Thursday 30 September 2004
“I FAULT THIS president for not knowing what death is.” So writes E.L. Doctorow, one of my all-time favorite novelists, in an essay entitled The Unfeeling President.
“I fault this president for not knowing what death is. He does not suffer the death of our 21-year-olds who wanted to be what they could be . . . He cannot mourn but is a figure of such moral vacancy as to make us mourn for ourselves.”
Tuesday 28 September 2004
NEED TRAVELER’S AID? Try seatguru and find the best seat by type of plane. For many airline carriers – utterly useful and fun!
PHOTOBLOGGERS TAKE HEED. In November, the world will be graced by JPG Magazine. Brain child of Heather Powazek Champ and Derek Powazek, the magazine will feature photographs taken by contributing photographers who work primarily online, but would love to see their work in print.
Check out the JPG Magazine site, which contains information on how to submit your work for potential publication.
Saturday 25 September 2004
THREE GOOD THINGS to tell you about. Movies and music.
Shaun of the Dead
I think Shaun of the Dead creates a new genre: Punk Horror. I laughed almost the entire way through, except for the parts where I was screaming “EWWW” with the rest of the crowd.
I loved it.
Living long enough to see women rock mighty is a joy. I don’t mean women rocking a little. I mean women taking rock to its hardest, sexiest, hottest, realist end. Antigone Rising, one of The. Best. Bands. Ever.
Rich Robinson is a songwriter that totally embodies American roots rock. Folk, blues, country, and sheer rock n’ roll.
His brother, Chris Robinson has born all the fame for the frontman tricks when The Black Crowes were out there (not to mention that he’s married to Kate Hudson), but in brother Rich is the songwriting that made that band the musical genius it was.
There were problems with Rich’s show, but it was all in the venue and sound. The man is no doubt a genius songwriter that will probably be an “unsung” American hero, no matter what his brother has done.
He plays slide guitar like no one I know. I am glad I saw.
Good things come in threes, so they say . . .
Friday 24 September 2004
PROFESSIONAL PROGRAMMERS PLEASE comment on this one. A software developer I know and I were IMing last night and after looking at a web site he was working on, I mentioned that, while his HTML looked okay, he was missing a
T: I always rip out the
DOCTYPE‘s and meta stuff.
m: yeah? So, it’s okay with you as a programmer to write tag soup?
T: I’m just saying – I always cut them out. Visual Studio .NET will put them in – and I rip them out.
m: sigh. My life’s work means nothing.
I didn’t understand his rationale at all, mostly because he didn’t provide one. He went on to tell me he was just a “dumb programmer” and what did he know? I tried to explain that HTML was a language with specifications and that conformance requires a correct
DOCTYPE. At that point, I stopped talking to him. I was extremely tired and I didn’t feel like arguing.
Tuesday 21 September 2004
LAST NIGHT I opened a fortune cookie and it was empty.
Completely totally empty.
Saturday 18 September 2004
AOL SHUNS MICROSOFT anti-spam technology, backing non-proprietary methods instead.
I’m not familiar with Microsoft’s “Sender-ID” technology, which somehow makes it difficult to spoof email headers and therefore cuts down on spam.
Interestingly, AOL has made its decision based on the opinion and concern of the Apache Software Foundation, who are by nature opposed to proprietary solutions.
While AOL will allow other service providers to use the Microsoft technology to track their IP addresses, all incoming email will be processed using a non-proprietary method.
Friday 17 September 2004
Where are all my music advisors? Come over and talk to me, I need you.
What are your absolute top three pieces of music right now?
THE ARROGANT WORMS are a Canadian band.
They are very silly and very funny. A few of my faves:
History is Made By Stupid People
“History is made by stupid people.
Clever people wouldn’t even try.
If you wanna place in the history books,
Then do something dumb before you die.”
“. . . not nearly as scary
As that girl . . . at every show
Mouthing the words from the front row . . .
The stalker girl is scaring the hell out of me.”
Don’t Go Into Politics
“Don’t go into music
You’ll end up dead
Don’t go into music
You’ll end up dead
And don’t go into science
You’ll end up dead
Don’t go into politics
You’ll end up dead.”
SLIP SLIDING AWAY – Microsoft Internet Explorer loses market share for the first time in over seven years.
In the meantime, Mozilla browser share grew from 3.5% to 5.2%.
These numbers might not look like a lot at first glance, but considering this is the most significant change in the browser market we’ve seen since IE grabbed the top spot seven years ago, there’s some reason to party.
In related news, Mozilla is promoting a 1,000,000 downloads in 10 days event via its spreadFirefox.com web site. With eight days to go, they’re already over half the way there! Of course, The Web Standards Project (WaSP) Browse Happy campaign provides information on why you should consider leaving the little blue “e” behind, and offers a number of alternatives to Firefox, as well.
Thursday 16 September 2004
“What is HUAC?”
Coolest question in my inbox right now, because of the poll.
HUAC is House Un-American Activities Committee which led the way, in the late 1930s, in conservative attacks on federally supported art.
Here’s Wikipedia’s take on HUAC
A documentary was made about HUAC, Committee on Unamerican Activities, which I’ve not yet seen.
GRAB YER GUN er, your paintball gun that is and let’s paint Bill Gates’ face red.
Are you a high-end business customer using Microsoft products? Well lucky you! You might be one of the “some” customers who will be receiving three-day advance security warnings and updates so as to be better prepared against security onslaughts.
Of course, you might not be in that class. You might be some poor sucker who just bought Microsoft products because, well, they came with your PC. Or maybe you’re one of the many small business customers who won’t be included in that “some” group.
Oh, wait – there’s an alternative. You can request these updates, but you have to swear in blood that you won’t tell anyone else.
Molly: Geez, MSFT is now giving “some” paying biz customers a 3 day advance warning on security issues, while non-business users are kept in the dark ’til the patches go out.
Eric Meyer: Hmm. Wait a minute . . . no, I’m not even a little bit surprised. Oh, wait, maybe – – no, still not surprised.
Sigh, I’m not either. Will it never end?
Wednesday 15 September 2004
OLDEST PROFESSION OR just more search silliness? I found it funny.
You tell me!
SHANA TOVA MEANS “A good year.” This evening marks the Jewish New Year, “Rosh Hashana” and in the spirit of my heritage, I share my thoughts for all that this coming year will indeed be a good one.
The Jewish calendar is rather interesting. It is both lunar and solar, combining lunar months with an over-arching solar year. Traditionally, Rosh Hashana begins with the sounding of the Shofar, a ram’s horn. Rosh Hashana is also first in a series of the most important religious holidays, a period referred to as the “High Holy Days.”
While feasts and celebrations are certainly in order for Rosh Hashana, it is also a time for contemplation. We are encouraged as Jews to think deeply about our actions of the past year, to assess our virtues and our sins, to challenge ourselves to become better people in the next year, to revisit our spiritual purpose, and get our lives in order.
So welcome, 5765 ! And Shana Tova to all.
Tuesday 14 September 2004
PARANOID OR PRIVATE? Give me a little reality check here, friends.
There’s a shopping center not far from where I live that I’ve frequented for many years. It has a coffee house, market, pharmacy, bookstore and postal service – all of which I use regularly.
A few weeks ago I met a friend for coffee there, and we noticed a security guard in the parking lot taking down the license plates of cars. I said something to my friend because this activity struck me as odd.
Today, I went to pick up a prescription and some mail, and as I was leaving my car, the same security guard came up and started writing down my car’s license plate. I asked him what he was doing and why. He explained that his bosses have asked him to write down license plate numbers in the parking lot to “keep track” of how long cars were parking in a spot.
I went into the mail service and asked the owner there if he knew what was going on. He mentioned that there was some dispute between businesses about the use of the parking spaces.
Now, I need some help here. I find this to be definitely on the edge in terms of privacy. I am not by nature a conspiracy freak, but I do not think that any commercial business where I am a guest, lawfully using the premises, has a right to take down my vehicle’s information each time I visit. It smacks of a civil liberties issue – because if this is acceptable, what’s next? Will I have to show my social security number to the security guard? As I enter the business? Provide ID just to make a purchase?
In expressing my concern to the owner of the business I frequent, I got a bizarre stare from the guy, who apparently thought I was some kind of freak of a woman for having a problem with my comings and goings on the premises of his business tracked. He said “Why are you concerned, you’re not doing anything wrong.”
I responded with a “Sir, that’s precisely why I am concerned. I’m lawfully using the premises. If I were doing something problematic or illegal, then it’s an issue for security and the police. But until that time, am I not afforded a certain right to respect and confidence that I can shop without my movements being observed?”
Am I just being paranoid, or is my concern a legitimate one?