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Scripting News

Scripting News, the weblog started in 1997 that bootstrapped the blogging revolution.

Published: Fri, 17 Nov 2017 17:26:06 GMT

Last Build Date: Fri, 17 Nov 2017 17:41:13 GMT

Copyright: © 1994-2017 Dave Winer.

Fri, 17 Nov 2017 16:41:07 GMT

Braintrust query: Here's a new version of Bingeworthy with fixes for a phone-size screen. Let me know if it works, or doesn't. ๐Ÿ’ฅ

Fri, 17 Nov 2017 17:26:06 GMT

One of the things that makes Mathew Ingram dangerous is that he asks what other people think. Which led to this thread with Ben Thompson, Rafat Ali and myself.

Fri, 17 Nov 2017 16:01:12 GMT

Erin Gloria Ryan: "Morganโ€™s account reeks of naked political opportunism, of weaponizing victimhood in a way that is so morally bankrupt that it threatens to derail the entire #MeToo conversation for selfish political ends."

Thu, 16 Nov 2017 17:31:18 GMT

Podcast: For news orgs, wouldn't it be nice not to be dependent on Twitter and Facebook? There may be a little pain at first, but on the other side is freedom to move, to innovate, to radically improve the news experience on the net.

Media Files:

Thu, 16 Nov 2017 18:26:46 GMT

New Scripting News feature: If I tweet an item from the blog, which is more likely now with the 280 char limit, it's automatically set up to be expandable so you can see the tweet if you want. Like the item below.

Thu, 16 Nov 2017 18:14:04 GMT

It would be interesting to see a list of billionaires, with a column for their net worth, annual income, and how much they would receive each year from the Repub tax bill. Let's see the numbers. Let's expose the billionaires who are pulling the Repubs strings.

Thu, 16 Nov 2017 14:15:42 GMT

New BingeWorthy feature. The names on the Hotlist page are now linked to the voting panel for that program on the main page. So if you see a program on the Hotlist and want to vote, do a search, or the other features that are sure to come, click the link.

Thu, 16 Nov 2017 16:37:09 GMT

There's now a JSON file that contains the hotlist data. It changes at most once a minute, so please don't read it more often than that.

Thu, 16 Nov 2017 16:33:53 GMT

October 31 is when I started the Bingeworthy outreach.

Thu, 16 Nov 2017 14:32:01 GMT

I only make software that I use. When I've tried to make software that I don't use, it usually comes out unusable. It's gotten so that I write software only for my own use. I don't even release some of the best stuff. That way I can break the entire user base and they don't complain. ๐Ÿ’ฅ

Thu, 16 Nov 2017 14:56:48 GMT

The Repub tax law is a direct consequence of Citizens United.

Thu, 16 Nov 2017 13:38:39 GMT

Please choose a browser from this list.

Wed, 15 Nov 2017 21:55:17 GMT

A quick demo of a new hotlist feature.

Wed, 15 Nov 2017 18:21:40 GMT

New BingeWorthy feature -- a standalone hotlist page, it does not require login.

Wed, 15 Nov 2017 19:08:26 GMT

Hotlist notes. What is I, Claudius? Highly rated. Never heard of it. Nice to see my favorites being highly rated. Some exceptions. Fargo is #20, Silicon Valley is #47. Six Feet Under one of my #5's is rated 2.8. Bojack is #77? That can't be right! And Star Trek Discovery, which I have not watched, that everyone raves about is #98. It's still very early, but some programs have as many as 60 votes. Top 5: The Wire, Breaking Bad, Claudius, West Wing, Band of Brothers.

Wed, 15 Nov 2017 19:18:21 GMT

This is how Republicans make love.

Wed, 15 Nov 2017 16:41:07 GMT

A story I like to tell. At Living Videotext, our first office was a dark room in a former church on San Antonio Road in Mountain View. The church is gone, the land is probably now part of a Google sub-campus. It was kind of a slum of an office, but it worked, it got us to the next stage, a suite of offices on Elwell Court in Palo Alto, near the golf course and airport. The problem with the first office was that the windows didn't open and I was a smoker and they let you smoke in offices back then, even if the windows didn't open. So we made sure that the Elwell Court office had windows that opened. It was our top feature request. Then, we kept growing, and the next office was a standalone building on Charleston Road in Mountain View. By then we had forgotten about the windows opening, and as soon as we moved in realized oh shit the windows don't open here.

Wed, 15 Nov 2017 16:56:05 GMT

The moral of the story. We elected Obama to fix the economy that Bush broke. We, collectively, forgot. So we elected someone even worse, who is proceeding to break the economy even more. We're going to need someone better than Obama to fix it, if it's possible. Also, don't expect the next president to be like Trump. It doesn't work that way. He or she will be total Establishment. A real intellect. Not flamboyant or a narcissist. He or she will have other flaws, that we will have by then forgotten to watch out for.

The 2017-18 Knicks are fun!

Thu, 16 Nov 2017 03:41:04 GMT

The Knicks this year are fucking awesome. So much fun to watch. So many stories and rookie lessons. I love it.

The only reason the Knicks lost to Cleveland is that LeBron fucked with their heads. If that's how he has to win a game. My fear is that he'll want to come to NY next, and the Knicks might just do a deal with him. That would be Melo 2.0. We just learned how having a non-point guard who thinks he owns the ball is poison.

This is Linsanity squared. The Knicks are having fun and there's so much love on the court. It's why basketball can be such a great sport.

Tue, 14 Nov 2017 16:22:10 GMT

Bingeworthy howto and a place to ask questions.

Tue, 14 Nov 2017 15:37:39 GMT

Here's a screen shot of Bingeworthy on opening day. ๐Ÿš€

Tue, 14 Nov 2017 15:39:04 GMT

Here's the idea. I want to binge something good on Netflix or HBO or Amazon, or whatever. I ask friends for ideas. Then I pick something. It might be good. I want to systematize that. That's Bingeworthy. At first we produce a Top 100 list, because that's all we have the data for. The goal is to build a database of prefs so we can make better and better recommendations.

Mon, 13 Nov 2017 14:54:15 GMT

Good morning CMS fans!

Tue, 14 Nov 2017 03:17:38 GMT

If we are to believe Republican senators have principles that won't allow them to accept Roy Moore, how can they accept Donald Trump?

Tue, 14 Nov 2017 03:51:33 GMT

Why are baby animals so darned funny?

How I rate bingeable programs

Mon, 13 Nov 2017 20:18:09 GMT

I've been thinking about my categories. When I say 4 out of 5, this is what I'm talking about.

  • Worst! -- Never should have been made. A complete disaster. I need to hate on this.
  • Meh -- I have some respect for it, but please, don't do another season. Homeland is in this category. Lost is halfway betw Meh and Good.
  • Good -- I watched it, maybe not all seasons, maybe not all the way through. It was entertaining. I respect the program, but I'm not sure I would recommend it. Dexter is a prototype. I got really tired of it. Also Big Love. Entourage.
  • Loved -- The programs I would recommend wholeheartedly. There are a lot of programs in this category.
  • Best! -- There are only a few Bests. For me The Sopranos, The Wire. The West Wing. Silicon Valley.

My rating is the average of all seasons. For example, the first couple of seasons of Homeland were pretty good. Then it got lost, about the time F. Murray Abraham came on board. So net-net it's a Good. ;-)

RSS feed problem diagnosed, fixed

Mon, 13 Nov 2017 14:54:25 GMT

I believe I found and fixed the problem that was causing posts from Scripting News to repeat in RSS readers, and why they didn't show up as doubles in River5.

The problem occurred when I traveled outside my time zone, and post something using my laptop. And it happens again, in some readers, when I return home.

To understand why, you need to understand something about how RSS works. Each item has an identifier called a guid that uniquely identifies it. My CMS software generates each item's guid using the time it was created. For example, if a post was created at 10:38:12AM, the guid would be a103812. But when I move to a different time zone, say to Mountain Time from Eastern Time, the guid would change to a083812. A different guid, therefore the RSS reader thinks it's a new post. So you see it again in Feedly. Depending on how the reader works it might see it as a new item once again when I move back to Eastern Time.

Why didn't River5 have the problem? It has another check. If two posts have exactly the same text, it figures you don't need to see it again. This protection was put in to guard against the possibility that you might subscribe to two feeds from one pub, and they might run the same item in two feeds. I reasoned you don't need or want to see it a second time. There are some pubs, like the NYT, where I subscribe to a dozen or more feeds. They might run a sports/business item in both the sports and business feeds. Because they are in different feeds, the guids don't match, so you'd see it again. So I used a heuristic technique, that happened to also suppress this bug.

The fix was simple, generate the guid using UTC, which doesn't change based on where the feed is generated. So at this point, if you see two items from this feed in your reader, it's some other problem.

As they say "it's even worse than it appears."

Mon, 13 Nov 2017 03:38:12 GMT

Just finished Big Little Lies. Great acting, characters and (no spoilers) it's a story for our time. 4 out of 5 stars.

Mon, 13 Nov 2017 04:01:44 GMT

I just made a change to how permalinks and GUIDs are generated in my CMS. This is a test post to see how badly I broke things. ;-)

Mon, 13 Nov 2017 04:32:55 GMT

Interestingly, that last post should have appeared twice because the GUID changed. I figured out how to fix things so it can survive an author time-zone change. More in the thread for this bug and its fix.

Sun, 12 Nov 2017 20:49:23 GMT

With cannabis legal in so many states, why isn't there a cable news show that spends an hour a week exploring the changes this brings about? Such a large change, an end to Prohibition, seems there would be quite a bit of interesting stuff to discuss about it.

Sun, 12 Nov 2017 20:36:15 GMT

One of my most frequently RT'd and Liked tweets ever. I don't keep track of these things. "Senator McCain, America has been humiliated by your president and party. Enough. Time to stop this. Speak up for impeachment." BTW, this is also the most responses I've gotten on Twitter from trolls. Wondering how many of them are real people, and how many are imitation people, Russians dressing up as Americans.

Sun, 12 Nov 2017 20:43:11 GMT

Maybe John Dickerson should interview a group of Russian trolls to get their opinions on American politics. It would be more illuminating than listening to a bunch of Americans who were brainwashed by them. Skip the middleman, go direct to the source.

Sun, 12 Nov 2017 18:17:34 GMT

Facebook replaced the web with much less than the web. This should get more attention than it does.

Sun, 12 Nov 2017 16:37:06 GMT

There was a problem with Radio3 this morning. I rebooted the app and all is working again. I saw that it had been running for 222 days. That's one of the advantages of working in the Node environment. Once you get a piece of software stable, in this case nodeStorage, it pretty much takes care of itself.

Sun, 12 Nov 2017 16:36:34 GMT

Couldn't watch the last segment on Face The Nation with a panel of Trump voters. It's time to stop asking them to explain themselves. Let's hear from other citizens. And let's stop putting reporters in the middle.

Sun, 12 Nov 2017 02:50:18 GMT

Five years ago I wrote a tutorial showing how to set up AWS to host a website. I just brought it back online. I need to do more of this! ;-)

Sat, 11 Nov 2017 18:44:29 GMT

Trump is one of the weirdest people ever. If there's a rational explanation for his behavior I hope to someday hear it.

Sat, 11 Nov 2017 17:05:12 GMT

Why do we let the front-men and women of the Republican Party speak for the power behind them, their billionaire donors? How does it serve the rest of us to accept the farce that the politicians have a say in the future of the US. We've been snookered.

Sat, 11 Nov 2017 16:56:32 GMT

In previous wars America had a big advantage -- an ocean on either side separated us from Europe and Asia. We no longer have that separation, the Internet removed it.

Fri, 10 Nov 2017 21:04:46 GMT

Reader query: I've had a report by one user of repeated items from Scripting News in Feedly. Are other people seeing this? In other feed readers? I've seen no problems in River5.

Fri, 10 Nov 2017 19:03:41 GMT

Poll: Should Louis C.K.'s work disappear?

Fri, 10 Nov 2017 18:47:49 GMT

The allegations against Roy Moore, it seems, could split the Republican Party in two. It's hard to imagine, for example, Mormons in Utah, who are largely Republican, condoning what Moore is accused of.

Fri, 10 Nov 2017 17:56:25 GMT

Everything in my world works better, post-280. I was sure this would happen. It's one of the things that was making the cost of Twitter too high to sustain. Facebook didn't have the 140-char limit, nor did my linkblog, or the RSS feed of links. But because I want all my links to flow to these four places, I was limited by the least capacity of them all. Now if Twitter and Facebook would support limited HTML, then we'd be really flying (though, depressingly, we would just be where we were in 1994).

Fri, 10 Nov 2017 18:00:08 GMT

I mentioned my 2011 invitation to Moscow because it's worth considering if you see an American blogger supporting Russia, or an academic, or journalist, they might have taken the trip that I chose not to. Back then it wasn't clear that Russia was an adversary. In today's climate I wouldn't be tempted. But things were different then.

Fri, 10 Nov 2017 14:55:07 GMT

An idea to balance all the writing online about ugly violent non-consensual sexual acts -- a place where people write about their loving consensual and adventurous sexual experiences. Otherwise people, esp young people, might get the wrong idea about sex. Seriously it's not all bad. (Quite the opposite.)

Thu, 09 Nov 2017 14:41:35 GMT

I have to say I like the 280 char limit. It feels like legal cannabis. Something that was once forbidden that now is OK. It's like what, I can do that! Wow.

Thu, 09 Nov 2017 15:04:35 GMT

One of the reasons 280 chars is great is that it means that links I post to Facebook can have longer descriptions. It may seem counter-intuitive, but I use Radio3 to post my links, to Twitter, Facebook, to my linkblog and to an RSS feed. I don't write different versions for each environment, so what you get is the least common denominator. Which is Twitter. When they up the limit, they do it for all other platforms, at least in my world.

Thu, 09 Nov 2017 19:58:48 GMT

I was invited to a future-of-news conference in Moscow in 2011, all expenses paid, by a Russian news agency, Ria Novosti. I said yes at first, but in the end didn't go. Something didn't seem right. Soon after, their feed redirected to Sputnik, then to RT.

Thu, 09 Nov 2017 15:22:53 GMT

Lindsey Graham this $5 is yours if you vote against the Repub tax bill.