Tag Archives: Eugenia


Eugenia released a little web-let called “MobileQuo” the other day, and it caught my eye. I downloaded it and hacked it up and made some changes.

1. This version is more secure – it won’t let the content of the feed break your HTML. Update: Apparently, the desired behavior is to render the HTML, not to preserve the markup as markup, so the new version Eugenia has released reflects that change. So code will be rendered, including javascript, so beware!!
2. This version outputs friendly errors. The 1.0 version can fail if your php.ini isn’t set up right, or output a blank page if there are certain errors.
3. This version is more portable and doesn’t rely on a particular PHP configuration.
4. Most differently, this version can cache the results. This way, each reload won’t hammer an RSS feed. Rather, the results can be cached for a perdiod and fed from cache, and then when the cache expires, it reloads the cache.

The source code is here: MobileQuo. Note that you will need to upload a blank WRITABLE file in your MobileQuo directory. Then just use the rest of the code from Eugenia here.

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Gnomefiles Gets Pretty URLs

So Eugenia IM’ed me and told me that GNOME was pretty insistent about the fact that they wanted to see Gnomefiles clean up the URLs to make them more friendly. She asked me how hard the move would be. Having already dug pretty deep into GF code, I knew that it wouldn’t take too much effort to clean things up. So, just a few days later, I’m pretty sure we’ve gotten all the bugs ironed out. Apps are now accessed like this: http://gnomefiles.org/app.php/[appname] where [appname] is, obviously, the name of the application.

There were a few challenges. For one, the plus character has significance in the URL, so apps like, say, GTK+, are inaccessible. So now we dynamically convert those titles to something like GTK_Plus. Also, spaces are switched to underscores. The one thing that burned me was that some apps have names that include strings like Sunbird/Calendar, which is not only URL significant, but it also breaks the code. So unfortunately, we have convert those to pipes right now, so an app such as the previously mentioned Mozilla Sunbird/Calendar is now available at http://gnomefiles.org/app.php/Mozilla_Sunbird|Calendar. Until I have a better way to pull this off, / becomes a pipe.

However, for nearly all other apps, you’ve now got a very pretty URL. Fear not, your old URLs still work, but you’ll probably want to update your incoming links to point to the new style URL.

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Linux Desktop Waning

Eugenia’s blog entry yesterday, which claims that the hype surrounding the Linux desktop is waning is a really interesting read. I have realized that not only is the hype waning, but the interest is condensing into a few main distros, as I once predicted it would, back in 2003. In fact, these were my words: “I expect it to be a Ximian-ized Novell/SUSE distribution, Red Hat, and some sort of Debian offshoot – whether it’s User Linux or not remains to be seen.” Shoot, sub in Ubuntu and you’re pretty much dead on. Maybe that wasn’t such a stretch, but it’s still pretty damned accurate.

Linux as a desktop system is not going to succeed until a major corporate backer makes a serious play at CORPORATE desktops. This is where the success is viable. People will pay a small amount for support and multimedia/codec integration. Xandros is right on track here, I just don’t know if they are too early for their own good. I think, sadly, you’ll need a major player with pre-existing credibility, such as Red Hat. But Novell is capable of this, and I pray they haven’t used up all of their karma chasing NetWare (which was an EXCELLENT system, by the way).

Does Linux really matter as a desktop anyway? I mean, if Linux existed simply to prompt the creation of OpenSolaris, isn’t that a good enough contribution to humanity? If we’re all running some sort of Nexenta-ish system in two years, has it all been for naught?

The relevance of Linux has already been proven. Interest is a luxury we’d all love, but it’s not a requirement for the betterment of computing. That part is already locked up.

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I suppose I really ought to put something new now that Eugenia has indicated she is going to be linking to me! We put in a ridiculous amount of time updating OSNews and Gnomefiles and Dusty-Computing, etc to fix a lot of the old code that was written with register_globals on. I was EXTREMELY happy that Small Axe survived the change with no problems, as did OSGalaxy, which is based on “Galaxy,” which used to be a Small Axe beta project called ftBlogroller. Soon I’m going to package that code and release it.

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