PHP awesome

Coding Horror rips PHP a new one:

The great crime of PHP is its utter banality.

The problem is that banality isn’t a crime, it’s a virtue. Banality is predictability. Predictability is ease of understanding. PHP is a good tool because it’s easy to visualize what your program is doing.

Transparency is important for a programming language. C has it, C++ doesn’t. Javascript yes, Java no. Ruby yes, Rails no. PHP yes, Perl no.

Programming is about programmer’s heads. Tools are there to assist with cognition. PHP does that well.

Personally I’m moving on to Node.js these days, because it doesn’t make sense to use different languages on the server and client. That way I can keep my head in a single language regardless of where my code runs. My goal is to increase the banality of my language. The problem isn’t that PHP is banal, it’s that PHP isn’t banal enough.

I am a Hangouts fan

I really like Google+ Hangouts as a replacement for phone calls. There are a lot of drawbacks but overall they are much better than any alternative.

Better than Skype:

You can easily set up a video conference call. Skype makes this hard because they want to charge you, and the payment process is too slow to be worth it.

No client install needed. There’s a rumor that Skype is going to WebRTC to get a browser implementation, and that’s very nice from a web standards perspective, but Hangouts work great right now.

Not very broken. There are lots of malfeatures but no more than Skype.

Better than plain old telephone:

More reliable than over a cell phone. Voice calls over cells have a lot of problems.

Video+voice is higher bandwidth than voice alone. Video calls are richer and more effective communication.

Integrated IM is necessary for pasting in links, Wikipedia references, images, videos – things that expand the potential range of communication.

Integrated screen sharing enables showing slides/ doing presentations, which is often incredibly useful.

Lawyer demands $20,000, so webcomic raises $100,000 from the Internet | Ars Technica

From Ars Technica:

For creators, especially independent ones, the DMCA takedown process is almost impossible to turn into a useful tool. But for user-generated content sites, policing uploads for copyright infringement is a hugely difficult challenge, and they are routinely accused of turning a blind eye to piracy when they can’t solve the problem themselves. One possible solution, used by sites like YouTube, is to let creators upload their work and then offer them options whenever exact copies of that work are uploaded to the site. When executed well, such systems have limited impact on fair use but can also provide modest protection for creators like Inman. But they aren’t required by law.

via Lawyer demands $20,000, so webcomic raises $100,000 from the Internet | Ars Technica.