An attachment a la Plato for a bashful young potato
or a not too French french bean.
And everyone will say, as you walk your flowery way,
If he's content with a vegetable love that would certainly not suit me,
Why what a most particularly pure young man this pure young man must be!
The important thing isn't speed. It's ubiquity, the sense that the Net is wherever you want it to be. Not dialing a modem makes a big psychological difference; instead of the Net being a separate activity, it's just there.
She saved the world a lot
I'm currently using the d7 release of Ceres. If you'd like to know more, or watch the construction as it happens, visit the Eastgate Development Peekhole. If you notice that Ceres made a mistake somewhere in this site, please email me.
New birds: a delightful morning of birding near College Station yields three North American lifers in about two hours, leaving me in great shape to present Where Are The Hypertexts, Again? to a gratifyingly large (if silent) crowd.
Three new birds in one morning, thanks entirely to a wonderful guide.
Flash titles: The headline on this page was formerly an image. Today, it's a Flash object.
Flash is usually used for animation, but it renders type cleanly and scales it well. Flash is more efficient for headlines than GIF images.
Using Flash to replace HTML is probably a bad idea; HTML is more efficient and more useful. But using Flash to replace an image is bound to be a win. Comments and dissents are welcome.
House of the Rising Sun: At the heart of Traffic is the old drug lie: a cute virginal white girl goes to a party where her friends drink and do a little social cocaine. A few weeks later, she's turning tricks in a fleabag hotel. She's rescued overnight by Christ and 12 steps.
The movie knows it's a lie, it subverts the falsehood with cinematographic shorthand. Perhaps its a ruse to fool the ratings board. Maybe its politics.
The movie seems designed to provide one experience for the Left and another, completely different experience for the Right. This is hard to do: that's probably a good thing.
Life with Palm: At Eastgate, we're all walking around with PalmOS PDAs, learning how small computers really fit into business life. We know about calendars and address books; we're trying to learn what lies beyond (and how we can help get there)
It's interesting how little action I've found on the Web about integrating these little computers into your worklife. I've found plenty of sites that advertise shareware, but editorially the landscape seems bleak. Contrast the Mac world: where is the Palm news site like MacCentral, or the daily news feed like MacNN? Where are the rumors sites? The deal sites?
For example, the Palm lets you assign categories to all sorts of things. For some people, the categories are obvious. For some, they're mandated by corporate MIS. How should the rest of us use them?
Another example: how urgent is a priority 1 todo? Once a day? Once a month?
What You Can Live With: At work, I keep four computers on my desktop. Hope is the Web development and mail center, Patience is the home of Storyspace development, Faith is a shiny new Windows box, and recently I've been trying to spend time with a PDA. We've got a new system in planning that ought to be perfect for PDAs, so everyone around here has been told to use the things.
Hope is a big server that's showing some age, and replacing it's old 800x600 15" monitor has been on the wishlist for years. Other things came first (like adequate monitors for everyone else at Eastgate!)
Recently, though, Hope has been looking like an old Mac Classic shortly before the power supply would blow: shimmery video, constantly shifting, feathery screen edges, the works. Every day was a little worse.
Rather than wait for it to give out entirely, I broke down and ordered a generic 17" monitor. The difference is astonishing. How could I have put up with the old display? I can't imagine.
Total cost: $225. Oy.
Phone Fun: Last night, my home phone began to insist that I handn't chosen a long distance carrier. I brought this to the attention of my long distance carrier; the pointed out I wasn't calling from home.
"I'm standing in my kitchen!"
"But this isn't your line, sir."
"I'm pretty certain it's my kitchen. I've lived here for years."
Somehow we cross-circuited to B. Stay tuned.
Happy New Year: This year's midnight double-feature was Sleepers, followed by 2001: A Space Odyssey.
In grad school, we used to talk about submarine chemistry -- experimental work that you might try on the off-chance it might work. We'd say, "If it doesn't work, it'll never surface." Submarine chemistry avoids having to justify experiments you don't really expect to work. You never know...
I've got a submarine hypertext system running on my laptop.
Dissonance: I hate release mode. We're almost ready to ship; the remaining issues are boring, difficult, or unrewarding. Often all three.
I'm reviewing a set of papers for a conference; many of them seem to be wretched, sterile, and deadly dull.
The good news this week a a remarkable little book, Stephen Lekson's The Chaco Meridian. Studiously informal, written with wit and polish, exquisite.
Thanksgiving: Free-range turkey, cooked (as always) on the grill. Too chilly for many neighbors to notice this annual eccentricity. Rootmos. Fresh cranberries, chopped with clementines. Zaca Mesa Chardonnay. Meryl's blueberry crumble.
I told you...
A flock of Tufted Titmice at Great meadows. You see individual TT's all the time, playing with the chickadees, but I haven't run across an entire flock before.
Also Canada Goose, Mallard, Black Duck, ?Common Grackle, Green-winged Teal, American Crow, Black-capped chickadee.