The short-form week of 31 Jan–6 Feb 2011

07 Feb 2011; last modified 13 Mar 2011

The week in review, 140 characters at a time. This week, 68 messages in 65 conversations. (With 12 favorites.)

This document was created automatically from my archive of my Twitter stream. Due to limitations in the Twitter API and occasional glitches in my archiving system, it may not be 100% complete.

In a conversation that started on Sunday at 07:42am

I'm shocked! Shocked, I say! RT @doctorow: Documents reveal widespread lawbreaking by #FBI #eff #surveillance—@ndw

In a conversation that started on Sunday at 05:24pm

Is there any more frustrating web experience than trying to find the actual home page of a particular hotel?—@ndw
@ndw the fun part is where you find their website and realize that Google, Expedia etc are better tools to find info about the hotel...—@martin_probst
@ndw restaurant websites—@abdelazer
@abdelazer Yeah, exactly the same problem.—@ndw
@ndw You've never used the SNCF's website (French railways). It shows. After that, finding a hotel page is all about zen.—@robinberjon
@robinberjon @ndw Is SNCF as hideously slow and convoluted as National Rail's site?—@arnia
@arnia No, SNCF is much worse! It's unusable, buggy, and they change it too often for you to be able to learn the bugs. @ndw—@robinberjon

In a conversation that started on Sunday at 07:34pm

Watching King's speech as per @ndw suggestion. High expectations on this one—@dscape
@dscape I bet you weren't disappointed. The best film I've seen in the last 12 months if not longer.—@philipfennell
@dscape Well, do tell. Was it as good as I lead you to believe?—@ndw
@ndw @philipfennell the acting was tremendous and the movie was very good :)—@dscape

In a conversation that started on Monday at 02:20am

oXygen says: net.sf.saxon.s9api.SaxonApiException: I/O error - Read timed out - for XHTML DTD.—@philipfennell
@philipfennell Right, so not Calabash's fault then. Or oXygen's. Whew! :-)—@ndw

In a conversation that started on Monday at 02:49am

Twitter: possibly the best solution to cognitive surplus since gin went out of fashion. #rsln—@robinberjon
@robinberjon Gin went out of fashion? Where? When? Remind me not to move there!—@ndw
@ndw It's all relative. Compared to this it has—@robinberjon
@robinberjon @ndw Gin relativity. I always thought things seemed slower after a few, and distances changed.—@arnia

In a conversation that started on Monday at 11:29am

@ndw From my analysis it is an issue between Calabash and Saxon, the resolver it is not used when a document is read with http-request—@georgebina
@georgebina Ah. I'll take a look. Not used for the URI being requested, or not used when that doc is parsed, or both?—@ndw
@ndw When that doc is parsed - Saxon creates a new parser without using the resolver, see my msg on the XProc list on how we solved this.—@georgebina

Monday at 01:36pm

epic movie mashup! RT @MrDigDoug Star Wars: TRON Legacy. Awesome.—@peteaven

In a conversation that started on Monday at 03:28pm

If having a slightly less crappy health care system is unconstitutional, then change the stupid Constitution. Ugh.—@kendall
@kendall Oh, for the love of all you hold dear, don't encourage them to draft constitutional amendments. That could end very, very badly.—@ndw
@ndw I don't think I was encouraging that; but if that were required to make single payer unconstitutional, that would be a *good* thing.—@kendall
@ndw ... a good thing, because they don't have the votes for *that*. As it is, a dopey judge in FL has declared it unconstitutional now. :(—@kendall
@kendall I wasn't thinking about any specific case, just the general notion that it'd be bad if they start fscking with the constitution.—@ndw
@ndw they're already trying: first up, so-called birthright citizenship.—@kendall

In a conversation that started on Monday at 04:59pm

Thinks that there will certainly be passes to @xmlprague 2011 on eBay soon... #xmlprague #soldout—@innovimax
@innovimax Hmm. I wonder if my spot is worth more or less because it includes a speaking obligation? #xmlprague #soldout #ebay—@ndw

In a conversation that started on Monday at 06:40pm

Doctor's offices that run behind schedule should have free wifi. #wasted-afternoon—@dcm
@dcm There are doctor's offices that *don't* run behind schedule?—@ndw
@ndw to be fair - that last time I saw this one, he was incredibly prompt with me - but you are probably right—@dcm

In a conversation that started on Tuesday at 09:53am

If you're caching URIs and the server doesn't return a last-modified header, assume local copy is expired or isn't expired?—@ndw
@ndw does it come with etag or expires header ? is a good source of sanity—@xquery
@ndw It's in the spec, but I don't remember the answer. I think you take the Date header as last-modified. HTTP 1.1 is all about caching.—@walterunderwood
@ndw Depends on the local cache TTL, doesn't it?—@0xcafebabe
@ndw expired. You didn't get a 304 Not Modified, so you should take it as new—@abdelazer
@ndw Assume not expired for whatever period you're happy to tolerate our-of-date cached results.—@mmmmmrob

Tuesday at 12:45pm

All of the bullshit you dream up for your API? RFC 2616 has already figured it out. We're on the web. We speak HTTP. Please join us.—@tommorris

In a conversation that started on Tuesday at 01:30pm

My path today at the Iguazu falls. Upper, Devil's Throat, boat ride, and lower. I'm spent!—@merlyn
@merlyn What software did you use for the pathing?—@hunterhacker
@hunterhacker I have a wintec WBT-201, and translated that to KMZ with gpsbabel, then pushed into Google Earth—@merlyn
@hunterhacker FYI: I hacked together a perl script to overlay track data on Google Maps for my cycling.—@ndw
@ndw @hunterhacker FYI: I hacked together a python script to overlay track data on #OpenStreetMap for my running.—@timberners_lee

In a conversation that started on Tuesday at 01:32pm

I just agreed to start as an XML Data Architect for the Library of Congress (via CACI). Really, really jazzed about this.—@kurt_cagle
@kurt_cagle Congrats, Kurt!—@ndw
@kurt_cagle Best of luck!—@fgeorges
@kurt_cagle Fantastic on the new gig !!!!—@DALDEI

Tuesday at 03:37pm

I am so not sorry I left that platform behind. RT @tomcoates More on the Apple tackiness from Wired:—@ndw

In a conversation that started on Tuesday at 03:48pm

RT @dalmaer: Will Apple one day start asking and Basecamp and Flickr for a piece of their subscriptions?—@windley
@windley "Yes" seems like a good guess.—@ndw

In a conversation that started on Tuesday at 04:30pm

Shoveling is not easier when the piles you're shoveling onto are shoulder high. #justsayin #snopocalypse—@ndw
@ndw Time for you Americans to discover snow scoops: shovels aren't for real snowfalls.—@david_megginson
@david_megginson The plow hasn't really left me anyplace I could practically scoop it. I have a "push shovel" but now I'm stuck throwing.—@ndw
@ndw Build a ramp, then push snow up and dump at the top. I've made 6 ft-high sliding hills in my back yard when my kids were small.—@david_megginson

In a conversation that started on Tuesday at 04:31pm

How high is the snow when your little dogs can walk over the four foot fence? To fscking high! #snopocalypse—@ndw
@ndw did the little dog tunnel over to the fence, or just skim across the thick stuff?—@JeanKaplansky
@JeanKaplansky In all honesty, it's a little too soft still. But if we get ice tomorrow, he'll be able to just hop over it.—@ndw
@ndw We don't go out without leashes. If anything, it means I can get the little one back if he submerges...—@JeanKaplansky
@ndw As a karate expert, I would have to say that The Snow Is Too Damn High.—@ffg
@ndw I'm supposed to fly from YOW to BOS tomorrow afternoon, then drive out to Burlington MA in PM rush hour. Hmm.—@david_megginson

In a conversation that started on Tuesday at 05:54pm

RT @counternotions: Q: What do these have in common: XML (fail), Antartica (fail), Atom (fail), Sun (fail) and Android? A: Tim Bray.—@timbray
@timbray Classy stuff there.—@webmink
@timbray @counternotions Is XML a #fail? Ubiquitous in enterprise and online data, just not popular for web-page markup or AJAX payload.—@david_megginson
@david_megginson I think this is the "XML on the web" hasn't been as successful as it might have been, so XML is a fail meme. Nonsense.—@ndw
@timbray Wow, that's rude and wrong. (The fail part.)—@zeldman
@timbray @zeldman is right, that's just rude. Who'd ya piss off? :-)—@ndw
@timbray well if XML has failed then I would like to fail the way it does every day—@xquery

In a conversation that started on Tuesday at 07:23pm

@ndw I'll trade you our predicted ice for your predicted snow.—@MattioV
@MattioV we've got ice coming tomorrow too.—@ndw

Wednesday at 10:36am

Ice, ice, baby! At least it's not rain, so it's not accumulating on tree limbs and power lines. Yet.—@ndw

Wednesday at 11:16am

CORS considered harmful - [mca blog] "... a bad way to model the Web." #HTTP—@mamund

Wednesday at 12:08pm

Just knocked off five long-standing XProc action items. #gsd—@ndw

In a conversation that started on Wednesday at 01:35pm

@timbray In Chrome, on the page, scroll to the bottom. Wait. View bounces back to the middle of the page. WTF?—@ndw

In a conversation that started on Wednesday at 02:48pm

last John Nettles midsomer murders tonight! (in 15 minutes, itv1)—@libbymiller
@libbymiller Aww, poo. Well, I can't act surprised, I'd heard the news. One more set to buy, then, I guess.—@ndw
@ndw I got first 5 series for about £30 from amazon a while back—@libbymiller

In a conversation that started on Wednesday at 02:54pm

AsciiDoc ( is becoming the writing format of choice for more and more #oreillymedia authors.—@adamwitwer
@adamwitwer That looks very cool.—@ndw
@ndw Yeah, authors are responding enthusiastically, and the conversion to DocBook works pretty well.—@adamwitwer
@ndw by far the most impressive DocBook transformation we've ever seen from a lightweight markup language (& we've seen a few)—@abdelazer

Wednesday at 02:58pm

I just discovered an amazing Twitter client! It reads them! And has matching pictures! And runs on my TV! They call it CNN.—@Gernot

Wednesday at 03:57pm

"It would be hard to devise a more wasteful, damaging, unsustainable system." #food -—@simonstl

Wednesday at 09:43pm

Free UULINK Dial-Up Internet Software to Fight Internet Tyranny << It's a weird world. Dialup UUCP for PCs is back.—@nazgul

Wednesday at 11:09pm

Norm (@ndw) takes up the short-form-injection torch. Recommended for anyone who blogs&tweets:—@timbray

Thursday at 09:57am

My goodness, the question "why are my handbrake encoded files too dark" certainly leads to a maze of twisty passages. Sigh.—@ndw

In a conversation that started on Thursday at 10:06am

RT @wonkmonk_: UN report: World population growth must slow down significantly—@bsletten
@bsletten Bloody obvious, you'd think.—@ndw

In a conversation that started on Thursday at 11:20am

RT @yehaskel: Best shwag at the #strataconf? A steel usb key AND bottle opener in one from MarkLogic.—@peteaven
@peteaven Ooh. I want one of them! :-)—@ndw

In a conversation that started on Thursday at 01:40pm

Thinking about getting away? Thinking about XML? Think MarkLogic User Conference! San Francisco, 26-29 Apr.—@ndw
@ndw "about 19 hours ago via Norm's personal command-line client" Yeah!—@fgeorges
@ndw Does it work if I'm thinking about getting away, from XML?—@robinberjon
@robinberjon Might do. There's always lots of cool stuff at MLUC. Not that "getting away from XML" is a phrase with any meaning to me.—@ndw

In a conversation that started on Thursday at 02:43pm

Wolfram Alpha calculates the probability of two people in a 23-person room having the same birthday at 0.5.—@Kellblog
@Kellblog when it starts answering this then I'll be impressed—@xquery
@Kellblog damn .... gobsmacked, need to spend a bit of free time playing with #wolframalpha—@xquery
@xquery Isn't that link proof that you should already be impressed?—@ndw
@ndw yes I is ... as an unrelated aside my personal AI test for computers is when they can both tell and laugh at jokes—@xquery
@Kellblog that's an old party trick—@eedeebee
@eedeebee Yes, but how many search engines can calculate it! Plus you can change the room size!—@Kellblog

In a conversation that started on Thursday at 03:28pm

For those of you chomping on the bit for a Verizon iPhone? Prepare for The Suck wrt to customer service. #fail—@bsletten
@bsletten That'll differ from AT&T how, exactly? Not that I'd want a *cough* CDMA phone anyway.—@ndw
@ndw @waltomatic I’m not saying any other one is better, just that I’ve recently become a Mifi customer and learned what they can expect.—@bsletten
@ndw But I am with you on the CDMA issue too. Is there going to be a software upgrade or is it planned obsolescence?—@bsletten
@bsletten I just assume they think enough customers will never leave the US that it doesn't matter.—@ndw

In a conversation that started on Thursday at 05:25pm

RT @cwilso: SHOCKED, I am. Really, shocked. RT @t: BREAKING: W3C HTML WG rejects #HTML5 "distributed extensibility"—@simonstl
@simonstl No matter how certain you are of an outcome, it still has an impact when it arrives.—@ndw

In a conversation that started on Thursday at 07:46pm

I wrote a backup tool. Now I've blown away the database. Restore is running. What could go wrong?—@ndw
@ndw live dangerously!—@RepoRat

In a conversation that started on Thursday at 10:38pm

Restore was an epic fail. That's a success because I found out before it was important. Can you restore from your backups?—@ndw
@ndw Apple Time Machine. Convenient, automatic, reasonably fast (the backup, that is), successfully restored files + whole systems—@martin_probst
@martin_probst Indeed. Though I don't actually trust it for a full backup. But anyway, this is a tool for a narrower context.—@ndw
@martin_probst re time machine, did you ever have to restore from it ? experiences ?—@xquery
@xquery I did, both due to snafu and pc migration. It's a bit slow due to fragmentation (i.e., 2-3 hours), but worked perfectly every time.—@martin_probst
@ndw I had epic fail with timeMachine restore—@crichey

Friday at 04:14am

Don't Make Me Steal — Digital Media Consumption Manifesto: cc @Turblog—@robinberjon

In a conversation that started on Friday at 08:55am

@ndw where can I find docbook in docbook format ? hints its "online" but I cant find it. I want to try turning into #JSON #duck—@DALDEI
@DALDEI I should probably archive the XML, eh? My bad. In the meantime, it's under SVN at—@ndw

In a conversation that started on Friday at 09:39am

As @ndw says "its docbook all the way down" ... Even limited to 5 levels of recursion I run out of heap parsing the xsd—@DALDEI
@DALDEI That sounds like a buggy XSD impl. Considered RELAXing instead?—@ndw
@ndw re: docbook/xsd I can read the xsd fine, its what I'm *doing* with it thats eating up > 6GB ... maybe its recursing :)—@DALDEI
@DALDEI Right. It sounds like the XSD implementation is using memory, uhm, inefficiently.—@ndw
@ndw re: xsd ... its my code, I cant blame anyone else.—@DALDEI

In a conversation that started on Friday at 10:32am

town is #steelers crazy today. Nurse @ Dr decked head to toe in Steelers gear w/backpocket terrible towel. yellow shirt w/Steelers tie—@peteaven
@peteaven For the first time in my life, I'll be watching the super bowl. I'll root for the #steelers on your behalf.—@ndw
@ndw @peteaven #superbowl ... Stealers Go ! as with @ndw I've never watched one ... but wtf excuse to drink beer—@DALDEI

Friday at 11:18am

OH: 4000 years of written history later, humanity continues to spiral around foolish fantasies—@lizfraley

Friday at 01:11pm

API design is hard—@peteaven

Friday at 01:21pm

@ndw @DALDEI #awesome yes, I'll be attending the church of the #prolatespheroid (thx 2 @ndw for that 1) on Sunday as well #gosteelers—@peteaven

Friday at 01:22pm

Friday at 02:26pm

@ndw Glad you enjoyed it!—@lizfraley

In a conversation that started on Friday at 04:07pm

One of the words that annoys me the most: "monetize".—@ebruchez
@ebruchez Indeed!—@ndw

In a conversation that started on Friday at 04:21pm

Someone cheer me up.—@JeniT
@JeniT Can I give you a virtual hug?—@michaelhkay
@michaelhkay You can :) Thank you.—@JeniT
@JeniT well ... I found this pretty funny a few days ago, was laughing out loud at some of her writings—@xquery
@JeniT I'm reading books of yours from 2001 and 2002 and still finding them useful!—@simonstl
@simonstl Thank you :) ... But really, move on! I mean, srsly, Muenchian Method?!? XSLT 2.0, man! whatchadoin?—@JeniT
@JeniT DocBook -> HTML5, trying to stay within an XSLT 1.0 (+EXSLT) toolchain.—@simonstl
@simonstl Like Jeni said, why!? Well, maybe because I haven't promoted the XSLT 2.0 stylesheets very aggressively. Sigh /me fail.—@ndw
@ndw as for ORM, I think it's mostly that toolset works well, no need for change.—@simonstl
@simonstl @ndw Now, now for the record, we love XSLT 2.0! Made a web service that wraps Saxon for those unfortunate clients who can't play.—@grechaw
@grechaw interesting. When I started this (a while back), was told xsltproc path of least resistance / most commonality.—@simonstl
@simonstl If you're interested in a python client libary that just does XSLT 2 (within our network) I can point you at it.—@grechaw
@grechaw I don't actually need it, really!—@simonstl
@simonstl @ndw hmm, I remember doing xslt 2 stuff 5 years ago, am surprised it's not somewhere in the toolchain—@andrewsavikas
@andrewsavikas @ndw turns out it is in the toolchain, just not in this corner—@simonstl
@simonstl Why? Trying to do it on the client? Non-Java-capable environment?—@JeniT
@JeniT and if you saw what I was doing, no real need for XSLT 2.0 I can find. Muenchian was actually unnecessary.—@simonstl
@JeniT mostly just that the ORM toolchain is still XSLT 1.0. Hasn't been a problem so far. (We do use XQuery - not entirely 2001.)—@simonstl

Friday at 05:22pm

@ndw I'm well off the beaten DocBook XSLT path. Generating HTML5 code for jQTouch framework. But basically trivial work.—@simonstl

Friday at 05:25pm

Off to dinner at Chez Albert, the best restaurant in Amherst.—@ndw

In a conversation that started on Friday at 06:05pm

@gabrielsaldana There's no such thing as too hot!—@ndw

In a conversation that started on Saturday at 08:38am

That's it. Next winter I'm dreaming of a sunny, 70 degree Christmas.—@ndw
@ndw It's 70 here, and I am wishing for snow (but no chance of that)!—@ebruchez
@ndw @shelleypowers Come to the Peoples' Republic of Santa Monica for warm weather. Actually, more like Corporate Republic of Santa Monica.—@blacktelephone
@ndw 68 is really where it's at. Maybe some light frost in the morning that burns off by the mid morning. #California—@gcarothers

In a conversation that started on Saturday at 04:54pm

Clearly there's much I don't understand about Linux Huge Pages: "shmget(512): No space left on device". Uh. What?—@ndw
@ndw maybe add a couple more arguments to that shmget() :)—@DALDEI
@ndw Easy — you tried mget, and it was all, like, "mget, shmget"—@robinberjon

Saturday at 11:04pm

@ndw re shmget more seriously you may need to ask for a page size or bigger—@DALDEI

Sunday at 02:31pm

Rebooting my rebooted XML Resolver code. Documentation/weblog posting to follow.—@ndw

In a conversation that started on Sunday at 02:45pm

@ndw Your level of paranoia is just my style. May have to dust off my perl to port to C# or PowerShell.—@MattioV
@MattioV The Perl parts should be easy to replace. Fair warning, I'm having trouble w/a big restore. Expect update "soon".—@ndw

In a conversation that started on Sunday at 03:51pm

.@amarie Ibis Reader also makes it much easier to discover new things to read though the addition of Feedbooks' and other OPDS Catalogs—@abdelazer
@abdelazer is a blank page on my Galaxy Tab—@ndw
@ndw Uh oh, this seems to be happening to a number of people...—@abdelazer
@ndw ...and of course not on my N1. ? Have you ever used it before?—@abdelazer
@ndw And, naturally, the—@abdelazer

In a conversation that started on Sunday at 03:52pm

@ndw hmmmm if Italian was acceptable you'd be all set!—@collwhit

In a conversation that started on Sunday at 05:21pm

Chili. Wings. Crudités. Chips. Pretzels. Four kinds of beer (five if you count my Imperial Stout). Good for my first ever Super Bowl?—@ndw
@ndw very well done! u sure u haven't done this before? :)—@peteaven
@ndw Sounds like you’re ready! ;)—@bsletten
@ndw oh, pro tip: make sure to serve in black & yellow bowls, dishes, glasses, etc. ;)—@peteaven

Sunday at 07:36pm

On the Greenbay TD, "In your face, Norm." Gee, thanks, dear.—@ndw

Sunday at 07:57pm

Your car reading aloud Facebook status updates while you drive? Car companies have officially run out of ideas.—@Carnage4Life

Sunday at 08:00pm

This explanation of atheism is simply beautiful. It's close to what I came to 45 years ago, but expressed much better.—@geoffarnold

Sunday at 11:24pm

Wait. Did I miss the Angry Birds commercial? Dagnabit!—@ndw