· Naughties
· · 2006
· · · March
· · · · 31 (4 entries)

FSS: Hawai’i · Friday Slide Scan #27, like #26, has two twenty-year-old photos from Hawai’i, the Big Island; but unlike last week, these are ordinary pretty-plant pictures. Like last week, I picked them because we’re going to be spending the a week there, leaving tomorrow, April 1. If anyone I know is going to be there too, let’s get together for a Mai Tai ...
JDiskReport · Hey, this is cool; it’s a little doo-hickey that draws pie charts and graphs of what you’ve got on your disk. I wonder on what set of hardware/OS combinations the web-start Just Works like it did on my Mac? The pie-charts of my life were so cool I had to publish a few. And I turned up a real problem, too ...
Scoble’s Bad Month · I don’t always agree with Scoble, but the man doesn’t have an ounce of malice, near as I can tell. I think that, by and large, he towers over the people who’ve been giving him a hard time, and I’d advise him to tune ’em out unless they’re really adding value. To address a couple just in the last week: Note to Vogels@Amazon: There’s a word for companies that base all decisions on ruthless quantitative ROI metrics: Bankrupt. I’m an engineer and value numbers, but in business, sometimes anecdotal evidence is all you’ve got, and the anecdotal evidence that blogging produces good results for some companies is pretty voluminous. You don’t want to hear it, that’s your privilege; me, I tend to want to consider all the inputs. Note to Nick Carr: This perils of blogging piece is really poorly considered. Carr introduces his lengthy list of Things That Can Go Wrong with “Last year, the San Francisco law firm Howard Rice provided a useful overview of the legal risks inherent in employee blogging”. As a thought experiment, replace the word “blogging” with “email” or “conference presentation” or “teleconference” or “sales presentation”. Or “barroom conversation” for that matter. Quick, quick, you wanna be safe, you better lock all your employees up and never let ’em say anything to anyone! The point is that qualitatively, blogging requires no new policies and introduces no new risks. If your employees are going to say stupid things in public, you’ve got a management problem and a policy problem, not a blogging problem. Note to executives who are frightened of hearing what their employees have to say, or finding out what the world really thinks about their company: Carr has done you a real favor. Just go and ask your attorneys if they think blogging is safe, and slip ’em a copy of that list, and you can rest easy knowing you’ll never hear anything uncomfortable.
Sebastian and Fred · That would be J. Sebastian Bach and Frederick II Hohenzollern (AKA the Great) of Prussia, who famously met in 1747. The King proposed a Royal Theme and asked Bach to extemporize fugally; Bach did so on the spot, somewhat, and a few weeks later sent Frederick The Musical Offering. This episode appeared at the beginning of Gödel, Escher, Bach, and now finds itself at the center of another book: Evening in the Palace of Reason by James R. Gaines, of whom I’d never previously heard. It’s pretty good; read on for some remarks on the book, Frederick, Sebastian, and the Offering ...
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