Archive for May, 2002


Hold…… and release.

Friday, May 31st, 2002

So Mozilla‘s on Version 1.0 Release Candidate 3 now. Not version 0.991 or 0.992 or 0.993, but the third trial-balloon-final-release-sort-of-but-not-really.

I remember my Dad telling me one June day when I was a kid that today was February 126th. I assured him it was June and not February and that February only had 28 or 29 days, but he explained that a project his company was working on was due at the end of February and it still wasn’t ready, so they’d decreed that February wasn’t over yet. I think February had about 250 days that year.


Warning: Irony and Sarcasm ahead

Wednesday, May 29th, 2002

Dammit, apparently Linux has this 497-day uptime bug. What a piece of crap. I never had that problem with Windows…


Reading Room

Tuesday, May 28th, 2002

I’m reading David Weinberger’s Small Pieces Loosely Joined, an enjoyable insightful commentary into the social impact of the internet.

David has a kids’ version of Small Pieces that reads very well for 10-15 yr olds. As one of the online comments says:

[the kids version is] Like a scalemodel (clue) train


Deer in the headlights

Tuesday, May 21st, 2002

I’m at one of those awkward passes, where I’ve got so many things lined up to do that I’m at an impasse where to start. I’ve just been sitting here frozen in front of the keyboard, my mind swimming with the daunting array of tasks ahead of me. Time to kick my butt into gear.

One of those things is to get some blogging flowing again. I’ve always leaned towards blogging only when I have something to say rather than forcing a regular blurb out perhaps before one is ready. There’s a middle ground to that though, I suspect, where I encourage myself to seek blog inspiration in order to whet my appetite for a good rant or discourse, thus keeping up the flow.

I guess it’s my duty to link to a few people too, and quote lots of stuff I’m sure you’ve all seen elsewhere anyhow, lest I get branded a narcissistic snob by the demablogues who contend that there are right and wrong ways to blog, and those who open their blog at the little end are deserving of pejorative labels.


deconstructing Pim

Saturday, May 11th, 2002

From BayswaterFarm[ via]:

Tolerance is all very well, but how does a tolerant society tolerate the intolerant?

That just about sums up the popular misunderstanding of Pim Fortuyn’s views.

I assume you’ve been following the Pim story, and have read Adam’s thoughts.


cleanse RSS as you collect it

Friday, May 10th, 2002

Tim’s been doing some programming with RSS and learning a thing or two.

Not to get behind, I’m working with Scott Johnson on some RSS stuff and wrote a test harness for a routine to clean up the descriptions in a feed, removing or escaping html, truncating description size, etc.

I’ve been following the debate about whether Jenny should truncate her feed., so it occurs to me it doesn’t matter any more whether she does or not. As long as I use my new handy-dandy RSS cleansing proxy, I can control it myself.

I’ve saved a piece of Scott’s feed as an example since he’s got some html in it and his entries are long. Here’s the raw feed

If you use my cleanser, you get this result

The feed parameter of course is required. I’ve added optional parameters too –

limit sets the byte limit to truncate the feed at, or 0 for all of it. defaults to 500 bytes

method allows you to specify whether you want all tags removed from the feed (remove) or just have ampersands escaped so it doesn’t mess up your aggregator output or cause script security concerns (amp). Defaults to remove.

More examples: limit to 50 bytes, amp method

I’ll leave this available for a day or two, but after that, you’ll have to do it yourself – I don’t need the entire world’s RSS calls proxied through my server.


Where do you stop supporting old browsers?

Wednesday, May 8th, 2002

I recently had a remote scripting support question about Netscape to which I responded:

You don’t say what version of Netscape. If it’s 4.x, I don’t even have it
loaded any more, so I can’t debug it at all. It’s time to let it break and
force people to wake up and get a decent browser.

The response I received said (edited for clarity):

The version I use is 4.79. The application has to be compatible with every browser.

No it does NOT have to be compatible with EVERY browser. Are you making it work with Lynx? Are you making it work with Spyglass Mosaic 1.0? Are you making it work with Cello? Are you making it work with Netscape 2.0? Of course not. They’re all irrelevant to web applications. So too is NS4.x but it won’t ever lay down and die as long as people keep propping it up with superhuman hacks.


Rubber baby buggy bumpers

Monday, May 6th, 2002

I was describing Netscape Communicator 4.x today in a BlogChat discussion with Albert Delgado, who runs the Whittier School site and is a very active guy in education and technology.

10:08:35 brent: Netscape 4.x is DEFINITELY not up to the task.
10:08:51 brent: it’s a horse and buggy.
10:09:10 brent: or rather it’s hoarse and buggy.
10:09:12 brent: heh heh