Friday, August 24, 2012

New Wikipedia coolness

Not sure how new, and apologies if I'm lagging behind, but I do check the sources on Wikipedia all the time (no really, I do), and this is the first time I've noticed this feature. If it's not clear from the screen shot (even after clicking to enlarge), what happens is this: If you hover your mouse pointer over a link to a reference (a footnote number), a balloon tip sort of window will appear, and the text within will be what's found at that link. (Try it on the actual Wikipedia page.) Saves scrolling down to the bottom of the page and back. Even better, if the reference note contains a link to the source, as they often do, that link will be displayed in the balloon tip window, ready for right-clicking and opening in a new tab. Very handy!

Thanks, Wikipedians. Or MediaWiki people. Or both.


Substance McGravitas said...

One of the things about killing the javascript (at home at least, the work computer can die a virus-laden death) is that you miss stuff like that.

Brendan Keefe said...

Ah, yes. I had forgotten about your preference for surfing with NoScript.

I like the web better with JS, and so far, it doesn't appear to have cost me in terms of infection. I think if you run a decent a/v program and keep your software patched, you're pretty safe. I suppose there are regions where I don't go that this might not be true, admittedly.

Substance McGravitas said...

I use a Mac; the only infection I'm liable to catch is one I install myself (although there was that one thing). A little paranoia can go too far I guess, but it's interesting seeing the amount of crap blocked on various websites.

Brendan Keefe said...

Wow, you use a Mac and you still prefer to disable JS by default?

Well, if it works for you, that's fine.

As I think I told you before, I tried NoScript for a short while and could not bear it. Too much of the Web assumes JS is turned on, to the point where even basic page layout requires it. (For a loose meaning of "requires.") I wished that NoScript had a switch that would have allowed me to whitelist the Web by default, and then activate NoScript on a site-by-site basis. (And that was mostly to shut off the insane amount of stuff that happens under the hood on sites like HuffPo, that makes clicking over to read one article such a tedious experience.)

Maybe I didn't have enough patience, and should have taken the time to try to whitelist every site I visit, say, at least once every fortnight, but I guess what made me decide it wasn't worth the effort was my acceptance, long ago, of the reality that there is no such thing as a PC that can be perfectly secured. Hence, I go for a combination of close attention to software updates + a decent free a/v package + a bit of caution when surfing. And meanwhile, I don't store anything on machines connected to the network that I'd absolutely hate to have compromised.