About this site….

My name is Elizabeth Liddle, and I started this site to be a place where people could discuss controversial positions about life, the universe and everything with minimal tribal rancour (pay no attention to the penguins….)

My motivation for starting the site has been the experience of trying to discuss religion, politics, evolution, the Mind/Brain problem, creationism, ethics, exit polls, probability, intelligent design, and many other topics in venues where positions are strongly held and feelings run high.  In most venues, one view dominates, and there is a kind of “resident prior” about the integrity, intelligence and motivation of those who differ from the majority view.

That is why the strapline says: “Park your priors by the door”.  They may be adjusted by the time you leave!

I will start the blog off with a series of posts arising from some interesting discussions at Uncommon Descent, which were difficult to pursue because of the blog format over there.  I hope that the participants in those discussions will come over here where we can continue them without having to move from squat to squat on other threads, derailing them as we go.

I also hope that other people will join me in posting new OPs, so that it becomes a group blog, and that people will also offer to write guest OPs.

In the mean time, welcome to all, and have a free virtual beer on the house!




239 thoughts on “About this site….

  1. Nonquote.




    Editing shows the editor put the blockquote tags around everything.

  2. HTML editor without blockquote.

    HTML editor sentence in blockquotes

    No blockquotes on this sentence.

  3. I guess that is the way I have to do it with my browser (IE 8).

  4. This is a line of notepad text that will be copy/pasted into the editor with the quotes applied.

    I admit that I am not using notepad (I use linux).  Maybe I’ll try tomorrow on Windows.

    To do what you described:

    Push the quote button.

    Enter text to be quoted.

    Enter a new line.

    Unpush the quote button while cursor is at the end (that new line).  Now paste in unquoted stuff as desired.

    It works for me with copy/paste from kwrite (similar to notepad).  I am using firefox, though I doubt that matters.

    If I have copied multiple paragraphs, then I have to put the cursor on the line between the paragraphs, and backspace.  That merges the paragraphs.  Then I hit enter to separate them again.  Then the software properly follows the paragraph breaks.  Otherwise it treats multiple (notepad-like) paragraphs as a single wordpress paragraph.

  5. I’m not finding any difference between copy/pasting from Microsoft Word (which I use most often) or from Notepad.  I just tried out Notepad to see if there might be some formatting in Microsoft Word that was screwing things up.


    However, even when I enter stuff into the editor without copy/pasting from another source, I am getting the same problems.  I am doing exactly everything you do, but it doesn’t work most of the time.  It only worked once; and I don’t know what happened after that.


    The buttons are supposed to act in the same way that they do in Word; you press them and you are in that mode until you press them again.  But, for some reason, that isn’t the way they are behaving for my browser.


    I can live with the HTML editor if I want to write some math. I can do it in Word where I can see better, and then copy/paste.  I don’t need to write math here very often anyway.


    The HTML editor update button shows as a line below the Cancel button; but as long as I know what it is, I can use it.

  6. When I hit the HTML button, I can edit all I want, but there is no update button, ONLY a cancel. Posting with the HTML window open doesn’t post what I wrote there. Closing that window eliminates the HTML, as does CANCEL.

    Pressing the quote icon puts the entire post into blocks instantly, no matter where the cursor is or when I do it. Unpressing that button takes the entire post out of block mode, no matter where the cursor is or when I unpress it.

    I have found that if I write and post a few characters, I have one hour to edit that post. The edit window allows HTML, and the SAVE button saves it, so that the post is modified to include the tags as intended. The downsides are, I have only an hour to do this, and I have to post something unintended in order to have access to the “edit this post” functionality.     

  7. Now for some experimenting.

    <blockquote>This is quoted as a block</blockquote>
    And this is outside the block.  

    Aha, loading that into the edit window shows that the angle brackets have been replaced by “&lt” and “&gt” strings, which don’t work properly.

  8. Look very carefully around – and especially below – the Cancel button.  I found a short, somewhat thick line which I had overlooked earlier.


    Hovering your cursor over that line makes a pound sign appear on the lower left hand border of the edit window.


    Click on that line when the pound sign appears.  That is apparently the Update button squashed by our browsers.

  9. This is a quoted sentence in the HTML editor using blockquote tags.

    This sentence is not quoted. Hovering over the thick line just below the cancel button causes a pound sign to appear on the lower left hand corner of the border surrounding the edit window. Clicking it updates.

     Then you can post.

  10. Ah, when you load it into the edit window it gets escaped the same way that somebody entering javascript into a comment would have it converted into harmless strings that can still be represented in the browser as “<” but don’t get executed as code. 

    I guess if you edit the html only in the html editor (right most icon) it should work.


    Like so

  11. Experimenting with the thin gray line under the cancel button.

    Now I’m going to hover over the line and clickblockquote Then I’ll exit the HTML source editor.

  12. Interesting. It honored the

    opening blockquote, but ignored the closing




    Probably I made a typo.

  13. <a href=http://themescompany.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/2538699.jpg>test link</a>

    OK, that didn’t work. How do you post links in the new format?

    test link 2

  14. I can’t get quoted text to work, and I can’t post at all from my tablet.

    These problems are new.

    The tablet no longer sees input forms as input forms. Posting is completely disabled. 

  15. I cannot post at all from a tablet, and using Chrome on a PC, I have lost all html functionality. I cannot even do blockquotes, and the published text does not bear any resemblance to the WYSIWYG editor.

    For me the site is nearly unusable. At least the simple editor allowed me to insert blockquotes. 

  16. I’m directly editing the HTML if doing anything other then a plain post. Can’t see to work out quoting etc in the actual interface. 

  17. Can I once again submit my complaint about the posting form?

    I cannot post at all from a tablet. The box simply doesn’t allow text entry of any kind.

    My main browser is google chrome, and the formatting tools simply don’t work.

    So I am mostly unable to post, and when I do, I cannot use any formatting. 

  18. Yes, sorry.  I just haven’t had time to spend on trying to sort this out without risking breaking it.

    It’s nearly at the top of my to-do list.

  19. Not sure where else to post this… the domain homepage (http://thesketpicalzone.com/) is giving me a php error:

    Warning: require_once(/home2/x0zuic9qwkl3/public_html/.
    ./seagull/lib/SGL/FrontController.php) [function.require-once
    ]: failed to open stream: No such file or directory in /home2/qfycpamv/public_html/setup.php on line 98

    Fatal error: require_once() [function.require]: Failed opening required ‘/home2/qfycpamv/public_html/../seagull
    /lib/SGL/FrontController.php’ (include_path=’.
    :/usr/lib/php:/usr/local/lib/php’) in /home2/qfycpamv/public
    on line 98 

  20. The forum thingy I originally plugged in to this site (the Penguin Colony) is no longer functioning, not just because of the hack (I also stopped my subscription). However, the occasional Disturbance in the Force you may be experiencing here right now is because I am trying to set up a more integrated phpbb forum, which might make life more comfortable for discussion without losing the benefits (which I think there are) of blog format. I’ve backed everything up in case I booboo, but if you come here and find things are looking odd, it’s probably because I miscoded something at the back end of the phpbb, and will fix.

  21. Reader via the Archbishop Cranmer site. Finally got around to ‘registering’ with this site. Took about half an hour to figure despite setting up a wordpress account, I also needed to register with this site. Oy Vey, the joys of internet discussion forums!

  22. davidkavanagh123,

    Welcome David. All first comments are automatically held for moderation. Any further comments will appear immediately. Not sure what difficulty you encountered registering,

  23. Nah, it was me not getting to grips with WordPress you see, as I’m a bit of a technophobe, like having ‘123’ after my name. I’ve got rid of that and made a comment on a thread below, so I guess that will need moderating as my profile doesn’t have 123 on it anyone.

  24. ah, it was me not getting to grips with WordPress you see, as I’m a bit of a technophobe, like having ‘123’ after my name. I’ve got rid of that and made a comment on a thread below, so I guess that will need moderating as my profile doesn’t have 123 on it


  25. Am I allowed to post on this blog? I have a few pretty interesting themes that could possibly become interesting discussion subjects… I hope …

  26. J-Mac: Am I allowed to post on this blog?

    Everyone should be able to create an OP.

    Look for the + New in the title bar and when hovering over it click on Post in the dropdown menu.

  27. J-Mac: Am I allowed to post on this blog?

    Yes. But you might find that you need help publishing what you prepare. If that happens, post a brief note in the moderation thread.

  28. Alan:

    Anyone else finding the site slow to load?

    Yeah, it sometimes takes minutes to load. Then it will be fine for a while. I’m wondering if there’s a problem with the server that causes them to have to reboot continually.

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