misc 05 July 2005
    "AJAX as Prototyping Tool"

    This is strange. I wanted to put together a simple UI for stepping thru large quantities of data. I'd have normally done this via Tcl/Tk which provides a great environment for quick and dirty UIs, and has the added benefit that I'm very familiar with it.

    But, as I …

    misc 02 July 2005
    "Tech innovation driven by immigrants"

    Ross Mayfield, in a post on Estonia, casually mentions:

    in Silicon Valley 70% of CEOs are first generation immigrants

    That's a fascinating stat. First generation immigrants are incredible people, but this is fairly outrageous. I wonder what the stat for new businesses in general is.

    misc 11 April 2005
    "T-Mobile Sidekick II Phone Review"

    Original Sidekick

    I'm not typically an early gadget adopter, but I was so into the whole concept of the Sidekick I got one of the early ones. The good old black and white, nice fat ones. Surprisingly, I wasn't disappointed.

    I travel a lot, so having access to email while …

    misc 05 April 2005
    "Server crash, dead disk!"

    The disk on the server died! Shahin managed to save the mysql database, as well as an old copy of my site. New disk, software re-install, and I'm back on.

    Sin City: Go See It

    Watched Sin City. Excellent. Really much better than I had expected.

    If you like stylized movies and violence, this is for you. Mickey Rourke plays the most compelling character in the performance of his life. Bruce willis is good. Elijah Wood works surprisingly well in his role.

    The movie has …

    A Russian Beauty (Nabokov)

    Author: Vladimir Nabokov

    I randomly picked up a collection of shorts by Vladimir Nabokov, this one. Just as randomly I selected a story, "A Russian Beauty".

    This is one the most amazing shorts I've ever read. It's really quite incredible; it paints a rich, vivid picture of this lady's life …

    misc 01 April 2005
    "Comment Spam! Be Gone"

    I got some comment spam. Great.

    I was about to setup a captcha, but stumbled across lr2spam. This is obnoxiously easy to install, so I'm giving it a go. Please post a comment here if you run into any problems posting comments.

    misc 29 March 2005
    "SOAP over JMS: No Such Thing"

    Subbu Allamaraju makes an excellent point: there is no such thing as SOAP over JMS. It simply doesn't make sense.

    JMS is a set of APIs. It is not a transport or a protocol. You can implement JMS on any kind of transport; I could use messenger pigeons or smoke …

    misc 23 March 2005
    "Plugging back into academia"

    I'm sitting here in the hotel room, flipping channels, too tired to do any real work. I run across these free lectures from Harvard, and two minutes later I'm listening to a presentation on Evolutionary Dynamics. Nice. I see there's quite a bit more out there; here's MIT's contribution, and …

    misc 15 March 2005
    "The Demise of SOAP"

    "What do you think about the whole SOAP vs. REST thing?". I hate this question, but it comes up all the time. Who cares? It's all just XML over HTTP*. I don't care about SOAP vs. REST.

    My traditional answer has been: REST is great for simpler projects where the …

    misc 13 March 2005
    "Norm’s Service Description Language"

    Check it out: http://norman.walsh.name/2005/03/12/nsdl .

    I like it a lot. Specifying the parameters via XPath statements is dead on. The POST body as template is also excellent, although I'm not crazy about the syntax. How do you feel about expressing the input parameters as …

    misc 11 March 2005
    "Simple Recipe for Debugging Web Services"

    Debugging Web services seems to be a black art, entirely related to your knowledge of the arcane details of your SOAP toolkit. Here's one approach I've found useful:

    A SOAP call is just XML over HTTP. All you have to do is capture the XML sent by the SOAP client …

    Movie Review: Ondskan (Evil)

    I watched Ondskan (Evil).

    Decent movie, fairly juvenile. It pushes all the buttons to build the tension, the hatred of the mean mean bad guys. The hero is so noble, so cute, such a good boy really. It's one of those experiences where you find yourself rooting for the good …

    misc 10 March 2005
    "Taste Vectors: Own, Share Your Tastes via XML"

    Each time you use Amazon it assembles a better profile of your tastes, your habits, your likes and dislikes. Why should they own your profile? I propose you publish your likes and dislikes via a simple XML format (RSS? Atom?), and we build collaborative filtering tools to help you find …

    Movie Review: The Machinist

    I just watched The Machinist. Interesting movie. The most striking thing, almost an extra character in the movie, is Christian Bale's emacited body. He starved himself for this role, achieving an incredible, disturbing skeleton state that had me distracted for the first ten minutes.

    The movie is ok. I had …

    "Kung Fu Hustle: Greatest Movie Ever Made"

    I just saw Kung Fu Hustle . This is quite possibly the best movie ever made.

    Ok, so maybe I exaggerate a little. But this is an excellent movie. Laugh out loud funny, and I'm not much of a laugher. Btw, Wachowski brothers, this is how a fight scene with one …

    misc 04 March 2005
    "Wiki-like Blog"

    So I've started this blog. But before I commit any more of my precious thoughts into this medium, let me step back and be one with the blog. Let me complain.

    I'm using WordPress, which is really quite nice. But, …

    You see, my thoughts, if you hadn't noticed, are not …

    misc 04 March 2005
    "XML Namespaces must die"

    I hate XML namespaces. I strongly dislike them.

    I will rant about this in detail in the future, as if there hasn't been enough vitriol on this topic already. But let me present my current problem:

    gsoap is returning this:

    <soap-ENV:Envelope xmlns:SOAP-ENV="http://schemas.xmlsoap.org/soap/envelope …

    misc 03 March 2005
    "The Smart Marketing People are at Apple"

    I bought a Creative Nomad Muvo MP3 Player a little while back. I love this thing; it's exactly what I wanted.

    Before buying that, I tried a Lexar MPC-231 JumpGear, which is basically a cap for a USB memory stick that turns it into an MP3 player. I wasn't happy …


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