November 2005

It's "Make your own caption" time

by Volker Weber


Cheap WLAN adapter

by Volker Weber

not completely wireless

An unbiased and unscientific proof of global warming

by Ragnar Schierholz

global warming


by Volker Weber

Still wondering why I like Top Gear so much? Watch this. And do ignore the ads.

The most foolish war in more than 2000 years

by Volker Weber

A few interesting quotes:

What had to come, has come. The question is no longer if American forces will be withdrawn, but how soon — and at what cost.'s armed forces are the products of a technology-driven revolution in military affairs. Whether that revolution has contributed to anything besides America's national debt is open to debate.

Therefore, simply abandoning equipment or handing it over to the Iraqis, as was done in Vietnam, is simply not an option. ... For all intents and purposes, Washington might just as well hand over its weapons directly to Abu Musab al-Zarqawi.

Clearly, then, the thing to do is to forget about face-saving and conduct a classic withdrawal.

Who said this? A "liberal"? Hardly.

Martin van Creveld, a professor of military history at the Hebrew University, is author of "Transformation of War" (Free Press, 1991). He is the only non-American author on the U.S. Army's required reading list for officers.

Go read the whole story.

Passend zum Programmniveau

by Volker Weber

Satellitenbetreiber und Fernsehsender denken über die Umsetzung einer Verschlüsselung und damit einhergehend die Einführung einer Grundgebühr für den Empfang dieser Programme schon für das Jahr 2006 nach. Neben den steigenden Programmkosten werden dafür auch die stagnierenden Werbeerlöse ohne Aussicht auf Besserung seitens der Programmanbieter angeführt.

Nach Brancheninformationen könnte sich der monatliche Grundpreis - passend zum Programmniveau - in der Höhe eines Hamburgers mit Cola bewegen.

More >

Senator-Mau Mau

by Volker Weber

T.W.* erzählt uns die Abenteuer eines Handlungsreisenden:

Sobald Leute zu Gehör bekommen, daß jemand häufiger geschäftlich auf Reisen ist, kommen meist schnell beneidende Worte: "Du hast es gut, bezahlt durch die Welt fliegen - das hätte ich auch gern."

Dieser Neid ob der Erlebnisse des modernen Handlungsreisen würde recht schnell verschwinden, hätte derjenige nur mal eins, zwei Tage lang die Möglichkeit festzustellen, wie das Leben "on the road" tatsächlich ist.

Und das Beste: Es ist alles wahr.

More >

*) T.W. hat zwar die "balls" für markige Worte, aber nicht für eine namentliche Nennung. Schade eigentlich.

Apple releases Security Update 2005-009

by Volker Weber

Use Software Update. Requires a reboot. Details about the update here.

Firefox 1.5 has been released

by Volker Weber

About Firefox 1.5

Xmas season is open

by Volker Weber


Today I received my first Christmas present. The season is now officially open. I don't know about your country, but here it is quite common to have a calendar with small treats that counts down the 24 days in december until Christmas' Eve. This one from Thomas Radigewski claims to be the smallest such calendar. That is a bit like claiming you have the world's largest Bonsai. :-)

Last year we received quite a few cards. I am a bit old-fashioned and really, really like it when people send me Christmas cards. Quite some companies have cut back on them, and I think this is money saved in the wrong place, or as we say "at the wrong end".


by Volker Weber

This is one amazing website:

Can you help me discover more music that I'll like? Those questions often evolved into great conversations. Each friend told us their favorite artists and songs, explored the music we suggested, gave us feedback, and we in turn made new suggestions. Everybody started joking that we were now their personal DJs.

We created Pandora so that we can have that same kind of conversation with you.

More >

[Thanks, Stephan]

RIP OS/2. Long live osFree?

by Volker Weber

osFree project is an atempt to build an OpenSource OS/2 clone. At the present time the osFree project doesn't work with low-level parts of operating system like loader, kernel, and physical device drivers. As a pilot stage we are cloning selected OS/2 command line tools.

So where is the project currently?

Kernel Loader: In progress
Kernel: Not started
Base device drivers: Not started
Control Programing Interface: Not started
Command line tools: In progress
Classic REXX support: In progress (Regina REXX project)
System Object Model: Not started
Presentation Manager: In progress (FreePM project)
Presentation Manager tools: Not started
Display/adapter drivers: Not started
Multimedia: Not started
Workplace shell: Not started
Multimedia classes: Not started

They do have one screenshot. This looks like a long march ahead.

More >


by Volker Weber

Was ist das, eine MP3-Schnittstelle?

Außerdem enthalten: Das Audio-Paket mit MP3 Schnittstelle (zum Anschluss externer Audiogeräte)

More >


by Volker Weber

Kann er, oder kann er nicht?

by Volker Weber

Seit 10 Tagen ist das Weblog Industrial Technology & Witchcraft in Seenot. Liest man sich die Darstellung des Betreibers "majo", bürgerlich Manfred J. Heinze, durch, so hat man den Eindruck, dass ein tapferer Webseitenbetreiber gegen die Windmühlen des Hosters 1&1 kämpft, der sich seines Problems einfach nicht annimmt.

Hört man sich dann die Gegenseite an, so scheint es eher, dass der Webseitenbetreiber seine Software nicht im Griff hat, und dass er die Nachrichten seines Hosters nur sehr selektiv wahrnimmt, respektive nur sehr selektiv wiedergibt.

Cartoon von Karl A. Bihlmeier, der dazu schreibt:

Es ist immer wieder erstaunlich, wie sich der Service verbessert, wenn der Geschäftsführer des Providers einen Pferdekopf in seinem Bett findet.

Ich bezweifle, dass diese Anspielung an Mario Puzzos Godfather passt.

Derzeit läuft alles auf eine juristische Auseinandersetzung hinaus, die das eigentliche Problem natürlich nicht löst. Der technische Kern des Problems scheint zu sein, dass das CMS jede Menge Verbindungen zur Datenbank öffnet aber nicht wieder schließt. Bis zu einem gewissen Grad kann man solche Fehler mit leistungsfähiger Hardware abfangen, aber das kuriert nur das Symptom, nicht aber die Krankheit.

Wie kriegt man diese Kuh vom Eis? Man nimmt die ganze Webseite inkl. Betriebssystem in die Verantwortung des Webseitenbetreibers. Und dann lässt man jemanden mit technischem Sachverstand das eigentliche Problem lösen.

Merke: Technische Probleme lassen sich nicht durch Brüllen oder Fingerzeigen lösen.

My iBook battery is dying

by Volker Weber

And it's much worse than it looks. It drops from 100% to 75% in about 10 minutes, and then it shuts down the iBook hard. When you recharge it shows 0%. Buying an extended warranty does not help since AppleCare does not cover the battery.

I am very good with these batteries. The iBook is my first notebook that fails completely.

Ubuntu is user friendly

by Volker Weber

Ravi writes:

Ubuntu is fast on its way to becoming a peoples OS. I have always wondered what is it that makes people embrace Ubuntu over other Linux distributions. After some pondering, it struck me that the USP (Unique Selling Point) of Ubuntu is its user friendliness. Ubuntu is a distribution targeted at the non-techie crowd - those that want to get their job done and not spend time tinkering with the OS. And consequently, the developers at Ubuntu have bundled simple easy to use GUI front end tools to achieve common system administration tasks. Here I have put together 10 things in Ubuntu that make a new user's life that much simple. I used Ubuntu 5.10 to aid my observation.

More >

Solving the audio noise problem on the Edirol UA-1X

by Volker Weber

Last year I bought a USB audio interface from Edirol. The UA-1X has stereo inputs and outputs and headphones output. You want this kind of interface if you need to add more channels to an iBook, for instance to have two output channels to the amplifiers and two for the headphones. This enables you to queue up songs in a DJ software. You will also get a much better sound quality than going out through the headphones jack.

After I used this device a couple of months, it suddenly started producing a crackling and hissing noise that was very noticeable, especially if you set the sound output to 100% and the iTunes output to something like 10%. I reported the problem to Edirol, and they eventually replaced the device with a new one. Unfortunately it had the same problem. On both my iMac and my iBook.

I tested this with my friend Thomas' PowerBook and he did not have a problem. So I swapped the Edirol with his M-Audio Transit. Eventually I was having problems with the Transit and swapped back to the Edirol. The noise issues I was having seemed to be gone by now. Why? I was not sure. I had since installed a new operating system (Tiger replaced Panther), Quicktime and Core Audio were revved. I did not really care.

Until yesterday. The noise was back.

Today I dug around trying to find a driver for the Edirol. But it does not need one, since it uses the Core Audio driver supplied with the OS. I also found some references on the Roland site, talking about noise issues that had been resolved in OS 10.3.3. But here I was running 10.4.3 and still having problems. Then I found an interesting article explaining how to resolve issues with the M-Audio Transit. The author was advising to take a look at the Audio MIDI Setup in the Utilities folder.

And there I found it.

Look in the lower right hand corner under Audio Output. This should not be 2ch 8-bit. Set it to 2ch 16-bit with 48000 or 44100 Hz. The noise was gone. So simple, once you know where to look.

Recently in France

by Volker Weber

darjeeling darjeeling

[via Marc]

One year of openBC

by Volker Weber

It has now been one year since I accepted an invitation to join OpenBC. At that time I had been bugged by many friends with invitations and I wanted to be safe from receiving even more. I registered without high expectations. The "impossible" high water mark at that time was Mitch Wolfson who had 483 contacts after being a member of this service for only one year.

Much to my surprise it did not take much time to pass that number. Currently I have 607 people registered as contacts. (Mitch has 683). And there are lots and lots of people I know who never participate in these kinds of games. During the time I worked at the university I had personal contacts with about 500 students, almost none of them are in my network. There is also a large number of people in my class that I permanently lost contact with. But there is hope. I have recently been found by a member of my high school class on openBC.

The network has grown tremendously over the last year. If I recall this correctly there has been a time when there were only 9 people on the network that invited more other members, and only 49 people who had more contacts. These numbers now stand at 12 and 203.

Has it earned me any money? None that I know of. Was it worthwile anyway? You bet. It is now my primary directory for looking up addresses and phone numbers that I don't even bother to write down in my address book. And all of those addresses are maintained by their respective owners.

In case you are not yet playing, here is your free invitation.

Hausaufgabe für den kleinen Sysadmin

by Volker Weber

Finden Sie den Fehler in dieser Beweiskette:

Der Beweis ist ganz einfach: wir haben alle Daten aus der Datenbank in eine Installation auf einem externen Server exportiert, so daß die Weblogs aus einem anderen MySQL gefüttert wurden. Sofort verschwanden die Probleme.

Randbedingung: 1 Gig RAM mit Apache und MySQL auf der selben Hardware, 100 k Seitenaufrufe am Tag, Webseite dynamisch aus der Datenbank generiert.


by Volker Weber

It's no longer Cold Dead Fish. It's now "Workplace Cold Dead Fish Services Express" or WCDFSE.

Next-generation BSOD

by Volker Weber

And what does a crashed Xbox 360 look like?

A bit like this, here.

Note the interesting multilingual error message, the proportionately spaced fonts and the cool Matrix effect, indicating that this is very much a next-generation BSOD.

More >

Can I have this as MP3 please?

by Volker Weber

Beware. Loud music after the jump.

More >


by Volker Weber

Ich habe ja schon einiges gesehen. Aber ein so sauber dokumentierten Betrug eines Journalisten in Zusammenarbeit mit einem Hersteller ist mir noch nie untergekommen. Wenn sich jemand fragt, warum c't auch nach 20 Jahren noch erfolgreich am Markt ist, dann soll er sich das Sprichwort "Ehrlich währt am längsten" ausdrucken und einrahmen.

Ich denke, Michael Specht kann jetzt umschulen. Den Namen Karl-Heinz Baumann merke ich mir auch mal.

Transparent backgrounds are so 2004

by Volker Weber


This is the real thing. :-)

[via John]


by Volker Weber

Let's try to blow this place up

by Volker Weber

The Lotusphere 2006 Frappr maps locations of Lotusphere attendants on a map. Currently there are less more than 100 people (this lasted about 5 minutes) on the map. It won't take more than 500 to seriously impact this service. ;-)

Feeling pissed today?

by Volker Weber


Firefox expands a single character into a full web address

by Volker Weber

Dirk Borchardt has found out that Firefox will expand a single character in the URL field to a full web address. Examples:

A =
B =
C =
D =

Find the full list at his site.

Update: I have learned that this is a rather simple feature. Instead of adding www. and .com as other browsers do, Firefox issues an "I feel lucky" query on Google. Depending on your language settings you will get different results from Google.

Example: Try "vowe". Firefox sends you here. Safari sends you to the domain grabber who wanted to sell me He still has not made any money from it.

Very cool screensaver

by Volker Weber

It's "Make your own caption" time

by Volker Weber


Does Bush have an exit strategy?

by Volker Weber

If he has, it's not working.

Stupid is as stupid does

by Volker Weber

A French woman has admitted attempting to open an aeroplane door mid-flight so that she could smoke a cigarette.

More >

Really Simple Sharing

by Volker Weber

This is the kind of posting I hoped for when Ray announced the return of his blog. Apparently his brother Jack Ozzie and George Moromisato have worked on an extension to the RSS format to foster a very simple sharing of items and outlines between applications. Think Notes replication for RSS and OPML. From the FAQ:

Simple Sharing Extensions (SSE) is a specification that extends RSS from unidirectional to bidirectional information flows.

SSE defines the minimum extensions necessary to enable loosely cooperating applications to use RSS as the basis for item sharing—that is, the bidirectional, asynchronous replication of new and changed items among two or more cross-subscribed feeds.

For example, SSE could be used to share your work calendar with your spouse. If your calendar were published to an SSE feed, changes to your work calendar could be replicated to your spouse's calendar, and vice versa. As a result, your spouse could see your work schedule and add new appointments, such as a parent-teacher meeting at the school, or a doctor's appointment.

If we now can agree on using this stuff, life could become much easier.

Don't try this at home

by Volker Weber


by Volker Weber

Anybody care to explain how this trick works?

From the "It just works" department

by Volker Weber

What is Foldershare? It shares folders. Across the Internet. You sign up, download and install a small program, start it and log in. If you add a second computer of yours, you can tell Foldershare to keep two folders on both machines in sync. Or you can invite a different Foldershare user to share one of your folders. Imagine you are working on a small project and you need a "fileserver" but you don't share a common intranet because you are not working in the same office or even the same company.

Now imagine, you were working on your home machine before leaving with your notebook computer. You forgot to put the file you were working on into the shared folder. No problem. Log into Foldershare, search for the file on the remote machine and download it. Foldershare will even use Spotlight, if the remote computer is running Tiger. Yes, it runs on the Mac. And it runs on Windows.

Foldershare does not provide a relay service. Both computers need to be online at the same time to exchange files. But that is good enough for me. I am online quite often. ;-)

ByteTaxi, the makers of Foldershare, have recently been acquired by Microsoft. The service that used to cost $100/year is now free. And I have few doubts that Foldershare will be part of Windows Live. Will they support Macs when that happens? I assume so, but I have no further insights. Until then, enjoy.

The IT Stalinistas strike back

by Volker Weber

I know the kind of people who will like this program: SkypeKiller

Hessischer Schildermaler

by Volker Weber


by Volker Weber

What is IBM's favorite means of collaboration? Hint: It is not email.

More >

Huge migration in slow motion

by Volker Weber

Procter & Gamble is trying something I've never seen before: A slow migration from Notes to Outlook & Co.

As part of that broad effort, P&G is introducing a set of desktop applications to foster real-time collaboration among its worldwide workforce of more than 100,000 people and with its vast network of customers and partners. The rollout consists mainly of five Microsoft products-the Office 2003 desktop suite, Outlook E-mail client, Communicator instant-messaging software, Live Meeting conferencing service, and SharePoint document-sharing portal-plus Windows Server 2003 and other server software. The deal represents the largest license to date of Microsoft's real-time collaboration suite (Communicator 2005, Live Meeting 2005, and upgraded Live Communications Server 2005), introduced in March.

The Microsoft apps are intended to replace Lotus Notes on the company's 80,000 Windows PCs, plus 12,000 more Windows PCs that are part of P&G's $57 billion acquisition of Gillette, which closed Oct. 1. "Intended" because Global Business Services isn't forcing the issue (not just yet, anyway). "We don't have big deployment milestones in people and dates, which is the old way," says Laurie Heltsley, a director with Global Business Services. "We're talking about an adoption strategy where people can opt in."

Company officials project that 80% of PCs will be upgraded to the new tools by sometime next year, driven by what they expect will be employee enthusiasm for an integrated suite of contemporary desktop apps.

More >

The bigger picture

by Volker Weber

I am receiving between 300 and 700 mails a day. My inbox shows around 100. SpamAssassin has taken care of the rest. So who am I to complain about the 5 to 10 spam messages a day that still came through in the last two weeks?


by Volker Weber

Before I get another 132 messages let me tell you that I do know what the Google #1 result for "failure" is. And no, you don't have to hurry up before Google fixes that because (a) the result is accurate, (b) Google is located in California and not in Kansas, and (c) most people at Google will probably agree.

How does that work? It's a Google Bomb and it's actually 4.5 years old.

Speaking of which: This Radicati page now has risen again to the second hit behind the company's own web page. Dan Lyons has already made it to the second page. ;-)

It's "Make your own caption" time

by Volker Weber

IBM to provide export filters to OpenDocument for Lotus Notes

by Volker Weber

Interesting tidbit from the Q&A session with IBM's Kevin Cavanaugh and Peter O'Kelly from the Burton Group. Kevin Cavanaugh, who is responsible for all Notes & Domino development, said that IBM will be providing export filters for the OpenDocument format. You will be able to select Notes documents and save them in a standard format. He has not committed to any particular release dates for these filters. Cavanaugh also said that IBM Workplace 3.0 will support this format for office documents. The current version of Workplace is 2.5 with 2.6 to be released soon.

Update: Arthur Fontaine comments:

Workplace Managed Client 2.6 has the read-write capability for Open Document Format -- no wait for 3.0 on this feature.

No further comment required

by Volker Weber


Welcome back, Ray

by Volker Weber

Ray is restarting his blog as Ray Ozzie: V3. Believe it or not, but I am taking some credit for his return. ;-)

Back from Nürnberg

by Volker Weber

Regular posting shall commence tomorrow

Predictions about the future are hard

by Volker Weber

Will try some anyway. They are all mine. If I get them wrong, they are still mine.

  1. Lotus Notes and Domino are doing much better than anybody expected. Version 7 will have a great uptake. Actually because of prediction #3.
  2. Sametime will lose a few big customers. It has been neglected for too long. Almost every single Sametime customer is also an Office customer, most of them should also have Active Directory. Watch for some shops to drop Sametime and go with LCS instead.
  3. (Lotus) Workplace is about as successful as Raven. To save it, IBM will eventually fold it into Portal, where it should have been anyway.
  4. Don't get me started on Quickplace.

This could be fun

by Volker Weber


I think I am getting one of these for Lotusphere. ;-)

Ne Me Quitte Pas - If You Go Away

by Volker Weber

Originally written by Jacques Brel, this song was performed by many musicians, including and not limited to: Acker Bilk, Al Hirt, Alfred Janson, The Bartlebees, Boister, Clara Adams, Claudia Beechman, Damita Jo, Dawn, Dee Dee Bridgewater, Dusty Springfield, Eileen Mager, Frank Sinatra, George Davidson, Giacome Aula, Glen Campbell, Helen Merrill, Jack Jones, Julio Inglesias, Juañares, Marlene Dietrich, Miguel Bosé, Natacha Atlas, Neil Diamond, Nina Simone, Olivier Laurent, Paul Mauriat, Rod McKuen, Sandler & Young, Sheena Easton, Shirley Bassey, Toots Thielemas, Ute Lemper. Terry Jacks' interpretation may be the best known one, but I am currently enjoying Cyndi Lauper. Who would have thought she could do much, much better than Girls Just Wanna Have Fun?

And before you wonder: No one is leaving here at vowe's magic flying circus. :-)


by Volker Weber


by Volker Weber

E-Plus läutet das Weihnachtsgeschäft ein:

Düsseldorf, 14. November 2005 - E-Plus hat auch in diesem Jahr wieder passende Geschenke für den weihnachtlichen Gabentisch. Ein gutes Beispiel: Das Nokia 6101 gibt es in dem Tarif 'Time & More 200' bereits für 0,- Euro.* Die Werbekampagne zum Angebot startet am 16. November.

0 Euro klingt gut. Lesen wir mal das Kleingedruckte:

* Dieses Angebot gilt nur bis 31.12.2005 bei gleichzeitigem Abschluss eines E-Plus Service Mobilfunkvertrags mit 24-monatiger Mindestlaufzeit und einmaligem Anschlusspreis € 25,- z.B. im Time & More 200: mtl. Paketpreis € 40,– für bis zu 200 Inklusivminuten (rechnerischer Minutenpreis € 0,20).

24 Monate mal 40 Euro plus 25 Euro. Macht 985 Euro. Klingt weniger spannend.

Microsoft to remove Sony DRM code

by Volker Weber

Sony's controversial anti-piracy CD software has been labelled as spyware by Microsoft. The software giant said the XCP copy protection system counted as malicious software under the rules it uses to define what Windows should be protected against. It is planning to include detection and removal tools for XCP in its weekly update to its anti-spyware software.

You know you fucked up royally when Microsoft is one of the good guys.

More >

Avoid these subjects when sending mail

by Volker Weber

SpamAssassin is currently letting through a wave of unsolicited messages. So I started setting up some server side rules. Avoid these subjects lest you want your mail to end up in the trash bin:

investor medication penny pharmaceutical pharmacy smallcap stock timekeeper timepiece wristpiece

Peter Drucker, RIP

by Volker Weber

The Los Angeles Times reports:

Peter F. Drucker, considered by many the "father of modern management" for his innovative approaches to leadership in the workplace, died today. He was 95.

His death was announced by Claremont Graduate University, where Drucker was the Marie Rankin Clarke professor of social sciences and management from 1971 to 2003, and where he continued to write and consult up to the time of his death.

How to remap your iBook keyboard

by Volker Weber

Just found this gem via John Gruber's review of his PowerBook. It explains how you can remap the enter key to have a second command key right of your space bar. Very handy for lefties.

More >

Große Steuererhöhungskoalition

by Volker Weber

Wenn ich mal zusammenfassen darf:

  1. Pöstchen verteilt
  2. MWSt rauf
  3. Spitzensteuersatz rauf
  4. Probezeit auf 2 Jahre

Wessen Probleme löst das jetzt?

Aus der Spezies: Handy-am-Gürtel-Trager

by Volker Weber

Niemals, wirklich niemals trägt ein ernst zu nehmender Mann einen Blackberry mit Clip am Gürtel!

More >

When I grow up, I want to be a real spam message

by Volker Weber

Who owns your computer?

by Volker Weber

You do, right? Well, that's what you believe when you get it at the store and pay with your own money. Not according to the music industry though. When Sony Music was caught installing a root kit into Windows computers, Mac users shrugged and thought they were unaffected. Now RCA has been caught installing kernel extensions (PhoenixNub1.kext and PhoenixNub12.kext) on Macs.

You think they cannot sink further? They can. Just wait for Windows Vista, where they no longer even have to install root kits and kernel extensions. Vista will come with shackles built right in. Mac users unaffected? Dream on. What do you think is the reason that Apple switches to Intel? Faster processors? Dream on.

Repeat after me: DRM is bad for the customer.

Corollary: What's bad for the customer is bad for the industry. Because customers will stop buying. At least this former Apple exec will:

From this day forward I will never spend a another dime on content that I can’t use the way I please. If I can’t copy it to my hard drive and play it using the devices I want, when and where I want, I won’t be buying it. Period.

They can all take their DRM, and their broadcast flags, and their rootkits, and their compact discs that aren’t really Compact Discs and shove them up their bottom-lines.


SuSE Evolution

by Volker Weber

Sehr geehrter Herr Weber,

Bitte beachten Sie folgende Stellungnahme von Holger Dyroff, Vice President Product Management Linux Platforms, Novell:

"Novell hat in Abstimmung mit seinen Kunden entschieden, sowohl Gnome als auch KDE weiterhin in allen Produkten von Novell zur Verfügung zu stellen. Beide Oberflächen werden auch in Zukunft weiterentwickelt, der Support bleibt uneingeschränkt gewährleistet. Die einzige Neuerung besteht darin, dass bei allen zukünftigen Produkten Gnome als Standard eingestellt ist, ein Wechsel auf KDE ist allerdings einfach."

Holger Dyroff steht heute für Pressegespräche zur Verfügung. Bitte richten Sie entsprechende Anfragen an oder antworten Sie auf diese E-Mail.

Was ist da bei Novell los? Eine Ankündigung aus USA und dann ein Dementi aus Deutschland. Das ist symptomatisch für den Zirkus, der dort gerade abgeht. Erst scheidet ex-ex-IBMer Richard Seibt aus, um durch ex-IBMer Tom Francese ersetzt zu werden, gestern schmiss einer der Gründer von SuSE die Brocken hin, und Chris Schläger ist auch schon futsch. Chris Egle, ehemals Pressesprecher und dann Produktmanager von SuSE Linux Professional hat sich schon vor Wochen verkrümelt.

Was steckt dahinter? Die Entscheidungen werden zunehmend in Provo getroffen. Offensichtlich in einer Art und Weise, die hier nicht akzeptiert wird. Ein Bild sagt oft mehr als tausend Worte. Zum Beispiel dieses hier:

Orlowski reads the Bill and Ray memos - so you don't have to

by Volker Weber

Ever the master of public relations, Microsoft has always been able to figure its way out of a tight spot with the use of a judiciously leaked memo.

Remember when AOL merged with Netscape back in 1998? Time to take a leak. Remember when Microsoft's cellphone strategy was struggling to get any traction? Time to take a leak. Remember when the antitrust settlement talks had hit a sticky patch? Time to take a leak. Remember when Microsoft's security woes finally became an issue? Time, once again, to take a leak.

More >

Uplink wieder normal

by Volker Weber

Letzte Woche berichtete ich über die ersten Erfahrungen mit dem Netgear DM602 DSL Modem. Zunächst hocherfreut über den schnelleren Downlink und dann betrübt über den schlechten Uplink.

Heute kam das Arcor Austauschgerät und ich habe es kurz getestet. Dann wieder das Netgear. Und nun zeigt sich, dass der Uplink auch beim Netgear normal ist. Der Downlink erreicht aktuell nicht die Werte der letzten Woche, liegt aber immer noch leicht über dem Arcor Speedmodem:


Und deshalb bleibt jetzt das Netgear dran. Mal gespannt, wie sich das noch entwickelt.

Kam eben rein

by Volker Weber

IBM Lotus Notes/Domino 7 Vorteile und Strategie - Ein Überblick für Entscheider
IBM bietet halbtägigen Firmenworkshop zur Evaluierung eines Upgrades auf IBM Lotus Notes/Domino 7 an.

Der neue IBM Workshop richtet sich an alle, die die Vorteile einer Einführung von Lotus Notes/Domino 7 für ihr Unternehmen analysieren und die Entscheidungsfindung vorbereiten möchten. Das können je nach Unternehmensstruktur und Komplexität der Notes/Domino-Umgebung Personen mit unterschiedlichem technischen Know-How und Managementverantwortung sein: Geschäftsführer, IT-Leiter, System- oder IT-Architekten bzw. Entwickler oder System-Administratoren.

IBM Experten bieten in diesem halben Tag eine kompakte Übersicht der geschäftsbezogenen und technischen Vorteile von Lotus Notes/Domino 7. Ziel ist, dass die Teilnehmer im Anschluss an den Workshop die Möglichkeiten der neuen Version beim Einsatz in ihrer Organisation fundiert einschätzen können.

Das ist doch ein schickes Angebot. IBM kommt ins Haus und erzählt, wie toll das neue Produkt ist, das man dann erwerben darf. Und damit man sich dran gewöhnt, darf man diese Werbeveranstaltung auch bezahlen:

Der Workshop wird in einer IBM Lokation oder beim Kunden vor Ort durchgeführt und der Termin kann individuell abgestimmt werden. Der Preis für einen Firmenworkshop beträgt (bei bis zu fünf Teilnehmern) € 1.000,- zzgl. MwSt. Für den sechsten und alle weiteren Teilnehmer fallen zusätzlich € 200,- zzgl. MwSt je Teilnehmer an.

Für dieses Geld kann man sich sogar eine unabhängige Meinung kaufen.

vowe's Gesetz der konstanten Armleuchterquote

by Volker Weber

Darmstadt (ots) - Zwei bislang unbekannte Jugendliche haben am Dienstagvormittag (08.11.05) versucht, eine Schutzhütte auf einem Spielplatz im Martinsviertel (Lichtenberg-/Liebfrauenstraße) in Brand zu setzen. Die Jugendlichen waren gegen 11.10 Uhr von Zeugen überrascht worden, als sie offenbar im Begriff waren, ein zum Teil über die Schutzhütte verteiltes Benzingemisch in Brand zu setzen.

Es ist vollkommen egal, in welcher Bevölkerungsgruppe man schaut. Mindestens 10% Idioten sind immer dabei.

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Charles, where is your other hand?

by Volker Weber


Why does it need 3 aerials? Because it goes to eleven.

by Volker Weber

Nikon is calling back EN-EL3 batteries

by Volker Weber


Nikon is calling back EN-EL3 batteries used in Nikon D50, D70 and D100 cameras with these batch numbers:

44AC 46AC 46AE 46AF 46AG 46AH 46AI 46AJ 46AK 46AL 46AM 46AN 46AO 46AP 46AQ 46AT 46AU 46AV 46AW 46AX 46AY 47AA 47AB 47AC 47AD 47AD 47AE 47AF 47AG 47AH 47AI 47AJ 47AK 47AL 47AM 47AN 47AO 47AP 47AQ 47AR 47AS 47AT 47AU 47AV 47AW 47AX 47AY 48AA 48AB 48AC 48AD 48AE 48AF 48AG 48AH 48AI 48AJ 48AK 48AL 49AA 49AB 49AC 49AD 49AE 49AF 49AG 49AH 49AI 49AJ 49AK 49AL 49AM 49AN 49AP 49AQ 49AR 49AS 49AT 49AU 4AAA 4AAB 4AAC 4AAD 4AAE 4AAF 4AAG 4AAH 4AAI 4AAJ 4AAK 4AAL 4AAM 4BAA 4BAB 4BAC 4BAD 4BAE 4BAF 4BAG 4BAH 4BAI 4BAJ 4BAK 4BAL 4BAN 4CAA 4CAB 4CAC 4CAD 4CAE 4CAF 4CAH 4CAI 4CAJ

Check the Nikon support site:

On receipt of your application you will be sent a pre-paid postal packet in which to return your battery. When we receive your battery it will be inspected, verified and a replacement battery will posted to the address declared during registration. Your Nikon EN-EL3 battery will be replaced free of charge with a new EN-EL3a or a new EN-EL3e battery within approximately 5-10 working days of receipt. The EN-EL3a and the EN-EL3e may be freely substituted for the EN-EL3 in all cases. Please note that in the case of high demand, returns may take longer.

Meanwhile your precious Nikon DSLR will serve as a paperweight.

Ich bin, ich kenne sehr kleines Deutschland traurig.

by Volker Weber

"versendend und anfassend" wird in versteigern angegeben. Es schliest eine "Behandlung" und ein "Verschiffen" ein. Wenn Sie dieses Einzelteil bieten, mussen Sie sein ubereinstimmen mit dem "Verschiffen und der Behandlung"

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[Danke, Jan]


by Volker Weber

Overheard today:

Microsoft Word is only suitable for short documents. If it were to handle larger documents it would be called Microsoft Text.

Do I hear Apple Pages? :-)


by Volker Weber

The hunt is over. Thanks to Mac Guidera we have found a nice place in Flagler Beach where we will be staying the week before Lotusphere. Thanks for all your help.

Autonomy buys Verity

by Volker Weber

British search software company Autonomy Corp. PLC has agreed to buy fellow search technology developer Verity Inc. in a cash deal totaling around $500 million, the companies announced today. ... In its last fiscal year, the company (Verity) had revenue of $142.6 million and net income of $7.5 million.

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Test your VoIP connection

by Volker Weber



by Volker Weber

Falls Sie in Zukunft keine weitere E-Mail erhalten wollen, klicken Sie hier um sich abzumelden. Bitte senden Sie uns keine Abmeldewünsche per E-Mail, da diese nicht bearbeitet werden können.

OPTIMAL SYSTEMS Gesellschaft für innovative Computertechnologien mbH
Cicerostraße 26 * 10709 Berlin

Der radikale Verlierer

by Volker Weber

Hans Magnus Enzensberger. Ausdrucken. Lesen.


by Volker Weber

<@Sita> war grad nen freund im hotel besuchen
<@Sita> hab an der rezeption gefragt wo sein zimmer ist
<@Sita> "er hat aber nur ein zimmer für eine person bezahlt" - "keine sorge. ich blas ihm nur einen und geh dann wieder. ich bleib nicht lange"

Big Ben under surveillance

by Volker Weber

Photo: Sam Javanrouh

Teen Sex and the Linux Desktop

by Volker Weber

Matthew Szulik, Red Hat CEO, said recently:

The [Linux desktop] has become a lot like teenage sex. A lot of people are talking about it but not many people are doing it."

Nat Friedman, VP of Linux desktop engineering at Novell, has some interesting data:

These graphs report that by age 19, 69% of American males and 77% of American females have had sexual intercourse. In fact, by age 17, about half of all teenagers have taken a ride on the wild elmo.

So, I don't know if Matthew has teenaged children or not, but if he does, I hope he's paying more attention to his Linux teams!

Need advice on two filters

by Volker Weber

I found two filters in my bag of old photo equipment. Both have 52mm threading and should fit the new lens I am getting:

  1. Hama HTMC - UV 390 (O-Haze) M52 (IV)
  2. KAISER 52mm POL-CIRC.
Can I use these filters on my new lens with a D70, or am I just messing up the camera? I think I can use the first filter as a protection for the lens and leave it on all the time. But what about the other filter? I am confused about linear and circular pol filters. This one has a metal ring that lets you turn the filter.

Confusing slides - confusing story

by Volker Weber

What is BillG telling us here? That all the "Live" products are vaporized water lifted up by hot air? The cloud on the right is already raining on "Other Software". I have seen too many Steve Shows. I can't take these overloaded Powerpoint presentations anymore.

More of these awful slides >

[via Writers Block]

Novell is standardizing on Gnome

by Volker Weber

Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols writes:

Novell is making one large strategic change. The GNOME interface is going to become the default interface on both the SLES (SuSE Linux Enterprise Server) and Novell Linux Desktop line.

KDE libraries will be supplied on both, but the bulk of Novell's interface moving forward will be on GNOME. "The entire KDE graphical interface and product family will continue to be supported and delivered on OpenSuSE," said Mancusi-Ungaro.

Since I prefer Gnome over KDE, I am completely unfazed. But I can imagine that lots of KDE lovers have their knickers in a twist now.

Ceci n'est pas un élan

by Volker Weber


Bald werewolf from Vienna

by Volker Weber

Horst makes some interesting observations:

And then there's this special case in which some men have no hair on their body and a lot of hair on their head for the first half of their life, and then they suddenly start to grow hair all over their body and lose all the hair on their head as they enter the second half of their life.

Either evolution has a twisted sense of humour, or this is proof that God exists after all.

Too many options

by Volker Weber

front page

And too many ways to present options:


Ladies and Gentlemen, this is Office 12 (FrontPage and OneNote). The next release. The one that does not suck. ;-)

Sometimes it only takes one story

by Volker Weber

Before running his Blogsmear article Dan Lyons was a known idiot only within the IBM community. Somebody who would make the wrong predictions with laser-sharp accuracy, every single time. This is business as usual where he is working. In the stock market you watch these guys. When they sell, you buy. When they buy, it's time to divest.

After his article things have improved. Now there are a lot more people who know what he is. ;-)

Und dann war da noch ...

by Volker Weber

Ein Autofahrer, der sich beliebt gemacht hat, eine nichtsnutzige Antwort, ein saublöder Dieb und zum Abschluss dies:

X: Ihr seit alle doof
Y: "Seit" schreibt man mit "d"
X: Seid wann denn das

Why Closed Doesn't Work for Collaborative Workspaces

by Volker Weber

Thoughtful as always, Michael Sampson finds a good reason why email is still the preferred collaboration tool:

This report is about why collaborative workspaces haven't been adopted, why email continues to be the default medium for communication / coordination / collaboration, and what we "the industry" need to do about it. At a fundamental level, and looking across the demands put on people today, it argues that today's collaborative workspace offerings make it more difficult for people to communicate in comparison to email. Architectural "closedness" is preventing adoption. This used to be the case with email, but it changed. It used to be the case with instant messaging, but it is changing. It is the case with collaborative workspaces, and change is needed.

More >

Netgear to the rescue

by Volker Weber


Ich habe soeben ein Netgear DM602B, das mir Karsten freundlicherweise zur Verfügung gestellt hat, statt meines Arcor Speedmodem 50z angeschlossen. Warum? Das Arcor/Zyxel signalisierte, dass etwas mit der Stromversorgung nicht stimmt: Oranges statt grünes System-LED. Wahrscheinlich also ein krankes Steckernetzteil. Das habe ich vorgestern bei Arcor reklamiert und dann folgendes Schreiben erhalten:

Sehr geehrter Herr Weber,

vielen Dank für Ihre E-Mail vom 01.11.2005.

Sie reklamieren das Ihnen zugesandte Speed-Modem.

Bitte senden Sie das defekte Modem an unseren Logistikpartner:

Logistikzentrum Arcor
Ernst - Lässig - Str. 5
09232 Hartmannsdorf

Legen Sie dieser Rücksendung bitte eine kurze, formlose Nachricht mit einem kurzen Hinweis
auf den Austausch für das gewünschte Gerät bei.

Ein Ersatzgerät für die Zeit des Austausches bieten wir leider nicht an.

Bei Fragen oder Anregungen stehen wir Ihnen gerne unter der kostenpflichtigen Service-Rufnummer 018 10 70 010 zur Verfügung.

Die Anregung gebe ich gerne hier auf meiner kostenlosen Service-Seite weiter:

Schicken Sie mir ein Austauschgerät und ich schicke Ihnen den Schrott zu, wenn Sie ihn gebrauchen können. Aber bitte in dieser Reihenfolge. Wenn Sie wollen, können Sie mich gerne vorher kostenpflichtig anrufen.

Update: Arcor darf mir jetzt gerne das defekte Speed-Modem austauschen, damit ich ein Ersatzgerät habe. Aber das Netgear gebe ich nicht mehr her. Das hat nämliche einen deutlich höheren Durchsatz. Hintergrund: Theoretisch habe ich 6000 kBit/s Downstream und 640 kBit/s Upstream. Mein Draht hat aber einen so hohen Rauschpegel, dass das Arcor Modem nur sicher mit 3500 bis maximal 4000 kBit/s synct. In der Praxis waren das so um die 400 bis maximal 450 kByte/s Durchsatz. Und wie man sehen kann, kommt es sehr wohl auf das DSL-Modem an:


Update: Schon wieder zu früh gefreut. Der Download ist zwar schneller, der Upload dafür langsamer. Rats.

Someone keeps stealing my letters

by Volker Weber


Vorsicht bei WM Options-Tickets

by Volker Weber

David wollte Tickets kaufen:

Wem noch keine ersehnten Tickets für die FIFA-WM zugelost wurden, der sollte sich beim Versuch über die sogenannten "Optionstickets" gehörig vorsehen! Die AGBs haben es gelinde gesagt in sich.

Und dann hat er festgestellt, dass er die Tickets sofort bezahlt. Auch wenn er sie gar nicht kriegen wird. Geld zurück gibt es dann nach der WM.


More >

In search of a portable password store

by Volker Weber

I need something that most likely quite a few people might need: a portable password store. I know there are brazillions of those tools out there. But they only work on selected platforms. And they are also not implemented as open source.

I think the requirements are very simple: One file to store the information, a frontend that lets you enter freeform notes and browse existing ones. The individual notes don't need any structure. Just a name that appears in the list and a text field for the payload. The backend of the application should encrypt and decrypt the store with user supplied password.

The most important feature however is that the data has to be portable. I want to see this data on a PC, on a Mac, any Palm device, Series 60 Smartphone, as well as on the Series 80 communicators and UIQ devices. For now I can live with sending the file around via Bluetooth. However, it would be interesting to design a replication mechanism between different devices.

The first implementation of an application like this could be done in Java, which would make it work on most mobile devices. If the data store is well defined one could then add more clients for Windows, Mac, Linux etc.

Has anybody started work on something like this?

Stoiber wird SPD-Chef?

by Volker Weber

Nach bewerben sich Edmund Stoiber und Horst Seehofer um führende Positionen in der Sozialdemokratischen Partei Deutschlands. Die ersten Reaktionen von Seiten der SPD waren enthusiastisch.

Dieses Jahr ist voller epochaler Ereignisse. Ein Bayer wird Papst, im Mai entleibt sich Bundeskanzler Schröder, die Europäische Union vergeigt die Verfassung und Angela Merkel die Bundestagswahl. Und an diesem Montag, einen Tag vor Allerheiligen - an Halloween, my friends! - tritt auch noch Franz Müntefering zurück, die Verkörperung der deutschen Sozialdemokratie. Aber damit nicht genug. Wie soeben aus sicherer Quelle erfahren hat, hat die Dramaturgie dieses wunderbaren Jahres ihren Höhepunkt noch nicht erreicht.

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Zip up

by Volker Weber

Are you guys aware that your Google search box is hanging out?


This is not to single out Duffbert. Seems to be a Blogsphere thing. So, if you have Blogsphere and a Google box, check out your site.

When Google dances

by Volker Weber

After the latest Google dance a lot of page ranks have changed. is still 6 (it was briefly at 7), Ed Brill is now also at 6, is already at 5, but this page is only at 4. You can help by changing your old links from to Of course you may also put this in your side bar with a catchy link title like so:

<a title="Radicati Group" href="">Radicati Group</a>

Since the page rank for this page has temporarily dropped from 6 to 4, it has fallen through to page 4 in the search results. It has not hurt the traffic though. The recent Forbes story has raised some interest.

Which reminds me: The new page about the writer, who aspires to be a journalist, does not yet have a page rank, so it could use some links as well. ;-)

<a title="Dan Lyons" href="">Dan Lyons</a>

Wofür braucht eine Partei eigentlich 45 Vorstände?

by Volker Weber

Mir schlackern in den letzten Tagen mächtig die Ohren. Ein Vorstand mit 45 Mitgliedern? Was sollen die denn machen? Drei Vorstände, fünf Vorstände, von mir aus auch acht. Aber fünfundvierzig?

Dann haben wir für den Bundestag ja auch einen Vorsitzenden, einen Bundestagspräsidenten, der sozusagen gleich nach dem Bundespräsidenten kommt. Und wenn der mal verhindert ist, braucht er natürlich einen Stellvertreter. Und wenn der dann auch nicht kann, vielleicht noch einen. Aber wie viele haben wir jetzt genau? Habe da etwas den Überblick verloren. Die SPD möchte ja gerne einen Vizekanzler haben. Aber was machen wir, wenn der auch nicht kann, oder gerade nicht den Sekretär kriegt, den er haben will? Da muss doch zur Sicherheit noch einer her. Oder fünf. Oder fünfundvierzig.

Auch ne Art von Jammern auf hohem Niveau.

Two confirmations

by Volker Weber

lotusphere logo

Today I received two confirmations for Lotusphere 2006:

Speaking at Lotusphere will be quite a change. So far I have only spoken (and written) about but never at Lotusphere. Last year I discussed an opportunity with Ed, but decided not to. This year I am going to try a panel, but I won't be the moderator. At least that is what I think right now. You never know ... ;-)

In any case: It means one more card in the deck. (plus 2005 which is missing from the picture)

Gib ma Zeitung

by Volker Weber

Repeat after me: DRM is bad for the customer

by Volker Weber

Mark explains how Sony f*cks up your Windows installation when you play (one of?) their CDs. I have seen too many hosed Windows systems to tolerate this behaviour.

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I explain difficult concepts in simple ways. For free, and for money. Clue procurement and bullshit detection.


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