Change of Address

After an unavoidable, three-day pause Grammar Captive’s web development has recommenced. The outcome of this pause is a new address and a highly stimulative private sector work environment in the heart of downtown Seattle.

Click on the word Contact in the navigation bar on Grammar Captive’s main page for more information.


Backend Update – Addendum

Further the form in which the content of the Seven Gates Newsletter is entered before being uploaded to Grammar Captive’s host server for entry into the newsletter’s template and eventual distribution has been completed. This form, along with the template into which the form’s content is loaded, insures a reliable and consistent newsletter format. As the newsletter has many features, it is important that users can go to those features that they value most without have to read through other features that may be of little interest to a particular user. These features include: one, a weekly article about the state of the English language industry, second language learning in general, and learning the English language in specific; two, a profile of a featured Grammar Captive subscribe; three, a question submitted by a Grammar Captive subscriber and answered by Grammar Captive’s host; four, a brief summary of the current week’s podcast; five, a brief summary of the following week’s article; six, an invitation to subscribe or unsubscribe; and seven, a list of important Grammar Captive links. These features do not include the personalized header, the more permanent footer, and images of the seven gates that constitute the newsletter’s emblem and will be filled eventually with commercial advertisements relevant to subscribers’ needs.


Backend Update

Along the way to realizing an automated mailing of the Seven Gates weekly newsletter, Grammar Captive has automated the folder procedure in which the contents of the newsletter will be stored before it is uploaded to the Grammar Captive host server and readied for distribution In effect, a new content folder will be created automatically with each new ediction and the last edition number advanced by one. This will improve both the tracking and organization of the editions as they are created and eventually archived for future use.


Newsletter Template

The first draft of the Seven Gates newsletter template is nearly  complete.  In addition to the main content section are included a feature student, Q&A, podcast, and next-up section.  The template also includes one image of each of the seven gates that can easily be replaced with sponsor’s advertisement.

Next in line is the creation of a form page that can be used by the newsletter’s author to fill in the vital sections of the template with real content.


Any Language!

By the way, I almost forgot one of the best parts of the new email verification system.  You can enter your name in any language, and it will appear in the verification email in the same way that you entered it.  You get to choose, how you want to be greeted!


eMail Verification Complete

The email verification process has been completed.  As nearly always it has fallen short of my expectations.  Still, it is formidable in both function and design.

This week has been an exhausting week of Javascript and jQuery with very little to show for my effort.  Then too, never was the thought of Grammar Captive with me, as I was teaching myself PHP in Thailand in 2010.  It is, however, those many months of self-training that have made Grammar Captive possible today.

I have not tested the new verification system on Explorer, but it appears to work well with Safari, Chrome, and Firefox.

This week will be devoted to finishing the newsletter template so as to insure consistent and timely content in the future.  Hopefully, I will also return to podcast production very soon.

If you decide to sign up for Seven Gates, Grammar Captive’s weekly newsletter, please do so using the Seven Gates splash page.   For, it is there where everything is completely automated.


p.s. Special thanks go out to W3Schools for helping to overcome at least one major hurdle — the PHP handler( ) function!

Email Verification Success

The backend to a successful email verification system has now been installed. Only the decoration (eye candy) remains.

So what is email verification!

Step 1 – The subscriber fills out a form and submits it.
Step 2 – His data is checked for proper format and passed through a filter to clean it of foul play (a possible malicious hack).
Step 3 – A hash (one-way encryption) is created from a randomly generated password and placed into a database along with the user’s email address and other less sensitive information that he entered into the subscription form.
Step 4 – A confirmation email is sent to the user along with the encrypted password (hash) in the form of a verification link.
Step 5 – When the user clicks on the link, the hash is sent to a webpage that compares the returned hash with the email address and the hash stored in the database.
Step 6 – If a match is found the user’s account is activated, and the user is informed of his new account via another email that contains his first free edition of Seven Gates, Grammar Captive‘s weekly newsletter.

The user’s password is never seen, but by the user, and only then, if it is sent to him. It is the hash that gets stored, and the hash cannot be decrypted.  For the moment, not even the password will be sent, as the user will have no need of it.  It will simply perish in the system.

This coming week will be spent on the completion of a personalized newsletter, the styling of the subscription page, and another unpublished podcast.