Blocking Auto Play on news sites…

We’ve all been there. We go to our favorite news aggregation tool and we scan through the headlines, control clicking links and letting them open up behind the main page to read later. When out of nowhere a few seconds later a cacophony of noise begins erupting from your speakers and you quickly try to determine which tab it is has kicked up a video only to realize that three tabs have started playing videos over one another.

In one of the more recent builds of Chrome, a small little speaker icon is shown in the tab if it’s playing audio, but still this is somewhat of an annoyance. I knew that there had to be a way to stop this, I just hadn’t stumbled across the proper setting.

And then it hit me… well okay, so then the photons carrying information to my eyes were absorbed and I was enlightened. Enter Addictive Tips recent article on just how to block auto-play videos across all browsers.

Check it out…

6 Places to use Ajax

So I get a kick out of the fact that now four months later that Alex Bosworth’s article on 6 Places to use AJAX is coming up on Maybe there’s hope for me afterall?

Nonetheless, I find it interesting that there is such an outcry for using Ajax anywhere and everywhere. On the discussion boards that I read on a regular basis, I hear people talk about how it would be great to start programming all of their applications with Ajax mixed in. It’s interesting to see this idea put forth mostly because it’s completely useless to think that way.
I remember writing a simple form program a year ago for a friend and doing it all in Javascript so that it would have form validation, embedding it in code that would then be displayed on the page. My friend came back and said, “But why not write it entirely in PHP?” Sure, PHP was what the server was using for its backend application server, but JavaScript worked perfectly fine for what the need was.
I see this occurring more and more with regard to Ajax. There’s a need for it here and there such as Alex mentions, but there are times where it’s basically pointless to have such code included when it adds a level of complexity that some coders aren’t ready for and in some instances becomes so much of a hindrance to the end user that it drives people to other sites in search of the information for which they seek.

[Listening to: – Houston Astros at Cincinnati Reds, bottom of the 4th inning]


So a good friend of mine who I shall refer to merely by the letter J suggested the book “Alexander Hamilton” by Ron Chernof. Needless to say having read just the preface I am blown away. So quickly we forget the roots of the country that we live in and enjoy such incredible liberties, rights and privileges. I suppose that my AP History and AP Government courses in high school prepared me for this great biography of Hamilton, but to say the least, with the little that I’ve read so far, the picture that is woven is astounding. Perhaps its just from having aged ten years and my eyes being a little more focused and able to handle such incredible knowledge, but seriously, I’m glued. Thanks J 😛
Here’s a little snippet of the preface that really just puts things into perspective about this great country in which we live.

It is an auspicious time to rexamine the life of Hamilton, who was the prophetof the capitalist revolution in America. If Jefferson enunciated the more ample view of political democracy, Hamilton possessd the finer sense of economic opportunity. He was the messenger from the future that we now inhabit. We have left behind the rosy agrarian rhetoric and slaveholding reality of Jeffersonian democracy and reside in the bustling world of trade, industry, stock markets, and banks that Hamilton envisioned.

Programming in C#

Four years ago when I was graduating from the University of Virginia, I would have never imagined that I would be learning C#. The reason for this mostly being that while in college I was learning open source web development in PHP and Physics, as well as some UNIX and network systems administration. I think it’s funny that the name is C-Sharp (not C-pound as many have called it) mostly because those that don’t know music call it C-pound (as just mentioned) which leads me to think that they therefore think it’s super powerful. I’m glad that Microsoft was somewhat optimistic when naming C# for the reason that if it was going to be a dismal language they could have named it C-flat (Cb).
Needless to say it’s been interesting and I can definitely say that after learning C, C++, and Java a few years back, learning C# has been relatively easy. So what’s my suggestion you ask? Well, I like Jesse Liberty’s Learning C# as well as Programming C# and last but not least a book that he co-authored with Dan Hurwitz, Programming ASP.NET. I have yet to get my fingers on a copy of Alex Ferrara and Matthew MacDonald’s Programming .NET Web Services.
Now, you might be wondering why my sudden aversion to C#, call it technical training of sorts 🙂 Additionally it’s very interesting to see how one can build custom components and what not that can be integrated into other Microsoft Software.
Trust me, I still love working in PHP (mmm, C like programming) and developing database schemas for MySQL.
Last but not least, back to my open source roots I should mention Mono, which is the open source framework that is capable of running .NET code on open source platforms — Java finally has some competition on Linux. Very cool project, for more check this out for more about the project over at or to read a Developer’s guide on Mono, click here.

[Listening to: Steady As We Go – Dave Matthews Band – Stand Up (3:22)]

Astronomers find objects

Astronomers find most distant objects
BBC Science & Nature: “They are bright and powerful – quasars that can be seen at a time when the Universe was very young.” – Of course now that the Universe is quite mature and educated it’s shunning these little quasars off, flinging them off into the Universe at unbelieveable velocities, hoping that we won’t see them. But guess what Universe, we’ve got your calling card. And even more so, let’s see, they’re finding objects – yippity doo! I’ve been finding objects since I was a few days old… and after taking CS101 in college I was writing them and creating them and instantiating them! How about you Mister Universe?

What cracks me up though is that these astronomers are so distant minded that they continue to just look outward away from the planet. And yet they are unable to find things such as all of the left socks that I’ve been looking and searching for for years.

I do find it quite interesting however that they are seeing these things zoom off into the distant sky. The only question I have for them is whether or not there is a chance that the red shift that they have in the lens is due to something in the air. When I lived in Hawaii we used to have the sky turn red all the time due to the clay seeping into the air.

Speaking of things that are red, my hair… now is this a shift because I’m moving off into the distance or is this some other phenomena that I should be clued in about? I bet that they would rate my hair as being something like a 6.3. I’d get into all the record books 😉 Nonetheless, back to reading about TCP/IP packets.