Wednesday, December 31, 2003

BarlowFriendz

BarlowFriendz

interesting reading. more minds to wander through.

i hope he lasts longer than gibson.

Tuesday, December 30, 2003

Pew Internet & American Life Project

Pew Internet & American Life Project

Stats, stats, and more stats.

The Internet hasn't reeled in everyone yet | csmonitor.com

The Internet hasn't reeled in everyone yet | csmonitor.com: "That raises the question of whether the much-talked-about 'digital divide' between those online and those not is closing. The Pew findings show that the poor and less-educated are online less than the affluent. Among Americans with less than a high school education, Internet usage dropped from 31 percent in January 2002 to 26 percent in August 2003, the report says.

Of those who don't use the Internet, at least one third, or about 10 percent of all adult Americans, would be online if they could, says Donna Hoffman, an Internet researcher at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tenn.

'There would be more growth if only there were programs or opportunities for people who can't afford it,' she says. 'The Internet is clearly indispensible now, and when you have a technology that's indispensible, there's no question there's a role for the government in taking a look at what happens when people don't have that access ... and what are the implications of that.'

Some people who can afford the technology aren't sure the benefits of being online outweigh the perceived drawbacks."

Well there ya go. I wonder if anyone has some ideas?

Bueller, Bueller?

IHT: Brazil gives the U.S. a nuclear headache

IHT: Brazil gives the U.S. a nuclear headache: "WASHINGTON Just when the Bush administration thought it had turned a corner in the global campaign against the spread of weapons of mass destruction - with Libya's Muammar el-Qaddafi, of all people - we learn that Brazil has decided to begin enriching uranium in 2004 and now refuses to allow the kind of inspections being urged on Libya, Iran and others.

Brazil? Since when is the second-largest democracy in the Western hemisphere an aspiring nuclear proliferator? Should Brazil be on the shortlist for an updated axis of evil?"

I guess this would make Brazil the fulcrum of the new axis between good and evil?

Monday, December 29, 2003

local6.com - News - Officials: World's Largest Snake Caught

local6.com - News - Officials: World's Largest Snake Caught: "JAKARTA, Indonesia -- Indonesian villagers claim to have captured a python that is almost 49.21 feet long and weighs nearly 992.07 pounds, an official said Monday.

If confirmed, it would be the largest snake ever kept in captivity.
Hundreds of people have flocked to see the snake at a primitive zoo in Curugsewu village on the country's main island of Java, Republika reported. It splashed two large pictures of the reptile across its back page."

Ice Cube, Owen Wilson, and Jon Voight were strangely unavailable for comment.

Arutz Sheva - Israel National News

Arutz Sheva - Israel National News: "Israel has joined what has increasingly become a worldwide crusade to break free of the Microsoft Corporation and their perceived monopolistic constraints.

The Ministry of Finance announced Sunday it will begin distributing Open Office, which is a package of basic software programs similar to Microsoft Office, for free starting this coming week. The ministry plans to distribute thousands of Open Office programs on CD-ROM at public computer centers and eventually community centers across the country throughout the coming year."

This is outstanding. Good work, out there in bomb-land.

I think we are going to stick with OpenOffice fully on Moore4Yates now. With these guys and Austin taking the plunge, it's only a matter of time till another good idea filters from the left to the right.

Forum: The fish that threatened national security

Forum: The fish that threatened national security: "Like many college students who flew home for the holidays, I had to endure the latest airport safeguards in the name of homeland security. A lot of us have stories to tell, but only mine is a fish tale, a contemporary melodrama of the absurd to prepare you for future travels.

My boyfriend Trey and I arrived by taxi at the US Airways terminal of La Guardia airport. We had four bags apiece, and one more precious piece of cargo -- MJ, my pet fish. MJ is a gorgeous fighting Betta fish, his palate a perfect pastel rainbow. He had become quite a solace to me in New York, a city that can make you feel so small and alone."

I fly out of there all the time, and after taking over 50 flights this last year, I can assure you that this type of TSA person exists. They are still rare, but they're there.

Wikipedia get the Cash

Wikipedia Request for Donations: "As you have all seen the past few days, we have been having technical difficulties. The essential problem is that we do not currently have enough hardware to cope with routine failures of any kind. When any one of our machines goes down, we experience cascading problems due in part to the excess load on the entire system.

The solution to this problem is to purchase now sufficient hardware to give us enough excess capacity so that we can be reliable. I estimate that $20,000 in hardware would get us to a point where we have reserves to handle the failure of any one machine. Additionally, we would be well-poised to continue our track record of astounding growth."

The great thing is that this letter was posted yesterday. As of now, that links shows donations totalling $23,382.17. The Net rocks.

Dean's secure in his view of Saddam

Dean's secure in his view of Saddam: "In his interview with the Monitor, Howard Dean repeated his contention that Saddam Hussein's recent capture had made America no safer.
'My opponents spent the week criticizing me for that, which I think was to their detriment' since the federal government had just increased the terror alert level to orange, indicating an elevated risk of an attack.

But he said two other recent events had benefited national security: the capture of a ship loaded with drugs in the Persian Gulf - 'which is almost certainly how al-Qaida is partly financing their operations,' Dean said - and Libya's decision to declare its illegal weapons programs and get rid of them.

Dean said there was no evidence to suggest the Bush administration's use of force against Iraq had anything to do with Libya's move."

More on Dean. I'm really curious to see polls of frequent Fox News viewers and their opinions on Dean. The frequency of attacks coming from that particular source are so consistent and generally misleading they could only find a home on, well, Faux News.

The 10 Dumbest Quotes of 2003 - Funny Quotes

The 10 Dumbest Quotes of 2003 - Funny Quotes

Good stuff. But make sure you have a pop-up blocker (i use the google toolbar) because About.com sucks for pop-ups.

Saddam Info Leaks

Reuters | Latest Financial News / Full News Coverage: "DUBAI (Reuters) - Saddam Hussein has given his U.S. captors information on hidden weapons and as much as $40 billion (22.5 billion pounds) he may have seized while he was Iraq's president, an Iraqi official has been quoted as saying.

'Saddam has confessed the names of people he told to keep the money and he gave names of those who have information on equipment and weapons warehouses,' Iyad Allawi, a member of the U.S.-appointed Iraqi Governing Council, told the London-based Asharq al-Awsat daily.

'The Governing Council is searching for $40 billion worth of funds seized by Saddam when he was in power and which has been deposited in Switzerland, Japan, Germany and other countries under the names of fictitious companies,' Allawi said."

Treat as suspect. If there's a major WMD find in the next few days, then we'll know this is good info.

Tuesday, December 23, 2003

Yahoo! News - Court Upholds Sentence for Bush Threat

Yahoo! News - Court Upholds Sentence for Bush Threat: "ST. LOUIS - An appeals court has upheld the three-year prison sentence of a man who suggested that President Bush (news - web sites) might be set ablaze during the president's March 2001 trip to Sioux Falls, S.D."

Time to tone down the rhetoric, it would seem. Especially in bars.

Humphreys said he got into a barroom discussion with a truck driver a day before Bush's visit. A bartender who overheard the conversation told police that Humphreys talked about a "burning Bush" and the possibility of someone setting Bush ablaze.

The Agonist: Elite Israeli Troops Refuse To Serve in the Territories

The Agonist: Elite Israeli Troops Refuse To Serve in the Territories: "Thirteen reservists from Israel's elite military commando unit stated Sunday in a letter to the prime minister that they would no longer serve in the occupied territories, joining other influential security officials who have recently criticized Israeli military tactics and treatment of the Palestinians. "

I'll give the Agonist the nod, so just click through there. This is how wars are stopped.

MySQL Quashes Defects in Database Release

MySQL Quashes Defects in Database Release: "MySQL AB on Monday released Version 4.0.17 of its MySQL open-source database software. The update features a number of cleaned up code defects that were recently sniffed out by an independent inspection company.

Reasoning performed its independent analysis using defect density as a prime quality indicator. Defined as the number of defects found per thousand lines of code, MySQL's defect density registered as 0.09 defects per thousand lines of source code. Through its analysis, Reasoning concluded that the commercial average defect density—covering 200 recent projects and totaling 35 million lines of commercial code—came to 0.57 defects per thousand lines of code."

Empirical evidence of the Open Free Source Software model contributing to high quality code.

Reuters | Latest Financial News / Full News Coverage

Reuters | Latest Financial News / Full News Coverage: "BANGALORE (Reuters) - India's film makers are offering Internet movie downloads on web site Kazaa in a move that could lower costs and boost revenues in Bollywood, the world's most prolific film production centre.
Some 35 producers will be able to sell movies using Kazaa, a file-sharing program owned by Australia's Sharman Networks, according to company statement.

'In a distribution deal struck between Sharman's partner Altnet... and IndiaFM.com, one of the most popular Bollywood entertainment sites, Kazaa's estimated 60 million global users will gain access to previously unavailable content,' the statement said."

And while Hollywood continues to advocate the suing and arrest of downloaders, Bollywood will grab massive amounts of converts by treating them like the mostly honest people they are.

CNN.com - Judge orders Limbaugh's medical records released - Dec. 23, 2003

CNN.com - Judge orders Limbaugh's medical records released - Dec. 23, 2003: "During a Monday hearing on access to Limbaugh's medical records, attorney Roy Black said Limbaugh paid 'extreme amounts of money' to Wilma Cline, his former housekeeper, and her husband, first for pills and then for extortion. Black alleged that the Clines had threatened to go public with information about Limbaugh's drug use unless they received $4 million.

Black said Limbaugh wanted to contact the FBI, but was told by an unidentified friend that if he went to the authorities, they would target him, and his political enemies would use the information against him.
'That's exactly what happened,' said Black, who also alleged that Cline's husband was a convicted drug trafficker."

Ahh, the spider web of deceit catches yet another victim. Limbaugh should simply be punished by his own rules, which, if he's a felony drug offender, I believe includes death by roo-roo.

Monday, December 22, 2003

More fun with the "Papyrus" Flash App

Bob Sawyer: "Earliest known evidence of a reality series found in medieval vault in eastern Great Britain.

Evidence of the earliest known reality series, 'Qveere Eye for thye Medieval Man' was found recently in a vault in eastern Great Britain. Officials date the series of tapestry panels back to around 1066, the year of the Battle of Hastings."

I need to find this thing and play with it.

We got him: Kurds say they caught Saddam - www.smh.com.au

We got him: Kurds say they caught Saddam - www.smh.com.au: "American forces took Saddam into custody around 8.30pm local time, but sat on the news until 3pm the next day.
However, in the early hours of Sunday, a Kurdish language wire service reported explicitly: 'Saddam Hussein was captured by the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan. A special intelligence unit led by Qusrat Rasul Ali, a high-ranking member of the PUK, found Saddam Hussein in the city of Tikrit, his birthplace.

'Qusrat's team was accompanied by a group of US soldiers. Further details of the capture will emerge during the day; but the global Kurdish party is about to begin!'"

Well, wait on this for a bit, considering the amazing quality of the U.S. media reporting on such stuff (Lynch, for example), it's not surprising that this isn't on the news yet.

Boston.com / News / Boston Globe / Opinion / Op-ed / Prejudging the 9/11 report

Boston.com / News / Boston Globe / Opinion / Op-ed / Prejudging the 9/11 report: "THE PROBLEM is not Tom Kean's assertion that the terrorist attack on the United States two years ago was preventable, it is President Bush's repeated assurance that it was not. The vaunted Bush attack machine stirred briefly last week, but paused before ginning up the conservative establishment for an assault on the moderate Republican chairman of the commission investigating Sept. 11, 2001."

This is going to probably hurt a bit when it comes out.

Threat Level Raised

Threat Level Raised: " Washington, DC - SECRETARY RIDGE: 'Good afternoon. Today, the United States Government raised the national threat level from an Elevated to High risk of terrorist attack -- or as more commonly known, from a Yellow Code to an Orange Code.

We know from experience that the increased security that is implemented when we raise the threat level, along with increased vigilance, can help disrupt or deter terrorist attacks. "

Sweet, and I've only got 4 more plane flights before the holidays are over.

Saturday, December 20, 2003

ABCNEWS.com : NASA Releases Images From New Telescope

ABCNEWS.com : NASA Releases Images From New Telescope: "Dec. 18— NASA unveiled the first views Thursday from its space infrared telescope, a super-cooled orbiting observatory that can look through obscuring dust to capture images never before seen. "

It took a few tries, but I finally found a story with the link to the actual images. Click here for the images.

Some great stuff that's going to keep coming even after the Hubble goes down. Also, be ready for Mars stuff on Christmas. We have a countdown for the Beagle II. And 'Spirit' should be following soon after.

Thursday, December 18, 2003

Best 1%er Biker and Bad Cop News, by the Outsider: bikernews,Motorcycle,Hells,Bad Cop,Cop,Biker,News,Police,Nude,Daytona,myrtle,Sturgis,laconia,thunder,val

Best 1%er Biker and Bad Cop News, by the Outsider: bikernews,Motorcycle,Hells,Bad Cop,Cop,Biker,News,Police,Nude,Daytona,myrtle,Sturgis,laconia,thunder,valley,outlaw,outsider

There it is. Because you know how many geek bikers there are.

Texas College Humor presented by THE VOORN PROJECT

Texas College Humor presented by THE VOORN PROJECT

Texas College Rundown. I went to Trinity University, BTW.

New Scientist :: The Real 100th Anniversary Flight

New Scientist: "The first piloted and rocket-powered craft to have been developed by a private company made its maiden flight on Wednesday, over the Mojave desert in California.
The craft, called Space Ship One (SS1), also become the first private craft to break the sound barrier, reaching a top speed of 930 mph (1490 km/h). The flight, exactly 100 years after the Wright brothers made their historic flight, marks a big step to winning the $10 million X Prize for private spaceflight."

The Wright Brothers failed re-enactment notwithstanding, read this story (and check the pic) to see how far private aviators have come in 100 years.

Wednesday, December 17, 2003

FARK.com: Comments Thingee (756183)

FARK.com: Comments Thingee (756183)

A photoshop contest for the first photo.

Weird! Fox's favorite 'progressive Democrat' just seems to beat up on Dems

Weird! Fox's favorite 'progressive Democrat' just seems to beat up on Dems: "TAMMY, TELL ME UNTRUE: Weird, isn’t it? Tammy Bruce said, two times each, that she was “progressive”—and a Big Democrat! She stressed that she was openly gay, and a Big Feminist to boot (see THE DAILY HOWLER, 12/16/03). But just as soon as she opened her mouth, she began praising Bush—and trashing Dems. Bill O’Reilly even had to fix her fake facts. No wonder our analysts were so kerflubbled as they watched this “progressive Democrat” in action."

look at Faux News' "experts". This seems to be the literal use of a strawman (strawchick, in this case) to further a political agenda.

'Gawrsh Billy O'Really, I'm a democrat and I think everything you say about them is spot on'.

PNC Bank - The Annual 12 Days of Christmas Index

PNC Bank - The Annual: "PITTSBURGH, Dec. 8, 2003 � While stiff import competition is driving deeper discounts on merchandise sold in the United States, skilled labor cost is on the rise, resulting in a 16 percent increase in this year�s PNC Advisors Christmas Price Index � the biggest jump the Index has seen in its 19-year history. "

Congressmen mislead on Iraq

Local News: "U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson said Monday the Bush administration last year told him and other senators that Iraq not only had weapons of mass destruction, but they had the means to deliver them to East Coast cities.

Nelson, D-Tallahassee, said about 75 senators got that news during a classified briefing before last October's congressional vote authorizing the use of force to remove Saddam Hussein from power. Nelson voted in favor of using military force.

Nelson said he couldn't reveal who in the administration gave the briefing."

Hey, but at leat we got him. Sure, we've increased the number of terrorists in the world, divided our allies, and spent over $200,000,000,000, but We've Got Him, and his country.

Don't you feel secure now?

Salon.com Technology | Raking muck in "The Sims Online"

Salon.com Technology | Raking muck in "The Sims Online": "According to Ludlow, E.A.'s move was 'clearly censorship,' and other scholars of MMORPGS -- massively multiplayer online role playing games, a category that describes the online worlds of 'The Sims,' 'Everquest,' 'Ultima Online,' and new entrants 'There' and 'Second Life' -- who are familiar with Ludlow's site agree with his assessment. They say the situation underscores what is becoming increasingly apparent in the virtual world: There's a fundamental divergence between the interests of a community (typically high-minded goals like freedom of speech and assembly) and the interests of the corporations that run those communities (typically not very high-minded but otherwise understandable goals like making money and avoiding public association with words like 'prostitution')."

Understanding dystopia through simulation. I love it.

Obvious point: You don't want corporations running your life. In any way.

CNN.com - Bush honors anniversary of first flight - Dec. 17, 2003

CNN.com - Bush honors anniversary of first flight - Dec. 17, 2003: "KILL DEVIL HILLS, North Carolina (CNN) -- The Wright brothers would have sympathized.

One hundred years after the brothers' first flight, a meticulous reproduction of the 1903 Wright Flyer made a valiant attempt to take to the air on Wednesday.

Much like many of the brothers' early efforts, the plane could not get airborne. It struggled down a narrow track and unceremoniously came to a halt in a mud puddle. "

I saw a special on this on Discovery last night. Not too surprising that it didn't work, the Wright Brothers tried a number of times before things worked right.
After about thirty-five feet the Flyer lifted off the ground. But after just 3 1/2 seconds, it smashed back to earth. It took two days to repair the damages. But on December 17, 1903, the Wrights were ready to try again.
With more details under the link.

Michael Moore.com

Michael Moore.com: "Thank God Saddam is finally back in American hands! He must have really missed us. Man, he sure looked bad! But, at least he got a free dental exam today. That's something most Americans can't get.

America used to like Saddam. We LOVED Saddam. We funded him. We armed him. We helped him gas Iranian troops.

But then he screwed up. He invaded the dictatorship of Kuwait and, in doing so, did the worst thing imaginable -- he threatened an even BETTER friend of ours: the dictatorship of Saudi Arabia, and its vast oil reserves. The Bushes and the Saudi royal family were and are close business partners, and Saddam, back in 1990, committed a royal blunder by getting a little too close to their wealthy holdings. Things went downhill for Saddam from there."

Linkalicious post after the ranting.

U.S. rejects Israeli protests - The Washington Times: World

U.S. rejects Israeli protests - The Washington Times: World: "The Bush administration yesterday brushed aside Israeli objections to planned U.S. meetings with the architects of the 'Geneva initiative,' an alternative Israeli-Palestinian peace plan launched in Switzerland this week.

'I am the American secretary of state. I have an obligation ... to listen to individuals who have interesting ideas,' said Secretary of State Colin L. PowelI yesterday.

'[This] in no way undercuts our strong support for the state of Israel,' Mr. Powell said. "

Seems to be moving forward. The plan looks like a pretty solid compromise, IMHO. I haven't seen any sunstantive criticism of it from Israel yet (although I'm sure that's my bad), so I'm surious to hear why they don't want us talking to anyone about a peace accord.

About.com : http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/thr/home_video/brief_display.jsp?vnu_content_id=2047010

About.com : http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/thr/home_video/brief_display.jsp?vnu_content_id=2047010

Hmm, strange linking. Anyway.
MARSEILLES, France -- Blockbuster Inc. president and chief operating officer Nigel Travis on Thursday called for an end to regional coding on DVDs, saying they merely create more opportunities for piracy. "I believe, in addition to the elimination of two-tier pricing, the studios should also make another significant strike against piracy with the elimination of regional coding," he said. "The extra time on windows created by regional coding is an opportunity that pirates exploit." Travis, the keynote speaker at the annual two-day Perspectives in European Video conference taking place here, cited "Finding Nemo," which was released on video and DVD in the United States on Nov. 4 but will not be available in the United Kingdom until March 18.
Now we're thinking. Also, let's make it NOT a felony to rip a DVD so I can watch minie on my phone, like I wanna.

Traffic Tracking

3.0 nedstat installed. Just curious if this thing is picking up any traffic. It's my log, but I've done a wee bit of promotion, although I'm sure a bunch of people looking for a certain type of doll wander by here.

Howdy folks.

Tuesday, December 16, 2003

Yahoo! News - BitTorrent and RSS Create Disruptive Revolution

Yahoo! News - BitTorrent and RSS Create Disruptive Revolution: "Disruptive technologies are born for all sorts of reasons�good ideas, market pressure, economic opportunity, and sometimes just plain luck. Many of today's disruptive leaders only emerged when combined with other seemingly unrelated inventions. WiFi and broadband (DSL and cable but not satellite) have prospered in a mutually symbiotic fashion. So too have weblogs and RSS. "

Massive tech article coming soon...if I finish it.

Why I Gave (washingtonpost.com)

Why I Gave (washingtonpost.com): "I and a number of other wealthy Americans are contributing millions of dollars to grass-roots organizations engaged in the 2004 presidential election. We are deeply concerned with the direction in which the Bush administration is taking the United States and the world."

At the VERY least, the campaign finance reform will force more 'shadow players' to come out in the light. I've read a bit about it, and am happy that the U.S. Supreme court said that democracy trumps the voice that money can buy, but we've still got a ways to go.

Reuters | Breaking News from Around the Globe

Reuters | Breaking News from Around the Globe: "RAMALLAH, West Bank (Reuters) - Palestinian public support for suicide bomb attacks in Israel has dropped to its lowest level in three years of Middle East conflict, according to a poll released on Tuesday."

Interesting results, not much change, but popular sentiment there is right on the knife's edge.

Didn't take long for this one

It's like they were waiting for it.

Exploring Dystopia: Main

Exploring Dystopia: Main

Very Interesting. At the very least, it will define an important word for everyone.

Thursday, December 11, 2003

Reason :: Libertarian argument for Dean

Reason: "I think I must have been ill that day. At some point, no one can say precisely when, libertarians apparently swore a feudal oath of fealty to the Republican Party. In response to an American Prospect article on libertarian disenchantment with the Bush administration, Reason's own former editor in chief Virginia Postrel explained that 'real Dean voters don't like Jeff Flake. (I do.)' "

Could be a nice swing voting block. Although it did remind me that preferential voting is the only way we are ever going to break out of a 2 party system, which always makes me sad.

SignOnSanDiego.com > News > Science/Health -- Scientists freeze pulse of light, for an instant

SignOnSanDiego.com > News > Science/Health -- Scientists freeze pulse of light, for an instant: "Physicists say they have brought light to a complete halt for a fraction of a second and then sent it on its way, an achievement that could someday help scientists develop powerful new computers.

The research differs from work published in 2001 that was hailed at the time as having brought light to standstill.

In that work, light pulses were technically 'stored' briefly when individual particles of light, or photons, were taken up by atoms in a gas."

Hmm, more reading necessary. /. has good coverage.

CBS News | Rock Shook Communism's Foundation | November 10, 2003 10:01:32

CBS News | Rock Shook Communism's Foundation | November 10, 2003 10:01:32: "(CBS/AP) Rock music played lead in giving Hungarian baby boomers the resolve to bring down their communist state, says one of those reformers who today is a government official.

Andras Simonyi, Hungary's ambassador to the United States, spent an hour Saturday night discussing the impact of Western songs on Eastern European politics before an invitation-only audience of 250 at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame."

The Power of Rock trumps political ideology any day.

Tuesday, December 09, 2003

Albino Blacksheep - Flash / Smoke Kills

Albino Blacksheep - Flash / Smoke Kills

Yes it does. And Russians are a bit strange (ain't we all).

Mercury News | 12/09/2003 | Governor won't probe allegations after all

Mercury News | 12/09/2003 | Governor won't probe allegations after all: "SACRAMENTO - Just weeks after vowing to investigate allegations of sexual harassment against him, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger has changed his mind, saying it's ``time to move on.''

More than a dozen allegations of harassment and groping surfaced against the movie-star-turned-politician in the last days of the recall campaign, prompting Schwarzenegger to acknowledge that he had sometimes ``behaved badly'' on ``rowdy movie sets.'' He apologized to anyone he may have offended, a mea culpa his communications director reiterated Monday.

``The governor, after consulting with legal counsel and advisers, has determined that an investigation would be rather pointless given the political nature that this has taken on,'' said Rob Stutzman, Schwarzenegger's communications director."

Does this include all future investigations and accusations also?

Hey, at least he's got that 'tell the voters one thing, do another' political dance down. Who said this guy isn't qualified?

Monday, December 08, 2003

intThe Australian: James Franklin: Philosophy, a matter of life and death [ 08dec03 ]

The Australian: James Franklin: Philosophy, a matter of life and death [ 08dec03 ]: "In 1935, John Anderson, the University of Sydney's professor of Philosophy and Sydney's best-known academic, wrote a newspaper article in which he said Australian culture was dominated by one philosophical attitude."

Hint, they were founded by thieves. It is strange how this seems to keep popping up whenever there is a discussion of Australia.

Promillelukko

Promillelukko

I jush wanna go hommme.

FSU: Orange Bowl Pairing Is The Pits - from Tampa Bay Online

FSU: Orange Bowl Pairing Is The Pits - from Tampa Bay Online: "TALLAHASSEE - A week ago, Florida State coach Bobby Bowden was delighted to be stuck between two likely and tantalizing postseason scenarios - either his first trip to the Rose Bowl and a date with fourth-ranked Michigan, or a return to the Fiesta Bowl to play Texas.

On Sunday, Bowden and his Seminoles were simply stuck."

Heck, why not just have special 'electors' from each state get together and vote, en masse, about who should be the 'National Champ'. The BCS is so bad, it's not even right to call it a 'National Championship' anymore, it is the 'BCS Championship', which means fuck-all to anyone.

United Press International: Analysis: Medicare law has cost drawbacks

United Press International: Analysis: Medicare law has cost drawbacks: "WASHINGTON, Dec. 8 (UPI) -- President Bush scored a political victory Monday when he signed the Medicare prescription drug bill, but the new law has strings attached and rising out-of-pocket costs for seniors."

Thank god all those patents will expire by the time I retire, otherwise I might get the shaft like all these old people did.

TCS: Tech Central Station - Robot Nation?

TCS: Tech Central Station - Robot Nation?

I started working on a draft about Mr. Brain's work a while back, guess I need to finish it.

TCS: Tech Central Station - Robot Nation?

TCS: Tech Central Station - Robot Nation?

I started working on a draft about Mr. Brain's work a while back, guess I need to finish it.

TCS: Tech Central Station - Robot Nation?

TCS: Tech Central Station - Robot Nation?

I started working on a draft about Mr. Brain's work a while back, guess I need to finish it.

C&EN: COVER STORY - NANOTECHNOLOGY

C&EN: COVER STORY - NANOTECHNOLOGY

Good reading on the subject.

pandagon.net - 12/04/2003: "Twenty Most Annoying Conservatives of 2003"

pandagon.net - 12/04/2003: "Twenty Most Annoying Conservatives of 2003"Internet gold.

Slashdot | World Summit On The Internet And IT

Slashdot | World Summit On The Internet And ITThis will probably be a wee bit scary.

Friday, December 05, 2003

pandagon.net - 12/04/2003: "Twenty Most Annoying Conservatives of 2003"

pandagon.net - 12/04/2003: "Twenty Most Annoying Conservatives of 2003"

Good stuff, and it gets better when the attacks come in the comments. See the massive rift in political ideology in the U.S., all nice and organized in black and white.

Herald.com - Your Miami Everything Guide

Herald.com - Your Miami Everything Guide: "BUENOS AIRES - At the height of the Argentine military junta's bloody ''dirty war'' against leftists in the 1970s, then-Secretary of State Henry Kissinger told the Argentine foreign minister that ''we would like you to succeed,'' a newly declassified U.S. document reveals.

The transcript of the meeting between Kissinger and Navy Adm. C├ęsar Augusto Guzzetti in New York on Oct. 7, 1976, is the first documentary evidence that the Gerald Ford administration approved of the junta's harsh tactics, which led to the deaths or ''disappearance'' of some 30,000 people from 1975 to 1983."

Whew, thank god we didn't sign that ICC thingy. Hell, some people might be held accountable if we did. And we can't have that, sure, we demand it from everyone else, but we certainly can't be expected to follow our own rules.

Times Online - Health

Times Online - Health: "JUST a few alcoholic drinks a week may be enough to shrink the brain, according to US research.

Middle-aged men and women who consume moderate amounts of alcohol on a regular basis tend to have lower concentrations of brain tissue than teetotallers or occasional drinkers, scientists have discovered. "

hu-huh, hu-huh, hu-huh, alchohol shrinks your brain. Thus leading to the survival of the fittest neuron theory many drinkers subscribe to.

Thursday, December 04, 2003

CBC News: Oldest male fossil 'amazing'

CBC News: Oldest male fossil 'amazing': "It was named Colymbosathon ecplecticos, which is Greek for 'amazing swimmer with large penis.' "

Who says egghead's have no sense of humor?

frontline: beyond baghdad: dispatches: the policeman

frontline: beyond baghdad: dispatches: the policeman

Behind the scenes in real time.

POPSHOT 2004

POPSHOT 2004: "The result was an influx of “liberal” minds to the Republican side of the debate. The great success of weblogging shows off this trend in sharp detail. One need look no further than the “Blogfather,” Glenn Reynolds of Instapundit.com, for evidence. Reynolds openly discusses pre-marital sex, rock ‘n’ roll, drug use and other non-conservative subjects while maintaining a resolute support of the war in Iraq. Time was when no one spoke favorably on all these topics except P.J. O’Rourke. "

Well, let's also remeber that many of the issues that were once considered 'liberal' are now pretty much totally mainstream, lending to their use and adoption by conservatives. If you are on the edge, you got's to keep moving.

Wednesday, December 03, 2003

CBS 11: CBS 11 Investigates Poison Gas Plot

CBS 11: CBS 11 Investigates Poison Gas Plot: "Federal authorities this year mounted one of the most extensive investigations of domestic terrorism since the Oklahoma City bombing, CBS 11 has learned.

Three people linked to white supremacist and anti-government groups are in custody. At least one weapon of mass destruction - a sodium cyanide bomb capable of delivering a deadly gas cloud - has been seized in the Tyler area.

Investigators have seized at least 100 other bombs, bomb components, machine guns, 500,000 rounds of ammunition and chemical agents. But the government also found some chilling personal documents indicating that unknown co-conspirators may still be free to carry out what appeared to be an advanced plot. And, authorities familiar with the case say more potentially deadly cyanide bombs may be in circulation."

Well, there ya go. Another front in the War on Terror. And that ain't Iraq, it's Texas.

Congressman Dutch Ruppersberger

Congressman Dutch Ruppersberger: "Washington, DC - The Maryland Congressman who started a program to help U.S. troops fly home on donated frequent flyer miles says a new report from the Library of Congress reveals that a plan for the government to begin paying for the flights falls short of the funds required.

Congressman C.A. Dutch Ruppersberger (D-MD) released a memo from the Library's Congressional Research Service (CRS), which says the $55 million recently appropriated by Congress to pay for soldier's domestic flights, '...is not sufficient to ensure each and every service member on R&R would receive travel assistance to his or her home.' The report noted that officials of the Department of Defense told CRS that the total cost of a program to pay for R&R travel all the way home would mean the $55 million would run out in a matter of a few months."

I got 10G for these folks. Match-up warmongers.

Heck of an idea, BTW.

Use PCP And Become Another Statistic (washingtonpost.com)

Use PCP And Become Another Statistic (washingtonpost.com): "Well before Nathaniel Jones had his violent and ultimately fatal confrontation with Cincinnati police Sunday, something happened that pretty much sealed his fate.

He used PCP.

And what we saw on that police video was a predictable result from a drug with its own special ways of killing and getting people killed."

I saw the tape of this last night. Not going to draw any conclusions until they release that first 1:37, but I might link this story.

Nanotchnology: Are 'Molecular Assemblers' Possible?

Nanotchnology: Are 'Molecular Assemblers' Possible?: "Two experts in the field of nanotechnology, K. Eric Drexler, Ph.D., cofounder of the Foresight Institute in Palo Alto, Calif., and the person who coined the term 'nanotechnology,' and Richard E. Smalley, Ph.D., a professor at Rice University and winner of the 1996 Nobel Prize in Chemistry, exchanged open letters about this question. These letters are making the -- long -- cover story of the current issue of Chemical & Engineering News."

Interesting reading on the future of nanotech and some good barbed exchanges.

Tuesday, December 02, 2003

40th Mersenne Prime Discovered

40th Mersenne Prime Discovered: "ORLANDO, Florida - December 2, 2003 -- Michael Shafer, a 26 year-old volunteer in the Mersenne.org research project called the Great Internet Mersenne Prime Search (GIMPS), has discovered the largest known prime number. Shafer used a Michigan State University lab PC and free software by George Woltman and Scott Kurowski as part of an international grid of 211,000 networked computers in virtually every time zone of the world."

This is so nerdly even I had to look up the point of it. Read the headline, that's the point.

Something along the lines of understanding mountainclimbers and their desire to scale Everest and every other big rock is needed to appreciate the significance of this particular discovery.

Israeli official: U.S. Secretary of State should not meet ``Geneva Accord'' organizers

Israeli official: U.S. Secretary of State should not meet ``Geneva Accord'' organizers: "Reversing his initial lukewarm initial response, Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat sent a message to the Geneva gathering warmly praising the virtual treaty, calling it 'a brave initiative that opens the door to peace.'

However, militant Palestinian groups denounced the accord and called the Palestinian negotiators 'traitors,' objecting to concessions over the return of refugees to their original homes in Israel.
In reaction from the Arab world, the newspaper 'Oman' praised the accord. In an editorial, the paper described it as the first true Palestinian or Arab document that gives a comprehensive vision for a solution to all the issues and paves the way for a Palestinian state. "

Okay, when I see the hardline nutjobs on both side being unhappy with the deal, then we are on the right road.

Philip Greenspun's Weblog:

Philip Greenspun's Weblog:: "Not all of our students will see this cover story in Business Week on the migration of high-paying jobs to India. But most attended a lecture in 6.171 by the folks who run MIT's latest big IT effort: OpenCourseware (http://ocw.mit.edu), which distributes syllabi, problem sets, and other materials from MIT classes (at least one semester after the class is actually given). During the lecture the students learned that, although ocw.mit.edu is a purely static .html site, it is produced with a database-backed content management system. In fact, of the $11 million donated by foundations to support the service, about $2 million was spent on technology and the salaries of folks at MIT who oversee the technology."

Interesting comments on the IT industry and it's move to commoditization and collapse.

VOANews.com

VOANews.com: "U.S. immigration officials say they are suspending a controversial program requiring young men from 25 mainly Middle Eastern countries to register annually while in the United States.
Critics had accused the government of unfairly targeting thousands of people on grounds of nationality and called the program intrusive. "

Fortress America in the New American Century.

MediaGuardian.co.uk | City | Stanley Gold's letter of resignation to Walt Disney board

MediaGuardian.co.uk | City | Stanley Gold's letter of resignation to Walt Disney board: "'It is with regret that I resign effective immediately from the Board of Directors of the Walt Disney Co. and second Roy Disney's call for the removal of Michael Eisner as chairman and chief executive. I am proud of my more than 15 years of service and my role in reshaping the company in 1984 by bringing Frank Wells and Michael Eisner to the company. I do, however, lament that my efforts over the past three years to implement needed changes has only succeeded in creating an insular board of directors serving as a bulwark to shield management from criticism and accountability."

Two down, one more midget to go.

Geneva Accord

FT.com Home UK: " 'two state' solution with a demilitarised Palestinian state and Jerusalem split into two capitals. Arab east Jerusalem to be part of Palestine, Israel to keep Jewish parts and adjacent West Bank settlements.

� Israel would withdraw to pre-1967 borders. Some big settlements would be dismantled, but 75 per cent of Jewish settlers would remain inside Palestinian territories and under Israel's protection.
� In exchange for keeping some Jewish settlements, Israel to give Palestinians an area of the Negev desert adjacent to the Gaza Strip. A safe passage route to be created between the West Bank and Gaza.

� Palestinians would waive the right of 3.6m refugees from the 1948 Arab-Israeli war and their descendants to return to Israel.


For a full text of the accord
Click here

� Israel would cede sovereignty over the shrine in Jerusalem known to Jews as the Temple Mount and to Muslims as al-Haram al-Sharif (Noble Sanctuary). Israel would retain control of the Western Wall.
� Palestinians would recognise Israel, end violence and disarm militants."

Sounds like a deal to me.

Technology News: Diebold Retracts Legal Threats Over Voting Machine Flaws

Technology News: Diebold Retracts Legal Threats Over Voting Machine Flaws: "Diebold Elections Systems spokesperson David Bear told TechNewsWorld that the company simply 'chose not to pursue legal action' that was based on copyright protection and the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA). "

Maybe that's because you would be using copyright law to keep people from talking about potentially MASSIVE vote fraud. BTW, this fraud can be done with an off the shelf version of Microsoft Access.

Pentagon puts hold on Boeing tanker deal - Dec. 2, 2003

Pentagon puts hold on Boeing tanker deal - Dec. 2, 2003: "WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The Pentagon has told Congress it will postpone action on $18 billion in contracts for 100 Boeing Co. 767 tankers until the deal is investigated following Boeing's firing of two officials for ethical violations, Defense Department officials said Tuesday. "

Mainly they got busted for jumping the gun on what seems to be standard practices for the military industrial complex.

Monday, December 01, 2003

One Man Against Secrecy (washingtonpost.com)

One Man Against Secrecy (washingtonpost.com)

The good fight needs fighting.

the RANT:: Media Bias

the RANT:: Media Bias: "The media doesn�t exist to inform the public, it exists to make money. It is really that simple. As long as the media is a for profit venture, designed to get ratings, the problem of bad reporting will forever be an issue. What many people don't realize is that for most of their existence the news divisions of the major networks, going back to the days of radio, were money-losing efforts, the evil government required that the broadcasters devote a percentage of their operating expenses to covering news or risk loseing their license to broadcast. As a result, you had news divisions that were under no pressure to 'get ratings' and the coverage was far less sensational and tended to focus on producing quality journalism. With little pressure to produce ratings broadcasters concentrated on covering the news with objectivity and public service as their primary goal."

Very true, I think this has been mentioned before.

Last of the Disney's

Roy E. Disney quits.

This would have been much more timely without the Sonny Bono Copyright Extension Act. Then Mickey could have joined Roy in the free world of Not-Disney.