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November 2003
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January 2004

A nice doohickey

I recently bought a handy iPod accessory that you might also have a need for, the PocketDock. It's a simple adapter that lets you use 1st and 2nd generation iPod accessories with the 3rd generation "dock connector" iPod.

I have a few accessories, such as a car charger, that I'd have to replace if it weren't for the little plastic widget. At $19 it's not cheap, but it's better than buying, and having to carry around, cables that serve only one purpose. Now I can use the Firewire cable for the iSight, for example, with my iPod. One less thing to haul around. The PocketDock is sturdy, works well, and its color and texture match the iPod. It's nice that they paid attention to these details.

I am an Ethnographer

When I'm asked "what do you do?" (or worse, "what are you?") I sometimes don't quite know how to answer. Usually the questioner is actually asking what my current job is, so sometimes I'll give them a break and answer that question instead.

But if I have to fill out a form, or describe myself, I'll usually say that I'm an Ethnographer. (Which, by the way, chicks dig.)

I don't know where I came across the link to this Wiki, but I'm very happy to add it to my bookmarks. Take a peek: Guide To Ethnography


Border is the type of software that I really dig. It's small, specialized, home-grown, and makes an annoying task quite simple. Laying out repeating-pattern borders for photographs and other artwork is tedious, but Border makes it a snap. It comes with a surprisingly large, and decent, collection of designs too.

So I was pretty darn close to buying a copy. However, when I got to the order form I was surprised to learn that the license requires a separate fee for every user. Not every computer on which its installed, which is annoying enough if you have both a laptop and a desktop, but for every user of one computer. You even have to specify the exact user name when you buy the product.

That's a ridiculous restriction. It would prevent both my wife and I from using the application on our G4 desktop, and it would lock me into always using the same login name for as long as I needed to use the application. For that, I say "Bah!" to Border.

Experimental Open Collaboration

Kudos to stevenf for running an ad hoc collaboration experiment with SubEthaEdit. See his excellent write up about the results: A Shared Blank Document (aftermath). I see some familiar faces among those who participated. (Hi, Tom!) I'm sorry to have missed the fun, but the results are well-captured and reported.

My favorite observation below. Sad but true:

Just as you can't have walls without graffiti, in a collaborative environment that is wide-open, there will always be destructive behavior. Not to say that it's good or bad... it just is.