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Showing posts from November, 2004

Bill O'Reilly defending Dan Rather?

Before you think he is, he's not. Dan Rather's mistake of running with a story he should have been more skeptical about is only the cover for Bill's other objective. Like so many before him, O'Reilly is not defending Rather. Rather, he's protecting his bread and butter - old-school journalism. The Bush papers (and Swift Boat Vets before that) are not the fault of bloggers who got away with something "wip[ing] out a lifetime of honor and hard work" simply by having a LiveJournal account. In fact, if O'Reilly had done his homework, he would know that the bloggers were the first ones to debunk the papers.

And if you think O'Reilly isn't protecting himself, check this quote out:

Unfair freedom of speech did him in. This is not your grandfather's country anymore.

Nice. Nothing like playing the Fear card. But, to be fair, he's right. This isn't your grandfather's country anymore. No more will the Hearst's and Clear Channels (other …

Don't buy that plasma TV just yet

CNet is reporting that, maybe as early as next year, the price on plasma and LCD televisions (and, theoretically, computer monitors as well) will plummet in the next 12-18 months. "Plummet" here is defined as 30%, which means that a 20-inch LCD TV from a well-known manufacturer will be under $299, down from $700 to $800 today. According to according to Tasso Koken, vice president and general merchandise manager for Sears home electronics, "[t]he 2005 price drops in LCD will make the 2004 reductions look like a walk in the park".

!!!

Link

Unreal Tournament Mod

Finally, a reason to play Unreal Tournament! A single-player (offline) mod that looks like it was inspired by Painkiller. I think I got Unreal for free with my mobo.. woo hoo! Now, if I only had a hard drive.

Hmm... that sounds like a song. "If I ooooonly had... a hard... drive..."

Nah.

Link

*smack head on desk* THIS is why Tech Writers are not respected

Once again, Tech Writers don't get it. (Name and contact info removed so I don't have to deal with some guy bitchin' about me posting his info all over the place.)

On Wed, 17 Nov 2004 18:28:54 -0800, [President/Principal Writer] wrote:
> Speaking of google, what's the difference between doing a little
> research about the contents of a test and an employer using goggle to
> underhandedly find out information about a candidate.
>
> [President/Principal Writer's first name]
> --
[President/Principal Writer]
President/Principal Writer
[Company name]
[Company website]
MSN: [removed]
Yahoo: [removed]
There are two pains in life, the pain of sacrifice and the pain of regret.

This is the pain of the industry, if you ask me. Googling your name for info is already cliche in some circles. If you don't think that people are plugging your name into search engines before or after talking to you... wow. That's like not looking up the bio of an acclaimed writer. You&#…

You mean Emeril doesn't actually cook?

Yeah, surprise all you Uber Yuppies.

So who does the cooking? Mostly guys like Ernesto. Hardworking faceless guys from places like Guatemala, Ecuador, El Salvador, and Mexico. You were expecting a bunch of Italians singing opera flinging pasta? Wrong. You hear mariachi music and guys cursing in Spanish.

Yep. And the author even gets the big picture in there:

Perception can be more important than taste in my business.

Nice, quick read.

Link

Avoir MP Parrish!

Canadian MP Carolyn "I hate Americans" Parrish has been dismissed from the Liberal party by PM Paul Martin (who is also leader of that party). Why? Good question.

On "This Hour has 22 Minutes", MP Parrish stomped on a President Bush doll. Oh, it should be mentioned that this filmed as Bush was announcing he was coming to Ottawa. (It's unclear if a TV broadcast was in the background as Parrish did the jig, or if the show spliced it together later).

This isn't really that bad. The problem is, Parrish can't seem to keep her mouth shut in front of cameras or reports when someone mentions the good ole' USA. It's like Cartman and Styx; she just has to bad mouth Americans. Good thing to do to a big trading partner. Smart for the economy and all that.

So, c'est la vie. Avoir, see yah around, toodles MP Parrish. I'm sure you'll be fun to watch as an Independant.

Link (Previous post about MP Parrish)

The Top 40 Bands In America Today - 2004 Edition (as compiled by bloggers)

I've heard of about 5 of these bands (Bruce Springsteen?!?!?), but I'm game to try new stuff. I have a hard time taking what some of the MP3 bloggers are serving up usually, but once in a while I find something I really, really like. One of them clued me into iRate radio as well, which is great for getting great, free, legal music.

Anyway, the MP3 bloggers have a big circle-jerk and came up with this list. Sounds like a good place to start, if you can stand the constant references to other bands you've never heard of.


Link[via Kottke's remainders]

John Cleese - funny, online, and free!

John Cleese, of Monty Python fame, has begun to put clips on his website, some for free. He's also a wine connessoire, but without all that nose-pointing-in-the-air drudgery that most snobs give you. I don't know if that content will be free (I wasn't able to find any).

He also has a members section (of course), and the site is definately not modem-friendly. But, it's John Cleese, if you like that sort of thing. Membership is a little steep at ~$50/yr, but I'll look at all the free stuff I can find. Be warned, the navigation sucks (Flash-based hunt-and-click).

TheJohnCleese.com

[via The Times Online]

CyberNET Group building raided in Grand Rapids

Whew! That was close! I interviewed at this place (didn't get an offer) about a year ago. As my significant other said, "everything happens for a reason, eh?".

CyberNET Group building raided in Grand Rapids
(Update, Grand Rapids, November 17, 2004, 5:27 p.m.) Federal officers from about every agency you can name entered The CyberNET Group building on South Division Avenue, south of Fulton Street, in Grand Rapids Wednesday morning.
[via WOODTV - News]

Blue Balls from Bungie

This past weekend, I "finished" playing the single-player of Halo 2, arguably one the most anticipated games of the season. I'm glad I cashed in $20 worth of gift certificates, though, since the "ending" of the game was the storyline equivalent of dry humping in the back seat.

Ok, aside from the good game play (which I still prefer on PC), the game was solid. I noticed a couple bugs (like your AI teammates forgetting to come along with you), but overall a decent game worthy of loading up a few maps to play again.

What hooked me, though, was the storyline. Right from the start, the game gets you with a great story (which knowing the 1st game will enhance greatly). And then, just when they build it to a huge crescendo, it's over. OVER! No conclusion, no resolution, total cliffhanger. Let the credits roll (cursing at the TV, like I was) and there's another cliffhanger afterwards.

Damn it! Who the hell is writing the script for this thing at Bungie? Did they t…

FCC has a website encouraging you to get digital TV

I can't tell if this is weird or just poor presentation, but the FCC has a website encouraging consumers to get digital television. We already have an HDTV and love it, but does the government need to encourage this? In a few more years, you'll need to have one to get cable or broadcast television. Seems to me that's more than enough motivation for most Americans.

If you link to the site, beware the annoyingly stupid sounds effects and crap-ass navigation.

Link

Once again, bloggers make crappy journalists

See, when a real newspaper (or station) like CNN or the New York Times or The Washington Post do a story, they fact check. Facts are these really difficult things to get for many bloggers because they have an agenda. Always. Like me. This whole post has an agenda behind it. I'm sick of hearing that "this election wasn't fair" or "Bush stole the election... again!" You know why? Because I read more than the circle-jerk of blogs that always agree with me or on which I comment.

Take for instance this story from the Post (reprinted on the Seattle Times website) about the allegations of vote theft, hacked votes and phantom voters.

One by one, it pops the balloon of conspiracy surrounding the vote. It also raises an interesting point; if any of these theories were true, why isn't their candidate saying anything? You would think that John Kerry, of all people, would see the benefit of pointing out that over 1000% of the people registered in one Ohio country vote…

Submission, by Theo Van Gogh

Submission, by Theo Van Gogh

Theo Van Gogh (who was related to the artist of the same name) was brutally murdered on the streets of Amsterdam by an Islamic fascist for daring to make an eleven-minute film about the oppression of women in Muslim society....
Go. See it now. Now. Right here. It's eleven minutes. Eleven minutes that illustrate what a life is worth to some people.
[via Michael J. Totten]

Poor Dan Gilmor

Dan Gilmor, author, Journalist (that with a capital J, mind you), and Blogger (also with a capital) has a problem. Actually he has many problems, but this particular one is a commenter he's acquired in recent months, a troll. Granted, a troll of the worst kind, but a troll none-the-less.
The troll has become somewhat of a problem for Dan because, as trolls are known to do, this one has mired up many a comments section of Dan's less-than-technology angled posts. See, Dan likes to trade his popularity for the Left, spinning any incident of marginal importance as the Tea Party du jour. His troll enjoys spewing idiocy for the Right. To me, this seems like a pretty fair balance in the Commons that Dan has so dilligently put forth as the New Media. You know, the one where everyone has a voice.
Oh, unless you disagree with Dan. Then he'll threaten you with a new *shiver* Comments Policy. That's right, if Dan doesn't get his way, he's taking his ball and going home, cl…

Ohio Election Data Analysis

The original poster on this kuro5hin article starts out trying to cast doubt on the Ohio numbers from the election. Fine, nothing new there. But, someone who actually knows how to crunch numbers pipes in in the comments section with some pretty interesting numbers and, well, basically says "I don't see anomolies, but if you do, refute this data".
This is why numbers, and not emotions, matter in elections. Because when you get down to it, you can spin "voter attitudes" and "I remember 2000, and this year was different", but if you can't quantify it, it doesn't count.

Link

And dumbass time continues

So, apparently if you own a NBA team, you no longer get to have an opinion. Mark Cuban, owner of the Mavricks, Benefactor, and blogger, has been fined by the NBA for this entry in his personnal blog. (He has held back on directly commenting, and just announced the fine.)
He also asked what the blogoshpere (I hate that term) thinks of this.
I think it's bullshit. My company is ISO certified. If a member company got fined every time a they complained about some aspect of the ISO board, ISO would be richer than the United States. How does an orginization think it's going to grow or address issues that members have with it when they won't even let you voice your opinion? Is the NBA that scared of what one owner thinks that they have to try and silence him through fines (which, by they way NBA, if you havne't noticed, it's not working).
Does it affect how I interact with the league? Not really. I gave up on the league a long time ago. Hell, I live in Detroit and I didn&#…

And now, for something pretty damn funny

From El Reg:
Trippi isn't the only one to blame. All the blogging believers are at fault.

Even if Jesus set up a blogging cafe in the center of Rockport, Texas and extolled the virtues of a woman's right to choose while snapping pictures of gay weddings with his Nokia, it would have made no difference to this election. All of the bloggers would have told themselves about the miracle, while Bobby and Bobby Sue went right along with their business.

The longer the Democrats pretend that their vacuum of righteousness is actually reaching the public at large, helped by NPR, the more trouble they will be in. Be it an internet wasteland like New Mexico or fat pipe rich Connecticut, it doesn't matter. George W. Bush kicked your blogging ass.
'nuff said.
Link

SUPERcomputing

Alice and Bill have an article today about some of the upcoming supercomputers.
But the big news is IBM's prototype Blue Gene/L, being developed for the Livermore Labs. It currently runs at 70.72 teraflops --but they're still tweaking it. When the final version is finished, it should hit 360 teraflops without breaking a sweat.

The current record? Two years ago, 35.86 teraflops. The newest computer, IBM's Blue Gene, potentially could increase the record by a factor of 10. What are they going to use this for, you might ask. Well, at least they're doing the right thing. Blue Gene would (finally) be powerful enough to do protein folding, something which is currently being done through distributed computing (and a very worthwhile cause, I might add). Protein folding could lead to huge advances in the understands and eventual treatment of Alzheimer's, Mad Cow (BSE), CJD, ALS, Huntington's, and Parkinson's disease.

Computer science (the real science part) is finally …

Why the semantic web is a pipe dream

This article on Metacrap is a quick and dirty reasoning about why this renewed talk about the "Semantic web" is a load of, well, metacrap. It's a business, people, and all they want to do is sell you something. If this brilliant idea were remotely achievable, it would have happened already. There are no tools we don't have that are fundamentally stopping a world of meta-meaningfulness.
I'm looking at you, tech writers. Content management is all about metadata. This is a must read for every tech writer, even you crotchety ones.
2.3 People are stupid
Even when there's a positive benefit to creating good metadata, people steadfastly refuse to exercise care and diligence in their metadata creation.
Take eBay: every seller there has a damned good reason for double-checking their listings for typos and misspellings. Try searching for "plam" on eBay. Right now, that turns up nine typoed listings for "Plam Pilots." Misspelled listings don't show …

The Morning After

Yep.

I voted for George Bush.
I am not a redneck.
I do not spend my days watching cars race around a track, drinking cheap beer and slapping my woman on the ass.
I am not a bible thumper. In fact, I am an atheist.
I am not a homophobe.
I am educated beyond the fifth grade. In fact, I am college educated.
I am not stupid. Not by any stretch of facts.
I do not bomb abortion clinics.


You will not be thrown in jail for the sole reason of being a liberal.
Your child's public school will not suddenly turn into a center for Christian brainwashing.
Your favorite bookstore will not turn into puritan central.

This is not Nazi Germany in any way.
You will not be forced into concentration camps.
You will not be burned in human-sized ovens because of your religion.
We will not be forced to wear uniforms and march in line every day.
You will not live in fear.
If you think this is a country in which you have to live in fear, I have some friends in Iran who would like to have a little talk with you.
[via A Small …

And here's why Bush has 4 more years

There's going to be so much wailing and gnashing of teeth, you'd think the Democrats were the ones that would set up a Theocracy. JasonUCF on Slashdot summed up wonderfully why the Democrats lost. And why they will continue to lose until they change drastically.

I can't find the right word. Annoyed? Depressed? Flustered? None of them carry the meaning for me.

This was not Bush's election to win. This was Kerry's election to lose. And man, did he lose.

When will the democratic party realize that they need to get in the game, play it tough? America doesn't want a smarty pants North Eastener with a fake politican smile a mile wide. America obviously responds to the aw shucks grin, the not too einstein but firmly resolved mindset.

When will we realize that whining about problems won't work when the majority of the population doesn't want to think about problems? They want a bed time story, and someone to turn the light on and off for them.

When will the democrat…

Why Kerry lost

I love flickr; the meta nature of the photos you get with even the most cursory searches are bizarre. Here's one that's pretty damn weird (photo of a diseased fish, anyone?), and the comment for the photo is even better. To writ:
Why Kerry lost:
The refusal of the Democratic party to represent left/center mainstream values of peace, environment, small business, and innovation. Instead, homo-marriage, stem cell research, and minor issues that do not affect majority have hijacked the party. Homo-marriage lost Ohio for Kerry, and the next four years with it. Was it worth it? No, not for Matadors. Our natural resources will suffer for this. Our support is no longer worth it. You freaks are the new Nader. Get out! Time to take our party back!
Link

Australian Slang

A long list of Australian Slang.
It wasn't easy but we've tried to include uniquely Australian slang here and to exclude British and American slang even though these are commonly used in Australia. We see no point in informing the world that "fridge" is Australian slang for a "refrigerator".
Here are a few that might come in handy:

Bog in: commence eating, to attack food with enthusiasm
Dunny: outside lavatory
Liquid laugh: vomit
Mystery bag: a sausage
Tinny: can of beer
Ute: utility vehicle, pickup truck
[via J-Walk Blog]

Voting in AA

No, no stories of improper voting procedures or anything like that. In fact, Ward 5 used the draw-a-line-put-it-in-the-machine scantronic (fantabulous!) machines. Slick as ever and (virtually) idiot proof, although Idiot R&D is working on that.
No, the cool thing was a conversation I overheard while standing in a very short line at 4pm. A gentlemen was getting his ballot when one of the poll workers mentioed how busy they were (as he was handing the gentlemen ballot 1450-something). The gentlemen asked how many they usually get, and another poll worker stated "Usually about 400 or 500 for the day."

Wired Mag's Creative Commons CD

A 320kbps MP3 version of November 2004's freely distributable Wired Magazine cover CD - includes Beastie Boys, David Byrne, Dan The Automator, Gilberto Gil, Cornelius, and many more Creative Commons-licensed tracks for remixing, spreading - unmissable.
I got this with my issue of Wired this month. It has a little bit of everything and well worth getting. Plus it's legal and free; best of both worlds.
Link[via LegalTorrents]

Yes, I'm really that dumb

Ok, so I hosed this site. Boo me. I will be attempting to repost some of the original posts, manually entering the original time they were posted to recover my archive.
Unfortunately, all comments are lost. I have them, I just don't have a way to put them back with the posts. Sorry. Like I said, I really am that dumb.
Mental note: Just stick with one tool; the tools just don't play well together.