The impact of social media on the wine blogosphere

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It's a beautiful Sunday afternoon in the SF Bay Area, and I can think of nothing better to do than sit on my tail and write up some recent thoughts. Let others hit the beaches, walk in the redwoods, cruise one of the three wine countries he have here, enjoy The City, or maybe sneak up to Tahoe for the last of this year's skiing. Today, I'm all about Cloud Computing and its place in history. I'm not a technical person, as anyone who has ever read my stuff can attest. So I won't tell you how cloud will affect EJB or you PHP/Perl/Python folks, or whether open-source will boon in a cloud-obsessed world. Truth is, this last sentence was a straw man, as we all know that technical discussions about cloud--at least as they relate to application development--miss the point. Cloud Computing requires a very high-level, organizational dialog. Therein lies Cloud's vast potential. Be... (more)

Wines for Summer Grilling & Chilling From

From backyard barbecues, to picnics on the beach to fancy summer dinner parties, Americans are enjoying more wine with their meals. "Online sales of white wine in the summer rises to 36%," says 29-year old Saurabh Abrol, President and CEO of, the fastest growing online wine merchant. But, he adds, "Red wine loyalists continue to opt for fruity or full-bodied flavors to complement beef." "Online spending for wine is showing steady growth because it's cheaper and easier for consumers. . .they save time, gas and money, especially with our case discounts." "People are also eager to experiment with value-priced wines from many parts of the world," Mr. Abrol notes. "New popular wines come from Chile, Argentina, South Africa, and even Long Island, but everyone wants a light, good-tasting wine at an affordable price to pair with their favorite summertime ... (more)

Enterprise Cloud Computing: Dallas – January 23 – 24, 2014

Enterprise Cloud Computing: Dallas – January 23 – 24, 2014 Thursday January 23, 2014-Friday January 24, 2014 Dallas Texas Venue TBD Price: $1,045.00 (including $250 early discount)   We offer additional discounts for groups of three or more people, government or non-profit employees, people who’ve taken a ZapThink class before, or individuals who are paying out of their own pocket. Please email us at [email protected] for a discount code you can use when registering. ZapThink Enterprise Enterprise Cloud Computing Course: The Leading Vendor Independent, Architecture-Focused Cloud Training The Enterprise Cloud Computing course an intensive, two day “fire hose” of information that prepares you to leverage the Cloud to achieve real business value. We cut through the hype and separate what really works from the noise. Announcing the new version 3.0 of the course! ZapThink’... (more)

Oracle 9i on Linux vs Windows 2000 Server

Linux author Don Burleson edits a popular Oracle database journal, so when he writes that 32-bit limitation of Intel-based servers being 'about to change,' it commands the interest of the entire Linux community. 'The impending availability of Intel 64-bit architecture has caused widespread excitement,' Burleson writes, 'and Intel-based servers will soon be able to compete with giant proprietary UNIX servers.' The main breakthrough, Burleson explains, is this: 'Oracle professionals now have a choice: They can use the Intel-based server on Oracle with Linux or Microsoft Windows.' There is a huge debate about which OS is best, he adds, noting that Linux advocates are rushing to make Linux accessible to preexisting Windows applications. (One example he gives is the WINE emulator -- that’s Wine as in Wine Is Not an Emulator).. WINE threatens Microsoft because you can run ... (more)

Mono Project Grows as Novell Hires 2 Volunteers

This month I will look deeper into Mono's 0.30 release System.Windows. Forms (SWF) implementation changes, and also discuss some other ways that Novell has helped Mono and open source. Mono Last month I mentioned some of the highlights of the Mono 0.30 release, including XML, security, and C# compiler performance improvements. This month I will go over some of the other improvements and announcements. However, just after the 0.30 release, a couple of compiler bugs were found that affected several people using Mono for "real" work, so there was a quick 0.30.1 release. The full release notes can be found at; the release itself is at Included in the release notes is an announcement that Novell has hired two longtime Mono volunteers. One will be working from Barcelona on System.Drawing, joining th... (more)

Wine Tasting at Sea

Wine Blog on Ulitzer Whether at home or at sea, the owners of Paraffin are never without an incomparable wine collection. Here, their wine steward, Laurent Barbier, describes the special design features implemented in the construction of the yacht's wine cellar and dining room, and what he has to consider when serving the valuable stock to guests. After many years of training in several exceptional restaurants in France, and aboard the luxury liner Queen Elizabeth II, I finally discovered the world of private yachting, first on Rasselas, and for the past seven years, on Paraffin, a 197ft Feadship based in northern Europe in the summer and the Caribbean in the winter. As the owners' personal wine steward, I alternate between Paraffin and their various residences. The owners of Paraffin are great wine connoisseurs. They have beautiful cellars in all their houses; the... (more)

An Interview with Mark Hinkle

Mark Hinkle, LinuxWorld Magazine's editor of desktop technology and CIO of NeTraverse, makers of Win4Lin, talks to Kevin Bedell about the latest developments in the Linux desktop and Windows-to-Linux migration. LWM: Your Dr. Migration column has been very popular with our readers; what gave you the idea to start writing it? Mark Hinkle: I guess it was mostly a product of my own frustrations as I moved from being primarily a Windows user to being primarily a Linux user. I found it tough to read main pages and search newsgroups for answers to my questions just because the level of technical expertise was so great there and hard for a naïve user to comprehend. I wanted to offer a resource for people like me who were management professionals, doctors, lawyers, teachers, and other vocations that were not IT specific, so they could understand how to run Linux in a less int... (more)

Linux on the Desktop: Bringing Linux into the Corporate Environment

Linux is coming to a desktop near you. The question being asked has gone from "Can it happen?" to "When and how do we get there?" This article is a high-level overview of some of the technical issues revolving around your corporate Linux desktop. Fear, Uncertainty, and Doubt: The Current FUDBefore any corporate-sponsored Linux-based project gets under way, the current crop of FUD should probably be addressed. It might save some time later, and the mere fact that it comes up is a testament to the success of those who are spreading it. There is so much of it that there's no way this article can be remotely comprehensive on the topic. You'll need to evaluate what has come your way: ask the principals what they have heard and address it so that everyone understands that this is not another backroom project. For the purposes of this article we'll largely assume that we'r... (more)

Obsession with the Sea

Once a favorite haunt of pirates, and the setting for Treasure Island, the riches in this area of the West Indies now lie in abundant coral reefs and unpopulated islands accessible only by boat. The crisp, crackling underwater sound I heard was unfamiliar to me. I tried to pinpoint it while caught up in the mesmerizing world of slowly waving purple sea fans, magenta-colored coral, and schools of fish ranging from electric blue to vibrant yellow. When I was able to tear myself away long enough to return to the tender of the 85ft Hatteras, Obsession, I removed my snorkel and asked Captain Gene Costa about the source of the noise. He told me it was the sound of the vividly colored, multistriped parrotfish chewing on the coral. In fact, he said, their teeth are designed for just that purpose. I resumed my drifting, facedown in the 86-degree turquoise sea, this time focuse... (more)

Product Review: RadView's WebLOAD

One of my key tasks at (the Magenic project for which we were awarded Microsoft's 2005 Worldwide Partner of the Year Award for a Custom Development Solution) was architecting a sales tax calculation Web service capable of supporting the tremendous volumes of traffic encountered by the main Web site. The software package I used for this purpose was a Web service-testing package that just happened to have some load-testing functionality built into it. One of the things I like best about RadView's WebLOAD product is that it is 100 percent focused just on load testing - allowing for much more breadth and depth of functionality within this category. The way that the product works is illustrated in Figure 1. You begin by creating a test script that details the various operations that you want to perform as a part of the load testing of your Web applicatio... (more)

The Vanishing Bits

I often wonder what happens to data when it gets erased. Just where does it go? What happens to it? Does it "vanish" completely, or does it still exist somewhere, perhaps in the memory bank of the expanding universe? My theory is this: everything that is erased has been recorded by time and, given enough technology to go backwards, we should be able to recover lost data (if we are able to travel backwards to the point before it was "permanently" erased, that is). Quantum Mechanics Meet "Panks Mechanics" Most of the data I have lost over the years resulted from poor handling of disks, hard drives, and outright stupidity. But one program, which is still dear to my heart, continues to haunt my own memory banks. I call such foibles "vanishing bits." Some 10 years ago I created a fairly complex text adventure (one of my first large programs) on the Commodore 128 computer.... (more)