Tagged with #technology

Sander @ June 24 at 1:50 pm

Found an interesting article with a positive take on useful features that modern blogs should have. The Hacker News comment thread shows that whether a feature is considered useful is very subjective.

I'd like to go further and state that most of the usability and user experience enhancements should be implemented as browser add-ons, so that they can be installed if the user sees it as a positive enhancement to their reading experience.

The old-school view is that the reading experience is the domain and the responsibility of the browser, and we have collectively gone way beyond what a website should offer in terms of behaviour. #technology

Sander @ February 21 at 11:07 am

Navigate Xbox Series console using LG remote

To navigate an XBOX series games console using an LG Magic Remote, first disable the Automatic Configuration option in the Connection settings under HDMI Configuration in the TV's settings. Reconnect the XBOX's HDMI cable going into the TV. Then on the input switcher, edit the Xbox setting, mark it as a Blu-ray player manufactured by Microsoft, and follow the wizard. #technology

Sander @ February 12 at 10:38 am

Looking at my browser tabs, I can't believe that we collectively have still not standardized on page title vs site title formats in 2024. I've seen SITE - PAGE, PAGE / SITE, PAGE | SITE, SITE: PAGE, PAGE etc. I'd prefer it if we had a sitetitle tag in head and let the browser figure it out. #technology #html

Sander @ January 31 at 2:30 pm

Content vs crap. A single sentence marked with a red box, versus the rest of the site wasting screen space #technology

Sander @ January 31 at 11:57 am

Use an expression to select an array value in PHP. It's handy for quick output logic. Update: it's a bit too clever, perhaps, versus using the tenary operator.

$classes .= [ ' sort-default', ' sort-custom' ][ has_custom_sort( $post ) ];

#php #technology #tips

Sander @ January 23 at 11:21 am

Why do web-browsers not have a dedicated "Back to top" button? #technology

Sander @ January 16 at 4:33 pm

Finally updated my #WordPress Blocks In Plain English page with the WordPress 6.3 change in naming from Reusable Blocks to Synced Patterns. #technology

Sander @ January 3 at 2:07 pm

What would it take to make writing vanilla JavaScript more pleasant? After reviewing the code for my blogging engine Lamb I concluded:

Most of the code adding interactivity to personal websites comes down to running code after the page has loaded; niceties to query the DOM and hook into events. There's probably more but this is a start. The result is shorthand.js. Hint: it's not dissimilar to jQuery, but you can fully learn it in 5 minutes.

Which simplifies code to:

onLoaded(() => {
    const forms = $$('form.form-delete')
    forms?.forEach($form => $form.on('submit', ev => {
        let confirmed = confirm(`Really delete status ${ev.target.dataset.id}?`)
        if (!confirmed) return

This is just a prototype and will evolve.

#technology #projects #lamb

Sander @ January 2 at 4:37 pm

If you're using the Anytype (current version at the time of writing: 0.37.3) AppImage and made a .desktop file to launch it, here are a few tweaks that integrate it into your system better.

You may want to use a program like Desktopius to edit the .desktop file.

The Anytype icon and part of the main window

Prevent two dock icons

If you see one item for the AppImage and one for the application window in the Dock, add StartupWMClass=anytype and these will be combined. This value is the result of running xprop WM_CLASS and clicking on the Anytype main window.

Fix the icon

If you see the generic icon, extract the icon to a path and update Icon=/path/to/anytype.png (replacing the path to the directory where you will extract the icon).

To extract the icon from the AppImage do the following:

$ cd /tmp
$ mkdir anytype && cd anytype
$ /path/to/Anytype.AppImage --appimage-extract
$ cp squashfs-root/usr/share/icons/hicolor/1024x1024/apps/anytype.png /path/to/anytype.png

#technology #anytype

Sander @ December 11 at 8:51 am

I experimented with _hyperscript to replace the little JS enhancements on the Lamb microblog over the weekend. After a day I had all the scripts replaced with clearer code in about half the lines of the previous JavaScript. It sounds like a success, however I rolled it all back. This is because _hyperscript requires a 100KB library, whereas the 3KB JavaScript it replaces does not. As Lamb is a minimal blogging system, that's the vast majority of the pagesize. #technology

Sander @ November 14 at 10:08 am

Ashley Belanger writes for Ars Technica Apple gets 36% cut of Safari deal with Google as default search:

Statista reported that Google's advertising revenue was $224 billion in 2022, and based on that, Engadget estimated that Apple likely gets paid in the tens of billions of dollars for Google's default Safari placements.

Meanwhile Slack, Discord and others continue not to benefit from an Electron commit that wasn't properly reviewed setting Search with Google as the default #technology #privacy

Sander @ September 22 at 9:12 am

On personal goals

Today, I've realised my overarching goal as a software engineer: create digital experiences that help improve mental health for the people using them.

Unwittingly I myself have trended towards community software where capitalism, media manipulation and corporate influence is minimised (open-source, privacy first, self-hosting), and writing software with these values in mind.

In my experience, capitalism and corporate software distort the incentives of software for the financial benefit of it's backers. Media manipulation uses information overload and content agendas to influence the news cycle and change the common values we live by. This ultimately is more important to them than the wellbeing of the person experiencing the artifact, but not to me.

How have I been unwittingly trying to create positive user experiences:

#technology, #projects, #society

Sander @ September 9 at 12:56 pm

If you want an example of why we need a viable open source phone ecosystem, try and share some assorted music files from your non-Apple pc to another person’s iPhone. #technology

Sander @ August 3, 2023 at 9:03 am

Anchor bugs in Blink engine browsers

I've been looking into an issue for work where Google Chrome loads a URL ending in an anchor and scrolls to the incorrect position on the page. Imagine linking to the third heading on a page and Chrome scrolling to a indeterminable position above that. Firefox is not affected.

After ruling out all JavaScript and the particular HTML source code, it turns out that disabling the html { scroll-behavior: smooth; } CSS style fixes the issue. My theory so I suspect there is a race condition between determining the length of a page and position of the element while scrolling? This results in bugreports such as "Anchorlink going to the wrong place"

Regular behaviour is also partially broken

What's more interesting is that blink based browsers are unable to scroll to the anchor even after the page is already loaded!


  1. load https://downloads.vandragt.com/test-long.html#test This page has an id attribute test set on the header but is otherwise plain text. Any other page will also work though.
  2. The page loads and the scrollposition is correctly set at the test header.
  3. Scroll up a paragraph or more than a screen, and refresh the page. Notice the scrollposition isn't set.
  4. Optionally refresh many times, or press the Enter key in the address bar to attempt to reload the page. However the scroll-position is now permanently broken until you navigate away from the page.

This results in bug-reports such as "It only goes to a place when you first enter the URL to the browser, it doesn’t go to the same place when you re-fresh the page". Together this erodes the trust in the application and honestly it's hard to believe this has not been more widely reported.

There's probably an elaborate JavaScript solution but in my opinion a browser's bugs should be fixed by the browser, because in the future when the browser fixes itself a workaround might result in incorrect behaviour. #technology

Sander @ April 10, 2023 at 10:41 am

The AI evolution seems scary until you realise most of the applications are summarised as a wrapper around the OpenAI API that does all the work, with the context provided by a prompt prefix. So with half a day's study most programmers can participate. #technology

Sander @ April 6, 2023 at 10:43 am

Ubuntu's minimal installation appears to be the standard installation plus the removal of some packages! That's unexpected as I was trying to save installation time. #ubuntu #technology

Sander @ March 24, 2023 at 7:24 am

Anyone, regardless of coding experience can now create scripts and simple WordPress plugins:

WordPress developers who want to share their AI-assisted creations with the community have also started submitting them to WordPress.org.

We can imagine the headlines in six months when another popular site or plug-in is hacked, when both the author and the generator and the webmaster don’t understand the code, and can’t review it for security weaknesses, The current tools are proof of concept creators, but please be careful not to assume production ready code.

If you want a code review done hit up an engineer, like myself #technology #ai #wordpress