My Comments Go to Dev Null

/dev/null on a *nix computer is the bit bucket, the place where things go to disappear, the black hole of the computing universe. It appears that any comments that I try to write recently just disappear. This is mostly happening with Wordpress and TypePad powered blogs, either on wordpress.com or self-hosted using the open source Wordpress blog engine. With the help of Nicholas Goodman and Gianugo Rabellino, I know that the comments are NOT going into the Akismet queue of comment spam on their sites, and Gianugo even reposted the comment that I sent to him in email "pretending" to be me by putting my name, email and URL in the appropriate fields - it went through just fine. I've even tried leaving the comment with Camino and Safari, as well as the Firefox that I normally use on my MacBookPro. I should have mentioned that Wordpress gave me an error message saying that I had left that comment already when I tried to leave the same comment with Camino after trying with Firefox. I don't think it's a cookie thing; it doesn't seem to be browser related; nor do I seem to be marked as spamming. The only other thing that I can think of is that it is somehow related to my IP address. I'll try commenting from my "south bay office". Any one with any ideas... please HELP.

Update 20070415;13h12: It seems trackbacks won't go through either, as my attempt to communicate with the BI Team blog shows.

Update 20070418;15h45: I should mention that I've had this problem in the past with TypePad blogs, such as Shel Israel's, and today with Seth Godin's.

White Bean and Ham Soup

Now that you've made many ham and swiss on rye sandwiches, ham frittatas, Denver omelettes, and whatever else, from your leftover Easter 2007 ham, and you're down to the bone, what's next?

Soup, of course

'Tis my understanding, taken from Zuppa "Soups from the Italian Countryside" warning: Amazon Link by Anne Bianchi, that there are eight types of Italian soups:

  1. Zuppa - rich and complex, usually served over a large slice of crusty bread, that has been brushed with olive oil and maybe garlic or an appropriate herb, and toasted on that side
  2. Farinate - a porridge or gruel, made from a savory, often vegetable, stock with polenta, buckwheat or farina (flour made from durum or semolina wheat, barley or farro, rice or chestnuts)
  3. Minestrone - a "big soup" with many, many ingredients [my family's minestrone is ham, cabbage, green beans, salami or pepperoni, potatoes and savories]
  4. Minestre - much like a zuppa but with rice or pasta, rather than being served over bread
  5. Brodi - a broth, possibly served over a large crouton, as with a zuppa, or croutons, or not
  6. Pancotti - bread soups
  7. Passate - purees made with a food mill
  8. Creme - cream soups

So, rather than the minestrone that my parents make, or a simple navy bean soup, here's what I'm doing with my ham bone today...

Minestrone di Castagne e Fagioli Cannellini

A big soup of chestnuts and white beans adapted from Anne Bianchi's book
  1. If using dried cannellini [small white beans] and dried, peeled chestnuts, pick over for stones, wash, and soak together overnight as usual, one pound of chestnuts and an half-cup of beans
  2. Put the ham bone and whatever meat is left into a stock or crock pot with a properly studded, sweet, yellow onion
    Onion studded with bay leaves attached using cloves
    Click to view original size
  3. Cover the ham, bone and onion with vegetable stock; simmer for four hours
  4. Add the soaked, drained, and otherwise prepared beans and chestnuts, and simmer for two hours
  5. Add a bunch of kale, chard or spinach that has been cleaned and soaked in cold, salted water for an half-hour, two tablespoons of a soffritto made from diced onion, celery and carrot, cracked black pepper, and coarsely chopped parsley, lightly (literally boiled in oil) stewed in olive oil and butter, until the vegetables are very tender, a grind of nutmeg, crushed pepper, and salt to taste, cook another 20 minutes
  6. an half-cup of white arborio rice may also be added at the same time as the greens and spices for a very hearty soup

Serve piping hot with crusty bread and white wine and... Enjoy! :p

An Afternoon at JasperSoft

Yesterday I spent the afternoon with Andrew Lampitt, Senior Manager Business Development, Nick Halsey, VP of Marketing, and Ian Frey, Director of Product Management & Product Marketing, at JasperSoft HQ in downtown San Francisco.

We discussed a wide variety of topics such as all of our backgrounds, JasperSoft's history, strategies, and future plans. Here's a sampling of the conversation.

  • As announced in January, JasperETL is based upon Talend Open Studio. JasperSoft found Talend Open Studio to be a very mature and well-planned data integration product. While the Talend Open Studio ETL tool was only released in the latter part of 2006, it is the result of a three year R & D effort led by former Informatica and DataStage personnel system integrators [updated 20070416]. The goal of JasperETL is to provide an easy-to-use but fully featured graphical ETL tool to facilitate data integration for the Jasper BI Suite.
  • There are over l30 active projects available for download on JasperForge. According to the forge statistics, 38 are public and 93 are private. Some of these projects use JasperSoft products, some extend them, and some provide embedding or integration of JasperSoft products into other applications. This led to a discussion of the Jasper4 program vs. other adapters; JasperSoft provides the functions in a Jasper4 branded application, such as Jasper4salesforce, while adapters or other applications from the community or third-parties would not carry the Jasper4 brand. CRM is a particularly active area as exemplified by the SugarCRM adapter, the partnership with Centric [see the OSA announcement] & the previously mentioned Jasper4salesforce.
  • JasperSoft has 5000 payinq customers in 81 countries, approximately half are ISVs embedding JasperSoft capabilities into their own products, projects or offerings.
  • JasperAnalysis & JasperServer are separate projects but share the same framework, which is why they were originally released on the JasperForge as JasperIntelligence, but they are currently being branded as Jasper BI suite; Ian gave a presentation showing the architecture and roadmap.

Overall it was an informative afternoon, and we're looking forward to working more with JasperSoft BI Suite in the future.

Cotinuous Process and Code Improvement

We're constantly recreating our 6D™ project management methodology. It started with combining Clarise's software development and project management experience with my aerospace system engineering and program management experience to adopt strict project controls to modern business needs for responsive software development and system integration processes working through distributed personnel. Well, here's a quick thought... software development and deployment should move away from traditional release cycle concepts to one of continuous process/code improvement within SaaS and virtual appliance environments. No code is alpha nor beta nor production, but a continuum of changes and adaptations responding to fluctuating business needs; done within a well managed environment to prevent security errors, poor performance, "garbage out" and junk code. So as we're assuring that our 6D™ [six dimensions of a project] is in accord with the PMBoK, we'll be keeping this thought in mind as well, and let's think beyond Extreme and Agile programming and continuous process improvement for software quality.

Easter 2007

As I've said in the past, Easter is my favorite holiday for food. As such, we very much follow tradition from year-to-year. This year was no different, but as many food oriented traditions, the amounts eaten and the time taken to eat are both much less than in previous generations. When my grandmothers served an holiday meal, it would start in the morning and proceed into the evening meal. Now, we had a two three course brunch.

The Italian "breakfast" course

Mazzarelles

Mazzarelles are one of my favorite things to eat, but are only made for Easter. Stefano, who owns and rents a villa in Abruzzo, provided me with the correct spelling in a comment [lost apparently when we blacklisted angelfire.com for spamming, rats, fixed it now] in 2005. There are many individual variations of this dish in my family. Dad made them this year, and his have more tomato sauce than mine do, but it's very good. Here's my recipe.

  1. Clean, devein, trim and properly prepare the heart, kidney and liver from an unweaned lamb. Likely you'll need to know a shepherd/ess [I used to know a shepherdess in Mendocino, but long ago, and I've lost touch] to obtain this; if not, use calves' liver.
  2. Slice the organ meat into julienne strips.
  3. Sauté the strips of meat in olive oil with garlic and crushed black pepper until just browned
  4. Remove the meat
  5. Deglaze the pain with white wine and reserve for the sauce
  6. Wrap some [about two ounces or a small handful] strips of each type of meat in two leaves of romaine lettuce, with a trimmed, whole green onion and a sprig of Italian [flat-leaf] parsley [Plus - added 20120407: seeing sprig of marjoram as well, tried it this year & very good], tie each packet with the green stalk of other green onions or chives that have been soaked in room temperature salted water; they'll need to be very flexible or you'll get frustrated [of course, the traditional tie is cleaned lamb intestine, or butcher's twine]
  7. In a large, flat-bottomed, high-sided pan, simmer three glasses of the dry, white wine that you'll be serving with the meal.
  8. Add the lettuce packets of lamb organs, and one roma tomato per packet that have been peeled, halved cross-wise and seeded; the packets should be just covered with liquid
  9. Simmer for an half-hour, then place in a 325°F oven for two hours, checking to assure that the pan doesn't dry out or the packets blacken; add water, baste and cover if needed; salt to taste about half-way through
  10. Remove the packets with a slotted spoon and place in the serving dish
  11. Stir the sauce, and cook down if needed; the sauce can be passed through a food mill if desired, but I prefer to just spoon it over the packets
  12. Serve hot with spiniad and frittata
Parsley, walnut, & garlic frittata
  1. The leaves from about an half bunch of Italian [flat-leaf] parsley, cleaned and left to dry, then chopped fine with a mezzaluna
  2. 10 whole, large eggs, beaten with 2 tablespoons of heavy cream, a teaspoon of very cold water, 3 tablespoons of ricotta, the parsley, salt and freshly cracked black pepper
  3. Crush a clove of garlic and sauté in a tablespoon each of olive oil and unsalted butter [this gives a higher smoking point temperature than either alone] until just starting to brown
  4. Remove the garlic, and pour in the egg mixture
  5. Reduce the heat to low, cover, and check after 10 minutes to assure that the eggs have set; if they are, loosen the frittata from the bottom of the pan by banging and judicious use of a spatula
  6. Place a dish that is a bit larger in diameter than your pan over the top of the pan, placing your hand firmly on the bottom of the dish, lift the pan by the handle and, holding it all tightly together, flip over so that the frittata is on the plate
  7. reheat the pan over medium-high heat, add a bit of butter if needed, and slide the frittata, pale side down, into the pan, to brown that side; repeat this operation several times until the frittata is nicely browned on both sides, but don't overcook; the interior should be moist
  8. This dish is normally served at room temperature, so you can make it right after putting the mazzarelles into the oven

Spiniad [Easter bread]

Spiniad, at least that's what it sounds like my grandparents would say, is an Italian Easter Bread. The paternal side of the family would make it in a coffee can, so that it puffed out the top, much like a Christmas panettone, to look like a chef's hat; the maternal side made it in a ring, with one hard-boiled egg - still in the shell and boiled in holy water - set in place like a jewel decorating one corner. They're both very rich in eggs and slightly sweet, reminiscent of challah. Dad made a variation this year in his bread machine. You can find a more traditional recipe on the web. Unfortunately, I don't have either of my grandmothers' recipes.

Pizza or Torta Rustica

We didn't make this dish this year, but my maternal grandmother would always serve this with Easter brunch. 'Tis like a quiche in that it has a pie crust. The filling is ricotta based, mixed with egg, some chopped parsley, grated parmigiana, salt and pepper, and poured into the pie crust, studded with chunks of fontina, prosciutto, and salami, and baked. Served at room temperature.

The American "lunch" course"

Ham basted with cola and white wine, glazed with fresh pineapple, ginger marmalade, nutmeg, paprika, stone ground mustard and turbinado sugar

Jewell yams with butter, turbinado sugar, allspice and pecans

French green beans almondine

Potato salad

Desert

What? You think that you can't eat any more. Try to resist, just try.

Pastiera

[also known as Neapolitan Easter cake, although ours is with rice not the traditional wheat berries, even though it comes down from my Neapolitan, maternal great-grandmother]

  1. Make a pie crust of 6 tablespoons of unsalted butter, cold and cut into 7 ounces of unbleached flour mixed with 1 tablespoon of turbinado sugar [crushed], knead into the dough 3 large egg yolks and 1 tablespoon of whiskey or dark rum and form into a ball, cool for an half-hour and roll out, line a 10-inch spring-form pan, reserve the remaining dough
  2. Make the filling of

    • 15 ounces of ricotta
    • 3 whole large eggs, beaten
    • 3 drops of pure bourbon vanilla extract
    • zest from one lemon and one orange
    • grind of nutmeg
    • one half cup [dry, pre-cooked measure] of brown arborio rice cooked in sweetened milk or coconut milk
  3. Pour the filling into the crust
  4. roll out the remaining pie-crust dough, and cut into half-inch wide strips, and make a basket weave over the top of the filling
  5. Bake in a pre-heated, 350°F oven, checking after 45 minutes, and then every 15 minutes, until a clean, stainless-steel knife inserted half-way between the edge and the center of the pan, comes out clean; if the crust begins to over-brown, cover with aluminum foil
  6. After removing from the oven, let stand at room temperature for two hours, and remove the spring-form pan
  7. place in the refrigerator, but remove at least an half-hour before serving
  8. serve cool with...
Coffee with Anisette

My grandparents would also serve that at the end of a meal. I do it a bit differently than they did. A good pot of Joseph's blend, brewed for five minutes, in a French Press using filtered water right off the boil, and served laced with warm milk, turbinado sugar and Sambuca Black. Oh, yes, very nice.

I might come back later and update this post with some details, but I started cooking 10 hours ago, and now, I think, 'tis time for a little nap.

Updated on 2007 April 14 with recipes and links.

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The TeleInterActive Press is a collection of blogs by Clarise Z. Doval Santos and Joseph A. di Paolantonio, covering the Internet of Things, Data Management and Analytics, and other topics for business and pleasure. 37.540686772871 -122.516149406889

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