GaSP v2 and the new Imagine Theme!

Over the last few weeks, I have completely rebuilt GaSP (both the front and back ends).

gasp-admin
It is now fast, secure, and intuitive, while keeping the source code easily readable (Hey, I spent too many years as an educator for that not to be one of my goals). All of the changes inspired me to build a new theme, so may I present Imagine!
imagine
I took the picture earlier this year on a trip to New York with my daughter. I really liked the interplay of lines and patterns and have been looking for an interesting way to use the image. Here, I have used CSS 3 border radius and shadow along with font embedding to build a theme that feels like it flows with the picture. If you load the site on your mobile phone, you will also get to see the mobile version of the theme. I am still working on the tablet version (I only have a Kindle Fire to test it on and I don’t trust its browser to speak for all tablets).
Once I finish cleaning up the GaSP source files, I will be open sourcing the code, and some default themes along with it. Any, and all, feedback is welcome!

Link: Premium VPN UK/US PPTP and OpenVPN VPN | HideIpVPN

From Premium VPN UK/US PPTP and OpenVPN VPN | HideIpVPN:

 

HideIPVPN offers premium VPN accounts on our servers located in United States, United Kingdom, Germany and Canada.

Link

With recent changes in Privacy Laws here in Massachusetts, I have become more aware of when and where customer data lives on my computer. This, in turn, makes me more hesitant to work from the local coffee shop on their WiFi. How do I know the connection is secure? Is there a way I can guarantee its security?

By using a VPN service (like the one provided by my office), I can be assured that my data is encrypted. But, what can I do about my personal work? What happens while I am traveling? In both of these situations, I can use HideIpVPN to protect my data from local prying eyes.

HideIpVPN offers other benefits as well. My bank’s website requires me to have an IP address that originates in my home country. This can be inconvenient when traveling abroad. HideIpVPN offers to mask your IP address with IP addresses from the US, the UK, Germany, and Canada giving you access to local services in the country you choose.

The service is also useful for Web Application Designers. Recently, I used the service to check if an application I wrote picks up what country someone is connecting from so it can display prices in their local currency. I seamlessly moved back and forth between US Dollars and Great British Pounds simply by turning on and off the VPN connection.

It’s simple to configure for Mac OSX. The built-in VPN supports HideIpVPN just fine. So, whether you are protecting your connection, connecting to your Bank, or longing to watch TV programs that can only be viewed if your IP is in a particular country, the easiest way that I have found to do all of this, is a HideIpVPN account.

Link: Microsoft Confirms IE9 Won’t Come to XP

From Microsoft Confirms IE9 Won’t Come to XP – HotHardware:

 

Link

Since the ranks of Windows XP will not be diminishing any time soon, this means that IE8 support in websites will be around for a very long time to come. This is not a bad thing actually. In fact, IE8 does a pretty good job being standards compliant.

I do hope that this move in some way accelerates the decline of IE6 market share. IE6 support is being dropped by many large players in the web application space these days, most notably, YouTube. But, many developers like me don’t have a choice of what browsers we support.

In an ideal world, I would only like to support the latest version of any web browser for a particular operating system (IE8 for Windows XP, Safari 3 for Mac OSX 10.4, etc). In a very straight forward way, this makes an incredible amount of sense.

Why then, do we all worry about IE6?

Simple really. There are lots of corporate users who are not allowed to upgrade the browsers on their computers. So, they are still using IE6. So, though I am not a Windows user, every day I hope for a faster Windows 7 adoption rate. Every person who realizes that 7 is not the new Vista, potentially reduces the ranks of IE6 users.

Get it right this time Microsoft, make IE9 just irresistible. Help bury the IE6 monster that you created.

Use Facebook, Google, Yahoo, and OpenID accounts to log into my site

Some friends have been following links from LiveJournal, Twitter, and Facebook back to this site and have been wondering about how to log in here (so they are not commenting anonymously).

If you go to the Log In link at the top of the page, you will see a way to log in with Facebook or OpenID (Yahoo uses OpenID).

fb-openid

And, if you click to reply to a message and are not logged in, you will see this button to connect using Google Friend Connect.

friendconnect

Using any of these methods will create an account on this system that is linked to your existing account.

Hope that helps!