Are Tech books dead?

I was at Barns & Noble today.  I wanted to buy Windows Presentation Foundation Unleashed.  But I couldn't, I couldn't justify buying a 50 dollar book that is already out of date.  I suppose I am some what spoiled with my whole library access to Safari Tech Books Online.  But there is so much more power in this format, its highly portable, simple to copy a code snippet.  It just like a book except its stuck on the screen.  Which means for ever in the office or listening to the hum of my laptop.  But still a much better cost proposition then buying a printed book.  Its more like a lease and in the Tech book market with the rapid pace of change, a lease is so much more compelling.  So while prose may not be dead printed Tech books will soon become a thing of the past a  relic of college life.  In our future books will be defined as

published work: a published work of literature, science, or reference, or a work intended for publication(encarta.com)

No more paper.

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Do You Like Posters?

Carlo Has posted an extensive list of Microsoft Posters, take a look.

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What's your Point?

"Point is a bicycle

Encompass is a Cadillac"

Is this a complement or an insult.  Maybe I just like my bike to much.

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I felt the earth move under my feet

We had a nice little earthquake this evening which will led to a long night of after shocks.  5.6 centered about Aum Rock. not so far from home.

http://quake.wr.usgs.gov/recenteqs/Quakes/nc40204628.html

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Things I learned today.

Things I learned today.

  • Google wrote Google maps with asp.net and SQL.
  • adding AJAX roll over data to a web client helps to increase scalability.
  • Although you don't need any software to run a web client some how you still need a SQL server on the client.
  • websites can be ergonomically designed!

 

Pinnacle Web does not require any software installation, local client, special downloads, or plug-ins, saving districts time and money in initial purchase costs and maintenance. Built using the same AJAX technologies employed by Google Maps, the gradebook provides users smooth scrolling, instant response rollover information, smart menus with drop-down options, and immediate, real-time information.
 
+ A new ergonomically designed interface, which reduces training requirements

+ Expanded mobility for educators, requiring access to only the Web and a SQL server

 

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Most Lenders Still Choose Foreclosure

If your a lender and you tell the Press/Public that Foreclosures are bad and that your doing every thing you can not to foreclose, follow through.  The Truth about Mortgage reports a survey by California Reinvestment Collation "survey says few lenders making loan modifications".  The survey finds that while lenders have the intent to avoid foreclosure they are none the less avoiding loan modifications and foreclosing.  

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An Account Executive's Story

BlownMortgage offered up a depressing story about life during the peak of the mortgage boom, presented by TheTruthAboutMortgage.com

It turned out the borrower was actually employed as a loan processor, undoubtedly making less than $240,000 a year (sure some may have been making that during the boom, but that was not the case here).

In any event, you would think the loan would be dead, considering the borrower lied about their income and employment on a legal document.

Well, not the case in the mortgage industry. Instead of the file being declined, it was uplined to the VP of Underwiting who massaged the loan, probing and searching for some way to make sense of a lie. After all, the loan was worth $1.5 million, so clearly the company had no intention of throwing it away. And if it could be cleaned up a bit and sold to the investor, no one would be the wiser.

After some research, it came to the VP’s attention that the borrower was a licensed real estate agent, and just like that the 1003 was miraculously changed to state that the applicant was a loan processor and a real estate agent, earning the originally stated $20,000 a month.

It would seem money was growing on trees.

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Space Image Galleries

The BBC announced The Apollo Image Archive today but did not provide a link so here is the Arizona State University and  NASA's Johnson Space Center's scanning of Apollo mission photos that have never been released to the public before. 

Here are a few other nice Galleries I have found over time.

Apollo Image Gallery

NASA Gallery

Astronomy Picture of the Day Archive

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Vacation Sucks

I leave work and Godaddy fubars my websites.  What a fun week.  I would appear updating to the new dasBlog corrected some issues and reuploading the entire websites corrected the other issue.  I Basically started over with Godaddy today.  I tried CrystalTech but can't host the subdomains and other sites how I would like, I will miss them.  I am not sure why I couldn't explain that if my blog engine worked fine Saturday and Sunday then it should still work fine on Monday!  And if it does not work I should see asp.net errors not server was reset...  I don't think a basic page like microfisch.com should take 30 seconds to load.  This makes nonsense to me.  I don't like the level of support I received from Godaddy so I will be looking for a new host.  If you have suggestions please let me know.

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Hello World

Did you miss me?? 

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Windows Explorer gone mad

I am now running windows vista 64.  Which has been surprisingly simple how ever I have run into a few issues.  Windows Explorer went insane and ignored the open in same window setting (note open in new process option was set to false.) resulting in a new window pre directory.  I find life impossible in that situation.  After numerous attempts to correct this via registry edits, I failed.  Having given up I installed xpore2 as a replacement. ( great program I always wanted to filter my directory to only one file type) I now find after a reboot Windows Explorer works correctly and recycles the the window when displaying a new directory.

I have also found that you cannot just install sql management studio 64bit.  you need to run(as admin) dvd drive:\Tools\Setup\SqlRun_Tools.msi otherwise you go through all the motions but nothing gets installed.

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Is Micro Bill Systems legit or Ransomware - Hosts News

 

Extortion in the 21th century.  Pay me if you want to use that computer of yours.

Is Micro Bill Systems legit or Ransomware - Hosts News

At least they have the money to litigate any company that thinks their software should be removed.

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ActiveSync for the iPhone

Mithun reports that Apple has licensed Exchange ActiveSync for the I phone.

Apple licensing Microsoft's Exchange ActiveSync protocol for the iPhone...
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11 Tips for Sparkling Fireworks Photos

Visit Photojojo for a  11 tips to better fireworks photos

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There Is No Such Thing as Free Puppies.

Today we find Jeff trying to spend his ad revenue Supporting Open Source Projects in the Microsoft Ecosystem perhaps the most interesting comment was not a suggestion for which lowly OSS to toss money at and make dance but a far more serious question:

So here you have all of these people raving about the OSS projects/products that are making their lives easier and I just have to wonder how many of them have contributed anything at all to these projects themselves?

Do we need Jeff to go out and get a list so that HE can contribute something on our behalf? How many of you who raved about Paint.NET actually clicked on the "donate" link and sent in a few dollars? BTW, I have.

Get off of your lazy butts and do this yourself instead of bashing Microsoft for not contributing to the tools that YOU say are helping YOU save time and money!

"I find Paint.NET useful and think it's a great program. Why isn't Microsoft paying them money so that I can continue to use it for free?". Sheesh!

-Matt on June 27, 2007 07:45 AM

But OSS isn't about money at least not on the DotNet side, its about passion, shared owner ship and community(Money has its perks just look at Mono, FireFox and Community Server.).  But the failure of the OSS communities, the difficult times they living is by no means caused by MS or a lack thereof. Rather this failure rests souly on the PM's shoulder.  The arrogant and elite leadership of the OSS project. The very leader ship that tells all willing to help "your not trust worthy" go do our dirty work and write documentation, file a bug report, donate your money.  Yes life can be difficult when one builds them selves up into the Ivory tower. 

To be sure this does not describe all projects but look in to a failing OSS project and you will find a broken leader. 

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What's New in Visual C++ Codename "Orcas"

 Found this in the new MSDN help.  Pretty nice feature this rebuild after an assembly change has driven us nuts for years. 

Managed Incremental Build Support
The compiler supports managed incremental builds

When you specify this option, the compiler will not recompile code when a referenced assembly changes. Instead it will perform an incremental build. Files are recompiled only if the changes affect the dependent code. For more information, see General Property Page (Project).

What's New in Visual C++ Codename "Orcas"

 

I have notice the online MSDN is much better now.  Slow but I do like the article version specific note along with links to newer and older versions.

image
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Want Proof Google is Evil?

I noticed today that RealPlayer is now part of the Google Pack.  All the Proof I need that Google is now more evil then Microsoft. 

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Some Patents should just not be.

Title:

Coffee vending machine filter paper support

Document Type and Number:

United States Patent 6401597

Link to this page:

http://www.freepatentsonline.com/6401597.html

Abstract:

A filter paper roll support apparatus for a coffee vending machine, having a fixed arm and a pivotable arm spaced from the fixed arm for supporting opposite ends of a support roll on which the paper roll is mounted for rotation. The pivotable arm is hinged and spring biased towards the fixed arm. A spacing element is formed in each of the arms to engage the opposite sides of a roll of filter paper to keep it from rubbing on the main bodies of the arms.

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Godaddy Tier One Support Why Bother

This old code is now back up and running on thisoldcode.microfisch.com its old home where 99% of the perma links exist.  It turns out I had tried redirecting with a CName and this caused an issue with the forwarding.  If the Godaddy tech that I waited on for 5 hours bothered to look at the site settings rather then telling me to wait 48 hours I would have been up faster.  Why offer support if you just brush people off.  You only anger your customers that know it doesn't really take 48 hours to update DNS and if you ping the site and it resolves something is not right.  What ever happened to customer service?  I will be calling support from now on.

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Spyware for Fathers day

How nice Donny@nilsabbas DotCom sent me malware

To view your eCard, choose from the options below.

Click on the following link.

http://www.americangreetingsDoTcom/ecards/view.pd?i=439899392&m=2157&rr=y&source=ag999 <http://americangreetingscDoTnet/en/viewcard.html>

Or copy and paste the above link into your web browser's "address" window.

If you have any comments or questions, please visit

http://www.americangreetingsDoTcom/help/index.pd?source=ag999 <http://americangreetingscDoTnet/en/viewcard.html>

Thanks for using AmericanGreetings

So sweet.

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GoDaddy Tech Support and Customer Service

Even though a call to tech support should take 5 minutes of wait time i chose email with a 5 hour wait time.

My Question: 

Over the weekend I removed my subdomain and created a new one for forwarding so thisoldcode.microfisch.com would forward to thisoldcode.net
If i ping thisolcode.microfisch.com it resolves to thisoldcode.net however if I try to browse the site in the webbrowser I receive Bad Request (Invalid Hostname). I am not sure if the DNS still needs time to propagate through your servers or, I have an incorrect setting

Godaddy Reply:

Dear Aaron Fischer,
Thank you for contacting Online Support. Changes to the settings of a domain take up to 48 hours to become effective because of the number of networks involved, and because these networks are controlled by several different agencies. This delay applies to all domains with any Registrar, not just Go Daddy. Please allow for this delay when planning web sites or configuring a domain to work with your services.
If, after 48 hours has passed, you still receive the same issue please contact us so that we can further investigate. I apologize for any inconvenience.

 

This is my blog the most outward facing site I have, its partially(Perma links are dead for all intents and purposes) down for any one that uses the old link so I am a little nervous about down time.  Would it have been to much for the tech to look at my settings and reassure me its just a mater of time for the DNS to resolve properly?

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Words to live by

 

image

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Buying the Book One Chapter at a Time

O'Reilly announced they are now selling one chapter of a book very similar to the buying songs online

(Buy O'Reilly Books by the Chapter) I am not sure how usefully this is typically songs stand quite nicely by them selves but a single chapter in a book?  For 3.99 a chapter it only takes about 3-4 chapters to justify buying the whole book.  I will admit I do have a few books where a few chapters were a waste of my time, sadly you have to read said chapter before you make that evaluation.  In music you hear the song on MTV, Radio, or Sirius.  How do I preview the chapter before I buy? 

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Pi = 3?

I never new there was a debate.

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Third Party Dependencies in an Open Source World

Today Phil announced Subkisment ( Introducing Subkismet-The Cure For Comment Spam).  I believe this will prove quite beneficial to many  a project.  Be they open or closed source.  What's more interesting, later on today  Mads published Think twice before using any third-party assemblies were he emphasis the exact opposite approach to development.  There is little debate that taking on a third party dependency is not to be taken lightly.  However the benefits can and typically do out weigh the doing it in house.  Lets take a blog engine as an example.  If you roll your own text editor, is that really a core goal of your product?  Do you always want to add improvements and features to your text editor?  Why not pick up a dependency on FreeTextBox or FCKeditor and periodically merge their changes, reap the hard work of another project focused on creating a great text editor?  dependencies are not always about control especially when they are open source. dependencies are a statement, we choose to let a focused community work on this feature.  It is an important feature that needs to evolve but its not our focus. 

Mads maybe correct in his assertion

CAPTCHA controls
There exists hundreds of CAPTCHA control libraries for ASP.NET both visible and invisible ones. However, a CAPTCHA is one of the simplest things to write – it takes only 20 lines of code to create a rock solid invisible one – so that’s what we did.

But does your project want to pick up this torch and stay at least one step ahead of the hoard of SPAM developers?  Or would you rather trust a community dedicated to this goal such as Subkisment?

In an open source project it should be a no brainier, take on as many other open source dependencies.  Run your community with unwavering focus on your core goals.  Besides you have the source if you ever need it.

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Google Complains About Microsoft's Vista

 This is priceless

SAN FRANCISCO -- Internet search leader Google Inc. is trying to convince federal and state authorities that Microsoft Corp.'s Vista operating system is stifling competition as the high-tech heavyweights wrestle for the allegiance of personal computer users.

In a 49-page document filed April 18 with the U.S. Justice Department and state attorneys general, Google alleged that the latest version of Microsoft's Windows operating system impairs the performance of "desktop search" programs that find data stored on a computer's hard drive.

Google Complains About Microsoft's Vista - washingtonpost.com

 

I tend to think of this as the best way to stifle innovation.  I really feel sorry for Microsoft.  That company is held to a crazy standard.  Imagine if Apple was held to that same standard.  What would happen if Microsoft released the next windows mobile and would not let third party code execute on it?  What if Microsoft had an Ilife they bundled on Vista?  The irony is that windows is such an open platform that its almost its own worst enemy.

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New old name and search

I have set the blog address to thisoldcode.net with some luck it will make this blog searchable.  I also added windows live search :( no Google search.  Why because I could not get Google form based search to work on this blog, live on the other hand uses some nifty java script and worked with out a problem. ( maybe the search box should resize with the page.)

I look forward to seeing a nice search from Google that rival the look of live search and ease of setup.

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Amero Granted New Trial

 

courant.com | Amero Granted New Trial

Go figure Computer experts know more then a police stations self proclaimed computer expert.

The judge cited a forensic computer analysis conducted by the state police crime lab - conducted after the guilty verdict - to support the argument that the verdict should be set aside. She said the lab report "contradicts testimony of the state's computer witness."

It doesn't look like there will be a new trial thankfully.

Prosecutor Smith said state would take no position on Dow's motion for a new trial, making it unlikely she will be tried again. Smith also acknowledged that erroneous information about the computer was presented during trial.

Evidently if people opine it is an attempt to improperly influence the court.

Judge Strackbein criticized the bloggers today, saying they tried to "improperly influence" the court.

I think Strackbein should lose her job over that comment.  Its a free country and an open court. the trial was over for the criminal conviction.  The one thing that is clear to me, Amero was jury was her peers the held a very naive view about what unscrupulous people can do with modern technology.

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I don't have a problem with the concept of background compilation

Jeff likes this comparison of Background compilation to background spell checking(Background Compilation and Background Spell Checking).

 

Perhaps the my issue is not with the concept of background compilation but its current implementation. Background compilation is some what slow process on my machines.  If I trigger it, I will be forced to wait 15-20 seconds before I can do any thing in that IDE.
I remember a time when the red squiggly first appeared in Word and I turned it off because it was to slow.  Unlike Jeff and Ian my spelling and grammar are atrocious.  back ground spell check is now at the point where it really is seamless.   And a great benefit to my written communication.  I find its most beneficial feature is that it offers practical suggestions to my mistake as apposed to just flagging the word.  Grammar check on the other hand, well we just don't get along

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Not Getting Gears Offline

I guess I don't get this Google Gears thing.  This morning Scott posted Google Gears - Maybe all Rich Internet Applications needed was Local Storage and an Offline Mode

RIA I see but for offline storage?

My response was Cookies 2.0 to which Carlos  reply's

Cookies 2.0?
Have you even looked at SQLite? You can stuff all sorts of things in the database and get it back out via SQL.
You can build a synchronizing n-tier web app on the desktop. If the thought of that doesn't make you drool, nothing will.

I actually use SQLite a lot, there are things I like and things I don't but as a local data store for RIA its a fine choice.  Google providing a simple framework for access via JavaScript is great.  But unless my app is written in 90% JavaScript client side what good is this Gears thing in the offline world?  I perused the frame work and I don't see any Synchronization.  So yes Cookies 2.0 I can store much more rich information on your computer and I will be able to deliver some very compelling user experience, all with a relatively speaking easy API.  I am just not seeing what this has to do with an offline environment.

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Dose the \n\r "Return" Really Cost That Much?

legible

p

{

line-height: 150%;

}

p.dropCap:first-letter

{

font: bold 700% 'party let', 'comic sans MS', fantasy; margin-right: 12px; color: red; float:  left;

}

not legible

p { line-height: 150%; }
p.dropCap:first-letter { font: bold 700% 'party let', 'comic sans MS', fantasy; margin-right: 12px; color: red; float: left; }

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Give me a pair of those rose tinted Glass the NAR economists are wearing

Resales Fall; Unsold Homes Hit 15-Year High

Single-family existing-home sales fell 2.4% in April, and the supply of unsold homes on the market shot up to the highest level in 15 years, according to the National Association of Realtors. The NAR reported that sales of previously owned single-family homes fell from a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.35 million in March to 5.22 million in April. Compared with the level recorded in April 2006, sales were down 11.2%. NAR senior economist Lawrence Yun said the April sales continued to be affected by weather issues and the problems in the subprime market. However, he said he is seeing data that show improved sales in early May. And he said it may indicate that the subprime problem will turn out to be a "short-term disruption to the homebuying process" as buyers find other mortgage products. Meanwhile, the supply of unsold single-family homes jumped by 11.5% to 3.6 million in April, which represents an 8.3-month supply at the current sales pace and the highest monthly supply since 1992. Sales of condominiums and co-ops fell 3.8% in April, but inventories rose by only 4.1%. The NAR economist said the condo market has strengthened thanks to "bottom fishing" by investors.

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When do you know your industry is ready for a bubble pop?

The Complete Idiot's Guide to Success as a Mortgage Broker

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Phishers, Just get better.

In the inbox today.  Notice the use of BOA actual images.  FireFox and IE did recognize this as a phishing site.  It might be good for email to start checking links against known Phishers.  It never hurts to be more preemptive.

This email was sent to you by Bank of America. To ensure delivery to your inbox, please add bankofamerica@replies.em.bankofamerica.com to your address book or safe sender list.
Bank of America
Man on couch with computer.If there's any activity on your account, you'll be the first to know.

As part of our efforts to meet the requirements of the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council (FFIEC), we now ask all Online Banking users to verify their account information. It's a smart and simple way to add an additional level of protection to your account.

Here's how it works:

1. Click here to sign on and provide us with the required information.
2. Complete our quick and simple form.
3. Continue with your Online Banking session.

We may periodically ask you to provide information in Online Banking as a quick identity check. That way, when you drop in to do business, we'll know it's you.

If you choose not to verify your account today, you will have only 3 more chances to do so before it's required to access your account online
Email Preferences and Opt-out instructions
This is a promotional email from Bank of America. To select the types of promotional email messages you prefer, or to opt-out of future promotional email, please update your Email Preferences.
Privacy and Security
Keeping your financial information secure is one of our most important responsibilities. For an explanation of how we manage customer information, please read our Privacy Policy. You can also learn how Bank of America keeps your personal information secure and how you can help protect yourself.
Bank of America Email, 8th Floor, 101 South Tryon St., Charlotte, NC 28255
Bank of America, N.A. Member FDIC. Equal Housing Lender Equal Housing Lender
© 2007 Bank of America Corporation. All rights reserved.

Comments [0]

Interesting Search Query

Yesterday and today I have seen this search come through from yahoo. "what does this quote mean "There are 10 kinds of people in this world - those who understand binary and those who don’t"" 

I am not sure why my site pulls up but its funny since who ever is running this search falls in toe the latter half of people.  If you don't know Binary 10 is two.

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MyMicroISV » Lower Literacy Website Visitors

If you blog, you should probably read this.   50% of US adults have an eight-grade reading level.  If the article is correct that most web content is written at a 12 grade reading level, forget the Digital divide we still have a core Literacy issue that we need to address.  Although I do wonder if the medium is somewhat responsible for this.  When i read content on the web its very much word by word( this is how we are now taught to read in the US education system.) but when i read print i can speed read.  its much more difficult to read fast with comprehension on the monitor.  I think it may be the font and leading.

 

More interesting statistics

Correctional Education Facts

Reading Facts

Comments [0]

AmEx Unveils Mortgage Payments by Credit Card

Via Broker Universe

American Express has announced a new program enabling members to make monthly home mortgage payments on the American Express card. American Home Mortgage Corp. will be the first lender to offer the Express Rewards Mortgage program for eligible prime loans, AmEx said. Cardmembers with qualifying loans with American Home will pay a one-time fee of $395 to the lender for enrollment in the program at closing. American Express said its research had indicated that members "overwhelmingly cited" monthly mortgage payments as "an ideal opportunity" to use the American Express card. The company can be found online at http://www.americanexpress.com.

I quite like the idea of collecting bonus points and cash back awards off of my mortgage payment.  It is after all the largest bill most of us get every month.  Sadly for those who get mortgages to reduce credit card debt, this would be like giving enabling a heroin addict...

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More fun and Microsoft's Expense.

This is how Microsoft packages a product.

Now see how Microsoft names their products.


Video: Windows Server 2008
Comments [0]

Lost Another Round to CompUSA

I just purchased a Microsoft Natural Ergonomic Keyboard 4000 

I paid 52.69(sticker 66.00 then 15% off) I see Amazon.com has it

for 49.99  I guess I didn't do so good.  Even as they go out of business they still manage to rip me off.  However all hope is not lost during my Amazon prize search I noticed Microsoft has a rebate, turns out buying it from CompUSA keeps me qualified for a 20 dollar rebate. so I end up paying a little more for having it today.

I have always been a fan of Microsoft's Natural Elite keyboards and this one does not disappoint.  The F Lock is enabled by default and will remember its state between reboots its USB ( my computers don't have ps2 anymore).  Best of all the home keys are not all jacked up.( I have to get used to a small delete key again).

As a side note the drivers that come in the box's cd will not install under Windows Vista but you can install IntelliType Pro 6.1 to get it to work. 

Comments [0]

Julie Amero

I have been reading about this case, and some of the comments bug me ( if you don't know about the 40 year old substitute teacher that has been convicted of displaying porn to minors and now faces up a 40 jail sentience. read more here and here and here).  Mainly there are a lot of people that think she should have turned off the computer.  Now even if she had been told not to turn off the computer we would have to take into account how long it would take to get over the initial shock of porn popup's filling the window.  Now if you wanted to turn the computer off hitting the power button does nothing its not like ten years ago when you could just flip the switch. You either hold the power button for 10-15 seconds or you use windows to shut things down.  depending on the spyware/viruses on the computer the latter may not have even been possible.  I also doubt that very unsavy computer users know they can hold down the power button to turn the system off.  Some said that she could have pulled the plug, which would probably have involved unblocking the monitor with her body ( only 10 of the 40 students in the class room saw any thing on the monitor.) which would let the masses see the screen.  Also if this was a laptop ( its not clear what kind of PC this was.) pulling the plug would do nothing its battery would keep it on.  Finally this never would have happened if the school had their filtering software up to date.  let alone some type of active spyware prevention on the PC.

Comments [0]

Nine Rules for Selecting a Future-Proof LOS

 I believe in finding one absurd thing a week, I think  Mr. Liston has the next couple covered.

Nine Rules for Selecting a Future-Proof LOS take a read.

Point 1 is stupid.

Point 2 has some merit but you buy for the environment you have or want.  And the environment your vendor tests against.

Point 3 should you be responsible for dealing with business rule changes or your vendor?  what exactly are they selling you?

Point 4 I agree you should know what your dependency will be.  But conversely once your up and running it doesn't matter very much.

Besides we all know all you need is Point and PDS.

Comments [0]

I have a Love hate relationship with VB, I love to hate it.

I suppose Jeff is remorse about his life in C# much the same way I am towards VB.NET

If you come from c, c++ or Java there can be no other way but C#. 

Jeff:

The so-called choice between the two most popular languages, C# and VB.NET, is no more meaningful than the choice between Coke and Pepsi. Yes, IronPython and IronRuby are meaningfully different dynamic languages, but they're somewhere on the horizon and far from first-class IDE citizens.

Wow Pepsi Is different the choice of the next generation, how can anyone trivialize that.

I see Ian has a nice counter response which I agree with.  Case sensitivity is important. Its these little things that make it so easy to switch between the c languages, Its quite frustrating to know what and how to write the code and then come to realize you are writing in the wrong language syntax.

In summary of the debate for back ground compilation

Ian:

I hate VB.NET’s continuous bloody interference. I HADN’T FINISHED TYPING YET YOU STUPID COMPILER! CAN’T YOU SEE THAT? DOES IT LOOK TO YOU LIKE I’M DONE TYPING? DID IT NOT OCCUR TO YOU THAT THE REASON YOU’VE FOUND ALL THOSE ERRORS IS BECAUSE I’M NOT FINISHED YET?!! I’LL TELL YOU WHEN I WANT YOU TO CHECK MY WORK, AND NOT BEFORE!

Brilliant!

Comments [2]

Internet Explorer and the Update of Doom.

Previously I installed an Internet Explorer cumulative update KB931768 and ran in to a little problem with IE7 no longer working

I see that Spyware Suckes has a post describing the solution to this issue:

 

You have installed the Internet Explorer cumulative update KB931768 and have previously moved your temporary internet file folder from it's default location.

You see an error like this one:

File Download - Security Warning
Do you want to save this file?
Name: navcancl
Type: Unknown File Type, 2.64KB
From: ieframe.dll
Save Cancel

FIX:

If your temporary internet files folder has been moved from its default location, move it back.

An alternative is to run IE as an Administrator (right click the IE icon, select "Run as Administrator", but I *strongly* advise against this.

***DO NOT*** uninstall the cumulative update.

While I am puzzled how I am supposed to surf the web to fine a fix to this issue with out uninstalling the patch.  I also do not recall ever changing the path for IE.  Since this is XP sp2 its clearly not a rights issue since I have admin rights.  But I am game to try any thing once, well see how it works out.

-Update 05/14/2007-

I double checked the Temporay Internet Files location and it is infact using the default C:\Documents and Settings\<UserName>\Local Settings\Temporary Internet Files.  I also tried disabling Phishing which some people reported success with on the IE Team Bog


-Update 05/29/2007-

I have a new post detailing how i resolved this issue by truning off Internet Explorers Phishing Filter.

Comments [0]

Phishing, Its not the end users fault.

Coding Horror presents

Phishing: The Forever Hack

Which was interesting but the only conclusion that can be drawn is that web browsers must protect the sheep.  I personally would like to see it easier to report Phishing sites the last one was quite the chore.  Years ago and probably still today there were people that would call house randomly and ask for personal information under the guise of some legitimate company.  Fortunately most companies had a public out cry "We will never call you and ask for information." To their credit most did not.  Here in lies the problem with Phishing sites common typos we cannot prevent ( unless we have address books, your favorites may be good only on the second visit. ) But Companies could stick to not sending emails asking users to log in.  As long as you legitimate companies come along and publish links and encourage users to login we will have this problem.  You further make the problem worse when you find ways to display the full html message circumventing any built in browser/email security.   Forget the convinence of email links and error on the side of teaching users one good standard.  Never click on links from an email.   

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Life Quote

"Life is an open-book test."

Alfred Thompson

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Petzold, Prose Dead?

 Charles does not seem to be taking Jeff's recent analysis of his WPF book VS Adam Nathan's Windows Presentation Foundation Unleashed to well. Petzold deemed prose to be dead and Power Point to be the new king of publishing.  I think Jeff is wrong.  First color is I a good thing we don't program with note pad any more, we have notepad++ or a nice IDE that offer us rich color coded goodness for fast digestion of information, and its difficult to go back.  To contrast Nathan's and Petzold's books is the difference between a Nutshell book and an instructional documentation.  For those of us whom have been reading the WPF blogs and bits for over a year now we may find it usefully to have a reference of the current WPF state of affairs rather then a book that takes you from the start.  When you pick your reference, it needs to be based on what you already know and your programing level.  Jeff is comparing Oranges to Grape Fruit, they have a lot incommon but their target audience is fundamentally different.  In summation Please Add color to your publications we are a pack of spoiled developers that demand no less!  Further more I certainly hope prose  is not dead I for one stopped picking out books based on the number of pretty pictures they contained in Junior High.

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Should You Bother Tracking Bugs?

Best Brains published an article on why bugs should not be tracked.

Why Bugs should not be Tracked

I don't think they are joking but I think Lars rational is definitely a consultants overly simplistic/marcom spin.

What do you think?

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Posts tagged Ssd at Engadget

Cool add a 32 GB Solid State Drive to your Dell Latitude for around $550.  I would love to see windows and Visual studio running off of this little guy.

Link to Posts tagged Ssd at Engadget

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Watch Your Back

If I knew enough I wouldn't trust my CPA, but I would like to highlight the fact that we do sometimes play Russian roulette with our money. 

Say you are an intuit Turbo Tax users just look at the mess that awaited you if you filed last minute.

Why you build for peak load,

Last-minute payers using Intuit software swamp e-filing servers,

TurboTax e-filing woes draw customer ire

Intuit Response #1- Not so good

I think Intuits vp is a little snippy when commenting on Dennis's Blog:

You are correct in that if you have zero capital gain/loss from the ESPP transaction, it is not showing on Schedule D. Although the calculations and tax liability are correctly computed, the fact that transaction is not reported on Schedule D may cause a reconciliation error at the IRS (difference between sales reported by broker and sales reported on Sch D). We believe this error crept in during one of our updates this season and we are tracking it down.

We will be providing an update as soon as possible to correct the reporting issue. I don’t have a specific date, but I know the team is working on it now.

Additionally, I’m skeptical that you would have no gain or loss on the sale of ESPP stock. In all the company plans that I’ve seen, employees normally have a nominal fee on the sale (something like a $5 fee). If you really don’t have any fees either on the sale or purchase, here is how I would suggest you workaround the issue. Simply enter sales proceeds $0.01 less than the actual amount(for example, enter $9,999.99 instead of $10,000). Or simply enter $0.01 in the box for purchase commissions/costs. This one cent difference will trigger the reporting and not have any impact on your tax liability.

I hope this information helps and I appreciate your bringing this issue to our attention.

Bob Meighan
VP, TurboTax

 

Now I have to admit at least you could file,  If you had chosen Tango from H&R Block they have a minor bug, you cannot efile.  At least they offer a simple workaround, print out your tax return and mail it( how old school).

 Known bug: HRblock.com’s Tango cannot actually e-file my taxes!

albeit it this error message may have been the bug according to one commenter

Hi Mark…thanks for checking out Tango! This is – I’m the Tango product manager, and I wanted to follow up with you about your account. Your account, along with 6 others, experienced a hic-up in the e-file messaging that we communicated- basically the reject message you saw wasn’t the right message. I assure you that the file submitted to the IRS was exactly what you entered in the product, and the reject message was related to something else on your return. (So everyone knows…Tango is setup to e-file and just like most tax products almost all returns filed are accepted when e-filed…)

We recognized this issue and contacted all users who experienced this…unfortunately you beat us to the punch and called us first. My apologies that we weren’t better equipped to handle the case when you called in. This issue has been resolved. Since I’m sure you don’t want the details of your situation outlined here, I’ll contact you separately to walk through the specifics of your return.

I did want you to know that we saw your post and we really do take these issues to heart—everything you mentioned has either already been addressed or is in the pipeline for the next release. At H&R Block we’re passionate about our customers, what you have to say, and the experience you have! This is just the beginning for Tango—we’re already well underway on version 2. I promise that next year we’ll knock your socks off!

 Much more friendly then Intuits VP go figure. 

I don't see any thing for TaxCut but I just take that to mean they are over do for a nasty error report.  Seriously some times we expect far to much from our software.  100%accurate 100% of the time.  Keep in mind that these are an ever changing set of requirements so no two years are the same which so helps your bug regression.

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Utah bans Keyword Advertising.

Utah, They have a brilliant legislature.  Utah recently banned Keyword advertising on trademarked terms.  I am sure Microsoft and Google look forward to dealing with this.  The full stories are here and here.

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Cool Language, But How Is Its Performance?

I have no idea what Twitter is, I don't want to know.  But I hear they have scalability issues which raises a question at what time does a love for a language/platform interfere with your core business goals?  further more when should we as developers care?  Twitter seems to be infatuated with Ruby on Rails to the extent that Ruby is slow causes performance and scalability issues but Twitter seems to stick with it.

5 Question Interview with Twitter Developer Alex Payne

 

How has Ruby on Rails been holding up to the increased load?

By various metrics Twitter is the biggest Rails site on the net right
now. Running on Rails has forced us to deal with scaling issues -
issues that any growing site eventually contends with - far sooner
than I think we would on another framework.

The common wisdom in the Rails community at this time is that scaling
Rails is a matter of cost: just throw more CPUs at it. The problem
is that more instances of Rails (running as part of a Mongrel
cluster, in our case) means more requests to your database. At this
point in time there’s no facility in Rails to talk to more than one
database at a time. The solutions to this are caching the hell out
of everything and setting up multiple read-only slave databases,
neither of which are quick fixes to implement. So it’s not just
cost, it’s time, and time is that much more precious when people can[’t]
reach your site.

None of these scaling approaches are as fun and easy as developing
for Rails. All the convenience methods and syntactical sugar that
makes Rails such a pleasure for coders ends up being absolutely
punishing, performance-wise. Once you hit a certain threshold of
traffic, either you need to strip out all the costly neat stuff that
Rails does for you (RJS, ActiveRecord, ActiveSupport, etc.) or move
the slow parts of your application out of Rails, or both.

It’s also worth mentioning that there shouldn’t be doubt in anybody’s
mind at this point that Ruby itself is slow. It’s great that people
are hard at work on faster implementations of the language, but right
now, it’s tough. If you’re looking to deploy a big web application
and you’re language-agnostic, realize that the same operation in Ruby
will take less time in Python. All of us working on Twitter are big
Ruby fans, but I think it’s worth being frank that this isn’t one of
those relativistic language issues. Ruby is slow.

 

Poor Ruby Slow But cool.  Twitter does seem to be looking for a Senior Engineer so maybe they will find their way off of the tracks and back into the boring but scalable world of DotNet and Java.  Job postings via blogs are interesting.  Especial when your end users us it. 

Anonymous said...

Could someone please take this job? The current team obviously has no idea how to solve twitter's scaling issues, despite saying they were working on it a week ago.

Even if Twitter finds some one tomorrow they are looking at months to correct this issue(if they are lucky).  I wonder how many, if any users this will cost them.

Does time to market matter more then performance and or usability?  It seems to me that having a lot of pissed off customers is not a good thing.  Assuming Twitter's developers knew they had issues when they started with this architecture.

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IBM Offering Origination Services

BrokerUnivers reports

IBM Offering Origination Services

IBM has formed a new business unit that will specialize in mortgage origination services. IBM Lender Business Process Services Inc. "will enable mortgage lenders to replace the fixed costs associated with typical loan fulfillment operations with a variable cost framework," the company said. Services it will offer include loan application, underwriting, processing, vendor management, document preparation and loan closing, according to IBM.

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iWars: Ipod VS Zune, May The Best Device Win

This was just to funny.

 

Thanks Steve

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Interesting Subprime Reading For A Saturday

Some Interesting posts regarding Subprime.

Tim O'Reily: Subprime Loans Glossary

I am not sure how Automated Underwriting really played in the over evaluation of the Housing Market.  I believe this swift ramp up was the result of low interest rates backed by very creative loan programs especially Stated Asset Stated Income or ( liar loan as the washingtonpost's Steven Pearlsteing describes it.).

The washingtonpost has 'No Money Down' Falls Flat

I don't agree with item D Piggyback loans were not (at first) a means to no down payment but rather a way to escape Mortgage Insurance.  One could argue that it was a lie to the Investor because there was more then 80% loan to value relating to the borrowers actual liability.

The New York Times offers The Subprime Loan Machine

Little bit of history relating to how AU came to Subprime and its ramifications.  Although A paper ala Freddie Mac, Fannie Mae had AU years before.

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The Daily Show's clip about the Daily Show on YouTube on, YouTube!

In a slight case of irony and humor you can watch the Daily Show making fun of the law suit between Viacom and Google.

or watch it on YouTube which makes this clip even more humorous. Thanks lonelyjew14

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This Old Code on Google search

Hmm,

The Google oddity if you search for This Old Code my site does not seem to be listed, nor is "This" searched for.  When you search for "This Old Code" still no joy.  Now if you happen to take out the spaces thisoldcode my site renders at the top.  How very odd and annoying.  And if you ever search for microfisch This Old Code does list as the 15th  site and Microfisch.com doesn't show up at all worse Google is pretty sure you should correct your spelling to microfiche.  Now I may have ulterior motives for this post, maybe if my site has enough This Old Code it will show up in Google's page rank.  Only time will tell.

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Has Google Dropped the Subscriber count?

I have noticed the Feedfetcher-Google; (+http://www.google.com/feedfetcher.html) user agent in my log files.  Last week it would state the number of subscribers.  So does any one know where has that information gone to?

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Following a Search Spam Money Trail with Fiddler

Microsoft has an interesting site were they followed the money for search spam, using Fiddler.

 

Strider Search Ranger: War on Search Spam: Shifting the Battleground by “Following the Money”

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Ah Yes but ASK.com Sucks!

Irask

Ask's little guerilla marketing campaign information-revolution-org seems to be back firing. 

My suggestion before you go after Google. Ensure your search is as good or better then Google.  Unless you just wanted to make every one laugh.

 

 

 

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This Website Now Certified

I  have now passed the CodingHorror Certification Program

after testing my blog engine with the following steps:

  1. Compile your application code. Getting the latest version of any recent code changes from other developers is purely optional and not a requirement for certification.
  2. Launch the application or website that has just been compiled.
  3. Cause one code path in the code you're checking in to be executed. The preferred way to do this is with ad-hoc manual testing of the simplest possible case for the feature in question. Omit this step if the code change was less than five lines, or if, in the developer's professional opinion, the code change could not possibly result in an error.
  4. Check the code changes into your version control system.

 

Now I to can proudly display my new logo:

 

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Would you like a HELOC with that?

Wal-Mart Now has the right to offer mortgages and debit cards.  I don't know.  I just don't know.

Full story.  A home loan from Wal-Mart?

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Viacom to sue Google and YouTube

It looks like Google pissed off Viacom by not preventing more of their content from being posted to YouTube after they requested a 100 odd thousand clips be removed. 

Link to BBC NEWS | Business | Viacom to sue Google and YouTube

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Sometimes You Wonder Is DasBlog Worth It?

Its events like this that make me wonder why I run my own DasBlog engine and not some Wordpress or Blogger site.

2007-03-12 19:12:51 PM
450
PingbackServerError:
System.Net.WebException: The underlying connection was closed: Could not establish trust relationship for the SSL/TLS secure channel. ---> System.Security.Authentication.AuthenticationException: The remote certificate is invalid according to the validation procedure.
at System.Net.Security.SslState.StartSendAuthResetSignal(ProtocolToken message, AsyncProtocolRequest asyncRequest, Exception exception)
at System.Net.Security.SslState.CheckCompletionBeforeNextReceive(ProtocolToken message, AsyncProtocolRequest asyncRequest)
at System.Net.Security.SslState.StartSendBlob(Byte[] incoming, Int32 count, AsyncProtocolRequest asyncRequest)
at System.Net.Security.SslState.ProcessReceivedBlob(Byte[] buffer, Int32 count, AsyncProtocolRequest asyncRequest)
at System.Net.Security.SslState.StartReadFrame(Byte[] buffer, Int32 readBytes, AsyncProtocolRequest asyncRequest)
at System.Net.Security.SslState.StartReceiveBlob(Byte[] buffer, AsyncProtocolRequest asyncRequest)
at System.Net.Security.SslState.CheckCompletionBeforeNextReceive(ProtocolToken message, AsyncProtocolRequest asyncRequest)
at System.Net.Security.SslState.StartSendBlob(Byte[] incoming, Int32 count, AsyncProtocolRequest asyncRequest)
at System.Net.Security.SslState.ProcessReceivedBlob(Byte[] buffer, Int32 count, AsyncProtocolRequest asyncRequest)
at System.Net.Security.SslState.StartReadFrame(Byte[] buffer, Int32 readBytes, AsyncProtocolRequest asyncRequest)
at System.Net.Security.SslState.StartReceiveBlob(Byte[] buffer, AsyncProtocolRequest asyncRequest)
at System.Net.Security.SslState.CheckCompletionBeforeNextReceive(ProtocolToken message, AsyncProtocolRequest asyncRequest)
at System.Net.Security.SslState.StartSendBlob(Byte[] incoming, Int32 count, AsyncProtocolRequest asyncRequest)
at System.Net.Security.SslState.ProcessReceivedBlob(Byte[] buffer, Int32 count, AsyncProtocolRequest asyncRequest)
at System.Net.Security.SslState.StartReadFrame(Byte[] buffer, Int32 readBytes, AsyncProtocolRequest asyncRequest)
at System.Net.Security.SslState.StartReceiveBlob(Byte[] buffer, AsyncProtocolRequest asyncRequest)
at System.Net.Security.SslState.CheckCompletionBeforeNextReceive(ProtocolToken message, AsyncProtocolRequest asyncRequest)
at System.Net.Security.SslState.StartSendBlob(Byte[] incoming, Int32 count, AsyncProtocolRequest asyncRequest)
at System.Net.Security.SslState.ProcessReceivedBlob(Byte[] buffer, Int32 count, AsyncProtocolRequest asyncRequest)
at System.Net.Security.SslState.StartReadFrame(Byte[] buffer, Int32 readBytes, AsyncProtocolRequest asyncRequest)
at System.Net.Security.SslState.StartReceiveBlob(Byte[] buffer, AsyncProtocolRequest asyncRequest)
at System.Net.Security.SslState.CheckCompletionBeforeNextReceive(ProtocolToken message, AsyncProtocolRequest asyncRequest)
at System.Net.Security.SslState.StartSendBlob(Byte[] incoming, Int32 count, AsyncProtocolRequest asyncRequest)
at System.Net.Security.SslState.ProcessReceivedBlob(Byte[] buffer, Int32 count, AsyncProtocolRequest asyncRequest)
at System.Net.Security.SslState.StartReadFrame(Byte[] buffer, Int32 readBytes, AsyncProtocolRequest asyncRequest)
at System.Net.Security.SslState.StartReceiveBlob(Byte[] buffer, AsyncProtocolRequest asyncRequest)
at System.Net.Security.SslState.CheckCompletionBeforeNextReceive(ProtocolToken message, AsyncProtocolRequest asyncRequest)
at System.Net.Security.SslState.StartSendBlob(Byte[] incoming, Int32 count, AsyncProtocolRequest asyncRequest)
at System.Net.Security.SslState.ForceAuthentication(Boolean receiveFirst, Byte[] buffer, AsyncProtocolRequest asyncRequest)
at System.Net.Security.SslState.ProcessAuthentication(LazyAsyncResult lazyResult)
at System.Net.TlsStream.CallProcessAuthentication(Object state)
at System.Threading.ExecutionContext.runTryCode(Object userData)
at System.Runtime.CompilerServices.RuntimeHelpers.ExecuteCodeWithGuaranteedCleanup(TryCode code, CleanupCode backoutCode, Object userData)
at System.Threading.ExecutionContext.RunInternal(ExecutionContext executionContext, ContextCallback callback, Object state)
at System.Threading.ExecutionContext.Run(ExecutionContext executionContext, ContextCallback callback, Object state)
at System.Net.TlsStream.ProcessAuthentication(LazyAsyncResult result)
at System.Net.TlsStream.Write(Byte[] buffer, Int32 offset, Int32 size)
at System.Net.PooledStream.Write(Byte[] buffer, Int32 offset, Int32 size)
at System.Net.ConnectStream.WriteHeaders(Boolean async)
--- End of inner exception stack trace ---
at System.Net.HttpWebRequest.GetResponse()
at CookComputing.XmlRpc.XmlRpcClientProtocol.GetWebResponse(WebRequest request)
at CookComputing.XmlRpc.XmlRpcClientProtocol.Invoke(Object clientObj, String methodName, Object[] parameters)
at CookComputing.XmlRpc.XmlRpcClientProtocol.Invoke(String MethodName, Object[] Parameters)
at newtelligence.DasBlog.Runtime.Proxies.PingbackClientProxy.ping(String sourceUri, String targetUri)
at newtelligence.DasBlog.Runtime.BlogDataServiceXml.Pingback(String sourceUri, String pingbackService, String pingbackTarget, String entryTitle)
while processing http://thisoldcode.microfisch.com/PermaLink,guid,830a2557-66ad-48e2-ae67-16e2beaccd71.aspx,http://blogs.zdnet.com/microsoft/?p=315.

When DasBlog throws up, it really does a number on your shoes.

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Are You Afraid To Publish Your Code?

Is it possible sites like Worse Than Failure do more harm then good to our Development community?   I caught and episode of  TWit today  and an interesting idea emerged could the open source community be stiffed because programmers are worried they would be publicly ridiculed for what they publish?  I know its hard to believe with episodes such as our recent FizzBuzz: the Programmers's Stairway to Heaven were almost we see almost all readers opening them selves to public ridicule by posting adhoc solutions to FizzBuzz 

While  The daily WTF is fun, it must strike fear into the hearts of programmers everywhere what if my code/project shows up?   We've all had our moments of writing poor/lazy code.  What happens when this gets out, do programmers have ego's to damage?  It seems the typical programmer is quite the  introvert.  So what would this type of public mockery affect you?  Would you keep your ideas to your self? would you avoid help to avoid criticism?

Its not only Large web sites that lambaste the programmers for humor.  No you need only browse over to your favorite forum where you can see  people ridiculed for asking questions some one else has deemed childish or stupid.  What breads this type of hostility in our community?  Is it just human nature or some thing else?

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Do Financial pros need their own myspace?

Mary  Foley blogs Microsoft builds a ‘MySpace for financial pros’

I'll be interested to see whether this site gains much traction. Corporate controllers and accountants don't strike me as folks who have a lot of time or interest to blog, chat and share photos and play lists.

It seems they do if you look at Mortgage Grapevine.  Many people are contributing questions and answers it looks like they may have a need for their space.  The real question is will  Microsoft's(Microsoft Dynamics Live Beta Community) start up site have the traction to draw traffic away from the Grapevine and BrokerOutpost?

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I can never decide.

VS Live is the best opportunity I get to learn Microsoft's new technology.  There are to many tracts and I would like to attend them all.  Today I am trying to pick a pre-Conference

Build Distributed Object-Oriented Apps in .NET 3.0

or

SQL Server 2005: Power to the Developer

or

Making the Tough Choices: Selecting the Right Techniques for Your Application

All very interesting but none match verywell to what I am working on.  I think its time to pick of a coin and start fliping. 

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Bad week for Vonage

The BBC reports today

Internet phone company Vonage has lost a patent case that could threaten phone services for its 2.2 million customers. Full Story

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No more RAM for you.

 

Jeff wrote about x84's dirty little secret. Coding Horror: Dude, Where's My 4 Gigabytes of RAM? I feel your pain Jeff.  I have a Intel Core 2  Dual at home but chose to run Vista 32.  I expect a richer driver life over there.  But it hurts to see 500mb of my ram missing in action every day(The thought that I simply cannot max out the ram on this system drives me nuts as well).  I don't think we will ever see good drivers on 64 bit systems Microsoft has set a high bar, One that is not worth jumping over if your a camera, scanner,printer or mouse manufacture.  Right now 64bit is a server and geek thing.  When Mom and Dad need 5gig of ram then we might start seeing "Good Drivers"(I don't know if such a thing has ever existed).

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What Technology Books Do You Read?

O'reilly Posted an interesting graph of 06 vs 07 book sales.


It's interesting that there is so much Java..

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Open Letter To Lutz Roeder

Luts,

If you read this please, when you release a new version of Reflector include some type of change log.  I would really appreciate knowing what is different from one version to another.  We are now at version 5.0.5.0 with out an note as to what has changed nor any formal notification.  Perhaps a simple blog entry to feed the huddled masses?

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BBC NEWS "Net firms tackle Vista headache"

 I found this article on the BBC interesting:

Windows Vista is causing problems for some new PC owners hooking up their machine to a broadband connection.

One memorable quote:

One reader was warned by Virgin Media that it would be "weeks" before its software worked with Vista.

Come on Virgin, its not like you didn't have close to a year to get ready for this,  You are after all a ISP didn't you ever stop to look at the pretty new OS? and test your install pack?  Seriously ISP such as AOL are such vultures I find it hard to believe that they would not update their freebie install disks before vista computers hit the market.  How would you ever convince some one to buy AOL if they didn't get a free disk with they computer?

Virgin:

"We can get people online without the installation disc," he added. "It's not that it does not work, it's just the disc."

So Virgin sat on their lorals and now are paying the price in support calls.( I wonder what the average time to answer if for their support. )  But it gets better support has placed a help page.

The spokesman said BT had created a help page devoted to Vista to make it easier for people to get their PC connected.

I believes when I can read a help page with out broadband connection that....

BBC NEWS, Net firms tackle Vista headache

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I thought I knew what a strong password was

Strong Passwords for WinQual:

Password Requirements: Contain 8 - 16 characters with both upper and lower case (e.g., a-z, A-Z). Have digits and punctuation/symbol characters as well as letters e.g., 0-9, !@#$%^&*()_+|~-=\`{}[]:";'<>?,./). One or more of the characters from the second (2) to sixth (6) positions must not be an alphabet character e.g. between A-Z or a-z.

I wonder if I will remember it in the morning

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Google knows your language based on IP address.

Allison over at O'Reilly Radar wrote a little note to Google for the international feature.

By Allison Randal

Dear Google,

I applaud the enlightened international perspective that led you to provide your site in multiple languages and to detect a user's country and language preferences by their IP address. You'd be surprised how much French I remember from studying it as a child, and how much Dutch I can read as a result of studying Afrikaans the past 3 months. However, perhaps you should consider providing an option to change languages, or set a language preference, so your users aren't all forced to be so linguistically nimble when traveling. If there is such an option, I haven't been able to find it yet while navigating my account preferences in Dutch. I'm curious to experience Google Docs & Spreadsheets in Japanese, but maybe not that curious.

Love,
Allison

I post this as proof.  "Google guesses your language based on your IP address." and you doubted me!

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FizzBuzz Round Two

Jeff Atwood over at Coding Horror is at it once more FizzBuzz: the Programmer's Stairway to Heaven In His second blog post he left out the FizzBuzz test so as not to distract his programmer brethren.  As with the last article Jeff addresses the surprisingly high ratio of weak programmers to interview candidates.

Jeff once again asserts his readers superiority

The whole point of the original article was to think about why we have to ask people to write FizzBuzz. The mechanical part of writing and solving FizzBuzz, however cleverly, is irrelevant. Any programmer who cares enough to read programming blogs is already far beyond such a simple problem. FizzBuzz isn't meant for us. It's the ones we can't reach-- the programmers who don't read anything-- that we're forced to give the FizzBuzz test to

In yesterdays post Why Can't Programmers.. Program? I thought Jeff ment if you read  programing blogs, you are competent.

I now realize Jeff is just trying not to offend his readers. 

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Uhm I think I like broke Myspace.. or something.

After numerous articles about MySpace's scalability it would appear the camels back broke today.

Perhaps not  the best message to great hundreds of thousands of teenagers after school. 

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Google noise

In the past Eric Sink has discuss the idea that there is some thing wrong with Google when his name comes up before Eric Clampton(who ever that is.)  I have to agree. I have a small blog it's just wrong that a Google search for 2008 epa estimates is the first search result.  I know there is a delicate art form to constructing a Google query to limit this noise but..  There is something flawed with the system and we need to fix it.  Maybe the search game isn't over, Yahoo, Search.MSN and Google really don't provide search results but rather link results.  I think there is still room for a new search king to emerge.

Comments [0]

What can Programmers... Do?

Jeff Atwood at codinghorror.com writes Programmers can't.. Program? 

In comment Jeff says

Any programmer who cares enough to read programming blogs is already far beyond such a simple problem. It's the ones we can't rerach-- the programmers who don't read anything-- that we have to give the FizzBuzz test to.

winch brings to mind.

Phillip Haack at Haacked.com response Why Can't Programmers.. Read?

Trouble is there are many Specs that are not well constructed just as there are many Developers that need a little better reading comprehension. Why this idea that blog authors and readers are some how better then others in this industry?  Where is your proof?  There are quite a few wanabes that hang around the proverbial water cooler trying to blend in because they want it.  This is the reason you see Programmers that cannot program.  Look around programing forms or myspace.  Jeff also  observed.

it's amusing to me that any reference to a programming problem-- in this case, FizzBuzz-- immediately prompts developers to feverishly begin posting solutions.

Why do "pProgrammers" feel the need to prove themselves?  Is it because any one that uses a formula in Excel can self proclame themselves a "Programer"? 

At any rate what we are left with are a group of "Programers" that can't read, can't write but are desperate to prove otherwise to the world, typicaly in the most public forum they can find!

Did I miss something when did it become popular to be a Programer?  Were's the glamor?

Comments [2]

How do you know when its time to turn off the computer?

I have found a new low to my procrastination. I have reached the end of the Internet.

Ok people blog something I don't want EOTI as my home page for ever.

Comments [0]

The Internet as the Social Network

Question What is a social network? 

Google Says:

Definitions of Social Network on the Web:

  • The personal or professional set of relationships between individuals. Social networks represent both a collection of ties between people and the strength of those ties. Often used as a measure of social “connectedness”, recognising social networks assists in determining how information moves throughout groups, and how trust can be established and fostered.
    www.parliament.vic.gov.au/sarc/E-Democracy/Final_Report/Glossary.htm
  • refers to structural characteristics such as proximity to others, frequency of social contact and the type of relationship (eg spouse, confidant, relative, friend, group).
    www.therubins.com/geninfo/Definit.htm
  • A web of interconnected people who directly or indirectly interact with or influence the student and family. May include but is not limited to family, teachers and other school staff, friends, neighbors, community contacts, and professional support.
    rrtcpbs.fmhi.usf.edu/rrtcpbsweb/glossary.htm
  • A social network is a map of the relationships between individuals, indicating the ways in which they are connected through various social familiarities ranging from casual acquaintance to close familial bonds. The term was first coined in 1954 by J. A. Barnes (in: Class and Committees in a Norwegian Island Parish, "Human Relations").
    en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Social_network

So what purpose does MySpace or the others with this type of social networking website format really provide that a personal blog would not?  After all those that run the Internet, you and me the small development community really isn't the whole of the Internet our Social Network?  For example take a look at what happens when Dare Obasanjo nags about functionality in Google Reader and Feed burner.  Blog Rants as Bug Reports.  So you can notice that with the advent of RSS and RSS aggregator like Google Reader our little Geekdom has cemented itself.  Developers of feedburner and Google subscribe to Dare and now their respected peer, thus they respond promptly his criticism.

I wouldn't call WordPress a Social Network but it does provide the bare free foundation.  You can start a conversation with the world add resource pages. Is there any thing missing from this equation except some one specifically telling you "you are not part of a social network called the Internet."?

Last night I asked do I really exist without any readers?  But I know I have at least three constant reader Google, MSN Search and Yahoo.  So perhaps the better question is do you really exist if you don't blog?  If you don't there is no real potential for your view points and insight to propagate through the Internet and to others in our little Geekdom.  I think blogging for Geeks is the equivalent to all of the more "Social networking" that is done in other businesses ie lunches and dinner parties.  But that's just my two since what do you think? and yes a blog with comments enabled begets conversation.

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Do I exist?

Seth recently asked:

If no one reads your post, does it exist?

What do most people get out of blogging? After all, most blogs are virtually unread by outsiders...

The act of writing a blog changes people, especially business people. The first thing it does is change posture. Once you realize that no HAS to read your blog, that you can't MAKE them read your blog, you approach writing with humility and view readers with gratitude. The second thing it does is force you to be clear. If you write something that's confusing or in shorthand, you fail.

Respectful and clear. That's a lot to get out of something that doesn't take much time.

Or maybe I just like like the sound of crickets. After all silence is golden right?

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Are Data Structures still relevant?

Alfred noted in a post today Computer Science and Data Structures how many students are not studying data structures.  Maybe there is no more need for this after all all you need programmers and developers to do in business is wire up all the different components.  Kind of like a plumber its not as if they need to know any thing about their material they just make connections from one fixture to the next.  In the end your toilet gets water and expels water to the sewer.  So why would we need to teach students this basic computer science idiom.  Now they just open C# or VB and drag some buttons on a form drag a data table onto the form.  Heavens any Neanderthal can do it.  I am not sure how you tell the educated from then sheep.  Though I enjoy my foray into managed code and the joy that is DotNet.  I know my roots from Fortran to C.  I don't think a computer science degree makes the developer but does your business what some one who plays a developer on TV?
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What is XM radio worth?

4.6 billion dollars evedently.

Reuters reports Sirius plans to buy XM in $4.6 billion stock deal.  Its so nice to say I called that one.

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Robert got me thinking about school

Scoble has me thinking "Note to Steve Jobs: unions are only half of school's problems"  I agree with Steve "No amount of technology will improve education"  I think its insane to push computers into the class room, this device is a tool no different a hammer.  It does not help you think only help you do.  So yes you can have as many tools as you want they will not help you learn to learn.  Now Unions, I like unions and I know they have problems but they are not the root of all evil as some like to make out.

Don Doge Thinks its incentives and he is dead wrong.  Teachers don't choose to teach for the money, ideally the wages should help cover the cost of living and Unions help prevent schools from firing senor teachers to hire cheaper fresh out of college staff.

I do tend to agree with Giovanni Rodriguez Dumb Moment: Steve Jobs Demonizes Teacher Unions and Are Teachers Being Paid Adequately?

Public education is complicated, its politics at its whose, every state and every city want to do it different.  Its a  pipe dream really.  How can you offer equal education for all when we are truly not the same?  How can we do this efficiently and economically when ever school has a different set of text books and a different set of lesson plans.  That doesn't even cover the fact that most of our poor scores come from at risk schools ESL schools who's children don't stay for long or are put/promoted into grade level base on age not merit.  Don't criticize the teacher all they can do is teach the willing.  If the principle promotes the F student because, and the principle does not remove trouble makers.  How much teaching can really get done.

Update Alfred Thompson chimed in with People Who Know Nothing About Schools Telling Us How to Fix Them.  I fully agree.

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Saving Face

Finding a way to use system.io.compression for zip archives
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What's In a Version Number, Anyway?

 

Link to Coding Horror: What's In a Version Number, Anyway?

I would agree with the contention that meaning full version names for the end user are best left to the year published. Point 2007.  But what then would you do if you have two releases Point 2007 sp1? could you sell a service pack?  Or perhaps Point 2007 R2.  I don't know what R2 stands for( Release 2).  At the very best this is not a question "developers" need be concerned with.  Strictly speaking Marketing will decide what "version" the user should see on the splash screen.  When it comes to the internal versions what Dev, QA and Support refer I like (Major).(Minor).(Full year).(days since January 1st).  Don't ask about two builds in a day :)

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Not statistically distinguishable from zero

Does P2P effect legal music sales? 

P2P effect on legal music sales "not statistically distinguishable from zero"

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MaxiVista Vista Blues

 I heard Mark sign the MaxiVista Vista Blues today. And had to respond

Mark Miller - Vista, I'm so Pista (part I)

 

I love MaxiVista, but I think they are using WDDM as to much of an excuse. The product tanks under xp when you try to use WPF (if you ever want to see your computer on acid. just try WPF and MaxiVista together, seriously you could sell tickets.)
Any way I digress MaxiVista will be outa busina if they don't come up with some type of solution(direct X). And thus I have given up the dream that is three monitors. My poor shiny Vista Computer will forever look funny with just two :(

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New Source Control In My Life.

Well It's official VSS and I have broke up.  I can't say I am really parting with any good memories and I really don't know what I saw in VSS to begin with other then convenience.  No more late nights trying to recover work that VSS misplaced no more slow VPN conversations that made my life so stressfully, I just can't take that kind of abuse any more. 

It's rough right now, we're separating what belongs to who, VSS is having a hard time letting go.  Visual Studio is being an enabler for VSS, but what can I do.  I've found a replacement already Source Gear Vault.  Much better. and its not just a fresh UI like VSS tried in 2005.  Vault has some really winning qualities. 

I am looking forward to my life with Vault, I think every thing is going to be ok.

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Component Vendors, are they all Idiots?

Why do I so dislike ComponentOne and Preemptive?

 

c:\Development\SourceControl\Point Projects\Point\main\ReminderWnd.h(223) : error C3624: 'k8': the compiler cannot find this type; it is defined in the module 'OLE32.DLL'
StdAfx.cpp
StdAfx.cpp(0) : warning C4945: 'DotfuscatorAttribute' : cannot import symbol from 'c:\development\sourcecontrol\point projects\third party\componentone\main\c1.c1zip.dll': as 'DotfuscatorAttribute' has already been imported from another assembly 'c:\development\sourcecontrol\point projects\third party\componentone\main\c1.win.c1report.dll'
StdAfx.cpp(0) : see declaration of 'DotfuscatorAttribute'
first seen type is used; re-order imported assemblies to use the current type
StdAfx.cpp(0) : warning C4945: 'DotfuscatorAttribute' : cannot import symbol from 'c:\development\sourcecontrol\point projects\third party\componentone\main\c1.win.c1flexgrid.dll': as 'DotfuscatorAttribute' has already been imported from another assembly 'c:\development\sourcecontrol\point projects\third party\componentone\main\c1.win.c1report.dll'
StdAfx.cpp(0) : see declaration of 'DotfuscatorAttribute'
first seen type is used; re-order imported assemblies to use the current type
c:\Development\SourceControl\Point Projects\Point\main\ReminderWnd.h(223) : error C3624: 'k8': the compiler cannot find this type; it is defined in the module 'OLE32.DLL'

 

Its that kind of crap.  I am not stealing your dime adozen controls I paid for it and what to use it.  Attention component vendors, Do not obfuscate your work. 

Nsoftware is almost worse since you have to dirty your build system with there install in order for licensing to work.

 

Clearly I realize that companies would like to protect their intellectual property.  But seriously I could still defeat the obfuscation. Why bother if you want to be scared stay out of DOT NET land and stick to assembly where no one can decompile your work.  If your a component vendor you should know obfuscating libraries is nothing but a recipe for disaster.  Since I use Doffuscator for obfuscation I know, It sucks at library mode.  Maybe you should try some thing else or nothing.  Why do you feel compelled to make my life difficult? did I not give you enough money?

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MicroFisch or Microfiche

I see from time to time a Google search for MicroFisch, now this is most likely some one unable to spell microfiche.  What boggles my mind (and no I cannot spell) Is that there are companies that sell microfisch and not microfiche(5600 ish).  Now does any one know what a MicroFisch is?  Other then my domain name.  If your not sure of the spelling and your spell check is no help type it in Google and see what you get, typically Google will tell you what you ment to search for better then any spell checker I have used.

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Microsoft MISMO and Excel

It's funny this idea that word and excel are good for things such as LOS or Closing/Servicing systems.
Take a look at Financial Services OBA

At the very least the diagrams are interesting.

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What I think is wrong with Wikipedia

By now everyone  has heard that  Microsoft was going to  pay someone to update Wikipedia entries,  at this time I don't think they did any thing wrong.  If you read the Wikipedia articles many of them have a slant and its a sin for some one with first hand knowledge to make corrections.  I have seen the Wikipedia content zares at work, adding an article  for dasBlog, and one for adding a link to dasblog to the Weblog Software article.  Take a look, I'll wait.

Now tell me how to 3 deletes win over 5 keeps? This is a serious problem many people are starting to rely on Wikipedias data, Its almost like Google where if you or your product does not show up it just doesn't exist.  Yet these self appointed hall monitors are completely unaccountable for the inaccurate information that they allow to be published.  In fact it may be worse considering Wikipedia's preference is for inaccurate information over expert accurate information.  Wikipedia is a flawed resource which is a real danger.  with luck some one will sue and put an end to it.( it was a neat idea and very promising.)

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But The Cat Came Back The Very Next Day

Let me start by saying I hate InstallShield,  this probably isn't fair there was a time when I liked them back in the day when the name of the product matched the name of the company they were small and focused.  They installed software and it made life easy.  Now MacoVision has different ideas and IMHO ruined the InstallShield the product. 

I started the other day by reading Shahine's blog regarding InstallShield updater,  he found a nice resource to remove this product.  The trouble is, InstallShield updater keeps coming back.  Case inpoint yesterday evening I saw Steve's post about Nikon's RAW codex in vista so having a Nikon D50 I went and happily down loaded and installed the codex.  This morning I see that installation has once again turned on Install Shield Updater.  I tend to agree with Shahine I hate updaters the only one I don't really mind is windows update (in vista it's almost nice).  On the other hand I have to give credit to MacoVision the idea of one common update framework/resource is compelling(They charge an arm and leg for it though).  But These things should never be silently installed behind the users back.  Getting your customers to stay uptodate is a very difficult problem, I don't think a unique solution per company is the right choice but InstallShield updater sure comes up wanting.

 

ps,

This was my first post from windows live writer.  My initial impression is the spell check could be much better.

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Firefox my mouse do not get along

Firefox does not seem to like my Logitech MX 1000 Laser mouse.  It refuses to  follow the forward and back  mouse buttons.  I find this very frustrating.  Has any one else seen this, or better yet talked some sense into Firefox and got the mouse working with it?

I found a solution thanks to Don't Back down

I got the new Logitech driver (I prefer unobtrusive generic drivers when posible)(I wonder how the XP driver will work on Vista).

You can also try remapping the forwared and back buttions to ALT+LEFT and ALT+RIGHT

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No more Default Gateway on the VPN

   If you like to work at home and connect to a Corporate VPN sometimes it’s the small things that annoy you like not being able to print to your network printer.  For some reason printing documents out on the office printer while I sit at home does nothing for my productivity.  Thankfully Steve Harman has found a way to route out the VPN's default Gateway

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VS 2005 Build to the prior frame work

Why is it possible to target a different version of the DotNet framework? and is it a good idea? If so why can we not do this for the MFC library as well?
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What have I been doing today

I have a new front door!
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There is always someone who thinks they have a better way.

Mike walker has found a new competitor for Calyx and Ellie Mae.  Its groovy that they are a 2.0 app, really.  It just so doesn't matter.  Just like it doesn't really matter that Encompass is on 2.0. or Byte. It doesn't even matter that Calyx has been using 3.0.

LoanAce is free at the moment so we"ll have to see what the pricing structure turns out to be.  I recall Encompass not charging when it fist arrived as well. 

Typically when the market gets tight companies look for technology to make them more efficient.  They tend to buy when its slow rather then when they are busy.  How much that translates into small broker shops addopting new technology we have yet to see.  They are going to have an interesting challenge with 4 solid LOS systems already on the market.

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Google Finance and Sirius

I am finding Google Finance very useful looking at Sirius I notice an MSN money story "Sirius Adds CNN to Online Lineup"  I find it pathetic that I find this out second hand rather then directly on Sirius,  I don't think they get how to communicate with their listeners.  Some times an email should be used for more then just new letters and you cannot count on your listeners always having their radio on to here your news.  I admit I haven't been listening to Sirius this week rather NPR and KQED.  I would listen if they offered NPR or PRI via their online Player.

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Google Finance

Check out Finance a new beta offering from Google.  Its really to bad Google keeps their betas so hush hush, I Like this much better then Yahoo Finance but never would have known about it if it wasn't for Robert Scoble's blog entry.

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Defence or offence?

Remote controls, pelet guns and computers.
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Hmm MISMO and Microsoft

Since I couldn't comment on Mike's Blog I thought I would respond here regarding his post pertaining to Choosing a Loan Message Exchange Standard for Banking.

In defence of MISMO the new standards are in xsd not dtd.  Also MISMO is very good for a few specific Mortgage transactions.  Currently MISMO closing looks the best for use outside of a given transaction.  Also in regards to vendor adoption its quite poor compared to the FNMA format.(compared to IFX however, that's another story)

There is a lot I don't personally care for in MISMO but one on the most important things it provides our area is a common agreed upon vernacular.

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Microsoft's new old Idea

After long last Microsoft has finally released SQL 2005 Compact Edition (formerly known as SQL Mobile)download link.  The question to be answered is how it took so long to allow support outside of the mobile platform and why it took Microsoft so long to wake up and think this might be a good idea?  When I was looking for a light weight desktop Database I only saw one good prospect SQLite (which also had an update January 9).  At any rate its nice Microsoft has something better then Access DB  to offer Client side programmers.  If you want to compare SQLITE and SQL 2005 Compact Edition.  Also I have found a nice ADO.NET 2.0 data adapter for SQLITE at System.Data.SQLite.  Overall SQLite has been a nice little database that we haven't had any real issues with, unlike our Access db.

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How Not to sell software and how to pissoff your customer

Rick Strahl was complaining about component vendors poor selling techniques and I agree. His rant was inspired by Kevin Dente's post How NOT to sell software (Kevin got free license out of his post, oh the power of public forums.) 

I am also getting sick and tired of the licenses hoops we have jump through in order to install third party components on our DEV systems and the crap it entail to get them working on a build system.  I can't count the number of bugs filed from some novel approach to license control screwing up an end build.

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This is embarrassing

With one little mistake comes a nasty memory leak.  We found this in some of the code i wrote

CMenu* CLMI::GetLenderMenu(void)
{
    //test if lender should show up if not
    if ( !ShowLender() )
        return NULL;

    CMenu* clm = new CMenu();......


Sadly clm was never reclaimed, and MFC redraws the Main menu every time you blink so can you say bad :(

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Nothing new on the home front thought I would pass along some posts of intrest.

Since I am still working on my blog about what I did for my winter break I thought I would share a couple items that I noticed in this morning.

Alfred Thompson's Blog talks about an issue I think of whenever I hear Spec documentation is being designed without customer involvement. And I found Scott Gu's announcement that the new Yahoo Messenger is build with WPF and .net rather interesting.

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ATM network not very secure

I picked up this issue from Mike Walker blog  where he reports that the US Secret Service is calling the ATM system unsafe after reading this post and the original report from Bob Sullivan's blog.  It Basically amounts the the fact that researchers that work for an Israeli computer security company have released a report in how the ATM network can be compromised in order to reveal PIN numbers.  ATM PIN's are essentially decrypted and encrypted on every network hop so if one machine is compromised it becomes simple to crack the PIN's encryption. And apparently this is some thing the Russian Mob is very interested in.  The Israely company release this report after being dismayed with the American Banks lack of action(Banks were informed of this security flaw in the ATM protocol 2 months before the release of the report.)

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Humble pie any one?

Apologies to Mark Miller for a comment I left on his blog
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Every one wants to live in a world were we don't have to lock our doors

Are we living in fear of our online world?
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