Foursquare Latest Checkins Widget

Foursquare Latest Checkins Widget Screenshot

Foursquare Latest Checkins Widget

I just released the first public version of my newest WordPress Plugin.

The Widget displays your latest Foursquare checkins in your sidebar. There are quite a few plugins out there that offer similar or even more features, but my motivation was, that I wanted the venue icons to show up as well. After a bit of research I found out, that the only way would be to use Foursquare’s API and not the private RSS feed most of the other developer used for easy integration.

Since I didn’t want to learn yet another API I just used Yahoo’s awesome YQL to get out the data I wanted. There is no caching impemented in the plugin at the moment, so it would be wise (anyway) to have some kind of page caching mechanism installed on your WordPress blog, otherwise it might slow down page loads, because of the sometimes relatively high latency of YQL calls.

Head over to the Foursquare Latest Checkins Plugin page to download.

Feel free to comment with feature requests, questions and criticism. I’ll try to answer it all!

Is IE9 a modern browser? NO!

Firefox versus IE9I just stumbled upon this infographic by @paulrouget that explains the differences between Mozilla Firefox (4) and the just released Microsoft Internet Explorer 9. I have to say, that I was pretty excited about this new IE version, because I thought that maybe finally the headaches over IE compatibility will start to fade away. But after reading through all those information I am very disappointed. For instance they still didn’t implement simple CSS stuff like text-shadow? Seriously?! (And I’m not even talking about transitions, gradients or HTML5 history API)

Click here to see the graphic as an HTML document with clickable links to all the test sources.

When will Microsoft wake up and get their act together? Is there really any incentive in releasing a browser that lacks so far behind? Especially when they already acknowledged that their older products (IE7 & IE8) are lacking most of the modern web technologies and thus they needed to release IE9.

 

Thanks to @malde for sharing this in Google Reader!

Paste currently playing iTunes song in text fields (aka AMIP for Mac)

For quite some time Mac users where searching for a way to paste the currently playing song from iTunes in chat messages etc. I never thought about it much but recently a friend of mine, who was a former AMIP user on Windows, needed a similar functionality under OS X. Together we constructed a working solution.

So here it is the AMIP alternative for Mac:

    • Open Automator and start a new “Service”
    • Choose “no input” for “Service receives”
    • Drag the “Run AppleScript” Action into the workflow
    • Paste in the following and edit the output in (green) to your hearts desire
on run
 try
 tell application "iTunes"
 set songTitle to the name of the current track
 set songArtist to the artist of the current track
 set songAlbum to the album of the current track
 set songYear to the year of the current track
 set the clipboard to "np:" & the songArtist & " - " & songTitle & " \"" & songAlbum & ", " & songYear & "\""
 end tell
 end try
 try
 set the clipboard to Unicode text of (the clipboard as record)
 on error errMsg
 display dialog errMsg
 end try
 tell application "System Events"
 key code 9 using {command down}
 end tell
end run
  • Save the service. I named mine “music” (creative isn’t it? :) )
  • Now your able to run the service from every application’s menu under “Services”. Be sure to have your cursor in a text field because the service will immediately paste in the constructed string.
  • If you’re in a super nerdy mood today, you can also give your service a keyboard shortcut.
    Go to “System Preferences”, open “Keyboard”, go to “Keyboard Shortcuts” and set your desired Hotkey. (mine’s CMD + SHIFT + M)

I’d be happy to see further improvements, thoughts & ideas about this solutions in the comments!

 

And to all my Austrian friends: Frohen Faschingsdienstag (not that I’d care!)