Metapost: Comment weirdness
People are noting (on the main site, not the forum site) that the “Name,” “E-mail address”, and “URL” fields for making a comment, which are normally prepopulated with the last values you used on whatever computer you’re using, are coming up prepopulated with other people’s identities. This is obviously annoying, and, if people’s e-mail addresses are being exposed, is in contradiction with my policy of not making poster’s e-mail addresses public. I am trying to figure out the problem; please use this post to describe exactly what it is you’re seeing. Be sure to tell me what browser (Internet Explorer, Firefox, etc.) and what operating system (Windows XP, Windows 98, Mac OS X, etc.) you’re using.
(WARNING: Boring technical stuff to follow! If this stuff doesn’t interest you, stop reading now! But if you want to know my theory about why this is happening, read on.) The reason I did the technical fiddling I did last weekend was because I was getting warnings from my ISP that my site was eating up too much server resources. Basically, WordPress (the software that runs my site) stores all the information about posts, comments, etc. in a database, and constructs the Web pages you see dynamically every time you access the site. When you have as many visitors as I do, this can put quite a strain on the computer running your Web site. What I did was add a caching feature to WordPress. Now, instead of building each Web page from scratch time someone accesses it, WordPress builds a static version of the page once and then presents that static version to anyone who comes along until the page changes. This should cut my server load dramatically. However, it appears that in the process, the prepopulated values in the comment fields are also being stored on these static pages! I’m going to see what I can do about changing this. It may be that you will have to re-enter your name every time you want to comment; my primary goal is to stop other people’s information from coming up.