Why Standards Matter

Here is another reason why standards matter.

Sam Palmisano, the CEO of IBM, challenged his entire company to
migrate to Linux for their desktop systems by the end of this year.
Turns out things aren’t going so well.

IBM is running into this one tiny little problem. You may have heard
of it, it’s called Internet Explorer. See, many internal IBM web
applications were written with IE-proprietary code, and darned if that
isn’t just one big, huge migration hurdle right there.

From here.

United Airlines in the Blogosphere Crosshairs

When I travel, it is usually (90%) due to work-related events. For a long time, my preferred airline was United Airlines, as I lived within 7 miles of SFO (Ya know, the place with the huge aircraft that takes off like clockwork at 23:00 Pacific Time every night).

In fact, I was on a United 777 on Tuesday, September 11, 2001 when it got turned around. After that, United seems to have been turned around.

Now I live in the Boston area. When I tried to fly to London on United, I got a rude shock — all London flights go via Dulles or JFK. Flew British Airways instead.

I have a United Credit Card to collect Mileage Plus Points. I have lots of points. It is my primary form of payment for most things. I also have a Delta Credit Card to collect their points. And with Logan now opening the mysterious Terminal A (I have tried to start the rumour that it has been a secret NSA listening post due to its length construction) for Delta, I will likely start to rely on Delta more exclusively.

But it’s not just because Delta is here. It is because United isn’t the kind of airline that made me an enthusiast in the past. It was a joy to get on a United flight…now it is a chore.

A couple of comments on this. [here and here]

United, I want to be a customer. I want to be happy to fly on your planes again.

How are you going to make me a happy customer? How is United going to make me an evangelist?

I doubt that an organization as narrowly focused as United can even begin to address these questions.

Feedburner burning folks?

Over the last few days, I have read a couple of tales of woe and misery surrounding the FeedBurner service [here and here]. I am not sure what has happened, as a lot of the blogging community does use this technology.

Perhaps it falls back to my new philosophy: Free is Worth Less.

Submitted Presentation Proposal for OSCON 2005

I submitted a presentation proposal for OSCON 2005 just now. The abstract is below.

The Open Source community has driven the online world for the last decade. PHP, PERL, Apache, Java, and MySQL are all major components of large online enterprises.

However, putting an application online and ensuring that it satisfies the performance, availability and reliability demands of the increasingly knowledgeable online consumer are often two separate concerns.

Performance should not be an afterthought; performance should be a leading force in creating a Web application.

Using simple Open Source Tools, Web performance measurement solutions can be built that rival commercial solutions. But what does this data tell you? And how do you turn this into useful business information?

This discussion will expose the participants to key Web performance metrics that make sense to both technology and business leaders in your organization.

I have a snowball’s chance in hell of having it accepted, as it is not hip, technical or trendy, and I am not an Open Source Guru, but if you design stuff for the Web, then you better be ready to have your site examined in detail, because if you don’t do it, your customers will.