Critical Section

Archive: October 21, 2019

 

Archive: October 21, 2018

 

Archive: October 21, 2017

 

Archive: October 21, 2016

 

Archive: October 21, 2015

 

Archive: October 19, 2014

monster mashup

Sunday,  10/19/14  12:49 PM

monster mashupI'm stuck coding so I might as well blog...

And even coding is a distraction from creating a pitch deck.

And even creating the deck was a distraction from practicing a presentation.

Deeply nested yak shaving, you have been warned :)

This looks cool, need to learn more about it: mobile linking gets deeper.  I, too, have wondered about the difficulty of interaction between links and apps.  This is one thing - perhaps the main thing - which the web has going for it, and it is a big thing.

Hehe this is awesome: Spanish comedy club uses facial recognition to charge customers on a per-laugh basis.  Good thing I didn't have to pay per-laugh while reading it.  What an inventive use of visual search :)

Hurry!  Six mobile innovations retailers have time to adopt for the Holidays.  I notice visual search didn't make the list, but maybe it will take too much time.  Next year!

Yovo - intriguing screenshot protectionThis is pretty cool: new photo app protects your pics from screenshots.  A most intriguing plugging of "the analog hole", reminiscent of the Macrovision hack which was used to protect VCRs.  Will be interesting to see if this catches on...

the backs of receiversDave Winer: the backs of receivers today suck.  Yes they do.  And it's because they're mired in old technology ... like ... RCA plugs (click through for a great picture of the back of a 1940s-era radio).  My 12-year-old Yamaha receiver is the oldest piece of electronics in my house, because there's nothing with current technology to which I can upgrade.  Every receiver should just be on your WiFi, accessing your media server, right?

Eric Schmidt: Google's biggest search competitor is Amazon.  Not competitor, but search competitor.  How interesting.  Read the whole article, it's full of good stuff...

Really?  Amazon to open New York retail store.  For picking stuff up though, not for picking stuff out.  Still, weird.

baseball strike zone expansionAfter watching the League Division Series, I must agree: Baseball's strike zone expansion is out of control.  This is presently a weak spot in the game; human interest is all very exciting, but how lame is it when the announcer's report "so and so is a low strike umpire".

Pretty thought-provoking, from Scott "Dilbert" Adams: ISIS Puzzle.  "In the long run, I think ISIS will be the best thing that happened to the Middle East because of what it does to the common psychology of who the "real" enemy is. And it comes when the problems in the Middle East seemed otherwise unsolvable. Is that a coincidence?"  I like, you think.

The app that helped launch a revolution: FireChat.  When the revolution cannot be televised, Tweeted, or IM'ed, a decentralized phone-to-phone network steps in.  How fascinating.

Apple product lineLast Thursday Apple held another announcement event, billing it "it's been way too long", but in the end it wasn't much of an event.  Cult of Mac posted a nice summary: The twelve biggest takeaways from Apple's iPad event.  My summary from the summaries is ... a bunch of expected upgrades.  Which doesn't mean they aren't cool, but they aren't significant, like the announcement of the Apple Watch a few weeks ago.  Perhaps the fact that most of the announced products had a version number tells the story.  Onward!

I do agree the graphic shown at right is a cool summary of Apple's current product line.

On the long trip to Mars, virtual reality could help keep astronauts sane.  Well, yeah.  Of course if the spacecraft and sensors are good enough, no need to send people at all, just use virtual reality to let them experience the trip!

Lockheed Martin announces breakthrough in nuclear fusionLockheed Martin announces a major breakthrough in nuclear fusion.  Excellent!  Given their gravitas, I doubt this is simple announceware to placate investors, there must be something real behind it.  More, faster!

Meanwhile: The physics of why 'cold fusion' isn't real.  I'm reminded of that saying, when a scientist says something is possible, they're probably right, when they say it's impossible, they could be wrong.

Onward!

 
 

Archive: October 19, 2013

Stay Hungry, Stay Foolish

Saturday,  10/19/13  04:47 PM

Sensei JobsToday is the second anniversary of Steve Jobs' passing, and to commemorate Business Insider posted a few key quotes.

I like them all but especially this one, headed:

On your working life

Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you find it. And, like any great relationship, it just gets better and better as the years roll on. So keep looking until you find it. Don’t settle.”

It's always been a nice sentiment and all the more so for being true, but it's especially relevant to me just now.  Stay tuned as I will have some interesting news about *my* working life.

This quote is from Steve's amazing Stanford Commencement speech, delivered in June 2005 when he was already ill with the cancer that ultimately took his life (though we didn't know it at the time).  The speech ends, Stay Hungry, Stay Foolish.  Indeed...

 
 

Archive: October 21, 2012

 

Archive: October 20, 2011

extreme yak shaving

Thursday,  10/20/11  12:07 PM

shave ... at your perilHey y'all it's been a couple of weeks since I posted about "stuff"; just wanted you to know I am engaged in some extreme yak shaving.  (Also, I had the slight interruption of riding the Furnace Creek 508 :)

I've been loving my iPhone for a while, and more recently have begun loving my iPad too.  Although it wasn't immediately apparent why anyone with a smartphone and a laptop would want a tablet, I've slowly begun realizing the tablet form factor makes it nice for "occasional" computing in alternative locations, like my backyard, my bathroom, and ... my bed.  I can read just about anything on the iPad; emails, web pages, RSS feeds, etc., and can compose email, send messages (with IOS 5 and iMessage), and do some light editing.  But I can't blog :(

The problem isn't fundamental; it's perfectly possible to blog from an iPad.  But when *I* blog I do it in a certain way, and that way involves tools that are only usable from within Windows: SharpReader to read feeds, Photoshop to edit pictures, and Citydesk to update the blog.  This mechanism dates back eight+ years to when I started blogging, and in the intervening time I've thought about overhauling the whole thing a few times.  Now I'm biting the bullet.  My plan is to do it all from email, so I can blog from anywhere, on any device, at any time.  Of course this requires a bit of work (!) with several nested levels of things to build, and so in the meantime I'm not blogging at all. 

Except to report that I am engaged in some Extreme yak shaving.  Please stand by :)

 
 

Archive: October 1, 2010

the world's smallest elephant

Friday,  10/01/10  05:55 PM



The picture above shows the world's smallest elephant; a rather oddly shaped cell in a cluster of other cells imaged from a pap smear at 1/4 micron per pixel.  The elephant cell is about 4 microns across :) which is 4/1,000,000th of a meter.

 
 

Archive: October 21, 2009

Wednesday,  10/21/09  11:03 AM

Blogging from Virgin America flight 108 high above Arizona.  Have I mentioned how great this is?  I am on my way to an FDA panel meeting to discuss regulation of whole-slide imaging for pathology, and I am really excited about it.  This is it; the culmination of years of hard work and development and study designs and customer advocacy, where the field of digital pathology moves into clinical diagnosis.  A real inflection point!

But meanwhile, it's all happening...

Antarctica and U.S. size comparison - wowQuick, how big is Antarctica?  Check out this picture of the U.S. superimposed over it...

Ann Althouse notes we are losing our religion, as U.S. belief in global warming is cooling.  Like nuclear energy, carbon emissions are a political football and most people respond based on opinion rather than fact.  I believe global warming is a problem and is also way overstated as a problem.

how to blast an anvil 200' into the airNews you can use: how to shoot an anvil 200' into the air.  Do not try this at home, especially if you live in my neighborhood :)  In addition to loving the idea of blasting an anvil into the air, I was struck that the practitioners of this sport look exactly like what you would expect.

Nook ebookWell it didn't have the hype of the Kindle, but Barnes and Noble have announced the Nook, a Kindle competitor.  It uses a similar E-ink display, but has a color touch screen.  In terms of business model it is similar to Kindle, with a tweak that allows people to "lend books" to their friends.  I think this validates the Kindle more than competes against it.

BTW I noticed B&N's website is considerably slower than Amazon's; a minor note, but I'm telling you website speed is important.  It is no accident that Google's website is faster than Bing's, for example.

Apple stock hits all time high.  John Gruber goes out on a limb and predicts AAPL's market cap will surpass MSFT's by year-end 2010.  And notes that Apple has enough cash on hand to buy every share of Dell.  It is amazing that everyone gave up on Apple, and they have succeeded by creating new markets for music players and smartphones, instead of by growing within the desktop computer market.

the thinker... the very definition of a silverbackPicture of the day: the thinker.  The very definition of a silverback.

ZooBorn: baby white rhinoZooBorn of the day: a baby white rhino.  (NB "white" rhino designates a species, not a color.)

 

Noah cuts back

Wednesday,  10/21/09  12:50 PM


sometimes you can only cut so far
might have been better to leave out half the species instead :)

 
 

Archive: October 21, 2008

Tuesday,  10/21/08  09:39 PM

More work, more kid taxiing, and still blech although I did get in a ride today, so it was better.  And I was able to get some code running "in production" that I've been working on, so that was nice.  I can't complain but sometimes I still do.  And meanwhile, it's all happening...

Lala rocksSo I must tell you, I like Lala.  To early to tell if it is a fad or a keeper, but I've spent more time listening to music there than on any other online music site so far...  and they don't even have much of a "sounds like this" capability.  Basically I already know all this music, but I don't have it, and there it all is...  I haven't downloaded anything yet, I guess that will be the proof of the pudding.  Stay tuned...

Remember Mississippi Queen?  Can you name the band?  ... Mountain ...

India's moon mission blasts offIndia have launched their first moon mission!  "The unmanned Chandrayaan 1 spacecraft blasted off smoothly from a launch pad in southern Andhra Pradesh to embark on a two-year mission of exploration.  The robotic probe will orbit the Moon, compiling a 3-D atlas of the lunar surface and mapping the distribution of elements and minerals.  The launch is regarded as a major step for India as it seeks to keep pace with other space-faring nations in Asia."  Wow, how excellent.  Good for them.

Microsoft's sidesight technologyThis is an amazingly innovative idea: Microsoft's Sidesight.  Technology that detects gestures you make with your fingers at the sides of a mobile device, that can be used for controlling it.  No touchscreen required, multitouch or otherwise.  A great idea...

Matt Haughey notes Tivo's rebound.  "Off and on for the past six years I've been an armchair quarterback for TiVo telling them they should do anything and everything to become profitable... What I realized this week is that TiVo has spent the past couple years starting battles on all these fronts, and it looks like (at least to this outside observer) like TiVo is winning on all fronts."  I'm a huge fan, of course, even more so after my ill-fated flirtations with Moxi and other DVRs.

BW has an interesting interview with Bram Cohen, creator of BitTorrent.  They play up Bram's Asperger's Syndrome angle, but neglect the more interesting question of how you take a successful program like BitTorrent and turn it into a successful business.  So far it is an unanswered question...

 

 
 

Archive: October 21, 2007

 

Archive: October 15, 2006

Ole votes

Sunday,  10/15/06  03:38 PM

I spent this afternoon voting, in the comfort of my [home] office, with football playing in the background.  Picture me browsing to websites, reading the Official Voter Information Guide and the candidates' statements in the Sample Ballot, and actually spending time thinking about the issues.  Weird, isn't it?

I know, most people don't do this, most people have never heard of most of the candidates and don't trouble to inform themselves, most people don't understand the issues they're voting about.  So be it, our system is not perfect.

Anyway, here are my votes in case you wanted to know...

California State positions

  • Governor - Arnold Schwarzenegger
  • Lieutenant Governor - Tom McClintock
  • Secretary of State - Bruce McPherson.  Tough call over Debra Bowen, even though she's way liberal.
  • Controller - Tony Strickland.  An uninformed decision but I like his website.
  • Treasurer - Claude Parrish.  This is a vote against Bill Lockyer.
  • Attorney General - Chuck Poochigian.  A vote against Jerry Brown.
  • Insurance Commissioner - Steve Poizner.  A vote against Cruz Bustamante.
  • Member, State Board of Equalization, 2nd district - Bill Leonard.  Doesn't like the parcel tax (prop 88), neither do I.
  • State Assembly, 37th district - Audra Strickland.  I agree with her positions on virtually every issue.

Federal positions

  • Senator - Dick Mountjoy.  I like him, plus a vote against Dianne Feinstein, who I voted for originally but who has disappointed me over and over and moved to the left while in office.
  • Representative, 24th district - Elton Gallegly.  He's been a great representative for a red district in a blue state.

Judicial positions

  • Joyce Kennard - Yes.
  • Carol Corrigan - Yes.
  • Robert Mallano - Yes.
  • Frances Rothschild - Yes.
  • Roger Boren - Yes.
  • Victoria Chavez - No.  A thousand times no.  No on her dad, too, except he's not on the ballot.
  • Patti Kitching - Yes.
  • Richard Alrich - Yes.
  • Norman Epstein - Yes.  Liberal but smart.
  • Thomas Willhite - Yes.
  • Nora Manella - Yes.
  • Steven Suzukawa - Yes.
  • Richard Mosk - No.  On the Christopher Commission and Iran - United States Claims Tribunal.  Not real world.
  • Sandy Kriegler - Yes.
  • Arthur Gilbert - Yes.  Has a blog :)
  • Dennis Perluss - Yes.  A Davis appointee but surprisingly rational anyway.
  • Fred Woods - Yes.  Solid citizen.
  • Laurie Zelon - No.  She and Madeleine Flier are flaming liberals, both appointed by Davis.
  • Candace Cooper - No.  Not enough on the web about her considering how long she's been on the court (appointed by Davis in 2001).
  • Madeleine Flier - No.  See Laurie Zelon above.

Community positions

  • Community College District - Cheryl Heitmann.  Seems to be doing a good job.
  • Conejo Valley School District - Mike Dunn, Pat Phelps, Tim Stephens.  Based mostly on statements in voter guides.
  • Thousand Oaks City Council - Dennis Gillette, John Diguiseppe, Bob Wilson.  I like the current council, our city is in great shape.  I'm voting incumbents.
  • Conejo Recreation and Parks - Joe Gibson, Susan Holt, Mike Berger.  Based on voter guide.

We interrupt my vote for a rant.  Why oh why do we have voter information published in Spanish?  There is one official language in California, and it isn't Spanish.  I'm Dutch, why don't we publish voter information in Dutch?  There must be people from hundreds of countries speaking thousands of languages living in California; why not publish voter information in every used language?  It doesn't make sense.  People who can't speak English or comprehend written English should not vote.  Simple as that.  Okay, now back to voting...

State propositions

  • 1A - No.  I think gas taxes probably should be used for transportation improvements, but I don't like earmarked taxes.  Let the Governor and Legislature have flexibility to reallocate when necessary.
  • 1B - Yes.  $20B bond issue for state and local transportation improvements.  Although there's an argument that we shouldn't use bonds for this stuff ("borrowing against the future") the fact is that these investments are needed and we can't fund them out of tax revenue, and shouldn't choke economic growth by raising taxes.  So...
  • 1C - No.  $3B bond issue for housing and development programs.  Unlike 1B, It isn't clear that these investments really are investments, or whether they're needed.
  • 1D - No.  $10B bond issue for school infrastructure.  Unlike 1B, I don't think school infrastructure is a one-time upgrade; rather, this is ongoing maintenance and investments needed, and should be funded from tax revenues.
  • 1E - Yes.  $4B bond issue for flood management projects.  This feels like 1B to me, so I'm for it.

Note: 1A through 1E are generally being promoted as a package, supported by [among many others] Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger.  I have chosen to vote for them a la carte...  despite all being bond issues they have less to do with each other than supporters of the package claim.

  • 83 - No.  Increased punishments and restrictions on sex offenders.  If I thought this would help prevent sexual abuse I'd vote for it, but I don't, so this would be just more money thrown away on bad people.
  • 84 - No.  $5.4B bond issue for water quality and flood control.  I might not understand this well enough to make the right decision, but it feels to me like a special interest thing which isn't really needed.
  • 85 - No.  Makes it more difficult for minors to get an abortion.  I think anyone who is pregnant and doesn't want a baby should get an abortion, especially minors who are less likely to care for the kid.
  • 86 - No.  Excise tax on cigarettes.  I don't like "sin taxes" and this one especially doesn't seem to make sense.  Seems to have special interest language in it, too, to protect hospitals from antitrust laws.
  • 87 - No.  $4B tax hike to fund alternative energy [sic].  I am a big fan of alternative entropy but I don't think government subsidy is the way to get there.  Instead let's remove government barriers to private enterprise solutions.  Anyway this kind of tax is a waste of money.
  • 88 - No.  This is the infamous parcel tax.  Although this is a way to carve back on Prop 13, which was a big mistake, we should change Prop 13, not enact new taxes in different configurations to work around it.  Also, it isn't progressive (that is, doesn't scale to the value of the parcel), which seems unfair.  Backed by Reed Hastings (Netflix) and John Doerr (Kleiner Perkins).
  • 89 - No.  Public campaign funding.  I don't think candidates' campaigns are a good use of public funds, sorry, even though I understand and somewhat accept the argument that in the absence of public funding, rich candidates have an advantage.  I think they do anyway (!), and people should raise money for their campaigns based on merit.
  • 90 - No.  An anti-Kelo attempt to restrict public seizure of private property.  I am sympathetic to the intent of this proposition, but unfortunately it goes too far by requiring government to compensate property owners for actions which change the value of their property, as well as actions which seize the property.  This could trigger a rash of lawsuits and restrict governments from conducting business.  ("You didn't put the new school next door to my property, so it is now less valuable!")

Thanks for your attention!

By the way, I am not one of those people who say to everyone: "you should vote!"  Instead, if you don't know what you're voting about, don't vote!  If you know the people and understand the issues, and we disagree, so be it.  But if you don't know the people and don't understand the issues, then please don't dilute my vote with yours.

 
 

Archive: October 21, 2005

 

Archive: October 21, 2004

Hi from Virgin Galactic

Thursday,  10/21/04  05:29 PM

Here's an email you don't get every day:

Hi from Virgin Galactic

Is this a great time to be alive, or what?

 

Thursday,  10/21/04  10:11 PM

One of the really feel-good stories that came out in the past couple of weeks was the elections in Afghanistan.  As Scott Norville reported, it was Just a Success Story  [ via Citizen Smash ]  Democracy is the best hope we have of defusing radical Islam.  Cox & Forkum captured this perfectly in "Casting":

"Casting"

A classic Kerryism.  "Talking about education yesterday, Mr. Kerry also told the largely black crowd at the day care center that there are more blacks in prison than in college.  'That's unacceptable,' he said.  'But it's not their fault.'  Rather than the inmates, the former Boston prosecutor blamed poverty, poor schools, a dearth of after-school programs and 'all of us as adults not doing what we need to do'."  Classic victimology.  I sure hope this pendulum of political correctness starts swinging back.  People have to be held responsible for their own actions.

Related, Philip Greenspun: The Bell Curve Revisited.  I still think it is a great and important book, and I defy anyone who has actually read it to brand it "racist".  There are important problems in our society, and we must face the truth to solve them.

Kip Esquire: How Evolution is like Economics.  Interesting commentary on the Wired Magazine article about "Intelligent Design", a creationist plot against evolution.  "Almost every college student takes at least one basic economics course, yet when economic policies are debated the most basic economic principles seem to get drowned out in the din of a handful of crackpots who posture themselves as having equal standing when in fact they don't."

The Motley Fool looks at The eBay Way.  eBay just announced their quarterly earnings, and knocked the ball out of the park again.  "I would love to lead this story by pointing out how eBay trounced Wall Street's targets this past quarter and is raising its guidance for the next year, but would that even be newsworthy?"

Antikythera geared computer, 56 B.C.The Antikythera Computer, 56 B.C.  "In 1900, sponge divers discovered a shipwreck in 200 feet of water.  Among the historical curiosities to be excavated from the wreck was the earliest geared computer.  About the size of a shoebox, the unit was a working computer which could calculate the positions of the moon and the five planets known in 56 BC.  From this one device we learn that the Greeks had clock-making capabilities equaling that of 16th-century Europe."

Weirdly, my ancient Tyranny of Email article continues to get linked, and hit; today I had over 50,000 hits again.  Aside from the ego gratification, the best thing about this is seeing all the great sites linking me in the referral logs.

Nik's avatarOne of them was a post by "Nik" to the Brosenbex forums, using this really cool animated avatar...  (Reminds me of David Roy's "wood that works" sculptures :)

This is so I can find it later, and in case you need it; a great survey article about glue.  If you ever need to stick something to something else, bookmark this page.  [ via Gizmodo ]

Jaws for BunniesFinally, here we haveJaws for Bunnies.
I am not making this up. 
[ via BigWig ]

 

 

 
 

Archive: October 20, 2003

Monday,  10/20/03  10:37 PM

FuturePundit ponders Human Natural Selection In Taiwan, where there are two girls born for every three boys.  "An obvious consequence is that when the little king passes puberty, he discovers that the girl he liked in high school has gone to USC, probably never to return, while those who remain are being snapped up by other men."  A realtime experiment in artificial selection - with humans!

You know how I like SpaceX?  Their September update is out, including news of their first customer - the DOD!  "This is a significant vote of confidence, as many launch vehicles have no choice but to fly unpaid test launches with dummy payloads.  Overall, the Falcon launch manifest is looking quite promising and I think we will be able to announce both a second and a third customer in the next few months, one of which is international."  Excellent, looks like Elon Musk has another winner.  Be sure to check out the movie of the engine test firing - very cool.

Greg Costikyan is Recasting the Debate on IP.  "Recently, I went to a movie, and was subjected to a spot from some film industry organization, I do not remember which, that featured a fellow who is a set maker for the movies.  He spouted some nostrum about how people who 'steal' movies were screwing him, not the studios.  I was not impressed."  I saw that spot, and had the same reaction.  These guys make union scale, what do they care whether the movie is pirated?  Read the whole thing - good stuff.

Henry Sheehan: LA Crix Nix Pix Prix.  The LA Film Critics Association have cancelled the annual awards show because of the MPAA's ban on screeners.  Excellent.  [ via Roger L. Simon ]

Mirabella VThis is so cool - Yachting Magazine reports Mirabella V will be The World's Largest Sailing Sloop.  These dimensions are hard to grasp; overall length 75 meters (250ft.), mast height 90 meters (300ft.), beam 15 meters (50 ft.).  "She cannot fit in the Panama Canal, nor can she get under the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco, as the mast would be standing 40ft above the road."  The keel bulb will weigh 110 tons and the draft with the keel fully extended is 10 meters (40 ft.).  Unbelievable.  The owner is planning to charge about £250,000 per week for charter of this yacht.  Okay, back to coding for me!

Mark Frauenfelder relates A Night with Stephen Hawking.  I wish I could have been there.

I'll never forget my first Ernest C. Watson lecture, at CalTech's Beckman auditorium.  The speaker was Kip Thorne, the subject was Radiating Black Holes.  I was a 16-year old undergraduate, and I was in complete awe.  The audience was as impressive as the speaker and the subject; I can remember Murray Gell-Mann sitting next to Richard Feynman.

Scott Loftesness raves about Windows iTunes.  There's a lot of that going around.  "Apple now has a strong cross-platform offering for distributing protected data.  As the early lead in the market, they now have potentials to expand a lot beyond the world they run in."  Yep, in particular it will be interesting to see what they do with video.

Ars Technica has a review which points out some problems.  The Windows world is different from the Mac world...

The BBC reports Apple sold 3 million songs in the three days following the Windows iTunes announcement.  And over 1 million people downloaded the Windows version of iTunes.  Wow.  "'We're off to a great start, and our competition isn't even out of the starting gates yet,' Apple CEO Steve Jobs said."  Oh, yeah, Napster 2.0 launches next Wednesday.

For you Mac-ers out there, OSNews has a nice review of Panther (OSX 10.3).  I'm just about ready to upgrade my iMac from Jaguar (OSX 10.2), looks like it's time...

Maya visualizationIf you're interested in playing with a high-end video modeling / animation / rendering / effects tool, Alias is now offering a free "personal learning edition" of Maya.  You, too, can make 3D images like the one at left.  A terrific way to waste valuable free time!

Alex King posted a comparison of the Treo 600 to the Treo 300.  I was going to do this, but he already did, and did it better than I would have.  Check it out.

Dilbert.com announced their second annual "exuberantly non-scientific Weasel Poll": 

  • Weaseliest Organization: Recording Industry Association of America.
  • Weaseliest Country: France
  • Weaseliest Company: Microsoft
  • Weaseliest Individual: George W. Bush
  • Weaseliest Behavior: Blaming fast food restaurants for making you fat
    (Religious extremism finished a distant second)

Vodaphone "bowlingual" phoneOkay, I know I promised to stop reporting "gadget news", but Vodaphone just introduced a new phone with a 2-megapixel camera - and dog translation software.  The "bowlingual" feature translates dog barks into English.  I am not making this up.  Really.

 

What I want from the PDC

Monday,  10/20/03  10:42 PM

I'm hoping this makes the "PDC bloggers" blog, so the PDCpeople will see it...

So, I'm attending the Microsoft Professional Developer's Conference next week.  What do I want to get out of it?

  • I want to get the big picture.  What's new, and how do the new things tie together?
    • All these code words, all the inside jokes, all the mysticism - hey, keep it simple.  I'm just an experienced coder trying to build applications, tell me what I need to know.
       
  • I want to understand all the code words.  What do they mean?
    • Longhorn
    • Whidbey
    • Avalon
    • Yukon
    • WinFS
    • Indigo
    • MSBuild
    • XAML
    • etc...
       
  • Where does all this new stuff leave COM?  Are OCXs still a thing?  Will they still work?  And what's the blessed new way to build components?
  • I'm someone still developing mostly under VS6, with VC++ and VB.  I don't want to ship the .NET CLR with all my applications.  When should I move to VS.NET?  When should I migrate from VC++ to C#?  When should I migrate from VB to VB.NET?  When should I target WinXP instead of Win2K?
  • Tell me how to use SOAP.  I get XML, and I get HTTP.  I get XML-RPC.  SOAP seems so much harder, please, make it easy for me...
  • I want to get a list of "deep" contacts, so I can get further questions answered "from the inside".
  • And finally: What is .NET?  (I mean, really, all marketing hype aside...)

Hey, thanks!

 

Loving My Treo

Monday,  10/20/03  10:50 PM

Handspring Treo 600So I've got my new Treo 600 and I love it

I love everything about it compared to my Treo 300, which I also loved; the smaller size, the brighter screen, the lack of a flip cover, the navigation buttons, the improved GUI which no longer requires a stylus for most things, the sold feel, the rounded shape, the better sound, the faster processor, I could go on and on (and I probably will, sorry).

But the thing I really love is having a built in camera.  Happy snaps!  You have been warned.  I carry my 'phone everywhere, and consequently I now carry my camera everywhere.  Even on my bike...

Scenes from my ride yesterday:

The Start: Luke
The Start: Luke

Climbing along the Golf Course
Climbing along the Golf Course

More Climbing
More Climbing

Yippee a Descent
Yippee a Descent

Approaching the Landing
Approaching the Landing

Along the Lake
Along the Lake

Cruising around the Lake
Cruising around the Lake

Over the Freeway
Over the Freeway

Traffic! Downtown...
Traffic!  Downtown...

Climbing back up
Climbing back up

Back! 13 miles...
Back!  13 miles...

Yeah, it isn't professional quality, but hey, it works.  I love it!

 

 
 

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The Joy of Craftsmanship
The Emperor's New Code
Toy Story
The Return of the King
Religion vs IQ
In the Wet
the big day
solving bongard problems
visiting Titan
unintelligent design
the nuclear option
estimating in meatspace
second gear
On the Persistence of Bad Design...
Texas chili cookoff
almost famous design and stochastic debugging
may I take your order?
universal healthcare
entertainment
triple double
New Yorker covers
Death Rider! (da da dum)
how did I get here (Mt.Whitney)?
the Law of Significance
Holiday Inn
Daniel Jacoby's photographs
the first bird
Gödel Escher Bach: Birthday Cantatatata
Father's Day (in pictures)
your cat for my car
Jobsnotes of note
world population map
no joy in Baker
vote smart
exact nonsense
introducing eyesFinder
resolved
to space
notebooks
where are the desktop apps?