Sunday, August 28, 2011

Quick Review: La Cave, Wynn Las Vegas

I was looking for a light but nice bite to tide me over to dinner after suffering through a 45 minute check-in line at the Wynn. Self-service kiosks--even if just as a backup. Join the 21st century people. I know you want to give the personal touch and all that but, if the personal touch involves handing water bottles to people who have been standing in line for a half hour, you'd be better off trying something else.

But I digress.

Anyway, La Cave piqued my interest. The advertising copy describes it justly: "With its low-slung ceilings and cozy nooks, La Cave is the ideal retreat for indulging in Chef Bill DeMarco’s savory small plates, oven-fired flatbreads, charcuterie and modern specialties that are perfect for sharing and pairing with wine.  In addition to the innovative wine program,  La Cave features an extensive selection of hand crafted beers and fine spirits, making this the ultimate spot for lunch, dinner or late night revelry."

Bacon-wrapped Dates

Which sounds about right. Although the space towards the back--that opened up into a garden area (though at 110 degrees, no one seemed much interested in outdoor seating)--was actually pretty light and airy.

I ordered a mixed sausage flatbread pizza (and a Doghead IPA). Seemed about right for a light lunch. The surprise came when, after a frankly not very long delay, the manager came in to apologize for the wait and present me with their bacon-wrapped dates with a blue cheese fondue sauce (pictured).

The flatbread when it (soon) arrived was good enough with just the right amount of heat. Though, in truth, it wasn't all that different or better than other good flatbread pizzas I've had. The dates were extremely flavorful however. A nice blend of textures and flavors with the bacon perfectly cooked. I may have to try to recreate that one.

Strongly recommended with the service a big plus.

I would point to the restaurant website but it's embedded in one of those horrible Flash things that Las Vegas casinos are even more inexplicably attached to than restaurants and hotels as a whole are.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

How the mobile era changes TV

Access to information and communications has changed so radically that storylines dependent on them not being available have to explain why they're not rather than the other way around. If I were plopped down 20 years ago, I would feel incredibly frustrated by how difficult it would be to track down information and people.From James Poniewozik of Time Magazine:

As it turns out, back in 1976, people would practice tennis on courts that happened to have landline phones perched next to the net. Indeed, maybe the most striking thing about comparing this old segment to modern action shows is how much mobile technology has changed the contemporary drama. In the new Charlie's Angels—as on any thriller/espionage show now—characters are constantly getting cellphone calls, checking tablets computers, generally relying on a constant access to information that, from the standpoint of the 1970s, is something close to psychic ability.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Open clouds isn't a license question

From Marten Mickos Says: Keep the Cloud Open:

The problem is that it's tougher to define "share and share alike" in the cloud space. It's not just about code, it's also about data, APIs and company policies that affect whether use of cloud services are open or not. "The border line between me and the one serving me is different. If I'm a Facebook user, I don't need the  GPL to protect me... I need the right to withdraw my data.

The definition of open needs to change, says Mickos. "Though the GPL is a great thing... as we move into the cloud, it's not enough. We need to extend the definition of open for code, data and APIs." Mickos closed the keynote saying that the community needs to protect the principles of "sharing and sharing alike" for the next generation to enjoy it in the cloud the same way the current generation has enjoyed it with Linux and open source.

I'm certainly all on board with the idea of cloud interoperability and portability. And so are most of the users I speak with. In fact, I just finished co-presenting a Red Hat-sponsored webinar in which we included a poll question asking viewers how important portability was to them. The results? Overwhelmingly somewhat or very important.

There's no disputing that figuring out what sort of freedoms and portability are the most important to maintain in the cloud is an ongoing process. I discuss some of the issues in this piece I wrote while still an industry analyst a few years back.

However, I'm less convinced about encoding freedoms in licenses. And, in fact, the trend seems to be headed in the opposite directions. The Affero GPL--which essentially extends the copyleft provisions of the GPL to the case where software is delivered over the network in the form of a service--has not been widely adopted. Furthermore, there seems to be an overall trend toward the use of more permissive licenses such as BSD, Apache, and MIT rather than strong copyleft licenses like the GPL. (This post of mine on CNET has some more background on both the trend and the way the various licenses work.)

It is indeed right and good to promote open and interoperable clouds. I also firmly believe it's going to be the winning side just as it has (often) been elsewhere. But partly for that reason, I'm unconvinced that the open source license landscape is the right place to look for answers even if the overall success and values of open source is.


Monday, August 22, 2011

"Just do it" works better for Nike than private clouds

From AGIMO and cloud - when aloof is good | Cloud CIO

Moving workloads to the cloud without considering the other cross dependencies such as data, integration, compliance, security, identity, continuity, workflow, licencing, business process, application support, service management, service assurance and the service catalogue, will only mean that it wont take long before something breaks and it might be very hard to fix.
Enterprise adoption of cloud is not a race, it is a journey of transformation, there is too much to be considered in the portfolio approach to a cloud transformation to see it as anything else but a long term transition that needs a program management approach.

Those are a couple of great paragraphs. While focusing on process always has the potential to go off the deep end into some ITIL swamp, the "just do it" approach doesn't cut it for private clouds either.

One of my favorite quotes in this context comes Michael Hammer who wrote: "Automating a mess yields an automated mess." At Red Hat, we've been finding that there's a huge appetite among customers for getting through the knothole from managing IT systems to managing IT as a service--a transformation which is as much about organization and process as it is about technology.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Links for 08-20-2011

  • I, Cringely » Blog Archive » Losing the HP Way - Cringely on technology - "Software is a big part of IBM’s profits and it is growing rapidly.  IBM and Oracle have been on buying sprees, picking up one software firm after another.  HP has not.  Software is only three percent of HP’s business.  Are there any good buys out there for HP?  Again it could be a matter of timing.  HP is late getting started.  The best deals may already be gone."
  • Unedited Thoughts About Technology Better Left Unposted - "A lot of other companies
    I really fucking hate the way you cede so much ground to Apple. You just let them do the shit they do. Why couldn't you launch a decent tablet before the iPad? Why are your tablets still shittier than the iPad, for the most part? Why do your laptops still, by and large, look and feel crappier than MacBook Pros? (Exception: ThinkPads.) Why are most of your phones the same fucking way? Does Apple have some secret monopoly on making well designed, well constructed, easy-to-use gadgets? I want to love your products. I really really really do. Just make amazing shit. That's the only rule. Make. Amazing. Shit."
  • Amy Wohl's Opinions on Cloud Computing and SaaS: What is HP Thinking? - "HP has been trying for some time to move into the arena of enterprise software and services, but they have yet to be a big enough player to gain critical mass and buying another niche software vendor  is unlikely to give them the traction they're looking for. "
  • Apple Final Cut Pro X Reviewed: Not Ready for Professionals on – Online Video Strategies, Platforms, News, and Tips
  • Taking The 'Lug' Out Of Luggage - Forbes
  • Canned Platypus » Blog Archive » Don’t Be a Jerk - "We need to stop enabling the jerks by applauding when they act in deliberately offensive ways on HN, on Twitter, in conference presentations, etc. We need to stop pretending that the combative style prevalent on HN or LKML is the best way to facilitate progress; there’s no empirical evidence that “culling the herd” or “honing one’s weapons” or other such bloody metaphors really apply. We need to stop encouraging young techies to expend their energy emulating those styles instead of developing real people skills. Social skills really do serve a useful purpose, and anyone can improve them."

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Links for 08-17-2011