Archive for June 21, 2003

Saturday, June 21, 2003

Quantitative Typography

Tim Bray links to a study of online typefaces, which concludes that Verdana is good.

Anticipatory Software Design

Pierre Igot writes about “tendency to design software for which the optimal running environment is a computer that does not exist yet.” It’s a real problem, although I disagree with one part of his article:

It is clear that Apple is quite aware that this is an issue. Otherwise, they would not have provided users with the option to turn drop shadows off in iPhoto 2. They would not have introduced the option to turn the Preview display off by default in Columns view in the Finder.

I turned off shadows in iPhoto because I don’t like the way they look, and I turned off previews in the Finder because of the way they interfere with scrolling and keyboard navigation.


Buzz Andersen:

Complexity may be a boon to software marketers looking to hype new features and “professionals” who get a thrill out of adding new certification acronyms to their email signature, but it’s bad for almost everyone else.

Apple T-Shirts

Jonathan Rentzsch:

Nevin Liber gave a presentation at PSIG 65. He told his tale using T-Shirts he received while working at Apple. He graciously allowed me to photograph them, and I offer them here for your viewing pleasure.

Alpha Users

Eric Albert:

James Duncan Davidson writes about the spread of PowerBooks and Mac OS X among the computing cognoscenti. That’s such an interesting transition for Apple. Years ago, Macs were used by creative professionals and in education. These days they’re unfortunately disappearing from a lot of schools, but those changes are being countered by increased consumer sales…and a rise in sales to folks like Duncan.


Chris Hanson:

This is almost as effective as caffeine for helping me crank out code like mad, especially since I finally put ProjectBuilder into “many windows” mode once and for all. Now my principal development environment looks and feels like a real IDE rather than a clone of that Microsoft Visual Studio garbage everybody seems to think IDEs should be like these days…

Just say no to using laptops on your lap.

The Matrix Reloaded: The Abridged Script

Great stuff from Rod Hilton (via Jamie Zawinski):

            KEANU REEVES

Who are you?

           THE EXPLAINER

I am The Explainer.  I designed the

matrix screenplay.  Unable to

decently explain the convoluted plot

well, I have resorted to putting

myself here in the final act and

having you ask all of the questions

the audience wants to ask.

     (dramatic pause)

You must begin by asking your own

questions then gradually switch to

asking those of the audience, in

order to not make this scene any

more awkward than it already is. 


Two new Cortland cartoons from Matt Johnson.

Cocoa Blogs

CocoaDev now maintains a list of blogs about Cocoa and Mac OS X.

More Mailsmith

I forgot to mention that Mailsmith 2.0 is a free update. Here’s some more blog coverage of it:

Types in Microsoft Office

Daniel Weise has gotten Microsoft’s Office group to use code annotations and domain specific checkers to catch bugs. His buffer overrun detector uses a dependent type system based on those annotations to turn buffer overruns into type errors.