Netscape is dead –

Netscape is dead – Long live Mozilla

It was announced yesterday that AOL was ending production of the Netscape Browser with the release of Version 7.1 which was just released at the end of June.

Wow! Normally I would be sad – I am since Netscape has been my primary browser since version 4 – but the reason Netscape is going away is a going to be a good thing for those of us who use the Internet.

Back 1998, when Netscape saw they would stomped out by Microsoft’s Internet Explorer, created an open souce group called That group got the source code for a new generation of Browser with the Gekko rendering engine and the Netscape Browser suite was made freeware.

This week, with the end of Netscape, as developer of a Browser suite, AOL gave $2 million dollars in money and equipment to set off on its own.

The Mozilla browser has been built from scratch by a collection of programers at Netscape and volunteer coders from around the world. It took some time to get to version 1 and now they are up to version 1.4 and the Internet community is giving kudos to all the work.

I am writing this post using Mozilla Firebird – a test browser show where it is going in the near future. It is as simple as it can get. It is just a browser that can be extended and expand as the user wants when they want. Instead of a 14 meg download like Netscape 7.1 was, Mozilla Firebird is only about 6 meg. It is almost fully customizable even down to the menu items that show up at the top of the screen.

I recommend Mozilla.

Reason behind this Blog

Some may wonder why I started this Blog.

Well, it is because I got pissed at the antics of two people who were elected to serve the residents of Hancock County, my home county.

I should be up-front and tell you I don’t live there now, but my family still lives there and I read the Findlay Courier on a regular basis. Findlay is the county city.

The two representatives are State Sen. Lynn Wachtmann, R-Napoleon and State Rep. Mike Gilb, R-Findlay.

Their public statements concerning the proposed Ohio state budget just smacked of the hypocritical public policy that has infected the nation since 2000.

After an article in the Courier concerning Rep. Glib, I had to write a letter to the editor to complain. I was lucky that it was published. The version I sent them is below. When it was published they edited it a bit from the original. Unfortunately published letters aren’t posted on their website:

[Letter to the Editor of the Findlay Courier – sent 6/10/2003 and published 6/13/2003]

Dear Editor,

I am writing to complement The Courier’s coverage of the on going debate over the upcoming State budget from a Hancock county perspective including the article on State Rep. Mike Gilb published on June 9th.

It is telling how the two people elected to represent Hancock county in Columbus, State Sen. Lynn Wachtmann, R-Napoleon and State Rep. Mike Gilb, R-Findlay, are so obsessed with cutting taxes that they refuse to see the revenue problems all local governments are having in these economically slow times and instead base their position on irrational political motives.

Wachtman and Glib want to see education and Medicaid cut. They both failed to stand up for local governments when it looked like their state funding was going to be cut. In fact Wachtman said on April 8th that he supported making some cuts in local government funds.

Both have repeatedly said that government spending is out of control when the opposite is true. The state has already cut the budget in the current fiscal year as well as cutting taxes for at least the past 4 years and revenues have been off since 2001. Where have Wachtman and Glib been for the past 4 years?

Even Hancock county, consistently one of the better local economies in the state, almost had to severely cut its Sheriff’s department and has trouble replacing old bridges and if there are further cuts in state funds as well as a continued soft economy it might get worse. Not to mention the proposed cuts in funds for libraries and parks that will hit the average people hard.

If it is getting difficult here imagine what it is like in the rest of the state. I am sure Wachtman and Glib haven’t.

They sure have ignored the 81% of Ohio businesses who pay $2000 and less in corporate income taxes each year. The current budget bill does nothing to resolve that revenue problem.

Hancock county needs rational representation.

Originally posted on the blog “Hancock County Politics Unfiltered”

I am going to try

I am going to try this story out it. It isn’t fiction but it is long for a Blog.

An Old Diary

I was looking through some papers the other day and I came across a diary I kept when I was in college. I was trying to keep my brain limber because I wanted to be a writer.

I read through the old notes of my life. Boy it all seems silly now. I didn’t hold anything back back then. All my dreams and all my horniness is there in black and white.

There must have been notes on a dozen different women I had met in my time at my dorm that year. I didn’t write anything real filthy but I pointed out who I liked and who I really drooled over.

There was the girl who flirted with me mercilessly. I think she did it to get me to blush and it worked every time.

Then there was the Jewish girl who had way too much energy for me sometimes. I still think a lot of Jewish girls are hot but the one I wrote about rocked my world. We even had a writing class together. I think she might have been interested in me because when it came time to workshop one of my stories she asked if one of the female characters was her. Or she could have been full of herself.

Then there was the girl who had the perfect timing to pop into my room when I was drunk and acting silly. Messing that up kind of bothered me for awhile.

One long log was about a cute girl who worked on the dorm staff who I had a huge crush on. I write about the time I sat in the lobby waiting for friends to go to dinner in the dining hall and I closed my eyes to rest. A short time later someone kissed me and I opened my eyes and there she was smiling – melting my heart completely. I asked what that was for and she said that she just wanted to kiss me awake. *Sigh*

There was also a run down of other girls who lived in the dorm who I thought were hot but I didn’t really know them personally. They were just good to look at.

The largest number of pages was devoted to the one woman who captured then destroyed my heart on October 9th, 1987.

I fell in love with her the day I met her the first day new residents could move into the dorm. Her smile blew me away and she had the same kookie sense of humor I did.

For weeks I couldn’t think straight, couldn’t sleep, couldn’t eat, and I wanted to spend as much time with her as possible. I also did stupid stuff like skip class so I could have lunch with her and her friends and skip studying to hang out in her room to talk. I stopped going to class just to be ready if she wanted to talk or go shopping or anything.

One day she tells me on the sly that she just broke up with a guy she had been seeing and that she was interested in my friend. She wanted me to tell her any secrets I knew about him. My ethics were stronger than my heart and I told her the truth about him – nothing negative – that he had a girlfriend back home (which he did).

I had seen enough episodes of “Square Pegs” to know that if I didn’t act fast she and my friend would hook up and my soul mate would be gone. As luck would have it she tried to get together with my friend and he rejected her because of the girlfriend back home. I still needed to keep her from finding anyone else.

On that fateful October day I took her into one of the empty study rooms and confessed my love for her. It was hardest thing I ever did. Even harder than doing the door drill in football practice. To put one’s heart out in the open is not as easy as it looks in those cheesy teen movies.

She smiled, cleared her throat, and in her pleasant voice she said she was flattered by my interest and my honesty but because of the recent break up and rejection she had decided to give up men.

I was crushed, depressed, and melancholy for months afterward especially after her man moratorium ended after only a month and she hooked up with another friend of mine who was unattached.

Our relationship was strained after she rejected me. I kept hoping she would change her mind so while I backed off we did get together from time to time as friends. It was very tense because I was still in love with her. I heard from one of her friends that the woman felt awkward as well when we were together. I not only lost a soulmate, I lost a good friend.

Well I actually lost a couple of friends that year. I was pathetic being depressed and talking to them endlessly about my loss. I had never gone through the trama of losing someone I truely loved. Eventually we drifted apart. When I asked what was wrong, one of them was pretty blunt about getting sick of hearing about my troubles.

The next year I came back to the same dorm but most of the people in my life the previous year had moved on. The guys were living on South Campus as was the girl I was still hooked on. But I was getting better.

One day while I was with my buddies we ran into her at her new dorm. She invited me to visit another day alone since she was on her way to an appointment.

I was nervous going there alone, after our past history. I made a mix tape for her. She accepted it and we chatted. I knew right then something was different. We weren’t the same people from the year before. Our interests had diverged and it became hard to hear her ramble on about her new life in the school year.

She did admit that she didn’t mean to hurt me and I boldly explained it was ok. My guess is my friends kept telling her how much of wreck I was for months. I appreciated her concern and I left that day on good terms.

Although we said, upon parting, that we should get together again, we didn’t. She went on with her life and I went on with mine. I heard, several years later, from a mutual friend, who I did keep in touch with, that she got married. I was happy for her. I still had my old diary.

Findlay makes the big time!

Findlay makes the big time!

A story published in the Courier, on July 3rd, concerning a preacher asking for a sign from God being struck by lightening, in the village of Forest, was picked up by the Associated Press. It was then picked up and published today on the website of BBC News in England. The page also included a link to the Courier website.

Originally posted on the blog “Hancock County Politics Unfiltered”