June 2015 Leap Second

Today a positive leap second will be introduced, as per IERS announcement:

To authorities responsible for the measurement and distribution of time: UTC TIME STEP on the 1st of July 2015. A positive leap second will be introduced at the end of June 2015.

The sequence of dates of the UTC second markers will be:

2015 June 30, 23h 59m 59s
2015 June 30, 23h 59m 60s
2015 July 1, 0h 0m 0s

National Geographic has a good video on this leap second phenomenon:

The International Earth Rotation and Reference Systems Service adds a leap second every few years to keep the clocks we use to measure official time and the speed of Earth’s rotation in sync. But why do we need to do this? And what kind of problems could result?

Watch your digital clocks, they should seem to be stuck for a second at midnight (UTC) :-)

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The Emerging Global Web

Fascinating presentation by Stephanie Rieger which I saw at the excellent (and unfortunately last) Mobilism:

This presentation will introduce you to fascinating and innovative services that are re-shaping the web to serve the consumers of tomorrow. Driven by mobile, the power of personal relationships, and the breakneck pace of globalisation, these services provide a glimpse into the business models, opportunities and challenges we will face, when growing a truly global web.

Lets face it: We “The West” are lagging behind. Asia is in the pole position.

A video recording of the talk is also available:

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Scale Yosemite’s El Capitan with Google Maps


Welcome to The Nose of El Capitan, in Yosemite National Park — the most iconic rock climb on earth. Tighten your harness and double-check your knot, to join Lynn Hill, Alex Honnold, and Tommy Caldwell on a 3,000 foot interactive journey up El Capitan.

Here’s a behind the scenes video:

Scale Yosemite’s El Capitan with Google Maps →

Want to skip the site around the whole thing and directly go to Google Maps on El Capitan? Here’s the way.

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Tiny two way data binding

Awaiting Object.observe() to land, Remy Sharp has written his own simple implementation:

Data binding to the DOM is just one of those things that’s damn handy when you’ve got it and super laborious when you don’t. The problem is that it usually comes at a price of a hefty framework.

So, as any good re-inventer of wheels, I wrote my own two-way data binding library, partly to experiment, partly to solve existing needs in my own projects – weighing in at < 2K compressed.

The concept behind the API is fairly simple: take an object bind it to functions and/selectors given a particular mapping.

var user = Bind({
  name: '[new user]',
  game: { score: 0 }
}, {
  'game.score': 'span.score',
  name: 'input[name="username"]'

// usage
user.game.score += 25;

Tiny two way data binding →
bind.js source (GitHub) →

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MarI/O – Machine Learning for Video Games

MarI/O is a program made of neural networks and genetic algorithms that kicks butt at Super Mario World

The source code is freely available.

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Solving problems with CSS Selectors

Presentation as given by Heydon Pickering on Responsive Day Out 3.

Solving problems with CSS Selectors →

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Responsive day out 3: the final breakpoint


Extensive write-up by Hidde on the third edition Responsive Day Out:

As may have become clear from my notes above, Responsive Day Out 3 was a day full of variety. I had the feeling it could have easily been called Web Day Out, and I guess that makes sense, as responsive web design has naturally grown to be a pleonasm in the past few years.

Very sad I had to miss this one, as the previous two editions were truckloads of fun.

Responsive day out 3: the final breakpoint →

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NASA Graphics Standards Manual


The National Aeronautics and Space Administration Design Program is a modernist vision

NASA Graphics Standards Manual →

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World Geo-Graphical Atlas by Herbert Bayer


In 1953, the Container Corporation of America commissioned Bauhaus designer Herbert Bayer to create an atlas to commemorate the company’s 25th year of business. Alongside three other accomplished designers, Bayer worked for five years on an oversize (11.5″ x 15.5″) book of 368 pages, featuring over 2,200 diagrams. The results are stunning and, to my eye, yet unmatched.

Stunning indeed.

The World Geo-Graphical Atlas →


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CSS conic-gradient() Polyfill


<script src="https://cdnjs.cloudflare.com/ajax/libs/prefixfree/1.0.7/prefixfree.min.js"></script>
<script src="conic-gradient.js"></script>

Conic gradients are awesome, but browsers haven’t realized yet. This polyfill lets you experiment with them now.

By Lea Verou. Automatically creates an SVG which is set as the background. Uses -prefix-free.

Alternatively you can also use the JavaScript API behind it directly:

var gradient = new ConicGradient({
    stops: "gold 40%, #f06 0", // required
    repeating: true, // Default: false
    size: 400 // Default: Math.max(innerWidth, innerHeight)

console.log(gradient.svg); // SVG markup
console.log(gradient.png); // PNG image (fixed dimensions) as a data URL
console.log(gradient.dataURL); // data URL
console.log(gradient.blobURL); // blog URL

CSS conic-gradient() Polyfill →

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