Category: Web

thought
2

GitHub now has even better commenting on commits. Better UI (collaborator highlighting, comment preview), better functionality (repo collaborators can edit anyone’s comment), better aesthetics. I use Git. I’m not wild about using it. I could take or leave it, to be honest. But I would stand in front of a tank for GitHub.

There are many geeks out there with a soft spot for Mercurial, or Bazaar, or darcs, or an even‐more‐neckbeard‐y DVCS, and they often wonder why Git is getting all the love. It’s because Git has GitHub. Mercurial seems to be feature‐equivalent to Git (at least in my limited experience), and Mercurial has BitBucket, which seems to be pretty good. But it’s not as good as GitHub.

Nobody should be ashamed that they can’t replicate GitHub’s success. It’s really hard to do the web well. It’s hard even to really smart people, of which I’m sure there are a few at BitBucket. The only people who think it’s easy are idiots. You can spot these people easily: they’re the ones who comment on TechCrunch posts and chortle that they could build a Stack Overflow clone over a weekend.

quotation

Don’t slip a concrete dildo into someone’s box of Fruit Loops. They won’t be happy with your Morning Breakfast Surprise. Put the concrete dildo in a clearly labeled box, with instructions. Then when someone encounters a problem, “Hey, something is screwing me here. Maybe it’s the concrete dildo?” at least they know to ask.

The Higgs Bozo
quotation
1

Surprisingly, there was no press release with a rationalization for the name or any explanations of how the logo represents cutting edge technology and XFINITY’s commitment to its customers. Or whatever. The new name feels at the same time pompous and clichéd — as if there is no brighter horizon than the infinity of XFINITY but, really, nothing is as depressing as a badly placed “X,” a gesture better reserved for extreme games and products, for bad dot‐com era start‐ups and for strip‐club dancers not named Destiny. It might sound more fun than “Comcast” but at least Comcast sounds like a real company with almost fifty years of experience.

Brand New
code
2

Mock geolocation

Useful if you’re working on a website meant for mobile devices. Firefox 3.5 has geolocation, but I use this with Safari and GreaseKit. Replace with whatever latitude and longitude you prefer, naturally.

if (!('geolocation' in navigator)) {
  navigator.geolocation = {
    watchPosition: function(success, f, options) {
      var broadcast = function() {
        var position = {
          coords: {
            latitude: 30.2696384,
            longitude: -97.74947,
            accuracy: 10000,
          },
          timestamp: (new Date()).valueOf()
        };        
        success(position);
      };
      
      broadcast();
      window.setInterval(broadcast, 10000);
    }
  };
}
link
1

A stream‐of‐consciousness browsing session brought me to this writeup on how the Source engine deals with lag. Also serves as a parable for web developers — don’t rely on the client to validate input, for the same reason that a game server can’t trust a participant to tell it if that bullet hit anything. See also Ninjam, a clever latency workaround for online jam sessions. And consider that even without the inherent delays of Internet traffic, the speed of light would be a constraint on distant collaboration.

link

Thomas Fuchs just pushed out the alpha 5 release of scripty2. This is the first release to include the small handful of UI controls I’ve been writing. The controls are designed to be compatible with jQuery UI’s Theme API — meaning that, for instance, a theme built with ThemeRoller could be dropped into a site using scripty2, and vice‐versa. More to come!

The “Configurable” pattern

Posted in Articles, Prototype

If you don’t know about Raphaël, you’d better ask somebody. It provides a vector drawing API that works in all major browsers (by abstracting between SVG and VML). I’ve been working on a JavaScript charting library called Krang. Krang is designed to take a data set and produce any chart

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Panel audio from The Ajax Experience

Posted in Prototype

I just discovered the existence of audio (and slides) for two of the sessions I was involved with at The Ajax Experience 2008, held in Boston last September. Which is to say: I knew that audio existed, but didn’t know it was yet available anywhere. The first was PPK’s main‐hall

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quotation

Lou Dobbs has been saying recently that people are asking a lot of questions about the birth certificate. Yes, the same people who want to know where the sun goes at night.

Bill Maher