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The Rob blog

I'm Robert Pohl, the creator and co-founder to ThatsToday. I blog mostly about technology and internet related topics. Follow me on Twitter @robertpohl
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Slides on AJAX Performance Anti-Patterns by Andreas Grabner.

This is a great presentation with a lot of do's and dont's when it comes to AJAX and JavaScript DOM programming.

Found this super easy example on how to create a Google Chrome extension:

This article is a good place to start if you want to know the basics of creating a Chrome browser extension. This is largely because at a minimum this article only needs just 2 code files and an image icon to run.


Working with multi-regional websites
Googles guidelines on how to structure URLs and content for localized web sites

Reddit have replaced memcached with Cassandra
How they switched to NoSQL in 10 days of development

The Google User Experience team aims to create designs that are useful, fast, simple, engaging, innovative, universal, profitable, beautiful, trustworthy, and personable.

Saying Yes to NoSQL; Going Steady with Cassandra
Digg has jumped on the NoSQL train.

FluentPath: a fluent wrapper around System.IO
A flexible way to work with files and folders in .NET

YQL Geo library – all your geo needs in pure JavaScript
Using this library you can do the following:

  • Detecting the visitor's location with the W3C geo API and with IP as a fallback
  • Find geo location from text
  • Find location from lat/lon pair
  • Find locations in a certain web document (by URL)
  • Get the location for a certain IP number

Ambilight Sample; video and canvas
A cool HTML5 Video + Canvas example how to create a real time TV ambient effect.


break the text with csharp

When dealing with external text data such as RSS/Atom Feeds you often get articles that look ugly and is pretty hard to read. Text information in feeds are often stripped of any HTML/CSS formatting to keep the payload down, but if you want to display that text on your web site it often does not look good.

I wanted to create a function that at least split up large text chunks into paragraphs so that it becomes more readable. That is of course if there is no HTML formatting already.


        /// <summary>
        /// Splits text into 200chars text chunks separated by <br /><br />
        /// </summary>
        /// <param name="text">The text.</param>
        /// <returns></returns>
        public static string HtmliFyText(string text)
            if(text.Contains("<br>") || text.Contains("<br/>") || text.Contains("<br />") || text.Contains("<p>"))
                return text;
            const int threshold = 200;
            const string sep = "<br /><br />"; //the html tag that separates paragraphs
            int currentChunkLen = 0;
            StringBuilder outs = new StringBuilder();
            string[] chunks = Regex.Split(text, @"\.\s"); // split on ". "
            foreach (string chunk in chunks)// loop all chunks/paragraphs
                if (chunk.Length > 0)
                    var len = chunk.Length; //how long is the current paragraph
                    if (len + currentChunkLen >= threshold) //have a big enough chunk?
                        outs.Append(chunk +". "+ sep); //close current paragraph
                        currentChunkLen = 0;
                        currentChunkLen += len;//calc new length of current paragraph
                        outs.Append(chunk);//append to current paragraph
            return outs.ToString();


Here is an Interview with Craig Allen and Eric Kallman of Wieden + Kennedy to find out how Old Spice "The Man Your Man Could Smell Like" was made. The final clip was made in one shot after a three day session. It's amazing how they solved all the transitions without almost no CGI !




Nowdays NoSql is on everybodys blogs and it seems that it is the salvation to all the worlds problems including world hunger and quakes. I read a lot about it with great interest to prepare myself for future scalability challenges. Here is a list of interesting articles:


The "NoSQL" Discussion has Nothing to Do With SQL
A sober comparison between SQL and NoSQL, and how SQL can be optimized.


Notes from a production MongoDB deployment
Some thoughts and numbers 8 months after a MySQL to MongoDB migration.


Schema-Free MySQL vs NoSQL
Just because Mongo, TC, or Couch are 'document-oriented' or 'schema-free' does not mean they are necessarily better for your application.
Brian Aker gives a lightning talk (10 minutes) about NoSQL during the Nov 2009 OpenSQLCamp


Great video from PyCon where Jonathan Ellis who is behind Cassandra, talks about how to scale databases and different cache optimizations.

Coding related articles that  I like right now:

Seeking a Database that doesn't suck
Quick recap of databases that suck - or at least, suck for my purposes - and some that I'm still investigating.

Lucandra, a Cassandra based Lucene backend
For most users, the trickiest part of deploying a Lucene based solution is managing and scaling storage, reads, writes and index optimization.

Twitters plan to analyze 10 Billion Tweets
Twitter has only 10% of the expected 100 billion tweets now, but a good brain always plans ahead. Kevin gave a talk, Hadoop and Protocol Buffers at Twitter, at the Hadoop Meetup, explaining how Twitter plans to use all that data to an answer key business questions.

Video: JavaScript - From Birth to Closure by Robert Nyman
Great video that describes both well knows things and lesser known spices in JavaScript

Hot HTML5 + CSS3 samples
The new specifications has added quite a few interesting and useful tags for structuring your markup.

facebook picDid you know that there is a universal password that works for any account on Facebook? Also that FB staff have been fired for abusing that password?

Rumors say that Facebook have 200 to 220 million active users spread around four datacenters around the world, hosted on 8.000 servers.

FB is also the largest photo distributor in the world with roughly SIX TRILLION images.

All this and more comes from an anonymous insider at Facebook.

You might argue if this is fake or not, but read the full story at: The Rumpus


Lock picking set


Kevin Mitnick, the world famous Hacker, has the greatest business card. A Lock Picking set! :)

Read more at flickr

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