Monthly Archives: April 2006

iPod Competitors Don’t Compete

Why is it that the dozens of digital audio player makers that try and make their living fighting over the relatively small number of people who aren’t buying iPods are fixated on competing with each other, rather than Apple?

I mean, if they were serious about winning away the increacing numbers of iPod owners who might be looking to upgrade, they’d support the unprotected AAC format that most iPod users have ripped their CD collection into.

Instead they support MP3 (because it’s ubiquitious), Microsoft’s WMA standard (because Microsoft has given them strong incentives to), and maybe the odd other format.

Why are they behaving in such a clueless manner? I suspect that Microsoft’s WMA licensing arrangement has something to do with it.

Today’s Notes

I upgraded my blog to WordPress 2 last night, and now I’m trying to get Dave Winer’s OPML editor working with it. It seems to be working, I was able to do a test post. Now I’m experimenting with it a bit more.

I’d tried to get it running with WordPress 1.5.3, but had given up when it didn’t work. I’d assumed I needed to use a more recent version. I now realize that I’d missed a setting. I think it was probably trying to connect to

Hmmm, the OPML editor seems to be munging my textile markup. Bummer. Paragraph spacing with my stylesheet also looks horrible. Looks like a break is getting inserted after each paragrah. I’m not sure why. Seems to be an intereaction with Textile, because it goes away if I disable the Textile plugin.

In other news, It’s almost a month after the launch of Oblivion, and I’m still contemplating doing an upgrade to my nearly brand new 3D card.

I’ve got a eVGA 7800gt now, and I could upgrade to a 7900gt using eVGA’s “step up” program for only about $60, but it’s pretty clear that Oblivion is running better on ATI cards at the high end and down into the mid-range.

I’d originally contemplated getting an x1900 xt, but it’s pretty clear at this point that a x1800xl would do the job nicely. The x1900 gt should be announced next week, which might also be an interesting option.

If I go that route, I’m going to have to eBay my existing card, which is more of a hassle. I’ve considered doing the trade-up and then selling the brand-new card on eBay, which is even more of a hassle, but might cut my economic losses.

In still other news, I’ve been banned from the official Oblivion forums for a day because of a post I made pretending I was an infant who could do nothing but cry. It actually feels good to have expressed myself, but it hardly seems fair that people who behave similarly don’t get the boot. They’ll make multiple posts asking vague questions and then expect other people to do all the work of figuring out what they are really asking asking, much like a baby who cries until their parents figure out what they want. Only these posters aren’t babies, and the other forum members aren’t their parents.

Stupid Microsoft Download Trick

Microsoft has released a free version of Microsoft SQL Server called “Microsoft SQL Server Express Edition”: Their hope is, in part, to compete better for mindshare with with “mySQL”: and “Postgress”: among price concious developers.

It looks to be a fairly capable offering, so I was going to give it a try. Unfortunately, for some bizzare reason, Microsoft’s servers are only delivering it at 30kb/s. Since I chose the “advanced version” which comes with various extra features, that means I’ve been waiting for 40 minutes, and I’ve got another 40 minutes to go.

I could have downloaded the latest version of Postgres with bittorrent and installed it by now.

Boot Camp for Gamers?

In a suprisingly pragmatic move, Apple has “announced support for dual booting”: the new Intel Macs into Windows. They’ve updated the system firmware to support booting WindowsXP, and they are also providing Windows drivers for the core peripherals. This comes just a few weeks after the hacking community managed to accomplish the “same thing on their own”:

I suspect that this could be very popular with gamers, especially once the tower Intel Macs are released. It’ll give them the chance to have a nice groovy apple multimedia experience without having to spring for a separate PC to have access to the large numbers of Windows-only games.