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Scripting News, the weblog started in 1997 that bootstrapped the blogging revolution.

Permanent link to archive for Friday, April 30, 1999. Friday, April 30, 1999

DaveNet: We Were Deleted, Was I Fooled

Early next week we'll release the source for My.UserLand.Com. 

TechWeb: Network Solutions Starts a Search Engine

News.com: Network Solutions Glitches Bug Users. Thomas Creedon says that the problems are months old not days old. 

Wired: Turning the Body Inside-Out

News.com: Cold Fusion Servers Still Show Security Holes

Today's Marimba's IPO day. It opened at 59! 

Red Herring: Marimba Shares Triple on IPO

Jakob Nielsen: Top Ten Mistakes Revisited

New channel: Sparks.Com

Eric Soroos spotted the new Douglas Adams website, and he thinks it might be a Frontier site. I sniffed around, it's a wonderful site, whether or not it's done in Frontier. I'll send Douglas an email with congratulations and ask for his comments. 

PC Data Online is tracking the top 50 websites on a public page. Looks like it would be a great investor tool. 

An indispensible site for the world traveler. It's a database of Internet cafes. It's good, it showed a cafe in Negril. This will make it easier for me to email with my uncle who's a third-world guy. 

I love the name and location of this cybercafe. Shall we have a Scripting News reunion there 20 years from now? 

ZDNet: Deja News privacy snafu? Zzzzz. 

NY Times: Email for World Travelers

FuturePipe Industries is a Frontier site.  

Wired: Cuba embraces email, warily. "None of the Cubans interviewed about email had any illusions about privacy. It's known that every email sent from the university account is automatically copied into an archive. It's equally known that the email is being copied elsewhere, too." 

News.com: Calendars are the latest portal feature

Permanent link to archive for Thursday, April 29, 1999. Thursday, April 29, 1999

The DNS problems continue. It appears it might not be an ISP problem. If you have any clues what might the problem might be, send email to please brent@scripting.com, or if you can, post a response to the DG message linked to above. Thanks. 

Wired: Sun Scuttles Open Java Plan. "Alan Baratz, president of Sun's Java Software division, said that Sun has changed its strategy because Microsoft bought off the ISO and influenced the group's filing procedures, according to a report in ITWeek." 

InfoWorld: Lotus Shaken After WSJ Article about CEO. At least they don't blame it on Microsoft. 

Gomez: Amazon wants to be your big brother. The juice starts squirting. 

News.com: Microsoft struggles to find online chief. First step, have a vision. Hire some excellent developers and thinkers. Empower them. Cut thru Microsoft's internal self-defeating bullshit. 

Washington Post: MP3 Undermines Music Biz. "MP3 has been around since 1992, but as its use has blossomed, the giants of the industry have become torn over what to do about it sue those connected with it, try to replace it or use it as yet another promotional tool." 

Press release: The Globe and Wave Systems Partner.  

The What About Apple thread continues. "There's tremendous economic pull to get us onto Unix. This is what we want to tap into. The Mac server platform, and its future incarnations do not, at this time, get us there. In fact, we have a very unclear idea of what Apple is doing, there have been some surprises lately.." 

Metrowerks: A 1997 interview with David Hempling, lead developer of the Latitude porting libraries. Adobe used Latitude to port Mac API versions of PhotoShop, Illustrator and Premiere to Sun and SGI platforms.  

NY Times: Intel Goes to War over Hidden Serial Number

MacWEEK: Avid answers Mac critics

News.com: Marimba ups offering price

NY Times: Deadlocked House Denies Support for Air Campaign

Permanent link to archive for Wednesday, April 28, 1999. Wednesday, April 28, 1999

DaveNet: An Open Letter to Steve Case

Due to a DNS screwup, many userland.com sites are not accessible. We apologize for this, we're working on it. 

Red Herring: MP3 Tune is Same Old Song

Laurence Tribe: The Internet vs The First Amendment. "Those who launch murderous plots by posting their deranged plans on a Web site are exposing their schemes in a public space, one that government agencies may freely browse without warrant.." Of course. 

Infoworld: Sun's I-Planet sounds like XML-RPC. "Pricing is to be user-based, ranging from $10,000 for 100 users to $39,995 for 1,000 users, and $16 per user in large quantities." But it doesn't connect to Mac apps. 

I do my part to help the Mac. "It's too simplistic to say that whatever Apple is promoting today, whether it is run by Jobs or Amelio, is the right thing. In the world we sell software into, the Mac is not rehabilitated, if anything it's further undermined. We sell server software, remember. When you say 'It runs on Mac' many customers run away." 

Java Apache Project: Cocoon is a 100% pure Java publishing framework servlet that relies on new W3C technologies (such as DOM, XML, and XSL) to provide web content. Is anyone using Cocoon? How does it compare to StoryServer and Frontier? 

Josh Lucas has installed Cocoon and has some comments

Wired: Inside Amazon's Shopping Cart. "They are putting their customers under surveillance," Hendricks said. "Amazon.com customers will be at the mercy of Amazon." Amazon bit into something really juicy. Wonder if they looked before they lept? 

CNN: Children Killed by NATO Bombs. Will there be an international outpouring of grief for these children? Are Yugoslavian children less important than American children? 

Beograd.Com: "The man famed for saying 'I did not have sex with that woman' on national television said that Serbian television studios were a legitimate target because they told lies." 

Disclaimer: I am not a Serb. My family fled Eastern Europe to escape ethnic cleansing (Nazis). Three of my grandparents were Jewish, one was a blond-haired blue-eyed Aryan. They were from Rumania, Czechoslavakia, Poland and Russia. I was born in New York City, I've lived in the US my whole life. I am a US citizen. I think, I listen and I vote. 

Permanent link to archive for Tuesday, April 27, 1999. Tuesday, April 27, 1999

1987 BYTE editorial: Ben Rosen talks about new software for the Intel 80386. "Many people from the software community were questioning whether there was room in the market for any new software products, no matter how good." 

Wired: The net must pay. "Whenever a new form of evil extrudes into American society, demands for Internet regulation seem to arrive faster than a greyhound on crack." 

New channel: CampaignWeb

StarNine: WebSTAR 4.0 Public Beta. Mac OS. 

InfoWorld: Red Hat Linux 6.0

Nicholas Petreley reviews Caldera OpenLinux 2.2. 

Standard: How much should you pay for a free PC

If you like Linux mark yesterday on your calendar. It was a big day. Thanks to Jim Hebert, a Linux fanatic who we had crossed swords with in the past, he single-handedly got the Win32 binary version of Frontier running on Linux. It wasn't that much work!  

From his screen shot, which got more complete as the day went by, we can see that the majority of Frontier runs fine thru WINE, which is not an emulator. Now I have to go to Fry's and get a copy of Red Hat and work with it here. We were originally thinking it would take a year to get Frontier on Linux. Now, dare I say it, it might be a matter of months or weeks. Remember Murphy! 

Hats off to the WINE people, btw. What an accomplishment! I think that running Frontier thru the WINE process will make it better. Now I want everyone on Linux. Human nature, I guess. 

The WINE Is Not an Emulator thread continues, with some observations on human nature, invalidating questions we don't want to answer and continued subserviance to Our Lord Murphy, which reminds me, we need a religious shrine on the net, with case studies. 

I wish I had thought of grabbing this domain name, early on. 

Permanent link to archive for Monday, April 26, 1999. Monday, April 26, 1999

DaveNet: Ben Rosen is Back

News.com: Amazon buys three companies. $645 million. 

MacWEEK: "Release the source and they will come develop" isn't the way things work in the real world. Just ask the Mozilla group. Open-source works well when people need a particular type of functionality. In this case, it's Apple -- not the open-source community -- that needs the QTSS to proliferate. 

Afer much beating on my head I now understand that WINE Is Not an Emulator. It's looking more like this is the rational path to use to move Frontier to Linux. 

WINE Headquarters: About WINE

Check this out! Jim Hebert tried launching the Trial Version of Frontier 5.1.6 under WINE on Linux. Here's a screen shot. It crashed, but you can see from the picture that a lot of stuff works with no mods to the program. Wow! 

InternetWorld profiles Conxion, our ISP. 

Doc Searls, senior editor at Linux Journal, talks about the 'wide open spaces' of Linux. 

In Sept 1997, Doc Searls wrote: "So Steve Jobs just shot the cloners in the head, indirectly doing the same to the growing percentage of Mac users who prefered cloned Mac systems to Apple's own. So his message to everybody was no different than it was at Day One: all I want from the rest of you is your money and your appreciation for my Art." Doc's art is pretty cool too! 

Apple Recon: Debbie Does Quicktime. "Adult content is the biggest money maker on the Internet if you use the amount of traffic and dollars it generates as a gauge.. And about 85% of those sites use QuickTime as it's ubiquitous and is the most popular format for the XXX Internet industry as it has the highest quality and can also compress MPEG, does AVI, etc" 

FileMaker now has ODBC support, as does Frontier, on both Mac and Windows, so now there's a whole new way to develop apps in Frontier that store data in FileMaker. 

NY Times: Sun's Portable Productivity Desktop. "The new software, called i-Planet, creates an electronic work space for employees that includes traditional applications like word processing and spreadsheets as well as group calendars, file storage and e-mail." 

Alexa has a form that allows people to rate the links that are "related" to any site, and to add new ones. 

Red Herring: Marimba nets Tivoli exec. This is their IPO week. Good luck Marimba! 

Anatole Lieven: Let's Not Freeze Russia Out

Yesterday I asked: "Why are people so excited about Ask Jeeves?" Christoph Jaggi says: "The answer is simple, they probably never encountered a product that worked, Symantec's Q&A." Right! 

Permanent link to archive for Sunday, April 25, 1999. Sunday, April 25, 1999

NY Times: Compaq at a Crossroad. "It's hard to kill a computer company," said Andrew J. Neff, an analyst at Bear, Stearns. "The right management can turn things around "Look at Apple. Look at IBM."  

Red Herring: Quality doesn't matter for Internet IPOs

News.com: Online trading ads under scrutiny

How to index other sites using Frontier 6's search engine. 

Why are people so excited about Ask Jeeves? I just asked it to find biographical information about Ben Rosen, their lead investor. It returned garbage. It even complained about my spelling of Rosen's name (I spelled it correctly.)  

InfoWorld: Rosen Holds CEOs to High Standards

In 1997 Rosen received an award from Columbia University. In his brief acceptance speech he outlined his career in the computer industry. 

CNN: Windows Convergence Coming. "For those who want to know who Gates really sees as his competition, he revealed that Microsoft's top competitor is, well, Microsoft's installed base." 

New channel: International Colored Appaloosa Association

CNN: US-Russian relations at a 15-year low

Chicago Tribune: Uprising Against Linux

Permanent link to archive for Saturday, April 24, 1999. Saturday, April 24, 1999

Eric Kidd is optimistic about the evolution of Mozilla. 

John Carmack of id software says that the first test release of Quake 3 will be for the Mac OS, then Linux, then Windows. He says this was not a political or economic decision. He also says Mac OS sucks. I wish he wouldn't say that. 

New channel: Transitorials

Someday I'll write a DaveNet piece about this tiny house on the edge of the Intercoastal Waterway near Crescent Beach, FL. 

NY Times: Skeleton Shows Humans are Part Neanderthal

News.com: Next week's Net IPOs

Permanent link to archive for Friday, April 23, 1999. Friday, April 23, 1999

DaveNet: We Didn't Start the Fire

Scientific American: XML and the Second Web Generation

InfoWorld: Apple Notebooks Get Skinny

InfoWorld: Microsoft Lags in Enterprise Penetration

Slashdot posting from a student at a school neighboring Columbine. It's the second message on the page. I've been getting lots of mail like this from recent high school graduates echoing this scenario. 

NetCenter now has a Build Your Home Page feature. 

Fortune's Stewart Alsop recommends chucking your PC. 

Rasterboy doesn't want something like Vignette, he wants something simpler. I think he makes a good point, and offer a roadmap of where we're going now that 6.0 is out.  

Billy Joel: We Didn't Start the Fire

Billy Joel's official site, with clips from the song. 

Chris Maher: In Defense of Banner Ads

Carolyn Kotlas: Self-Publishing Electronic Newsletters

News.com: Webzine draws $3 million eBay bid. Seems like a fair price? 

Permanent link to archive for Thursday, April 22, 1999. Thursday, April 22, 1999

DaveNet: Bombing Yugoslavia

Wired: Melissa was but a Sniffle. "The havoc caused by the Melissa computer virus is tame compared with the destruction expected to strike on 26 April." Unfortunately they don't point to sites with technical information. 

Symantec's page on the CIH virus. 

Symantec has a free tool that eliminates the CIH virus, which, thankfully, doesn't effect Windows NT systems. All our Intel servers are running NT. 

Michael Moore: The Bombing of Yugoslavia

Wired: Hot IPOs Flaming Out

Frontier 6 security alert, reasonably high for people who are running the discussion group software. 

Netscape: Javascript Template Engine

MacInTouch's mail page on Avid's decision to drop Mac support in favor of NT. A fascinating discussion between award-winning television and movie editors. 

New channel: Thinking About Kosovo

Permanent link to archive for Wednesday, April 21, 1999. Wednesday, April 21, 1999

WebMonkey and Fray are My.UserLand.Com channels. Perfect! 

Other new channels: Absolute Gamers File Archive,  

Black Gold Youth Foundation, decipher, Florida Keys Info-Net, head.on.back, Horizon,  

Lanced.Channel, Mapping Your Future, NewsTrolls

Pratz Business Helpline, The Brunching Shuttlecocks, The Stuffed Dog, The Useless Nothing, The Zack Network, Top Web Comics, Tsubakimoto Chain Co., Your mom

Warming up.. Here are my comments on Matt Neuburg's Tidbits piece. "If you look at the competitive landscape in publishing software, you'll see that they're all built around scripting. From DreamWeaver to Vignette, customization is key, and where customization is important, scripting is central." 

The NY Times is doing a 1000-year time capsule and is looking for ideas. 

Wired: Stock trading thru the night

The Stuffed Dog is a new weblog. 

Wired: A privacy hole in IE 5? No way! It's a feature. Keep it. 

CNN wins today's award for meta-news. News about news. 

NY Times: Peace among former competitors. Gag me! 

Red Herring on Salon's IPO. 

4/8/99: Al Gore sticks his foot in his mouth again. 

Infoworld: DataChannel, Isogen merge

Permanent link to archive for Tuesday, April 20, 1999. Tuesday, April 20, 1999

Matt Neuburg: Frontier 6 Demystified

NY Times: A new kind of convergence, writers and programmers

Jakob Nielsen: Stuck with old browsers until 2003

DocServer docs "stock" macros that ship with Frontier 6. 

InfoWorld: Linus Urges Users to Ignore Hype

Xoom.Com: Media Sharehouse Beta

A Lego MindStorms robot that can determine the height of each point of an object on a grid. 

What if God Smoked Cannibis? Requires MP3. 

Red Herring: What if Ask Jeeves is worth $100 million

Mirror World: Lifestreams

Lots of new channels. Tomorrow we'll catch up. Just got back. Time to chill! My fingers don't work anymore. I like the feeling. 

Permanent link to archive for Monday, April 19, 1999. Monday, April 19, 1999


Permanent link to archive for Sunday, April 18, 1999. Sunday, April 18, 1999


Permanent link to archive for Friday, April 16, 1999. Friday, April 16, 1999


Permanent link to archive for Thursday, April 15, 1999. Thursday, April 15, 1999


Permanent link to archive for Wednesday, April 14, 1999. Wednesday, April 14, 1999


Permanent link to archive for Tuesday, April 13, 1999. Tuesday, April 13, 1999


Permanent link to archive for Monday, April 12, 1999. Monday, April 12, 1999


Permanent link to archive for Friday, April 09, 1999. Friday, April 09, 1999


Permanent link to archive for Thursday, April 08, 1999. Thursday, April 08, 1999


Permanent link to archive for Wednesday, April 07, 1999. Wednesday, April 07, 1999


Permanent link to archive for Tuesday, April 06, 1999. Tuesday, April 06, 1999

Guidelines while I'm gone. We're going to leave the DG turned on while I am traveling. Play nice, and eat your vegetables! 

New channels: Emulation Sphere, AustLII, 4 Stones, Auto Dealer Info

Red Herring: When is Now for AOL

The Michigan State Singing Trustees

Permanent link to archive for Monday, April 05, 1999. Monday, April 05, 1999

DaveNet: My.Vacation.Com

New My.UserLand.Com channel: JavaWorld

JavaWorld: XML for the Absolute Beginner

Thea's Galleria: Sister Moon

Chris Nolan: Will AOL buy CBS

Press release: UserLand Ships Frontier 6.0

Interactive Week: MSNBC Gets Caching Religion

Tomalak: Hello Salon.Com

Wired: Amazon's Auction a Bust. "Alongside of the back issues of Hugh Hefner's magazine was listed a 1979 copy of the raunchier Gent, which touts itself as Home of the D-Cups."  

Jakob Nielsen: Intranet Portals. "An intranet should have a single home page that integrates a directory hierarchy, search, and news. Most intranets are chaotic, under-funded, and lack design standards, causing huge losses in employee productivity." 

Nielsen identifies Directory, News and Search as the "Big Three" features of any website. That's exactly the same conclusion we reached. The same applies to every website, public or private. Frontier 6 already has News and Search and limited tools for directory authoring. But have great software for this, still in its early stages, we'll release it when it's more mature. You can see it in action at frontier.userland.com. Here's a screen shot of the directory for the website. It's all in a single outline. Makes it really easy to edit. Yahoo should be using one of these. 

Epicentric: Custom portals for Intranet, Extranet and Internet

Mozilla.org: Mozilla At One

News.com: Ticker confusion drives up tiny stock. "What happens if, six months from now, somebody else decides they want our new symbol? Do we go through this again?" the CEO asked.  

Heard on the XML-DEV list: "This mailing list occasionally has messages that note some feature or behavior of a Microsoft product, observe that it conflicts with the author's opinion on how the world should be organized, and impute some fiendish, nefarious and usually obscure motive to Microsoft. I don't generally comment on these. That does not mean that I believe they have merit; rather that I am very busy working with Satan and the International Trilateral Commission on an enigmatic master plan for global domination." 

Permanent link to archive for Sunday, April 04, 1999. Sunday, April 04, 1999

The next net innovation: Online Surgery

New channels: Robot Wisdom, exoScience Space News, Simpleton USA.  

NY Times: When Privacy is More Perilous than Lack of It

News.com: Former CEO may make bid for Pointcast

12/5/98: Software Soup. "When Unix gets a standard GUI, if it gets one as rich as Windows or Mac, it will require just as much head-banging to make the software work as users expect it to." 

111772 crack fiends served since February 5th, 1999. 

Permanent link to archive for Saturday, April 03, 1999. Saturday, April 03, 1999

Pre-vacation notes about web servers, writing, Microsoft, Moore's Law, scripting, and body surfing. 

9/30/97: Moore says Moore's Law to hit wall. Just in time for the Internet to come online and make cheap scalable distributed computing possible. 

Often a working example is exactly what you need to get a project going. That's why we've put together a collection of dynamic Frontier applications and released the source code for those applications. 

The Frontier News page has a new home and a new look. 

New channels: Auricular Immersion Media, Deep Fun

Tomalak: Salon.Com points to the right site

NY Times: The Anarchic Lure of Virus Writing

Dan Bricklin's photo album of the 1999 PC Forum. 

Permanent link to archive for Friday, April 02, 1999. Friday, April 02, 1999

Today is Ship Day for Frontier 6.0. No April Fool! 

The first step is to upgrade Frontier 5 users. Then, in about a week, we'll start offering F6 through our e-commerce site. 

mainResponder is at the core of Frontier 6, server-side. 

What is Frontier? (Click on the Next links to step thru the pages.) 

DaveNet: Frontier 6.0 Ships

Right after a new release I like to ask How Are We Doing

A note about docs. For this release they're more complete than for any previous release. However, there are still holes that must be filled. Brent and Andre will work with users over the next few weeks to add HowTos to the documentation site. Please ask questions on the mail lists or the DG, and they'll get answers on the website asap. We have a good CMS, and the guys know the product, so it's just a matter of (a small amount of) time before the gaps are filled. As always, Still diggin! 

Many thanks to the people who helped define and refine the new server features in Frontier 6. 

News.com interviews TheGlobe.Com founders Stephan Paternot and Todd Krizelman. 

Jamie Zawinski resigns from Netscape and Mozilla.Org, in doing so reveals differences between what Netscape ships and what is open sourced. 

Eric Kidd asks if Zawinski quit too soon. 

SJ Merc: Mystery surrounds Inprise resignations

Permanent link to archive for Thursday, April 01, 1999. Thursday, April 01, 1999

Macworld: Presenting with HTML. They should read Scripting News. We've been doing this for a long time! Frontier is a much better tool for HTML presentations, because it's built around an outliner, and outliners are central to easy presentation authoring. 

Samples: Slideshow Websites. I wrote the scripts for you! 

Here's a slideshow I did on 1/27/98. Here's another one, from February of this year. The DaveNet Reader Profiles site is a slide show.  

Jessica Graves of Macworld asks me to point out that it's the *print* version of Macworld that should get a clue. The online version of Macworld is a Frontier site, so I guess they Get It. 

Rebol 2.0 is coming soon, the beta is out, and it's sporting many new features. 

In response to Bernie's online outlining writeup, I published the source code I used in the experiment. An interesting discussion started, leading to a frames-based way of flicker-free updating from the technographer workstation to the screens of each of the participants. Now I'm about to go on vacation (starts Tuesday!) and I am turning the code over to the discussion participants. This is fertile territory. Let a thousand flowers bloom. 

Tomalak: Amazon holds a silent auction on user experience

Builder.com: Vote for the Web Innovators. I am nominated twice. Thanks! 

News.com: Inprise CEO resigns. The CORBA strategy didn't work? 

News.com: Microsoft database to support XML. Bosworth joins the SQL group. 

Wired attends Guy Kawasaki's $495 entrepreneurs conference. 

Stratfor.com is covering the crisis in Kosovo. 

Happy April Fools Day! I'll try not to zonk you too bad. 


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