Updates from April, 2007 Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • Joe 18:12 on April 27, 2007 Permalink  

    Microformats in Usability Magazine 

    Microformats LogoI wrote an article about the emerging practice of embedding semantic data in html documents, AKA Microformats.

    This article has been published in Usability Magazine #3, see usabilityweb.nl. It is available in Dutch only…

    (More …)

  • Joe 19:43 on April 17, 2007 Permalink
    Tags: France;, Germany;, The Netherlands;   

    Firefox on the rise, NL lags behind 

    It has been a time since I last looked at the browser market figures, so I was still under the impression that Firefox had a market share somewhere in the 10 percent range.
    Firefox Market Share
    Well, that is not quite true any more, it’s more in the 25% range as I found out (via vecosys).

    These figures come from the XiTi Monitor, where figures per country can be found.

    Now this reveals a very interesting fact: The Netherlands appears to have the absolute lowest market share for Firefox. Just 13.3% and decreasing (indeed, my ‘around ten percent‘ figure). At the same time, Germany (36%) and France (22%) are on the rise, and generally the new European countries have around the 30% penetration.

    What can be the cause of this relative low popularity of Firefox among the Dutch? We like to call our society an innovative one, and I like to see Firefox with its open platform as much more innovative than the competition. So what can be the explanation?


  • Joe 17:20 on April 17, 2007 Permalink
    Tags: , CBS, , Robin Berjon, semantic web backend technology   

    Joost Updates 

    Lots of updates around Joost.com, so time for a little blog post again.
    First, version 0.9.2 adds network stability, the video plays almost without any hitches on both of my Macs now. The impressive part is going on behind the scenes: much of the content is coming from the P2P network now many more beta testers are being added. And apparently mixing P2P with traditional streaming has its challenges.

    New content: lots of CBS programs will appear soon. A Dutch proverb says: “if the first sheep passes the bridge, all of them will follow“. Oh well…

    In the mean time, bloggers around the world are getting to the gory details of Joost’s semantic web backend technology. For instance, Joost: It’s The Metadata, Stupid! and Idea: Joost’s missing feature (well, that was in March – the scaffolding for this idea is already in the current betas).

    For me, the next exciting milestone will be the opening of the API for developers. At this time we can only guess what this will look like. But I expect something very similar to the current Firefox plugin architecture, with added SVG goodness (Robin Berjon is working on SVG and Widgets for Joost). In other words: develop your own overlays, with transparency and smooth scalability. Sweet!


    • Lyly 17:37 on April 17, 2007 Permalink

      send me invention to joost to:
      subotaj AT gmail.com

    • Robin Berjon 18:50 on April 17, 2007 Permalink

      As you might expect I cannot commit to an exact feature set (and certainly not a date) at this point, but here is a very rough overview (and subject to change) of what is on the table:

      – yes there will be SVG involved (and XHTML, CSS…), basically you’ll have the capabilities of recent Gecko builds (but with some restrictions)

      – the extension system is “comparable” to that which is found in Firefox, but isn’t the same (largely for security reasons and convenience). Notably, it doesn’t rely on overlays and the extensions are not running with chrome permissions.

      We are still in the early stages but if you have any suggestions as to what you would like to see in there, please don’t hesitate to email me.

    • aleksandar 13:31 on April 21, 2007 Permalink

      I heard about joost but i dont have any friend to sent me an invitation.So can you sent me one please.Thank you buy

    • Agustin 15:47 on May 7, 2007 Permalink

      I also need and invitation to join Joost.

  • Joe 09:56 on April 13, 2007 Permalink
    Tags: , , ,   

    Google Maps with KML data 

    Some time ago I wrote about the introduction of a new feature for the Google Maps API: you can now use the same definitions file format as with Google Earth (technically speaking this is the KML 2.1 format).

    All cool and neat, so I did a little experiment to try it out. And guess what: it didn’t work! No error messages, just my KML file was completely ignored.

    Well, it appears that KML file must be accessible for Google to read and parse; in other words: it is not the client side API (Javascript) which reads the KML, but the Google service. Apparently what they do is: parse the file, calculate the correct view port and then send over all geo data, back to the client API.

    As I hosted the file on my local computer (http://localhost/), this did not work. Duh!

    This feature was not immediately obvious to me from the API documentation. And it might not be strictly necessary: as long as the KML file is hosted on the same server as the client HTML, the file could just be retrieved through XMLHttpRequest (the same origin policy would be satisfied). Performance might be an issue, though, as XML Parsing in the browser is not very efficient. And setting the viewport for the map would require another round trip and delay.

    Conclusion: be sure to host your KML file such that it is accessible for Google (over http), otherwise it will just not work.

    var geoXml = new GGeoXml('http://www.yourhost.com/geo/map.kml');


  • Joe 11:06 on April 12, 2007 Permalink
    Tags: , early applications, geeky applications, , , open IM protocol, protypical web   

    Twitter vs Jabber 

    Twitter logoAs you might know, Twitter is the hype of last months. Everybody and their dog are updating their current activities like crazy.

    As a spin off, many secondary purposes are being created on top of the public Twitter API.

    This reminds me of the old days when Jabber was started as an open IM protocol. Lots of geeky applications sprung into life, like monitoring incoming email (headers), keeping an eye on your computer logs and such. Now the Jabber protocol (XMPP) is being used as the basis for a couple of IM platforms, like Google Talk. Many of those early applications are now official a XMPP extension. The platform has matured, but lost its appeal to the geeky crowd.

    Today, these kinds of applications are being built on Twitter by the dozens.
    Without any effort, I found lots and lots of them. I estimate these are less than 5% of all Twitter applications out there, so the list is really getting huge.

    • MoniTwitter (answering one simple question: What’s your website doing?)
    • TwitterIsWeird (displays pairs of twitter quotes in comic balloons)
    • PingTwitter (update Twitter when you publish a new blog post)
    • TwitterChat (2-way live shoutbox-twitter integration)
    • Twitterific (Mac OSX client application)

    And then we have the Twitterforum, an unofficial Twitter related discussions site, listing even more twitter related applications and sites.

    So does the Twitter API popularity have to do with its incredible simplicity? And its pluggability for the protypical web 2.0 platform (yes, it has a JSON interface)?

    I’m not sure, but I hacked togeter my own little contribution to this madness in just half an hour: Browse with Twitter, a Greasemonkey script for Firefox.

    Update your twitter.com status with a message “Browsing: [document.title]” whenever you load a web page.

    Fair warning: don’t install this script if you do value your privacy (or at least restrict it to the sites you explicitly want to show up on twitter).


  • Joe 11:56 on April 11, 2007 Permalink
    Tags: Bangalore, Ivan Herman, , Web If   

    State of the Semantic Web 

    If you are interested in current developments around the Semantid Web, you must absolutely check out these slides: The state of the Semantic Web, by Ivan Herman for the International Conference on Semantic Web and Digital Libraries, Bangalore feb. 23th 2007.

    An interesting section answers common questions about what is RDF and what not. But every page is wirth its full attention!


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