Tuesday, June 26, 2007

"Proxy Authentication Required" for .Net Apps

The A/C in our office is out for the second day so we are all working from home. It's been a good break and I haven't missed the drive.
I've been working through an issue in our test farm with our .Net application. The error being trickier by the addition of our new domain at work and our new machines. I recently got this error:

System.Net.WebException Message:
The request failed with HTTP status 407:
Proxy Authentication Required.

The problem was the .Net 2.0 application was not using the proxy exclusion list in my IE settings - for some reason. The problem was solved by the addition of this little wad of xml in the web.config:

<proxy usesystemdefault="False"/>

This forces .Net to not use a proxy by default, but to use a direct connection foregoing the need for authentication and making everything zippier.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Sweet new fuel for your car

A synthetic form of diesel called DMF (2,5-dimethylfuran) can now be produced from the sugar in plants . Ethanol is often the end product of energy from biomass, but ethanol as a transportation fuel has many drawbacks. Ethanol takes lots of energy just to create, especially in the distillation process. DMF takes only one-third the energy for distillation. Ethanol cannot be shipped via pipelines because it combines with water; DMF does not have this problem. Ethanol is not very energy dense, DMF packs more power in a gallon.
The sugar to DMF process is still experimental and DMF will need to be certified as safe for human contact.
DMF looks like a promising alternative to create a transportation fuel from biomass.

Monday, June 11, 2007

Amazon Unbox and Tivo

Tonight we watched our first video downloaded from Amazon Unbox straight to our Tivo.
The whole process worked great. Two unfortunate things about the experience though. I had to sit at my home pc to order the movie from the web (although it was very easy). Tivo says they will have "order direct from Tivo" ability in the near future. That will be great.
The other unfortunate thing is the price. It cost about 4 dollars to rent a movie for a day which seems a bit excessive considering the cost of NetFlixs. For the next 24 hours we can watch the film all we want, but after that it disappears.
Amazon Unbox

Friday, June 01, 2007

Venezuela's Banned TV now on YouTube

The Venezualian goverment shut down a major TV station for broadcasting anti-goverment news. The station has gone off the air and has moved to YouTube to get their message out.

Very interesting use of the internet to avoid censorship. YouTube's reach is too small in Venezuala to really be a viable network of information, but is a trend for the future.