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Showing posts from January, 2008

Inbox Zero

Merlin Mann, who is the author of 43folders.com, presented this talk at Google about Inbox Zero.  Or processing your email.  I suggest a check out.


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Inbox Zero

Merlin Mann, who is the author of 43folders.com, presented this talk at Google about Inbox Zero.  Or processing your email.  I suggest a check out.


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AT&T Wireless Data Outage

Originally posted here.

Thanks all of you that have written in. We have seen the articles that say that AT&T is having a wireless data outage.

We have heard from multiple sources on the issue, and it seems to be limited to only certain regions of the US. (Central and South East primarily). I am currently in the NE section of the country, writing this entry on my AT&T 3G Wireless card. So I know it's working here (plus my iPhone and my wife's Blackberry work fine too).

We have also heard that this problem has been resolved. So everything should be back (if not already) to normal soon.

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AT&T Wireless Data Outage

Originally posted here.

Thanks all of you that have written in. We have seen the articles that say that AT&T is having a wireless data outage.

We have heard from multiple sources on the issue, and it seems to be limited to only certain regions of the US. (Central and South East primarily). I am currently in the NE section of the country, writing this entry on my AT&T 3G Wireless card. So I know it's working here (plus my iPhone and my wife's Blackberry work fine too).

We have also heard that this problem has been resolved. So everything should be back (if not already) to normal soon.

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So, you want RSS feeds in your inbox?

One thing I liked about the new Mail.app in Leopard was the ability to aggregate not only my email, but RSS feeds right into my inbox, so I could just scroll through and read all my feeds in line with my email.
Well, Mutt doesn't do it natively, and I couldn't find a patch in the 10 seconds I was Googling to perform this action.  However, I did find a nice tool called "rss2email".  A program written in python that takes the rss feeds that you give it, reads them, parses them into either plaintext or html, and then sends them to you via whatever smtp server you want.
It works great and I highly recommend it.  All you have to do to automate it is to cron it.  Done.
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So, you want RSS feeds in your inbox?

One thing I liked about the new Mail.app in Leopard was the ability to aggregate not only my email, but RSS feeds right into my inbox, so I could just scroll through and read all my feeds in line with my email.
Well, Mutt doesn't do it natively, and I couldn't find a patch in the 10 seconds I was Googling to perform this action.  However, I did find a nice tool called "rss2email".  A program written in python that takes the rss feeds that you give it, reads them, parses them into either plaintext or html, and then sends them to you via whatever smtp server you want.
It works great and I highly recommend it.  All you have to do to automate it is to cron it.  Done.
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Jobs named "most powerful person in business"

We all know by now that I admire Steve Jobs for his taste and vision.
This morning Fortune published an article (via cnn.com) that named Steve Jobs the most "powerful person in business"

Quote: "That's five industries that Jobs has upended - computers, Hollywood, music, retailing, and wireless phones. At this moment, no one has more influence over a broader swath of business than Jobs. "
Also there's a related article.  Expanding upon the point.
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Jobs named "most powerful person in business"

We all know by now that I admire Steve Jobs for his taste and vision.
This morning Fortune published an article (via cnn.com) that named Steve Jobs the most "powerful person in business"

Quote: "That's five industries that Jobs has upended - computers, Hollywood, music, retailing, and wireless phones. At this moment, no one has more influence over a broader swath of business than Jobs. "
Also there's a related article.  Expanding upon the point.
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Back to my Mac

I've posted on Back to my Mac before.  Basically the theory of "I think this will be cool, and I'll use it".  Turns out after I got it, I couldn't get it to work.  I had a Linksys router, nice one too, one of the top of the line B/G models (well, top of the line when it came out).   After I read lots of forums on Apple.com saying that you need to enable "UPnP" on the router, and this and that, and do you have portmapping for these ports?  Open this.  Poke a hole here.  Yuck.
Well, this past Friday I got rid of the Linksys router.  I called up my ISP, got some directions for how to switch routers (some ISP's basically have the equivalent of port security on, so you can't change your router.  My ISP in Georgia was like this).  Turns out all I had to do was either have them reset my modem on my end, or I could simply unplug the coax for about 10 minutes while the mac addresses cleared.  Faster to have them reset it, so the nice lady did.
I've had…

MacWorld

Now, since during this year's MacWorld, I was at our corporate annual kickoff event sitting in presentations,  I had not yet gotten the opportunity to watch Steve Job's Keynote that he gave at the event.
So, when my wife fell asleep on the couch this evening, I decided I'll go ahead and watch it in HD.  So I did.  I did notice a couple things though, first off I notice Steve Jobs make about 4 mistakes in his presentation (and no, I was not counting).  But I heard him say "Tiger" when he actually meant "Leopard" and other minor mistakes like that.  Makes me realize that even if you are arguably one of the best presenters alive right now, even you too can make mistakes.  
However this is on thing that I did notice.  At one point in the beginning when he is introducing the "Time Capsule" product, he walks in front of a screenshot of Time Machine up on the screen.  In the lower left corner, there is a button that isn't there normally on Time Mac…

Back to my Mac

I've posted on Back to my Mac before.  Basically the theory of "I think this will be cool, and I'll use it".  Turns out after I got it, I couldn't get it to work.  I had a Linksys router, nice one too, one of the top of the line B/G models (well, top of the line when it came out).   After I read lots of forums on Apple.com saying that you need to enable "UPnP" on the router, and this and that, and do you have portmapping for these ports?  Open this.  Poke a hole here.  Yuck.
Well, this past Friday I got rid of the Linksys router.  I called up my ISP, got some directions for how to switch routers (some ISP's basically have the equivalent of port security on, so you can't change your router.  My ISP in Georgia was like this).  Turns out all I had to do was either have them reset my modem on my end, or I could simply unplug the coax for about 10 minutes while the mac addresses cleared.  Faster to have them reset it, so the nice lady did.
I've had…

MacWorld

Now, since during this year's MacWorld, I was at our corporate annual kickoff event sitting in presentations,  I had not yet gotten the opportunity to watch Steve Job's Keynote that he gave at the event.
So, when my wife fell asleep on the couch this evening, I decided I'll go ahead and watch it in HD.  So I did.  I did notice a couple things though, first off I notice Steve Jobs make about 4 mistakes in his presentation (and no, I was not counting).  But I heard him say "Tiger" when he actually meant "Leopard" and other minor mistakes like that.  Makes me realize that even if you are arguably one of the best presenters alive right now, even you too can make mistakes.  
However this is on thing that I did notice.  At one point in the beginning when he is introducing the "Time Capsule" product, he walks in front of a screenshot of Time Machine up on the screen.  In the lower left corner, there is a button that isn't there normally on Time Mac…

Microsoft Makes Zero Day Exploit Recommendation: Buy a Mac

Got an alert today via Google, titled "Microsoft Makes Zero Day Exploit Recommendation: Buy a Mac."
I thought that was very interesting, so I followed the link.  The link said: "Unconfirmed sources report that draft recommendations from Microsoft on how to defeat the Zero Day problems includes buying an Apple iMac Computer. The draft document printed on internal Microsoft letterhead was leaked to Unconfirmed Sources by a member of the Zero Day crisis team that has been working around the clock in Redmond, home of Microsoft."

Read into that what you will.
THIS JUST IN, I DID IT WRONG.  Unconfirmedsources.com is a satirical site.  I was p0wned.  This whole article above is fake.  Thanks to CunningPike and scottder.
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Microsoft Makes Zero Day Exploit Recommendation: Buy a Mac

Got an alert today via Google, titled "Microsoft Makes Zero Day Exploit Recommendation: Buy a Mac."
I thought that was very interesting, so I followed the link.  The link said: "Unconfirmed sources report that draft recommendations from Microsoft on how to defeat the Zero Day problems includes buying an Apple iMac Computer. The draft document printed on internal Microsoft letterhead was leaked to Unconfirmed Sources by a member of the Zero Day crisis team that has been working around the clock in Redmond, home of Microsoft."

Read into that what you will.
THIS JUST IN, I DID IT WRONG.  Unconfirmedsources.com is a satirical site.  I was p0wned.  This whole article above is fake.  Thanks to CunningPike and scottder.
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New Router

In my network I've had two routers.  Linksys was my gateway, and hooked to that was a gigabit switch, which all the machines in my network were connected to.  Also attached to that switch was an Apple Airport Extreme which all my Apple wireless computers were connected to, to take advantage of the 802.11n features.
Today I just eliminated the Linksys router and am now letting the Airport Extreme manage the gateway and the network (the switch is still there).  My network is not only faster, (like I can download at ungodly rates and network transfers are actually as fast as they are supposed to be) but more reliable.
I had no idea that just that small of a change could make such a big difference.
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New Router

In my network I've had two routers.  Linksys was my gateway, and hooked to that was a gigabit switch, which all the machines in my network were connected to.  Also attached to that switch was an Apple Airport Extreme which all my Apple wireless computers were connected to, to take advantage of the 802.11n features.
Today I just eliminated the Linksys router and am now letting the Airport Extreme manage the gateway and the network (the switch is still there).  My network is not only faster, (like I can download at ungodly rates and network transfers are actually as fast as they are supposed to be) but more reliable.
I had no idea that just that small of a change could make such a big difference.
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Getting Things Done (GTD), Mutt, and Vim

I've Googled about 100 articles in the past couple days detailing how people best use Mutt to implement their theory of how GTD works for them. I found alot of good articles, but many implemented alot of scripts and extra headers, and tagging... yuck. Way too much!
The point of GTD is to make the world and your email in particular work for you, not you work for it. I don't want to manually have to edit a "X" header everytime I want to tag an email with "Defer" or "Reply". I want to just hit a one or two keystroke combination and be done with it.
The major point of GTD is to navigate through life easier, not have alot of things pending in your mind. Get it out of your mind and get it on paper, (or whatever) and be done with
thinking about it. Just have it in a trusted bucket where you can store stuff.So I have a different theory. First off let me preface this by saying that I do not keep my To-Do list and "Next Actions" list in Mutt. I use a…

Getting Things Done (GTD), Mutt, and Vim

I've Googled about 100 articles in the past couple days detailing how people best use Mutt to implement their theory of how GTD works for them. I found alot of good articles, but many implemented alot of scripts and extra headers, and tagging... yuck. Way too much!


The point of GTD is to make the world and your email in particular work for you, not you work for it. I don't want to manually have to edit a "X" header everytime I want to tag an email with "Defer" or "Reply". I want to just hit a one or two keystroke combination and be done with it.
The major point of GTD is to navigate through life easier, not have alot of things pending in your mind. Get it out of your mind and get it on paper, (or whatever) and be done with thinking about it. Just have it in a trusted bucket where you can store stuff.

So I have a different theory. First off let me preface this by saying that I do not keep my To-Do list and "Next Actions" list in Mutt. I use …

Pownce is open to all

It's been a long time in the works now, but Pownce is finally open to the public. Be sure and get an account if you are into the Web 2.0 stuff. (I "kinda" am.)

Add me as a buddy if you go there. JoelEsler is my username.


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Pownce is open to all

It's been a long time in the works now, but Pownce is finally open to the public. Be sure and get an account if you are into the Web 2.0 stuff. (I "kinda" am.)

Add me as a buddy if you go there. JoelEsler is my username.


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Mailing lists and "Botnets: How they are getting better"

I am subscribed to a couple dozen security type mailing lists. It's one of the best way for sharing of information. A small list:
Full-Disclosure Bugtraq Dshield Incident list (although, i think this one is dead)
Snort-Users Snort-Sigs Snort-devel Bleeding-Sigs Emerging-Sigs focus-ids fedtalk (An Apple list for people that work for .gov/.mil) 53L (An army.mil list for people in the computer profession) Clam AV sigs Clam AV Devel Clam AV users Nmap Devel Nmap hackers vuln-dev botnet list (various internal Sourcefire lists)
Now, I am a member on several more, however, those I am not at liberty to discuss... so anyway, moving on.
I got an email on one of my lists today detailing a web-gui for managing a botnet. Yes, seriously. You can go to this website (I am assuming it's hacked as well) login to this website and manage your botnets point & click style!
Remember the days when you could manage your botnets via IRC? Well, if you want to do things the old school way, fine. But we are Web 2.0 …

One of my predictions comes true (supposedly)

While this is seemingly obvious, we've all known Apple to not doing things that were obvious.  Anyway...
I predicted that the multitouch trackpad on the MacBook Air will make into the rest of the line of the laptops.  AppleInsider says I'm right.
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RSS Feeds, all in one place

I've been using Feedburner for quite awhile now to serve up my RSS and Atom feeds for this blog.  It keeps really nice stats and I like how it keeps a good subscriber count, auto-pings all the blog update services, and reformats my blog so that every reader can read it correctly.
So, using mod_rewrite I am sending all the atom.xml and rss.xml subscribers over to feedburner.  Hopefully this won't cause alot of headaches.  It certainly makes things easier for me.
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One of my predictions comes true (supposedly)

While this is seemingly obvious, we've all known Apple to not doing things that were obvious.  Anyway...
I predicted that the multitouch trackpad on the MacBook Air will make into the rest of the line of the laptops.  AppleInsider says I'm right.
Subscribe in a reader

RSS Feeds, all in one place

I've been using Feedburner for quite awhile now to serve up my RSS and Atom feeds for this blog.  It keeps really nice stats and I like how it keeps a good subscriber count, auto-pings all the blog update services, and reformats my blog so that every reader can read it correctly.
So, using mod_rewrite I am sending all the atom.xml and rss.xml subscribers over to feedburner.  Hopefully this won't cause alot of headaches.  It certainly makes things easier for me.
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Excel 0-day

I've started to notice that a bunch of people are Googling for "Excel 0-day" and getting to my website.  
Yes, there is a new vulnerability out there for Excel.  Called 08-0081.  Well, seeing as how people are interested in it, and I believe in our own VRT, check out the new release of OfficeCat at Snort.org.   
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MacWorld, Sales Kickoff, and where I have been

This week I am in Annapolis with the entire of Sourcefire to hold our annual sales kickoff that we do once a year.  Good times had by all.  I get to hang with everyone, meet all the people that I haven't met yet, and generally have a good time.   We had a big meeting the other day when everyone was in the room together, and I looked around and said to myself...  "Who are all these people!?" So I can only feel how people like Caswell or Baker or Roesch feel.  
This is actually the first sales kickoff i've ever had the opportunity to attend.  The first opportunity was when Sourcefire was attempting to be purchased by CHKP.  Not everyone went to that kickoff.  In fact, I think I was working that week, I was in Florida or something.  Anyway...  The next kickoff, I wasn't able to be at either.  Reason being?  
My daughter is 1.  Happy Birthday pumpkin.
So, it's good to be with all my friends, put faces with names, and in reverse as well.  People come up to me all the…

MacWorld, Sales Kickoff, and where I have been

This week I am in Annapolis with the entire of Sourcefire to hold our annual sales kickoff that we do once a year.  Good times had by all.  I get to hang with everyone, meet all the people that I haven't met yet, and generally have a good time.   We had a big meeting the other day when everyone was in the room together, and I looked around and said to myself...  "Who are all these people!?" So I can only feel how people like Caswell or Baker or Roesch feel.  
This is actually the first sales kickoff i've ever had the opportunity to attend.  The first opportunity was when Sourcefire was attempting to be purchased by CHKP.  Not everyone went to that kickoff.  In fact, I think I was working that week, I was in Florida or something.  Anyway...  The next kickoff, I wasn't able to be at either.  Reason being?  
My daughter is 1.  Happy Birthday pumpkin.
So, it's good to be with all my friends, put faces with names, and in reverse as well.  People come up to me all the…

ZFS for OSX, now Open Source

Reader writes into me telling me about an article on Slashdot.  Apparently ZFS for OSX is now on the streets and is Open Source.  Merry late Xmas from Apple.  
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ZFS for OSX, now Open Source

Reader writes into me telling me about an article on Slashdot.  Apparently ZFS for OSX is now on the streets and is Open Source.  Merry late Xmas from Apple.  
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Re: Open Letter to Apple

I got an email from a reader asking me if I got some feedback about my Open Letter to Apple I submitted.  Yes, I have received feedback from Apple on the two tickets I submitted.  However, Developer feedback is under NDA so I'm not supposed to post the responses.  However, let me say that they are working on the two issues I have noted.  Obviously, it's Apple, they can't provide any more info than that.
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Re: Open Letter to Apple

I got an email from a reader asking me if I got some feedback about my Open Letter to Apple I submitted.  Yes, I have received feedback from Apple on the two tickets I submitted.  However, Developer feedback is under NDA so I'm not supposed to post the responses.  However, let me say that they are working on the two issues I have noted.  Obviously, it's Apple, they can't provide any more info than that.
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Skype, is it right for you? Let's take a look.

Recently, I have heard ALOT about Skype, the ability to detect it, and the ability to stop it. Let me just say, I use Skype. I like it, I’ve done alot of communication over it with both domestic and foreign people. I’ve done podcasts on it, etc.. so it’s a great part of the network here. However, this post will attempt to look at the pros and cons of the software and why business should or should not allow it. The decision is up to the reader, I will not make it for you.

What is Skype?
Skype, if you don’t know, is a P2P based VOIP, IM, and file transfer program. It allows:
-Voice Calling to another Skype user
-Voice Conference Calling (up to 10 connections)
-Voice calling to traditional phone lines (this is called “SkypeOut”)
-Voice calling from traditional phone lines (people can call you, this is called “SkypeIn”)
-Chat with groups possible up to 48 people.
-Cross-platform file transfer
-Directory and presence management.

There are some great researchpapers out there about how to detec…

Skype, is it right for you? Let's take a look.

Recently, I have heard ALOT about Skype, the ability to detect it, and the ability to stop it. Let me just say, I use Skype. I like it, I’ve done alot of communication over it with both domestic and foreign people. I’ve done podcasts on it, etc.. so it’s a great part of the network here. However, this post will attempt to look at the pros and cons of the software and why business should or should not allow it. The decision is up to the reader, I will not make it for you.

What is Skype?
Skype, if you don’t know, is a P2P based VOIP, IM, and file transfer program. It allows:
-Voice Calling to another Skype user
-Voice Conference Calling (up to 10 connections)
-Voice calling to traditional phone lines (this is called “SkypeOut”)
-Voice calling from traditional phone lines (people can call you, this is called “SkypeIn”)
-Chat with groups possible up to 48 people.
-Cross-platform file transfer
-Directory and presence management.

There are some great researchpapers out there about how to detec…

Open Letter to Apple

Dear Apple,
While I love the iPhone and I think it's a great product.  Please please do one thing for us all that have it.   On the iPhone there is a Notes application. On the Leopard version of Mail.app, there is a Notes section.  Please make them sync?
On the Leopard version of Mail.app and iCal (actually, system wide) there is a To-Do database.  Why in God's name do these To-Do's not Sync with the iPhone?  You could also make them sync with the iPod Touch and give that platform even great organizational functionality as well.
That is all.  Thank you.  I'll be filing this as an feature request on your developer site.
Thanks,
Joel Esler
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