Extreme Makeover.

Well, unless you are using a screen reader and suffer from the same proverbial blindness as a bat (Holy Smokes Batman) you might have noticed that the look and feel of the website has changed just a tad. Reason for this is a: The old logo and look and feel was getting.. erm … old, AND I did not really know how to change everything around without breaking it.

The Knightwise.com website runs on a Joomla Backend, Joomla being an open source (of course) content management system that makes building of dynamic websites by html illiterates like me .. easy to do. I got talked into Joomla by the ever so powerful Codemonkey Rob who had been using the system for quite some time. He helped me overhaul the site and understand the basic concepts. But all the fancy stuff (setting it up, creating modules and components and organizing menu’s) was a little beyond me. After two years of using the system a got the hang of it a little bit, but I stuck to adding content and moving stuff around, nothing major. A shame really that I did not find (or make) the time to dive into it further.

Until last week when me and my big mouth talked about using open source and content management systems at work. Only to be baffled by the request to : "Set it up and make it happen" Talk about being thrown in in the deep end. I do not need to mention the fact that the learning curve was so steep I needed a safety rope and suffered from altitude sickness. But it was worth it. Getting to play with Joomla and the whole LAMP back end thought me how CMS systems like these work AND also : What you could do with them. Adding themes, installing components, moving around content and what have you.. And also : Setting the whole thing up from scratch ( Like : from a linux server with LAMP installed and talking it from there ) Let me tell you : Doing stuff like this is like Porn with a keyboard ! You learn stuff, find out things, get to tinker and play.. get frustrated, have epiphanies.. Its like bloody childbirth !

So you know your geek right ? When he gets a new toy : He wants to play with it. So when I learn an new skill I want to implement it. What better subject to experiment on then my own website . (You should be happy I did not study to be a plastic surgeon, otherwise my wife would have six breats by now). So with the help of some co-workers (who knew the HTML mumbo-jumbo that was alien lingo to me) we managed to take down KW.com, overhaul it .. and put it back on line. Et voila .. here is the finished result. 

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SOLD !!!!!

After a week of silence, I have returned. I have returned with
an excuse why the podcast has been slow in coming and why posts have
been so far in between
. Over the last month we (Nyana and I) have pulled
of yet another trick that most people take months to complete. I am
proud to inform you that " El Casa Del Knights " is officially SOLD !
Yes, shock and awe for some of you but its true. Or lovely little house
in Hasselt has been Sold and pretty soon, the Knights will be moving.

.. the back story.
  We bought this lovely little crib in Hasselt four
years ago (feb 18th to be correct) and completely renovated it (thanx
to the help of many of our friends). There where still a few details
that needed to be done but overall the house was in picture perfect
shape. One problem : It had four bedrooms. And since Nyana and I don’t
plan on children (those of you who want to convince us .. Don’t start)
the house was a little too big for us. So with the real estate market
becoming a sellers market it was time to sit down and talk about our
options. It came down to the  fact that the house was just too big for
us. Giving the cat and the dog a separate bedroom was a little too
much. And the massive office I have upstairs (suited for a big
workstation and a small PC lab) sits a little empty now everything has
been replaced by laptops, Virtual machines and TFT displays. 

A few weeks ago we started looking for something smaller. Something
more compact to better suite our needs. And when I say a few weeks
ago.. I mean it. Nyana (who is the equivalent of real-estate google)
found this cute little house in nearby Tongeren that has been
completely renovated , is smaller AND sports a cute little backyard
with a minute lawn. Minimal maintenance, nice space, classy and very
very well oriented ( 3 minutes from the nearest freeway and very close
to a nature reserve) So our initial visit to the place ended up with
deciding to buy it straight away (our real estate broker was a little gob smacked.. but still) So in two weeks we had found, visited, approved
and bought the house. Next up : Selling our own house. This proved to
be an even faster ride then we had thought. Over the last month much of
our free time had gone into prepping our house for sale. Painting the
hallway (Nyana did almost ALL of the work in her spare time) and
arranging furniture, taking pictures and preparing everything for the
buyers. It was all terribly time consuming but after a few weeks our
house was ready for the market. It went on sale last week on Friday (
at 11am ) at 1 PM we had already booked 3 visits from possible buyers,
the first hopping by the next day at 1 pm. By 5 pm we had 5 planned
showings for the coming Monday. 

Monday comes along and strange
people walk through our house,
peering and peeking in every corner. I
just got so sit there, shut up and let the real estate guy do his work
( actually NOT being the salesman was pretty hard for me) But we
managed. By 9pm everybody was gone and we had the first offer. By 9 AM
the next day that offer had been matched by another buyer and the first
buyer offered us the total asking price. We accepted and 3 days after
the house went on the market .. it was sold.

So we will keep
you posted about everything that is going down on the whole house
lf. I’ll post of the "catalogue" pictures of our house on Flickr ,
so the voyeurs among you can have a peek in our Crib.

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