Scripting News via email should be working again, at least the sending part. Sorry for the outage. I've been doing a complete rewrite my content system, this is one of the last parts to come back online. If you're getting 80,000 copies of this message, remember, Murphy runs this show, not me.
Rockbox is "more intuitive" firmware for Archos boxes, which are famous for their awful user interface, or so I'm hearing. How bad could it be, he wonders. Out loud. Foolishly.
Thanks to Vitamin C, echinacea and lots of rest, my first cold of the winter appears to be over. I exercised today. Sinuses are clear. Generally feel pretty good. What a change from the old days when I was a smoker, when a cold meant a multi-week recovery. And, the premonition that winter had begun was false, today was a New Orleans winter day more than a Boston one. To celebrate, here's the season's first Christmas Tree. Ho ho ho.
Philip Miseldine explores Googlism.
Don Park wrote a great tutorial on BitTorrent. "A shocking ISP bill won't wipe the slashdotted smile off your face at the end of the month."
At the meeting with Dave Sifry and Kevin Marks last week, we had a long discussion about doing development in the open. I said that it was really important that we do so. I told Kevin, on the drive down to San Jose, that I feel we're at a turning point in the weblog world, either we're going to be like every other hierarchy that's ever been, with secret deals, lots of impediments to progress, eventual stagnation; or we're going to overcome that. I've been through this before, many times. The early days of the Apple II market held great promise, then the IBM PC, then the Mac, then the Web. And so it goes. Nothing ever seems to change. Either you're in or out, and if you're out, sometimes you can't even tell until it's too late. I don't want to be part of that. So if Sifry has competitors, I want them to know how to be compatible with me. Same if I have competitors. So what if it helps the other guy. There are worse things. Anyway, with that preamble, Dave and Kevin, check out the category element on this feed. It tells you all you need to know to understand the context. Here's a screen shot in case that link goes 404 (very likely).
There may be another law here. It goes something like this. When you meet in private with someone else to talk about something other people are interested in, we all lose. So, for example, if Pete should go to a private meeting where something relevant to Paul is discussed, and Paul doesn't know about it, Paul's knowledge can't be applied to the process. He may be off doing something that assumes it's not being done, and he may be wasting huge amounts of time, or may end up competing in an area he'd prefer to partner in. Now there's nothing that says you can't tell me something in confidence, I have to be able to accept that, but it's at the point of intersection, where we make Thing A work with Thing B, that open-ness is so important. That way a guy out in left field can break through. You don't have to know The Right People in order to be empowered to do something important. And left field is where The Good Stuff always comes from.
I'm gradually restarting my Channel Z development work. It's slow after a one week break. Today's project is to do category-level RSS feeds. For example, here's the feed for Mottos. Basically you throw a dot-xml at the end of the URL to get the RSS rendering. Don't subscribe yet, still diggin, breakage ahead, praise Murphy, IANAL, my mother loves me, etc.
I downloaded and installed BitTorrent, but I'm mystified. Where is it? How do I invoke it? I want to get a copy of a Beatles song (that I've already purchased on vinyl and CD, btw). How would I go about doing that? And if all else should fail, how the heck do I uninstall the thing?
Tim Bray did an investigation of BitTorrent.
I started a BitTorrent category.
According to Jason Shellen at Google, their new API will ship in about two weeks. "There is a light at the end of the tunnel."
Redhead: "Good grief, tomorrow is December."
Greg Ritter sends a pointer to the Archos Jukebox FM Recorder MP3 player. 20GB hard drive, records off the radio, speech. About $250. Looks like a great deal, better than the 256MB Creative Rhomba I wrote up yesterday.
BBC: "A Chinese student arrested for criticising the Communist Party on the internet has been released from prison."
Xiao Qiang told us about this weblog at the dinner in Berkeley on Tuesday. 10 million daily visitors.
Steve Gillmor: "A game at which Microsoft excels -- the waiting game. Clone, wait, collaborate, extend, wait, repeat, rinse, dry. But now comes RSS -- and the rules may have changed. First, the enemy is now scattered, behind rocks, in startups, open source, virtual coalitions that pop up on IM and video conferencing, and a myriad loosely coupled evolutionary steps forward." Sounds like Crichton's emergent nano-threat.
Chris Phoenix: "Imagine a horror story about baseball, in which the batter keeps hitting the ball hard enough to kill the fans. The story might be entertaining, but it's obviously unrealistic."
Don Park: "If your head gets too big, go stand in line at the nearest DMV for an hour."
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