Monday, December 19, 2005

Helios Proves Linus Right

Linus Torvalds has been much quoted recently for his views on Gnome Vs KDE. Part of what he said is this: "If you think your users are idiots, only idiots will use it.."

I guess Microsoft have been designing for idiots for a very long time now, and in the following article Helios demonstrates just how successful they have been - » Blog Archive » What Part of Virus and Spyware Didn’t You Understand?

Target Equals

You know what I hate?

Popups, that's what I hate. I'm not talking about ads, and those that are traditionally regarded as unrequested popups - stuff like "onload=open-another-bloody-window();". I mean, sure those are hidious and obnoxious, but the thing that really really pisses me off is "target=_blank", and various JavaScript equivalents.

When I click on a link I almost always want it to open in the current window and tab. If I want to open something in a new tab, I will do so myself using the middle mouse button. This should be my choice. Opening a new window or tab should not be forced on me by the designer.

Which brings me to one of my favourite Firefox extensions: TargetAlert. This excellent add-on gives advanced warning of just what kind of nasty evilness the web designer is about to attempt.

The author: "Provides a visual cue for the destination of a hyperlink by appending a link with an icon that shows what type of file it leads to, or the effects it may have, such as opening a new window or leaving a secure site."

Is there a Firefox extension to add "Open Link in Current Tab" to the right-click menu? That would also be helpful.

Friday, December 16, 2005

End Procrastination Now!

The google ad says "End procrastination now", and I'm thinking about clicking on it, really I am. But what if it's some kind of a con or something and then what if it's one of those nasty websites that hijacks my wonderful Internet Exploiter browser, which is really secure and don't go letting those damn Mozilla users tell you any different, and then what if it turns out to be really really expensive and then I really need to buy it because of this procrastination problem I have and anyway who the hell do those guys think they are telling me I have a problem. Those bastards.

So, I'm thinking about clicking on the ad.

Anyway Here's a list of Gifts for Geeks. Extremely pathetic gifts, if you ask me, which seems unlikely.

Monday, December 12, 2005

Writing with Writely

No doubt this is old news to everybody else, but I've only recently discovered the online word processor known as Writely. So I created this document in Firefox on a win2k machine, and am now editing it in Firefox on Debian. It appears to look and work exactly the same on each. It has the usual formatting options, can save as Word, Openoffice, RTF, and PDF. As far as I can see the default format is HTML. Writely also allows collaboration on documents, and supports a revision history.

Now I'm going to click "Blog" in order to, hopefully, publish this article directly to my weblog from within Writely...

Oops, I tried to edit this again after previewing and got an internal server error - had to then close the tab, go back to the writely main screen and select the document again.

So, here goes my second attempt... Success!!

Friday, December 09, 2005

Plug and Play

So I buy a couple of air conditioners, take them home, and live happily every after in climate-controlled comfort. Yeah, right.

It turns out the damn things have to be installed. You need to get some guy to measure and cut and hack and do all sorts of things with wood and metal and electricity that I don't understand just to get the stupid things working. What kind of a useless product is that?

This really is unacceptable. They should just work, like my computer does, or the toaster, as soon as I take them home. None of this installing stuff, and hacking it, and making sure it has the right kind of protection and won't, you know, fall over as soon as I turn it on. It's just crap. When will the white-goods industry get their fingers out and try to do the right thing by their customers, like the computer industry does.

Tuesday, December 06, 2005 | EULAs, indemnification, and user protection | EULAs, indemnification, and user protection: "In proprietary software, the restrictions on warranty and liability included in these EULAs would be unacceptable."

This is bullshit.
Here's a few snippets from a fairly common EULA from a little company called Microsoft. As you will see it is just packed full of restrictions on warranty and liability.

"12. ...Except for the Limited Warranty and to the maximum extent permitted by applicable law, Microsoft and its suppliers provide the Productand support services (if any) AS IS AND WITH ALL FAULTS, and hereby disclaim all other warranties and conditions, either express, implied or statutory, including, but not limited to, any (if any) implied warranties, duties or conditions of merchantability, of fitness for a particular purpose, of reliability or availability, of accuracy or completeness of responses, of results, of workmanlike effort, of lack of viruses, and of lack of negligence, all with regard to the Product, and the provision of or failure to provide support or other services, information, software, and related content through the Product or otherwise arising out of the use of the Product. ALSO, THERE IS NO WARRANTY OR CONDITION OF TITLE, QUIET ENJOYMENT, QUIET POSSESSION, CORRESPONDENCE TO DESCRIPTION OR NON-INFRINGEMENT WITH REGARD TO THE PRODUCT."


"15. LIMITATION OF LIABILITY AND REMEDIES. Notwithstanding any damages that you might incur for any reason whatsoever (including, without limitation, all damages referenced above and all direct or general damages), the entire liability of Microsoft and any of its suppliers under any provision of this EULA and your exclusive remedy for all of the foregoing (except for any remedy of repair or replacement elected by Microsoft with respect to any breach of the Limited Warranty) shall be limited to the greater of the amount actually paid by you for the Productor U.S.$5.00. The foregoing limitations, exclusions and disclaimers (including Sections 11, 12 and 13 above) shall apply to the maximum extent permitted by applicable law, even if any remedy fails its essential purpose."