Thursday, February 14, 2008


I have always made a conscious effort to stay away/above from the crowd.. yes I know I sound snobby.. but thats the way it is. I am not questioning my morality or my intellect but the fact that I like the idea of being unique... thats 1 in 6 billion people.

While skimming through my blogroll yesterday I had an epiphany: How different is my life if all of my academic life can be generalized by the PHDComics, my work life by Dilbert and my thought process by XKCD?.. My reaction: D'oh.

Sunday, February 03, 2008

Tiddly oooo...

First of all let me introduce you to my foray into the world of javascript : .

I was never too much of a web enthusiast (from a developer's perspective).. the reasons being that presentation is a big part of a web application and I hate spending hours on a wysiwyg editor to get the right look. Also there does not seem to be any consistency in the way the pages are rendered on various browsers.

This website began as an exploratory project into the tiddly world when Paul Reiber introduced me to it at an SVLUG installfest. The prospect of an all javascript website sounded alot more interesting than spending hours on dreamweaver/quanta/bluefish/frontpage etc etc. Tweaking a few if and for statements was all I needed to get the right look (and some occasional div tweaks).

There were a lot of different technologies that went into this website that I had no or little experience with:
  1. TiddlyWiki: This is a microcontent wiki created by Jeremy Ruston. Here's an extract from
    TiddlyWiki is fundamentally different from a conventional Wiki because it is not based on separate, entire pages of content, but rather items of MicroContent referred to as Tiddlers that live together on the same page.
  2. Tiddlers can not only be used to edit and publish new content but also to edit and modify the source of the webpage itself. This enables a highly modular plugin architecture. All you have to do is write a small plugin to do your bidding or better yet.. import one from someone who has already done it. Check this tiddler out. This small plugin was written by me to fix some rss rendering inconsistencies on IE... simple enough. Websites like tiddlytools provide tons of cool plugins that make adding any snazzy formatting/functionality a breeze on tiddlywiki.
  3. DNS Management: Although this is pretty easy and does not take more than 20 minutes; setting up sub domains, CNAME records, forwarding etc is interesting in many respects (not fun though). It was sort of an educational experience for me. Apparently if you use meta tag information on a page for redirection, Google considers the page as a duplicate and penalizes the page which will reduce its page rank and thats as bad as it can get... who knew.
  4. RSS management: Ok.. I cheated here. I used yahoo pipes to join couple of feeds, imposed limits on the number or elements, made a few cosmetic changes via feedburner and plugged it into the website. Yahoo pipes is one great tool that you have to check out.
One thing that was quite evident while testing the websites on different browsers was that they still have to go a long way towards standard compliance. I developed this website on firefox, IE put quite a fight, Opera was the official loser and Safari turned out to be a ringer. There was a big difference in the way iframes were rendered.

Anyhoo.. do check out my website and let me know if you stumble upon some bug or irritating feature.