Simon Willison’s Weblog


Thursday, 4th July 2002

Home improvements

A couple of home improvements. I’ve added a “5 latest comments” box to the front page, and I’ve implemented a system to ping whenever this blog is updated. Next up,

[... 34 words]

Useful CSS links

A few useful links spotted on css-discuss:

[... 77 words]

Blog update alerts

I need a good, reliable way of automatically checking when various weblogs have been updated. I’ve tried aggregators (both Radio Userland and Amphetadesk) and they don’t do it for me—I don’t want to read everyone’s blog entries on one page, I just want to know when I should visit their site for updates. appears to act as a centralised resource for recording updates, but requires blogs to “ping” it when they are altered—but what if the blog I am interested in doesn’t do this? Mine doesn’t (for the moment at least).

[... 164 words]


Brent Ashley explains K-Logging. K-Logging is Knowledge Logging, a technique that companies can use to help share knowledge built up over the course of a project. Generally it involves the use of blogging style tools to informally record every part of a project. Brent also points to this article explaining 11 common KM problems and how K-Logging helps overcome them.

[... 71 words]


Via Boing Boing: Seth Schoen’s notes on Palladium after a meeting with Microsoft. Cory Doctorow points out that Seth is probably the most knowledgeable tech person to have been briefed on Palladium by MSFT without signing an NDA and his post certainly makes interesting reading. Palladium has had a lot of coverage since the Newsweek article announcing it first broke, with Robert Cringely providing some of the best analysis (in my opinion at least). The Register also has a story about Palladium which introduces some more information and guestimates on a shipping schedule.

[... 115 words]

Accessible tables

Mark has been educating us on the accessible way of marking up tables, with particular reference to calendar tables on blogs. My blog doesn’t have a calendar (yet, I’m considering adding one) but Mark’s articles have brought up some interesting things that I was previously unaware of. Giving your calendar a real caption explains the <caption> tag, which can provide a useful (and easily styled) caption for any table. Using real table headers explains how <th> tags are interpreted by speech browsers and shows how they can be used in conjunction with the abbr attribute to create more accessible table columns.

[... 126 words]

Spam proof email

Today saw a useful thread on Webdesign-L about hiding email addresses from spambots. Some of the points raised:

[... 148 words]

Google interview

Slashdot are carrying an interview with Craig Silverstein, Google’s director of technology. The interview is actually quite disapointing—the answers given are relatively short and little new information is given. Topics covered include Google’s programming contest, how they monitor their immense server farm and a few questions on Google corporate culture.

[... 58 words]

New Mozilla rendering mode

Evolt: New DOCTYPE sniffing in upcoming Mozilla releases. If you weren’t confused enough by Mozilla’s standards and quirks modes, the next release of the browser will include a third rendering mode called “almost standards” mode. Thankfully the difference between this and full standards mode is minimal—the only change is a subtle alteration to the way imagfes are handled in tables. This prevents table based layouts from breaking in standards mode (behaviour which has been described by Eric Meyer on Netscape DevEdge). This topic came up on SitePoint recently and will probably be well recieved by most web developers, once the initial confusion has been overcome.

[... 121 words]