some days you’re the dog, some days you’re the hydrant.

this piece of wisdom was passed on to me some time ago, and i’ve found it a useful mantra. it helps remind me about life’s little ups and downs.

for the past few days, it’s been technology that’s the dog, and i’ve been the hydrant. so i’m just gonna vent the old spleen a bit, and move on to smaller and better things.Read More →

arcodology (n.): the black art of code examination and analysis, performed during software upgrades and/or web site refreshes. arcodologists sift through tangled code fragments, often (but not always) of unknown origin and authorship, in search of meaning, enlightenment, or any shred of code that can actually be re-used. See also frustration, laziness, and cruft.

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SPAMOUFLAGE AND SPAMJECTSso, let’s get the easy question out of the way first – why do so many spam messages have weird-yet-compelling subject lines? well, i can’t shed any light on why they’re compelling, but i can say what they’re trying to do…they’re trying to defeat best-of-breed, automated, anti-spam filters by disguising themselves as potentially interesting messages. those subject lines are "spamouflage." (i wish i could lay claim to this term – Wired beat me to it.) this probably comes as no surprise. some of you might even have said, ‘duh’ when you read the explanation above. the better question is, why do these subjectRead More →

the following entry is a (sanitized and expanded) version of an email i recently sent to a client explaining some of the issues surrounding browser compatibility and web developement. it’s amazing these issues persist after years of slowly grinding towards a world of web standards…someday, i hope these ideas will seem quaint: "oh, how cute! they used to have to worry about those things…"

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social networking is all the rage, or at least it seems to be. i keep hearing about it everywhere i turn (NPR, friends, blogs, san francisco magazine, the checker at the grocery store). i have my doubts about most of these players, but there is a recent entrant that pushes a different set of buttons: orkut

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hyperlinks are becoming a currency in the digital age, but one limited to those with the power to create and destroy them. i went to a friend’s web site recently (URL withheld to protect the "innocent"), and noticed that the link to my home page had dropped off his blogroll. what??? dropped me from the secondary navigation? had i slighted this friend in some unbeknownst way? was some kind of digital payback going on? granted, it was kind of petty of me to care in the first place, but hey, links matter if you want people to read your site. and why would i writeRead More →

my spam filters have been getting progressively more sieve-like. the spammers are getting smarter at disguising their drivel. at least the email titles provide some entertainment value. for your sampling, here is a list of recent subjects: melville loquacious january moliere afghanistan down draftsman marvelous maudlin gar bolshevik hereof cone Re: MDM, grunya! what’s this Re: HDIIKINY, the procurator understood beauregard actinium roof hackneyed every michaelangelo gallberry formatted ceil foot expletive haunt maul exclaim osaka hydrometer messy nitrogenous hartley adultery bitwise narcosis gelatin mart academy andorra influenza it’s hard to pick my favorites, although any spam email that includes an element from the periodic tableRead More →