Friday, May 30, 2003

SCO, how low can you go?

CNET: SCO Group executives say the company's copyright dispute with Novell doesn't affect its legal campaign against Linux, but that they'll probably sue Novell, anyway.


It just keeps getting worse...for SCO that is.


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Turbo10 not so turbo

I start to read an article on The Register and it goes like this: You're not going to believe this, but a new search engine has just appeared and, well, it may be better than Google.


Ok, I'll bite. So I go to Turbo10.com and I wait.  Then I wait some more. Then I fire up this post for the weblog as I continue to wait. Here's a quick business pointer: if you're aiming at taking on Google, you better be able to handle traffic driven to you by a single site like The Register. Maybe Turbo10 is great, but I won't know until I can actually use it. I wonder if the company behind Turbo10 thought about that aspect of their new service/product.


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Wednesday, May 28, 2003

Economy: fact or fiction?

Snellspace: Well, Bush got at least part of what he wanted. I personally think that tax cuts are generally a good thing. I know the extra thousand or so dollars I'll be saving will come in handy. However, I'm struck by the fact that, given the way our economy works today, tax cuts of any size are largely irrelevant. The U.S. economy is not driven by investors, or individual households, or tax cuts, or whatever. The U.S. economy is driven by one thing only: our own perception of how it is doing. If we, as American's perceive our economy to be strong, it is strong. If we perceive it to be weak, it is weak. The only way to strengthen the economy today is to make people believe (really believe) it is strong or getting stronger. The only way to do that is for the government to make people think they are doing good things (regardless of whether they are or aren't). Bush is an inspirational leader in war but less than effective at inspiring confidence in the economy. Clinton, on the other hand, had a gift of making crap smell like roses; which is why, despite the fact that the economy was overinflated and destined for a hard crash, everyone kept their blinders on and kept on trucking thinking all was peachy keen. So, while there are still basic, proven underlying economic principles at work that must be followed, the bottom line to stimulating the economy is not tax cuts, but Hollywood — that is, making people believe what may or may not be reality.  


An interesting take on tax cuts and the economy in general. I tend to agree that the economy is (at least) partially based on our perception of how things are going. Does the average US citizen really know or care if the economy is really rebounding? I don't think so. We just want to “feel” like it's coming around. James Snell hits the nail on the head when he says that the 90's economy kept rolling along while Clinton was in because Clinton did one of the finest jobs of making people ignore hard economics and role with the feeling of a positive flow.


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I'm open to any suggestions except those not coming from me
I overhear a conversation where one person argues every suggestion given to her by a manager from a department outside of her own. The classic part here is that she ends the conversation with, “But I'm open to any suggestions to make this process run better.” Uh-huh, sure you are.
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SCO = stupid, Novel = smart

Slashdot has a post about how Novell is now claiming that they own the patents and copyrights to UNIX System V, not SCO. If this is true, then I would say SCO has a lot of explaining to do. In fact, I would think that this could mean the final nail in SCO's coffin. Novell, on the other hand, comes out looking like a champ with its support for the Linux and Open Source community as a whole. Novell isn't in great financial shape by any stretch, but they at least know you don't want to alienate and anger millions of fanatics. Those same fanatics may be the ones that come to your rescue in the not so distant future.

Read Bruce Perens' post on his site for further analysis. Perens has been following this case very closely and knows a thing or two about Open Source software.

Also, I noticed that SCO has the tag line, “SCO Grows Your Business.” I wouldn't say a company that tries to keep itself in business with weak (and now potentially false) lawsuits is all that interested in growing anyone else's business.


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Tuesday, May 27, 2003

The next version of Internet Explorer (continued)
Scoble, who now works at Microsoft, seems to be hinting that he knows something about the next version of IE but can't say anything (yet) due to Microsoft's NDA. He does hint that he may have more to say in the near future though. Hmmm...
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Your service doesn't allow me to type “U” or “W”!

The Fury of The Cow!I ended up talking to this lady today, that was upset that our services weren't working for her today. She had just upgraded her computer, she says. (Which I later discovered consisted of buying a new monitor and keyboard only.) She wanted to know why our service was down. Her reason for thinking our service was down....she couldn't type the letters W or U. Sent her into Notepad and sure enough they wouldn't type. Suggested maybe she didn't get a working keyboard.


Classic. If you use a computer for day-to-day activities, please become informed enough to know that a new keyboard and monitor is not a “computer upgrade.”


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Monday, May 26, 2003

The next version of Internet Explorer
Slightly Bent wonders what happened to the next version of Internet Explorer. I wonder about that too. My suspicion is that Microsoft doesn't care about the web browser anymore and why should they? They killed their competition with the power of a monopoly in one market, operating systems, to overtake another, web browsers.

I admire the creativity that browsers like Opera and Mozilla continue to offer despite the odds. I don't respect what Microsoft has done with Internet Explorer and will only use it when I'm forced to.

I believe if developers of browser based applications recognized what Microsoft has done to their development environment they might not be so quick to develop IE only web apps. I encourage all web developers to take into account browsers other than Internet Explorer, even if it may not seem to make economical sense in the short term. Invest in the future of the web by supporting browsers that still have the developer and users' interests in mind.
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Friday, May 23, 2003

I swear this porn just jumped on my screen!

MacNN: Some Henrico County parents want school officials to delay the iBook computer program before bringing it to elementary schools, to allow time for discussion of safety concerns and content problems. One parent said her middle school child has been exposed to pornographic content on his iBook three times in five months. The $22 million program started last school year when county high school students were given their own laptops.


You gotta love that. Nice try kiddie. At least we know the cutting edge school system in Little Moscow...errr...Madison, WI won't have this problem any time soon!


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Standards over innovation
The Server Side points to a great article by Jim Waldo about standards coming before innovation.  The Java (or more specifically, J2EE) community suffers from this disease.  On the other end of the spectrum you have Microsoft, who chooses to monopolize standards to the point where there is no sight of an open standard anymore.
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Sad films
Roger Ebert has It's an article about how Cannes has become a festival full of depressing films. I've never been to Cannes, but I have kept track of the Oscars over the years and I've picked up on the same trend — sad films overwhelm the nominations. I have nothing against excellent yet sad films. Life can be sad and depicting that on film is a natural extension. But are the only good films these days full of nothing but sorrow and hopelessness? I guess it's the hopelessness part that bugs me the most about these films.

I don't know. Maybe this trend in the movies is why I want to go see a movie like Bruce Almighty, or just about any Jim Carrey flick. Or, maybe I'm just looking for an excuse to like some not-so-great comedies?
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Thursday, May 22, 2003

PeopleSoft is on the right track
John Taschek at eWeek has an article about how PeopleSoft's new initiative concentrating on “total ownership experience” (TOE) is flawed. He argues that PeopleSoft cannot fix broken business processes, but it can fix its technology. Taschek goes on to argue the gaps in PeopleSoft's current technology, ending with this paragraph:

There are other gaps. Why isn't there a better way to upgrade from PeopleSoft applications that have been heavily customized? PeopleSoft should be concentrating on fleshing out the technology it claims to already have. And yet the first demonstrations of TOE showed only minor changes, such as saving a mouse click to add a new customer record.

I think PeopleSoft's latest initiative is a good one. Yes, it is vague and fuzzy when you look at it from the outskirts, but if done right, this initiative could drastically change the way at least one ERP vendor approaches enterprise software. PeopleSoft is focusing on where the customer's greatest points of pain are. Taschek makes light of the “saving a mouse click to add a new customer record” but fails to see what that example was about. Here is what PeopleSoft's CTO, Rick Bergquist, had to say about this change in their CRM application, “An example: our last version of CRM required over a dozen clicks to add a customer. The new one needs three.” I would call that a significant change Mr. Taschek. It's a change that isn't sexy like adding web services or “self-healing” functionality to your apps. Instead, this change in PeopleSoft's CRM software is one that real users of the software will see real benefits from.

The TOE initiative at PeopleSoft is about focusing on improving PeopleSoft's products and services for its customers. It's not about technology first and it shouldn't be about technology first. If you want technology first Mr. Taschek, please head over to SAP, Oracle or most other ERP vendors that tend to tout their technology over everything else. PeopleSoft is trying to change that approach. Will it work? It certainly has a chance if the executives down to the last person in the command chain at PeopleSoft take the customer to heart.

I've often felt that one of the largest problems with the large ERP/CRM vendors was the fact that they were too busy concentrating on what the competition was doing to take notice of what customers really want. At least PeopleSoft is saying the right things. Now we have to see if they can follow through.
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Wednesday, May 21, 2003

Worms, spam and Macs — oh my!

jhawk over at The Fury of the Cow! points out that the Pylah worm isn't quite as destructive as it first appeared — or is it?  Turns out the worm is more interested in keeping your PC in good shape so that it can send a bunch of spam. I bet jhawk feels even better about his brand spanking new iBook right about now.


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Little Moscow, don't fail us now

MacNN: MacNN reader Alex Nepple writes: “I'm a graduate of the Madison Metropolitan School District (Madison, Wisconsin), where they are eliminating Macintosh computers. The district in the past has been on the cutting edge of using technology in education-- and was on the Internet very early in the game. It once had plenty of Macs but its presence is now fading to a point where their purchase is no longer allowed. Very disappointing for a district with 45 schools, considering the number of teachers I know that use the Macintosh platform at home and school.”


This is disappointing news. I guess you can rally against “evil companies” like Microsoft in Madison, but when it comes to selling your soul to the devil himself, that's OK.  Did I mention Madison, WI is one of the more liberal cities in the states? Did I also mention that I live very close to Little Moscow (Madison) in Little Russia (Wisconsin)? Sigh...


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Yet another Java vs. .NET benchmark

Head over to the Manageability weblog and check out this post on some more realistic benchmarks of Java and .NET. I'll give you a clue on how it ends: In summary Java is at least 7,733x faster than C#...


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Tuesday, May 20, 2003

People who ignore you at work
Generally I don't care if people ignore me at work. In fact, I would probably prefer that people ignore me most of the time when I'm at work. This past week, with one person in particular, is an exception to the “please ignore me while at work” rule. I've been trying to setup a meeting with a few people about an important phase of a project I'm leading. One of the key people needed at this meeting will not respond to my emails for the last five work days. She refuses to return my phone calls. Don't get me wrong. This person is nice from what I can tell. She just seems to not want to be a part of this meeting. Arrrrgggghhh. Guess what? I don't want to be a part of this meeting either, but we have to have this meeting so just give me the courtesy of a reply and life goes on.

On a related note... This person is one of those that let their emails pile up in the inbox. She has over 1,000 messages and at least a few hundred unread. She sorts the messages by the From field. So, a new message comes in and she has to scroll through a ton of read and unread messages in order to figure out where the new mail is from. What are the chances she even knows if I sent a new message? My new message probably blends in with the other 300+ unread messages from months gone by. I think people who use email extensively need to learn how to file messages. Email 101: If you have over 100 messages in your inbox, consider using some of the nifty little tricks your email client offers like rules and filters. Oh yeah, and if I send you several emails requesting confirmation on a very important meeting, go ahead and send me a reply.
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A Microserf wants source code

Scoble: Joseph Jones has released TabletBlogger. Cool, but can I have the source code so I can make it work with Radio UserLand?


How ironic.


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A great analysis of why SCO has no prayer of winning their suit

CNET: SCO's lawsuit against IBM is not a patent case. The fundamental patents on Unix would have expired long ago, while SCO's handful of patents aren't significant. The main allegation is that trade secrets of Unix have been copied into Linux. To win a trade secret case, you have to prove the information was secret. Detailed knowledge of Unix has been available in libraries for 30 years, and a full Unix specification was distributed by the U.S. government as part of its POSIX standards.


Bruce Perens hits the bullseye. He addresses every hole in SCO's case and even shines the light on Microsoft's involvement. His article is a must read.


I guess the executives at SCO took the saying “desperate times call for desperate measures” to heart. Unfortunately, their desperate measures are only hurting an already struggling IT marketplace. Scaring customers is not a good policy for anyone.


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Monday, May 19, 2003

Wasting a decade

I'm just starting to read a Fast Company article by Seth Godin, which starts off with this great take on the current economic conditions: Here's a question that you should clip out and tape to your bathroom mirror. It might save you some angst 15 years from now. The question is, What did you do back when interest rates were at their lowest in 50 years, crime was close to zero, great employees were looking for good jobs, computers made product development and marketing easier than ever, and there was almost no competition for good news about great ideas?


What a great way to look at this period of time! I wonder how many companies are viewing this time as an opportunity? I doubt very many are. People look at me like I'm crazy when I tell them this year is a great year to innovate and make strides in the marketplace. I argue that the opportunities have never been greater. Seth Godin's article goes on to say exactly what I've been trying to convey for quite some time now.


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Google's meta data

Scoble: Oh, did you just realize that this weblog is nothing more than metadata for Google to use? Yeah, you'd be right. Google figured out how to get people like me to go around and look at websites and add meta data about those websites. How did Google do that? By giving us power. Think about it. That's how Google pays us back for the work we're doing to improve its index.


Excellent point! People who complain about Google's index getting clouded by weblogs should take a closer look. Google is actually finding a way to make things more relevant than ever and it's partially based on you and I contributing to the web. I think that idea is the best compromise between all out chaos and strict directory structures like those found in Yahoo's directory listings.


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Friday, May 16, 2003

Lakers lose, Kings win — I'm happy

I've found myself actually watching NBA basketball quite a bit during the playoffs. I'm so happy the Lakers are out of it this year and that the Kings are still in (barely). San Antonio will probably win it all. If the Kings can get past Dallas in game 7, they could possibly pose some problems for San Antonio, but I doubt it. The East is rather pathetic. There doesn't seem to be near as much talent in the East as there is in the West these days. Although, if I had to pick one player to take over a game for me in the fourth quarter, I would probably go with Allen Iverson — inconsistent shooting and all.


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Open Source CMS is falling way behind the competition

Tony Byrne over at CMSWatch, has an article on why Open Source CMS packages are becoming less appealing as the CMS market matures. I agree with his assesment. I've been in charge of finding a CMS solution for the company I work for and was not pleased with the options in the Open Source community. There were plenty of choices. In fact, there were too many choices and none of the choices seemed to have a firm grasp on what businesses are looking for in a CMS solution these days. I had our hosting provider pushing for OpenCMS or even Red Hat's Content Management System. The problem with these systems (at least six months ago) was that they lacked polish and features the end users would need from a CMS. This isn't even to mention the fact that many of these Open Source CMS solutions come with requirements for a particular database system, which Tony Byrne is right in pointing out in his article. It doesn't matter if your solution is Open Source when you're already boxing me in with a particular database.


I'm rooting for Open Source in the area of CMS, but for now I'm going with CrownPeak Technology's Advantage CMS.


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Bringing weblogs mainstream

I didn't make the claim, but Userland's John Robb did: Sorry, I am a little blogged out.  Perhaps due to the war.  Building momentum, be back soon.  Lots of great things going on at UserLand.  We are going to bring weblogs mainstream.


That's a very bold claim for a small software company to make. I hope they do it, but I'm skeptical.


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.NET slower than Java?

I tend to enjoy browsing the posts at TheServerSide.com.  This latest post is to a blog entry by Cameron (who, as one reader pointed out, is so “famous” on TSS there is no need to list a last name .) Cameron does some tests with Java and .NET and shows that Java is about 15% faster on average. Not that it really matters, but I thought it was interesting that Java was faster since Microsoft and MS supporters tend to argue just the opposite.


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Thursday, May 15, 2003

You only have that much email?!
I often find myself in meetings. I almost always have my laptop with me at those meetings and inevitably someone at the meeting peeks at my screen and sees my email in Outlook. They see an inbox with only a handful of messages and freak out. “That's all the mail you get?!!!” they gasp. No, that's not all the email I get. You see, there's these things called filters. You see all those folders under my inbox? Yeah, you know, the ones broken out nicely into categories even you can understand. That's where all my email goes. Got love people who simply allow themselves to be buried by email and then freak out when they see someone else appears to get hardly any email at all.
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Wednesday, May 14, 2003

Why do .NET developers LOVE stored procedures so much?

Robert McLaws has a rant against using “dynamic queries” in applications. I agree, dynamic queries are not the way to go, but his suggestion that stored procedures are the path to all things golden is puzzling. I've oftened wondered why Microsoft developers so easily swallow the MS line of “use stored procedures whenever you can.” I guess if you develop MS only applications, then you don't care about other databases. In fact, I think it's assumed that you're using a Microsoft database when doing .NET development. Almost every .NET tutorial/how-to I've read deals with SQL Server only. Is this how Microsoft expects to make it in the enterprise? Do they really believe you don't have to work with other systems, especially legacy systems? Sadly, I think this is the case, and so developers who use Microsoft's tools tend to think this way as well.


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SCO, SCO, SCO...

Slashdot: Hank Scorpio writes “Well, SCO is at it again. I just received an email from their Developer Partner Program stating that not only are they suspending all future sales of their own Linux product (due to the alleged intellectual property violations), but they are also beginning to send out this letter to all existing commercial users of Linux, informing them that they may be liable for using Linux, a supposed infringing product. They mentioned that they will begin using tactics like those of the RIAA in taking action against end-users of Linux. This seems like it will be about as successful as the whole GIF ordeal a few years back. Where is UNISYS today? Is SCO litigating itself into irrelevance?”


Idiocy. Where is SCO at with their suit against IBM? Wouldn't IBM be the one reliable for the damages if it was found IBM took code from SCO and put it into the Linux codebase? This whole thing reaked of desperation when it first broke. Now it is reaching lunatic levels of stupidity. Does anyone believe SCO at this point? I know I don't.


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Mac OS X Server: 2003 Product of The Year

MacNN points to this Network Magazine article that awards Mac OS X Server as the magazine's server operating system of the year. I've used OS X Server here at work a little and it is sooo much better than the old AppleShare IP server software that ran on Mac OS 8/9. Granted, that's not saying much but it's nice to be able to tell my IT admin co-workers that OS X Server is a nice server OS.


I like to tease the Windows admins here at work about how you administer a Windows server remotely, through remote control software. I tell them it will be awesome when we're able to login to a server securely and be able to do admin it via a powerful command line. What a day that will be! Of course, it's kind of sad when some of the admins look at me and nod in agreement. They honestly don't know you can do this already with other OSes like Linux, OS X, FreeBSD, Solaris, etc. Sigh.


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Flash as a development environment

I've been tempted to dive into learning Flash. I'm most interested in using it to develop applications that don't make much sense within a browser only paradigm. I was quite pleased to see that Kevin Hoyt had posted an article on “Programmatic Flash MX.” Well, I was pleased until I saw that his example took 100+ lines of code to create a single button and that button wouldn't handle resizing very well — arrrggghhh.


I haven't looked at Flash MX, but from the sounds of Kevin's article, Flash does not provide a nice IDE like one would suspect coming from a Java development background. I'm spoiled by class browsing, smart auto-complete, debugging, etc. I'll have to look into this a bit more.


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Tuesday, May 13, 2003

The first black president to give commencement at black college

Fox News: But Tougaloo President Beverly Hogan and other backers of the school are hoping a commencement address from former President Bill Clinton on Sunday and a Democratic presidential debate sponsored by the Congressional Black Caucus (search) will bring the troubled campus some positive attention.


Hey, I didn't call him “The first black president.” But, why wouldn't the first black president give a commencement speech at a black college?


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Bill Gates the thief
The Register: And what do you do if a billionaire blows into your coffee shop and orders a mocha, says he's got no cash when you say “That'll be $3 please,” and tells you his people will settle it? Easy. Call the cops, tell them there's a guy in your store pretending to be Bill Gates.
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Monday, May 12, 2003

I think I have a (better) idea why the record labels are losing
I was in Borders over the weekend. My wife and I were just looking around. I wandered over to the music section and looked at some CD’s. I was shocked to see that most of the CD’s in the Pop/Rock section were $18.99! Is it any wonder why the companies that make up the RIAA are struggling to compete in this new environment? I say within ten years Apple or some other technology company will be one of the biggest players in the music business, not one of today’s big record labels.
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Running PHP with FastCGI on IIS
As always, John Lim has a great article on his site. This time he explains how to use PHP with FastCGI on IIS. I tried getting this running quite some time ago with no luck. I'll have to try John's instructions and see if that does the trick. Up until now, I've always had to run PHP as a CGI on Microsoft IIS web servers, which sucks but at least it's stable.
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Friday, May 09, 2003

Puppy problems
.NET Guy: What do people do who have puppies, but they work all day?

I work at home, and the puppy is being tremendously distracting. He more or less constantly wants attention, and I don't have the time to give it. I've been way under-productive these past few weeks since he's been here. Now Lisa's talking about giving him away because I can't get my work done.


Is there any reason we shouldn't just crate him for the hours Lisa's at work, in a place where his barking won't bother me, and treat it as though I weren't actually here?


I would recommend crating him for a couple hours at a time. Maybe start one hour at a time and let him out for 15 minutes or so. Our dog has separation anxiety and its not fun. I hope that's not the case with this puppy.


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Wednesday, May 07, 2003

The good/evil CSS
I'm doing a little bit of coding (imagine that!) for a prototype application we'll be releasing to our customer base sometime late summer. I'm now concentrating on the HTML interface and have to laugh about the whole CSS debate. CSS sucks, but so does HTML. And guess what? So do most technology standard references. I use a mix of HTML and CSS for my page layouts. There's no way I'm going to use CSS entirely for the layout of an ecommerce related site — not a chance. CSS support in the browsers is still too inconsistent. I can normally trust my table layouts mixed with CSS and that's what I stick to. Am I missing something here?
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Tuesday, May 06, 2003

Poor Florida
I walked into work this morning with the guy who heads up customer service for our e-commerce division. We're upgrading the system to a new payment processor and he was talking about how much more control they would have over fraud. I asked if we got a lot of fraud. He said, “Yeah, and almost all of it seems to come from Florida.” We then agreed that Florida could be detached from the US and sent floating down the Atlantic.
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Indiana Jones is finally going to be on DVD

Slashdot: “The ”Indiana Jones“ trilogy, one of the most requested film series for the DVD format, is finally slated for worldwide release Nov. 4 as ”The Adventures of Indiana Jones — The Complete DVD Movie Collection,“ a box set that will include a fourth disc specifically dedicated to bonus materials.”


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Monday, May 05, 2003

A nasty bug in Internet Explorer

John Dowdell points to this IE bug. I confirmed that the following code in a page will crash IE 6 (with all the latest patches according to System Update) on Windows XP Pro:


<html>
<form>
<input type crash>
</form>
</html>


Pretty sophisticated exploit, huh? Remember, this will crash Outlook, Outlook Express, etc. as they use IE's rendering engine. Maybe putting that little chunk of code on all our pages will entice people to upgrade to a better browser like Mozilla or Opera. OK, I'm only joking — kind of.


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Bush as the anti-christ

Blogdex pointing to Counterpunch: Bush's blood lust, his repeated commitment to Christian beliefs, and his constant references to “evil doers,” in the eyes of many devout Catholic leaders, bear all the hallmarks of the one warned about in the Book of Revelations - the anti-Christ.


Normally I wouldn't point to such titillating garbage, but I couldn't resist on this one. The author, Wayne Madsen, does on to say this about the Pope as it relates to stopping “Bush's blood lust”:


The Pope, who grew up facing the evils of Hitler and Stalin, knows evil when he sees it. Although we can all endlessly argue over the Pope's effectiveness in curtailing abuses within his Church, his accomplishments external to Catholicism are impressive.


I have nothing against Catholics or the Pope in particular, but to hold up the Pope as a beacon of justice and truth is laughable. Madsen even admits that the Pope has done little to nothing about the abuses within his own church. It's funny that Madsen also points out Hitler in this article. The Vatican was not doing much to stand up to the Nazis. In fact, there now appears to be a belief that the Vatican made under the table deals with Hitler and his party.


Articles like Madsen's do nothing but hurt the Catholic church's image. His article sounds much like those written by far right wing religious nuts: completely out of touch with reality and damaging to the causes they supposedly support.


Some people go looking for their version of the Anti-Christ (for the extreme Left it's Bush, for the extreme Right it was Clinton.) The sad thing is that instead of trying to determine “the end of the world” or who the Anti-Christ may or not be, we should be seeking out God. I'm pretty sure the world is screwed up enough as it is.  We don't need to add to the problem by accusing people of being the Anti-Christ or predicting the end of the world.


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Indie labels coming on Apple's Music Store
The biggest complaint I've heard so far about Apple's new Music Store is that it doesn't have enough selection. A number of people have pointed out that Apple doesn't carry a lot of good artists because they're on independent labels. Well, according to this post on MacRumors, the indie labels will be coming soon. Jobs says it was all a matter of time. Apple had to get the big five first. Now they can focus on getting a lot more labels on the system.

Remember, everyone involved with Apple's Music Store wants more music on there — the labels, Apple and consumers. The labels need this worse than anyone though. Apple is the only hope the major labels have right now of salvaging their reputations, if that's even possible.
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Saturday, May 03, 2003

Yet another reminder of why Microsoft's EULA sucks

The .NET Guy: XP's definition is apparently “you added an ATA RAID card and a wireless network card. Please re-register. Oh yeah, do it by phone, because we love to piss you off about it and waste your time.”


Ah yes, the almost forgotten “feature” of Windows XP, the anti-piracy licensing mechanism. Haven't run into it? Try changing some hardware around and you'll see what it's all about. This is an example of what people are screaming about when you hear them whine about Microsoft's licensing agreements.


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Friday, May 02, 2003

Update on the whole dog situation
Well, my wife was going to see the little boy that got bit by our dog Anakin. He had to have roughly 30-40 stitches on his face. We keep praying for his safe recovery. Thanks to everyone who wrote with encouraging words. You're all the best, especially Jhawk!

My wife is still very upset about the whole thing. She said she hasn't cried this much since her Grandfather died — it's been that sad/bad of a situation. She's blaming herself even though the boy's Mom even said it could have happened to anyone with just about any dog. It'll take time for the emotional wounds to heal as well.

As for Anakin... We think we may have a way to keep him. Someone at work suggested to me yesterday that I try a muzzle. I thought about it and couldn't figure out why I hadn't thought of that before. So last night we went to PetsMart and bought a mesh muzzle. Anakin hates it but he only has to wear it when Ethan or any other small children are around him. I think this compromise will work. My wife was OK with it, but she keeps saying how she feels bad that Anakin has to wear it. I keep reminding her that the alternatives are much worse — give him away or put him to sleep. I hope this will work out. Our son Ethan loves Anakin. Ethan would be as heartbroken as any of us if Anakin has to go. He still may, but maybe this muzzle idea will work. We talk to the vet on Monday to see what he thinks. I'm hoping he thinks it's a decent compromise. He was in favor of very focused behavioral training, so maybe he'll be OK with the muzzle idea in addition to the training? My wife and I didn't think the training alone would resolve the problem. Anakin is trained pretty well. He just bit once and now we can't trust him with little kids. I don't think it's a behavioral problem. I could be wrong though.
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Clustering databases through a virtual JDBC driver
I saw this interesting project and have to admit I'm intrigued by the idea. If you can throw a few PostgreSQL or SAP DB database servers behind an application for reliability and scalability that would be extremely powerful. I'll keep an eye on this one.
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The Colonel