A Single Name Across The Web (Project Dimes)

Welcome to the first of a new Category of Clarion Folk posts!

Project Dimes will be ideas for any kind of Projects. They might be brand new, they might already have been done half a hundred times.

A single Screen Name across the entire Web. That’s my proposal.


"What!" I hear you say, "That’s stupid."

"OpenID is the big thing for the now, people are fighting with big words over whether or not to do it .. silly silly boy, don’t even step into that overly large pond."

That’s true. OpenID is the big talking point these days. But hear me out.

The Big-Ass Name Grabber

Instead of getting everyone to subscribe and wotnot, turn the whole thing on it’s head.

The idea is that you go to the people, not the other way around.

1. Develop a lean mean fighting machine of a "Bot" and send it throughout the web, probably just starting with blogs, reaping all the names of comments, posters, and others that it can find.

The problem here is Emails. You need the Email, but to get it, you become a spam artist. And therein lies the problem with my idea. Found. Debunked. Done.

But I’ll keep going :)

2. Contact the Names and ask them to come and verify their "Name".

See, here’s the rub. How do you contact them without being a spammer? And without getting them to come to you first?

3. First person in gets the name first, and then you do a kind of "Gravatar" ish thing, making deals with the bigwigs like WordPress and Drupal and all the hosted Blogging places.

4. Because you’ve successfully done what noone else could, retire at the ripe age of twenty three and live out your days playing badminton or Halo or even Warcraft. Whatever floats your fabulously wealthy boat.

Okay. There is _something_ in that idea .. but it’s not much. And the whole "Get Email Without Being a Spammer" thing would really seem to put the kybosh all over it.


  • How do you "go to" people instead of people "coming to" you?

Going Back To School With Google Code University

It’s not so much the actual content that interests me, it’s the way they are packaging it.

The web, to me, has always been the best textbook. I can find out most anything about what I’m doing either by doing it myself, or by finding help on the web somewhere, in some location, on some lone computer.


Google is packaging up some (probably a tiny portion) of their knowledge (which is all the bits and pieces in the entire galaxy) in the form of  Google Code University.

I like they’re tutorial on Ajax. It’s Google-i-fied, but so what. This knowledge has been around for eons sure, but now this behemoth is taking hold of it, and wrapping it up in a nice little clean and lean bundle.

It’s not so much the actual content that interests me, it’s the way they are packaging it. Although the content is no doubt quality and up to scratch.


What Tool Do You Use For Reading Newsgroups?

Updated (25th March 2008)

The problem is the answer. It seems impossible for the current Readers to contextually filter and range through the content.

Gary announced the new version of Organise365 on the newsgroups recently, and it’s big feature is Newsgroups.


This got me thinking about Newsgroup Readers.


For the longest time, I used Outlook Express. That was because I didn’t know any better. But the search capabilities really, REALLY, got my goat.


I then tried Thunderbird for a while. There were some _slight_ searching improvements, but not really enough. I really wanted to use Thunderbird, mostly because it’s from Mozilla, who make the wonderful Firefox (soon to be better).


Since getting this beastie, I’ve been using Windows Mail. It’s okay, but really, the searching hasn’t gotten much better.


I’ve heard Windows Live Mail might be better, so I’m going to go ahead and try it out.

EDIT: (25th March 2008)

Windows Live Mail looks pretty good. Not only does the Newsgroup Reading functionality looked beefed up (you’ve got a "View All Posts" ability, which is cool), but it’s got an RSS Feed Reader also. This was mentioned in the Skype discussions, apologies.

What is the problem with Searching Newsgroups? And what is it that we want in this Searching?

The problem is the answer. It seems impossible for the current Readers to contextually filter and range through the content. When I type in "Two Bob’s Code", I want not only any "Bob"’s who have posted, not only any Subject lines with "Bob" in them, but I want any post with "Bob" in the body. And I want them shown to me grouped like that.

This is some complicated searching, granted .. but newsgroups are an important part of development, and other businesses I’m sure. It’d be worth it.

Google Mail seems to track email conversations in the same way the Newsgroups work. But I’d like my newsgroup reader to be better at allowing me to follow the flow of the conversation. When I view without Grouping (that is, for example, all posts in Date order without any Grouping) I’d like it to be far easier to slip into a Grouping, or to see it’s order not only by Date, but by the next in the Grouping.

Not much to ask for :).

Here’s my current conclusion:

If Google add Newsgroup support to GMail the world will tilt on it’s axis and I’ll be a happy little dev.


  • What tool do you use for reading Newsgroups?

What Have I Been Up To? ClarionFolk and Tafres, Plus More

Over the last week I’ve finally launched two important sites.


Clarion Folk is my new site for .. Clarion. As the Tech Evangelist, I needed a web presence. I wasn’t prepared to create one without having the site public.

So now it is, I’ve been starting to branch out, commenting on blogs, posting on news. This will hopefully be a good enough start to leverage the public awareness of Clarion.


Tafres is my first ever piece of Clarion software. I wrote it a long while ago, but it recently started receiving attention, and so I in turn gave it more attention.

It’s a Freight System. Manages Loads that go from Origin to Destination with a Commodity. That kind of thing.

Other than that, life is full as per usual.

Nettalk 4.30 Released

And many huzzah’s were voiced!

Download here.


Although there have been pre-release versions for a while now, this is the official 4.30 release.

It contains a crazy number of good things, including:

  • New Examples, including a SOAP Server
  • Session can now be optionally locked to the IP Address
  • AddLog has arrived! You can now call the method and have it log to the Window (and/or) Disk.
  • Read onwards for more, NetTalk Version History

Desktop Search with Copernic, Windows and Google

Desktop Search came up on the Skype channel recently.


Copernic was the main topic of conversation. It’s very polite, only indexes when there is no activity, and from what people said, it takes about a day/night to index a dev computer.


Another one mentioned (that I could find) was the Windows Desktop Search. Not the one that comes standard, but a separate download. Begs the question why it’s not in Windows by default. I guess they have their reasons.


Not sure why, but Google Desktop Search wasn’t mentioned. It’s what I have running on this beast, and it does a pretty good job. The double-click of CTRL is fantastic, and I usually get a good answer from it. Actually, I usually cannot find the file, which then tells me it’s not on my computer, or it’s named something else.



Google Desktop Search was indeed talked about. My own internal searching algorithm is quite stupid it seems, heh.  Almost every comment was that it is limited. I respect the wisdom of my fellow Clarionites, so that makes me want to give Copernic a try. See what I’m missing out on.


  • What Desktop Search do you use?
  • What benefits does Desktop Search provide the developer?

Making Use Of “Kuler”

Thanks to Dave’s helpful pointing, I finally discovered something called the "color theory". And then promptly forgot about it.

kuler is an Adobe initiative, and you can go to town with putting together a color scheme.


Being that I don’t have a single sliver of a graphic design bone in my body, I went with the first one on the list, Firenze.


So here it is. Take a look around, tell me what you think.