Weekly Digest, 12-7-08

Here’s the latest from your favorite providers of interesting links in a highly digestible weekly format:

IsItFunnyToday? Find out if your favorite comics are funny today

This website (which, unfortunately, requires an http visit) lets users upvote and downvote the week’s webcomics. A real time-saver if you’re trying to keep abreast but don’t feel like spending half an hour every morning using your browser to look at websites.

Google Contacts :: Thunderbird Add-ons

Self explanatory: this Thunderbird .xpi will add your gmail contacts to your Thunderbird address books and keep everything in sync. If, like me, you’re going around using a G1 and Thunderbird, you’re basically indestructible now.


cherrypeel.com came to my attention courtesy of a friend with a bad habit of passing along reddit links as if I wasn’t eventually going to get around to them and see that he was merely passing off reddit links as his own discoveries. Nevertheless, cherrypeel–it’s like reddit, but for music!–is a website where independent music is upvoted/downvoted Thunderdome stizz by users who are every bit as snarky and excitable as the irascible, pre-teen redditors you know and love.

The Fountain Jet Home Soda Maker From Soda-Club

I’m normally not a gadget enthusiast–if there’s an MLM out there selling widgets based on anything but outrageous bullshit and misdirection, I’ll eat my hat–but this is kind of awesome. Particularly if you’re a hopeless, elbow-bending boozer and soda drinks are among your preferred liver-hardeners. Get one of these, a fridge that automatically makes chipped ice and one of those trays that lets you make shotglasses out of ice and you’ll never have to leave the house again. Except for more hooch.

Could VC be a Casualty of the Recession?

Although YC is based on the idea of it being cheap to start a startup, we never anticipated that founders would grow successful startups on nothing more than YC funding.

What Blogger Should Do

Building more interconnection between users and blogs is clearly part of the focus now with "followers." It’s something we realized we were remiss in not doing more of… don’t try to make one big network. Perhaps enable anybody to create a blog network/community thingy…

Re: EngineYard’s recent post about Phusion Passenger

More interestingly however, is that even though Engine Yard claims to not have experience or expertise in Passenger, they seem to be perfectly capable of making some strong statements about it anyway as found on Ezra’s slides and Tom’s blog post.

Apache + Passenger -vs- nginx + mongrel

Over ten years ago I learned personally that it’s far easier to manage static environments compared to dynamic environments for one simple reason: When things are changing dynamically, it’s hard to understand why things are behaving the way they are.

Dynamic YouTube Image Thumbnails

I quickly realized there was a very obvious pattern to the thumbnail URLs being returned with each call…

Terminal Tips: Enable "path view" in Finder

When you open a Finder window and start browsing to a folder, do you lose track of the path to that folder? If you do, the Terminal command below will enable path view in the Finder — this means that you will see the directory path to the current folder you are browsing in the title bar, instead of only seeing the name of the current directory.

Real Advice Hurts

…if the countless, dreary hours of resource-hunting and tip-scarfing have primarily produced more RSS subscriptions and a giant ass print on your couch, maybe it’s time to…

RubyGem is from Mars, AptGet is from Venus

Very interesting comments on this Hacker News page, and on the original article as well.

Rails templates

Templates are simple ruby files containing DSL for adding plugins/gems/initializers etc. to your freshly created Rails project. To apply the template, you need to provide rails generator with location of the template you wish to apply, using -m option.

The “broken windows” theory of crime is correct

When the alley contained graffiti, 69% of the riders littered compared with 33% when the walls were clean.

autoload and concurrency (Ruby Core)

The current MRI implementation has a bug. Fix it with a mutex, and it all gets better. Then we find the next global thing that’s not thread safe…

How I Use TextMate

To that end, I’d like to share the add-ons I use that keep TextMate and I on friendly terms.

TextMate productivity tips

For anyone who is new to TextMate or considering trying it out, I thought I’d share a few tips.

Twitter Update

Evan promises some pretty drastic changes in 2009 with support for Groups and sub-networks.

Visual Event

Events in Javascript are often seen as a bit of an enigma. This is odd given that Javascript is very much an event driven language, but it is typically down to their complex nature and difficulty to debug. To this end I’ve created Visual Event to help track events which are subscribed to DOM nodes.


As the about page says, if you live exactly 6 minutes from Sunset Tunnel East Portal, 8 minutes from Duboce and Church, and 10 minutes from Church Station you may find it useful too.

The Other Half of "Artists Ship"

Steve Jobs’s famous maxim "artists ship" works both ways. Artists aren’t merely capable of shipping. They insist on it. So if you don’t let people ship, you won’t have any artists.

Amazon SimpleDB Grows Up

SimpleDB makes it easy to grow. You can have up to 100 domains and 10 GB of data in each domain during the beta. You don’t have to worry about splitting your data up across multiple disks as your database grows. That’s all taken care of for you, behind the scenes. SimpleDB makes it easy to scale. You don’t have to worry about creating a complex master-slave setup to support a high level of concurrent access.

Goodbye Pownce, Hello Six Apart

We’ll be closing down the main Pownce website two weeks from today, December 15th.

Why Git is Better Than X

This site is here because I seem to be spending a lot of time lately defending Gitsters against charges of fanboyism, bandwagonism and koolaid-thirst. So, here is why people are switching to Git from X, and why you should too. Just click on a reason to view it.


Data Cleanup for Everyone from Dabble DB. Magic/Replace is a tool to make changes to all of the rows of a data table at once.

Why I Love Twitter

What’s different, of course, is that Twitter isn’t just a protocol. It’s also a database. And that’s the old secret of Web 2.0, Data is the Intel Inside. That means that they can let go of controlling the interface. The more other people build on Twitter, the better their position becomes.


Published by

Trevor Turk

A chess-playing machine of the late 18th century, promoted as an automaton but later proved a hoax.

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