"The Road" Blogmaster Change Log.

Peter at work

In this "change log", I track the changes and updates made in all my blogs. Over the years, it grew almost a work sheet, showing that "serious blogging" does a certain effort :-)

Updates for Jan 2012:

On Facebook? Follow: The Road, AidNews, AidResources, Humanitarian News, News on Green, AidJobs and NonProfitBlogs.
Moved all aggregators onto a faster server, did some major reconfigurations to increase the loading speed.
Started AidJobs, a new aggregrator for job vacancies in the nonprofit world.

Updates for April 2011:
(what April already? Dah!?)

Moved Shotfromthehip to a faster server.

Updates for Jan 2011:

Look and feel changes changes:
I implemented a mobile theme for several of my blogs, to make browsing from a mobile device easier: AidNews, AidResources, News On Green, AidBlogs, The NonProfit Blogs, Blogging Today and The Weird Bit

Updates for Dec 2010:
(uh, December again? Where did the year go?)

Content changes:
I updated the my blogroll links

Look and feel changes changes:
Over the Xmas period, I revamped the Humanitarian News sister sites. They feature more or less the same content, but present the news in a different layout and navigation:
  • AidNews is a super fast collector of the latest news from countries in the aid spotlight
  • AidResources aggregates the latest articles from dozens of reference sites
  • News On Green summarizes the latest environmental news
  • AidBlogs is the one and only aidworker blog collector
  • The NonProfit Blogs aggregates the posts from over 800 nonprofit blogs
  • Blogging Today is the magazine for bloggers and social media fanatics
  • The Weird Bit... because life is too serious too often
Internal and technical changes:
- I reviewed and updated all 1,500 links to blogs and websites I aggregate.

Updates for Sept-Oct-Nov 2010:

Internal and technical changes:
Spent most of my time and efforts moving Humanitarian News, Have Impact and BlogTips to a new server. With thanks to Andrea and Fabio for their help.

Updates for August 2010:

Content changes:
The Two Series, my latest Twitter feeds let you follow all humanitarian news at 2 tph (Tweets Per Hour).

Updates for July 2010:

Look and feel changes changes:
- Found the solution for the funny characters that appeared in many posts on Humanitarian News

Internal and technical changes:
- Had major problems with the performance of the Humanitarian News hosting server. Had to disable the Drupal search and the search-based RSS feed generation. The site went down for 20 hours.
- My House on the Road had several problems in loading pages. I disabled the caching. Will monitor how it goes.
- And to continue in this period of technical problems: Scribbles had problems with the caching too, causing a problem to load the home page. Is now resolved.

Updates for June 2010:

Content changes:
- Updated all the links (aidresources, aidblogs) on The Road
- Dazzed up the look and feel of the Twitter widget on The Road. You like those little Tweetie bullets?

Look and feel changes changes:
- Gave The Non-Profit press a new look.
- Moved the links from The Road's home page to separate pages, collected onto one masterpage.
- Updated the menu just below the banner.

Internal and technical changes:
- I finally nailed down the problem with the search on Humanitarian News (which was no longer returning the latest articles on any search). There is still a time-out issue though...
- Changed all meta data of newer blogs.

Updates for May 2010:

Content changes:
- added a lot of feeds as input to www.aidnews.org and www.humanitariannews.org as well as nonprofitblogs.info

Look and feel changes changes:
- did major changes to the download speed of www.humanitariannews.org
- overhauled and simplified the theme of BlogTips

Internal and technical changes:
- Changed the images and some gadgets on the front page of The Road so it could download faster.
- This was a sad month during which www.blogtips.org and www.humanitariannews.org were hacked. All is cured now.

Updates for Jan-April 2010:

Content changes:
- updated the aidworkers blogroll on the side column
- moved older aidworkers blogs to their archive 
- introduced The Non-profit Press with the latest press releases from non-profit organisations
- cross-posted the last 6 months of my 'best writing' to Scribbles

Look and feel changes changes:
- added a widget on the sidebar with the latest feeds of humanitarian highlights

Internal and technical changes:
- did some major upgrades of the CMS for most of my self hosted sites

Updates for December 2009:

Content changes:
- Announcing Shot from the Hip, a new blog with pictures taken from my mobile phone.

Look and feel changes changes:
- Solved a formatting problem on Change Thru Info and AidBlogs that would "staircase" posts when the body of the post was empty.
- Gave Humanitarian News a complete new template

Updates for November 2009:

Content changes:
- Because life is too short to be serious all the time, I launched: "The Weird Bit", collecting odd newsbits. Follow as @TheWeirdBit on Twitter.
- Updated my aidblogs and aidresouces section. Deleted old links and sites no longer updated.
- "Snapped", "interviews" and "Song of the Day" are official subject series now on The Road. :-)

Look and feel changes changes:
- I re-arranged the drop down menu options, and added new "Series" items, so it is easier to follow certain types of posts.
- Solved a display problem on AidNews that would "staircase" posts when the body of the post was empty.
- Deleted the polls from all eBook short stories on The Road.

Internal and technical changes:
- Yahoo Pipes, the engine I use to import posts on Humanitarian News -amongst others- had a lot of problems this month. Many manual interventions to keep the import of posts going. Dah..
- The search functions on AidNews, AidBlogs and Change Thru Info are cooking now! Broke a while ago, but took some time before Google indexed the sites fast enough.

Updates for October 2009:

Content changes:
- Added a widget in the side bar "Humanitarian Spotlight" with links to the latest news of spots that keeps us, aidworkers, busy. It also includes individual RSS feeds for those topics.

Updates for September 2009:

Content changes:
- Started a new mega aggregator site for nonprofit news: Humanitarian News. Follow on Twitter via @HumanityNews
- Implemented RSS feeds for the different kinds of news streams on Humanitarian News.
- And another one: You and Us and Me with news clips about the environment. Follow on Twitter via @NewsOnGreen
- On a new blog "Scribbles" I publish my most notorious writings.
- I released My Home on the Road as a homepage of some sorts. It displays the feeds to all my blogs on one page, and has several pages attached with my preferred newsfeeds.

Look and feel changes changes:
- Added a 'Followers' widget in the side column
- Added related posts with a picture at the bottom of each post.
- Changed the drop down menu slightly. "My other sites" now links to a page which lists all my blogs and websites.
- Made new post category: "Songs of the Day", which collects all the music videos I published on The Road

Internal and technical changes:
- Started to clean up the post labels. Deleted all labels that had only one reference.

Updates for August 2009:

Loads of changes this month! The Road's blog layout was completely overhauled.

Content changes:
- deleted the humanitarian news feed in the side column. I guess if people want to read the humanitarian news, they'd go to AidNews.
- My latest project: In The Nonprofit Blogs I collected the latest posts from 200 blogs in the soft sector.

Look and feel changes changes:
- Implemented a new template, migrated all widgets, but still fine-tuning and moving stuff around.
- You can now leave a comment underneath a full post. Previously, you had to click on comments to leave a comment...
- Implemented a new 'read more' feature which refreshes the screen showing the full post.
- Standardized the "+" icon to "Read More" or "Expand" for all widgets.
- Aidblogs, Aidnews,.. widgets in the sidebars are now collapsed

Internal and technical changes:
- solved a bug with underlining when hovering over a link (OMG! Earth shattering!)
- tweaked what I wanted to do since a long time: the blog archive list..
- changed the look of the labels list.
- solved a bug in the collapse feature through which all sidecolumns appeared below the posts (nasty...!)
- I went through all 1,500 active posts to correct any formatting problems after I switched to the new template.

Updates for July 2009:

Content changes:
- Started a new blog Have Impact!, which concentrates around our microfinance projects.

Look and feel changes changes:
- the humanitarian newsfeed is now a blogpost rather than a collapsable list in the side column
- moved the 'addthis' button (enables readers to share posts via social bookmarking) to the 'feed' box in the side column

Internal and technical changes:
- I changed the "meta blogs" to their own domains: www.aidblogs.org (the aggregator for the aidworker blogs), www.aidnews.org (the aggregator for aid news), www.thehorizon.info (my Internet clips), www.changethru.info (the aggregator for aid and development resources).
- Got tired with the performance problems of the 'Addthis' button underneath each post. I replaced it with 'ShareThis'.. Let's see if the performance gets better.
- Improved the download speed of the home page

Updates for June 2009:

Content changes:
- I started a new blog Blog Tips, filled with tips for the Non-Profit Blogger.
- Started a new Twitter account linked to BlogTips: BloggerTip
- Added a RSS feed of all the Twitterers on the ground in Iran, on the side bar. Let's wish all of these people the best of luck in their strife for social change...

Look and feel changes changes:
- Changed the way I retrieve my twitter feed, so updates publish much faster. (did loose the cute little Twitter Icon along the way, though...)

Internal and technical changes:
none this month

Updates for May 2009:

Content changes:
- I kicked off 3 new Twitter streams: AidNews, AidBlogs and Change Thru Info
- added new aidblogs to the list of aidworker blogs in the sidecolumn, and updated my aidnews and aid resources list.

Look and feel changes changes:
- added an RSS feed icon in the sidecolumn for aidblogs, aidresources and aidnews so you can more easily subscribe to those sites' feeds
- deleted the link to the comments RSS feed after the posts. It just confused people
- On AidBlogs, AidNews and For Those Who Want to Know, I now marked a clearer link to the full article.

Internal and technical changes:
- AidBlogs did not post updates for a couple of days. Problem with the publishing queue is now resolved.
- Our Forum had a technical hiccup, is resolved now.
- I move the RSS feed services from Feedburner to Google. If you have any problems with the feeds, let me know.

Updates for April 2009:

Content changes:
- Check out my Delicious account for interesting random clips I find while fooling around on the Web.

Look and feel changes changes:
- Added a little balloon icon for the comment feeds in the side column. Cute, no? ;-)
- Reformatted several of the sidecolumn features so they appear with the same layout.

Internal and technical changes:
none this month

Updates for March 2009:

Content changes:
- Added a technology page to NewsFeeds, showing the latest news articles from the technology world.
- Added a dozen new blogs to the Aid Blogs section in the side column. I added them also to my AidBlogs site.
- Added over 100 new sites to the Aid Resources list in the side column. Also added them to the For Those Who Want to Know site.
- Added a timeline for the Sudan crisis in the side column
- Added my Facebook profile to "You can find me here" in the side column

Look and feel changes changes:
- Moved the RSS feeds and Email description into a separate widget in the side column
- Cleaned up the [[under construction]] news feeds on my newsfeeds site.
- Deleted the "causes" I used to display at the bottom of the home page, and put them in a separate page. I refer to that page from a widget in the side column. It increases the download speed of the home page (and nobody found those activism sites at the bottom of the page anyway). Ah... things one learns! ;-)

Internal and technical changes:
- Had a problem on my newsfeeds site, caused by Google Gadgets (or Google Sites, or a combination of both). Was corrected and tested.

Updates for February 2009:

Content changes:
- To celebrate my 1001th blog post on The Road, I launched a new site: NewsFeeds, showing the latest 2000 news articles from hundreds of different sources.
- Updated the aidblogs list
- In the side column, I added a list of social bookmarking sites you can find me on

Look and feel changes changes:
- Corrected some layout bugs in the feed for the 'Latest comments'
- now only using the collapse feature on posts which are on the home page of the blog. Once per month, I take all collapse-stuff out of old posts.

Internal and technical changes:
- Added RSS feeds now showing the latest discussion topics of The Road's Forum and deleted it again, as the forum host disabled RSS feeds :(

Updates for January 2009:

Content changes:
- updated the "aid resource" links in the right column.
- updated and added links to For Those Who Want To Know". Over 150 different RSS feeds are now collected.
- I added a widget with the latest Twitter feeds in the side column
- Updated the expat blog and aidworkers blog lists in the side column

Look and feel changes changes:
- To start off the new year on a good foot, I changed the layout of the right column. Hope you like it!
- I also deleted the blogger navigation bar on the top.
- I no longer put the captions "News" and "Rumble" in the title of the posts.. Took too much space.
- To optimize the space used in the side column, I am making several lists/items expandable/collapsable with a widget "+/-". Will start to use it more extensively... I am a nerd! ;-)
- Also started to collapse/expand some of the blog posts, as an experiment. Have put up a small poll to get feedback from the readers.
- I changed the search widget in the side column to only search The Road.
- implemented collapse/expand feature for the eBook short stories.
- Changed the layout of the post titles and the widgets at the bottom of the page. Not only does it look better, it also increases the download speed (as it no longer loads an image for the line under the post title.)
- I finally figured out how to change the Blogger favicon (the small icon thingie you see in your browser URL-line and in your bookmarks). From now on, on both The Road as well as the "meta blogs" (AidBlogs, For Those Who Want to Know, The Signs Along the Road and AidNews), your browser will show "The Road's" icon.
- On The Road's discussion forum, users reported problems with the search function on the metablogs. The problem was reported to Tumblr, the bloghost, but was not resolved. I have replaced the Tumblr search with a Google search.

Internal and technical changes:
- corrected a bug in the post archive widget in the side column (old posts were shown in a big rather than in a small font)
- I worked quite a bit to further to speed up the download speed of the blog: I removed the Woopra statistics monitoring and deleted the syndication widgets from the bottom of the page; corrected a bug with the top banner; and avoided using an image for the 'underline' feature under each post title. Firebug is a great tool to debug for speed!

Updates for December 2008:

- There was a bug in the Google search, as it also searched in the subsites of the Road (AidNews, AidBlogs,...). Is corrected.
- Corrected the broken video links in my post about Monsanto.
- There were several problems with Tumblr, Yahoo Pipes etc.. that affected my new sites: AidBlogs, For Those Who Want to Know and Aid News... These all seem resolved now. Did cost me a couple of sleepless nights.
- Started The Road's own discussion forum! Now how many blogs have that, hey?! ;-)
- The list of aid resources was getting too big for the front page, so I moved them to a separate page
- My metablogs (AidBlogs, For Those Who Want to Know, AidNews and The Signs Along the Road) now all have a small menu making it easier to navigate.

Updates for Nov 2008:

- Changed the font to Verdana and changed the hypertext to normal roman font.. Makes it easier on the eyes.
- I am really proud to announce the start of The Road's social project: "Change Starts Here".
- A new post category on The Road: In Picks of the week I collect interesting sites or posts.
- You can now follow me on Twitter
- There was a coding error in the drop down menu for 'Email updates'. Is corrected now.

Updates for Oct 2008:

- Continued optimizing the download speed of this website. Took a poll of how readers appreciate the download speed. Think I got the speed where I want it.
- I made on a news clipping site called Signs Along The Road and made a new aggregator for blogs from active aidworkers. Have a look!
- Installed new dropdown menus, so I could take away some of the pseudo-navigation clutter in the right column.

new road feature

- Turned my heart into a stone (Flemish saying), and combined all the different news feeds from the right column into one big feed. I hope that gives less clutter and downloads faster...
- Put all the feed syndication into a separate page.
- I started a new feature: in Picks of the week I collect interesting sites or posts.

Updates for Sept 2008:

- Iiihaaaaaa! We migrated The Road from "theroadtothehorizon.blogspot.com" to its own domain "theroadtothehorizon.org". All links seem to work. Migrated directories, blog widgets etc..
There is an automatic forwarding from the old to the new domain, so all should be pretty transparent for the reader.
Meanwhile, I also started a new Email address for correspondence concerning The Road:
peter (a) theroadtothehorizon (dot) org

- I optimized the download speed of The Road. I now religiously compress all pictures I publish, replaced any widget icons with icons stored on Flickr, deleted a number of widgets from the right column and moved some widgets or links that seemed to hold up the download to from the side to the bottom of the page.

- I am spending a lot of time in scouting the web for reference news articles, aid blogs, aid resources etc.., and in keeping all of it updated. Most of the results of the blood, sweat and tears, you can find in the right column.

Updates for August 2008:

- I added interesting blogs and resources for aid workers in the right column, cleaned up those blogs which are no longer active.
- cleaned up the humanitarian newsfeeds in the right column. Deleted several headers, making the layout easier.

Updates for May 2008:

I have updated the list of interesting blogs and resources for aid workers in the right column

Updates for April 2008:

I am started a new series: "Picture of the Day", to post pictures I come across that speak a thousand words.
This would add one more series to the posts prefixes we already have:
- "News" (for news clippings);
- "Rumble" (for random thoughts and things that are happening around me);
- "Tips & Tricks" (for blogging tips); or
- [nothing] (for the short stories).

Updates for March 2008:
  • I spent quite a bit of time to update the links to blogs and sites of aid workers and aid work (in the side column)... Hope you enjoy...
  • Have also a look at all the news feeds in the side column.. All of them are updated automatically with every refresh.
  • I updated and added more Blogger's tips and tricks.

Updates for January 2008:

My friend "E" and I edited some of the previously published rumbles written by Cyprien, Enrico and herself into eBook short stories. By coincidence, all stories are about life in Sudan, but mostly about life as an aid worker. Enjoy!

This Man... (by "E" herself)
Murphy's Law in Sudan (by Enrico Pausilli)
How Deep Is the Deep Field? (by Enrico Pausilli)
The Pit Latrine? (by Enrico Pausilli)
Twenty-Four Hours in Aweil (by Cyprien Hiniolwa)
The Theory of Relativity (by Enrico Pausilli)
The Forces of Nature (by Enrico Pausilli)
The Perfect Balance (by Enrico Pausilli)
The Driver's License (by Enrico Pausilli)

Updates for December 2007:
  • I released several new short stories for the eBook: Nights on Deserted Island, Once Upon a Fine Antarctic Morning, Shit No Go - We No Go, Lost Connection, Ham Radio Anyone? and Doing Good to Others
  • To ease social bookmarking, I added a new icon under each post. It makes it easier for the reader to link to that post using IE Favorites, Digg, Facebook, Del.icio.us, My Yahoo, Newsvine, Technorati, etc...
  • I updated the links to other interesting blogs in the right column, and split them up in different groups. Have a read!
  • As I continue to get a lot of questions via email about aid work, and "How do I become an aidworker?", I included a new tab in the right column with interesting links to related to aid work, and life as an aidworker.
  • I updated and added more Blogger's tips and tricks.
  • I revisited several short stories, edited them and changed some pictures.. All new and updated short stories are marked as such.
  • As I can not keep up with the interesting news stories people send to me, I post more in my Newsvine space. The articles which are relevant to aid work, you can find back in the "International Aid Workers Group" on Newsvine.
  • I updated the my book library and added the latest books I am reading. You can find it under the tab "Need Inspiration: My Books".
December 25-31, 2007
  • I updated the links to other interesting blogs in the right column, and split them up in different groups.
  • I included a new tab in the right column with interesting links to related to aid work, and life as an aidworker.
  • I re-arranged the Ebook short stories in a more chronological order. If you hover over each short story, it now shows the country the story is about.
  • As the tag list for the posts was getting quite long, I put it in a scrollable frame. Saves space.
  • I updated and added more Blogger's tips and tricks.
  • As I can not keep up with the interesting news stories people send to me, I post more in my Newsvine space. The articles which are relevant to aid work, you can find back in the "International Aid Workers Group" on Newsvine.
  • I updated the my book library and added the latest books I am reading.
December 21-25, 2007
- Relabeled all News Round-up stories as 'News Item', renamed title to 'News'
- Added Adsense ads at the bottom of the page (let's try it again)
- Added links, page ranking, alexa ranking, and more detailed visitors stuff to the right column
- Rearranged right column a bit. Edited 'About the Road'

December 20, 2007
- Added New bookmarking with 'addit.com' to right column
- Added 'title' text to comments, deleted author name on post footers.
- Added 'addit.com' icon on post footers

December 9, 2007
- Added Page Rank to the right column
- Rearranged right column a bit.
- Upgraded (and edited) the GPS rumbles to a short story

November 11, 2007
- Changed the image of the video inspiration link
- Upgraded (and edited) the Itanglish rumble to a short story

November 9, 2007
- redid the links/blogroll part in the right column
(used direct links rather than Blogrolling)
- Updated "About me".
- Did something else, but forgot what. Oh, now I remember... I included a new site translation tool.

November 7, 2007
Updated "Navigating the Road", "About the Road" and the Ebook index.

November 6, 2007
- Replaced blogrolling links by direct links to the interesting blogs
- Deleted the note right under the header

August 23, 2007
- Redirected the blogger RSS feed to Feedburner.
- Reshuffled some items in the top right column
- Deleted inactive links in the directory links

June 12, 2007
Phew, it has been a while since I made structural changes to this site. Anyway, I updated the shortstory list by deleting 'New' icons for those stories which were new 3 months ago, but no longer now...

April 11, 2007
- Added a new link to read "The Road" without any graphics in the 'Navigation' chapter.
- Shortened the Humanitarian News Feed, but created a new site which contains all latest headlines.

March 30, 2007
- Changed the Humanitarian News feed to Newsgator and spent a night reformatting it. :-) Wonder if people find this useful.
- Added a 'last comment' feed (a few nights ago...)
- Updated some posts with new pictures.

March 28, 2007
The link to the video from Rageh Omaar got broken. New link restored

March 27, 2007
- aaah, i finally found a way to display my favorite books and music. Hope it can be of some inspiration. They are displayed in the right column and are linked to Amazon.com (which ask fair prices for the items..).
- I also added some inspirational videos into one post, linked through the right column

March 25, 2007
- I am reposting some of the older stories which I found to be un-read or under-read
- I re-edited 'What's in a Gesture' into a short-story

March 22, 2007
Added feeds for humanitarian news items and news from different agencies in the right column

March 20, 2007
Ok, that's it. No more Adsense ads. Only two ads remain, and these were paid for. If I want to generate money for a worthy cause, will have to do it with fixed ads. Have to say: it looks much nicer without the ads.

March 18, 2007
- Ok, giving the ads one more chance.
- I added a Tips & Tricks section so that other newbie bloggers like myself don't have to go through the same pains as I did, to get their site up and running

March 13, 2007
Reshuffled the layout a bit. Moved the ads down. A little bit more, and I will throw them out. Google Adsense should do a better job in assisting publishers defining what kind of ads they want. I am sick and tired of all military ads popping up each time I use the word 'military' in one of my texts. You should see what kind of ads I get when I use the words 'terrorist' and 'extremist'. Pffft :-(

March 12, 2007
- starting a new string of news feeds. Summaries will have a separate prefix "News Round-up"
- added box with date of next short-story release.

March 8, 2007
- added a guest book
- made a search shortcut to see all 'rumbling' posts

March 7, 2007
- Added a pointer to the Technorati and Feedburner links
- Listed the sites that blogrolled me.

March 4, 2007
- added the tag-label 'when will the next short story be published'.
- experimented with new font in last rumble, and appended the polls to the last

March 3, 2007
- added more bookmark links to ease subscription to the feeds.
- added the post labels (tags) as a new form of index
- replaced 'Blog' with the word 'Rumble' in the title of all all entries

March 1, 2007
Added the reader's digest.

Feb 25, 2007:
Added the blogrolling and (after reading the story where an online writer found out someone took his eBook, printed it, and sold it) I added the copyright stuff.

Feb 24, 2007:
Added RSS feed icons and fixed the Email subscription button

Feb 22, 2007:
-Fiddled around with the layout... Moved all icons for blog directories to the bottom. Going for a cleaner look. Spring cleanup.
- Moved the 'vote for me' icons into the poll section. Ay. Hope people will find it there, and still poll me...

Feb 19, 2007:
- Added a separate poll after each eBook story, and after each blog I thought had the potential to be re-edited into an eBook story...
- Converted 'The US Special forces' and 'TV Censorship the Pakistani Way' from blogs to new eBook stories.
- Ooops. Dropped the "Ugly Duckling" story from the eBook directory... Thanks for letting me know.. Added it again..

Feb 17, 2007:
Moved the poll away from the main page and put it in a separate page.

Feb 16, 2007:
  1. I marked the eBook directory with tags 'new', and 'updated' to indicated the most recent changes
  2. My Dutch eBook (about my expeditions to the Pacific and Antarctic) is now ready, with hundreds of pictures: Verslaafd aan de Horizon
  3. I have started translating parts of this blog-site into Dutch, published here
  4. As an experiment I have added polls to the latest stories so I can get faster feedback. If you think they are a drag, let me know.
  5. Added pictures from my time in Dubai- UAE and East Timor (they were taken one day before Pero was killed) to the Flickr account. You can access the pictures through the 'My Pictures' section
  6. Oh, and I changed the front page banner. Pretty cool, no? A picture taken by my friend Arie Nugteren during our expedition to Howland Island in the Pacific.


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