Archive for the 'Rants miscellaneous' Category

3 Normal Forms: Spanish Translation

I am happy to announce that my Three Normal Forms tutorial has been translated into Spanish by Roberto Fernandez. You can download it here.

Ancient Treasure

In my apartment building people often leave books they no longer want in the lobby for others to pick up if they want. Usually it’s nothing interesting, but the other day someone left a truly incredible artifact: the Microsoft Excel Version 1.04 manual, from 1986.

This is a true historical document. It’s not the absolutely first version of Excel, but it’s almost the first. It includes the installation media (800KB floppy!) and it’s absolutely pristine. It feels like this thing belongs in a museum.

But the most interesting part is the very last page: a bug report form, for sending “software bugs, documentation errors, or suggested enhancements”. Best of all: Mail the form to Microsoft!

This thing is a treat. Shall we start the bidding at, say, $0.43?



Back in the blog

After a long hiatus, I’m resuming my activity on this blog, devoting it mostly to Oracle and other database matters.

Gigantic Sea Turtle on Staten Island

Saturday morning I was jogging down South Beach a little south of the Verrazanno Bridge when I came upon a stupefying sight: a huge sea turtle had crawled up on the beach and died. It was a little awe-inspiring, because the turtle’s great size implied great age. I measured it with my steps; it was 4′ 8″ from tail to beak. I stood there for a while, wondering why nobody else around seemed interested in this remarkable creature, then continued with my run.

After getting home I decided there must be someone who would be interested in such a thing. I called the Bronx Zoo but couldn’t get past the receptionist who insisted the zoo doesn’t make house calls and she said I should call the City to get it cleaned up.

That wasn’t quite what I had in mind, so next I called the New York Aquarium and was transferred to someone in “the lab”. The woman I spoke to seemed quite interested and took down whatever little information I could give her.

This afternoon Cancer-grrl and I went back to take a look. I was a little worried that I might have dreamt the whole thing. As we approached the spot on the beach the turtle was no longer where I had originally seen him, but he had come loose and was floating with the tide just a few yards offshore. He was being buffetted pretty badly by the waves and it will no doubt not be long before he starts to disintegrate. We were able to take these pictures. This was a majestic beast and it felt important to make some kind of record of its death.

I think it was a loggerhead turtle, which has been known to frequent Staten Island.





14.jpg 11.jpg



Godzilla vs. Rodin

Godzilla vs. Rodin

I blog.

I wish I had something to say!