This is my personal blog. The views expressed on these pages are mine alone and not those of my employer.

Wednesday, August 31, 2005

AJAX: Back in the Safari Saddle Again

I'm back at the Berkeley Used Computer Store, renting and hacking on a Mac to get access to the Safari web browser.

Like I have been the last few months in different browsers, I'm experimenting with getting reliable control of and notification of changes to the browser's history, including changing the browser's location using anchors.

Why am I tracking down such obscure things? Well, for one, having a reliable way of dealing with the back and forward buttons and bookmarking means we can have these in AJAX/DHTML applications. My goal is to create an extremely simple API, named DhtmlHistory, that has two very simple methods:


Whenever a history change occurs within your AJAX application (i.e. if the user presses the back or forward buttons), your listener gets notified. When you add() a new location, such as add("page:foobar"), we add this as a hash value on to the page:

Then, when the user moves around with the back and forward buttons, your listener gets called back.

Here's whats great about the API above: it doesn't dictate how your app handles these events. If you want to make them simulate Undo/Redo actions, go ahead. If you want to tie all of your XmlHttpRequest events into your history, more power to you. If you want to tie a mix of user actions and network activity in, you can.

I believe this is the way forward when it comes to bookmarking and history activity in AJAX apps: you decide. History and bookmarking should be decoupled from network activity, since AJAX fully breaks these now. All users expect is that back and forward should work, as well as bookmarking; your particular app needs to decide what this means.

Coworking Event: Alternative Office for Programmers and Writers

You are invited to try out the San Francisco
Coworking space this comming Tuesday, September 6th!

Most people who work for themselves hack out of a
coffee shop or their homes. At first this is great,
but after awhile it gets old. You miss working around
smart people, and start slipping into bad habits, like
hacking all night and sleeping through the day.

I have created "coworking" as a solution to this
problem, an alternative office space where
self-employed developers and writers come together for
community and structure. The San Francisco Coworking
group meets Mondays and Tuesdays at a great space in
Noe Valley. I rent this space two days a week from a
women's art space named Spiral Muse
(; as you can imagine, the
space is beautiful, with a garden in the back, couches
everywhere, a full kitchen, and paintings and tasteful
decor. Plus, there's WiFi.

We meet from 9 AM to 5:45 PM, and begin the day with a
short check-in. Then, we work in the amazing Spiral
Muse house, sitting at tables or relaxing on couches
as we do our work. Even though each of us is doing
separate work, perhaps programming or writing a novel,
we can feel each others presence, run ideas by others,
or take breaks together at the "watercooler." You can
take lunch with others or alone. Later in the day we
have a 45 minute break where we do a different
activity every day, such as guided yoga, a walk to
Delores park, or how to mix a great martini; anyone in
the group can lead an activity. We end the day at
5:45 PM sharp, supporting each other in both starting
a good work day at 9 AM and ending our work in a
healthy, balanced way at the end of the day.

Room is limited to only four more people, so act soon.

Feel free to try out coworking for a free two weeks;
we ask that you make a small ten dollar suggested
donation. Afterwards, the space, activities, and
wireless is only $150 per month.

The address of the space is 3387 and 3389 22nd Street,
between Guerrero and Valencia.

Please RSVP whether you will be joining us this
comming Tuesday at

Pictures: Oasis', Kasbahs, and Winston Churchill's Favorite Haunt

Some of the pictures from my trip to Morocco with my girlfriend Bekka have come out.

This picture is of an oasis village as we crossed the Atlas Mountains on our way to the Sahara:

Playing with some kids in an ancient kasbah named Tinerhir:

Hanging with my woman at La Mamounia, an amazing hotel in Marrakech; of La Mamounia Winston Churchill used to say "It is the most lovely spot in the world":

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