One quick tip of the beanie to me

It was 20 years ago today that RoastBoy burst upon the scene.

This blog started after I was laid off from IBM. In April 2003, Big Blue had acquired Rational Software, where I’d been employed for five years. I started writing as a way to chronicle my time while looking for work. I picked up some contract work with EMC in early summer which led to a great full-time gig. That ran for a year or so until health issues put me out of work for five years. (This occurred before ObamaCare prohibited insurance companies from denying claims for pre-existing conditions.)

Anyway, 20 years is a long time for anything. I wasn’t thinking 20 years ahead then and certainly am not now. Let’s enjoy the day. Except for some clumps in the woods, the snow is gone. It’s spring.

Blitzed by @FeedBlitz

Some of you may have seen a scary message when you clicked on a link to my blog post this morning. The service that handles distribution of my blog, FeedBlitz, had a bit of a meltdown this morning. They’ve explained the error in an email and on their blog. In part,

This morning, shortly before 8am US Eastern, one of our databases became overloaded and, to use a technical term, crapped out.
Our monitoring apps told us of the situation, we quickly jumped on the apparent problem, and we thought we were done … but there was more to the issue than at first appeared.
One of our downstream web servers that handled tracking became horribly overloaded as a consequence of its being unable to reach that specific database. That in turn caused a failsafe in FeedBlitz to kick in, which had the nasty and unintended consequence of putting up a scary malware message.

There was no risk to your computer or with anything on I’m sorry for this false alarm. FeedBlitz responded quickly and correctly, getting the servers back online and communicating pretty well.

They did continue their regular Twitter posts, which did not relate to the crisis at hand and, for while, leading to the impression that it was business as usual. 

Why is Amazon a Mac hater?

Amazon offers a publishing service that delivers blog content to Kindles and kindred e-readers. The subscription costs $.99/month, one-third of which goes to Amazon.
I set up an account and will make this stream o’ bits available through the Kindle channel. (If anyone subscribes, I will donate my proceeds to charity. I’m interested in the publishing process, not in making money.)
One annoying hitch, however, is that, when I go to the publisher’s page to log in to my account, I’m greeted with this warning.

Prompt to install IE or Firefox

Internet Explorer isn’t available and you really have to dig to find Firefox versions older than the current  (17.0) release.
It turns out that the message is benign. Safari and Chrome, the two browsers that I have installed on my Mac, work ok.