Tuesday, January 7th, 2020
Thursday, December 5th, 2019
JS is also global by default. We use IIFEs and wrapper functions to add scope.
Tuesday, August 21st, 2018
In defence of the cascade (especially now that we’ve got CSS custom properties).
I think embracing CSS’s cascade can be a great way to encourage consistency and simplicity in UIs. Rather than every new component being a free for all, it trains both designers and developers to think in terms of aligning with and re-using what they already have.
Remember, every time you set a property in CSS you are in fact overriding something (even if it’s just the default user agent styles). In other words, CSS code is mostly expressing exceptions to a default design.
Friday, July 27th, 2018
A directory of progressive web apps.
Monday, June 4th, 2018
Andy Bell is documenting is journey of getting to grips with web components. I think it’s so valuable to share like this as you’re learning, instead of waiting until you’ve learned it all—the fresh perspective is so useful!
Friday, November 17th, 2017
In the immortal words of Ultravox,
this means nothing to me.
I’m filing this away for my future self for the next time I (inevitably) get confused about what
Sunday, February 26th, 2017
Edge of darkness: looking into the black hole at the heart of the Milky Way | Science | The Guardian
Building a planet-sized telescope suggests all sorts of practical difficulties.
Monday, December 26th, 2016
One might think sending messages to other stars would be a massive, expensive job. No. It isn’t. The Cosmic Call was essentially a crowdfunded hobby project.
A lovely piece of design fiction imagining a project where asteroids are shaped and polished into just the right configuration to form part of an enormous solar-system wide optical telescope.
Once they are deployed in space, a celestial spiderweb of crisscrossed laser beams can push around clouds of those microscopic optical sensors to desired locations.
Wednesday, November 23rd, 2016
A really terrific piece by Heydon that serves as a rousing defence of the cascade in CSS. It’s set up in opposition to methodologies like BEM (and there’s plenty of back’n’forth in the comments), but the truth is that every project is different so the more approaches you have in your toolkit, the better. For many projects, something like BEM is a good idea. For others, not so much.
Funnily enough, I’ve been working something recently where I’ve been embracing the approach that Heydon describes—although, to be fair, it’s a personal project where I don’t have to think about other developers touching the HTML or CSS.
Sunday, August 7th, 2016
A wonderful investigation of a culture-shifting mobile device: the kaleidoscope. A classic Gibsonian example of the street finding its own uses for technology, this story comes complete with moral panics about the effects of augmenting reality with handheld devices.
(I’m assuming the title wasn’t written by the author—this piece deals almost exclusively with pre-Victorian England.)
Sunday, July 3rd, 2016
Thursday, June 26th, 2014
The telescope in the woods
I met Sandijs of Froont fame when I was in Austin for Artifact back in May. He mentioned how he’d like to put on an event in his home city of Riga, and I said I’d be up for that. So last weekend I popped over to Latvia to speak at an event he organised at a newly-opened co-working space in the heart of Riga.
That was on Friday, so Jessica I had the rest of the weekend to be tourists. Sandijs rented a car and took us out into the woods. There, in the middle of a forest, was an observatory: the Baldone Schmidt telescope.
The day we visited was the Summer soltice and we were inside the observatory getting a tour of the telescope at the precise moment that the astronomical summer began.
It’s a beautiful piece of machinery. It has been cataloging and analysing carbon stars since the ’60s.
Nowadays, the images captured by the telescope go straight into a computer, but they used to be stored on glass plates. Those glass plates are now getting digitised too. There’s one person doing all the digitising. It takes about forty minutes to digitise one glass plate. There are approximately 22,000 glass plates in the archive.
It’s going to be a long process. But once all that data is available in a machine-readable format, there will inevitably be some interesting discoveries to made from mining that treasure trove.
The telescope has already been used to discover a dwarf planet in the asteroid belt. It’s about 1.5 kilometers wide. Its name is Baldone.
Friday, January 17th, 2014
Des is right, y’know.
Scope grows in minutes, not months. Look after the minutes, and the months take care of themselves.
Friday, July 29th, 2011
Another beautiful piece of work from James: a kaleidoscope made from Google maps.
Tuesday, December 7th, 2010
The latest Zooniverse project is a beauty: you can help spot bubbles in infra-red images of nebulae.
Monday, June 29th, 2009
Matt's opening keynote from Reboot 11 in Copenhagen.
Wednesday, January 28th, 2009
This addition to Firebug is rather excellent: a built in reference for whatever you're inspecting.
Tuesday, May 20th, 2008
I love the idea of this bit of real-world steampunk alternative history. From May 22nd to June 15th you will be able to use the telectroscope to look into a tunnel through the earth from London to New York.
Sunday, October 14th, 2007
A clever little periscope-like device that allows you to use your Macbook's iSight facing outwards.