Archives For September 2010

New patent

Ed Anuff —  September 27, 2010 — 1 Comment

Patent 7,801,990 from back in 2001, finally granted nearly 10 years later.

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Done with a clear cache and VPN’d into a couple of different locations, but hardly an exhaustive test:

A is for Amazon, B is for Bank of America, C is for Craigslist, D is for DMV, E is for eBay, F is Facebook, G is for GMail, H is for Hotmail, I is for Ikea, J is for Jet Blue, K is for Kaiser, L is for Lowes, M is for Mapquest, N is for Netflix, O is for Outside Lands, P is for Pandora, Q is for Quotes, R is for REI, S is for Skype, T is for Target, U is for USPS, W is for Weather, X is for XBox, Y is for Yahoo, and Z is for Zillow.

Some of these appear to be location dependent, VPN’ing into a server in Los Angeles gives me KTLA instead of Kaiser, Lakers instead of Lowes, Myspace instead of Mapquest, OC Fair instead of Outside Lands.

It seems like most of my friends and colleagues have heard I’ve been using Cassandra in my current project and they forward on to me every blog post or tweet where someone has something negative to say about the Apache NoSQL open source database.  To be clear, it’s debatable whether you should use Cassandra in production today, although at the recent Cassandra Summit, it was clear a lot of people were, and were having success with it, and of course, as we all know from the blog headlines, a few people are not.  But, I also think that it’s probably useful to keep in mind how many of the basic building blocks of the web started on very shaky ground and went through many iterations before getting to where they are today.  I’m not exactly talking about the Gartner Hype Curve, because it’s very hard to apply and very hard to actually determine where you are on that curve until years after the fact.  Having ridden that curve on a number of web technologies, it’s not as simple as drawing a sloppy sideways S-curve and saying “here we are”.  The reality is that there are a number of little peaks and valleys inside the overall process.

Continue Reading…

A friend of mine recently showed me his Facebook iPad application that he’d built and which was selling quite well in the App Store.  Besides being a pretty cool app, one of the interesting things about it was that it had been written primarily in Javascript and HTML5, with a small amount of native code basically wrapping it in a UIWebView.  It seems like this is a recent but growing trend among iPhone developers, since it’s easier to write crash-free code in Javascript than in Objective-C, and the iPhone’s WebKit browser has a lot of mechanisms for supporting things like touch interactions, and there are a growing number of companies (Appcelerator, Sencha) and projects (JQTouch) trying to make this easier.  This is all good news, and if this trend continues, it means the number of mobile applications will continue to explode.  I’m a lot more skeptical about any of this making the App Store any less important, building apps was only ever half the battle…

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This joke never gets old

It all comes down to packaging and distribution, of course.  App stores never go away, even if they ultimately become, under the hood, a way to sell password-protected, pay-to-open, web bookmarks.  And that’s not a bad thing, because for all the headaches of dealing with opaque approval processes and such, at least they’ve figured out how people get paid.