The world according to Sven-S. Porst
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Today nonsensically titled post, features bullets with links that are mostly sponsored by Michael Tsai.
Bruce Tognazzini on nonsensical security policies. Now make the relevant people read this. Wash, rinse, repeat.
Why is it that when you have a computer related problem that your local BOFH will waste your time solving it? Basically they explain to you all the reasons why things don't work and how you could change the way you work to accomodate their system. And they seem to stop working at your problem as soon as you pass through the door.
BOFHs may electrocute you or lock you into the tape safe (subject to availability) – but they shouldn't waste your time or get you involved with their systems. Perhaps it's not a proper BOFH.
About programmers preferring lots of code. I sure don't – if only because I'm a lazy typist. But I'm not a programmer.
Richard Monson-Haefel: Amazon reviews are a farce. He actually only touches the issue of being impersonated, where I think there is a much larger issue: While reviews by other buyers are a good thing at amazon – moving it closer to a proper bookstore with recommendations and knowledgeable owners – to me the bottom line seems to be that amazon has no interest in reviews being truthful or authentic. Their interest is selling books – and if that is achieved by fake reviews, so be it. Even better – if a buyer is eventually disappointed with a product that got good reviews, they'll blame the reviewer and not amazon. Great.
The whole review thing is much worse at eBay, I suppose. EBay's reviews are much more of a farce. To begin with they only serve sellers – what exactly is my benefit of having a good review record as a buyer? And then eBay seems to be offering the option to some people to hide their feedback profile but only display the percentage of positive reviews. Very dodgy.
Some comments from The Guardian: More christmas – and what DVD box sets have in common with English breakfast. (Although I don't quite share that opinion in favour of a well-made English breakfast.)
A review of online shopping – about time web usability becomes an issue of public awareness.
Why choice isn't it.
The mantra of moderately-to-very experienced computer users is “customization customization customization” [...]
My first reaction was to think
Wrong! – complete with capital letter and exclamation mark. This may be true for 'moderately-to-very experienced' sixteen-year-old computer users, but not otherwise. Who needs customisation if the interface is good enough to begin with? – Rather than
Customisation, customisation, customisation, the mantra for UI developers should be
Choice is bad. – I guess this warrants a more careful discussion. There is good customisation as well. Perhaps it's customisation that doesn't feel like you're customising things, e.g. windows and icons remembering their positions. And those are easy to undo as well. – I haven't thought this through properly, hm.
German computer magazine c't turns 20. I used to read it after I started considering the Mac press rubbish and incompetent in 1997 or so – yep it took me a long time to figure that one out. But after a year or two I stopped without being sad because their signal to noise ratio was becoming quite bad as well.
November 18, 2003, 23:50
I used to read it after I started considering the Mac press rubbish and incompetent in 1997 or so – yep it took me a long time to figure that one out.
Me too - I went through the hoops to subscribe to c’t even though it was rather expensive from the US. Then my subscription lapsed about two years ago, because I wasn’t find it any use (also, it took effort to read German :-)
IMO, the best English-language Mac publications are TidBITS, MDJ/MWJ (www.macjournals.com) and MacUser UK. I just got another request from ASCII’s MacPeople magazine to include ICeCoffEE on their CD, and happily said yes - wish something like it existed in English. It contains essentially a paper equivalent of VersionTracker with useful capsule reviews for hundreds of products - even the screenshots in the complimentary issues I was sent turned me on to a number of programs I’d otherwise have never known about.
November 19, 2003, 0:27
Wow, subscribing international magazines is really going a long way. I would’ve thought there should be an equivalent paper everywhere.
I think c’t titled too much towards the standard Windows review junk around the time when issues became uncomfortably heavy and they switched to fortnightly publication. They are probably still the best non-specialist computer magazine in Germany, but the bar has been lowered.
These days I feel computer magazines have little to offer beyond what I can easily access on the internet. And whatever they have to offer they manage to compensate a few pages down by the sheer incompetence of their other writers. Thus I rather stay away – unless they review one of our applications of course, in which case I’ll get myself a vanity issue, as most magazines don’t seem to send you a complimentary issue these days.
November 19, 2003, 22:05