Web proxy stupidity

At work they force us to use a web proxy. One of the things they do with this web proxy is block access to “inappropriate” web sites. Kind of embarassing when somebody sends you a URL and you paste it into your browser only to find that it’s blocked with the category “Adult Content” – especially since your manager gets a report of blocked sites you attempted to visit. Recently, I’d hit a bunch of sites that are blocked with the category “Music”, and an explanation that they’re blocking music sites because streaming and downloading music is taking too much bandwidth. Ok, I was actually looking for lyrics for songs I’m listening to on my iPod, but ok, not a big problem. (Usually now I remember to use the Google cache to look them up instead.)

At least it wasn’t a problem until I came back from lunch and hit “Refresh all tabs” on my browser, only to find that The Register is blocked as a “Music” site. WTF? Then somebody sent me a link to a story in The Guardian, and it’s blocked as a “Music site”. Putting two and two together, I tested and found that the other “The Register” link still works, and it appears that every .co.uk site is blocked.

The “access denied” message says you can get it unblocked if you can produce a business case why you need it unblocked. Hard to make a business case for The Register or The Guardian. But I discovered another site that’s blocked – our own company’s UK division. Hmmmm.

Paul’s rules of life, #1

Taking a page here from Tina Marie’s blog, I present #1 in my rules of life:

It doesn’t matter how many fun and interesting people you’ve worked with and for in the past, if you write a bunch of reminiscences about past job experiences, the only person who will find your blog and email you about it is the guy you called a dick.

Oh, and Mike? While your reasons for choosing Microsoft products were probably more valid than I gave you credit for in that blog entry, and I’m really really sorry you’ve got leukemia, I still think in many ways you were a dick. Maybe I should have mentioned some of your redeeming qualities, but hey, this was about me, not about you. I liked you as a person for the most part, but it was your management style and skills that made me think of you as a dick. As for your Quake skills – the consensus over in developer row was that we should change your model to a pup tent with a fire in front of it.

In the good news, my new Powerbook just got scanned at the FedEx facility in Harrisburg PA! This is going to be better than watching my last Powerbook go through FedEx faciliites in Asia.