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Welcome to our humble site.  Originality is Overrated, or 'OIO' as we sometimes call it, is the brainchild of me- disillusioned. The domain itself was originally registered in January 2002, simply because I wanted a personal web site, and liked the title, especially as a web/graphic designer. 

Some History

For the first year or so, the site consisted of a smarmy flash page as a few of the editors will attest to, and the ubiqitous phrase 'coming soon'. I pretended to have some grand plan for the site; I had none. Instead, I began to develop the site out of the need of a way to use a 'cool' graphic I had created.

I added a PHP news script that I found online, and gave a few of my closer friends accounts. Eventually, I thought this would be a great place to show off some of our writing, and also to maintain a journal. Within three months, I developed the code base for creating new users, adding and editing entries and musings, and all of the other functionality you see on the site. A lot of the concepts were inspired by other journal sites- we are definitely not original in that respect. I do think our editorial staff sets us apart, though, with their ramblings featured on the main page, and the like.

About OIO

Originality is Overrated is fundamentally a web site created by a high school student-cum-college-freshman for the purpose of providing our group a way of keeping informed about each other's lives.  Many of us are moving out of state and far and away, and instead of using more direct means, we thought a place to maintain a journal of our day-to-day 'adventures', such as they are, would be invaluable during this time. 

The more I thought about the site, the more concepts came to mind.  I was inspired to create a 'musings' section of the site to allow the editors a place to display their writings, creative, introspective, and everything in between.  The journal functionality remained for less critical writings, and for a place to write about the current happenings in one's life.

About Editors

Originality is Overrated has a few users called editors.  These are 'special people'.  That is, they were chosen, probably by me, because I thought (however mistakenly, sadly the case may be) they would contribute meaningful, well thought-out creative works and introspections, as mentioned above.  This is a tightly controlled membership, but you may break in if you feel you have the creative fortitude to impress us. In all likeliness, this is one of those "don't call us, we'll call you" sort of things. Simply put, if you have to ask for it, you're probably not editor material.

That being said, there are two ways to become an OIO editor:
1) Work actively within your journal account, posting write-ups, such as they are, on anything and everything.  Make the writings you consider musing-worthy intelligent, spell-checked, and interesting.  After you've collected a few of these within your journal, contact me, and tell me you wish to run for a shot at editorship.  I'll put your material under review with a few of the existing, active editors, and we'll make our decision there.  Chances are, a better, more thought-out process for this will come about soon enough.

2) Sleep with me.  If you are this desperate, I pity you.  But not in the way that doing so wouldn't make you an editor.  It's worth a shot, anyway.

About Page Titles

Page titles are those spiffy sayings you see embroidered on your browser window at the very top of the window, typcially directly to the left of that weird underscore line, those two boxes, and the big X that closes the window.  Sometimes, its accompanied by the name of the browser you're using. 

The thought to use random titles came to me a long time ago.  Probably somewhere near the era of Chris Online... (yes, I once had registered chrisonline.com, at the recommendation of OIO editor diffused)  I knew scripts existed to randomly output a quote through JavaScript, but <tech talk> JS isn't processed until the header information is outputted.  That is to say that the title couldn't contain the information generated and output by a random title generator within JS.  Unless I missed something, which is a very real possibility.  Also, JS generators pull their values from unsightly arrays, usually maintained in text files.  This was no good.  I decided to create a database table to hold the titles, as well as add the ability for OIO editors to contribute their own.  Now, if you're an editor, you can easily contribute a title to the OIO nodegel, and it'll be plucked lovingly from the database on pretty much all the OIO pages you load.</tech talk>

No, really.  I don't get those titles...

Oh, yeah.  Well, editors add them.  They may make sense to you (chance are, if they're from resplendence, this is sadly not the case ;-) if you're particularly on the up-and-up with nerd/pop culture and various other elements of esoterica.  We fully understand that what is funny to us is funny to us because we know the background behind it.  Consider it our inside joke playground.  I'm considering adding a function that allows us to provide backgrounds on titles, to explain where the reference comes from.

What about those random links on the main page, and in a few other places?

There is a site called Everything2.  This is, quite simply, the greatest web site on the Internet.  It contains 470,000+ writeups on literally everything, most written with a certain level of quality.  Entertaining to say the least, I use those links to showcase my E2 bookmarks.  (I'm disillusioned on E2, also.  However, all of my E2 writings I publish on OIO)  You're welcome.

What's next with my account?

Well, you've got your brand-spanking-new account. Congratulations on following those simple directions- you had us worried for a while there, but we're glad to see you pulled through.  And kudos for using a real email address, too!

Now that you have this account, you need to do the following: (These links won't work if you're not logged in)
Edit your profile - Tell the world (read: six people who actually read the site) about who you are
(Sometimes called a bio, depending on the mood I'm in)

Edit your journal description - That gigantic blank space to the left of your journal entry list is just aching to be filled.  Give your journal a personality.  Or paste the long part of your bio that you just created here.  I don't much care.
Create new journal entries - It's fun.  It's easy.  It'll let you keep track of that mess you call your life. (Read about my mess here)
Register on the OIO Forums - Yeah, it sucks.  Our forums use vB, which isn't tied into the user creation or bios of OIO.  Terrible tragedy, I say skimp on the forum bio, focus on the OIO one.  With any luck, I'll at least create a link to the OIO bio from your forum one in due time.  Forums are used to discuss things more openly.  Sure, you can leave notes on user's entries and musings, but those usually have something to do with the content of said musings and entries.  The forums provide you with a place to chat about whatever.

Private entries - Promise you won't tell?

Private is something of a misnomer. It means that no one with access to the site can read your entry, unless they have your user name and password. However, I (disillusioned, in case you forgot) do have access to the database, and can view all entries at will, private or not. While I don't have the time, nor am I bored enough to actually go through the journal database and match up editor numbers with entries (entries aren't saved with your editor name, but with your id number), it is a possibility that I can see them, especially if I have to debug, although this is increasingly unlikely. I promise I won't ever publish, share, discuss, or otherwise make mention of any entries kept private, if I ever see anything kept in one. 99.9 percent of the time, I won't be reading them anyway.

Cookies?  Yes, please.

Yeah, we use cookies.  That giant "remember me" check box you can click when you login plants one that keeps you logged into the site when you close the browser.  Ahh, the wonders of modern technology.  Don't use this feature on public computers, as anyone could access your account, change passwords, screw with your journals, and make an otherwise good day bad for you real fast.   If you set one, and know others will have access to your account, logout!

The time's all wrong!

No, you just don't live in Arizona. The server is based off of Arizona time, which is Mountain Standard Time without Daylight Savings Time. What this effectively equates to is that, during those "spring forward" months that the rest of the western world follows, Arizona is on Pacific Standard Time. When you all fall back, we switch it up to Mountain Standard. It's confusing for you, but for us, we don't have to bother with all the clocks in our house. All dynamically generated times on the site are in Arizona time.

Copyright and all that jazz...

Any content submitted to the site remains the property of the author. Originality is Overrated respects the rights for authors to contribute creative works, journal entries, song lyrics and the like without transferring any rights to our precious little web site. All content on the site should be original. If you're pasting song lyrics or poetry or other works that aren't yours, please cite them properly. It's as simple as that.

Oh, and in case you're wondering, all source code, backend, and static content, as well as any original aspects of our layout and all graphics and graphical works *are* copyright 2003 Chris Cardinal, aka disillusioned. Please contact me if you wish to use any of the graphics on the site. Graphics not created by me will be cited. Graphics held within other user's journals may or may not be the property of said user. Take it up with them.

"Help, I don't get [blank]"...

If you find yourself truly unable to figure out certain things about the site, always feel free to email disillusioned or any other editors. Bugs go to dis, as do suggestions, props, and anything else you need. I've tried to cover pretty much everything in here, and to make the site's basic features as intuitive as possible, but sometimes even the basest levels of fundamental design can thwart those who choose not to apply levels of higher thinking to the task at hand. To those people, I apologize. Chances are good, for instance, that if you can't read or comprehend, you will be unable to use this site. I'm sure I'm violating some disability mandate or some such, but tough cookies. Use your brain, *then* email the help. Oh, and read this FAQ again. You probably missed something. I'm almost sure of it. So read it, and don't skim this time.

Why do I care what "Dis" is listening to?

You don't. You don't have to. If you must know, the text at the very bottom of every page is generated every time I (disillusioned) change songs on my computer. Changing a song submits a query to a web page from Winamp, using an info sender plugin. That page grabs the song name from the URL it used to get there, and then adds it to the database, in a special table I actually made *just* for this purpose. The site footer parses the last song title submitted, and yes, I'm probably listening to just that. If it hasn't changed for awhile, chances are it's because I'm not online anymore, and it was just the last entry submitted. If you've read all of this, props and pity at the same time. You have great patience, or simply bizarre curiosity...

 

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