I've been a big fan of Globally Recognized Avatars (Gravatars) for use in blog comments. Recently, however, the Gravatar website has been very sluggish. Retrieving gravatars has been a hit and miss affair. I decided to try and code around it by using cURL.
Update: The solution was bollocks, so I removed it. Like an idiot, I had completely forgotten about the implications of setting a fat timeout. I'll post a new solution in the near future.