Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ category

A Special Soul

January 5, 2006

A dear friend of my wife’s is passing away before our eyes.

Lorie Anaya, a wife and a mother of two small precious little ones has given so much to so many. If you’re a praying person… offer some prayers for her family. Lorie’s probably going to… die in the hospital.

Her life has served as an inspiration to so many… me, my wife Michelle and countless others.

Please, prayers and donations to the family (or to your favorite charity to honor someone who would have done it for you if she but could).

Seth Godin Wants You To Save Someone $100

December 19, 2005

Seth Godin’s tooling up for another invite only event going. This time a new twist… Any member who mentions another attendees blog gets that blog owner (who also happens to be attending) a $100 credit.

In the day/age of trackbacks I think Seth could be making a lot of $100 credits to a lot of people fishing for mentions. Of course, he could also be making a pile of dough (I hope).

I’d ask you to mention this site, but I might be applying my boss for one of the ten free not-for-profit slots. So, a mention, while nice, won’t help us out (unless Seth’s cutting checks).

Training Wheels Are Off!

December 12, 2005

OK, the BFD is unleashed on the world now and I’m happy to spill the beans.

For the longest time (has it really been two years in the making?) we’ve been working on pitching, justifying and building out a search engine for a nearly one million document large repository of data.

It’s hosted on Apple gear. Is built entirely in Java. Powered by Lucene. And runs in JBoss and is WICKED cool.

http://search.datapages.com/ is the subscriber address. In all liklihood you’ll be blocked unless you’ve paid for full-access (you’ll know if you did).

However, http://payperview.datapages.com/ is the open access site. This one will let you search about 70,000 or so articles dating back to 1917 and purchase any or all of them at $10 a pop.

Now, while this might be one of those GROOOOAANNNN kind of things to you I have to tell you I have a whole new appreciation for “search” as an application. IT AIN’T EASY SISTA! I evaluated a TON of solutions out there: Apple’s Spotlight; SearchBlox (which is still awesome); and a score of others… Lucene kept coming back as the one to beat (open source, platform agnostic, portable, scaleable…)

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS
Hats off to two EXTREMELY fine geniuses: Fred Toth and Jay Allen Hill. They are truly marvelous, dedicated, talented professionals who brought their creative problem solving skills to bear on some pretty funky stuff and pulled off programming miracles on a routine basis. We could not do this project without their involvement. There’s more to do and I hope they’ll stick with us through the next iterations. They’re both a pleasure to work with.

Michael McDonald of Pinehurst Technologies… Thanks for the introductions to Fred on election day 2004. Time has flown!

My bosses here at the AAPG and Datapages. I really appreciate the trust you’ve placed in me to get this deal launched.

The folks at Petris Technologies who have hosted the searchable archives for the past many years. These guys did a great job and we’ll be looking forward to the next business opportunity that bring us together.

My staff – Anne, Paula, Bev, Carol, Sandra and JingYao. Guys… there’s no way this thing would have come together without your can-do attitude. I know the availability’s been spotty for the past year (probably will be for another year). But, this deal is a testament to “hire people better than yourself” cliche. I have no worries because of each of you!

Last and MOST important – my family!
Michelle, Ian and Logan have put up with so much BS from me for the past two years I’m amazed I’m still married. I’m even more amazed there’s a little girl on the way! ((When did THAT happen!?)) I see authors pour doting praise on their families for putting up with their project/profession. NOW I appreciate what that all means. It sure helps to be blessed with a bride who’s understanding and encouraging. Also helps to have munchins who don’t know any better! :)

Conversational Farsi Anyone?

December 1, 2005

So, here I am in Boston improving my chops a LOT on OSX Server.

Arek Dreyer is the instructor Apple brought into 111 Huntington and he is absolutely stellar! Reminds me of the old Apple SE Summer Camp days when Apple brought out all the young turks to make us smart. MAN! That feels like yesterday.

Anyway, in Boston… @ the 111. Nice place. Connected to this mall. So, I go down to have breakfast on Tuesday and among lots of other things (like John Battelle’s “The Search”) I find this great little sidewalk vendor pumping out some slick video by way of one of the newer G5 iMacs. That was enough to draw me in. On closer inspection this is a language development company called Rossetta Stone.

I speak French (somewhat) and can read it well enough to know if I’m being directed to the kitchen, a submarine, the bathroom or to eat a cat. I like languages and have had some interest in middle eastern languages and Chinese for a long time (oil country languages if that wasn’t obvious). French was a high school diversion that happened to be flush with all the pretty girls (different story)…

So, I try this software out over lunch and I’ll be dog goned if it didn’t just blow my socks off! I bought both Farsi (module 1) and Arabic (modules 1 and 2) and highly recommend anyone who’s serious to check this stuff out.

Tivo2Go… Should Just Go Away

November 21, 2005

That didn’t take long and again was predictable as rain in London. Tivo’s supposedly going to announce their 2Go service has MPEG4 conversion capabilities. Big whoopdidoo.

Tivo HAD to preempt Apple’s move into the video space. Funny thing is Apple’s simply going to completely obliterate the first mover advantage when they make their move (whenever that is).

Face it, Apple’s dominance in the home entertainment sphere is growing leaps and bounds. Front Row is the latest volley of entertainment oriented ammo to come out of Cupetino. Have you tried this stuff!? Yegads it’s awesome. My wife, who is pretty much a sideline afficianado of all things tech appreciates ease of use. Apple’s done a superb job of minimizing, dumming down but maintaining the elegance.

If Michelle gets it and likes it… I’m sure the next several million people will too. No wonder no one’s buying Tivo (the company). Everyone’s wondering what killer move Apple’s going to make.

Tiger Server Certification Weeks Off

November 15, 2005

So, yeah, OK…

Six weeks from now I’m going to be Tiger Server Certified. That just rocks in absolutely every conceivable way.

Yipppeeee!

Spotlight Module & Apache. Sweet Redemption.

November 2, 2005

Damn! Seriously, I mean DAMMIT GANG! This is a GREAT day!

Before I deleted my previous batch of posts leading up to the Tiger launch I was bitching mightily at Apple about their lame (yes, I still feel this way) lack of documenting the apple_spotlight_module for the Apache server built into X Server.

That all turned upside down this evening for me (no thanks to Apple’s technical writers).

All I wanted was a way to hook into the awesome funk of Spotlight piped through to a web interface. Sure, I could have gone with some hacked up PERL mess or WebStar or God-only-knows-what-else. But it wouldn’t have been Spotlight. So, today… (grinning like a little boy who peaked into his Christmas presents a little early) I got my wish!

This site posts the only working solution I’ve found and I’ve looked about as hard and long as anyone on this pretty blue marble we live on. Kris, my hat’s off to you man! I get a ton of click-throughs from Google and Technorati on “spotlight apache” searches and I hope this makes a lot of joy happen out there.

To see it working (I never said it was pretty… remember that) go here and search on the word “discovery”. The tips at AFP548 are helpful too if you’re planning on deploying this beyond something of a personal nature such as searching for files while you’re away from the office.


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