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August 30, 2004-- Newsletter #300
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Goodies to Go (tm)
August 30, 2004--Newsletter #300
This newsletter is part of the internet.com network.
Featured this week:
* Goodies Thoughts - The Numbers Game
* Q & A Goodies
* News Goodies
* Goodies Peer Reviews
* And Remember This...
The new Beyond HTML Goodies book is now available!
Goodies Thoughts - The Numbers Game
Numbers are funny things. They can be really amazing if you
think about them. For example, to get from one number to the next, you simply
add one to it. This is the same for all numbers, so why is it that "special
feature" numbers, like prime numbers, are not evenly distributed among the other
numbers? The primes come in clumps, with huge gaps in between the clumps.
Personally, I think that this feature is fundamental to the structure of the
universe. Stephen Hawking has pointed out that the uneven distribution of matter
in the universe a few moments after the big bang is what gave rise to the
galaxies and all that they contain. As the universe came into existence, there
was first one thing, then another and another and so on. The rapid rise in the
number of things is what we call the Big Bang, so it all seems to make sense to
me! (Actually, I think the universe makes as much sense to me as it did to
I was inspired to think about these funny things numbers do by the coincidence of today's date, being the 30th, and today's issue number, being the 300th. Having contemplated "Top Ten" ideas and "special numbers" relating to the Internet (and ending up yawning at both!) I decided it would be interesting to take a look back over the past issues of GTG that are nicely organized in the archive, and see what fascinating snippets I find. Here then, is the result of my treasure quest:
#1 November 9th, 1998 -- The Inaugural Issue.
Joe Burns, the original creator of HTML Goodies put out his first newsletter. Joe's brilliance is his very familiar humor and his ability to explain things in a manner we can all understand. Check out that issue, http://www.htmlgoodies.com/letters/001.html and count the number of times he uses the word "fun". Joe opened GTG with "Greetings, Weekend Silicon Warriors ", describing his view of his audience.
#9 January 4, 1999
The first issue of the new year contains lots of humorous predictions for the state of the web at the end of 2004. It's fun to compare with what's actually happening now that we're almost there. Joe was a little off on a couple of points! http://www.htmlgoodies.com/letters/009.html
#60 December 27, 1999
Joe ends the year with more predictions, this time predicting all kinds of disasters resulting from the "Y2K Bug", http://www.htmlgoodies.com/letters/060.html only to find that........
#62 January 10, 2000
..... he's eating "Some Crow and a side helping of Humble Pie"!! See http://www.htmlgoodies.com/letters/062.html
#100 The Centennial Issue
And in this one, there's lots of e-commerce news; plus, you can find Wilma Flintstone's maiden name along with Betty's! http://www.htmlgoodies.com/letters/100.html
#113 January 16, 2001
GTG now sports the line: "This newsletter is part of the internet.com network", having been acquired by Internet.com (now Jupitermedia.) http://www.htmlgoodies.com/letters/113.html
#161 December 17, 2001
Joe's penultimate newsletter (for some reason his last newsletter never made it into the archive) as he moves on to pastures new, and .......
#162 January 7, 2002
..... Curtis Dicken takes over. Strange thing here is that #161 & #162, despite having the consecutive numbers, appear to have had two issues sent out in between them. In 161 Joe talks about the next issue being his last, and in 162 Curtis refers to something he sent out prior to 162. (see http://www.htmlgoodies.com/letters/161.html & http://www.htmlgoodies.com/letters/162.html) Something else I noticed here is that Curtis seems to have favored the reverse chronological direction for the Archive Index to that which Joe favored. Joe's are oldest at the top, newest at the bottom and Curtis reversed the direction. I think I prefer the newest at the top -- that's also how I have my email arranged.
#194 August 19, 2002
Yours truly takes over the helm with a somewhat abbreviated newsletter, sent out on my sister's birthday, what's more! http://www.htmlgoodies.com/letters/194.html
#200 September 30, 2002
And we reach the bicentennial issue http://www.htmlgoodies.com/letters/200.html -- the hot topic here is he ongoing browser war. Why choose? -- Have 'em all, is what I say!
So now here we are, the tricentennial issue, which indicates to me that my 100th slipped by without me noticing! I'll have to make up some other excuse for a party!
I really enjoy creating GTG, and based on your responses it seems that you enjoy receiving it. If so, please tell your friends and colleagues -- perhaps the most important number of all is the subscriber count -- as long as that number keeps increasing, Jupitermedia will continue to fund GTG as a free newsletter.
I think we'd all like that!
Thanks for Reading!
- Vince Barnes
Questions are taken from submissions to our Community Mentors. You can ask a Mentor a question by going to http://www.htmlgoodies.com/mentors.
Q. I'm trying to implement Joe Burns' shopping cart onto my webpage and it's working great so far. However, instead of having an 'Add This Item To My Total', and then a 'You Have Ordered This Many Of This Item:', I'd like to have a dropdown menu listing various numerical choices and then an 'Add This Amount To My Total' button. I'm trying to figure it out, but I'm not getting very far. How do I go about doing this?
the function that fills that box in Joe's script also stores the variable, and you need to find another way to do that. That's the part that's a serious rewrite.
Q. I am starting to design web-pages and wanted to know what would I need to start a small e-commerce site. I want it to be database driven.
A. First you need to know if your server supports database driven sites and if so, what type. If your host uses a UNIX server then it should support PHP and PERL. If your server is a Windows server then it supports ASP. Once you figure which one, you can then look for a shopping cart that will work on your particular server. Your host may even offer a cart for you to use. Ask them first. The next is to start testing cart available on the internet. Do a search on Google and then test drive them. Make a list of what you might want in a cart and see which ones offer what you need.
If you do not want host your own shopping cart, you can look into something like Paypal (http://www.paypal.com). HTMLGoodies has a tutorial about Paypal here: http://www.htmlgoodies.com/beyond/paypal.html
They do all of the shopping cart work for you. You add some code to your site to use their cart. They do get a percentage of the sale but I am not sure how much.
Q. I want to add a link on my pages that would allow my visitors to go back to the last page they were looking at, no matter which page it was (like the "Back" button, but a hyperlink). How do I code this?
Q. Do you use href to open a link in a new window?
A. Yes you do. You add the target="blank" for a new window. Code it like so:
<a href="http://www.somewhere.com" target="_blank">Somewhere</a>
Q. My server supports CGI, PERL, PHP & MySQL, but not ASP. What is the easiest way to add a shopping cart capability with credit card processing capability?
A. You can buy a shopping cart that will run on what your host supports. First check with your host to make sure that they allow uploading a shopping cart. Then take a look at this site: http://php.resourceindex.com/Complete_Scripts/Shopping_Carts
It has a lot of pre-built carts that will run on a server that supports PHP. They seem fairly inexpensive. Before you buy one, make sure it has everything you are looking for and if possible, see if they offer a demo for you to try.
Q. I'd like to do is create a template (basically a header and footer) so that I can update the top and bottom of all my webpages by only altering one file for each.
A. You can use SSI to include a page at the top and a page at the bottom, if your server supports this. Take a look at this tutorial: http://www.htmlgoodies.com/beyond/asp.html
About half way down the page it explains SSI and include pages.
Verizon Wireless Expands to Circuit City
[August 30, 2004] The mobile carrier plans retail expansion inside 570 Circuit City stores.
Juniper Takes Security to Endpoints
[August 30, 2004] A new initiative integrates third-party software from McAfee and others with Juniper's SSL VPN appliance.
IBM's Little DB Gets Big Help
[August 30, 2004] IBM plans to beef up its online community to support development of Cloudscape and Derby.
WinAmp Skin Flaw Patched
[August 30, 2004] The new WinAmp 5.05 modifies the way the skin installer mechanism works.
India Worth More Than Outsourcing
[August 27, 2004] UPDATED: Vendors pursue a burgeoning market for products and services while mindful that some hurdles remain.
It's Official: Longhorn 2006
[August 27, 2004] Microsoft makes deep cuts in features to get its next major release of Windows on the road.
Google Options Begin Trading
[August 27, 2004] Google began trading options on Friday, and interest in the financial instruments appeared strong.
HP's iPod Leads Product Rush
[August 27, 2004] The company woos consumers with 25 new products to help comprise its digital oasis.
VeriSign Loses Round Against ICANN
[August 27, 2004] Registrar said it would file another antitrust complaint against ICANN in state courts.
A Virtual Work-Around The RNC
[August 27, 2004] With a swath of downtown NYC closed to traffic and gridlock on the horizon, workers plan on taking their business to the Internet.
Every week a site is selected for review. Each week, reviews of the previous week's selected site are chosen for publication on the HTML Goodies website.
The current week's selected site is published in Goodies To
Go and in the Peer Reviews section of the website.
Current contact email addresses for submitting your site and
for submitting reviews are published in Goodies To Go.
If you would like to have your site reviewed, sign up for the Goodies To Go newsletter in the Navigation Bar on the left side of this page.
For full details about this program, see http://www.htmlgoodies.com/peerreviews
Did you ever wish your newsletter was an easy two way communications medium? Ploof! It now is!
If you would like to comment on the newsletter or expand/improve on something you have seen in here, you can now send your input to:
We already receive a lot of email every day. This address will help us sort out those relating specifically to this newsletter from all the rest. When you send email to this address it may wind up being included in this section of the newsletter, to be shared with your fellow readers. Please don't send your questions to this address. They should be sent to our mentors: see http://www.htmlgoodies.com/mentors/
For those who are missing Peer reviews: we are once again revising the Peer review program in the hopes of creating a workable solution. The current plan is to move the new Peer Review pages into place in the new year. All those who have been selected for reviews in the past will be featured in the new pages. The new method will make it much easier for your peers to provide feedback and much easier for us to handle the publication side of things. "Watch this space!" It's coming soon!!
Thanks for all the responses to the blog article last week; I'm glad you all liked it so much! Congratulations to all of you who are now new bloggers! You will, I am sure, find it to be a fun and oftentimes therapeutic pastime.
I'll be adding some posts to the demo blog at http://htmlgoodies.blogspot.com that will include links to some of the blogs you let me know about. Go check 'em all out!
Thanks again for all your feedback!
Windows Tech Goodie of the Week:
Middle-Tier Hosting for Client/Server Communication
There is broad-reaching debate about .NET Remoting, Web services, Enterprise Services, and DCOM. It is a debate about the best technology to use when implementing client/server communication in .NET. Rocky Lhotka shares his thoughts on the issue while offering clear explanations of basic application architecture terminology.
*** AND ***
ASP.NET URL Rewriting and Caching Engine
A simple idea for content management turns into a great little script via lots of trial and error in this article on ASP.NET URL rewriting.
And Remember This . . .
On this day in...
1983 First African American in space
With the launch of the space shuttle Challenger on this date in 1983, U.S. Air Force Lieutenant Colonel Guion S. Bluford became the first African American to travel into space.
"Guy" Bluford was born in Philadelphia in 1942 and graduated from Penn State with a degree in aerospace engineering in 1964. He got his wings as a pilot in the US Air Force in 1965 and flew 144 combat missions in Vietnam. In the 1970's he received a master's degree and doctorate in aerospace engineering from the Air Force Institute of Technology and was accepted into the U.S. astronaut program in 1979. He was a mission specialist on the 1983 mission (the eighth shuttle flight) and flew three more shuttle missions after that one.
Today was also the day that in: Honolulu, Hawaii became a city; 1941 the Nazi's Siege of Leningrad began; 1945 Hong Kong was liberated from Japan; 1961 JB Parsons was confirmed as the first African American US District Court Judge; 1963 the White House - Kremlin hotline went into service; 1967 Thurgood Mashall was confirmed as the first African American US Supreme Court Justice; 1979 President Jimmy Carter was attacked by a rabbit while on a canoe trip in Plains, Georgia (US); 1989 Roman Polanski and actress Emanuelle Seigner were married;
Born today were: in 1797 English author, creator of Frankenstein, Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley; 1871 English physicist, discoverer of the nucleus of atoms, Ernest Lord Rutherford; 1907 actor Fred MacMurray; 1909 actress Joan Blondell; 1917 actress Julie Bishop; 1919 country singer Kitty Wells; 1927 clothing designer Geoffrey Beene; 1928 actor Bill Daily; 1935 singer John Phillips; 1939 actress Elizabeth Ashley; 1950 actor John Landis; 1974 musician (cousin to Jon Bon Jovi) Matt Bongiovi;
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