Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Listen, OK Here...

I'm gonna be straight with you. I've got a certain budget for food and entertainment (and if you talk to the starving people in Nigeria long enough they'll tell you, "We are very bored! Food is our entertainment!") and just because I spend it with you does not mean you're special.

I'm not Will Smith. No man is an island. I've got to get done the things I've got to get done, and to some extent doing extra past that level is not going to deliver any tangible benefits to me. Sure, there's speculation and I might get something incredible accomplished by working long hours...

But come on! You only live once, and I could die tomorrow. So, it's better to document everything thoroughly, or they're going to have a hell of a time untangling my mess after I'm gone... right?

Lets have some fun with this. You don't have to join the Debate club if you haven't already.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Could Be Worth a Lot

Remember: this information could be worth money!

So, I was trying out Fedora Core 9 on my new USB stick, which I can take anywhere and use at any computer to boot Linux without necessarily affecting the contents of the hard drive.

The mouse cursor was not showing up. This is a neat problem. Without two computers, it was a struggle to get into the forums and find the details of anyone with a related problem: the mouse is connected and when it's moved around the screen, it highlights selectables just like if it were a mouse pointer... but, you can't see it, and incidentally since its invisible, it also doesn't ever change shape.

/etc/X11/xorg.conf

Section "Device"
Option "HWCursor" off

In a college full of smart people, some of them using Fedora Core, and certainly many of them using nVidia and HP computers, and still nobody in my office had ever seen this problem before, or was prepared to offer a solution.

This information could be worth money!

Friday, May 9, 2008

Career Coders get Tracks

I heard that Rentacoder.com has real money up for coding tasks, but I don't know how hard it is to please those escrow judges... assumedly, if they want to keep the programmers coming back, they will pay them. This is not necessarily a given! There are so many competing todo lists, I just heard about GTD Tracks from my buddy Brandon, I hope these tasks find their way to the top of my doings and may I please don't get distracted by shiny features or anything else!

This program called Tracks is all about David Allen's GTD methodology and implementing it into your working patterns, I've seen those programs come and go, the last one I liked a lot was actually called Trac and I still have a deployment of that kicking around on my network somewhere. It's about project management, yes, but Tracks acknowledges that it's actually about context management too.

My buddy Dan wants to put together a website. It's for an entertainment company that he's interested in starting, he wants to sell tickets to shows and maybe music, maybe online distribution vectors, maybe t-shirts, well there are plenty of people doing that kind of thing and it would be good to have some examples for him when we go and talk on Monday. I'll put together a document, which I hope he'll read.

See this is what you've got to understand first and foremost: your one big project may have several components, and you might not be able to convince all of your clients that they should foot the bill for each and every one of them. And, you might not be able to slip it past them in an extra fee, sometimes there is unpaid work that no paying clients will own up to having generated, and sometimes there is work that just doesn't get done for lack of time, funding, or interest.

Back to tracks: you should track it all if it's not too much trouble, for some contexts might eventually have to be cut, and this could result in alterations to the quality or delivery date of your final product. Maybe Dan's entertainment website doesn't need Java or Groovy for scripting, maybe it doesn't even need PHP! If all of the model content providers and sellers have outsourced the scripty functionality of their own websites, then maybe you're really just working on a design and a layout, and implementing it into pages of HTML and templates of CSS.

Maybe Don has been here before, where Dan and I are about to go... "all I know is, I hate writing press kits!" Time to get creative, and it should look nice.

There are also totally online communities where information is exchanged as currency, like ProZ.com, and RentACoder.com, even Dice.com and Monster.com fall into this category.

Can't I bill someone for all of this work? Who says there's not any money in Free Software? I heard about Inkscape and Scribus who both address this problem of layout, like Microsoft Publisher and Adobe Somethingorother, except these pieces of software are in the public domain and licensed under GPL, so there's not any Anteing Up to get started playing the game.

The output is the same around, Portable Document Format (PDF) except that predictably, Microsoft has declined to support the standard that everyone else is using. And who's to say they're wrong for doing that? They almost sold me a copy of their software, I had clients sending me files in Publisher format, am I going to tell them "no! take your proprietary files and green money somewhere else."

Maybe some day...

For now, I'd better work on my presentation. I don't think we need to clear the cache, if they want to steal my work from their cache, I think the browser has made it hard enough to do that, I should reward their labor with my data. There's nothing really stopping me from shooting back with a lawsuit, or some slanderous sounding remarks, much much later, when I find out they're using my copyright and they haven't paid the fee.

This should all be worked out on paper and ironclad before anybody asks too many questions, they could even reveal just how much you don't know and well that would be pretty embarassing wouldn't it? To my adoring fans, til Saturday when we speak again.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Jyte Claims: Kingdon Did Not Travel to New Zealand

There is a way to create digg buttons on this page, but it's not built into the interface in an obvious way, and now I can't remember how to do it. I think I created some files on my hobo11 server a long time ago, and I think I might even still have them, but at this point even Thursday is not being maintained regularly, I guess I'd better spend some time on my infrastructure.

I can show you instead, the Jyte service which was introduced to me by Korean MyID.net OpenID provider service. Here, I can claim that I am the person referred to by http://kingdon.myid.net/ and also http://jackthemac.myid.net/ -- it might not mean anything, because most Jyte users don't know who "I" am, and safe bet that most Jyte users also don't speak Korean, so they wouldn't gain any information by visiting either URL.

These URLs are known as OpenID providers, and by entering them into a web page that knows how to authenticate against an OpenID account, I have just offloaded the job of keeping Kingdon's identities by using some servers in Korea. By posting them to this page, I might have "signed" it or "tagged" it. The mechanics of OpenID are much more complex, and beyond the scope of this article.

DNS is a layer that counts as the world's central "claims broker" on names, it really obsoletes Trademark for the Internet community, except as a means of arbitration. DNS is wholly undemocratic. If you think that you have a claim to a name, your choice is to either pay a fee to the person who already owns the name

(hopefully, the common pool, otherwise the fee will be inexhorbitant or "negotiated")

OR you can escalate the matter to the International Convention for Assigning Names and Numbers (ICANN) who will undoubtedly charge at least as much to provide an opinion. Which, could go either way.

The Domain Naming System is a cog, which could be a golden cog encrusted with diamonds, but instead it is a simple cog. The DNS infrastructure is an example of technological feudalism, where Jyte is an example of a social democracy for deciding truth and value of a "fact," such as ownership of a name.

Somebody has traveled to New Zealand.
Somebody named Jack has traveled to New Zealand.
Somebody named Kingdon has traveled to New Zealand.

All of these are statements, and I would bet that all of these statements are also true facts. With Jyte.com, you can make claims and tie them to an OpenID. Since I can have more than one OpenID, I can actually contradict myself using this service!

The value of such course of action is uncertain. One possible application is to reflect a changing opinion. At any rate, that two servers in Korea say a thing is true does not make truth, and does not necessarily mean that Korea says such a thing is true. That the fact is proven, and that the proof is satisfactory to someone knowledgeable, well, that also does not mean the thing is true.

North or South?
I have no idea. All I want is an IP address of my very own, that people will recognize as mine when they see it. Can you recognize your friend's phone number without Caller ID? Caller ID (and lets not worry too deeply about the reliability of the numbers returned by that system) is an expensive database to maintain. This is not a difficult claim to substantiate: first accept that all databases are expensive, add next that yours surely does not do everything you want it to do.

Of course, that a claim is popular and that a lot of people provide an opinion, does not mean that the truth of the fact is unprovable, or that the claim is really important. It could just be thought-provoking. Some of these popular claims are serving to discourage me from wanting to use the service!

There should be no space between a function name and the paren that starts the argument list.

This claim demonstrates an apathy towards political issues. What? Yes, if you have time to argue about whitespace, I posit that you do not care about politics. Should I add this fact to the database? This is getting tedious now.

http://rochester-arabic.blogspot.com/2008/04/blog-post.html

Kingdon Did Not Travel to New Zealand.



Now, we have opened up a number of issues: it is possible for one person to have more than one identity, and it is possible for a person to make false claims. In Prolog language, you store a database of "facts" and you query asking, "is this fact true."

Back to the matter of the day: what is the effect of posing a claim in the negative? If I am taking a survey, and I am asking "did Kingdon travel to New Zealand" I am sure to generate a different response than if I ask, "is it true that Kingdon did not travel to New Zealand?" One of these may be a leading question. You could also ask, "Kingdon, how was your time in New Zealand?"

And if you do ask that, I'll do my best to keep from looking frustrated and discouraged. I'm sure that New Zealand appreciates your tourist dollars, and I don't want to discourage anybody from visiting that great island nation of New Zealand. And if I say "New Zealand was great," you can bet that it's still great as it was when I was actually in New Zealand. That was, never. I didn't go to New Zealand. For real, it's a made up story. I don't know where it came from.

Peace Out Folks

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

The City I Hate

So it's nothing against this particular city... in fact I like the city, the people look driven, on a mission, enough are friendly, outgoing, it's not like the place is anything bad in and of itself.

Moed Kattan 17a: If a Jew is tempted to do evil he should go to a city where he is not known and do the evil there.


So it has kind of an effect on us. There's a room with a stove, but we've got to go out and spend money on food in restaurants. There's a laundry machine, but we're putting on extra layers of deodorant to cover the smell of a third day in the same shirt. I hope this is worth it.

The bag of potatos is more than half full, but it's cold off the bay, I don't know the route of this drafty breeze. Wrap your head in a towel, your hair won't freeze.

Our neighbor on the left has a huge house with a beautiful clay thatched roof, I guess he's some kind of Port-a-Potty Prince on Jamaica Bay. Humble yourself man! Shit's pretty big business.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Return Your Library Books

BarCamp is only 2 days away, and the Google Summer of Code is accepting submissions for 2 more days after that! Got to get on task and get some things ready for press, I can't even hand out my resume these days because it's not current.

Starting a new tag on yebyen, and reviewing the tasks laid out for me by JackTheMac (that's me, who sits at home figuring out what's good on the computer in all his spare time for the pure enjoyment of it.)



A casino simulator? What's that all about? I don't know exactly, but for some reason VMWare Server Beta download is constantly getting hung at only 24% completed, and I can't handle that.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Career Fair Spring 2008 - RIT

Met some interesting companies at the career fair today! I spoke with Paul from Thomson West, he looked to be in good health and representatives from Microsoft, Paetec, NVidia, Melissa from Yahoo, a company that manufactures artificial spines called NuVasive, someone from the USPTO, someone from Delphi (the automotive company, not the programming language), and a local company called Siteworx that I think I might do business with, most immediately!

I've promised resumes to a lot of people and should be receiving a handful of replies back from the friendly people that I spoke with, props to both Yahoo! and USPTO for providing quality dog toys, a blinking red bouncy ball and a laser pointer/LED flashlight.

Better yet, speaking with the rep from Yahoo I was able to identify a problem with one of their existing software products, pitch a solution, and make contact with someone who will take an interest in both the solution that I can present, and also my resume! Thank the lord for open APIs, without them us developers would surely never get anything done.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Word of the Day

We are in business to make an impression! Money is for bean counters. Business is more like idol worship than it is like chopping wood or carrying water. Or is it?

仁 - rén: humane
厚 - hòu: generous, thick
仁厚 - rén hòu: clemency, clement

Happy Birthday Clement Chan! :D

"I need a gardener more than I need a handyman." -- truer words were never spoken

Monday, January 28, 2008

The Professional Issue Tracker

I wanted to provide a review for the Jira product, since the Atlassian company has done so much for me! However I can't be arsed to download and install the product even if it is better than our current issue tracker, see the problem is that we have an awful lot of time and data invested into the existing system, and a migration is very expensive indeed.

People can't be motivated to maintain two systems, and some people just don't believe things are going to get any better will never be convinced to change their ways. I think those people are called BSD users!

On a small scale we can begin to use a new product, and I've already converted a few of my friends to a workflow using Yahoo! Delicious product, though I think we haven't shaken any money out of the computer from just doing that. Patterns and scales of use will shrink and grow as long as they are not totally stagnating the system stays alive; this is the way!

I have seen some forums and now using some tools with a more free and fluent workflow such as RememberTheMilk, gmail, Subversion, but these days most people are convinced that their problems will not really go away if they simply change over to a new system. I'm not one who likes to beat a dead horse, so I think they can stay on their old systems for now.

Still I don't believe that obsolete is a dirty word, and sometimes I like to get things done in fewest number of clicks, I will remain a software evangelist as long as I am using these machines.

Try these apps for a good time:

WordPress, Subversion, RememberTheMilk
and if you get tired of making items codes and words:
try Gimp 2.4

I hope that you are an artist and you send me a pretty picture!
Kingdon

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Word of the Day

Today's word of the day, brought to you by a tight development schedule and a high-frequency release cycle, is the word complicit. An individual is complicit in a crime if they are aware of its occurrence, have the ability to report the crime, but fail to do so.

"While employed with those people, I was complicit in the greatest failure in the history of mankind!" I'm not just telling stories people, this one should be in the history books if it's not already. The name of the failure? I'm not sure if it has got a name.

Employment? The wager? Something like that.

Cheers to the American University System! On account of some non-disclosure agreements that I have signed along the way, I'm sure that I'm not at liberty to disclose the name of the responsible party. Worse, I'm not sure that it would mean anything if I did.

The crime? Well I don't think it was a crime exactly... and it's not even that I never gave a report, on top of that. In fact at the time I was actively flailing my arms and ever since I have had the impression this is no way to do business.