Keep your Javascript off my back button!

Infinite-scrolling web sites are garbage. The increasingly common model where new content is loaded as you scroll down is actively user-hostile, because content is never unloaded, guaranteeing that eventually your browser will decide it’s had enough and force-reload the page. From the top.

Adding insult to injury, however, is the trick where it also inserts artificial navigation commands into your browser history, changing the URL to reflect your offset into the infinite scroll. As much as I like the content over at Mad Genius Club, I hate the fact that I have to hit the back button multiple times to leave. Just now, without having scrolled down very far at all, I had to hit the back button four times, because each time it decided I was still far enough into the scroll to need my history re-fucked-with.

About the only Google service up right now…

…is Google+.

Probably because no one goes there any more.

Variations on a theme…

If I hadn’t already deleted my Twitter account, I’d go courting bans












Hmmmm, would you get banned from Twitter if you remade this song as “learn to code”?

First time, last time…

I was vaguely curious about the shopping experience in the Alibaba empire. After all, they’re doing so well that they’re kicking us out of our building. What’s the first thing I see on AliExpress?

First suggested category is bondage, which makes me a bit nervous about the one labeled “ring men”…

That was new…and pointless

Someone posted two comments to the previous entry that were filled with links to his (or his customer’s) web site. File that under bafflingly stupid, since search engines don’t execute Javascript when they index content, and my comment system is JS-only.

It was adorable, too, with every letter a separate link to a page on the site. Judging from the URLs, it’s a clickbait site aimed at an English-speaking Indian audience. Must not be very good clickbait, if they’re desperate enough to hire an inept pagerank scammer.

Dear US Customs Department,

Please update your Javascript validation code on the Global Entry application page to accept brand new passports issued during the current month.


Works today. Someone must have noticed before I did, because I sincerely doubt that a government agency could make, test, and roll out a change to a web site on a Sunday night.

Now to see how long the queue is.

Blog software update

I bit the bullet and upgraded Hugo finally, from 0.41 to 0.53. Why so far? Because in 0.42, they re-did the internals for making relative references to pages by name, and made it a fatal error if pages in completely different sections had the same filename. Even if you never actually referenced them.

This was a show-stopper, because the only way to build your site was to fix all filename collisions, which meant breaking external links. In my case, about 300 of them on the blog, and several thousand on the recipe site (which, being automatically generated based on the recipe name, was hard to deal with; why, after all, shouldn’t two completely different collections be able to have a recipe named “egg-salad”?).

After some back-and-forth, they made it a warning that such references will return non-deterministic results, but by then there had been other changes that affected output, and I always do a full diff of the site to catch undocumented changes. And the diffs kept getting bigger.

Today I finally broke down, renamed all the colliding entries in my various microblogs (mostly affecting external links to the Quotes section), and scrolled through the 93,923 lines of diff output. Fortunately, 95% of it turned out to be removal of a bunch of gratuitous <p></p> pairs inserted by the old version of their Markdown library (either completely empty, or around <div> tags). Looks like they actually undid some of the changes that had increased the diff size for earlier versions.

As far as I can tell, nothing noteworthy broke, so I’m back in sync with the devs, and I’ve shaved a few seconds off my build time again.

Yeah, that’ll work!

Dec 17: Tumblr removes adult content.

Dec 24: Tumblr shuts down completely.

Seriously: “photos, videos or GIFs that show real-life human genitals or female-presenting nipples” is about 95% of their content. The rest is emo kids and SJWs, who aren’t going to provide much ad revenue.