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Showing posts from January, 2009

Site Downtime

I'm fed up with 1&1 as my host and am in the process of transferring hosts. There will likely be a lot of downtime this week as I work out the transfer (never done it before) and get the site back up and running.

I know the 3 of you who read this will be incredibly disappointed, but thems the breaks.

Finally

No, you will not solve all of our problems. But you make us want to try and say that you'll support us and... well, that's more than we've been able to say in a long time.

Welcome Mr. President, we've been waiting. Enjoy your day today, because tomorrow this country will forget it's good will and turn back to its bitter, divisive ways. Be the better person this country needs.

Enough

This is only one of thousands, thousands, of Palestinians who have suffered at the hands of the IDF. (Click the triangle at the bottom right, then choose "turn on subtitles" option.)



As Americans, we should be ashamed that we have enabled this kind of suffering and destruction. This action by the Israelis has gone too far and needs to end.

Find your Representative

Find your Senator

Contact the White House

A Few of My Favorite (Free) Things

Inspired by a conversation at work today about free (as in beer) software, here's a quick list of some of my favorite apps. I use Windows, so many of these will be Windows-only.

FileZilla; open-source, easy to use, FTP client; even runs off a USB drive

Twhirl - Adobe AIR-based Twitter client. Supports multiple accounts, skins, multiple link-shortening services, etc.

KeePass - Password safe. Folder, search, password generation (with random inputs). Open-source, speedy, runs on USB drives.

Notepad++ - Enhanced text editor with support for syntax coloring for dozens of languages and plug-ins. Fast cross-file searching make this a must-have for troubleshooting via log file.

CDBurnerXP - Free CD/DVD burning software. Doesn't automate, but is incredibly lightweight when compared to the bloatware that Roxio has become.

VirtualBox - Open-source virtualization software. Easy-to-use, let's me safely build sandbox environments to trash.

Handbrake - DVD to MPEG-4 converter, which now accepts…

A Workplace for the Electric Future

This week is the North American Auto Show, the annual circle jerk of the automotive superpowers, as they demonstrate the latest and greatest in Detroit. Despite it precarious status as the center of the automotive world, Detroit still holds sway over the direction of the industry and, if this year is any indication, the future is electric. From the Chevy Volt, to the Cadillac Converj, to the new Prius, to an unknown Daimler electric, full-electric cars are destined to hit the market very soon. At almost half the total operating cost of a standard vehicle (at 12,000 miles per year), these are financially attractive vehicles. But, what would it mean to actually power one? In today's world, filling up is a task done once, maybe twice, a week for the average commuter.But, with electric, you have to top off daily, if not more than that. The expected range for a Volt upon release is somewhere in the neighborhood of 40 miles per charge. If I live 25+ miles from work, I have a dilemma; ro…

Store Locator FAIL

For reasons I won't get into, I was curious what the closest comic book store to my house was. So I went to Comic Shop Locator (natch), plugges in my location. Closest result?



Yeah, not so much. Thanks Google.

Reducing the Administrative Burden Means You Need to Help Us

My AD forwarded yet another article today (this one in Science Magazine) about the increased administrative burden placed on faculty and researchers. To quote:
A 2007 survey by the U.S. Federal Demonstration Partnership... found that 84% of faculty in the United States believe that the administrative burden associated with federally funded grants has increased significantly in recent years. Most notably, the study indicates that of the total time that faculty devote to research, 42% is spent on pre- and post-award administrative activities. [Here's the report]
First, this is a perception that is widely shared up and down the research structure. Central offices, research assistants, and researchers alike are being asked to complete more paperwork, submit to more reviews, and respond to more and deeper questioning than ever before. And, with good reason.

Headline-making conflicts of interest and the need to protect subjects, both human and animal, and security concerns in a "p…