February 24, 2009

Tweets for 2009-02-24

  • Hmm .. Opera 10 Alpha does the Acid3 test with a 100% score. But is it just me or are all browsers beginning to look alike? #
  • Going to watch “Delhi 6”. They say this shows the “old Delhi” and that the city has a different character of its own… We’ll see 🙂 #
  • “Delhi 6” was interesting. Definitely not your average Hindi movie, more like a multi-layered social commentary 🙂 #
  • Time for the daily dose of “Bones” and then off to bed 🙂 #

February 17, 2009

Tweets for 2009-02-17

  • OK, today looks like “one of those” days 🙂 Was feeling better than I had for a while but now my computer is acting up … #
  • Got Laurie a crossword program for the iPhone which downloads puzzles daily. Now I want something similar for my Omnia … 🙂 #
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Posted by Fahim at 11:59 pm  |  No Comments

February 10, 2009

Tweets for 2009-02-10

  • Looking for a better iPhone e-book reader for Laurie. Current candidates: ruBook, Book.app, BookReader, and textReader. Which one wins? #
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Posted by Fahim at 11:59 pm  |  No Comments

January 22, 2009

Tweets for 2009-01-22

  • Another glorious day 🙂 Have some interesting coding work to do in testing out a new PHP framework. Will I have the time for it all? #
  • Got my copy of Ubuntu 8.10 in the mail today. They’re pretty fast because I think it’s only been a couple of weeks since my request! #
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Posted by Fahim at 11:59 pm  |  No Comments

January 19, 2009

Tweets for 2009-01-19

  • Must find and fix a bug I introduced into the Twitter Tools plugin when I made some modifications to support XMLRPC posting … #
  • My current set of projects are coming to an end. I need to start looking for new clients today, as well 🙂 #
  • RSSBandit is still my favourite RSS reader 🙂 Can’t beat the price (unless somebody’s paying people to use their app :p) and great features! #
  • How come everybody wants to pay developers in equity? You can’t buy groceries or pay bills with equity 😀 #
  • Somebody contacted me just now asking me to create a program which allows him to bet on a horse after the race ended 😀 #
  • “Seven Pounds” was a good movie. A bit slow perhaps but still, a good movie overall. You take something away from it … #
  • We’re watching “Revolver”. A bit old but that’s the only Statham movie we’ve missed so far. And he looks good with hair. Hard to recognize. #

January 12, 2009

Tweets for 2009-01-12

  • How annoying is it that FireFox 3.1 beta doesn’t have a custom toolbar button for “New Tab”? That’s one toolbar button that I use often … #
  • Thing is, I’m a creature of habit. I have things set up a certain way on the computer and my actions are almost intinctive. I don’t think >> #
  • << about opening a new tab, I automatically move the mouse to the toolbar button and click. Now I have to think about CTRL+T to open a >> #
  • << tab. That’s annoying. Why change something when it isn’t broken? #
  • Time to watch the last four episodes of “Dexter” season 2 … Then have to hunt down a DVD of season 3 😀 #
  • Wondering if I should go back to working on any of my old Delphi projects … but the conversion to Delphi 2009 makes me pause … #
  • Finished “Dexter” season 2. Now on to “Surface” … not sure how it’ll go but so far the monsters look very unrealistic 🙂 #

January 11, 2009

Tweets for 2009-01-11

  • I had forgotten all about “This is True” till this blog post for the weirdest stories of 2008 reminded me: http://is.gd/fgTq #
  • Why is it that people who don’t otherwise try to live life as Islam teaches suddenly feel kinship with the folks in the Gaza? #
  • And why is it that people always stick to their own little groupings against other groupings? Why must it always be us vs. them? #
  • Why is it that all major female characters on “Dexter” are nut jobs? Is that how the writers of the show see women or were they written so? #
  • The new Chrome 2.0 alpha certainly does better at the Acid3 test but it really doesn’t feel like a major release – more like a point release #

January 9, 2009

Tweets for 2009-01-09

  • Kind of a grey day here. Might just be that the sun hasn’t dawned yet but that’s how the day feels … #
  • It’s a slow day. Didn’t get much done except for tinkering around with Delphi Prism and VS.NET … Trying to figure the future of #Birdie .. #
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Posted by Fahim at 11:59 pm  |  No Comments

September 3, 2008

Polishing Up the Chrome

Google has their own browser! Yes, you heard me, a new Google browser has hit the streets as a beta 🙂 And what’s more, it seems to be mostly faster and better than the existing crop of stable browsers …

The new browser, named Chrome, has been built from the ground up with the latest web technologies in mind. So, each tab in the browser, as well as every task/process within each tab, is it’s own thread. What this means for most users is that the whole browser does not lock up because one site on one tab has issues or is busy. In fact, in using Chrome, I found this difference to be crucial because the browser performance was super smooth for each and every tab I was working with.

If that wasn’t enough, Chrome also appears to be ahead of the pack with regards to standards support. While most of the existing stable versions of browsers aren’t doing so well on the Acid3 test, (and no, don’t bring up the browsers that do pass the test :p), Chrome appears to score about 79 out of 100 on the Acid3 test whereas the latest FireFox (3.0.1) manages only about 71 out of 100. And that’s better than how IE fares 😀

Of course, there’s one thing funny with the how Chrome handles the Acid3 test, it seems to take longer and the score isn’t always the same – it’s almost as if the test was created for single-threaded browsers and the multi-threaded nature of Chrome throws the test off somehow …

Additionally, Chrome imports bookmarks, site passwords, browsing history, and a host of other information from FireFox and so, if you use FireFox, once you start using Chrome, it’s almost as if you’ve not changed browsers at all. All your previous settings and browsing history is all intact.

I won’t go into all the other great features of Chrome, especially the address bar which does FireFox‘s nifty new address bar one better, but the one thing I do miss is the ability to extend the browser using extensions, as is possible with FireFox. I haven’t checked yet to see if Chrome supports extensions/plugins but I sure do hope it does …

August 26, 2008

Of Bygone Vistas

I have been a staunch defender and advocate of Windows Vista since it came out. I had been using Vista since the early beta days and I’d always found it to be better than Windows XP in many different ways. In fact, some people on various online forums went so far as to say that I was a shill for Microsoft and that I was championing Vista because my bread and butter depended on it :p (Of course, if somebody at Microsoft wants to pay me for championing Vista, I won’t say "No" – just so you know … :D)

I like Vista both for the little touches that it adds to the operating system which makes life easier (like the multiple clocks in the system tray) and for the speed enhancements in the graphics subsystem and the stability that it seemed to provide. The people I clashed with over Vista were people like the lady who claimed that none of their games would run under Vista and this had never happened when they first switched to XP. (I had pointed out to her that she either didn’t switch to XP immediately or had already forgotten the pain those of us who were early adopters of XP had in running games – that’s part and parcel of switching to a new operating system and that hasn’t changed since the Windows 3.1 days …)

Anyway, while I like a lot of things about Vista, I realized that I spent a lot of my time fixing minor niggling issues under Vista and that these minor fixes were eating into a lot of my time. While there were no major BSODs (Blue Screens of Death) as I’d have quite a bit of the time under XP, I would have something minor like a USB device not being recognized or a the drivers for the device not being installed properly. I’d spend a couple of days troubleshooting that and finally get it working and the next day, something else would stop working …

I suspect that most of these issues are because I’ve turned off the annoying UAC (User Account Control) feature in Vista. For instance, UAC got turned back on by accident on my machine and one of my startup programs refused to load because it no longer had read access to one of its data files – a file that I accessed everyday without any issue with UAC turned off, mind you. So perhaps somebody who uses Vista without turning of UAC or doing any of the other power-user stuff that I do probably would have better results with Vista. But for me, it wasn’t working …

So I formatted my OS partition (I have three partitions – one for the OS, one for applications, and one for data) and went back to using XP SP3. I got the old familiar BSOD as I was pulling down updates from Microsoft, even before I was fully up and running, but it does run faster in most cases (except with regards to the graphics subsystem) and it takes up a heck of a lot less space! My OS partition had about 2-3GB free after I got done installing Vista but with XP, I’ve still got about 10GB free 🙂

Only thing was, using Vista had spoilt me – I was no longer content to using the Windows Classic theme and I couldn’t bear to use the Lunar interface under XP either. Fortunately, it turns out that while I was using Vista and singing its praises, others had been busy getting the Vista look and feel working under XP. There’s individual applications like viStart, Visual Task Tips, and TrueTransparency which try to provide bits and pieces of the functionality that is present in Vista. Or, there’s projects like the Vista Transformation Pack, which combines all of the above utilities, adds in graphics and themes and gives you a one-stop-solution to getting XP to look like Vista.

So if you’ve had to switch back to XP and are missing the look and feel of Vista, the above might be a good place to start 🙂

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Posted by Fahim at 6:01 pm  |  1 Comment

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