This Spewed Out of the Internet #6


0511-0701-3118-0930Lots of interesting things spewing forth from the internet these days:

Jeff KE9V articulated a compelling vision of web-based (“cloud computing”) ham radio logging. This caused a lively discussion among some readers (read through the comments on Jeff’s blog). I found the idea interesting but I am inherently suspicious of the notion of “cloud computing”.  (“I give you all my information and trust that you’ll do the right thing with it.”) As I read through the comments, I realized that what interested me was the idea of having all these logging programs playing well together and with other applications such as Logbook of the World. Right now, this is mostly a pain. That seems to imply we need well-designed standards that define how the software interoperates, whether it exists on my PC or in the cloud.

Jeff also had a great post about narrow-minded thinking. Reminds me of my previous post about Religion and Ham Radio.

The Fi-Ni Report had a hilarious piece about a ham that puts a small VHF/UHF vertical on top of a 100-foot tower:  Ham Claims New Tower is Not Overcompensating.

On a more serious note, it seems that some folks are concerned that the proliferation of radio communications towers are killing off certain migratory birds. This is the first time I have run across this issue, which surprised me a bit. A little Googling Binging on the web finds quite a few articles about it. It seems that the birds fly into the towers or guy wires, especially at night.

I found this spoof of Apple by The Simpsons on You Tube. Pretty funny….unless you are an Apple Fan Boy.

Scot, K9JY, publically admits to buying an Apple computer. One of my daughters has also turned into a Mac fan. I tell her, “Sure, if you want the silly computer to just work, buy a Mac. If you want to dig in and learn all about configuring networks, troubleshooting software problems, understanding file formats and becoming a real computer user, then get a PC. If not Windows, then Linux.”

In case you haven’t heard, the 40th Anniversary of the Apollo 11 Moon Landing is coming up on July 20th. There is a really cool site (http://www.wechoosethemoon.org/) that is recreating the events in real time (40 years later). Check it out. What a reminder that we can accomplish amazing things if we commit our hearts and minds to it!  Unfortunately, it is also a reminder that it is easy to sit on our butts for 40 years and not accomplish much in space.

73, Bob K0NR

  1. #1 by Paul - WW2PT on 20 July 2009 - 3:05 pm

    Hi Bob.

    I own and use Macs and PCs, and I’ve administered more than several networks on both platforms. I’m too old to re-fight all of the PC/Mac wars of the 1990s, so I’ll just say that the reason I prefer Macs is that I don’t want to troubleshoot software problems or (re)configure a network, especially in the middle of a contest or while chasing DX on the digital modes. If wanting my computer to just work means I’m not a “real computer user,” well so be it — just don’t tell my clients, they pay me good money to keep their computers running.

    I guess I’m not a real car user either because I prefer not to have to rebuild my clutch every other time I drive to the store. ;-)

    I love the Simpsons clips on YouTube, thanks for the link.

    73,
    Paul WW2PT

  2. #2 by K0NR on 20 July 2009 - 4:39 pm

    That reminds me of this old joke….somewhat ironic given the recent problems at GM:

    GM vs Microsoft

    At a recent computer expo (COMDEX), Bill Gates reportedly compared the computer industry with the auto industry and stated: “If GM had kept up with technology like the computer industry has, we would all be driving twenty-five dollar cars that got 1000 miles to the gallon.”

    In response to Bill’s comments, General Motors issued a press release stating (by Mr. Welch himself): If GM had developed technology like Microsoft, we would all be driving cars with the following characteristics:

    1. For no reason whatsoever your car would crash twice a day.

    2. Every time they repainted the lines on the road you would have to buy a new car.

    3. Occasionally your car would die on the freeway for no reason. You would just accept this, restart and drive on.

    4. Occasionally executing a maneuver such as a left turn would cause your car to shut down and refuse to restart, in which case you would have to reinstall the engine.

    5. Only one person at a time could use the car unless you bought “Car95” or ”CarNT.” But then you would have to buy more seats.

    6. Macintosh would make a car that was powered by the sun, reliable, five times as fast, and twice as easy to drive, but would only run on five percent of the roads.

    7. The oil, water temperature and alternator warning lights would be replaced by a single “general car default” warning light.

    8. New seats would force everyone to have the same size butt.

    9. The airbag system would say “Are you sure?” before going off.

    10. Occasionally, for no reason whatsoever, your car would lock you out and refuse to let you in until you simultaneously lifted the door handle, turned the key, and grabbed hold of the radio antenna.

    11. GM would require all car buyers to also purchase a deluxe set of Rand McNally road maps (now a GM subsidiary) even though they neither need them nor want them. Attempting to delete this option would immediately cause the car’s performance to diminish by 50% or more. Moreover, GM would become a
    target for investigation by the Justice Department.

    12. Every time GM introduced a new model, car buyers would have to learn how to drive all over again because none of the controls would operate in the same manner as the old car.

    13. You’d press the “start” button to shut off the engine.

  3. #3 by Ron WB8YFL on 10 August 2009 - 8:25 am

    Of course you do know that Mac = NetBSD UNIX.
    mmmmm hexidecimal mmmmm
    Maybe your daughter will use the terminal.

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