Sender Either Didn’t Read My Post, Or Is a Bot

I received the following unsolicited email:

Hi Steven,

I landed on your site and noticed you have a number of useful resources relating to digital rights management listed here – http://nomadicoder.com/2005/07/05/the-trouble-with-drm/. I hope you don’t mind me sending you a short email to tell you about our beginner’s guide to DRM.

Here’s the link – [URL Elided].

It provides an introduction to the topic and a good overview that I’d hope many of your visitors would find useful.

Perhaps you could update your page to include a link to us?

Please let me know your thoughts.

Thanks,
Anthony

Really?!? First the posting was from 2005. Second, Obviously “Anthony” didn’t read the post to conclude my position on DRM. Third, My 12 year old post was obviously harvested for keywords. Anthony: I tag your email as SPAM with impunity.

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Spring feels like winter 

29°F riding to work. How much longer?

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The Problem With Trying to Live Small

Move to Washington DC or Seattle a study on the best places to live in the small. It was a struggle for me when I lived in big-home and car-centric Los Angeles.

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Why do some people prefer Macs over PCs running Linux?

Years ago, when I worked in a PC only shop, people asked me what computer I used at home. I replied that I use a Mac. They were incredulous. When they asked why, I replied that when I go home, I didn't want to have to work. Based on this Quora reply, I'm not alone.

Answer by Ansel Halliburton:

I have built PCs and Linux boxes from parts. I built and ran a distributed Linux cluster. I had a few flavors of Linux on a laptop at a time when it was non-trivial to do that. I can handle running Linux just fine.

But now I choose not to. I have a Mac.

Why? I just don't have time for that stuff anymore. I am at a place in my life where I will gladly pay more money for a product of higher quality that saves me time because I am (1) really freaking busy and (2) not broke anymore. I need a low maintenance, high performance computing tool. Mac OS X and most of its major applications are well integrated, very high quality tools. Macs are also beautiful and shiny, and I like that as much as the next person, but it's secondary.

As for the question's premise that you can get as good a UI in Linux as you can on a Mac, that is just not true. Yes, there are some very shiny Linux distros and window managers out now. But the quality of third-party Linux applications' UIs is, generally, still poor—certainly not on par with the average UI quality of Mac applications. You have to look at that when considering an OS because without third-party applications, the OS isn't going to get you very far.

Why do some people prefer Macs over PCs running Linux?

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What is the most complex/significant program created by a single programmer?

While it's difficult to use, I think Donald Knuth's TeX is probably the best written piece of software created.

Answer by Victor Eijkhout:

Around 1978, Donald Knuth was getting dissatisfied with the quality of computer typesetting. He thought he could solve the problem on his sabbatical. Ok, it took him 8 years, but solve it he did. The typesetting system TeX produces beautiful output for ordinary text, and is unsurpassed when it comes to mathematics.

As a result, it is used by 99 percent of mathematicians, at least half of all computer scientists and physicists. It is even used by people with strange alphabets (apparently there is an Old-Icelandic dictionary done in it) or strange design demands (religious texts with commentary and commentary on the commentary).

Since TeX was written back when computers were smaller and slower, the code is actually pretty tricky to be as efficient as possible. And yet it is basically bug-free. Knuth writes you a cheque if you can find a bug in the code, which happens almost never.

What is the most complex/significant program created by a single programmer?

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Reading Slow and Fast

I’m learning to read more efficiently as I zip through my RSS feeds. That’s a lot to read every day, so I’m training myself to stop subaudiblizing. But even this doesn’t help when I encounter a lengthly article. …So much to read …So much I’d like to read.

Gracy Olmstead writes:

Efficiency is a means to a greater end, a greater virtue: that of wisdom. Wisdom is “the quality of having experience, knowledge, and good judgment.” To have wisdom, therefore, one must have basic knowledge of the pertinent. But “good judgment” doesn’t come from gulping down news in a frenzied fashion. Good judgment requires thoughtful, prolonged, and careful meditation. It requires outside opinions, secondary sources, and at least some research. It requires a depth of reading inspired by thoughtfulness, as well as inquisitiveness. In order to get wisdom, slow reading is necessary: a careful, deliberate inculcation of timeless truths.

From “The Art of Reading, Fast and Slow,” The American Conservative.

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It’s All About Context

If I read a paper book, they say, “So wonderful he is reading and making good use of his time.” If I read the same book on my iPhone, they say, “Such a shame he wastes his time with his electronic device!”

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Those New Yorker Cartoons

Behind the scenes at the New Yorker Magazine.

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James Fallows on Google Keep

What to trust and not trust to Google:

A Problem Google Has Created for Itself – Technology – The Atlantic.

HT: Boing Boing

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Fogbeam Labs: Post “Good Google”, Who Will Defend The Open Web?

It is up to us to save the Open Web.

Fogbeam Labs: Post "Good Google", Who Will Defend The Open Web?.

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Wonder Why There Were So Many Videos of That Meteor in Russia?

There are so many Russian drivers with dash cams, some of which captured spectacular video of a meteor exploding over Russia. Wired’s Damon Lavrinc reports, “A combination of inexpensive cameras, flash memory and regulations passed by the Interior Ministry in 2009 that removed any legal hurdles for in-dash cameras has made it easy and cheap for drivers to install the equipment.”

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TED Talk: Everything is Remix

Kirby Ferguson talks about patent law and remix. “Remix may sound like common sense until you’re the one being remixed.”

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Structure and Interpretation of Computer Programs ePub

Thanks to Calibre, I was able to convert Structure and Interpretation of Computer Programs by Harold Abelson and Gerald Jay Sussman to ePub.

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Some Lesser-Known Truths About Programming

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Some Lesser-Known Truths About Programming

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Zapping Malaria With Lasers

A very cool way of controlling Malaria… Zapping mosquitos with lasers!

Posted via email from nomadicoder’s posterous

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RSpec test code extracted from Sinatra Ruby

From: http://www.sinatrarb.com/testing.html#frameworks

In app/hello_world.rb

require 'sinatra'
get '/' do
  "Hello World #{params[:name]}".strip
end

In app/spec/app_spec.rb

require 'hello_world'require 'spec'
require 'rack/test'

set :environment, :test

describe 'The HelloWorldApp' do
  include Rack::Test::Methods

  def app
    Sinatra::Application
  end

  it "says hello" do
    get '/'
    last_response.should be_ok
    last_response.body.should == 'Hello World'
  end
end

To execute:

$ spec spec -c

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Quick RVM Rubinius 1.0.0 Install Recipe

Here are the quick and dirty commands I used to install Rubinius 1.0.0 with Rails, RSpec, and Sinatra in RVM on Mac OS X. So far I haven’t been able to get Cucumber to install.

The problem has been fixed with the 1.0.1 release. I have added commands to install Cucumber support.


rvm install rbx
rvm rbx
gem update --system --no-ri --no-rdoc
gem update --no-ri --no-rdoc
gem install rails --no-ri --no-rdoc
gem install sqlite3-ruby --no-ri --no-rdoc
gem install rspec --no-ri --no-rdoc
gem install rspec-rails --no-ri --no-rdoc
gem install cucumber --no-ri --no-rdoc
gem install cucumber-rails --no-ri --no-rdoc
gem install sinatra --no-ri --no-rdoc
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Pogonip: the visual expression of clouds, wind and cold

In the freezing, windswept hours of late Thursday night, weather conditions in the Tehachapi Mountains turned the upper elevations white, like the hair of a mother worried about her grown but troubled children.

This phenomenon is known by several names, including Pogonip, which is derived from a Shoshone Indian word for “cloud.” Other terms include frozen fog or ice fog.

Jon Eric Hammond writes in the Tehachapi News on the lovely phenomenon called Pogonip. I’ve seen this myself a few times. It turns the landscape into a winter wonderland, and disappears quickly under the Sun’s warmth.

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The App That Lets Me Leave the iPhone at Home

Though I had switched to a Motorola Droid, I kept carrying my iPhone with me. But now that I have Google Listen, Evernote and VIP Access for Android, I have duplicated all of my critical apps on my Droid. It’s nearly perfect. If only OmniFocus ran on the Android. But it’s not critical. Besides, I’m moving my GTD functions to Evernote.

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