Scripting News for 9/12/2006

After all the hassling today with the phone company I still don’t have a dial tone at the house. I came back to the apartment, ready to sign up with Comcast, but they won’t sign me up unless I transfer my old service. But I don’t want to transfer my service I want service at both places. Never mind, we can’t even do that unless you come down to our office to prove that you’re not the old owners who apparently owe them money. Okay, I give up. It’s apparently impossible to get Internet service in Berkeley. Grace Davis says I need a personal assistant.  

I got burned again by the Firefox bug/feature where it implements permanent redirects without looping the server in, and this was really elaborately fcuked up. Okay, so I had a bug in some software and it was redirecting where it shouldn’t, and because I was doing permanent redirects, once I fixed the bug there was nothing I could do to Firefox to tell it to forget about my mistake (or was there? is there some programmer’s switch I can flip that tells it to forget about all the redirects it’s remembering? that would solve the problem). Anyway, so I map a different domain to the app, as I did last month when I hit this wall, and I used that one instead. However, I forgot to change the domain for the cookie the app was returning. So I spent hours chasing down a bug in some ancient mainResponder code that I haven’t looked at in this milennium, and therefore didn’t trust, when the problem was somewhere very far away, in my work around for this new weird and programmer-unfriendly behavior of Firefox’s. Now I know some idiot is saying it’s my fault for having bugs, but that’s ridiculous. If I have to write bug-free code to use Firefox as a development tool, well then I’d better find another browser. Unless there’s some hidden nerd switch (see above). 

Pretty soon Scoble will be more popular than Jesus. :-) 

MacWorld report on Apple’s announcements. 

Interesting back and forth between the leaders of the Wikipedia and Britannica communities. In defense of Britannica, there is indeed an important difference, Britannica tells you who the editors are, and Wikipedia can’t. When directly asked about that, Wales dodges. I feel sympathy for the Britannicans, and I’m embarassed that the people from the web, which is where I hail from, are so hostile toward the print folk. When Wales cites an accuracy issue for Britannica (calling it “bad publicity”), it’s clear they did the right thing, when the 12-year old boy found the errors, they thanked him, and made the corrections. What else would you have them do? Have no mistakes? Oh come now. At the end of the supposed bad publicity, “Lucian said that despite the mistakes, he still thought the encyclopaedia was the best reference book he knew.” Bravo. The Britannica guy isn’t as aggressive a debater as Wales, but when you look past that, there is a balance, you just have to find it yourself. At the outset Wales seemed to accept that both approaches are valuable, and you know what, he could have stopped right there. Yes, both approaches are valuable. QED

Good morning. Real busy yesterday and today with New House Stuff. I’ll miss the Apple announcement, probably won’t have a net connection either (today I’m waiting for the DSL installer). Like everyone else I’m looking forward to hearing what Apple will announce. And amazingly my Macs (knock wood) are actually behaving these days. However if they announce a replacement for either of my machines (or my 60GB iPod) I expect them to fail completely and never boot again (praise Murphy, praise Steve). 

Postscript on the DSL installation. I waited until noon and then called SBC/Yahoo to find out where the installer was. They said they weren’t sending anyone out and I didn’t need to be there. Except when I signed up they said I had to be there. Not an auspicious beginning. Four hours waiting for an installer that wasn’t coming.  

5/7/97: “A programmer is a rigorous scientist determined to coax the truth out of the ones and zeros.” 

11 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by bobby orbach on September 12, 2006 at 1:05 pm

    grace davis quote..
    as much as I was horrified about 9/11, as much as I was doing the same angry sobbing that day and for days afterwards, I think Katrina was worse, far worse”

    This is the dumbest most idiotic stupid quote i have ever seen
    how could you say katrina was worse?
    9-11 was the worst tragedy any nation ahs seen since the holocaust.. an attack on innocent lives over 3000 children lost a parent that day,,, Katrina was an act of god, it was devastating; loss of life could have been avoided, 9-11 was much much more devastating, it was an attack on our freedom and it affected,changed and damaged many many more people than Katrina.
    i have much more to say but I am horrified that anyone can be so wrong, I compare this to those that deny the holocaust ever happened.

    Mad in NY

    Reply

  2. To Bobby – you didn’t read my post all the way through. I finished the entry as follows:

    Then, my middle-way self will gently push herself forward and try her best to see the balance of 9/11 and Katrina and everything else. That it’s all suffering and that our work is to alleviate suffering, as much as we can.

    You took my words out of context, my friend.

    And to you, Dave – regarding waiting at home for the DSL installation? Two words:

    Personal Assistant

    Reply

  3. Oh my… SBC/Yahoo sent installers to our office three times. They each showed a different order and were prepared to install a new line, as if I had placed 3 orders for 3 seperate DSL lines. It was pretty annoying getting things set up, but once it was, the service has been fine.

    Reply

  4. Posted by Mark Reinhold on September 12, 2006 at 7:48 pm

    SBC/Yahoo? Should have checked Sonic.net and gone with them. I have had them for several years, and get help either by phone or online whenever I need it. They are great.

    Reply

  5. Posted by jeremyw on September 12, 2006 at 9:53 pm

    Regarding the Firefox “bug”: Wouldn’t clearing your cache do the trick?

    Reply

  6. For goodness sake Dave – Scoble more popular than Jesus? I hope you’re having a laugh – especially as Jesus is less popular than Mohammed.

    Reply

  7. Dave,

    maybe something on the Firefox about:config page can be tweaked to get the behaviour you want? Just enter “about:config” in the URL box.

    Reply

  8. Posted by Marc on September 13, 2006 at 5:55 am

    >bobby orbach said,
    >This is the dumbest most idiotic stupid quote i have ever seen…
    >9-11 was the worst tragedy any nation ahs seen since the holocaust…
    >I am horrified that anyone can be so wrong, I compare this to those that deny the holocaust ever happened.

    Think Rwanda might have been through tough times in 1994? That whole genocide thing seems a bit worse to me.

    It seems right to me that 9/11 was indeed worse than Katrina, but why on earth does it chap your hide that someone appeared to rank them differently? And how does the great crime of not ranking tragedies appropriately rank up there with Holocaust denial?

    Reply

  9. Hrmm, sorry to hear about the pain you’re having with you broadband installation. Out here in North Carolina we have Time Warner Cable and their service is actually quite fantastic. The installer with the equipment showed up on time and it all happened quickly. On top of that Best Buy had a deal for their service for like $30 a month (though you have to have cable TV as well).

    Hrmm, I have IE7 RC1 and Firefox. Truth tell, I actually use IE7 more… but perhaps that is because I don’t really have the desire to start adding a ton of add-ons.

    9/11 and Katrina by far have not come close to the worst disasters to occur. In this century or any other. Regardless though, it affected us all differently and we will all respond to it in a different light. Lets not try and tell each other which should affect them more, or which was more important. You’d be hard pressed telling a poor person in New Orleans that what they experienced wasn’t horrible, or a New Yorker that what they experienced wasn’t the worst thing to experience.

    We are all lucky though that in the scheme of things the disasters we have faced have claimed far fewer lives than many others that have occured around the world. That of course does not make them less meaningful to us though.

    Reply

  10. Bobby Orbach, you are appauling

    1) You seriously diminish the Holocaust by using it as your point of reference for 9/11. How many millions of Jews, Gypsies, Homosexuals and Jehova’s Witnesses from multiple countries were murdered on a industrial scale over a span of multiple years?

    2) You cast aside the suffering of millions more people by saying that nothing else since the Holocaust compares to 9/11. What about the Vietnam War, what about the millions murdered in cambodia, what about Rwanda? Chairman Mao’s bullshit?

    As for the relative impact of the two events: Consider how many people lost their homes to Katrina, (not just their houses, but their churches, their communities, their whole cities), people who are still displaced, even a year later. Consider what it did to the rest of the nation when they saw how the government failed all those people so completely despite fair warning of both Katrina in particular, and the risks of hurricaine season in general.

    Reply

  11. Posted by bobby orbach on September 13, 2006 at 12:02 pm

    to grace D

    your assumption is correct, I did not read your post all the way, just took the quote from Dave’s post…sorry
    as for Rwanda, Cambodia, Iraq etc.. genocide is equally horrible anywhere .. Holocaust was only an example, ranking an attack on our freedom and devastating loss of life below a natural disaster doesnt make sense

    Reply

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