Mink Machine

Entries of year 2006

A first look at Expression Web Designer

I’ve had a look at the May 14th release version of Community Technology Preview (CTP) of Microsoft’s Expression Web Designer (codename Quartz), one third of the Expression series also including Interactive Designer (codename Sparkle) and Graphic Designer (codename Acrylic). Unlike Interactive Designer that targets WinFX Runtime Components Beta 2, the Web Designer is ready to go straight from the box.

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Contenders for mashup dominion

The web site Placeopedia is a mashup using Google Maps, connecting cities with their Wikipedia entries. In other words, it’s sort of a geographical version of Wikipedia for the planet Earth. It’s still in a very early phase and there are lot of contenders, but it could be interesting to watch it grow. If you prefer to tag areas instead of points, WikiMapia is an alternative. It allows users to tag map areas and write their own comments.

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German engineering vs iPod nano

You’ve all heard the stories about the extremely sensitive surface of the iPod nano. It’s almost getting scratched by merely looking menacingly at it. Yet somehow, we all seem to like the shiny little carebear while resisting the urge to examine just how fragile it really is in a bare-knuckles fight. What we all want to know is: can it withstand the crushing power of German automobile engineering? Have a look at the destructive stress testing.

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Noise at work

At most offices today there is a never-ending assault of ambient sounds. Annoying cell phone signals, printers screaming in agony, people shouting across the hall, you name it. Some depends on the environment (such as heavy traffic outside), some on fellow colleagues (choosing loud nasty phone signals). How do people cope with it?

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Atlas demo with Europe map

I’ve been playing around a bit with the April CTP release of Atlas, Microsoft’s upcoming framework for Ajax applications. I’ve done a small live demonstration with ASP.NET 2.0 which show a basic map display with pinpointed locations. The pins show some of the largest cities in Europe.

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Featured stories

The sound of Salzburg

The sound of Salzburg

"It is based on the true story of Maria von Trapp, even though I suspect she didn’t go singing alone in the mountain ranges."
Eating my way through Basque country

Eating my way through Basque country

"Not too bad to wash it all down with a local Txakoli, the young white wine typical of the Basque country."
Roaming in Valletta

Roaming in Valletta

"I passed the statue of Jean de Valette, the 49th Grand Master who laid the foundation stone to Valletta in 1566, to gaze at the golden interior of St. John’s Co-Cathedral, where he is buried in the crypt."
Roaming the cobblestones of Istanbul

Roaming the cobblestones of Istanbul

"Inside the church there are still traces of rune inscriptions made during the Viking age by Varangians, an elite guard made up of Scandinavian immigrant warriors."
On the Trans-Siberian

On the Trans-Siberian

"Since the toilets were locked during the seven hour stop, we had to bribe the provodnitsas to use the facilities. Then came the Mongols."
The lakes of Lombardy

The lakes of Lombardy

"The town of Como, largest settlement around Lake Como, attracts a lot of people with big wallets. But I preferred to take the funicular up the mountain to the Brunate region, where you get a much better view of the lake."

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