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Permanent link to archive for Thursday, December 06, 2001. Thursday, December 06, 2001

Jon Udell: The Event-Driven Internet

PerryPack is working on XML-RPC for .NET. 

Bug reports should have three parts. 1. Here's what I did. 2. This is what I expected to happen. 3. This is what actually happened. For extra credit, if it's a public Web app, provide a URL. It also couldn't hurt to say what version of the software you're using, what OS, and other things that might make your installation different from others. 

Dan Mitchell asks a question that came up on yesterday's radio show. Microsoft's software can cost more than the computers that it runs on. Customers don't know what to make of this. 

I'm glad that Paul Andrews is blogging again.  

Joshua Allen: "Peter Blake, two time Americas Cup winner, was blogging in the Amazon when he was killed by pirates today." 

Being in "shipping mode" since October, I'm starting to think about taking a trip to let my team take full responsibility for Radio 7.1. My friend Lance Knobel calls this "Management by being away." It's getting to be time. Anyway of course I was thinking of hopping over the pond to visit Europe, my favorite tourist destination, but reading Adam Curry's blog reminds me that the beginning of this year may not be the best time to go to Europe. Can you imagine what it will be like in Italy? 

Embracing Moore's Law 

Every time there's a speed bump, it takes a while to factor it into your thinking. Recently I changed the way I use my personal Web server, and now instead of having 20 or so files in the www folder, I now have 594 files. No surprise, I guess, the upstreamer (a thread that moves new or changed files "up" to the community server for public access) started running much more slowly. So I started thinking of ways to get fewer files in the folder.

Just for the hell of it I wrote a bare-bones scanner to see how many cycles the scanner itself was taking. Here's the punchline. Sit down before reading this. To count the files took about 4/60ths of a second. Then, when I added a real burden to the scanner, checking the mod date of each file against a value in the object database (this emulates the real upstream scanner) it went up to 11/60ths of a second. That's is so much faster than I thought it would be. I was blown away.

So the slowness is somewhere else. (That's good news.) But my memory of performance of older machines said that scanning a deeply nested folder structure is expensive. In 2001, on consumer hardware, emphatically, it is not.

BTW, when I wrote this, initially, I mistakenly said I was embracing Murphy's Law, not Moore's. A little programmer humor.

Why I like the West Wing 

Sylvia writes to ask why I like The West Wing.

Scene from last night's show. Everyone's in the White House movie theater. One of the aids says "Something's not right, the man's not talking, he always talks during the movie."

Later, when everything's right, the president sits down next to his daughter and starts teasing her. "Shhh," she says, "there's a movie on." To which he says "I don't think anyone's going to tell me to shut up."

I find this satisfying. As an alpha male, in a society that thinks we're the problem, it's nice to see another alpha male gain total acceptance in his alpha-ness.

Pearl Harbor, Cuban Missle Crisis, or..? 

Listening to the report on Ashcroft's testimony earlier today, on NPR. "It's wartime," they say over and over. No one mentions that there has been no declaration of war. What is going on with Congress.

Immediately after Sept 11, people compared it to Pearl Harbor. I've heard it compared, later, to the Cuban Missle Crisis. Now let's see how it measures up against the burning of the Reichstag.

Soren Swigart: "Hitler was asked by a corespondent of the Daily Express whether the suspension of liberties was permanent. He answered in the negative saying that full rights would be restored as soon as the Communist danger was over."


Last update: Thursday, December 06, 2001 at 6:11 PM Eastern.

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