Category: Software

Mozilla release Bespin Embedded preview

Mozilla’s Bespin is a code editor built using web technologies. It’s still in its infancy, but shows promise. A new release, Bespin Embedded, lets you use the basic editor functionality on your own websites, using just a couple of lines of Javascript. If you don’t want to download it yourself, I’ve got a working demo. The editor doesn’t really do much at the moment, so this is really only a proof of concept.

Bespin, the cloud, and Canvas

Mozilla recently launched a very early version of Bespin, their online IDE (Sitepoint have a nice overview). It’s hard to make too much of it at this early stage, although it is impressively fast and responsive; time will tell if that continues to be the case as new features are added.

This responsiveness seems to come from the front end being created using JavaScript (only 62kb compressed, apparently) and the HTML5 canvas element (update: more on that implementation). Seeing other examples of what its capable of, I really need to start learning more about canvas.

Five plugins (and a theme) to improve Textpattern

Following on from my previous post, I thought I’d explore in a little more detail how I like to optimise my Textpattern installation when starting a new site. While TXP has a pretty good setup out of the box, there are a few more steps I like to take to really make it zing.

Bear in mind that I’ve only really noticed the power of TXP in the last year or so, and there may be a heap of other plugins that I’m unaware of; listed below are just my favourites that I’ve discovered so far.

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Textpattern releases new version

Textpattern have announced the release of version 4.07. In case you don’t know Textpattern, it’s a lightweight and easy to use CMS with a nice XML-like template tagging system. The major new feature is a new tag parser, allowing for a lot more flexibility in site development. However, the admin interface still uses the fiddly design from previous versions, so I strongly recommend you install the restyled interface mod as soon as possible.

WordPress begins to open up its redesign process

The ongoing documentation of Mark Boulton Design’s redesign of the Drupal website is providing some great insight into the process; Leisa Reichelt’s latest post, on the community wireframing project, is a prime example. Now — whether by happy serendipity or a desire to compete — WordPress have begun to do likewise.

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Mark Boulton to redesign Drupal website

Mark Boulton Design have been selected to redesign, the website of the Drupal CMS. I’m a big admirer of Mark’s writing about design and typography, and I think it’s exciting that a big open-source project is going in this direction.

Now, if we could get him to design the Drupal user interface (as Veerle Pieters is doing with Expression Engine), that would really be something.

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I’ve updated my Speaking page to include more conferences, more videos, and a little on my speaking requirements and preferences. I’m planning to cut down on the number of talks I give in 2014 (twelve is too many), but am always open to interesting offers and opportunities, so please get in touch if you’re organising an event.

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