Monthly Archives: November 2014

November 20, 2014

learnyounode

Learn You The Node.js For Much Win! An intro to Node.js via a set of self-guided workshops.

The single best interactive tutorial / guide to Node.js I’ve seen yet. I’ve fiddled around with it, and for beginners, I have only one tip: read each assignment carefully. It should go without saying, but personally, I’ve yet to heed my own advice.

November 19, 2014

Brent Simmons on native apps and web apps

… Which is just to say that the distinction between native and web apps isn’t a true distinction. Since native apps are also web apps, and since native apps may also use HTML, the true distinction is between native apps and browser-based apps.

See my earlier post on the subject for my two cents.

November 17, 2014

Font rendering issues when using CSS transitions in WebKit

A couple of days ago, I was messing about with CSS3 transitions and I noticed that, in Safari at least, text rendering gets messed up for the duration of the transition. WebKit uses sub-pixel anti-aliasing for font smoothing by default; apparently this gets disabled when a GPU-accelerated CSS transition is executed, causing the text to be rendered using “regular” anti-aliasing.

I haven’t found a satisfactory workaround. This Stack Overflow thread recommends using either -webkit-transform: translateZ(0px); or, curiously, explicitly setting sub-pixel smoothing (-webkit-font-smoothing: subpixel-antialiased) even though it should be enabled by default. Either way, you’ll end up with a) thinner (and uglier) fonts even before a transition or b) a slightly less noticeable change—but a change nonetheless—in font rendering during a transition. It’s not an ideal situation.

Feel free to comment on this post if you know of a workaround that eliminates the problem without one having to force regular anti-aliasing.

Update: I found the original bug report, first filed in 2009 (!): https://bugs.webkit.org/show_bug.cgi?id=23364

November 15, 2014

With no prior knowledge of OpenStack, I must say that as a user, it has proven to be a really nice experience. Was able to configure and start and instance with an extra attached volume in a few minutes. Good stuff.

November 14, 2014

The Knowledge, London’s Legendary Taxi-Driver Test, Puts Up a Fight in the Age of GPS

Actually, “challenge” isn’t quite the word for the trial a London cabby endures to gain his qualification. It has been called the hardest test, of any kind, in the world. Its rigors have been likened to those required to earn a degree in law or medicine. It is without question a unique intellectual, psychological and physical ordeal, demanding unnumbered thousands of hours of immersive study, as would-be cabbies undertake the task of committing to memory the entirety of London, and demonstrating that mastery through a progressively more difficult sequence of oral examinations — a process which, on average, takes four years to complete, and for some, much longer than that.

An exceptional piece by Jody Rosen.