Steve Burge

Talking open source since 2005

All the focus on WordPress’ new desktop app has been about its use of Javascript.

I think that’s missing the bigger picture.

Brian Krogsgard’s Post Status newsletter has an interesting quote from Matt Terenzio:

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I’ve spent some time testing today’s new desktop app from Automattic:

The app is pretty good, especially for a 1.0 release.

What struck me more than the power of Calypso, was the power of Jetpack.

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Take a brief look at the web today and you might think open source has a lot of influence:

  • Swift is open source, from Apple.
  • HHVM is open source, from Facebook.
  • Android is open source, from Google.
  • Bootstrap is open source, from Twitter.
  • .Net is open source from Microsoft.

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Welcome to my #firstworldproblems post.

I make a good living, sitting At my desk all day. I can take breaks at any time and eat whatever I want.

I’ve nothing to complain about except a lack of self-discipline. That freedom to eat has been trouble.

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Amongst all the news of the European refugee crisis, one snippet stood out to me:

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10 years ago, I was standing in a classroom on the north side of Atlanta, Georgia.

My job was teaching English to the children from Central America whose parents had flocked to Atlanta, looking for construction jobs during the enormous housing boom.

I found out about Joomla’s arrival while sitting at my desk, grading papers during a lunch break.

The growth of Joomla gave me the confidence to start my own business. Joomla allowed me to work from home and see our two children (now 4 and 5) grow up.

The majority of our business today is not Joomla-related, but Joomla is where it all started.

When Joomla’s 5th birthday arrived, I wrote a post for called Thank You.

Now that Joomla’s 10th birthday has arrived, let me say “Thank You” again.

This week, Adobe released a new set of stats about ad blocking. These were the headline figures:

  • Globally, the use of ad blocking software grew by 41% year over year.
  • Usage in the United States grew 48% during the past year and Europe grew by 35%.

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This is a fascinating use of Slack, via Michael Strickland. The NYTimes used Slack to write, edit and publish a live blog of last night’s Republican debate.

They wrote a Chrome plugin to connect a Slack channel directly to their CMS.

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Back in 2007, decided to stop listing any software that used license keys. They did this because they believed that license keys were incompatible with the GPL license.

Fast forward to 2015 and many (most?) commercial WordPress plugins now use license keys. Some of these license keys just provide access to updates and support – those aren’t the issue here.

However, some license keys lock down the software to a single domain, disabling the plugin even on test sites and localhost installs.

Does this use of license keys violate the GPL?

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Over the last 5 years, I’ve not missed a single episode of From Our Own Correspondent from the BBC.

The brilliance of From Our Own Correspondent is its discipline:

  • Each episode is 30 minutes long.
  • Each episode has 5 segments from different countries.
  • Each segment is about 5 1/2 minutes long.
  • Each segment only ever has one person talking.
  • There are never any sound effects.
  • There’s never any news. The show is all about stories and personal anecdotes.

Oh, and the show is going to be 60 years old this year. It’s an incredibly successful example of creativity coming from a strong restrictions.

The only flexibility in the show comes from the breadth of the stories told and how they often swing from tragedy to comedy within a single episode.

You can get the From Our Own Correspondent podcasts here.

This show gets me thinking about how I could improve by putting tighter restrictions on my work.