Category Archives: Web

Ajax enabling crusty legacy webapps with Prototype

With all of the hype around Ajax it’s easy to think you might need an MVC framework with baked in Ajax support like Rails ActionPack or JBoss Seam to make Ajax easy. However, libraries like Prototype (which is what Rails … Continue reading

Posted in AJAX, CSS, Javascript, Software Engineering, Web | 1 Comment

Javascript debugging in Internet Explorer

It always drives me nuts when I get a Javascript error in Internet Explorer that I can’t reproduce in Firefox because I’m used to debugging Javascript in Firefox with Firebug. I finally had to buckle down and figure out how … Continue reading

Posted in Javascript, Software Engineering, Web | 2 Comments

Using Ruby’s timout to keep the user experience snappy

On a my Ruby on Rails based San Francisco Sailing Weather website I make calls out to flickr.rb to retrieve photos.

Posted in Ruby on Rails, Software Engineering, Web | Leave a comment

Deferring ad loading on your pages to avoid unnecessary outages

At GreatSchools we’ve had 3rd party ad server outages or slowness effectively make our site unusable as users browsers waited for certain ads to render before rendering the rest of the page. I had originally thought just specifying height and … Continue reading

Posted in CSS, Design, Javascript, Software Engineering, Web | 2 Comments

Major sites not conserving bandwidth with gzip content compression

At GreatSchools we do around 1M real page views per day and another 250k or so for crawlers. Before content compression we were running well in excess of 10Mbit/s during peak hours and were getting hit with bursting charges on … Continue reading

Posted in Systems Administration, Web | 3 Comments

Implementing CRUD HTTP style

I’m amazed by how often DHH can keep coming up with newer, simpler, and more elegant approaches to web development that really make you think. In his recent blog entry/keynote he discusses using HTTP’s PUT and DELETE methods to more … Continue reading

Posted in Ruby, Web | 1 Comment

Why nobody is web testing in Java

Go into any IDE and create a default Web project and you’ll often get JUnit, but I have yet to see one include some form of web testing support (e.g. Cactus, Cargo, and HttpUnit) and that’s just lame!

Posted in Java, Ruby, Software Engineering, Web | 3 Comments

Java’s SEO blunder: jsessionid

Update: Bryce pointed out a servlet filter you can implement to disable JSESSIONID’s… very nice! When we started moving GreatSchools from Perl to Java + SpringMVC + Hibernate one of the first things we had to figure out was how … Continue reading

Posted in Java, Search Engine Optimization, Web | 9 Comments

Will a language scale? Wrong question!

This tongue in cheek post by Dion about Ruby not scaling made me chuckle but also got me thinking! The whole question of whether a modern language scales or not is really the wrong question to ask. Almost any language … Continue reading

Posted in Java, Ruby, Software Engineering, Web | 5 Comments

Issue and solution for upgrading Lighttpd from 1.4.8 to 1.4.11

After upgrading Lighttpd to 1.4.11 from 1.4.8 it was no longer working with my Ruby on Rails project saying it couldn’t find public/dispatch.fcgi. Well, it turns out they made this security fix which breaks relative paths typically used in lighttpd.conf:

Posted in Ruby, Systems Administration, Web | 7 Comments