Thursday, 20 January 2005

Stan Lee dreamed up Spiderman way, way, way back when. Until today, he's never really gotten his due. People don't realize that he's never really been compensated, other than as an employee, for the Spiderman franchise's income.

He sued, and a judge has ruled that Stan the Man should get 10% of Marvel Comics' earning from Spiderman sales since 1998.

Marvel, of course, says they'll appeal. Hmmm... Can anyone say DC?

"The ruling is a long time coming. Lee began with Marvel in 1939, and served as writer, editor, art director, head writer and publisher for the company before effectively retiring from active duty and becoming chairman emeritus. He filed the lawsuit in November 2002, pointing out a clause in his contract that entitled him to 10 percent of TV, movie and merchandising deals, an amount he thought was significantly higher than the $1 million-per-year salary he currently receives. Marvel tried to find a loophole in the wording...

"...Lee's lawyer says the victory is bittersweet.

"The foundation of [Marvel] was based on characters he created, and to have to ultimately sue to enforce an agreement under which they were supposed to give him his fair share was very disturbing," Graff told the Hollywood Reporter. "We're certainly hoping that Marvel, after they recover from the sting of this decision, will determine that it's time to own up to its obligations to Mr. Lee."

(from Yahoo News)

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Random Stuff
Thursday, 20 January 2005 17:09:56 (Pacific Standard Time, UTC-08:00)
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 Wednesday, 19 January 2005

Finally!!! I have been struggling with the fact that there has never been an IFilter available for CHM (Microsoft compiled help) files. But now there is!

UPDATED INFO: Apparently there is another relatively new freeware CHM IFilter avalable in addition to the commercial one mentioned below. I have not had a chance to check it out, and documentation is pretty much non-existant on the web site, but check out Citeknet. They have a CHM IFilter, a tool called IFilter Explorer that you can use to examine your system's IFilters, and a bunch of other IFilters (CAB, CHM, HLP, MHT, ZIP) on their web site. Thanks to Sean for the comment and the pointer - I stand corrected. I think IFilters in general deserve another post here (click to read the followup), especially with the genesis of these new desktop search applications and new activity/interest in IFilters in general.

If you use a system that can leverage IFilters to index or discover the content inside of proprietary files (systems like SharePoint or Windows built-in search, for example), this is for you. There are IFilters for all kinds of binary formats, such as PDF, TIFF files with optical character recognition (OCR), etc... And now, CHM!

In fact, IFilterShop has a whole slew of filters for sale:

  • CHM IFilter
  • MindManager IFilter
  • Inventor IFilter
  • WMV/WMA IFilter
  • SHTML IFilter
  • WF IFilter
  • Msg IFilter
  • PDF+ IFilter
  • Zip IFilter
  • XMP IFilter
  • StarOffice IFilter
  • OpenOffice IFilter
  • vCard IFilter

There are also a whole bunch of free IFilters available on the Internet.

Here is the official announcement:

IFilterShop releases CHM IFilter 1.0

IFilterShop is pleased to announce the release of new product CHM IFilter.

CHM IFilter extends Microsoft Indexing Service to extract content from Compiled HTML Help (CHM) documents. Microsoft HTML Help is Microsoft's online Help authoring system. It is designed for use by authors or developers who create Help for software programs, multimedia titles, intranets, extranets, or the Internet. CHM IFilter makes Microsoft HTML Help files instantly searchable in all products built on Microsoft Search technology.

For more information, please visit our website at:

(ED: removed direct reference to .exe file)

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Office 2003 | SharePoint | Tech
Wednesday, 19 January 2005 14:31:50 (Pacific Standard Time, UTC-08:00)
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Microsoft Expert Zone WebCast: How to listen to digital music in your car
Wednesday January 19th, 10:00am Pacific Time

I have a project pending where I plan to do some serious computer-in-the-car stuff. So, I took note of the fact that Microsoft is putting on a live webcast in their Expert Zone Wednesday morning at 10am Pacific Time about that very topic: Digital music and spoken word and podcast or whatever.

"...But you need a way to connect your digital audio to your car stereo. The topic of this WebCast is how to find digital audio to listen to, how to connect a portable audio player to your car stereo, and how to support and power it while you drive. This presentation also discusses how to replace your car stereo, how to add a hard disk-based audio player, how to burn custom CDs with digital audio, and where to turn in the online community when you need help and have more questions about digital audio."

The PowerPoint deck can be downloaded prior to the event, as well.

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Mobile | Tech | Windows Media Technology
Wednesday, 19 January 2005 01:17:17 (Pacific Standard Time, UTC-08:00)
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 Tuesday, 18 January 2005

The Jib Jab crew has been hard at work again - and here's their most recent funny film:

JibjibinnaugCheck out "Second Term" from the creators of "Good to be in D.C." and "This Land." This latest cartoon pokes fun at President Bush, conservatives, liberals, and just about anyone else vying for political power.

5.8MB of fun and jest. Gotta love those Jib Jab guys. It's humorous - maybe not as funny as some of their past videos, but a good one.

Note that when you get to the end and the credits appear on the screen, some of the names in the credits are links to each person's web site - an interesting and fun diversion.

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Tuesday, 18 January 2005 23:08:21 (Pacific Standard Time, UTC-08:00)
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Scott and Omar have announced the release of dasBlog Community Edition v1.7. There's lots of new features and improvements in this version, and best of all, it's open source and free of charge. I have had the privilege of running it in various dev stages over the past few weeks, and yesterday one of my blogs running the v1.7 pre-release software got Slashdotted without as much as a hiccup, so I think it will hold up just fine under pressure.

In fact, this weblog was Slashdotted last year while running v1.6 (with a super-heavy traffic load that day), and it help up quite well - the slashdot traffic overran the NIC well before the app ever had a chance to choke. Considering that dasBlogCE v1.7 has a slew of big-time performance enhancements over v1.6, you can pretty well rest assured it's built to handle a serious load.

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Blogging | Tech
Tuesday, 18 January 2005 20:16:04 (Pacific Standard Time, UTC-08:00)
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 Monday, 17 January 2005

Hey - it’s a worth a few minutes of our collective time for the chance at a free computer. is from the same people who ran the free iPod promotion. You do have to agree to one offer, but they are all free - minus of course a touch of your marketing info.

Go ahead let’s help each other out…

From the people who brought you the Free iPod, here's your chance to get (and this is for real) a free Mac Mini - and it's the 80GB version, too.

  • You have to sign up for one offer or service on a marketing web site. The marketing is what pays for the computers [Note: I signed up for an offer for Blockbuster's online rentals (unlimited rentals for $9.95 first month and $14.95 per month after that) and I'm dumping NetFlix, since the Blockbuster service costs a little less each month and adds two free in-store rentals a month - it's a perfect deal for me].
  • Then you have to have 10 people do the same thing.
  • Once 10 people have signed up under your referral, you get shipped you new Mac Mini.

So there you go - CLICK HERE to get started! And thanks for helping - your sign-up via a link on this page will help me get mine. Get on-board early!

The Brand New Apple Mac mini (80GB)

  • Fast G4 processor
  • Comes with 80GB harddrive
  • iLife ’05, Mac OS X v10.3 “Panther,” Quicken 2005 for Mac, Nanosaur 2, Marble Blast Gold
  • Built-in Ethernet and modem
  • Slot-loading Combo drive
  • DVI connector, VGA adapter
  • Just 6.5 inches wide and 2 inches tall
  • Weighs only 2.9 lbs

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Geek Out | Tech
Monday, 17 January 2005 22:42:35 (Pacific Standard Time, UTC-08:00)
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