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Showing posts from May 15, 2011

Modern Browsers Will Display Gziped File Directly

Modern Browsers Will Display Gziped File DirectlyDiscovered that in latest version of all major browsers, they will display a gzip compressed page directly (instead of asking you to download). For example, check: perl_Ilya_Regularly_Expresses_2000.html.gz.The browsers with this feature includes: IE9, Firefox 4, Google Chrome 11, Opera 11.1. The only browser that doesn't is Safari (v5.0.5 on Windows.)Btw, the that gziped article is mentioned in these articles: Text Processing: Emacs Lisp vs PerlPerl Books Survey 2002.

Unicode Font Comparison: Arial Unicode MS vs DejaVu Sans

Perm url with updates: http://xahlee.org/js/unicode_font_comparison.htmlUnicode Font Comparison: Arial Unicode MS vs DejaVu SansXah Lee, 2011-05-19This page is a comparison of 2 unicode fonts: Arial Unicode MS vs DejaVu Sans.Arial Unicode is from Microsoft and is bundled with Microsoft Office. It is also bundled with Mac OS X (since 10.5).DejaVu Sans is a open source font and is bundled in many Linuxes (e.g. Ubuntu, OpenSUSE, Mandriva).Both support wide number of characters in Unicode. (For info about them, see: Best Fonts for Unicode.)My website uses unicode extensively. (See: Xah's Unicode Tutorial.) Almost all latest versions of major browsers today will show all most unicode chars, except Firefox 4, released recently, took a step backward in this department. (See: Web Browsers Unicode Support; Firefox 4 Sucks.) Firefox is a very popular browser, with close to 50% market share.So, this means, you are forced to use CSS to specify a unicode font. Not a good solution, because ther…

HTML, CSS, javascript, Web Tech and Browser Timeline

Perm url with updates: http://xahlee.org/js/web_hist.htmlHTML, CSS, javascript, Web Tech and Browser TimelineXah Lee, 2005-12, 2011-05-19This page is a brief overview of timeline of web tech. 1993-06 │HTML 1 │ 1993-11 │ │Mosaic 1 1994-12 │ │Netscape 1 1995-08 │ │IE1 1995-09 │javascript │ 1995-11 │ │IE2 (SSL, cookies, VRML) 1995-11 │ │Mosaic 2 1995-11 │Cookie │ 1995-11 │HTML 2.0 │ 1996 │HTTPS │ 1996-03 │ │Netscape 2 1996-08 │ │IE3 (tables, frames, JScript, CSS, Java) 1996-08 │ │Netscape 3 1996-12 │CSS 1 │ 1997-01 │ │Mosaic 3 1997-01 │HTML 3.2 │ 1997-06 │ │Netscape 4 1997-09 │ │IE4 (HTML, CSS) 1997-11 │ │Opera 3 (js) 1997-12 │HTML 4.0 │ 1999-03 │ │IE5 (CSS2, XML) 1999-12 │HTML 4.01 │ 2000-01 │XHTML 1.0 │ 2000-11 │ │Netscape 6 2001-08 │ │…

A/B Testing, Google, Visual Design

A/B Testing, Google, Visual DesignLearned the term A/B Testing. It can be applied to lots of areas. For example, a web page design. Suppose you are not sure larger font or smaller font is best in attracting readers. You alternate the 2 designs on different days, and check your readership. (something like that) This can be applied to lots of other things. Basically, you have 2 choices, you test them both out, and check the data to see which performed better. Here's a Wikipedia quote:A/B testing, split testing or bucket testing is a method of marketing testing by which a baseline control sample is compared to a variety of single-variable test samples in order to improve response rates. A classic direct mail tactic, this method has been recently adopted within the interactive space to test tactics such as banner ads, emails and landing pages.Significant improvements can be seen through testing elements like copy text, layouts, images and colors. However, not all elements produce the …

computer science: Program Transformation

Perm url with updates: http://xahlee.org/cmaci/notation/pattern_matching_vs_pattern_spec.htmlDiscovered several languages. TXL, Colm, and the concept of program transformation.There's the concept of Program transformation. Basically, it takes a input source code and transforms by some spec into another form. Similar to the concept of compiler, but more at textual level, i think. e.g. Source-to-source compiler.There seems to be quite a few such languages. Here's a big list: http://www.program-transformation.org/Transform/TransformationSystems.TXL (programming language) (home at http://www.txl.ca/) seems to be a popular transformation language. And a new supposedly improved one is Colm, at: http://www.complang.org/colm/. On the colm site, it has a Ph D thesis in PDF that gives a nice overview of such systems.

the Barbarism of Specialization

Perm url with updates: http://xahlee.org/Periodic_dosage_dir/Barbarism_of_Specialization.htmlthe Barbarism of SpecializationJose Ortega Y GassetIt would be of great interest, and of greater utility than at first sight appears, to draw up the history of physical and biological sciences, indicating the process of increasing specialization in the work of the investigators. It would then be seen how, generation after generation, the scientist has been gradually restricted and confined into narrower fields of mental occupation... how in each generation the scientist, through having to reduce the sphere of his labour, was progressively losing contact with other branches of science, with [the] integral interpretation of the universe....Specialization commences precisely at a period [the beginning of the 19th century] that gives to civilized man the title “encyclopedic” ... In the following generation, the balance is upset, and specialization begins to dislodge integral culture from the indi…

Moral nihilism, Perspectivism

Discovered a essay: the Barbarism of Specialization. See also: Futuristic Calamity.Also, discovered a term for what i believe. Moral nihilism. Quote:Moral nihilism (also known as ethical nihilism or amoralism), is the meta-ethical view that nothing is moral or immoral. For example, a moral nihilist would say that killing someone, for whatever reason, is neither inherently right nor inherently wrong. Morality may simply be a kind of make-believe, a complex set of rules and recommendations that represents nothing real and is seen as a human creation.[1]See also: Why Do I Not Support the “Human Right” Concept?.Also, discovered the term Perspectivism. Quote:Perspectivism is the philosophical view developed by Friedrich Nietzsche that all ideations take place from particular perspectives. This means that there are many possible conceptual schemes, or perspectives in which judgment of truth or value can be made. This implies that no way of seeing the world can be taken as definitively "…

Babolog — Digital Goods Marketplace for the Masses

Recently, 2 guys came up to me on skype. One is Michael K and the other is sabalaba. It turns out, they have something mysterious to sell, and that's their startup company babolog.com.It's a digital goods marketplace website, where you can sell any of your digital files easily. So, they convinced me to use their service, and here it is, my emacs tutorial sold there, at: http://www.babolog.com/shop/p/471. Go buy it now! Help me out and check them out.If you have some digital goods, you can sign up with them. Takes about 20 seconds. No upfront fee required. When your item got sold, they charge $0.3 plus 3% of the price. (always check their site for the exact terms.) Their site is quite simple. Check it out at: babolog.com.

English Idiom in Unix: Directory Recursively

Perm url with updates: http://xahlee.org/comp/idiom_directory_recursively.htmlEnglish Idiom in Unix: Directory RecursivelyXah Lee, 2011-05-17Today, let's discuss something in the category of lingustics.You know how in unix tools, when you want to delete the whole directory and all sub-directories and files in it, it's referred as “recursive”?For example, when you want to delete the whole dir in emacs, it prompts this message: “Recursive delete of xx? (y or n) ”. (Note: to be able to delete whole dir in emacs in dired, you'll first need to turn it on. See: emacs dired tutorial.)Here's another example. A quote from “cp”' man page: -R, -r, --recursive copy directories recursively A quote from “rsync” man page: … This would recursively transfer all files from the directory … -r, --recursive recurse into directories This tells rsync to copy directories recursively. See also --dirs (-d). … and lots of other tools have a “-r” option, and they all ref…

Emacs as Word Processor: Bold and Highlight Text

Perm url with updates: http://xahlee.org/emacs/emacs_as_word_processor.htmlEmacs as Word Processor: Bold, Underline, Color TextsXah Lee, 2011-05-16Jan from Oslo wrote and ask wouldn't it be great if emacs can be used as a word processor, i.e. letting users bold text, slant text, etc.Yeah, i find that to be great. Imagine, i can just use it to write notes, with bold text, highlighted text, etc.Note that emacs has a “facemenu-*” command. See the menu 〖Edit▸Text Properties▸Face〗. Here are the hotkeys.【Alt+od】 default【Alt+ob】 bold【Alt+oi】 italic【Alt+ol】 bold-italic【Alt+ou】 underline【Alt+oo】 other(See also: Emacs's Keybinding Layout.)You can also use emacs's highlight commands to highlight text. e.g.:highlight-phrasehighlight-regexphighlight-lines-matching-regexpThough, the problem is that when you save the file, the font decorations are not saved with it. So, in order to use make emacs to have word processor capabilities, you'll need a file format to go with it. Perhaps s…

Windows Blue Screen of Death — a Account of My PC's Memory Failure

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Perm url with updates: http://xahlee.org/mswin/blue_screen_of_death.htmlWindows Blue Screen of Death — a Account of My PC's Memory FailureXah Lee, 2011-05-14, 2011-05-16This page documents a episode of personal computer failure.I started to get Blue Screen of Death in the past week. It got worse, and started to happen every hour or so. Spend the whole past 2 days diagonalizing the problem. It's extremely painful. It seems to be a faulty memory module.It's gonna take me perhaps 10 hours to write my story coherently, starting with my system spec, expected problems, symptoms of past year, recent new problems, with all the tech detail and specs. And also document my experience, my actions, and all sort of software incompetence. Instead of doing that, here's i'll haphazardly comment some random points that comes to my mind.Note: after i wrote this article, i noticed that i'm still getting blue screen of death. The problem may not be my memory after all. So, don'…

Syntax Semantcs Design: Use of Unicode Ellipsis Character vs Dot Dot Dot

Perm url with updates: http://xahlee.org/comp/unicode_ellipsis_use.htmlSyntax Semantics Design: Use of Unicode Ellipsis Character vs Dot Dot DotXah Lee, 2011-05-16I decided, to use the unicode char HORIZONTAL ELLIPSIS “…” (U+2026) instead of the common 3 dots “...” for all my online writings. So, spent the past couple hours replacing all 3 dots to the ellipsis glyph, starting with my Emacs Tutorial directory (~300 files; 421 replacements.) (I have yet to do it site-wide, about ~5k files.)Note: the replacement are done on a case-by-case basis with human eye-balling, and cannot be done blind programatically, because some occurrences of consecutive 3 dots are parts of computer code, error messages, or other uses, and must remain as 3 dots, e.g. in regex, 3 dots is a pattern for 3 chars. This task is done using emacs's command “dired-do-query-replace-regexp”. (See: Emacs: Interactively Find & Replace String Patterns on Multiple Files and Find & Replace with Emacs.)Why Use Ellipsis Ins…