Thank you so much for all the kind comments you've left over the last few days, and all the emails, and all the other messages via various diverse routes. It's not been the easiest Christmas, as you can imagine, but support from every quarter has helped the family through.
If you did leave a comment, you may have noticed that my commenting system has changed. Haloscan's days are numbered, bought out by a bunch of self-confident entrepreneurs called Echo. Their upgraded system is an over-flash, over-complicated real-time streaming box, which might be what some people want, but it's not for me. Echo offered a simple choice - pay up and join us, or get out - and set a two week rolling deadline for all former subscribers. My fortnight ends today. And I got out.
If you did leave a comment, you may not have noticed that my commenting system has changed. Grey background, row of cards across the top, small white boxes underneath for entering personal data and text. Good, innit? Only down at the bottom of the pop-up is the telltale line "Commenting by Tridentscan". It's a custom-built Haloscan clone, that's what it is, and it's been put together by a very kind reader who understands coding, scripts and databases. I am very grateful.
You've made 41229 Haloscan comments over the years, which is a heck of a lot. All of these have had to be extricated from the old system and dropped ever-so-carefully into the new so that my seven-year archive is maintained. Echo prefers log-ins and profiles to empty-box simplicity, and would have lost all your email addresses and homepages during the transfer, whereas (hurrah) this homemade system has retained the lot of them.
The big change has already happened, a week in advance of enforced Echo takeover, thanks to a lot of hard work by a certain person behind the scenes. Thanks Kirk! So now, whenever you're moved to comment on something I've written here, you'll be entering your message into a bespoke non-profit-making template. And most definitely not into an elaborate"has it loaded yet"realtimelifestream.
The new system is still very much a work in progress, so it's not yet functioning perfectly. There are no "numbers of comments" at the bottom of each post, yet. You have to enter your name afresh every time because the system doesn't remember it, yet. Comments don't appear on a few old posts, yet, and line breaks aren't working brilliantly in IE8, yet. But we'll get there. And it's most definitely a whole lot better than ostentatiousbloated Echo, I hope you'll agree. Long live Tridentscan!