Other WelchWrite Blogs: A Gardener's Notebook - Career Opportunities - TechnologyIQ - Careers in New Media

Home -- Contact Me -- Search Welchwrite.com -- Follow My Word

Subscribe to Douglas' Newsletter today!

Sunday, June 30, 2002

Inside Jaguar: An exclusive sneak-peek at new updates, part one

An interesting look at the upcoming Mac OS X 10.2, due to be released later this summer. It looks like their will be plenty of new stuff to figure out once it is released.

Via ThinkSecret.com

The Complete Works of Shakespeare

If you want to catch up on your Shakespeare reading, this is a cheap and easy way to get the Complete Works as a TEXT file that you can download to your PC.

Project Gutenberg also has hundreds of other works from many other authors available for download.

What I'm Reading...


From Hardtack to Home Fries


Reinvent your work


Survival is not enough

Audio | CD

cover Shakespeare

Complete Sonnets

cover Shakespeare

Henry IV Part One

**My Word earns 5%-15% from each Amazon purchase you make

Getty Center - Upcoming Events

Here are some interesting activities from the Getty's July Calendar.

Artful Weekends

Pick up a handout before visiting the galleries for some inspiration and sketching fun. Then, create your own art in this drop-in workshop. Every Saturday and Sunday, 12-4 pm, Family Room Patio.

Restoring the Light: Recent Developments with the Conservation of Benjamin Henry Latrobe's Baltimore Cathedral

John G. Waite, principal architect and Wayne T. Ruth, chairman, Basilica of the Assumption Historic Trust, Inc. will discuss the state-of-the-art methods of non-destructive evaluation and testing used to better understand and restore America's first Roman Catholic cathedral. Presented by the Getty Conservation Institute as part of its Issues in Conservation series. Harold M. Williams Auditorium.

7 pm

Make Reservations

Saturday, June 29, 2002

New Coffee Shop In Studio City

This message is for all of my fellow coffee lovers out there.

Today I was visiting Beeman Park and the Studio City Library. I have been taking Joe to Beeman Park since before he could walk and I often bemoaned the fact that there was not a coffee shop, Starbucks or otherwise, anywhere within walking distance. As of 4 days ago, this is on longer true.

As I was leaving the Library today, I saw a new place across the street. Here is the pertinent info:

Coffee Fix


12508 Moorpark Street

Studio City, CA 91604


I stopped in, picked up a Latte to go and chatted quickly with Alex (I believe that was her name). I recommended that she post some flyers over by Beeman Park, as I could imagine there are more caffeine addicts like me that visit that park. I think their location, directly across from the library, should bring them some good foot traffic, as well.

My double latte was tasty and cheaper than any of the other places I frequent.

If you are in the area, I highly recommend you check them out.

Closing a public park on the 4th of July?

I was visiting one of the nicer parks in are area yesterday, Lake Balboa in the Sepulveda Dam Recreation Area, when I noticed a banner announcing that the park will be closed on the 4th of July. The City of LA Parks and Recreation is going to take over the entire park for a paid admittance event at $6/person.

It seems odd to me that you would close off one of the nicest parks in the area, on what is arguably the busiest holiday of the summer, to those that can't afford $6 a head. It angers me that on a holiday dedicated to celebrating our "freedom" we are telling a large part of the Valley populous, "you have the 'freedom' to celebrate elsewhere."

I am distressed at the trend of closing access to public places in order to make a buck. It seems that every holiday and every event in Southern California is quickly being turned into soem form of money-making operation. Our public parks are one of the few opportunities to enjoy the outdoors for hundreds of thousands of citizens. Removing this option, especially on the 4th of July, seems capricious and cruel.

As you might guess, I will not be attending this "celebration." Being charged to use a public park on a national holiday goes against my grain. I think it is time that the city realizes that access to public parks should not be revoked whever they find it convenient.

Career-Op: Willfully Ignored

by Douglas E. Welch, ComputorEdge Magazine

Recent news stories have questioned the leadership of the FBI and analyzed their handling of intelligence reports prior to the September 11th attacks. It seems that information provided by various FBI field offices was never passed on to those in charge and then to the decision makers in Washington, DC. In reading these news stories I had the strange feeling that I had heard it all before. In fact, I had. Every employee, especially those in high-tech fields, knows that management is not always receptive to their new ideas. Sometimes they willfully ignore the information and talent they have in their own backyard.

Latest America Online (AOL) OS X Beta

You can get the latest Beta of AOL for OS X by visiting keyword, "MacBeta" when connected to AOL.

Link above is for discussion of upate only.

Via Versiontracker

Friday, June 28, 2002

Apple Security Update

This is the latest update from Apple to plug some recently discovered security holes. The link is only for discussion. Use Software Update to download and install.

From the site...

Security Update July 2002 includes the updated components, Apache v1.3.26, mod_ssl v2.8.9 and OpenSSH v3.4p1, which provide increased security to prevent unauthorized access to applications, servers, and the operating system.

The Friday Five

The Friday Five is an interesting concept. The creator of the "Five" posts 5 questions each Friday (hence the name) and you can use these questions as fodder for your weblog. (or journal, or family discussion, whatever) This week I am joining in so you can learn a little more about me.

When was the last time you...

1. ...sent a handwritten letter?

I don't think I have sent a handwritten letter in years, possibily even a decade. The bulk of my communications is by email. Even my parents, well into their 60's have a computer and are capable of both email and instant messaging.

2. ...baked something from scratch or made something by hand?

I don't bake a lot during the rest of the year, but each year, in December, I bake between 70 and 80 dozen cookies for our annual open house. That said, I helped to make Pasta alla telefono last night for the family.

3. ...camped in a tent?

It has been years since we camped, but we still have the equipment in the closet. My son is now old enough to go camping, I think, so this may be back on the agenda very soon. We used to volunteer at a visitor's center in the Angeles National Forest and would often camp out after working our 8 hour shift. It is funny that this is one of today's questions, as I have been actively thinking about camping recently. Maybe this will be the push I need to get back out into the forest.

4. ...volunteered your time to church, school, or community?

I haven't done any volunteer work lately, but I was giving free Internet classes at my local library until it was closed for remodeling. I hope to restart the classes when the branch re-opens later this year.

5. ...helped a stranger?

This seems to happen quite frequently to me. I must look like I know where I am going as I am always being asked for directions. Whenever I hear someone who is confused or unsure of something I will often ask if I can help them. I can't remember anything recently, but it seems to happen almost every time we go out, whether we are far away from home or walking through the neighborhood.

Thursday, June 27, 2002

Cat House (EFBC/FCC)

This organization has one of the largest collection of exotic cats in the nation. We have been wanting to visit, and now that I have found this web site, I am planning on going as soon as I can.

From the site...

EFBC's Feline Conservation Center (FCC), also known as the Cat House, is located in Rosamond, California. Cat lovers of all ages who discover this desert zoo north of Los Angeles are surprised and amazed at the variety of wild cat species found here. We are dedicated to the protection and preservation of the world's endangered felines.

Open House at the Hollywood Bowl

Starts July 8, 2002

Open House at the Hollywood Bowl concert series is back this summer for its 34th season. This six-week festival is packed with quality music, storytelling and workshops from July 8 through Aug. 16.

This year the theme, “From Sea to Shining Sea: A Celebration of American Music,” brings performers that will take children on a journey through American music, frompatriotic and folk songs to jazz and classical music. Each performance includes three age-appropriate sessions. For ages 3 and 4, Open House begins at 9:30 a.m. with a Parent-and-Me Music Making interactive performance that includes a short concert by the week’s scheduled musical ensemble. For ages 5 to 10, the sessions begin at 10:30 and 11:30 a.m. with host David Prather and the performers giving a 45-minute show. (Monday performances are translated in American Sign Language).

Art workshops are held at 10:30 and 11:30 a.m., and are conducted by mime, artist and teacher Judy Garratt. New this year is a “musical petting zoo” that allows children to meet the artists and play instruments. Following the shows, kids can watch the morning’s orchestra rehearsal for that evening’s concert.

July 8 –12: traditional American music with Mappamundi.

July 15 – 19: spirituals and songs with Cedric Berry and the Albert McNeilJubilee Singers.

July 22 – 26: jazz with the Miles Mosley Trio featuring John Cody.

July 29 – Aug. 2: American classical music with the Lontano Music Group andJohn Pennington Dance Group.

Aug. 5 – 9: American musical theater performed by the Open House Summer Stock Players.

Aug. 12 – 16: L.A. fusion music with Natural Afrodisiac.

For children ages 3 to 10 and their families. 9:30 a.m. (ages 3 to 4), 10:30 and 11:30 a.m. (ages 5 to 10). Mon. through Fri. July 8 through Aug. 16.

$5 per person or $30 for series, free for ages 2 and under, but ticket required. Workshops (ages 3 and older): $2 per child.

Open Rehearsals: 9:30 a.m. to noon most weekday mornings. Free. 2301 N. Highland Ave., L.A. 323-850-2000.

Wednesday, June 26, 2002


Ok, this is was just too weird and precious not to share. I came across the Bunny Museum while I was looking for events to post to my WelchEvents mailing list.

The museum is in a private home, open only by appointment or on major holidays. They are holders of a Guiness Book of Word Records title with over 12,000 bunny collectibles in their home.

July 4th is there next open house and I might just have to stop by to see it with my own eyes.

Idyllwild Town Crier Online

A quick link to information on our favorite small town in the mountains.

Every Thursday the Town Crier serves up the news in Idyllwild. We have looked at cabins in the area, thinking of a time when we might be able to live there -- at least part time. This web site helps me to stay in touch with what is happening "up on the mountain."

There is also lots of information on lodging, food, shopping and activities, should you want to visit yourself.

Recipes - Pasta with Radicchio, Bacon, and Spinach

As some of you may know, I love to cook. Although neither of my parents cooked a great deal, they gave me a basic understanding of cooking techniques at a very early age. This was very useful when my four siblings and I entered school and often had to throw together our own meals to match our "out-of-sync" schedules.

These days I love to find neat recipes and try them out, especially those recipes that fit within my fairly finicky food habits. I am a fussy eater, so when I find a recipe like this, it is wonderful. The Food Network is a great source of recipes and food information. This dish comes from an episode of Gordon Elliott's Door Knock Dinners.

There are several great things about this dish. My wife is part Sicilian, so pasta is a big part of my repertoire. Since we took our first trip to Sicily to meet her relatives I have been heavily immersed in Italian foods. This is yet another way of making pasta so our meals don't get boring. Second, it contains some meat, which I love, but not enough to make it too fatty. Third, I don't like vegetables at all, but this pasta allows me to get radicchio, basil and spinach in a form that I will eat them.

I am hoping to throw this dish together in the next few weeks. I have already added to my personal recipe binder that always sits on the kitchen counter. This is where I collect all the neat recipes I come across on television and on the web. In the past, when we have been called away on business for a week or more, I take this binder with me so I can bring a little bit of home along with us. You might consider making one of your own.

Monday, June 24, 2002

What I'm Reading...

While I may have these books "in hand", I have only just started
reading them. I have no idea whether any of them will be good,
but they caught my eye in some fashion. I usually check out the
"New Books" shelf at the library whenever I am in to pick up
books I have specifically requested. I try to write longer reviews
of those books I find enjoyable. -- Douglas


Comfort Me with Apples: More Adventures...

I just finished listening to Reichl's first book Tender at the Bone, on tape. It was interesting and enjoyable, so I requested this
latest book, which continues her memoir.

Death of a Hired Man

A mystery series out of Canada.


Recipes from Home

I am always looking for new recipes, so whenever I see a new cookbook
I tend to bring it home.

coverMedieval Panorama

This large format book is a review of Medieval history using the
art of the period as a main source.

City of Los Angeles

This web site links you to a major source of information about the city government of Los Angeles. The best features is the 'My Neighborhood" search that quickly provides links to all your representatives and city offices for your area.

You can also use the ENS (Early Notification System) to receive information and agendas for upcoming meetings.

If you ever had a question about who is responsible for the public works in your neighborhood, this is the place to find out.

Macintosh AppleScript Update

Just another reminder to run Software Update regularly on your Mac. This Applescript update for OS X was made available overnight. There have been several other updates in the last few weeks. Keep your Mac current.

This link is only for comments on the update. Use Software Update to download.

From VersionTracker

Saturday, June 22, 2002

Ojai Summer Art Stroll and Family Festival

Although we were a bit slow getting out of town today, and hit a minor traffic tie-up on the way, we finally made it to Ojai around 12:30. Joe had fallen asleep in the car, so we pushed him around the stroller, checking out the festivities. Once we got to lunch at Bonnie Lu's, a small restaurant in downtown that serves up a good American-style breakfast and lunch.

After lunch, we headed up to Libbey Park, where the small, but fun, Family Festival was in full swing. Joe got to play with musical instruments, make pipe cleaner necklaces, cuddle up in a tent for story time and play in a great playground that he remembered from previous visits. He even got to chat with the Sherriff's deputies that had a display on bike safety.

Up the street, a small art supply store had organized an art fair in the street. There was a bandstand with all sorts of music, a small art show and several craft stations for the kids. Joe and I made a neat faux-batik painting using sturdy paper towels and food coloring.

The Summer Art Stroll brings many Ojai artists into the streets. Throughout downtown there were musicians, sculptors and painters. One artist group had set up large panels and were creating a mural in the park. The map provided by the "Stroll" helped us to find galleries and stores that were off the main streets and tucked into the neighborhood behind. One of the nicest spots was the restored and converted former home of the Church of the Nazarene. The main chapel is now a beautiful hall for events and small office/studio space a have been added around a small courtyard behind the church.

On the way out of town, we stopped at Viking Farms Nursery. Their offer of free hot dogs and pony rides caught our eye, but there was much more. Along with the usual nursery items, they specialize in water gardens. There were several ponds of exotic fish, including Japanese Koi and goldfish. Inside the store, Joe was excited to find goats, rabbits and all sorts of baby chicks. Even more surprising was the huge turkeys that strutted about in pen at the back of the property.

Once last stop on the way home was the small dairy bar called The Summit, which is about half way between Ojai and Santa Paula on Highway 150. We had stopped to pick up some milk for Joe, but Rosanne noticed that they were offering strawberry and cherry milk shakes made with real fruit. The drinks were heavenly and we enjoyed them for the rest of the trip home.

Friday, June 21, 2002

Career-Op: Making your mark

by Douglas E. Welch, ComputorEdge Magazine

There are times, in the day-to-day trials of a high-tech career, when you may begin to wonder what your career is all about. How did you get to this point in your life? You might be questioning your choice of career. You might even be wondering if your work makes any difference in the world around you. While it can be an unsettling feeling to doubt yourself and your work, I can assure you that it is an important part of your life.

By the way, you may notice the small "Comments" links at the bottom of each post . I recently set up a way for you to add your comments to my postings. Simply click on the link and follow the instructions on the page. Your comments will then be available for all to see. -- Douglas

Make yourself in Lego(tm)

For all you Lego Maniacs...

Choose from a variety of different pieces to create a Lego character that looks just like you.

Does this guy look familiar?

Via MetaFilter

SS Lane Victory Cruises

(I normally wouldn't feature something this expensive in WelchEvents, but the unique quality of this experience sounds like it might be worth the price. This is the only ship I know of that offers this kind of all day cruise along with all the history, food and activities included.)

Catalina Terminal, San Pedro, CA, Berth 94

(310) 519-9545

Sat. July 13

Sun. July 14

Sat. Aug 17

Sun. Aug 18

Sat. Sept. 14

Sun. Sept. 15

Cruise aboard a fully restored World War II cargo ship to the waters of Catalina Island. Includes music by a live jazz band, morning snack, buffet lunch, simulated aerial attack, guided tours of the ship, whale-watching, and a museum loaded with wartime and maritime memorabilia. The SS Lane Victory has been designated a Historical Landmark and has been the site for many Hollywood movies and commecials. The ship is owned and operated by the U.S. Merchant Marine Veterans of World War II, a non-profit organization. Due to boarding limitations, wheelchairs and baby strollers are prohibited.

Adults $100/Children under 15 $60

Wrightwood Mountaineer Days

Saturday and Sunday

July 6th and 7th, 2002

Wrightwood Village

Entertainment for the whole family!

Bluegrass Music - Line Dancing - Bed Races - Silent Auction - Gold Panning - Gun Fighters - Frontier Encampment - Nail Driving Contest - Parade - Longest Beard Contest - Best Dressed Historical Attire - Large Selection of Foods, Beer Garden,
Pony Rides, Kids Games and MORE!

Thursday, June 20, 2002


An automatically updated, constantly running slide show of recent news photographs from the web.

Via MetaFilter

Security Alert Overload

Ok, everyone, repeat after me....

  • I will actively ignore any and all security alerts.

  • I will go about my normal life regardless of the media and government's attempts to make me afraid of anything and everything.

  • I will not allow the media to use my fear to drive television ratings or newspaper ad rates.

  • I will not allow others to make me afraid so that they can feel better about their own fear.

Vague security alerts only exist for one reason, to allow our representatives to CYA if something, anything, ever does happen. They want to be able to say, like a bad physic hotline, "See, I told you something was going to happen!", even though they have never given us any information that would help us avoid a specific attack, in a specific place at a specific time.

It seems odd that all they are doing is promoting fear, uncertainty and doubt...just what the terrorists want.

It is important to remember that the chances of you getting hit by a bus are astronomically greater than dying in a terrorist attack. Yet, you still get in your car or cross the street nearly every day.

I know that I cannot truly live, if I find myself worrying constantly about death. Very few people can. Let's all do our best to get on with our lives and not allow others to drive us into fearing our own shadows.

Digital City: Los Angeles - Fourth of July

Digital City sent me this interesting link showing their listing of 4th of July events. This link takes you to events in and around LA, but there is a link at the bottom to look in your city, if you live elsewhere.

Wednesday, June 19, 2002

What I'm reading this week...


Dictionary of the Future: The Words,...

Write Your Heart Out

A New Brand World: Eight Principles for...

The Art of Imperfection : Simple Ways to...

Monday, June 17, 2002

The Hungry Ocean by Linda Greenlaw


Possibly the only female swordfisherman in the world, Linda Greenlaw recounts a typical, 30-day fishing trip in the Grand Banks off off Newfoundland. Greenlaw knew the men of the Andrea Gail, another sword boat whose tale is told in A Perfect Storm, by Sebastian Junger, but doesn't tread on the details of that story. This is a simple slice-of-life tale detailing a typical month in the life of a sword captain, her boat and her crew. There are no harrowing tales of life and death struggle, but a simple telling of the exhaustion, boredom and potential benefit of a swordfishing trip. This makes it an excellent companion to A Perfect Storm. After reading about the struggle and death of the crew of the Andrea Gail, it is enlightening to read about the realities of their lives.

Greenlaw writes in a simple, conversational way. Her story is engaging by its very nature so I found myself unconcerned with her writing style since the story was so compelling. That said, I found her writing straightforward, concise and enjoyable . I completed the book in just under 3 days, another tribute to the quality of the book. I found it difficult to put the book down as I wanted to find out about this woman and her crew and how they made (or didn't make) their living.

Highly Recommended.

An Audio Version is also available.

Internet Explorer 5.2 for Mac OS X

Finally, a way to install/re-install Explorer without facing a complete re-install of OS X.

7.2 MB download

Saturday, June 15, 2002

Kulak's Woodshed

We stopped in to check out a show at Kulak's Woodshed in Studio City tonight. This casual club offers a wide variety of musical styles in a comfy, living room-style environment.

If you can't catch the show in person, you can tune into their webcast, 8 pm -11 pm every night. We had to leave early this evening so I caught the lsat 2 acts from the comfort of my home office. Check it out!

From the web site...

Kulak's Woodshed is a Community of Musicians & Volunteers Dedicated to the Celebration of Music just fer the FUN of It. A Live (7 nights a week), Acoustic Music, Singer/Songwriter, Folk, Blues, Country, Rock, (anything goes), Seats 'bout 50, Internet Webcast, Kinda...Thang, That Music Lovers and Performers Have Taken Into Their Hearts.

Career-Op: Crisis Computing

by Douglas E. Welch, ComputorEdge Magazine

There is an old saying about the ability to "keep one's head when all about are losing theirs." While this saying was forged in war, it applies quite well to the success of a high-tech career. You will often face clients and co-workers who don't always keep their heads in a crisis. Worse still, they can spread their sense of panic to yourself and others, which is a sure fire way to keep from focusing on finding a solution to the problem.

Friday, June 14, 2002

The Outdoor Picture Show


The Outdoor Picture Show is a new free family movie series in Burbank sponsored by the City of Burbank, the Media City Center and IKEA.

7:30 to 10 p.m. Wednesdays through July 24.


Grease June 19, Raiders of the Lost Ark June 26, Independence Day July 3, Ferris Buhler's Day Off July 10, Top Gun July 24. IKEA Courtyard at the Media City Center, (I-5 at Burbank Blvd.), Burbank.

Tuesday, June 11, 2002

What I'm reading...

Another ecelctic week for reading. It never fails that when I request a group of books from the library , they tend to arrive all at once. Thank goodness I have them for 3 weeks and can renew them as necessary.

There are a few audio books in the list. I drive "over the hill" to work twice a week and the audio books help to pass the time more quickly. I am finding the Writing Mysteries collection to be a good read. Since I have a few ideas for mysteries that I would like to write, it allows me to apply the lessons immediately to a particular story.

Once upon a Time in Italy : The Vita Italiana of an American Journalist - Memoir

Our Paris: Sketches from Memory - Memoir

The Hungry Ocean : A Swordboat Captain's Journey - Non-fiction

The Hungry Ocean - Audio/Non-fiction

Dr. Nightingale Races the Outlaw Colt - Mystery

Tender at the Bone : Growing Up at the Table - Food

Tender at the Bone (Cassette) - Audio

Nucleus : A Trip into the Heart of Matter - Science

Fish! Tales: Real-Life Stories to Help You Transform Your Workplace and Your Life - Business

Fish Tales - Audio/Business

Writing Mysteries : A Handbook by the Mystery Writers of America - Writing

Monday, June 10, 2002

Partial Solar Eclipse

Today we had a partial solar eclipse over much of US today. When I mentioned this to my son, Joe (4), he decided he wanted to know more about it.

I put together an eclipse viewer using a cardboard box, some aluminum foil and tape. It actually worked fairly well. We also noticed that you could see the eclipse projected on any flat surface when sunlight was being filtered by the leaves of a tree. I had heard of this effect before, but had never seen it in action. It was quite neat. You can see the effect in the second picture below. Click to view the large version of the photo.

Career-Op: MS-ing Around

by Douglas E. Welch, ComputorEdge Magazine

Yet another security patch. Yet another bug fix. Yet another day of downloads. Are you as fed up with Microsoft (and other software manufacturers) as I am? I would estimate that more than 1/2 of my billable hours are spent installing patches or working around flaws in commercial software. It amazes me that we have let the state of computer software get so out of hand.

Friday, June 07, 2002

Summer Solstice Celebration at the LA Natural History Museum

Sunday, June 23 at 11:00 AM to 5:00 PM

Free with Museum admission

From the NHM web site...

Celebrate the summer solstice, and the cultures and science featured in the Voyages of Discovery and Endurance exhibits. Hear live world music including the Panacea Steel Drum Band, Brazilian drumming and dance from the Viver Brasil dance company, live Australian digeridoo music, and Polynesian music and dance. Enjoy storytelling, craft activities, free tours of the featured exhibits, and presentations on the scientific voyages that changed the way we view our world.

Ojai Family Festival

Date: June 22, 2002

Time: 10:30am

Phone: 640.4300 ext 346

A celebration of families & young children. Live music, vendors, activities & information. Free Admission! For information call 640.4300 ext 346

Location: Libbey Park

Art Ojai Summer Stroll

Date: June 22, 2002

Time: 12-9pm

Phone: 805.646.1525

Downtown shops, galleries, restaurants feature local artists, art demostrations, and live music.
Location: Downtown Ojai

Thursday, June 06, 2002

Followup - NY State Education Department restores unrevised text

As mentioned earlier this week, the NY State Education Department has decided to restore the previously edited texts from famous authors that theywere using in their standardized tests.

It seems that someone there was someone capable of seeing the absurdity of this, even if it did take a few kicks to the seat of their pants to realize it.

Heavens-Above - Satellite Tracking

Did you ever wander just what was sweeping by above your head as you sit sipping your iced tea on a summer night? Heavens Above is the place to find out.

Once you select your position on the globe, this web site will show you what satellites and space stations might be passing overhead. Using the detailed charts, you can even watch for them as they pass by. You can also get information on the more traditional star gazing targets, including a map of the sky at your current location and time.

Macintouch Reader Report: Office v.X

My old favorite, Macintouch.com, is tracking user comments regarding the latest MS Office v.X update from Microsoft. If your update didn't go smoothly, this may be the best place to find some answers.

There is also a section on the Mac OS X 10.1.5 update issued by Apple 2 days ago.

Tuesday, June 04, 2002

Mac OS X - 10.1.5 Update

This is the latest, greatest software update from Apple for Mac OS X. You can download and install this update by choosing Software Update from your System Preferences dock item.

I installed it about 1 hour ago and all seems to be fine. I haven't noticed any big changes in speed or features, but only time will tell.

From Apple.com...

Update 10.1.5 delivers enhancements which improve the reliability of Mac OS X applications, improved networking, security, support for PC Card serial communication devices as well as expanded peripheral device support. Specific improvements include:
Peripheral Device Support
- Expanded support for new Canon digital cameras.
- Improved support for Nikon FireWire cameras.
- Expanded support for SmartDisk, EZQuest and LaCie disc recording devices.
- Improved support for MO drives.

Application Improvements
- Increased stability of Mail and Sherlock.
- Emails are properly retained when rebuilding the Draft mailbox.
- Support for 2D and QuickTime hardware acceleration for Rage Pro.
- Updated Carbon applications can use Quartz anti-aliasing technology for high quality text display.

Networking and Security
- Improves networking via AFP when accessing multi-level directories on Windows NT file servers.
- Significant improvement to file searching on local and remote volumes.
- Includes a generic PC Card driver to support a variety of PC Card modems.
- Mail accounts go offline to indicate that SSL encryption settings are not supported by mail server.
- Includes the Security Update April 2002.

- More efficient iDisk mounting and file navigation.
- Added support for connecting to iDisk using default DNS settings of AirPort.
- Support for mounting a WebDAV volume from a non-standard http port.

Asian Language
- Significant updates to the Korean Input Method, especially important when using AppleWorks.
- Internet Connect and AirPort applications updated with Chinese and Korean localized content.

What I'm reading...

I often find myself reading many books at the same time, bouncing from one to the other as the mood strikes me. Here is what I am carrying around in my book bag today.

cover Work 2.0: Rewriting the Contract

cover The Dot-Com Decision

cover Discover Your Genius: How to Think Like...

coverDr. Nightingale Meets Puss in Boots

cover A Year by the Sea: Thoughts of an...

cover The All-American Cookie Book

Monday, June 03, 2002

MS Office v.X -- Service Release 1

There is a new update for MS Office v.X that encompasses both previous updates and a host of new ones. You can download the update (11 MB) from Microsoft's web site at the link above.

I just installed the update and am experiencing no ill effects, but you might want to check out Macintouch.com for comments from other Office users before installing.

Via Macintouch and D. Harlow

Sunday, June 02, 2002

NY State Education Department -- Leave the words alone!

A recent New York Times article, "The Elderly Man and the Sea? Test Sanitizes Literary Texts" notes how the New York State Education Department took it upon themselves to sanitize literary excerpts used in standardized tests.

Authors who suffered the editing including Annie Dillard, Anton Chekov, and Isaac Bashevis Singer. In the most ludicrous example, Singer's work is stripped of any mention of Judaism, one of his major themes.

My thoughts? First, if the Education Board feels they must gut the work of these authors in order to include them in the tests, why are they using these authors at all. They can use excerpts from other textbooks if they are so offended by the writing.

Second, how many times do writers have to stand up and scream to petty bureaucrats

"LEAVE THE WORK (and the words) ALONE!!!"

Read the work if you like it. Leave it alone, if you don't. Don't presume that you know better than the author of the work. Writer's don't come in and repaint your kitchen to another color because they don't like it. Do NOT presume to re-write the words of recognized experts in their field... for ANY reason. Take or leave it, but do not change it.

A Visit to the Slim Gauge Guild Model Railroad Club

Today we headed off to Pasadena to check out the club's Open House. They open up their layout to the public twice each year, in June and November. There is still a chance to check it out, though. The Open Houes continues this Tuesday, June 4th, from 6 pm to 10 pm.

The Slim Gauge Guild is housed in the basement of the China Factory office building at 300 S. Raymond Street in Pasadena. After you view the trains, it is an easy walk to Old Towne Pasadena to have a snack or dinner. We had an excellent lunch at the Crown City Brewery which is located in the same building as the club.

Click here for Picture Gallery

The club's space is around 2000 square feet and encompasses many interlocking train layouts. The layouts are exquisitely designed and decorated. In some cases, they replicate actual locations along the Denver and Rio Grande Railroad and the Rio Grande Southern. The club members have a wide variety of rolling stock including detailed engines, box cars and passenger coaches. There were 4-5 trains running nearly all the time during the open house.

We all had a grand time, especially Joseph, There is a certain inherent fascination with model trains and the Slim Gauge Guild certainly catches and holds your attention. The club members were fun and engaging and always willing to discuss both their trains and the history behind the Denver and Ro Grande railroad. This is a wonderful (and FREE) event that can be equally enjoyed by both children and adults.

Saturday, June 01, 2002

Free Sunday Concerts In The Park
at Peter Strauss Ranch

June 9, 2pm - 4pm

Blues in The Parks

Join us for an afternoon of blues.


Southern California Blues Society in cooperation with National Park Service

No vacation for many workers...even if they leave the office

This USA Today article gives some disturbing statistics regarding workers and their vacations. It seems that over 60% of workers will be checking in with the office at least once each week while they are gone. 25% say they will check in daily.

As a writer on career issues, I have seen the effects of overwork and pressure on the average worker. My only advice is to forget your office even exists while on vacation. You take a vacation to relieve the pressure of your day-to-day work, commune with your family (maybe for the first time all year), and recover enough energy to face the post-vacation landslide of email. Do not let the pressure of hyperactive companies prevent you from enjoying what little vacation time you have.

Checking in with your office on a daily basis almost guarantees that you will have a lousy vacation and feel even worse when you return to work. Any company that cannot function when staff members take a vacation has major problems. Staffing is not at appropriate levels, managers have become micro-managers and the company has lost respect for its workers, except in its ability to exploit them for every last minute of their waking hours. Remember, your company has a vested interest in preventing you from taking vacation time. It is up to you to protect your own needs.

Maybe you have convinced yourself that you don't have the time to take a vacation. This is a sure sign that you are in dire need of one. Even more, you might be better off to find a new job than stay at one that offers no hope of relief, even for 2 weeks out of 52.

If you are struggling with vacation decisions, check out this article. How to take a vacation is a Career Opportunities column I wrote back in May of 1999. It offers several hints on how to take a vacation that won't have you thinking more about work than fun.

Any company for which it is worth working will understand the importance of vacation time. They know that they may lose a few hours of your time, but they also know you will come back with a new attitude and perhaps, even more, great ideas to help them build their business.