Weblog Archive >  1999 >  July Previous/Next

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

Permanent link to archive for Saturday, July 31, 1999. Saturday, July 31, 1999

Dan Gillmor: Software plan is a travesty for consumers

Dennis Ritchie released two versions of the first C compiler, 1972-73, the compiler used to build the first versions of the Unix operating system. More antique software! 

There have now been three significant new releases of antique software in the last few weeks. Dan Bricklin/Lotus released an early version of VisiCalc, and Borland released early versions of Turbo Pascal and Turbo C. 

New Media: "In Hollywood you take a film and you sell cable rights, videotape rights, whatever. There are lots of ways to make your money back. The same thing with music. But there are 25,000 CD-ROMs sitting there with nobody making any money from them." 

Popular Science: Newspaper to publish Online-only. "Oldham said common sense drove the move. 'Clearly, the future of newspapers is on the Web.'" 

NY Times: More security holes in Microsoft OS/apps

Atlantic Monthly: Living with Linux

Marketing Computers profiles Larry Cohen, Microsoft's developer relations guy in Silicon Valley. 

Wes Felter: ''Imagine a wireless phone that, instead of proprietary protocols, uses H.323 over IP over AirPort-compatible wireless networking. As crazy as it might sound, Symbol already sells it!'' 

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

Last night, thanks to brilliant detective work by Lawrence Lee, we had the open letter from Microsoft et al to Steve Case, at least twelve hours before other major news sites. This happens from time to time, we network with the very best loggers and insiders and often get the story first. 

If you want to be in our tightest loop, sign up for Scripting News bulletins via email and catch the scoops and the continuing story of the Internet industry thru the latest (also the oldest) push technology -- email. Over 400 people have already signed up. It takes less than a minute, and it's super-easy to opt out.  

PythonWare: PythonWorks is a rapid development environment for Python, authored by Fredrik Lundh, a regular here, and the pioneer of XML-RPC for Python.  

FreeMac.Com, which is not affiliated with Apple Computer, will be giving away 1 million iMacs, starting this fall, according to their website. 

Newsweek: Sex and the iBook. "He makes his living baiting people who take themselves too seriously, and you guys fall for it every time!" 

The Hunger Site will donate a free meal to a starving person for every unique visitor to this page each day. 

MacWEEK: Rocket in the House. "According to Lucent Technologies, which worked with Apple on AirPort, the device will implement the next generation of the 802.11 standard. Tentatively called 802.11b, the standard provides both higher data speeds and backward compatibility for 802.11 devices." 

Red Herring: Microsoft Critics Say AOL Should Open Up. A surprising list. Philippe Kahn, Gary Reback, Bob Frankenberg. "If Microsoft critics are behind it, that's a strong signal that the rest of the market believes AOL needs to embrace the openness of the Net." Key point: Microsoft is no more open than AOL. 

InfoWorld: Controversial software law proposed. "The UCITA deregulates product licensing and covers software, multimedia interactive products, data and databases, and the Internet and online information. It further allows vendors to disable software remotely as a means for repossessing products; makes shrinkwrap licensing terms more enforceable; prevents license transfers from one party to another without vendor approval; outlaws reverse engineering; and lets vendors disclaim warranties." 

Inc: The Best Business Plan on the Planet

CNN: US Plans Y2K Bunker. "The White House said Wednesday that it was weighing a long-term plan to tighten U.S. defenses against threats to government and private computer networks. Disclosure of the draft plan, which would give the FBI a lead role, triggered concern that it would threaten privacy and civil liberties." 

Cringely: "AOL feels betrayed, its $180+ million investment in ICQ made potentially worthless overnight." 

InfoWorld, 12/97: Microsoft submits buddy-list spec. "Missing from the list of supporters are Netscape and AOL; the two teamed up in October to offer Instant Messenger service, which uses AOL's existing buddy lists to let users know when other Instant Messenger users are online." 

Terry Teague: Tidy for Mac OS

Wired: Reader comments on yesterday's editorial.  

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

Letter dated 7/30/99 to Steve Case from execs at Excite, Microsoft, Activerse, Tribal Voice, Prodigy, Yahoo, AT&T and Infoseek. "Dear Steve, Now is the time to unlock the broadest possibilities of this technology and the Internet by tearing down the walls between vendors so that all customers can talk to one another.."  

IMPP mail list: AOL technical staff will actively participate in the working group. 

Thanks to Lawrence Lee for digging this up. 

News.Com: "AOL said it's willing to work with companies to link its IM program with their networks as long as the connection is secure. Microsoft's MSN Messenger program asks people for their AOL usernames and passwords, which AOL says jeopardizes the security of members' data, such as billing information." The group includes Marc Andreessen, Steve Jobs (Apple), Bill Joy (Sun), Rob Glaser (Real Networks), Eric Schmidt (Novell). 

Jakob Nielsen: Metcalfe's Law in Reverse

One more time

DaveNet: Elderly White Male Pundits

Marcia Harris sees a notable lack of clear thinking in reponses to Dvorak's article. 

Be-Opera Now in Beta. Free 30-day trial. Screen shot

This is definitely the hot link of the day. From the Borland Museum website you can download antique versions of Turbo C and Pascal. It's as if Philippe Kahn wrote the copy himself. Those were the good old days. Borland sure knew how to market software! It's incredible that they've captured this on the web. 

WSJ: Net firms do it for free

NY Times: The Walkman Turns Twenty. "In the United States, Sony has offered models called Freq and Psyc. Aimed at teen-agers, the Psyc line clips to a belt or backpack. Some Psyc models are molded of the same translucent blues and greens as the iMac computer." 

Wired editorial on Dvorak. "'I am computer geek!' he is yelling, 'hear me roar!' Dvorak, secure in his elderly, white male punditry, understands this in a way that sandal-wearing, veggie-munching Steve Jobs doesn't." I liked Dvorak's piece. It was a refreshing change from PC-as-Usual. 

I sent this letter to the editor of Wired in response to their editorial. 

USA Today: Feds To Seek Microsoft Breakup

I downloaded and installed Microsoft's instant messaging client. My email address is davewiner@hotmail.com. Not sure if that's all you need to contact me via chat. Question, since Microsoft is a proponent of open APIs, is the API for their client open? Can I write a server for it? What's the protocol? 

From this posting on an IETF mail list, it's clear that Microsoft's Instant Messaging software is no more open than AOL's. 

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

InfoWorld: Oracle Promises $150 Computer. "Asked whether the device is a PC, Ellison responded, 'It's not a PC; it's a network computer!'" 

Excellent news this morning. Dr. Matt Neuburg, the author of the O'Reilly book on Frontier 4, has joined the UserLand team. He's going to work with us and with members of the Frontier community to improve the Frontier documentation, bring it up to date, covering the new features in Frontier 6 and beyond. Our docs will go from average to market-leading with Matt at work again. 

More excellent news! Netscape released the next version of the RSS spec, and it's even better than I thought it would be. They can do fat items, and they adopt all the extensions in ScriptingNews 2.0b1. I am very pleased to see that Netscape responded positively to our offer to work with them. We will support the new version in My.UserLand.Com, and we will remain compatible with the earlier format. 

WebMonkey: Threaded Discussions with PHP/MySQL

Hong Kong Zip Trip: "Anita Tong Man-Ming flew in from China to shoot 30 minutes of tape for Radio and Television Hong Kong and than hopped back on the plane to make the six o'clock news the next day." 

June 1997: Scripting News Redesigns. I tripped over this researching something else. There were some really good designs in there. I wonder why I didn't use them?? Or did I? I think I might be getting Alzheimers. 

Brent Simmons reviews Eric Soroos's Frontier Mail Server. 

Eric Kidd: Cosource.Com goes Live. "Cosource wants open source developers to get paid in cold, hard cash. They've set up a website to help the process along. Cosource.com provides a way for individuals to help sponsor open source developers. Think of it as an open-source eBay, and you'll get the right idea." 

Useful Inc: XSL stylesheet for ScriptingNews syndication files. 

Salon's Janelle Brown calls Dvorak and Red Herring on sexist journalism. "Women use computers, women run computer companies; equating them with busty plastic dolls shows that no matter whether we've come a long way, baby -- not everyone has kept up." Excellent! 

Wired: A Urinal is an Opportunity. "Say you want to reach hip twenty-somethings. Just what do they have in common? They get drunk and go to the bathroom, right? Why not stick your company blurb right there, above the toilet in all the hipster clubs in town?" Interesting coincidence! We were thinking about doing urinal ads at Buck's. 

Glowware in Woodside. "It's not all software at Buck's. Now and then people actually have products you can pick up and hold in your hand."  

OmniGlow's Bovine Beacon. "When a cow is mounted by a herd-mate, the Bovine Beacon's chemiluminescent ampoule is broken, generating a bright red glow that is easily visible from all angles - day or night, rain or shine. Its excellent visibility takes the guesswork out of heatmount detection, saving you time and money." 

Something to think about next time you're cleaning a urinal. 

Wired is on a roll this morning! I love this piece. "So eager are the scads of new dot coms to get their names out, they'll pay upwards of US$40,000 a month for one of the prime boards on Highway 101 between San Francisco and San Jose. A year ago, the same boards sold for $20,000 a month." Dig it. My favorite 101 billboard is Yahoo's take-off on the Tahoe billboards that used to be on 101 just before the Bay Bridge. I wish we had a picture of that one on the web. Helloo Yahoo! 

Too bad someone grabbed US101.COM before I could. Hey isn't it cool that the original highway that runs thru Silicon Valley is a binary number? The other major highway, 280, is not a binary number. Too bad. 

Linux Today: Eric Raymond says Microsoft is Right

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

New Channel: Technocrat.Net

InfoWorld: 600Mhz Pentiums Due Next Week. "Consumers may not know what a chip set is but performance is something they understand."  

News.com: Priceline.Com Takes Car Bids. "The service, which debuts tomorrow in the Tampa, Florida, market, allows customers to bid for a new car on Priceline.com's Web site. The anonymous request is forwarded to all of AutoNation's franchises in the area, and the first dealership to accept the offer makes the sale." 

Hey I just started a new weblog at pitas.com. Thanks to Jorn Barger at Robot Wisdom for this link. The weblog thing is really catching on! 

News.Com: Software firms cash in on portal trend

InfoWorld: RedHat's e-Commerce Server. $149.99. 

WebMonkey: Sending Search-Engine Traffic to Your Site. "It's become obvious to me — and to the search engineers I talked to while writing this article — that most sites could get their pages much better placement on search engines without using deception." 

Wired: Universal -- Don't Link to Us. "A Web site that aggregates links to movie trailers online has come under fire from a major movie studio that says the links infringe on its copyrights." 

Steve Bogart: Stupid Movie Studio

Movie-List: "The net's most updated movie trailer site." 

PC World: Portals Ditch the Browser. "Wireless networks that connect people directly to hulking back-end servers could ultimately bypass the Internet and rob portals of both traffic and eyeballs, Bockman says." 

Scott Rosenberg: Should Journalists and IPOs Mix? "On one side, [newspaper companies] are being threatened by a new medium that has already begun to seize their classified ad revenues and their role of providing raw information like stock quotes, sports scores and weather; on the other side, their talent pool is being drained by a new industry that invites greater risk from its workers and promises greater potential rewards." 

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

Steven Levy: Apple's iBook. "Now comes the computer that will fill the final niche in Jobs's four-pronged product strategy involving mobile and desktop computers for the pro and the consumer: a $1,600 laptop that fulfills the promise of 'an iMac to go.' This was pretty much expected. The surprise is that the iBook is rigged to easily accept some optional equipment that allows a wireless high-speed Internet connection." 

John Dvorak: The iBook Disaster. "When you see some guy pulling an iBook out of his backpack a few months from now, tell him his little computer looks delectable and see what he says." 

John VanDyk, Frontier developer, squash hunter. 

Wired: Government to NSI -- Give it Up. "In an escalating war of words, the Commerce Department has warned Network Solutions to share its valuable listing of more than five million Internet addresses and their owners." 

CNNfn: Open Instant Messaging Inevitable. "We want interoperable systems and that's going to happen," said AOL spokeswoman Ann Brackbill. "The issue is how we will work together. Without the right coordination, privacy will be at risk in our view."  

The State: Computer News going Electronic. "Windows Magazine, one of the most respected computer publications in the industry, announced in its August edition it would no longer offer a print version." 

PC WEEK: The Way of Linux. "Could the fragmented history of Unix be repeating itself with Linux? There are signs: Variations in ideology as well as cash--lots of it--are pushing Linux to the brink of fragmentation as the threads of the open-source model--its only stabilizing force--are weakening." Wishful thinking? 

Eric Kidd: Zope XML-RPC Todo List

Next problem. I'm looking for an easy way to do filesystem-based redirection in Microsoft's IIS. 

Robert Palmer finds himself searching for a live XML-based stock feed, which would truly be a killer app for XML. "Hey, I'm a newbie to XML, so maybe I'm just completely off the mark and/or lost." 

I3 Solutions has an XML stock ticker, but where's the XML? 

Josh Lucas found the XML. I've tested it here, and it works. However, on the I3 Solutions page they say "we are extracting stock information from a popular stock quote portal site and converting that data into XML," so I'm not really comfortable building an application off this XML flow. 

Jonathan Eisenzopf: A Perl module that "provides a basic framework for creating and maintaining RDF Site Summary (RSS) files. This distribution also contains several examples that allow you to generate HTML from an RSS file. This might be helpful if you want to include news feeds on your Web site from sources like Slashdot and Freshmeat." 

6/20/99: A collection of scripts, in Frontier, Java, AppleScript, Perl, Cold Fusion, PHP and Tcl, that produce a ScriptingNews 2.0b1 format syndication file from a plain text format that's easy to work with. 

SJ Merc: Woodstock Webcast a Digital Debacle. "This weekend's Woodstock.com Webcast of the 30th anniversary festival -- when you could access it, when your computer wasn't crashing, when the so-called streaming video did as much and stopped with the herky-jerky Max Headroom nonsense -- was a painful display of the sophomoric misuse of technology." 

Wired: Geezer Geeks. "Older techies are finding it difficult to sustain the upward spirals of their early careers in an industry that favors younger, cheaper labor." 

Forbes: 2 Amigos, 1 Amiga. "You can do stuff with a ten-year-old Amiga running on a 14-megahertz processor that you can't do on new PCs," says Collas, who left his job as Gateway's senior vice president of new products in 1999 to head Amiga.  

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

This morning as part of a review of all the software running on the Nirvana server, I got the Netscape What's Related interface working again. A format change on the server had broken this app a few months ago. Glad to have it working again, in the interim, it seems they've made some improvements to the database.  

A bug report for Netscape. Under some circumstances some of the requests return poorly formed XML text. Still trying to figure out the circumstances. An example, this query returns correctly formatted XML when I go there in a browser, but the first child has a type attribute that is not in "double-quotes" when I do the request from a script. Puzzling!  

10 Points for Fredrik Lundh. For some reason Netscape sends well-formed XML only if the HTTP request appears to come from MSIE. I modified my script so that it does that, and it works now. Think about it. It's weird! 

NY Times: The Mole in the Machine. "The Government promises better protection of top-secret information, like the nuclear secrets leaked from Los Alamos National Laboratory. But the truth is, there is no such thing as a secure computer network." 

NY Times: Now, Endless Words from Our Sponsor. "Colorful high-tech enticements swirl with animation, pleading to remove me from the task at hand, be it word processing, surfing the Net or sending e-mail." 

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

DaveNet: Dave the Disintermediator

Microsoft Executive Q&A at last week's analyst meeting. "The thing that we need to do is take what we've done with ASPs and what we've done with Visual Interdev and our COM approach doing this object stuff, and take that to a new level." 

MacWEEK interviews Adobe CEO John Warnock. "Asked what Adobe wants to become, Warnock is clear: 'If there is anything to be authored, we wanna do it.'" Excellent! 

Jim Biancolo created The Listology because he "kept running out of good movies to rent, books to read, and music to listen to." 

Red Herring: Attack of the Viral Web notes. "But one has to wonder, with a large group of these products now available, how does one decide between them? Will there soon be Web notes tools for the Web notes tools? The next craze could be meta-pan-Web tools."  

On 7/23/99, Confinity made history at Buck's by receiving its first-round financing from Nokia Ventures using Palm Pilots and Confinity's PayPal software to do the funds transfer.  

9/7/95: You Are Media. "There must be a social pulse to Silicon Valley, but it's hard to find." Not no more! 

Sandy Reed: Why we reverted to the former InfoWorld.com Web site. "Many pointed out that the original Web site we had thought was behind the times had a lot going for it. It was snappy in performance, clean in appearance, and easy to use." Yes. 

An email to Symantec's chief counsel sent on July 17 re "antique" software. 

Fortune: Big Brother Online. "Several weeks after surfing around Pregnancy Today's site, she had a miscarriage. She and her husband were deeply upset since it wasn't the first pregnancy they'd lost." 

Wired: Never Enough at MacWorld Expo. "Macworld organizer IDG Expo Management has selected 4 January 2000, a Tuesday, as the first day of the show, a test of Y2K preparedness and patience for all involved. People setting up the San Francisco event will be faced with traveling during one of the busiest holiday weekends of the year, while flying in the face of potential logistics snafus caused by the millennium bug." 160 days to Y2K. 

MSNBC: Starbucks Tones Down Net Expansion. "Chief Executive Howard Schultz said Starbucks will grow its Internet business conservatively, not through big acquisitions, as investors had feared, and will refocus on its core coffee retailing business." 

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

Red Herring: Investors Beam Funding to Confinity. "At Silicon Valley's Bucks Restaurant, where many a venture capital deal goes down, Nokia executives will 'beam' the company's $3 million investment to Confinity CEO Peter Thiel's PalmPilot." We have pictures. 

Scott Rosenberg: Boom or Bubble? "As executives and financiers like Yahoo's Tim Koogle, America Online's Bob Pittman, Softbank's Masayoshi Son, Amazon's Jeff Bezos and John Doerr of Kleiner Perkins stepped forward to detail strategies and rate competitors, the room became suffused with a strange mixture of giddiness and paranoia, self-confidence and insecurity -- the heady psychic brew that fuels most Internet companies today." 

MSNBC: From Hack to Honcho. "Dave Kansas, founding editor of TheStreet.com, may be the patron saint of journalists. One day he’s a work-a-day reporter for The Wall Street Journal; the next he owns several million dollars of shares in a public company." 

InfoWorld: Microsoft execs hint at Web-enabling Windows. "We will have symmetry between rich clients and [the] server," Gates said. "No one has made it easy to write those applications." I'm so confused! 

More news from ZopeLand. We have the main News page working over there now too. Both of our news flows are going thru Linux. The next step is to switch www.scripting.com over to Linux. This should be happening soon! 

Microsoft's Charlie Kindel on Apple's AirPort. "I love what Apple's done with their wireless thing for the iBook. Very smart." 

Wired: Compaq Awarded Key Patent. "Compaq engineer Adrian Crisan developed the energy-harnessing design in which keys are outfitted with magnets and wire coils. When each key is pressed, the magnet-coil interaction produces a tiny current. The energy from each stroke is stored in a capacitor that feeds the built-up electric charge to the computer's battery." 

Wired: "In the tight-knit world of Net start-ups, just about everyone gets a chance to strike it rich. Unfortunately, that includes journalists." 

Jeff Walsh, formerly of InfoWorld, on the Chris Nolan controversy: "At InfoWorld, we were specifically forbidden to invest in any tech stocks. If the Merc had no such policy, then it seems to be their fault, not Nolan's. You can't decide something is a problem and then punish previous offenders. Am I missing something or didn't they have such a policy? The stories I saw so far haven't specifically said." jeff@oasismag.com. ;

News.Com: Net Messaging Standards War Brewing? "Right now, some companies--including AOL--have Internet messaging applications that only allow people with the same software to communicate with each other." 

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

DaveNet: Brick and Mortar Isn't Dead Either

Press Release: "Microsoft Corp. today announced it has joined several leading Internet messaging companies to voice continued support for developing a standard protocol for instant messaging and presence awareness." 

Jacob's Angst covers online health sites. 

Motley Fool: An Apple Today. Congrats to Steve Jobs. Apple has legs again. 

SF Chronicle: Online grocery shopping really works. "I've been shopping [online] for the past few weeks, and I'm sold. I expected prices and selection in line with those of a 7-Eleven. Instead, the Web grocers rival Safeway -- and I could shop much faster online than in line." 

WSJ: Compaq Loses Big Accounts

SJ Merc: Nolan Disciplined, Will Lose Column. "Mercury News editors said Wednesday that business writer Chris Nolan will lose her column because she accepted a local executive's offer of a profitable investment opportunity not generally available to the public." 

News.Com: Apple gains despite low-cost competition

Henry Norr on MacWorld Expo. Henry is at the Chronicle now. 

After stopping at Buck's, Newt paid a visit to Homestead.Com. 

WebSter's Dictionary provides a forms-based gateway to a spell checker for WWW documents. 

Dr HTML provides a web page spell-checker among other features. 

MacInTouch report on wireless networking. 

c't: Open-Source-Web-Publishing mit Zope. Objekthierarchie! 

Cool stuff happening. We have the My.UserLand.Com story flow hooked up to XML-RPC. Now we have two servers hooked into the flow, one running on Frontier-on-NT and the other going to Zope-on-Linux. This is key to distributing this stuff, obviously. 

NY Times: I Link Therefore I Am. 'Ms. Halpert's site, an intellectual layer cake, seems to fulfill the original promise of hypertext more completely than most others on the Web, where all roads lead to an Add to Shopping Cart button, or so it seems.' Hey Wes, she's in Austin! 

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

DaveNet: Apple's AirPort

New Channel: Perl.Com. Excellent! 

WebMonkey: Have a Ball with IP Masquerade. "If you know a little about Linux networking, you can share one IP address among many computers, and add a strong firewall in the process." 

Red Herring: Apple Unveils iMac To Go

James Spahr test-drove an iBook at the Expo. "The Airport is very fast. Big web pages loaded quickly." 

Big News! Former Speaker of the US House of Representatives Newt Gingrich was at Buck's this morning. Steve Jurvetson of Draper Fisher Jurvetson brought him in for breakfast to meet with principals of two of DFJ startups, Kana and Everdream. Gingrich is a new fellow at the Hoover Institution at Stanford, just down the street from Buck's. 

Motley Fool: Apple Opens the iBook. "Apple has some interesting software assets that the market is valuing at basically zero. Jobs wasn't shy about reminding us of that today." 

Jon Katz: Media get carried away by JFK Jr.'s death. "Grief becomes ritualized, globalized. People thousands of miles away — strangers who couldn't possibly have any first-hand knowledge of the principals in a far-off tragedy — weep as grievously as family and friends." 

MacInTouch reports on Steve Jobs's MacWorld Expo keynote. Key announcements, the expected consumer laptop, and wireless networking in partnership with Lucent. Key question, does the wireless networking only work with Macs? 

From the Apple wireless networking FAQ: "Can I use a PC notebook in an AirPort network? Yes. Because AirPort is based on the IEEE 802.11 DSSS standard, there are a number of companies with products that allow a PC to be used in an AirPort network." 

Don Clark, a DaveNet reader, asks: "Have you figured out if you can use an AirPort at the airport?" It's a good idea. With dynamic TCP address allocation, which is now a standard feature in Windows and Mac, you could walk into a special room, open your laptop, check your mail, browse the web, close the laptop and be done without plugging any wires into your machine or doing any configuration thru dialogs. I'm not a hardware guy, but from a software standpoint our laptops are ready to do this. 

Where is CreateAStandard.Com

Farallon's Skyline should be compatible with Apple's AirPort. 

Search.UserLand.Com sports a modern new look and feel. 

News.Com: Allaire Announces Web Publishing Tools. "Spectra, currently in beta, will ship in early October priced at $7,495 per server." Prices are falling in web content management. 

MacWorld: Microsoft Plans Browser Update

Wired: Red Hat Spreads Shares. "In an email to members of the open source community Tuesday, Red Hat, a distributor of the Linux operating system, offered developers first crack at its pre-IPO shares." 

InfoWorld: Waiting for Standardized XML

Thanks for all the good wishes. I'm feeling much healthier this morning! 

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

DaveNet: The Bees are Back

8/26/98: All About Bees. "A lot of people thought when I wrote this piece that the Bees were symbolic of Be Inc. To the best of my knowledge, they were not." 

Be IPO'd today. They got their money. All is well! 

An email I sent to Jean-Louis Gassee. 

News.Com: Be Goes Public, But Doubts Persist. My opinion only: There's a niche for Be. Now that they are public, they can offer cheap stock to developers who deliver apps. Linux can't do this, and Microsoft never has. 

Dan Bricklin: How I Got Permission to Post Visicalc

Jacob's Angst continues to impress. 

Press release: $299 web server, including hardware

News Byproducts celebrates the Moon Landing TV show. "Even David Copperfield's vanishing Great Wall has failed to have the same lasting impact." 

Extra! News Byproducts mentions the fact that we mentioned them. Will the recursion continue? 

We bought yet another domain name over the weekend. This one is going to be fun. A textarea and a button. A confirmation dialog. You are about to create a standard. OK or Cancel? Warning: By creating a new standard, you will always have to do it this way, and so will everyone else. ;-> 

SF Chronicle: "'There's rich, there's filthy rich -- and then there's Woodside.' Those are the first words of David A. Kaplan's new book, The Silicon Boys, the words that got the book yanked from the Web site of Buck's of Woodside within two hours of its posting." Hey I wish they had pointed to the website. Also they should check their facts. A little screwed up there at the Chron. 

Jesse Berst: "When working stiffs need a break, they call in sick for a few days. When Microserfs need a break, they call in rich. Forever." 

I've got a baaaad cold today, so don't expect much here in the next day or so. We'll see! Watch the My.UserLand.Com home page for the fastest changing and most informative news on the web. 

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

Scott Rafer wrote a public email calling for the reinstatement of Chris Nolan as a columnist at the San Jose Mercury-News. I concur, if the facts are as Mr. Rafer states, I want her back on the Merc. I like her column. I want to keep reading. 

Press release: PHP 4.0 Beta 1. "PHP 4.0 offers drastic improvements in every aspect - performance and scalability, features, platform support and extendibility." 

News.Com: Red Hat to start Linux news site. "Judging by the Linux seller's job openings and filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, the company intends to set up a news site based in San Francisco, complete with an editor-in-chief and a staff of journalists writing news, features, tutorials, and other original content. The portal effort would compete with other prominent Linux-related Web sites such as Slashdot and VA Linux Systems's Linux.com site." 

XmlTree.Com adopts the Dewey Decimal System to classify XML content on the net. This is an interesting idea. 

Lawrence Lee links to background info on the Dewey Decimal System, which was invented around the turn of the century (the last century). 

News.Com: Coalition supports Microsoft metadata proposal

Wired: Microsoft Quarterly Earnings. "Microsoft said on Monday that its fiscal fourth-quarter earnings jumped an eye-popping 60 percent -- a much bigger growth rate than in recent quarters -- on continuing strong sales of its Windows and Office software." 

"A man pulled up in front of Buck's last weekend with a load of strange creatures. At first I thought they were llamas, but closer inspection revealed them to be alpacas. Alpacas have a shy, engaging look about them and they resemble a sheep crossed with a camel. They have a soft bleat which, in chorus, is plaintive and haunting." 

Economist: Caught in the Web. "Without classified advertising, most newspapers would find it hard to survive; and classified is the bit of the bundle that is most vulnerable to the Internet. The newspapers’ problem is not just that techies like surfing the web; it is that classified works far better on the Internet than it does on paper." 

Wired: Slaves of the Net. "We're all slaves to the idea that we think we're going to get rich in this medium," Lessard said. He estimates there are hundreds of thousands of wage slaves toiling at jobs in the bottom ranks of the digital economy, but says their plight has been obscured by the media fixation on multi-millionaires in their 20s." 

Press Release: Barksdale and Silverberg Invest in Net Startup. "Tellme was founded by Mike McCue, former vice president of technology at Netscape, and Angus Davis, former product manager of Netscape's Communicator Internet software. In April, Hadi Partovi, lead program manager for Microsoft's Internet Explorer browser, made headlines when he joined the company co-founded by his former arch-enemies at Netscape. All three are under 30, and Angus is 21 years old."  

Hardware update: SuperHonker is back up now, after having its motherboard, two CPUs, and heat sensor replaced. But it's cold today, so I'm staying realistic until the next heat wave comes. And I'm using the laptop again to write and it has a Shift key that's intermittent. Dell asks if I've tried an external keyboard for the laptop. Oh geez. I wish I had never bought a Dell. 

It could be worse! At DesignFrame in NY, the ceiling fell on their web server. It still works, amazingly. 

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


Permanent link to archive for Saturday, July 17, 1999. Saturday, July 17, 1999

Washington Post: Microsoft Valued at $500 Billion

A new Backend feature, now we maintain an XML archive of all stories that appear on the My.UserLand.Com home page. There's one file for each hour, organized into a calendar folder structure. Here's the file that has this story when it first appeared. 

Sam Devore posts a script that makes it easy to get current with the Discussion Group, and I wrote a two-part tutorial to show him how, thru XML-RPC, he could improve his script. (This would work in any scripting environment that supports XML-RPC.) 

Jacob Levy looks at the web sites for candidates for the Y2K US presidential primaries. 

Time: Is Linux the New Macintosh? "In mid-August EBIZ will launch the Pia, the 'Personal Internet Appliance,' a user-friendly desktop machine that retails for $199 and runs pure, unadulterated Linux." I want one! 

Matt Sergeant: Introduction to PerlScript. "It is my hope that this document will bring more people to PerlScript, and away from having to use that dreaded VBScript." 

Derek asked me to tell you about Fray Day 3 in SF, September 18. Here's what I didn't know. He used to do the HTML for the DaveNet stories at HotWired, back in the old days. Hey what a small world! 

Red Herring: Top Venture Firms. "Ranks 1998's top VC firms by the percentage gain of the stock of its technology portfolio IPOs from the time of the IPO until year-end." Kleiner-Perkins is not on the list, but Microsoft and Intel are. 

Press Release: XMLSolutions Receives $3.6 Million in Venture Capital Financing. Verticality is the VC behind Zope, an early supporter of XML-RPC. 

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

New Channel: Jacob's Angst

News.Com: Microsoft Wins Bristol Case

Regular Expressions: Scripting Makes Enterprise Programming Easier. "In addition to Frontier, Java, Perl, PHP, Python, and Tcl coming together on XML-RPC territory, there are also hints that leading Web development tool vendors are deciding whether to support it. Growing use of XML and comfort with multilingualism can only expand interest in XML-RPC." 

XML-RPC.COM: Edd Dumbill suggests a higher-level set of standard procedure calls that allow external callers to find out what services are available. Good! 

Wired: eBay-only Browser. "The Auction Browser, launched Thursday, is designed specifically for eBay users who don’t like to let a single auction slip through their fingers."  

SJ Merc: Chris Nolan Suspended in Stock Controversy. I agree with others who have commented. Every pub has to define the integrity lines it won't cross. The Merc has high standards in the current climate. For example, Fortune employs two venture capitalists as columnists, Stewart Alsop and Bill Gurley. Their conflicts are right in the reader's face. In a recent column Alsop promoted one of his investments, one that's competitive with UserLand. Oooops. There's my conflict! 

Back issues of Chris Nolan columns. 

Lawrence Lee uses the little-known Reader Comment feature on My.UserLand.Com. It's open to all UserLand.Com members

Bill Gurley: You Say You Want a Revolution? "A programming project distributed across a large group of empowered developers moves faster than a project controlled by a single entity." 

New channel: Cameron Martin's Clippings. He kicks it off with an interesting question. 

Changes to currentStories.xml. Proof that XML is moving now, not five years from now. 

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

Dan Bricklin: "I've finally gotten permission from Lotus to put a copy of the original  

VisiCalc for the IBM PC (an internal Software Arts version with copy protection removed) on my site for download (but only if you read the  

license first)." 

DaveNet: Dan Bricklin's VisiCalc

John Foster is running VisiCalc on a Mac. 

A new My.UserLand.Com Backend feature. We're keeping a historic archive of midnight snapshots of every channel. This could be used to seed a search engine or may be of use to historians if XML-based weblogs develop into something important.  

Another new Backend feature. currentStories.xml is an XMLization of the current contents of the My.UserLand.Com home page. 

MacCentral: AppleScript Primer

Salon: "After nine years of building an operating system, Be is going public. But has the company figured out what it wants to be?" 

News.Com: Oracle 8i users shrug off Net features

CNN: The Evil and Traumatic Side of NT

SJ Merc: "Apple Computer is set to unveil its revolutionary consumer laptop next week, which will combine cutting-edge design with new engineering techniques in a package priced below the company's existing PowerBook range." 

Erin Clerico notices poor performance on UserLand.Com servers. We've noticed it too, and are working diligently to improve performance. I posted a response that explains where we're at in kernelizing Frontier 6.0 server functionality. It's interesting that we're filling in the same puzzle that Allaire is (see article below) but from opposite corners. We have content management nailed. Now we're scurrying to get our dynamic serving act together. It's all the same goal, reaching true web content Nirvana. 

InfoWorld: Allaire developing XML-based content management. To be announced on July 21. 

Whump.Com: XML for More Like This Web Log

News.Com: Apple beats estimates. 7th consecutive profitable quarter. 

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

Six new stories on Buck's

iReady: World's Smallest Web Server

Reuters: Kasparov surprised in Internet chess match. "It makes the game very exciting,'' said Kasparov, who agreed to the contest as an experiment to test and gauge the popularity of interactive chess on the Internet.  

New sample script: user.html.macros.rssChannel

Tonight: TechOakland Mixer

Joyce Park: NT vs Linux for small-business networking. 

Salon: "Wondering just how hot the MP3 market is today? Look no further than the upcoming IPO for MP3.com." 

InfoWorld.Com is back to its original form. Whew! 

I'm relearning about Dell service. They sent a tech out today to replace the motherboard and heat probe on SuperHonker. Ten minutes after the guy left it thermal failed again. Restarted. Ten minutes later it failed. Called Dell. On hold for fifteen minutes. They'll send the tech out again tomorrow with a new CPU. I asked if this is how they do diagnostics, and the rep said yes. Trial and error, in the meantime we had to rearrange our servers to work around the outage.  

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

Thea's Galleria showcases a Frontier 6 site with a custom-designed editing suite and a comprehensive workflow system. 

Brian Wilson: "I've been having a conversation with a coworker about XML and its applicability when it comes to feeding transactions to an enterprise middleware service layer for high volume systems. My associate says that since the volume of network traffic is doubled or tripled by XML because of the embedded tags that it will never perform and that anyone who tries to build a transactional system with it as the transport protocol will fail." 

TechWeb: "Janus, the code name ascribed to Microsoft's Windows 2000 Data Center Server under development, will feature advanced clustering services such as robust fail-over and load balancing features as well as support for 16 processors out of the box." 

Dr Dobbs: A brief history of Unix and the Internet

Jeff Walsh's Manila article is now on PC World! BTW, we're getting lots of email. Seems like we hit a nerve.  

AppleInsider: Apple/Palm Deal Nears

SiteExperts: Building a Story Server with XML and ASP

Random.Org: The CORBA Random Number Server

It took less than five minutes to write a random number XML-RPC handler, install it on Betty, and test it with the RPC Debugger page, take a screen shot and upload it to a server. 

Michael Lawley had similar results with CORBA and Python. 

News.Com: Internet advertising firm DoubleClick today announced it was acquiring rival online advertiser NetGravity in a stock transaction valued at about $530 million.  

BBC: Back Orifice is easy to disable say anti-virus makers. 

News.Com: Amazon Expands Again. "Despite the many new offerings, the Seattle, Washington, company is facing intense competition in all of its markets and continues to lose money." 

Wired: Ask Jeeves for Cash. They're being sued for infringing on a natural language patent. Easy defense! They don't do natural language queries (although they say they do). 

Salon: Don't you know it's different for girls? "There is a demographic that doesn't respond to this theme, and that's 40-year-old men with teenage daughters. It makes them very uncomfortable, and that was most saliently represented by a production designer who went up to my editor and said, "this movie really gets to me, it's as if these girls think that they have the right to have an orgasm." I think what is scaring them is just what is attracting teenage girls to the movie." 

The Economist: "Some men wish they were as feared or respected as they imagine their grandfathers once were. But how many would willingly trade places with women?" 

Jakob Nielsen: Affiliates Programs. "An affiliates program is a way for sites to pay for incoming traffic: when site A links to site B, there is some mechanism for site B to pay a referral fee to site A, depending on who follows the link and how valuable they are to site B. Site A is called an 'affiliate' of site B, because it is associated with site B and uses it to provide a service to its users." 

Wired: Third Voice Patches Holes


Hardware trouble. The Superhonker has "thermal detectors" that keep tripping. We're having a heat wave in the Bay Area. My high-end Dell workstation doesn't like it. All my other computers are fine! Go figure. 

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

Gabby.Net: "It is shown by Mr. Kageki, and it goes to the restaurant BUCKS in Sand Hill by car. This restaurant is a famous place for picking a meeting while being said as Power Breakfast and taking breakfast. 

There is a table which the group which is worthy of it the street of 'The person who tightens a necktie is almost the person of the venture capital' gathers in. In this California, because there are few people who tighten a necktie, a feeling that it is certainly conspicuous." 

Cnn.Com is unreachable thru DNS this afternoon. 

News.Com: XML Standard for Directory Services

What is a Weblog? "A weblog is a new kind of website that's becoming popular and is easy to create and update. A weblog links to other websites, it's a collection of links, updated frequently, often several times a day, that represent the interests of a single web person. It's a neat way to share what you learn with other people who like to use the web." 

New version of the Buck's in-store kiosk. When you visit Buck's this site is running on a flat-panel on the front counter. I've watched people watch it. Sometimes they stand there for 10 minutes while all the slides roll thru.  

Bernie DeKoven: Technography.Com

Permanent link to archive for Sunday, July 11, 1999. Sunday, July 11, 1999

Microsoft Security Advisory: Back Orifice 2000

Symantec on Back Orifice 2000. 

Jakob Nielsen: Believe the Data. "Don't make online advertising the center of the marketing plan for your own site - instead combine offline advertising with Internet-appropriate marketing methods like affiliate programs and email (to customers who ask to be notified; never send spam if you want a reputation as a reliable and high-trust site)." 

7PM: Everything's back to normal at My.UserLand.Com. The improved weblog editor is working too. Whew! 

Just for fun.. The hip turtle movie

NY Times: "While literally billions of speculative dollars are being amassed, invested and turned into overnight fortunes in this effort to develop and control the means of transmission in the coming age of instantaneous information, investment in the actual gathering of information by conventional journalistic means is in apparent decline, under the banner of cost control, in all but a handful of traditional news organizations. ... The Internet ... is a wonderful place to collect raw data. But it's not, so far, a wonderful place to find reliable and original reporting, real news, except where it has been siphoned off the old."  

Dan Gillmor on LastMinute.Com. 

Po Bronson: Instant Company. "Eleven weeks ago, despite not having a single line of code written or even a paper sketch of the Web site they wanted to build, they got $8 million in seed financing from venture capitalists." 

XML-RPC: Eric Kiebler wants to send XML structures as params to RPC calls and returned values. 

Permanent link to archive for Saturday, July 10, 1999. Saturday, July 10, 1999

DaveNet: Distributed Computing at WWW9

Nicholas Petreley: "How would you want your IT customers to spend $10,000 if you were a vendor? Would you want them to pay all of it for one Windows server, with half of the money ending up at Microsoft for the base operating system, manuals, user licenses, and the cost to you for supporting Windows? Or would you want your customers to get two Linux servers for $10,000, almost all of which you get to keep? C'mon folks, you don't need to be Alan Greenspan to figure this one out." Exactly. 

Stewart Alsop: Chuck Your PC Software. "I'm beginning to believe that maybe everything we want computers to do can be done through the Web browser. Everything." 

Erik Bosrup's overLIB is a "JavaScript library created to enhance websites with small popup information boxes to help visitors around your website." 

Jorn Barger proposes a group clinic for prospective webloggers on the Script-Meridian Beginners List. 

Deja.Com discusses Jodi Foster. Wait a minute. It gets better. Over on the Meg Ryan discussion, someone claims to be her gay lover, before she had the sex change operation!  

I am Co-Chair for the Developer's Day "Distributed Computing on the Web" track at WWW9 in Amsterdam next May. My fellow chair is Annrai O'Toole of Iona, an expert on CORBA. I guess XML-RPC is being acknowledged. What an honor! Maybe it's time to join W3C and get official? 

I'm still a newbie at this "Chairing" thing, but I understand we're in the Call for Participation stage. This means that if you have work you want to present at WWW9 that relates to Distributed Computing and the Web, now is the time to at least start thinking about making a proposal. 

Mr O'Toole is CTO at Iona. He is "the visionary behind the evolution of Orbix, IONA's flagship product and the world's leading technology for Making Software Work Together." 

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

mad.co.uk is "the online community for marketing, media, advertising and design." It's also a Frontier site, probably the deepest and most comprehensive Frontier site to-date.  

Now when a MailToTheFuture message goes out, or a password confirmation, or a Bulletin, it will flow thru the offload server. So every time you get an automatic email from UserLand, think to yourself "This code is still working." 

Due to popular demand, XML-RPC.COM now has its own Discussion Group. (Actually it always had one, but now it's visible thru the UI.) 

News.Com: Why do corporate software makers want to be portals? "As enterprise resource planning companies press ahead with plans to establish Yahoo-like sites for their markets, analysts are still scratching their heads and wondering what these business software makers are trying to accomplish." 

Wired: ICANN Points Finger at NSI. "The notion that there is some secret process that has any significance simply makes no sense." 

MacWorld UK: Quark 'Welcomes' Quark-killer. "The upgrade will also be more "Web-enabled", with the ability to export as HTML. This can be done with content only, or with layout as well. XML support will not be included, said Gill, because a very small number of QuarkXPress customers will use it." 

I spoke with Chris Oakes at Wired about the changes this week at NSI. I'm still confused about what the new rules are, but in the meantime we've turned our interface back on. 

UserLand's first business development Talent Search. A longish survey form that asks thought-provoking questions. If interesting and informed thoughts come back, we know it's worth pursuing. It's time for us to grow, we want smart and informed business people on our team. Maybe that's you? 

The technology behind Prefs.UserLand.Com is XML, of course. It's an unqualified win. Because the wizard interface is spec'd in XML it could be rendered in any interactive environment and it's easy to change and you don't have to be a rocket scientist to do it. 

Steven Ivy: XML in Director. "I think that using XML as a means of storing settings, preferences, etc. is going to be big. One of my coworkers is working on a real-time stategy game in Director, and I'm trying to get him to build in an xml-based customization engine. There's so much possibility here." 

WSJ: Web groceries firm places $1 billion order

PC WEEK: "Lutris unleashed the source code to Enhydra in January, eliminating the price tag on its Java-based app server. Now the company is hoping the product takes off, leaving Lutris in a ripe position to tap consulting and integration gigs around the product it invented." 

Wired: Clone OS to Run NT Apps. "If Microsoft's previous actions, or lack thereof, in similar situations is any indication, Trumpet is safe from a lawsuit. Microsoft has not taken action against two open source projects, Wine and ReactOS, which similarly aim to run Windows applications using the Win32 application program interface." One request, no socket limits! 

Wired: Third Voice Opens Security Holes. "Vulnerabilities were first discovered by Michigan-based programmer Jeremy Bowers, who found that the software hole allowed users to post not just text but programming code in Third Voice notes. Once executed on other Third Voice users' computers, the code, if maliciously designed, could perform a variety of compromising tasks." 

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

InfoWorld on Manila. "Although the product is not even in beta testing yet, it is currently being put through its paces at Buck's of Woodside, a restaurant that serves as a hub of the venture capital community in Silicon Valley. The Buck's Web site is updated regularly by Jamis MacNiven, owner of the Woodside, Calif., restaurant, who has no knowledge of HTML." 

BucksWoodside.Com is a Manila site. 

Jamis: "If you want a camel for a friend, bring peanut butter." 

I've gotten a bunch of emails today saying that AOLServer has been open-sourced. It's not clear from the website when this happened. 

WebReview on PHP

Red Herring: Zcentral Pencils in Investors. "Like most Web-based community sites -- but not all calendars -- the service encourages users to get their friends, family, and colleagues to sign up so that they can share email, documents, and calendars. If a user changes their information online, the service automatically updates the information in all their friends' and colleagues' address books. Zcentral has 10,000 users so far." 

UserLand.Com is approaching 10,000 members. Wow! Maybe we're worth $100 million too? Wait till you see the cool stuff we can do with membership! 

Network Solutions has turned the Internic into a hostile lawyer's playground, so we turned off WhoIs.UserLand.Com in protest and paranoia. May The Force Be With You. Live Long and Prosper. 

The whole point of implementing a Backend is to allow other people to write script applications that build off our content flow. This is a good thing, and we thank people for doing it. However, we ask that you be kind to our server and make backend requests from your scripts no more than once an hour. 

Bob Lewis: "Given a choice, I'd rather lug my laptop and rent clothes from the hotel." Hmmmm. Good idea! 

PC WEEK on Microsoft's Neptune. "Internal Microsoft documents viewed by Sm@rt Reseller and PC Week indicate that the company is also working on an adaptation kit for its consumer Windows version, code-named Neptune, that would allow third parties to develop their own non-desktop PCs." 

Joshua Allen reports that Rebol 2.1 has an XML parser. (Hey, check out Josh's member profile page. Nice picture!) 

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

DaveNet: Linux Don't Blink

Press release: UserLand and Digital Creations Form Strategic Alliance; Frontier and Zope to Interoperate Using XML-RPC Standard. 

Following up on the changes at InfoWorld.Com, I learned today that they're going back to the old format. This should happen in the next few days. 

XML-RPC appears on Freshmeat.Net. Thanks! 

Useful Inc has an XML-RPC client/server for PHP

WebMonkey: Startup tips from Vets

Paul Reiber: "They're asking you for advice on how to navigate near Linux; that's clearly an indication that they don't intend to keep a respectful distance from it. My only free advice to the MS-cruise-ship about how it should deal with the solid rock shores of the continent of Linux would be 'throttle down and learn how to aim, or get ready to abandon ship.'" Response

CNN: "A 25-year-old hacker, hoping to give Red Sox shortstop Nomar Garciaparra a bit of a nudge after it was announced he trailed Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter by some 20,000 votes, went to work on a computer program that took advantage of Major League Baseball's newest method of voting -- via the Internet."  

Jodi Mardesich on Desktop.Com. "They're building a place on the Web where you can find the equivalent of everything you use on your computer desktop."  

LinuxToday points to today's DaveNet. Thanks to Eric Kidd for keeping them in the loop, and thanks to Linux Today for implementing a back-end file that My.UserLand.Com can render as a channel

Wired: Can the Internet drive you mad? "The Net can be scary for anyone who's never used it, but for patients suffering from paranoid delusional psychosis, it can be an extreme torment." 

Janelle Brown: "After spending a few hours trolling the Web with Third Voice, scrolling through endless pages of throw-away posts, I came to the Gay.com community site expecting to witness an outpouring of homophobic epithets. Instead, I came across a thought-provoking discussion about whether there was a need for Gay Pride marches, and what the ramifications of a Hetero-Pride march might be. There were signs of intelligent life after all." 

Here's a cool fact. If you do an AltaVista search for Third Voice, our Discussion Group thread shows up in the first page. That's power! 

Motley Fool: From the Starbuck's Folder. "If you are in a Starbucks when a thunderstorm rolls up, run shrieking from the store because even though the kids behind the counter are mostly a pleasure, several of them have enough metal poking from their ears and faces to suck all the electrical charge from the air for a square mile." 

Slate: They Love Bloat. "Hey, Shuman, why is Microsoft software so bloated, so full of junk, sucking up megs of space on my hard drive, hogging memory, and taking forever to load!" 

ZDNET: Are portals losing their magic? "Internet users are getting more sophisticated, and that could mean trouble for the portals, the biggest sites on the Internet, according to new findings." 

New feature: Member profiles can now include a picture. You can upload a picture thru the Picture and Statement panel. 

This morning I'm listening to Elvis Costello's Get Happy!! "I found myself down at the dockside, thinking of the old days of Liverpool and Rotherhide. The transparent people who live on the other side,  

living a life that is almost like suicide." 

The Nirvana server, which hosts the DG and My.UserLand.Com, among other sites, hit a glitch at midnight, and was off the air for six hours. Sorry! 

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

XML.COM: iSyndicate backs ICE. "Though more than 80 firms participated in the development of the initial ICE spec, few vendors other than Vignette are advertising support for the spec in their products." 

New UserLand.Com feature, Bookmarks pane on the News page. Here's a screen shot. You can edit your bookmarks thru a new pane on prefs.userland.com. I set the Home button in my browser now to point to News.UserLand.Com. We're going to integrate this with My.UserLand.Com, so you can have channels link to the home page.  

PC WORLD reviews Lotus QuickPlace. "Given all its success with Notes, you might expect Lotus to make a compelling Web-based workgroup application. Not exactly. Judging from our experience with a prerelease version, the company's new QuickPlace workgroup program--though miles ahead of its predecessor, Lotus Instant Teamroom--still lags several steps behind the competition." 

Robert Cringely: Let It Ride. "Spend some time around some Internet zillionaires and you'll come away with the sense that they don't really believe their wealth. Maybe it isn't real. Certainly it is considered in bad taste to actually buy things with the money. Instead, the archetype is David Filo of Yahoo, who lives in the same grotty apartment and drives the same grotty car as he did as a Stanford graduate student." Maybe they love the work they do? Money just isn't that important, IMHO. 

CNN: Slow sites cost vendors billions. "Slow download times at online shopping sites could place at risk as much as $4.35 billion in U.S. e-commerce revenues each year, says a report released this week by Zona Research." 

Michael Alderete thinks I should run Linux Don't Blink thru DaveNet. I'm thinking about it now. (I'd have to clean it up a little.) 

InfoWorld: Broadband Hits Home

ICANNWatch's mission is "to serve as a central point of reference about what ICANN is and is not doing, to make this site a kind of hill overlooking the often chaotic information landscape from which anyone seeking a better understanding of these developments can survey the everchanging terrain." 

Hannes Wallnöfer announces a new version of XML-RPC for Java. 

New channel: Useful Things

This afternoon on the Script Meridian Community list I responded to speculation on what Manila is. "Manila is not a workstation product, it runs on the server. It is designed to be very easy, content management for the rest of us, no scripting. But you get the major benefits of Frontier, separation of form from content, separate spaces for stories and graphics. Templates, and glossary (in Manila glossary entries are called shortcuts). All configuration and writing is done thru the browser. It's not ready for prime-time yet, since simplicity is the central goal, it can't be released in rough form. Also, it's a development platform, you can customize it ad infinitum." 

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

PC Mag on XML-RPC: "The Web, which was built on HTML, is being rebuilt on XML; and a new XML protocol called XML-RPC.. designed to let developers write automated routines making use of XML--is gaining momentum as well." 

1/29/99: "I was surprised, my impression was that Microsoft moves in lockstep, that they execute quickly, but I found that this is not true." 

Fortune: New Search Tools. "The Web has lacked the reference librarian. Yes, there's Yahoo. The indexing that Yahoo's Web researchers do often gets me further than the global searches performed by engines like Alta Vista, but it's not good enough. And as the Web has grown the problem has become worse." 

Stephan Somogyi: Measuring open source. "The company should open up the interim source code now, not in three or four months. Apple has little to lose, and -- as the fast bug fixers showed the various server benchmarkers -- much to gain from such a move." 

InfoWorld.Com's archives work again, here's a pointer to a story about Microsoft and XML-RPC from July 1998, but as Lawrence Lee points out, the story is horribly formatted. "It's impossible to imagine anyone that would be able to get past a few sentences without getting an immense knot in their brain." Thanks to Lawrence for staying on top of this. Lots of good stuff in InfoWorld's archives. 

Let's say your sweetie cooks a really great meal for you... 

Part 2 of the eating tutorial. 

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

This morning we topped-off the Manila-ization of the main UserLand discussion group. If you want to try out the new way, use News.UserLand.Com as your port of entry to DiscussionLand. The good news is that if you prefer the old way of DGing, you can keep coming in thru discuss.userland.com, it still works. 

Lots of new stories on the Buck's home page

Today's best link (so far) came from Misnomer, pointing to Scott Rosenberg's Salon piece from 1997 about Microsoft and their claim that removing MSIE from Windows would cause the system to crash. Rosenberg says: "Removing IE actually prevented crashes."  

Salon: Penguin Wiggles its Flippers. "We've had friends who have started companies, the most famous being Excite -- seven friends started this company, and within a year all of them combined owned less than seven percent, and most of the decision makers were these new implants from IBM and Sun. I just think that's incredibly boring." 

6/8/99: "Like a scene from Microserfs, there were a couple of reps from Penguin Computing outside the event being young and enthusiastic and handing out leaflets. One was dressed in a penguin costume!" 

Yesterday: "If you have a winner, the ones you leave behind will always make barking noises. The trick is to know when you have the winner, and stick with it and ignore the barking." 

NY Times: AOL Everywhere. "An astounding 39 percent of the time Americans spend online is spent using services the company controls, 10 times the share of its nearest competitor, Microsoft." 

Mozilla.Org: "There are many people who care about standards and would like to help our push at Mozilla.Org for compliance, but who aren't C++ engineers. Well, here's their chance--the Gecko BugAThon." 

Red Herring: AOL and Prodigy woo users with hardware deals. "The key right now is to get as many people as possible onto your site and worry about the business model later." 

Dan Gillmor: "If you're wondering why the biggest companies in the technology universe are fervently wooing consumers to their instant-messaging services, consider the stakes. This is the beginning of a new kind of telephone system, but also much more." 

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

New channel: Russian Nuclear News

InfoWorld: Bob Metcalfe adds nothing factual to the Linux vs NT debate. Bob, what if powerful turnkey servers went for less than $1000? What kind of new networking markets might develop? Will Linux force Microsoft to match its price with an easy NT-based web server? I bet it does. Servers everywhere. 

MacWEEK: Getting on Apple's Ship List. "Reports that Apple has been showing a cascading directory-tree folder interface give me a serious case of the shakes." 

It'll be interesting to watch the My.UserLand.Com story list over the holiday weekend in the US. It's usually a quiet period on the big corporate sites. Does the weblog world take a holiday too? 

The Linux version of the My.UserLand.Com story list. (The URL is temporary.) It's a clone, the only way you can tell it's on Linux is the cute little penguin on the page. We now have the content flowing from the batchJobServer app running in Frontier on Mac OS, to the main My.UserLand.Com server running on NT, and flowing thru Zope and the Postgresql database on Linux. This reflects our philosophy of being an Internet developer, not specifically a Mac or Windows or Linux developer. They're all excellent operating systems, and they all have an important role to play in the evolution of the Internet. 

TechWeb: Citrix CEO on Thin Clients. "Ed Iacobucci, the founder and chairman of Citrix Systems, is starting to see his vision of thin client-server computing take root in the technology landscape -- 10 years after he left IBM to start the Fort Lauderdale, Fla.-based software company." 

NY Times: Hackers redirect Network Solutions site

Wired: Starbuck's stirs literary brouhaha. "The idea that there are any publications that are somehow completely pure and devoid of any contentiousness is naive."  

MSNBC: How Microsoft Plans to Remake Windows

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

BBC: Net Users Take Over News. "If Slashdot were a mammal, most of our news sites would be the dinosaurs. Many journalists don't understand this and don't think it's journalism."  

Hey I got top billing on today's NTK

Don't be fooled by Microsoft's report on PC WEEK's benchmark comparing Linux and Windows NT. The tests measured performance of super-high traffic static sites. Neither Microsoft or PC WEEK considered price-performance, nor did the tests measure performance of dynamic database-stored sites.  

David Rothgery points to a PC Magazine comparison of dynamic web servers on Linux and NT. 

Eric Kidd asks a strange but interesting question. "Is anybody working on XML-RPC for Emacs?" Indeed! 

CNN: Mario Puzo dead at 78. "The Godfather sold more than 21 million copies worldwide. With the help of director Francis Ford Coppola, Puzo adapted the series to the big screen. Two of the movies earned Puzo and Coppola Best Screenplay Oscars, and Marlon Brando won a Best Actor award." 

6/7/96: "I wish DaveNet were a TV show so I could show you a clip from one of my favorite movies, The Godfather, starring Marlon Brando and eighteen other great actors doing their best work." 

Techweb: Lotus Chooses Linux, Dumps Netware. "It's a sad thing," said Mike Carey, president of Information Technology Consulting Group, a midsize reseller in Hicksville, N.Y. "People don't realize there's a lot of NetWare out there. My NetWare business is as strong as it's ever been."  

PC WEEK: IBM Revises Open Source Agreement. "We're an 800-pound gorilla, but we have impeccable manners."  

SiteExperts.Com: Building Documents with XML, XSL, CSS

Guido van Rossum, the creator of Python, has feedback on My.UserLand.Com. All of Guido's comments are right-on. I'm going to use his comments as a template for the next rev of the user interface. It's time to do a cleanup. Lots of loose-ends.  

Former 49ers coach Bill Walsh had breakfast at Buck's with Rams coach Mike White. Coach Walsh is one of my heroes. He knows how to compete. He would always say how great his competitor is. "Oh they're very strong." What respect! It was also great tactics. His team wouldn't be over-confident, but maybe the other guys would. And if he won, well he just beat a great team. Now, if you trash the other guy and win, well, you just beat a loser. I've always felt that Walsh would make a great software company board member. He has a great appreciation for competition. A total class act. I hope to meet him some day, shake his hand, and thank him for being such a great teacher. 

News.Com: Tripod Founder Promotes Digital Village. My family vacationed in the Berkshires when I was a kid. Fond memories! 

Can we agree on a single content syndication format? I've spoken several times this week with people from Netscape on the next step with RSS and scriptingNews formats. I proposed that we agree on a single format, and a loose way of moving forward in the future.  

News.Com: Are Portals Slaves to Windows

From Steven Ivy's weblog: 'I didn't know that a developer can create a Sherlock plugin which will allow Sherlock to interpret and display search results which are returned in XML.' 

UsefulInc has an XSL style sheet for scriptingNews format. 

Arnold Lesikar has a cool new Frontier site! 

MobileStart: Palm CEO Resigns Unexpectedly. (MobileStart is a My.UserLand.Com channel.) 

MacWEEK: Apple Fights iMac Knock-Off. "Apple announced that it has filed a complaint against Future Power and its backer, South Korean PC manufacturer Daewoo, for illegally copying the iMac's industrial design with its forthcoming all-in-one E-Power system." 

News.Com: Warner Bros Targets Yahoo's Backlash.  

Mozilla.Org: "We at mozilla.org want to clear up any misconceptions resulting from the comments reported Wednesday by an executive at Sun. Our contributors and staff are responsible for the management of all browser development. As a major mozilla.org contributor, AOL completely supports our efforts. Commercial open source software development is in its early stages, and Wednesday's comments demonstrate that it is still regarded with skepticism by some in the industry. We would like to stress that Sun was not speaking for mozilla.org or for AOL." Thanks for clearing that up. Baratz made some very puzzling statements. 

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

Happy July! It's the month of BBQs and beer. It's hot hot hot. Outdoor weather. Wear your sunscreen. 

David Gewirtz: Windows CE Power's Channels. "Each month, we need to produce about 27 articles of 1,000 to 2,000 words each, 12 tip mailings, and about 240 news stories. We need to generate hundreds of pages of HTML and about 230,000 lines of HTML code." 

There's an article about David in US1 Magazine. It sounds like he's going into competition with Vignette! Right on. 

Red Herring: Slashdot Founder Finds Fulfillment

That reminds me, a little bird told me that Red Herring has an RSS file. For five points, anyone know where it is?? 

Denver Post: Town Celebrates Headless Critter

Is the person who does a weblog a weblogeer? A weblogster? 

MacWEEK: Linux and OS Politics. "My advice: Get out there and support Linux. As critical as I may sound of the OS, it's drawn an impressive following that is committed to evolving the OS continually. The question we have to ask ourselves as Mac OS users: Can Apple keep up?" 

Oooops! InfoWorld.Com has a problem.  

More on the flipside of the Cluetrain. 

MacWEEK reports on Web99. 


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