During lunch, I wandered over to Alan's office, which is next to mine. I mentioned that this blog generation code was basically finished (read: abandoned) and he could look at the results of my work. He fired up firefox, which took around 15 minutes because his machine was interacting with "the grid", and .....
"You used a center tag?", Alan said in a distasteful tone after dismissing the content and inspecting the html source. "Uh, yeah", I mumbled, "Isn't html circa 1994 good enough for you?". After an uncomfortably long stare from Alan, he casually mentions that my life would be better if I used CSS.
Now, I've used CSS before--my poor excuse for a home page has some on it, but I never really understood it. This was simply because creating HTML is about as appealing to me as a bone marrow transplant without anesthetic. Never seriously reading any documentation and mostly goading others to write it for me probably had a big contribution as well... So, Alan began his explanation and, after a while, I actually began to like what CSS could do for you. It could alter the layout of a page very nicely and you don't have to change the HTML at all. With some simple span and div tags you could do anything.
SNAP OUT OF IT! What was I thinking?!? Here's reality: CSS is a sucking pile of feces. Even though it solved all of my problems, fixed up the layout to look nice, and was quite pleasurable to use, deep inside somewhere there is a rotten core. It is present simply because a human designed it and we all know how well humanity is doing of late. Sure, I might not see it and it is all peaches and roses right now--but mark my words there is a soaking pit of sanity destroying hell waiting to ensnare and shatter your mind. This is the nature of computers and the reason why I have slowly begun to loathe them.
A computer and the code it executes are the actualized representations of human desire. Vast intellect concentrates into computer hardware and software, but, in addition, a form of highly distilled idiocy congeals and hides in the reified thought. This isn't your run of the mill idiocy such as reading a book while driving and inattentively slamming into a bus full of school kids. Instead it is insidious idiocy. It is the kind of idiocy that when you encounter it, you wonder if someone actually sat down and fashioned that idiotic thing in just so a manner as to be a blighted red tide upon the seas of intellect.
It is the kind of idiocy that needs so much experience and wisdom to see, that once seen and understood, with realization often coming in an instant, you gravely reflect on the amount of your life that was wasted finding it. It is the idiocy that grows and can overwhelm both a project and/or a mind. It is the idiocy that every so often is actually required--at great cost to sanity, for smooth operations. This blog (I hate that word almost as much as any particular distribution of Unix) is mainly here to talk about these hidden pockets of monumental frustration and other things for which I care to babble.
Obviously, if I had a comment system, people would be queuing up and buying tickets to point out some stupidity that I wrote in code or said in these pages. While asserting their mental dominance over me, they'd probably get in a jab on how ugly the style of the pages are to get some self-gratification for free. In many and/or all cases, they'd be right and I'd be made a fool.
But to these people I say to you: I know the Emperor has no clothes.
End of Line.