Catching up

In accordance with prophecy, I haven’t been updating because I’m working on something. A couple of things, actually; one is paid work and must be done, and the other is a little private project of mine and Sarabian‘s. So, sorry for the lack of stuff, and here’s a Mark-esque catchup. I always feel, when doing this sort of thing, that it’s so old-hat — a list of links with very little commentary, that’s what weblogging was in the last millennium, man. Not that I like the whole word “weblogging” (or “blogging”), but yeah. Anyway. On with the links.

  • Curious Yellow, a network-aware coordinated “superworm”. Interesting. I wrote an essay a while back about how worms should co-operate with other instances of themselves, but this is a layer of evolution beyond that
  • Guess the Dictator and/or Television Sit-Com Character. ASks yes/no questions and tries to guess your choice, and if it gets it wrong asks for who it was and adds that information to its database so it’ll be right next time. It’s played about eight million times and is right two-thirds of the time, which is pretty reasonable.
  • I’d forgotten how much I like Bob Cringely‘s articles. In A Hollywood Ending, he says, “Microsoft has more cash on hand than the total combined profits of all movie studios and broadcast and cable networks for the last decade. So why should Microsoft care about movie studios? Frankly, they don’t. It’s just a reason to give to people like me, and one to be believed by people like you.” I noted someone else mentioning this a few days ago. Not gonna happen, but it’s an interesting thought, isn’t it? Would the RIAA be better if run by MS, who don’t care about music piracy but do care about you buying their OS forever and about control through DRM.
  • XIST “is an XML based extensible HTML generator written in Python. XIST is also a DOM parser (built on top of SAX2) with a very simple and pythonesque tree API.” One to look at.
  • The great Zeldman redesign continues. I don’t like the teal, myself. Or the text, which never seems very readable to me, although that could be a font problem at my end.
  • Office 11 XML. Be interesting to see how much of this is marketing BS and buzzword compliance. As Kam and I once discussed, you can get an existing binary Word document and put \<worddoc> and \</worddoc> tags around it, and it’s XML. Not useful, though. If you want my opinion of how it’ll go, I’d say that the industry press will wibble about the power it gives you, a few people will get into it, a lot of people will try and write tools that exploit it and then find that they haven’t got quite enough information about the format or the data stored therein to do what they want, and Dorothea Salo (and others, but I’ll see CavLec first and follow Dorothea’s links) will be disappointed that MS could have done it right and ensured interoperability and document existence in perpetuum (in aeternam? not sure) and failed to do so out of short-sightedness.
  • Blogger hax0red. Oops.
  • Googlism tells you who a person is, by, I think, searching Google for “X is” and then displaying up to 10 words of an excerpt beginning with that. So, as Adrian says, searching for “Adrian Holovaty” returns “adrian holovaty is assistant database editor and product developer at the atlanta journal”, which is true. Good show. I tried “Aquarion”, to see how the man was regarded (and because things like this aren’t good at finding me because I don’t use my name much), and got a really interesting diagnosis, the best bit of which, after “aquarion is a bhc company affiliate” and “aquarion is the largest investor”, and some true things too, was “Aquarion is on irc”. Cracked me up, that :) Just in case he objects to this, I note that “aquarion is wonderful”, too, just like Googlism says, and on Wednesday I’ll try and remember to bring his CD back to him.
  • Mozilla does small screen rendering without any special effort, unlike Opera.

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