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It's Time To Revive Hypercard

gjh Google Wave (299 comments)

I've felt the same way for years. I had high hopes for Google Wave to fill the gap.

It's not the same thing, and scripting for end users would not have been the same, but we don't need a direct replacement. We need:

- Web based, cloud based.
- Multi screen sized, flowable
- The card stack model from HyperCard was GOOD for naive use - and perfectly carried into Google Wave
- Simple scripting, but probably JavaScript not HyperTalk

In fact, my ideal system is somewhere in the middle of Wave, HyperCard, Lotus Notes, XSLT or similar and the web.

- Document templates that can be filled in. Let's get rid of MS Word and have more structured docs, but in a way that hobby developers can cope with.
- Effective visual editing of templates; HTML template editing but much more like a good UI editor,
- Somehow remove all the complexity from the scripting of events... HyperCard WAS good at this!!

I'm not going to mention SharePoint. MicroSoft NEVER understood groupware!

about 3 months ago

Autonomous Car Ethics: If a Crash Is Unavoidable, What Does It Hit?

gjh Probabilities, Summation (800 comments)

Options would have to be costed. Many things would feed into that. The problem of course is that for all of those costings, probability multiplied by survivability does not produce a linear outcome of quality of life value; you could assign a value of harm to each individual present, but you could not get a meaningful figure by summation.

about 9 months ago

ARIN Is Down To the Last /8 of IPv4 Addresses

gjh It didn't matter whether it was last year or next (306 comments)

It didn't matter whether it was last year or next...IP usage was accelerating into the wall anyway. The GOOD part about this is that now the US is out of addresses certain parts of the Internet industry are more likely to take IPv6 seriously.

Sadly, ISPs in other parts of the world have proven adept at further avoiding the problem by downgrading consumer connections to carrier-grade NAT, so we have another 5 years of eking out of old order before people REALLY have to take notice.

about 9 months ago

All In All, Kids Just Another Brick In the Data Wall

gjh Muggles. (110 comments)


Data wall by Dolores Umbridge.

about a year ago

Abandoned UK National Health Service IT System Has Cost $16bn... So Far

gjh Monolithic vs. standards (220 comments)

Surely for a few tens of thousands of pounds, it would have been better to publish and API for storing and modifying the info on (secured) web servers locally in a way that could be indexed and catalogued separately. Then, incentivize private firms to make and sell software to surgeries and hospitals that provide the API. Why do people always go for monolithic top down solutions for these things?

about a year ago

Microsoft Steeply Raising Enterprise Licensing Fees

gjh Clearbooks.co.uk (571 comments)

http://www.clearbooks.co.uk/ - Completely cloud/web based accounting.

Sorry, I have no idea if there is a US version, and of course it it quite specific about taxes and so on. But it was the best day of my software experience life when I switched from SAGE to Clearbooks. Not only does it do everything we need, but it is the first accounts package I have ever seen that anticipates your needs - "this account isn't really suitable for this transaction, your probably want to use x instead". "This is a large capital purchase, so it's been added to your asset register pending approval". OMG it's wonderful!!!

Yes, I'm an evangelist. Most accounting packages are so bad that it's like night and day when you see a good one. It includes...
- PAYE (uk equivalent of withholding)
- VAT (EU equivalent of sales tax)
- automated monthly importing of bank statements direct from bank websites
- automated matching of statement items with purchases and vendors
- automated asset management and depreciation
- automated filing of govt tax forms for VAT, corporation tax and others
- multicurrency, + international transactions in line with tax rules
- quicky stuff like small business flat rate VAT, agricultural taxes, partnership tax rules, etc etc

I may no longer actually need an accountant. I could never say that with other software. With this, I am beginning to think that he adds no value whatsoever.

more than 2 years ago

David Braben Kickstarts an Elite Reboot

gjh Code and extension trading...? (173 comments)

Tell you what I always wanted in a remake of Élite... nerd tools. An extension API, allowing scripts, GUIs/HUDs and possibly external connectivity. And the same facility to trade code and attachments that you see in something like Second Life.

- The universe really IS newtonian, but you can develop and trade control systems that make it appear otherwise and apply directed power to compensate for unwelcome inertia
- Bots, autopilots, combat aids
- Buy extra ships, develop swarm/formation flying control systems

What? Is this a desirable mash up? To me, it's the logical conclusion of real trading and real newtonian physics. Give the society the real ability to develop and create.

The challenge is to make sure that automated things don't dominate, and to create a playing society that can police the worst renegades. Rules are enforced by players, with bounties etc..

more than 2 years ago

Ron Paul Wants To End the Federal Student Loan Program

gjh Ron Paul in Five Words (1797 comments)

There's a lot of clap trap in these comments trying to sum out Ron Paul by his financial policies. It completely misses the point.

Ron Paul is a constitutionalist.

He believes that the federal govt overreaches. Financially, yes, but also militarily, socially, and almost every other sphere of influence. I'm sure he'd be fine about individual states offering loans - or transport systems, or healthcare, or abortions, or ID cards, or gay marriage or whatever. But these are not the job of the federal government. It's not rocket science - he is simply the only prominent politician who takes the limitation to legislate only over "commerce among the several states" seriously.

In practise, this all means that he has the only plan that can save the USA, being as the first step to solving the financial hole is to stop digging. And that means cuts to spending. I personally hope that he would do it in such a way that individual states can take over whichever programs they want in a clean and managed way. But this man is your only hope. Vote for him.

more than 3 years ago

Entry-Level NAS Storage Servers Compared

gjh AFP (182 comments)

My own AFP experience with QNAP was terrible, due to the dodgy FOSS stack - I forget which one - that was included. There was no useful way to authenticate (no OpenDirectory, no Kerberos, no way to automate user import). I ended up with iSCSI between the QNAP and the Mac OS Server (ATTO iSCSI) and serving AFP from there, with a 5x speed improvement.

Was I doing something wrong? It doesn't seem to match the AFP figures in the article. Anyone else have similar awful real-world AFP performance?

more than 3 years ago

Spam Causes Microsoft To Kill Newsgroups

gjh Fixing it... (157 comments)

Of course, it IS still just about possible for one of us to fix USENET. If we cared enough.

- A distributed ratings system that works, and allows matching of your preferences to people with similar preferences.
- A better standard for signing articles, and ownership of virtual websites where threads or subforums can only be started by the owner
- Standards for structured documents and so on.
- Incorporation and acceptance into multiple CMS's so that you can actually read existing forums through NNRP

So far, in the 15 years since this has been an issue, noone has cared enough to fix it. Pity.

more than 4 years ago

Apple Expected to Demo Leopard Successor Next Week

gjh My prediction on the record here.... YellowBox (432 comments)

Data points are rumors are....
- Drop the Mac branding, eg "OS X Leopard"
- Drop or minimise Carbon favor of Cocoa
- PC version of Leopard, or 10.6
- Apple Software Update can push/strongly advise major new apple software features to Windows users

In my mind, these add up to the old YELLOW BOX - i.e., the ability to run Mac (Cocoa) Apps on Windows. Yellow box is a compatibility layer. This feature was advertised initially with Rhapsody, but wisely withdrawn. We are now in a very different place. There are many desirable Mac Apps, and OS X is a desirable place for developers. Businesses begin to want Mac Apps and maybe eventually the full MacOS but need a transition path.

There is now every reason to release the Yellow Box and no reason not to.
- It provides the transition path
- It provides for stealth killer apps to seep onto Windows users' radar
- It will no longer dilute Mac Sales - because Microsoft's lustre and safety have gone

You'll all see that I'm right :)

more than 6 years ago


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