Monday, December 22, 2003

Need a project for the Xmas holidays ?
Why don't you build a paper trebuchet ?
Free kit and instructions. Next you may want to move onto more sturdy catapults

Friday, December 19, 2003

I want one ! How big is that monitor ? 92" that's how big !
All I need now is $18,000
Just what the world needs. Coffee flavoured corn flakes
Now you can be wired all day !
So the Beagle space probe is going to land on mars on Christmas morning.
But little did I know the lander is only 32cm in diameter, by 23 cm deep. Thats tiny. I'm impressed. But it weights nearly 70kg. I imagine most of that are the parachutes and airbags.

Thursday, December 18, 2003

It looks like the X-Prize is not too far from being won.
And there are lots of contenders, and many of them are very close.

EroTech Industries announces a new adult product: the LoveLump(tm). I'm not entirely sure this is a joke, which makes it even funnier

Wednesday, December 17, 2003

Silly flash games for the time of the year.
Try catapulting Santa
Or Finding Santa
Or take out your yuletide frustrations on a snowglobe
If you need to get me a Christmas gift, then this will do nicely
The catapult watch !

Tuesday, December 16, 2003

One storm can wreck your whole 5 years.
All that planning, work, blood sweat and toil, only to have your multi-million dollar project hang in the balance because of a unpredictable natural phenomena. Doh !
Lets hope it all works out for them. It would be gutting to the engineers if the storm screwed it all up.
So how old do you have to be to take US citizenship ?
He was born during Czar Nicolas II reign (if that helps you at all) What's My Pirate Name? "Dirty William Kidd", it says, which I'm pretty sure isn't quite right.

I got "Dirty Sam Flint"
(You're the pirate everyone else wants to throw in the ocean -- not to get rid of you, you understand; just to get rid of the smell. Like the rock flint, you're hard and sharp. But, also like flint, you're easily chipped, and sparky. Arr! )

Monday, December 15, 2003

I wonder how many americans actually think like this ?
Certainly > 0%, but < 100%.

Sunday, December 14, 2003

What do you mean the French have no sense of humour ?
Need to know stuff about H.P. Lovecraft ?
Then try his very own search engine. :D

Thursday, December 11, 2003

I have mixed feelings about the US not letting countries who opposed the war bid for contracts.
But it is US tax dollars, so they have a right not to take bids from people they don't want to take bids from.
How would you like it, say, if you had to buy groceries from a firm you didn't like? And where being forced to?
Its US cash, they can spend it how they see fit. Of course there is a political side to this too, and some countries may get really pissed off with the decision.
What a stupid way to lose your job
Who says the germans have no sense of humour, or sense of fun ?
Michael Schumacher (top Formula 1 driver) races his F1 car against a Eurofighter !
What a great idea. The F1 car actually won in the 600m race.
Man, that's a lot of rebooting. How much money are we talking about again lost to the "reboot activity tax"?

Tuesday, December 09, 2003

So the new Nokia N-Gage gaming phone still works as a phone, but you look really stupid using it.

Friday, December 05, 2003

You may be shocked to see that Celerons are now the crapest processors around. A duron at half the price beats the celerons eveytime.
PIII celerons used to be reasonable, but the P4 celerons have trouble keeping the input cache full, so the processor stalls all the time.
The world oldest penis is found.
It's a fossil record of a mammal, and since soft tissue is rarely fossilised, this is quite a scientific find.
More proof that religion is bad for you, and your children.
And she still thinks she did nothing wrong !

Friday, November 21, 2003

Everybody's already seen the French Military Victories page, right? I just stumbled on it today which shows you how far behind I really am.

Monday, November 17, 2003

Aussies seem to have stupid politicians too. Like this guy who wants to ban a driving game that uses Sidney as one of its tracks.
Do you still want a bluetooth enabled phone ?
Even when people can download stuff of it without your knowledge ?
There are a number of security problems with Bluetooth.
People have been using Bluetooth messaging to spam your phone too.
You'd think in this day and age, security would be a huge consideration, wouldn't you ?
So, after telling Disney that the Europeans are really not too big on Disney parks. They went ahead and built one. In *France* of all places. So it comes as no suprise that they are still continuing to make a huge loss.
BTW France has a park dedicated to Asterix The Gaul, which gets 3 times as many visitors as EuroDisney, and it makes lots of money.
As someone who really thinks Mickey Mouse is shit, this comes as no suprise. Donald Duck is OK (I like the angry ones :D).

Thursday, October 16, 2003

SOE Shoots Itself In The Jimmies

Two days ago, an SOE employee announced on the Star Wars Galaxies page that the next hotfix would change the loot drop tables to include the mythical Holocrons. Finding a holocron would give you a hint as to what you needed to do next to unlock your secret Jedi character slot.

Then they pushed the fix back a day.

Today, the hotfix went in. I checked the server on which I play at 8:00 and people were already logged in killing NPCs for all they were worth. By noon, a person whom I know electronically had killed nearly 2,000 Meatlump thugs and had found exactly zero holocrons. People were calling in sick, taking vacation days, skipping class, what have you just so they could finally (FINALLY!) get a hint about becoming a Jedi.

At 13:00 Eastern time, they revised the patch notes to remove any mention of adding holocrons to the drop tables. That's right ... they silently decided not to put them in.

What could have been the single biggest day in terms of SWG excitement by the players has instead turned into yet another high hard one from SOE. I don't know whether it's due to error, malfeasance, or just plain f*ck-up-edness but they managed to turn a silk purse into a sow's ear.

Don't get me wrong ... I'm not cancelling my account, nor will I quit playing. I'm just saying that this is symptomatic of SOE's general state. They might have fixed quite a large number of things, but they somehow manage to screw the pooch every single time. Good job, fellows!

Monday, October 13, 2003

It's good to see that the Catholic Church has its priorities straight.
David Kay's testimony before Congress is online. This is about the state of Iraq's WMD programs as determined by the inspection teams sent in after the Three Weeks War. I won't taint you by commenting. Yet.

Thursday, October 09, 2003

Well I never thought the Game Cube would outsell the PS2.
Admittedly this is only for this month, but still. The PS2 has never been outsold before !
Brits, eccentric ?
Not at all.
After walking 26 miles under loch Ness in an old turn of the century diving suit, who wouldn't decide to ride across Australia on a penny farthing ?
BWA-hahahahahaha! Take that, you evil Lords of Redmond! I will lick the salty tears of anguish from your cheeks!

Monday, October 06, 2003

So Nasa is sayinmg the shuttle could fly again in a year !
And they are trumpeting this as a huge success ! WTF ????
Take space exploration away from Nasa and put it in private hands. Maybe then we will see some advancement.
Nasa has sucked since Apollo 11.
Considering they have been working on the HHGTTG movie for years and years, I'll believe it where I see it
Anyway it'll be scripted by an American, acted by americans, and it'll be shite because of it.
Honestly, an American travelling the universe looking for a "Really good cup of tea" ?
Well I think Eddie Izzard is a fabulous choice for Doctor Who.
BBC America has axed Eastenders.
Good I say.
Eastenders is a crappy British soap that people love back home. I hate it. Then again I hate all soaps, and I'm notoriously hard to please.
Take it off BBC America, and keep it off.

On a side note...
The Americans make soaps about super rich people (Dallas, Falon Crest etc)
The Australians make soaps about the urban middle class (Neighbours etc)
The British make soaps about poor losers (Eastenders, Coronation Street etc)
Well if I had to make a choice, I certainly wouldn't want to watch a program about losers (which is why I don't watch Big Brother, American Idol, Bererly Hills 90210, etc etc)
Now I'm suprised that after awarding the Iraq Cell phone contracts, that they wheren't the shitty TDMA that most US companies where trying to push on Iraq. GSM is the standard in almost every country over there, so it's nice to see that Iraq is actually going GSM.
I feel like giving a "hooray!" for common sense.
When US companies are playing catch up, with moving to GSM (2nd Gen), and while Europe already has GPRS (2.5 Gen) and is almost ready to move to W-CDMA (3rd Gen), its nice to see the Americans didn't force TDMA (1st Gen) on the Iraqis (despite US cell phone companies lobbying hard to do so - they own the TDMA patent you see !)

And this happens on the same day (see post below)
Wierd huh ?
You live in a small New York flat. What would you have as a pet ?
A hamster maybe ? A cat ? Perhaps even a small dog ? Why, oh why, would you have a full grown tiger, and a crocodile ?
And why do crazy people seem drawn to New York ?

Friday, October 03, 2003

I picked up Halo yesterday from CompUSA.
I had to wait in the store at lunchtime until the delivery truck turned up, as they had no copies on the shelves.

By the time I'd checked out, at least 5 other people had dropped in and bought it too.

I picked up the Z-Board with a generic First Person Shooter overlay. (Free after $20 rebate)
I haven't used it yet, review to come. I was too busy instaling Halo.

I've played for about 3 hours, and here is my inital review of the single player pieces.
(Multiplayer to come)

Now if anyone has a machine which is less than my specs, good luck in running it. This is a very demanding game on your hardware.

I have P3 800EB, GF2 GTS, 512Mb, Win2K.
This rig plays most games very well at 1024x768, I've only had to turn Ghost Recon down to 800x600 on a couple of really busy maps. Otherwise I get very acceptable frame rates for everything.
Except Halo.
I've turned Halo down to 800x600, turned off lots of the GFX extras, but it still slows down a lot when a few guys are on screen, shooting at me, at the same time.
Its still playable, and lots of fun, but I am looking forward to getting my new rig set up (sometime before Christmas - I hope) and turning all the pretty options to max.

The GFX of people (especially their faces) is very poor by todays standards. It's very "two years ago". But then again Halo is 2 years old.

Really fun parts

Plasma grenades are sticky. Which means if you land one on an enemy with a good throw, it sticks to him. He then proceeds to run about in a panic before he explodes
The small enemy guys also shout "Get it off ! Get it Off ! Aaahh No !"
And there are lots of grenades in the game, but you can't 'cook' them. Throw grenades everywhere, enemies drop them all the time.

Your team members will run up to aliens you've just killed, shout "Get up so I can kill you again !" at them and fill the already dead body with more lead.

Driving a Warthog is so much fun, & shooting the rear mounted cannon off is great. Also its so much easier to drive with a mouse than that damn controller.
Don't forget to try to run aliens over.
Also drive your Warthog over a jump, and watch and listen to your passengers whoop and scream in delight

When you are outside, the vista is very pretty and very detailed. Except for a few spots which are almost bare (normally beaches).
Drive youf warthog through the water, and there is no splash, and the wheels drive on top of the water. (Maybe thats just my settings though).

In the single player game, there are a few times so far where I'm thinking what am I supposed to be doing now ?
But there are always lots of enemies to kill, and after you've wiped them all out it triggers the continue script. So if in doubt - kill everything.

The enemy weapons are very interesting. Do not discount the pistols, they have useful secondary fire modes. For instance there are a set of guys who carry a plasma shield and they deflect nearly all shots. Use the "crappy" plasma pistol to charge up a round (hold fire down) and it disrupts their shield. You can then simply shoot them anyway you like. They also do this to you BTW. Having your shields down can be very worrying - run for cover so they can recharge.
Also the really big guys with spikes out their backs seem to be more susceptable to this charge pistol attack too.

I like the rifle butt hit. You can sneak up to someone, and smack them over the head with your rifle. Very satisfying.

You can also get into gun emplacements and shoot hot plasma and death all over the place in a very satisfying way.

All in all, 2 thumbs up.
Be aware that you need at least a semi-beefy system though.

I'll be playing multiplayer this weekend (a lot I feel).
I'll post a review of that next week.

So far my recomendation is "go buy a copy".

Monday, September 29, 2003

Facial fuzz world championships !
This is too funny......

Wednesday, September 03, 2003

Well holy shit !
A man drills through his own head !

Friday, August 29, 2003

CNN says that the FBI is going to be arresting somebody for writing the "Blaster" worm. Here's their story. The bit that I find most curious is this paragraph:
A witness reportedly saw the teen testing the infection and called authorities, the official said.

I'll just let you sit and think about what that must mean for the two people involved. Doesn't the informant necessarily have to be part of the accused's circle? I mean it's not as if you can watch somebody typing away in another cubicle and figure out what they're doing with any real accuracy. They'd pretty much have to be giving you a demonstration, wouldn't they?

Wednesday, August 27, 2003

So decide now. Which version of the dubya doll do you like the best the buffed up fighter pilot or the slightly more truthful realistic sayings doll.

Monday, August 25, 2003

Windows is insecure by design.
Well bugger me ! You only just realised this ??
My wife doesn't understand why I drink so much tea, and also doesn't understand why I don't enjoy coffee very much. (I enjoy really *GOOD* coffee, but not 99% of the crap that goes around).
Douglas Adams obviously had the same problem, with explaining the consumption (and social hoo-haa of the correct way to make tea) to his Americans friends. (They have never had a good cup of tea)
This is a rather good explanation of his.
Anyone who doesn't get the drinking of tea, should try a *good* cup of tea with a Kit Kat (straight out of the fridge). You will never ask such silly questions ever again :D

An exceprt from a guide to making good tea.

The finished tea should be a "rich, attractive colour" and be somewhere in the region of 65 degrees centigrade – any hotter and scientists warn that "vulgar slurping" might be required.

George Orwell (of 1984 fame) had rules for making tea
1. Use tea from India or Ceylon (Sri Lanka), not China
2. Use a teapot, preferably ceramic
3. Warm the pot over direct heat
4. Tea should be strong - six spoons of leaves per 1 litre
5. Let the leaves move around the pot - no bags or strainers
6. Take the pot to the boiling kettle
7. Stir or shake the pot
8. Drink out of a tall, mug-shaped tea cup
9. Don't add creamy milk
10. Add milk to the tea, not vice versa
11. No sugar!

And those familiar with the Hitchhiker's Guide will remember the drink dispenser from The Restaurant at the End of the Universe which, trying to figure out how to brew the perfect cuppa, grabs all available computing resources on board a certain starship.

And guess what the number is of the Earl Grey tea from Harrods (which some consider to be the finest example of tea) ?
Coincidence ? I think not !

Sunday, August 24, 2003

Mark Steyn has a few things to say about the California recall election, most of them quite funny and right on the mark:
I had a brief conversation with Bustamante at the 2000 Democratic Convention and he didn’t seem entirely there. A few months later, he was giving a speech in honour of Black History Month to the Coalition of Black Trade Unionists and carelessly referred to the Negro Labor Council as the ‘Nigger Labor Council’. He carried on speaking, apparently oblivious, until it occurred to him rather a lot of people seemed to be walking out. I’d love to see a Republican use the N-word at a Black History Month dinner and live to tell the tale. But what’s relevant here is the delay between the unfortunate error and realising he’d made it.

Thursday, August 21, 2003

It was only a matter of time.
How long before Micro$hite O/S's causes a meltdown ?
Or maybe death to commuters ?
Its about time software was lawfully required to be "fit for purpose".
MPAA/RIAA try to get Palestinians to obey USA law. Hmmmm, aren't they in a different country where US law doesn't apply ?
Why Yes, I think they are !
Bwahahahaha !
They probably use SMS too :D (see blog below)

Wednesday, August 20, 2003

So crappy movies have nothing to do with the studios, we should blame it all on SMS (Text Messaging)
How long before the MPAA bans cellphones ?

Tuesday, August 19, 2003

Monday, August 18, 2003

So there is all sorts of hidden and or sensitive data in word documents that anyone can get at.
Oh. A Microsoft security bug. Well I never. I can't believe that ;-P

Thursday, August 14, 2003

Well this is old news, but this piece is intersting.

"Microsoft said its home and entertainment unit, which includes Xbox, PC games and the company's TV products, had a fiscal second-quarter operating loss of $348 million on revenue of $1.28 billion. A year ago, that unit reported a loss of $180 million on revenue of $833 million for the December quarter."

So they haven't sold anywhere near the amount of XBoxen they wanted (less than half), and they've managed to push their division into an loss of an extra $168 Million over the year before.

Ouch !

I will have an XBox when Halo2 comes out, but not until then.
And I'll get e re-con one for about $100.

And while I'm on the subject ATI will make the Gfx chip for XBox 2, not Nvidia.
So ATI will make the GFx chip for both the Gamecube and XBox. And XBox chips constitue 20% of Nvidia's business.

Gawd love Ralph Peters. He's quite obviously a man who isn't afraid to come right out and tell you what he thinks in small words.

Monday, August 11, 2003

It's true. There is such a thing as a Heatwave in England !

"Temperatures are set to reach 33C (91F) in London and 30C (86F) elsewhere in the South East, while in Scotland it will be 22C (72F), 26C (79F) in Wales and 23C (73F) in Northern Ireland. "

Well as A Brit 'Over Here', I have to say that this seems like a normal day in my new home town to me. But my fellows back over the pond don't have air-con. So it sucks to be them.

See it doesn't *always* rain in England :D

Friday, August 08, 2003

How cool is this ? A walk through fog screen for a projector.
And they are talking about making it touch sensitive.
I want one.

On an unrelated topic....
BTW its "walk through" not "walk-thru". I really hate these crappy shortening of words into illiterate bite sized pieces for the MTV generation. (Like "Bar-B-Q" [obviously "BBQ" is too confusing], or "tonite" or even "to-nite". I think you get my jist.)

Thursday, August 07, 2003

Yet more pictures of me in my Star Wars Galaxies alter-ego.

Wednesday, August 06, 2003

Monday, August 04, 2003

Its almost as bad as losing your homei in a divorce. :D

Friday, August 01, 2003

Progress is being made. I know Lee won't be satisfied until we find an actual missile with a nuke warhead and Saddam giving it a big hug while saying "It's mine, and keep your filthy mitts off", but reasonable people (i.e. not Lee) will eventually be satisfied, I think.

Thursday, July 31, 2003

The Catholic church shows its true colours.
Pity they don't put the same effort into stopping their priests f**king choir boys.

Anyone that says Churches & Religions are about anything other than their own power and intolerance should try opening their eyes to the real world.

Friday, July 25, 2003

In one fell swoop, Robert X. Cringely describes a potential business that can (1) provide music downloads cheaply, (2) isn't illegal, and (3) pisses off RIAA. I love it. If I had $2,000,000 hanging around, I'd be all over this like white on rice.
Well duh !
You needed a report to know men download porn.
How much money did you spend on this report ?
I can do a report on effects of alcohol, or fast sports cars, or huge yaughts full of beautiful women, if you will fund me :D
Form the BBC:
The greatest recent success - the location and killing of Saddam Hussein's sons - came as the result of an Iraqi tipping off the Americans to get a $30m reward, not from intelligence gathering.

Oh dear, Mr & Mrs CIA/FBI etc etc.
Cash works better than you guys. :D
Oh dear. I made a video of myself doing silly things. And now its available on the internet I need to sue someone.
After all I'm a 15 year old kid, now with psychiatric problems.
Suck it up boyo. You're famous now :D

Thursday, July 24, 2003

This email archive has a quick statement by an anonymous IBM source about how SWT (the Eclipse widget set) came to be and why they think AWT/Eclipse is teh suXor.

Wednesday, July 23, 2003

Rachel Lucas opens up on a particularly deserving specimen of homo stupiditous. It's so moving, I'm all teary-eyed. <sniff/>

Tuesday, July 22, 2003

Video games (namely Counter Strike) can help you by bringing you a little Sanity after you go nuts.

But how do you get rid of violent content in a FPS ?
And why would you want to ?
Some time ago, Kathy's brother Michael called and told Kathy about this new massively-multiplayer online role playing game, set in the Star Wars universe. After the two of them talked about it a while, she told me I should pre-order the collector's edition so we could try the game and see how it went. Being the easy sell that I am, I dashed right off to to order our copy and then I promptly forgot about it.

On launch day, the box arrived. We were doing other stuff that weekend (I forget exactly what now), and so didn't get around to opening the box and installing the game until Sunday. That meant that we went to bed at a decent hour both Friday and Saturday nights. That was good, because I'm pretty sure that was the last time I went to bed at anything like my usual bedtime since (about three weeks now). This game is really good. There are bugs, of course, and I spend a bit of time complaining about them, but I also note that I'm spending all my leisure time playing the stupid game instead of doing other stuff so it's obviously more entertainment than the bugs are annoying.

Here's how addictive the game is: after playing less than a week, Kathy said I needed to upgrade another desktop machine so that she could have her own character and we could play together. After pricing upgrade bits, we wound up buying a pre-made HP Pavilion system for her, and she's been playing since. That's right ... we bought a computer system just to play this game. We're insane, obviously.

While in the game one day, we ran into a friend of Kathy's brother who told us his in-game hobby was taking snapshots of the other characters to post on his website. "Well, duh," I thought to myself. "I should be doing that as well." So, here is my first batch of snapshots.
Now I'm not musical at all. But I really want one of these.
Is it only me who feels Microsoft have Sour Grapes ?

Search for 'flowers' and you get lots of hits. Well, no shit.
Search for 'apple' and you get lots of hits. Well, no shit. So what if Apple Computer isn't in the top 10. Try seaching for "apple computer" then if that's what you are interested in. Duh ! What a bunch of fuckwits !

99% of these problems can be overcome by having a little common sense. Of course 99% of people don't seem to have any common sense :D

Friday, July 18, 2003

Hello. We are your Government. You can talk to us, but only on subjects we want to hear about, but we don't promise to read it at all.
For the people by the people.........
A short movie that combines two of my favourite things :D

Thursday, July 17, 2003

Metallica sue over the use of E and F chords.
No Really they are.
Ooohhh. A new Clie.
Blue tooth, Wi-Fi, its all good. :D
And it looks like the new Linux based Sharp one as well.
Be careful with the "Fire And Brimstone" speeches in the pulpit, else we will sue the church.

Wednesday, July 16, 2003

Halo PC - a little more info
I don't know about you guys, but I can't wait.

End of summer - Halo, Half Life2, Doom 3.
You won't seem me for ages. Drool.......

Sunday, July 13, 2003

Friday, July 11, 2003

BWA-hahahahaha. Oh, my aching sides ... this is high-larious: Things My Girlfriend and I Have Argued About.

Thursday, July 10, 2003

Bwahahahahaha ! Some people are easily upset. I wonder if this constitutes "fair use" :D

Monday, July 07, 2003

Seeing as Mitchell is ragging on me to play Star Wars Galaxies. I thought I'd better read a Review.

It seems like a mixed bag. What SWG needs is way more content it seems. WAY MORE. I'll have a play then comment some more.

Of course the same company does Planteside. Now this I enjoy a lot.
"You want some of this? All you gotta do is stand up." That's pretty much what I heard President Bush tell the bad guys, and it appears I'm not the only one who heard it that way. "Woot!" for the President.
Bill Whittle finally posts Trinity in two parts. I continue to be amazed at the quality of the writing that falls off this guy, and further amazed at how perfectly he captures the essence of Americanism. Hooray for Bill!

  • Trinity Part I

  • Trinity Part II

  • Go and read. Now.
    David Brin's "The Transparent Society" had quite an impact on me, not least because it crystallized a suspicion I already had towards people who claimed that if we all used PGP then the government would just wither away and utopia would arrive. Now, interestingly enough, MIT appears ready to test his theory of transparency.
    I don't mind overdubbing so much; everyone makes mistakes and overdubbing just helps ensure that the finished CD is listenable over many sessions. I do, however, think that pitch correction like this is pretty dishonest. I'll grant that it's merely a question of degree; you could claim that it was just overdubbing if you cut-n-pasted individual notes that a musician happened to get just right, but we'd all recognize that as a travesty of the idea of performance. Pitch correction: okay as long as it's labelled.

    Friday, July 04, 2003

    Oh great. Like they really need proof

    This random act, will now be used over and over again as 'proof'.
    Maybe the madonna's face will appear in a rusty car again, or maybe a statue will cry raindrops.

    Thursday, July 03, 2003

    Java Performance Tuning author Jack Shirazi went to JavaOne and watched a bunch of presentations on large-scale deployments. From this, he's generated all new tuning heuristics for your edification and pleasure.
    I wish these guys would get over their anti-commercial attitude and get on teevee already. "Adult Swim" would be much improved if they had a few shorts like this in the rotation.

    I'm gonna start a petition to MAKE them take some money from the teevee people!!!!

    Wednesday, July 02, 2003

    I'm laughing so hard my face hurts. I'm also running through my list of friends classifying each as "TweedleDee & TweedleDum" and "Ren & Stimpy" now, thanks.

    Tuesday, July 01, 2003

    Frank J. talks about hurricanes. I laughed out-loud enough to make people stand up out of their cubicles to see what was happening.

    Monday, June 30, 2003

    Cue the music! Dinesh D'Souza writes a stirring article on why he became an American. Most of these are obvious after-the-fact, but this is still well worth reading.
    I wonder if this workflow engine will produce a stable release ... it sounds like a promising project. I wish them luck, which I suspect they're going to need since they've stopped COMPLETELY EFFING DEAD IN THE WATER to change build systems. I hope the "change the build system" need came across them because something in the old build system was fundamentally b0rken, not because they felt compelled to lemming off behind Maven (rant forthcoming).

    Thursday, June 26, 2003

    Not quite the smoking gun we expected, but they are warm gun parts and we've got the guy who put them there too.
    Yes, sir, Mr. Tim Blair sir ... we'll get right on that because we don't want that kind of result at all. No siree-bob.

    Wednesday, June 25, 2003

    Hooray! The only thing (and I do mean the only thing) I didn't like about IDEA was that you couldn't get the correct keybindings for it. As we all know, had there been a diety he would have wanted us to use "vi" for all time. And now, Rick Maddy has developed a "vi" plugin for IntelliJ IDEA. The world is saved!!!!
    Mean Mr.Mustard has designed yet another t-shirt for me to buy. BWA-hahahaha. Ahem.
    Hi. I'm Mitchell, and I'm a bright.

    Tuesday, June 24, 2003

    Holy effing crap. Dick Gephardt announces his complete preparedness to overthrow the Constitution to suit himself. Everyone please remember this when election time rolls around again.
    Apple hits the Five million mark for music service.
    I think we can say if you provide what the public wants, it will buy it.
    RIAA, you are not doing very well at this are you ??? Hhmmmm ?

    Monday, June 23, 2003

    Now thats a Flight Simulator !
    I wonder how long its going to be before the FBI/CIA accuse him of flight training terrorists :D

    Sunday, June 22, 2003

    No cannisters of VX yet, but we may be closer to a conclusion, as much as it may pain weak-minded in-duh-viduals such as Lee to find that it wasn't all made up.

    Saturday, June 21, 2003

    I love a good rant. "No," you say, "not you! Why, you're a paragon of friendly friendshipdom and shizznit."

    Behold The Bile Blog from a guy who obviously knows his way around the Java community and is able to inspire great reaction in his readers. I'm also putting him in the blogroll so I won't forget to check his page daily. Hooray for hatred and loathing!

    Friday, June 20, 2003

    Oh, my aching sides. You kids!!!
    Oh dear sweet Jebus ... this sounds like great hooting fun.
    Time to get my Rubber Mallet out again. Fast food industry in firing line
    If you eat too much of this, you're going to be a fat bastard. What is hard to understand about that ?

    Thursday, June 19, 2003

    News Flash! Globalization is Good!!! With a capital "G"!!!! (Found via Tim Blair)
    Finally! A responsible explanation of why writing projects (like the Full of Hate Brothers) might someday have real meaning.

    Wednesday, June 18, 2003

    In yet another fine example of other people thinking of things in a completely new way, Erik Benson runs a service called All Consuming, which displays a running list of the most talked-about books in a (large-ish) subset of the blogosphere. He also wrote an article for O'Reilly explaining how he built the whole thing using SOAP, XML, and RSS. It's quite an interesting story, I opine.
    Proof that there are morons everywhere

    Tuesday, June 17, 2003

    BWA-hahahahahah! Rand Simberg lets Bill O'Reilly have it with both barrels. Woo hoo!
    Finally, the online world catches up with the real world. New icons for MSN Messenger.
    I keep finding these things just a few montsh too late to save me. In an effort to make my pain have meant something, I present the way I should havegenerated those damned Excel spreadsheet from a weba pplication instead of the way I wound up doing it.

    Monday, June 16, 2003

    More lego goodness.
    It was only a matter of time beore someone made Nebuchadnezzar from The Matrix

    Saturday, June 14, 2003

    Oooooh ... Samurai Jack action figures!!! Yet more crap to clutter my workspace! Yay!

    Thursday, June 12, 2003

    Ah. A Fat Tax.
    "The 1 percent tax hike proposed by Assemblyman Felix Ortiz would apply to junk food, video games and television commercials, which Ortiz blames on New York's growing obesity problem"

    Now I have a better idea.
    Tax the people who ARE fat.
    Having trouble sticking to your diet ? Now its gonna cost *you* money.
    Video games don't make you fat. I have hundreds and hundreds (I kid you not), and I'm not fat.
    Commericals don't make you fat, I've seen them my whole life and I'm not fat.
    Junk food, well that only makes you fat if you eat too much of it.
    Common sense will make a big difference here. If you eat 4 Big Macs a day then you're gonna be fat - Idiot !

    While I'm at it, lets tax stupid people too ! They are the cause of most of the crap (such as this proposed law, "caution hot" signs on coffee, etc etc)
    Maybe Taxing stupid people would encourage them to learn.
    And lets make stupidity painful too. Yeah ! I like that idea.
    We can allow smacking people upside the head with big rubber mallets when they do something stupid.

    Officer: Whats going on here then ?
    Man 1: He hit me in the head with a hammer !
    Man 2: It's true I did. But he claimed taxing video games, commericals, and fast food, would stop him being fat. This is obviously stupid. What would stop him being fat would be for him to stop eating cakes. So I hit him with my rubber mallet.
    Officer: Thats OK then. You're totally within your rights. Move along please.

    Wednesday, June 04, 2003

    I love to issue proclamations, but I don't really expect anybody to do what I tell them to. I would like to ask, however, that you please go sign this petition. The steady erosion of our public domain due to lobbyists for Disney et al is a real problem, even if it doesn't look like it yet. There are many many pragmatic solutions to the issue that don't involve depriving Mickey of any of his residual income.
    If you're considering trying to find a VC, there's obviously a lot of stuff to think about. Thanks to Joel Spolsky, I found two interesting bits:
    • Presenting Your Company: David Hornik and Andrew Anker, two VCs with August Capital, throw out a few bullet points of ways to completely screw yourself up in the presentation
    • Joi Ito describes her company's investment process, which is kind of icky in its own special way.
    Come and get it! Finally, a browser that is usable and that doesn't suck as bad as IE6. I had hoped against hope that eventually the time spent rewriting Mozilla from the ground up would accomplish something (besides giving the entire browser market to Microsoft), and it appears that it might finally bear fruit. Presenting: the Firebird Browser Project Page.

    Tuesday, June 03, 2003

    Hooray! Now you can configure Outlook (if you're using it) to quit hiding your attachments from you. Sure, some attachment suffixes are dangerous, but so is a pocketknife, fire, and bleach. Just because you may hurt yourself with a thing isn't necessarily enough reason to expunge it completely from your world. Sometimes, you really want somebody to email you an Access database, damn it.
    Ooh! Owww! <thwack/> <thwack/> <thwack/> Arnold Kling unleashes a short torrent of economic attitude on Clinton, Bush, Greenspan, and other worthy recipients. More like this, please, sir.

    Monday, June 02, 2003

    Now this is too cool (pun intended)
    A Peltier Beer Cooler

    Sunday, June 01, 2003

    Kathy and I took our daughters to see Finding Nemo yesterday, and I have to say that Pixar has done it again. The film was great fun and the voice characterization was spectacular. The story was sufficiently engrossing that, for most of the film, I wasn't even marvelling at the animation but was just pulled into the quest for Nemo. And for me that's really saying something.

    As always, there's a scary bit. McKenna cried pretty seriously at that part, but she stuck it out and cheered for the big finish. All in all it was well worth the price of admission. Go see it.

    Wednesday, May 28, 2003

    If you google up "mr", we're #4. Curiously enough, a real website with a url anything like "" doesn't show up anywhere. I suppose that's why nearly half of our visitors here with referrer tags are from some variant of that search. Sorry 'bout that kids ... they have their own page at "". (Duh)

    I wonder if they know how much of their traffic we're siphoning off, and if it's worth any cash to them?
    Damn, but that miniputt is some hard sh*t.
    Since the Jayson Blair-a-thon hasn't yet run its course, I'd like to point to this 404 page, found via Joanne Jacobs.
    Holy effing crap! That is a staggeringly impressive layout you've got there. I'll be cutting and pasting some CSS tonight, for sure.
    BWA-hahahahaha! Finally, an academic quite to my liking. He's a funny funny man.
    In case you ever want to use the stock JavaMail distribution to fetch via POP3 or IMAP over SSL, you'll be glad to have these tips on JavaMail and JSSE.
    More SCO happiness:

    Novell announces that they own all the patents to what used to be AT&T Unix System V, so SCO doesn't have any intellectual property to be trying to protect. Neener neener.

    SCO replies that, um, they weren't alleging patent or copyright infringement (so what was all that back there then?), but breach of contract instead. Way to go! Move them goalposts!
    BWA-hahahaha! A quick quiz: Art or Crap (as found on Gawker)
    Whoa! Flashback alert! Jess, the Expert System Shell for the Java Platform, brings back all kinds of weird memories of my narrow escape from the crushing black hole that was AI research.

    Tuesday, May 27, 2003

    Blah blah blah until you get down to the sidebar at the bottom that describes how SAML solves the cross-domain SSO problem. Sure it's kludgey, but it'll be workable. You have a better idea?
    LinuxTag, a non-profit organization in Germany chartered to support and evangelize the use of Linux, has filed suit in German court. Under German law, it appears, company "A" may demand that company "B" stop making anti-competitive speech unless they can demonstrate a factual basis for company "B"s claim. In short, SCO now has to either (1) divulge their evidence of intellectual property misdoings, or (2) shut up.

    Choice #1 lets them continue making their "Linux is infringing on our patents" claims while giving IBM an early look at their evidence which may very well help IBM in the US trials coming eventually. Choice #2 suggests, rather strongly I'd say, that SCO in fact have the proverbial sack-o-nothingness.

    Couldn't have happened to a more deserving pile of schlubs. Hooray for LinuxTag!

    Saturday, May 24, 2003

    BWA-hahahahaha! I gotta get me one of these t-shirts!!!

    Friday, May 23, 2003

    I missed two, for an embarassing 89% score.
    Oh crap. Here's yet another thing for me to worry about, and my oldest daughter is only 5.
    Bob Cringley weighs in on the SCO v. IBM suit. My opinion, and thanks for asking, is that SCO has a big ol' sack full of nothing, and they're hoping to make some money fall out of the sky. I suspect they'll be in Chapter 13 in no time at all.
    Whoops! Sorry 'bout that, chief. It apparently isn't true that all emails containing the letter 'P' are evil; it's just that some people apparently imagine they are.
    I just found this, and only about two years after it was written: Ted Husted wrote a quick few notes about performance penalties for reflection and creation v. caching in Java. I was under the impression that reflection was an order of magnitude slower than direct invocation, and here people are only seeing 5-10% slower. Damn, but that's a whole different kettle of fish.
    Hooray for The Gipper! And hooray for Scott for writing this moving essay about the great change in the world that is the end of the Cold War.
    Well, crap. More stuff I have to buy. I'm going to have to get a second (or third) mortgage to pay for all the stuff plus someplace to store it.
    Hey France! So, like, we're have a party? and lots of people are gonna be there? and you're totally not invited. Okay?

    Thursday, May 22, 2003

    Frank J. explains how to deal with the plethora of Homeland Security Alert Levels. In detail.
    Death to these bastards. I'll even supply the bullets and fire 'em myself.
    BWA-hahahahaha! "Throw me a frickin' bone" indeed!! This sounds like great fun.
    Sick of dealing with actors and their fragile egos and demands for better lighting/blocking/trailers? Dump 'em all in the very near future.

    Wednesday, May 21, 2003

    No women allowed in the Masters in Augusta.
    I'm with the guy at the back with the orange sign

    Tuesday, May 20, 2003

    Holy crap. Lee, it appears that you got out just in time, because your erstwhile countrymen have gone completely around the bend.
    (Blogger archive links are hosed. Again. What a crock).

    More reason why Tim Blair is must-reading for all sentient beings:
    According to Clean Up Australia, Australians use in excess of 6 billion plastic bags per year. If tied together these bags would form a chain that is long enough to go around the world 37 times.
    Well, maybe that's exactly what we're trying to do, art haters.
    I seem to be on a web services kick. As in most things, once you get immersed in something you get sensitized to it, and start finding it everywhere. (This happens especially when you buy a car). Anyway, if you do anything that remotely involves books, you can now access the entirety of the Amazon powerhouse via their published web services.
    For the three people left in the world who write their own WSDL files, let me point out this free graphical WSDL editor. "Use vi and be careful" is no substitute for a good format-specific editor. ("Use emacs and be careful" is, of course, malfeasance)

    Saturday, May 17, 2003

    Once again, the Japanese lead the world in coming up with bizarre crap to buy. Here we have hats. For cats. To wear on their little feline heads. Plus collars, in some cases. I'm completely boggled. (Thanks to Kimberly Swygert for finding this rare gem)
    BWA-hahahahaha! How to look like a no-life-having online dork without trying.
    Just like Urban Dictionary but with a higher S/N ratio: pseudodictionary - the dictionary for words that wouldn't make it into dictionaries :: v2.0

    Friday, May 16, 2003

    Well, well, well ... who knew the Beeb was in the training business?
    Bwa hahahahaha! Kathy and I watched all the episodes of "Red vs Blue" released so far, and laughed at quite a bit of it. These guys are a riot.

    For those who don't recognize the visuals, this is all done with Halo for the XBox. Quite an impressive accomplishment, given the nature of the tool (first-person shooter for a console).
    Also, rememberize this IBM series on BPEL in order to ensure full bozzword compliance.
    Note to self: make sure I've internalized this list of IBM's best practices for web services; it's sure to impress somebody eventually.
    I kept waiting for Lee to notice this theory, and even told him about it, but he never blogged it. I suppose it doesn't really tie into his "it's all America's fault" mania.

    Thursday, May 15, 2003

    The clouds broke just long enough for me, my wife, and our oldest daughter to see the vanishing moon. It was wonderful. I know it meant a great deal more to me and Kathy than it did to McKenna, but hopefully she'll remember it later. The clouds moved back in before the totality finished, but the coolness was fully established by then.
    Hooray! A Sam & Max sequel is coming!!!!
    And now ... a diet for Lee to endorse.

    Tuesday, May 13, 2003

    Hey Lee! You keep claiming that free speech is being suppressed here in America, right? Perhaps you've forgotten what suppression of dissent really looks like. Keep this counter-example in mind the next time you want to chat about the Dixie Chicks and their poor pitiful dissent-suppressed selves.

    Monday, May 12, 2003

    "Switch" to a better entertainment form!

    Sunday, May 11, 2003

    I am completely dying here. I'm hoping with all my being that this is a joke. The crappy MIDI music gives it away, if it is.

    If it isn't a joke, then I weep for the future.
    Michelle has a fun contest!!!1! Enter now!
    Moxie explains the difference between women and men, in a disturbingly clear graphic.
    FInally, a real help to all those people looking for a complete timeline for the development of the Internet.

    Friday, May 09, 2003

    Get this - they knew for SEVEN MONTHS !!!
    Why don't they fix this shit straight away ?
    Flaw exposes Microsoft Passport service

    Thursday, May 08, 2003

    Got all your info in your .Net passport account ?
    Credit cards ? SSN ? phone number ? email ?
    Well you won't want to hear about this then ! MS Passport flaw
    We are still looking. But we are certain Iraq weapons proof 'will be found'

    Saturday, May 03, 2003

    Thursday, May 01, 2003

    Tuesday, April 29, 2003

    This was from yesterday, but I only now got around to reading it: Orin Kerr quotes Terry Fisher as saying that record companies only make $0.19 per $20.00 CD sold, to which I thought "well, that's crap." My reply was this (sent via e-mail, since they don't have comments on their blog):
    I apologize for the lateness of my response, but I only today read your posting on The Volokh Conspiracy about CD prices. I'm not in the music industry, so perhaps I'm missing some important facts from elsewhere. Allow me to question one aspect of your posting: the $1.50 per CD for manufacturing. I can go to Best Buy, Media Play, or Circuit City and buy 100 CD-Rs for $10 nearly anytime. With only a slight bit of preparation (buying the Sunday paper for a week or two), I can find a coupon/rebate combo that results in CD-Rs being free after all the paperwork is filed.

    CD-Rs: between $0.00 and $0.10 per
    CDs: $1.50

    Hmmm ... my "Hollywood accounting" detector is ringing madly. I suspect that most of the cost (beyond what the retail store gets) is inflated tremendously. As I said before, I'm no industry maven, but I can certainly question the accounting practices that cause Toni Braxton to file bankruptcy simultaneous with having a multi-platinum selling CD, the Dixie Chicks telling Dan Rather that their 17-million-selling CD didn't make them millionaires in spite of that representing $200M in revenue, and Courtney Love does the math for us.

    All in all, I think somebody's leg is (or legs are) being pulled quite mightily.

    Professor Hatch already responded; he said to read the paper because he's just repeating the numbers. I read the paper, and it did absolutely nothing to dispell my unease. I also suspect that these numbers might very well be correct at exactly the same time that Courtney Love's numbers are correct. It's all about where you decide to put the numbers in which column, and where you are when you put them there. I still believe that the record companies are playing fast-n-loose here, although I can't prove it.

    And another thing ... if these CDs are created as works-for-hire (which the music industry claims is the case), how come the artist has to bear the cost of the creation? Am I to understand that "40 Grit" gets to pay to create the music, gets to pay for the producer, gets to pay for the studio time, gets to pay for the marketing, gets to pay for damned near everything related to the generation of the content, but the record company owns the result? The record company gets the profits? How exactly do you explain that away without terms like "indentured servitude"?
    Holy effing crap. I may have to buy a Honda, just to reward the people that make adverts like this. And amazingly enough, it all really happened exactly that way in real-time ... no Photoshoppery involved, although it did run to 606 takes to get it all right start to finish.
    Peter Oborne asks "Is Blair just an empty, vainglorious, narcissistic creep?" Come on, Peter! Tell us how you really feel about it all!

    A quick excerpt:
    The government now faces two distinct challenges. The first, of course, is the reconstruction of Iraq, while the second remains the reconstruction of Britain. Labour swept to power six years ago with a series of promises to rebuild public services. They have all been broken. As far as Tony Blair is concerned, the central paradox of six years in office is stark: the levers of power respond with alacrity in defence and foreign affairs, and yet government is all but powerless in the domestic arena.

    It is worth pondering this contradiction, made sharper by the military victory in Iraq. It raises two fascinating questions. Why do British armed forces, with their meagre £25 billion budget, always deliver? But why do the NHS and the education system, though in receipt of unlimited amounts of public money, continue to fail? To put the problem in another way: how come the simple British squaddie — though underpaid, overworked and forced to carry out his or her duties in conditions of appalling danger — always rises to any challenge? But how come so many British schoolteachers, rather better paid, with far shorter hours and long holidays, endlessly whinge and — as the teachers’ union conference demonstrated yet again — block even quite sensible reforms?

    Monday, April 28, 2003

    Once again, Bill Whittle has penned a truly wonderful essay, "Victory", which everyone should go read right away. As always, it's moving, forceful, and really just about the best use that those electrons could have been put to.

    I keep putting "BIll Whittle" into Amazon's search page. Sooner or later a book's going to show up, and I'll be having one thank you very much.

    Thursday, April 24, 2003

    Dixie Chicks 'get death threats'
    This proves there are RedNecks everywhere.
    Jeesh !
    Right just so you get this I'll put in a bold and captials

    They are entitled to their views, just as you are entitled to yours.
    Military Intelligence. An oxymoron if I ever heard one.
    Can we trust the intelligence services? since they haven't found diddly squat (so far) in Iraq.
    "They've got weapons of mass destruction"
    "They are working on atomic weapons"
    "Blah fucking blah fucking blah"
    So you where lying to justify a war then ? Go on admit it now, you may as well.
    But what happens after you're cried wolf too often. Will anyone listen then ?

    Wednesday, April 23, 2003

    A quick essay on why the Jakarta Commons Logging API instead of plain ol' Log4J is a bad idea. I'm not sure I buy this completely, but it is the way I've been trending over the past half-dozen web-apps I've delivered.

    Tuesday, April 22, 2003

    Oh Drool...............

    Valve's Doug Lombardi sent along the following:
    Half-Life 2 will be shown at this year's Electronic Entertainment Expo.
    So all these wacky rumors should be cleared up by May 14th.

    UPDATE: has publicly leaked two bits of information: the first is that the magazine embargo ends on April 28th, so magazines can publish their Half-Life 2 articles after this date. It's already been shown to certain members of the press.

    They also leaked the big news we hinted at before: Half-Life 2 will be released this year.

    It should also be noted that this is pretty much the first official mention of Half-Life 2's existence from Valve.
    Ummm ... can you say "conflict of interest" boys and girls? I sure can.

    Monday, April 21, 2003

    In my long-running quest to completely exhaust my meager savings and earnings by acquiring scads of nearly-worthless electronic junk .... I present the home laser cutting/etching tools. They even come in colors! CNC machining tools in my own goddamned basement!
    Yet more consumer crap that I must now buy. I'm going to have to get a better-paying job if I plan to continue affording all this electronic junk, aren't I?
    An easy one-page guide to properly using apostrophes in your writing.
    Holy crap!!! I may have to revise my mental picture of what arbitrary and capricious means. Not only is the law (apparently) written far too broadly here, but it also suggests that a digital camera has an unforseen advantage over film: it doesn't allow the local busybodies-masquerading-as-retailers a chance to poke their noses into your business. Christ on a stick, I've got pictures of both of my daughters naked (in the bath, getting a diaper, running down the hall, etc) ... does that mean that I'd be considered a child pornographer in Texas?

    Sunday, April 20, 2003

    My wife also says "we never talk", when in fact our household is filled with talking from the instant the girls wake up until they go to bed. Rather a lot like this, in fact.

    Tuesday, April 15, 2003

    I must admit to having been vaguely irritated at seeing our various Presidents returning salutes since they weren't in uniform, although unlike the NYT I didn't demean the men holding the office by calling them "puerile"; I just didn't like it. Now, thanks to Bill Quick, I find out the history of the returned salute, and find that it doesn't offend me quite as much anymore. Yes, that's probably because I thought Reagan was a spectacular President.
    It's all about the ooooooiiiiillll, innit? Don't bother denying it, you sorry sonsabitches.
    Kanan Makiya is an Iraqi expatriate, a respected author of several books on Iraq, and is reporting for The New Republic. In general, not really a good candidate for inclusion in the Vast Right Wing Conspiracy(tm). So how come he's pointing out that Baathist officials had the most reason to loot the National Museum and none of The Big Media is picking up on it?

    Sunday, April 13, 2003

    I won't call her a buffoon either. I will, however, call her a liar unless she upholds her end of the bet.
    Oh my oh my oh my. That's quite an error you've got there. I'm not a lawyer (duh), but doesn't most software come with a license that says that the company doesn't warrant anything at all? This might be a most interesting test of how well a software company can claim they're not responsible for how their software product performs.

    Friday, April 11, 2003

    Having accidentally missed a Paul Graham essay (the topic of the previous post), I figured I'd be happier if I went and made sure I hadn't missed many. I hadn't, although I note he's written yet another essay about language design.

    For those of you who don't know, which is damned near everybody, Paul Graham is a Lisp resource of the first magnitude. He wrote the textbook on ANSI Standard Lisp, and his book "On Lisp" covers in more depth how to think in Lisp/write idiomatically in Lisp/be a Lisp native than anything else I've ever written. He really is The Man.

    Unfortunately, he hasn't yet learned the central lesson of RMS ... the set of people who want to learn/know/use Lisp is vanishingly small. No amount of proselytizing will convert the vast majority of software developers into Lisp guys. It just doesn't work that way. Eric Raymond (go read everything he's ever written, by the way) noted this same thing about RMS a while back, although I haven't been able to track it down via Google yet.

    Mr.Graham also looks down his nose at Java, and C (and C++) to a lesser extent. In fact, in his essay Beating the Averages, he states that there is a continuum of language power/expressivity such that some languages occupy higher places on the lattice than do others. Lisp, of course, sits at the pinnacle. Java comes in for a real beating in nearly every essay he writes.

    And yet ... Java is everywhere. How did that happen? I'll posit my opinion, and it's a remarkably simple one:
    Java forces you to play well with others

    That's it. There isn't any magic ... just the fact that all the bits and pieces are required to fit together without serious blood loss. Sure, you can get libraries written in C with well-documented headers, but they're woefully OS-and-version dependent. C++? The language standard specifies that symbol mangling is implementation-dependent because the committee knew that trying to force one single object model/memory layout on everybody at this late date was going to be organizational suicide ... so you not only have to have the right OS at the right version, but also the right compiler also at the right version. Perl, Python, Tcl, and Ruby are all doing pretty well in places, but none of them have serious corporate buy-in, for reasons which I completely do not know.

    Lisp? There's a bit of lip-service paid in the standard to what they call "FFI", but the reality is that Lisp expects everything in the entire world to be loaded (in source form) into the current image. Sure, the libraries you can find/buy will work, but that's because the vendor has to give you the source. Not many vendors really want to do that.

    And so we come to Java. Run-time linking works because it's specified in the standard exactly how it has to work, and Sun is quite serious about prosecuting people who call their product "Java" that doesn't hew quite closely to the standard. Hey, look! We can write servlets, and web apps, and SOAP services, and sell the damn things to people using any old J2EE container and we don't give a good goddamn whose container they're using because run-time linking works.

    I can sell/give away a JAR file full of Java classes and interfaces with embedded documentation, and my clients can just drop it into their copy of JBuilder, IntelliJ, VAJ, or even EMACS. Compilation works, context-sensitive help works ... it's just shocking.

    Don't misunderstand me here ... I don't particularly like the language. It gets in the way far too often for a language that does so little to help you out. The real truth, though, is you don't have enough time to write all the infrastructure and support you can have via download if you just put up with the warts.

    I have no doubt whatsoever that Mr.Graham's Lisp-based e-commerce solution is clean, sparse, elegant, tasty, and more absorbant than anything I'll ever write. I, however, can get to the finish line faster than he can because I can download stuff written by IBM (representing untold man-years of effort) and nail it to stuff written by the Apache group (representing more untold man-years of effort) and then nail that to stuff written by Object-Refinery. My finished work product isn't nearly as pretty as Mr.Graham's but it only took me a week. What was your time to market again?
    Hey! I missed a Paul Graham essay from earlier this year.

    I've read it twice now, and I continue to be strongly conflicted over this paper. On the one hand, it creates a tremendous resonance in me; I hated my school years from sixth grade on, although it was much better from tenth grade because my high school placed a huuuuge premium on aggregate performance on national standardized tests, such as the SAT and the AP exams.

    I hated school so badly that I was (and still am) determined not to let my daughters suffer through the same things. I am completely in favor of homeschooling them both right up until they turn 18 and decide they want to go to college and drink too much. My wife, however, feels that she can't teach them effectively, so wants to put them in good private schools. Given that I'm the primary earner in the family (and consequently not home to bear the obligation of mentoring full-time), my eldest (5 years old) is in a private pre-K, and will probably be in a private kindergarten this fall. Believe me when I say this does not make me happy, but she seems to really enjoy being around her classmates, so I can only hope she'll wind up sitting at the "A" table when the time comes.

    On the other hand, this essay also carries with it a whiff of sour grapes, as well as the subtle flavor of a well-coddled self-esteem. Poor Paul Graham (and me) ... those horrible heathens didn't recognize how truly superior we were, refused to acknowledge that we were already travelling down the road they were only dimly aware they had to follow, why we were true leaders! We deserved their respect and admiration, and they were the doody-heads for not giving it to us! Wah! We demand our just due! Wah!


    On the third hand (yes, I'm an alien), he's exactly on the money (I opine) with his analogy of school personnel to prison wardens. Public schooling is nothing if not relentless in its demand that students sit down, shut up, and do as they're told. It's horrible, but unlike Paul, I don't see a mechanism for improving that except taking the kids out of the situation. He seems to hold some hope that the system isn't irredeemable, but he didn't say how he thought it gets fixed. In the meanwhile, my daughter goes to school four days a week and I hope each day that she doesn't ever have to put up with the cruelty and spitefulness that I did.
    And here's a review in English for the little tanks. Oooh .... I've got to get a couple or four of them right quick.
    How's your Japanese reading these days? Good enough for this toy? I'm having trouble finding all the characters in my J->E dictionary, but what I've translated so far looks super-dee-duper.
    How come it took this long for the M.S.S./Monty Python to be made so clearly?
    Today I received a spam (as yet unopened) with the subject "Iraq: God's Plan?" Now I must admit I'm a big fan of General Franks and the CENTCOM general staff, but isn't that a bit over the top? I mean, they're still just professional military personnel, plain ol' homo sapiens sapiens just like the rest of us.

    Thursday, April 10, 2003

    Oh my aching sides
    Holy crap! Cats and dogs are expected to begin cohabitating immediately, now that Microsoft is leaping on to the open source bandwagon.
    It appears that I'm the last guy in the world to link to this make your own freeway sign applet. Requires Java 1.4 (as far as I can tell) to work.
    I keep saying I need to take a look at Maven, since it appears there's quite a lot of movement towards it as a build tool. Here's IBM's take on it.

    As an aside, I always thought project management was about managing the project goals, requirements, stakeholders, and schedule. How surprised I am to find out that project management really only means "smarter build tool". Who knew?
    Holy f*cking crap, that's insanely hard.

    Wednesday, April 09, 2003

    Only about six months ago (see! I'm getting less irrelevant by the minute!), Chuck Cavaness wrote an article about Struts best practices. Excellent stuff, that.
    I still occasionally go look at the Sitemeter stats to see who's coming to the page, and what they were looking for. Most of the stuff is more-or-less normally bizarre, but this just blew me away.

    According to, we're the sixth best hit for "f*cking my brother's wife".

    Holy crap. Since I don't have a brother, they must be looking for you, Lee. Better watch your back.
    I lurv Homestar Runner. I do I do I do.

    Also, am I the only person who doesn't understand why Cartoon Network isn't offering them a production deal? WTF?
    ScrappleFace: Looting Suddenly Stops in Baghdad. Oh, my aching sides.
    Why didn't I think of this ? 'TIME-TRAVELER' BUSTED FOR INSIDER TRADING
    Hooray for Brigadier General John Kelly, United States Army. Thanks to Tim Blair for finding this loverly article.

    Tuesday, April 08, 2003

    The Tech Report has a review of the NVIDIA GeForce FX 5800 Ultra. I really need to start saving up, don't I?

    Monday, April 07, 2003

    I'm only a year out of date, it appears. I just found an article about web application development comparing XMLC and JSP. I now officially have my curiousity bit latched high, and I must now go poke around a bit.

    Sunday, April 06, 2003

    Our weapons technology is so amazing, we now actually need (and have) bombs that don't explode.

    Friday, April 04, 2003

    Hooray! Finally, someone has compiled a list of the 100 best hoaxes ever.
    My name is Mitchell, and a ridiculously large percentage of my extended family suffers from HEV.
    So Saddam doesn't think he's outgunned and outclassed then ?
    "At least 320 Iraqi soldiers were killed in the fighting for the airport, US military sources said. According to the AFP news agency, two US servicemen were killed"
    All together now ! Land Of The Free
    Try not to choke while you do it.
    Its the New York Times (so FRRYYY)
    Look! hours and hours and hours of fun, as found by 2 Blowhards.
    Ummmm .... you did what with your floppy drive? Drives? As in plural? Good God, man, are you insane?
    The Department of Defense has published it's favorite photos of the war so far.
    Goddammit ... now I'm getting all weepy again. You people stop writing these things, would ya? I'm going to run out of Kleenex.


    Thursday, April 03, 2003

    Behold the power of Trogdor!!!1! And all was in burnination!
    In another stunning discovery, American entrepeneurs have discovered an entirely new way to make money without discarding their hipster cred.
    Hey, Lee! This guy's got you pegged completely. Who knew you were so easily winkled out?
    Damn me, but Bill Whittle can f*cking write. I have to go compose myself again.
    BWA-hahahahaha! Finally, some signs I'd be willing to carry in the "protest"

    Wednesday, April 02, 2003

    If you really believe Microsoft will give you money for forwarding emails, or
    Someone in Nigeria really needs your help (and money & passport), and will reward you with lots of cash when he gets here, or
    any of the other really stupid scams goping round the internet
    then you need to
    Go Here. Your life depends on it (and I'll send you some cash)

    Tuesday, April 01, 2003

    Don't you love love internet connected useless toys ?
    I give you the George Foreman USB iGrill
    From the horses Mouth : Writing Secure Code, Second Edition
    Please notice that it's been discounted !! ;-P
    My irony-o-meter just pegged. Oh, my aching sides. Stop it! You're killing me!
    Well no shit Sherlock !
    Unfortunately, the only people who will get this joke will have already understood how stupid the broadcast flag is. It's really a pity, because RFC3514 is hilariously funny and deserves a much broader audience.

    Friday, March 28, 2003

    HaloScan has crapped out. Again. Gah, but I'm sick of this. Who's a good hosting company for two guys running a blog for nothing but their own self-gratification? They need to allow something by way of decent blogging software, probably Moveable Type, although I don't have an opinion yet on whether that's the right bandwagon to hop on.

    Crap, but this is irritating.
    Bwahahahahahahaha !
    F*ck the creationists !!!

    "I've actually challenged creationists on the board of education to put the second law of thermodynamics up for a popular referendum in Ohio," he said. "I'd gladly vote against it. I hate the second law. It messes up my life — my office is disorganized."
    Land of the free. Maybe it was once. But now Bush is out of Control
    ATM subversion
    BBC news chief claims there's no systemic bias to their reporting. This would be more meaningful if he hadn't been speaking at meeting of Media Workers Against The War. It's okay to be biased; everybody is. It's not okay to be biased enough to go to a meeting for Media Workers Against The War and give a speech while claiming you're neither for nor against the war. That isn't being unbiased; that's flat-out lying.
    What's the opposite of "nationalize"?

    Thursday, March 27, 2003

    Wednesday, March 26, 2003

    Curious about how many people are playing massively multiplayer online games? Well, wonder no more.
    Massachusetts doesn't really surprise me, but Texas did: Use a Firewall, Go to Jail.
    First the dolphins, and now the monkeys have joined the coalition of the willing.
    Intel likes to bitch. And now they say we can't overclock our processors anymoreIntel invents overclock deterrent method
    So in a childish fit they are saying :
    I'm not playing, and I'm taking my ball back
    Its completely OK for the government to put false information on you into their huge criminal databse. And there is nothing you can do.
    Ah ! Democracy at its best.
    Next step - Police state.

    Tuesday, March 25, 2003

    Kewl!!! A map of the developing force deployment.
    Lee, I'll be buying you a beer plus any other Britsh gentlemen I can find just because. Offer dependent on my financial state at the time of the purchase, of course.
    Like most people, I didn't go to West Point. So this Flash animation describing U.S.Army doctrine for dealing with an emerging target was all shiny and new to me.

    Sunday, March 23, 2003

    I've only started reading this essay on the roots of European anti-Americanism, so I can't really comment yet. I also have a habit of losing bookmarks, so I'll stuff it in here until I get back to it.

    Thursday, March 20, 2003

    The scariest part about this story is this was a manager, for f*ck's sake, and he's able to drive a car and vote and everything.
    Lee, this article is just for you.
    More fun with iconography from Homeland Security.

    Wednesday, March 19, 2003

    Lee: send me an email or an IM when you wake up, would you?
    It appears the clock has officially run out on the warm-up, and the serious business has begun. I'm one of the most atheistic people you'll ever have the sorry misfortune not to have been able to avoid meeting, but sometimes a little ceremonial deism is in order:

    God save the United States, and protect the brave men and women serving in her armed forces.
    My wife has been threatening me recently. It seems that an acquaintance of ours has a soda fountain in his house, and she wants one. Luckily for me, somebody wrote up a HOWTO.
    Click now. Sign. Press the button.
    Oh yes ... this makes it clear how the entire world is opposed to supporting our line on Iraq.

    Tuesday, March 18, 2003

    WARNING: Extreme time-suck ahead.

    Chinese Characters and Culture will let you waste entire days just poking around inside a huge dictionary of Chinese words plus etymology and other huge great happy word-fun bits.

    Don't say I didn't warn you.
    Holy crap, um, carp. I mean it ... "holy", that is. Whole religions have been built around less.
    Let me start with "I love Strong Bad". Notice the link over there (<===) on the left side. Now his fame is spreading far and wide: two new words in the dictionary.
    Yet another nation signs on to enforce the U.N. mandate, whether or not France wants them to.
    Woo-hoo! Hooray for the Aussies!!!1!
    Okay, so it's only American cowboys who insist on attacking a peaceful sovereign nation in the Middle East? Guess again. Once more it appears that the more a person finds out about Iraq, the more determined they are to see the UK/US/Aussie/Spanish/Italian/[...]/Jordanian coalition take his punk ass down.
    All who are in favor of helping the regime that retains and trains people like this stay in power, raise your fucking hands so I know who to shoot.
    So people like me who have a TiVO, are "stealing" when they fast-forward through the ads ? Well it seems a new study has a case that people fast forwarding recall about as much of the Ad as a guy watching it at normal speed.
    Maybe other people are not as good at the 60x FF as me, but I can skip all he ads in about 6 secs, and stop exactly on my program resume point.
    You could say I watch too much TV (But with all the Stargate SG1 being repeated on SciFi what is a guy to do ?)

    Sunday, March 16, 2003

    Umm ... not yet guys. You have to wait for the whistle. Found via Brian Tiemann

    Friday, March 14, 2003

    It's nice to see even people 100% behind a war in Iraq are pissed at all the patriotic shite thats being shovelled around in the media.
    i.e. "You don't agree with us so you're idiots, and we hate you" - Land of the Free, Freedom of speech, All Men created equal, yadda yadda yadda - My arse !
    BWA-hahahahaha!!!! I'm absolutely dying! Thanks to Jane Galt for finding this treasure.

    Thursday, March 13, 2003

    Land of the free, and home of the guys shooting at anyone who doesn't agree with the Bush's point of view. Agree to only publish what the US govt says, or be shot at.
    Hmmmm.... Let me think about that....
    Ewwwwwww !!
    It seems the US really wants war, no matter what. Even as France aims to break Iraq deadlock.
    What I don't understand is that North Korea is blatantly smacking the US with the threat of nuclear weapons, while Saddam is disarming somewhat (albeit at a slow pace), and the US is prepared to talk to North Korea, but nothing will sway them from war with Iraq - and to hell the consequences.
    Now this would have nothing to do with the fact that Iraq should be a relatively easy war, whereas North Korea, with its million man army, and better-than-Iraq weaponry, would take a protracted war, with many American deaths ?

    And another thing. If saddam has all these WMD's, wouldn't he use them in his defense when the US starts attacking Iraq ?
    After all what has he personally got to lose ? He's gonna be deposed no matter what (as the US won't stop until he's gone). So the US troop deaths are gonna be huge if he has them. And if they are not, then he has disarmed, and therefore met US demands to disarm, and therefore there is no reason for a war.
    Trouble is, we won't find out for sure until there IS a war, which of course is too late.
    The irony of it........
    Why am I not suprise that 40% of mail is spam ?
    You only need to look at your own inbox to see that !
    Well it's no supprise that Micro$hite is locking users into thier own proprietary XML formats for office. And we had such high hopes for this, but almost no expectation. Proved right again.
    Microsoft will fuck me

    Tuesday, March 11, 2003

    Who voted this nutcase into office ?
    Although, I'm all for an extra day off work. And I'll drink a beer to just about anyone :)
    I have a Tivo and its bloody fantastic. If it went away I would stop watching TV completely. Now AOL wants to make an "AOL-Tivo" that doesn't fast forward, has extra commercials inserted, and expects us to pay for. WTF.
    If you're gonna give us extra commericals then it should damn well be free.
    This will never work, it's 10% of what a Tivo is, without all the good things about Tivo, and with extra baddness added.
    Watch out Saddam. We got some new operatives that are gonna get medeval on yer ass !<

    Thursday, March 06, 2003

    I'm watching the Preseidential press conference, of course, and getting more irked by the moment. President Bush did a good job of seeming presidential, but I'd like to go yell at his handlers for a while.

    Why, when reporters asked about the opposition of France and Germany et al, didn't he respond that neither Chirac nor Schroeder is primarily concerned with the good of the U.S.? Even if he (and you) want to assume that's understood by all the people in the room, he should still state it. Out loud, and with force.

    Also, when the same (or equivalent) reporters asked about the masses opposed to the U.S. policy, why didn't the President respond by naming the nations and masses who are with us? He said even France approved resolution 1441, but he completely dissed the Vilnius group by not mentioning that the majority of the citizens' governments in Europe have published an open letter stating their support? Why would he just let the barely unstated assumption that it's us against the world go unchallenged?

    Crap crap crap. Another opportunity not completely capitalized upon. Still, it was much better than it could have been. He stayed on message and didn't provide any wiggle room whatsoever. Plus, as a bonus, he smacked every maroon who asked about "another last chance" with the clue-stick that they so richly deserve.

    Tuesday, March 04, 2003

    Microsoft quits theOpenGL board. They have been trying to kill the only cross platform graphics language for a long time. I don't think its gonna happen, after all the world has the Quake Engines.

    Monday, March 03, 2003

    A history of graphing, as found by Colby Cosh. Only geeks with more analytic skill than life will find this compelling, but boy do we ever!
    Today was a very special day in the life of Mitchell Morris. For the past four weeks, I've been busting my ass writing a web application for data visualization and dimensional alaysis of some performance metrics. Today I arrive at the client site to install the first code drop (version 0.1.0) only to find my <quote type="scare">partner</partner> had shown up and told the client that I was his employee, not his partner, and that he'd fired me and I should be escorted from the building. Hooray for internal power politics!!!

    Unfortunately, my lawyer tells me I can't send a cease-and-desist to the client for reasons with long legalese names that I promptly forgot. All I've got is this pitiful little soapbox.

    So ... fuck James Copher and his horse.

    Actually, the last time we were delivering a product to the client that was primarily my work-product and not his, he also engineered a big row just before the deadline. Apparently, he always has to make damned double sure that he's always got somebody else he can visibly blame if things aren't just right. Here I thought we were partners and it turns out I was just his scapegoat.

    Sunday, March 02, 2003

    Friday, February 28, 2003

    I'm not dead yet ... just very very very busy. I'm so far behind my required reading now I may never catch up. It's so bad, in fact, that I might have even missed a few days reading Megan's work.

    Friday, February 21, 2003

    Bwahahahahaha ! Have you developed in MS-SQL server ? Then you now owe Timeline royalties. Microsoft has been lying to you again.

    Monday, February 17, 2003

    So the crazyness has started. People believing that terrorists would attack *in* a nightclub. Which leads to a very unfortunate end. So the govenment standing up and saying more "terror attacks are on the way, but we are not going to say when, whereabouts it will take place, or where we got this information" is never going to painc a nation into things this like this. Chicago clubbers trampled to death

    Sunday, February 16, 2003

    Well it seems Google has bought us out ! Well bought out blogspot anyway.

    Thursday, February 13, 2003

    BWA-hahahahaha! Get it? "line" sounds like "lion"! One of our cats, Miz Boo, gets this haircut during the summer and she loves it.
    Motorola will use linux in most of its phones.
    If Nokia do it then we can really sit up on go 'Wow'. Motorola doesn't have a very biug market share - but still - Linux phones !
    390,00 people put 'Jedi Knight' in the box that asked their faith in the latest census for the UK. ho ho ho
    HA! Hahahahahahaha! Kevin Mitnick's security company's website gets hacked. Twice. Hee hee hee.
    Let me see if I've got this straight: a U.S. Senator was the CEO of the company that made the voting machines that tallied his "landslide" victory, and he's also facing questions from the ethics comittee? I can spell "conflict of interest" ... can you?