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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