Conkeror: They're only encouraging me

As many people close to me know, I'm an Emacs freak. I try to use Emacs for all of my editing needs even when I have to jump through hoops to do so. I've only recently caved in to Eclipse for my Java work because my edit-compile-test cycle seems shorter in Eclipse.

This weekend, I read Bill Clementson's post titled "Firefox for Emacs users". Bill talks about a new Firefox extension called Conkeror. Conkeror's stated mission is:
Conkeror is a mozilla based web browser designed to be completely keyboard driven, no compromises. It also strives to behave as much like Emacs as possible. This means all the key bindings and to-die-for features of Emacs that can be imitated by a javascript/XUL web browser Just Work.

Of course, I about jammed a finger trying to get to the Conkeror install site at warp speed. The install was typical - just an XPI file that installs itself like any other extension. However, it doesn't just show up like any other extension. You have to type a special command line to get Conkeror to fire up the first time (this is on the Conkeror "install" page):
firefox -chrome chrome://conkeror/content

Once you start it up, you see the Conkeror help page. You can't resize the window - pretty annoying. However, if you go down the page and hit the button that says "Set Chrome", restart Firefox normally, then you'll be in full time Conkeror mode and you can resize the window any way you wish.

Aside from the bizarre start-up, Conkeror rocks! It's sure to tickle your Emacs fancy because it binds many of the common Emacs keys to browser functions. They've also made it easy to "click" links on a page by numbering each link; you simply type the number of the link and BLAMO - you're navigating.

The only drawback I've seen on Windows is that Conkeror interferes with some AJAX/DHTML sites like... Blogger! But, as little as I interact with some of those hardcore sites, I can fire up IE as a work-around.

Give Conkeror a try and experience the beauty of mouse-less browsing. It really is quite cool.

Update 05-30-2006 10:38:26 CST:
It seems that Gmail attachments are causing problems for me in Conkeror. Yikes! This draw back may really cramp my style.



I've recently fallen in love with this quote:
Courage is not the absence of fear, but rather the judgment that something else is more important than fear.
-- Ambrose Redmoon


Google Notebook - More proof of attempted world dominance

Lifehacker on Google Notebook - Further proof that Google is going for world dominance through rendering the desktop irrelevant.


Cygwin Ruby on Rails MySQL problem

I've started playing around with Ruby on Rails on one of my Windows machines. I was trying to connect to my local MySQL installation and I kept getting the error:

No such file or directory - /tmp/mysql.sock

It turns out it's an issue with the Cygwin environment trying to use Unix sockets when you use "localhost". I read the excellent notes posted at
Labnotes » Blog Archive » Setting up Ruby + Gems on CygWin
. It turns out the fix is very simple. Just change localhost to its IP address,, and you're in business!