July 27, 2005
I've been noodling with the idea of a slogan for the site, or at least the 'base' blog. Well, thanks to my girlfriend wandering through Amazon's bumper sticker section, we now have one. I was going to go with "bynkii.com: Because idealism untempered by cynicism is annoying".
But it didn't really scream out me
The slogan I went with? It's a modified version of a bumper sticker, and it's definitely me.
bynkii.com: The reason God invented the middle finger| Comments ()
July 26, 2005
The 2005 Mac Networker's Retreat
The 2005 Mac Networker's Retreat has been announced, it's happening, I probably can't make it, but I'm urging anyone who can go to go.
First the specifics:
The 2005 Mac Networkers Retreat will run from Sunday, 30 October 2005 to Tuesday, 1 November 2005 at the Seascape Resort in Aptos, California on Monterey Bay. Aside from the fact that the surroundings are gorgeous, the Retreat itself is an opportunity unlike any other in the Mac IT space. It's not just workshops like In-Depth Tiger Server Setup and Administration, or Wireless Network Design and Implementation, lead by Mac IT Experts, like Schoun Regan, Mike Bartosh, Joel Rennich, and more. It's also the more informal discussion groups that run, well, all night if need be. This isn't a dry Ze class vill be from 9am to 5 pm, vis prrrrrecizly vun hour for lunch kind of thing.
The Retreat is more laid back, to foster an exchange of knowledge between all the attendees. It's intense, I mean, we aren't talking about "Barney meets Mac OS X" here, but it's not a one way lecture either. Everyone at the Retreat, regardless of what side of the Podium they're on, is an expert on some aspect of Mac OS X networking. They all have unique experiences that could very well help you out. That, by the way, is the 'soft' value here that lasts far beyond the retreat. The people you get to know in and out of the lectures, the workshops. The email addresses and phone numbers you collect. Make no mistake, I've had my bacon saved by some of these guys, and I hope I've helped return the favor whenever possible. While you can't put a dollar amount on this part of a conference, you can bet that a year or two down the road, it's going to be far and away greater than the expenses that get you there.
It's also pretty cheap. $795, $695 if you register before September 30th. That's dirt cheap for this kind of thing. In my case, I'm not going because I have family obligations during that time, but if I didn't, I'd have my keister in Monterey for this SO fast, I'd leave a flame trail ala Wile E. Coyote.
It's a great chance to not only learn something of immediate value, but to create a network of "smart friends" that will last you for years to come.
Registration for the event opens soon, so keep an eye on the site.
disclaimer: I'm not getting a dime for this. I'm not asking for a dime for this. I'm not getting a T-shirt, or anything else, and I don't expect to get anything for this. I just really like the idea, I know the people involved, and they're the best in the Mac IT world. I've been doing Mac IT work damned near as long as there has been any kind of Mac IT, and when these guys talk, I shut up and listen, because I know I'll learn something. Like I said, if I could be there, I'd be in the front row.| Comments ()
July 6, 2005
Parent your own kids!
Okay kids, now I'm pissed. Not annoyed, not bemused, but honest to god angry. Once again, "Protecting Children" is being used as a reason for my access to adult, (No, NOT porn, but adult, in the sense of "For grownup sensibilities") entertainment and information to be made still harder. This time, by Kirk McElhearn writing for iPodlounge, in his column called
I can't even say that on the surface it seems reasonable, because it's only reasonable if you're one of those parents who demands that everything on the friggin' planet be reduced to a level suitable for a six - year - old with self-esteem issues. (We'll let the idiotic title go in this case, it's just Dvorakism writ large.)
Kirk is all concerned and worried because
...there are over 3,000 podcasts available for free through the iTunes Music Store. And if that wasn’t enough, there’s a pretty big selection of pornographic content, too. It seems that podcasts such as CrossOver, Fetish Flame, Rope Weekly, and GayPorn Talk are just a huge problem because the lack a voluntary tag that marks them as explicit. (even though at the moment, Fetish Flame does have that tag, and GayPorn talk appears to have disappeared from the site.
Kirk is six kinds of worried because
Apple’s iTunes Music Store is designed to appeal to a young demographic, and it surprises me to think that Apple added all of these podcasts without screening their content in any way.. I mean, it's easy to spot the porn right? The title's a dead giveaway as he says:
In some cases, the names of the podcasts or descriptions of the episodes are dead giveaways: “check out two dirty stories about couples that cook up some very naughty holiday surprises...”
Well Kirk, I don't see the problem, unless you let small children have unhindered, and unsupervised access to the Internet. You can't be that kind of parent, right?
But Kirk's an open-minded guy...
Now I’m no prude, nor a member of any religious or political group crusading against pornography - from my perspective, consenting adults have an indisputable right to choose what they listen to. Moreover, I have no issue with podcasts legitimately presented as educational - as are some of the ones in the screenshot above of the podcast directory section called Health > Sexuality. But, as a father he's very concerned, because he's disturbed that Apple...
a company I’ve trusted to have good judgment, seems not to be concerned about the presence of pornography in their podcasts. At least, Apple should provide Explicit warnings on all these podcasts; at best, they should sort through the podcasts they have added (because Apple expressly chose to include these podcasts when launching iTunes 4.9) to weed out what is incompatible with a substantial fraction of their users. Users can subscribe to individual podcasts by adding entering their URLs in a dialog, so those people who want to listen to this type of audio content can do so with no restriction.
See? It's simple. If you want something that's not on the level of Radio Disney, you can just manually enter the URL. Easy access is only for the kiddies. You people who want "that kind" of content can just enter the URL manually. No ease of use for you! After all...
Freedom of choice is very important. But free access to porn through a portal designed to attract young users is a big error of judgment. Apple needs to be more responsible about the type of content it provides - not to censor it, but to appropriately label and restrict its access.
Well, pardon me Kirk, but isn't restricting your child's access to content you judge inappropriate for your child your job. Obviously Kirk couldn't be bothered to listen to the podcasts he's stigmatizing as pornography. While Rope Weekly is a bit on the naughty side, CrossOver is simply a podcast for those in the Transgendered community, and sounds like the BBC. Damned preverts, thinking they should have a right to easy access to a podcast of interest to them. You just shut up and listen to Raffi.
Please note that like Kirk, I too am a father. I've an eleven year old son, who has his own Mac. He's got an iPod. Guess who controls what he sees on the internet? Is it some bit of software? Nooooooo. Is it me lobbying RoadRunner to clean up the Intarweb? NOOOoooo. It's me. I do this. I'm a single parent, with a latchkey kid and guess what, I am the one who takes care of the parenting. I preview movies, I blatantly censor what he has on iTunes, I peek in on him with Apple Remote Desktop at random, and I hold the keys to his buddy list and his Address Book. Yeah, it's a lot of work, but that's okay, IT'S MY DAMNED JOB!!
See Kirk, I get very pissy when lazy parents like you demand that any.entity.other.than.yourself dumb itself down to Radio Disney level so that you don't have to keep an eye on your kid. I LIKE having easy access to entertainment that while not pornographic, (or hell, even if it IS porn), is simply not suitable for my child. I don't demand that you live your life according to what I think is appropriate, so how about you return the favor. It's not my job, it's not Apple's job, it's not Britney Spears', Nomar Garciaparra's, Howard Stern's or anyone else's job to raise your kids. It's yours. Don't like it? Tough.
Also, don't give that, "I'm no prude, I think adults have a right to whatever entertainment they want" right after you say you want all content you don't approve of to not be listed in iTunes, and only available via manual URL entry. That's called "hypocrisy" because you obviously don't want anything you don't like to be available with any kind of convenience. Of course, if it's not listed, then how is anyone to know it's there? I guess preverts have their own mailing list or something. It's intellectual cowardice. You obviously only want the content you approve of to be easily accessible, and everyone else can just pound sand, as long as you can turn your kids loose on iTunes with no adult supervision. You remind me of the idiots who assume that people in bookstores and video game stores should not only hide everything but whatever you approve of in the back room, but that they should also watch your kids for you so that you don't have to expend the effort. It reeks of entitlement issues, and parents like you really piss off parents like me and my friends who DO spend considerable effort doing the damned job themselves, because we have this odd idea that our children shouldn't be someone else's burden by default.
So how about you actually get up and do your job? If you can't be bothered to perform all the duties of parent, then you shouldn't have become one in the first place. But in either case, stop lobbying Apple to hide everything that's more mature than "Billy sees a bug" away from iTunes. Because it's not their job to protect your kids, it's yours. Period.| Comments () | TrackBacks (3)
More silliness on the Intarweb
So Derik DeLong, Author of "doodism" has decided that Shawn King is just a big jerk. Now, I've known Shawn a while, and there's times when I've definitely thought that, and I know he's returned the thought more than once too.
But why? Why Santa? Why is Shawn King a big jerk?
Well my child, it's because Shawn doesn't like Podcasts, and specifically, doesn't like Dawn and Drew. Oh the horror. Shawn hates podcasts. He probably pulls the wings off of flies too. (No, no, he doesn't, but if you give him a dollar, he might eat one.) Normally, most adults are going to say "Oh well, Shawn thinks most podcasts are crap and doesn't like Dawn and Drew. Look, the damned dog peed on the damned floor again." Not Derik. He's alllllllll hurted over this. He's MAD. He's really upset.
Basically, instead of recognizing that this will become another commonly accepted and used distribution medium, he wants to make sure his listeners stick with Audible. [Correction: Only old shows are charged for, the most recent is free.] He doesn’t give any recognition to some really good podcasts (such as the Daily Source Code, the MacCast, or TWiT). Instead, he tries to dissuade the listenership from the medium all together because they may realize that paying that money week-in, week-out for something they can get elsewhere (sans Radio Gold voice) for free. In particular, the MacCast and Inside Mac Radio have fulfilled my Mac radio needs. For free.
Oh Derik? Your correction's still not right. The stream of the most recent show is free. The downloads of the show are not free. A little fact checking can help you look less silly. ...The Daily Source Code? That explains SO much. Oy.
See, according to Derik, the only reason Shawn's doing this is because he's trying to somehow "keep his audience from realizing that they can get the same thing for free". That's nonsensical, because Shawn never says that. He's always said that if you like YML, then listen to it. If you like any of the other shows, listen to them. He's not going to tell you not to. If you think YML's worth paying for, great! If not, well, that's a shame, but you can listen live for free and listen to the stream of the most recent show for free.
Seems reasonable, right? Of course, were Derik to listen to the show, or maybe even, oh, email Shawn and ask him, then he wouldn't be able to have his temper tantrum. Oh wait, that's right, it's the Intarweb, never let reality intrude. See, this is the essential insecurity of prats like Derik. They can't handle anyone disagreeing with them. Especially a modestly famous someone. The idea that they just disagree doesn't occur to him. No, he seems to be very bothered that someone disagrees with him.
OMGWTFBBQ!!!! OH NOES!! SOMEONE ON THE INTARWEB DISAGREES WITH ME!!! IF EVERYONE DOESN'T BOW TWO MY WISDUM, THEN I AM RONG!!!!!1111.
Jesus kid, Shawn said that he thinks most podcasts are crap and thinks it's a fad. So what? I think most podcasts are crap, and that the popularity of podcasting is going to die down once people realize that most podcasts really are crap, and the authors of the podcasts run out of things to say. A LOT of people think most podcasts are crap. If you're going to write angry articles every time someone says podcasts are craptacular, you're going to have sore hands.
Oh yeah, he's all upset that Shawn's dissing other shows. Because,
I can only hope he realizes that bashing other shows isn’t cool. It doesn’t make you look better; it only makes you look desperate. Based on what I’ve heard, he probably should be.
Um....Hello, pot? This is the Kettle? You're black. Yes. Yes, you are. Okay, bye now.
It's kind of hard to claim the high moral ground when you're doing the precise thing that you're bashing Shawn for, only in far less mature methods.
Your Mac Jerks? Are you going to call him a big stupid doodyhead too? What are you. 12? (Yes, I know you're 23 and a recent college CompSci graduate. That would of course, explain much about your attitude)
I mean, if you disagree with Shawn on his views regarding Podcasts, great. There's a dozen ways to do this, without getting into name calling, and not sounding like the jerk you accuse him of being. But then, your article would be like, not as d00d-eriffic, and you wouldn't get as much of a wank rating out of it. The increased in your site's hit count probably doesn't hurt either. (That's right little Who's...the more famous the subject of your rant, the more attention it attracts. I learned this recently when I discovered that Star Wars fans are a LOT more defensive than I thought they were.) But this is the Intarweb, and Derik Needs Attention, so he calls Shawn a few names. I hope you handle your other interpersonal problems with a tad more aplomb.
Oh yeah, Derik, (I really do keep seeing "Dorkrik" there, but I figure the neighborhood bullies took care of that for me long ago.), no fooling that Shawn did a podcast. It's that whole "Listening to your audience" thing. See, in the grownup world, we have professional needs and personal opinions. When a grownup has a professional need that contradicts a personal opinion, unless it's something that would cross certain morals or principles, a grownup sets aside the personal opinion, and takes care of the professional concern. In this case, the YML audience wanted a Podcast, so Shawn did one. That doesn't mean that he magically thinks most podcasts AREN'T crap, or that the hype around podcasting ISN'T stupid, but that he was doing his job.
Doing your job is a concept that is, I'm sure, still new and scary for you, but as you start working with grownups, you'll find that your personal opinion really doesn't count or matter, and that things in the big people's world are handled based on professional needs. Or you can live in your mom's basement. (Judging by the amount of self-aggrandizment on his site, I'm guessing Mom's basement is a real priority here.)
Guess what...Shawn disagrees with you. He's also not going to listen to every podcast on the planet like you seem to think he should. Using one podcast to illustrate why he doesn't like them isn't disingenuous...it's called an example. Maybe you should spend a little more time studying the concept of "Everyone doesn't agree with Derik" a little better, because you don't seem to have internalized it yet.
Oh, because I already know the first rebuttal...No, I don't really care what you think, or about you at all. But Shawn pointed out your article, and I've had a cold for a few days that just cocked up my Fourth of July weekend, so I'm in a bad mood, having a slow day, and was hoping to find a crippled baby seal to beat. You happened to be in the way. AKA...I was bored and now I'm not.
Yes, I am indeed, an asshole. I may even be Lord God King Asshole. I have references.
I'm a jerk too. All sorts of things. I eat a baby for breakfast, and kick small animals for a past time. Yep, all of it's true.
Just saving some time is all.| Comments () | TrackBacks (1)
July 1, 2005
Blame NSLog() for this one
Erik J. Barzeski's NSLog that is and this entry which asks, "what's the closest you've come to death?" Well, having grown up in Miami in the 70s and early 80s, and spending 7 years in the Air Force, and living through a hurricane, the closest I've come to dying is...
Drowning in a parking lot.
In Upstate New York.
Gather 'round kids for an amazing tale of dumb...
I almost died a couple years ago. Now, usually, when people say this, they mean, "I was almost hit by a truck,", etc. In other words, they were certainly in danger, but it probably wasn't something that was about to be guaranteed fatal. When I say it here, in reference to the following incident, I mean that for probably the longest 45 seconds of my life, I truly believed that I was about to check out.
I was at *funeral* of all places, the funeral of my housemate and ex-girlfriend's grandfather, sitting in the corner with the morbid people, drinking some water. That's right. Water. H2O. The wet stuff. In a little conical cup.
I get a little water in the wrong pipe...okay, I'll go outside and cough, don't want to disturb anyone...
interlude the first: Why do people whisper and talk so softly at a funeral? It's not like you're going to disturb THE DEAD GUY IN THE BIG BOX...
So I get outside, and the coughing gets worse...hmm...I must have made a very odd noise, because Jenny (person whose grandfather was the dead guy) follows me outside. HMMmmm...still have water in the wrong place. I need to cough harder. I'll take a nice big breath....
interlude the second: Did you know that when the shit TRULY hits the fan, it in fact DOES sound like it did in "Airplane"
The definition of bad: Trying to inhale, and having it NOT WORK. Either I had a thin film of water over the airway, or my throat just spasmed, but either way, I.Could.Not.Breathe for about ten seconds. Not "breathe with trouble". Not "breathe, but not really effectively". I mean, for ten seconds or so, (estimation, I really wasn't timing it, but Jenny says it probably wasn't much longer if at all.), it was like I no longer had lungs, and my trachea just *ended* in a block of glass.
interlude the third: suffocation is a GREAT way to realize just HOW long a second takes to pass...hint: it's a LONG time
I would have panicked, but I was rather busy suffocating. So I find that if I inhale like I'm trying to inhale the parking lot, I can get a WEE bit of
air forced in...getting air out is easier, but not by much. So now, I can make VERY disturbing sounds, enough to motion to Jenny, that "Hey, John's fucking CHOKING here, and maybe trying to Heimlich him would be a REALLY GOOD IDEA!!
Unfortunately, the Heimlich maneuver doesn't work for shit if the person doing it to you is a foot shorter, and a bit panicky herself. I have to say that I am now panicking myself, with good reason I think...
interlude the fourth: I have now decided that the very ESSENCE of "a sinking feeling" is when the Heimlich maneuver FAILS. It's not supposed to EVER do that. ESPECIALLY not on me.
So, I figure, I need a lot of air going out of me NOW so I can get some back in me...because I'm not liking the fuzziness in the vision, or the feeling of the base of my brain screaming "BREATHE YOU STUPID FUCK! I NEED *OXYGEN*, AND *NOW* WOULD BE AN EXCELLENT TIME TO GET SOME!"
So I commence to trying to burp, vomit AND cough at the same time. Fortunately, (or unfortunately depending on your personal opinion of me.), this works enough to get usable amounts of air back into my lungs so I can cough effectively.
Interlude the fifth: Yes, I AM familiar with how to self-Heimlich. However, it's a parking lot at a funeral home...the only things that would have worked were the parking bumps, and had I not gotten my air, I would have been doing at least ONE impact with those.
So now, my throat feels like I've been gargling with broken glass, but the feeling of air in my lungs is, for a few seconds, better than all the sex...hell, better than EVERY other good feeling I have ever had...COMBINED. It's amazing how good something like NOT DYING can feel. People are a little FREAKED OUT, because there's only supposed to be one corpse per funeral, and you aren't supposed to make more on the spot.
Interlude the sixth: Wendy's Frosties are quite soothing to a racked throat.
I had two thoughts during the process...
- DON'T FUCKING DIE DUE TO DROWNING IN A PARKING LOT. Being fodder for the next two months of morning show jokes about "what kind of dumbass can't work a glass of water" is very specifically how I DON'T want to die.
- What kind of attention whore prima donna dies at someone else's funeral? "John, It's not about YOU, it's SOMEONE ELSE'S DAY" Yes, this was running through the back of my head, along with "Well, my funeral will be cheap, Mike and I got along really well, just throw me in the box next to him, I already have the suit."
I could have gone a LOT longer without knowing what I learned that day. (This next bit is the most sincere thing anyone will ever hear me say,) I never want to go through that again.
This happened just before I moved to KCMO, so I didn't even have time to get properly drunk about it for a while.
p.s. For the next few hours, I had quite a few people laughing themselves into a coma over how they were going to have to start cutting my food up for me...and only letting me eat baby food. As one said, "Gerbers....because John can't manage water" Aren't friends grand?
I might make this into a podcast just for the hell of it.| Comments ()