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Comment Someone needs to question whats going on. (Score 1) 193

Someone needs to question the US Patent Office and the whole patent system. It's current state lies somewhere between broken and totally "busticated". If Congress or the Courts won't man up to the challenge I say let the Jury do it. I don't care if your Democratic or Republican if your not pissed off your not paying attention

Comment Re:IE's Real Problem (Score 1) 271

Apple was stalling things for a while. Not sure about the whole story on this, what changed, when and how long it took for the IE team to get things done once the legal stuff was sorted out. Here is an original email form apple.

and some background This is all several years old at this point. But this was an IE history lesson, not current events.

Comment Re:IE's Real Problem (Score 1) 271

Your right. I should have done fact checking before just writing down my memory. CSS in Microsoft Explorer 3 was the first time me and the majority of the world encountered it. But the standards guys and real inventors had been working on it for almost 2 years.

From wikipedia - Although the CSS1 specification was completed in 1996 and Microsoft's Internet Explorer 3[8] was released in that year featuring some limited support for CSS, it was more than three years before any web browser achieved near-full implementation of the specification.

Comment IE's Real Problem (Score 2, Insightful) 271

I have been working on the web since before IE 1.0 came out.

IE 1 - 3 Were garbage compared to what Netscape was offering at the time IE 4 was substantially better than Netscape Navigator. With IE 5 crushing it as Netscape imploded.

Microsoft was late to the game but threw everything at it to crush their competition. They had much better technology once they got to IE 4. (They also used other business tactics to run Netscape out of business with OEM agreements and giving away their web servers).

The CSS we complain about - Microsoft invented it. The Browser wars took HTML from a markup that didn't even have tables to close to what we have today. The Standards were a joke. Each browser came up with innovations and then copied their competitors. Standards were an after effect of what web developers adopted (down with Blink). Websites were best with IE or best with Netscape.

Once Microsoft drove Netscape out of business they just sat there and didn't put any effort into it like any Monopoly - there was no reason to.

The Standards bodies created a host of specs CSS 2 and 3 being some of the most important that differed from what Microsoft had in IE. This was different from the rubber stamping of the implementations we had before during the browser wars. I suspect a combination of better design and(just sour grapes - do it differently just because). Microsoft largely ignored the standards, in their mind they were the only browser and were the standard.

So IE just sat there with a slow release cycle and no desire to implement the standards - they had VML implemented so why bother with SVG - a paper spec when they have an actual implementation for years. Microsoft was busy trying to address all the security problems of their features first mentality with the trusted computing initiative and not making any forward progress on functionality.

So While Microsoft idled, Firefox and WebKit/Safari grew. The Standards bodies continued to work now they were a head of the browsers now, not way behind. Microsoft woke up to see its market share slipping and suddenly It's Browser wars II

Now Microsoft has a couple of problems keeping up

1) Backward compatibility - this is arguably a good thing as it keeps you from breaking old stuff, but also makes fixing older 'quirky' behavior.
2) Release cycle tied to OS - the slow release cycle compared to the opensource alternatives means their browser is always behind.
3) Standards games - It's not all Micosoft's fault - the standards bodies don't always play fair. Why does IE not have Canvas? When every other browser does? Because Apple has a patent on it. Apple's agreement with W3C is to license that patent once it becomes a standard (not just a proposal) but until canvas is an official standard, Microsoft is open to lawsuit if they implement it. But while the all the other browsers are implementing Canvas (opensource bodies don't have any cash to lose if Apple files a lawsuit ) their not pushing it through the standards commitee to make it official. This leaves Microsoft as the odd man out.

The IE team is working hard to catch back up, but the above 3 points are holding them back. Windows 7 is a decent OS so finally we have a chance of replacing all those OEM Windows XP computers still running IE 6.


New Microsoft Silverlight Features Have Windows Bias 251

An anonymous reader writes with this quote from a story at El Reg about an early look at the Silverlight 4 beta: "There are ... major changes to Silverlight's out-of-browser functionality, a loose equivalent to Adobe Systems' AIR runtime for Flash. Even when fully sandboxed, which means having the same permissions that would apply to a browser-hosted Silverlight applet, out-of-browser applications get an HTML control, custom window settings, and the ability to fire pop-up notifications. ... Unfortunately, some of these features are not what they first appear. The HTML control in Silverlight 4 is not a new embedded browser from Microsoft, but uses components from Internet Explorer on Windows, or Safari on the Mac, which means that the same content might render differently. The HTML control only works out-of-browser, and simply displays a blank space if browser-hosted. Clipboard support is text-only in the Silverlight 4 beta, though this could change for the full release. More seriously, COM automation is a Windows-only feature, introducing differentiation between the Mac and Windows implementations."

Comment Re:Something needs to be done as today's system is (Score 1) 296

Bottom line: Nobody trust the government to do it right.

Conservatives are riled up about this issue because there is an entitlement tsunami is going to crater the economy if we don't get social security and medicare/medicaid reform (mixed up with anger about stimulus plan pork spending). Ironically the Health Bills are being presented as cost saving reform, even more ironically they are also supposed to increase coverage for more Americans. Which one is it? A reduction of cost or an new expensive government entitlement? They don't believe it can be both and so they assume the latter.

Seniors are scared of a medicare reform as they don't want their benefits affected.

Doctors are scared of government controlling their livelihood even more than the insurance companies already do.

Insured people are scared that the government will ration their health care/reduce its quality.

The U.S already provides public health care for 40-60% of its citizens through medicare/medicaid. These programs will be insolvent in a decade and both parties agree they are a mess. The Republicans don't seem to care and the Democrats think that doubling down and expanding coverage to 100% of Americans will somehow make it easier to manage / less expensive.

It's fear that's running the show. The proposed health care plans are supposed to reduce costs, expand coverage to uninsured, and not ration health care. Most people think that you've got to pick two out of the three and since no politician will admit which one of the three will get the short end of the stick fear abounds.

Comment Re:Pest control (Score 1) 93

Don't worry. You have to get past the other common species in Papua New Guinea such as the the salt water crocodiles on the coast, the aggressive cassowary, huge insects such as the rhino beetles, and over 80 different species of poisonous snakes (most of them venomous). All before you get anywhere near Mount Bosavi.

Comment Re:Not a "Texas Court", a US Court (Score 1) 403

Yes but the 21 Texas Representatives to the Federal House of Reps and the two Texas Senators in the US Senate are about the only ones who can get these bozo Federal Appointees off of the bench. If you're a Texan call your Rep and tell em to Impeach Ward and Davis. Just a few hearings on reform or the threat of Impeachment could turn the tide.

Comment Re:turn it around... (Score 1) 281

Junior High was a long time ago I was remembering Rick Perry's recent remarks.

Your right there is no explicit clause stating one way or another. Here are the different sides to the argument.

and wikipedia

Finally, I don't agree with this guy but I like this quote.

"I say Texans can do whatever the hell they want. Even if U.S. law says Texas cannot secede from the Union, the whole point of declaring independence is to free yourself from such laws"

Not quite as elegant as "For the People and By the People" but we ain't from Boston.

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