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What A Scam: “Colorado Corporate Compliance”

If you are part of a Colorado corporation and get an “Annual Minutes Disclosure Statement” request from Colorado Corporate Compliance, you should read this notice from the Secretary of State’s office:

The Colorado Secretary of State’s office has recently become aware that entities by the names “Colorado Corporate Compliance” and “Board of Business Compliance” have mailed solicitations titled “Annual Minutes Disclosure Statement” or “Disclosure Statement” to many Colorado entities. These solicitations offer to process corporate meeting minutes on behalf of the corporation for a fee. Despite the implications contained in the solicitations, Colorado corporations are not required by law to file corporate minutes with the Colorado Secretary of State’s Office.

The warning signs were there: I had not received this notice before, the timeline seemed short (sent on Sep 3, due on Sep 15), and the $150 fee seemed a bit steep. But, if I hadn’t searched for this company, I probably would have sent a check–it looks official. (To be fair, it does, at the bottom of the back of the form, say what the service is actually about–making minutes available to members of a corporation). Just goes to show you that the scammers aren’t just out to protect your domain names or send you virulent spam.
[tags]scam, colorado corporate compliance[/tags]

Squid cache log configuration thoughts

I have found that debugging squid, the excellent web proxy, is difficult.

I believe this is for a number of reasons, but primarily because I’m a developer, and just want to get squid working. I’ve found that I do this with a lot of tasks that are required of the small independent developer with time pressures–CSS/UI development, database design, system administration. All these are things that can be done well by competent specialists, but my clients often don’t have the money to hire them, or time to find them, so they get me. What they get is not in depth CSS knowledge and in depth knowledge of the entire user interface problem domain, for example. Rather, clients get my ability to figure out the problem (based, to a large extent on internet knowledge and to a lesser extent on my deep understanding of web applications and how they should behave) and my tenacity to test and test again to ensure that corner cases are dealt with. It’s a tradeoff.

Regardless, squid is hard for me to debug, and I found this page which lists all the options for the cache.log debugging parameters useful. However, not all that useful–‘client side routines’, number 33, apparently includes squid ACL parsing. Rather, I’ve found the Squid FAQ to be the single most helpful document in terms of my understanding squid enough to ‘get things done’. However, this time I ended up viewing the access log of my http server, while deleting my browser cache multiple times, to confirm that caching was set up the way I thought I had configured it.

[tags]squid,getting things done[/tags]

Google Chrome First Impressions

Here are my thoughts on Google Chrome. Yup, I’m following the blogging pack about a week late. First off, the install process was smooth. The comic book stated that the rendering engine is Webkit, which should make testing relatively easy. This is borne out by the user agent string: Mozilla/5.0 (Windows; U; Windows NT 5.1; en-US) AppleWebKit/525.13 (KHTML, like Gecko) Chrome/ Safari/525.13

They give you the ability to change the search engine, and other options, easily. It definitely follows a Macish configuration processs–you don’t have to apply or save the config changes you make, you just make them and close the options screen.
As Farhad Manjoo mentions, there is a lack of addons. (Addons are pieces of functionality that are extend the browser’s behavior [think adblock], as opposed to plugins which extend the browser’s ability to handle content [think flash]). I didn’t see much about addons or plugins for Chrome searching today, other than some strong desire for it. I don’t remember any mention of addons in the comic book or on the Chrome website. Also, as Manjoo mentions, opening a new tab by clicking next to the existing tabs doesn’t work (though there is a plus icon up there which it should not take too long to get used to).

It looks like there is already a way to create simple desktop applications like a calculator that use chrome as their ‘shell’, javascript as the programming language and HTML for user interface definition. That’s very similar to Adobe AIR (at least the ajax version) and something like the C#/XAML pairing as well. Let’s hear it for declarative markup for user interfaces!

The custom start page seems pretty neat, with the ability to have bookmarks not in a pulldown menu, but right on the start page, which also includesthe ‘most visited’ sites. Machine learning of this type can be a great time saver.

From a development standpoint, there is a javascript/DOM console, which looks similar to Safari’s. It is, however, much more responsive and stable, though I still can’t figure out what the ‘search’ box does. However, the wealth of development tools that I use everyday in FireFox (web developer, yslow, firebug, whois, live HTTP headers) will take time to migrate over to Chrome, if they do so at all. This will continue to make developing in FireFox first and testing in other browsers my default strategy.

Finally, Cringley has some interesting comments on Google’s motivation.

[tags]google chrome[/tags]