Congress is considering expanded legal protection for record labels who resort to sabotage in their ongoing battle with "peer to peer" networks that allow users to freely trade music, movies and other copyrighted material.This is at the behest of Record Labels who want action like this to occur...
a technique called "interdiction," which closes off a user's hard drive to others on the networkNever mind that the American economy has been based on competition in the marketplace. Forget trying to bring out better products that better meet the expectations and desires of the consumer. No, just keep doing what you are doing, release over priced CD's, and make sure the consumer only consumes in ways you prefer (because they produce higher margins).
I've worked at an independent record label before, and the deals with artists were heavily weighted in favor of the label (artist gives up ownership and only gets their music released when the label so desires it). It's worse at major labels. IMHO, the recording industry needed a kick in head, but I fear they might simply retaliate instead of waking up and smelling the global distribution medium.
In My Experience migrates to RSS 2.0.
September 27, 2002 9:51 AM
In a nut shell, the template mentioned yesterday is good, works well in the one aggregator I really care about (NetNewsWire) and does what I wanted to do anyway. I had planned to rewrite my RSS/RDF MT template to put the full post in the RSS (HTML and all) so that aggregator users could read my site as they wish (via a web browsers or an aggregator like the aforementioned). Dive into Mark made it easy for me. Thanks.
Now, consider for a moment the implications of this action. I'm lowering my potential page views and won't be able to foist my I337 UI hax0ring on passers by. But, this is a user centric blog, and aggregators have been quickly moving up the hit counts in recent weeks, so enjoy it folks. In the mean time, I'm going to count requests to my syndication feed as 'page views.'
RSS 2.0 template for MovableType.
September 26, 2002 7:39 AM
dive into mark has been kind enough to make a pre-packaged RSS 2.0 template for MovableType users. He asserts...
this template is designed to be backward-compatible with all existing aggregators, news readers, and RSS parsers, ranging from the super-smart XML parser built into .NET to the dumb, minimal, regular-expression-based parser that your downstairs neighbor banged out on a Friday night.I'm hoping that covers NetNewsWire (which has been climbing the referrer charts here recently) and will do a little testing before I give up my nice RDF based RSS file. :^p
Why is Mason so great? First, if you do know some Perl, Mason can make your web application (or web site) development a lot easier by abstracting out the interface to arbitrary amounts of components. The Perl logic and database advantages should be obvious to anyone reading this here bit rag. The true value (imho, because I am a UI designer/developer) is the UI abstraction. But it's not complete abstraction, and I think that's a good thing.
Here's the description from the developer site...
Another Mason nicety: We have a suite of form element components with other UI elements wrapped around them for formatting in a standardized way. Those components can have data passed into them from other components to populate up the form elements. As in, we pass in the "name" of the element, it's "value" and any onclick/onsubmit handlers. The component that passes in these variables is written in pure Perl/Mason. So, if I have done my job as a Mason and UI developer, I can prevent the Perl coders them from writing ANY UI code. That's good.
I've only scratched the surface here so I'll mention one of the other great things, "dhandlers". The documentation says...
What happens when a user requests a component that doesn't exist? In this case Mason scans backward through the URI, checking each directory for a component named dhandler (``default handler''). If found, the dhandler is invoked and is expected to use $m->dhandler_arg as the parameter to some access function, perhaps a database look up or location in another file system.The part I really like is the recursion, using the URI, to figure things out. This allows you to create URLs that don't actually exist, but are bookmarkable and will cause Mason to use the dhandler to execute whatever Perl code you want to return whatever you want (be it HTML< XML or even CSV). Bookmarkable resources = web services. mmmmmmmmmmmm, web services...
[ via diveintomark ]
Fix your Passat misfire.
September 22, 2002 12:53 PM
We interrupt this blog to bring you the method for fixing a misfire in the 1996 Volkswagen Passat. Little did I know when I bought said car that annoying, expensive and consistent problems would arise. Finding explanations and fixes for the problems I've had have come few and far between.
In an effort to Google bomb this explanation for fixing the misfire in the 1996 Volkswagen Passat GLX VR6, I am posting this blog entry, complete with keywords, such as...
Please post a comment below if this information has been useful to you. Also, if anyone is interested, I have the old cracked coil pack left over from my recent repairs. If anyone would like to buy it, just make me an offer (I mean, someone might want it, right?).
[edited Oct 3, 2002]
First to post the MP3 wins!
September 20, 2002 11:17 AM
Record labels have stooped to a new level of stupidity by sending promo copies of CDs to reviewers with portable CD players wrapped around them. Glued shut cd players, so the CD can't be ripped to MP3 format. Glue.
Now, unless they made these players out of titanium, or steel, or some other material requiring torches to open, getting the disk out will be easy. It seems to me that this is a challenge that begs to be taken, and I'm sure someone will, or just sell the player/disk on eBay. There is kitch value after all.
Computer junkies reveal universal truths.
September 19, 2002 11:16 AM
Names changed to protect the innocent. Profanity not removed.
him: redhat sucks ass me: sweet him: fucking microsoft of linux him: they deliberately broke compatability with sys V init scripts in their distro me: heh, there's only one Apple of Macintosh him: then they get 3rd parties to write shit for them him: then you try to install the stuff on any other distro him: and all the init scripts break him: because they refuse to follow fucking standards. me: that's the nature of The Unseen Hand of Commerce me: heh me: play bombing run in ut2003 me: very cool game me: in general tho, i am disapointed in ut2003 me: it's basically no different me: looks way better me: but the weapons are 90% the same him: yeah him: its very quake 3 feeling to me me: the game play, 90% the same him: I'm going to buy 1942 me: the maps are cool tho him: and the game is awesome him: its worth the money me: heh me: costco is selling warcraft for $39 him: hehe him: damn I forgot I had costco is selling warcraft 3 him: been too busy with gta3, hehe me: junkies tend to do that him: i blew up like a whole block in gta3 last night him: stole an armored car him: police finally cut me off him: got in a huge shootout and killed like 8 or 9 cops him: swat showed up and started shooting him: i hit behind a cop car, swat shot it all up him: cop car blew up him: the explosion from it blew up 3 more cars him: when they blew up they killed like 20 or 25 people walking around on the sidewalk me: hehehe him: I was running away and looked back and all you could see him: was fire, and burned out pieces of car him: and bodies all over the place and smoke him: hahaha
Build numbers keep pace with those of their pre-release PowerPC counterparts; for example, Apple is internally running a complete, x86-compatible version of Jaguar, a k a Mac OS X 10.2, which shipped last week.Imagine what chaos would ensue if a copy of this was leaked to the public. Would Apple be able to prevent users from buying non Apple hardware? What would the driver compatability scene look like? Would product manufacturers develop drivers for x86 OSX? Imagine the chaos.
The salient language agnosticism of OSX makes me hopeful that more and more applications written by individuals or small teams of people will emerge. Why would I be hopeful of that? Well, IMHO, small groups of people make the most innovative, timely and bloat free software, instead of 38 meg application binaries. This was true of Quicktime which was originally written by five developers. NetNewsWire is written by one guy.
Xbox hax0ring on Mac OSX.
September 16, 2002 2:34 AM
It's not exactly easy, and there are many required tools to do this, but...
Using this tutorial, we will cover the basics of burning working ISO images with toast titanium and Mac os X, we will cover extracting and packing ISO files using xboxisomaker, and we will cover connecting to the XBOX using FlashFXP and evolution X.I don't have a modded Xbox, and I'm guessing that some DMCA implications come into play when following the instructions. However, I love the hax0r entrepreneurialism in the tutorial and can't resist linking to it.
The folks I work with often write their own little screen scrapers when data isn't exposed to them in any other way. Is the horribly coded website that they are scraping obsolete? Anything but. But, don't get me wrong, I like code that validates against it's DTD, and I love standards (because I hate double coding) because it all becomes more reusable and portable as requirements inevitably change. But this doesn't make old crappy code obselete, it just makes it more expensive to work with, and that is what's important in the real world, MONEY/COST. Don't forget that.
Wireless bridge to an Xbox, not.
September 12, 2002 2:25 AM
[Note: Dec 30, 2003; This relatively old post has been seeing more traffic now that Wireless tech and the Xbox have become cheaper and more popular. Read the comments left by the people below to get some good info on how to set up your Xbox on a wireless network. I have it working at my house.]
I've said before that I think wireless is the last mile solution that is desperately needed in these here United States. But, this won't work out for Xbox users who want to subscribe to Xbox Live (or so says this guy on slashdot) and this is too bad.
I'm expecting Adelphia to finally get cable modem access out to my area sometime before the end of the year and I was planning on doing the following...
Update: Nate notes below that there is a fix for this issue. Thanks Nate.
September 9, 2002 8:56 AM
Nokia will be introducing a video phone that seems to be getting a less than enthusiastic welcome from analysts (but what do they know anyway?). A video phone is all new and futuristic, but the real fun will be the bashing the circular number pad will get in the usability and HCI communities.
I remember, back in the when I was a kid, there were commercials on TV showing the masses how to use the grid number pad on the touch tone telephones. There was this guy wearing pilot/barnstorming duds dialing the touch tone pad way faster than the old crappy looking rotary dialer. It was a help manual in 30 seconds of video and was used to sell the concept. I wonder if Nokia will try to sell the circle pad as something 'better' or as something 'cooler' or if they will even bother and rely on the wow factor of a Dick Tracy phone. At any rate, it will be something requiring time to get used to and become proficient with. Is that what we want from our devices of convenience?
Google in the usability labs.
September 7, 2002 11:47 AM
I poke thru my logs everyday like it's the morning paper, and saw an intersting referrer domain show up today...
The line element represents a sub-paragraph. It is intended as a structured replacement for the br element. It contains a piece of text that when visually represented should start on a new line, and have a line break at the end.Um, I use <br> because I want ONE break, not two. If I wanted two, I'd use a block level element, like a <div>. I must be missing something here.
In terms of wide spread adoption, I think the points made at AoV are incontrovertible, but I do imagine that audio formatted weblogs will be useful to those who can't read (for one reason or another). However, this might be a poor solution for providing access to those who need sound?
The current blog entry audio clips don't help you navigate the blog, and how would you know where to click to begin the audio if you can't read (due to reasons of blindness or academic depravity)?
Also, think a bit about the usability of a computer generated voice reading a weblog entry. Stunted and jilted voices reading stunted and jilted entries would make for a horrible listening experience. The writing style would have to change (read: become more professional), and be spoken by excellent voice synthesis software. Otherwise, bloggers should just rant into a microphone and post the mp3.
How would Audioblogging change memepool? It's incomprehensible as is.
OSX TechNote tells all.
September 4, 2002 9:08 AM
Apple releases TechNotes pretty much everyday about their hardware and software. This tech note covers a boat load of info about OSX and it's most recent incarnation, Jaguar. Apple says there are 150 new features in Jaguar, but I'd argue that a lot of the items below are more compelling features than new fonts. Here's the top 20 (my comments are in parenthesis)...
You'd have to guess that lots and lots of QuickTime junk is loaded up to have the audio preview be available so quickly, and is that why this OS requires I have 256 megs to run smoothly? Thank goodness I have half a gig.
A few points about Apple's opening of Rendezvous.
September 3, 2002 3:37 AM
The new version of Mac OSX has a zero config networking technology called Rendezvous. I won't both to describe it at all since there's plenty of info about it on the web, and this is old news, so I'll try to say something insightful (in a half-assed way). Here's what C|net reported...
The technology, which is built into the new version 10.2 of Mac OS X, can be used to simplify network printing, file sharing and other communications tasks. Apple uses Rendezvous in its iChat program to allow people to see a list of other people on their local computer network who they might want to chat with. It has also pledged to add the technology by early next year to iTunes, which will allow Mac owners to stream music files stored on other Macs on the same network.There is really nothing different about this than gnutella networks (as fart as RIAA is concerned). the fact that Apple wants to make it easy for anyone to share their playlist has got to get RIAA's lawyers salivating, and Apple is not that stupid to walk into a lawsuit. So, what's the business plan here?
Consider for a moment that iTunes+Rendezvous is set up to allow streaming of data and not copying of data (like the Real One format). So, if I'm using iTunes on my corporate network and other Rendezvous enabled users are on the network, they could 'tune me in.' That's cool, but do I now own RIAA and ASCAP funds for being a broadcaster?
Ok, never mind that, because it's not the really scary part of the equation. What's nuts is that open sourced (or shared sourced) Rendezvous technology will lead to a new Napster. What I really mean to say is, Napster was EASY to use, and an Apple derivative technology based on easy of use (remember it's zero config tech) will get adopted.
UI debate gets another argument.
September 1, 2002 11:22 AM
I've seen the conversation about the next gen user interface ebb and flow for years. I think most of it is bullshit, including the argument saying the 'windows, menus and pointing' paradigm is over drawn, past its prime and about to die. The other end of the spectrum is cognitive and relational bliss, and is revolutionary, but what we need is evolutionary (imho).
Why do we need evolutionary progress instead of some bright new tomorrow? simple, millions of us use mice, type on keyboards, open windows and file things in folders. Millions of us are used to that, understand that and are productive with that. Throw it out? Boooolshit.
In spite of all that, Spring looks cool.