There’s a great article on continuation based web programming in general over at DeveloperWorks. I fooled around with Scheme based modal web programming earlier this year, and the model itself was really compelling. It’s nice to see an example given using popular web framework technologies.
I’ve been having trouble with uploads to both Flickr and BuzzNet during this vacation. I uploaded images the day I left for NY, and everything worked at 12:30pm PST. Then I landed in NY and tried an upload using the same phone using the same settings to the same accounts, and it doesn’t seem to be working any more. And everyone is gone for the holidays it seems, so self service it is. I didn’t have the OBEX bluetooth tools setup under Linux (I’m currently using Gentoo on my laptop). I’ve tried to install the slick-as-hell-sounding gnome-bluetooth package, but I can’t emerge it. Error compiling. So I went tooling around looking for simple bare bones shims so that I could just move some data around. Not all that much out there. I have GPRS working over bluetooth for this laptop and phone, so I know the basics are working. But how about accessing the data on the phone itself? Not good, here’s some info.
I’ve been reading over a few REST themed articles:
I’m over at my parent’s place, and since east coast TV is way different than west coast TV, I flip on the onscreen guide to check out the schedule. My sister is sitting there and she goes “wow, how did you get that to come up?” I found that pretty interesting. She just never pushed that button, or even realized it sitting there. So I asked my father how long they had the system for, thinking maybe my sister just didn’t have time to muck around with it. But they’ve had it for a year. So why didn’t my sister see anyone else using the feature? My mom also didn’t know about, and my father just found out about the onscreen guide just a month ago (when Devin stepped on the remote and the guide came up). It’s interesting, but I’m not quite sure what it means. Obviously the onscreen guide is a really cool feature, I love having it there. Maybe my family is just a really isolated instance. We’ve never really watched all that much TV, so the chance of coincidental exposure to the guide might just be lower than average. But still, I wonder how many other households out there have cable boxes sitting there that can display a guide but never have. Just curious.
I was taking a picture of the Christmas Tree at my parent’s place when my four year old niece spotted me and wanted to take pictures too. I figured she couldn’t do any worse than I do with the camera (and much to my chagrin it turns out that was right). I released her unsupervised for about half an hour just to see what was on my phone when she came back. Half the fun for me was seeing if she really understood what she was doing. If the joy of sharing photos online is all about capturing the random everyday events from your life then this photo set should be pure gold. Here they are: Photos by a Four Year Old. I really like some of them. Some just look neat. Others suggest a functioning of the four year old mind that I personally find pretty staggering. Check this out: a photo of the artist, Devin Link, taking a picture of her reflection in an ornament on the Christmas tree. She definitely understood what she was doing, and went out of her way to find subjects that not only look interesting but in many cases really point to an understanding that she was creating something. She also took a snap of herself reflected in a full length mirror. There was something interesting in watching herself watch herself and capturing it. Not that I attribute any deep philosophical meaning to the pictures that she took, or that they indicate an amazing degree of self awareness. But I would tend to think they are the manifestation of a mental model much more developed than the “I want that, give me” model I tend to think of when I think about four-year-olds.
I’m over in New York for a while visting with my parents for the holidays. They live in Huntington, which is about half way out onto Long Island. It’s the suburbs of New York City pretty much. Very heavily populated area, outlier to the most major metropolitan area in the US. And my cell coverage sucks. I have service through T-Mobile currently. At the time I last switched my service they were the ones most consistently willing to give me a flat fee unlimited data plan. But this is just insane. I was sitting talking to my father and my phone beeped with an SMS, I had a voicemail message. What the hell? I hadn’t moved in an hour or so, and my phone definitely didn’t ring. It was a message that Elle had left a half hour earlier. That means an SMS must have been sitting queued for half an hour. I looked at the signal strength meter on my phone to see if my parents are in a dead area. Not that being in a “dead area” would really be an excuse, that still means T-Mobile has crappy coverage. And as I was looking the meter is bouncing all over the place. Strong signal to disconnected, GPRS indicator flashing on and off.
So it’s all official and getting somewhat settled down, I’m now a Feedster employee. The first thing that people normally say after “Cool!! Feedster rocks!” is “Well, what the hell are you doing at Feedster?” Okay, valid question. It’s a bit different than what most of the people out there know me for. But I actually do a decent amount of web programming, and I can sling XML when XML demands to be slung. The other question is how Feedster relates to my whole kick about mobility. It doesn’t. Not yet and there’s no reason it has to. Mobility is my personal passion. I work on mobility stuff cause nothing screams “M4d Sk1llz” more than being able to IM from the train. Plus, it’ll probably be useful for something one day. (That was partial sarcasm. I love mobility, I just think it has a lot more potential than we’re currently able to get from it.)
Peter Kaminski mentioned BuddyBuzz to Elle during Bloggercon, and she came home with a flyer about it. Russ lent me a 6600, so I figured I would try it out. It’s an interesting application. It uses the concept of rapid serial visual presentation, which means that one word is shown on the screen at a time and they’re shown in rapid sucession (for more info see this article). I do find information presented this way easier to read actually. For a news story at least. There’s no scanning the page each time you scroll and losing your place. I’ve found the experience to be quite pleasant actually. And that I can crank the speed up pretty high and still take in the story.
There’s an interview with the authors of OpenGardens over at the Mobile Technology Weblog. I’m hadn’t heard of the OpenGardens book before, but I would certainly like to get my hands on a copy. They say they talk about one of the issues I’ve written about a number of times: how to get an innovative mobile application out into the market given the current environment. If anyone has gotten a chance to check it out please drop me a line or leave a comment here.
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