domingo, 15 de noviembre de 2009

A tip for the next interview with Steve Ballmer

Hi, guys!

In case you are an IT journalist and were to interview Steve Ballmer, Microsoft's CEO, please, I beg you, ask him this question:

- Mr. Ballmer, given your hard stance on GNU/Linux violating Microsoft's IP (whatever that means), what's your take on Microsoft being caught twice in a matter of a few months in violations of the General Public License? Is it official policy at Microsoft that personnel can throwing all kinds of (unproven) accusations at the Free Software community yet, at the same time, treat GPL software with total disregard for the terms they demand?

I just can't believe a company that prides itself of "respecting IP" can be caught twice in a GPL violation. Even worse if all they do is point fingers at other people saying other's are violation Microsoft's IP (without showing proof).

- http://news.slashdot.org/story/09/07/23/1327205/Microsofts-Code-Contribution-Due-To-GPL-Violation
- http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2355892,00.asp

lunes, 9 de noviembre de 2009

man date: %C: century; like %Y, except omit last two digits (e.g., 20)?

Oh, really? The only problem that I find in that statement is that it would be correct on the very last year of a century. I mean We are in 2009 and our century is the 21st, right?
Well, let's see what date says about our century:

$ date +%C
20

Lovely! What about in 1999?

$ date -d 19990303 +%C
19

So in 1999 being the 19th century, the closest thing I was to using a computer was an abacus (considering I was a windows user at the time we can agree I was actually using something next to an abacus).

And what about the last year of the 20th century?

$ date -d 20000303 +%C
20

Only then the definition provided by 'man date' does match the actual century for a certain year. And before people start complaining about 2000 being the first year of the 21st century instead of the last of the 20th century:
The year 0 doesn't exist in our calendar. Remember the gregorian calendar is roman based and romans didn't know the concept of 0, therefore no year 0. Theoretically speaking, from Dec 31st 1 BC, you'd have jumped into
Jan 1st 1 AD. If the first year of the first century is 1 AD and the last is 100, the first year of the second century is 101, the first year of the 20th century would be 1901 and the last would be 2000 and the first of the 21st century would be 2001 and so on. I used to discuss about this very same point with my Music History professor at the Conservatory in Maracaibo and we'd get into all kinds of philosophical questions about when it was 0, the limit between year
1 BC, 1 AD and so on and we'd never get to a point. My best wishes for my dear professor Osvaldo Nolé, by the way.

More info:
- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Year_zero
- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gregorian_calendar