Posted in Camino, Links at 11:00 pm by

Some years ago now, long after nearly all web standards people had adopted Firefox or Safari, the great CSS guru Eric Meyer was (still) a Camino user. In that capacity, I interacted with him a few times in my role as a member of the Camino team.

Today I join with the global community of those who knew or were influenced by the Meyers in presenting a #663399Becca border on افكار و احلام (and background on the main ardisson.org landing page) as a mark of remembrance for their young daughter who tragically passed away last Saturday.

I have no more words.

(Via Jon Hicks)


Public Service Announcement: Flag Etiquette

Posted in Life, Links at 5:40 pm by

A reminder to those of you who display the American flag on a flagpole at your home, place of business, or other location:

The flag, when flown at half-staff, should be first hoisted to the peak for an instant and then lowered to the half-staff position. The flag should be again raised to the peak before it is lowered for the day. On Memorial Day the flag should be displayed at half-staff until noon only, then raised to the top of the staff.
          —4 U. S. C., §7 (emphasis added)

Public Service Announcement: Traffic Safety

Posted in Life, Links at 5:03 pm by

If a traffic signal is not functioning at an intersection, all drivers must treat the intersection as if a stop sign is posted for all directions.
          —2010 Driver’s Manual (GA)

This public service announcement brought to you by those of us who do not wish to be killed or injured in chaos at an intersection where power to the traffic signal has been lost.


On Privacy

Posted in Life, Links at 1:37 am by

The Chronicle recently published a good piece about the complex nature of privacy, vectors of assault on facets of our privacy, and the fallacies of the “if you have nothing to hide” justification commonly used by defenders of measures that intrude on our privacy. Plus, both Orwell and Kafka for the price of one!


Camino Tips: Going Flash-Free (and Cheating using Google Chrome)

Posted in Camino, Links at 1:23 am by

(Hey, look at that; Camino Planet is working normally again, which means my posts are appearing again.)

Once again it’s been over a year since the last post in the Camino Tips series, but we’re back with another one.

Recently, going “Flash-free” (and cheating by using Google Chrome when you hit a Flash-only website) has become all the rage on the web; you can do so in Camino, too, with a little help from AppleScript and/or Automator.

Short version:

  1. Uninstall the Flash Player plug-in by moving Flash Player.plugin and flashplayer.xpt from /Library/Internet Plug-ins to some other location.
  2. Install one of the solutions below to facilitate opening the current page in Google Chrome (which ships with its own built-in copy of the Flash plug-in).

Toolbar Script solution

Carlo Gandolfi (aka gand, of FreeSMUG and Portable Camino fame) wrote a short AppleScript that can be used as a toolbar script; if you’re on a page with Flash that you need to be able to view, you can click the toolbar button to open the page in Google Chrome.

For more information about this method and to download the toolbar AppleScript, see Going Flash-Free with Camino on FreeSMUG.

Automator-based Service solution

Philippe Wittenbergh, always mindful of the keyboard accessibility of features and tricks, adapted the toolbar script solution into an Automator-based Service for Mac OS X 10.6 (it can probably be adapted for use with ThisService for users on Mac OS X 10.5); if you’re on a page with Flash that you need to be able to view, you can use the keyboard shortcut you’ve assigned to the Service to open the page in Google Chrome.

For more information about this method and to download the Automator workflow, see Workflow for a nearly Flash-less online life with Camino at ::[Empty Spaces]::.

Thanks to Carlo and Philippe for putting these tools and their instructions together (it’s something I had wanted to do for quite a while now, but, as usual of late, never found the time to do)!


Graphics for the Weekend

Posted in Links, Travel at 1:35 am by

I’m in a bit of a posting malaise right now, with lots I want to write about but little energy to make it happen when I have the time.

As a step in the right direction, though, I offer these links to some nifty graphics to keep your mind sharp for the weekend:

  • Tallest Mountain to Deepest Ocean Trench from Our Amazing Planet
    • I never realized the Statue of Liberty was so short!
  • Locals and Tourists from Eric Fischer
    • Having been a tourist in nearly a dozen of these places, a former resident of one,1 and a general geography buff, it’s fascinating to see the places we find interesting, and the differences around the world (Greater Cairo, for instance, has a relatively low density of photographs, and an even-lower density of definable locals—but it is fun to see the tourists on felucca rides in the Nile!).


1 Or two, by the definition used in the compilation—had I uploaded any photos to Flickr, of course.


Best of Brent Simmons on Software Development for End-Users

Posted in Links, Software at 9:43 pm by

Brent Simmons, author of renowned feed reader NetNewsWire, periodically writes about software development issues as they pertain to end-users. He debunks common end-user myths and misconceptions about software development (“it’s like one line of code to add this”) and provides guidance to users about making good feature requests and bug reports (and why developers will ask you lots of questions along the way). Since I periodically want to refer back to these posts (and refer others to them) and Google is not nearly as omniscient as one might expect ;) when entering "Brent Simmons" "software development for end users", I’ve decided that here is as good a place as any to collect them for my reference.

(Thanks to Brent for doing all the hard work of writing these articles, and apologies for appropriating your name for the title of this anthology.)


Remixing John Gruber

Posted in Camino, Links, Software at 11:53 pm by

Commenting on a post about iPhone apps, Daring Fireball’s John Gruber writes:

[J]ailbreak users expect everything to magically just work and will blame legit apps, rather than the hacks they’re running, for crashes.

Substitute “Users of InputManager hacks” for “Jailbreak users” and you have the bane of the Mac software developer’s existence.

Sadly, you can also substitute “Users of NPAPI plug-ins” for “Jailbreak users” and “legitimate browser plug-ins” for “hacks” and explain most web browser (and many web view-using application) crashes, which are the bane of the web browser developer’s existence.1


1 Simmons’s final lament is just as true for web browsers as it is for non-browser applications that use a web view.


Quote of the Week (or, how the mighty have fallen)

Posted in Links, Software at 4:16 pm by

From the Ars Technica comments on a recent Ars piece:

I didn’t expect to find "Jackass of the Week" material featured on Ars.

(Hat tip to Daring Fireball.)


Putting code where your heart is?

Posted in Links, Open Source, Software at 2:37 am by

Marc “uwog” Maurer, a leading AbiWord developer, on AbiWord’s 2008 Google Summer of Code projects:

Interestingly, we did receive quite a few applications about improving OOXML support, while we got zero OpenDocument related proposals. Apparently the support for the OpenDocument ISO standard isn’t strong enough in the F/OSS community to actually make an effort to improve support for it. Even when paid. Food for thought.

Both sad and disturbing for advocates of truly free and open standards for document formats (of which I am one).