Standardizing Flash

Tommy over at Autistic Cuckoo has posted a little writeup on what’s next for Web Standards. Among his list of things is this:

[there are still many sites that] require third-party products such as Flash to work

I think this point should be looked at from the other side of the fence. Flash is not going away. It’s way way too popular and useful for too many websites.

Once you think of it like this, the problem becomes how tough it is to use Flash in a way that doesn’t invalidate your documents, which is where I think much more fucus needs to go these days.

Standardize the browser plugin architecture and I bet you’ll see way more XHTML valid Flash websites.

WordPress author comment highlighting

I’ve noticed a few people doing ‘author comment highlighting’ on other blogs, and thought it was kinda neat. How often are you reading through comments on a blog and not realizing that the person commenting is the owner of the blog?

Well, why not highlight your own comments on your own blog so your visitors know it’s you?

Here’s how I added it to this blog:

1) I decided to highlight the comments based on my e-mail address. This means that every comment post that uses my e-mail will be marked as ‘special.’

To do this I used a small snippet of PHP code (new code is bold):

<li id="comment-<?php comment_ID() ?>"<?php if ($comment->comment_author_email == "") { ?> class="mycomment"<?php } ?>>

2) Edit your stylesheet so your posts are different. Since I added the class mycomment to the comments I make, I added this to my stylesheet:

ol#commentlist li.mycomment {
   background-color: #fbfbfb;
   border: solid 1px #457AA5;

3) Make sure nobody can post comments by pretending to be you:

I think everyone should do this on their blog anyway, but here it comes in extra handy. I went into ‘options ->discussion’ in wordpress and added my e-mail address to the list under ‘Comment Moderation.’ This assures that if a comment containing my e-mail address anywhere in the post, the comment will be held for approval by me. So every time I post a comment I’ll have to approve it before it shows up, but this isn’t really a big deal and takes almost no time at all to do.

I’m sure there are ways to improve this and make it better, like checking all of the author e-mail addresses, and possibly giving each author their own unique css class so they can each have their own look, and then packaging all of this up into a WordPress plugin… But I’m much too lazy for that, and since this works fine for my single user blog, I’ll probably just leave it like this.

UPDATE (4-28-05): Just saw this post on the WordPress support blog that updates this for use with WordPress 1.5 and also supports alternate post highlighting as well.

The Chopping Block is hiring

We are looking for some web nerds.

We’re looking for a crack developer with unmatched flash abilities. Successful candidate should end the match in one round based upon his/her XHTML, CSS, Javascript, Actionscript, dynamic Flash experience skills.

We’re loooking for a designer with fancy foot work and the strong graphic design muscles. Must be able to command the fight from round one right through to the knockout (no tko’s).

We’re looking for a manager who is not afraid of stepping into the ring and landing a few solid punches. Must be able to inspire other fighters to go the extra round and not afraid to sometimes help put in that plastic mouthpiece.

We’re looking for the kind of person that it is impossible to make boxing analogies for… Bust out the nerd glasses, we’re looking for programmers. Database architecture, Back end scripting capabilities (PHP, ASP, Java, XML, XSLT), experience with website CMS systems and dynamic Flash integration a plus.

So if you are in New York City, send your info here:

Firefox 1.0 released

I’m entering this post right now with Firefox 1.0 (ftp download). Looks like they added in a more visible ‘critical updates’ notification (little red thing shows up next to the search box). Also of note, is the new Firefox Google start page. Hmm, I wonder what Google could be cooking up.

UPDATE: Also, if you feel like giving a little to help further develop Firefox and the other cool Mozilla Foundation projects, you could always buy a Firefox t-shirt. I just bought a Navy one.