Zotero Makers Sued

Thomson Reuters is suing George Masons University, sponsors of the Zotero bibliographic software. The Disruptive Library technology blog has details and extracts from the suit.

I’d note that it doesn’t look like the Thomson legal team actually had anyone look at the Zotero code. The complaint alleges that “users of Zotero [are freely converting] the EndNote Software’s proprietary .ens style files into open source Zotero .csl style files and further distributing such converted files to others.”

It’s hard to figure out what Thomson Reuters thinks they’re gaining with the lawsuit, aside from the eternal ire of technically-savvy people all over the world.

According to a story from Courthouse News Service, Reuters is claiming that George Mason is violating the terms of its license agreement by including a function in Zotero that will convert citation styles from the proprietary EndNote format to a format that can be used by Zotero. Reuters also asking for $10 million in damages for destroying the EndNote customer base. Since George Mason is a state institution, the Commonwealth of Virginia is also named in the suit.


The Boston Globe has a gorgeous set of photos from Baikonur.

When NASA’s last scheduled Space Shuttle mission lands in June of 2010, the United States will not have the capability to get astronauts into space again until the scheduled launch of the new Orion spacecraft in 2015. Over those five years, the U.S. manned space program will be relying heavily on Russia and its Baikonur Cosmodrome facility in Kazakhstan. Baikonur is an entire Kazakh city, rented and administered by Russia. The Cosmodrome was founded in 1955, making it one of the oldest space launch facilites still in operation. Here are collected some photographs of manned and unmanned launches from Baikonur over the past several years.

Candidates likely to skip bailout vote

This drives me up the wall. If you’re not there to vote, you’re not doing your job.

Congress is poised to vote on the biggest government intervention in the financial markets since the Great Depression, but it’s unlikely that any of the three senators vying for the White House will be there, even though all three have talked of little else for over a week.

Seriously, your job is to represent your state in the Senate. If I just ran around the country, without showing up to work, do you think I could keep my job? State governors are not exempt, either.

If you’re running for national office, you should resign your current political job. Period.

John Frame on Single-Issue Voting

Josh Harris quotes John Frame about single-issue voting.

This is not to say that political choices are always obvious. Often we must choose the lesser of two evils. Candidate Mershon may have a better view of one issue than Candidate Beates, while Beates has a better view on a different issue. It is an art to weigh the importance of different issues and to come to a godly conclusion. Each of us should have a large amount of tolerance for other Christians who come to conclusions that are different from ours. Rarely will one issue trump all others, though I must say that I will never vote for a candidate who advocates or facilitates the killing of unborn children.”-John Frame, The Doctrine of the Christian Life (P&R 2008). p. 617.

I haven’t read that Frame book, but I really like how he views the question.

Ugly Qt

Heh, to each his own. I’ve always held that the Java widgets are some of the ugliest I’ve seen since Motif, but Claudio compares them favorably against Qt.

…tellico is QT and thus ugly as hell (not as important, but not pleasant to work with).

By contrast, JabRef has a very clean interface and the search is fine for my needs (regular expressions). You can even change the look and make it look it like a GTk+ application.

I didn’t know about the Gtk+ theme. I’ll have to figure out if I have that available somewhere on my system.

Tellico 1.3.4 Released

I have another minor release of Tellico, 1.3.4, available.The changes include:

  • Updated IMDb import.
  • Improved drag/drop to match on file extension.
  • Added (minimal) searching for board games from Amazon.
  • Fixed bug with linked images in HTML reports.
  • Fixed CSV import error for consecutive white-space.

UCLA Fans at a TN Game

I drafted a letter last week, after being at the Rose Bowl to see UCLA beat TN, 27-24, in a depressing, but exciting game. I was really disappointed in the UCLA fans for the three and a half quarters. They only seemed to realized that they were at a football game sometime in the fourth quarter.

But I waited too long to send the letter to the UCLA Athletics Dept. or to one of the local papers. Oh well…

Congratulations to the UCLA Bruins and Coach Neuheisel for an exciting
win last night. The Bruin defense really kept their team in the game in
the first half, and the offense came through when it mattered. The
resilience of the football team was impressive.

Unfortunately, the experience at the Rose Bowl as a fan was anything but
impressive. As a transplanted Volunteer fan, I was excited about the
chance to see Tennessee play in the Rose Bowl. I was sitting in section
14 with five friends, tickets that I was told were in the visiting team
section. In reality, it was a fair mix of Vol and Bruin fans. Bruin fans
appear to believe that when you go to a football game, you sit down and
don’t raise your voice until the fourth quarter. My friends and I were
on our feet cheering for most of the first quarter. That didn’t sit well
with the fans in our section, who called security over to tell us to sit
down. We were rather incredulous when the supervisor told us we were not
allowed to stand up again until halftime. Is that what passes for
football excitement for UCLA? I’ve never been in a quieter stadium
during a game in which neither team ever led by more than seven points.

The security supervisor was very cordial and told us that it was
considered UCLA courtesy at the Rose Bowl to stay seated. I hope every
Bruin fan who makes the trek to Knoxville next year realizes that they
probably won’t be able to see much if they stay seated. If the football
monopoly in Los Angeles is truly over, UCLA fans will need to be
educated about how to cheer at a real football game.

More on board games in Tellico

Raphaël Pinson recently blogged about using Tellico for his collection of board games. He’d emailed me to ask about searching Amazon, so I expanding the Tellico search to include Toys. That’ll be in the next version release, 1.3.4 I guess.

The catch is that Amazon just lumps a lot of the information as BrowseNodes, including the number of players, game genre, age group, and others. And, as my fiancee would say, the vocabulary is not controlled at all. The format is free-form, for the most part. I can’t really blame Amazon for that, but it does make it impossible to sort through meaningfully.

And unfortunately, Tellico and GCstar don’t import and export board game collections from each other yet, so I my suggestion to Raphaël to use the GCstar plugin didn’t work.

I’ll have to take a shot at getting that import working in Tellico, at least. My list of things to work on grows!