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Category: Internet

Microsoft Eyes Master Search Tool

Microsoft Eyes Master Search Tool: In their attempt to wrest supremacy of Internet searching from Google, Microsoft announces a single tool that will search the your local computer, your email, and the Internet. They also plan to build in extensive personalization features including tracking users' Internet activity to help refine search results. Yay for privacy issues.

28 May 2004 by Steven | Permalink | 4 comments »

Search terms!

Occasionally I take a look at the search engine keyphrases that bring people to Peiratikos and find some that I just have to share!

  • you and i have unfinished business
  • spreewald pickles
  • neilalien nick cave
  • freudian comics
  • ethics for kids
  • herodotus goes to hollywood
  • righteous indignation in literature
  • is the snake in the garden the link between man and animal
  • marquis de sade blog
  • fantasy art gorilla
  • comics with metaphors in them
  • a ballpoint banana batman
  • what does the acronym marvel stand for?
  • i hate work
  • become a real life batman

It just goes on and on! I hope you all found what you were looking for, folks.

Web Developer extension for Firefox and Mozilla

Web Developer extension for Firefox and Mozilla: If you use a Mozilla browser and you're a web developer, you'll almost certainly find the tools in this extension useful.

25 May 2004 by Steven | Permalink | Comments disabled

Linkblogging and site updates

As you can see, our little linkblog has changed. No more sidebar, now the links are integrated into the blog itself, but formated differently. Links now also have their own permalinks and comments threads. The idea for setting up linkblogging this way comes from Matt Mullenweg. This is a neat way of doing it, I think, because it’s more compact and slicker than the sidebar and better integrated into the blog.

You can still see the old links at

We’ve also upgraded to WordPress 1.2, which has finally been released! As long as we’re upgrading, we figure we might as well play with the design a bit, so expect quickly changing looks over the next week or so. If you encounter any problems with the site, let us know!

Next project, beating the citations archive into shape. When will do that? Ah, who knows.

A Virus from Outer Space

Last night’s bedtime reading was “Sociolinguistic Attitudes and Issues in Contemporary Britain,” by Paul Alceo, an essay in English in Its Social Contexts: Essays in Historical Sociolinguistics, which cost me a dollar at Half Price Books and has been well worth the investment. I was fascinated to come across something entirely new to me:

Polari survives in only about 100 words, the remnant of what was probably once a fuller criminal argot derived in part from Lingua Franca, a Mediterranean pidgin. It is a vocabulary, rather than a full language, used by vagabonds and homosexuals in the theater and navy.

In looking at word lists I realize I’ve read many of the words before, admittedly mostly concerning “homosexuals in the theater” rather than those in the navy or vagabonds of any sexual orientation. Still, while I’d known that subcultures, particularly persecuted or marginalized ones, have their own inflections and code words and circumlocutions (something I was rather obsessed with as a teen, in fact) I’d never thought of this as a separate language. It makes me wonder when and how current argots will be discussed and codified, from 1337sprach to stupid cyberknitters’ acronyms to all the other sorts of shared shorthands that the internet and blogs in particular create and nourish. This is something I like to watch while reading message boards and blogs, and I should probably pay more attention and keep track, but I don’t think I’ll ever do real sociolinguistic commentary on it.

As for Polari, the definitive source seems to be Paul Baker, who has written a history and a dictionary (still in print!) of Polari. I intend to hit the library.

Channel 9 From Outer Space

Hey, look at this:

Channel 9 started as a personal story from one of us about fear of flying. Lenn realized after years of dealing with it, that it was actually a fear of the unknown. The fear was conquered through learning. The more transparency into what it took to fly a plane, the more the fear went away. Lenn got to know pilots who flew planes everyday, and every time he flew he turned on Channel 9 on the in-flight audio system to listen in to the cockpit.

We think developers need their own Channel 9, a way to listen in to the cockpit at Microsoft, an opportunity to learn how we fly, a chance to get to know our pilots. Five of us in Redmond are crazy enough to think we just might learn something from getting to know each other. Were we wrong? Time will tell.

Join in, and have a look inside our cockpit and help us fly the plane.

Welcome to Channel 9.

Ooh, now look at this:

This page is not Valid HTML 4.0 Transitional!

Errors: 359

It’s OK though, they know their HTML sucks!

At some point, I’ll go over the whole site and try to make it more palatable for the masses. Xhtml will be the goal, except that I’m not sure how friendly Asp.Net is going to be for that. Anyway, I know it sucks, I wish it didn’t, that’s what i get for pushing our functionality so quickly into both ASP.Net Forums 2.0 and FlexWiki. For now, leave your issues here and i’ll try to address them once this becomes a priority.

I’m having trouble here. I can’t decide what’s funnier… Is it

  1. Microsoft’s technical evangelism blog uses 8-year-old obsolete HTML and still can’t get it right
  2. ASP.NET isn’t “friendly” with XHTML


We ♥ Jews

According to Trisha Lynn on Tartsville, the search term “jew” has been googlebombed by an anti-Semitic group, so the number one search result is their web site (which I’m obviously not going to link to). I submitted a spam report to Google, just in case nobody else thought to do so. Trisha reports that some bloggers are doing grassroots counter-googlebombing to get the Wikipedia entry on “Jew” into the number one spot. Boy oh boy, the Web sure has introduced the world to some exciting new forms of political activism!

Referral Spam

I was looking through our referrers list here at Peiratikos just now, and I discovered three rather odd referers. I won’t link to two of them, because they’re real sites. I will give you the third URL: That’s not a real URL—there is no Paris Hilton Sex Tape blog. So that’s clearly not a legit referral, but the other two are highly questionable: one is an Internet service provider and the other appears to be a Belgian company. I.e., not web sites that are likely to link to us.

Folks, the newest innovation in spam has arrived, and it is referral spam. Apparently a lot of bloggers are getting hit with referral spam for John Kerry’s blog, whihc is pretty pathetic—Paris Hilton spam is to be expected, but when Presidential campaigns start spamming… or maybe it’s some Republican script kiddie trying to turn tech-savvy people against Kerry.

At any rate… come on, referral spam? It’s wasted on our site, since Rose and I are the only ones who can look at our referrers list. It would certainly cause us a lot of difficulty if we start getting hit hard by this method—not least because of all the wasted bandwidth used up by serving bogus referrals—but nobody will actually see the spam ads except us, and it’s not like we’re going to buy something from a company that 1) spams us and 2) wastes our precious and expensive bandwidth. So whoever decided to spam our referral list made a poor marketing choice. For people who list their referrers on their web sites (I know several bloggers do), this could create a larger public annoyance.

But still, referral spam?

Stupid Javascript

Look, people: don’t use that stupid Javascript that disables right-clicking, OK? It takes five seconds to disable Javascript and then I can download your images to my heart’s content. Actually, I don’t even need to waste my time disabling Javascript. I can just go to “File → Save As…” and save your HTML and all the images on it to my hard disk. If you want to keep people from downloading your precious images, don’t put them on a public web server. If you want to mark your images as belonging to you, learn about embedding metadata.

Number One Scariest Dean Web Site

Crushies for Dean wins!

Our group is open to anyone who wants to join us in swooning over Howard Dean and discussing why (as one of our founding crushies wrote: “is it his confidence? his compassion? his sincerity? his intelligence? his…well, this could go on and on! Let’s just say it’s all of those amazing character traits and…that look in his eyes…”).

Howard Dean