Irish Mythology & Ancient Elves: Interpreting ‘Dragon Age’ Lore

Mel Choyce:

Really fascinating comparison of the ancient elves of Dragon Age to Irish mythology. As a Dragon Age fan this was really fun to read! (Warning: minor spoilers for Inquisition)

Originally posted on FemHype:

Dragon Age

The fun thing about interpretation is that, even if the writers didn’t intend to convey something, it can still be gleaned by someone else. We all like to see our experiences reflected in the popular culture we consume, and my long-standing adoration with Dragon Age is no exception. My father emigrated from Ireland before I was born, and while half my family still calls fair Éire home, I proudly consider myself half-Irish. With my identity steeped in the lore that came before, it goes without saying that days like St. Paddy’s hold cultural significance for me. Thus, it’s basically inevitable that I would interpret my heritage within the world of Thedas. While I don’t presume to be an expert in historical accuracy, I’d like to touch on a few significant points in Irish mythology within the lens of Bioware’s trilogy, particularly having to do with the elves.

It’s difficult to discuss the tales of ancient Ireland without first understanding that much of the stories we associate…

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28 billion pageviews: A Year at VIP

Originally posted on VIP:

2014 has been a big year at VIP. So far, we’ve served more than 28 billion pageviews (or, 28,250,403,658 the last time we checked). We’ve also added 350 new sites to the VIP network and 13 new members to our team (including an acquisition)!

As the leading WordPress solution for enterprises, we pride ourselves on working with your team to ensure that your code is optimized, secure, and fast. This year our customers have deployed changes 31,000 times, comprising more than one million lines of code—and we’ve reviewed every line. (And in case you were wondering, 4pm ET on Thursdays is the busiest hour in our deploy queue).


Here’s a quick look at big moments of 2014:


We rang in the new year by helping Walt Mossberg and Kara Swisher launch

And we push the button for @recode

A video posted by Kara…

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New Theme: Museum

Mel Choyce:

Another one of my themes is now available on Thanks to Daniel for porting it over!

Originally posted on News:

We’re excited to introduce Museum, a new free theme!


Created by’s own Kelly Dwan and Mel Choyce, Museum is crafted to showcase your best photographs, drawings, or illustrations. Featuring elegant, museum-inspired typography and ample room for your images, Museum pays special attention to category and media attachment pages to help your collections shine. Image posts are organized into collections by adding them to the same category so you can proudly show them off. Media attachment pages are also designed with care, displaying all of your media’s details in a thoughtful manner and allowing you to link to individual attachment pages with pride. Check out an example!

Learn more about Museum at the Theme Showcase, or preview it by going to Appearance → Themes.

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New Theme: Intergalactic

Mel Choyce:

A new theme I designed, Intergalactic, is now available for use on! Had an awesome time working with Caroline to get this one up and running. :D

Originally posted on News:

We have a brand new free theme for your blogging pleasure today!


Intergalactic Theme

Designed by Automattic’s very own Mel Choyce, Intergalactic is a stunning specimen for your personal blog. Bold featured images act as the backdrop to your text, giving you a high-contrast, readable theme that’s perfect for making your content pop. The one-column layout provides a distraction-free environment for reading, while the slide-out menu keeps your navigation and secondary content readily accessible.

In Mel’s own words…

Intergalactic was inspired by long-form storytelling sites like Exposure and Medium. I wanted to design a theme that focused heavily on showcasing your stories, images, and videos, and could flex its content to many different use-cases. I also wanted everything to be big — as big as the Beastie Boys (who inspired the name). It was great working with Caroline to bring Intergalactic to life.

Learn more about the free

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Measure Twice, Cut Once

Originally posted on The Daily Post:

Note: A theme sets the look and feel of your site. Although all themes in our Theme Showcase fundamentally work the same way, themes can have significant differences regarding specific layouts, options, and functionality.

One of the first things that most people do with a new site or when freshening up an existing one is spend loads of time looking at themes. Once they choose a theme, it’s not uncommon for folks to spend considerable time and effort customizing it, all without planning for content. If you’re in that group, I hope you’ll reconsider your approach.

You see, content should come first.

This is a good thing for everyone to remember, not just first-time bloggers. A site with ho-hum content — or worse, no content — will keep people from coming back, assuming that they find your site in the first place.

Content should drive the theme, not vice versa. What good is a…

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Automattic Acquires BruteProtect

Originally posted on Jetpack for WordPress:

I’m excited to announce that Automattic has acquired BruteProtect, a plugin and service that protects your sites from malicious logins, saves server resources so your site runs faster, and keeps all your sites on the latest and greatest versions of WordPress core, plugins, and themes.

The plugin and service are currently available, but over the coming months we’re going to build their functionality into Jetpack and retire BruteProtect as a standalone thing.

BruteProtect also has a premium service that starts at $5 a month per site — effective immediately, that will be free for every BruteProtect user and Jetpack-enabled site. If you’re already a BruteProtect subscriber we’ll be in touch soon to send you a surprise thank you for your early support. You can download and get started with Jetpack here.

The BruteProtect team is based in Portland, Maine and they’re long-time contributors to the WordPress community. We’re excited…

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