Colby Palmer


I'm an Internet technologist, developer and entrepreneur who makes astounding experiences for world-class brands.

Every day I try to accomplish 3 great things: be a great husband, be a great dad, and be a great tech innovator.

A Much Needed Update

Finally bringing colbypalmer.com into this decade.

Today I get to release something special: a site I've built just for myself! This is special because I have been SO busy with client work that my site had become somewhat dated. I had been wanting to swap out the software from the excellent ExpressionEngine to a custom Django back end. (I mostly build in Django these days and it bugged me that my own site wasn't built with it.) I also wanted to update the front end with a modern HTML5/CSS3 interface - believe it or not, my old site was old enough to predate jQuery (not to mention border-radius and the like) so most of the UI was pretty rusty - not at all a showcase of my current skills.

So, welcome to the new colbypalmer.com. Tight, ain't it?

The site has a responsive layout that serves a different experience for desktop, tablet, mobile (landscape) and mobile (portrait). Try resizing your browser window to see what I mean! It's packed full of the latest HTML5/CSS3 goodness, with appropriate fallbacks for older browsers. It also is running a full-featured Django blog app that I've built and plan to open-source as soon as I can package up the code.

I plan to write up a couple things related to this site: a colophon page so I can credit folks whose plugins/apps this site uses, and tutorials on some of the cooler features I've got here - a few things that I developed in the course of making this site are worth sharing.

I'd love to hear your thoughts on the new site design - and if you chance to find any bugs I'd love to find out about those too! Please use the fancy new threaded commenting system to share your input.

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Posted on Sept. 20, 2011, 11:51 a.m. Tags: blog css3 django html5 jquery opensource

iTweet and OAuth

A good change for most! Inconvenient for others.

This morning marked the official deprecation of Twitter's basic authentication system. I had been working toward the changeover, and at about 8 am I switched iTweet.net over to OAuth-based authentication.

Things went pretty smoothly, I hope. Most people seem to have been able to refresh, authenticate with Twitter, and start tweeting again right away. Even aside from the improved security, the nicest immediate benefit is the API rate limit of 350 calls per hour instead of the 150/hour available through basic authentication. This will allow me to do some fun stuff that wasn't possible before.

The people who were most affected by this change were those who use iTweet because twitter.com is blocked due to a company firewall/filter or censorship. These folks are not able to sign in via OAuth, just due to the nature of what OAuth is. I'm bummed that this is the case, but don't immediately see a way around it - however I am open to ideas from any direction.

For the time being I've put a basic-authentication version of iTweet up at:

http://itweet.net/basic/
- and you can use it at that address for the next two weeks.

However, please note that Twitter is going to be cutting down the number of available API requests by 10% every business day until August 31, when basic authentication will be switched off entirely. You can read about this in the twitter-development Google group. If you're one of the folks who use iTweet to get around a filter, this is a bummer.

So by the end of the month people needing a proxy for twitter.com will be out of luck. I'm open to suggestions as to how this inconvenience could be avoided, as this change will happen for all apps, not just iTweet.net - feel free to post ideas in the comments.

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Posted on Aug. 17, 2010, 5:57 a.m. Tags: api itweet oauth twitter

Blocked Port 25: SMTP Using Postfix on Go Daddy Dedicated Server

How to use Godaddy's relay server for outgoing email on a Go Daddy dedicated server.

I've been setting up a new dedicated server at Go Daddy running Ubuntu 8.04 (Hardy Heron).  I was following The Perfect Server guide at HowToForge, and it was very helpful, especially in the area of setting up email using Postfix, which is new to me.

I did run into an unexpected problem with outgoing email - it wasn't going out, or anywhere for that matter!  Taking a look in /var/log/mail.log showed an error saying "No route to host".  Trying to telnet to any other domain would give me the same error.  A little Googling dug up the fact that Godaddy blocks outgoing traffic on port 25, which is used for SMTP.  However they do provide a relay server that you can use for your outgoing mail.

The relay server is k2smtpout.secureserver.net.  To use it, edit /etc/postfix/main.cf and set the relayhost line to look like this:

  1. relayhost = [k2smtpout.secureserver.net]

Then restart Postfix with the command:

  1. sudo /etc/init.d/postfix restart

And that should do it!  I had a lot of trouble diagnosing the problem and then finding the solution, so I thought I would post it here to help anyone else experiencing this problem.

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Posted on July 15, 2010, 10:40 p.m. Tags: godaddy postfix smtp ubuntu