Mailing list

November 30, 2005 | Leave a comment

We’re looking to start a development open-access mailing list. Can anyone recommend / offer reliable hosting? We’re open to commercial services, university-affiliated servers, as long as it’s going to stick around for a while.

Mainstream and then some

The Playstation Portable is now a fully capable podcasting client. A host of big players seem to be getting into podcasting at the ground level – right now it’s basically a hack that sits on top of weblog technology, but where will it be in five years? This is beginning to look like it’ll be bigger than weblogging itself.

Via Educational Weblogs.

RSS feeds in mail clients

I think, before too long, RSS feeds aggregated like this will be common practice. Users are all familiar with email, and placing the aggregator in a message-based context actually provides new functionality for content providers too – they can save bandwidth by letting people pull in the new content they’re interested in reading, and better yet, correct mistakes. When you send out a mailing list to subscribers, there’s no going back – with an RSS feed you simply change the content and wait for the clients to reload.

Within an educational context, this means that central information – like course notes, perhaps a lecturer’s blog – can be stored in one place but broadcast to their students. No worries about incorrect email addresses; just a single point of failure. I’d be interested to hear about anyone’s experiences doing this, with Elgg or any other software.

Firefox

Mozilla Firefox 1.5 is out – I upgraded this morning and haven’t found any problems. The thing is, I haven’t found any exciting new features either; there’s an easy-to-find “delete all private data” button that would be useful were I to use public computers, and a handy drag-tabs-to-reorder-them widget, but beyond that there’s precious little to sing about. Oh, and it’s incompatible with my web developer’s toolbar, at least for now.

Under the hood, of course, there’ll be all kinds of little fixes and compatibility nudges that make it a better piece of software, which is why I downloaded it. But considering that 81% of people are still using Microsoft Internet Explorer, I think they’re going to have a very difficult job indeed convincing people to move on reliability alone. I would go so far as to say that I think it’ll be a bit of a flop, at least compared to previous releases. The new Mozilla.com website is very nice though; I’ve always thought their graphic designers were very good. Does anyone know who does their art?

An aside: since they removed advertising a month or two ago, I’m becoming more and more impressed with Opera, even though my open-source-friendly instincts tell me to support Firefox to the end. It’s not my default browser – yet – but some of its unique features are both innovative and clever. It also runs faster than any other browser I’ve ever used.

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