Thought I’d try out Hyphens

On 27 Nov 2012 what should appear in Google Reader but a post called Hyphenation works! by PPK. I'm trying a little experiment here in that I set text-align: justify and turned on hyphenation. It's pretty easy, you tell the browser which language to use with a lang attribute. I'm declaring the language on the html element.

<html lang="en">

Next you add the CSS.

text-align: justify; /* optional */
-webkit-hyphens: auto;
-moz-hyphens: auto;
-ms-hyphens: auto;
-o-hyphens: auto;
hyphens: auto;

I believe hyphenation makes justified text work on the web. Tell me what you think.

Update: After seeing that Chrome does not support hyphenation, I removed text-align: justify so that text is easier to read in Chrome. At least until Chrome supports hyphenation.

Track Day on July 10, 2011

The hot pit where we waited to start our session.Some of you may remember last November I scheduled a track day with XtremeSpeed Track Events, but couldn't attend because of an unfortunate accident on Glendora Ridge Road. I was following my friend Doug around a blind right-hand corner and he had a head-on collision with a motorcycle who was on the wrong side of the road. I was following Doug a couple of feet too close and slid into Doug's car when I slammed on my brakes.

Last week I had the opportunity to reschedule my track day with XtremeSpeed Track Events. I had a blast. I was so excited I couldn't get to sleep and stayed up till 2:15 AM when I had to wake up at 4:15 AM. When 4:15 AM rolled around I hit the snooze button for another 20 minutes and ended up leaving my home around 5:20 AM to make the 120 mile trip to Buttonwillow Raceway Park in Buttonwillow, CA. On the way I stopped at the McDonald's in Valencia to pick up a quick breakfast and still made it to Buttonwillow Raceway Park by 7:35 AM, even though there was a very long line to enter the track. It cost $10 for admission to Buttonwillow Raceway Park.

After I parked, I went to the registration building, registered, rented a helmet for $10, bought a helmet sock for two dollars and signed up for instruction at an extra cost of $45. I attended the drivers meeting and was assigned to the beginner group. Since that this was the first time I had driven at Buttonwillow I also attended a mandatory first attendee meeting. Around 100 cars registered for the event. For the beginning and intermediate groups passing was only allowed on the straights and only if the car ahead of you did a point to pass. A point to pass means that the slower driver keeps his line and sticks his arm out the window pointing to the driver or drivers behind indicating which way to pass. Since I had one of the slowest cars there, I did this a lot.

Once the meetings were over we were ready to go. There were five groups: beginner, intermediate, advanced and super advanced. Each group got to run five sessions of five laps each on the three mile long track. The first session was a follow/lead session. After each lap in the follow/lead session, the car behind the lead car would peel off and go to the end of the line so that each entrant could follow the lead car around the track. We had more than five laps the first session to allow each driver to follow the lead car around the track. The beginner's group had three lead cars and approximately 25 entrants.

I met my instructor Douglas, who is a driving instructor for the LAPD, before the second session. He told me what to expect and that every so often he would make a course correction to my steering wheel and instructed me to not let go of the steering wheel. He immediately saw my long-time problem of turning into the corner too soon even though I knew I had the problem and was attempting to turn in as late as possible. He also saw that I was carrying too much speed into the corners and that I kept looking into the mirror at the cars behind me. I learned to ignore the mirror until I got to the straights and then look into the mirror and point to pass to let any cars behind me pass. Douglas helped me to turn in later, go wider exiting one of the turns and to learn the track. I could tell right away that I was going faster. The instructor session was well worth the $45.

Here's my car waiting for the more advanced groups to finish their sessions.

I spent the next three sessions improving my speed, learning the track and having too much fun. On the fourth session I actually got so low on gas (petrol) that the engine shut off entering and exiting turns. I drove the car slowly off the track and was wondering what was wrong with my car when one of the other drivers asked me if I had checked the gas gauge. The car was almost out of gas! I was having so much fun I forgot to look at the gas gauge. Fortunately, the track has gas pumps that take a credit card and at $4.95 a gallon for 91 octane, you'll need a credit card. I bought around five gallons of gas which would allow me to finish the last session and drive to the city of Buttonwillow to fill up, which only cost $3.85 a gallon.

It was a hot, humid, long day and my shoulder hurt like the dickens, but I didn't care because I had so much fun. If you have the opportunity, I'd highly recommend XtremeSpeed for track day, the next track days are on July 30 and 31, 2011.

Business Ethics and HP’s Handling of Legacy Palm Pre Users

My friend Eric Mack has a very good summary of ethics in Knowledge Management which I believe applies to the current problem Hewlett Packard has when they decided not to tell their legacy users that they would not get an upgrade to webOS 2.x OTA.

Here's how I currently define the argument for Ethics in KM

  1. Knowledge Management is about sharing of knowledge, information, and experiences - an exchange of information and ideas. (We often call this learning.)

  2. This exchange cannot occur without effective communication.

  3. For communication to be truly effective, transparency must exist. Transparent communication is built on trust.

  4. Any unethical behavior undermines trust which ultimately impairs communication which leads to the loss of sharing and the loss (or distortion) of information and knowledge.

The bottom line is that ethics is important to KM because of trust.

The problem is that Hewlett Packard was not transparent in their communication with their base users of webOS devices which comes across as untrustworthy. They announced three new products that are not ready to ship despite HP CEO Leo Apotheker having previously stated the following in an interview.

“HP will stop making announcements for stuff it doesn’t have. When HP makes announcements, it will be getting ready to ship.”

HP CEO: New Products Will Ship a Few Weeks After Feb 9 Announcement

They gave a vague "sometime in summer" ship date. Palm webOS products have missed many milestones in the past. See Flash by the end of 2009, webOS 2.x in fall of 2010 and then in winter of 2011. If you look at the failures in their demonstrations (unable to reply to an email for instance) you can tell that this is still a beta product.

This is not how to treat your customer base. They now say that year-old equipment is not capable of running the new OS. This is despite having previously previewed the new OS on equipment that was first sold in June 2009. As previous coworker of mine used to say "it doesn't pass the smell test."

I believe that HP should produce an OTA upgrade as a stopgap measure to keep their loyal user base . This will allow developers to upgrade their products for the new OS with the knowledge that there are still potential users to purchase their product and potentially keep many of their loyal user base using their old phones until HP is able to ship their new phones and Touchpad tablet device. To prevent user apprehension they should also state what mobile phone carriers they are negotiating with to carry their new devices. If these two things are not done I believe they will lose many of their loyal users.

What do you think?

Track Day on November 20, 2010

I'm very excited about being able to run my MGB GT on a race track next month at Willow Springs.

My son and I driving the MGB GT on Mulholland Hwy.

Willow Springs has seven tracks.

  • Willow Springs Raceway (2.5-mile road course)
  • Streets of Willow Springs (1.8-mile road course and skid pad)
  • Horse Thief Mile (11 turn road course featuring major elevation changes, tight turns and canyon-like surroundings)
  • Willow Springs Kart Track (.675-mile sprint kart track)
  • Balcony Autocross
  • Speedway Willow Springs (1/4 mile with walls oval)
  • Walt James Stadium (3/8-mile high-banked dirt oval)

We will be using Horse Thief Mile, an 11 turn road course with decreasing radius turns, switchbacks and elevation changes. It should be like driving up Decker Canyon in the Santa Monica Mountains.

HorseThiefMile.jpg

The price of $85 a day (with discount) seems reasonable to me. Your car should be in good condition with good tires, no fluid leaks, loose wires or loose body panels. If you have a convertible or roadster you will need a rollbar. A helmet is required and they have helmets available for use if you don't own a helmet. Since the track day starts at 7:30 AM my wife and adult children will not be coming with me (they like to sleep in on Saturdays). If you're interested in attending, check out the Extreme Speed Track Events registration page. I hope to see you there.

IE Only in this Day and Age

In this day, it is hard to believe that there are still sites that only work with IE. It doesn't really look like they want people to look at their claim information.

gallagherbassetfail.jpg

When I tried to access the site with IE 8 the site said that it couldn't validate my information. The reason is because my last name contains an apostrophe. The system does not allow apostrophes in a last name. An apostrophe is a valid name character!