Sickness and death

Our entire family has been sick for several days. Some of us longer than others. We all are running fevers of up to 104.6°, coughing, runny nose, sore throat and general lethargy. And yesterday we noticed that our cat was not doing very well either.

Tiger had been unusually quiet recently, which we attributed to him getting a bit older (though he was only about 6 years old). But last night was very different. When my wife picked him up he felt limp. At one point he seemed like he wanted to get off her lap. When she placed him on the floor he had great difficulty standing up, with his legs just slipping out from under him. Realizing the end was near we called our girls in to say goodbye.

He wouldn’t drink any water, so we placed him on a towel in a box so he would be comfortable through the night. Our youngest woke up in a coughing fit at about 4 in the morning, and my wife spent a few last minutes with Tiger after attending to our daughter. He purred as she pet him for quite some time before returning to bed. At 7:30 this morning he had died...

»plink« · March 30, 2003


I’ve been busy putting together a promotional CD-ROM for one of our teacher programs at work. It’s finally done so I can catch up on email and link to a few sites here, like this article on WI-FI evangelism by Paul Boutin, or this send-up of Apple’s announcement this week of adding Al Gore (yes, that Al Gore) to their board of directors. And maybe I’ll even have some time to write a review of the 12" PowerBook...

»plink« · March 21, 2003


Designerly types have traditionally had a problem with the web when it comes to controlling typography. CSS with its ability to control margins, padding, line heights and more, goes a long way to helping. But sometimes you just want to use Shelley Allegro, and you know that 98% or more of your audience will not have that face on their computer. The only way to deal with that has been to set the type in an image editing program like Photoshop, and save it as a GIF.

This leads to a host of other problems, beginning with accessibility, the inability of others to be able to select the text, resize it, or for search engines to properly index it. Enter Douglas Bowman (he of WIRED redesign fame), has posted an excellent article detailing how to use the background-image property of css to deal with almost all of these problems [from Craig Saila via Digital Web].

And speaking of fonts, I have updated my article on fonts for Unix with some screenshots over at Real World Style.

»plink« · March 10, 2003

X vs. XP

Dan Pouliot has obviously put a lot of effort into his new resource site, Mac OSX vs. Windows XP. Although the title makes it sound like a boxing match, this is in actuality a fairly balanced review of both operating systems. Dan is a Mac man, and admits as much up front. But, as he says in his final analysis:

“I acknowledge that different people will feel more comfortable—and therefore more productive—with different OSes. By all means buy a computer (and an OS) that feels best to you.”

»plink« · March 10, 2003

On a Friday for once

This week’s Photo Friday challenge is Stapler...

»plink« · March 7, 2003

Teaching and technology

I can’t say that I would have predicted that Maine’s laptop program would be a success, but these early positive assessments don’t really surprise me. In a former life I was a teacher, and I received a Masters in Education based in part on some research into the effects of technology in the classroom. I left teaching before I had a chance to do any additional research, but my initial efforts revealed that if you get technology into the classroom, it will be used. And even teachers who are unsure about it are more likely to use it in innovative ways than teachers who only have access in a lab setting, or for short periods of time.

»plink« · March 5, 2003

The PowerBook has left the building...

Sometime this weekend my PowerBook left the plant in Taiwan and at this very moment is winging its way home. Come to papa...

»plink« · March 3, 2003

You appear to be using a browser that does not implement style sheets correctly, or you have turned style sheets off in your browser. If it’s the latter, turning style sheets back on will greatly enhance your experience on this site, and many others on the web. If you are using an older browser (such as Netscape 4) you may wish to know that there are standards compliant browsers available for all platforms. See the Web Standards Project’s Browser Upgrade Campaign if you would like to find one for your particular needs. Otherwise, rest assured that you are seeing all of the content that everyone else is - it just doesn’t look as pretty...