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Scripting News, the weblog started in 1997 that bootstrapped the blogging revolution.

Today's a big shipping day Permanent link to this item in the archive.

I didn't plan it this way, but a lot of stuff is ready all at once.

Over the day I'll link them in here. They will also appear in various other places such as the rssCloud mail list, on Twitter, and I'm not sure where else.

1. A rssCloud walkthrough for publishers. This doc is a shortcut for publishers so they don't have to wade through the michegas that cloud and aggregator developers do. ;->

2. A self-documenting OPML reading list of real-time photo feeds. Lots of new stuff working here. I also added a photo feed for television, in anticipation of the Emmies tonight.

3. DNS for RSS feeds. I have a proof of concept app up, for you to try out and comment on.

N. And last but not least, and I had nothing to do with this one -- the Scobles shipped another Scobleizer last night. Baby and mommy are happy and healthy, and according to daddy, cute. Happy birthday Ryan! It's nice to have you on board for this crazy thing we call life.

Hooking the lizard brain up to the cerebral cortex Permanent link to this item in the archive.

This is worth a special post as a followup to the earlier piece, it's so interesting.

I was talking with a friend today, he's an expert in DNS, and I said it's too bad people can't open their sub-domain in a browser. I understood why this wasn't possible:

A picture named crumb.jpg1. The browser is looking for an A record or a CNAME, and we're setting the TXT record.

My friend who doesn't want me to say his name (and I respect that) said it might not have to be that way. We talked about connecting the DNS with HTTP and it was really intriguing. If you think about it, DNS is like the lizard brain of the Internet, and HTTP, while it is in some ways lower tech than DNS, is the cerebral cortex. To have them integrate is like bringing the Wright Brothers plane they flew at Kitty Hawk on an Apollo moon mission. But that's the way we do things in techland. ;->

Then I thought -- wait a minute, what's to stop me from also registering an A record that points back to me, and then keeping a database locally that associates a name with an RSS URL. Then when you open your subdomain in a browser:

1. It comes to my machine.

2. It looks you up in the database I'm keeping that's a mirror of what's in the TXT records in DNS.

3. From there I get your RSS address.

4. To which I simply do a 302 redirect.

Hah! I had to try it. And guess what! The fcuker works!! ;->

Try it out:

And then go through the registration process, and try it out yourself.

This is actually important because everyone expected taht you'd be able to open the sub-domain in the browser. Now you can.

DNS for RSS feeds Permanent link to this item in the archive.

Here is a Unix shell command that gets the address of my RSS feed: dig +short TXT

It makes a DNS call to get the TXT record associated with That's different from an A record or a CNAME record. TXT records are used for things like this. That's why when you go there in your browser it doesn't go anywhere.

I have an app up for you all to try out, so you can have a domain for your RSS feed (it works equally well for Atom, or anything that can be parsed as XML).

Enter your Twitter username and password and the URL of your feed. It verifies that it is the correct password. (And it doesn't store it or use it for any other purpose.) And then if everything goes well, your username will map to a domain and point to your feed.

This is of course not rocket science.

But it does seem to work. ;->

PS: Why this is interesting, possibly, is that it may give us a way to shorten URLs and make them more flexible if we want to build a loosely-coupled Twitter-like network with feeds distributed around the net. DNS is the little bit of centralization that the Internet, itself a loosely-coupled network, is built on.

Fuck you John Edwards Permanent link to this item in the archive.

A picture named edwards.jpgI read the front page story on John Edwards with delight, as I'm sure many others did.

Yes it is news, to those who ask, because he came close to being VP, and was a serious candidate for President and the press was ignoring the story until they couldn't ignore it any more.

I remember when Edwards came to speak at Gnomedex and everyone said he was great and he should have a webcam everywhere but in the bathroom and bedroom. They wanted the transparent candidate. He thought it was a good idea.

Now we know for sure, but I thought so for sure then, nothing about the guy was real. His story was good, too good. His wife has cancer. Meanwhile, according to the Times he's promising to marry the mother of his out-of-wedlock child as soon as the wife dies, in a rooftop ceremony with Dave Matthews providing the music.

This is the end of John Edwards, who if he could have kept the act up a bit longer might have been the Attorney General of the United States. He's fucked. And maybe we should reflect on just how fucked up we are that we go for that kind of nonsense. Edwards was our ideal of what a candidate should be. A commercial product advertised on TV with the judgement of a con artist. Just the kind of guy we want a heartbeat from the Presidency. Not.

Yes this is a front page story because who Edwards is says so much about who we are. Edwards is a good serious look in the mirror.


Last update: Sunday, September 20, 2009 at 8:42 PM Pacific.

A picture named dave.jpgDave Winer, 54, pioneered the development of weblogs, syndication (RSS), podcasting, outlining, and web content management software; former contributing editor at Wired Magazine, research fellow at Harvard Law School, entrepreneur, and investor in web media companies. A native New Yorker, he received a Master's in Computer Science from the University of Wisconsin, a Bachelor's in Mathematics from Tulane University and currently lives in Berkeley, California.

"The protoblogger." - NY Times.

"The father of modern-day content distribution." - PC World.

One of BusinessWeek's 25 Most Influential People on the Web.

"Helped popularize blogging, podcasting and RSS." - Time.

"The father of blogging and RSS." - BBC.

"RSS was born in 1997 out of the confluence of Dave Winer's 'Really Simple Syndication' technology, used to push out blog updates, and Netscape's 'Rich Site Summary', which allowed users to create custom Netscape home pages with regularly updated data flows." - Tim O'Reilly.

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