Archive for July, 2005

On Holiday!

I’m off for a couple of weeks hoilday in a few days! Should be good, and I’ll tell you all about it when I get back. No doubt I’ll take thousands of photos too ;-)

Anyway, while I’m away comment moderation will be on for this blog I’m afraid. There may not be anything going on in the way of BritBlog signups and reviews either if I don’t get a chance to set it up before I go. I hope this doesn’t cause anyone too much of a problem; normal service will resume when I’m back.

France Terror Alert

Got this a few days ago. Bit out of date now, but makes me laugh…

Jacques Chirac has officially raised the French terror alert from “Run” to “Hide”.

There are only two higher alert levels in France, which are “Surrender” and “Collaborate”.

The rise was precipitated by a recent fire which destroyed France’s white flag factory - effectively crippling their military

Dilbert RSS feed

Woohoo! I found a Dilbert RSS feed! In fact, in wasn’t much of an achievement - I just did a quick Google search for it: dilbert rss feed. Why didn’t I think of doing this ages ago?

Anyway, if you’re looking for it, here it is: http://feeds.feedburner.com/tapestrydilbert.

I’m really beginning to wish that Thunderbird supported OPML - I’m getting such a lot of subscriptions!

Base64 Encoded Images Embedded in HTML

I’ve been playing around with embedding images directly in HTML documents. The main driver for this is the huge load and bandwidth suck that BritBlog experiences as a result of most our members linking directly to our little icons. (Don’t get me wrong; it’s great that so many of our members help to promote us, I just wish a few more folk could host their own icons!)

You may have noticed that that Internet Explorer can save web pages (images and all) as one file. This seems to be MIME-encoded (like HTML email) with boundaries, which is fine for standalone documents, but no good for me if I want to embed an image directly in an ordinary HTML file.

So after hunting around a bit I came across an alternative technique, that still uses base64 encoding. It’s a great approach, but unfortunately it only seems to work in Firefox. This is great for me, but alas a large proportion of internet users still use IE so I can’t really use it for my stated application.

Anyhow, it’s an interesting technique, so I thought I’d share it here. This is what I was planning on doing:

<?php
$file = "icon.gif";
if($fp = fopen($file,"rb", 0))
{
   $picture = fread($fp,filesize($file));
   fclose($fp);
   // base64 encode the binary data, then break it
   // into chunks according to RFC 2045 semantics
   $base64 = chunk_split(base64_encode($picture));
   $tag = '<a href="http://www.britblog.com/"><img ' . "n" .
          'src="data:image/gif;base64,' . $base64 .
          '" alt="British Blog Directory" width="80" height="15" />';
   echo $tag;
}
?>

This is roughly what it produces:

<a href="http://www.britblog.com/"><img
src="data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhUAAPAKIAAAsLav///88PD9WqsYmApmZmZtZfYmdakyH5BAQUAP8ALAAAAABQAA8AAAPb
WLrc/jDKSVe4OOvNu/9gqARDSRBHegyGMahqO4R0bQcjIQ8E4BMCQc930JluyGRmdAAcdiigMLVr
ApTYWy5FKM1IQe+Mp+L4rphz+qIOBAUYeCY4p2tGrJZeH9y79mZsawFoaIRxF3JyiYxuHiMGb5KT
kpFvZj4ZbYeCiXaOiKBwnxh4fnt9e3ktgZyHhrChinONs3cFAShFF2JhvCZlG5uchYNun5eedRxM
AF15XEFRXgZWWdciuM8GCmdSQ84lLQfY5R14wDB5Lyon4ubwS7jx9NcV9/j5+g4JADs=
" alt="British Blog Directory" width="80" height="15" /></a>

And if you paste this into your HTML document, this is roughly what you get (I had some problems getting this code through WordPress, so this may be another reason not to use it!):

British Blog Directory

Depending on your web browser, you will either see a broken image, or a nice little BritBlog icon!

So I wonder when the next IE will be out, and if this will fix the problem?

PEAR Cache_Lite version 1.5.1 released

PEAR Cache_Lite 1.5.1 has been released, so you should go and get it now. I’ve said it before, and I’ll probably say it again, but I do like PEAR - especially when the packages are well maintained like this one is!

New PEAR XML_RPC Release

As you may have guessed, I’m currently playing around with the PEAR XML_RPC package (cf. XML-RPC weblogUpdates.ping). If you too are using it, you may like to know that there is a new release out today - version 1.3.2.

At least the French didn’t get it!

I can’t say I’m especially excited that London got the 2012 Olympics, but I am pleased that Paris didn’t get it! Not that I’m actually that bothered to be honest, but I had a drink with a French person last night who was quite convinced that Paris would get it, so it’s good to be able to rub her nose in it a little bit ;-) There was no reason for this individual’s line of thinking either, just that France, being France, is the best place to do anything! Vive la France and all that!

Ah well.

A French peasant sells T-shirts unwittingly prepared for the Paris 2012 Games

A French peasant sells T-shirts unwittingly prepared for the Paris 2012 Games

Blogher conference in London

Is anyone interested in a Blogher conference in London? Improbulus is trying to organise one, and it is looking like it will be held on Sunday 31 July. If you are interested, please head over to her site and register your interest!