Megan and I have listened to the first three and they are enlightening, entertaining, and from the heart. Highly recommended.
The cupcake infatuation was in full swing during our time in Melbourne. We saw small shops spring up across the city dedicated to the baking and selling of cupcakes – small sponges covered with icing. Many cupcakes were extravagantly decorated to resemble anything but a sugary treat.
Cupcakes tick many of the boxes required to be the basis of a new craze. They are cheap to make, consistent, familiar, and infinitely differentiable through size and decoration. They can also attract the sizeable mark-up needed to maintain a business. A cupcake and coffee is often presented as an affordable luxury.
We saw this cottage industry appear in Melbourne and wondered if it would last. Other fads had come and gone. We moved shortly afterwards and I have thought little of cupcakes since.
So I was surprised to see a new cupcake store has opened in Lyon, France. When we passed the store it was attracting attention from others on the street. Passers-by commented and pointed out the business to their friends.
The cupcake store is clearly still a novelty in this city, Lyon. A food lover’s city in a country with pastries and delicious treats available on almost every street.
I wonder how the My Cupcake will fare against the established bakeries. It is unlikely to be the first cupcake store in Lyon but its existence suggests a growing market for treats from other cultures.
We often find ourselves in art galleries and museums during our travels. They offer us refuge, calm, and an enjoyable way to spend a few hours. The Scottish National Gallery in Edinburgh was no exception.
The Scottish National Gallery is centrally located and is home to a fantastic collection of art both painted and sculpted.
I did not know what to expect. What we encountered was more than I imagined possible. Two huge warehouses full of beautifully maintained and explained railway engines and carriages. The scale of the exhibits was as much the focus as the individual items.
A sense of humour crept into a few exhibits. In particular we laughed at some of the railway food posters and museum signage. It was clearly deliberate humour, subtle, and very well done.
The other vistors fell squarely into two age groups. Those bringing young children for a day out and an older set of mainly men. Enthusiasts wandering between the the engines delighting at the giant hulks of metal on show.
A second warehouse was home to a selection of Royal carriages. Between each train was a seating area and cafe. A few too many cafes but they were all busy and maybe provided a welcome resting place for tired partners of those enthusiasts captivated elsewhere.
For the last few days this site, The Work Life, has been undergoing a persistent attack. Every 30 seconds an attempt was being made on our WordPress administration page. The attack made no impact on the site but did turn up in our log files as an anomaly.
Yesterday I added a simple but effective second layer of protection to our site. I added HTTP authentication, rfc2617, to our login page.
Within minutes the attack stopped and has not returned.
If the attempts are no problem, why add the complexity of a second layer – and second set of credentials?
Every request for our administration page took time and resources to serve. Those resources are limited and count against our monthly allowances. By adding an immediate authentication requirement, malicious connections are limited. They are limited in the harm they can do and the resources needed to serve the initial request.
There are numerous approaches to adding additional security to WordPress. I was greatly tempted by fail2ban but could not justify the time to set up and test it. In the end a fairly trivial edit to
.htaccess was all that was needed.