Found an interesting page about
fisheye views
, applied to XUL menus. If you’ve seen the OS X dock,
you’ll know what a fisheye view is, but you may not have thought about the
cunning metrics going on behind the scenes to make it feel natural. Exscade
uses distance measurement only (as shown in the diagram), but there’s a
short paragraph covering velocity sensitive approaches. I couldn’t get the
demo to work… Bummer.

Fisheye views are a way of getting more Fitt’s Law bang-for-your-buck, by
artificially creating larger areas to aim at. They’re especially useful for
cramped or small interfaces – but I’m stretching my head to figure out how
to apply this to PDA interfaces. There’s no such thing as a hovering cursor
on a PDA, you see. ;-)

Sadly, I know Mark
would have enjoyed sinking his teeth into these problems. :-(

Love the Debian HK site, added it to the Planetarium. The description field in their blog feed is: “Unite all Debian users in Hong Kong, dominate the Greater China Linux market, conquer all servers in the world!” As long as Pipka can still speak Mandarin on the mainland, that plan sounds mighty fine to me. :-)

There is a great post by ‘rkrishnan’ on GNOME Bangalore about why blogging
is important. It’s a fictional conversation between the protagonist and a
skeptic, attempting to explain what a blog is, and why it’s useful. Various
points are made, but the skeptic doesn’t seem to understand until the
protagonist enthuses, “It is like meditation that comes thru karma.”

“Ah, I understand that now.”

And with that, I welcome GNOME Bangalore to the Planetarium. :-)

Some fascinating
stats
in the Free/Libre/Open Source Software Asian Developers Online
Survey
. Marco
should be proud, around six percent of respondents knew who he was. Cool!

It certainly gives me pause for thought about the importance of Asia to the
Australian economy, how our current government has systematically fucked our
good standing in the region, the scaremongering over foreign outsourcing in
the local IT industry, and what we have to lose through the bilateral US
Trade Agreement (I like Rusty‘s
strategy of dropping the “Free”).

The GNOME release parties ought to have a slogan, and I think I found
a good one
on FootNotes: “Will installing it through the night while
I am half-dressed and supposed to be finishing homework count as a
party?”

In case any of the Novell systems administration team read my blog, I just
wanted to encourage you to route all important public-facing website
decisions through Dave Camp. He’s a very smart cookie, loving and huggable.
Plus, he would keep Planet Novell alive on the interweb, so everyone could
see how much the Novell dudes are rocking.

Liiiinkage! Great article on news.com about presence,
which links to a bunch of other good articles for people interested in
collaboration station ideas. After talking with Gus about the
language debates going on at the moment, he suggested I check out RMS’s paper on
Emacs
design and lessons learned. A good read. Why I
love the French
. Things you never wanted to know about Joe
Shaw
, who almost redeems himself by having good taste in music. Some quick
hacks
on install-module produce good
results
.

I don’t have an expressable opinion on the language thing yet. But I’m glad
it has been brought up with a fairly sensible analysis,
instead of a flamewar. Even so…

Before Havoc’s essay:

After:

Since Alex Larsson doesn’t have a blog, I will have to blog this great article
about choice
for him: “The ordinary man believes he is free when he
is permitted to act arbitrarily, but in this very arbitrariness lies the
fact that he is unfree.”

There’ll be an Alan & Telsa moment in our house when Pipka gets up this morning. The Debian
Installer folk need testers on weird platforms, so I’ve been trying to help
out with some machines here. Unfortunately, they’re hot and noisy, and there
is very little room left in the office (which, um, would have nothing to do
with the amount of mess)… So sticking them upstairs in the chill-out room
with a wireless switch seems to be the best solution. I have the nagging
feeling that Pipka won’t appreciate them being there for too long, however.