Whatever happened to URI Schemes?


A web browser showing an error message that it didn't undetand a protocol

A few days ago, I ranted about how chat apps have poor support for URI schemes. By "Chat Apps", I'm talking about the new wave of messengers - WhatsApp, WeChat, Telegram, Wire, and the like. What do I mean by "URI Scheme"? You're probably familiar with: https://example.com The "scheme" is https - it tells the […] Read More

Creating a generic, open source, check-in app


A very basic looking HTML form

Many years ago, when Foursquare was still cool, I built an app to let people check into chocolate bars. You know, "@edent is eating a Wonka Bar classic. 4/5🌟" It was a quick and dirty hackday project. Ever since, I've had the hankering to build something a bit more generic. I currently use Untappd to […] Read More

Building Darth Vader


Vader strangling me

Long time readers will know that the happiest day of my life was when I got married. Dressed as Darth Vader. The most expensive thing about our wedding was probably that Vader suit. After nearly 10 years of marital bliss, I got bored at having that gorgeous suit packed away in a box. So I […] Read More

Falsehoods Programmers Believe About Families


Only 5 family members are allowed

I've written before about Solipsist design - those services which have been designed to work only for a very specific type of family. I was taking a look at Google's "Family" proposition - which allows users to share their purchases with other family members. What I found didn't impress me. File under "Falsehoods Programmers Believe […] Read More

KYLI - because it is superior to JSON


Kylie striking a pose https://www.flickr.com/photos/evarinaldiphotography/6805204016/

This is a (silly) attempt to fix some of the shortcomings of JSON. Hence it is named after the goddess of music. It uses C0 Control Characters Here is an example: ␜ ␁ This is a KYLI document ␂ ␝ GroupName ␞ data ␟ value ␛ Comments are supported too! They can be multilined easily. […] Read More

Training Customers To Be Stupid


Verizon asking for customer's passwords

Companies face a complicated choice. Make things easy for the customers, or make things secure for them. Convenience seems to take priority most of the time. This forces companies to get their customers to risk their own security. In this example, we see Verizon Wireless asking their customers to type their passwords into Twitter for […] Read More

Inspecting Solar Panels using a Drone


Solar Panels as viewed by a drone

I'm probably not the first to do this - but it was a fun way to learn just how tricky it is to control a cheap quadcopter even in mild weather. This video has no sound. Your browser doesn't support HTML5 video tag. Good enough quality to make sure the panels aren't covered in bird-mess, […] Read More