Tim’s Weblog Tim's Weblog
Tim Strehle’s links and thoughts on Web apps, managing software development and Digital Asset Management, since 2002.


"PHPTMAPI implements a PHP API for manipulating topic maps, based on the TMAPI project."

Tue, 30 May 2006 12:28:06 +0000

The Spread Toolkit

"Spread is an open source toolkit that provides a high performance messaging service that is resilient to faults across local and wide area networks. Spread functions as a unified message bus for distributed applications, and provides highly tuned application-level multicast, group communication, and point to point support. Spread services range from reliable messaging to fully ordered messages with delivery guarantees."

Sun, 28 May 2006 20:42:23 +0000

Considering Ajax, Part 1: Cut through the hype

Chris Laffra at IBM developerWorks - Considering Ajax, Part 1: Cut through the hype:

"The major reason for the success of the Web is the predictability and simplicity of its UI model. Basically, anyone can move a mouse, click on a link, move a scrollbar, and hit the Back button. With the growing popularity of Ajax, the risk is very real that developers will go overboard and essentially make everything clickable and change the UI in an unexpected and asynchronous manner. The last thing you want to do is force your user to think.

[...] In this installment of Considering Ajax, I discussed the hype that currently surrounds this technology. You also saw that reliable frameworks are still under construction, and that you should worry about navigation history, bookmarkability, feedback, persistence, concurrency, and security."

Fri, 26 May 2006 09:25:35 +0000

Ongoing Continuations

Ongoing Continuations compares passing state in hidden form fields or server-side sessions with continuations:

"What David’s afraid of, and with good reason, is the obvious alternative: storing all of the data as global session state, with each page (or a cookie) referencing a single session ID from which the rest of the information can be retrieved on the server side. The problem with this, as Gilad points out, is that in the world of back buttons and tabbed browser, there is no single session state: the same user in the same session might be simultaneously exploring two booking options, and the server can easily get confused between them. Encoding the information in hidden fields on the page means that the server’s idea of the current state always matches the user’s."

Mon, 22 May 2006 10:03:44 +0000

FogBugz 4½ and Subjective Well-Being

Joel Spolsky - FogBugz 4½ and Subjective Well-Being:

"If you're a software designer, this is it. This is your big chance to do something meaningful to improve the world. Design software that puts the user in control and you'll increase happiness, even if your product is the most boring accounting software imaginable.

[...] Brett also snuck in a feature he's been itching for: lots and lots and lots of keyboard shortcuts. There's only one keyboard shortcut you have to memorize, though: Ctrl+; switches FogBugz into keyboard mode and little letters light up reminding you what the shortcuts are for various commands around the screen."

Wed, 17 May 2006 20:17:20 +0000


"Topincs is a Topic Map authoring tool, that allows groups to create Topic Maps in Firefox. Even though it is run in an ordinary browser window it feels like an application installed on your computer. [...] It consists of a client, for editing maps and a server, for storing them. [...] The Server requires Apache 2, PHP 4 and MySQL."

Sun, 14 May 2006 20:19:28 +0000

Bazaar-NG (bzr)

"Bazaar-NG is a decentralized revision control system designed to be easy for developers and end users alike. Decentralized revision control systems give people the ability to work over the internet using the bazaar development model."

Wed, 10 May 2006 12:39:51 +0000

Accessing the web of databases

Jon Udell at InfoWorld - Accessing the web of databases:

"I’ve always regarded the Web as a programmable data source as well as a platform for the document/software hybrid that we call a Web page. Early on, programmable access to Web data entailed a lot of screen scraping. Nowadays it often still does, but it’s becoming common to find APIs that serve up the Web’s data.

[...] Free text search is an even more popular access API. Nearly every site provides that service, or outsources it to Google or another engine.

[...] What you can’t typically do, though, is create mashups by running ad hoc queries against remote Web data. There are good reasons to think that it’s just crazy to export open-ended query interfaces over the Web. No responsible enterprise DBA would permit such access to the crown jewels. But there are all kinds of data sources -- or what Idehen likes to call data spaces -- and a range of feasible and appropriate access modes."

Thu, 04 May 2006 15:05:43 +0000

Google Data APIs

"The Google Data APIs ("GData" for short) provide a simple standard protocol for reading and writing data on the web. GData combines common XML-based syndication formats (Atom and RSS) with a feed-publishing system based on the Atom publishing protocol, plus some extensions for handling queries."

Update: Byrne Reese on Google Calendar and OpenSearch.

Wed, 03 May 2006 15:48:01 +0000