Easily Convert Database Character Sets

If you began using WordPress prior to version 2.2, you may notice that your database has tables with two different character sets and collations. This is because all database tables created prior to WordPress 2.2 use the latin1 character set and the latin1_swedish_ci collation, and all database tables created after WordPress 2.2 use the utf8 character set and the utf8_general_ci collation. Outside of the obvious visual difference, no hard evidence has ever been submitted to prove that this difference causes any sort of problem. However, numerous random and unrelated issues have apparently been resolved by standardizing the character set and collation across the database. The WordPress Codex provides an article detailing the process of converting database character sets with MySQL commands. If the thought of destroying your entire database simply because you made a typo concerns you, then fear not! There is an easy way to convert your database’s character set using nothing more than phpMyAdmin (available through most hosting providers’ control panel) and a plain text editor.

The following instructions are Mac-specific using the plain text editor Fraise, but they can be easily reinterpreted using any Windows or Linux-based plain text editor.

Earth Day, 2010

It’s April 22nd, and that means that it’s time to celebrate¬†Earth Day again! If you haven’t been saving the environment for free, why not start today? ¬†Today is also the perfect day to plant trees and donate to a few worthy charities, like The Nature Conservancy and The Conservation Fund.

Want to do more for the environment? This list of fifty ways to help the planet should offer plenty of inspiration.

Review: The Death and Return of Superman

The Death and Return of Superman, the omnibus edition, is a colossal masterpiece from the collective minds of Dan Jurgens, Karl Kesel, Jerry Ordway, Louise Simonson, Roger Stern, and Gerard Jones. In 746 detailed pages, it deals directly with what it would take to kill a hero, what the world would be like without that hero, and what it would take to bring a hero back to life.