Simon Willison’s Weblog


Tuesday, 18th June 2002

Python and the space shuttle

Dan Shafer: Space shuttle engineers use Python to streamline mission design.

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XHTML list

I’ve signed up for a new mailing list (probably not a good idea, I’m getting over 200 mails a day which isn’t much fun on a modem)—XHTML-L, which describes itself as A forum for discussing XHTML issues for both XML and HTML developers. The list is adminned by Simon St. Laurent, who coincidentally is involved with the SIG-XML project I mentioned earlier today.

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Language tag

Mark Pilgrim’s accessiblity series continues: Day 7: Identifying your language. Since I’m using XHTML 1.0 I’ve changed my opening <html> tag to the following:

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Javascript select boxes

Via thelist: Javascript Selectbox Functions. Extremely useful demonstrations of how multi-line selectboxes can be used to create advanced user interface widgets with javascript, including tools to alter the order of items in a list and pass values from one selectbox to another and back again.

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PHP Documentor

phpDocumentor version 1.1.0rc2 has been released over at The feature list (from their press release):

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Suicidal chipmunk

From Google Answers via Elegant Hack: The tale of the suicidal chipmunk. On a related note, I saw chipmunks on sale at a farmer’s show (the Bath and West) a few weeks ago for ten pounds each—very cute but I have no idea if they’d make good pets.

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Email interfaces

Peter Van Dijck: Email interface design 101—a short article examining the possibilities of using email interfaces for web applications. This is an interesting topic and one that deserves further exploration. I am particularly interested in the security problems faced when building this kind of interface (something that is not covered by Peter’s article)—how can you effectively secure an email interface? I’m guessing that for true security the only real solution is PGP encrypted mail and some kind of password driven authentication system. Peter’s blog carries a discussion on the article.

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Knowledge Management

New buzzword (at least for me)—Knowledge Management. Apparently this is a theoretical corner stone of content management, an area I’m very interested in. Plenty of information about it in DMOZ as well.

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Minimal XML

Minimal XML is a project of SML-DEV, who describe themselves as a group of over 125 XML experts working to create simple XML standards and to simplify existing XML.

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2002 » June