Download Internet Explorer 8 beta1 and try out exciting new features

Microsoft has released beta 1 for Internet Explorer 8. This release is not intended for public release, but is for web developers and designers who want to check out the new features. This can also be used to plan migration of your site to support IE8.
Windows Internet Explorer 8 Beta 1 for Developers is […]

ie8 beta logo Microsoft has released beta 1 for Internet Explorer 8. This release is not intended for public release, but is for web developers and designers who want to check out the new features. This can also be used to plan migration of your site to support IE8.

Windows Internet Explorer 8 Beta 1 for Developers is available now in two versions: a stand-alone version for Windows® XP Service Pack 2, Windows XP Professional x64 Edition, and Windows Server® 2003; and an enhanced version built to take advantage of the Windows Vista® platform. Support for Windows Vista Service Pack 1 is also planned once it reaches final release in early 2008.

Internet Explorer 8 gives more importance to standards compliance and interoperability. Now backward compatibility is taking a back seat. This means that if your site is not standards compliant, it may not render correctly in IE8!! It is possible to switch IE8 to IE7 mode, but it is not on by default.

IE8 aims for full compliance to CSS 2.1 standards and will be working towards HTML 5 standard. IE8 currently passes Acid2 test in default mode.

Major new features in IE8

Activities – These are a set of contextual services provided by browser on any Webpage. Using the context menu, user can send or receive information from external websites.  For example, if you want to add a page to Digg, you can just right click and select "Add to Digg" option. Cool, eh?

Webslices – Portions of a webpage can be marked as Web slices. It is possible for the browser user to subscribe to content inside a slice. Once subscribed it will appear on favorites bar. Whenever content in that slice change, you can preview it without leaving the current page you are viewing! Many popular sites such as Facebook and Ebay has already started using Webslices!

Domain highlighting in address bar – IE8 will highlight the owning domain of the web page you are viewing. This in future should bring down the incidents of phishing by fake sites.

You can download IE 8 beta 1 from here.

Books and resources on Grails framework

Grails is an open source Web application framework written for Java platform. It is based on the Groovy programming language and is a competitor to Ruby on Rails.
Grails boost programmer productivity by eliminating configuration effort using the "coding by convention" paradigm.
Grails eliminates the need for downloading and configuring multiple sets of applications […]

Grails Framework Grails is an open source Web application framework written for Java platform. It is based on the Groovy programming language and is a competitor to Ruby on Rails.

Grails boost programmer productivity by eliminating configuration effort using the "coding by convention" paradigm.

Grails eliminates the need for downloading and configuring multiple sets of applications for starting development of a Java Web application. Grails provides a single package which contains test application server, ORM tool (Hibernate) etc. So in a nutshell, Grails is J2EE on steroids.

Books on Groovy

In order to be an expert on Grails, you need to learn Groovy. Groovy is a scripting language based on Java. Following are some of the good books available in Groovy.

Groovy in Action – This takes a detailed look at the Java scripting language Groovy. This is the favorite book on Groovy.

Groovy Recipes: Greasing the Wheels of Java– Groovy recipes one programming problem at a time and explores how it can be done in Groovy. This is a must have book if you want to be quickly productive in Groovy. This book also looks at Grails.

Programming Groovy: Dynamic Productivity for the Java Developer – This book is not yet released. This is intended for new programmers and will contain both Groovy fundamentals and advanced Groovy topics such as meta programming, unit testing and domain specific language creation.

Books on Grails

The Definitive Guide to Grails (Definitive Guide) – This is a comprehensive reference to Grails. It takes you through the complete Grails development lifecycle such as project configuration and automatic ORM mapping. This also contains a quick introduction to Groovy.

Getting Started with Grails – This book is available as a free Grails book download (PDF). This is a quick introduction to Grails platform. It takes you through the framework step by step. It also explores how a Web application is turned into concrete code from abstract code.

Night Vision

Icon package with 22 icons in formats PNG (256×256) and ICO (256×256, 128×128, 48×48, 32×32, 16×16). 4 groups: Blue, Beige, Black and Green.Night Vision Icon Pack 2.53 MB &nbspEnjoy, it’s free! These icons are released under CC License Attribution-Nonc…

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Domain search at lightning speed – 10xwhois instant domain search

I recently came across a high speed domain search called 10xwhois. This service shows the domain availability as soon as you type in the domain name. You can also save a list of favorite domain extensions and can also bookmark favorite domain searches.
From the author’s site,
10xwhois has support for keyboard shortcuts and you can also […]

quick domain search 10xwhois.comI recently came across a high speed domain search called 10xwhois. This service shows the domain availability as soon as you type in the domain name. You can also save a list of favorite domain extensions and can also bookmark favorite domain searches.

From the author’s site,

10xwhois has support for keyboard shortcuts and you can also save your domain searches in a favorite list. This tool is a Java web application and is hosted on a dedicated server. It is designed to handle high volume requests and is probably the fastest domain search service on internet.

I am still working on a couple of enhancements such as domain suggest and 10xwhois widgets…

This tool also is a demonstration of the effectiveness of Ajax Web paradigm.

Globat suffers major downtime in February

Globat hosting suffered a major downtime on February 21st 2008. The primary network switch and backup switch completely failed and took down the entire network including globat website. This site was also down for about 12 hours! From the mail I have received,
Our primary network switch in our main datacenter in downtown Los Angeles failed […]

Globat hosting suffered a major downtime on February 21st 2008. The primary network switch and backup switch completely failed and took down the entire network including globat website. This site was also down for about 12 hours! From the mail I have received,

Our primary network switch in our main datacenter in downtown Los Angeles failed completely and despite tremendous efforts by our technical emergency response team could not be brought back online. This switch is a major brand name piece of equipment and as such it contains internal redundancy. We were able to switch over to the back up circuitry and begin bringing the system back online at which time, for yet unknown reasons, the entire devise, including backup system, failed completely.

After a short deliberation we decided to rush a new switch from our vendor’s nearest warehouse to our data center. While waiting for the replacement we initiated a work around to at least get email service re-established. After several attempts all email systems finally went live and back to normal at approximately 10:00am Pacific Time.

When the new switch arrived we went through the installation and testing process and as a result were able to bring all our services back online, but not before we had suffered a 5-hour outage for e-mail services and an 8-hour outage for Web related services. In Globat’s entire 6 year history, we have never experienced anything even remotely like this! The outage was so severe
that it affected our own Web sites and all but one of our telephone lines so we were unable to communicate with our customers to update anybody about the status of the incident. We decided to ask some of our staff members to post updates on well known Internet forums, which helped a little in disseminating the information.