YQL - Yahoo! Query Language Logo

The Yahoo! Query Language is an expressive SQL-like language that lets you query, filter, and join data across Web services.

YQL’s possibilities are virtually endless, say you want to get specific Flickr Images containing a defined word in the title, or you want to geo-code some addresses on the fly. YQL makes those tasks extremely easy by just forming a simple query that gathers the data. Output can be switched between JSON and XML, so you can choose whatever fits best for your application.

The best way to go about using a YQL service is as follows:

  • Construct your query using the YQL Console and try out if it gives you the right result.
  • Copy the REST Query URL the console gives you at the bottom and insert it into your web app. There are even examples in the documentation on how to use REST queries in different programming environments.

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Facebook iPhone Dev Quits Project Over Apple Tyranny

What a shame! Joe Hewitt was a very skilled iPhone developer and it’s a pity to see him move back to the web because of Apple’s App Store policies.

My decision to stop iPhone development has had everything to do with Apple???s policies. I respect their right to manage their platform however they want, however I am philosophically opposed to the existence of their review process. I am very concerned that they are setting a horrible precedent for other software platforms, and soon gatekeepers will start infesting the lives of every software developer.

The web is still unrestricted and free, and so I am returning to my roots as a web developer. In the long term, I would like to be able to say that I helped to make the web the best mobile platform available, rather than being part of the transition to a world where every developer must go through a middleman to get their software in the hands of users.???

via Techcrunch

Here’s quite an interesting interview with Joe Hewitt from earlier this year at the Mobile Orchard Podcast.

All over the place sites are suddenly going out of business. And no, I don’t mean those myriads of startups, that shut down their pages due to a poorly designed business model (or none at all). I’m talking about websites, that once held up the flag of free speech and off-mainstream information, art & ideas.

Two sites in particular, that I really liked for their unusual approach, shut down during the last months.

The first is TOTSE or the “Temple of the screaming electron” how the initiated call it. This site originated as a BBS back in the old days and hosted a huge number of text files on nearly every imaginable topic. This site brought up the concept of “user generated content” decades before it became a Web 2.0 buzzword. It’s very sad to see it go.
Read the site owner’s statement over here: TTFN

The second site that came to my attention, by shutting down recently, is T-Shirt Hell. A business selling shirts with questionable (and for some prudish folks even offensive) slogans. I found most of them really funny and it appears to me, that the people who where complaining about it, simply didn’t quite grasp the irony and criticism behind the phrases on the shirts.
You can read what T-Shirt hell has to say about the whole matter here: T-Shirt Hell says Goodbye

So is this a general trend? Did someone start a hunt on non-conformist folks and tries to get them “off the net”? I find it rather disconcerting to see sites shutting down, that where slightly off the main course of what the general public seems to consider “appropriate”.
Thanks to the guys running those sites, I’ll honour your work and it’s really sad to see you go!