strange_complex: (Me Mithraeum)
I am now back from Cyprus (which I'll post about separately later), and have spent this afternoon setting up a Dreamwidth account. I no longer trust LJ not to delete my account unexpectedly, or indeed disappear altogether, so I want the security of a backup. And, since I'm setting it up anyway, I may as well use the new account properly and interact with people there.

You can find me at strange_complex. There aren't any entries on the new account yet, as the import is still running. I am also currently fiddling about with different display options - especially trying to figure out how to make it render nicely on both my gigantic home desktop PC and my smartphone.

I have systematically gone through my LJ friends list, looking for accounts with the same name on DW and granting access / subscribing to them if I was confident that they were the same person. I've also granted access / subscribed to everyone I knew about who is there under a different username. But obviously people whose (former) LJ and DW names are different are harder to find, so if I haven't found you yet, please let me know who you are there.

I think my long-term plan is to continue reading my friends pages on both sites, cross-posting my own entries on both, and allowing comments on both. That means nothing much should change from the point of view of people who want to remain LJ-only and continue interacting with me here. Eventually, I will identify all the people who are cross-posting to DW and filter them off my LJ friends page so that I don't have to see their entries twice. But even then I won't be defriending them on LJ, as I still want everyone to have the same access to my journal whichever site they are coming from. It's just that I will be working across the two sites, seeing all the same content as before but spread across two reading pages.

I don't have any plans to delete my LJ. I don't think that would achieve anything, while it would cut me off from people who prefer to stay LJ-only themselves. I'm sad, though, that after almost 14 years I no longer feel like I can trust what was once the most important site on the internet for me.
strange_complex: (Saturnalian Santa)
I have wanted to make this post for three days, but have been unable to do so until now because I could not load my LJ photo galleries. As multiple friends have noted, LJ has been shonky in a number of ways over the same period, and although it seems OK again now, the problems seem to be associated with a server move to Russia - and I must say I also feel very uncomfortable about relying on anything in Russia for the ongoing preservation of a journal I have been carefully curating for 13 years now. I've never felt so inclined to set up a Dreamwidth mirror... but then again something [livejournal.com profile] nwhyte said in an entry earlier today made me doubt that Dreamwidth has proper picture-hosting facilities at all. It's all sadly ironic that this should happen just when people are genuinely popping up on LJ again, thanks I understand to a FB LJ-nostalgia community.

Anyway, here's what I actually wanted to post - a few pictures of our Christmas. We booked a cottage in the Cotswolds village of Bourton-on-the-Water this year - 'we' in this case being me, my Dad, my sister and her husband and children. None of us had ever done Christmas this way before, but we decided to try it on the grounds that it would be healthier and cheerier to do something new and different this year, rather than try to re-create our normal family Christmas but with one person missing. It would also allow flexible levels of participation for each person, in that everyone could choose whether to hang out with the other cottage residents, go out for a walk or simply lie on their bed reading a book. And I'm glad to say it worked really well. We did remember Mum of course, and Dad had a couple of tearful moments. But for a first Christmas without her, it was actually really nice and enjoyable and nothing like as difficult as I suspect it would have been in the family home, or even my sister's home (where Mum had also been for Christmas day a couple of times in recent years).

We arrived in the afternoon of the 23rd, in pretty rotten weather, and got settled in. We had brought a LOT of food, which took quite a bit of unpacking and putting away, while Christophe admired the (fake) Christmas tree which the cottage owners had supplied, and Eloise enjoyed The Snow Dog.

Pictures start here )

Anyway, here we are in the Festive Perineum (h/t [livejournal.com profile] inbetween_girl), which I found boring as a teenager, but has now become one of my favourite times of the year. The obligations of Christmas are all fulfilled, my work email account is blissfully free of people demanding things, and it is genuinely OK to sit around in my dressing-gown watching a Buffy marathon on SyFy and ordering the unpurchased items on my Amazon wish-list. I wondered about driving up to Allendale for their New Year's tar bar'l procession this year, as 2016 is a year which I feel pretty strongly could do with a good burning out. But the weather reports say it will be raining pretty heavily there right over midnight, so maybe not. I am open to other suggestions, if anyone has any?

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strange_complex: (Doctor Caecilius hands)
Before I changed my LJ username, I wondered what this was going to do to the old OpenID presence based on it which I had on Dreamwidth. Nobody knew for sure, so in the end I decided to find out by just doing it and seeing what happened.

I can now report that the answer is that I have lost control of the old OpenID, and have been allocated a completely new profile by Dreamwidth. Even if I try to log in as "purple-pen.livejournal.com", the system interprets me as "strange-complex.livejournal.com". No-one else can get into it either, so it isn't a security risk. It is just an orphan identity which I can no longer access.

That's not particularly troublesome to me, because I didn't have a particularly highly developed Dreamwidth presence anyway. I had used the old OpenID for occasional commenting, a handful of DW users had granted it full access to their journals, and one person had used it to subscribe to my LJ from her DW reading page. I've effectively lost all those connections now, but since there weren't that many of them, I will live.

But obviously for people with a more highly-developed OpenID-based Dreamwidth presence, losing it all because they had changed their LJ name could be a major pain in the ass. So I'm writing this post about it partly so that it can be used as a reference-point for anyone in the future wanting to know what will happen to their OpenID if they rename their livejournal.

I'm also writing this because I am going to need to ask anyone who wants me to be able to see and comment on their friendslocked DW content, or anyone who wants to read my LJ from DW, to re-grant me access to your DW journal or re-subscribe to me as appropriate.

In practice, I think the only DW journals I've ever actually commented on are miss_s_b's and matgb's - and I see that miss_s_b has already updated her access / subscription links, so thank you sweetie! But for the record, these are the other DW users who had previously granted me access to their journals:
  • ashavah
  • dadi
  • gylfinir
  • katsmeat
  • lefaym
  • matgb
  • mia_oia
  • moominlou
  • mother_bones
  • nmg
  • nwhyte
  • swisstone
If those people, or indeed anyone else, want me to have OpenID access to their DW journals, could you please update your permissions? Thanks! :-)

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strange_complex: (Computer baby)
(Well, or for anyone who knows anything about how OpenID works, really.)

As mentioned in my last entry, I am planning to rename my LJ. However, I am very unsure as to what effect this will have on the OpenID that is based on my current LJ name, and particularly the Dreamwidth presence I have which allows me to comment on some of your journals.

For the record, I plan to use the 'forwarding' version of the LJ rename service, so my old LJ username shouldn't be vulnerable to getting bought up by someone else who can then take over my old OpenID. But other than that, I really don't know what effect the rename will have. So far as I'm concerned it could be anything between my previous OpenID completely disappearing at one end, and the system being so clever that it recognises my rename and updates the OpenID too at the other (though I really doubt that the latter will happen).

If any Dreamwidth-enabled people actually know what will happen, and are able to comment on it, I'd be really grateful. I haven't been able to find out anything via Google that would help me to predict what it will be, so it may just end up being a great big leap into the unknown. At worst, I can always just abandon the old OpenID and set up a new one linked to my new LJ name. But if that's how it ends up being, here at least is a heads-up letting you know to look out for me under the new name.

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