Archive for the 'Software' Category

Buzzword – competitor to Google Docs word processing

Monday, May 12th, 2008

Adobe launched a preview version of Buzzword,
which uses
Adobe Air to edit documents.

Pros

  • documents are on web server – so you can edit them anywhere
  • very slick UI
  • sharing sends a unique URL to the sharee
  • looks like it supports collaborative editing. Maybe two editors can see each other’s edits in realtime?

Cons

  • documents are on web server – so you don’t “own” them
  • can’t save to PDF .. on an acrobat.com domain!!!
  • UI is obtuse – instead of a simple tooltips UI, clicking on “radio button” options looks
    like a completely different action. e.g. sorting documents by date vs alphabetical order
  • password is forced to have non-alphabetical component
  • manipulating documents is difficult – single-clicking on a document’s name opens it rather than selecting it. You must click the icon next to the document’s name to select it. Renaming requires selecting “Rename” from a drop-down menu.

twhirl – twitter client

Monday, April 14th, 2008

twhirl

Ran across
twhirl
today because
Seesmic
bought them, and my good friend
Bear
is a Seesmic dev.
(Hi Bear!)

It’s an
Adobe Air
app, which is both good and bad (Air is not open, but there are Linux and Mac versions),
and seems to be the Twitter-client-du-jour.

I always do twitter-via-IM, so I’m not sure what benefits this would bring me.
Perhaps Twitter IMs are a bit too interrupting, although I’ve mitigated that somewhat by setting a custom sound for twitters, by which I know I don’t have to pay attention to the IM window that has popped up.

What do other people use to Twitter? IM? Twitter-specific clients?
If I was all blog-centric, I would put up a poll, but all I have are the comments below, so please add one!

Automatic archives

Monday, March 24th, 2008

In my web browser I set my history to the max # of days. I wish you could just set it to “infinite”.
That’s what databases are good for!
Well, I guess you should archive every now and again.

I manually archive things like mail at the end of the year as it is.
But I can still access all the (casual) bookmarks I’ve ever made back to June 2003!
Having that many bookmarks broke Foxmarks such that I couldn’t use it until late last year.

Every month I create a new
strftime("%Y-%m %b")
bookmark folder (e.g. 2008-03 March)
in which to store casual bookmarks.
Ditto for download folders, which are always strftime("~/download/%Y-%m-%B")
(e.g. ~/download/2008-03-Mar),
although I may switch from ~/download to ~/Downloads since both ubuntu and Mac OS X use that folder name.

I’ve thought of writing a Firefox plugin to manage all these month-specific setups.
I should also write an Azureus plugin that does the same thing.
Both could be really, really low level so you could just use strftime format strings in any preference folder/file name.

Download folder: %Y-%m %b

That would be sweet..

“E Text Editor” – TextMate for Windows

Monday, March 3rd, 2008

E Text Editor logo

I’m working in Windows at the moment
(my development Mac hasn’t arrived at work yet)
so I’m looking around for replacements for things I use on the Mac.
I found out today about the
“E Text Editor”
(and also the free, Monaco-like font
Anonymous).
E is the closest thing I’ve seen to
TextMate,
my favorite Mac text editor.

What really struck me about the author’s description of the editor was that:

  1. He has a powerful revision-control system embedded in it (in fact, the editor was just a test app at first for the revision control app library)
  2. He
    actively sought out
    Allan Odgaard, the author of TextMate, and talked with him about making a Windows-based editor with a lot of compatibilty (being able to use TextMate plugins, etc), and Allan was highly in favour of the idea (the TextMate page mentions it will never be available on Windows, after all).

So I have downloaded the app and will give it a 30-day tryout.
Maybe I’ll post a review here or something.

Does anyone have any other Mac-replacement recommendations?
And why, after all these years, does
Cygwin
installation still suck so much?
They need to be like a Linux distro and have a single, massive installer with everything in it, instead of forcing everyone to separately download everything as part of the install.

Microsoft and Bungie “devolve” relationship

Friday, October 5th, 2007

Microsoft is spinnging Bungie off to be an independent company again.
Shane Kim, vice president of Microsoft Game Studios said “We saw ‘Halo 3’ and we were all, like, WTF? This is just Halo 2!! We are *so* *done* with them”.

Harold Ryan, talking head for Bungie was heard to cackle “Hehehehe, the plan *worked*!”

ActiveCollab becomes ProjectPier

Friday, October 5th, 2007

The ActiveCollab project has gone closed source,
so the community took the last open source version and started a new project to take it forward:
ProjectPier.
This is pretty common in the open source world.
The creators of a project decide they want to close the source and go the proprietary route, and the community takes up the open code and continues on.

This is separate from projects like cddb, which was always closed-source, but took it’s community-provided data and closed it and sold it out.
it’s called GraceNote now,
and like open source projects going closed, a free replacement sprang up:
FreeDB.org.

‘Digg This’ bookmarklet for Safari

Wednesday, September 12th, 2007

I found out recently that most “Digg This” bookmarklets don’t work with Safari.
I think it’s because other browsers use document.getSelection() and Safari only accepts just getSelection().

In any case, this bookmarklet Diggs whichever page you’re looking at, uses the title of the page as the title of your Digg, and puts the selected text in the description.

Drag this to your Safari bookmarks bar: DiggThis

QIP – popular Windows-only multi-IM client

Friday, May 11th, 2007

Ran across this one in
a mention on Slashdot
today.
Qip
is a freeware, Windows-only multi-IM client, like
Trillian
and
Pidgin-formerly-Gaim.

Alas, it is not open source like Pidgin is, so I don’t see a point unless it’s a lot more featureful or something.

Coda

Tuesday, April 24th, 2007
coda
Coda

Panic, the creators of “Transmit” and “Audion”, have released
Coda,
a new web development IDE.
It has a slightly steep price at $US 79.

They’ve licensed
the SubEthaEngine
from
the Coding Monkeys,
so multiple people can collaborate easily on a web site.
I think this was an excellent idea.
Small developers should be helping each other out like this more often.

The IDE includes a terminal you can put into pane in the IDE.
It knows how to ssh to sites and upload all your files.
It looks pretty nice!

installing wordpress on a Mac using MacPorts

Wednesday, December 20th, 2006

Note to self: when setting up mysql on a Mac using MacPorts (formerly Darwin Ports), install mysql with the following:


% sudo port install mysql5 +server

That bloody little “+server” part was a royal pain in the ass, let me tell you.
I would think that mysql installs would be servers by default.
There should instead be a special “+client” flag to prevent server installation!
Egad.

Oh, and for some reason, the wp-config.php did not like the host name localhost.
Instead, use 127.0.0.1.