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i just had a chance to play around with msn soapbox.  youtube copy? whatever, i've decided not to try to care much anymore about the "you're copying us" mentality after i saw iMediaCenter...er...i mean iTV.

i didn't want to use soapbox mainly because i'm not a fan of the usability experience of windows live id and/or passport.  why?  take a look...here's msn's home page:


notice the branding and look and feel...now let's click 'sign in':


does this look the same?  other than the msn butterfly logo, i'm clearly jumped to another place...and by the way, if i signup for a login at this point, i lost context of what i'm signing in for.  why can't ther just be a username/password box on the msn page?  want to use live id?  fine, just do it behind the scense...services anyone?

take soapbox:


i'm pretty sure they are using the same service, and look at the difference, no dual windows, and it looks/feels like i didn't leave soapbox -- and it is faster for some reason. 

so anyway...why do i like soapbox so far?  two reasons: experience and quality.  first the experience.  it's all web 2.x (trying to stay away from the term so no big book publishers get mad...hmmm...maybe i should trademark web 2.x) looking.  the menus on the side size up/down as you roll over them and it's all smooth like with no flash involved.  then when i start to upload a video i enter all the information and click upload...what do i see?  a note saying i can upload another while the other one is processing...so i do...check it out:


see the 'uploading' and 'queued' -- and i can still do everything else, browse/play videos, etc. -- very well done here.

then when my video is finished, i look at the quality...it is great (it started as an avi).  compared to the same file in youtube, it is much better quality from my perspective:

Video: Zoe and Brendon

i think the soapbox team did a good job and i hope they continue to enhance their offerings.

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bill pointed out this great example of moss2007 in action, in use, full-featured, and guess what...it doesn't "look" like sharepoint.  it's the sharepoint european conference site.  the site seems well organized and even uses the infopath form server features as a part of the registration form.

SharePoint InfoPath Server

talk about dogfooding!  well done!

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the concept of least priveleges (LUA, UAC, non-admin, whatever you want to call it) is nothing new.  windows vista implements 'user account control' which even as an administrator on the machine (read: someone in the administrators group), with uac on, you still have to authorize certain actions.  personally, for consumer users, i think this is a great thing...for developers...well, jury is still out for me.

anywhoo...my wife and i have a 4 year old who is getting too smart for her own good (just turned 4 going on 18).  we have a mac at home and we bought a few games for her to help her learn (dr. seuss abc, dora, you get the picture).  dora is her favorite.  in fact, she loves dora (and diego) so much, she has little figurines and plays outside with them-here is diego on a search for his lost ocelot...


but now i'm getting off on a bigger tangent.  back to my point.  my wife and i both have separate logons on the computer.  for my wife, she thinks it is because i'm hiding something from her.  for me, it's just normal paranoid behavior and just there because i don't think i've ever sat down in front of a computer without a password.  well, we are both "administrators" (the equivalent) on the mac.  my daughter has learned to click around a bit more, etc.  she actually went to sesame street's web site on her own, found a picture and printed it out.  we were shocked.  because of this we decided it might be wise to create her own login and use the parental controls to limit certain programs and content.  boom, we setup her own login and let her pic her own picture (no it wasn't dora oddly enough).

well, she logged in the other day (funny to hear a 4 year old say 'log in'), and double-clicked (we call it 'click twice fast' to her) the dora icon we put on the desktop.  spinning, spinning.  boom. error:

Dora Mac Error

my interpretation of this error is that something in the game uses a shared library component that is in the /Library folder.  and that it is not accessible by non-administrator users. 

what's my point?  nothing really.  oh yeah, except that the mac isn't immune from these types of agony problems.  it's probably the developers' fault...but that is beside the point...

for what it is worth, sometimes this helps -- you can only listen to so much dora.

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back in june, there was a release from the patterns and practices team of their .  it is a tool that provides some analysis and resulting suggestions (with reasons/instructions on how to implement) for ASP.NET projects.

well, the team has just placed the guidance explorer on codeplex.  what is cool about this is not only can you look at how the explorer works, you also get source to the user interface to see how they may have done some cool things.  go check it out.

is growing to be quite an interesting microsoft community.  my only wish is that they fix the project creation issue ASAP!  there are some cool projects listed/featured on the homepage, but their descriptions never transfer and they just sit there with default text -- it might as well be lorum ipsum to me.

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well, one reason i haven't updated (which i now consider to be an archived project -- at least i won't be touching it) is that tagging support is now added into the latest refresh of :


the tagging support now included was exactly the direction tag4writer was heading with exposing the templates for configuration, etc.  you'll notice the tagging support in writer has some cool memory-sense (intellisense-ish).

along with tagging support, here are some other updates:

  • blogger beta
  • categories changes
  • improved startup
  • improved style detection
  • and some others...

learn about all the updates and get the refresh from the .  install it, then make sure you install :-).