Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Information Overload

Dan's got a great piece outlining the information overload he faces, and what steps he takes to partly overcome it. Pearls of wisdom. This 16 year-old is more articulate than many TV anchors and professional online journalists I've seen. Watch out World. A few months back, Om Malik did a related piece on Internet Anxiety Disorder.

I fear to open my news reader. I've taken a few step backs in the past few months, and have only been sporadically checking one or two sites, such as Om Malik's or TheAppleBlog (to which I also contribute). I rely on Dan to IM me anything important I may be missing out on.

Work's been keeping my mind busy 24/7, while Brandy and I try to stay away from the computers on weekends to catch-up on our sunburns at the beach. The water was fantastic last Sunday. I had a good time boogie-boarding while Brandy was snuggled-away in the shadow of her umbrella.

my southpark character

my southpark character
Originally uploaded by chrisholland.

Meet "frenchy".

More on Steve Jobs vs Music Industry

Gareth Potter wrote a fantastic analysis of the current challenges facing both Apple and the Music Industry as those contracts for the iTunes Music Store are coming-up for renewal. Some interesting comments from readers are also rolling-in.

Microsoft Unleashes EarthLink ScamBlocker Copycat, Claims First

Microsoft Unleashes EarthLink ScamBlocker Copycat, Claims First

I covered ScamBlocker last year. It's quite cool. It's no replacement for constant vigilance, but it most certainly helps.

Tuesday, August 30, 2005


Originally uploaded by chrisholland.

Merry sea lions.

Commoditizing Voice Communications

Om Malik is portraying the steadily increasing reach of Voice Communications through Instant Messaging Clients, as one of many ominous signs further spelling out significant upcoming challenges for many traditional voice revenue models:
Over a longer term, what this trend of constant commoditization of voice, will manifest itself in a whole new meaning of “voice.
Many surmise this trend will globalize itself far beyond the desktop PC once friendlier handheld IP-enabled devices hit U.S. consumer markets, as they already have in many countries such as South Korea. Could we see a major comeback of "thin clients" in the U.S., much to the dismay of Microsoft's thick desktop-bound cash-cows? Could the computing powerhouse PC of today simply be a very temporary, albeit powerful and convenient testbed for IP communications and messaging? Malik and Microsoft Geek Robert Scoble duked it out.

Thursday, August 25, 2005

'Gul Whisperer

'Gul Whisperer
Originally uploaded by chrisholland.

i was eating a sandwich on this mound of sand by the pier, with a strong wind coming from the ocean. 'Gulls had been eyeing the food for quite some time. This mofo was gliding right next to me, so i slowly turned over, raised my right hand with the camera, and snapped the pic in its face.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Skimmer Kid, Hermosa Beach, CA

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

2GB of Powerbook RAM for $252 ?!

James was looking for RAM chips for his Powerbook, and stumbled upon this deal from Omni for a 1GB Powerbook RAM chip for $125.99 (same RAM chip for most PC Notebooks too) via That's the price i'm seeing as of this writing. They don't appear to be charging tax, and they're offering free standard USPS shipping.

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Microsoft: "Mobilizing Our Two War Rooms"

The director of Microsoft's security response center, Debbie Fry Wilson, said the computer giant was in an "emergency response" mode. "Right now, we're mobilizing our two war rooms," she told CNN.
Read more of this riveting tale.

Here's the dirt on this latest virus, named Zotob. Wikipedia has also initiated coverage of the Zotob worm.

It apparently does a buffer overflow exploit on Windows 2000 machines running the LSASS on TCP port 445, just like the Sasser worm did before it. Why this service is running on a default installation of Windows 2000 is beyond me.

I've said it many times before and i'll say it many times again. Operating system vendors need to distinguish between "Client" and "Server" distributions of their operating system. The vast majority of end-users, even advanced users, do not need, on a default installation, to be running any service listening on any port.

Apple has grokked this very simple philosophy a long time ago. This is why you have Mac OS X Server for people in the business of running servers. And Mac OS X Client, for the rest of us. Both are equally advanced versions of the same operating system, they're simply configured differently for different purposes.

Thursday, August 11, 2005

P2P Legitimized: BitTorrent Ready for VC Love

Once tainted by some of the more nefarious P2P stigmas, it would appear PHBs out there are slowly coming to the realization that BitTorrent, while it enables end-users on disparate networks to poll their bandwidth to facilitate transfer of files, isn't at all designed to be an illegal file sharing system. Big players of various industries are starting to embrace it as a significant cost-saving platform, and many are starting to court the little startup with funding. Om Malik shares interesting insights into this evolution from an interview of Ashwin Navin, an early investor in BitTorrent.

Don Berryman Talks about Muni WiFi

an interesting bit, covers more than just WiFi.

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

DTV: Internet TV!

DTV launches on the Mac, Windows coming soon:
DTV is a new, free and open-source platform for internet television and video. An intuitive interface lets users subscribe to channels, watch video, and build a video library. Our publishing software lets you broadcast full-screen video to thousands of people at virtually no cost. The project is non-profit, free and open source, and built on open standards. A Windows version of DTV and a full website are well underway and will arrive in the next several weeks.

Wednesday, August 03, 2005

Rick Romero from KABC-TV Stopped-By

Rick Romero from KABC-TV, our local Channel 7, came to the house to do an interview on blogging. We created an example blog for KABC-TV. No word on an air date just yet. Could be tonight, tomorrow, in a year, or never. They said they'd give me a heads-up. If you have some TiVo space to spare, you might consider adding their various news time slots and keep'em for only a day or two. Or not :D

AVP Weekend Fun

AVP Girls
AVP Girls,
originally uploaded by chrisholland.
The July 23rd weekend was quite fun. Tom and Laura came down to visit us with their friend from England. Brandy took them to the beach while I stalked most of the AVP games.

Hermosa Beach was crawling with people.

Both the Men's Final on Saturday and the Women's Final on Sunday were broadcast on NBC. The stands were packed and long lines were formed to get in, as the event was free.

On Saturday, after waiting in line, I managed to get in for the Men's final just at the right time to enjoy most of the 3 games. It was a close call I did not want to repeat for the Women's final on Sunday. So i bought a "Beach Club" pass, which gave me access to the sand, right below the stage. I'll be saving-up to do the same next year.

It was very impressive to watch the Women wield such grace and power in their play. Their serves were very powerful, more powerful than most Men's games I saw, where the ball was mostly lobed over the net.

I managed to videotape the Women's final on Sunday, I've yet to import it and put it up on Google Video. I got sunburned on the face pretty badly in the process. During the lunch break, the AVP Girls were kind enough to pose for this picture. They had some very impressive choreographed bits.

On Sunday Tom and I took our Tmaxxes out for a spin at the park. We had to change our glow plugs. I busted the front bumper last weekend. Poor car. I'll be buying more parts soon.

Blog Systems Overview

I personally believe that the best way to introduce someone to blogging is to point them to Nothing out there tops their very welcoming 3-step approach to setting-up a blog. It is the first blog system I signed-up with and the one I continue to find the most appealing.

Derek has a very-nice breakdown of the various blogging systems out there.

Beyond blogging, there's also Social Networking. A few sites such as Friendster and Orkut have entered this field a couple of years ago. LiveJournal, primarily a blog system, also has a notion of "friends" and social networking which lacks. Now Yahoo and MSN are looking to blend these concepts and more with burgeoning all-inclusive content sharing portals: Yahoo 360 and MSN Spaces. Those systems make it easier to establish connections around common interests and develop new interests around social connections. For technical and security reasons, those social networks will never allow you to customize look, feel, functionality of your online journal content, to the extent that pure blogging systems do. Which is partly why I still favor over most alternatives out there.

The king of Picture Sharing remains, which integrates very nicely with many of the blog systems out there.

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Address, SIP and vCard

Here's a sample vCard:
ORG:Some Organization
FN:Chris Holland
ADR:;;123 Some St.;Hermosa Beach;CA;90260;
TEL;type=WORK:123 456 7890
The vCard RFC doesn't define a field for a SIP address.

However, most developers are agreeing on a URL representation of a SIP address, using the "sip:" protocol, the same way an e-mail address might be represented as a URL using the "mailto:" protocol.

I'm currently looking to specify a SIP address in a vCard payload using two fields:

1) a custom X-SIP field.
2) a URL field whose value contains a SIP URL.

The problem I'm running into is that in Mac OS X, Address appears to treat all URLs as HTTP URLs. Even though the field might display, clicking on the blue link will trigger the browser to open:

Gizmo registers in Mac OS X as a handler for the sip: protocol.

I was wondering whether somebody out there might point me to better ways to represent a SIP address in a vCard entry and/or ways to get around these limitations in Mac OS X.