Archive for June, 2002


Accent problem doesnt affect RSS

Thursday, June 13th, 2002

It seems the accent problem doesn’t affect RSS or the aggregator – the problem is that IE and Mozilla both choke on accented characters in the description element when trying to render the XML in the browser, even if I replace them with their equivalent html entities.


Just testing.

Thursday, June 13th, 2002

Here’s some text that the XML renderer is choking on:

[removed because it of course choked the damn rss feed]

I’ll look at it in my feed now.


translating RSS

Thursday, June 13th, 2002

Jenny asks

my next question is how do we get on-the-fly translation into news aggregators, but I’m sure we’re a ways off from that.

Not that far off at all! I wrote Jenny an RSS cleanser in PHP recently, and it took me about 20 minutes tonight to add translation to it. I’ve showed it to Jenny but won’t post it here because (a) it really burdens the translation service and (b) for some reason accented characters in the description break the RSS feed, even if I use their html entity equivalents.


Translating on the fly

Wednesday, June 12th, 2002

My BlogChat partner Tim points me to a discussion from Jenny about realtime translation.

I’ve been playing with realtime translation with BlogChat. I’m at a pretty early proof-of-concept stage, but have used it to good effect already. Here’s a capture of a session:

It’s simple to use and quite fast. I’ve got a whole bunch of ideas of how to build a useful translating chat. Time to leap into the conversation, I guess!


Ceci n’est pas un Lundi

Tuesday, June 11th, 2002

Michael O’Connor Clarke comments on Price-WaterHouse-Coopers Consulting’s new branding initiative. I was hard pressed from the feel of the site to know the product is consulting. You’d be forgiven for thinking it’s a new deodorant or a breakfast power shake.

Their advertising campaign says this to me:

We will help you spend tons of money to come up with airy-fairy vacuous mission-statement shite that helps you condescend to your customers. We’ll build you a company website like ours using Lotus Notes, requiring craploads of consulting to keep it going. Our sales guys will be golfing with your CFO while you lay off staff to afford our rates to support our hoity-toity ad campaign.


JSRS 2.1 released

Monday, June 10th, 2002

Now that Mozilla 1.0 is out, I finally made JSRS work with POST for Mozilla. Some changes broke it around version 0.92, so I’ve been waiting for 1.0 so I know it’s safe to fix it without having to revisit it.

It turned out was a pretty simple change to jsrsClient.js – in an iframe, the document is now known as iframe.contentDocument instead of iframe.document as it was before.

I managed to find the problem with the really neat Venkman ECMAScript debugger and the object browser built into Mozilla. I’ve generally found Mozilla 1.0 to be really fast, slick, very nice to work with.

Of course, the very second I say that I find an issue where I can’t insert a URL in the Movable Type 1.4 blog entry page using Mozilla. The button does nothing. Also, the text box doesn’t wrap. Damn. Maybe it’s fixed in MT2.0. Well, I’m still pretty happy with it anyhow.


Who was that masked man?

Monday, June 10th, 2002

The Wireless Bandit stalks Toronto and environs, finding free and/or open 802.11 feeds, documenting and mapping them for the benefit of all.

Hi-ho Itanium and awayyyy!!

…and I never got a chance to thank him!


My expanding family universe

Monday, June 10th, 2002

The story so far in summary: I was adopted at birth in 1961. While in search of some essential medical history, I met each of my birth parents for the first time in 2000. Since then I’ve met a number of half-siblings on both sides, and quite a few aunts and uncles and cousins.

Recently I met a half-brother. He’s a talented musician in a popular local band about to release their first CD to undoubtedly rave reviews. That leaves one half-sister yet to meet and I’ll have met everyone – 6 half siblings all told, ranging from 22 to 40 years old, from Toronto to Los Angeles.

What an enriching experience. Until I had my own children, I had never had any particular interest in knowing my birth family history. It wasn’t until we were compelled to make the search that I really put a lot of thought into it at all. However, it has been very rewarding on the whole, the timing has been good, and I wouldn’t want to have missed out on it.

We hosted a party at our house on the weekend with 40 or 50 guests from my birth father’s family. It was a real knees-up affair with barbeque, sing-alongs, lots of children, filled with a fantastic level of warmth and familiarity.

It’s all a pretty convoluted set of relationships for the adults to comprehend, but the children see right through it – more attention, more kids to play with, more family – what’s so complex?