(You might also like: Pulling the plug on Facebook and Twitter, Tweet Archive; New Normal; Google Spreadsheets API and Column Names)
My new debate site, Like Debate, is finally up and running and I'm losing the first debate badly. I need your help: The Oxford comma is an acceptable form of punctuation. Actually vote your conscience. I don't care if I win this one, but give it a spin and let me know if it works for you.
If you have a better argument for or against that wretched comma have at it.
There are things I still sort of like about Skype. I use it a lot for video calls (although for work and muti-party video it's pretty much all about Google Hangouts these days). I have a Philips phone that integrates with Skype for international calls (they seem to have discontinued it, and while the calls are cheap the UI is baroque). But the IM is horrible. It can't remember which messages you've seen between devices and so you're constantly trying to figure out what you have and haven't read.
And the IM on the desktop is nothing compared to the horror of the Skype Android app. This slowly spins up and by the time it's loaded previous messages your battery is dead.
Imo.im made Skype IM tolerable on Android and possible on a Chromebook. In the last week it seems that Skype has kneecapped them and blocked their servers from signing in. I'm limping by with IM+ Pro at the moment, but it's slow and buggy and frustrating.
I sympathize with Imo.im. I've been stiffed by Skype before as an officially sanctioned partner so it's no shock that they'd take out this kind of tool.
It would be nice if they could fix mobile and web access to the network first though.
2013-06-16 Update: There is now a patch for the issue discussed below.
I just upgraded to BlogEngine.net 2.8 as it contains a fix for broken links from Facebook. There were a couple of hitches that I'll share in case they help anyone else.
I messed up the first upgrade attempt because the updater utility updates the source folder (containing the newly downloaded 2.8 code) instead of the destination folder (containing the current version of your blog). This is a little odd and the result is I uploaded an unchanged instance and then embarrassingly complained the the Facebook bug hadn't been fixed. It had, just not in the folder I was expecting. I probably didn't pay enough attention to the instruction video.
Having got that out of the way I discovered that new posts were appearing with a bad link (to /.aspx instead of /blog-title.aspx). I rarely post using the editor as I have a home-grown post by email service running. After a bit of digging it turns out that prior to 2.8 you could leave the slug empty when creating a post but now this results in the bad link. Luckily there isn't much effort require to fix this, you just need to set the slug before saving the new post:
In the middle of playing with this my live site died and started returning a 500 error. No amount of uploading the working local copy would fix this. Happily Server Intellect have outstanding support and restored a working backup for me in the middle of the night. Thanks chaps!
(You might also like: Use WPF Dispatcher to invoke event handler only when needed; Geotagging posts in BlogEngine.NET; Wall of Skulls)
The Mirage by Matt Ruff
A brilliant and detailed transposition of 9/11 in America to 11/9 in Arabia. I thought it was going to be a one trick pony but Mirage also delivers a solid thriller.