Thursday, August 24, 2006

AOL Agonies Of Late

Well, it didn't take long for Time Warner to pull Maureen Govern's page on their corporate site.
Don't bother, the AOL stone masons chiseled her very being from both the temple, as well as the rest of the internet that they could manage to get to.

Dr. Abdur Chowdhury, the person actually responsible for posting the data on the internet, according to Slashdot, has retained a lawyer. Actually, I can't wait to get his latest book,

"A. Chowdhury, "Automatic Evaluation of Web Search Services" , ISBN: 0-12-012164-6 Book/Hardback , Advances in Computers, April 2005",

which can be verified on his sitepage.

Bet the meta tag gets updated real soon there too.

Let's review AOL's Button Policy, highlighting their view to your right to free speech:

About Putting a My AOL Button on Your Site

AOL is providing you with an 'add to MyAOL' button to use on your interactive site(s) that will provide your end users with the ability to add RSS feeds distributed on your site(s) into AOL's RSS reader. By using the button, you agree to the following: (a) not to alter the button in any way (e.g., design, size, color, code, etc); (b) not to display the button in any manner that can be reasonably interpreted to suggest editorial or other content on the page has been authored by, or represents the views or opinions of, AOL; (c) not to display the button in a manner that is misleading, defamatory, infringing, libelous, disparaging, obscene or otherwise objectionable to AOL, or that impairs the rights of AOL in its trademarks or logos, in AOL's reasonable opinion; (d) not to violate any law or regulation in connection with your use of the button; and (e) to remove the button from your site(s) promptly upon AOL's request.

Of course, you don't have to use their button. You can make one of your own as long as you write the code yourself!! Oh, and please don't infringe in any trademark rights they have...
Just be a little more creative. EFF's fine example is on the right.

Rights!! What was I thinking??
"Must be a bit too much preservative in the meat ration. Or too much of that oily gin."

Maybe your thinking of upgrading to AOL 9.0 for all the neat security add-on freebies. Well, you might want to wait until complets their review & hears back from AOL. If you are intrested, here's the post from their blog. And I found the Pure Software Act of 2006 proposal rather intresting also.

I have a lot of friends that still use the antiquated AOL dial-up, when it works.
People like:

My Brother-in-Law, who is afraid that the local authorities might find out he's been priceing 'buck lure', out of season.

Or, my Mom, who has been researching why Aunt Bea's strawberry shortcake is 'lighter & fluffier' than hers.

And my ex-girlfriend from high school, who has been doing extensive research in high school class reunions & high powered rifles with silencers.

I just assure them that they were not part of the 680,000 or so users that the data defines.
Well, that is, maybe just my Brother-in-Law & Mother.

Anyway, as you know, once something is posted to the vast internet, its there forever!
AOL pulled the database within hours, however, it had been mirrored within minutes.
As a service to those 'AOL users that I know ONLY' I am providing a link to those mirrors so that they & their lawyers might glean if their civil rights were violated & at what depth.

And I thought the video was rather ironic, as its a genuine AOL.UK commercial.

Enjoy, if you are able. (That's until Time Warner pulls it!!)

Courtesy Flame Scape Google Video SITE 1 SITE 2

Update 3 AOL Subscribers Sue Over Data Release

Sunday, August 06, 2006

Microsoft's Awakening

Big M's recent attempts to work with their own software.

I'm not a big fan of Microsoft. I,m not totally ecstatic with their products, either. If you want to get anything done today, Microsoft is just a necessary evil. Microsoft was not always greeted with the 'torches & pitchforks' that a majority of opinions on the internet tend to lean toward. Back in the mid 80's, you either worked a Mac or a Microsoft. We're talkin' like back just as Windows 95 was hailed as the last OS you would ever need. For the average PC user today, Linux has a steep learning curve & Apple was, until the Mac mini, out of the reach of most of the market.
I had some exposure to the advertising field back in the 80's, so I had the opportunity to use both Apple & Microsoft. Prior to that, an acquaintance of mine used a Vector Terminal with the old rubber cup modem to access a corporate mainframe. And prior to that, I hand wrote Basic & Unix on an old Atlantis Terminal in high school. That's like late 70's. Thoses machines were not the multi-tasking, multi-function, multi-modifiable, high powered racecars of today. Macs had a specialized purpose, mostly graphics. Microsoft machines' big advantage was that they did a little bit of everything. IBMs were big on database application & deployment. While they all came off an assembly line, as a whole they were much more specialized for specific applications. It was a matter of choosing the right tool for the right job. It was not until much later that manufacturer's product lines had 'something for everyone' & most people outside of the workplace only saw the low-end "Personal Computer" of a particular brand. Hey, even the Radio Shack TRS-80 had its day, just as did flint arrow points when they were the 'cutting edge'!

One old adage that was true then,
"It will work IF you know what you are doing!!"

That brings me to Microsoft's recent start-up, Windows Live Spaces. Now, we all know that all start-ups have some minor kinks in the beginning. But Microsoft was working on this whole 'LIVE' concept as long as a year ago. And with something around half a million software engineers around the world, and a rather modest estimate of 2% of the world's total PC users as 'beta testers', it seems to me that some of the client side issues would have been ironed out already.
MSN Spaces has been around for a while. And it worked fine in IE6. But we all know that browser is old. Then Microsoft got going on IE7 beta 1. Lots of problems & holes there too. Then in March, it was IE7 beta 2. Ever tried to add a Google Groups Subscript Box to your Googlepage or post to your blog at any of the major blog hosting sites in IE7b2? Trust me, unless you build the page as a pure HTML on your own screen first, then 'pop' it into the template, you'll never get the page clean unless you wipe it & start over.
I tried to get some feedback from both companies and hit a brick wall that I'll elaborate on in a future article.
As of Wed 8/2/06, Microsoft Windows Internet Explorer Ver. 7 beta 3 is available. OLD SOFTWARE
My suggestion is that "You take a stress pill, & talk this over with your computer" before committing.
Until then, there's always the Official Live Spaces Blog that you can enjoy. Be sure to remember to hit the 'Comments' link on any article.

And the RRS Feed can be found HERE if you are so inclined.

Oh, and I suggest you use IE6 for a more predictable experience.

Keep in mind that all the comments on the Live Spaces Blog are from Registered Microsoft Users using Authentic Microsoft OS Software.

Courtesy   CNBC   Google Video