The Old New Thing

Why does canonical order for ACEs put deny ACEs ahead of allow ACEs?

So-called canonical order for ACEs in an access control list places deny ACEs ahead of allow ACEs. Why is this the canonical order? Because it gives results that are sensible. The algorithm for determining whether a user has access to an object protected by an ACL is as follows: let access-still-needed = access-requested for each ACE...

The meaning of a red traffic light is open to interpretation

It seems a sure-fire way to get a lot of good comments is to write about traffic lights or crazy driving, so I'm going to combine the two and write about crazy driving at traffic lights. Then my comments will set a new record. My friend The Knitty Professor told me about the time the sister of one of her friends came to visit from another...

How do I inflate a bicycle tire with a potato?

I see this all the time. People have a problem and have already decided what technology they're going to use to solve it, and then they hit a roadblock: The technology they picked is unsuited to the problem! How do I put my laptop into standby mode from VBScript? How do I change the user's mouse acceleration from a batch file? I changed...

How not to prepare for the STP (2007 edition)

I signed up for the annual Seattle-to-Portland bike ride, known to Seattle-area bicycling dorks as STP. My bicycle riding is mostly just commuting to and from work, nothing even approaching the 200-mile trek that STP entails, but one of my friends who recently started bicycle-commuting inspired our little bicycle commuting group to sign up. ...

Email tip: Lay off the massive email signatures

All too often I see email like this: From: X Is there a way to turn off Q? Thanks, X Support Professional Microsoft Product Support Services Tel: +123 456 7890 Extension 1234 Email: X@microsoft.com In case I am unavailable and you need urgent assistance, you can contact the following people: My Backup: Y, Phone: +123 456 7890 ...

It's official: The logo for the London 2012 Olympic Games is hideously ugly

Yesterday, the organizers of the London 2012 Olympic Games unveiled their official logo, and it's officially hideous. They paid £400,000 for that? As one of my friends put it, it looks like a bunch of old people tried to imagine something that would appeal to young people. Unfortunately, they forgot that today's young people don't live...

Compatibility constraints of the water cooler

One of the things you learn when dealing with compatibility is that every single external detail is a potential compatibility constraint. A few years ago, the water coolers in the buildings were replaced. I have no idea why. Maybe the new water cooler company put in a lower bid. Who knows? All I know is that I like the newer ones less, and ...

Death at a Funeral, Cashback, and Tell No One

Another installment in Raymond's short reviews of SIFF movies he's seen recently. Death at a Funeral: The family funeral gets off to a bad start when the funeral home delivers the wrong body, and it's the only mishap that actually gets fixed without further incident. Everything else goes horribly wrong, and then when you thought it couldn't...

Choosing a provocative debug signature

Back in Windows 95, there was an elusive heap corruption bug in the graphics engine, and after a lot of analysis, the graphics folks were convinced that the corruption was coming from outside their component, and they had a pretty good idea who the corruptor was, but they needed proof. One of the standard techniques of narrowing down the...

I took the Monorail to the Shadow of the Moon

It turns out that the replacement movie wasn't any of the ones I listed. Instead, I decided to see In the Shadow of the Moon, a mid-week performance in Seattle. Since it was also a fantastically warm sunny day, traffic into Seattle was a nightmare. As the bus crawled along the highway, I had to do some mental calculations. I'm definitely ...

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