Items in Aug, 2007
Webistrano. Web based interface for managing Capistrano deployments. Cal recommends having a “deploy to live site” button in his book; this looks like an easy way to build that. # 31st August 2007, 11:05 pm
A meeting must fight to exist. It must defend its existence to its attendees who should constantly be asking “Why are we here?”
They promised us jetpacks, too. Ben Hammersley points out that the recent flying car story has done the rounds many times before. I’m sure I remember it from my childhood. # 31st August 2007, 10:28 am
Thoughts on (and pics of) the original Macintosh User Manual. “[I] was struck by how it had to explain a total paradigm shift in interacting with computers”. # 30th August 2007, 5:32 am
The biggest mistake I made in Leonardo was making “foo” and “foo/” mean the same thing.
Why the Alt Attribute May Be Omitted. “The benefit of requiring the alt attribute to be omitted, rather than simply requiring the empty value, is that it makes a clear distinction between an image that has no alternate text (such as an iconic or graphical representation of the surrounding text) and an image that is a critical part of the content, but for which not alt text is available.” # 25th August 2007, 1:11 pm
At one point I thought I hated programming because I was just so sick it... It turns out I don’t hate programming, I just hate programming in Java.
jQuery 1.1.4: Faster, More Tests, Ready for 1.2. The backwards compatibility policy for 1.2 is pretty clever: provide a plugin that restores removed functionality (such as XPath selectors). # 24th August 2007, 4:22 pm
Brad Neuberg’s Personal Research Agenda. Inspiring; lots of interesting problems to solve. I also liked the idea of moving to Thailand during a tech downturn and hacking on interesting projects while spending $200/month on living costs. # 23rd August 2007, 1:40 am
The other interesting thing about the 1.0.2 update is that Apple didn’t try to prevent the hacks that are out there [...] one would have assumed that Apple would have done *something* in this release as a sort of “shot across the bow” but they didn’t, which bodes well for a future, more open platform.
The Shrinking Python Web Framework World. Python used to suffer from a paradox of choice with regards to Web frameworks; today things are considerably easier for new developers. # 22nd August 2007, 10:06 pm
Live Query jQuery plugin. Ingenious plugin that lets you register jQuery event bindings to be executed when a new element matching the provided selector is added to the DOM. Performance is kept snappy by only running the check after a jQuery DOM manipulation method has been executed (append, prepend, attr etc); it won’t notice elements added using regular DOM methods. # 22nd August 2007, 10:01 pm
In 1997, I chose to suppress a similar finding: users tend to click on banner ads that look like dialog boxes, complete with fake OK and Cancel buttons.
H.264 support coming to the Flash player. It looks like this is a response to the higher video quality offered by Silverlight. I wonder if YouTube knew about this when they started transcoding their videos to H.264 for the Apple TV and iPhone. # 21st August 2007, 8:28 am
An update on Google Video feedback. Google are now offering a real refund to everyone who bought a video, and are letting people keep the Google Checkout credit as well. Purchased videos will keep working for six months. # 21st August 2007, 7:54 am
BBC Olinda digital radio: Social hardware. Schulze and Webb made a social radio prototype for the BBC; the IPR will be under an attribution license so manufacturers can run with it without asking for permission first. # 20th August 2007, 9:47 pm
I’ve been using Vista on my home laptop since it shipped, and can say with some conviction that nobody should be using it as their primary operating system—it simply has no redeeming merits to overcome the compatibility headaches it causes.
Bust A Name. Smart Ajax powered domain search; you give it some words, it shows you available combinations. It’s still almost impossible to find something that doesn’t suck though. # 20th August 2007, 3:40 pm