10 April, 2013


Post by Bert Witkamp

Version 10 April 2013.
Updated 21 April 2013.

It is silly, perhaps, to be happy and filled with a sense of achievement by successfully redirecting the address for this blog to the domain I own. Google is a great company, and in its own way quite generous. The initial address http://zamart.blogspot.com shall continue to work; but now you can get there by a redirect from http://artblog.zamart.org. Google’s Blogger shall continue to host. 

To get such a redirect to work you open the settings of your Blogger blog where you now type the new address of your blog as a sub-domain of the domain you own, get the Blogger instructions, and from there all is simple as you only need to go to the DNS record of your domain registrar (you do all of this online, switching between tab of Blogger and your domain registrar), open the DNS record, create 2 CNAME records in it which point to Google (one for the blog and the other to verify that the domain truly is yours, and you're done. Save changes; a child can do the laundry, my physics teacher at school would say. I am sure you got my meaning. It actually took me 4 hours - I first tried it out on a test blog. The second attempt indeed was done in some 15 minutes.

Over 2 years ago I started this art blog as I could not set up a website about the Zambian Art World. Since a few months I have a website, with the help of another rather generous company called Weebly, (“It’s for free!”) and the link is http://zfactorart.weebly.com. Also here I have managed to put in one of my registered domains. You can now access the Zamfactor company website at http://zfactorart.comIt is a rather simple business, but enough to change the future of the ZamArt Blog. Its stand alone pages shall be transferred to the website, and its posts which actually are articles shall be reworked to become a series of proper Internet Publications. The blog shall continue to announce events and be a vehicle for brief publications of texts and imagery.

First attempt at Art Website Creation. Drupal failure - too complicated.

The website development is still not quite the way I like it, the Weebly thing is manageable but a bit too simple. I am still handicapped by poor transmission speed – it’s just the cost of it: we can access Zamtel genuine broadband for Kr 400/month. I have been trying to download WordPress to be hosted on the paid for provider (2 years now without any uploading!) but so far without success. I just keep trying till it works. I have given up on the Drupal software – it is too complicated. IT software developers are freaks. Many of them, for sure, have a very limited capacity to step in the shoes of a layman for whom terms like DNS, CNAME, aliases, CMC or CSS and much of the other jargon these guys are so fond of only have a mystifying and demoralising effect.

Some progress indeed, despite the IT technologists. And you'll see, finally, that the Zambia Art Site, the site this blog was started for, indeed shall go up. Not tomorrow, but I say with some confidence, "soon!"