Posts from 2001

Friday, 18 May 2001

Published 17 years, 6 months ago

Now it can be told… I’ve resigned from The OPAL Group, effective the end of May.  I do this not because there were any problems; actually it’s a fine place to work and a great group of guys.  The decision to leave them actually caused me a good deal of stress and a certain measure of guilt.  However, it’s all in a good cause:  I’m taking a position with Netscape Communications as a “standards evangelist.”  This move will definitely give me a chance to have a bigger impact on the shape and direction of Web browser development, both now and in the future.  Even better, the position does not require me to relocate.  This has been more than two months in coming, between the time Netscape contacted me and today.  The long delay should help explain some of the stress reflected in my posts here on

So that’s the news for now.  It’s scary and exciting all at once, as most major life changes tend to be—but at the very least, I will have followed up all my talk about the importance of standards with a commitment to work towards improving support, and that’s worth a lot to me.

Tuesday, 15 May 2001

Published 17 years, 7 months ago

Beware the Ides of May!  Beware!

Today did not go at all well.  I had to argue with two major corporations, did a good deal of legwork with two more just to find out if the previous two were smoking crack or not (apparently they were), didn’t receive confirmation of certain actions, and consequently didn’t get some very important stuff done by the end of the business day.  There’s always tomorrow, I suppose, but time’s a-wastin’ and deadlines are beginning to loom.  Add to all of that a failure of will, and it was definitely not a good day.  At all.

On the other hand, I thought there was at least one very interesting potential development in the online realm today.  Slashdot picked up the story, of course, and I realized that Slashdotters were in serious trouble.  The Playstation 2 becomes an access point for what’s been called the lowest-common-denomintor crowd, and in the Slashdot community the X-Box might as well have “Serial Baby Killer” written across its face.  No Slashdotter worth his street cred will be able to admit to owning either console.  So how are they going to play cool games next year?

Tuesday, 8 May 2001

Published 17 years, 7 months ago

Ah, three days in New York City.  Concrete and skyscrapers as far as the eye can see, the bustle and energy of several million people, the constant hum and the honking of taxis, blasts of pungent bus exhaust.  Isn’t it funny how the same things I find abhorrent, my wife can find so wonderful?  I could probably try stretching that observation into other areas of our life together, but that would be grossly unfair and (more importantly) not very funny.

The trip to NYC (which ended on Sunday) was undertaken so that I could speak at a conference along with Jeff Veen, Jeffrey Zeldman, and Eric Costello.  Unfortunately the conference was cancelled at the last minute, so no panel for us.  We got together anyway, along with Jeff’s wife Leslie (previously quoted on this very page), and spent a pleasant evening schmoozing and eating at The Noho Star.  I always like to hang with industry veterans in a social setting, because the conversation always takes interesting swings from shop talk to politics to gossip and back, wending a path through anything which takes the collective fancy.  These are smart people leading interesting lives.  What could be more compelling?

Kat and I also took the chance to visit with her parents, naturally, and to see some of Kat’s friends in the NYC area.  For the weekend, we drove up to Hartford, CT to see Peter and Celeste for the first time since their wedding last summer, and to admire their new house.  It’s funny how being fellow homeowners can provide all kinds of material for conversation, most of it the kind of thing we would have been horrified by not five years previously.  Yet there we all were chatting gaily about boring grown-up stuff like wall paint and hardwood floors.  I can only imagine what it will be like when we have children.

As for last week’s update… there is much to say, but not now.

Tuesday, 1 May 2001

Published 17 years, 7 months ago

Some dreams are at the last minute reborn; some die before they’ve had a chance to be born at all.

Tuesday, 24 April 2001

Published 17 years, 7 months ago

I was going to post stupid stuff about how I don’t hear from some of my friends and colleagues these days, and then I changed the plan to whining about my life and how confusing it’s been recently, but when it gets right down to it none of this is worthy of complaint.  I’m just sliding through a moderate emotional trough and really should avoid posting until I’ve recovered.  In fact, this post was probably a bad idea, but too late now.  (You’re reading it, after all.)

As for recent events, our friends Jeff and Erin got married over the past weekend.  As all brides and grooms must be (according to federal law), Erin was absolutely beautiful and Jeff looked mildly panic-stricken.  The “rehearsal dinner” was held at our house on Friday night, and it seems a good time was had by all.  We saw some of Kat’s classmates for the first time since graduation, so there was a great deal to talk about.  Jeff broke out the mandolin and serenaded the crowd with such gems as Chinese People Don’t Eat Sushi and other original compositions.  Jeff’s mother was also kind enough to translate the Chinese writing on our many wall hangings and tell us the story behind some of them; thanks to her, we’re now sure that our artwork does not say things like “Simple Sketch I Overcharged Stupid American Tourists To Draw.”  We’d always wondered…

Monday, 16 April 2001

Published 17 years, 8 months ago

We had more out-of-town friends staying at the Manor Meyer over the weekend, so I was sort of forced into a socializing/relaxation mode, which felt pretty alien.  No articles were written, no book material was cranked out, there was no class to check on, and no project deadlines were looming.  Weird.  I still checked e-mail, of course, but even on that front it was a slow weekend.  I was actually considering doing something productive like raking the yard, but then a cold rain started falling and I decided to goof off some more.  (Like I need an excuse as obvious as inclement weather when it comes to avoiding yard work.)

Monday, 9 April 2001

Published 17 years, 8 months ago

I can’t say it any better than Tycho did over at the Penny Arcade this morning:

…when someone tells you that you can do what you’ve always wanted, and not just that, what you’ve always dreamed, and do it as your job, you start wishing that they’re right.  And you wish really, really hard.

Even when the wish seems dead, you fight to keep it alive, because it’s so damned hard to give up.  And you keep hoping that it’s going to work out, somehow, against what seem like all odds.  I hear ya, Tycho.  I can’t restore your wish any more than I could anyone else’s, but I hear ya.

Monday, 2 April 2001

Published 17 years, 8 months ago

So it’s the day after April Fool’s Day, and guess who the joke is on?  Anyone who believed George W. Bush’s environmental campaign promises.  You know, last time I checked Washington, D.C. was a coastal city, so it will be one of the first to feel the effects if sea levels do rise to any significant degree.  Apparently Bush is okay with flooding many of our national landmarks, damaging and perhaps destroying them.  Maybe he’s hoping that the sound of waves breaking against the Capitol building will lull Congress into a relaxed state, thus making them more prone to civility.  It’s so crazy, it just might work.