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Permanent link to archive for Thursday, June 21, 2001. Thursday, June 21, 2001

NY Times: "Carroll O'Connor, an actor trained in Shakespearean drama who achieved his greatest triumph playing Archie Bunker, television's malapropian, working-class bigot from Queens, died on Thursday at a hospital in Culver City, Calif. He was 76 and lived in Malibu, Calif."

Theme song: "Girls were girls and men were men."

"It was easy for us to be 'nice' kids," [O'Connor] wrote. "We were not preyed upon by dope pushers, our pop music did not issue thunderous invitations to a semisensate flight from normality. Our music used to be played by skilled orchestras; intelligible singers rendered tunes about dancing in the dark while orchids bloomed in the moonlight and nightingales sang in Berkeley Square and stars fell on Alabama silly sentiments, but carried along by intelligent melodic phraseology, and if the words were doggerel they were often wonderfully compelling. I know my comparison is cranky, but there it is."

John Lee Hooker: "No matter what anybody says, it all comes down to the same thing. A man and a woman, a broken heart and a broken home."

A Microsoft opinion on Smart Tags. "To suggest that the author knows best how to write effectively to each individual reader is silly, yet that's what I understand of your position."

I wonder how the US government is going to feel about Microsoft making their writing more effective for the individual reader?

Imagine if Big Brother could have made Orwell's 1984 more effective for each individual reader.

GoogleButtons look like they were designed by someone who cares about users and writers.

Eric Norlin: "Who the hell said I was trying to write effectively for each individual reader?"

Nick Sweeney: "Did Lincoln need Smart Tags in Gettysburg, to speak effectively to each individual reader? Will Microsoft be Smart Tagging the Bible? In the beginning was the word, and the word was with God, and the word was God." Excellent!

James Spahr: "Go read McLuhan and then tell me with at straight face that Smart Tags don't alter an author's message."

Paul Thurrott: "This sentence includes the word nice. As I typed the sentence, I wondered why a little Smart Tag squiggle appeared under the word. Nice, France, was the only connection I could think of, and sure enough, that's what the tag referred to. The Expedia Smart Tag kicked in, asking me whether I wanted to book a flight to France."

Post comments and questions re Smart Tags on the new mail list Rahul Dave started yesterday.

I felt strongly that Seybold, a high-integrity organization that works at the intersection of publishing and technology, should have something to say about Smart Tags. I had dinner last night with Craig Cline, Thad McIlroy and Liz Grady from Seybold to talk about Smart Tags. This is one of my responsibilities, as I see it, as a Seybold Fellow, to raise issues that Seybold can then respond to. Craig, who is the top editorial guy at Seybold, says he will write a bulletin about Smart Tags tomorrow, and of course we'll carry it on Scripting News.

Nicholas Petreley: "You can't compete with Microsoft without first making a deal with Microsoft over something as basic as where your customer's data is stored and how one must access it. If that thought doesn't bother you, given Microsoft's abuse of its authority in the past, then by all means, embrace what you must view as the beneficent dictator of the future of network computing."

News.Com: "A new feature introduced in the latest test version of Microsoft's Windows XP operating system requires people to establish an account with the software maker's Passport authentication service to use new instant messaging and telephony features." Heads-up, I think it's going to be worse than that.

Gary Robinson: "It is dangerous for one company to have control over the world's access to the Internet." Amen.

Mark Hurst: "Microsoft's upcoming release of Windows XP contains a feature that attempts to suck all meaningful experience out of every page on the Web."

Can you imagine a telephone company that inserted helpful tips into the middle of a phone conversation?

Heise: Microsoft verzichtet außerhalb der USA auf Smart Tags. According to Babelfish, they're saying that Smart Tags is only for the US version of MSIE, for now.

News.Com: Ballmer meets with Cheney. "Microsoft chief executive Steve Ballmer on Tuesday paid a 'courtesy call' to Vice President Dick Cheney to discuss a range of issues but did not bring up the imminent U.S. Court of Appeals ruling on the government's landmark antitrust case against the software maker."

ZDNet: "The Web Credibility Project, launched earlier this month, will focus on how health, travel, advocacy, news and shopping sites disclose business relationships with the companies and products they cover or sell, especially when these relationships pose a potential conflict of interest."

ESPN provides an excellent example of philosophy in baseball. "On the advice of a Tibetan Buddhist holy man, Giorgio, 37, left a Red Sox cap on Mount Everest's summit last month, then burned a New York Yankees cap, all in hopes of breaking the curse, said to have been set when the Red Sox sold Babe Ruth to the New York Yankees."


Last update: Thursday, June 21, 2001 at 9:52 PM Eastern.

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