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Better export that quickly
Mar 30th, 2012 by Ken Hagler

VIDEO: Largest handwritten Koran in Kabul. One of the world’s most exquisite copies of the Koran, has been unveiled in Kabul. It is the world’s largest handwritten copy of the Koran. [BBC News]

Afghanistan is not a very safe location for historically significant religious artifacts. They’d better get that across the border to Iran, or into some other country with an appreciation for history and no Imperial Stormtroopers to set it on fire.

Is ASCAP a scam?
Mar 26th, 2012 by Ken Hagler

How ASCAP Takes Money From Successful Indie Artists And Gives It To Giant Rock Stars. The short version of the story is basically that, to make its own life easier, ASCAP just pays those performance royalties to the top 200 grossing tours in the US, and every other touring musician is more or less screwed — unless you can convince ASCAP that you play “serious music.” [Techdirt]

I know a number of indie artists, and I can’t remember ever hearing any of them say anything, good or bad, about ASCAP.

Dictation amusing but worthless
Mar 24th, 2012 by Ken Hagler

I decided to test the Dictation feature on my new iPad to see if it actually worked. Here is my sample text:

I say to the gods and the sons of gods the things that whet my thoughts; by the wells of the world there is none with the might to make me do his will.

Dictation rendered that as:

Message the gods and the sons of guns the love my thoughts for the Wilson’s the world there is none within the commitment do his will

It’s a good thing I’ve gotten better at touch-typing with an iPad.

An interesting study
Mar 24th, 2012 by Ken Hagler

From an article title Born This Way? in the May issue of Reason Magazine (not yet available online):

In a study I conducted with colleagues Jesse Graham and Brian Nosek, we tested how well liberals and conservatives could understand each other. We asked more than 2,000 American visitors to fill out the Moral Foundations Questionnaire. One-third of the time they were asked to fill it out normally, answer as themselves. One-third of the time they were asked to fill it out as they think a “typical liberal” would respond. One-third of the time they were asked to fill it out as a “typical conservative” would respond. This design allowed us to examine the stereotypes that each side held about the other. More important, it allowed us to assess how accurate they were by comparing people’s expectations about “typical” partisans to the actual responses from partisans on the left and the right. Who was best able to pretend to be the other?

The results were clear and consistent. Moderates and conservatives were most accurate in their predictions, whether they were pretending to be liberals or conservatives. Liberals were the least accurate, especially those who described themselves as “very liberal.”

I’d realized years ago from talking to both liberals and conservatives that conservatives generally understood liberals pretty well (they just disagree with them) while liberals are so far off base about conservatives as to border on delusional. I’d wondered if this was true in general, or just a peculiarity of the people I came in contact with, so it’s interesting to see a study confirming that it is in fact true in general.

Useful feature for CM
Mar 24th, 2012 by Ken Hagler

I really like the git blame command. In CM it’s pretty common for an irate developer to complain, “The build is broken, fix it!” Tools like this are very useful for figuring out what happened. Although I’ve found that in practice there’s a pretty good rule of thumb: the developer who complained is almost always the person who broke the build.

Kodachrome news
Mar 23rd, 2012 by Ken Hagler

Seen on a mailing list:

“On demand” could conceivably include any film that Kodak has ever manufactured. Someone in the audience asked the inevitable question: “Including Kodachrome?” [Beverly Pasterczyk of Eastman Kodak Co.’s] answer: “Yes, including Kodachrome”. She added that while small runs of Kodachrome were unlikely, it was not out of the question, since they have had numerous inquiries.

To the question “How could this be made possible?” her answer was intriguing. “Volume is the answer. Consumer groups of large numbers of individuals could petition for the return of a specific film. This would include not only large companies, but also individuals banded together such as camera clubs, especially those with a large enough base such that they could collectively join on a national or even international basis”.

The question of processing isn’t really addressed here. I seem to remember reading that Dwayne’s sold their processing equipment after they stopped processing Kodachrome. However, if that were dealt with, it occurs to me that another company could conceivably order a production run and then resell it, like the way that companies buy graphics cards from a manufacturer and then resell them with their own company name.

iCloud not safe enough
Mar 22nd, 2012 by Ken Hagler

Ask Ars: how safe is my data stored in iCloud? [Ars Technica]

An interesting article which ultimately concludes that it’s “safe enough.” However, right there in the article is something which contradicts its conclusion:

As far as your Safari bookmarks or iPhone photos, however, that information is only given out when required by law, such as when it’s required by court order. “We may also disclose information about you if we determine that, for purposes of national security, law enforcement, or other issues of public importance, disclosure is necessary or appropriate,” Apple wrote in its privacy policy.

In other words, it’s not really safe at all. If it were, it would be impossible for Apple to ever disclose anything, for any reason, because they wouldn’t be able to get to it to disclose it.

Amusing timing
Mar 20th, 2012 by Ken Hagler

Perforce is a Git Developer. We’ve been studying Git for some time. We like to keep an eye on players and technology in our space, partly because it’s something we think our customers appreciate, partly because it’s due diligence as a leader in the SCM/Version Management space, and partly because it’s just plain interesting! But something unexpected happened last summer as a result of this study of competing technologies: the relationship between Git and Perforce turns out to have synergistic appeal with a peanut butter twist, as outlined in my blog articles Perforce and DVCS: Two great tastes that taste great together and Git as a Perforce Client.

[…]

But if you want to use Git and Perforce together today, you’ll likely be looking at the git-p4 feature of Git as either a tool or a starting point. So to get you a little further along the road, we’ll be making an increased effort on git-p4 in the coming months. Here’s where you can give us a hand: letting us know what’s important to you in a git-p4 feature set. Please add your suggestions to the comments below! [p4 blog]

I just started trying out git-p4 yesterday for a very small internal tool, so this is really good news. As a CM Engineer, I pretty much live in Perforce, but it’s a bit awkward for working on small internal tools where I might want to have several experimental branches. I’m quite new to git, but I’ve already found that its capability for that sort of work more than lives up to the hype.

Are they certain about the reasons?
Mar 20th, 2012 by Ken Hagler

Analyst: Only one in ten tablets sold has a cellular connection. It’s clear that people are willing to pay for new tablets, but it’s also clear that they aren’t yet ready to take on the fee for cellular connectivity to their tablets. [MacCentral]

Personally, I don’t care about the fee, but I refuse to volunteer to carry a tracking and surveillance device around with me. The idea that I’d pay to carry one is just insulting.

Quote of the Day
Mar 17th, 2012 by Ken Hagler

There’s either a sports game on TV, or a large group of men is being tortured in the house next to mine.

Terra Naomi

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