Boo!

It will come as no surprise to recent readers that this website and many of the others on lochac.sca.org have been feeling a little unwell. The explanation for the extended downtime is long and painful, but here’s the precis: the Masonry team, who look after Lochac’s websites, took the opportunity of some unexpected downtime to upgrade a few features in the name of security and maintainability, and because every silver lining has a cloud, this has meant a certain amount of fiddling with individual branch sites. The results will, eventually, be beneficial for everyone, but for now the lads are paddling hard just to stay in one spot.

By the time you read this, unless you’re suffering the same dreadful lurgi that has me coughing my lungs out and unable to sleep at five in the morning, a bunch of files will have been uploaded to the correct place and you should be able to see them again. That includes all the documents in our Arts & Sciences section, and also all the various photos we have about the site. The theme has changed, but that was coming anyway since the original one had a couple of bugs that made it hard to use on smartphone web browsers. And there will no doubt be some flaky behaviour here and there, but I hope to get that stamped on. Wish me luck!

Awards!

I am pleased to announce that the Roll of Arms of the barony of Ynys Fawr is finally up and functional. I’ve slurped all the data out of the old database and merged it with the information I already had. I believe we now have everybody on there who has ever received an award in Ynys Fawr… but as usual, there are mysteries.

The first mystery is that almost nobody in that database had a baronial award without also having a kingdom or former principality award as well. That seems very odd indeed! I suspect that some information has been lost, but I can’t find it, due to it being lost. I welcome any help that anyone can give.

There’s also the matter of one award given to one person in the barony, even though the award doesn’t exist! I can find no mention of it anywhere, so I suspect it was a one-off “pretend” award. Nothing wrong with that — I’m on record as a big fan of the Royal Order of the Gingernut, one of Lochac’s best and most unofficial awards. But I will be chasing the recipient down to get the full story.

And sadly, we don’t yet have an Order of Precedence, which is the same as a Roll of Arms but arranged by rank rather than name. That’s on my TODO list for a bit later on.

Still, what we do have is pretty good. Don’t forget to recommend people for awards if you feel they’re lacking, and I’m sure they are! Contact the Baron and Baroness to recommend baronial awards, or send a message via Canon Lore to the King and Queen for kingdom awards and peerages.

What I Did On My Summer Holiday, By Bat, Aged 516¾

I have to start by saying that I took on the job of webminister without paying nearly enough attention to the work done by my predecessor, Fra João Baptista de Oliveira. It took some puzzled comments from citizens more compos mentis than me before I realised that a lot of bits were still missing.

The photo gallery, for example, confused me for a while. I had a complete copy of all the files that went into Fra João’s website, and there were no photos there, so I always assumed that he’d never gotten around to adding any. It was only when people asked me where all the other photos had gone that I realised: they were there, but hidden! I found them eventually, in an unexpected place, and with a marathon effort of programming managed to upload the lot to the barony’s Flickr account. You can see them there if you like, and please do! There are thousands of them! Far from “never getting around to it”, Fra João had probably the most extensive collection of photos of any barony in the kingdom! So I’m glad I found those.

More recently, I’ve been discovering his records of the awards of the barony. I knew they were in there somewhere, but today I finally began extracting them. I already have all the kingdom awards, easily extracted thanks to knowledge gleaned from my time maintaining the Canon Lore website. Now I’m getting all the baronial awards. They’ll be up soon, merged and properly arranged. Once again the effort is Fra João’s; I’m just the bugger who’s sitting here taking all the credit and laughing evilly. Bwahahahahahaha!

(Thanks, João!)

The Officers’ Blogs

It occurs to me that everyone likes to know what’s ahead of them – hence the popularity of headlights, astrologers and guessing – so it makes sense for me to start writing here about what I’m planning for this website. If you like, you can think of this as my report to the barony, but really it’s just Yet Another Blog.

The trick with any website is to update it regularly, which is where the idea of the Officers’ Blogs comes in. Peddants will have noted the position of the apostrophe in that title; I’m hoping (dare I say expecting?) that many officers will take up the offer to use this forum to communicate with the barony. For now it’s just me, of course, until I tell the rest of the lasses and lads about it all.