Miscellanea for November’s end

  • A quite interesting thread in the comments on my latest piece. Who got the point? Well, that’s the trick:I have the feeling we’re still talking about different things. And the discussion is raging on, so let’s just hope it will remain polite.
  • Mac Upgrade: Leopard is shaky and eats up some memory. Plus, Mozilla Thunderbird can get sluggish and buggy, Java support is broken (and so OpenOffice.org has problems) and I still don’t see the whole benefit for the users. My take? Better use Linux; what I especially like about Macs are the macs themselves. The OS really is a BSD with a ton of proprietary eye-candy, and sometimes this can become tireseome.
  • A blog about PDF, by Jim King. A fascinating read providing insight on PDF, XML, and the history of computing. Jim has a good take on the actual use cases for PDF documents, but he has that natural tendency to defend his beef a little too much over what’s necessary. In doing so, Jim misses some point: while a format, and I’d say, any format may reflect at least some of the features set of the native application it stems from, it is not necessarily a bad thing. At least, it can be helped through a plural, open and public process. See ODF: Sun, OpenOffice.org originated what would later become an ISO standard. But players like KDE and IBM also joined in. Talking about features sets, I’d call that leverage. And as Rob Weir pointed out recently, maybe what I want out of my documents is not just to keep their layout intact, but what I also want is to update them and manipulate their data. There is not everlasting truth in that matter. Suffice to say, the document metaphor is changing, as I have explained elsewhere several times. The layout aspect is one side of the problem, not the whole problem.
  • I’m moving to a new apartment: Tough but exciting. And the part of Paris where I live now is great, but there’s still a lot of work to do although the very hard part (the moving itself) is done.

Stay tuned!

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