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Saturday, October 11th, 2003

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New xearth for windows
I released a new xearth for Windows today. This program displays as your desktop background an image of the Earth as seen from your favorite vantage point in space, with correct solar illumination.

Version 1.1.0 is a very long overdue update that fixes the number one difficulty that people often had - to obtain the live earthquake updates, it used to rely on an archaic protocol called "finger". Many firewalls and proxy servers and so on are not normally configured to permit the use of the finger protocol, and the earthquake information finger server was often unavailable. So the latest version now uses normal HTTP and recognizes the user's existing firewall and proxy settings. This should help make the program work better for everybody.

The last change I made to xearth was on January 1, 2000 - it was a fix for a Y2K problem. Perhaps I'll get back into the habit of more frequent minor updates as issues arise.

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