Seen on Mars #1

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Back in control

Recently, I’ve seen a fair number of articles where people are complaining about having the data under the control of one for-profit entity or another. That tension will always be there. One thing I can control, though, is this blog. With better software than I’ve had in the past, I hope to maintain my interesting sets of links (with commentary) on my blog in addition to Twitter and G+.

Software Development

The new Montage framework from Motorola Mobility has some awesome ideas in it. Ars Technica has posted an introduction by the framework’s creators. The article also talks about Ninja and Screening, which are visual tools for building and testing Montage apps.

The Google Summer of Code project to build a graphical event timeline for Firefox is progressing nicely indeed. You can download the add-on now.

Parashuram Narasimhan shows us how we can get going with IndexedDB today on browsers that don’t support it using IndexedDB polyfills.

Metaquery is an interesting approach to breakpoints in web design. Of course, not everyone thinks breakpoints are the right approach, but this is still an interesting library.

Firefox add-ons have been downloaded 3 billion times now. Firebug has nearly 50 million downloads. And those figures are from addons.mozilla.org alone. I know for certain that a significant number of Firebug downloads have come straight from the Firebug site.

Speaking of Firebug, did you know that you can set conditional breakpoints not only for JavaScript but for XHR and even cookies as well?

Lea Verou has introduced Prism, the new JavaScript syntax highlighting library that she extracted from her Dabblet project.

WeasyPrint converts HTML/CSS (including print styles) to beautiful PDFs (well, assuming your original HTML/CSS was beautiful!). Unlike PrinceXML, WeasyPrint is free (BSD-licensed).

How to make a game like Cut the Rope. I wonder if a tutorial like this exists for the web? I enjoy Cut the Rope, personally.

Other tech

Ed Bott finds Microsoft’s new strategy laid out in MSFT’s 10-K. This is a bold shift for Microsoft. It’s hard to imagine Microsoft as the underdog, but to some extent that’s the position they find themselves in.

Mac

Better Mac OS defaults for geeks that I will likely not use all of, but there are a bunch of useful settings in here.