I believe the EU is way off-base on this.
since when is a company obligated to help its competitors with their
software problems in this unprecedented of a way?
five hundred hours of free technical support a piece I believe is more than
generous.
After that, they can pay just like everyone else.
But forcing Microsoft to turn over source code is just plain wrong.
How are they supposed to prevent competitors from stealing ideas and
concepts that way?
Last I checked, Windows wasn’t created under a Creative Commons License.
It’s copyright, all rights reserved, and Microsoft has every right to share
as much or as little as they see fit.
It doesn’t have an obligation to help its competition along.
If you want top market share, earn it, don’t expect it to be handed to you.
Antitrust Chief Kroes Says EU Hasn’t Received Microsoft Details
Associated Press
January 31, 2006 4:13 a.m.
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB113869837680960868.html?mod=technology_main_
whats_news
BRUSSELS, Belgium — The European Union’s antitrust chief Neelie Kroes
said
Tuesday she had not yet received all information on Microsoft Corp.’s
offer
to share software codes and comply with a 2004 EU antitrust ruling.
She also told European lawmakers that the software giant couldn’t
charge
fees for the server protocol and communication codes if it couldn’t
prove
that the code was innovative.
“If no such innovation … no remuneration can be charged by
Microsoft,”
she said.
Microsoft has until Feb. 15 to reply to the formal charge sheet the
commission sent in December over providing complete and accurate
information on interoperability of its software codes.
“We have not yet received full details from Microsoft,” Ms. Kroes told
a
parliamentary committee.
Microsoft offered last week to let competitors examine some of the
blueprints to its flagship Windows operating system in response to a
European Union antitrust ruling calling for greater openness.
Ms. Kroes said the first she heard of the offer by the U.S. company
was via
a Microsoft press release.
The technical information is important for competitors to make their
software compatible with Windows servers.
Although Microsoft insists it had already complied in December by
supplying
the documentation and offering rivals 500 hours, or about $100,000
worth,
of free technical support apiece, it says it will license the Windows
source code — which it says is the “ultimate documentation” — to
address
any lingering concerns that EU and U.S. regulatory officials may have.
EU officials and an independent monitor held talks Monday at
Microsoft’s
U.S. headquarters to discuss the documentation the software company
has so
far supplied to comply with the EU antitrust ruling.

Triage just got a call from an agent, asking for clarification of what classifies as stolen meds.
The agent had a member on the phone who said she lives on a house boat in Illinois, and that a Mermaid or fish got on the boat, and stole her meds.
John dialed in to listen to the call as it progressed, with a whole bunch of us clustered around his cube.
After a few minutes the agent found out that the caller was just trying to be cute, but only after specifically asking if the meds had been lost.
The caller mentioned the Mermaid again while we were all listening.
UM says he’s going to contact Client Services to see if we can have Mermaids listed as a criterian for replacing a med, and that they’ll probably get that done faster than they’ll fix the DB_interface.
All and all, it was great.
Thanks to Third World County, Gribbit’s Word, Dianne’s Stuff, Stuck On Stupid, Rempelia Prime, |

The Journey to Unity – 174
Sabbath Rest for the Animals:
“Remember the Shabbos day to sanctify it. Six days shall you labor and
accomplish all your work; but the Seventh Day is a Shabbos to the
Compassionate One,
your God. On it you shall not perform any kind of work – not you, your son,
your daughter, your servant, your maidservant, or your animal; nor the
stranger
within your gates.” (Exodus 20:8-10).
Dear Friends,
There is a mitzvah Divine mandate – not to cause our animals to do work on
Shabbos. The book “Nefesh Kol Chai” cites some halachic sources which state
that this mitzvah is connected to the Torah’s prohibition against “tzaar
baalei Chayim” – causing needless suffering to living creatures. Why,
however,
should causing our animals to work on Shabbos be a form of tzaar baalei
chayim? After all, does not the Torah give us permission to cause them to
work
under humane conditions during the six days of the week? If so, then why
can’t we cause them to do some work on Shabbos under humane conditions? The
beginning
of the answer to this question can be found in the following verse which
serves as another source for this mitzvah:
“Six days shall you do your tasks, and on the seventh day you shall cease,
so that your ox and your donkey ‘yanuach’ – will have restful contentment”
(Exodus 23:12).
The Hebrew word “yanuach” is related to the word “menuchah” – restful
contentment. According to a midrashic commentary known as the “Mechilta,”
the word
“yanuach” is therefore teaching us that in addition to resting from physical
work on Shabbos, our animals are also free to go into the fields and graze
without being disturbed. The classical commentator, Rashi, cites this
teaching of the Mechilta, and a noted commentator on Rashi offers the
following explanation:
“On Shabbos, our animals are to have contentment of the heart” (Be’ar
Yitzchak, cited by Sha’arei Aharon).
In this spirit, “Nefesh Kol Chai” states in the name of the Ohr Somayach
that on the Holy Shabbos, the Torah wants animals “to have contentment and
pleasure.”
This is the mandate of Hashem the Compassionate One.
Regarding this mandate, Rabbi Samson Raphael Hirsch writes:
“On the Seventh Day, the human being refrains from exercising his own rule
over any of Hashem’s creatures and humbly subordinates himself and his world
to the Creator. While he observes the Shabbos, the Shabbos teaches him to
respect every other creature alongside himself, as all are equal before
Hashem,
and all are His children. This dismantling of the human being’s rule over
all creatures is one of the objectives of the Shabbos – the day on which the
human being shows homage to Hashem – so that the animals who work and bear
burdens should have rest from working for the human being.” (Commentary to
Exodus 23:12)
Yes, during the week, we have limited dominion over the animals in our
possession, which includes the right to have them work for us under humane
conditions.
This right, however, is taken away from us on Shabbos, as the animals are
given the right to rest during the entire Shabbos and to experience
contentment
of the heart. As a result, any attempt to force them to work on Shabbos is
considered to be needless suffering – tzaar baalei chayim!
Have a Good and Sweet Shabbos,
Yosef Ben Shlomo Hakohen (See below)
Related Teachings:
1. There is an ancient story about a non-Jewish man living in the Land of
Israel who became inspired to accept the Torah after witnessing how a cow
that
once belonged to a Jewish man would not work on Shabbos. This convert later
became a Torah sage. The story appears in the archive on our website (lower
section), and the following is a direct link:
http://www.shemayisrael.co.il/publicat/hazon/tzedaka/cow.htm
2. As the custodians of the earth and its creatures (Genesis 2:15), human
beings only have a limited form of dominion. We discussed this issue in a
previous
letter of this series titled, “The Limits of Human Dominion,” and it appears
in the archive on our website (lower section). The following is a direct
link:
http://www.shemayisrael.co.il/publicat/hazon/tzedaka/limits.htm
Hazon – Our Universal Vision:
www.shemayisrael.co.il/publicat/hazon/

I checked my mail this morning, and found a huge amount of spam from the contact form.
Why didn’t I think that would happen.
Now to try to find out how to keep that from happening.
If I can’t find a fix, then I’ll have to disable it.
I submitted my resume to HR yesterday to go with my application for the administrative assistant position.
They’re taking applications through tomorrow, so I won’t find out anything until next week at a minimum.
I hope they don’t drag it out too long, and I hope it doesn’t end in more unproductivity.
There’s new music on the Wolf.
That’s a good thing.

It’s time once again for the Open Trackback Post.
You know what to do.
Leave your link and a trackback, and you’ll get some publicity.
As seen at Linkfest Haven
Open Trackbacks, linkfest, open trackbacks, blog promotion

I just looked at my paycheck.
$589.74 isn’t bad.
I’ll pay all my bills, and maybe have a little left over to put in the Paypal account.
I’m saving up to take a trip as soon as I can.
I’ve managed to get through today with very little sleepiness.
I don’t know if that’s good or bad.
I’m glad tomorrow’s Friday, but I’ll be even more glad when they let me know whether or not I got the admin position.
I’d like to come home at the end of the day knowing I put in a full day’s work.
I’ve forgotten what that’s like.
I mean, work always has its disadvantages, but at least when you’ve worked, you know you’ve done your part.
I’ll probably need some couch time when this is all over.

I talked to Ray earlier this evening, and he told me that he had asked the advice of an acquaintance of ours more knowledgeable in the law than either of us.
Basically, it comes down to this.
As long as the company pays me, and doesn’t say anything derogatory, then they can dally as much as they like regarding my work situation, and there’s nothing I can do about it.
Angry isn’t the right word to describe how I feel right now.
What few teeth I thought I had in this situation really never existed, and I’m completely at the whim of a group of people who for the most part don’t give a damn about anyone but themselves.
It’s a good thing there’s no alcohol in the house.
I’d be in no condition to go to work tomorrow if there were.

by Rabbi Emanuel Feldman
Suddenly my flight was upgraded, and I began to view the world differently.
I was recently bumped up to first class on an overseas flight to Israel. El
Al had oversold the coach section, and I was one of the fortunate few to be
given complimentary seats upstairs. I am not certain that it is worth the
extra thousand dollars normally charged for this pleasure, but I must admit
that
I loved it. The ambience was luxurious, the service gracious, the seat wide
and comfortable. But something strange happened to me when I entered that
first
class compartment.
I confess that before very long I sensed within me the beginnings of an
attitude towards those unfortunates in coach that was quite unbecoming: a
blend
of pride, hauteur, and what can only be described as something akin to
condescension towards those huddled masses yearning to breathe free.
It was at first a deliciously wicked feeling, but soon enough I was troubled
by it. Parvenu that you are, I scolded myself. Shameless arriviste. One
short
flight of stairs on a plane have you climbed, and look to what level you
have sunk. By what alchemy have you suddenly been transmogrified into an
aristocrat,
and they into riffraff? Had it not been for the sheer accident of your being
at the right point in the line, you too would be down there rubbing
shoulders
with screaming children, irritated parents, and harassed flight attendants.
Countless times have you preached about the sin of forgetting our origins,
and how the Torah constantly reminds us to remember where we came from. But
in the time it takes to climb nine short steps you have forgotten your
origins.
But as quickly as the twinges of guilt settled upon me, just as quickly did
they dissipate. Pampered by the luxury, I let myself melt into the
hedonistic
ambience of eat, drink and be merry for tomorrow we arrive in Israel.
It’s All Relative
Now and then I wondered about the great unwashed who were sitting
downstairs. Was it noisy there, were the tourists already standing and
chatting loudly
in the aisles, had the attendants by now become impatient, had the
saran-wrapped meals and the plastic cutlery been served, were the aisles
already impassable
and the rest rooms all occupied?
Thus enclosed in a cocoon of self-satisfaction, I dozed off in my soft
leather chair. It had enough leg room and tilted back deeply enough for me
to fall
into the semi-somnolent airline state that resembles actual sleep.
And then I dreamed a dream. In the dream an old question was posed to me: If
a tree falls in a forest, does it make a sound? Without hesitation, I
answered
firmly: Yes. A sound is a sound independent of its listeners. The existence
of a sound is not dependent on who hears it.
A second question was posed to me: If you are in the first class compartment
of a plane, and there are no passengers at all in the coach section, are you
still in first class?
Now this was a more complex question. If there is no second class, there can
be no first class. First class-ness itself depends on second class-ness. So
if no one at all is in the coach section, by what definition is my section
first class?
And yet, the same level of luxury obtains in first class whether or not
there are people sitting in coach. Like the tree that falls in the forest,
first
class-ness is its own entity: it is a state unto itself, independent of any
thing else, unrelated to other sections.
Or is it? One of the items the airlines sell with their first class tickets
is the unsavory little pleasure of knowing that there are passengers on the
same plane who are not in first class — who are sitting in a separate,
curtained-off compartment behind you or beneath you in a place
euphemistically
called “coach,” in a section more crowded that yours, in seats narrower than
yours, receiving service less frequent than you, attended by stewardesses
more harried than yours, eating on table trays not covered by linen
tablecloths like yours, and — if you don’t observe kashrut — eating food
that is
much less varied than yours.
But if the coach section is empty, that means that all the passengers are in
first class. If everyone is in first class, that means that the first class
passenger is being deprived of his unsavory first class pleasure. First
implies a second. (See Rashi to Genesis 1:5) After all, as the incisive old
adage
puts it, it is not what we have that gives us pleasure; it the knowledge
that our neighbor lacks what we have that gives us true pleasure.
The High Road
So bemused, I spent the next few hours in semi-sleep. Soon enough the
questions dissolved in the steady hum of the engines, the quiet in the
compartment,
the whispering attendants, the dim lights, the thick blankets, the oversized
pillows. Coach class, first class — why all this Talmudic hair-splitting?
I was, for a change, having a comfortable trip to Israel, period.
The sun came up, and with it, breakfast. Entree, juice, eggs, warm bagels,
lox, cream cheese, cereal, coffee, Danish, chocolate, milk — an endless
array
of goodies. I stretched, yawned, washed, davened, and sat down to enjoy the
feast.
But the night-time question hung in the air. In the dawn’s early light it
occurred to me that a truly pious Jew would not have had a difficult time
answering
it. Says the Talmud, “Do not look down at anyone.” And Nachmanides in his
famous letter warns about humility and the evils of haughtiness and pride:
“… Humility is the finest quality among all the fine qualities Know, my
son, that he whose heart is arrogant toward other beings is in fact a rebel
against
God’s kingdom, for he is utilizing God’s garments to glorify himself — for
it is written (Psalms 93:1): “God reigns, he is robed in pride….”
Nachmanides goes on to demonstrate that in whatever man would be proud — be
it his wealth, his glory, his wisdom — he is foolish and sinful, for all
these
things are God’s alone.
Beyond this, the Torah itself (Deut. 17:20) warns a king not to multiply
chariots or sessions “so that his heart not be lifted up among his
brethren.” A
king — who has authority and majesty — is warned against the pride which
is his due; how much more so ordinary people.
Only two more luxurious hours remained before landing, and I would not allow
vexing reveries to disturb my tranquility. Not for me these trivial
exercises
in pettiness. Thus purified and cleansed, I awaited our arrival in the Holy
Land.
And yet…. what if no one was in fact down there in coach?
I was only curious. It had nothing to do with my being upstairs; I was
simply wondering. Could there be such a thing as a coach compartment without
any
passengers at all? An entirely empty coach cabin: that would be something to
see. Just theoretically, of course.
Danish and Coffee
I don’t recall exactly what happened next — was I dreaming again or not? —
but I found myself arising from my chair, walking to the cabin exit, and
descending
the circular stairwell. Nine steps. Once on the lower level I turned towards
the back of the plane, parted the curtain and peered inside. Before me were
unruly children, impatient flight attendants, a long line before the
restrooms, papers and refuse on the floor, mothers diapering babies, 200
passengers
pressed closely together.
I slid back the curtain, climbed back up the stairwell, entered the first
class compartment, and sank into my seat. The compartment was tranquil, and
the
attendant plied me with more Danish and asked me how I would like my coffee.
But my mind was elsewhere. Dream or not, I knew that Nachmanides would never
have experienced the tiny surge of reassurance that coursed through me as I
beheld the multitude overflowing the coach sections.
It was then that I became aware of four unvarnished facts of life:
1. For ordinary people who have not attained Nachmanides’ heights, first
class does require a second class.
2. The “lifted heart” warning of the Torah is directed not only to a king
who is tempted daily by pride, but is directed at every human being; for
anything
— even a seat that is three inches wider with leg room four inches
longer — can generate an attitude of “lifted heart.”
3. The frail human heart not only needs someone to look up to, but also
someone to look down at.
4. It is much easier for a religious Jew to be in first class than to be a
first class religious Jew.
from
The Shul Without a Clock
(Feldheim.com)
This article can also be read at:
http://www.aish.com/jewishissues/jewishsociety/First_Class_Jew.asp
Author Biography:
Rabbi Emanuel Feldman, a resident of Jerusalem, was rabbi of Atlanta’s
Congregation Beth Jacob for almost 40 years. Ordained by Baltimore’s Ner
Israel,
he also holds the Ph.d from Emory University. He has just retired as editor
in chief of Tradition Magazine, and is the author of seven books, including
the best-selling “Tales Out of Shul,” and “On Judaism, ” and, most recently,
“The Shul Without a Clock.” He serves as editor in chief of the Ariel
Chumash
project, which translates Rashi and other commentaries on the Bible into
English. Rabbi Feldman’s newest book is “Biblical Questions, Spiritual
Journeys:
Inner Explorations for our Times”.

Reuters
Thursday, February 2, 2006; 2:27 PM
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/02/02/AR2006020201
141_pf.html
MAPLEWOOD, Minn. (Reuters) – President George W. Bush Thursday called
on
Congress to raise the cap on the so-called H-1B visas that allow
companies
to fill high tech jobs with foreign workers.
“The problem is, is that Congress has limited the number of H-1B
visas,”
Bush said in a speech.
“I think it’s a mistake not to encourage more really bright folks who
can
fill the jobs that are having trouble being filled in America, to
limit
their number. So I call upon Congress to be realistic and reasonable
to
raise that cap,” he said.
High-tech businesses have pushed Congress to increase the number of
such
visas, currently capped at 65,000 per year.
Workers are allowed to stay in the United States for six years.
Some labor groups have opposed an expansion of the program, saying it
takes
away jobs from Americans.

I checked the weather this morning, and we’re supposed to have a high in the
mid 70’s today.
That’s just enough to start the onset of spring fever.
Can we just have done with winter already?
It’s a good thing all my clothes, winter or summer, are in the same closet.
We’ve had such weird weather this winter that I’ve had to alternate between
both.
Either way though, I’m thankful for the weather.
I like it when it’s warm like this.
Not too warm, not too hot.
Maybe I’ll spend some time outside today.
I’d love to figure out how to post to the blog via a mobile account.
I could just set up a standard partnership with ActiveSync, I suppose, but I
can’t email from there anyway.
If anyone has any suggestions, contact me.