Archive for January 2004

Standards in Paradise

ECMA Technical Group 5 is charged with standardizing C++ bindings to the CLI. Progress has been slowed by the lack of 200-watt backlights for the laptops.

Tivo for $160

In other Amazon Friday Sale news, they’ve got a Tivo Series 2 40 for $214 plus a $50 rebate. (Hmmm… actually, Tivo.com has refurbished units for $150). You still have to pay $300 for the service and $99 if you want to play MP3s.

A penny saved…

If you’ve been putting off that decision to jump into non-linear editing, now is the time!

Moving pictures

I wanted to demonstrate the SpamBayes plug-in for the school, and I realized I ought to try the screen-capture feature of the free Windows Media Encoder 9. The results were stunning. via [Jon's Radio]

I used that codec for a video on programming the Tablet PC I did last year. It’s amazingly compact. I don’t think one can dynamically switch codecs in the middle of a video, though, so you can’t have a talking- head segment followed by a screenshot video with segment-specific codecs. Pity.

‘Lonestar’ Alpha Now Available on BetaPlace

Neowin is reporting that Microsoft has broadened the alpha test of its next-gen Tablet PC operating system, “Lonestar,” to all BetaPlace testers. Last week, Microsoft execs told us to expect Lonestar to go beta in late February or early March. The final Lonestar release target is still June.
[Microsoft Watch from Mary Jo Foley]

HP Makes $2.5B in Linux-Based Revenue

… this reminds me of a conversation I had with a friend a few days ago in which he asked if I knew of a company that provided technical support for LAMP-based small businesses. “Don’t know of any,” I said, dollar signs appearing in my eyes. (Which relates to my suspicion that there’s more money to be had in freelance support than there in freelance programming.)

Azureus And Sun’s Big Mistake.

…It’s a common theory that the reason that Apple isn’t where Microsoft is today is because of their refusal to license the MacOS during the mid 80s….Sun’s refusal to embrace native client side widgets is what allowed Microsoft to catch up to where Java is now with .Net….via [Russell Beattie Notebook]

I think Russell’s right. The most striking thing to me when I jumped from Java to .NET was how absolutely foolish I felt for having abandoned native OS widgets and integration. One of my most memorable dot-com experiences was bringing on a contract programmer at $150 / hour to implement a single custom widget in Swing and having him fail to do it in four weeks. Even though it was complex, I’d estimate I could duplicate it in 3-5 days with .NET.

The Big 0×28

On my 30th birthday, I left Tina, whose hair was just beginning to grow back from her bone-marrow transplant, at 7:15 in the morning to commute into San Francisco to a job I’d get back from at 6:30 at night. On my 40th birthday, Tina and I went snowboarding in the middle of the week because we can.

I have less money now than I did when I was 30, but I have more fun. No regrets…well, actually, if I never met certain people I ended up in business with I’d be happier, have a more charitable view of human nature, and be significantly richer, against which the added wisdom I gained seems paltry compensation, but for expository purposes: No regrets.

My 50th birthday will be on a Monday. I think Tina and I will go SCUBA diving.

Language Divergence In Whidbey

Language Divergence In Whidbey My Latest Column For SDTimes

Language Divergence in Whidbey — my latest column for SDTimes

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