Tuesday, August 09, 2005

Broadway Chutzpah
According to Page Six and the New York Post , gay actors Harvey Fierstien and Rosie O'Donnell will have the lead roles or Teyve and Goldie for the end of the fourth revival of the musical production of "Fiddler on the Roof". To have homosexual activists, one a gentile, play the best known fictional Orthodox Jewish couple may seem to be poor casting. However, this is far more insidious it is an attempt to appropriate or destroy the cultural impact of the only widely known theatrical piece on Shtetl life. Lenin and Hitler merely destroyed shtetls. David Leveaux, Harvey Fierstien, and the others involved wish to deconstruct their memory. It is an affront to Jewish heritage.
Of course, American Jews who stood by watching this historical revisionism and political correctness run amock in American society will probably embrace the cultural suicide in the name of tolerance.
I, for one, wretch at the thought of two normalizers of the practice of an abomination sing "Tradition".
Were I to remember any, I would probably translate a verbose Yiddish curse. However I believe that the purveyors of such filth should go back and read Isaiah chapter 5.

Isaiah 5:20 Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that change darkness into light, and light into darkness; that change bitter into sweet, and sweet into bitter!


IT in the cross hairs of lawyers
As a recovering former programmer and current techie, I feel obligated to pay attention to the effect of legislation, lawsuits, and proposed policies on the IT industry.

Today, The Committee to Fight Microsoft announced their intentions to sue Microsoft to prevent the release of the upcoming Windows Vista operating system.
Of course Microsoft has written horribly flawed software. (There are many Microsoft jokes that end with the punch-line - "It's not a bug; its a feature!" In the case of Word 4 for the Macintosh, this was an actual explanation from MS regarding printing issues.) Windows 3.1, Windows 95, and Windows 98/ME were consumer operating systems designed for ease of use connectivity, not security. Windows NT, and 2000 were designed for secured networked environments and Windows XP falls somewhere in the middle.
Operating systems are huge projects that take years to complete. The scale and complexity of such a project is hard for non-programmers to grasp. Imagine producing the Encyclopedia Britannica from scratch and insuring that the end results is equally legible for all dialects of English and be understood by those with a 4th grade education, while still valuable to graduate students.. Each major subject matter or theme would have to be farmed out to a different set of authors. Moreover, new and exciting content and methodology would be needed. consumers would demand both text and multi-media content. The style of all the articles would need to be similar, regardless of the subject matter. Finally, any spelling or grammatical errors, or faux pas would suddenly open the company up to punitive damages.
Aside from the actual scale of the project coders must make a flexible solution that can adapt or be updated to deal with new hardware or software, which may or may not be written properly. Finally, operating systems are under continuous attacks from hackers, crackers, worms and virus writers.
While some of these issues can be mitigated by better planning and a shift in focus from ease of use and interface changes to security, there is simply no way to build an operating system that does not need periodic updates any more than one can build a perfect anti-virus program.

While I emphathise with the complaints, an attempted injunction is ridiculous. That the "public interest" lawyer, Andy Martin, supposedly plans to run for governor of Illinois as a Republican is sad. Whatever happened to the free market?

At the same time, 13 Pennsylvania high school students are being charged with computer trespass for " bypassing security with school-issued laptops, downloading forbidden Internet goodies and using monitoring software to spy on district administrators."
How exactly are we to produce decent code-writers and techies if students are threatened with imprisonment for testing the boundaries of current systems or youthful experimentation. There was no cracking, violation of school records, or other malicious acts reported. Moreover, the students did not install spyware. Rather they first circumvented and then took over horribly mismanaged remote monitoring software.
They and other students downloaded IM software and even pornography. While this should not be done on school computers, the fact that the password for blocking software was easily identifiable and occasionally left in plain view, makes me wonder who the real criminal is.
Whoever set up the network, and the blocking software was either utterly inept or bound by s school polices that border on negligence. Were I to set up such an open network for a client, I would be fired for incompetence.
I would briefly discuss my youthful hijinx and how they set the basis for my current work, but I am unsure of statute of limitations for certain acts.

In an all too expected development, Google is being sued for the chronic administration problems with Google Adwords.
As a user of Google Adwords, Overture, and similar services, I am constantly annoyed with "over performance", where in I budget $50/day on a campaign, only to get clicks charges for $57. However, I have learned to budget in a 10% error in such services.


Of course, I can't complain about everything. Recent legislation mandating better security of patient records is both necessary and personally lucrative. Likewise, I am gleefully looking forward to President Bush's proposal that all patient records be available online.

1 Comments:

At 4:08 PM, Blogger doer said...

Just found your blog, it's great! I also have a web site related to Google Adwords ebooks and software.Thanks!

 

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