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Me (scoffing, while scoring a bald joke): You are not gonna care about washing your non-hair when the zombie apocalypse comes.
I've long suspected that my cat might be trying to kill me, based on how he trips me on the stairs and lurks in dark rooms waiting to scare me to death—but recent news suggests he might actually be trying to become me. It seems my furry feline friend is attempting to steal one of my favorite vices, and I can't help but wonder—what's next?
Let's discuss whether or not Chauncey (pictured below, on a bender) and I will be knocking back a few frosty beverages together, thanks to Japan's latest offering to the animal kingdom: wine for cats. If you've ever dreamed of getting hammered with your pet (And frankly, who hasn't?), then you're in luck.
It's called Nyan Nyan Nouveau, which is Japanese for "people will buy, seriously, just about anything," and opens up the long-awaited possibility of partying with all the animals in your house. Okay, so there's no actual alcohol in either of these beverages (sorry, Fluffy and Fido) but the feline wine does contain catnip and the pooch hooch contains meat, which is about as high as your pets are ever going to get (legally, anyway). I'm not sure how popular Nyan Nyan Nouveau is expected to be, since they're only making 1,000 bottles (Hurry, order now - operators are standing by!), but B&H Lifes claims there's a market for beastly booze due to the many requests they get from customers who want to "celebrate Christmas and birthdays" with their cats. So, it's not really a product for the pets—like designer dog houses and wedding cakes for kitties, running a tab for a tabby is more for the owners' enjoyment. A version of this article originally appeared on In The Powder Room and is republished with permission.
For everyone out there who wants to take up writing as a hobby or as a serious, pseudo-legit profession, I've (unintentionally) started an online university (sort of) which (sort of) teaches just one (sarcasm-based) class: Writing 101. If you're new here you might want to check out my first Writing 101 session, in which we got started with a discussion about The Process of writing. After 45 minutes or so of this alert cooperativeness - during which twelve outfits are rejected, math homework is found to be half-completed, and various cereals are refused on the grounds that their marshmallow contents fall below the girls' sugar standards - Sunny watches the bus pull away, tugging her heartstrings along with it, as it escorts her little darlings off for a blissful eight hours of school. Sunny spends the day doing laundry, organizing the girls' closets by color, and taking inventory of her pantry so she can effectively formulate a weekly menu plan that maximizes coupon savings. Hahaha, I'm just kidding - she surfs Pinterest for two hours, drinks coffee, and spritzes some Febreze around to make it smell like she cleaned.
Meanwhile, all across the neighborhood, other parents of school children simultaneously receive the same announcement from the principal. Every scrap of cloth in every house is taken for a spin (or twelve) through a scalding hot rinse cycle. After a night of shampooing, scrubbing, and scalp sifting, the children are sent back to school the following day in hopes they won't all just reinfect each other. If you open your door this Halloween and there's any question about whether or not the youngsters you see fall into the "Come on, now, shouldn't you be at home doing your trigonometry homework?" category, here's a graphic to help you out.
It's been a wonderful few weeks around here, and you know that's true because otherwise I would've opened with something much funnier.
I was shocked, honored and thrilled to be named by BlogHer as a Must-Follow Humor Blog in their first-ever Must-Follow Mondays list!
My 2-year-old's craziness comprised about 30% of BabyZone's 17 ridiculous toddler demands. Raising Wild Things featured my Princess Leia Halloween costume (see below) on her great series, Too Tired To Try Tuesday. I shocked the publishing world by (as far as I know) inventing a new book genre, the faux-mance novel. Ole and Lena were laying in bed one night when the phone rang, Ole answered it and Lena heard him yell, "Well, how the hell should I know, that's over 2000 miles away!" and he hung up. There's been some discussion on the Syndication mail list about assigning unique identifiers to RSS channels.
Ole was talking to his neighbor Sven who said, "Ole, you and Lena should really get some new blinds." "Why?" asked Ole. Here's an article on recent developments in XML that put things into perspective for me, and now I see a disconnect more clearly.
I know Deborah Branscum thinks I'm tilting at windmills, and while I appreciate the quote in her Newsweek article (and thanks for the link!) global warming is an issue our political leadership, worldwide, is not dealing with. Back in the early 80s when I was a regular on CompuServe's CB Radio service, an early version of chatrooms, I had a personal friend who worked at CompServe. Anyway, all this is super-interesting, what a fantastic time to live, it's all so twisty and self-referential. Between you and me, I don't think Dan Gillmor read the whole Jonathan Lebed article in the Sunday NY Times. BTW, I did a little searching and found that Rick and I agree on the value of simplicity in XML formats.
I don't know the answer, or really any answers, but I do believe that the more you know about your loop the happier you will be. Also there's no harm in doing an inventory, to see what the accomplishments of open source are a few years after the concept was rolled out.
Wired: "'Moreover sees cybersleuthing in the same continuum as headline news delivery,' a company spokesman said. Albert Shanker may be most famous for the reference in Woody Allen's Sleeper, where, according to the plot, civilization on earth had been destroyed 200 years earlier when a man named Albert Shanker got a nuclear bomb. This reminds me of another project I heard about a few months ago, to do a XMLization for scripting languages.
Ole Eichhorn suggests adding four items to yesterday's list of 16 software categories that have not yet been conquered by open source: Personal finance manager (Quicken), Tax preparation software (TurboTax), Database (Oracle, Sybase), Firewall (Cisco PIX, Raptor, CheckPoint). BTW, I got a lot of email about this list from people who must not have read the introductory paragraph.
I was interviewed by Deborah Branscum today for an article she's doing on weblogs for Newsweek.
Register: "One of the most depressing stories to come out of the Internet crash is the failure of community on the web. Brent: "I was watching on TV a cheetah standing in the middle of a giant herd of something -- not gazelles, something a little larger.
Due to a configuration error on the Radio mail list, only members could read the posts linked to above. Yesterday Jeremy Bowers posted his ideas for a responder-like framework for email in Frontier and Radio. It's been a privilege to experience the flames in and around Eric Raymond's life for the last 18 hours or so. I submitted the Raymond comments to SlashDot, something I learned how to do at the P2P conf. Thomas Lynch: "Timothy McVeigh, the Oklahoma City bomber, has requested that his execution be televised.
Business Week: "Tchong's view on the news demonstrates how spoiled everyone was by the adulation of the past few years.
I got back from dinner late this evening, a great feast hosted by NY literary agent John Brockman who turned 60 on Friday.
Before going to the city I stopped by KnowNow and met with Rohit and some of the other people. Tomorrow my house is getting an 802.11b upgrade so I'll be able to do demos in the woods and in the living room and check my email from the kitchen.
Give Microsoft's Jim Allchin 10 points for making a boneheaded comment about The American Way, and give every open source advocate and journalist 10 points for taking the bait. The full Leonard quote: "The 'American Way' comment is rhetoric with extremely ugly connotations.
Now a comment for Dan Gillmor who has added to the fast-developing thread about The American Way and software.
A List Apart: "In six months, a year, or two years at most, all websites will be designed with standards that separate style from content.
Larry Ellison: "I think Apple can be the greatest provider of digital appliances in this market. People say great things about Grey Matter, now they have over 500 sites, growing at a fast clip. Quote from a Grey Matter user: "Things are mighty different around here, though hopefully you won't notice right away. Also the opportunities to work together have never been greater, and with that will come motion. Now, for the first time in my career, peace is the number one issue in the technology industry.
Another classic puzzle: "100 people died in a plane crash on the border between US and Canada. Now for an exercise to see if you get it, read this David Singer essay about his trip from San Jose to Hartford and see how you might mark it up using Galbraith's Neat Meta-Markup Feature. Now, even more interesting is Nick Arnett's idea for mining gold in all the relationships in the blogs. Craig Burton offers advice to Microsoft's Jim Allchin, a former competitor (Burton was at Novell, Allchin at Banyan), then as an analyst and consultant. Tech Interview: "Two MIT math grads bump into each other at Fairway on the Upper West Side. Now I had a great talk with Anne Thomas Manes after the panel, which lead me to say late last night on SN that we had won with Sun. I got an email from Microsoft PR saying that both Mary Jo Foley and Dan Gillmor were invited to the Windows XP rollout. Please share inappropriate giggles with me on Pinterest, Twitter, and Facebook, or subscribe via email so you don't miss a thing! But if your cats are anything like mine, they think every day is their birthday, and they celebrate Christmas by climbing into the tree until it falls over and crashes onto the television, then freaking out and barfing on your shoes.
But the idea of some singleton out there pouring wine into a cat dish while she softly hums "happy birthday to me" and adjusts the elastic string under her cat's pointy party hat makes me so depressed, I'm going to have to go drink my own wine directly from the spigot on the box. But if you've already absorbed that and passed the final (which, as I recall, required you to send me a double batch of brownies, but I might be completely making that up because I'm hungry), you've now arrived at lesson two: why you need spell check.

For example, not checking it leaves you more time to write, plus, knowing how to spell is boring. The front door flies open and the girls' footsteps thunder toward her, accompanied by their urgent voices.
You can see previous episodes here, and be sure to check out more dollhouse fun on the As The Dollhouse Turns Facebook page! You should go check her out - she's lovely, and funny, and obviously shares only the most wonderful, top-quality crafts and recipes every week on Tuesdays.
The purpose of this list is to allow people outside the community to see what we're tuned into. And I keep looking for ways to make it easier for all of us, more formal, so we can do more powerful things working together. It's very simple and fairly intuitive, and it provides a mechanism for us to talk about work we're going to do.
Like yesterday's story about workflow, and the resulting discussion that showed me that we have a few features that people normally think of as workflow. He told me they referred to us internally as The Lonelyhearts, as if anyone who used a computer to communicate was somehow socially dysfunctional. When I was at the Apple press conference for Darwin a couple of years ago, while they were touting Apache, I was the only one who asked what this meant for users who were developing systems around WebSTAR and Quid Pro Quo. The adults are total Loony Tunes characters, the kid played the game by the rules the adults invented.
I sent him an email, pointing out that despite his decision not to use my software, he does use my software. I don't know if this means I'm about to get sick and die, or what, but it's there, and there's no avoiding it.
So one line of reasoning (my mind is always working) is that some part of me is dying, perhaps in a symbolic way, and my body is grieving. I'm not anti-open source, so I hope the conversation can move beyond the for-or-against thing. In the end, Jonathan Lebed is just a boy, in high school, who happens to trade stocks using the Web. Last night I got an email from Erin Clerico saying that they have an outage and are scrambling to get back on the air. Here's a list of community groups that are logging 802.11b access points in Australia, Europe and North America. Since Flash's file format is open, it should be possible to have an open XML format that can be processed to produce a non-animated Flash picture. Perhaps people believe that Apple would sue anyone who cloned it or even was inspired by it. Basically it would define an XML mapping for loops, tests, assignment, procedure calls, basically every feature that every Algol-like language supports.
Yes, I've heard of Gimp, a lot, but still believe it has not driven PhotoShop from the top position.
There are commercial alternatives, but as far as I can see, the majority of servers are Apache. Members of the Net community, whether born in 1954 or 1986, will pretty much always rally to oppose censorship. I find much of what he stands for unacceptable but I can still accept his support as long as I don't have to get into the bathtub with him. John and I talked about Grateful Dead lyrics, we recited the lyrics to Touch of Grey, the dreariest of songs, sung to an upbeat melody (I think that's why I like it so much) and talked about common friends from years-gone-by. You can download an excerpt of Kurt Vonnegut reading a chapter of his own classic, Slaughterhouse Five. Then while waiting for the cops to arrive, I did a little surfing and found out that ex-Pyrite, Matt Haughey, is working for KnowNow.
Now Microsoft PR says it was an oversight that they did not actually invite Dan Gillmor to the Windows XP rollout. Net that out as a 10 points against Microsoft, and at least a hundred points on the other side.
I'd like to try it out but would rather not install the software on one of our servers at this time. The only software and services that will grow, as users get smarter, are the ones that offer user control of data.
Blogger, while so many love them, including me (can't speak for the rest of my company on this) has not prioritized working with others. Has there been any activity on the other side, trying to promote Linux and open source as a matter of government policy?
Surely, IBM is entitled to its opinion, and also is entitled to lobby governments through the press. We learn that we are not the greatest primate in the jungle, that other people have greatness too. It's not that we didn't try to explain, but you don't need to force a browser upgrade to get content separated from form.
It's not hard to see the utility in this, either, because Singer recommends a restaurant in his essay, and gives us lots of data about airlines and cellphones, etc. Wow he really got me thinking, but I'll have to add that to the queue of Other Neat Things To Write Up As Soon As I Can. I had a wonderful meeting with a Microsoft person today about next steps for interop in the SOAP world. In a perfect world a top exec at the Largest Software Company In The World would only say politically correct things. We're also looking for support from one or more major Silicon Valley venture capital firms, since it is our belief that SOAP is a big enabler of startups. We already have, in the integration of our scripting langauge and object database the "info-set" stuff that I've found so puzzling on the XML-DEV list, and I now understand why others need schema, they're using relational databases to store their XML content and to do that they must have schema. Actually we were early adopters of a new way to communicate, as it turns out, with the benefit of hindsight.
Over the next few years the quality of writing and reporting on "this side" of the editorial fence will grow to match the quality on the other side. Apple has a historic tendency to shoot itself in the foot by undermining developers, much as Microsoft is doing now (more carefully) with Dot-Net. Since they're from Minnesota, you should read them with the mid-western Fargo-like accent, very rounded o's, like OK for sure you betcha. They walk in the house and go through the living room where Ole's wife Lena is on the floor naked having sex with the mailman. I remember going through this, literally paralyzed with fear lying in bed, probably around age five, shocked by my lack of clues about death.
I saw the bug when I heard Brian Behlendorf (who I like as a human being) say that there should only be one web server. The SEC and its chairman Arthur Levitt act like freaked-out bullies, caught in an ethical conundrum. Shanker had a weekly advertorial in section 4 of the Sunday NY Times called "Where We Stand". It replaces a large number of the MacOS Quickdraw routines with equivalent perl subroutines. I'm not volunteering Andy (exactly) but, it's my way of saying that I would like to be a user of this format, not a designer or implementor. Then scripting engines could output this format, and the scripts could run in any compatible scripting environment. When you're an old fart like I am (you can quote me on that) the pushes still take a lot of energy, but as my body ages, I have less to give. None of us knows how this will play out, but we do know it will impact the hierarchy of power in, and between, institutions, governments and activists. If the item on the clipboard isn't a URL, when I choose the Add Link command, it figures out that I might want to turn it into a URL, so it does it for me. Barn-raising and volunteer fire departments are wonderful concepts, but they do not map onto open source.
Wouldn't it be nice to edit your whole blog, all the way back to the beginning in a single outline?
I still like Blogger, but the company's recent collapse made me realize I had to be in control of my own content, no matter how easy Blogger had made things.
This, imho, is an integrity issue for our industry, something which any responsible and intelligent user can appreciate, and as the creakiness of our financial and technical foundations are appreciated by the users, they will demand it more and more, and this is a Good Thing.
But understand that IBM has a financial interest in this, as one of Microsoft's largest OEMs. You could try to put labels on them, one is open source, the other works at Microsoft, but there would be no point to that, because the labels carry connotations that don't begin to tell you who they are.
Looking at it from this perspective, it's ridiculous that the tech industry is in a downturn while Moore's Law is still inexorably putting so much power on our desktops and in our servers, and we now have a networking infrastructure that few would have dreamed of ten years ago. Note, this is not XHTML or any weird schema or CSS or namespace or (god forbid) RDF, or anything that Zeldman Must Have Right Now, just plain old garden variety HTML, blockquotes and tables in all their gory misery. His name is Marshal Goldberg, obviously a very Jewish fellow, a few years older than me, reminds me of Bernie DeKoven, a very sweet man, we talked about a lot of things, mostly SOAP and XML-RPC and the community of independent developers gathering around these protocols.
But Doc man, now maybe you can understand how I feel about some of the nasty shit the spokespeople in the Open Source World say about people like me who make software for a living. What a strange thing to have the same thing happen on stage yesterday with Commander Taco (spelling?) who was commenting, in real-time, in not nice ways, on virtually everything I said.
I'm hitting the connection limit more now, and there are some display glitches coming from recent changes. If the URL of your channel changed you'd still use the same id, that way aggregators would know that the two files are reflecting the same content. Branscum's article, and most of the articles about weblogs, tend to view bloggers the same way, as lonely people with Nothing Better To Do.

I know this for sure, because it's already happened, but we just haven't acknowledged it yet. An example -- the announcement of the "Pink" operating system weeks after the shipment of System 7.
It's true that Frontier does have its own scripting language, but I don't feel it's very different from Python or JavaScript, and someday we will get Python running in Frontier, lots of people want it, it's the right way to go. I'm still happy, probably happier than most times, but if you're over thirty you must know what I'm talking about. At the end I asked if we could help each other, and with the caveat that he doesn't want to help Microsoft, which is his right, he agreed. I could tell you when I grok it, and when that happens I think a lot of other people would get it too. While I haven't given this a lot of thought, it seems do-able, and powerful, and quite interesting. The cheetah was looking around at all these animals, in the middle of literally tons and tons of meat, but there was nothing he could do.
I also discovered the W3C's RSS file, and even though it's a flavor of RSS that I've never heard of (those wacky W3C guys, so bleeding-edge, just like those crazy browser guys) Radio reads it just fine. I'd love to get some pointers to examples of Murphy-like amusement about open source, or as one of my critics says "Open Sores".) For what it's worth, the obvious play on words for UserLand is (oh this hurts) LoserLand. If Linux were to replace Microsoft, they save money on licenses and undermine a major competitor. They must see an opportunity to win big, or a threat that they're headed for the scrap heap, or both at the same time.
We have some ideas for a project we can do to help get interop sooner, but we're both sensitive to the politics (actually we love the politics, if I may be so bold as to speak for Marshal).
Later, in the Web Services session audience members asked where the low-hanging fruit is (someone had mentioned that there was lots) and none of the panelists had an answer.
When it's ready for the masses the coffee mug (to the left) will become a permanent fixture on Scripting News. All of a sudden the leading edge was back in vapor just as developers were delivering scriptable applications, with the benefit of hindsight, a much more empowering idea than object oriented programming (which was the benefit of Pink, and the insane craze in the software industry at the time, kind of like Push was a few years ago).
The adults are throwing things onto the field, which is in violation of the rules, but the police shrug their shoulders "That's just the way it works." So one of the kids throws something onto the field. And as far as the database is concerned, well, it's a huge win to have the database integrated with scripting. If there were a product marketing function for open source (ie if it were a company) no doubt they would want to know where it's at.
This would allow me to construct diagrams in an outliner or text editor, but then would provide a common format that easy-to-use drawing tools could save to (next year). Imagine all the HTML coders who can wrap their minds around tables (they really are complex), what if they had exact pixel-level control of positioning. For all the Clinton-lovers who said they knew better and wish they really had --> I Told You So. In the middle are thousands of random developers, working every day to create cool shit for users, hoping to Hit It Big like the Napster guys (see below). Here's a young guy who's already done so much to influence culture through technology before going to college. The bad news is that on arriving back home all my neighbors' mailboxes and mine had been been emptied by vandals.
And imagine if the volunteer fire departments went on a PR campaign against professional fire departments.
CGI scripts on my own server gives me Blogger-like ease, greater flexibility, and complete ownership of my creation. In that menu would be a command called "Corporation", followed by "Person", then "Relationship", and other common things that we human beings know about. Version 1 was the pre-web Internet, the playground of techies and geeks and professors and programmers. This results in a ridiculously low amount of effort being put into the evening - the least effort humanly possible, really, while still attaining their ultimate goal: going home with a huge sack of sugar. Now we're not just chatting, we're publishing, and at first people talk about their personal issues and form clubs, but I think this is just getting familiar with the power of the technology. It's so twisty, because one of the best examples of the closed-minded cynical curmudgeonish press-person is Ms. Hey where are you folks from?" Ole says "Ohh we're from Minnesota." "Ohhh Minnesota, I've been there. I'd love to see an A-B comparison on ease of scripting our database versus scripting an external database.
When we test the condition that would break out of the loop, our CPU, which has bugs, fails to break out, and around we go, one more time!
This is what the Web does, levels the playing field, which was at one time, the goal of the SEC. And if you cut through the hype you'll see that joining the open source community is just as much a poison pill as becoming a Microsoft or Sun developer. The juxtaposition relative to the Style menu would get people to think "Hmmm, this must be something like a style." Now when you select some text, and choose one of these commands, it wraps the selection in the chosen element.
But there's a problem, in my world, it's hard to shrug off the shitstorms that come when a Microsoft exec like Jim Allchin says something overtly hostile to an operating system that many of my friends love (Linux).
I guess I was the rock video and he was *both* B&B, cause his partner Jeff was very sweet and positive, a nice guy who I'd love to have a beer with sometime. The goal is to be totally inclusive and drive SOAP to interop asap and have it achieve its promise of opening up lots of compatible development and entrepreneurship. And a lot of people will die if we don't do something about what we're doing to the planet. The next step after that, not for everyone of course, is the question "What can we do with this power?" Perhaps this is on the path to consciousness for us as a species, and we sure need that to solve problems like global warming.
Branscum, who runs a weblog herself, spouting on about annoying PR people and industry leaders who lie all the time, while I spout about reporters who don't ask hard questions, and think that they're so important that PR people should do what they want them to do.
They made a mistake by inviting a user (they must have thought I would like what they were doing). It's OK, in a way, because we like our loops, they're comfortable, but they can stop us from seeing that there's more to the universe than our loop. I watched as the Apache people completely ignored (this is not a complaint) the development work we did with Frontier, adding an HTTP server, then Manila, without responding.
We're looking for the right answer, not to be proven right, or to prove the other guy wrong. Joshua was a Linux developer who went to Microsoft because he didn't agree with the political direction Linux was taking. I could even imagine someone thinking that when they move their file they would have to get a new id. Is her point of view more significant than the CompuServe employees' view of the CB Radio users? I asked Jobs tough questions, saving the reporters the trouble of sticking their necks out. I guess people don't like to think about the kids, but they are people, different from adults, but still quite powerful.
You can boast about your product, no problem there, but you also have to boast about your date's product. If you weren't in SF at the P2P conf, I wish you could see how bright the geeks are in this generation. Or if I mention Juan, he could be wrapped in a element, and if I mention Juan and Alice, each would be wrapped in a person, *and* in a relationship called . There's no point screaming and barking about it, it won't go away, and no one is going to feel sorry for poor Microsoft for a long long time, and esp not Jim Allchin, who must not love politics as Marshal and I do. Not one of the stories reported on the questions I raised, they were all rewrites of the Apple press release.
If we can get Groove to maintain a folder or set of folders that Radio can watch, then when a new or updated file arrives, we can fold it into any Radio data structure we want.
And as Rick points out, scheduling can be handled in other apps, and when we get a better handle on exactly what people want, we might be able to add the features. I also feel strongly that it should not attempt to do animation, because that would add a lot of complexity.
I asked Markoff this question a couple of weeks ago, and to my surprise he didn't find it threatening, he found it interesting.
But the users always won because we kept trying to come up with ideas that worked better for them. These are young men, from my point of view, but they're acting more responsibly than people my own age. But the prospects of that are dimming and the carpetbaggers are going home, and what remains is bright and solving problems, and their hair is weird and they're pierced in weird ways, but these are Nice Kids, and that's so cool. First we have to understand what good end-user software is, and then respect it, get the press to write about it, get the VCs to fund it, and get the users to start writing checks again. Awards will also be given for little companies working with little companies (a rare, precious thing).
I am ashamed of what my generation has done to split the technology world along idealogical lines. Tim was talking about Web Services in exactly the same way we talked about scriptable apps in the Mac in the early 90s. But the developers don't have guns, they just have compilers and text editors, servers and browsers.

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