Thursday, April 21, 2005

Do the Math: Intel Snaps Sun's "Open Source Diva"

In case some of you were wondering why Intel Corp snapped Danese Cooper, formerly Sun Microsystems' Open Source Diva, here's the answer. Like always, a simple mathemetical equation shows us the answer:

^Click on the image to zoom it.

Congratulations once again to Danese for her great sense of humour!.

Do the Math: Danese Cooper, open source Diva

I will start a new, hopefully new section with this post, dubbed: "Do the Math". The goal?. Explain both people´s origins and also company moves with simple mathematic equations. Well, sort of. At least these equations are much more fun for me to create than working with "real" math!. ;)

Today, we will see who is the "Open Source Diva" that until recently worked at Sun Microsystems. In the spirit of discordance, I will always try to e-mail the works to the equation target before publishing it -if possible-. In this case, Danese Cooper took it humorously and seemed to enjoy it, saying "LOL...Yes, that old pic really did get overused. I liked it so much better than the sterile ones Sun PR had made for me, though. At least
I looked awake, you know!".

So, my kudos to Danese Cooper for her great sense of humour!.
After this tiresome introduction, here´s for you.... April´s

Do the Math: Danese Cooper

^click on the image to zoom it

Tuesday, April 19, 2005

Advantages of having a German Pope, which some accuse of being a former nazi

[Note: This is humour, a parody, folks. Don't read if you're too easily offended!]

1. Forget those complaints about the Roman Catholic Churc moving slowly and not keeping up with the times!. The old (John Paul II´s) italian-made "Popemobile" will be replaced with a sports model specially designed in Germany by BMW, sporting ABS brakes, a maximum speed of 198 mph, an onboard computer and GPS, plus airbags. That will surely help quiet those accusations that the Catholic Churc Moves Too Slowly. Ha! the new German Pope will be able to speed without limits on the Autobahn!
Now there will be a tasty reason to attend!. The new Pope will guarantee more attendance to religious services, because now... priests will be allowed to hand out each comunion wafer along with a tasty german slice of Leberwurst!.
3. Confessions will be PAINLESS. The classic confessionary will be re-designed according to a new model proposed by Pope Ratzinger. Now the priest will stay outside, and the sinner will confess his sins inside an air locked chamber. It is necesary for the priest to be outside so he can press the button opening the gas valves, if needed.
4. Catholic Symbols get a facelift. The catholic churc will rejuvenate the classic cross symbol, adding four extra lines, one to each extreme of the cross.
5. New dress code. Ratzinger’s past included a brief membership of the Hitler Youth movement, which according to him "dressed muuuch muuuch betterrrr than the current crop of Catholic altar boys!!!!!!!" (read in maniacally voice ;). Expect the altar boy outfits to be redesigned as well.
6. No chance of misunderstood messages. The classic Easter message delivered by the Pope will be changed slightly. Instead of "Happy Easter", Pope Ratzinger´s message will now end with "Happy Easter, it´s an order!".

Have any other ideas of coming changes to the Catholic Church? Post those below by clicking on the "x comment(s)" link below this.

Monday, April 18, 2005

Software patents are Evil. Read this and get scared...

If you are still not convinced that software patents can be EVIL, just see this patent. It seems like corporate juggernaut Symantec has been granted a broad patent that covers something as simple as the delivery and apply of software patches (incremental updaters) over a network, although with a specific method of grouping patches together to make it easier to jump from one version number to another.

I´m not really a legal expert and I'm not accusing Symantec of anything (they applied for a patent and it was given to them). What I´m simply saying is that the SYSTEM of granting patents to SOFTWARE PROCESSES is EVIL and rotten, and has the potential to end up hurting development and hampering innovation.

On a slightly related note and speaking of patents and "patches"... the other day I installed a trial version of RTpatch, and saw the dreaded "patent pending" message on its "splash screen". The trial version I installed (6.5) is a few years old so I don´t know now if the patent has been granted already. I suspect anthing they applied for should be granted or denied by now (the trial was dated 2003).

In a blog entry on Joel on Software, he says that a license for RTPatch reportedly costs $2750 greenbacks (US dollars :) now, but that some years ago the same licence had a cost of $5,000 greenbacks. The price drop for RTpatch , at least the post seemed to imply, was coincidental with the introduction by folks of Red Bend Software from Israel of a competing product dubbed vBuild which, the same report says, sold for $2500 dollars.

Now, speaking hypotetically, what would happen if the folks that make RTPatch one day need new revenue desperatelly, wake up in "trigger happy" lawsuit mode a la Darl McBride of SCO fame, and starts taking everyone who does a "delta patcher" or "binary differential updater" to court, demanding payments for breach of their patented design?. This is pure speculation, in fact, I don´t know if the Israeli software conflicts with RTPatch´s patent, I'm just using these examples to highlight the implications of widespread patent grants covering about anything imaginable. The whole thought of it should scare everyone that has ever written a single line of software.

The potential of software patents to prevent software innovation is amazing, and largely unreported in the mainstream press. How can you be serious that routing you've written doen't step in to someone else's patent?. Are you scared already? You should...

Ok, I have a blog in, now what?...

"I'm a trend follower not a trend setter" was at some point in life one of my mottos, and this certainly confirms it. I feel kinda uncomfortable now, however, having opened this blog on rather than installing and running my own. Hrmmm.... I still haven't decided what to do.

The good part of having your blog in a "free service" is that you can continue blogging even if your life goes down the drain... even a few coins can let you update your blog from the street, if you ever become a homeless (provided you find an internet cafe that lets a homeless in, and that you don't stink too much ;). The bad part, and this is pretty obvious, is that you lose control.

The problem I see is that I have several personalities, me the computer geek, and me, the political advocate. And to top this split-personality disorder, I have friends overseas, who would certainly like to read my babbling in english (ok, spanglish ;), and local friends, who would very much prefer to read my babling in espaƱol.

What to do?. Split my musings in four different blogs? Create sub-categories?. I'm open for suggestions....