The future of the web!!

May 29, 2003 at 12:00 AM

Category: Internet & Technology

You don't understand how many articles that I've read in the past week that claim one technology to be THE FUTURE OF THE WEB!! (Cap locks and exclamation points optional.)

This HDTV project I'm working on is suppose to be completely authored in open standards so the w3c and I have been seeing quite a lot of each other. I applaud the optimism of this industry but I'm getting a headache from all the acroynms...

Being that this is a video project, my crew has been looking at SMIL (Synchronized Multimedia Integration Language) in order to add a layer of interactivity to video. The examples in the testsuite are quite simple (and ugly) but definetely much more than I expected.

SVG (Scalable Vector Graphics) was brought to my attention almost a year ago by an article by Colin Moock (Mr. Definitive Guide to ActionScript) himself but SVG still hasn't caught on to a wider audience. Now I've seen my fair share of ugly SVG graphics that I've scoffed at but these next two links will suprise you all:
+ a tutorial that takes an animation originally made in Flash and rewrites it in SVG, and
+ Adobe's link to some heavy duty SVG application examples.

Now there's a few things exciting about these links. Run an example and right-click. You'll get a menu that's sort of like the Flash Player but wait... View Source (!) ... Find (!) Now there's a kicker...

There's other cool stuff too like having the benefits of being part of the XML family and being able to apply CSS to a SVG file (told you the acronyms have gotten to me) so developers can rejoice but maybe that's the downfall of SVG... it's not very designer-friendly at all. Worth looking into though I don't know how they're going to replace the one-line inertia effect of ActionScript (this._x += (this.targetx - this._x)/rate).

And finally, there's MPEG-4. I'm still sort of confused with everything that it can do (because it does many many things) but here's a pdf of a magazine article that talks about it in layman's terms. It sounds spiffy though. And MPEG-21... they'll probably add 'serving coffee' to it's specifications... it's that good. Future of the web and all, ya know. :)

Our cities are sick

May 05, 2003 at 12:00 AM

Category: Internet & Technology, Urban Legends

Nice simple and elegant 'discussion' about urban cities on CBC's web one.

Also, this snippet in the Toronto Star website was misleading (sort of): "Unlike Toronto's new official plan, Toronto's chief planner is happy to get into specifics. Speaking last week at a conference about that plan, Paul Bedford cut through hours of PowerPoint presentations to bring delegates a quick reality check. "This city is screwed," the chief planner said." Read on...

Banana Bread

May 01, 2003 at 12:00 AM

Category: Food

Trust me, this one is good -- amazingly moist. Eat plain or spread with margarine/butter or some mashed bananas. For a less fattening banana bread, replace the oil with an equal amount of applesauce.

Ingredients:
+ 2 cups all-purpose flour
+ 1/2 cup granulated sugar
+ 3 tsp baking powder
+ 1/2 tsp baking soda
+ 1/2 tsp salt
+ 1 egg
+ 3/4 cup milk
+ 1/4 vegetable oil
+ 1-1/2 cups mashed bananas (~6 bananas, the softer the better)

1. In a big bowl, stir together with a fork the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt.

2. In a different bowl, whisk the egg with the milk and oil.

3. Add the bananas to the wet mixture and mix it up a little bit.

4. Pour the wet mixture into the dry mixture and stir with a fork. Clumpy is okay as long as all the flour gets wet.

5. Put all of this into a greased 9"x5" baking pan (or split into two pans) and bake in a preheated oven at 350 degrees F.

7. Depending on your oven and how many pans you used, this should take about 50-65 minutes to bake. It's done when a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.

8. Remove from oven when ready and let stand for at least 5 minutes.