technology Articles


Looking for a Nav system (Revisited: 2018)

If you want a good feel for the advancements in Navigation systems in the last 10 years, you should check out my piece Looking for a Nav system from 2008. The article went through my key issues that lead to my recommendation of the TomTom's in those days. TL;DR …

TPS Reports? (Testing PostgreSQL under SmartOS)

Rob and I are working on updating our standard envrionment in our data centers. As may be clear already, we're big proponents of SmartOS, which has been working really well for our needs. We've also big proponents of automation (and, in particular, Ansible). Due to a hardware failure this weekend …

Jumping a dead 2000 Boxster S

I'm generally extremely happy with my 17-year old 2000 Boxster S that I bought new. However, running back and forth between Atlanta means that I've not been driving it as much as I have recently (although quite a bit more than I did in the 2008-2010 period). Last year, I …

Sun SparcStation 20 vs Raspberry Pi

For those of us old timers, here's an amusing shootout between a SparcStation 20 and a Raspberry Pi, including both the Pi and the Pi2 (but unfortunately not the Pi0). For those unfamiliar with the SS20, it was a workhorse desktop in the 1990's. Early pizza-box design and pricing out …


Aperture and laptops

For those of you digital photography enthusiasts who use Aperture, here's a little bit of info on how I deal with going out of town with my laptop, but wanting to do the "real work" on my desktop when I get home. It turns out that if you are careful …


Will It Blend ad for the Olympus PEN camera

I didn't realize the Blendtec guys would do this, but it's a very cute advertisement, especially for a tech-savvy camera, like the new Olympus, which has been getting rave reviews. Watch as fearless blender, Tom Dickson, discovers there's something more to blending than destruction.


Looking for a Nav system?

Editor's Note: this piece is quite long in the tooth at this point. I'm leaving it here for historical purposes, but I've got some updated commentary in the follow-on article Looking for a Nav system (revisited: 2018). A friend (Hi, Laura) asked yesterday what Nav system that I would suggest …

The "humanization" of Bill Gates

It is apparent now, after the airing of New Family (the second installment in Microsoft's new ad campaign), that the object of the ads is to create a more sympathetic, approachable, and perhaps even more "human" Bill Gates. My only guess here is that he's being groomed to be the …


Vista Followup...

So, after reading through all this Vista stuff, I decided that I should blow the virtual dust off of my virtual Vista computer (thanks Parallels!), and make sure I had Service Pack 1 installed. Here are my experiences. Keeping in mind that most of you think of me as a …

Yep, window dressing...

Just for the record, I've checked out the Mojave Experiment website (as I said I would in my previous article about it), and my expectations were met. If you look at the feature set for Vista, this is what people are experiencing here... features of the os in a controlled …

Contrived Microsoft "experiment" gets headlines

If you haven't already heard of the "Mojave" experiment, then you will--likely in the next few days. Microsoft, not please with the reaction so far to Vista, set out to attempt to bolster the new operating system's reputation by offering a "blind taste test" of the OS. What happened? Exactly …

Inside view of a cyberattack

The folks at Revision3 have a detailed article about a Denial of Service (DoS) attack which was perpetrated upon them over Memorial Day weekend 2008. The kicker is that the attack was either intentional or negligent misconfiguration on behalf of a RIAA "watchdog" company named MediaDefender. It's unclear whether appropriate …

Rube Goldburg fan hits the net

Somebody from HEMA (retail site in the Netherlands) put a lot of work into this advertisement It's well worth the click. Thanks to fark for the pointer. Ed Note (2018-11-23) This page appears to be lost to time and Flash.

TomTom: When a paid upgrade is a downgrade

Stick this one in the extremely shady business practices category. In order to add more revenue to the coffers, a paid upgrade from existing TomTom 910 and 510 maps that currently include locations of Starbucks will result in losing the locations of said Starbucks! Hey, that's darned good service for …


iPhone @ -10 C

The wacky Fins at F-secure have decided to put an iPhone through its paces in a fridge and the result is a chilling video. Thanks to The Ultimate Apple Weblog for the pointer, and YouTube for the video.