Saturday, August 29, 2009

Night Trail Run at Shakespear Regional Park

I just got back from an 11.5 Km night trail run up in Whangaparoa. I never would have thought that the limiting factor on my run time would be my cardio fitness, and I certainly wasn't expecting to finish so close to an hour (1:04:06), but I fell in with a group that had nice bright headlamps. I pushed hard to keep near enough to take advantage of multiple lights. One guy in particular had a huge spotlight mounted on his shoulder, there must have been a battery for it in his hydration pack. It was nice having him about 20 meters behind me for a good chunk of the race. :-)

The course was exellent . . . it was about an even mix of gravel road, single track, and paddock fence-lines. At one point we were running along a ridge with views of the Auckland skyline across the harbour on one side, and a stream of little multi-colored lights trickling up the hill out of the dark on the other.

I wish I'd had my little camera and a gorilla-pod along for that moment. At the finish, I did manage to grab my SLR and a tripod in time to catch some of the later finishers coming through:

Night Run Finish Line

As usual for TotalSport events, there were beer and sausages at the finish! Tomorrow is the last XTerra race at the same location. I'll get to see what we ran through tonight, plus a bunch of coastal rock scrambling.

Night Run Post Race BBQ

Tumblr Badge for Blogs and CSS Troubleshooting

My post on how to use CSS to restyle Tumblr's default blog widget has been quite popular. One commenter pointed out that it wasn't displaying properly in IE6 or IE7 (surprise). After a bit of investigation, it turned out to be the Usual Suspect: browser differences in default Box Model behavior.

Specifically, it appears that IE versions lower than 8 use a large amount of default margin to move elements to their default starting position in a container.  Firefox, Chrome, and Safari, on the other hand, seem to use about the same amount of space, but in Padding. You can see the difference in the two screen captures below.   The Red border is the Tumblr_Posts div.

Note that in Firefox above, the whitespace is on the inside of the Div, it's "Padding" of about 50 pixels. In IE below, it's also about 50 pixels, same resulting position, but caused by outside the Div "Margin" space.

My goal with the stylesheet was to keep a minimum of whitespace between the outer container (Green border), and the little photo boxes (inside the red box). I did that with the first CSS property that came to mind: Margin-Left. I raised that number until it looked how I wanted it in Chrome, doublechecked it in IE8, Firefox, and iPhone Safari, then published it. Unfortunately, since IE6 started with Margin-Left at about 50px, the impact of setting Margin-Left to -30px was a 80px move in IE (compared to 35px in most other browsers). The result was the posts were chopped off about halfway across by the border of the sidebar.

The solution, as with most things in computing, is to reboot. ;-) Specifically, set all the box model numbers to the one number that puts all browsers on equal footing: zero.

Zeroing out both margin and padding did exactly what I wanted in the first place: let the Tumblr Post boxes fill the containing div. Any number would work actually, as long as you set them all explicitly, rather then letting the browsers use their assorted defaults.

    margin: 0px;
    padding: 0px; 

Anyway, hope that helps. If you went and read up on the CSS Box Model, or have wrestled with this stuff before, you'll probably find this amusing:

CSS is Awesome! Mug on Zazzle

Here's the current, corrected CSS:

    width: 110px;
    height: auto;
    float: right;
    margin: 7px;
    border: 2px black solid;
    margin: 0px;
    padding: 0px; 
    font-size: x-small;
    list-style-type: none;
    width: 210px;
    padding: 7px;
    margin: 5px;
    overflow: hidden;
    border: thin black outset;

Wednesday, August 05, 2009

Legend of the Seeker

Kel and I have gotten hooked on the Legend of the Seeker TV series. It's the latest from one of my favorite writer/producer/directors: Sam Raimi (Spiderman, Evil Dead, Hercules, and Xena). Like Hercules and Xena, it's filmed here in New Zealand.

I had to laugh while watching the pilot when I saw them go from riding horses in the Southern Alps to rolling down the North Island West Coast dunes in a matter of seconds.

I'm pretty sure the spot in the dunes where this scene was filmed is at Bethell's Beach where I was running The Superdune race just a week earlier. Though it could be the Te Paki Dunes up north. Either way I've been there . . . love it! :-)