Thursday, January 17, 2008

Another bedtime story for designers

Did you ever wonder where Peachpit Press got its name. Robin has been associated with them for nearly twenty years, and she has the scoop on that.

When Robin was first introduced to the young fledgling publishing company, owned at the time by Ted Nace, they had published three books, one of them being Ted's own book about Ventura Publisher (they laid out the Ventura book on a plank placed over the bathtub). At the time, Ted and his college roommates were living and working in a peach colored house in Berkeley that was such a dump it was considered a "pit." Thus the name "Peachpit."

So now you know.

A Story for Designers

Sitting in the DriveSavers Hospitality Suite, I mentioned to Scott Gaidano, President and founder, that I like his logo, a white nautical life preserver against a red background. He says "Yeah, we were sitting around in a hot tub trying to come up with a name for a company, and there was a life preserver hanging on the side of the tub. We wanted to run a small, two-color ad in MacWeek, and the only choice they offered for a second color was red."

Recently a marketing company wanted to throw out the logo and start over on the image. Scott says "No the logo stays, but you go if you bring it up again. 300 of the Fortune 500 companies already know that logo."


Robin chats with Scott Gaidano in the DriveSavers Hospitality booth.

Blogger Lounge Hell

I decided to give the Microsoft Blogger Lounge another chance. It's been two days since I was there and unable to connect, using their Wi-Fi.

I can tell right away some changes have been made. The Lounge has just one other blogger in it. Instead of just walking in, a door guard asks if you're here to blog. If so, sign in with your name and blog address. I do that and login. They've changed the wireless network (because it was non-working). Now there's no security setting required, and no password required. Oh yeah, now there's a thirty minute time limit for a visit.

Sweet Swan of Avon! The connection works, but it's possibly the slowest connection I've ever experienced (other than the wireless connection in our hotel, The Westin). I go to to see just how slow it is. Loading that page just about uses up my 30 minutes, but no one kicks me out.

As you can see, the download speed in the Blogger Lounge is a blazing 242 kbps, (that's just a speed burst -- the average speed ended up as 174 kbps). That's not even modem speed from 10 years ago. And I'm now the only person in the Lounge! The red zone in the large gauge is the broadband speed area.

As a blogger, I'm really more interested in the upload speed. A Thousand Curses! The upload meter (the "Up" arrow on the left) never gets above a speed burst of 1 kbps.

I predict this lounge will be empty for the remainder of the show.