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Permanent link to archive for Thursday, October 25, 2001. Thursday, October 25, 2001

Thanks to Bruce Campbell for sending this picture which is sure to make the rounds. Suggestion to Microsoft PR. Next time Billg goes on TV, make sure they take the "War On Terror" banner off the screen. 

MSN backpedals. "The last thing we're going to do is turn people away." Of course. 

John Robb: " XP is much faster than ME or 98." 

Walt Mossberg: "Personal computers are just too hard to use, and it isn't your fault." 

Walt's got a problem that's for sure. He only talks about products from big companies. He gets schlock. Support your friendly independent developer. You're more likely to get what you want. 

Flangy: "VBScript is, to put it mildy, not my favorite language." 

Brett Glass: "Opera rendered the site perfectly -- and more quickly than MSIE." 

Thanks to Wes Felter for sending a pointer to this page on MSDN that has a SOAP request for Hailstorm. 

Lots of pushback coming from people who think Microsoft is anti-interop. Now, wearing my SOAP-developer hat, I have to push back to them. It's my job to make sure that SOAP is a standard for independent developers. If one of those developers is poisoning the soup, well, it's my job to highlight that. Microsoft has said repeatedly on and off the record that their purpose in using SOAP is to attain interop. If that's provably false, that's news. Now if I take off my SOAP hat, I have to say if MS achieves interop in SOAP, it would be a milestone, and unusual behavior for them, and newsworthy. 

Paul Simon: "Negotiations and love songs are often mistaken for one and the same." 

AP: "Webloggers aren't constrained by objectivity or fact-checking." Hmm. 

News.Com: MSN shuts out non-Microsoft browsers. Ooops. 

JD Lasica is looking for excellent weblog writing. 

An O'Reilly article about .NET services from Microsoft. Is anyone checking out Microsoft's stuff to see if it interops with Frontier and Radio? This is important. At the same time we're asking Microsoft to support the Manila SOAP interface in their development work. It works better if independent developers work at the intersection between different environments. 

I just got an email from a friend at Microsoft who says we can use COM to communicate with .NET. He surely means well, but there's still a major disconnect. We are not interested in connecting with Microsoft through COM. That's legacy. We invested three years in SOAP. Manila has a full SOAP interface. That's the protocol we want to use to connect.  

BTW, Wired is almost as frustrating. It's over a week since they honored me with their top award, and still there is no official mention of it on Wired's website. How long does it take to put up a page that says "Wired Announces the Winners," and explain who they are, and what the process was, and why Wired admires them so. Then I could send a pointer to people at Microsoft saying "Look, they checked it out, and we are actually doing cool shit with SOAP. You should support it and let people know it's there."  

Dr Strangelove asked Soviet Ambassador De Sadesky: "But the doomsday machine only does its job if people know about it. So why didn't you announce it?" 

I was thinking Microsoft could have run a press release when Wired announced the award. "Look, SOAP was honored." I could say wonderful things about how innovative Microsoft's work was, and explain the promise for independent developers. I actually think, had this not happened during the XP rollout, that the press release would have happened. The PR people at MS are paying attention, if not the technologists. 

Fast Company: Microcontent and Microcommunity

Derek Powazek: User to User Support

Blocking spam-pingers: "One of the people developing an app that builds on changes.xml pointed out a site that was showing up every hour even though the content on the site had not changed in any meaningful way." 

BigBlogTool supports Weblogs.Com. Thanks! 

WebReference published a list of sites using HierMenus. 

Thanks to Adam for this important news. He says: "Clearly this calls for a nationwide investigation!" 

Steve Burgess: "At this dark moment when we stand shoulder to shoulder with all the residents of Gotham, can we pause a moment to curse the Bronx Bombers and all their works? Hell yes. I hate those Bronx bastards." Amen. 

10/23/00: "Clemens, who cleanly fielded the bat head, turned toward Piazza, whipped his right arm back and threw the wood toward his newfound nemesis." 

JD Lasica: "The Internet Archive contains more than 10 billion Web pages dating back to 1996. Three years ago they'd already scooped up 12 terabytes of content, or 12 trillion bytes." 

Heard on NPR this morning -- there are more Muslims in the US than Presbyterians or Methodists. 

Congrats to Microsoft on shipping Windows XP. 

But: "A new technology meant to prevent illegal copying of Microsoft's latest operating system is stopping many people from buying it, according to an informal survey of CNET readers." 

Patent-busting for fun and profit 

Greg Brown, a software designer at the now-defunct Netobjects, helped piece together the patent mess between Adobe and Macromedia.

Apparently Macromedia bought 11 patents from Netobjects earlier this month, including the patent they're hammering Adobe with. And, although Brown was unaware that Clay Basket was developed in 1995, he confirms that my work in this area predates theirs by about a year.

I wasn't hiding it. I wrote a DaveNet in 7/95 about Clay and there was a public mail list and lots of users. I eventually came to believe that the Web is a groupware environment, and that the central app couldn't be a wizzy productivity tool. Netobjects probably eventually realized that too, but they had already promised their users something they couldn't deliver. Outliners play an important role, but the HTML web is not an outline.

BTW, I visited the production area of Smolan's 24 Hours project in 1996, and saw the Netobjects tools in use, and thought "Oh yeah I did that last year, it doesn't work."

BTW, I started working on outliners in the mid-70s. I have a feeling there were a lot of patents filed in the 90s on art that was published in the 70s and 80s.

The Wayback Machine could be useful for patent-busting. But the server is having problems, and it would be great if Google could index it. (Maybe they already are.)


Last update: Thursday, October 25, 2001 at 6:45 PM Eastern.

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