As an experiment, I added a BlogRush widget to the sidebar of Workbench and several other sites this morning. BlogRush is a new JavaScript-based blog headline exchange driven by RSS. Here's how it works: Headlines that might be of interest to readers appear in a box like this one, headlines from my site appear on other member sites, and we all get an enormous boost in traffic, a slobbery cover story in Wired and obscene wealth we can lord over others. Or at least the BlogRush founders do. BlogRush is viral -- your ... read more

Matt Haughey started catching hell from members of a site called Shoutwire who thought he had hacked Fox News to steal traffic for his personal weblog, A Whole Lotta Nothing. Turns out that loading a Fox News story within a frame, as Shoutwire did, triggers some Javascript code that redirects the visitor to "http://nothing": if (parent.frames.length > 0) {   parent.location.href = "http://nothing"; } In Mozilla Firefox, trying http://nothing takes users to the top Google result for the word nothing -- ... read more

When his weblog moved in March, Michael Fioritto put JavaScript in the first item of his RSS feed to redirect visitors to his new site.The news aggregator AmphetaDesk read the script tag and executed the redirect, making it impossible for me to use the software until I unsubscribed from his feed, which probably wasn't the effect he was going for.An aggregator that doesn't strip out script and other dangerous tags is a security exploit waiting to happen. ... read more

As today's California recall election demonstrates, live election results are a hugely popular feature for many news-oriented Web sites. This evening, I'll be reloading the California Secretary of State site over and over until my carpal tunnel nerves snap like kindling. Offering live election results can be difficult if you don't have a source providing you this information, preferably in electronic form. Fortunately, it's possible to use JavaScript to present authentic-looking fake live results that change over ... read more