If you use grep regularly while you’re programming, try ack. It’s easy to get setup in your shell account, and takes a short time to get familiar with. Definitely worth the small amount of trouble.
Archive for January, 2009
Cyberduck is a nice Mac FTP/SFTP GUI client that I’ve used in the past for moving files around between my desktop and some web servers. Turns out they’ve added support for moving your files directly to Amazon S3 and Mosso (RackSpace) Cloud Files. This means that you can use the same tool that you may previously have used for publishing content to your own web server to instead publish content directly to a self-service CDN. Amazon uses it’s Cloud Front service to distribute files, and Mosso is supposed to be integrated with LimeLight networks for distributing content from the Cloud Files system.
Just wish I had these services available to me three years ago. They would have saved me some serious cash on bandwidth commits for CDNs for those silly little projects I was working on.
Personally, I have avoided heavy-weight libraries for mobile application development, because I know that they are a burden to the end-user. This is less often the case for desktop users, who typically have broadband connections at home or at work. So what do we do to improve this situation?
I’m interested in hearing others’ thoughts about this idea.
I was in a conversation the other day about mobile platforms and the topic of Android, Google’s mobile OS, came up. The general outlook was: new, interesting, but too few devices to be concerned about.
I’ve read a modest amount of material about Android, but the sense I have is that Google is at the tip of the iceberg right now. Sure, only one device has been rolled out to date, and only through T-Mobile (bleegch). But more devices seem to be in the works, currently abroad, but certainly more in the United States soon.
The thing that is interesting, however, is that this is an OS that is (or can be) geared for devices other than cell phones, including netbooks, TVs, and kitchen appliances. It has great reach potential, which has not been demonstrated (yet) by other players. That is something to be considered by developers who are thinking about the next big mobile application to develop — because you might just find yourself playing Scrabble on your fridge while you’re waiting for the water to boil.
Misc / Comments Off
Can you spell, “awesome”?
So we’ve been playing around with the David Lee Roth Soundboard all week, and honestly, it might be one of the funniest things I’ve seen in the last few years. I figured the best way to continue enjoying Diamond Dave’s amazing vocals after this week is out would be to take these on my phone… yup, as ringtones. So, for your enjoyment, the links below are for m4r (iPhone ringtone) and mp3 files. These ringtones all come from the vocal track for Van Halen’s Runnin’ with the Devil.
Download or Play Ringtones
|Aahhaaaaahhhaaa yeeeaah whoohooooo ooo ooo||m4r||mp3|
|Aahaaahh yeah yeeaaaaah yeaaah yeah||m4r||mp3|
|Ooh god, oh god I’m running aaahhhh yeah||m4r||mp3|
|Yes I aaaamm||m4r||mp3|
Let’s face it… these are ridiculous.
How to use
For iPhone users, you should be able to add these to your phone by saving the m4r files, then importing into iTunes: 1. open iTunes, 2. select File > Add to Library…, 3. select the files from wherever you saved them. Connect your iPhone and check the “ringtones” tab to make sure you are syncing ringtones from your library to your phone.
If you have something else, you might be able to use the mp3 files for ringtones, but don’t ask me how. :)
By the way, thanks to Chad for giving me a heads up on how easy it is to make these for iPhones, and “davak” for the tech recipe with step by step instructions.
Mobile / Comments Off
Friends / Comments Off
John Goulah is a good friend of mine from Heavy where we worked together a couple years ago. John is one of the best developers I’ve worked with, and we always clicked as friends. He is an expert with LAMP environments, where the “P” stands for either Perl or PHP.
Mobile / Comments Off
I recently did some research on the web addresses (or, host names) that companies use for their mobile web sites. Turns out, there are quite a few varieties. That isn’t helping anyone who is trying to find on of these sites on their phone, which can be a painful experience as typing is more difficult and network latency (for mobile) is high.
This all stems from a discussion I was having recently about one company in particular who uses the subdomain “pda” for their mobile web site. “pda” seems to be somewhat of an outdated name for mobile devices. I’m not even sure that the “pda” subdomain was ever in vogue.
What I came to understand is that the term “pda” was used heavily by the company, maybe stemming from internal use. I’ve seen this sort of thing happen before — corporate vernacular turns into marketing speak. Often, the only people who understand the lingo are inside the company. On their own web site, this company referred to their mobile site as their “mini browser”. For me, a “browser” is a piece of software and not a web site.
I initially assumed that “m.example.com” and “example.mobi” were becoming the heavy favorites in this area. When I started digging around, I also found some other URLs that turned up frequently: “mobile.example.com”, “example.com/mobile”, “www.example.com/m”, “iphone.example.com”. The last is obviously device-specific, but worth noting.
The term “wap” is also used by some companies in their hostnames (“wap.example.com”). It stands for “wireless application protocol”. This is not very consumer-friendly acronym, and should be avoided.
I also looked at a list of “top mobile domains” (I forget where I found this) and the sites that came up were:
- m.google.com (google.com/m and google.com/mobile are also used for some of their mobile services)
- wap.aol.com/moviefone/ (I don’t know how anyone would guess this one)
- restaurantrow.com/avantgo (“avantgo” was one of the original mobile products back in 1998-ish)
- weather.mobi (also hails under “xhtml.weather.com”, which is another terrible acronym to use in a domain name)
Notice some of the trends here?
The mobile industry is still quite young. Usage of mobile sites is on the rise. To be found, companies need to make sure they select the right URLs for their mobile sites. Help out your customers — don’t buck the trend. Additionally, you should be casting your net wide. It’s not technically difficult to pick up three of four of these URLs and forward them to your primary URL (and I don’t care what your IT department says, it’s not).
My guess is that within two years, you’ll see 90% of mobile sites operating under “m.example.com” or “mobile.example.com” (“m” being short, it’s easier to type on a little bitty keyboard). These will stick with consumers the same way that they figured out what URLs were back in the ’90s. Remember the first time you saw “http://” somewhere and thought, what the hell does that mean?
With any luck, I’ll be able to find your mobile web site in one guess of the address.
Mobile / Comments Off