Critical Section

Archive: October 13, 2003

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Still Down

Monday,  10/13/03  05:35 PM

So I'm Still Down.  I'm blogging this but nobody can see it.

This outage is my longest ever, from 4:00AM last Sunday morning (now 36 hours, and counting).  It was triggered by a power failure so I have to believe we're just talking about resetting some box somewhere.  There are too many cooks, my relationship is with XO, who subcontacts with Covad, who relies on Verizon for the phone line.  Unacceptable.

Anyway, there's still nothing I can do but wait.  Stay tuned.


Monday,  10/13/03  05:50 PM

On the off chance that someday I'll get my data circuit back, here's a pass of the Ole filter...

LGF reports some infuriating statistics: "Of the $13.3 billion tax dollars invested in direct Foreign Aid only about 26% or $3.5 billion went to support people who endorsed American initiatives or causes.  A staggering $9.8 billion tax dollars went to causes and people who are in open and direct opposition to the United States' interests and objectives."  Seems like a waste of money, doesn't it?

Word of the day: Francopessimisme.  "From record unemployment to a chronic budgetary deficit, France's economic woes are taking a toll on the morale of the French.  The wave of negativity about the performance and future of the country has been dubbed 'Francopessimisme'."  Gee, I'm so sorry!  Now why am I reminded of another word, schadenfreude...

I'd like to encourage all visitors to visit the EFF website and send a message of protest to the FCC about the infamous "broadcast flag".  This would make all new PVR hardware and software subject to the approval of the Motion Picture Association of America before going to market in the U.S.  Preposterous.  Talk about stifling innovation!

Meanwhile back at the MPAA, 142 directors have signed a petition requesting an end to the ban on "screeners".  Despite the star power behind those signing on the letter the MPAA announced "...the screener policy remains as it was originally announced."  So be it.  Fools.

Matrix RevolutionsDid you know the second and third Matrix movies will be out on IMAX?  Yippee and Wow.

Tim Bray and friends have a solution for spam.  It seems quite workable.  I'd pay 1¢ per email to avoid spam, wouldn't you?

The NYT reviews Skype, the P2P VoIP service.  Interesting that in such articles Vonage is always mentioned, but never as "the answer".  I think Skype is cool but it will never cross the chasm from geeks to mainstream, the NYT article notwithstanding, while Vonage is already there.

I've forwarded my main home number to Vonage, so it is now our only phone service.  Works perfectly.  ($30/month, no long distance...)

Joel Spolsky has an interesting article out on Unicode and Character Sets.  As one of the many programmers who wish this would just go away so I could use good old ASCII, I found it very informative.

Joel is on a roll - he also explains why he dislikes exceptions.  I agree 100%.

This is a great example of a technique which some consider elegant, but which I consider kludgy; exceptions are a clear violation of W=UH (being both U and H).

Sharp 3D laptopSharp's 3D laptop is out.  This is 3D without goggles; the screen subtly shows different images to the left and right eye based on field of view.  I'm going to try really hard to see one in action - stay tuned.  Could be just the thing for viewing virtual slides.

Wired thinks Sony should skip making an iPod (MP3 player) and go directly to making a videoPod (movie player).  "Sony made a colossal mistake.  Rather than build a hard-drive-based MP3 player, the Japanese company sat back while Apple Computer wowed the world with the iPod.  Sony was so worried about piracy, and sapping revenue from its Sony Music division, that it chose to do nothing and let Apple ascend."  Maybe so, but Sony generally makes one of each and waits to see what will stick.

Remember Mark Frauenfelder and Carla Sinclair, the journalists who moved from Los Angeles to Rarotonga last summer?  Well, they've given up on Rarotonga and are moving to Waiheke, an island off New Zealand.  "We've gone anhedonic.  We seem to be unable to feel enjoyment.  I'm wondering if our time in Rarotonga has made us immune to natural beauty.  I look out at rugged spires of rock in a cove we're driving by, and feel nothing.  My mood is flat.  But maybe it’s something more than that. Maybe I'm suffering from the repercussions of a shattered fantasy."


Still Still Down

Monday,  10/13/03  11:31 PM

So I'm Still Still Down.  I'm blogging this but nobody can see it.

This outage is now at 43 hours, and nothing will happen until 9:00AM tomorrow, which will be 53 hours.  I have complained bitterly and often to XO, my provider, and they are sympathetic and I am still down.  Totally unacceptable.  After the dust clears I'll have to investigate alternatives.

Anyway, there's still still nothing I can do but wait.  I hope y'all are still out there.  Stay tuned.


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About Me

Greatest Hits
Correlation vs. Causality
The Tyranny of Email
Unnatural Selection
On Blame
Try, or Try Not
Books and Wine
Emergent Properties
God and Beauty
Moving Mount Fuji
The Nest
Rock 'n Roll
IQ and Populations
Are You a Bright?
Adding Value
The Joy of Craftsmanship
The Emperor's New Code
Toy Story
The Return of the King
Religion vs IQ
In the Wet
solving bongard problems
visiting Titan
unintelligent design
the nuclear option
estimating in meatspace
second gear
On the Persistence of Bad Design...
Texas chili cookoff
almost famous design and stochastic debugging
may I take your order?
universal healthcare
triple double
New Yorker covers
Death Rider! (da da dum)
how did I get here (Mt.Whitney)?
the Law of Significance
Holiday Inn
Daniel Jacoby's photographs
the first bird
Gödel Escher Bach: Birthday Cantatatata
Father's Day (in pictures)
your cat for my car
Jobsnotes of note
world population map
no joy in Baker
vote smart
exact nonsense
introducing eyesFinder
to space
where are the desktop apps?
still the first bird
electoral fail
progress ratches
2020 explained