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Well, the train apparently hasn't stopped yet...

For some reason, the weblog forest has had stories about masturbation pinned to many of it's trees this past months.

Here's another, thanks, as so many of them are, to Dan

Saturday, February 26, 2000 @ 04:17 p.m. - Comment


Yummy, yummy, yummy...

I want her on my tummy...

Saturday, February 26, 2000 @ 03:53 p.m. - Comment


<sigh>

The Murrican medical establishment is beginning to get on my nerves.

"But, the Emperor isn't wearing any clothes, Mommy."

Thursday, February 24, 2000 @ 01:01 p.m. - Comment


Jabber

Everyone keeps pointing to the open-source Jabber meessaging client -- a sort of coop-itor to ICQ and AIM (it works with them, but competes against the client).

Why am I the only one who thinks that the idea that Jabber keeps your contact list on someone else's server is right out?

Thursday, February 24, 2000 @ 11:59 a.m. - Comment


Oracle

You know, the database people? They've decided to rip off a piece of the mobile market.

Apparently, they've forgotten that WAP sucks.

Remember, big companies are not on your side, unless you're a shareholder. Think for yourself.

Thursday, February 24, 2000 @ 11:47 a.m. - Comment


The Register Takes on the MPAA

You know. The Motion Picture Association of America?

The people who decide what movies you should be able to see?

Jack Valenti sucks.

I wouldn't be a tad surprised to find out I meant that literally...

Thursday, February 24, 2000 @ 11:43 a.m. - Comment


Geek Test

Got an IBM System/390 mainframe laying around you aren't doing anything with?

Wanna run Linux on it?

Wednesday, February 23, 2000 @ 04:51 p.m. - Comment


You have two choices:

Either take your government back from the idiots who are running it, or do not take pictures of your children.

This prosecutor has his own issues to get over.

[ In an amusing side note, note the date on the page. This is a RealAudio v1/2 clip; your player will probably want to download an update plugin. ]

Tuesday, February 22, 2000 @ 08:08 p.m. - Comment


It Worked!

In a story that will really only be funny to you if you've been paying attention, have a program, and know the players, OneSwellFoop covers the shutdown of The Bradlands by ... oh, some sort of federal agents.

Graham had been a key player in the recent weblog merger and acquisition madness, with his attempted hostile takeover of both Pyra.com Ltd. (NASDAQ: PYRA) and UserLand Software (NASDAQ: DAVE). Negotiations for the takeover had broken down when both Evan Williams of Pyra and Dave Winer of UserLand Software ran out of tequila. After the meeting, Graham was reportedly attacked by a small group flashing weblog gang signs and beaten senseless, a process that took very little effort. Afterwards, when Graham attempted to return home in his 1987 Hyundai Excel, a bomb wired to the ignition exploded. Witnesses claimed hearing the shouted words "It Worked!!" after the explosion, but the Bradlands CEO was mostly unharmed, it being a web-based bomb and relatively harmless.

<snicker>

Tuesday, February 22, 2000 @ 07:55 p.m. - Comment


Mike, what happened?

I am extremely dumped. Mike hasn't updated in a week and a half.

Tuesday, February 22, 2000 @ 07:52 p.m. - Comment


Proof...

that Newsweek can live in the past and the future at the same time. (Note the byline date. Note, also, that this story was covered months ago several other places...)

Tuesday, February 22, 2000 @ 07:49 p.m. - Comment


Wrong Way.

Go Back.

Tuesday, February 22, 2000 @ 07:46 p.m. - Comment


Thank you for calling...

... the State Division of Employment. If you'd like a job as a phone sex operator, please press 1...

Tuesday, February 22, 2000 @ 05:43 p.m. - Comment


Ok, I give...

The Reaper was within one year of correct...

Wonder if he sews..?

Tuesday, February 22, 2000 @ 05:31 p.m. - Comment


Rant: Do One Thing. Do It Well.

This is a maxim that software designers seem to have forgotten.

I installed a sound card in my machine finally, this week. As you might expect, this implies that I finally set up RealPlayer. Used to be that Real Player was just a player.

Not any more.

Now, it's a "multimedia management system".

I JUST WANTED A PLAYER, THANKS!!!

I don't need Comedy Central to put up a splash screen wider than my monitor, with a tiny 160x120 window in the middle for the picture. I don't need CNN to put up an HTML page with links that don't work inside my player -- I have a browser for that, thank-you-very-much. I just need the video, and the controls. There isn't even a configuration switch to turn all the crap off.

ICQ is the same way (and don't even get me started about the fact that ICQ doesn't 'really' exist [there are no identifiable humans there]). It used to just do presence and messaging. Now it will scramble my eggs and put out my trash, and there's no way to hide at least half of that crap I don't want.

Admittedly, there have been a few worthwhile enhancements to ICQ, and I've always preferred it to AIM. But that does not excuse the extraneous bullshit it makes me deal with, and as soon as there's a viable option, I'm outta there. This is a lesson Real would do well to learn, too; no company is immune.

Let's hope they climb on board the Clue Train pretty soon.

UPDATE: I went to Real's website, to find an address to which to send a pointer to this rant, they should know I was unhappy directly.

(Stop me if you'd already figured this out:) there isn't one. The 'Public Relations' address is only for the press; everything else on that page is either sales, technical support (for paying customers only, presumably), or comments... about the website. Nowhere that I could find was there a place to which to send comments about the company and it's products.

Of course not. I certainly wouldn't want to hear people bitch.

And, of course, just like eBay, finding those email addresses is next to impossible. I had to bounce over to the corporate website at realnetworks.com to find any contact information at all.

FURTHER UPDATE:

Why does RealPlayer keep telling me I only have an 8-bit video card? Not only did I already know that, but the "don't tell me this again button is checked.

<grrrr volume="high">

Tuesday, February 22, 2000 @ 03:24 p.m. - Comment


Software Sucks.

It shouldn't be that way, obviously...

Or is it obvious? Maybe it's not, and that's why software sucks. Mark J. Minasi, a former editor of Byte Magazine, in it's dead-tree days, has written a new book on the topic, called The Software Conspiracy: Why Software Companies Put Out Faulty Products, How They Can Hurt You, and What You Can Do About It.

It explains why software sucks, why you should care that software sucks, and what you can do about it, even if you're not a programmer.

Jason Bennett has written a good review of the book, with his own opinions on the topic.

He also mentions, as does the book, UCITA...

Baad law; BAAAAAAAAAAD law!

Tuesday, February 22, 2000 @ 12:33 p.m. - Comment


Giggle Of The Day

I don't agree with everything he says, but he certainly says it lyrically, now, doesn't he?

Monday, February 21, 2000 @ 06:31 p.m. - Comment


Proof!

... that Macintosh users are better at being childish than users of other types of computers...

Monday, February 21, 2000 @ 05:57 p.m. - Comment


Dave Gussow

of the St Pete Times' Tech Times desk, is a pretty decent writer, but there are still times when I think he should run things by a technical editor before printing them.

Now, admittedly, this is mostly because the mistakes made in his section mislead people whom I have to support, and their misunderstandings make my life harder, but still... :-)

In any event, the latest notable piece is on connection speeds from Tampa to the rest of the world:

To go from the Tampa computer to Internet retailer Buy.com in Santa Clara, Calif., the route included Tampa, Miami, Atlanta, Chicago and Santa Clara, passing 18 network nodes, or intersections, along the way. To go from Keynote's headquarters computer in San Mateo to Tampa, the route included San Mateo, Palo Alto, Santa Clara, Atlanta, Orlando and Tampa, passing nine network nodes.

Traffic at any of those nodes can delay your request. One element determining the route is the carrier. Say a request to log onto a Web site starts on a network we'll call Sender and is destined for a site we'll call Receiver. Sender's Internet service provider carrier will work to transfer that request -- and the cost of carrying it -- to the Receiver network as soon as possible.

Um, ok, Dave, but you do know the Internet is a zero-settlements environment, right? I pay for my part, you pay for your part, and if a link gets seriously out of balance we'll deal with it.

In any event, what it is that really causes the problems is that, lately, what drives the design of the Internet is suits, not engineers.

This Will Not Suffice.

But none of the writers are talking about that, you'll notice...

Monday, February 21, 2000 @ 05:41 p.m. - Comment


Who's really running America?

Shi-Zhe Yung, of the Pratt Institute, New York, NY, has some ideas...

Monday, February 21, 2000 @ 05:34 p.m. - Comment


Jakob weighs in...

Neilsen, that is. The topic is the Stanford study everyone's logging about this week that suggests that the Internet is making people lonelier and less well socialized (approximately).

As you might expect if you saw the rebuttal stories, Jakob thinks this survey is bullshit... but not for the reasons you might think.

Interesting reading...

Monday, February 21, 2000 @ 04:25 p.m. - Comment


HTML 2000 - How good the candidates really are

... at creating valid web pages, that is.

'The Reverend' Bob Crispen decided to sift through the pages of the various presidential campaign sites; the results vary between amusing and scary.

[ Thanks to some guy on Slashdot ]

Monday, February 21, 2000 @ 12:25 p.m. - Comment


To coin a phrase

I was out singing Friday night, and there was a Seriously Drunken Individual (and you thought you knew what 'SDI' stood for... :-) wandering the place.

I watched him, for a while, and thought, first to myself, and then to my friend Erin: "There's the next guy in the Martin-Baker..."

Sunday, February 20, 2000 @ 10:39 p.m. - Comment


If you're an adult...

you're entitled to be reading this page, and I don't much care how old you are. Note that "being an adult", for this purpose, reads as "being intelligent enough to realize that if you're uncomfortable about something you read here, your solution is to go somewhere else, not try to make it impossible for me to say the things you didn't want to hear." It doesn't require that you be 18, or 21; I've known 40 year olds who were children.

In any event, if you're an adult, the odds are fairly good that you enjoy reading fiction intended for adult audiences, particularly erotica. If you do, then the alt.sex.stories Text Repository is a site you might enjoy. They are a volunteer site, and they pay the bills themselves, in consequence of which I will send you there via the donation beg page.

If you like it there, vote with your wallet.

I'm going to.

Sunday, February 20, 2000 @ 09:50 p.m. - Comment


The Institution of Marriage

Why does it often feel like it's going to put you in an institution?

Maybe it's because marriage hasn't changed much over the last 100 years... but Americans have. Weekly Planet writer Fred Branfman has the balls to consider that idea in this weeks issue (and I apologize to people reading this our of the archive if that link breaks; I have no way to know if it's permanent or not -- it does appear to be).

Only those willing to challenge the current orthodoxy and experiment with marriage offer any real hope of saving it. Marriage will fundamentally change or die in coming decades, and only those willing to change it can hope to preserve it.

Precsely. He goes further:

Reliable figures do not exist, of course, but let us estimate generously that one-third of couples are capable of monogamously achieving sustained sexual satisfaction throughout the course of their marriages. And let us assume, again generously, that although another one-third do not enjoy sexual passion in their marriage after an early phase, they are able to accommodate it because of a low sex drive and/or the satisfaction they receive from other aspects of the marriage such as children and security. That still leaves one-third of the married population forced to choose between varying degrees of sexual frustration and remaining married.

The classic solution for this group, of course, has long been adultery. But covert sex is often incompatible with vital, healthy marriages. The benefits affairs provide in reducing sexual frustration tend to be canceled out by the deceit involved. It can’t be emphasized enough that honest communication and deep, soulful friendship are keys to a good marriage. It is hard to have such honest friendships when one party is lying to the other, or bottling up jealous emotions that poison them.

It's so nice to see that this outlook has graduated from science fiction novels to the general (if not mainstream) press. No, that sort of approach to life is not easy -- it requires all the parties involved to actually be adults; you can't just pretend anymore -- but, as the old hit country song puts it: "Why do we have to hurt one to love another?"

Sunday, February 20, 2000 @ 09:26 p.m. - Comment


It will be necessary to destroy the net to save it.

Read all about the CIA's new security software package called NetEraser.

"Come into my parlor", said the spider to the fly...

Sunday, February 20, 2000 @ 09:23 p.m. - Comment


Where would this world be without PhD candidates?

Matthew Zook is one such, at -- no surprise -- Berkeley, and he's written an article for the American Behavioral Scientist entitled Old Hierarchies or New Networks of Centrality? The Global Geography of the Internet Content Market.

It's about the intersection between the wires and the walls, and he's been kind enough to post some of his research data.

As of January 2000 there were 10,008,475
com, org, net and edu domains registered
worldwide. There are another 3,344,305
country code TLDs (.uk or .de) domains
registered as well. That's about 2.2
Intenet domains per 1000 people worldwide.
In the US, the figure is 25.2 domains per
1000 people.

CONCENTRATIONS OF DOMAIN NAMES

Combined (com, org, net, edu and country
code TLDs) there are 13.35 million
domains. They are distributed as follows….

 The US has 50.0 percent
     California has 11.5 percent
        Los Angeles (CMSA) has 5.6 percent
        San Francisco (CMSA) has 3.9 percent
     New York State has 4.3 percent
        New York (CMSA includes NJ and CT)
        has 5.9 percent
 Germany has 8.6 percent
 The UK has 8.5 percent

Friday, February 18, 2000 @ 05:55 p.m. - Comment


Here's a good question

DO you own your email address?

This is not a new thing, people have had similar problems with phone numbers, particularly toll-free numbers, for many years.

The solution they chose, however, is completely useless:

NBC Internet's Snap.com and Xoom will be merging their membership databases on February 23rd, adding a .1 to user names on the Snap service. For example, if your Snap member name was user, you would now be user.1.
So, if I'm Banker35 on Xoom, and my username changes to Banker35.1... and the results of that HIV test come back to the Banker35 who was on Snap... who would that be that I would sue?

<sigh>

The only safe solution is to break everyone's email addresses and, of course, that won't happen, either.

Friday, February 18, 2000 @ 04:46 p.m. - Comment


Lilly expounds...

on the sensuous pleasures of her new pen.

Alas, that link will break, because Lilly only NAMEtags stuff she thinks will be linkable. :-)

Friday, February 18, 2000 @ 04:38 p.m. - Comment


Damnit; Dan finds all the cool links

Like this Windows NT / CP/M comparison article.

Friday, February 18, 2000 @ 04:34 p.m. - Comment


Benford's Law

Cam pointed to a spiffy HTTP transaction viewer program written by a guy named Rexford Swain -- sounds like the hero in a romance novel; don't it? :-)

Following Ashworth's Law ("If the page someone pointed to is interesting, there's almost certainly something even more interesting somewhere else on the site"), I poked around a bit.

What I found was this paper on Benford's Law. I was right. It's more interesting.

Dr. Hill is one of a growing number of statisticians, accountants and mathematicians who are convinced that an astonishing mathematical theorem known as Benford's Law is a powerful and relatively simple tool for pointing suspicion at frauds, embezzlers, tax evaders, sloppy accountants and even computer bugs.

Benford's Law is named for the late Dr. Frank Benford, a physicist at the General Electric Company. In 1938 he noticed that pages of logarithms corresponding to numbers starting with the numeral 1 were much dirtier and more worn than other pages.

Friday, February 18, 2000 @ 04:16 p.m. - Comment


Well, um, 'breasts', actually.

It's been a weird day.

The morning show on the country station to which I listen, WCTQ-FM in Sarasota, somehow got on to the topic of breast size.

Now, those who know me well know that this is a topic close to my heart (no pun intended...), but I had to profess to some surprise that, even though they are readers of Maxim Magazine, Rob and Mav both apparently missed the entry in "101 Things A Man Must Know" (or whatever they titled that story a couple months back) that said that one of those things was how to measure a woman for a bra.

Interestingly, I didn't hear a call from a single woman who knew, either.

Then, just to extend the topic a bit more, I ran across this piece, concerning the breasts of former Miss America Leanza Cornett, who co-hosted the "Who Wants to be a National Embarassment" thing on Fox the other night.

The story is, forgive me, a hoot.

And, of course, some caller made a comment to the effect of "have you ever seen a pair of perky D-cups?"

Yes, as a matter of fact; I have.

Friday, February 18, 2000 @ 01:10 p.m. - Comment


Ever have a car stolen?

Unless it was a really weird looking car, you probably won't be able to relate to this story, but check the Advice Goddesses site out, anyway.

BEING A GIRL, I find in-person visits in such situations to be quite helpful. ("Hi, I have big breasts, will you find my car?") The first officer I spoke with, Clinton Dona, who happened to own a 1960 Rambler, was especially sympathetic. He and the officers behind the desk promised to tell the beat cops to watch for my Rambler. I felt re-energized, empowered; I was Nancy Drew! (as played by Pamela Anderson). I waved a flirty goodbye and trotted out to my roadster.

Thursday, February 17, 2000 @ 04:42 p.m. - Comment


Does anyone remember...

the Venus Butterfly? What show was that; Ally?

The final answer -- from the Plaboy Advisor, no less -- was: they made it up. There isn't one, really.

Dr Bob Schwarz apparently disagrees.

Bob sent me two instructional videos, one for me, one for my wife. I hope it doesn’t make me as gay as the color mauve that I popped in both. First I watched the video “The Venus Butterfly Technique for Women,” which is actually intended for men to view and shows in graphic, up-close detail how to manipulate a girl’s man in the boat, her magic button, which Dr. Bob puts into strict scientific terms by comparing to a pencil eraser.

The video, just as he’d promised, is “one of the most explicit, graphic videos ever produced. It’s not pornographic. We’re very clear that it’s done very tastefully. But it’s a very hot subject.

“It may take you six months to actually see the end of the video” – here he laughed another perverse laugh – “’cause guys get really excited. We should’ve used less attractive couples.”

Thursday, February 17, 2000 @ 04:27 p.m. - Comment


Ahead, warp factor 9!

This is so typical...

Apparently the people who booked Patrick Stewart for this launch presentation forgot to talk to the people who operate the real ships.

"Some of you might be asking: What does this actor know about the future?" Stewart said, pausing and beaming. "I've been there."

<yawn>

Thursday, February 17, 2000 @ 04:21 p.m. - Comment


IDC /Win2K

Obviously, Dan Kusnetzky -- whose name would not have taken me three tries to get spelled right if the frigging morons at Infoworld hadn't disable copy and paste (how do they do that, anyway?) -- is not the guy you'd want picking a sunny day for your wedding...

Thursday, February 17, 2000 @ 04:14 p.m. - Comment


Just what I always wanted

Lindsay scores a scoop with The Duct Tape Wallet.

I do have a birthday coming up... :-)

Thursday, February 17, 2000 @ 03:58 p.m. - Comment


Zannah's right...

It must be a slow news day at Wired.

[ Thanks to /usr/bin/girl -- I dunno. I thought it was a nice picture. Even though, as nice as she was to me on IRC two weeks ago, she's been ignoring my email since... ]

Thursday, February 17, 2000 @ 03:30 p.m. - Comment


I Love Flirting!

Unfortunately, no one in America seems to know how to do it. Or, more accurately, how to take it lightly.

Flirting is not a strategy, but an artful riff on attraction. It has nothing to do with the sexuality flaunted in low-cut dresses or seductive poses. Compare the out-there sexuality of Madonna or Mick Jagger with Audrey Hepburn's sweet glances or Marcello Mastroianni's encounters and you get the difference. You know you've crossed over into the terrain of seduction when you begin issuing invitations or feel pressured by the other person's expectations.

Unfortunately, in the United States flirting is commonly thought of as a strategy in the mating game. It invariably connotes seduction and is considered an essential ingredient for snaring a mate.

Damn, but Salon gets some great writers...

Thursday, February 17, 2000 @ 12:32 p.m. - Comment


Kat Skipped School

and I love the reason:

USF is hosting the Win2K rollout today...

and the idea of being around great crowds of people - who - think - Windows - is - a - pretty - neat - idea made her skin crawl.

It's ok, though; it will give her time to work on her website (ok, hers and her boyfriends...) I described it as sort of "Gothdot", and they said that wasn't very far from wrong; it focuses on games like World of Darkness, Vampire, Werewolf, Changeling, and that sort of thing; if you like those, go there.

Oh, and to meet me for lunch. :-)

[ Editor's note: I see Netscape shares the "I don't understand that a hyphen is an acceptable place to word-wrap a line fault of most other word wrapping algorithms. Furrfu! ]

Thursday, February 17, 2000 @ 12:10 p.m. - Comment


Working with the Feds

From Computerworld, a piece concerning working with the FBI on computer and network attacks.

"I don't have that fear because I know how the FBI works," said Chesnut. They "can make sure they get the evidence they need in a way that doesn't interfere with our service." He believes companies can overcome their fears of working with law enforcement by meeting with them before problems occur. "You can break the ice by picking up the phone," he said.

Hmmm... I dunno. The consensus of the people on the NSP management mailing list I'm on is that the vast majority of the FBI's people are 99.44% clue-free on network attack issues, and the remaining .56 percent aren't interested unless the bill goes over $80k. We'll see...

Thursday, February 17, 2000 @ 11:50 a.m. - Comment


Married's just another word for nothing left to lose...

Brennan caught another good Salon piece, on Fox's silly-ass "Who Wants to Marry a Millionaire" show last night. My favorite quote:

For one thing, the specter of "wholesome sex" clung to this sad parade like a silent fart in a crowded elevator. Why not just go all out? Call the show "People Will Do Anything for Money" or "America's Funniest Prostitutes"?

Great stuff.

Thursday, February 17, 2000 @ 10:07 a.m. - Comment


The always lyrical Lilly

(gee, that sounds like a title for a musical, doesn't it?) has posted some interesting observations, with which I fully concur, concerning a New York Times story about how 'addiction to the net' is making people lonelier because they don't interact as much with 'real people'.

Bah.

I don't know about you, tovarishch, but the people in my addressbooks and ICQ and AIM buddy lists, and on my mailing lists and newsgroups are real. I haven't met most of them in person, some of them are jerks, and many of them need to grow up, but some of them are warm, witty, pretty, intelligent, and fun to hang out with.

Just like the people I've met in person.

So what's the difference?

In fact, being on line has some subtle advantages: you can have 6 private conversations simultaneously without offending anyone and still get work done, and you can *punctuate* things, exactly the way you want; you can even use semicolons. And ellipses...

:-)

Regulars will remember the piece I wrote last week about the way science fiction fans talk -- it applies to geeks, too.

And being a geek is becoming stylish.

That'll ruin it, of course.

Thursday, February 17, 2000 @ 09:53 a.m. - Comment


Thanks, Wes!

Wow.

Traffic from Wes Felter's Hack The Planet (my favorite technical weblog -- where would we be without CS grad students? :-) about doubled my normal hit count yesterday.

Wes: you can link to me any old time you want. :-)

The mix here isn't nearly as technical as his, but there's an occasional spike. I treat this as kind of a continuous editorial column -- that's the description, anyway, that I tried to put into the listing at weblogs.com ... and you'd be able to see it there if I hadn't gotten a script error from the CGI. <sigh>

In any case, welcome aboard, and I hope you find something interesting enough to bring you back.

Thursday, February 17, 2000 @ 09:32 a.m. - Comment


DOS Attacks

But what about the servers!?

Wednesday, February 16, 2000 @ 05:41 p.m. - Comment


Sliced Peanut Butter?

Cam, who was nice enough to fix the broken link, but not nice enough to thank me for pointing out the broken link ( Well, he has moved to New York... :-) notes this story, from beautiful downtown Tulsa, about a new process that allows moms to ask "one slice or two".

To quote those immortal words: I am not making this up.

Wednesday, February 16, 2000 @ 04:12 p.m. - Comment


Did you need a carrying case?

Perhaps this one will fill your requirement.

This case is virtually new. It shows minor wear, a few scratches, from storage, does not appear to have actually been used, and can be converted to a variety of uses -- to carry and/or store computers, telephones, other electronic equipment, Pokemon cards, Barbie dolls, action figures, jewelry, firearms, bombs, drugs, cash, or whatever else you might have typed into the search engine to reach this ad.

Me, personally; I prefer Pelican's. "Guaranteed against shark bite, bear attack, and children under 6", although I see their website no longer says that.

Wimps.

Wednesday, February 16, 2000 @ 03:53 p.m. - Comment


Win2K - the best Windows ever?

Well, that's not saying much; is it...

Computerworld has this story about the "Joe's Apartment" memo -- "would you pay $500 for a program with 63,000 bugs?" -- which doesn't hearten me all that much.

"Our customers, analysts and technical reviewers say this product is rock solid," said [ Director of Windows Marketing Keith ] White. "This is the most reliable version of Windows ever."

Time will tell the story. Windows 4.1, er, um, I mean 98, is the OS I expected when I paid almost $200 for the retail release of 95 -- the operating system that "didn't need a version number, because there won't be any point releases".

Shyeah, right.

My advice? Don't upgrade to it from anything; Microsoft still hasn't learned how to get upgrades right.

And only install it on throwaway machines. Do not install this OS (and I use the term lightly) on a production machine for at least the next 3 months; 6 would be better.

Wednesday, February 16, 2000 @ 02:14 p.m. - Comment


My...

but I seem to have a theme this week, don't I?

Entirely accidental, I assure you. Valentine's Day had nothing to do with it at all..

Wednesday, February 16, 2000 @ 11:47 a.m. - Comment


Bird on a Bed

(Sorry; it was just too good...)

Bird on a Wire nails exactly what I wanted to say about Colette Burson's delightfully titled movie Coming Soon.

It's sort of a female American Pie, you see, about teenage girls who want to have sex and orgasms. Since it's about girls, of course, it's rated NC-17, instead of the R-rating that AP got.

<loud exasperated pissy sigh>

Can someone explain Jack Valenti to me?

Or maybe he just needs killin'.

Wednesday, February 16, 2000 @ 11:42 a.m. - Comment


Last Week's Attacks

Here's a pretty good summary of last week's attacks on the Internet. It covers what happened, who it affected, how the government's reacting to it (poorly) and why it will be difficult -- though not impossible -- to fix.

Wednesday, February 16, 2000 @ 11:25 a.m. - Comment


Is your Windows machine secure?

Probably not.

In light of the recent spate of attacks on the Internet, the possibility that some of the attacks may have been launched from people's personal computers becomes more and more important.

Steve Gibson is a long time programmer, the author of Spin Rite -- probably the best disk data recovery program available to the general consumer -- and also probably the only programmer left who writes his code in 100% assembly language. Wow. :-)

He's taken this bull by the horns, now, and has a program running at his website that will scan your machine to see if you're safe or not.

I, personally, trust him; I'm familiar with his reputation, like his products, and am fairly confident that his program couldn't make things worse on a machine simply by scanning it; you'll have to make your own decision.

His "Shields Up" scanner, you can either download the executable, or just run the tests from his webpage. I downloaded the program, and scanned it -- no viruses, not that I expected any -- and it worked just fine.

Time to ride my hobby horse again...

This is important stuff, people; 200 home PC's with RoadRunner connections, infected by Distributed Denial of Service cracker tools like the ones that nailed Yahoo last week, can melt down a commercial Internet connection that costs $25,000 a month. This is not a game; you really should scan every machine you're responsible for, and recommend to everyone you know that they do too.

More importantly, though; do not give them the binary program, if you downloaded it, just give them the URL for the web page -- or point them here (:-) -- and let them do it themselves. I'm trying to get people to stop running programs that they aren't positive of the source of; that's part of how this sort of problem spreads in the first place.

Ok, everybody; let's get moving...

and let's be careful out there.

Wednesday, February 16, 2000 @ 10:01 a.m. - Comment


Well, here we go again

A Canadian net-sex case hits the courts.

Maybe I missed something, but isn't the stated purpose of laws regarding commercial sex one of public health? Since I can't see how that applies in this case -- unless one party or the other caught digital herpes -- I guess the lawmakers are gonna have to come out and admit, for a change, that they're trying to legislate morality.

That is, if some member of the media forces them to...

Tuesday, February 15, 2000 @ 04:32 p.m. - Comment


Network outages and criminals

are in danger now...

President Clinton announced today that Tom Clancy was right again; he's proposing the formation of NetForce, to hunt down all those nasty ' hackers' and slap 'em in gaol.

[ Thanks to Yahoo Internet Life's Daily Buzz for this one; hope that guy reads his referrer logs... :-) ]

Tuesday, February 15, 2000 @ 03:36 p.m. - Comment


Proof that Rock is evil?

I don't think so, either.

Maybe it's just proof that lots of money is evil.

I believe that comes from the bible, too; no?

Tuesday, February 15, 2000 @ 11:59 a.m. - Comment


Be Afraid.

Be very afraid.

The State of Sex Education in the US.

To quote Charlie Brown: AAAAAAAAARRRRRRRRRGGGGGHHHHHH!!!!!!!!

Tuesday, February 15, 2000 @ 11:53 a.m. - Comment


Masturbation III - in 3D!

Well, not really, but there seems to be a running theme this past week or two...

An interesting column in this week's Scarlet Letters (thanks to Debra) concerning the sex industry in general... but much more personal a piece than that makes it sound.

If you can't call yourself sex-positive with a straight face (no pun intended :-), skip this one.

Tuesday, February 15, 2000 @ 11:48 a.m. - Comment


Ooof.

Nuff said.

Tuesday, February 15, 2000 @ 11:38 a.m. - Comment


Just a reminder...

If you own a ferret, be careful...

Tuesday, February 15, 2000 @ 11:28 a.m. - Comment


I think George Carlin said it best

when he said "and so how is this abuse? I'd be standin' in line, myself..."

There's an excellent piece on this same topic in this month's issue of Gear, by their sex columnist, Eurydice, which I'd love to link to, but Gear appparently doesn't even have a website...

Tuesday, February 15, 2000 @ 11:23 a.m. - Comment


Those lousy hippocrits

Oh, sorry; that was last month. :-)

Thanks to Considered Harmful (not a lot of links, but always good stuff) for being a regular reader of Dan Gillmor's column on the Mercury Center site; this time, he takes the tech industry to task for saying one thing and doing another.

You go, Dan.

Tuesday, February 15, 2000 @ 10:40 a.m. - Comment


Spring Cleaning time...

I see I made it up on the Eatonweb list; hi, y'all.

More cool stuff on the next page.

Tuesday, February 15, 2000 @ 10:16 a.m. - Comment


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