Month: June 2009

Firefox 3.5 Released

Portfolioso June 30, 2009 No Comments Computer/ Tech Related

Firefox 3.5 is now out and it is absolutely amazing. Download it now! Here are some of my favorite features of 3.5 (in order of their importance) Warning, long ass post. But it’s good

  • SPEED – Tracemonkey is the name of the brand new JavaScript engine that compiles javascript and runs it as machine code so it is much faster. It renders JavaScript quicker than I can shotgun beers at a townhouse party. Why is this important? Most websites make heavy use of scripts (Facebook, Gmail, Digg, etc). Even if you have a blazing fast internet connection, using IE on Facebook or Gmail is like trying to win the Indy 500 with a Ford F-350. Why bottleneck your scripts in IE when you can use a browser that renders them quickly and makes the page content snap up quicker. That’s right.
  • Private Browsing – Okay, so Firefox was a little behind on this, but not anymore. IE8 has this thing called InPrivate and Google Chrome has Incognito mode. In simpler terms, this is @SonicBlur23‘s porn mode. If you start your browser in this mode, it will not remember anything you did. All logons, cookies, history and temporary files will be destroyed. This is useful for public computers, or if you are the type to go on a friend’s computer to check Facebook, forget to log out and worry that your friend will change your profile to be interested in men.
  • Embedded Video – Firefox 3.5 has native support for embedded video, namely the open source Ogg Theora format and Ogg Vorbis audio. That is right, you can play video right in the browser without flash or any other plugins. You can also use CSS and SVG to interact with the video and style it. This is an amazing demo that shows how powerful embedded video can be with CSS effects and scripts. (This only works in Firefox 3.5 – Google Chrome will play the video but not style the CSS right, and IE *GASP* won’t even display the page) Even more amazing, this is my favorite demo ever. It shows dynamic content being injected into a video. See the game of pong? Those graphics are SVG animations and are generated on the fly. And you can inject that, a video or an image into a video. Wow (except my computer is too much of a piece of crap to run it smoothly)
  • HTML5 support and CSS3 Enhancements – This means nothing to you common people who visit simple websites, but the web is evolving, and Firefox 3.5 is ready for it. CSS stands for cascading style sheet, and it’s controls how the pages display. All browsers interpret CSS differently. IE renders CSS just about as well as Hellen Keller could read books. W3 is an organization that creates web standards in hopes that all browsers interpret CSS the same way and display pages the same way. Microsoft is like F that shit and does their own thing, so web designers always have a fit making pages look good in IE, when they already looks good in Firefox/Chrome/Safari/Opera etc. Anyway, CSS3 adds some new effects, such as font support. Say I want joeshoes.com to show up using the font “Disturbia.” If the font is not installed, all other browsers will just use a system font. With Firefox 3.5, CSS3 and @font-face property, it is possible for the font to be downloaded and rendered on the page, even if it is not installed. Neat! There are also other cool things like animated texture maps using SVG graphics and aPNG images text shadowing, word wrap and nth css selectors (for alternating backgrounds).
  • Smart Session Restore – So you’re browsing the web and your computer crashes. Or a webpage makes Firefox not do so well and there is an unclean shutdown. Rather than losing your pages, Firefox gives you the option to restore some or all of the tabs or windows.
  • hacks.mozilla.org – This is an excellent website that provides real life demonstrations of all the cool shit Firefox 3.5 can do. Is it useful to the common web browser? No. However, there are some cool ass demos here which you should check out. Only Firefox 3.5 can handle many of these demos. I linked some above in the CSS3 bullet, but check out more.
  • Geolocation – The browser (with your permission of course) can determine your location using Wi-Fi, cell towers and ISP data. Check this demo.
  • Color Correction – Web colors render rather generically. When photographers take pictures, the images may contain color profiles so the colors display properly a certain way. This isn’t the case on the web, where profiles are ignored. Not anymore. Now Firefox 3.5 can render these profiles and you will see images the way the pros see them. See here for more, they’ll explain it better than me.
  • Tab Tearing – You can rip tabs off the tabbar and make them their own window. You can also combine tabs or rearrange them within different windows.
  • Undo Close Window – They have undo recently closed tab, but did you ever close a window and lose lots of tabs? Now you can restore that window. Speaking of restoring…
  • See a nice list of everything – Things I may have missed or are too geeky for the common man to understand

Or if you’re too lazy to read, watch this video (Try not to worry aboot the dude’s Canadian accent, he knows his shit, and is project lead for Firefox over at Mozilla.)

Tomorrow is an Excellent Day

Portfolioso June 29, 2009 No Comments Useless Update

Tomorrow is Tuesday, June 30 2009. It will be a very excellent day. Here is why:

  1. Firefox 3.5 Release – Everyone MUST upgrade their browsers to Firefox 3.5 tomorrow. It has many improvements, the most significant being a drastic speed boost in javascript. It’s much faster than 3.0 and blows away Firefox 2 or even IE 7 or IE 8. If you are on Facebook or any modern web 2.0 social networking sites, lots of scripting is used, so they will load slower than shit if you use IE. Get speedy and use Firefox! Other features include HTML5 support – including embedded video playback without any third party plugins, improved CSS3 support, private browsing mode (won’t remember anything from sites you visit for your porn… uh… paranoid folks out there) and location aware browsing (Firefox can ask you permission to look up wifi hotspots, ISP info and cell towers to try and pinpoint your location. Sweet). Have IE try and do that. HA! Check out http://hacks.mozilla.org to view live web demos of cool shit that only works in Firefox 3.5 and NEVER in IE or other shitty browsers*
  2. Alice in Chains Music Video – Alice in Chains will be releasing an entire music video from their upcoming album Black Gives Way to Blue (sweet title). This is their fourth studio album, first in over fourteen years and first without vocalist Layne Staley. It won’t be the same, but Cantrell is still amazing so it should be awesome. The video for the song “A looking in View” will be on their website, and is not the first single from the album. The album is set to be released September 29th.
  3. I get to wake up really early to clean dusty ass projectors, get my hands black and breathe in harsh fumes. But then after that, I am going to party my ass off with 3-4 smokeshows with nice asses who all want me really badly. Then I’ll wake up in between the two lucky ones the next morning and be like “shouldn’t I be at work.” Okay, just kidding about this one (for now). But in other randomness: go Yankees, and happy birthday grandma (also 6/30). The day is really packed.

*Google Chrome is an exception. It is an excellent browser and I’d be all for you if you chose that over IE, but I still like Firefox best.

PS – This is post number 13 for the month of June. I had this many posts the entire year in 2007

This Post Breaks A Portfolioso.com Record

Portfolioso June 29, 2009 No Comments Useless Update, Website Related

You are reading post number 12 for the month of June. Why am I pointing this out and who cares. Well, it signifies the first time in website history that I have published more than 11 blog posts in one month. The last time I had 11 posts in a month goes way back to June 2005. Ever since I upgraded WordPress to version 2.8 and implemented a sick theme, it is much easier to use and more fun to blog. If you look at 2007 where I slacked off heavily, I hardly ever posted things because I was either lazy or disliked the system. Now, everything is awesome, so it is easy. Not that anyone reads this, but I post because I can.

Iran Solution

Portfolioso June 26, 2009 No Comments Useless Update

I strongly advise the United States to adapt the portfolioso.com solution to the situation in Iran: do nothing. That’s right folks, this issue they are having with elections and oppression has absolutely nothing to do with the United States and is of no concern for this country. Who cares if people are going around screaming “death to America.” It’s not doing anything to me. Does it suck the way protesters are being treated? Yes. Should elections be fair? Yes. See, apparently even in the United States, elections are full of shit. Just look at 2000 – the majority of voters chose Gore (although he was also a moron along with most other politicians, but that’s not my point right now and he couldn’t have been worse than Bush). But we have this genius thing called the Electoral college, designed for morons on horses who couldn’t communicate easily in the 1700s and 1800s to vote for electors to vote for a person – mostly because government officials back then thought the common man was a moron (which is still true to this day). Even so, you don’t see people here turning into looting animals when the election goes awry.

By telling other countries what to do, it simply angers some people and this is why foreign countries end up hating the United States. Read Persepolis. Iran was a mess during the Iranian revolution and it will be that way again, because they don’t have their shit together. We have our shit together and it shouldn’t bother us what other nations do, unless there is a direct threat to American freedom. Last time I checked, their oppression has nothing to do with me. I don’t mean to sound harsh, but lots of people are being oppressed. Why should the country get involved with Iran and not for instance, Darfur and everyone else all over the world also being oppressed? Political interest/oil/money. It all comes down to that. There is no monetary benefit for helping Darfur, so you don’t see the US anywhere near there. But the Middle East? Oil, etc. There’s simply too many problems in the world, and those being affected need to deal with them. Take the advice of the country’s founders – stay away from entangling alliances and remain neutral in foreign affairs. We don’t do that anymore, and this is why the United States is going to the doghouse.

Now Verizon is pissing me off

Portfolioso June 26, 2009 No Comments Computer/ Tech Related, Rants ,

Dear Verizon,

I do not appreciate you LOWERING my internet speed. For a few years. I have had the 20MBPS downstream package, which ran at 20.3MBPS. How nice of you to go over slightly. A few days ago, the company announced speed increases for all, especially in competitive markets. The new low tier is said to be 25MBPS/15MBPS. Nice. However, not only has my speed not been increased yet, but it seems that a few hundred KBPS are missing off my downstream. I now max out at 19.3 MBPS. This is unacceptable. Is this how you make room for the extra bandwidth you are giving away? I’ll be expecting 25/15 by the end of next week.

love,
Portfolioso

Edit: Verizon says nothing is wrong. True, nothing is wrong, except for the fact that some engineer throttled my speed and didn’t inform the morons answering the phones.

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