Whilst digging around during the implementation of my FOAF Bookmarklet I came across a number of interesting bookmarklet techniques and examples.
I’ve started documenting some of these in wordtin. See Bookmarklet for an entry point. The Bookmarklet Bootloader is a very interesting technique.
I started writing up some notes on the techniques for using bookmarklets as service intermediaries last night, but have refrained from posting them yet until I’ve edited it a bit. This could well turn into a more fully-fledged tutorial as there are a lot of options.
Fun geeky stuff.

FOAF Autodiscovery Bookmarklet

There are a few web applications available for displaying FOAF files in a human-friendly format. For example there’s FOAF Web View, FOAFnaut, and FOAF Explorer.
A number of folk have also started using FOAF autodiscovery to LINK to their own FOAF descriptions. This uses the same principle as RSS autodiscovery.
I thought that it’d be useful to tie these together, and create a FOAF autodiscovery bookmarklet. So, here’s a first crack at it.
Drag the following to your toolbar: <a href="javascript:void(d=document);void(el=d.getElementsByTagName('link'));for(i=0;iFOAF Explorer.
You should now be able to click that link and be automatically routed to FOAF Explorer if the current page references a FOAF description in the correct way.
This page has one, as does hackdiary, Semantic Weblog, and dive into mark to name but a few.
I have encountered some problems with the bookmarklet in Mozilla 1.0, although the same pages work fine in IE 5. If there are any javascript experts out there I’d appreciate a pointer or two if you can see anything wrong with the code.. Morten Frederikson has fixed the bookmarklet and incorporated it into FOAF Explorer, so the bookmarklet should now work in all browsers. The link is basically just a hacked version of Mark Pilgrim’s RSS autodisovery bookmarklet, with the addition of a check for relative FOAF file locations as sported by Internet Alchemy. A quick test of the original RSS bookmarklet showed the same problem, so hopefully its not just me being dull (but don’t rule it out).
Thats my sad friday night tinkering done with for another week!

Ant Fan

Ant is rapidly becoming my favourite Java and XML processing tool. It features heavily in my next tutorial for IBM developerWorks (working title “Code Generation using XSLT”) which describes how to use XSLT as a code generation tool using an Ant based build framework. Basically using Ant + Jalopy takes all the hard work out of handling multi-step transformations that have to result in nice clean Java code.

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(Not) Creating Apps with Mozilla

Having recently picked up a copy of Creating Applications with Mozilla on one of my occasional hit-and-run attacks on Amazon, I’ve been tinkering a bit with XUL to see how easy it is to build applications.
This is part of some ongoing tinkering I’ve been doing to look at ways to quickly prototype user interfaces. My immediate interest is to decide on a toolkit for building internal administration tools for work, but I’d like to try out creating client-side user interfaces for web applications/services in general.

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John Peel and Orson Welles

Slightly random posting this one.
I was listening to the excellent John Peel last week, enjoying his usual eclectic mix of tunes, when he chose to play a 7inch recording of Orson Welles in a studio recording a voice-over for peas. Now I’m sure everyone else has already heard it but it was the first time for me, and I thought it was absolutely fantastic. Basically Welles slowly loses it over the poor quality of the script and the direction; it ends up with him walking out of the studio.
Due to the magic of the internet, and the clueful Radio 1 website you too can listen to the recording. Either here where its available as a Macromedia file (WinAmp handles it just fine, although its a bit glitchy in places) or you can listen to it “in situ” as part of the entire John Peel broadcast. The latter is recommended if you have time as
you can also hear Peel’s take on the difficulties in doing voice-overs and he’s done a few himself!
If you don’t have a soundcard handy, then try reading the transcript here.
I’m deeply pleased that I was able to find it online as the chances of coming across said 7inch record is practically nil. Ladies and gentleman, this is what the internet is all about.