All posts by Sean

Web Development, Visual Design, Accessibility, User Experience, Technology Evangelism, Leadership, Cooking, Geek Culture, Being Awesome. And Ninjas.

linkHive For Oct 6th

Here are the newest links to join the linkHiveOct 6th

  • Mastering CSS Coding: Getting Started « Smashing Magazine – CSS has become the standard for building websites in today’s industry. Whether you are a hardcore developer or designer, you should be familiar with it. CSS is the bridge between programming and design, and any Web professional must have some general knowledge of it. If you are getting your feet wet with CSS, this is the perfect time to fire up your favorite text editor and follow along in this tutorial as we cover the most common and practical uses of CSS.

Bookmarks for Jul 14th through Sep 10th

These are my links for Jul 14th through Sep 10th:

  • 500 Internal Server Error – 500 Internal Server Error
  • 500 Internal Server Error – 500 Internal Server Error
  • 20+ HTML Forms Best Practices for Beginners – Nettuts+ – Forms can be difficult and sometimes even annoying for users; often, a form interrupts a user's main focus and direction on a page: they're intent on purchasing that gift, or trying out your new web app, not giving you their shipping address or coming up with yet another password. These tips will make forms easier for you as a developer/designer, and them as a user.
  • 30 Useful Photoshop Tutorials for Vintage and Retro Style | Web Design Ledger – In past articles, we’ve shown you where to find plenty of great textures for vintage and retro style design. So now if you’re wanting to learn some techniques to put those to use, you’re in luck. Here are 30 very useful Photoshop tutorials that will teach you techniques to add vintage and retro elements to your designs.
  • 50 Most Extreme Free Grunge Fonts | Web Design Ledger – Grunge style has been popular for a while now, and it doesn’t look like it’s going away anytime soon. So if creating grunge style designs is your thing, then you are in luck. Here are 50 free grunge fonts that should fit almost any of your grungy typographic needs.
  • 40 Super Sleek Fonts for Clean Web Design | Web Design Ledger – A few weeks ago, I showed you some of the best fonts for use in grunge style design. Creating grungy designs can be fun, but sometimes a site requires a cleaner approach, one where artsy design elements take a back seat to clear presentation of content. Typography plays a big role in this type of design. If you have been struggling to find the right font for your clean designs, here are 40 of them that are both clean and beautiful.
  • 17 Sets of Excellent Hand Drawn Design Elements | Web Design Ledger – Last year, we saw the hand drawn style in web design become very popular, and this year it doesn’t seem to be slowing down. Hand drawn or sketched elements can make a web site inviting, and add an overall fun factor to a design.

    I’ve hunted down some excellent hand drawn photoshop brushes and vectors to aid you in your own hand drawn designs.

  • 21 Best Fonts for Hand Drawn Style Web Design | Web Design Ledger – By now you have probably noticed a lot of “hand drawn” style web designs. It has become a very popular option for designers when a project calls for a fun and inviting theme. We’ve shown you where to get your hands on some really great hand drawn design elements, but if you are getting ready to start on a site design that requires this particular style, you will need some hand drawn fonts. Here are 21 of the best available.
  • 28 Free High Quality Fonts to Boost Your Typography | Web Design Ledger – Choosing the right typeface is an important step in any design process. So it’s a good idea to have a selection of high quality fonts in your library. In this post, I’ve listed the best of the best fonts that will help take your designs to another level from a typography standpoint.
  • 20 Dingbat Fonts That Are Actually Useful | Web Design Ledger – Dingbats probably don’t get taken that seriously as a resource for web designers. However, there are a select few that standout in quality and style, and can actually be very useful. Here is a list of 20 dingbats that you will find useful in adding elements to your designs.
  • Top 10 CSS Table Designs | CSS, Events | Smashing Magazine – Tables have got to be one of the most difficult objects to style in the Web, thanks to the cryptic markup, the amount of detail we have to take care of, and lack of browser compatibility. A lot of time could be wasted on a single table although it’s just a simple one. This is where this article comes in handy. It will show you ten most easily implemented CSS table designs so you can style your tables in a zap!
  • Sweetie | Cute and clear icons – Cute and clear icons to use in your nifty web application. They are licenced under a Creative Commons licence, so commercial use is fine. Also feel free to make derivatives with the included Photoshop documents.
  • CSS Message Box collection – Message boxes are useful elements to display status messages after or during a specific user request.

    Some days ago I wrote this post about how to implement a nice Ajax chains of effects (fade in, delay, fade out) for a common message box using mootools. Today I want to share with you a collection of some simple CSS styles you can apply to your message boxes (clean, solid, iconized, alternated rounded borders, tooltip).

  • Ninjerktsu – Thanks for checking out my new thing. So basically I thought it would be fun to draw a comic about ninjas that are proficient in the area of being total jerks. That's it. That's what they do. Is that funny? Four glasses of red wine told me it was a month or so ago. Anyway it keeps me drawing and I've always liked doodling ninjas.
  • Rincon Paisa – 958 Upper Wellington Street, Hamilton, ON – 905-385-5829
  • Store and share documents online for free | Microsoft Office Live Workspace – Store and share documents online for FREE
    It’s easy with Microsoft Office Live Workspace

    * Store up to 5GB online
    * Works with Microsoft Office Word, Excel and PowerPoint
    * View, edit, share documents with password-protection

  • Online newspaper and magazine software | ProsePoint – Online newspaper and magazine software
    A free and open source newspaper content management system.

    ProsePoint is a software package that lets you quickly and easily publish your own newspaper or magazine online. You can upload stories, edit stories online, and organise stories into editions, all through the user-friendly and convenient web interface. You do not need to know any programming or html.

    ProsePoint aims to have as many commonly used features as possible available and ready to go out of the box. For a new publication, this means no customising or searching around for extra modules. If you find a theme you like, you don't even need a web designer. Just install ProsePoint and you're ready to publish!

    Best of all, ProsePoint is free and open source.

    You can try the ProsePoint demo, download ProsePoint, or read below for more information.

  • NEJM — A Surgical Safety Checklist to Reduce Morbidity and Mortality in a Global Population – Surgery has become an integral part of global health care, with an estimated 234 million operations performed yearly. Surgical complications are common and often preventable. We hypothesized that a program to implement a 19-item surgical safety checklist designed to improve team communication and consistency of care would reduce complications and deaths associated with surgery.
  • A Simple Surgical Checklist Saves Lives – Health Blog – WSJ – Score another victory for the humble checklist. Adopting a surgical safety checklist reduced deaths and complications by more than a third in a study published online by the New England Journal of Medicine this week.

    pdf checklistThe 19-item list, developed by the World Health Organization, is pretty straightforward stuff. At various points in the procedure, team members confirm that they’re doing the right thing on the right part of the right patient, that they’re prepared for certain high-risk situations that might arise, and that key issues regarding post-op care are clear. (See the checklist by clicking on the PDF icon.)

    But straightforward can be a good thing — especially if it encourages clear, systematic communication and behavior.

  • Rejecta Mathematica | Caveat Emptor – Rejecta Mathematica is a real open access online journal publishing only papers that have been rejected from peer-reviewed journals in the mathematical sciences. Click here to learn more, or read the current issue.
    The inaugural issue of Rejecta Mathematica is now available!

    At Rejecta Mathematica, we believe that many previously rejected papers can nonetheless have a very real value to the academic community. Read more about our philosophy here.

  • 500 Internal Server Error – 500 Internal Server Error
  • Brad Czerniak – Resume
  • Hawidu CSS | You’d add it all anyway – Why Use Hawidu CSS?

    It's a respectably-small CSS file that does a few important things right off the bat:

    * Lays out a working file, rather than making you add on to framework files
    o limits unnecessary cascading
    o provides a common-sense organization and coding style
    o makes it likely you'll understand what Hawidu does, rather than relying on it blindly
    * Normalizes padding/margin and font-size across elements and browsers.
    * Adds progressively-enhanced niceties, like gmail-style buttons (and pillboxes!) and pretty blockquotes
    * Focuses on semantics, even in the utility classes

  • Alltop – Top WordPress News – One of the reason so many bloggers flock to WordPress has to do with the number of great plugins available to help them customize the experience for their readers. There are plugins to help make your blog more spiderable to the search engines, plugins that foster community building, those that make media integration and breeze and lots more.

    Here are some of my personal favorite WordPress plugins that I think bloggers and small business owners can benefit from.

  • 5 Habits to Help You Complete Your Project in Record Time – Webitect – Everybody wants to be more productive. Productivity translates to success, whether you’re a freelancer or an employee. Here are five powerful ways to make sure you’re getting the most out of your time.

    Even if increased productivity didn’t bring extra income, people would still want to be productive because there’s just a confidence-building, make-you-feel-great kind of charm about knowing you can work fast, be efficient and get the job done without rushing.

  • Monit – Monit is a free open source utility for managing and monitoring, processes, files, directories and filesystems on a UNIX system. Monit conducts automatic maintenance and repair and can execute meaningful causal actions in error situations.
  • Removing SSL passphrases – How to remove the passphrase from an SSL certificate
  • User Guide Templates (Deploy Google Apps)
  • YouTube – GoogleApps’s Channel
  • Email – Google Apps Help – Get help with Google Apps Email
  • Google Apps Help
  • eLearning Videos (Deploy Google Apps) – On this page, you'll find both quick videos and self-paced videos that can help your users quickly learn the basics of Google Apps Email, Calendar, and Docs.
  • Resources for Users (Deploy Google Apps) – Use these resources to communicate the switch to Google Apps to your users and provide them with essential documentation, training, and support.
  • Collaborating : Notifications – Google Docs Help – You can set notifications to find out when your collaborators have modified your spreadsheets, and learn what sheets or cells they've modified.You can also choose how often you'd like to be notified. Here's how you can enable notifications:
  • Forms : Creating forms – Google Docs Help – You can create a form from the Docs list or from any spreadsheet.
  • Help resources – Google Apps Help – We've put together this one-stop resource for your Help Desk.
  • pastebin – collaborative debugging tool – pastebin is here to help you collaborate on debugging code snippets. If you're not familiar with the idea, most people use it like this:

    * submit a code fragment to pastebin, getting a url like
    * paste the url into an IRC or IM conversation
    * someone responds by reading and perhaps submitting a modification of your code
    * you then view the modification, maybe using the built in diff tool to help locate the changes

  • Friendpaste – About Friendpaste – * A fast service where you can copy/paste your code, recipe, anything else and give the link to your friend. It would have been easy to just take some features from pastebin around and create friendpaste. But we decided that we could do better. In particularly by designing a better interface. We also added some interresting features:

    * clean an intuitive user interface
    * choice of colorscheme for sourcecode
    * select your preferred languages
    * possibility to edit pastes
    * support for a large number of syntaxes
    * persistent pastes
    * diff between paste
    * instant reviews

  • codepad – is an online compiler/interpreter, and a simple collaboration tool.
    Paste your code below, and codepad will run it and give you a short URL you can use to share it in chat or email.
  • you want some lasers – A hilarious joke app making fun of the University of Waterloo Logogate.
  • 15 Killer Hacks for WordPress that Are Extremely Useful – WordPress community is growing fast, and we are coming up with new hacks every day. In this article we will be sharing with you some of the killer, most wanted, and extremely useful WordPress Hacks that you can use to unleash the power of this blogging software that we all love. We will try to explain how each hack works, if you don’t understand something feel free to ask the question in the comments.
  • Master of 500 Hats: Your SOLUTION is Not My PROBLEM – "Ok folks… if there is ONE thing i can help you with tonight, it's how to pitch better. it's very simple, and i can teach it to you in about five minutes."

    "Here's the secret: PITCH THE PROBLEM, NOT THE SOLUTION."

    "That's it. done! that's all there is… just tell me the problem FIRST, not the SOLUTION. the reason is, i may not be able to understand what your solution does, but if you connect emotionally with me on what the problem is — and i hopefully i also have the problem, or know someone who does — then i'll give you PERMISSION to tell me more about how you're going to solve the problem."

  • 45 Step-by-Step Tutorials on Web Design with Photoshop – Psdtuts+ – While many web designers create mockups in Adobe Fireworks and Dreamweaver, no design program gives you quite so much control as Adobe Photoshop. The lessons collected here will show you how to create gorgeous and functional complete websites, blogs, layouts, nav menus and headers in Photoshop.
  • Hand-drawn Social Media Icons | WooCamp – This time around, we collaborated with South African artist – Alex Latimer – to create a very unique hand-drawn icon set which is reminiscent of Alex’ signature drawing style. The set comprising of 24 different icons, should cover most of the social networks that you frequent regularly and the default icon size has been set at 64 x 64 pixels.
  • vi cheat sheet – vi/vim cheat sheet
  • Magic Tricks, Magic Trick, Learn Magic Tricks, Street Magic | Sankey Magic Inc. – Real Magic for the Real World Since 198
  • We Like to Share – a GOOD Blog – Creative Commons Creative Director Eric Steuer talks to people across a variety of fields who use sharing as an approach to benefit the work that they do.
  • Carsonified » How to Increase Sign-ups by 200% – When I had coffee with Jason Fried of 37signals after FOWA Miami, I asked him if he had learned anything about A/B testing that they hadn’t blogged about. And wow, did he have an amazing little tip to share …
  • 13 Helpful Cheat Sheets for Building WordPress Themes | Web Design Ledger – We’ve already shown you some beautiful sites built using WordPress. So now that you are inspired, you probably want to start building your own themes using this powerful and popular content management system. If you are just getting familiar with WordPress or even if you have been using it for a while, it’s a good idea to have some cheat sheets handy when building a theme. Here are 13 cheat sheets that I find to be very helpful.
  • Wordle – Beautiful Word Clouds – Wordle is a toy for generating “word clouds” from text that you provide. The clouds give greater prominence to words that appear more frequently in the source text. You can tweak your clouds with different fonts, layouts, and color schemes. The images you create with Wordle are yours to use however you like. You can print them out, or save them to the Wordle gallery to share with your friends.
  • Recipes, Food Photos & Discussion at Nibbledish – Nibbledish is a community of enthusiastic cooks sharing their delicious lives with the world. Over 2000 creative-commons-licensed recipes with photos.
  • osTicket:: Open Source Support Ticket System – is a widely-used open source support ticket system. It seamlessly integrates inquiries created via email, phone and web-based forms into a simple easy-to-use multi-user web interface. Manage, organize and archive all your support requests and responses in one place while providing your customers with accountability and responsiveness they deserve. [This looks promising - ease of install is a big deal for me, given my traumatic encounters with RT]
  • Writing a Plugin « WordPress Codex – WordPress Plugins allow easy modification, customization, and enhancement to a WordPress blog. Instead of changing the core programming of WordPress, you can add functionality with WordPress Plugins.

    WordPress Plugin: A WordPress Plugin is a program, or a set of one or more functions, written in the PHP scripting language, that adds a specific set of features or services to the WordPress weblog, which can be seamlessly integrated with the weblog using access points and methods provided by the WordPress Plugin Application Program Interface (API).

    Wishing that WordPress had some new or modified functionality? The first thing to do is to search various WordPress Plugin repositories and sources to see if someone has already created a WordPress Plugin that suits your needs. If not, this article will guide you through the process of creating your own WordPress Plugins.

    This article assumes you are already familiar with the basic functionality of WordPress, and PHP programming.

  • Creating Admin Themes « WordPress Codex – WordPress' flexible nature allows for almost every part of it to be easily changed. Creating a custom WordPress Admin Panel Theme is no different. There are essentially two ways of making a WordPress Admin theme: with a Plugin or by simply changing the CSS. The Plugin method is the easier of the two methods, allowing you to install WordPress Admin Themes quickly and easily. You literally "plug it in" and it works.

    If you are the creative type, we also have instructions to help you design your own style sheet for the Administration Panels, and even how to turn your Admin Theme into a Plugin for easy distribution to the public.

  • 6 Plugins for Branding the WordPress Admin — WPCandy — WordPress Themes, Plugins, Tips, and Tricks – As a freelance web developer and owner of WPCustomization, I’ve used WordPress with many clients – and they love it. WordPress is easy to learn and its back-end is easy enough to customize for certain situations. Not many visitors ever see the back-end of a WordPress-powered site, but it’s always nice to brand the admin a bit – whether it’s a structural overhaul or simple color changes. With that said, we’ve decided to collect six plugins that are quite useful when branding the WordPress administrator area. Check it out.

    The next few plugins let you customize the login screen. Some are simple and let you change the logo, others extend to color schemes and page structure.

  • Website Monitoring – Server Monitoring, Uptime Monitoring and Free or Low Cost Web Site Monitoring Plans – – We constantly monitor our own network to ensure that all monitoring nodes are performing efficiently.

    BinaryCanary provides enterprise-class monitoring of your website, email server, database, web application or custom device/port.

    We are a profitable, privately held company with a world wide monitoring network, with servers located in Canada, USA and United Kingdom.

  • Website Monitoring – Website Monitoring. A performance monitoring and uptime notification tool. This script is very easy to setup and use. Script will check if your website is up, and check the response time of the site also. You can then choose to receive an email if the site is down, or if the site response time is too high. All results are also written to a daily log file. You can check as many websites as you wish, all URL's are stored in a separate text file for easy updating. Website Monitoring is open-source and released under the GPL license.
  • Bash Shell Check Whether a Directory is Empty or Not – Q. How do I check whether a directory is empty or not under Linux / UNIX using a shell script? I'd like to take some action if directory is empty.

    A. There are many ways to find out if a directory is empty or not under UNIX / Linux bash shell. You can use find command to list only files. For example, following find command will only print file name from /tmp. If there is no output, directory is empty.

  • Bashish rocks your socks! – Bashish is a theme enviroment for text terminals. It can change colors, font,
    transparency and background image on a per-application basis. Additionally
    Bashish supports prompt changing on common shells such as bash, zsh and tcsh.
  • Vim color scheme: Wombat « Lars H. Nielsen’s Blog – I have put together a color scheme for (G)Vim called Wombat. Dark gray background with easy-on-the-eyes font colors. It shares some similarities with the Desert color scheme

linkHive For Jul 9th

Here are the newest links to join the linkHiveJul 9th

  • Sony PSP 3000 (black) Console reviews – CNET Reviews – The good: Light, slim enclosure; screen offers better color reproduction than that of earlier PSP models; improved AV output for video and game playback on TVs; built-in Skype with onboard microphone; retains all of the impressive media and online features of earlier PSP models; deep lineup of great game titles that offer better graphics than Nintendo DS games.

    The bad: Despite improvements, problems and annoyances remain: screen exhibits noticeable jaggies and scanlines during high-motion video and gaming sequences; UMD load times still poky compared with DS games; screen isn't glare-free, and is still a magnet for fingerprints; Web browser and data input can be cumbersome; no built-in storage; subtle redesign missed the opportunity to add even more features.

    The bottom line: While there's probably not enough to get owners of previous the PSP to upgrade, newcomers will find the PSP 3000 to be a solid portable gaming and multimedia device.

  • MOTOROKR S9 – Features – Ideal workout partner
    Combining ease-of-use with the latest Bluetooth® wireless technology, the water and sweat resistant MOTOROKRTM S9 is the ideal wireless headwear for the active music lover. Now, be connected and listen to your favorite songs during those tough workouts, without getting tangled in wires!2

Changing Symlink Ownership

I just encountered the Curious Case of changing the ownership of a symbolic link.  I used chown and then…what happened is…well nothing.  Or least that’s how it looked.  There was no error message and the symlink’s ownership was unchanged.

This seemed sub-optimal so I asked Google and a few colleagues and I got the answer, more than once, that you can’t change the ownership of a symlink.  I accepted this and so I deleted the symlink and then I su’ed to the account I wanted to give ownership to and recreated the symlink as that acccount.  Not a Bad Thing, but not a Good Thing either.

A few minutes later I couldn’t stop thinking about how little sense this made.  So I went back to Google and sweet talked her into giving over the goods.  It turns out that what happened the first time I tried to chown the symlink is that chown respected the symlink and I changed the ownership of the referent directory, not the link to it.  That was a Bad Thing.  Especially since I didn’t see that it happened.

Luckily, there is a Good Thing as well, and it’s chown.  Chown has an option (-h) to reference a symlink itself and not its referenced file:

chown --no-dereference user:group symlink

From the Good Thing comes a Happy Ending: I have restored the ownership of the referent directory and successfully changed the ownership of the symlink.  Not to mentioned learned a cool bit of linux trivia.  This would be a terribe(ly awesome) interview questions >:).

Many thanks to the Edmonds Commerce Blog, a Freelance PHP Ecommerce and SEO Developer in the UK for their post explaining this.  Although, if I had just man’ed chown, I would have been able to figure this out on my own <grin>.

update: The man page for chown has a comment that makes it sound like some OS really can’t change the ownership of a symlink.

-h, –no-dereference
affect  each symbolic link instead of any referenced file (useful only on systems that can change the ownership of a symlink)”

Just thought I’d mention that as well.

linkHive For Jul 4th

Here are the newest links to join the linkHiveJul 4th

  • CrunchPad: The Launch Prototype – Welcome to Couch Computing – We’ve been working hard behind the scenes on the CrunchPad since our last update in April, and have just about nailed down the final design for the device. We’re showing the conceptual drawings here today. In another few weeks we’ll have the first working prototypes in our office.

    This launch prototype is another significant step forward from the last prototype. The screen is now flush with the case and we’ve decreased the overall thickness to about 18 mm. The case will be aluminum, which is more expensive than plastic but is sturdier and lets us shave a little more off the overall thickness of the device

Macchiate Pasta con le Sarde

I have been out of my normal cooking schedule since returning from Indonesia, although I have managed to cook a few times.  I wanted a quick pasta dish the other day but also wanted something new.  Without time to head out to the grocery store, I was left with what I had in the cupboards to work with.

What I came up with is a pasta dish in the cuccina rustica style of southern Italy/Scicily that is tasty, simple and fast.  This dish is inspired by the simplicity of Pasta Aglio e Olio and Spaghetti alla Puttanesca.

Macchiate Pasta con le Sarde


  • 1 lb of Pasta.  Bucatini is great, linguine or fettuccine is fine as well.
  • 1 can of sardines – reserve the packing oil (I used Billionaires)
  • 1 medium onion sliced (minced if you prefer)
  • 2 cloves of fresh garlic
  • 1/4 cup Good Olive Oil
  • 3-4 cups of leafy greens (optional)
  • 2 tsp Turmeric
  • salt and pepper


  • bring water to a rolling boil, salt and add pasta, cooking as per the direction on the package
  • drain the packing oil from the can of sardines into your skillet
  • bring the skillet to temp and then saute the onions
  • Once the onions have softened, add the garlic and the olive oil
  • Once the pan comes back up to temperature, add the greens and cover to wilt the greens
  • After a minute or so, remove the cover and add the whole sardines
  • season with plenty of salt, as much fresh ground pepper as you like and add the turmeric.  Don’t be too generous with the salt: it’s easy to add and hard to remove :)
  • Fold all ingredients together
  • Using tongs, add the pasta directly from the pot to the skillet – we want the salty, starchy water
  • Toss the pasta with the sauce – if you need to add up to another 1/4 cup or so of pasta water go ahead.  The sauce should have a lovely sheen to it, be thick enough to stick to the pasta without pooling in the pan.
  • Once everything is combined, the sardines will have broken up and be little shreds of fish throughout the dish, with the lovely occasional larger bit lurking about.


  • Pile generous portions into a shallow bowl or plate.
  • Serve with a dish of coarse salt.  This dish can be great with a powerful salty flavour, but that is always a matter of taste.  Go easy with the salt in the pan and let your guests add as much or as little as they like.
  • Serve with a good crusty bread, so that at the end of the meal, you can clean the “stain” out of the bowl with your bread.
  • There are greens in this meal, but another vegetable side would be fine.  I think large, tomatoes just picked from your garden and still warm from the sun would be best, sliced thick and drizzled with olive oil (maybe a touch of fine balsamic vinegar) and seasoned with salt and pepper server on a side platter.  A very simple fennel salad of thinly sliced fennel tossed with olive oil, salt, pepper and lemon juice would work as well.  The pasta dish should be front and centre and all the accompaniments, the bread, salad and wine, should support the pasta.
  • I’m far from a wine expert, but I’d pair this with a classic Chianti or an nice oaky Chardonnay.  If you prefer I think a Pinot Noir or even the right Merlot would be fine.
  • You might have notice the absence of any cheese in this recipe at all, even a parmagianno regiano as a topping.  I think this is fine without cheese, which is surprising because I add cheese to anything.  But in this case, the strong fish and saltiness of the dish is enough and I think the cheese would be lost in that and/or muddle and confuse the flavours.  Maybe I’m wrong – I also didn’t have any parmesan handy when I made this <grin>.


  • Drawing on the inspiration for this dish here are some other ingredients you can add as variantions:
    • Olives
    • Capers
    • Red Pepper Flakes
    • Substitute canned tuna for the sardines (as Rob G. pointed out canned mackerel would also be a good choice here)
  • Drawing on the traditional Pasta con le Sarde recipes I found, you might want to try:
    • pine nuts
    • currents or raisins
    • substitute saffron for the turmeric


I haven’t written down and/or named my recipes very much.  I’m trying to do a better job of writing down what I cook, which out of necessity is making me come up with names for these recipes.  It’s fun, but I am rather finicky about names, so it take a long time for me.  I started off looking for similar dishes and found the Sicilian classic Pasta con le Sarde which I used as the starting place for my name.  I was playing with something like Pasta con le Sarde D’oro or Pasta with Golden Sardines, but it seemed too grandiose for this simple and rustic dish.  So instead went with Macchiate Pasta con le Sarde or Stained Pasta with Sardines (at least I hope…I am not exactly fluent in Italian – if you read Italian and can provide a better translation, let me know :)).  I like the idea of this being a stained dish because of the gorgeous yellow turmeric that blooms in the oil and coats everything…stain the pasta, the pot, probably the stove and likely some clothes <grin>.

I’m particularly pleased with myself with creating this dish because, I had the sense that this was a Sicilian style dish while making it.  Finding the Pasta con le Sarde recipe, which I’ve never seen, was great fun since it is indeed Sicilian but also because I thought bucantini was a good pasta and it turns out that’s fairly traditional for this dish- of course the traditional recipe uses fresh sardines, something rather hard to come by in Guelph.  Also, I chose to use turmeric because I was thinking of the Mediterranean/Arabic influence in the area so I was delighted to discover the traditional recipe uses saffron, which achieves the same golden colouring.  The traditional recipe startes the sauce off with anchovies; I don’t have this step, but I do use the sardine oil from the can which does have a bold, aromatic smoked fish flavour as well.  All in all I’m feeling more than a little clever <smile>.

linkHive For June 29th

Here are the newest links to join the linkHiveJune 29th

  • KeyTable – There are a number of tools such as DataTables which provide enhanced access to HTML tables for Javascript capable browsers. However, these tools often lack keyboard accessibility. KeyTable addresses this by allowing Excel like cell navigation on any table.

    KeyTable is a Javascript library which provides keyboard navigation and event binding for any HTML table. With KeyTable Excel style table navigation can be employed to provide features such as editing of a table without requiring a mouse. As a further bonus, KeyTable integrates seamlessly with DataTables.

    Let's jump straight into an example: the table below is editable through keyboard navigation. Simply navigate to the cell you wish to edit and hit return. This initialises the excellent jEditable plug-in for jQuery – make your edit and then hit return again to save.