Archive for November, 2005
Just wanted to give a mention to Akismet, a spam block plugin for WordPress. Akismet is basically a database built on analysing spam from countless blogs. You can help train the filter, which makes it more effective over time. Those of you using Thunderbird‘s built-in junk mail filter should be familiar with this. From the FAQ:
How does it work?
When a new comment, trackback, or pingback comes to your blog it is submitted to the Akismet web service which runs hundreds of tests on the comment and returns a thumbs up or thumbs down.
Do I have to maintain a blacklist?
Nope! Part of the idea of Akismet is that you’re always protected up-to-the-second from the latest dirty tricks of spammers. There’s no maintenance, no upgrading, no hassle.
I’ve been using it for about 24 hours and it’s successfully blocked all 19 spam comments until now, with no false positives. For those of you using a different platform than WordPress, no worries, Akismet also offers an API, enabling it to be ported to any other system.
Who’d have thought you could find value in those icky vacuum-cleaner dust bags (aside from the occasional rediscovered ring)? Well, for one, there’s Maria Adelaida Lopez, a Columbian artist, who takes that dust and covers doll houses with it in a fascinating tribute to her past work as a house cleaner. Very eerie, very cool. (via)
Yeah, you read right, it’s the CMS Zen Garden: CSS Toolshed. Similar to the famous CSS Zen Garden and the recent CSS Table Gallery, Toolshed promises to show how well CSS is suited for complete CMS-driven websites by means of user-submitted stylesheets.
This will show enterprise level CMS vendors that CSS can be used on a professional level (not only for smaller sites and blogs) and it gives CSS designers the chance to show that their skills go beyond designing an HTML document that was especially marked up to be style-able.
Joumana Medlej offers some excellently crafted tutorials on — among others — human and animal anatomy, color theory and Arabesque art. Simply scroll down a little after looking at her fine illustrations and you’ll find them. Alternatively, you can also order the 56 page book. Also, check out the rest of her site for some very worthwhile content.
From the same folks that brought us music activism site Downhill Battle, there’s a nice microsite promoting “13 good reasons” to switch from Internet Explorer to Firefox: Kill Bill’s Browser. They also link to their other project, Explorer Destroyer, which explains how you can get paid $1 by Google for every user you get to switch to Firefox.
Considering Google’s massive psychological presence in the blogosphere, most of you have probably heard about the launch of Google Analytics earlier this week, a comprehensive website statistics tool previously known as Urchin. Google acquired the original software makers, enhanced it to work seamlessly with their AdWords program and is now offering it completely free of charge, in contrast to its old $199/month pricetag. They’ve done this several times before, bringing us excellent free tools such as Google Earth (previously Keyhole) and Picasa.
The one thing all three have in common is a strong reliability on AJAX. The new generation of web applications really does look sexy.
Anyways, to get to the point of this post, there’s a nice little round-up of the three tools in Mark Boulton’s journal.