Thursday, September 30, 2004

Linux News: But Macs Are Slower, Right?

Linux News: Developer: But Macs Are Slower, Right?: "Macs generally cost less than comparable PC products"

Monday, September 27, 2004

Dell $$$ > Apple $$

NO, Mac's are NOT OVERPRICED!!!: "We could practically fund the war in Iraq on the cost of Windows virus attacks between 1998 and 2004."

Look at the map (link)

The Washington Monthly: "one major country in the entire Middle East that al-Qaeda was unable to operate in"

BBC | Florida vote trouble

BBC NEWS | Carter fears Florida vote trouble: "Voting arrangements in Florida do not meet 'basic international requirements' and could undermine the US election, former US President Jimmy Carter says."

Saturday, September 25, 2004

Former CIA says ...

Government Computer News: "slow creep toward nationwide fingerprinting"

Friday, September 24, 2004

the truth (not dot com, but still...)

President's Remarks: "And I think the world would be better off if we did leave ... [Iraq] ..."

Wednesday, September 22, 2004

800 planes at risk

News: "'A major breakdown in Southern California's air traffic control system last week was partly due to ... Microsoft Windows servers ..."

USA TODAY - Mac or PC?

Windows' security issues help some users choose: "'I like Windows XP, but the risks are too high these days. It's sad ..."

Homeschoolers: The new terrorists?!

Michelle Malkin: Anti-homeschooling bigots strike again: "'The exercise will simulate an attack by a fictitious radical group ... who believe everyone should be homeschooled. Under the scenario, a bomb is placed on the bus ..."

This is about one thousand kinds of wrong - although there are some homeschoolers who certainly do believe public schools shouldn't exist, or at least shouldn't exist in their current form, I have never in my entire life heard of any homeschoolers who would advocate any kind of violence or attacks on public schools. There are certainly homeschoolers who are trying to change things, but they are all using peaceful methods of action like political protests, letters to the editors of newspapers, and so on.

Tuesday, September 21, 2004

Windows malware count 4500 in first six months

Can you afford over 24 new pieces of malware (viruses, worms, etc) unleashed every day? Can you afford to reconsider Windows? Read more at

Monday, September 20, 2004

Behind the Music

Yahoo and Musicmatch: I was surprised to learn that "Thomson Multimedia is the largest investor in Musicmatch". Never heard that anywhere else on the net, in all my various travels. It does, as the author explains, account for MusicMatch's relatively pioneering offer of free unlimited MP3 encoding even in its unregistered, "free" version jukeboxes (as well as the MP3Pro encoding, I bet). However, I beg to differ with the author when he states that competitors must pay a licensing fee for each "MP3 encode". The larger licensees, at least, only pay a flat fee to be able to distribute a large number of encoders each year. Smaller licensees, AFAIK, do pay some amount per encoder distributed. But I haven't heard of anyone having to pay per MP3 file encoded, at least for consumer software. If that was the case, I suspect there would have been outrage from privacy advocates about MP3 encoding / "ripping" activities being logged and reported to a central authority.

Thursday, September 16, 2004


With her Everybody Gets A Car! idea - I think she's just ripping off "Richard Simmons' Dream Maker" this season.

NYT > Pogue

The New York Times > Technology > Circuits > From the Desk of David Pogue: Considering Microsoft's ITunes Store: "[A] Microsoft manager admitted ... 'We told our developers, 'Look at how Apple does it.''"

NYT > A Computer With the IPod's Bloodlines

The New York Times > Technology > Circuits > State of the Art: A Computer With the IPod's Bloodlines: "The iMac ... actually less expensive than comparably equipped PC's ..."

Tuesday, September 14, 2004

Policy on Windows Networking in the dorms

Policy on Windows Networking in the dorms: "[At] The University of Chicago ... over 3,200 computers running some version of Microsoft Windows were broken into last year, and we estimate that the 2004-2005 school year will be even worse."

Rob Glaser @ /.

My thoughts on: Slashdot | Rob Glaser Responds, Talks Up Real Networks

When Rob says he's "working on it" in regards to paid services for Linux users, I'd bet dollars to donuts that he is NOT talking of Rhapsody,, or the Real Music Store. More than likely, he means they are looking into offering Linux users the same two subscription services they offer Mac OS X users - SuperPass & RadioPass. Since there is no actual downloading or burning of content involved, but merely password authentication (to make sure only paying customers are accessing the service) and perhaps an integrated browser (which could easily be provided on Linux with KHTML or Gecko), it would be relatively simple to implement the two services I mention.
More than likely, the big issue is support; I think that's Real's biggest headache when it comes to offering services on Linux. The only thing I can suggest to them, is hope that their community can help out - perhaps even giving free subscriptions to certain influential and/or helpful members of the Helix Community so that they can help debug the services and support users on an unofficial basis.

Honestly though, I have ended up with these impressions:
A. Rhapsody/ ($10/m all you can eat) is not available on non-Windows platforms because it uses Windows Media DRM that simply isn't supported anywhere else. They plan to move this service to Harmony-flavored DRM at some point in the future (or so I have gathered by STFW) and at that point, (since Real will be using its own in-house DRM layer) it will probably be much easier to implement Rhapsody on other platforms.

B. Real Music Store (99c/song ownership) is not available on other platforms because they wanted to be as expedient as possible in getting it out the door. I get the impression that as long as it took them to figure out how to get into the iPod, they wanted to start making money based on that knowledge ASAP. They felt the most expedient way to do this involved supporting only Windows for now, and running some crazy half-price sale. Whether that will prove profitable in the long run is anyone's guess.
I suspect that since it does use their own in-house DRM, Real Music Store may possibly show up at least on the Mac before Rhapsody does. I also think that once they can port the DRM code, Real should be able to offer CD burning right away to both Mac and Linux users by taking advantage of support built into each OS. Supporting any type of MP3 player at all will probably take longer, but again, I'd expect at least iPod & Palm support on non-Windows platforms at some point. The real sticking point here is that since Harmony is relying on Windows Media DRM to put its music onto a large percentage of players, it will only be able to support loading those players with encrypted music on Windows OSes; since the iPod & Palm (as well as one unit from Creative, IIRC) rely on Real's own code to load encrypted music, that will be much more easily ported to alternative OSes.

Monday, September 13, 2004

Grace To You

A Good Idea: "... extend grace to the one who has fallen."

Saturday, September 11, 2004

WM : mac

A third partyhas finally created a codec to offer (what sounds like it will be) full importing & exporting support for Windows Media on the Mac.

I'm glad to see this (even though it doesn't appear to add any DRM support) because it proves it can be done, even if the Microsoft Windows Media team itself isn't interested in releasing it. (I think it will be interesting to see how much of this upcoming product relies on Microsoft's own code and how much had to be be created by this developer.)

Microsoft vs. Apple

Combat in High C: Microsoft vs. Apple - Knowledge@Wharton: "... Internet Explorer; it dominates the market but has so many security flaws it's a 'national disgrace.'"

Wednesday, September 08, 2004

Cheney Warns Against Vote for Kerry

AP Wire: "another terrorist attack if voters make the 'wrong choice' on Election Day"

Monday, September 06, 2004

This is what we're up against

Cleric supports targeting children: "... holding women and children hostage would be a reasonable course of action ..."

Sunday, September 05, 2004

Kokomo makes CNN Headline News ticker (!)

Nearly verbatim:
Down In Kokomo Mayor of Indiana city to ask state for permission to raise property taxes to combat deficit

Friday, September 03, 2004

MSNBC's gone round the bend!

Apparently, due to low ratings, "Triumph, the Insult Comic Dog" is a political commentator right now at about 2:10 AM ET on MSNBC. If you ever wanted to see a potty-mouthed rubber dog debate stem cell research with Ron Reagan, here's your chance.

How can I get Windows Media DRM downloads to play on my Mac?

Unfortunately, Microsoft refuses to support the relatively unpopular Windows Media DRM format on the Macintosh, choosing only to support it on their own proprietary operating systems. If you are a Macintosh owner and are unhappy about this, please send feedback to Microsoft and ask them to change their policy and interoperate with other operating systems.

The most popular family of portable audio devices, the iPod family, with over 50 percent of the market today, is completely supported on the Mac today, and we hope that someday Microsoft will join with the industry and support the choice that consumers have overwhelmingly made.

See original: MSN Entertainment - Music

Wednesday, September 01, 2004

They can't all be wrong, can they?

Zogby News!: "half (49.3%) of New York City residents and 41% of New York citizens overall say that some of our leaders 'knew in advance that attacks were planned on or around September 11, 2001, and that they consciously failed to act,' according to the poll conducted by Zogby International."

God is Not a Republican. Or a Democrat.

Take Action if you agree.