The Galactic Patrol

Saving the Universe from Boskone and Bugs

September, 2003

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    The RIAA indicts the entire state of California for file-swapping!

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    Ok, just kidding.  Still, it seems like the RIAA is really stepping over the border of common sense, prudence, and just plain pissing people off.  The link below is to a story about how they are pursuing the vile international criminal, that...
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    A beautiful West Virginia Bed and Breakfast

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    Al and Allison Alsdorf, my parents-in-law, run a beautiful Bed & Breakfast in Harpers Ferry, West Virginia.  It is really wonderful place; the house is large and comfortable – and the town of Harpers Ferry is a very cool, small town,...
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    Escape Analysis; or, 'how *did* that bug slip through testing?'

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     After the Indigo team's last milestone (M4), most of our feature test teams did an analysis of the bugs in their feature area, and extracted some useful 'lessons learned' to help us improve our testing in future milestones.  Here are some...
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    We can rebuild him - better, stronger, faster

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    I read here that Sony is coming out with yet another rev of their Aibo robot dog.  That thing has had more staying power than I figured – I would have guessed that its still a bit too early to make money off an electronic pet.  (Of...
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    nano-scale chemicals - boon or bane?

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    I was reading this article about the uses of iron nano-particles.  You know, nano-scale objects are like new chemicals all their own.  I’ve heard speculation that bucky-tubes can be as dangerous as asbestos.  I don’t know...
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    "I'm With Busey" claims another victim

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    I recently read another glowing review of “I’m With Busey” on Sean Alexander’s web site .  That’s the last straw – I’ve seen enough plaudits that I have now added the show to my TiVo to-do list.  We’ll...
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    Raymond's Bits of Eclectic Windows Trivia, Legerdemain, and Historical Oddities

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    I’ve really been enjoying RaymondC’s blog posts on the history of Windows and the checkered past of its development.  Here is the one where he explains why Joe Schmoe developer isn’t allowed to add entries to the Start Menu pin list.
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    Switching from Windows to Linux

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    I’ve found this site where Ton Zijlstra is documenting his conversion from Windows to Linux.  I’ll be curious to see how it goes – of course, I hope he finds out that Windows is the better answer after all!  [Note that the website appears...
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    The Portrait of the Mastermind (INTJ)

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    Here is an interesting personality assessment test; the Myers-Briggs personality assessment, very popular in some circles.  I don’t know how useful it really is, but I do find that it describes my personality fairly well, and it is quick...
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    The coolest jacket in the whole world

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    I forgot to post the item that prompted my last post on containers – it is this jacket I recently read about at the Wired web site .  It has 30 pockets.  It has 2312.75 sqare inches of pocket space.  It has useful wiring conduits...
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    an odd fascination with... containers

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    “Hello, my name is Bruce Williams, and is has been six days since I last bought a container…”  Does anyone else ever get that feeling?  I don’t know what it is, but I just love those container stores.  Plastic...
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    I work on "Indigo"

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    I noticed at this link that folks are starting to hear (and speculate) about Indigo.  That’s cool to see, because that’s my team!  I know, I shouldn’t tease, because I’m not allowed to talk about it yet – but still, it is just cool to start...
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    All roads lead to Fry's

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    A Fry’s electronics store opened recently near here – I’ve seen a number of folks mention it on their blogs.  Apparently Fry’s is quite an institution down in CA, so I had to go and see what all the fuss is about. ...
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    Rewriting Microsoft web services

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    Mark Pilgrim converts the new MS.COM web service into a REST format ; it is certainly more compact!  My team works mostly with SOAP, so I have a lot of intellectual investment in that approach; it is interesting and challenging to see other ways...
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    Amazing! Free! Cool!

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    One of the things I remember most fondly from high school was the seemingly endless free time I had to pursue whatever fancies caught my mind.  When I see the amazing on-line resources being made available from MIT and the BBC , it makes me wish...
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    internet flaky this morning...

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     My internet is being very flaky this morning – half the web sites I try don’t respond, but if I refresh they show up.  I wonder what’s up?

    ...
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    and now for a little silliness...

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    Gina and I like to buy toys – toys for little people, toys for big people; it is shopping madness.  If we see a really cool toy, we’ll buy it even if we don’t have a recipient in mind; it goes in the “toy closet”,...
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    Leggo my Lego!

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    I recently had a very pleasant vacation (modulo the whole mother-having-cancer issue), and one of the fun things was the gaggle of nieces and nephews running around – seven of them between the ages of one to nine years old.  Well, naturally...
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    Does that mean Bill Gates is "The Architect"?

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    Ok, normally gratuitous anti-Microsoft writing turns me off, but this one is just hilarious! (Matrix's Morpheus speaking to Neo) “Microsoft Windows is a system, Neo. That system is our enemy. But when you're inside, you look around and what...
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    The Mysterious Moving Maze!

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    Ok, this is bizarre .  It is a maze whose walls move around as you walk through it!  It looks pretty small from the outside, but I imagine if done well it could project a much larger “virtual space” while you are walking through...
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    Reality TV? Please, not while I'm eating!

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     Seriously, this sounds pretty cool – a news reporter discusses the day’s news with you, live on TV.  Just sits in his kitchen in a bathrobe, with some newspapers and a highlighter.  Huh.  Kinda makes me wish I lived...
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    I am a HiFi philistine

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    I will be the first to admit that I have one of the least discriminating musical ears in existence.  Really; CD, radio, TV, MP3 – they all sound pretty much the same to me.  You can probably tell that I don’t buy the expensive...
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    What else is going on in Iraq?

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    It seems like all I ever hear about Iraq these days is new attacks, new people killed.  It is all negative news.  I’m interested in that, but I’m also interested in the positive, rebuilding, actions taking place in the country...
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    Los Alamos whistle-blower gets $$$

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    I’m actually really happy to read about this .  I’d read an earlier article that described how this guy was sent to Los Alamos, and his * job * was to look for problems and misconduct – and when he found and reported it, they...
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    We've built a five-year-old! Now, about the potty-training...

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    I read an article on Gizmodo recently, how some Japanese researchers want their government to fund a long-term program to develop a robot with the capabilities of a five-year-old. Now, as a techophile, I’m all for this.  I completely...
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