More to come soon!
More to come soon!
Well, the friends and family are starting to roll into town, all the final plans are coming together for the big day, and I make my last blog entry as a single man :)
It’s pretty crazy to think that it was six months ago that we got married in Mexico. One thing we’ve said more than a few times since then is that we’re pretty proud of making this Fridays wedding all come together in such a short amount of time. If you think about it, most couples typically have at least a year long engagment to plan and save for their wedding, and even then it’s pretty hectic. So for us to save and plan in half the time, well.. that makes it just that much more hectic, but we think we did pretty good all things considered.
There’s still a lot to do though, so I’ll be away from computers for the most part the rest of this week, and of course, over the weekend untill next Tuesday.
For those of you we’ll see this Friday, we’re really excited to see you all, and to relax and have a good time with you. For those of you who couldn’t make it, we’ll be thinking of you too, and will probably have a beer or three for ya :)
If anyone needs directions to the wedding, there is a map at our wedding site. Also, there may be a suprise showing up on our wedding site too this Friday :)
Have a nice weekend everyone!
That the weather for the wedding next Friday is as nice as it is today. 78F, not a cloud in the sky, and a slight breeze (but not off the lake).. My statistical nature tells me that the chances of two nice Fridays in a row is low, but that doesn’t stop me from hoping!
“AOL doesn’t really seem to have a motive for supporting Mozilla and Netscape anymore,” said Jeff Howden, a Web applications developer and founder of evolt.org
I’m pretty shocked, but not sure by what I’m shocked the most at yet. That Jeffy is claiming the ‘founder’ title (something that when I did, and rightfully so, led to a lynching), or that they used an obviously biased Microsoft fanboy for insight on Mozilla. In either case, where’s the outrage? Send feedback to Wired (oh the irony).
It’s too bad it had to end for Netscape, mostly because of how much they started. There are many memories I’ve got of a company that represented
a brand new excitement and way of doing things.
I can remember the first time I used Netscape in the summer of 1995 on the campus of
Winona State University where I was working as a counselor for ‘at risk’ teens at the time.
On breaks or on weekends (when we weren’t partying the way college freshmen do) I’d use
a pretty decent computer lab at Winona State filled with Mac 9200′s to use my favorite online BBS, ISCA.
They were the fastest PC’s on campus, and also the only ones that were running Netscape 2.0, so they
were in hot demand even in the ghost town atmosphere of a college campus during the summer.
Of course, this notion of the ‘World Wide Web’ was pretty new, and totally radical in it’s thinking.
We all know the story no doubt, of how a little upstart company called Netscape had released this
piece of software called a ‘Browser’ that would let you view multi-media information
from around the world…
Although we take it for granted these days, I’m stilled awed at times, as I was then, about that
possibility. You can not only view pictures and read words created by people all over the world,
but you could also create your own pictures and words for the rest of the world to see. I’d
never ‘met’ or interacted with anyone outside North America before that.
I wasn’t the only one who was astonished by that either, because the little Netscape browser
became the hottest application on the market selling at around $40/copy. As a result of that,
Netscape the company became pretty hot themselves. So hot, that when they went public in 1994,
they shattered almost every record for first day public offerings as people realized the potential
power the Internet had, and that this single company had the software that everyone would need
to unlock that potential.
That IPO ushered in the ‘dot com’ era, where every company that had a .com after it, or an ‘e’ before it
was a hot commodity, they sky was the limit, and the future was happening now.
A while after they became a Wall St. darling and made instant millionaires out of many of their employees,
I got to intern at Netscape for a summer. There’s literally no way to describe the environment in that
place at that time. There was a constant buzz in the air, whether it was about changing the world, excitement about doing something
‘cool’, software engineers in shorts and purple hair, a camera hooked up to the Web that posted constant pictures
of a fish tank(one of the most popular sites ever on the Web BTW was that fish-cam), or a new attitude about
jobs and lifestyles.
Netscape was going to rule the world for a while, and it was pretty cool to be
involved with that at the height of the good times.
Naturally, the good times didn’t last as time flew by. Microsoft used illegal tactics to undermine Netscape’s
browser (for which they were later convicted, but not punished), and the bubble burst. What was once
a company that was going to revolutionize the world was now being picked over by America Online as an
acquisition target. In my head, the day when AOL acquired Netscape was pretty much the death of Netscape.
Thankfully, Netscape did make one last revolutionary move before their time was up. They released the
source code for their flagship product, the Netscape Navigator browser, to the public, and would continue
to develop it as an open source project called Mozilla.
Just like I have fond memories of Netscape, I’ve also got them about Mozilla. April 1 1999 was the ‘official’
release of the source code, and I remember being online on IRC at midnight waiting for the source code
to hit the FTP servers. People were like sharks waiting to get at that code, and I was right there with them.
When it did finally hit, and everyone jumped on that FTP server.
And like sharks frenzying over scraps of an injured seal,
it was almost impossible to get. Even more funny was that once we all did have the source code,
it was impossible to compile. In order to make Netscape Navigator suitable to be released under an open source
license, they had to rip out huge amounts of proprietary code that was licensed from other companies.
Ripping out that licensed proprietary code to make it really open source left huge gaps, and I remember it was
like a week until some guy got it to even compile, but when he did, everyone was totally amazed and wanted
him to release his source tree, so they too could get Navigator to compile.
It was really funny, because in the Mozilla community, the Netscape guys were like, “Hey people, don’t make changes
to that guys source tree just because it happens to compile! We’ve got work to do on the official source tree,
so it not only compiles, but is actually functional.” I don’t know why, but I still get a huge kick out of that.
In the interest of full disclosure, I was one of those people who couldn’t wait and spent like three days
praying to the MSVC++ gods for a Makefile that worked. :)
And for years after that, I was a faithful follower of Mozilla, which I started using full time about the
beginning of 2000, as I documented at the time in this article. Every ‘M’ (milestone) release
I was dutifully upgrading. M13 through M18. Mozilla 0.6 till what I’m typing this into, Mozilla 1.4. For
nearly four years, I’ve been using the same software to browse the Web and manage my email. It’s pretty easy
to say that I love Mozilla. :)
I love it even more in the wake of the news about Netscape getting the ax. It’s kind of like a child of famous
parents who everyone knew and liked, but no longer has those parents, and is alone in the world.
Thankfully, Mozilla will live on despite not being part of the AOL-TW family, and in my opinion will prosper
more because of that. With the formation of the Mozilla
Foundation to lead the Mozilla charge, the project will receive not only the financial backing it needs,
but also the evangelism and support it deserves, but AOL-TW never offered. Although it’s sad to see Netscape
officially wacked, the future looks bright for Mozilla, and I’m pretty excited about the possibilities that
It’s pretty cool to be excited by the prospects that a piece of software can provide, if you think about it.
It’s also pretty cool to be reminded of the excitement that a particular piece of software like Netscape
Navigator generated not only about the software, but how it was going to (and did) change the way many of us
lived our day to day lives and how it has opened the entire world up to us. It’s not often that something
as simple as a piece of software can make you feel that way, and it’s a big reason I’ll miss Netscape.
“Holy shit” I thought to myself on the way to work this morning, “I’m getting married two weeks from today!”.
Naturally, it’s not a bad thing, it’s just the realization is starting to set in a bit. For those who’ve known me for an extended period of time, you may know I used to think that I’d never get married. Not because I was a swingin bachelor who couldn’t ever give up the lifestyle, but because I could never find the ‘perfect’ girl.
Of course, all that changed when I met Jenny. I knew right off the bat that there was a very high chance that she was the one I’d been waiting for, and I prayed every night that I wouldn’t somehow screw it up :)
So here we are, days away from our (“real”) wedding, and it’s hard not to think about all the great times we’ve shared together – even daydream a bit about all the great years we’ve got in front of us. It’s kind of wierd, but as the Big Day nears, a lot of things I encounter during the normal day now remind me of a time or place or feeling that we shared together, and that’s pretty cool.The wedding getting closer is kind of like walking towards a big full sized mirror. The closer you get, the field of view behind you widens in the reflection of the mirror, but at the same time, you yourself come into focus and things that you couldn’t see when you started walking are visible in great detail now. Walking towards the future you start seeing both your past and present with great clarity, and you’re thankful an event can put things in such perspective.
Of course, before that moment of perfect clarity, there’s still quite a bit of work to do, and as is becomming more and more apparent, not a whole lot of time left to do it :)
This is pretty cool stuff… Three years I spoke at the International Oracle Users Group (IOUG) conference in LA about the benefits of running Oracle on Linux. Linux was just starting to gather mainstream press, the tech-boom was mostly still in effect, and a lot of people in the industry were curious about this ‘free linux stuff’.
The session that I gave was the first in the IOUG’s history to deal with Linux, and was very well attended for being a completely new topic. I think it suprised a lot of the experienced IT people in the crowd back then that a 24 year old kid was going to be lecturing them on an industry they’d been involved with for decades, and how an upstart Operating System was going to turn the whole industry on it’s head, Oracle included. That conference was a lot of fun, and a great experience.
So, when Tux shows up on the cover of Oracle magazine, that makes me feel pretty good. Because in some small way, I like to think that I introduced the Oracle world to the Linux world way back then, and I couldn’t be happier now that the relationship is doing so well.