another reason I love Stephen Colbert

I laughed so hard I just about woke up my sleeping Precious Daughter.

Bush, celebrities attend press corps dinner

And, [Stephen Colbert] said, “What incentive do these people have to answer your questions, after all? Nothing satisfies you. Everyone asks for personnel changes, so the White House has personnel changes and everybody’s like, oh, they’re just rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic. First of all, that’s a horrible metaphor. This administration is not sinking. This administration is soaring. If anything, they are rearranging the deck chairs on the Hindenburg.”

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what to do now for a good future in computers?

There’s a good number of social sites that I joined and never really got “active” in (Orkut, Friendster, Multiply, etc.) and a few I was active in years gone by, but not really much any more (Advogato, Livejournal, etc.). I’ve always imagined that’s pretty typical of most people, but I have friends and family that really stick with it. It’s likely just a personal priority kind of thing, which is unfortunate as it means I likely don’t value keeping in touch with friends/family as much as I really should. You have one of those days where you wake up and realize that the number of non-co-workers you’ve talked to in the last few months can be counted on one hand.

Anyway, before I digress too awfully much, I got a random scrapbook entry on Orkut. Normally I’ve ignored these (and deleted them), but today’s entry opens the possibility for some “code reuse” (ok, blog-post reuse, but still).

surendar: hi i m dr surendar.
i visited ur webpage.it is amazing.my younger brother is hoping for a good future in computers.can u tell me wat he shud do to be able get job in USA.he is indian.

Note: since my orkut page is anything but “amazing”, i’m leaning towards this being spam.  However, it’s not promoting any particular product or link, so I’ll go with it.  That and the guy is apparently 8’11”, so maybe he’s Wadlow‘s cousin or something.

The high-level: a future in computers can mean lots of different things. Everything from chip and board design, system test and integration, embedded development, networking design/implementation/test, blah blah blah… and software development.

I have no idea which area(s) surendar’s brother is interested in (nor what his current age is), so I’ll assume the last one since it’s the only one I know there’s a somewhat matching article about: Joel’s Advice for Computer Science College Students.

surendar: have him read that, but ignore the US-centric slant (like point #6: Stop worrying about all the jobs going to India. 🙂

A C# based approach to AOP-ish work

Given some of the AspectJ-based projects I’ve been on in the past (admittedly not a huge number), there’s some interesting concepts here – the Join-Point Interface seems reasonable nice – it certainly would have simplified lots of cases where I really wanted to bind to particular instances, which he points out.  Definitely worth watching, although make sure to click “Fast”, since it’s over an hour at “real” speed.

ResearchChannel – Are Aspects Really Needed For Aspect-Oriented Programming?

Description:
In this talk I will argue that we don’t need the ‘aspect’ as a separate abstraction mechanism for aspect-oriented program design, and there are good reasons to believe we might be better off without it. Rather, classes and aspects can be unified in a richer notion of class (the classpect). This unification does not significantly compromise the expressiveness of AspectJ-like languages. It improves the conceptual integrity of the programming model. And it improves the compositionality of components under aspect-oriented ‘advising.’

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Miss crontab? Try SchTasks… or Services For Unix

Although I had gotten used to the crontab interface (2 4 * * * OMG!!! PONIES!!!1!one), I heard about SchTasks last week, and it’s at least a nice upgrade from still using at.exe

Microsoft Windows XP – Schtasks

Schedules commands and programs to run periodically or at a specific time. Adds and removes tasks from the schedule, starts and stops tasks on demand, and displays and changes scheduled tasks.

Of course, that’s just one option.  If you really miss cron, you can have it (and TONS more of the typical unix shell/cmdline experience) with Services For Unix. It’s still odd to me that they call it “Windows Services for Unix” instead of “Unix Services for Windows”, but I digress.

Windows Services for UNIX 3.5 White Paper

Tools and Utilities

All the standard UNIX tools and utilities are part of SFU–there’s no need to purchase an add-on package from a third party to get the tools you expect and need to get your work done. All the familiar tools are available and work as a UNIX administrator would expect. The utilities include familiar text processing tools, such as grep, less, awk, sed, pr, tr, and so on; batch processing tools, such as at, cron, and batch; as well as job control tools, such as ps, nice, and kill; graphic utilities, such as xterm, xrdb, xset and xclock; development tools, such gcc, gdb, make; and connectivity tools, such as bind, sendmail and ftp. They’re all there, and they work as you would expect. Even man is the same as it’s always been.

remember, MSN: parameters matter in url's

Pick a page that’s valid, except for the parameter value you’re specify.  For instance, check out a slashdot article with a bogus sid (story id).  Note that this intentionally isn’t a link.

    http://linux.slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=doesnotexist

Doesn’t exist – page gives an error.  Great.  That’s what we expect.

Now, ask the search engines to give you the pages that link to that page.

    http://www.google.com/search?q=link:http://linux.slashdot.org/article.pl%3Fsid%3Ddoesnotexist
    http://search.yahoo.com/search?p=link%3Ahttp://linux.slashdot.org/article.pl%3Fsid%3Ddoesnotexist
    http://search.msn.com/results.aspx?q=link%3Ahttp://linux.slashdot.org/article.pl%3Fsid%3Ddoesnotexist
   
Notice those first two – both give no results.  That’s exactly what we expect – after all, noone will have linked to a page that doesn’t exist. 

However, our friends at MSN claim to be paying attention to the parameters and aren’t:

    Page 1 of 5,212 results containing link:http://linux.slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=doesnotexist (0.01 seconds)

You can check the results – they link to http://linux.slashdot.org/article.pl, sure, but not with the same sid value as we specified 🙂

Admittedly, I’m mainly posting this blog entry to make it simpler for me to send the feedback.

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