What's in a name?

What's in a name?

I headed out all by my lonesome to Salt Lake City this past weekend to see if I couldn't snowboard like those Olympians. No such luck, sorry to admit. But when I got back, Amber had a surprise waiting for me: a puppy.

"He's an Airedale, born just two months ago," she said. "I've been calling him Apache." Not sure if she knows about the open-source Web server or not, but the name seems to be sticking.

Mathematical mishap

A blunder of mine last week on those ECperf benchmarking numbers raised a few eyebrows on the faces of my spies, who came back to me asking whether BEA's WebLogic was 47 per cent faster or 47 times faster than the competition. For the record, the official result is that WebLogic is 47 per cent faster. Sorry about that, folks. I'll take solace in the fact that I am not the only one who is arithmetically deficient, however. One spy scolded me, saying that 47 times faster would be a 4600 per cent speed gain, while another said the same per cent would translate to a 4700 per cent improvement. You do the maths.

I may be mathematically challenged, but at least I am not alphabetically challenged, which is more than can be said for the Jxta team at Sun. The favourite slam Sun's Jini folks use against the Jxta team is that they cannot even spell. With a name like Jxta, I suppose those folks can't articulate much of a biting retort. They could use one, though, since there seems to be an old-fashioned grudge match between the two teams. One spy who works there said that, in contrast to last week's assessment that Jini is going the way of the pterodactyl, when it comes to most of the forward-looking presentations from Sun executives: "Jini is front and centre, while Jxta is never, ever mentioned." Although my spy claims impartiality, he said that if Jini were cancelled, there would be howls of protest inside and outside of Sun. "If Jxta were cancelled, nobody would notice."

Sayonara, boat mates

Speaking of slams, Larry Ellison, famous for trying to steal the competition's wind, is taking the cliche more literally and trying to win the America's Cup yacht race. Much like when Ellison came back from his near-death sailing accident in the Sydney-to-Hobart race and assumed more control of Oracle, the chief is taking the helm of his own boat, and spies report that he pushed aside long-time confidants to captain the Sayonara.

It didn't take long for Apache to start gnawing on just about anything. While Apache had a hold on Amber's pant leg, a passerby noted that Airedales are famous for their hunting instincts. This proved true. When the wind picked up, the pooch chased leaves as they blew around, pouncing on those he could catch.

What kinds of rumours are you catching these days? Send your tips to

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