couldn’t wait so I got all the bits and pieces for a new gaming PC and
they all arrived the end of last week. It actually went together
quicker than I thought it would, so I was left trying to decide if I
wanted XP or Vista on it. Considering I have an MSDN subscription with Microsoft and have licenses for Vista already, I decided to download the latest ISO images and install the Home Premium version.
It seems fine now, but here are some of the issues I’ve run into:
Vista would not install on an unformatted disk
kept getting an exception error when the installer was trying to load.
Some research indicated that a lot of people have run into the same
thing. In some cases it was a bad DVD or CD
burn, but in others, the solution was to run through the Windows XP
install far enough to format the hard drive. So after doing a base
install of XP Home, I booted up with the Vista DVD I created and the installation process went through.
drivers for Vista are still in beta, so I had to download those to get
the full benefits of my new graphics card. It’s unknown whether or not
the drivers will be out of beta when Vista hits the stores. I have seen
what I’ll call weird video events when the screen switches modes for
games and sometimes when launching apps, so it’s not quite finished
Uggghhh. I’m already tired of
getting asked to Deny/Allow any little thing that happens. I can
understand it from a security standpoint, but having experienced
similar permission prompts on Mac and Linux, Vista’s prompts seem
World of Warcraft Updates
I’ve been able
to install a few games, Doom 3, Half-Life 2 Eps. 1 and World of
Warcraft. All are working great. However, I did run into one issue
patching World of Warcraft, but was able to quickly find a solution on
their forums. One of the patches (not all of them) would bomb out at
the end and not get applied. It made a change to the Start Menu links
for the game which Vista did not like and since Vista didn’t prompt me
to allow it, the patch would not install. The solution was to manually
apply the patch by right clicking the patch executable and selecting
“Run as administrator”.
seems to be fine but I’m not doing anything but playing games so far.
This won’t be a development machine, but I can at least use it for IE7
testing since I still want to keep IE6 on my work notebook as long as
possible for easier testing.
Microsoft has finally released Internet Explorer version 7
and while I’ve downloaded it, I’m not quite ready to go there. I
suppose for now I’ll wait until my automatic update tells me I should.
I’ve read about toolbars not working and sites that use Ajax are slow.
While I do think it’s strange that IE7 executes things slower than IE6,
these aren’t really the issues that are preventing me from moving my
IE7 install from a virtual machine over my primary IE6 install.
Here are my personal reasons for holding off
I use FireFox. Aside from development, I haven’t used IE as my primary browser in years. I use IE strictly for developing websites.
IE6 is not going away very soon and will continue to be more of a headache than IE7. IE7’s implementation of CSS
has proved to be close enough to FireFox/Safari/Opera that I know I
won’t spend much time on it. I’ll spend my time making things work in
IE6. It’s just plain easier and faster to test in IE6 if it’s still the
main IE on my machine.
My clients and their users aren’t going to rush out to upgrade. While smaller clients may upgrade, larger ones won’t be in such a hurry.
I cannot run IE6 and IE7 simultaneously on my machine without having one loaded in Virtual PC (or related virtual machine).
I really think Microsoft makes things difficult for web developers by
not making it straightforward to do this. Sure there are hacks to get
them to both load, but I’ve tried these and just don’t trust them like
I would a clean install.
I’m not a religious reader of John Dvorak. I don’t consider him a web developer, so when he posts articles like this one
blaming the standards community for failing to do what it promised to
do, I can’t help feeling that he’s misdirected. But is he?
problems he mentions, mostly how instructions cascade, are nothing new
to web developers who have been working with CSS for a while. I almost
want to say he should be putting the blame on browsers, but that’s not
his issue. The issue is that he’s new to CSS and I would bet that even
if he were only using one browser, he’d still have
his issues. I think if he thought of it more like applying styles in
Word or something, he’d find it easier to understand.
Coincidentally, today Zeldman posted An Angry Fix which comments on recent departures from the W3C,
which is supposed to be leading the CSS standards effort but is failing
in some respects. I agree with him and hope the W3C can correct its
course. The most interesting part was when Zeldman mentions that
develpors may start looking elsewhere… Microformats.
why not? Microformats adhere to standards, but they are higher level.
Anyone able to understand XML data should be able to understand a
microformat. And just as it takes someone with more knowledge to write
an XSD template for an XML file, we’d expect someone with more
knowledge to write a CSS file for a microformat. Maybe by adding a
LayoutFormats or MacroFormats we’d eventually not have a use for the
W3C. The key is for developers to contribute.
While I see the benefits of microformats, I haven’t been a big user of them. I’m definitely going to pay closer attention now.
1 month later. After adding my number to the Do Not Call registry, I
received a few calls and then they completely disappear. I guess the
list works! Hopefully now that I said that, I won’t start getting calls
been a number of months since I’ve been working from my home office
once again. I’m pretty productive when I’m left alone, but this time
around there’s one distraction that’s becoming more and more of a
Before I get into this, I do have Caller ID and can
generally tell it’s a telemarketer. However, instead of not answering
the phone, it has become almost a personal quest to get them to stop
Please make it stop!
Every single day,
one to three times, I get a call from Dish Networks trying to get me to
switch. Almost all the time, it’s an automated message with some guy
named Jerry telling me about this awesome deal to press ‘1’ to speak to
a sales rep. The first time I got mad enough to give a rep an earful, I
press ‘1’ and was then given an option to press ‘8’ to get my name of the list. I happily did this.
thought they would respect my wishes. They did not. Assuming it may
take a little while to go through their system, I just kept opting out
every time I got a call.
The first rep
actually got a salesrep on the phone! I told her in a calm tone that
due to the excessive number of calls I get from Dish Networks that I
would never subscribe to their service and to please add me to their do
not call list. She appologized and said she was placing my name on the
do not call list.
The next rep
I kept getting the
calls and a few weeks later I got another call from a live rep. I went
through the same routine again. I tried to stay as calm as I could
since I’m at a point with Dish that I get enraged when I get one of
these calls. I know, though, that yelling on the phone’s not going to
do me any good. Once again, I got an apology and this time a guarantee that I would stop receiving calls.
One more time
I got another one and I felt like punching the wall. It was another
recording, this time it was a female voice, but it was the same exact
message that Jerry had from before. I hit ‘1’ to talk to a rep and
immediately asked for a manager, who once again, apologized and guaranteed me they’d remove me from their list.
I hate Dish Networks
think just hearing about them will get me angry for a while and I’m
glad I can vent about it here. From here on out, I plan to keep a log
of the calls, because I’m not convinced they’ve stopped.