Microsoft giveth, and Microsoft taketh awayeth. Damn Microsofth. They've killed the super-cool, barely known, rarely used x-bitmap (XBM) image. Kind of.
Recently Wolf5k got front-paged on Digg, and in the comments I noticed some people where having troubles with it noting, "I just get a broken image" or some such. This sounded odd, so I decided to investigate.
I had a look at my post and Wolf5k and they seemed fine. Then I checked them out in IE6. No XBM. This couldn't be right... surely Microsoft didn't get rid of XBM support?! Nope - there is an XBM file in my post and that was showing fine. But the scripted XBMs were not to be seen.
After some exhaustive searches 'round the internet I found that scripted XBM's have been made a no-no since window's service pack 2. This can be worked-around by importing (or modifying if its already there as "1") the following item into registry.
BlockXBM!!!! Damn them!!!! Why would they block scripted XBM's, and why is the registry key in the security section of IE? Then I remembered what I had written in my old post:
XBM images probably aren't going to take over the web anytime soon, but keep an eye on them. They are so obscure that I'm sure a windows buffer overflow vulnerability will spring up from them shortly.
Could it be that my post was read, and my jesting triggered a series of events that lead to the expulsion of the scripted XBM from the 'net? After all, it was some of my off-hand derogatory comments that got the <random-blink> tag removed from HTML.
Whatever the reason, rest in peace Scripted XBM image - you filled our lives with 2-colour animated happiness, and will be slightly missed, by a couple of people.