XML, Expressionism, Comics and Web Technology


I’ve released XML::Writer 0.510, with a couple of fixes for namespace prefixes and buffering. I’ve also changed the test suite (see sub checkResult($$)) to show diffs when tests fail - great for namespace hacking, where most of the failures were down to single lines.

(Context-free backreferences to real-world conversations follow.)

A well-read review of The Black Rider, and a concise and relevant runthrough of German Expressionism. Enough to make you hunt down Nosferatu and Das Kabinett des Doktor Caligari? (Related: Shadow of the Vampire is worth seeing, too. Or I guess you could just collect the action figures.)

If Gondry goes from these to Eternal Sunshine, is it a disappointment that Joseph Kahn goes from Toxic to Torque?

I’m always a tireless booster for Dan Clowes. Pussey (“a vicious indictment of the comics biz, from Art Spiegelman to Stan Lee”) is essentially spiteful, rather than ennui-laden (or genuinely disorienting). It’s really good. If that’s not your thing, I presume Todd McFarlane is still making things edgy, but do take a look at Comics 101. The pitch is simple - a well-written essay on a specific comic or character, filled with examples, on topics from V for Vendetta through to an introduction to Superman villains, including a thorough Bizarro backstory.

If you’re after a browser-based RSS aggregator, I hear good things about Amphetadesk. It’s probably simpler than writing your own. Bloglines also comes highly recommended. It’s a service, rather than a product, and seems to be the first choice of a lot of people who are smart enough to know what they’re doing. It does consolidated polling, too: it simply includes ‘n subscribers’ in its User-Agent. (It’s free, but “Text advertising and additional fee-based services will be launched in the near future.” Your call.) What if you want bare-bones, ultra-lightweight RSS publishing from the desktop? You could try FeedMaker, couldn’t you?

The RSS/BitTorrent meme doesn’t quite seem to have coalesced into a concrete product yet. There’s Andrew Grumet’s work, but it’s still Windows-only. Buttress looks interesting, as does bttvtrss.py.

Worth (re-)reading - Situated Software. “Yeah, I’ll send you the link:” dubious distinction, route 4, new ATHFs, “What is your most memorable concert experience [...] ?”, extreme continuous integration and Debian package auto-building.

Finally, I see that next Sunday’s NotCon ’04 is putting bloggers in with OAPs and students for concessions - hey, did I just save myself a pound?

(Music: Rammstein, “Mutter”)
(More from this year, or the front page? [K])