Xah's Web Dev Blog Archive 2010-01

Web Design: Should Hyperlinks Have Underline? (commentary and tips)

URL Percent Encoding and Unicode.

Popular Money Making Websites (survey; seo; web monetization)

I noticed today my webhosting company truncates IP address in the weekly weblog.

For example, in daily log, a entry would look like this:

196.12.236.55 - - [17/Apr/2010:00:00:00 -0400] "GET /favicon.ico HTTP/1.1" 200 217 www.xahlee.org "-" "Mozilla/5.0 (Windows; U; Windows NT 5.1; fr; rv:1.9.2.3) Gecko/20100401 Firefox/3.6.3 Creative ZENcast v2.01.01" "-"

But when they generate the weekly log by combining the past 7 daily logs, they replace the last part of ip address by “x”, so it looks like “196.12.236.x”.

Not sure why they are doing that. It wasn't so before. My webhoster is 1and1.com.

Anyone knows why? it's not by law is it?

Discovered that Wolfram Alpha generates a link graph for your site. See for example: http://www.wolframalpha.com/input/?i=xahlee.org.

This is quite useful when you need to know quickly a site's link topology. Am pretty sure there are better sites that generates a better link graph. If you know, please let me know.

Google's sidewiki feature in their browser toolbar pisses off a lot people, including me… Google Sidewiki Block.

Just discovered, that someone tried to trademark the term “SEO”. It appears, a chick named Rhea Drysdale stopped him, together with USD$17 k out of her pocket. See her blog on this incidence: SEO Trademark Registration Terminated , by Rhea Drysdale. Source.

I think that's a commendable deed.

CSS Text Flow Around Image (tutorial)

CSS: Overlay Text Over Image (css tutorial)

CSS “position:relative” Example (tutorial)

Website And Domain Lookup Tools (webmaster tips)

Quite amusing. Quotes from Content-control software:

Content-control software has been cited[14] as one of the reasons Beaver College decided to change its name to Arcadia University , as content-control software had been blocking access to the college Web site. Another example was the filtering of Horniman Museum.[15]

Quotes from Scunthorpe problem:

The problem was named after an incident in 1996 in which AOL's dirty-word filter prevented residents from the town of Scunthorpe, North Lincolnshire, England from creating accounts with AOL, because the town's name contains the substring cunt. Years later, Google's filters apparently made the same mistake, preventing residents from searching for local businesses that included Scunthorpe in their names.[1]

Discovered http://www.chillingeffects.org/. A site that deals with conflict of interest on the web. ⁖ “cease and desist” letters, copyright, defamation, DMCA, etc. Lots of useful and reliable info.

Styling HTML Table with CSS (basic tutorial)

Discovered Mibbit. A web based application for IRC, Yahoo Messenger, Twitter. Written in JavaScript. I'll be trying it out in coming weeks. Note, you can't use mibbit with freenode.net's irc server, because they banned it.

I haven't kept up with web tech for implementing instant messages, which is quite important and became popular in the past 3 or so years, especially by Google Talk. I looked into it about 4 years ago when a client needs chat functionality on a web site, but at the time i looked, there are like 3 or so Open Source ones i found in the few hours i looked. Most are implemented with PHP, and they are all pretty lousy.

Web Browser Market Share 2010-02. (report)

CSS Tag Matching (Selector) Syntax (basic tutorial)

Complete update: Floating Vertical Scroll Block (javascript tutorial).

How To Be A Online Ad Publisher (Monetize Your Website).

Advantages Of Feedburner.

Flowing List Items (tutorial)

How to make IE's webfeed button work. See bottom of: Atom Webfeed Basics.

Darren Rowse. A non-technical blogger, who became wealthy by blogging. Quote:

His two main personal blogs are 'Digital Photography School' which features photography tips and ProBlogger which features tips on blogging. These two blogs get around 85,000-100,000 page views a day and over $20,000 in total ad revenue a month.[2][6][7].[8][9].

This is really a simple fellow, not some mysterious CEO and business suite type of guy. You can check out his blogs at digital-photography-school.com and problogger.net. You can read about the guy by himself, to get a sense of who he is, here: http://www.problogger.net/about-problogger/.

As getting to know his blog, one of the article i read is: Why I Don't Use AdSense on ProBlogger Anymore , by Darren Rowse. Source. It contains a short video, where he talks about it. Very informative. I'll be reading more of his blog to gain some experience.

Also, discovered Google Code University, which is a set of tutorials. For example: http://code.google.com/edu/ajax/index.html. The tutorial is quite nice, much like my tech tutorials. To the point, practical, in plain english, without much obtuse jargons, pedantry, confused writing, open source hot air. 〔☛ Open Source Documentation Problems

Adding Web Share Widgets to Your Site. (webmaster tips)

Micropayment On The Web (comments)

Google introduced a new tool, Chart API. It lets you create many sort of charts and graphs. You need some coding experience to use it. Basically, you send a URL to google's chart server (GET or POST request), the URL is a little programing lang that contain all your data. Google than sends back a image of your chart. Very handy. I'll probably use it. Home page at: http://code.google.com/apis/chart/image_charts.html

Another thing Google announced is Aardvark. Which lets you ask a question and get answers. Any question. Any, you might ask your friends, family, co-workers, teachers, colleges, on tips, how to, where, or questions in professional fields. Announcement at: Source. Home page at: http://vark.com/.

2009-12-26. Google did a experiment on how speed effect users. Interesting reading. Speed Matters by Jake Brutlag. Source

A more informative article with clear summary is here: Bing and Google Agree: Slow Pages Lose Users by Brady Forrest. Source

Of course we all know that we don't like slow pages, but the interesting thing is that even a 0.4 sec delay has measurable impact.

Another, about minor and major experiments Google is doing: Search experiments, large and small by Ben Gomes. Source

More readings: http://googleblog.blogspot.com/2008/08/search-quality-continued.html. A interesting thing on the site is this link: http://www.google.com/jobs/britney.html, showing the few hundred variation of spellings people used to search Britney Spears. From this, we can infer how much trouble they take just for the spell correction feature, and further, how extremely complex the search technology actually is, beneath the extremely simple interface.

URL Percent Encoding and Ampersand Char.

Anti-bot Test: CAPTCHA!.

The Problems with CSS (random thoughts)

Preventing Image Leechers (some tips)

Interesting Tidbits About Domain Names.

“Zen-Coding” and “Emacs-Buddha-Coding”. (abbrev expansion template system for HTML)

More juice from the Google exit china threat, from The Wall Street Journal. Google Warns of China Exit Over Hacking by By JESSICA E. VASCELLARO, JASON DEAN and SIOBHAN GORMAN. Source

The article gives a bit more detail on the nature of the hack, google's revenue in China, Google search's market share in china. Follow links on that article will be quite a few others… all over the web.

From Google's blog: A new approach to China . Source

Google is saying that recently there's a sophisticated attack, originated from China, on gooogle china that seems to be focused on stealing info on Chinese human rights activists. And they are implying, that they might exit China business.

The article is overall negative on China. I'm Chinese by blood. If Google bad mouths China, i wouldn't support google.

Google might exit China? That is quite a laughable suggestion. As a business, that's close to suicide, even with google's particular philosophy on business ethics (which i think is good). Also, it is not clear if this is just a blog-level bluffing drivel. A blog with implied suggestion of exiting business in china is one thing, but if they explicitly make a official statement to their stock holders, that'd be different.

China has several of their own huge search engines, video site engines, etc. Just like everywhere else, the competition is tough. Those Chinese web companies, as well as foreign companies running in china such as Yahoo and Microsoft, would be more than happy, H A P P Y, if Google gets the f��� out of China.

As for Google ending their search engine censor in China… that'd be great if they asked the Chinese government and gets permission. Ultimately, it is up to the Chinese goverment, the Chinese people, to decide.

Am starting this web programing blog.

Bringing you interesting discoveries of all things related to web app programing, technologies, news. Items may include tech tutorials, tips, on HTML/XHTML/XML, CSS, JavaScript, AJAX, sitemap, RSS, APIs… and also webmaster news from Google/Microsoft/Yahoo etc.

This blog is branched off from my main blog Xah Lee's Blog, so it is more subject focused.

For past ≈60 articles related to web app programing, see: Xah's HTML/CSS Tutorial.

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