Saturday, May 14, 2005

IBM moves to Firefox

Microsoft's Internet Explorer continues lose market share as more consumers and businesses adopt alternative Web browsers. Rival IBM on Friday became the latest company to embrace Mozilla's Firefox browser , making it available to 300,000 employees. Firefox clearly has momentum. It has been downloaded more than 50 million times, and members of the open-source Mozilla project have provided funds for advertising to promote the browser. Firefox has features that aren't available in Internet Explorer. And some experts think it's more secure than IE, reason enough for businesses to consider it as an alternative browser.

Jaquith likes tab browsing in Firefox that lets him display multiple sites in one window. "It's the greatest thing since sliced bread," he says.

Microsoft's market-share decline is caused, in part, by the company's not refreshing IE or adding many new features over the past three years, as well as the perception that IE is riddled with security flaws that require constant patching, Jaquith says. "Firefox doesn't support Microsoft's Active X standard, and that's probably the No. 1 hole for spyware," he says. "The combination of no innovation and a dreadful security reputation has companies looking to the Firefox alternative for IE."

If you haven't tried Firefox, you probably should. You'll be introduced to tabbed browsing (something Opera also has) and if you've never tried it, trust me, it's like Jaquith said - it truly is the greatest thing since sliced bread - especially if you are still using dialup. Of course, Firefox isn't immune to security issues as I've mentioned before here. It had 2 biggies recently but fixed them within a few days, which is very fast. Opera is good too, but it doesn't support Roboform , the outstanding password form filler and that kills that right there from my viewpoint. Firefox also has "extensions" that add nifty little programs to Firefox and are very easy to install. So you can have a stock ticker running in your browser, special Google Preview thumbnails that appear and let you see what a page looks like when doing a Google search before actually clicking on the page, blogging tools, Tiny URL plugin (wonderful gizmo), etc.

No More Books for Undergrads - a Coming Trend

Students attending the University of Texas at Austin will find something missing from the undergraduate library this fall.


By mid-July, the university says, almost all of the library's 90,000 volumes will be dispersed to other university collections to clear space for a 24-hour electronic information commons , a fast-spreading phenomenon that is transforming research and study on campuses around the country.
Hardly surprising, eh? Look at how fast digital cameras are taking over from film. Maybe I had better hang on to all these books I have sitting around this house - they may become collectors' items one day!

Friday, May 13, 2005

Vacation, Adventure, and Surgery?

In case you missed the 60 Minutes episode, this article is worth a read. Even more so, if you are of the middle class, have no health insurance, and are facing an impending expensive operation. This could truly keep you out of the poor house. I have a friend in Thailand working on a new startup that will help American patients come to Thailand, have their operations, and have all the details taken care of for them. Once he firms this up, I'll be back to provide more details.

Thursday, May 12, 2005

Firefox Update

If you're using Firefox, you should immediately upgrade to Firefox 1.4 for security reasons. The download page can be found here . You can't miss the download link. As an extra goodie, it appears that Firefox has incorporated the blazingly fast forward and backward schemes that Opera has been using for some time in their browser. Load a heavy content page and then click on a link to go to another heavy content page. Then click "back" to return to the first page - think you will notice that it is all there without having to reload. Click "forward" and you will find the page that you had gone to, is instantly there. Great stuff!

Word of the Day
Podcast - An audio broadcast that has been converted to an MP3 file or other audio format and made available via an RSS syndication feed. Podcasts are created for many verbal discourses including home-brew discussions as well as major radio broadcasts. To read a bit more about this latest craze, head to this article . Actually podcast is a portmanteau of the words Ipod and broadcasting. What the heck is a portmanteau word? you'll have to head to that link above for a hint (and a link) to the definition. :)

For an article about podcasting and where to download software, check out this New York Times Article . If you don't want to take the time to read that (but you should), then you can go directly to Ipodder to download the software. If you are running Feed Demon as your RSS aggregator, then you already have FeedStation built in, which can download these podcasts and play them on your Ipod or via Windows Media Player on your desktop or copy them to any mp3 player.

Tuesday, May 10, 2005

Audible posting Big Gains

Audible came roaring back today, posting a 20% gain on the day at midday, after very positive 1st quarter results. This was good to see, as they had crashed from a high of 30.65 all the way down to 12.32 recently. Now it's back up around the $17/share level. You were a lucky person if you bought some around that $12 level. I think this company will continue to move up in the years ahead - we shall see - still a speculative stock, but has a solid niche in the audiobook business, especially when you consider their connection with Apple and those incredible Ipods, which play Audible books as well.

Trying to avoid camera shake with long lenses?

Some good tips in this article for those of you using 300mm and longer lenses. Always difficult to get tack sharp pics with those huge combos.

Monday, May 09, 2005

Tiger Swallowtail

One of the first butterflies I've seen here this Spring. To learn a bit more about this butterfly, head for this page. It is the State Butterfly of Virginia. Picture taken with Canon 20D and Canon EF 100mm f2.8 Macro USM. Identification aided via the help of Sarah's incredible butterfly/moth pages

Sunday, May 08, 2005


Did you catch the Kentucky Derby ? Giacomo came back from 17 horses off the lead to steal it in the stretch. 50-1 odds. Now catch this - if you had cast a $2 bet on Giacomo,Closing Argument, Afleet Alex, and Don't Get Mad in that order, you would have netted a payoff of 1.7 million bucks! Whoa baby!

Happy Mother's Day!

Image hosted by Spotlight: Today is dedicated to appreciating our mothers. In a recent study sponsored by, it was determined that an average stay-at-home mother would earn $131,471 annually, including overtime, if she received a paycheck. With the average mom filling the jobs of day care teacher, housekeeper, cook, driver, nurse, maintenance worker and CEO, it was estimated that she works about 100 hours a week, and would be entitled to a base pay of $43,461, with an additional $88,009 for 60 overtime hours a week. Happy Mother's Day!

Quote of the Day
"By and large, mothers and housewives are the only workers who do not have regular time off. They are the great vacationless class."
Anne Morrow Lindbergh