QR Code contains TinyURL of this article.The Trawler: № 2

It’s time for another browser tab clear-out. So, without further ado, I present to you another collection of links to the Internet’s finest.

BSD Unix: Power to the people, from the code. How Berkeley hackers built the Net’s most fabled free operating system on the ashes of the ’60s, and then lost the lead to Linux.

A flaw in the design. The Internet’s founders saw its promise but didn’t foresee users attacking one another. The first of a multi-part project on the Internets inherent vulnerabilities.

But maybe our computers can tame these flaws for us:

Computer program fixes old code faster than expert engineers. What takes coders months, CSAIL’sHelium” can do in an hour. The programmer in me is both thrilled and terrified by this.

But what is code anyway? What if we could write code for the human machine?


Improve the built-in dictionary of OS X with a semantic lexical reference: Terminology, and Webster’s Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913 + 1828).

“You get a feeling about English that Calvin once got with his pet tiger on a day of fresh-fallen snow: ‘It’s a magical world, Hobbes. Let’s go exploring!’” James Somers


If you have any interest in retro computing or gaming history, you will enjoy Jimmy Maher’s “The Digital Antiquarian,” an ongoing history of computer entertainment. Regular readers will no doubt have deduced that I have a certain nostalgia for the 8-16 bit era of computer games and hardware. Maher’s beautifully written articles stoke the fires for me.

You should also check out: Retronator Magazine for “Pixel Art, Gaming & Saturated Colors.”

On a more serious note, I read about Berlin’s digital exiles: where tech activists go to escape the NSA.

“With its strict privacy laws, Germany is the refuge of choice for those hounded by the security services.”

Finally, two cool little hacks to conclude this issue:

  1. An inexpensive (in terms of computer resources) method of detecting DOM Mutation Events in the browser. This is pure genius.

  2. Adobe’s amazing “Creating Realistic Text with CSS.” Realistic as in it looks like you’re reading a photograph of a printed page or book.