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Something about RSS [RSS news and comments]

RSS blog with information, news, comments, software and articles.

Saturday, November 29, 2003

Free software

It's interesting how much free software you can find. When I looked for new hosting I saw that many hostings offers many scripts as php-nuke / post-nuke, phpProjekt, xoops, phpmychat, phpmyadmin (almost standard), phpauction, phplinks, 4images, webcalendar, phpBB or many others. Some of them are free, others are not. As you can see many of them uses "php" in their name. LAMP (Linux / Apache / MySQL / PHP) systems are ruling open source scripts and low-costs solutions used by web hostings. Will these solutions move into larger business area or will remain mainly for personal / small-business sites?

I saw some moves from IIS areas (.NET) with open-source projects but they are still far away. Is not only the hosting costs or the number of web servers (see this survey) but also the software available for a specific web server.

Friday, November 28, 2003


I'm very disappointed with current web hosting. I spent some time today searching a new one. This is not an easy task because there are a lot of poor services. I tried to look for an .NET (reseller) hosting but is more expensive than *nix.
So, I'll keep *nix & PHP at least for a while. Finally, I think I found something.

My intention is to transfer this site (and others of mine) to new hosting in about 2 weeks.

For this search I used some good sites as ISPCheck.com, HostHideout.com, webhostingtalk.com and others.

Wednesday, November 26, 2003


Lately you could see forums on many sites. This happen more often because of some very popular forums software, available for free. One of them is phpBB.

The problem with phpBB scripts (made with PHP, of course) is that has an original solution for searching: all words are insterted in a looooong database. This solution could be inefficient for bigger forums (many users with many posts). Searching words tables will consume a lot of space.

A solution is to rely on full-text search capabilities available in many databases (MySQL, MS SQL). At least for MySQL you can find here the full solution. Is not difficult to implement and I think it worth it.

Maybe in next future version you could choose between custom searching or full-text search.

Tuesday, November 25, 2003

.NET free book

Do you like free online books? I do.
Here is one: ".NET Programming With Visual C++" (by Dr. Max Fomitchev) on Dr. Dobb's site. There is a link to buy online access but try this link (nothing illegal, just a Google search :) ). Then, you can open "View as HTML" links for each chapter. Isn't Google a wonderful thing? :)

Sunday, November 23, 2003

Web errors

When developing some web pages, it's very likely to get some errors during the tests. At least for IE 6.0 there is an option in browser to hide all these errors. You will see only a generic error message which is not very helpful. This option is set on by default.

You can disable it from Tools | Internet Options... | Advanced | Show friendly HTTP error messages.
Now, all those errors could have a meaning or some explanations.

Friday, November 21, 2003

Web services

I mentioned yesterday about web services. If you want a definition see this.

They are very interesting, but for sure won't solve all Internet problems.

And because I mentioned web services when talking about MS let's see their solution at work.

Of course, starts with version 1.0, and of course, there is a SDK. They are explained, no problem. But do you see what this web service is doing? Top downloads? This is all that MS can give? This is the most useful info you want to use from a MS web service?

I think this is what happen with many web services: they are interesting from the technology point of view, but (many) are practically useless or only demos (for the sake of technology). I can't wait to see them at work.

Thursday, November 20, 2003


Some days ago I attended a MS event focused on .NET. It was interesting and I found out some new things but still I'm not excited. Of course, it was marketing and technical presentations mixed together but I tried to figure out what is new and interesting and what is not. Some thoughts:

- "COM is old and is not perfect, .NET works seamlessly". I think a few years ago COM was the perfect technology. For sure in a couple of years .NET won't be so perfect, too :)
- Now the buzzwords are: "smart client", "SOAP", "XML", "web services", ".NET (compact) framework", etc. These words shouldn't miss from any technical presentations.
- On the laptops used for presentations were visible some virtual folders: http://localhost/blog or http://localhost/weblog. What these mean? :)
- They were good at showing what easy some operations are. What is difficult or buggy you will find yourself :)
- I compare these demo applications with some demos made for VB 6.0: open a project (form is there), drop some controls, drop a DataControl or ADODC, select some properties and fields from a database and press F5 (Run). Wow! Your application is working in 60 sec. But this is the way the programs are built? Is this the real life?
- Not a word about having .NET on other platforms. For MS, multi-platform means Win Servers, PDA (Pocket PC), TabletPC, Mobile (Win CE / SmartPhone). All running MS software. So, .NET will be multi-platform :)

Other than these, the applications presented worked, the food was good and everybody was happy.

Tuesday, November 18, 2003


I couldn't resist to comment on these news:
- MSN Newsbot to Take On Google News
- Microsoft Ready to Join the Chorus - "Software giant prepares for music downloading online"

Basically, is about Microsoft versions of Google's News and Apple's iTunes (for online music downloads).

Is there something that couldn't be copied? No.

A few days ago, I read in the news about Sun Microsystems Inc. and Zend Technologies Ltd. partenership regarding PHP ("Sun, Zend integrate PHP with Sun's Web server").

Today I've read about MySQL and SAP partnership ("MySQL Reopens SAP's Database for the Public").

With these moves, both PHP and MySQL could be more used by enterprise users. Combination of PHP as server-side scripting and MySQL as database is largely used by private users or small businesses. These popular free or low-cost solutions could became popular business solutions, used by (more) big companies.

Will we see more PHP & MySQL in the future? Maybe.

Monday, November 17, 2003


As many site-owners, I tried to cover some expenses adding online ads or donations. These days are rare the sites without advertising :)
I'm using a few methods, on different sites:

- PayPal donations
- Amazon affiliate program
- Commision Junction
- Google AdSense

By far, the best result are getting with Google's AdSense. More and more sites are using it and this system of pay-per-click looks that catch up.

Also, I'm using it as simple counter, to see how many pages were visited (Reports | Page impressions).

Sunday, November 16, 2003

Yahoo! Mail

As you know Yahoo! mails could be read from a web browser. But what if you want to use an email client? POP3 access to Yahoo mail is $19.99/year.

This is very useful when you want a local copy of the messages. Or you want to save locally your messages in order to save space.

Of course, you could save each message (copy-paste from browser) but wouldn't be easier to do it automatically and save them in your email client (Outlook, Netscape, Eudora, etc.). For this, there are some free programs, as:

- YahooPops
- MrPostman

First one, after installation and email client setup, runs invisible and do all the chores. You can read and sent emails using your Yahoo account because the program simulate POP3/SMTP access.

Saturday, November 15, 2003

Mono & .NET

Today I spent a few hours trying to install Mono (.NET) on my virtual hosting (*nix). Finally, I gave up. Maybe I'll continue other time.

The problem was that I have limited access to the server and some pieces in the puzzle were missing (I mention that it wasn't my local machine). And there were other small problems, too.

However, I think that Mono is a wonderful idea. I'd like to see it working and I like to see more hosting companies offering support for .NET, not only with IIS and MS .NET framework. There are many that have ChiliASP installed, why don't they have Mono, as well?

From Mono, I'd like to see:
- Better documentation;
- More support for virtual hosting and Apache 1.x as well;
- More used.

Also, it's worth seeing gotmono.com. Does it want to be something like gotdotnet.com? Maybe.

Thursday, November 13, 2003


A few days ago I mentioned MS people weblogs. But this is not something new, other companies are doing the same:

- Macromedia (scroll down the page) - or see www.markme.com/mxna/bloglist.cfm
- SUN (weblogs.java.net)

Maybe in the future we'll see more companies having weblogs.

Also, at community.java.net you can find projects for developing or you can open new ones. It's something similar with www.gotdotnet.com/community/workspaces or sourceforge.net.

Looks like it's time to share, both code (projects) and information :)

Wednesday, November 12, 2003


If you are interested in RSS you should read this article ("Battle of the blog"):

"The conflict centers on something called Really Simple Syndication (RSS), a technology widely used to syndicate blogs and other Web content. The dispute pits Harvard Law School fellow Dave Winer, the blogging pioneer who is the key gatekeeper of RSS, against advocates of a different format. The most notable of these advocates are Blogger owner Google and Sam Ruby, an influential IBM developer who is now shepherding an RSS alternative through its early stages of development."

I personally prefer to have, as the name says, "really simple" format. If somebody needs much more complicated format could use RCS ("Really Complicated Syndication") :)))

But I also think that RSS is perfectible.

Tuesday, November 11, 2003


Today I come across HP.com site. On the first page almost all links have .html extension. Nothing unusual. But let's open some pages and see what technologies are used:

- CGI: http://www.hp.com/cgi-bin/sbso/exit.cgi?SMBhome=left/products&url;=http://www.hp.com/sbso/busproducts.html
- JSP: http://www.shopping.hp.com/cgi-bin/hpdirect/shopping/scripts/home/home.jsp
- Servlets: https://register.hp.com/servlet/CommonLogin.CLAppServlet?appID=java_wreg_wreg_genpg&reqType;=Auth&return;=https%3A%2F%2Fregister.hp.com%3A443%2Fservlet%2FworkFlowController%3F
- JHTML: http://h20015.www2.hp.com/en/siteHome.jhtml?reg=nam&cc;=us&lc;=en&pagetype;=sitehome
- PHP: http://h30015.www3.hp.com/home/home.php
- ASP: http://h30014.www3.hp.com/offers/us/home.asp
- ASPX (.NET): http://h71036.www7.hp.com/hho/cache/755-0-0-225-121.aspx

Is there something missing? :)

Of course, these are on different servers and maybe developed in different periods of time. They proved that it could work all these technologies together. And there is something else - it's not so important (maybe) the technology used, but the results. At the end, all are doing the same things.

This is pretty much a living (Internet) history :)
Link to 2RSS.com

I added a new page with images and links to 2RSS.com. This is a free RSS directory and any support from those who use this directory is welcomed.

Having a link to your RSS feed in our directory could be helpful for your site. For sure will be visitors that come from our site. All you could do to help us is a small link :)) This is not mandatory for RSS feeds added to the directory, but I'd appreciate any support.

The images used for links are (very) small. I don't want these images to be too obtrusive on your site because I wouldn't use big images.


Saturday, November 08, 2003

Windows Messenger Service

Lately, you could find many articles on Windows Messenger service and how is it used by spammers. You can read this or even our article for more information. Or you should read this article from Microsoft (many others are available too).

Definitely, you could stop this service very simple using Services manager from Control Panel.
But if you are not a techie guy you could use our free application that does exactly this. You just have to unzip and run messenger.hta and then you can start / stop or enable / disable Messenger service. Enjoy!

Thursday, November 06, 2003


Are you looking for news regarding Microsoft, Google or maybe other big companies?
There are a few good sites with news you should consider. Of course, there is Moreover.com with news regarding Microsoft. But also there are www.watchingmicrosoftlikeahawk.com (I really like the domain name :) ) or www.microsoft-watch.com.

For Google you can try www.watchinggooglelikeahawk.com or google.blogspace.com.

Also, don't forget official pages:
- http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/default.asp
- http://www.google.ca/press/press.html


Are you developing with MS tools? Are you currently using MS .NET? Maybe it's time to take a look to these (new?) technologies. I don't know if they are new any more because they are a few years old (beta - framework 1.0 - framework 1.1 - ...)

If I search something in MSDN I found .NET references first. Everywhere there are .NET articles and .NET code.

But there is something new that surprised me - the idea of promoting .NET with weblogs & public projects.

There are a few weblogs regarding .NET (of people from MS):
- http://msdn.microsoft.com/netframework/community/blogs/default.aspx
- http://blogs.gotdotnet.com/
- http://weblogs.asp.net

Or try http://www.gotdotnet.com/community/workspaces/. Doesn't it look like http://sourceforge.net/ ?

If we talked about weblogs you could see such .NET solutions developed by the community as BlogX, .Text or dasBlog.

Or you could try RSS Bandit - an RSS aggregator developed with .NET (C#).

Interesting? Weblogs and open source projects got to MS ?

Wednesday, November 05, 2003


If Bloogger means Google, let's talk a little about Google. Have you seen calculator from Google? It's a very nice feature. Just type any expresion below and see the result:

What about definitions? If you are not sure about a term you can search for a definition with Google. Simply type "define" (followed by a colon ":") and any terms you want to get definition. Try this:

Tuesday, November 04, 2003


Now something about RSS. If you see RSS 2.0 specifications <author> element (of <item>) could have only email address or email address and name. What happen if you want to use only name (without email address) ? Is not possible. You could add a dummy email address (x@x.com) or have something that is not validated correctly by RSS validators. Or the best solution is to not use them.

The same thing happen to <managingEditor> and <webmaster> elements, too.

All these RSS could be a valuable source of email addresses for spammers. Maybe this could be changed and allows only author name without email address.
Finally the blog is up and running. I customized it to have the same look-and-feel as the rest of the site.
I realy like Blogger because has some nice features (and has a free version :) ) as :
- help files
- FTP for remote hosting
- templates
- preview
- easy to use

Actually, I didn't search or or tried other blogs - I stopped at blogger and use it. Would be nice if would have RSS or coments, but I can live without (at least for a while).

A few days ago I started my own software for blogging (PHP & MySQL) but I'm quite busy and I stopped it. I hope in the future I'll have some time to finish it. When I have something done I'll post on the site.
Yes, this is another blog. These days everybody has hiw own blog, so I decided to have one, too. I don't know how often I'll update it but I'll try to have new posts as often as possible.

Just a few words about me:
- I'm web developer & programmer using a few languages & technologies.
- English is not my first language (please excuse my typos).

More to come. Wish me luck.


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