Bigsmallbig.

Thanks in part to a nudge from Mark Pilgrim, and in part to a smart little PHP class (long since disowned by its author) [see below], the documents on this site are now served gzip compressed (at sizes reduced as much as 75%) to browsers which can handle such data, which I believe is most, though I’m not sure, but I’m fairly sure that browsers which cannot handle such data are sent a plain uncompressed file. I would ask for reports of decompression errors, but if there were any decompression errors the request wouldn’t be visible; such is the nature of compression. If you can read this it works.

UPDATE: Anyone with a recent version of PHP (4.1+) running on their server can easily take advantage of this. Benefits are greatly reduced bandwidth consumption and a much speedier site, especially for readers using modems.

Simply place the following snippet at the very first line of PHP-aware web pages, before :

And that’s it. Test here.

Potential problems and solutions:

  • If compression is failing and you can see the code snippet when you View Source on your page, the page is not PHP-aware. Create a text file in your web directory called .htaccess (if one exists already, open it) and paste the following inside it:
    AddType application/x-httpd-php .html .htm
  • If compression is failing and you can’t see the code snippet when you View Source, chances are your server’s version of PHP was compiled without the gzip library. Confirm this with your server admin.
  • If you get the error message "output handler 'ob_gzhandler' cannot be used twice", your pages are already being compressed. Felicitations.
  • If you get an error message like "headers already sent", make sure the snippet is at the very beginning of the page, before anything else.

[Textism]

Mail Scripts 1.3.3.  – Mail Scripts is a collection of AppleScripts for Mail and Address Book offering additional features or simplified workflow. Changes in this version include bug fixes and a new feature that allows the option to export messages as text files (one file per message) instead of mbox files. [AppleScript Info]

Dear Friends.

I have been watching you very closely to see if you
have been good this year and since you have I will
be telling my elves to make some goodies for me to
leave under your tree at Christmas. I was going to bring
you all gifts from the 12 days of Christmas, but we
had a little problem. The 12 fiddlers fiddling have
all come down with VD from fiddling with the
10 ladies dancing, the 11 lords leaping have
knocked up the 8 maids a-milking, and the 9 pipers
piping have been arrested for doing weird things
to the 7 swans a-swimming. The 6 geese a-laying, 4
calling birds, 3 French hens, 2 turtle doves and the
partridge in a pear tree have me up to my sled runners in bird sh*t.

On top of all this Mrs. Claus is going through
menopause, 8 of my reindeer are in heat, 1/2 of the elves
have joined the gay liberation and some people who
can't read a calendar have scheduled Christmas for
the 5th of January. Maybe next year I will be able to get my sh*t
together
and bring you the things you want. This year I
suggest you get your Butts down to Walmart before
everything is gone.

Sincerely,

S. Claus

Opera Baby

http://www.flowgo.com/greetings/operababy/operababy.swf

Email Click Throughs Increasing.

eMarketer: E-Mail Click-Throughs Climb in Q3

According to the Q3 Email Trend Report from DoubleClick, average click-through rates (CTR) for e-mail campaigns grew to 6.13% in Q3 from 4.85% in the previous quarter. DoubleClick notes that this year's Q3 average is on par with the average click-through rate during the same quarter last year.

The report also discusses click-through by industry and types of email (research, marketing, subscription offer, etc.) Haven't we moved beyond click-through though?

[marketingfix]

Replacing Perl Scripts with PHP Scripts. With the introduction of version 4.2, PHP has started supporting a new SAPI (Server Application Programming Interface) called CLI (Command Line Interface). This facility was introduced to help developers create small shell applications (scripts) with PHP. So, now you can kiss Perl goodbye forever. — Jayesh Jain

Hear hear. Thanks to my influence, other developers at Natsoft are using PHP for their batch scripts too. Hmm maybe it is because they report to me…

“zeldman.bang” [PHP Everywhere]


Living Below Your Means
Guide to Surviving Unemployment

I have been reading this series by the Motley Fool ever since it became a way of life for me back in February. While not always easy, and almost rarely fun, this article really sums up a lot of my experiences, decisions, and thoughts throughout most of this year.

Even if you found that pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, do yourself a favor and read this most excellent article.