Crazy Mac story.

I was overhearing a conversion on the train today, and it was so crazy that I feel the need to repeat it here.

The context: A middle-aged guy was advising a friend on buying a Mac:
They're working on creating an Office for the Mac, but its very hard because a program can't use files. The Mac doesn't have a file system - that's why it doesn't have a C: drive. A program can't store files.

Oh, it does have a file system, but its locked down, so each application has to use a special API to store files. They lock it down in order to protect the system from viruses - that's why it doesn't get them - but without a real C: drive, it's extremely difficult for programmers to write software for it.

I mean, hackers have found a way to get to the file system, but as soon as they access the file system it voids the warranty, because viruses could then multiply. Plus they want to protect the iTunes files from being stolen.

I found it odd that the advisor knew some technical terms (API, file system), but then went and described something that was completely, um, insane.

My only guess is that he works for Gartner.


Belkin Router Dropping Internet Connection

My trusty Belkin 802.11g router started having problems the other day.

When surfing through Google Maps, the router would stop communicating with the Internet. Restarting the router was the only way to correct the problem. It would lock up, and no other computer would be able to reach the Internet. Internal LAN connectivity continued just fine.

I have the latest firmware updates, so that wasn't the problem.

So then I turned off the Router's "enerprise-class" Firewall, and that fixed it! The firewall was described to me to be a "stateful packet inspection" type of firewall. Turning it off address the reliability problems - now - no more crashes so far!