Author Archives: David Megginson

Wellesley’s Law

“As discussion of a failure grows longer, the probability of a comparison involving my action at Waterloo approaches 1—​​that is, if such discourse should persist for a sufficient period, be assured that some self-styled wit will compare someone or something … Continue reading

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Testing webdev on mobile devices from my laptop

While I’m developing the new UI for on my laptop, I want to be able to test on various mobile devices easily, including other people’s devices (where it’s rude to root and mess around with /etc/hosts). Here’s what I … Continue reading

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Content providers vs their audience, in two acts

or … It’s always been a struggle for control Act I Time: 1980s Place: TV Network I want you to sit still and watch these commercials. Viewer When the commercials come on, I get up to go to the kitchen … Continue reading

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Web unusability

Sometimes, like in this FedEx Canada form, companies decide #usability is a bad thing. Continue reading

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Update: running Emacs in Android L (Lollipop)

Update from Dustin DeWeese: “A working Emacs 25 package is available in Termux: $ apt install emacs” — this is probably a better solution than the outdated distro below. In February 2014, I posted instructions for installing Gnu Emacs … Continue reading

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Technology design, in two comics

I refer to these two comics constantly when I’m doing technology architecture and design work. Affordance (From The Far Side, 1980s IIRC.) Coverage (

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A different kind of data standard

HXL is a different, simpler kind of data standard for use during humanitarian crises, using spreadsheets and hashtags. Continue reading

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Community data, Ebola, and the UN

The humanitarian community’s response to the Ebola crisis is more transparent than many responses in the past, and that transparency includes data. The core datasets from the UN and humanitarian partners are starting to appear here: If you do anything potentially helpful with the … Continue reading

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RCIM — Right-Click-Incognito-Mode

#RCIM (right-click-incognito-mode) on links is an easy way to bypass the web’s nastiness. Continue reading

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Breadcrumbs: yes or no?

In web design, Breadcrumbs are those little navigational links you see across the top of some web pages, like Home → Canada → Ontario → Ottawa or Media»Music»Classical»Beethoven Good idea? Breadcrumbs let you can see where you are in a … Continue reading

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