Opera Cure: Worse Than the Disease? – You may have seen the news yesterday that browser maker Opera filed a complaint against Microsoft with the European Commission, opening up the legal browser wars yet again. Raising the banner of consumer choice, they’re requesting the Commission to implement two remedies. First, they want IE unbundled from Windows (haven’t we been down this road before?). Second, they want “the European Commission to require Microsoft to follow fundamental and open Web standards accepted by the Web-authoring communities.”
Much as I’ve had issues with Microsoft and IE in the past, I personally shudder to think about the courts getting involved in the already-messy business of web standards. As web workers, do we really want to have this precedent set? Are there any browsers out there that implement all the “fundamental and open Web standards” (and how do we decide which of the huge stew of standards are fundamental)? And once they get involved, why would the courts stop at regulating browsers? Imagine a takedown order aimed at a site you just deployed because it won’t validate…
Location Independence for IM History – That’s the goal of IM-History, a service that takes your chat histories and contact lists and stories them online for searching from anywhere. Seems like this could be useful if you bounce back and forth between multiple machines in your use of IM. Requires a local install of their client, which currently supports Skype, Yahoo, ICQ, MSN, Miranda, QIP, Trillian, and Pidgin on Windows or Pidgin on Linux.
Social Technical Support – CrossLoop is one of several companies providing wrappers around the VNC family of screen-sharing products to allow easy and secure sessions from one computer to another. In addition to trying to make VNC secure enough for enterprise use, they let you set up a CrossLoop account, giving you a widget to promote your technical skills on your own site, where users can click through to see how you’ve been rated by people who have used your services in past support sessions. Main drawback for web workers: it’s Windows-only at the moment.
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