There's a part in the 4th movement of Beethoven's 9th Symphony, about 15 minutes into it, when the soloists have finished their initial turn and the strings and the woodwinds and the horns have been chasing a melody around for a few pages, right when things slow down and a simple fanfare is repeated 3 times by the horns and strings, just before the choir lets loose with
"Freude, schoener Goetterfunken, Tochter aus Elysium, Wir betreten feuertrunken, Himmlische dein Heiligtum. Deine Zauber binden wieder, Was die Mode streng geteilt; Alle Menschen werden Brueder, Wo dein sanfter Fluegel weilt. "
In that moment, in that pause before the onrushing storm, where you know just how wonderful the next 5 minutes are going to be, in that very moment, if you listen hard enough, you can hear the voice of God, speaking through man.
There was a knock on our door last night from an eager and earnest young man who wanted to sell me a newspaper subscription.
Newspapers. How quaint.
I've got a desktop at work, a laptop and Wi-Fi at home, and a web-capable Blackberry for everywhere else. I can be online almost anywhere I want to be, so why do I need to carry around newspaper?
It's not that I don't think the news-gathering part of journalism is going away, it's the medium. the paper part itself, that's soon to be history. Azcentral.com is part of my netvibes home page, as is Canoe.ca and La Nacion. There's no way a paper newspaper will ever give me coverage that broad, and there's no way it'll give me coverage as detailed on the topics that interest me as much as Strategypage.com, Brand Autopsy and TUAW.com can.
So I locked down my machines, removed admin access for the most-used accounts, and added ClamAV. Still, it kinda sucks that I need to worry about this, now. The last 10 years were fun. The last worm/virus et al I got was on OS8, I think...
This post over at Seth's blog and this little bit o' data about procrastination (I *finally* got around to reading it...) have got me into a bout of serious navel-gazing. I'm not one that's been blessed with self-ignorance, I need to know the why of what I do before I do it. I've not gone into myself for anwsers for a while, and I don't like it. So it's time to dive into myself and see what I turn up.
Don brought this to my attention, and I think it's a little more worrisome for shooters than he does. Getty is as big a stock photography company gets, and with this purchase, the price floor for legitimate stock photography just got lowered a few stories. Quite a few stories. iStockphoto is no longer a quaint internet site, it's now a legitimate player in the stock business.
True, their quality is spotty, at best. If I need cheap stock for actual client work, my first choice is Comstock. There's very few needles in iStockphoto's haystack. But the prices they charge reflect that.
Gee, a prime product placement in Ocean's Twelve didn't work? Go figure.
I love this line from the article linked above:
"At the launch of the Dell DJ, some observers said that this was the death knell for the iPod, because Dell would use its size and marketing muscle to squash the upstart, as it already sold so many more computers than Apple."
This is a BIG wakeup call for the corporate world. There are rules to every game, some of them written down, some of not. And trying tricks and deceitful tactics is now off-limits for respectable companies, something that needs to be done.
I think that's a good thing. Consumers have been fixated with megapixels as the sole measurement of camera quality for too long. Trying to explain file sizes, pixel density, and lens quality is too much for them, but it's a needed part of the conversation.
What I'm not so happy about is the trend for digital cameras to have different styles and looks from one model to the other, even in the same brand. It's confusing to the user to have to hunt and search for the right button on each new camera they buy. The were standards in 35mm cameras, we knew where the shutter release was, where the rewind release button was, where the cable release went. Why can't we have that in digital camera as well?
XPS 200: (Small form factor to compete with the iMac's size) Pentium® D Processor 820 with Dual Core Technology (2.80GHz, 800FSB) (A little faster, but the iMac's got the newer chip, the Yonah)
Operating System: Genuine Windows® XP Professional (Equivalent networking capability as OSX. And OSX has features now that Microsoft hopes to have with Vista. Sometime soon. Honest.)
Video Cards: 128MB PCI Express™ x16 ATI Radeon™ X600 SE (Same as the iMac)
Memory: 512MB Dual Channel DDR2 SDRAM at 533MHz (2x256M) (Same as the iMac)
Hard Drives: 250GB Serial ATA Hard Drive (7200RPM) (Same as the iMac)
CD or DVD Drive: 8X CD/DVD burner (DVD+/-RW) (iMac is CD-R/W,DVD-R only)
Floppy Drive and Media Reader: No Floppy Drive Included (Ditto)
Modem: Integrated 56K Data / Fax modem IM [313-2823] 14 ($50 more on the iMac)
Monitors: SAVE $100!! 20 inch UltraSharp™ 2005FPW Widescreen Digital Flat Panel (The exact same Samsung screen the iMac has)
Sound: Integrated 7.1 Channel Audio (Same as the iMac)
Speakers: No speakers (Speakers are required to hear audio from your system) (iMac has a small pair of speakers, you really need more, though)
Keyboard: Dell USB Keyboard EK [310-5234] 4
Mouse: Dell Optical USB Mouse (Same as the iMac, which now comes with the Mighty Mouse standard)
Office Software (not included in Windows XP): Microsoft Works Suite 2006 - Includes MICROSOFT WORD plus much more! (iMac: Pages +Keynote+Mail+Address Book: $50)
Network Interface: Integrated Intel® PRO 10/100 Ethernet (iMac has built-in Gigabit Ethernet as well)
Miscellaneous: Award Winning Service and Support (If "Worst" is an award...)
Hardware Warranty: 1Yr Ltd Warranty, 1Yr At-Home Service, and 1Yr HW Warranty Support (iMac has no in-home warranty service, length of time is identical)
Anti-Virus/Security Suite: McAfee SecurityCenter with VirusScan, Firewall, Spyware Removal, 15-months (Good luck after that 15 months is up!)
Dell Digital Entertainment: Starter Entertainment Pack -Basic digital Music, Photo, and Casual Gaming SEP [412-0865][412-0856] 399 Separate Photo & Music Software: Musicmatch Plus by Yahoo! Music- Music Player. Included in Deluxe and Prem MMPLUSB [412-0843][412-0838] 220 Separate Photo & Music Software: Corel Photo Album 6 Premium -Photo Management. Included in Deluxe and Prem DPSPREM [412-0846][412-0839] 220 Enhanced Software for CD or DVD Burner: Combo: Sonic DigitalMedia and MyDVD Plus (DVD+RW only) RNDVDLX [430-1353] 72
(These last three are an attempt to mimic the music/movies/DVD functions of iLife, which comes with the iMac. And it doesn't include iWeb or Garageband, so kick in for that, too.)
Adobe Software: Adobe® Acrobat® Reader 6.0 (iMacs read/write to PDF natively)
Dial-Up Internet Access: 6 Months of America Online Membership Included AOLDHS [412-0687][420-3224][412-0787][420-5256] 37 (yay!)
Wireless Networking Solution: Dell Wireless; 1450 WLAN (802.11a/b/g) USB 2.0 DT Adapter (Built-in on the iMac)
No Bluetooth option. No webcam built-in, both come with the iMac. And then there's Front Row...
The total from Dell: $1864.oo.
The 20" iMac, to the same specs? $1827.00, with Bluetooth, webcam and Front Row included, too.
And to address the "underpowered" issue, might I direct your attention over here.