Vista Upgrade Decision Flowchart

With only six to nine versions to chose from, upgrading to Vista is easy, once you decide to upgrade. Should you upgrade? Just click on the flowchart to follow it to its logical conclusion.



[From BBspot ]


Today I saw...

A tow truck towing a tow truck towing a van... I thought "Is that legal?" and then I thought "Is that safe?"..


Chavez can do whatever he wants... Again!

"Winning" the recall was not enough, having 100% control of the assembly is not enough, winning a relection was not enough, Chavez needed an enabling law in order to legislate without the pesky legislators from his own party. Now, perhaps, after 8 years he can actually start doing something different from the previous governments...


What a party!



I just woke up after a great New Year's party... Has anything happened? Hey! Who has been posting on my blog?


Chavez demands to take his rightful place met with skepticism

Chavez Demands Membership in Axis of Evil. Craves Slot Vacated By Saddam

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, riding high after being re-elected to a six-year term in office, set his sights on an even higher goal today as he demanded membership in the Axis of Evil.

Mr. Chavez, who made headlines at the U.N. last year by comparing President George W. Bush to Satan, has made no secret of the fact that he would like to join the exclusive club of the world’s most infamous evildoers, including North Korean president Kim Jong-Il and Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

But when the Venezuelan president recently received the news that former Axis of Evil member Saddam Hussein had been hanged, “he realized that this was his time,” an aide to the Venezuelan madman said.

“I want Saddam’s slot,” Mr. Chavez said at a press conference in Caracas today. “I’ve earned it.”

But “not so fast,” says Kim Jong-Il, who heard of Mr. Chavez’ demand while appearing at an Axis of Evil charity golf tournament in Scottsdale, Arizona.

While the North Korean president said that he is “a big fan of Hugo’s work,” he has reservations about granting the Venezuelan dictator membership in the Axis of Evil: “I think there’s a big difference between being evil and just being crazy, and I think Hugo falls under crazy.”

But when asked who he would like to see take Saddam’s place in the Axis of Evil, Kim did not miss a beat: Rosie O’Donnell.

“Anyone who can make enemies of both Donald Trump and Barbara Walters deserves a seat at the table,” Kim said.

Elsewhere, Vice President Dick Cheney defended the government’s right to obtain everyone’s financial records “except mine.”


A sad day today



We just got word that Misha Cotlar, my wife's Ph.D. Thesis adviser and the greatest mathematician who has ever worked in Venezuela, died in Argentina today. He left Argentina running of dictators and left Venezuela for the same reason. He described himself as a "student of mathematics" even though he was a teacher to all of us. I wrote a "Featured Review" with him for Mathematical Reviews and I consider that the high point of my career. He wasn't properly honored in Venezuela, though his students organized a conference for him and published a book in his honor. I'm glad to have had a minor participation in both endeavors. Donald Sarason said on the death of my first adviser, Allen Shields, that there were heroes up there and there were heroes down here. Like Allen, Misha Cotlar was a hero down here. He will be greatly missed, always.


Is Steve Jobs the one in the screen?



It sure seems so...


He should be proud...

Cingular Executive is proud Apple bend to their lock-in demands. He should be proud, Apple is (was? ) a company that at least pretended not to play the lock-in game. Oh, they did plenty of lock-in, but always saying is was for some kind of higher good. This time they are clearly doing something for no higher good, but just to lock-in customers (not only with the iPhone, but also with the Apple TV). He should also be proud because this is a great deal for Cingular and a terrible business model for Apple. Tons of customers in the US will change to Cingular in order to use the iPhone, but by playing that game Apple has alienated not only the early adopter, higher tech kind of guy, but also, perhaps, a lot of the rest of the world (precisely where the most expensive phones are sold). The problem is not the phones, the problem is the carriers, and, as Cingular just showed, the ones in the US are among the worst. Most SmartPhones in Europe can do Chat, What will the iPhone do when it tries to hit those shores? If it does Chat it will alienate its US customers, if those without it will alienate the European customers. Those are the conundrums for the players of a lock-in game.


Maybe the whole problem is...

that I should have been French. I would have made a great Frenchman! what would be different you ask? Well, I would be living in France, of course!


He is wrong

When people said that the iPod/iTunes strategy would fail for the same reason Apple's Mac strategy failed I was the first to point out that Music is a different business from Computers. I'm here to tell you that Mobile Phones is a different business from Music players. And so, Steve Jobs is wrong when he says:
“We define everything that is on the phone,” he said. “You don’t want your phone to be like a PC. The last thing you want is to have loaded three apps on your phone and then you go to make a call and it doesn’t work anymore. These are more like iPods than they are like computers.”
It is clear that his Steveness doesn't use cell phones. I wonder how much of this statements is lying and how much is ignorance. The iPhone doesn't have iChat, not video, not voice, not text. This internet device doesn't have a Chat program and you can't install one. Why? Because Cingular feels threatened by those technologies. But outside the US those technologies are winning. That's why most expensive cell phones are sold outside the US (10 million vs. half a million). In the US a good cell phone is useless, because the carriers in the US are clueless. I get better mobile service in a third world country than in the US. I think an US centric perspective has misguided Apple and Steve Jobs. The iPhone could go the way of the Cube... (Full disclosure: I bought the Cube.)


Did I say dumb?

It seems, Apple can't call it iPhone. Apple Computers, Inc did things in a certain way. It was different from other companies, while it sometimes made a mistake naming a product normally it wasn't a revolutionary announcement. It also didn't pre-announce things or refuse to provide crucial info on a product. Apple, Inc is a different kind of company...


DumbiPhone, Dumber *AppleLogo*TV

Well, we got some answers and they aren't good. The iPhone will be locked and exclusively for Cingular for a least a long while. But even worse, you can't install applications into this OS X device. Only what Apple and others tell you. I know, you are thinking, "I don't need any more than what the iPhone has, I trust Apple and Cingular to provide for me in the future." But that's just dumb, what about Skype? Think they'll provide that? What about what you don't know a year from know? My prediction is that the iPhone could be vulnerable to a serious attack by a decent mobile manufacturer. Some of its features are stupid, to say the least, like the writing in a screen keyboard with your thumbs. Sorry, Steve, but that's harder than writing in a tiny plastic keyboard that has tactile feedback. Steve was right, the iPhone is no SmartPhone, more like a DumbPhone.

But I still want the iPhone, who wouldn't? Even with this drawbacks is probably better than any phone out there... Unfortunately, I don't know when Apple will want my money. They certainly do not want me to buy an *AppleLogo*TV (formerly known as iTV). It only plays the two formats played by iPods. Fine for most people you say? Well, since the easiest way to achieve that is to use presets "For iPods" settings nobody will ever watch anything on HD. Buy a SlingCatcher instead. Apple is doing what Microsoft has done for years, cripple its product in order to protect an un-threatened market advantage. Speaking of Microsoft, I wish they would wise up and provide Divx and other formats on the Xbox 360. It would only cost a hundred dollars more than the *AppleLogo*TV and it would be a much better machine for that job... Without mentioning the ton of other things you can do with it. I mean, you can buy movies and TV Shows (no, you can't do that with *AppleLogo*TV. How dumb is that? ).


iPhone I ask!

The announcement of the iPhone by Apple raises more questions than it answered, so the people riding this stock high are crazy, I think. Here is a sample of some of the questions I do not understand.

1.- What does Cisco/Linksys think of the name? They have it registered and announced a product by that name less than a month ago... Did they do it to screw Apple? or to sue it?

2.- Can you buy the phone without a Cingular two year contract?

3.- What plan will give you those prices?

4.- Is it unlocked?

5.- If it runs Mac OS X... Can you install programs?

6.- Is there anyone else out there that is sad that Apple Computer, Inc doesn't exist anymore (it's called Apple, Inc now)?



Chavez demands a return to the 4th republic

If anyone in Venezuela or abroad thought Chavez was different from any of our previous presidents, his latest tirade should convince them otherwise. What he is asking for is a return to the 40 years of democracy he criticizes. They had control of all the companies and you couldn't make a single phone call. That's what he wants, no socialism, no benefits for the poor, just a powerful government as long as he is in charge...


This is important...

The plural of anecdote is not data.


Found a Pink DS Lite!



We finally found the DS Lite that my daughter wanted. After looking in every EB Games, EBX, Best Buy, Gamestop, Circuit City, CompUSA, Target, etc. At the first place we stop the salesperson informed us that it was sold out. He said emphatically we would never found it in pink, which was the color my daughter wanted. So, after convincing her that finding it in any color would be a lucky shot. We look for days and days... We had almost given up. Then my wife wanted to go to a Bed, Bath and Beyond, or some other equally horrible place. Going into the strip mall I noticed a K-mart and asked her, "Don't they sell video games at K-mart?" Nobody knew, but checking it out was more fun than going to Bed, Bath and Whatever. My son and I go in, we see a lady putting stuff on a locked shelf and right by her were one pink DS Lite and two black ones. I asked the lady (stupidly) "Are those DS Lites?" She said yes, I asked (again, stupidly) "In pink?!?!?!?!" She said yes with a a face that can't be described. I bought one pink for my daughter and my son bought a black one. The DS killer feature? being able to play wireless with only one game. It's so much fun! So now we have one black, one pink, and one white DS Lite and we are happy.


Weird names...

I wanted to bestow on all my descendants the first name "Doctor", so they would be treated with respect from the start. My wife wouldn't let me for some reason or another. Looking at this article it looks like I should have...
(thanks Miguel)

Correction to the Article: Most Venezuelans hate Richard Clayderman and his alleged music.


Not all elections are created equal


"Do you agree with the reunification of Austria with the German Empire that was enacted on 13 March 1938, and do you vote for the party of our leader Adolf Hitler?," the large circle is labelled "Yes," the smaller "No."



May the best of last year

... be the worst of the new year...


Happy Pi day!

3 14 15


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