Since I work at MS I can't criticize the Cringely article in too much depth because God only knows what is NDA material and what isn't but I will say these two things
  • Lots of people get source from Microsoft including governments, universities and major customers. Heck, you can download the Windows CE source code or Shared Source CLI
  • Given enough time a determined (h|cr)acker can determine the algorithms behind your application regardless of whether you obfuscate all the variable names and add some NOOPs to the code paths or not. The best protection for your IP is a good lawyer, just ask the RIAA.
There is a good article on source code obfuscation on GotDotNet that Cringely should have read before going on as much as he did.

Last week was time for our annual performance review which determines if and how much our raises will be for the next fiscal year. I had read Joel Spolsky's comments against reviews in general and the Microsoft review process in particular but didn't pay them much heed until last week. It's extremely disconcerting to write up how much better I think I am than my co-workers in a crass attempt to vy for a few thousand dollars more a year and the hopes of a future promotion. Even worse, is that after reading Joel's article I know wonder how I'll react if I find out that I was scored lower than I think I deserve. :(

After almost bouncing a check last month I decided to start actively keeping track of my expenses and budgetting instead of spending like a drunken lottery winner at a close out sale. I started using Microsoft Money since it came with my computer and all I can say is that it is fucking fantastic. It downloads my bank transactions and automatically matches checkcard purchases to items in my budget and flags overspending (e.g. a recent $86 dinner at Jak's grill was automatically flagged simply by downloading my checking account statement into MS Money). Even cooler is that it pops open when I'm browse to Amazon and asks "are you sure this purchase is in your budget?". I actually called my girlfriend to tell her about it last week, God I'm such a dork.

I meet Don Box today who turned out to be pretty cool even though we had a strained email exchange a few days ago. Oh yeah, he thinks Sam Ruby is cool which isn't surprising since he is cool as air conditioning on a summer day. Speaking of Sam, I just realized he is one of the head honchos over at the Apache Jakarta project which means I could have hassled him about my TomCat problems from last week. :)

If you use Apache check out Webalizer for analyzing your web server logs. I use it every day and love the "top search engine query" results the most. I've found out that people actually do Google searches for my name, that "XML database" or some variation of that is the most likely search term that brings people to my webpage and that a number of people end up there by being redirected from pages on my old school homepage

I agree with pb when he says rusty should get a real job and quit trying to make a living off of K5. I don't think the community can raise $70,000 or that it should because rusty doesn't want to relegate managing K5 to hobby status. Funny enough, I have a six month subscription and will get a text ad for this diary because I do feel that I owe K5 something back. :)

Quote of the week:
"I will also be starring in my own animated series created by Stan Lee -- 'Stripperella,' which is coming soon," she said.