Category Archives: Technobabble

Pun of the Day

Excerpt from #mozilla IRC chat:
jst we need one that says “Stop whining, just do it!”
caillon yeah
alecf god yeah
I could use that a lot when doing my reviews 🙂
peterv heh
WeirdAl whines only when he doesn’t understand
pouts the rest of the time
alecf that’s not a good time to whine
wow you’re a barrel of laughs
WeirdAl well, think about it: I’m right by Napa. Whining (sp!) comes naturally up here
(For those of you not from California, Napa Valley is world-famous for its wines.)

This just gets lovelier and lovelier.
(1) For some reason, sh isn’t calling perl correctly. And various people in #mozilla have been fairly adamant that building Moz with MingW on Win98SE is a fuggedaboudit kind of situation.
(2) I looked at the relatively simple instructions for building Mozilla on Linux, and I’d have to agree with them…
(3) So now I need to buy a Linux OS and get it installed on my system. Because that’s such a big leap for me (my experience with Linux is reading advertisements and computer magazine columns), I think I’ll pay someone to actually set it up for me and get my Internet connection working via Linux.
(4) Of course, cash flow is a bit of a problem…
And why do I want Linux or for that matter a buildable Mozilla? Well, it’s high time I learned C++ to do some of the cool things I dream of doing with the Lizard. I’m just a bit tired of having my hand held in understanding the Mozilla code beyond the UI.
Not sure that’s a great reason to learn, but I’m fairly sure I need to do this.

Hack The Matrix

Went to see “The Matrix Reloaded” today. Six words describe it best: “What the h*ll is going on?”
That’s sort of the feeling you have going on throughout the whole film. Which, I’m sure, is exactly what the Wachowski (sp?) Brothers intended!
Oh, most of the movie makes sense. But I just can’t figure out why Hugo Weaving’s ex-Agent Smith (ok, I just gave away a spoiler) is back. They never really make that clear in this film.
About the only bit I felt wasn’t necessary was the window-fogging scene between Neo and Trinity. Like we didn’t know that was happening; it just wasn’t necessary. I actually found myself thinking “get on with the story, man”. But, I guess they have hundreds of thousands of young male fans to satisfy… and I’m only one among those thousands.

OSCON 2003 in Portland, OR
Last year’s in San Diego, CA, was nice. This year, I won’t have to pay for the hotel room… my parents live right across the Columbia River in Vancouver, WA.
Looks like this year,’s presence will be restricted to Birds-of-a-Feather sessions (BOFs). Maybe we should try crashing the party (one BOF a day) 😉
BOF: Mozilla Beyond 1.4, BOF: QA & Triage, BOF: Bug Fixing, BOF: Business & Documentation, BOF: Anything Under The Sun, BOF: Introduction to Mozilla Technologies, etc.


I sure wish my local library would install Mozilla 1.0.x or at least Netscape 7.0. Last time I tried raising the issue (at least six months ago), they weren’t too enthusiastic about the idea. When I first broached it well over a year ago, they mentioned possible issues with security (yeah, right, like IE is secure and Mozilla isn’t).
Oh, well. At least I got to sign a copy of my book over here at the JFK library. The library system’s website is

Hello World

Welcome, everybody, to my two bytes on I’m here mainly to talk about my experiences working with DOM Inspector and with documentation.
Sometimes you’ll catch useful tidbits on how to do this or that in Mozilla. I have a section on XUL, XBL, JS and the DOM set aside for revelations along those lines.
Sometimes you’ll see me commenting about DOM Inspector, which is far and away my favorite tool in the suite. I’m trying to do a lot of enhancements to its code, give it functionality it’s never seen before. It’s going to be “sweet”, to quote bz.
Sometimes you’ll see me talking about issues facing documentation on — which I think is so far doomed right now that you need to send in the Marines. Docs has some serious issues facing it — beyond just asking people to write docs. Gerv may disagree with me on that, but I’m trying to convince him and others that we really need to just have a massive focus/push on getting documentation’s issues resolved well enough to get momentum going.
And then every now and then you’ll see me talking nonsense in the “Technobabble” section. But not too often. Well, maybe during baseball season (go Mariners).
Alex Vincent
author, JavaScript Developer’s Dictionary (Sams Publishing, 2002)
moderator, XML forum @