Simon Willison’s Weblog


Thursday, 12th June 2003

One year of blogging

Today marks the first anniversary of the start of my blog (and, by a slightly contrived coincidence, my thousandth blog entry). It’s been a fun year. Here are my highlights—if you can’t stand lengthy self-congratulatory bullet points, stop reading now.

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Official film sites almost always suck

Why do official film sites almost always suck? is a prime example: 100% Flash, ridiculous loading times (and I’m on broadband), totally unintuitive interface, tedious, unnecessary animations every time you click on anything and when you finally get to the content (all I could find was the “Mutant Database”) it gives you hardly any information above what you get by watching the film! It looks pretty (pretty expensive at any rate) but really is nothing more than a glorified trailer.

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Safely consuming RSS: RegExps don’t cut it

Mark Pilgrim highlights the severe security issues introduced by RSS aggregators that display potentially unsafe HTML, often executing it in the “secure zone” generally reserved for trusted local documents. Mark suggests a number of dangerous tags and attributes that should be removed before display. Unsurprisingly, regular expressions have cropped up in the comments as the suggested solution. Jamie Zawinsky famously once posted the following to comp.lang.emacs:

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Structured content defined

Peter Van Djick: The structure of content and metadata, a glossary style overview of important concepts in structured content and website metadata. Peter also links to Victor Lombardi’s excellent Metadata Glossary.

2003 » June