Simon Willison’s Weblog


Monday, 9th December 2002

Opera usability problems

Matthew Thomas lists 21 usability problems with the Opera 7 beta.

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Why MSN Messenger sucks

Acts of Volition: What’s wrong with MSN Messenger 5.0. I rarely load up MSN (I like to browse in peace) but I’d like to add a few points, aimed at Messenger in general rather than any particular version of the software:

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Personal web proxies

Les Orchard is considering building his own web proxy. I had never thought about the possibilities of these technologies beyond caching before, but Les’s post has really got me thinking. I often find myself searching around for a web page I visited a few months ago and can only vaguely remember—a proxy generated searchable history (I never got the hang of using my browser’s) would be a very useful tool. In addition, the ability to cache local copies of useful documents to preserve them should the original ever go offline would be very handy. How about a proxy with an accompanying small GUI desktop application which shows your recent browsing history (the last 15 pages or so) and allows you to mark documents for bookmarking / preserving? The application and proxy server could communicate via XML-RPC.

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Generics in java

It looks like Java is set to get a new feature—Generics—in version 1.5. Generics are the Java equivalent of C++ templates; they severely help clear up confusions over types used with abstract data types such as lists and sets. Preparing for Generics explains this new feature and the kind of problems it solves.

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Striking the 1976 act

Lawrence Lessig:

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One time URLs with PHP

Generating One-Time URLs with PHP has some simple example code which demonstrates PHP’s file locking functions in action.

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2002 » December