Politics, Weather, Photography, and the Dog
Tuesday 29 November 2005

I just got a voice message from the National Republican Campaign Committee, asking for survey input.

As a matter of fact, I do have some ideas for the 2006 campaign...

Heh.

Tuesday 29 November 2005 11:20:52 CST (UTC-06:00)  |  | Politics#
Not even the twenty-sixth named tropical storm of the year can blow any sense into our airhead administration.
Tuesday 29 November 2005 10:24:50 CST (UTC-06:00)  |  | Politics | Weather#

Anne writes:

I told the credit card woman that it was because I was boycotting J. Crew because they sell fur. She actually had the nerve to say, "I can assure you that the fur that we sell comes from reputable breeders and not from animal destruction."
I think that was off-script, huh? I just said, "I think by definition it comes from animal destruction."
I encourage everyone who is getting J. Crew's catalogs to call (800) 562-0258 and ask to be taken off their lists--and be sure to tell them why.

I didn't even know we had a J. Crew card...

Monday 28 November 2005 18:06:06 CST (UTC-06:00)  |  | Politics#
Monday 28 November 2005

I just finished Garbage Land, leaving only about a dozen books on my reading stack right now. Highlights:

Why is this in the Software category? Because better wetware means better software.

It's important to read widely in order to write better, whether your language is English or C#. Read as much as you can, about anything that interests you. Limit your professional reading to 50% of your total no matter what (but shoot for 25%). The more you know about things outside your profession, the more you can bring to the profession, whether it's software or anything else.

Monday 28 November 2005 16:13:58 CST (UTC-06:00)  |  | Software#
Sunday 27 November 2005
The owners of this property in Carmel, Calif., wanted to build a starter castle. But new building isn't allowed, so they're remodeling.
Sunday 27 November 2005 15:51:09 CST (UTC-06:00)  |  | Politics#

What I'm reading right now (and what Anne can't wait to borrow):

Sunday 27 November 2005 12:41:31 CST (UTC-06:00)  |  | Politics#

It appears we're finally going to have an impartial, thorough investigation into the run-up to the Iraq war, conducted by an governmental organization with the power and motivation to do it right: the U.K. House of Commons.

That's what happens when you have a 36% approval rating.

Sunday 27 November 2005 09:07:07 CST (UTC-06:00)  |  | Politics#
Friday 25 November 2005
The coldest Thanksgiving in recent memory prompts Tribune columnist Eric Zorn to suggest a change.
Friday 25 November 2005 08:29:44 CST (UTC-06:00)  |  | Weather#
Thursday 24 November 2005
We're in California for Thanksgiving weekend, and the weather here seems nicer than the weather back home.
Thursday 24 November 2005 11:13:46 CST (UTC-06:00)  |  | Weather#
Wednesday 23 November 2005

It looks like we've gotten about 12mm (1/2 inch) of snow overnight in Chicago.

Wednesday 23 November 2005 06:35:35 CST (UTC-06:00)  |  | Weather#
Tuesday 22 November 2005

"When your IQ reaches 50, you should sell."

—Guest blogger Anne

Tuesday 22 November 2005 16:37:15 CST (UTC-06:00)  |  | #

I'm glad someone agrees with me. :)

From today's Chicago Tribune:

"The president could take the politics out of Iraq once and for all if he would simply go on television and say to the American people: 'Yes, we made mistakes. Yes, there are things that I would have done differently. But now that I'm here, I'm going to work with both Republicans and Democrats to find the most responsible way out,'" [Illinois U.S. Senator Barack] Obama said. "Imagine if he did that, how it would transform the politics of our country."

—Guest blogger Anne

Tuesday 22 November 2005 14:32:17 CST (UTC-06:00)  |  | Politics#

Jeff Goldblum called Anne "sweetie pie." Fortunately I'm not the jealous type.

Cute photo, though.

Tuesday 22 November 2005 10:45:05 CST (UTC-06:00)  |  | #
Monday 21 November 2005

First, Andy Borowitz has a hi-larious report today:

In a ploy designed to put House Democrats on the spot, Republicans in the House of Representatives today insisted upon a floor vote on a new resolution banning the drowning of kittens. While few in the House expected the kitten-drowning resolution to pass, the House GOP leadership hoped that by calling for the floor vote they might force Democrats into an embarrassing position that they would have to explain to their constituents back home during the Thanksgiving recess.

Second, more seriously, Paul Krugman (reg.req.) says it's time to leave Iraq:

The fact is that we're not going to stay in Iraq until we achieve victory, whatever that means in this context. At most, we'll stay until the American military can take no more.
Mr. Bush never asked the nation for the sacrifices - higher taxes, a bigger military and, possibly, a revived draft - that might have made a long-term commitment to Iraq possible. Instead, the war has been fought on borrowed money and borrowed time. And time is running out.
Monday 21 November 2005 12:13:42 CST (UTC-06:00)  |  | Politics#
Sunday 20 November 2005

Aha.

In ASP.NET 1.1, you need to have a folder called aspnet_client\system_web\{.NET version} under a Web application's root in order for Javascript to work.

In ASP.NET 2.0, you don't. And in fact, on a server (like mine) where both versions are running side by side, having that folder causes Javascript to fail in some browsers on the ASP.NET 1.1 sites (like this one).

This means comments are working now.

But I'm still going to install Community Server, though I probably will keep Das Blog now. (For the record, I always thought it was a configuration error, not Das Blog's fault.)

Sunday 20 November 2005 10:55:51 CST (UTC-06:00)  |  | Software#
All Anne wants for Chrismukkah is...
Sunday 20 November 2005 10:34:11 CST (UTC-06:00)  |  | #
Saturday 19 November 2005 18:48:37 CST (UTC-06:00)  |  | #
Saturday 19 November 2005

I finally bit the bullet and downloaded the Visual Studio 2005 CD images from Microsoft, and installed the latest runtime on my Web server.

Only one site broke: Hired Wrist, my dad's site, which I just now fixed. That's not bad. Usually upgrading hoses everything.

Hired Wrist broke (gracefully, I should point out; only the graphic headers were affected) because the released version of ASP.NET 2.0 handles page names slightly differently, which caused my resource-based graphics handling to fail. Resources, apparently, are now case-sensitive. Oops.

Saturday 19 November 2005 14:01:50 CST (UTC-06:00)  |  | Software#
Friday 18 November 2005

I've just spent the past four and a half hours trying, and failing, to get Microsoft SharePoint installed and running.

I think the .NET 2.0 Beta runtime on my main server is screwing things up. I think this because, for example, other people have gotten SharePoint running without a problem, and my Das Blog difficulties only seem to affect this server. (I got Das Blog running on a laptop—which doesn't have .NET 2.0 on it—just fine.)

Why doesn't stuff just work?

Friday 18 November 2005 16:18:06 CST (UTC-06:00)  |  | Software#

I'm all ready to start testing two open-source prouducts that are built for .NET 2.0, which was released about two weeks ago. I can't yet because I don't have the final version of .NET 2.0 yet; I still have the final beta, and these open-source projects won't run on the beta.

My company subscribes to Microsoft Development Network, which gives us just about everything they sell, plus all the beta-test versions. They also have a site from which we can download anything we haven't received yet.

So today, when I finally have some time to play with the new stuff, their download site is down. And we haven't received the DVDs yet (they're due in about two weeks). So I can't do much of anything that I wanted to do today.

Fooey.

Friday 18 November 2005 10:49:20 CST (UTC-06:00)  |  | Software#
Thursday 17 November 2005

From Molly Ivins' column today:

One of our better political commentators, Tom Tomorrow, has boiled down our entire current political debate to one question: "Are they stupid, or are they lying?"
Thursday 17 November 2005 08:02:38 CST (UTC-06:00)  |  | Politics#
It's Chicago, in November, where the temperature has dropped 32°C (58°F) in three days.
Thursday 17 November 2005 07:51:15 CST (UTC-06:00)  |  | Weather#
In which sense finally overwhelms the pride of "not invented here."
Wednesday 16 November 2005 20:50:37 CST (UTC-06:00)  |  | Software#
Wednesday 16 November 2005

Dan Savage's Op-Ed today (reg.req.) asks a reasonable question:

If the Republicans can propose a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage, why can't the Democrats propose a right to privacy amendment? Making this implicit right explicit would forever end the debate about whether there is a right to privacy. And the debate over the bill would force Republicans who opposed it to explain why they don't think Americans deserve a right to privacy - which would alienate not only moderates, but also those libertarian, small-government conservatives who survive only in isolated pockets on the Eastern Seaboard and the American West.

Thanks to Angela Riccetti for this one.

Wednesday 16 November 2005 12:59:10 CST (UTC-06:00)  |  | Politics#

The Code Project has today publicized details about Sony's DRM CreepyWare that lets Sony know what CDs you're listening to. It also hides in the bowels of your Windows operating system and can't be un-installed without downloading a buggy patch from Sony.

I'm all in favor of protecting copyrights. But this is creepy, and more offensive than the Mickey Mouse Protection Act of 1998.

Update: The L.A. Times has the story now.

Wednesday 16 November 2005 08:24:24 CST (UTC-06:00)  |  | Politics | Software#
Tuesday 15 November 2005

(Last post for now.)

Anne just sent me a link to a very cool application.

That is all.

Update/Clarification: Anne found this to aid her writing, not because there's any special news from our family. But thanks for asking.

Tuesday 15 November 2005 12:43:29 CST (UTC-06:00)  |  | Software#

Translation: I am going to replace Das Blog.

Yes, as much as I like it—and I do, despite my gripes—I've found something more in line with the way that I work: Community Server. I've downloaded both the current version and the new Beta, and as soon as I have time (tomorrow at the earliest, Saturday at the latest), I'll switch over.

Since this is a brand-new blog, I have little compunction about wiping out all the permalinks. (There are fewer than 10 at the moment.) We apologize for the inconvenience.

Tuesday 15 November 2005 12:32:03 CST (UTC-06:00)  |  | Software#

Anne and I were shocked—shocked!—to learn on NPR's Morning Edition that the Food and Drug Administration ruled against allowing Plan B to be dispensed without a prescription, before the scientific panel had released its findings.

It was shocking because they actually had a scientific panel looking at the question.

Tuesday 15 November 2005 08:00:30 CST (UTC-06:00)  |  | Politics#
Monday 14 November 2005
What format for the blog's front page do people prefer?
Monday 14 November 2005 11:59:14 CST (UTC-06:00)  |  | Software#
Paul Krugman's column today explains why free markets don't work for health care.
Monday 14 November 2005 10:25:46 CST (UTC-06:00)  |  | Politics#
I think porting DasBlog from ASP.NET 1.1 to 2.0 will take longer than I originally thought.
Sunday 13 November 2005 20:56:15 CST (UTC-06:00)  |  | Software#
Sunday 13 November 2005
In which I outline the principal projects to which I will likely refer when discussing software in this blog.
Sunday 13 November 2005 13:05:31 CST (UTC-06:00)  |  | Software#
It mights gonna to be a bit vindy.
Sunday 13 November 2005 11:42:20 CST (UTC-06:00)  |  | Weather#
DasBlog, the blog engine running this site, has some irritating quirks.
Sunday 13 November 2005 09:54:24 CST (UTC-06:00)  |  | Software#
In which I describe who I am, what this is, and why on earth anyone would care.
Sunday 13 November 2005 09:45:42 CST (UTC-06:00)  |  | Politics | Software | Weather#
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David Braverman and Parker
David Braverman is a software developer in Chicago, and the creator of Weather Now. Parker is the most adorable dog on the planet, 80% of the time.
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