Showing posts with label Web X.X. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Web X.X. Show all posts

Friday, December 19, 2014

It's confirmed, Office 365 Public Web Sites are going away...

I mentioned this first here, Two Microsoft RIP's today - Public Office 365 Sites and Office Clip Art and have been waiting for confirmation. Well, we've got it.

Information about upcoming changes to the SharePoint Online Public Website

Starting in January 2015, Microsoft is making changes to the SharePoint Online Public Website feature. Customers who currently use this feature will continue to have access to the feature for a minimum of two years following the changeover date. New customers who subscribe to Office 365 after the changeover date won't have access to this feature. Moving forward, Office 365 customers will have access to third-party offerings that will enable them to easily integrate their public presence with their Office 365 service. Additional details about these solutions will be made available in January 2015.

Why is Microsoft making this change?
As part of the evolution of the Office 365 service, we periodically evaluate the capabilities of the service to make sure that we’re delivering the utmost value to customers. Today, we're making a difficult decision to discontinue the SharePoint Online Public Website feature. This lets us then focus on future investments while broadening our partnership with industry leaders.
What does this mean for existing customers of Office 365 plans?
Office 365 customers who currently use the SharePoint Online Public Website feature will continue to have access to the feature for a minimum of two years following the change. Moving forward, customers will have the option to subscribe to third-party solutions for public website functionality. Customers should plan to move to one of these third-party solution within the next two years.
What does this mean for new customers of Office 365 plans?
As of the changeover date, Microsoft will no longer be offering the SharePoint Online Public Website feature to new customers. New customers who subscribe to Office 365 after the changeover date won't have access to this feature. Moving forward, Office 365 customers will have the option to subscribe to third-party solutions by using links from Office 365.
How will this change be communicated to Office 365 customers?
All Office 365 administrators who currently have provisioned SharePoint Online will receive a notification in the Office 365 Message Center.
Overview of third-party offerings
What are the third-party solution offerings?

..."

Check out Mary Jo's post for some more information and details;

Microsoft confirms it is dropping Public Website feature from SharePoint Online

As rumors suggested, Microsoft is deprecating Public Websites from SharePoint Online and Office 365 in January 2015. Here's more on why and what happens next.

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Thursday, December 11, 2014

Bruce Clay (go local biz!) provides a free SEO Power Tools and SEO Tutorial

PR Newswire - Free SEO Power Tools Now Available In the Most Complete SEO Tutorial on the Web

Bruce Clay, Inc. brings free, online SEO tutorial completely up to date with five critical search engine optimization concepts absent from other popular SEO guides. No email, login or download required to view and use the step-by-step tutorial and free integrated tools.

SIMI VALLEY, Calif., Dec. 11, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- In today's digital world everyone is a marketer to some extent. Bruce Clay, Inc. has published an SEO tutorial that publishers of all technical levels may find bookmark-worthy due to free, embedded tools. Online marketing and public relations professionals, website and blog owners and content marketers can use the hands-on resource to check the SEO efforts on their own pages and their competitors'.

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The Bruce Clay, Inc. SEO Tutorial, spanning 20 webpages, stands out among other online SEO educational resources available. It's the only SEO tutorial that includes free tools anyone can use, no sign-up, login, download or trial required.

And it includes vital SEO concepts not covered in any other popular SEO tutorial, not even Google's:

  • Tools to monitor backlinks and the process for pruning backlinks
  • Mobile SEO and user experience optimization by device
  • Competitive analysis and tools to do competitive research
  • SEO for video, audio and podcasts
  • Tools to do on-page optimization analysis

The free SEO tools integrated throughout the tutorial include:

...

I don't usually blog about SEO stuff, but this is a local company, one I walk by every so often, and they are giving away free stuff! So it's a win-win in my book :)

Tuesday, December 09, 2014

Your one stop web designer cheat sheet stop? (If not, it's close...)

Designer Daily - The best cheatsheets web designers will need

Despite of years of practice and coding, it’s impossible for any designers to remember and know absolutely everything required for their work. The technology and trend is never constant. Whether it’s a programming language, CMS or any other framework, they need to refer the official document and a handy cheatsheet for best outcome in any design and development work.

In this today’s post, here we have collected the best cheatsheets that any web designers will need. Have a look at it below and enjoy your work!

1. CSS – Cascading Style Sheets

2. Popular CSS Frameworks

3. HTML – HyperText Markup Language

4. JavaScript & jQuery

5. PHP

6. WordPress

7. Joomla!

8. Drupal 7

9. SEO

10. Adobe Photoshop

11. Adobe Illustrator

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[Insert my usual, "One of these days, I'm might have to play web, so am going to cache this for future reference" statements here]

(via Infragistics - D-Coding - Developer News - What's IN with the Infragistics Community? (12/1-12/7))

Monday, December 01, 2014

Two Microsoft RIP's today - Public Office 365 Sites and Office Clip Art

Microsoft Will No Longer Offer A Public Site Option in Office 365 As Of Dec/Jan

RIP: Office 365 Public Sites!

Microsoft is throwing in the towel on the Office 365 public site option. According to a Msft source, it will be removed from the Office 365 Sharepoint Online offering as of an update scheduled for Dec 2014 / Jan 2015. Existing accounts using the public site will not be affected by this dramatic change, but can expect the already lacklustre support to dwindle further.

...

I've seen many asking for confirmation about this, but no official response yet, so take it with a grain of salt (but it sure rings true...). The next RIP story is official...

Office Blogs - Clip Art now powered by Bing Images

Starting today, customers searching for Online Pictures in Office desktop products worldwide will view and download royalty-free images curated through Bing Images.  The Office.com Clip Art and image library has closed shop. Usage of Office’s image library has been declining year-to-year as customers rely more on search engines.

Bing Image Search has higher quality images that are more up-to-date. For example, searching for “cellphone” gives more variety and modern looking phones instead of the old-school bricks from Clip Art. Also, Bing uses a copyright filter based on the Creative Commons licensing system.  These are images you can use, share, or modify for either personal or commercial use (settings can be switched to Show all web results to view more images).

...

As I usually say when these RIP type stories come in, maybe it's better to acknowledge it's dead and kill it than let it linger on in a zombie like afterlife (insert "SilverLight" cough here...)... um yeah... I guess.

If the public Office 365 site info is true (I have one and I've not seen any notice yet) that would be kind of stinky. BUT again, if Microsoft isn't ready to truly invest in it and given how far behind they are falling in this space, maybe it is better to kill it, IF they partner with a real player and help people move their sites. If they don't help people move, that would be very Closing Google Reader of them.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Introducing "Office 365 Video" not "Introducing Office 365" Video

Introducing Office 365 Video

"...

Today, I’m excited to announce Office 365 Video, the first of many NextGen Portals landing in Office 365. Initially, we will roll out to Office 365 First Release customers. We then expect to be fully deployed worldwide to all Office 365 customers by early calendar year 2015.

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...

A beautiful user interface with an easy-to-manage approach

Video is one of the most powerful mediums of communication. Office 365 Video provides organizations with a secure, company-wide destination for posting, sharing and discovering video content. From onboarding new employees, to distributing a CEO message company wide, to community contributions, video is now a first-class citizen to power and enrich your internal communications.

With a beautiful user interface and intuitive content management options, Office 365 Video is designed to meet the requirements of IT and win the hearts and minds of users. Powered by Azure Media Services—the same service used during the Olympics (6,000 plus hours of video in 18 days)—Office 365 Video benefits from adaptive smooth streaming technology optimizing video playback for the device it’s being viewed on. It, too, leverages Yammer and the Office Graph to deliver a social, personalized experience within Office 365.

Let’s take a moment to explore four core elements of Office 365 Video: 1) simplicity, 2) discoverability and share’ability, 3) mobile and 4) built-in security and easy to manage.

Simplicity. To upload a video, content owners simply drag and drop their video files into the web user interface—or upload from their mobile device—type a title and description, and let the service take care of the rest. You can upload a wide variety of video file types. The service then generates a standardized set of playback files for fast, easy viewing.

Discoverability and share’ability. Videos are easily searchable via enterprise search, with a dedicated search experience in the video portal already scoped to show only video results. All uploaded videos are discoverable in Office Delve (similar to documents, videos are automatically fed into the Office Graph).

...

Mobile. People will be able to view and share videos within Office 365 on any device. They can easily navigate the home page and channels to find and view content, and even upload new videos from their device. We’ll share more news in the next few months about how you can best interact with your video portal from your mobile device.

...

Built-in security and easy to manage. It’s very easy to set the permissions for the home page leveraging the same Active Directory powering authentication in all areas of Office 365. This same governance model enables admins to manage permissions for each channel. Channels are easy to create and assign delegated owner(s)—or channel managers—who can then manage their own content and specific set of permissions.

...

To sum it all up

Your business flourishes when all employees are informed, working together and aligned to the same important goals. Office 365 Video is just the first of numerous NextGen Portals to come to Office 365—portals to best support your corporate intranet needs, your knowledge management requirements, and facilitate how people and groups can best represent themselves—all designed to be mobile, engaging, intelligent and ready to go–for you. We’re excited to start this journey, to help you build less and use more.

..."

When I saw this, I saw "Introducing Office 365" Video and so skipped over it. Funny how titling a post can change its draw...

Once I figured out they meant Introducing "Office 365 Video" I took another look and found it pretty cool and interesting. One more draw to the cloud and Office 365.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Visual Studio Online RESTs, crosses the Pond and gets Hooked...

Visual Studio - European Datacenter & REST 1.0

European Datacenter

By popular demand, with today’s update, you can now create VS Online accounts in the Azure “West Europe” region, based in the Netherlands. You can get started by going to http://visualstudio.com and creating a new account. The account creation page will auto detect the data center that’s nearest to you, or you can click the “change options” link to override the choice

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Visual Studio Online REST API version 1.0 is here

In May, we announced the public preview of a new set of REST APIs for Visual Studio Online. Today, we are happy to announce that these APIs have graduated to 1.0 release status. This marks an important milestone in our journey to support easier integration between Visual Studio Online and other services, including your own custom tools and services.

The 1.0 designation means we have locked these APIs from any breaking changes going forward. As a developer, this means you can bind your app to the 1.0 API version and sleep well at night knowing future Visual Studio Online deployments won’t break your app.

Although the 1.0 set is locked from a breaking change standpoint, it is not locked from a feature standpoint. New APIs can be added to the 1.0 set and nonbreaking enhancements may even be introduced to APIs already released. A few existing preview APIs (like Git Pull Requests) remain in preview today, but will eventually graduate into the 1.0 set (this is mainly due to significant changes coming soon).

To learn more about how to use the APIs, check out Get started with the REST APIs.

To explore the available APIs, see the Visual Studio Online REST API Reference.

Developers with existing apps using the 1.0 preview APIs: you should start migrating to the release 1.0 APIs as soon as possible.

...

Service hooks is out of preview

I am also happy to announce that the service hooks features is out of preview and is a fully supported feature of Visual Studio Online. Service hooks let your app or service get notified instantly when an event happens in Visual Studio Online. With service hooks your app or service can avoid continuously polling to check for changes, such as completed builds, commits or check-ins, or work item changes.

Visual Studio Online supports 14 services out of the box, including ...

Not to be lost in the TechEd Europe news stream, VSO has rolled out two important updates, the REST API v1 and Service Hooks. I love me my official API's! :)

High Five to 5! HTML5 is Done (and what a ride it's been...)

MS Open Tech - W3C Charts a Course for the Future of the Open Web by Finalizing HTML5 Standard

Imagining what the Web might (not) have become without standards, and you will understand why we all must support an open web platform for the future.

Today marks a significant milestone for a great many of my colleagues around the world with whom I have had the privilege of working within the W3C HTML Working Group. Several of us have taken on new roles and responsibilities, changed companies, launched new businesses, or become parents – or in my case, a grandparent - since I joined the W3C HTML Working Group as a co-chair in 2009. Yet we continued to work as a community to produce the W3C Recommendation announced today for the HTML 5.0 open standard.

As a Co-Chair of the W3C HTML Working Group, I have seen firsthand the remarkable commitment that people and organizations from all over the world have contributed to this effort. It has been an open and intensely collaborative process, encompassing a great many passionate and brilliant minds.

Although many of the HTML5 features standardized today were sketched out several years ago, it took a lot of hard work to get the details right. Since 2007, the Working Group has resolved more than 4,000 errors, ambiguities, and controversies recorded in the WG bug lists. The email archive at http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/public-html/ shows that it took over 45,000 messages since March 2007 to get the job done!

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html5Doctor - The ride to 5

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In recent weeks I contacted around 40 people, a cross section of those who have banged away at, or banged on about, HTML5. I asked them for their perspectives on HTML5 becoming a W3C Recommendation. Below are the words of the 28 people who responded, pretty much in the order they hit my inbox:

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IEBlog - Celebrating HTML5 Recommendation with the W3C

Today, while several Internet Explorer team members are at W3C TPAC 2014, the IE team is happy to join Microsoft Open Technologies, other browser vendors, and the web community at large in celebrating the HTML5 specification reaching W3C Recommendation.

This milestone represents many years of commitment from people and organizations around the world to produce and stabilize the next generation of the W3C Open Web Platform. The IE team believes that the standards process is vital to creating an interoperable Web and ensuring that the web just works for everyone.

We’d also like to congratulate the W3C on its 20th anniversary and ...

HTML Guy or not, you have to admit it has changed the way we interact with the web and the world. HTML5 is when we, the internet industry, players and consumers finally grew up a little. The web world is far from perfect, but compared to the past, it's night and day...

Tuesday, October 07, 2014

Microsoft Azure Web Site Cheat Sheet

Microsoft Azure Web Site Cheat Sheet

Howdy, Cloud Adventurer!

You’ve stumbled across the Microsoft Azure Web Sites Cheat Sheet – The quickest reference for getting to know Microsoft Azure Web Sites on the web. If you’re looking for some tutorials on how to develop solutions on Microsoft Azure Web Sites check out the Microsoft Azure product site or the Microsoft Azure Training Kit.

Browse around this one page reference for information on command-line tools for managing your Microsoft Azure Web Sites. Take a quick look at the features that are offered on Microsoft Azure Web Sites then start exploring the wonderful world of Microsoft Azure!

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Hate to say this, but you know I've not created a Azure Web Site yet? Nope. I feel so... un-web like. Sounds like marching orders doesn't it? When/If I DO finally get off my fat butt (we'll fat'ish... I am losing weight ;) this site will come in really handy.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Groups.io (Email Groups 2.0)=, Mailing lists for the 10's, i.e. not your dad's mailing list service)

Mark Fletcher's Blog - Introducing Groups.io

...

But that doesn’t mean that mailing lists can’t improve. And this is where we get back to the unfinished business. Because email groups (the modern version of mailing lists) have stagnated over the past decade. Yahoo Groups and Google Groups both exude the dank air of benign neglect. Google Groups hasn’t been updated in years, and some of Yahoo’s recent changes have actually made Yahoo Groups worse! And yet, millions of people put up with this uncertainty and neglect, because email groups are still one of the best ways to communicate with groups of people. And I have a plan to make them even better.

So today I’m launching Groups.io in beta, to bring email groups into the 21st Century. At launch, we have many features that those other services don’t have, including:

  • Integration with other services, including: Github, Google Hangouts, Dropbox, Instagram, Facebook Pages, and the ability to import Feeds into your groups.
  • Businesses and organizations can have their own private groups on their own subdomain.
  • Better archive organization, using hashtags.
  • Many more email delivery options.
  • The ability to mute threads or hashtags.
  • Fully searchable archives, including searching within attachments.

One other feature that Groups.io has that Yahoo and Google don’t, is a business model that’s not based on showing ads to you. Public groups are completely free on Groups.io. Private groups and organizations are very reasonably priced.

We’re just starting out; following the tradition of new startups everywhere, we’re in Beta. So, as we squash the inevitable bugs and work to make the system even better (based on your feedback!), all features will be free.

...

Groups.io

Why You'll Love GROUPS.IO

Powerful features that make email groups more useful.

Great For Organizations

Groups.io is great for your internal discussion lists. Easily create and manage an organization, which is a collection of private groups, through a dedicated Org home page.

Do More With Integrations

Easily integrate Dropbox, Google Hangouts, Feeds, Facebook, Instagram, Github, Email and soon even more services into your group.

Better Archive Organization With Hashtags

Discussions can have assigned hashtags. Archives can be searched by hashtags, and hashtagged conversations can automatically expire.

Only The Messages You Want

Mute threads and keywords, ensuring you only see the messages you're interested in. Take advantage of better email delivery options, including receiving the first message only in each thread or receiving replies only

...

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While, like most, I have a love-hate relationship with mailing lists, I do think it's pretty cool seeing this new look at them, updated to today's tech.

Thursday, September 04, 2014

Driving IE with the Web Driver Tool and Code Sample too

Microsoft Downloads - IE Web Driver Tool for Internet Explorer 11

The IE Web Driver Tool enables developers to create automated tests that simulate users interacting with webpages and report back results in Internet Explorer 11. It can also manage testing across multiple windows, tabs, and webpages in a single session.

Version: 1.000

File Name:

Windows8.1-KB2990999-x64.msu

Windows8.1-KB2990999-x86.msu

Date Published: 9/3/2014

KB Articles: KB2990999

The IE Web Driver Tool implements many of the high priority features from the W3C spec to allow developers to open a session, automate basic functionality against the pages, and return the results of the tests. The IE Web Driver Tool differs from JavaScript unit tests because it has additional access to functionality and information in the browser, and it can more accurately simulate user events or OS-level events.

...

MSDN Code Gallery - WebDriver Sample - Cumulative Security Update for Internet Explorer (KB2976627)

WebDriver is like a remote control for Internet Explorer and allows developers to create automated tests that go beyond simple JavaScript unit tests. In Cumulative Security Update for Internet Explorer 11 (KB2976627), the WebDriver API demonstrated in Internet Explorer Developer Channel comes to general release.

Building the Sample

Because WebDriver gives any app that knows how to use it the ability to control your browser, it is not completely installed with Cumulative Security Update for Internet Explorer (KB2976627). To install and enable the remaining components, please follow the instructions in the Developer Guide.

Following that, you will be able to use the Visual Studio solution in this sample as a jumping-off point to build your own apps using the WebDriver API. However those apps will only run on systems specifically enabled to use the WebDriver API.

Description

The WebDriver sample provides a small example application that opens Internet Explorer, navigates to Bing, locates the Bing Search Box, types "WebDriver" into it, and executes the search. With dozens of commands available, this provides an excellent starting point for exploring the WebDriver API in Internet Explorer 11.

Source Code Files

  • IEWebDriverExample.zip

..."

Remember the days/weeks wasted and many tools we've used to "automate" UI testing of our web sites? Maybe, finally, those days are behind us? We can only hope...

Wednesday, September 03, 2014

Security/hacking got you a little freaked? Moving to Two Factor Auth? Looking for a WP8.x "Google Authenticator App"? Microsoft has got your back...

7Tutorials - Are You Looking for a Google Authenticator App on Windows Phone?

We all know the strong competition between Microsoft and Google and how ruthless it is at times. Because of it, Google has chosen not to develop Windows Phone apps for most of its services. Therefore, the Google Authenticator app that's requested by many services for two-step verification is missing from Windows Phone. Since two-step verification is a very common method for securing all kinds of accounts, being able to use a Google Authenticator clone on Windows Phone is very important. Fortunately for us Windows Phone users, Microsoft has our backs and they have developed their own Authenticator app and published it for free. Here's how it works:

Why So Many Websites & Services Ask You to Install the Google Authenticator App?

Because Google was one of the first big tech companies to implement two-step verification for their customer's accounts. They also developed a Google Authenticator app that's available on almost all mobile platforms except those developed by Microsoft. Since Android is so huge in terms of market share, the Google Authenticator app has become a standard in people's minds and everyone recommends that you use it.

Technically speaking, there's nothing special about this app because it uses a documented standard for two-step authentication: the Time-based One-time Password Algorithm (TOTP). Therefore anyone can make an app using the same algorithm.

According to this standard, the Authenticator app provides a random six digits one-time password that you enter in addition to your username and password, to log in to all kinds of services, including Google's and Microsoft's services. This six digits password is valid for 30 seconds. If an attacker steals it then, within 30 seconds, it will be useless. This is great from a security perspective.

When a website mentions using a Google Authenticator app, don't despair. You don't really need Google's app, only an app that uses the same algorithm to generate passwords.

Where to Find Microsoft's Authenticator App

On the Windows Phone Store, if you search for Google Authenticator, you will find lots of apps made by different developers and companies. Some of them are not even free. Most probably they work just as well, because they use the same standard as Google does but why use them if you have a free app, developed and actively maintained by Microsoft?

In the Windows Phone Store, search for Authenticator and tap the app made by Microsoft Corporation. You will find it here: Authenticator.

Authenticator.

...

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With all the hacking/etc. news I decided it was time to finally make the move to Two Factor Auth. Yeah, I know I'm a little behind (little?) but, hey every journey begins with the first step, etc.

Today I was looking for a Windows Phone app to help with a site that uses Google Auth. Well there isn't one, at least from Google. But, as you've seen above, we don't need no stink'n Google Auth App! The Microsoft Auth app works just fine. And I've confirmed that, it does indeed work just fine and is really easy to setup and use.

In short, if you've not made the move to Two Factor, it's really not that scary at all. Do it... DO it... DO IT!

Tuesday, September 02, 2014

Alas YUI, I knew you... Yahoo! User Interface Library (YUI) is officially dead in the water.

 Yahoo! Engineering - Important Announcement Regarding YUI

The Yahoo User Interface library (YUI) has been in use at Yahoo since 2005, and was first announced to the public on February 13, 2006. Although it has evolved tremendously since that time, YUI has always served the same overarching purpose of providing a comprehensive toolkit to make it easier for developers to create rich web applications. As such, YUI is an important part of Yahoo’s history: millions of lines of code relying on YUI have been written and are still in use at Yahoo today. However, it has become clear to us that the industry is now headed in a new direction...

...

Therefore, we have made the difficult decision to immediately stop all new development on YUI in order to focus our efforts on this new technology landscape. This means that, going forward, new YUI releases will likely be few and far between, and will only contain targeted fixes that are absolutely critical to Yahoo properties.

...

I've been following YUI since it went public in Feb 2006 (I blogged about it the day after it wen OSS, Yahoo! UI Library Released as OSS). I always thought it cool that Yahoo had released and improved it over time. But time matches on, and all that, and if you look at the web between now and then, it's a whole new world (Yeah, I've got my Capt. Obvious hat on again). Eight years? In web-time that's like 97 years or something... :/

 

Related Past Post XRef:
Free Yahoo UI JavaScript Hosting
Yahoo! UI Library Released as OSS

Building/Documenting a site? Want to see one example of a "site software guidebook?" techtribes.je example software guidebook is free and open...

Coding the Architecture - Free and open source example software guidebook 

A software guidebook for the techtribes.je website

It needs a little updating (isn't that always the case!), but I've moved the example software guidebook (previously an appendix in my Software Architecture for Developers book) into a separate free and open source book on Leanpub.

techtribes.je is a side-project of mine to create a content aggregator for the tech, IT and digital sector in Jersey, Channel Islands. The code behind the techtribes.je website is open source and available on GitHub. The source for the software guidebook is also open source and available on GitHub.

The techtribes.je software guidebook is based upon the concept of a software guidebook as described in my Software Architecture for Developers book; the software guidebook is a lightweight, pragmatic way to document the "big picture" of a software system. In essence, it's my simplified version of many "software architecture document" templates you'll find out there on the web.

techtribes.je - Software Guidebook is available to download for free from Leanpub. I hope you find it useful.

techtribes.je - Software Guidebook

About the Book

This is the software guidebook for the techtribes.je website; a content aggregator for the tech, IT and digital sector in Jersey, Channel Islands. The code behind the techtribes.je website is open source and available on GitHub. The source for this book is also open source and available on GitHub.

This book is based upon the concept of a software guidebook as described in my Software Architecture for Developers book, which is also available on Leanpub. The software guidebook is a lightweight, pragmatic way to document the "big picture" of a software system.

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How often do you re-invent the specification/documentation/guidebook wheel? Yeah, me too. The problem is that there doesn't seem to be many "real" ones that are open and available for free. Sure every corp has one, but those are often IP...

Here's one that's "real" and might give you some good ideas for your next project.

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Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Prefect for your next marketing-ware page - The New Age BS Generator

New Age Bullshit Generator

Namaste. Do you want to sell a New Age product and/or service? Tired of coming up with meaningless copy for your starry-eyed customers? Want to join the ranks of bestselling self-help authors? We can help.

Just click and the truth will manifest

Click the Reionize electrons button at the top of the page to generate a full page of New Age poppycock.

The inspiration for this idea came from watching philosophy debates involving Deepak Chopra. I wrote a blog post about it if you're interested.

After sitting through hours of New Age rhetoric, I decided to have a crack at writing code to generate it automatically and speed things up a bit. I cobbled together a list of New Age buzzwords and cliché sentence patterns and this is the result.

...You’ll get some profound-sounding nonsense here, too.

So, what is this for? Put it on your website as placeholder text. Print it out as a speech for your yoga class and see if anyone can guess a computer wrote it. Use it to write the hottest new bestseller in the self-help section, or give false hope to depressed friends and family members.

...

Seb Pearce - On the New Age Bullshit Generator and parodying woo

Link to the Generator: http://sebpearce.com/bullshit/
(Yes, it’s open source: GitHub link)

A while back, I was on a philosophy debate binge. Watching Sam Harris and the late Christopher Hitchens annihilate their opponents with precision and wit is my idea of a good night in, and YouTube’s “related videos” are a deep, dark rabbithole.

...

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Finally an awesome example of NLP. Some of these items are pretty cool sounding too. Best of all it's open source... :)

(via Beyond Search - Natural Language Processing Used to Serve Up Cynicism)

Monday, May 19, 2014

400 billion... The Wayback Machine now has more pages than there are stars in our galaxy (and here's how they manage that)

High Scalability - A Short On How the Wayback Machine Stores More Pages than Stars in the Milky Way

How does the Wayback Machine work? Now with over 400 billion webpages indexed, allowing the Internet to be browsed all the way back to 1996, it's an even more compelling question. I've looked several times but I've never found a really good answer.

Here's some information from a thread on Hacker News. It starts with mmagin, a former Archive employee:

...

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..."

How awesome is that? If you're interested in the story behind the storage/indexing/etc used by the Wayback Machine, read this...

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Web Camps Training Kit, March 2014 Edition

Microsoft Downloads - Web Camps Training Kit - March 2014

Version: March 2014

Date Published: 4/29/2014

WebCampsTK-Package-WebCampsTrainingKit.exe, 114 KB

The kit includes all the content presented around the world at the recent Web Camps events; presentations, demos, labs and more. Inside the new kit you’ll find content that covers the following technologies:

  • ASP.NET 4.5
  • ASP.NET MVC 4
  • ASP.NET Web API
  • jQuery
  • SignalR
  • Entity Framework
  • Visual Studio 2013
  • Internet Explorer 11 and HTML5
  • Building apps for Office with HTML5
  • Cloud application services

 

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Internal or external, if you're doing any kind of Microsoft Web Stack Training, presenting or attending, this is a great resource...

 

Related Past Post XRef:
Web Camps Training Kit Updated
“Web Camps Training Kit” Don’t re-invent, re-use…

Tuesday, April 08, 2014

Heartbleed in eight minutes, what it is, it's impact and more, Khan Academy style

TechCrunch - What Is Heartbleed? The Video

You’ve probably heard about Heartbleed. You’ve probably been told that, as far as security vulnerabilities go on the Internet, it’s pretty damned scary.

But what is Heartbleed? How does it work? Why is it something that you should care about? This Khan Academy-style* video tries to break it all down.

Made by Zulfikar Ramzan, MIT Ph.D. and CTO of cloud security firm Elastica, this video does a great job of explaining the bug at a pretty high level. Its still got a whole lot of acronyms and jargon thrown into the mix (so don’t expect an Explain-Like-I’m-Five explanation here), but it does a good job of explaining the bug’s ins and outs in a way that more people should be able to grasp. [GD: Post leached in full]

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Don't know if you've been following this, that the OpenSSL/Heartbeat/Heartbleed apocalypse is upon us, or not, but if you're like me and want a short brief about what the heck is going on, what it is and why it actually is pretty darn scary, this video is a must watch.

Monday, April 07, 2014

Succinctly eBook of the Day: "Twitter Bootstrap Succinctly" [Reg-ware]

SyncFusion Succinctly eBook Shelf - Twitter Bootstrap Succinctly

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Twitter Bootstrap (TWB) is a free front-end framework built by Twitter developers to ensure visual and functional consistency across websites and applications. In Twitter Bootstrap Succinctly, Peter Shaw explains what makes up a consistent, attractive UI, and why having one is important. He then walks you through the basics of adding beautiful, user-friendly components to your projects with only a few lines of HTML and CSS. You'll learn how to add TWB to an existing project, and use it to customize attractive buttons, tabs, breadcrumbs, dropdowns, and more. There are even chapters dedicated to optional JavaScript and TWB extensions for when you're ready to take your UI's appearance a step further.

Table of Contents

  1. What is Twitter Bootstrap?
  2. Adding Bootstrap to Your Project
  3. Twitter Bootstrap Scaffolding
  4. Twitter Bootstrap Base CSS Classes
  5. Forms
  6. Buttons
  7. Components
  8. Twitter Bootstrap JavaScript
  9. Extending Bootstrap

If you've been hearing about Bootstrap but weren't sure what it was or how to get started with it [insert usual "this ebook is for you" statement here]

(via expression{web.blog} - Twitter Bootstrap Succinctly)

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

OneNote Dev isn't dead by a long shot! The OneNote team opens up about their near-term API roadmap

OneNote Dev Blog - OneNote API Near-Term Roadmap

Hey folks, this is James Lau - I am the Lead Program Manager on the OneNote API team. In this blog post, I’d like to share with your our near-term roadmap and get your feedback.

Last week, we launched the initial version of our API. The first set of features are focused on scenarios for creating pages in OneNote: mobile app scanners, hardware scanners, save-it-for-later for newsreaders, etc. Of course, we are far from done, and we have already started are busy working on the next set of features. Instead of "going dark" and then shipping features that we think you want, we would rather have a dialog with you on what we are building.

One of the core principles we have on our team is customer transparency. We understand that you are trusting us and taking a bet on our platform when you use our API. As such, not only do you deserve to know what we are planning, but you also deserve to have a say in what we do! We have set up a OneNote API feedback site so you can participate in our planning, vote on features and submit your ideas.

Here is a list of the capabilities and features that we are planning to deliver over the next 3 to 6 months. That is a very rough timeframe, and priorities can change at any time, so please don't base your plan on this timeframe. The features below are also not listed in strict priority order. We have multiple teams tackling this list simultaneously, so some of these will be built in parallel. Nonetheless, we would love to get your feedback on their relative importance to you.

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Please let us know of anything you want that's missing and vote on the ones that you really want *right now*! Your feedback will really help us prioritize and influence what we work on next.

Other than transparency, our team also believes in delivering customer value early. That means we are going to be delivering new features as they are completed and not take a "big bang" approach. We do daily deployments to our service too, so there are tons of opportunities to get these features out on a regular basis.

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Looking forward to these features. The current API is a good starting point, but just that, a starting point. I hope they can keep the momentum and cadence up.

Wednesday, March 05, 2014

IE 11 Reading View - Did Microsoft just paint a big target on its back for every web producer?

IEBlog - Introducing Reading View in IE 11

Reading view is a new feature in Internet Explorer 11 for Windows 8.1 that helps you focus on the main content of the Web page you want to read. Reading view is a way to experience just the article or blog post you want to read, without the distractions of related (or unrelated) content surrounding the story. Find an article you want to read, switch to reading view, and settle into a great reading experience. When you’re done, just exit reading view to continue browsing on the site.

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Reading view is a native feature of “immersive” IE – you don’t have to install anything extra – and it’s available for pages with a significant amount of text, in any language IE supports.

How to Use Reading View in IE 11

Using reading view is easy. Just click the reading view button in the address bar. If you’re a keyboard person, you can also use CTRL+SHIFT+R to put a page into reading view.

The reading view button will appear in the address bar for pages that have “article-like” content. If you don’t see it, it means that the page doesn’t work well in reading view.

To exit reading view, tap or click the button in the address bar again), or hit Esc. To go to the previous page, tap or click the back button, or back-swipe if you’re using a touch-enabled device.

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No more “Next, Next, Next…” links

There are many articles on the Web that contain multiple and separate pages content. That means you have to click a “Next Page” link to continue reading, sometimes again and again, if the article spans many pages – and then you have to wait for each successive page to load, thus interrupting your reading experience.

Reading view in IE 11 combines the primary content from all pages of an article into a single continuously scrolling page that works great on any device. No need to click those “next page” links. Instead you can just use your finger or your mouse to scroll as you read. You get to have full control the position of the text on the screen.

If you are using a wide-screened device, like a tablet or a large monitor, articles in reading view can display in a multi-column, horizontally scrolling page.

If you like to read on a tablet while holding it in portrait mode, or if IE is displayed side-by-side with another app window, articles in reading view will display in a single-column, vertically scrolling page. As a general rule, if the IE window isn’t wide enough to show two columns of text, then reading view will use a single-column, vertically scrolling layout.

How reading view works

Once a Web site is determined to be reading view eligible, reading view uses a number of heuristics to identify and then extract relevant content from the page, to create a new page (in memory). The Web is a big and dynamic space, and from an engineering perspective, our algorithm aims to retrieve the most relevant content for the largest number of reading view eligible sites. These heuristics look at HTML tags, node depth, image size, and word count to determine what content on the page is the “main” content.

We have put together an interactive Reading View Test Drive demo to provide more details on key rules used in the Reading View extraction algorithm. We hope these tips will help content managers and developers ensure their site looks great on reading view.

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Reading View Guidelines

Reading view is a new feature in IE11 that provides a focused reading experience for text-heavy pages, such as news articles and blog posts.

The logic that reading view uses to detect the main content on a page follows popular markup patterns for news and blog articles on the web. This Test Drive doesn’t cover all scenarios, however, the following guidelines will get you started in making sure your site works well with reading view. See the Reading View in IE11 blog post for more details on how Reading View works.

To see tips on how to ensure particular elements on a page display correctly in reading view, click any of the 3 tab “views”, then click element names in the left nav bar or click the elements themselves on the embedded page.

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Um... wow. Is this what I think it is? While this looks like it might  a cool feature for some users, producers aren't going to be too happy, are they? They are forced to opt out, not in. Even as a blogger that kind of irks me. If my site and content was my business, I think I'd be pissed. This feels like old Microsoft, the we know better Microsoft.

Or am I over thinking this?