Managing live tracker development on the Web

Ben Koski posted Behind the scenes of a live World Cup and it reminded me of all the times I have advised people to avoid having one of every different web server technology in production.

I see now that this advice is not good since this application uses Ruby, Ruby On Rails, Flash, PHP, XML feeds, fancy CSS and Amazon S3 with reporters watching logs with their Apple Macs.

It makes my BHPBilliton ScoreCard app look lame.

Drag and drop between browsers

I found Leslie Michael Orchard informative on HTML5 drag and drop. If you open it in two (Firefox 3.6.8) browsers you can drag and drop between them. This could be useful in a Content Management System. I made a simple copy to demo the idea.

QuirksMode was very critical of the HTML5 drag and drop specification

HTML5 tags and comparing one CMS to another

I have made a simple page to show some new HTM5 tags that I hope will be useful when comparing one CMS to another.

These can set the definition of section, article etc so we can talk sensibly when discussing different approaches to content management.

comment spam

I wish whoever is adding comment spam to my blog would just stop it.

You may be the only ones visiting my blog!

Simple test of Plaxo badge

The simple test of Plaxo badge has failed (or worked, depending on how you like your security). A Coldfusion server setting prevents the script tag from being saved in your database. So instead of 'script' it saves <InvalidTag>

<div id="plaxo-pulse-widget"></div><InvalidTag src="" type="text/javascript" charset="utf-8"></script>

Coldfusion snapshot Memory Analyzer?

Pavan Kumar Gorakavi has posted an article on Using Eclipse Memory Analyzers

I wonder if it can be used in looking at a Coldfusion snapshot?

Tagcloud example using Flash SWFObject

This tagcloud served up keywords from the titles of courses offered at a University.

I wondered how useful it was if a user just wanted a broad overview of what was on offer.

It served up xml.

I presume undergraduates have a general idea and postgraduates have a specific idea of what they want. Was the number of links just too large?

CF cannot terminate threads in a "native thread" state

Charlie Arehart replied with this on [cfaussie]:

>>> "charlie arehart" 10/12/2009 10:58 am >>> Scott, as far as I can tell, nothing has changed in the CF Enterprise Server Monitor from 8 to 9. Both it, and FusionReactor, and SeeFusion can all attempt to kill requests.

Just beware: such an attempt is only that, an "attempt". There's no guarantee it can be interrupted. If a CF request is in what's called a native thread (that is, talking to something outside of CF, such as hung talking to a database, doing a cfhttp, or invoking a web service, etc.) then none of the tools can interrupt the request.

Yes, that does mean that CF requests can hang for a very long time, indeed indefinitely in some cases and that you can't really do anything about it. And no, not even the CF admin timeout setting can change this. It's subject to the same limitation. It is worth noting that putting a TIMEOUT on CFHTTTP or CFINVOKE is a good ideas, as sometimes it can allow CF to interrupt those. We had a discussion of that here last year, if I recall. There's also a TIMEOUT on CFQUERY too, but it doesn't always work and depends on the drive version, type, database, and other variables.

Finally, should anyone wonder, all this inability to timeout requests in a native thread state is not a CF bug. It's a JVM thing. The CF "kill thread" mechanisms above merely processes ask the JVM to terminate the thread, and it cannot terminate threads in a "native thread" state.

less popular pages

I wrote a very simple CMS (for a university) that was designed to draw traffic to the less popular pages.

Users could enter keywords and create categories that their content belonged in.

An autocomplete search showed visitors that some keywords were not available.

The more popular the category the more clicks it took to drill down to the content.

Keywords distinguished one page from another while categories grouped them together. The category would not appear until at least two content items belonged to it.

This worked because there were not a very large number of content items. Approximately 20 subcategories in 20 categories was about right in this case

hotmail accounts hacked

On the 25th of September 2009 Hotmail accounts were hacked. A story was released saying only accounts starting with A and B were hacked. This is not true. I know because my account starts with M and everyone in my contacts list got this email:


> I would like to introduce a very good company, electronic

> products dealer.

> I have bought some products from company,the price

> was very cheap,

> and the products are very good quality!They accept paypal,

> credit card transactions,

> bank transfers,and more.

> Just have a look at this web page :

> I am sure you will could save a lot of money!

> Best regards! > Let us help with car

> news, reviews and more Looking

> for a new car this winter?

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