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Dave Winer -

Scripting News - 2019-12-08T15:44:24Z

- 2019-12-08T15:44:24Z
One of life's lessons, if you've loved and lost, or taken risks in business or just had friends. If someone does something nasty and you think aw hell I'll just give them another chance, they'll do it again, and again, until you stop giving them the chance.

- 2019-12-08T15:18:41Z
Here's what I want the Articles of Impeachment to say. "He was caught trying to steal the 2020 election." That sends the message through the ages that at least the Democrats thought this was a problem. If the republic survives, of course that's the end of the Republican Party. I don't see how the stakes, for the world (Ukraine isn't part of the US) could be larger. BTW, I highly recommend listening to the Fresh Air hour about the Ukrainian president, Volodymyr Zelensky. Very interesting story told by an American reporter who has had access. One thing came out in the Fresh Air story -- in Ukraine, the Trump impeachment of isn't big news. Due to their location at the front between the constitutional US govt and the Russian-dominated one, they couldn't be more a part of the US if they were Hawaii.

- 2019-12-08T14:32:27Z
One of the boxes I received the other day from Berkeley contains backups going back to Madison in 1979. All different kinds of media. I'm optimistic that I'll be able to find a CD drive that works with my Mac and (at least) reads the backups I took in the 90s. For the others I might have to visit the Computer History Museum, or possibly an equivalent setup in NYC or Boston.

- 2019-12-08T14:34:03Z
I got an email from a longtime reader who wanted to know what became of Mail To The Future. He said he sent an email to himself twenty years in the future and would like to read it. I feel so irresponsible, because when you create a site like that you're pretty much obligated to keep it running. But the contents of the database, if I was any good at backups, is on one of those CDs. I will put the time in at some point to try to restore the app. It should be relatively easy to port to Node. And I can easily export the data out of a root file. I still have Frontier running on my modern iMac. I use it all the time. ;-)

- 2019-12-08T14:40:56Z
BTW, I still have the domain. And the source code. It's backed up, a little, on What I haven't found yet is the all-important data.

- 2019-12-08T14:28:53Z
You know your heating system works when it's 9 degrees F when you wake up and the house is nice and warm.

- 2019-12-08T14:37:42Z
I can't get this song out of my head. Weird thing is I hadn't listened to it in ages.

- 2019-12-07T21:28:10Z
Trump happens to be right about toilets. I bought a house recently and plan to rip out the toilets and replace them with ones that can handle the load so to speak. But I get to think about this stuff because I'm not president of the United States.

- 2019-12-07T19:49:11Z
Something really weird. I watch MSNBC at least one hour every night. The first ads for a presidential candidate I’ve seen are in the last few days and they’re all from Bloomberg. Why didn’t any of the other candidates advertise to me? They advertise to me on the net, mostly to get me to give them money. A TV ad for a Democratic presidential candidate in 2020 is still a novelty and if the ad is good, it can do more than motivate donations. People want to be inspired. TV advertising done well can do that. Bloomberg's ads check all the boxes. They're winning ads.

- 2019-12-07T13:23:15Z
I can't stop watching this ad for Aviation Gin. Three hot and emotive women at a bar, facing the camera. There's a plot, character development, non-verbal communication, lots to watch. The music is kind of funny. Something happened before this meetup and something will happen after. But this moment is very lovely, and that's why I find it so hard to move on.

- 2019-12-07T13:25:21Z
The XML-RPC spec looks really good, ported to GitHub and Markdown. A lot of people still use XML-RPC, even though REST was supposed to be so much better. With a JavaScript reference implementation and new debugging tools, we may find there's new life in the community. Or at the very least, it'll be ready for the next 21 years. 💥

- 2019-12-06T22:42:59Z
The next president has to be boring.

- 2019-12-06T14:49:58Z
If something truly goes without saying you don’t have to say it.

- 2019-12-06T18:17:31Z
Braintrust query: I'm writing docs that include an example of an HTTP request, in Markdown. Can't figure out to do it in MD.

- 2019-12-06T17:01:05Z
I'm doing a reboot of the XML-RPC website and readying a new JavaScript implementation. I was reminded that the original reference implementation, in 1998, was in UserLand Frontier. The docs are still there. 21 years. Not bad.

- 2019-12-06T15:13:07Z
Nancy Pelosi (not a boomer, she was born in 1940) was great yesterday, both in her press conference where she said what is sure to be a famous historic line: "Don't mess with me" all the way to the CNN town hall, which I watched, where she asked not to have to look at things through the prism of the White House, which as long as Trump is there is crazy town. She's the leader we didn't know we had. What I admire most about her is her clarity and her ability to think on her feet. Either that or she really prepared for this moment. No matter, she's just what we need right now. A strong woman to stand up to Trump. That's his Kryptonite.

- 2019-12-06T16:59:40Z
McKinsey is a management consulting company. Hiring someone with experience there means they understand how that part of the world works. I don't think it means their soul is dark, as some people seem to assume.

- 2019-12-06T15:34:04Z
Important to note the role journalism was ready to play in the Trump plot to throw the 2020 election. Fareed Zakaria of CNN would interview Ukraine president Zelensky, where he would say they were investigating "The Bidens" for corruption. From there, Trump would ask repeatedly, as with Hillary's emails what's the deal, or they're under investigation or his favorite "I don't know but people are saying." That's all that would be needed to keep the "story" alive in American journalism. Biden's rep is already tainted. In software we'd consider this a serious vulnerability, and we'd close it asap before our servers were infected again, but journalism just lumbers along oblivious, happy to be used this way. Fake stories don't just enter through the web, Facebook and Twitter, sometimes they enter through the thought-to-be-pure methods of American journalism.

- 2019-12-06T15:48:26Z
BTW, Fareed Zakaria, born in 1964, is a boomer. Joe Biden born in 1942 is not. His son Hunter was born in 1970, not a boomer.

- 2019-12-06T14:50:24Z
Had a brief talk with Doc yesterday. He and I of course are boomers. So is Trump and Rudy G. They were both born a decade before me. Their experience and values are vastly different from mine. There aren't many things you can say about boomers that's true of all boomers except for the period in which we were born (1946-1964) and our parents had sex and a few months later we were born (just like you btw). We come in all sizes and shapes. Some have penises, others have vaginas. Some are black others are white, others are Native American, some are children of Holocaust survivors, and others are Nazis. So many things to say about this, but most importantly the only way we get out of this mess is if we work together. The rest of it is stuff your parents should have taught you. If they're boomers, go ahead and blame them, but don't blame me. I'm not your father. 💥

- 2019-12-06T14:47:41Z
All of a sudden Alexa says Goodbye when I say "Alexa stop." I wish it wouldn't.

- 2019-12-06T14:49:20Z
Wouldn't it be cool if one of the candidates who have so much criticism for Facebook discovered that there is an open news distribution system, widely supported, ready to work for the people? None of the problems of FB. We're natural allies.

- 2019-12-05T21:36:47Z
My friend Yvonne was storing a bunch of boxes for me in Berkeley, and now that I have a house again, she shipped eleven boxes to me via Fedex (see below). I started going through them today and I'm so glad we did this. I had no idea what was in the boxes. I had a vague idea that it was junk, but it was not junk. First I found three quilts my mom made for me. Two of them in really good shape. The third had been chewed by my dog, Bon Bon, back when I lived in Woodside, CA in the early 90s. There were tons of pictures, the old kind, made with film cameras. Friends and relatives long gone, or now much older. Memories. Love and regrets, happy times and sadness, stored in boxes on paper. It all comes flooding back. And notebooks from when I was in grade school. Here's a page from one of them, in 1962, where I'm practicing the most basic writing. Funny thing I remember what this felt like as a seven year old. I loved learning then. We're programmed that way I guess.

- 2019-12-05T15:30:38Z
I appreciate people pointing to me when quoting something from my blog, but I prefer you point to the blog and not my Twitter account. My home on the web is my blog,, my Twitter account is a place to record random ideas before they appear on the blog.

- 2019-12-05T16:51:49Z "RSS is a crucial technology every activist ought to know about and use."

- 2019-12-05T15:13:07Z
Every so often I get tagged in someone's lament about how no one uses RSS. It's not true. It's one of those things you can't use alone, because it depends on your news sources supporting it. I get most of my news via my rivers, which of course are just aggregations of RSS feeds. I imagine the rivers will survive me. At some point it may not be a fire hose, it may be the way the Colorado River flows into the ocean, but I think I will never see the day that RSS is gone. It does its work quietly, unlike Twitter or Facebook. It doesn't steal your personal info. Or support Russian hackers. It's quiet. That's okay with me. 💥

- 2019-12-05T15:19:02Z
BTW before Russians hacked our meme ecosystem, Google was doing it, and before them Sun, Microsoft, Apple and IBM. Google always felt threatened by RSS. They encircled it and then cut it off. They quietly got their shills in the tech press to talk about its demise. To slam me personally. It's an insidious thing. They still do it. Usually through cutouts, journalists and consultants, and sometimes Google employees. Big tech companies hate open formats and protocols, because they evolve independently of them. They feel they must control everything. It's not smart, wise or even realisitic, but after decades of existing in the wake of bigco's I know it's as inevitable as the sunset and sunrise cycle. Eventually the lack of flexibility marginalizes the big company, but they don't die, they just keep polluting, they buy politicians and we have to live with the result.

Speaker Pelosi kicks ass - 2019-12-05T21:53:43Z

“I think the President is a coward when it comes to helping our kids who are afraid of gun violence. I think he is cruel when he doesn’t deal with helping our dreamers of which we are very proud. I think he is in denial about the climate crisis.

However, that is about the election. Take it up in the election.

This is about Constitution of the United States and the facts that lead to the President’s violation of his oath of office.”

Fedex impresses - 2019-12-05T15:04:46Z

As you know I've had trouble with UPS, so I figured when Fedex was set to do a big delivery to my house just after a 1.5 foot snow in the area, that they would never get one of their big delivery trucks down the road to my house, and I'd end up driving somewhere to pick up the packages. But yesterday afternoon there was a knock on the door, and there was the Fedex guy with my packages. Smiling. I couldn't believe it.

The truck said Hertz, not Fedex. It was a small AWD vehicle. He said when they came to deliver the stuff a day before they realized their big truck wouldn't make it down the orad, so they rented a smaller truck and drove that to my house with my package. He said we like to go the extra mile. Yes, they surely do! Compared to UPS, which has basically the same policy, trust the driver, but the ethos of this driver compared to whoever made the call at UPS (basically the customer can fuck off) was night and day.

Hat's off to Fedex. You win this contest, hands down.

- 2019-12-04T20:16:41Z
My four-minute podcast about why removing the president is obviously the thing to do.

- 2019-12-04T19:15:00Z
I was driving while listening to the Judiciary Committee testimony. During a break the NPR commentators spoke. Endless Republican spin, even though most of what we had heard at that point was very favorable to impeachment. Eloquent and passionate. A real education. At that point Turley had barely spoken, but all they did was make his points over and over. No question at this point NPR is Republican. Disgusting to me because I am most definitely not Republican. I need another source of news. WNYC which is generally good should consider breaking off from NPR if that's possible.

- 2019-12-04T15:16:52Z
This moment is the last gasp of the American Revolution.

- 2019-12-04T14:30:15Z
Something bothered me about Brave, and the direction Firefox is going in, and of course Google and Chrome. Finally figured it out. I don't like tech companies imposing rules on writers. I may hate what pubs do with their tracking code and paywalls, but I hate what the tech industry is doing to oppose that, more. Maybe if Brave came out of the University of Illinois I would like it better, but it came from Silicon Valley, from the former CEO of Mozilla. A club of high priests of tech and their bankers who see us as the little people, when we're not ignored, to be treated with disdain and disrespect. They know what's best for us. It's like that old Who song, meet the new boss same as the old boss. The web was about freedom, and that required a weak tech industry. I hope, if they control it as it appears they do, something wonderful and free rises to replace them.

- 2019-12-04T14:28:04Z
Maybe if we pool our money and run ads of people laughing at Trump he'll get the clue and leave our country too.

- 2019-12-03T15:16:21Z
An open podcast to Jack Dorsey, CEO of Twitter. It's way too long and rambles too much, but the idea is imho worth 16 minutes.

- 2019-12-03T20:55:18Z
Chrome keeps coming up with new things to complain about my sites. I ignore them. I wonder how many web devs pay attention to Google's complaints?

- 2019-12-03T20:55:38Z
I had a little health scare a few weeks ago. As you may know, I broke a rib in a bike accident in September. Mostly healed now. I had to go in for an X-ray and my doctor said there was a shadow that she didn't like. I should go for a CT-scan she said, let's find out what's going on. If it's lung cancer, that's good news, she said, we found it early and it's probably treatable. If we wait for symptoms then it's often not treatable. I smoked for 31 years, she reminded me, in case I was feeling sorry for myself. Heh. So I scheduled the test, had a couple of weeks to think about it. I was obsessed. Maybe she knows and isn't saying until she's absolutely sure. I was convinced that was it, and my life was about to change to the life of a cancer patient. I know a little about it because like pretty much everyone I know people who have cancer. My father died from it. Anyway, no cancer. Knock wood. But I had the benefit of thinking I had it. So I got that experience, without the awful chemo and radiation and possible dying. I feel very lucky. I decided to tell this story now to give you an idea why I don't care that Chrome hates my websites. I do what my doctor says, mostly -- I don't give a shit what Google wants me to do. As Logan Roy says, have a nice day. ;-)

- 2019-12-03T20:51:21Z
Poll: How many phones do you carry?

- 2019-12-04T01:47:36Z
You may not like Bloomberg, but his new ad is the perfect Democratic candidate ad for winning in a landslide.

- 2019-12-03T15:37:51Z
Interesting point. Brian Kelly thinks Scripting News should not remember the tab you were at from visit to visit.

- 2019-12-03T15:39:01Z
I encourage readers to see this blog as a piece of software. If you get an idea on how to improve it, I'm interested in knowing about it. I wrote all the code for it, so I can relatively easily add or tweak features.

- 2019-12-03T15:26:51Z
Vulture has a list of lists of best TV shows of 2019. I find some of their choices hard to fathom. Deadwood Movie was awful, imho -- and it wasn't a TV show, yet it's on a list. Anyway I'd love to have a list of all the shows so I could pick my own top 10. Amazon, Netflix, HBO, Showtime, Hulu and a few others. I'm sure I only watched about a dozen shows total, no more, so while the list of possible shows is huge, the actual top ten lists wouldn't be that hard to come up with.

- 2019-12-03T15:00:22Z
We had a good size winter storm at my country house in the last couple of days. It's the kind of storm that's mostly wet in NYC, where I lived previously, but up here it was first heavy snow, then it got lighter. So the first time I shoveled the walkway to the car it was heavy lifting and the second time, light and easy. Perhaps 1.5 feet of snow. I drove down the road before it was plowed, having an AWD is great, and noted that someone had been cross country skiing on my road, I was envious. I took note of where the tracks came from, and went. The air is cold and clear, it feels like one of those mornings in Utah, it's the best first moment of a day anywhere. Later we'll be on top of the mountain looking down at the village, and thinking man this is as good as it gets. I have to figure out how to either ski or ride my bike in this weather. Probably both. I live about 1/2 hour from a ski area. It isn't Utah, or the Alps, but it is mine. 🎿

The name of podcasting, part N - 2019-12-03T18:52:06Z

I've created commercial products, and no one ever said they named my product ThinkTank, Ready, MORE, Frontier, Manila, Radio UserLand, even if they thought of the name before I did. Because people respect commercial development.

The process for podcasting was no different, except we did it in the open and no one claimed ownership of the resulting product. This is the way new web standards were developed in the late 90s and early 00s.

Hammersley could have helped, but didn't. He made a lucky guess, and for that he deserves credit, but not for naming the product. It's possible that Dannie Gregoire, the person who does deserve the credit, got the idea from Hammersley, but I've never heard him say that. And he put in time and effort to help make podcasting real. So many people who poured their hearts into this work got little or no credit.

It has become established that Hammersley named our product, even though this is not true. That's the only reason I object. I think the truth matters.

Hopefully this makes it into the Wikipedia piece on the history of podcasting, if not, know that our system of fact checking and truth vetting is about as bad as can be. When people naively say that Facebook should be able to vet everything for truth, here's something that's easily shown to be false, has been contested for years, however the record never gets altered, and reputable reporters still cite the lie as fact. Probably will continue to for a long time, maybe always.

- 2019-12-02T18:20:26Z
Tooting my own horn a bit: John Naughton calls me a genius in this Guardian piece. I'll take it, to balance all the other things people have called me. 💥

- 2019-12-02T18:14:31Z
When did it become even thinkable that a president would publicly fake an orgasm to humiliate a woman who works at the FBI, for him. This is the moment for our Republican friends, if we have any left, to wake the fuck up and realize what you're endorsing.

- 2019-12-02T18:16:58Z
There comes a point where our minds are closed, we're not interested in considering there might be an innocence for people who stand by Trump. We're over that line now. You're dragging the rest of us to hell and we don't want to go there. Republicans this is on you.

- 2019-12-03T01:28:31Z
I live in a Hallmark greeting card.

- 2019-12-03T01:50:01Z
Suborning perjury is not just an issue for lawyers, Reporters have an obligation, if they know a subject is going to lie, to not put them on the air.

- 2019-12-02T14:05:41Z
I’d like to see a courageous journalist tackle this story. Why do Repub politicians sound like Russians? I’d like to know. Note I use the word courageous sarcastically. There's nothing courageous about investigating an obvious question. It's ridiculous that not one reporter has done this story. It's a scandal happening out in the open. But it doesn't fit a model that reporters know: it's not a horse race, and it's not a replay of Watergate.


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