Rob Bevan

Opera announces the Opera Platform

2005-11-15 18:20:01 +0000 UTC

The Opera Platform: is this the Konfabulator for mobile? The Opera Platform™ SDK is an SDK for developing rich client-side web applications on mobile devices such as Symbian Series60 phones (MS Smartphone support coming soon). With the Opera Platform™ Application Player, developers can create applications that interact with the phone’s native functionality, such as the phone’s address book, calendar or message store. In addition, developers can, using Ajax technology, interact directly with a multitude of web services, both home-grown and pre-existing.

Google Analytics

2005-11-14 12:38:47 +0000 UTC

A few months ago Google bought Urchin, provider of web analytics software ‘used by over 20% of the Fortune 500′ and also, until their recent move, by TextDrive where this site is hosted. TextDrive seemed unable to re-negotiate a site license for Urchin (and began work on a home-grown Ruby on Rails solution code-named Anemone). Here’s the reason why: Google Analytics, released today, is essentially Urchin 5 for free. And I was just thinking about buying Mint.

News from Norway

2005-11-13 08:59:34 +0000 UTC

In the first in an occasional series of ‘linked links’ and by way of tribute to Merlin Mann’s5ives here are some great stories from the English version of Aftenposten, Norway’s ‘leading quality daily’ that I’ve bookmarked at del.icio.us* recently. (I’m half-Norwegian, so I enjoy keeping up-to-date with what’s happening in the ‘motherland’, but it’s a great feed nevertheless.) Giant boulder closes highway A boulder weighing roughly 50 tons has shut down highway 715, one of the traffic arteries to Trondheim.

Comment using the Skype API

2005-11-12 18:49:19 +0000 UTC

I spent some time yesterday playing around with the Skype API because I wanted to see if I can initiate text-to-speech calls for a project we have in development. Seems like the Mac OS X API, like the Skype app itself, lags a little behind the Windows/Linux versions and the Applescript interface (which is easiest to use from a cgi script) is only partially implemented. I did manage to get a simple web-based IM sending app running on OS X server.

More on semi-private del.icio.us bookmarks

2005-11-05 15:42:03 +0000 UTC

Jon Udell’spost (via Lifehacker) on Alex Bosworth’s hack to save semi-private delicious bookmarks using the for:yourname tag prompted me to fix an aspect of my use of delicious that has been bugging me recently. For a while now, I’ve been using a variation on Frasier Speirs’ AppleScript to post to delicious directly from QuickSilver, tagging these GTD-style with @review, for those times when I want bookmark something quickly without going to the trouble of describing, annotating and tagging the link.

AppleJacked!

2005-11-01 23:46:36 +0000 UTC

For some reason, my PowerBook decided not to recognise me this morning and wouldn’t allow me to log in. Eventually, I figured out I could reset my (corrupt) account’s password from the login window using my ‘master password’, but then I wasn’t able to start up to anything other than a blue screen. (Coincidentally, I’d earlier read that one ofMac OS X 10.4.3′s fixes – released today – addressed (an unrelated) issue in which high ASCII characters in a password could lead to a blue screen at startup, or prevent log in.

Working with Flex 2 on Mac OS X

2005-10-23 18:13:33 +0000 UTC

(Note: this post was originally written on release of the Flex 2 alpha. I’ve since updated it for the Flex 2 beta.) Macromedia recently announced Macromedia Labs and the availability of the Flex 2 product line alpha, which includes a new Eclipse-based IDE and a new high performance client runtime (Flash Player 8.5) alongside the development framework. Unfortunately, for now, development on the Mac is not supported and Macromedia only provide an installer for Flex Builder 2, the Flex Framework 2, Flex samples and command line tools for Windows.

Giving .Mac the chop

2005-10-07 13:47:37 +0000 UTC

Today I let my .Macsubscription expire. I’ve been a .Macsubscriber since Apple began charging for what was once a free service, but I can no longer justify the ‘equivalent of £5.75 a month’ for Apple’s suite of Internet services. I’ve grudgingly paid the $100 fee for the past couple of years, largely for the ability to sync my bookmarks, calendars and contacts across machines, even if each time I’ve felt vaguely conned at having to pay for something that ought to be free (the same feeling you get on finding out you need to purchase a new QuickTime Pro key with each version bump).

Plat du Jour live

2005-10-06 12:49:44 +0000 UTC

Went to see Matthew Herbert and his apron-clad ‘brigade’ perform Plat du Jour at the Barbican on Monday night. Unfortunately I couldn’t shake the feeling that Herbert and co were a little bored by the idea of a last London performance (they delayed the start for a few minutes trying to work out if they could do the whole thing in reverse, just to make it more interesting for themselves) and his slightly irritating assumption that most of the audience had seen it before seemed like a reason not to try too hard.

The mystic claw

2005-10-06 01:45:45 +0000 UTC

My arrival back from Halifax with a live lobster for dinner re-ignited the ‘is it cruel to dispatch a lobster in boiling water’ debate in our household. I’ve always had a bit of a lobster fetish (I once had a fabulous Katherine Hammnet lobster t-shirt, now faded beyond recognition), so the mere presence of a live lobster in the house was a big thrill for me and especially for the kids.