A Mystery and Then, a Frantic Search

Old code is a liability…

I finished writing my previous post and dutifully clicked the big, yellow “Publish” button. I then clicked on the “View Post” link, wishing to see how it looked.

Surprise…! Look ma, no text!

The post title was there and the categories and tags … but the post text was missing. AWOL. Gone.

Upon further inspection, it turned out that text from other posts were missing as well. Only text, mind you. The pictures were all there.

Searching the rendered page’s source code yielded no clues. What happened then….?

“Maybe there’s a CSS conflict with the theme.” Switched themes… no luck.

“OK. Let’s see the plugins then.” Deactivated a bunch of plugins and voilá! The text came back! Narrowing the choices, I was able to identify the culprit: Scripturizer, an ancient plugin who scanned for Bible references and converted them into hyperlinks to Bible text, with the additional convenience of providing hoverboxes showing the referenced Bible text on mouseover.

Over the years, Scripturizer was a valuable addition to the site that provided convenience to my readers. But obviously I had to get rid of the plugin. It was too old and unmaintained. Thankfully it was just a bug and nothing worse what prompted me to change things.

Mystery solved, then. But now, I had to look for a replacement and find one soon. What options do I have for a Scripturizer replacement? I wanted to avoid any loss of functionality at all costs.

After checking out the (not so) many options available, I settled down on bVerse Convert, a plugin released by the good folks at CrossedCode.com. It has the right amount of features I was looking for and it’s simple to configure and deploy. I cannot be happier and I am grateful to CrossedCode for releasing such a wonderful plugin.

Honorable mention goes to the ESV Cross Reference Plugin, released by CrossWay. I would have used it but the hoverbox is too small and it would resort too frequently to a scroll bar, something which I find it less than desirable. But it’s still a great option. I hope CrossWay keeps updating and refining the plugin.

And so the story ends, with a moral obvious enough: old code is all too frequently a liability.

2 Comments

  1. Something like that happened to me some years ago. That was the birth of composing blog posts offline first, then pasting a copy of the marked up text. I now keep copies of all my posts in case some other weirdness strikes my blog.

  2. Hi namesake! That is a good practice. In my case I was not really concerned with an actual loss of text since I was able to see all text from my dashboard. The actual issue was text not displaying. That’s why I thought the culprit was some CSS mixup.

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