Author Archives

Aug 07

More on VMWare Fusion v Parallels

CNet’s Crave has a great writeup on performance of Fusion versus Parallels for Windows virtualization on the Mac. I’ve been excited since Parallels came out about this — especially for my work at Mozilla, it’s fantastic, as it means I can take a look at Windows builds of Firefox, other apps, etc — all with my MacBook Pro. As much as I like Parallels, though, I’ve found its performance erratic — and at times it overwhelmed my system resources. I’ve been trying Fusion lately, and my experience has been a lot better. It seems to perform better, and it’s much better behaved with respect to running other applications. Parallels has a better UI, I think, and its “coherence” mode seems to be better than Fusion’s “unity” mode. But I found using Parallels that I’d often have to restart my machine to get performance back okay — Fusion so far seems a lot better, so I’m going to stick with it for a bit.

Aug 07

Awesome opportunity mixing mission, impact & business

Nicholas Reville, executive director of one of my favorite non-profit tech companies, the Participatory Culture Foundation, has just posted on their blog that they’re hiring a West Coast business person.

This is a special opportunity, I think. I joined Mozilla 2 years ago when we were just 15 or so folks, and my title was Business Development lead — even though we didn’t really know what it meant. But in the 2 years since then, I’ve been fortunate to be part of something unique & great — the growth of Mozilla.  FWIW, I had only generic business/entrepreneurial background before joining to do BD — but was able to work with Chris Beard, Mitchell Baker and others here to build something of an ecosystem of partners, and to help make our economics more sustainable.

At PCF, there’s a similar type of opportunity — but even more at the ground floor — the opportunity is to figure out open video from the beginning, and to mix the business, open source, and non-profit angles all together.

If you’re interested in making sure that the future of video on the web stays open, I’d encourage you to take a look.

Aug 07

Reading Harry Potter 7

I’ll refrain from writing a review of HP7 (I liked it quite a bit), but wanted to note a new feeling for me — as I was reading this book, I started to imagine, for the first time, what it might feel like in 7 or 8 years when Sam reads the series for the first time. It’s fun to do that — fun to think about the types of conversations we’ll have, the questions he’ll have, and the learning he’ll do. HP6 came out about a week after Sam was born — so a lot of it hadn’t really sunk in yet.

There’s the basic emotion of thinking back to when I read Tolkein for the first time — read my parents’ old editions of them, naturally — and it was fun to discover this whole new world that Mom & Dad already knew about. Same for CS Lewis.  And that stuff is awesome — I can’t really wait. Kathy & I already love helping Sam as he develops his sense of humor.

But the collateral effect is that I found myself often wondering about what it was that JK was trying to communicate — what she was trying to help her readers understand.  So I really started appreciating some of the things she was trying to do, and appreciating her craft more than I had done previously.  That’s a pretty tremendous gift that I’ve gotten from Sam already — and has applicability far beyond just Harry Potter or even books.

It’s also fun to think about the characters that we all grow up with — the people and places and ideas that become part of growing up, learning how the world works, learning who we are. I think about the persistent characters in my life — Bilbo & Frodo Baggins, Gollum, Darth Vader, Kermit the Frog, Big Bird, Animal, Aslan, Winnie the Pooh — and wonder which ones Sam will know & care about — which ones will be real for him. Maybe Elmo and Bob the Builder and SpongeBob and Harry Potter — who knows. But I’m excited to find out.

Aug 07

Heart Shaped Box, by Joe Hill

I can’t really remember why I picked this book up — I think maybe Stephen King recommended it in EW or something. I don’t read a lot of horror — about one a year or so. I liked this one pretty well — it had some definitely creepy weird parts that were freaky to read at night. Definitely worth the read.

Aug 07

iWork ’08

i’ve been playing around a bit with the new iWork for a few minutes to get first impressions, but only have a few minutes left on my battery…

but my first thoughts are these:

1) keynote is mostly the same. the auto-alpha stuff is going to be really, really handy for cleaning up graphics

2) pages seems to have been considerably de-sucked. in fact, it may not actually suck anymore, although i’m not prepared to pronounce it non-sucking. word processing mode is a huge leap forward, if not actually an innovation, and change tracking looks like it works (and it looks beautiful, fwiw)

3) numbers is going to take some time to get my head around. i *think* it’s a spreadsheet that’s more about communicating than figuring, but we’ll see. the expressiveness there is shockingly good, and, as usual, it looks fantastic.

anyway, more soon. this release is going to be a little brutal for the Mac BU of Microsoft.

(i still would really like these rich client apps to auto-save to something like Google Apps on the server side.)