10-19-13 Hodgepodge

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Possible Light Posting

Opportunity has come a-knocking -- not unexpectedly, but a little more quickly than I anticipated. I may need some time in the wee hours at the beginning of the week to get prepared. I won't rule out posting here, but I may not have the time until nearly the weekend.

Weekend Reading

"An ancient principle is to deny one's enemies resources so that they are forced to turn their attention away from fighting and to focus on basic tasks of survival." -- Wendy Milling, in "The Real Obamacare Fight Is Between Establishment Republicans and the Tea Party" at Forbes

"Even if you're stuck with a dishonest co-worker or landlord, it doesn't follow that you have to become like them." -- Michael Hurd, in "Honesty Is Not Your Enemy" at The Delaware Coast Press

"Avoiding conflict on principle can lead to a false and inauthentic relationship where false assumptions will build up on one or both sides." -- Michael Hurd, in "Is All Conflict Bad?" at The Delaware Wave

My Two Cents

Anyone who thinks the news media, always carrying water for the Democrats, had the upper hand in the budget showdown over ObamaCare should read the Milling piece.


I don't agree with everything in this blog posting about Microsoft Word, particularly the anti-capitalist slant, but it does a good job of outlining what is wrong with the common word processing program and why. A biggie for me is the fact that the file format is ever-changing and obscure, making it worthless as an archive:

[P]lanned obsolescence is of no significance to most businesses, for the average life of a business document is less than 6 months. But some fields demand document retention. Law, medicine, and literature are all areas where the life expectancy of a file may be measured in decades, if not centuries. Microsoft's business practices are inimical to the interests of these users.
I have avoided Microsoft Word as much as possible for well over a decade, but I have had similar problems with the file formats of competitors, although for different reasons. If something is really important, I save it as plain text, perhaps with markups.

-- CAV


Steve D said...

I've had the same problem with Microsoft Word (and even more so with PowerPoint). In science, records need to be kept for centuries not months.
On several occasions, I've needed data or information for work from an old file and wasn't able to open it. So, I need get help from the information specialists - but I can't remember exactly which file. So I send them a dozen. Sigh!

Gus Van Horn said...

Fortunately, it's easier than you think to avoid PowerPoint, now that most word processors, (even Word, I think) can export to PDF (a ubiquitous and well-documented file type). I prefer to make slides in LaTeX, which I can compile directly into PDF, but I'll use LibreOffice, or even PowerPoint itself to prepare a presentation. In older versions of the last, "export" by "printing to file", then change the extension to ps from prn. There are several ways to convert ps to pdf.