Archive for the ‘general’ Category

Google AJAX Libraries API

This is pretty cool. We’re currently internationalising a couple of our social networking sites for the US and other international markets and I can see real benefits in using this approach, not least of which would be:

  • Caching can be done by Google… we don’t have to write and maintain additional code in our apps for this
  • Files are Gzipped
  • The files are hosted by Google which has a distributed CDN at various points around the world, so the files are “close” to the user (UK visitors get a copy from a UK based CDN, US Visitors from a US CDN, etc)
  • Because the libraries are hosted on the same URLs, if the user has used another application that uses this infrastructure, the file may already be cached on their local machine.
  • Google servers are able to deliver content fast!

A new space race

WOW – I installed Microsoft’s WorldWide Telescope the other day and I’ve got to say it is absolutely awesome.

I always wanted a telescope but could never justify the cost when there are always more pressing priorities.

With WWT I can scan the entire night sky and zoom in on countless near and deep sky objects from NASA’s huge archive of images.

Initial impressions are that it beats the pants off of Google Sky but some commentators see this as the start of a different kind of space race that will herald in a new era in space research.

If you watch the Guided Tour on the Orion Nebula you can actually see protoplanetary discs forming around young stars, it’s that amazing you are able to see that level of detail right there in Orion’s belt – as if I wasn’t in awe enough when I looked up at the night sky this adds a whole new hypnotically beautiful dimension to it.

These increasingly powerful tools coupled with an increasing number of eyes looking outward has enormous potential for expanding our knowledge of our universe, and I always think it is really cool when technology enables your regular ‘joe’ to discover more about our fascinating arena of reality.

A useful resource?

I came across this and thought it might provide a useful resource, especially “The reference section includes a growing library of test cases for checking cross-browser and cross-platform compatibility.”

I recently got stung by a cross-browser compatibility issue and had to roll back my changes (ouch!) so I’d be interested to know if/how anybody makes use of those test cases, as well as just the library in general.

Another commitment

As if I haven’t got enough to keep me exceptionally busy, I’ve now decided that I should start blogging.

Well I was kind of blogging anyway (if you count around 5 or 6 articles over the space of about 18 months entirely devoted to generating adsense revenue, the outcome of which was one of those “I can’t be arsed” type of lethargies after I made only $7) but this time I’m doing it for real and by that I mean I’m not in it for the readies, I’m just talking about what I love doing which, fortunately enough is also what I do for a living.

But wait, before you withdraw muttering about “another techie blog” , didn’t you notice the title? Well, the point is that although I shall indeed use my blog to post about my software development activities, there shall also be some (hopefully) interesting tidbits about my observations in and around the colourful and creative Soho area in the West End of London, where I am based, anecdotes about life in general and possibly some shockingly revealing insights into what it is like to be me (well, what it is like to be an extremely busy Dad, anyway!).

So lets hope that somehow, somewhere out there, somebody might just stumble across my blog and take a smidgin of pleasure out of reading what I have to say. If that does indeed happen, then I shall be delighted to count this endeavour as having been worthwhile.


P 🙂