Weird 302 redirect at GoDaddy

Posted on January 5, 2012
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It took me some time to realise what was going on, but I finally found out a weird bug (or feature?) on my GoDaddy web hosting this afternoon. Which made me switch to Namecheap later on.

This is what happens, totally randomly when a client is accessing a file. Let’s say you try to access the following URL: mysite.com/blog. These are the consecutive HTTP requests that will occur:

  1. GET mysite.com/blog
    302 redirect mysite.com/AbCdE/blog
  2. GET mysite.com/AbCdE/blog
    302 redirect mysite.com/blog
  3. GET mysite.com/blog
    200 OK

Where AbCdE is always a random string made of 5 characters. That’s right, randomly, requests happen to be redirected twice through a random directory that doesn’t exist before the server finally delivers the resource. What’s the matter, you will say? Well, this has absolutely no reason to happen, and even if a visitor wouldn’t notice it by loading the URL in his browser, this can have an impact in other fields.

First, Google tends to index the temporary URLs that doesn’t exist, and this leads to undesired pages to be indexed. Secondly, as this is an unexpected behaviour, this can fuck your scripts in some situations. It especially happened to me, when apps that are connected to my website couldn’t manage redirections that don’t output more than 255 characters for example. Because of this unwanted random 302 redirect, I couldn’t guarantee the availability of my app anymore.

I am sorry, but I am not responsible, as a developer, for this, and I don’t have to adjust my code to my web hosting in this situation. It seems to be a recurring problem at GoDaddy’s, you can check it out on Google, many people are talking about it, and GoDaddy doesn’t seem to be fixing the issue…

But I really wonder where this bug (or feature) comes from. I bet maybe for a feature, where by differing the actual delivery of the resource, it’s freeing some load on the server when too many connections are coming in at the same time.

Anyways, I am now hosting my site on Namecheap.

What is social trading

Posted on December 12, 2011
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Ever since the beginning of Forex trading, traders have been basing their decisions mainly on two types of analysis which are technical analysis (the use of historical charts to guess the future direction of the market) and fundamental analysis (the use of economical news in the world affecting the market). In the early ages, trading was taking place physically in the bourses and trade centres, where the information was coming from the telephone and the TV, often with a lagging time due to the technology in that time.

Nowadays, most of the traders have left those places and are now trading from anywhere in the world, because the Internet has replaced the traditional bourses. There is no need to be in a physical location anymore. The information is coming faster than ever (think of Twitter and the Web 2.0!). And it’s what social trading wants to take advantage of. Traders and investors now are more transparent and share information about their activity, and that’s considerably improving the social experience of Forex trading.

OpenBook and CopyTrader

It’s a very new approach to Forex. eToro first democratised it in 2010 when it released the OpenBook, a Twitter-like activity feed giving a history of every trader’s positions, and the ability to copy their positions. It’s so far the best opportunity for beginners to learn and improve their returns on the Forex market, because they can now learn by example, follow experimented traders and stand on their shoulders. The OpenBook, for instance, gives you a real time activity feed about the traders who agree to share it (but most of them do) and let you follow them in two ways: either you can choose to copy manually each of their positions that you judge are worth, or you can automatically choose to copy all of their positions, and in that case it’s much more like investing your money in an investment fund. For each choice, you can of course define the amount of your positions, so that you can limit the risk.

eToro shows good figures as of the first six months after they released the automated system to follow traders’ positions, with an average 3 to 4 percents gain per month for the overall traders who have adopted the system. Compared to the 3 to 4 percents you can get every YEAR by placing your money in a savings account in your bank, this makes quite a difference). Social trading is still at its early months, but sounds promising and worth keeping an eye on it (which I will do, of course). More information can be found (in French language) on this site: Qu’est ce que le trading social?

What a 15 euros phone has that an iPhone doesn’t

Posted on November 12, 2011
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Since I needed a Filipino number in addition to my French number, I ended up buying the cheapest phone I could find here. It’s a Samsung GT-E1080F that costed me around 15 euros in a Samsung store. I kept my iPhone for my French number and so I am using both of them. I intend to use my Filipino phone only for calls and text messaging, but I surprisingly found out 4 cool native features that my iPhone is missing. Two of them are unforgivable though and should really be implemented in the iPhone, the other one is just funny 🙂

Auto-reject calls

Very handy when you don’t want to hear about some people. Enter her number to the block list, and all the calls from that number will be automatically rejected. I remember a friend of mine needed that feature last year, and we could never find something that works on his iPhone, neither in the native features nor in installable apps (even from the Cydia store).

Text messages: Block number

This is the same feature as the previous one, but for text messages. Again, you can edit a block list of numbers that you don’t want to receive SMSs from.

Fake call

That feature is funny. Actually, I haven’t checked if there is an app for it, there is probably one on the Cydia store. Well, this is a native feature on my Samsung phone. While in an annoying meeting that you want to escape, put your hand in your pocket and press four times the DOWN key of your phone. Then, after a variable amount of seconds (that you can change in the settings of the phone) a fake call from an unknown callee will make your phone to ring.

Privacy lock

This is quite redundant with the passcode lock of the iPhone, but still useful. Instead of locking the whole device with a passcode, the Samsung GT-E1080F will instead add locks to the key applications you wish, such as the calls logs, the address book or the SMS. So someone can still use your phone, like playing games or using the calculator, and the privacy of your SMS is still good. I think that could be a good feature for iPhone, as it often happens that I give my iPhone to friends who want to play, but not necessarily feel comfortable that they read my texts or calls logs.

There it is, I find the comparison between that little Samsung phone and a 50-times-more-expensive iPhone funny, regarding this foor little features. If you have a solution/workaround for the foor of them on iPhone, thanks to comment on that post, I am personally interested in knowing them!

Mobile Internet in France versus the Philippines

Posted on October 30, 2011
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Like I already did one year ago comparing mobile plans in France and in the UK, I am now writing a little review of my experience of mobile internet plans in the Philippines compared to France. Once again, you will see that France fails, and French people have good reasons to feel like cash cows sometimes…

For my comparison, I will consider “SIM only” prepaid plans, which means you just pay for your actual internet connection and not include the price of the device (phone, 3G stick or personal hotspot).

Let’s say it from the beginning, the comparison is — oh — painful for French consumers… This is what Orange (France) and Smart (Philippines) offer for unlimited surf, for prepaid plans and excluding the price of any device:

Orange (France) Smart (Philippines)
Offer name: Mobicarte (prepaid) Smart Bro (prepaid)
Unlimited internet 1 day: 6 euros 50 pesos (0.83 euros)
Unlimited internet 2 days: 10 euros 100 pesos (1.66 euros)*
Unlimited internet 5 days: 26 euros* 200 pesos (3.32 euros)
Source: www.orange.fr

www.smart.com.ph

*prices are in proportion of the actual offers. To be accurate, Orange offers two unlimited options: 1 day for 6 euros, or 2 days for 10 euros. On the other hand, Smart offers two unlimited options: 1 day for 50 pesos (0.83 euros), or 5 days for 200 pesos (3.32 euros).

Let’s take the most advantageous case for Orange, which is the price for 2 days of unlimited internet, and let’s see that France is just 6 times more expensive than the Philippines.

I understand that the cost of living is no comparison between France and the Philippines. For knowing both countries, I know that the biggest difference comes from the labour cost. For the physical goods, you can find everything. Computer hardware and european cars are almost same price in the two countries, whereas food is about 2 or 3 times cheaper. Nevertheless, I will never believe that Orange is not taking advantage of the lack of competition in France to not maximise their profits excessively, at the expense of consumers.

Nomad Internet with Huawei e5

Posted on October 23, 2011
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I am writing this post from a coffee shop in Quezon City (Manila, Philippines) from my 3G connection that gives me a fair 1.5Mbps up/down for a bit less than 1 euro per day. (just for you to know the context)

Long before moving to Manila (Philippines) I have had wanted to get my hands on the Huawei e5 for its capability to turn a 3G connection into a wifi hotspot. I had tried to find it in Europe (France, UK, Romania…) and in the USA (Los Angeles, New York City), but now way to find any. Actually, that device seems to be available only in Asia (or online, but as I was going to the Philippines soon, I could wait).

Basically, what the Huawei e5 does, is to turn your 3G connection into a WIFI hotspot where you can connect up to 5 devices. There is also a USB port that allows you to connect another computer like any USB modem. So you can in the end connect up to 6 devices.

First days in the Philippines

Posted on October 17, 2011
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I am now writing this post from a Coffee Shop located in Eastwood City (Manila, Philippines). This is my first experience as an entrepreneur-traveller (as I explained my plans already some months ago, how I intend to live an unusual life) and let me tell you how things are going so far…

I went for a 24 hours trip (flew from Frankfurt to Dubai, Dubai to Manila, drove in the traffic to get to my flat…). However jetlag wasn’t so heavy, maybe I get used to it as I am travelling more and more. Here, climate is a shock compared to France. I sweat all the time when I’m outside, fortunately all the buildings have air conditioning or so. The violent typhoon that passed by Manila seems away now, at least the district I am living in doesn’t seem affected by it. Cost of living is low here, which allows me to get around in taxi easily, and have nice restaurants for the price of a meal at a French McDonald’s.

It took me some days to properly settle, get a decent Internet connection and being operational for my cruising speed. I can manage my work online pretty well so far (except I must work a bit late to be synced on the French timezone) and I will write a full post about it in the coming days.

Speed and reliability of the Internet network is a lot lower than what I expect in France, but at least it works. It’s not working well in my flat though (with 3G) but if I go down my building to the first coffee shop, I can get 1Mbps.

People here are nice and smile a lot. Customer service is not outstanding though, even if there are 10 idle sellers in the store, no one will jump on you to offer help… It’s the Filipino style, I have been told about it so it’s not a surprise, but it’s interesting to see the social and cultural differences with France 🙂 Well, I could talk a lot longer about the Filipino specs, but it will be for another post!

Stay tuned!

Steve Jobs is gone

Posted on October 6, 2011
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Steve Jobs has passed away last night, 5th of October 2011. He was a great innovator, inspiration for all the IT people and entrepreneurs and we will regret him a lot.

My breakfast was bitter this morning when I read the news, but later on I found myself energised back and got some big motivation. Eclipse/Photoshop are open and working hard this afternoon. I remember Steve, and how hard work, creativity, innovation and courage led him to build this empire. Yes, even if you’re gone, you will still be a model of entrepreneurship and innovation to me and my fellows. You can rest in peace now, Steve.

Note 1: homage to Steve Jobs is on Apple’s website
Note 2: you can send condolences to rememberingsteve@apple.com

Steve Jobs, 1955-2011

Lazy loading for Javascript

Posted on September 25, 2011
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In a previous post, I was discussing how to lazy load a Facebook widget, so that it loads only when really needed. I have put my thoughts further, and come up with a general way to lazy load any kind of JavaScript snippet.

I always take for example the Facebook widgets, which are always very heavy and load many files (include JS, CSS and images).If that widget is not in the viewport when your visitor loads your page at the beginning, and if it’s visible only after he scrolls, then you can tweak the performances of your page by lazy loading that widget. Note that it works for any kind of JavaScript snippet that would have a visible effect only after the user scrolls your page down.

In this post, I’ll introduce my jQuery plugin and show you a demo of how it works, but I’m not going to go very deep into the interior mechanisms (for that, see the Google Code page).

jQuery lazy loading JS

Deferred lazy loading of Facebook widgets

Posted on August 13, 2011
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Facebook Like BoxIf you use social widgets on your web pages, you must be aware of the extra kilobytes of data your visitors are going to load for this, and how it’s going to affect the loading time of your pages. It can be difficult to figure the weight of those widgets, but sometimes they’re worth considering them.

You can use Firefox and the plugin YSlow to measure how those social widgets overweight your pages (see total size of the page, loading time, and number of external JS/CSS/image files loaded).

In this post, I will consider the case of the Facebook Like Box, which is a quite fat widget actually (almost 200kB of data amongst 6 external JS scripts, 4 CSS sheets, 2 CSS image sprites and as much images as there are fans of your page) and how I can manage to load it ONLY IF NEEDED.

Downgrade Mac OSX Lion with Time Machine

Posted on July 27, 2011
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Snow Leopard

Last days, I told you about my disappointment when I rushed at installing Mac OSX Lion only a few hours after it was released. Quickly, I decided to downgrade back to Snow Leopard. Hopefully, Time Machine is a very good piece of software that works pretty well for restoring your OS to the exact state of the desired date. Here is how to do it.

  1. Check that yo have saved/backuped all of your work and data you carried out since you installed Lion (USB sticks, DVDs, whatever)
  2. Insert your DVD of Snow Leopard and shut down your mac
  3. When starting your mac again, press the OPTION key and wait until it offers a list of volumes to boot from. Select the Snow Leopard DVD
  4. In the Installer, don’t go on the process of installation. Instead, click on the Utilities menu, then choose Restore System from Backup
  5. Check that you are connected to your time capsule:
    for networked time capsules, I recommend to link an ethernet wire instead of using wifi, it will be quicker. If you really can’t use a wire, then connect to your wifi access point via the Airport Utilities menu at the top left of the screen
    for USB time capsules (or external HDD), you don’t have to do anything special
  6. In the list, select your Time Machine volume
  7. In the list, select the date at which you want to restore your system to. Dates and versions of the system are indicated, so just take the most recent backup you’ve made on Snow Leopard before you installed Lion

Now you’re good for waiting several hours, depending on the size of your backup and the speed of your connection. You have the time to go and make a coffee. Wait and relax, and forget about how Steve raped you with 24 euros.

Some hours later, your mac will reboot and your system is back like before. Lion is just now an old bad memory to you, until the day you have no choice but to upgrade because major softwares will not be supported on Snow Leopard anymore.

 

NB: if you don’t use Time Machine, I guess you’re going to have much more troubles while downgrading from Lion (if not possible at all?). Probabilities are that you’re to make a new clean install of Snow Leopard. And that you start to use Time Machine, at last (sorry dudes).