…and the award for the weirdest tech glitch of the week goes to … Firefox! Tonight I uploaded a new version of my music page. Not the one here in the blog, gotta fix that one up a little; I mean the one on my website. Now available for your listening pleasure are hi-res mp3s of all of the music on my two CDs. (Am I permitted a WOOT?) I’m using a neat little Flash player widget called NiftyPlayer, which is nicer than Quicktime because it lives right there in the page rather than taking you off to a blank window.

So I tested the page in both IE and Firefox here on my local hard drive, and it worked fine. But when I uploaded it, Firefox wouldn’t play the music. IE was still happy, but Firefox stubbornly refused.

After a little poking around, I figured out that the code I was using (either because that’s what I copied from NiftyPlayer or because of my own stupidity) had backslashes in the directory statements for the locations of the mp3 files. You wouldn’t think that would be a problem for the file system on the server, because IE had no trouble finding the files. But apparently IE was performing some kind of translation on the code while Firefox simply ran it in its original state, because when I replaced the backslashes with forward slashes and uploaded the page again, both IE and Firefox were able to play the music. Score one for Microsoft.

Actually, now that I think of it, Firefox has some competition in the tech glitch category from Spectrasonics Omnisphere. Yesterday I found an Omnisphere patch that had dropouts while streaming audio from my hard drive. Spectrasonics confirmed the problem, which was apparently due to timbre shift modulation in the patch.

I’m kind of surprised that I figured out the backslash problem. It could have bugged me for weeks, but sometimes my unconscious is on the job.

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One Response to Slashback

  1. Nikos says:

    It’s actually score minus one for Microsoft. Allowing buggy code means people will use buggy code instead of following the standard. URLs need to use forward slashes. Backslashes are not allowed. Note: “not allowed”. Meaning the browser should not allow them.

    IE is (and always was) famous for breaking standards and as a result there are still lots of “IE only” sites out there that are simply broken.

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