Thursday, October 26

San Diego, CA

So here I am. Tired as hell, in San Diego. I have to fly back to Georgia tomorrow. Then fly to Pheonix on Friday.



I travel too much.

Picture of my wife and I in San Antonio




My boss took this picture of my wife and I on the one of the tour boats that goes around the Riverwalk in San Antonio, TX. Good times.

"But Joel, you went to San Antonio, did you take a picture of The Alamo?"

yes.

Picture of me teaching



One of my guys in my class I was teaching in Rhode Island not too long ago took this snap shot. The picture is of me assisting the screen in showing all the words. You can see the projection over running the right hand side of the screen. Heh. oh well.

Wednesday, October 25

Apple Store visits

Well I added a couple more to the Apple Store Visits list.

See for yourself

San Diego, CA

So here I am. Tired as hell, in San Diego. I have to fly back to Georgia tomorrow. Then fly to Pheonix on Friday.



I travel too much.

Picture of my wife and I in San Antonio




My boss took this picture of my wife and I on the one of the tour boats that goes around the Riverwalk in San Antonio, TX. Good times.

"But Joel, you went to San Antonio, did you take a picture of The Alamo?"

yes.

Apple Store visits

Well I added a couple more to the Apple Store Visits list.

See for yourself

Fun in Texas



As if I needed another example of why I don't live in Texas, my wife's uncle sent me these pictures of a snake inside of the motor box that controls their boat lifter. (Raises the boat up and down into the water)

Avis is stupid



I was in the line at Avis in ATL recently. I saw this sign and thought it was funny and yet dumb. Who are the advertising/marketing people that should be shoved off a cliff for this one?

Tuesday, October 24

Fun in Texas



As if I needed another example of why I don't live in Texas, my wife's uncle sent me these pictures of a snake inside of the motor box that controls their boat lifter. (Raises the boat up and down into the water)

Avis is stupid



I was in the line at Avis in ATL recently. I saw this sign and thought it was funny and yet dumb. Who are the advertising/marketing people that should be shoved off a cliff for this one?

The Macbook Pro finally gets updated

Link It's about time.

YEAH!

The Macbook Pro finally gets updated

Link It's about time.

YEAH!

American Airlines

I wound up flying First Class in American Airlines today. Let me just compliment AA. Best two flights I have ever had. Aside from being late out of ATL (which was ATL's fault, I am sure), I sat in first class, I got a meal, (vegetable pizza and a salad. it was good!), and aside from the lady who had a panic attack on the plane and had to be given oxygen.

American Airlines rox. I'd fly American Airlines if I could everytime if their service was that good every time.

Monday, October 23

American Airlines

I wound up flying First Class in American Airlines today. Let me just compliment AA. Best two flights I have ever had. Aside from being late out of ATL (which was ATL's fault, I am sure), I sat in first class, I got a meal, (vegetable pizza and a salad. it was good!), and aside from the lady who had a panic attack on the plane and had to be given oxygen.

American Airlines rox. I'd fly American Airlines if I could everytime if their service was that good every time.

More Airport fun

So, I get to the airport today, and they cancel my flight when it was almost here.

Quick Story: I am currently sitting in the Augusta, GA (AGS) airport. I was booked on flight 4293 out of Augusta to Atlanta. They apparently cancelled the connecting flight from ATL to AGS, thusly canceling the return 4293.

Since flying at 2 was going to miss my connecting flight on flight 397 from ATL to SAN. (Where I had a first class upgrade) So Delta rebooked me through American Airlines. (Where i am sitting in coach!) and I wind up getting to SAN 4 hours later.

Just another late flight where the customers get screwed going from ATL to AGS or AGS to ATL. How can ASA possibly be against the customer (stay in business doing this to their customers) this much?

Delta's response

Delta wrote me back. I believe this to be an UNACCEPTABLE response.


Dear Mr. Esler,

Thank you for your e-mail and for sharing your disappointing travel
experience with us. We welcome your comments as they assist us in the
continuous evaluation of our performance.

We regret you were inconvenienced because of a missed flight connection.
Delaying a flight for a confirmed passenger is a difficult situation for
the airlines. In the past our policy was to wait for passengers whenever
possible even at the expense of on-time performance. Now, our customers
tell us that being on time is a high priority, and we have changed our
practices to better meet these expectations.

We expect our people to do everything they can to help customers
transfer between flights; however, they have been instructed not to make
guarantees about connections. The operations supervisors in each city
are responsible for the final decision to delay a flight. They have
access to all necessary information, such as flight times, the number of
customers already on board, and the availability of alternate flights.
Nevertheless, we regret your inconvenience and and we will continue to
make efforts to improve in this area. Customer service is very
important to us, and we are working hard to transform our company.

We have reviewed your e-ticket, xxxxxxxxxxxx, and have determined an
adjustment is due for the unflown segment. A copy of your e-mail has
been forwarded to our Refunds Department for processing. As you paid
with a credit card, the adjustment will appear on your statement within
1-2 billing cycles.

Please accept our apology for the unfavorable impression you received in
this instance. We appreciate your selection of Delta and will always
consider it a privilege to be of service.

Delta sucks

Okay. I could write this big long post about how Delta sucks. But I already did. Here an email I wrote to Delta:

------------

Yesterday, October 21, 2006, I was traveling from Denver, CO to Augusta,GA and had a connection in Atlanta Hartsfield-Jackson Airport. My flight from Denver was approximately 7 minutes late in arrival (the plane had to be de-iced in DEN), so I had hustle from one gate to the next. When I got to the original gate, I was notified of a gate change of just a few more gates down the concourse.

When I arrived at the gate at 2:55 p.m., I was told by the gate attendant that the flight had already left. I was disappointed to hear that the flight was already packed up and gone, yet the scheduled departure was not until 3:07 p.m. What bothered me the most is that I could still see the baggage crew loading the plane and the gate attendants were still printing out the passenger manifest.

I contacted the customer service department for Medallion members and expressed my concern with one of the Delta representatives. She informed me that according to gate check-in rules, a plane is allowed to leave up to 15 minutes prior to scheduled departure if everyone is accounted for. However, they are aware of those who have connections and should have allowed for more time. Apparently, that was not the case and they closed out early. The customer representative was quite confused as she looked further and found that flight 4103 was not even a full flight when they left.

After doing additional research I found that DL flight 4103 never pushed back from the gate until 3:30 p.m (23 minutes later than scheduled departure) and took off at 3:40. They arrived in Augusta, GA at 4:16 p.m.

I am a Delta Gold Medallion member and will achieve Platinum status by the end of this year. Unfortunately, I have not yet seen many benefits with Delta in being such a dedicated member. Flying out of Augusta, GA where my flights almost always originate, I have a choice of two airlines.
Depending on cost of flight and convenience I can pick from Delta or US Air/United.
Since I started to achieve Medallion status, I almost always pick Delta, spending well over 40K a year with your airline, for just business travel. Whether my employer pays for my travel or it is a personal purchase, this kind of service is unacceptable.

Please consider my frustration and address such issues with the Delta staff and crew.

Thank you!

-------

More Airport fun

So, I get to the airport today, and they cancel my flight when it was almost here.

Quick Story: I am currently sitting in the Augusta, GA (AGS) airport. I was booked on flight 4293 out of Augusta to Atlanta. They apparently cancelled the connecting flight from ATL to AGS, thusly canceling the return 4293.

Since flying at 2 was going to miss my connecting flight on flight 397 from ATL to SAN. (Where I had a first class upgrade) So Delta rebooked me through American Airlines. (Where i am sitting in coach!) and I wind up getting to SAN 4 hours later.

Just another late flight where the customers get screwed going from ATL to AGS or AGS to ATL. How can ASA possibly be against the customer (stay in business doing this to their customers) this much?

Delta's response

Delta wrote me back. I believe this to be an UNACCEPTABLE response.


Dear Mr. Esler,

Thank you for your e-mail and for sharing your disappointing travel
experience with us. We welcome your comments as they assist us in the
continuous evaluation of our performance.

We regret you were inconvenienced because of a missed flight connection.
Delaying a flight for a confirmed passenger is a difficult situation for
the airlines. In the past our policy was to wait for passengers whenever
possible even at the expense of on-time performance. Now, our customers
tell us that being on time is a high priority, and we have changed our
practices to better meet these expectations.

We expect our people to do everything they can to help customers
transfer between flights; however, they have been instructed not to make
guarantees about connections. The operations supervisors in each city
are responsible for the final decision to delay a flight. They have
access to all necessary information, such as flight times, the number of
customers already on board, and the availability of alternate flights.
Nevertheless, we regret your inconvenience and and we will continue to
make efforts to improve in this area. Customer service is very
important to us, and we are working hard to transform our company.

We have reviewed your e-ticket, xxxxxxxxxxxx, and have determined an
adjustment is due for the unflown segment. A copy of your e-mail has
been forwarded to our Refunds Department for processing. As you paid
with a credit card, the adjustment will appear on your statement within
1-2 billing cycles.

Please accept our apology for the unfavorable impression you received in
this instance. We appreciate your selection of Delta and will always
consider it a privilege to be of service.

Delta sucks

Okay. I could write this big long post about how Delta sucks. But I already did. Here an email I wrote to Delta:

------------

Yesterday, October 21, 2006, I was traveling from Denver, CO to Augusta,GA and had a connection in Atlanta Hartsfield-Jackson Airport. My flight from Denver was approximately 7 minutes late in arrival (the plane had to be de-iced in DEN), so I had hustle from one gate to the next. When I got to the original gate, I was notified of a gate change of just a few more gates down the concourse.

When I arrived at the gate at 2:55 p.m., I was told by the gate attendant that the flight had already left. I was disappointed to hear that the flight was already packed up and gone, yet the scheduled departure was not until 3:07 p.m. What bothered me the most is that I could still see the baggage crew loading the plane and the gate attendants were still printing out the passenger manifest.

I contacted the customer service department for Medallion members and expressed my concern with one of the Delta representatives. She informed me that according to gate check-in rules, a plane is allowed to leave up to 15 minutes prior to scheduled departure if everyone is accounted for. However, they are aware of those who have connections and should have allowed for more time. Apparently, that was not the case and they closed out early. The customer representative was quite confused as she looked further and found that flight 4103 was not even a full flight when they left.

After doing additional research I found that DL flight 4103 never pushed back from the gate until 3:30 p.m (23 minutes later than scheduled departure) and took off at 3:40. They arrived in Augusta, GA at 4:16 p.m.

I am a Delta Gold Medallion member and will achieve Platinum status by the end of this year. Unfortunately, I have not yet seen many benefits with Delta in being such a dedicated member. Flying out of Augusta, GA where my flights almost always originate, I have a choice of two airlines.
Depending on cost of flight and convenience I can pick from Delta or US Air/United.
Since I started to achieve Medallion status, I almost always pick Delta, spending well over 40K a year with your airline, for just business travel. Whether my employer pays for my travel or it is a personal purchase, this kind of service is unacceptable.

Please consider my frustration and address such issues with the Delta staff and crew.

Thank you!

-------

Friday, October 20

Blogging Amount

Obviously lately, I haven't been blogging alot. I've been on the road straight now for about 6 weeks. I'm a bit tired, and don't get the chance to blog as much as I wish I could.

I will be off in a week or so, then I might be able to catch up a bit with all the stuff going on. In the meantime, enjoy Star Wars parodies.

Blogging Amount

Obviously lately, I haven't been blogging alot. I've been on the road straight now for about 6 weeks. I'm a bit tired, and don't get the chance to blog as much as I wish I could.

I will be off in a week or so, then I might be able to catch up a bit with all the stuff going on. In the meantime, enjoy Star Wars parodies.

Monday, October 9

IE7 and how much it sucks

I wrote this article on isc.sans.org... i got lots of MS zealot feedback saying that I was bashing.

---
Thanks to one of our readers that wrote in to tell us that IE7, will be released this month via Automatic Update according to Microsoft's "IEBlog".

Unfortunately, it's still based on a similar code base, and will still hold the majority of market share. So, this brings me to the point of the article which I had originally intended..

My advice? Diversify. Use other browsers. I use Safari, Firefox, and Opera. I own zero Windows based computers, but I have access to thousands. I suggest you out there in 'reader land' switch to something else. Unless we see empirical evidence that IE7 is vastly more secure and superior.. it will wind up like its predecessors.

Yes, I know that on some corporate environments, its impossible to switch. There are applications that are dependent on IE. But I blame the Application Developers. Code to more open standards, try not to use ActiveX controls. Other browsers don't use them, and they work fine. I had a reader write in and say that in their environment (healthcare), they are dependent on IE. My wife works in healthcare, so I feel your pain. I know, I know, its unfortunate, sometimes corporate rollouts of Firefox..et all.. are not possible, however, give it a shot.

I used to work in an environment where IE was necessary for a couple of things. So, we used IE for those two things, and Firefox for the rest. My whole diary entry can be summed up in one line: "Where you don't HAVE to use IE, don't."

II have received alot of feedback since I wrote the initial article. Most people don't like the fact that I am saying that IE's security is lacking. It's fact. Everything has vulnerabilities. Every OS, every product, every browser. I have been cited, publicly stating that if Apple was 95% of market share and Microsoft was 5%, who is to say that the roles wouldn't be reversed. Hackers target the 70% of the browser market (IE) because that's the MAJORITY of what is out there. However, if the roles were reversed, who is to say that it wouldn't be backwards? Who is to say that there wouldn't be hundreds of thousands of vulnerabilities for Apple out there? Yes, I think that Apple is inherently more secure, (I use macs), but that's not to say that if the tables weren't turned we wouldn't have a different result.

In other Microsoft News:
Microsoft rewards Adware programmer with MVP status. Link here

Reader Dan writes in to tell us:
"You may also want to note that Firefox even has a plug-in available to open certain links in IE. This makes it even easier to follow your advice of only using IE when you absolutely must." -- https://addons.mozilla.org/firefox/35/

Update #1
Mentioned native apps.

Update #2
Mentioned Feedback

Update #3
Clarifying the article for it's original intention: Diversification.

Update #4
Added MS MVP article

Updated #5
Added Firefox plugin

----

I still say I'm right.

SANS article

I wrote an article about my recent trip to Vegas over at isc.sans.org. Since I am too lazy to copy and paste it, or retype it.. here is a direct link. Go read it here.

SANS article

I wrote an article about my recent trip to Vegas over at isc.sans.org. Since I am too lazy to copy and paste it, or retype it.. here is a direct link. Go read it here.

Tuesday, October 3

Marty Roesch strikes again

Marty made a post on his blog here about the new weapon on the war on terror.

A Ziploc Baggie.

Hilarious