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Permanent link to archive for Saturday, December 29, 2001. Saturday, December 29, 2001

Good morning and thanks for all the fish

Susan Kitchens takes us behind the scenes at the preparations for the Rose Bowl Parade. Susan is a nominee for Blogger of the Year, and this is why. The joy of sharing experiences, they don't have to be earth shaking to be interesting and colorful. The news didn't always used to be bad, and in the future, it won't be either. 

Doc Searls, another top blogger, says that Real changes its user interface as often as Rob Glaser changes his underwear. Now I'm not sure I want to go there. Checking. I don't. He also says "Earth to Real: I am not a pin in your bowling alley." Interesting. I never thought of Doc as a pin in a bowling alley. Now you know why he gets the big bux. 

Meanwhile the virtual thought police buzzards of the blogging world are circling John Robb, trying to push him into the LCD abyss, taking the edge off his writing, and the bluster out of his prognostications. I hope it never happens. That's what I like about Jrobb. He's blissfully unaware of how politically incorrect he is. And may he always stay that way. Because the emotional age of the norm in the blogging world is way down in the single digits. I think the wienerboys have given up on me by now, let's hope they don't get John. 

Postscript on the busted pipe. I called the gardener and he installed a new valve. The pipe was good. We did a little digging together, but I let him do the hard work. I called him instead of a plumber because I trust him, and because it was in his part of my domain. Yes I'm sure it has something to do with the Internet. I wonder if the Shea scoreboard consumes any water? 

A puzzle. When you go to the airport these days there are people all over the place waiting for flights because they tell you to come three hours early, and you know you gotta do it because the lines are so long. Now I understand why the line for security is so long, they're doing more work, it takes more time. Take your laptop out. Take your shoes off. It's a much bigger deal. More people are looking at each traveler. But tell me this, why are the lines at the ticket counters so much longer than they used to be? 

Another end of the year exercise. By now maybe you have an idea of what kind of 90s you had, personally. Was it good, bad, don't know yet? I'm going to find a way to ask this question today, Murphy-willing. How many times did you fall in love in the 90s? Did you make megabucks and then lose them? What are your regrets? You're ten years older, what did you learn? And what do you look forward to in the 2000s? 

JD Lasica: The FBI pays my mom a visit

Andre Durand: Chocolate is Out - Make-Up is In

Tommy Agee died this year, and then this report in the NY Times says the Mets might be headed for real trouble. A new stadium, with a retractable roof? Let's hope NY's new mayor sees the folly in this. Giuliani is a Yankees fan. Don't fall for his tricks. Of course the Yankees need a new stadium. Almost anything could help them. Why not try it. But the Mets, no way, leave Shea right where it is, funky scoreboard and all its deep philosophy.  

OTOH if they end up tearing down Shea, I wonder if I could buy the old scoreboard? Wow that would be cool. After the Gulf War I wanted to buy an old Scud missile for my front lawn (that was before I had a weblog or you would have heard about it). Unfortunately I never got the missile. But just imagine the power of having the Mets scoreboard on my front lawn. I bet you could see it from outer space. 

On the other hand, maybe they should build a new Shea, and if they did that, I'd abandon my quest for the old scoreboard if they move Shea from Flushing to Ground Zero. That would send a message to the terrorists. When you blow up a building that has very little philosophy (admit it, the WTC was sterile and uninteresting) we'll just replace it with the deepest philosophical icon we have. Then next time they blow up something we could move Shea Stadium there. What do you think? 


Mark Pilgrim theorizes that if we were writing Frontier today we'd do it as an Apache module. Now, we like Apache, we use it here, but we've been there and ran out of growing room. Here's the story.

We started on the Web in 1995 as an app running behind Webstar, when Frontier was seven years old. Webstar was not open source, but still played the role Mark talks about. Platforms are platforms, whether it's open source or not matters not one bit. The API Webstar defined was as open as Apache's and was emulated by all other Web servers on the Mac platform. (Another non-open source platform, probably as big as Apache, if not bigger in terms of software and developer hours invested.)

Eventually we outgrew the limited API of Webstar (or more realistically the inertia that comes from a broadly supported standard). Frontier is so much more than Apache ever will be, getting content and control to flow over HTTP is a small (but significant) part of what Frontier does, and it does it much more completely than Apache. Our stack goes all the way up to Manila. I still can't believe that Apache left all that territory open. My theory about this is that they were fat and happy and blissfully unaware of what the competition was up to.

If the world is right, having a browser-based way to edit content will be as basic a feature for a Web server as Undo became for word processors. Think about it. Go dig into the Qube and see where Apache stopped evolving and think about the role its opensourceness played in its complacence.


Last update: Sunday, December 30, 2001 at 5:56 AM Eastern.

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