So...two years ago I did an interview with Advertising Age (Dot-coms prep for Bowl Traffic Jams
) about the risks of blowing your wad on an ad at the Super Bowl and then failing to have your site live up to the demand.
As usually happens, most of my comments never made it into the article, but the crux was that the risk of damaging your reputation by having your site crash was far greater than whatever value you'd get by blowing your wad on an Ad.
So, in honor of this years inductees into this stupidity, I created a new category to track web site failures.
Thank you AT&T Wireless for reminding me with your mLife
web site and ad that even megacorporations can totally screw up a web site launch.
e.p.c. posted this at 19:56 GMT on 3-Feb-2002 .
Finally after about 90 minutes, AT&T Wireless has their mLife website back up.
e.p.c. posted this at 20:58 GMT on 3-Feb-2002 .
Ok...that was a decent football game.
I watched two games this year, both ended up having the Patriots playing.
Personally, the game in the snow with the Raiders was better but somehow I doubt they'll ever play a Super Bowl outdoors north of the Mason Dixon line.
e.p.c. posted this at 21:15 GMT on 3-Feb-2002 .
Closing the evening out watching
some xhtml education.
e.p.c. posted this at 22:11 GMT on 3-Feb-2002 .
Ok, the evening's not quite closed yet.
Had to clean up the current
house for the appraisal tomorrow and pay off some bills related to the new
And tweak the html here yet again.
e.p.c. posted this at 00:27 GMT on 4-Feb-2002 .
Ok...shutting down for the night.
e.p.c. posted this at 00:40 GMT on 4-Feb-2002 .
Take the "A" train...not!
Took the A today and spent nearly an hour trying to traverse the four
miles from Brooklyn Heights to midtown.
The train I
was on was actually ok, but the train just ahead of
it (which I intentionally missed)
Unfortunately with subways, the chances of passing another train are
e.p.c. posted this at 12:07 GMT on 4-Feb-2002 .
Hmm...the only problem I see with this mailing-to-weblog is that I
believe my other mail is being swallowed up and thrown away.
e.p.c. posted this at 12:12 GMT on 4-Feb-2002 .
So I set up posting via email last night and pointed to one of my accounts.
I have no defintie evidence, but apparently "Radio Userland" fetches the mail and discards any mail which doesn't have the magic subject string.
Again, no direct evidence except that I expected multiple notes to be in that mailbox this morning, and none were.
The posting interface worked more or less as expected, except with the surprise discard feature.
There doesn't appear to be a log of mail fetching activities, so I can't tell exactly what happened.
I'm hoping it's something I screwed up, as I think it's a neat feature.
e.p.c. posted this at 23:20 GMT on 4-Feb-2002 .
So...I've turned off the post-by-email interface until I find a POP account that I can dedicate for that purpose.
That experience was a little frustrating (if only because "Radio Userland" didn't log any of the mail activities so I don't know if anything other than junk or bulk mail was lost).
Last night was the night of unscrewing 1000 screws.
Ok..perhaps there weren't that many, however in order to get the closets fixed up in the new house I had to strip out all the various bits and pieces added to them by previous owners.
One of them apparently had a thing for screws since many of the braces had not one or two but six to eight screws (we're talking pieces of wood or plastic not more than a few inches long by a couple inches wide).
Perhaps someone got to liking their power screwdriver a bit too much in the past.
Other new house news...the DSL was installed.
I have no idea what the configuration information is since the new ISP hasn't sent that along yet but the modem connected fine.
Today's test is to go over and plug in a laptop to see if it's automatically configured via DHCP or not.
e.p.c. posted this at 07:54 GMT on 6-Feb-2002 .
Ok...I've reenabled post-by-mail via a separate account.
Let's see if this works.
e.p.c. posted this at 09:10 GMT on 8-Feb-2002 .
Spent most of today in meetings refining our product plan, will type up
the requirements this weekend.
Dinner tonight is at
Suspect we'll cab home.
This weekend has some running (well, walking in my case) in the NYRRC
race, followed by the monthly viewing of LOTR.
e.p.c. posted this at 23:39 GMT on 8-Feb-2002 .
So, while I got email posting working again, i got tripped up by Norton Antivirus.
See, I'd installed NAV2001 on my laptop in September.
Some time in December it got hosed and I removed it.
When I went to reinstall, all I could find was the trialware NAV2002, so I installed that instead.
Trialware is designed to be annoying so that you license it.
NAV2002 is nice because it inserts itself transparently into the protocol stack (well, that's what it looks like to me), so email, web, etc get filtered automatically without specifically configuring each application.
Even "Radio Userland" got filtered.
So, when I arrived home, there were a zillion dialog boxes from NAV's license manager (something called vBox) complaining that it could not find a valid license.
Radio, in turn, had an error up that each time it tried to connect to the POP server it received an error.
Given that it does this every minute, I was glad to see only one error dialog.
Net: now I'm trying to install the license for NAV2002, however it doesn't appear you can just buy the license, you have to re-download the entire 22Mb package.
e.p.c. posted this at 23:44 GMT on 8-Feb-2002 .
Oh, and while I'm at it.
This is the first opening night of the Olympic Games in six years I've had free to actually enjoy and watch the ceremonies.
I've celebrated this freedom by completing ignoring the opening ceremonies.
e.p.c. posted this at 23:45 GMT on 8-Feb-2002 .
A number of friends are around town this weekend, mostly in the northern
All week we couldn't get together for one reason or another, but figured
we'd get together this weekend.
So...here I am planning to take the train up to White Plains when I get
that queasy "I ate something I shouldn't have" feeling (either the
chicken salad sandwich for lunch, or the combined junk food-sushi
bonanza from yesterday's viewing of LoTR:TFotR
So, now I'm the one bagging on getting together.
Argh argh argh.
e.p.c. posted this at 14:59 GMT on 10-Feb-2002 .
I'm trying to figure out how to add a calendar interface to the archives but failing miserably...suspect this is easy to do and I'm just stumbling.
e.p.c. posted this at 15:42 GMT on 10-Feb-2002 .
Hmm...found a definite bug in the mail-interface (though, it's probably a safety feature).
For whatever reason, URLs are escaped, but only when the post is relayed to a Manila server.
The post appears fine on my flat weblog at http://home.earthlink.net/~epcostello/wwwlogue/
e.p.c. posted this at 17:15 GMT on 10-Feb-2002 .
I thought Enron's Last Year: Web of Details Did Enron In as Warnings Went Unheeded
in today's New York Times was excellent.
It seems pretty clear that the accountants and numbers jockeys were more concerned with coming up with new ways of manipulating the numbers than in maintaining any semblance of truth in the numbers reported to the public.
e.p.c. posted this at 18:44 GMT on 10-Feb-2002 .
Hmmm...when I load epc.editthispage.com via Opera, most of the
navigation disappears and only one story is listed.
This is odd since the HTML is pretty generic, not IE or NS specific.
e.p.c. posted this at 16:16 GMT on 12-Feb-2002 .
At Town Hall, watching Martha & Rufus Wainwright.
e.p.c. posted this at 19:52 GMT on 13-Feb-2002 .
Unfortunately there's lots of feedback.
e.p.c. posted this at 19:54 GMT on 13-Feb-2002 .
So last night I got to catch up with Cam, Emma, Pete & Rebecca (hi
guys!), then later Lisa & I saw Rufus Wainwright at Town Hall. The show
was a bit of a family act since his sister Martha opened, and his mother
and aunt (better known as the McGarrigle sisters) chimed in on a couple
Unfortunately the sound system had a number of feedback problems early
on in the show, forcing Martha offstage early, luckily the problems
didn't resurface during the second half of the show (these were
Lisa & I spent the night at the new Times Square W and enjoyed being
able to sleep in and get breakfast in bed (since both of us were within
walking distance to our respective offices).
e.p.c. posted this at 10:05 GMT on 14-Feb-2002 .
In the crime of sharing:
How excess legislation will kill your freedom of expression
Perry Barlow writes: And just as sharing makes us civilized, it's
sharing that makes civilization. It lets us build a great collective
work from the exchange of stories, myths, songs, poems, facts, jokes,
beliefs, scientific discoveries, elegant engineering hacks, and all of
the other products of human thought and discourse.
I know that this is a fairly obvious observation.
That's why I'm stunned that so many kinds of sharing have suddenly, without public debate, become criminal acts.
For instance, lending a book to a friend is still all right, but letting him read the same book electronically is now a theft.
e.p.c. posted this at 12:36 GMT on 14-Feb-2002 .
Hmm...think I need to look at Radio 8 this weekend.
Radio 7 seems to consistently have problems posting to epc.editthispage.com (the anchor tags get escaped) even while posting ok to the mirrored site on Earthlink.
e.p.c. posted this at 22:16 GMT on 14-Feb-2002 .
Picked up a new car tonight.
Let's just say it's not a Prius or Impact.
Though it is of the Honda family of cars.
Just, well, larger.
And, well, it fails the "economy car" test, however it does have a nifty uLEV sticker on it.
e.p.c. posted this at 22:18 GMT on 14-Feb-2002 .
Oh, and a minor setback at work tonight.
See, the office is on the ninth floor of a midtown Manhattan building.
Many of the other tenants are in the "garment" industry.
Today the phrase "sweatshop" took on a new meaning as apparently the factory on the eighth floor got a little too hot and caught fire.
I don't need to hear This building is on fire
twice to know to move.
I have the routine down pat, laptop into hibernation mode, slam everything interesting into my bag, jacket on, etc.
Was out of the door in under a minute.
Although smoke wasn't visible, it was in the air.
I walked quickly down the nine flights (and noted along the way that the fire doors were pretty much open the whole way down, some even wedged open).
Once on the street I let a couple people know I was leaving, and went over to Lisa's office on 57th & Madison.
Have already had a bit too much smoke in the last few months for my taste.
e.p.c. posted this at 22:23 GMT on 14-Feb-2002 .
And an update on the office fire: apparently the damage was contained to the eighth floor (right below our offices though).
Apparently our offices did get damaged a wee bit by FDNY
to gain access, nothing serious.
Will learn more in the morning.
e.p.c. posted this at 22:26 GMT on 14-Feb-2002 .
Thanks to the NYTimes
for wiping out $5/share of IBM today.
e.p.c. posted this at 22:05 GMT on 15-Feb-2002 .
The plan is to go away for the weekend, but so far we're enjoying a nice lazy Saturday morning.
e.p.c. posted this at 07:56 GMT on 16-Feb-2002 .
Just got back from a weekend in
Highlights included spotting some planet or another (I'm thinking it was Jupiter again, but not sure) Saturday night and reading
When Genius Failed
a history of Long-Term Capital Management.
We also ate at Pacific East a couple of nights.
The food was excellent...but the service was, well, not fun.
e.p.c. posted this at 17:21 GMT on 18-Feb-2002 .
Still am still trying to get an archive calendar working in Radio 7 with no luck.
e.p.c. posted this at 18:07 GMT on 18-Feb-2002 .
Interesting article: Supreme Court to Intervene in Internet Copyright
: The Supreme Court agreed Tuesday to intervene in a fight over copyrights, deciding whether Congress has sided too heavily with writers
and other inventors.
e.p.c. posted this at 10:12 GMT on 19-Feb-2002 .
And from the funny-but-not-funny file, the NY County Jury System refuses to believe that I do not live in Manhattan.
In brief, I moved from Battery Park City in Manhattan to Sydney, Australia in mid-2000 for five months, then briefly returned to the Upper West side of Manhattan
before settling in in Brooklyn Heights in January 2001.
My mistake appears to have been in getting a PO Box to consolidate all of the junk mail I was getting as the NYS Jury System apparently now believes I live in
the Bowling Green Post Office (I don't. Really).
e.p.c. posted this at 10:20 GMT on 19-Feb-2002 .
Study: Ability to invent inspires engineers
. A new survey aims to dispel stereotypes about engineers, emphasizing that most decided to enter their professions in order "to invent and discover." [CNET News.com
e.p.c. posted this at 18:10 GMT on 20-Feb-2002 .
Still working my way through When Genius Failed...
Have taken up reading (well, attempting to) on the subway.
e.p.c. posted this at 18:14 GMT on 20-Feb-2002 .
Finished When Genius Failed: The Rise and Fall of Long-Term Capital
I thought it was a good read, though the author seemed to focus a bit
too much on the alleged braininess of the partners in LTCM.
e.p.c. posted this at 01:48 GMT on 21-Feb-2002 .
Saturday we attended the Armory Show
Apparently it's one of the largest art-forsale shows on the East Coast.
All I know is that after several hours of wandering the piers my feet ached.
e.p.c. posted this at 09:23 GMT on 24-Feb-2002 .
Today I'm going to see the NY Knicks vs LA Lakers.
If I were to bet, I'd bet that the Lakers will win (the Knicks haven't one any of the games I've managed to go to this year).
e.p.c. posted this at 09:24 GMT on 24-Feb-2002 .
In today's NY Times I found a rather eerie photo taken from the 19th floor of my former home.
The article is Deciding Whether to Make a Home Near Ground Zero.
e.p.c. posted this at 09:27 GMT on 24-Feb-2002 .
Spent the morning at the new house, had hoped to work from there.
However, the ADSL connection via Cloud9
Spent a bit of time on the phone with the support folks and the problem
appears to be our local phone monopoly, Verizon
The modem gets DSL tone, everything configures ok, but there is no
routing to or from the central office.
So...Cloud9 is opening a trouble ticket with Verizon, cautioning that it
will take up to a week for them to act on it.
e.p.c. posted this at 13:13 GMT on 25-Feb-2002 .
So, today we got a call from Cloud9 saying that Verizon had fixed the DSL and could we please confirm.
I trudge over to the house, set up my stinkpad, and no, nothing worked yet again.
Reset the mode, tried a number of different things (including dialing in via Earthlink to see if I could ping the other side of the modem) but no juice.
e.p.c. posted this at 22:10 GMT on 26-Feb-2002 .
Oh, and the painters came and started painting the new house.
Two weeks to move day.
e.p.c. posted this at 22:10 GMT on 26-Feb-2002 .
A little snow this morning but it's gone now.
e.p.c. posted this at 16:42 GMT on 27-Feb-2002 .
Argh! Our office network ISP is down.
e.p.c. posted this at 09:52 GMT on 28-Feb-2002 .
Good thing that analog modems still work.
In case anyone's curious, our ISP is
No eta on the network returning to life, it has been out since 2:00 a.m.
EST (hmm, sounds like someone screwed up a change).
e.p.c. posted this at 10:10 GMT on 28-Feb-2002 .