Archive for June, 2012

June 21, 2012

Welcome, Brendan

Don’t want to forget my manners here. Should have written this post earlier. WELCOME Brendan Ashby (intentional all caps) who is helping with SeeSaw in a big way. You will see his posts here soon, too.

June 21, 2012

Commenting behavior

Was checking on the big fire at San Francisco’s Pier 29 yesterday. A friend and I had been talking and you could hear all the fire engines and helicopters.

I found one report about the fire on the Sacramento Bee site and looked at their commenting policies, something I want to document as part of the work on SeeSaw.

When you click on “about comments,” you can see that the editors “reserve the right to delete inappropriate comments or ban users who can’t play nice.” That sounds like a lot of work. I will bet SeeSaw can help with that.

The rules they lay out include: “Don’t use profanities, vulgarities or hate speech.” And don’t say anything “in a way you wouldn’t want your own child to hear.” SeeSaw can filter those out. Although I guess on some sites, profanities might be ok, so it should be tunable in that way.

“Don’t use all capital letters. That’s akin to yelling and not appreciated by the audience,” say the Sacramento Bee editors. Yelling is quite emotional, which people often are on subjects. I wonder about prohibiting that. But it is true, all caps text passages are not enticing. But they do express plenty of emotion, which might be legitimate to document.




June 18, 2012

Feeling Fine

I really like Sep Kamvar and Jonathan Harris’s We feel fine, which harvests human emotions from blogs. It finds mention of “I feel fine” and “I am feeling.” Those mentions go into a database and then the database is visualized and interactive. So cool. So inspiring, this “self-organizing particle system,” as they call it in their mission statement. May SeeSaw one day be this amazing.

June 4, 2012

Javascript vs. Ruby

Being a really baby developer and trying to learn Ruby, I come to this with odd and perhaps naive questions and surprise.

This overview and survey of Javascript vs. Ruby is fascinating.

Ruby would be better for teaching children how to program, is good for prototyping, is flexible, expressive, good for short iterations. There is lots of open-source code and it has a coherent design. More people find that Javascript is more efficient, but has annoying syntax, is hard to replace with other languages, but burns out developers who use if for a few years.

But if this overview is right, and I might not understand it entirely, Javascript is way, way faster than Ruby. But it terms of memory use, Ruby is better.