Yes, it’s true…

Now that I’m not using post titles all the time, I need to add a permanent link icon to each post. Working on that now…

UPDATE: I added a bolded link labeled…wait for it…”LINK” at the footer of each post. That way, the world still gets a permalink if I don’t title a post.

Help with a bit of easy SQL!

Hey, prepare for a bleg: I’m looking for an SQL pro to give me a hand with a bit of a tricky sql statement. An gift certificate for $10 (I know, big bucks!) goes to whoever can successfully help me with this issue.

Here’s the deal: I’ve got 3 tables in my database- users, directors, and movies. When my user logs in, I want to display their favorite movies, organized by director. An example of what a user would see when they log in:

Steven Speilberg

* AI
* Minority Report
* ET

Woody Allen

* Annie Hall
* Crimes and Misdemeanors
* Bullets Over Broadway

Now, the problem I’m having is that my attempts to pull both the directors, as well as their films, out of the database, are failing miserably. Instead of pulling one instance of each director along with a list of their movies beneath their name, right now I’m getting:

* One instance of the director’s name displayed for every movie in the movies table

Worse, I also get:

* A complete list of all movies from the movies table displayed under each director’s name (whether or not the movie is by that particular director).

So what I’m asking for (and what’ll score you that sweet Amazon gift card) is this:

* ONE QUERY to pull in the list of directors for a particular user, only outputting one instance of each director.


* ONE QUERY to pull in the particular director’s movies (again, these have to be sorted to make movie.users_userID = current logged in user, because users can have different lists of “favorite movies by fav directors”).

If you can give me a hand writing a quick (but somewhat tricky) sql statement, I’ll be forever grateful. I’ll demonstrate my gratefulness with an Amazon gift card. Send your assistance to Thanks in advance!

UPDATE: Contest over.

Network Landscape, version 3

Over last weekend, I spent a good amount of time updating Network Landscape, the TV/DVD/movies weblog I publish.

Besides a fresh design, the site got a new RSS feed, enhanced “quick news” section, leaner code, an update to its underlying blog software, and some other tweaks.

Over the next few weeks, the site will be roaring back to life, with writer Henry Hanks reviewing much of this season’s new crop of shows. We’ll also have some great giveaways, like LOST season 1 on DVD and more.

Check it out and feel free to send your feedback.

Various housekeeeping notes

In keeping with my recent rail against Technorati, I just updated the part of this site that automatically linked Technorati search results from the post (it was right over to the left there, under “Comments”).

Now, I’m linking you to results from Icerocket, a search engine. It’s just a trial, so let me know your thoughts on Icerocket’s blog search results.

Another note: Last week I was asking for help setting up Orb. I did get Orb running, but I haven’t had much of a chance to play with it yet. It’s pretty far down on the list of “things to do to be totally moved in to our new house (a novel-length list).”


I accidentally deleted every comment ever made to this blog. No, seriously, I am a bad person and an idiot.

So please, let this serve as official notice that I am not a censorship-loving opressor- I’m just a dolt.

The worst part? Now when I brag at parties that Mark Glaser commented here, I have no way to prove it.

Lame Excuses

Where I’ve been: Getting used to a new job, fighting a nagging respatory infection, wrangling with a lemon used car purchase, buying stuff for our possible new house, agonizing over a TiVo or MediaCenter PC, and as of late, working on a draft proposal for a new book.

I have no plans to abandon this space (I did update the header after last week’s dispicable attacks on London), but if you’re thinking about dumping me from your RSS reader, please don’t just yet! If I ever close up shop here I will be sure to make an appropriate announcement, so as not to leave people (all 2 or 3 of you) hanging.