Browse the web from your Nintendo DS

Opera have announced that they’re going to release a browser for the DS in Japan.

Frankly, this is brilliant. The browser on the PSP is all very well
and good, but it’s nowhere near the ease of navigation that a
touchscreen will give. The amount of time I end up waiting at train
stations with free DS-enabled WiFi will make this brilliant (although
the fact that it’s going to be about twenty quid does suck). Suddenly
web services like meebo become much more appealing.

See Russ Beattie’s review of Opera Mobile, and CVG’s article. In related news, this is the best picture I’ve seen comparing the old Nintendo DS with the DS lite.

Jabber clients coming to Nokia handsets

Well, not quite yet, but soon anyway.

Jabber Messenger contact list

Through a chat with Ralph Meijer, and an email to Joe Hildebrand, I got in touch with Shawn Carrigan from Jabber Inc. who sent me a pre-release version of their Symbian Jabber client. and very good it is too. Fast, intuitive and usable.

Check out the photos in my (small) Flickr photoset.

Orange France rolled a version of this out late last year, and I’m
led to believe that they will be rolling this client out across the UK
and the Netherlands in Spring sometime, although their PR department
didn’t return my emails.

It has all the features that you would expect including chat, status
messages, sorting users into groups, user blocking, emoticons, message
templates, playing a sound on new message receipt, profile editing and
so on.

The best thing is that it’s not locked to a particular server, so
you can connect to your favourite XMPP server, including Google Talk.

Jabber Inc. are clearly committed to supporting the XMPP standards as a version which will be released soon will support JEP-65 (SOCKS5 Bytestreams) via multimedia messaging and JEP-45 (Multi-user Chat) via simple MUC.

I know that Jim Hughes has also got a copy, so he may also write something interesting about it. Keep your eyes peeled 🙂

Use an elastic layout on your weblog, web “professionals”!

I’ve had a couple of several-hundred-word posts hanging around on this topic for months now, but my frustration has finally got to the point where the technical stuff can wait – if you have a weblog which has centred text (even Hivelogic and Andy Budd fall foul of this) then make your contents elastic!

When I increase the font size of my browser, I don’t want to be seeing 6 words per line when there’s masses of whitespace to either side of the content container! I want that content container to be the main focus of the page! I want it to expand with the font! I don’t want the page to become less legible when I make the font bigger! This is not a swings and roundabouts exercise! Sort it out! Roger Johansson gets it right on 456 Berea Street, and you call yourselves web professionals – sort it out!

Borland stops its IDE business

Borland plans separate company for Delphi, JBuilder, C++Builder, InterBase, JDataStore and other developer products…

I always wondered how Borland were making money from their IDEs given such strong competition in the Java and .NET markets, and of course Delphi has only ever been a minor player, it turns out that they were wondering the same thing.

I actually feel quite sad – we were taught programming using Delphi at University, and JBuilder was my first Java IDE. Years later, I was using C++Builder now and again, and I was using Kylix to develop cross-platform native applications. No longer.

It’s always a shame to see a competitor in a largely unchallenged marketplace (namely the .NET IDE market) drop out, and I imagine that for most developers, this will be the last time they hear the Borland name.

Blog for cash at the Torygraph

Telegraph gets into podcasting

Whilst skimming the jobs section of a newspaper, I came across this:

“Make your voice heard: podcast reporter, £25k, 6 month contract, The Daily Telegraph”

Gosh, newspapers are hiring specialist “podcast reporters” now? Who’d a thunk it? Obviously the best bit of the ad is you will [have] .. an engaging speaking style. Well, can you imagine what kind of people and voices you might get? Whoever gets the job has to appeal to the core audience y’know.

Anyway, this got me interested, and it turns out that the Telegraph already has several podcasts available, so this job looks like it’s to put someone dedicated to the task (although with it being a six month contract I suspect it’s just exploratory and then they’ll cut them loose – there can’t be any money in it for the paper can there?)

I had a quick look around some other big newspapers: of course The Guardian are doing the Ricky Gervais podcasts and political podcasts (including PMQs) but haven’t yet podcasted up their existing audio reports; The Times don’t seem to be doing anything at all in this area (although they do have an incredibly frustrating habit of having every single link open in a new window!) but they do have a beta version of a desktop search tool powered by Blinkx which is really quite unexpected and makes you wonder about what else these supposedly old-school media enterprises are up to with the new-fangled hyperinterweb.

Google Talk conversations now searchable in Gmail

Save chat histories in Gmail

Google are now offering the ability to search your Google Talk conversations in Google Mail.

There are also a host of Google Talk-related features which will be released to all Gmail accounts “within the next few weeks”, including inline chat with your Gmail contacts. Take that, meebo.

It’s obvious that the big IM providers are storing all our conversations, but as far as I’m aware, Google are the first ones to actually allow you access to their stored version of your previous conversations, which, despite being really impressive, is however yet another terrifying reminder of how much information these big service providers really have about you. Since the recent round of acquisitions, Yahoo! for example now knows about my photos, my bookmarks and my events, all of which are more than enough to draw up a very accurate picture of who I am and what I’m interested in.

It’s interesting to note that whilst the offerings from these companies are slowly becoming better and better I’m slowly offloading my reliance on them: my Gmail account is backed up to a remote server, and I could switch that entirely very easily; my bookmarks first go through a local scuttle install and then are backed up to del.icio.us for social purposes; my blog goes through Google but is hosted on my own server; my events are moving to an install of PHP iCalendar and being backed up to Upcoming, and so on. It’s not all in place, but I think it’s getting there.