Monday, 07 April 2008
Today in the mailbox I received a letter from Best Buy with the previously-promised $50 gift card to help compensate for the fact that the HD-DVD player I bought from them is a no-longer offered format. Cool stuff, and well ahead of the "expect it by May 1st" timeframe they established in their original communications.

Great service on this one, and again kudos to Best buy.

Some interesting trivia from the letter in the mail: "Customers will get a gift card for each player or HD DVD attachment they purchased. While we can't supply a specific number of gift cards that will go out, it's safe to say that, through this program, Best Buy will distribute more than $10 million in gift cards to customers across the country."



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Random Stuff
Monday, 07 April 2008 15:56:41 (Pacific Standard Time, UTC-08:00)
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 Sunday, 06 April 2008
Mark Russinovich, a Microsoft Technical Fellow, presented a very good session at the TechEd IT Forum last year on the topic of advanced eradication of malware on Windows machines. It's a great session and has some useful advanced techniques for removal. It is also a very good resource for those who want to better understand how malware infects and what some of the risks are. Lots of practical information and how-to's in this one.

Fortunately, the session was recorded and is available online for anyone who wants to see it. If viruses and malware are a part of your job or if this type of security topic is of interest to you, it's an hour and twelve minutes well-spent. I went looking for this session online hoping to find the PowerPoint and found the whole session with video and demo and everything - terrific stuff.

(Updated 4/7 - link to video fixed)



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IT Security | Safe Computing | Tech
Sunday, 06 April 2008 22:16:56 (Pacific Standard Time, UTC-08:00)
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˙ʎoɾuǝ ˙ǝɹǝɥ ʇı ʇǝƃ uɐɔ noʎ 'ƃuılǝǝɟ ʇɐɥʇ ʇsnɾ ɹoɟ ƃuıʞool ǝɹ,noʎ ǝɔuɐɥɔ ʎq ɟı ʇnq ˙ƃuılǝǝɟ unɟ ɐ ʇou

¿noʎ uo ɹǝʌo pǝlloɹ pɐɥ ʇı ǝʞıl ʇlǝɟ plɹoʍ ǝloɥʍ ǝɥʇ puɐ pɐǝɥ sʇı uo pǝddılɟ sɯǝǝs ʇsnɾ ƃuıɥʇʎɹǝʌǝ uǝɥʍ 'sʎɐp ǝsoɥʇ ɟo ǝuo ǝʌɐɥ ɹǝʌǝ

(via Guy Kawasaki on Twitter)



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Humor | Random Stuff
Sunday, 06 April 2008 09:48:32 (Pacific Standard Time, UTC-08:00)
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Count me in as one of the people who will line up to get a 3G iPhone - whenever it comes out. It looks as if the community has determined via tear-down methodology that the chipset inside the current iPhone is not 3G capable, so a software upgrade doesn't seem likely (something I had hoped might be possible based on early information, but ah, oh well...).

The most recent oh-by-the-way rumor/news about a 3G iPhone comes via Walt Mossberg, who says it will available in 60 days. And Walt is certainly a person to be in-the-know. In the video where he made the side comment also discusses the current state of "broadband" around the world and talks about where technology bottlenecks are preventing future growth and areas where consumers are not yet satisfied. It's a good clip to watch.

The 3G iPhone part is about 6:50 into the video.

Add to Mossberg's comment the recent orders of 3G chipsets and related ramp-down of 2G production at the company Apple sources their equipment from, plus side comments by other industry execs and some good Apple-style business common sense thinking, and it all really does start to add up.

Looks like it's time to start tossing that loose change in the ol' jar again each day.



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Apple | Mobile | Tech
Sunday, 06 April 2008 09:02:05 (Pacific Standard Time, UTC-08:00)
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A super-fast, new global network's controllers will turn it on sometime this year, but exactly when it will be available to you and me, in the same way the Internet we know is today... Only time will tell.

As is practically always the case, the new technology driving the "Grid" network was borne out of need. The Times Online published an article discussing the new network:
"Cern, based near Geneva, started the grid computing project seven years ago when researchers realised the LHC would generate annual data equivalent to 56m CDs - enough to make a stack 40 miles high.

"This meant that scientists at Cern - where Sir Tim Berners-Lee invented the web in 1989 - would no longer be able to use his creation for fear of causing a global collapse.

"This is because the internet has evolved by linking together a hotchpotch of cables and routing equipment, much of which was originally designed for telephone calls and therefore lacks the capacity for high-speed data transmission.

"By contrast, the grid has been built with dedicated fibre optic cables and modern routing centres, meaning there are no outdated components to slow the deluge of data. The 55,000 servers already installed are expected to rise to 200,000 within the next two years."
Imagine high-definition holographic video conferencing, or downloading movies and other massive pieces of data (well, massive by today's standards anyhow) in a couple seconds or less. Even if the Grid network is never made available to the public and is used solely by researchers, the technologies that are created and used to drive it can be used in the public space to drive change for everyone.

Let's just hope people seriously think about security this time around, during design rather than after the fact.

(one of several interesting links found today via Warner Crocker)



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Tech
Sunday, 06 April 2008 08:44:43 (Pacific Standard Time, UTC-08:00)
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 Saturday, 05 April 2008
Over at Lifehacker, Adam Pash has written an article describing in some very useful detail how to use a couple freeware apps to trim down a Windows XP installation so you can create a lighter-weight install disc for whatever purpose you may have.

I'm interested in this because I plan (at least at this point) to use a Windows Server 2003 install disc as the starting point for a VMWare Fusion virtual machine on my Macbook Air, and I want to keep it as lean and mean as I possibly can. That way I can run the couple/few Windows apps that I really need to make my computer life complete.

Why Windows Server 2003? Because I have a couple unused copies sitting on my shelf just screaming to have the shrink-wrap removed. Come to think on it, it might be the first time I have opened an actual shrink-wrapped Windows Server box since around 2000. I've grown quite used to electronic delivery and volume licensing discs. Wow.

Does anyone have any solid information that would point to benefits of using the 64-bit edition of Server 2003 over the 32-bit version? If so, please let me know! Comment below, or the email link is over there on the right side of the page.

I'll report back with results after I get it all set up. Should be interesting and a bit of fun.



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Apple | Geek Out | Tech
Saturday, 05 April 2008 10:09:52 (Pacific Standard Time, UTC-08:00)
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