BEA’s Java StAX Reference Implementation Open Sourced

BEA's reference implementation of StAX (Streaming API for XML, aka JSR 173) was open sourced at Codehaus back on May 12 but the announcement apparently didn't reach me so I just found out about it by loitering at the StAX Yahoo Group.

StAX website at Codehaus is lacking essential information for the moment but you can get the source from the CVS:

cvs -d:pserver:anon@cvs.stax.codehaus.org:/scm/stax login
cvs -d:pserver:anon@cvs.stax.codehaus.org:/scm/stax checkout stax

FYI, stax/dev/src and stax/dev/src100 were identical last time I checked.  Don't forget to join the StAX Yahoo Group to communicate with rest of the StAX fan club.

Korea

Korea is a country where:

  • Everyone thinks they know best.
  • No one is willing to lose.
  • Final decisions are never final.
  • Opponents are respected by vilifying and dehumanizing.
  • Violence is considered a way of teaching.

I know this because I know best and I am not prepared to accept contrary opinions.  Anyone who thinks otherwise are communist pigs who deserves a good beating so they will know better.  See what I mean?

Being Stupid and Homophobic

Joi Ito calls Ray Bradbury's complaint about Michael Moore's movie Fahrenheit 9/11 stupid and compared it to a supposedly homophobic essay by Orson Scott Card.

Don't you hate it when your favorite writers do, write or say stupid things?

This reminds me of the horror of reading Orson Scott Card's homophobic essay, "Homosexual "Marriage" and Civilization".

The following is an edited version of my comment:

I think Bradbury's position is understandable and definitely not stupid. Don't you think the proper thing for Michael Moore to do was to ask? If Bradbury was pro-Bush, he wouldn't have wanted the title of his works being used for Michael Moore's movie. For him to just blatently use the title like that is just plain asinine.

As to your comment about Orson Scott Card being homophobic, I don't see what is wrong with being homophobic. If there is nothing stupid about being afraid of heights or spiders, why is being homophobic stupid?

Update:

Thanks to Russ's mini-rant which prompted me to look up the word in the dictionary, I just realized that my definition of homophobic and the dictionary's definition are different so you can throw out that part of this post.  If you want to continue the discussion then I am fine with that too.

Poker Tourney

Just got back from the tourney.  I got there late because I thought it was to start at 6PM when it actually started at 1PM.  They still let me play though.  I didn't get many good hands all day so I had to max out the ones I got by building the pot.  After five hours, I ended up at the table of final seven players (out of twentysome players) by winning only a handful of large pots.  After that I spent most of my time dodging deadly hands because the final table was a no limit table.  In the end, I placed third which won me the chance to play in the tourney of champions in December without buying in.  So, my prediction was right on the ball.

Weaning off laptop

I have been using laptops primarily for the past few years and now I am planning to return to desktops.  Why?  Because laptops are difficult to upgrade and I am tired of paying too much to replace broken parts or batteries dying over time.  The control key on my current laptop, a Dell Inspiron 8000, is sticky and I can't fix it without sending my laptop off.  Fans (yup, it has two) and hard drives turning on and off is annoying too.

I have been eyeing the 17-inch PowerBook but Windows is my primary target environment so I can't just replace my laptop with the PowerBook.  So I am going to get a desktop, not the most powerful one available, but one that hits the Sweet Spot.  I think that means 3.2 GHz Pentium 4.  So far I am looking at Dell Dimension 8300 with 2 gig of memory, 400G disk.  Since I am addicted to 1600×1200 resolution and LCD (read ClearType), I'll have to get one of those 20-inch LCD and match that with Radeon 9800 GPU.  Even with fastest optical drives (CD/DVD-RW), total cost is around $2400 which is pretty good deal I think.

Only problem is that the price keeps dropping.  Longer I hold off on getting it, the cheaper it gets.  It's amazing that with such a strong incentive not to press the submit button, the computer industry still humms along.  How crazy is that?

After I finish making the transition to the desktop, maybe I'll get the PowerBook (why the heck does it support only 1440×900?) with the excuse that I'll be writing some OS X software.  At least that's the line I am going to use on my wife.  OS X software market is going to explode, honey!

Belated Apology

Dave wrote:

What really gets to me is how people who say they're my friend, stand by, and say nothing.

Oops.  Sorry, Dave.  When read about your shutting down of weblogs.com, I thought it didn't seem like something you would do without a good reason.  So I went and listened to your MP3 chat.  You did have a good reason which was that you tried to do the good thing but things got complicated and there weren't many options to choose from.  While it's easy to think there must have been better alternatives, it's just not the same as being the man on the spot.

Why didn't I say anything when the hounds were at your heels?  I thought you would just take it all in stride.  After all, you must have expected the hounds would come after you.  Would the hounds listen to opinions contrary to their smell of blood?  I didn't think so.  I thought they would just look foolish afterward since they chose to misinterpret what you said and misunderstand your motives.

Inside me is a scared kid as well but I have been all right ever since I accepted death as a side door with a glowing Exit sign over it instead of a gate to hell and eternal pain.  My apology is for not seeing that you might think differently and that you might misinterpret silence as a sign of abandonment.  I will speak up next time.

Vacation of sort

I just got back home from SFO after watching my wife and son enter the passenger gate.  They are going to Korea to visit family and friends for a month.  This means I'll be on a vacation from family life for the next month.  Heeehaaaw!  So far I got a private poker tourney scheduled for Saturday.  I should do well enough to beat most of the players, but I doubt I'll be taking the big pot home because trying to win the tourney takes too much fun out of the game.

Chromeless Phish

When I built the visual spoofing demo, I could have done it in several ways including chromeless window but I went for the simplest way.  It turns out that some smart phisher recently launched a chromeless window-based phishing attack.  Following is screenshot of the browser window showing the phishing site which was still active at 11:51AM.

The webpage and the URL portion of the addressbar is fake.  What's happening is that the phishing site opened a chromeless window to overlay the fake URL over the real address which can be discerned by dragging another window over.  It's using a IE 5.5 specific feature to float the fake URL over everything.  The interesting thing about this trick is that it can potentially defeat many phishmark implementations such as my own 9-block phishmarkPassMark and background-based phishmarks are still effective though.

Pure Java Berkeley DB

Wow.  Pure Java edition of Berkeley DB is out.  I guess pure Java version of Berkeley DB XML is coming as well.  As to the performance, I haven't checked it myself but if this quote means anything, I think this is a major event for Java developers:

"With Berkeley DB Java Edition, we have a simpler setup, a 3x increase in data import speed, a 5x increase in performance and a 10x decrease in disk storage requirements."

–  Eric Jain, Swiss Institute of Bioinformatics

Firefox 0.9: A Stinker

I just installed Firefox 0.9.  Urgh.  It's butt ugly now and seemingly infested with UI bugs.  I tried a few supposedly popular themes but none made me happy although the IE clone theme was most bearable.  They changed quite a bit of dialogs too, most of which seem to be a move in the wrong direction.  0.8 was good.  0.9 is a stinker.