January 24, 2009

HTML/CSS/JavaScript: What’s Possible #1

Filed under: Groundwork — mikecane @ 1:39 pm

I don’t code. I also lack the math gene (which is a personal frustration, as I love reading about mathematicians, their discoveries, and the power of algorithms). This makes me see things like computer programming as basically magic.

Being such a rube, I’m easily impressed by things that might — or probably — make experts yawn (or even sneer at my eejitcy).

Nevertheless, from time to time, I will do posts that I hope will be helpful to those reading this who are also unschooled in the magical art of programming. In this way, I hope we’ll all get a better appreciation of what kinds of programs we might be able to have on the Pre.

First up is CanvasPaint.


What’s this?

A near pixel-perfect copy of Microsoft Paint in HTML, CSS and JavaScript, using the canvas tag as specified by WHATWG and supported by Safari 1.3, Firefox 1.5 and Opera 9.

This web app is not authorized by, supported by or in any way affiliated with Microsoft.

To test this, I picked an image and did what I usually do with images: highlight in red. Here’s the result:


Another thing I do is trim images. This didn’t work out so well, however. Mind you, the capabilities of this program are dependent on the browser being used. The increment of Firefox 2.x I use might not work with all features. The problem I had was after selecting and Cutting a portion of the image, New didn’t work properly. I couldn’t get a proper blank canvas. Doing a Paste of what I had in the Clipboard resulted in a blank area.

You can go ahead and laugh, but MS Paint is what I use to process screensnaps: trim, highlighting. Then I open the Saved JPG in Photo Toolkit for final trim and rescaling.

Seeing MS Paint recreated in the programming tools of the Pre — HTML/CSS/JavaScript — excites me and makes me look forward to having something like it on my own Pre.

The Pre And The Cloud And You #2

Filed under: Groundwork — mikecane @ 12:39 pm


A day after posting a little bit about the dark side of The Cloud comes this news report.

securitybreach02 Reports Theft of User Data

The company disclosed on its Web site that it recently learned its database had been illegally accessed. user IDs and passwords were stolen, along with names, e-mail addresses, birth dates, gender, ethnicity, and in some cases, users’ states of residence. The information does not include Social Security numbers, which said it doesn’t collect, or resumes. posted the warning about the breach on Friday morning and does not plan to send e-mails to users about the issue, said Nikki Richardson, a spokeswoman. The SANS Internet Storm Center also posted a note about the break-in on Friday., the U.S. government Web site for federal jobs, is hosted by and was also subject to the data theft. also posted a warning about the breach.

Emphasis added by me.

That’s not good customer service!

She also would not disclose the volume of data stolen, but said the company decided it would be prudent to alert all of its users via its Web site.

The company advised users to change their passwords and reminded them to ignore e-mails they may get that purport to be from the company and that ask for password information or instruct the user to download anything.

Emphasis added by me.

A website notice is really dropping the ball. There’s no guarantee that all users will see it. I can envision users who might have their information on that service who haven’t logged in for months — and might not do so again until after the notice has been removed.

How will services in The Cloud treat you if your data is improperly accessed? It seems to me there has to be a Cloud-wise Best Practices standard agreed upon. Because if there isn’t a clear standard, I can see the Government stepping to demand one of its own. We still have a Federal Trade Commission.

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