About

I'm Mike Pope. I live in the Seattle area. I've been a technical writer and editor for over 30 years. I'm interested in software, language, music, movies, books, motorcycles, travel, and ... well, lots of stuff.

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Always do right. This will gratify some people and astonish the rest.

— Mark Twain



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Blog Statistics

Dates
First entry - 6/27/2003
Most recent entry - 6/14/2019

Totals
Posts - 2564
Comments - 2614
Hits - 2,148,811

Averages
Entries/day - 0.44
Comments/entry - 1.02
Hits/day - 368

Updated every 30 minutes. Last: 2:43 AM Pacific


  05:55 PM

Hey, it's Monday.

Why do only the "Experts" use online help? Jeff Smith is the resident expert on many applications at his work. Like this:

Me: Ok, so, according to the help, it tells us <what to do>. So, let's just do this...

[later...]

User: It works! Wow! You are a GENIUS! I do not know how you memorize and know all this stuff!

[via Michael B]

Missing Greatness. If one of the world's best violinists were busking in a train station, would you notice? [via BrettZ]

Asirra. Another CAPTCHA control/service. Like HotCaptcha, Asirra (Animal Species Image Recognition for Restricting Access) is based on images, but it's substantially more work-safe, I'd say. I also like their explanation about HotCaptcha that "Asking users to rate people's attractiveness is potentially offensive, and the challenge does not have any ground truth." (Emphasis mine.) Linguistic note: the term CAPTCHA is tm'd by Carnegie-Mellon; the generic term, apparently, is HIP (Human Interactive Proof).

Pick a License, Any License. Jeff Atwood bravely catalogs the types of licenses under which you can release your software: "I hate software licenses. When I read a software license, what I see is a bunch of officious, mind-numbing lawyerly doublespeak. Blah, blah, blah.. kill me now." As usual with Jeff's posts, the comments go on and on and on, but as usual, with good info.

List of company name etymologies. Like Jason says, this sounds so familiar. Anyway, ever wonder why it's A&M Records? Etc. [via Jason Kottke]

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