Showing posts with label html5. Show all posts
Showing posts with label html5. Show all posts

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Some Blogger Templates Have Broken Rich Snippets

After 2 years I have a new template. The old template was but ugly, contained pointless functions like dynamically changing look & feel to ensure that no matter what option was chosen, everything was always broken. Other, necessary functions like contact information it hid deep within the code, never to be seen by mere humans. I've watched my readership dwindle from thousands a day to a few dozen, as presumably they escaped to more sanely-coded pastures.

I had come to accept all of this until today, when I found myself extending some custom rich snippets. Over the years, you see, I've been fighting something of a crazed Google war with a dermatologist from California. A dermatologist who by happenstance is named Joshua Wieder. For some time a detente had been reached, the good doctor opting for the more formal Joshua while I controlled the top results for the more casual Josh. Then, a year passed in which I was focused on actual work. My domain name lapsed and was claimed by profiteers. The dermatologist invaded my top 10 results.

Rich snippets are part of my counter attack; an ingenious plan to reclaim internet territory lost without having to resort to remuneration. That's when I noticed that Blogger's template had broken rich snippet functionality.

I had only been angling to add the "Person" Microdata ItemType to my Contact Information page. I added the necessary language to my existing markup (those interested in some basic instruction should check out this simple how-to). However, when I went to Google's Webmaster Tools to check if it could reach my changes, I was surprised to see a number of glaring, week-old errors:


Clicking on an error and selecting the "Test Live Data" option, I quickly came across the issue. Rich Snippets require calling an outside formatting file; similar to how one might reference an Atom file in a sitemap. In the case of Blogger's dynamic templates, the "h-entry" format is used to provide Rich Snippets of new Blog Posts. The breakdown has occurred because they are using a dead link to the format page.

Rather than find the reference using Blogger's obtuse file management system, I have changed from a dynamic to static template, which has resolved the issue for now. Google can read the structured data I've formatted for them, and users now get to read a slightly-less hideous fixit guide.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Websockets and IIS7

So its been about 5 months since the IETF released the RFC 6455 proposal for websockets:

The websocket API is a protocol that allows for the bidirectional transfer of http/https data. This breaks down to a single initial handshake and then autonomous communication from both the server and client concurrently. With it comes a significant performance improvement (as only one handshake is needed, and client-side implementation gets much simpler) and a number of practical applications - I always think chat clients, but the applications are endless for web driven applications that require real time data transfer (HTML5 games that don't suck!)

Its no secret that websockets will not work with a standard IIS7 implementation. Http.sys is a greedy bugger, and gobbles up all connections listening on port 80. Even with WCF, there is no formally recognized workaround besides "wait for 8" and the native websocket/SOAP functionality that it will bring with it.

That being said, some folks may find a need to use websockets technology on an IIS7 server, and I found a neat prototype from Html5 Labs that can do just that: http://html5labs.interoperabilitybridges.com/prototypes/websockets/websockets/download

The protoype is WCF / Silverlight driven.

Haven't had a chance to test it yet, but I have a feeling this will come in handy in the future. Let me know what you think!

[EDIT: HTML5Labs deactivated the download to their prototype last month, sorry guys. I am not sure why - its not like 2008 is going anywhere any time soon. The good news is I am compiling some guides on using WebSockets in Windows Server 2012 here. For those developers who are not in a position to upgrade, it may be worth checking out SignalR as one alternative to websockets. SignalR relies on APM as opposed to WebSockets, and can be of benefit when establishing fast connections - it can be deployed on Server 2008 and using older browsers ]

Billing systems development now available

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