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Individual posts are edited in Markdown format, using the MacDown editor on a Macintosh. They are translated to HTML via a shell script that does some reformatting and vets the output using Tidy. Images are edited, when necessary, using Acorn and NetPBM. Autodesk Graphic is used for vector graphics.
Most of the not-quite dynamic sidebar content is produced by really small Python scripts running from cron, generating tiny HTML fragments that are transcluded into the pages at rendertime. This allows the flexibility of dynamic page generation with the benefits of static performance. More discussion of this technique here.
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Shelley Powers has posted some really nice fall colors pictures on her blog. Ooh and aah here.
And as we stand on the edge of darkness
Let our chant fill the void
That others may know
In the land of the night
The ship of the sun
Is drawn by
The grateful dead.
— Tibetan “Book of the Dead,” ca. 4000 BC.