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? Tampa Bay Blogs #
Florida Motion Picture and Television Association

(FMPTA) announces that they're a bunch of snotty, self-important bastards who can't be bothered to make clear to a venue they're renting that the exterior design and look are critical to the rental, and further, that they can't advance properly, and even worse, that they can't be polite when press-releasing the change of venue.

No, Pam, I don't think we'll be going. Scroom.

Friday, August 22, 2003 @ 01:12 p.m. - Comment


No, Prez, it wasn't a terrorist attack

... and we couldn't even keep the lights on.

Right after 9/11 the National Academy of Sciences asked the National Research Council to examine the nation's vulnerabilities. The report, issued a few weeks before Secretary Whitman visited Saint Paul, identified "several very dangerous scenarios." The scenarios of greatest concern involved the electrical system.

A spokeswoman assured reporters that the White House would certainly consider the report's findings.

As we near the second anniversary of the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon it is clear that Washington has failed to seriously address the central problem: how to keep essential life support systems functioning after a terrorist attack.

It has not been for lack of money. In the last two years the federal Homeland Security Department has awarded communities some $4.4 billion. Another $3.5 billion will be on the way shortly.

Thursday, August 21, 2003 @ 09:02 p.m. - Comment


My dad's signature

was always dead-bang perfect and identical, every time.

Pissed me off, since my never is.

But how many ways can you sign your name on a credit card slip and still get your goods?

[ Also courtesy Flutterby ]

Thursday, August 21, 2003 @ 01:28 p.m. - Comment


So I have this weird problem

"everytime I sneeze, I have an orgasm."

"What are you taking for that?"

"Pepper..."

[ Thanks, unsurprisingly, to Flutterby.

Thursday, August 21, 2003 @ 01:17 p.m. - Comment


Just checking in...

amazing the things you can do without a password... You might want to check your weather.com magnet (above) it's about to expire.

PS: Send me some traffic ;-)

[ Note: I'd send you some traffic if I *had* some, Pam. That's what *I* get for leaving the password in your browser, I guess. Good thing I got readers who tell me about this stuff... ]

Sunday, August 17, 2003 @ 11:35 p.m. - Comment


I had a chat, yesterday

with the folks who do that Homeland Security banner over to the left, there; Two Tigers Radiological, in NC.

The banner was down, because they were switching to a dedicated server -- 40,000 sites take that banner, and the over-bandwidth charges were killing them -- and because their host, ValueWeb, haven't gotten any smarter in 4 years.

In any event, they have a new toy, and it sounds like a killer: security alerts and the like, that page your cellphone, with a callback link to a voice-play server that lets you hear the alert info, taped or realtime.

They say they have all the issues worked out -- like, maybe *enough* detail in the message to decide if I'm interested? -- and they have deals signed with 5 of the 7 major carriers to colo voice servers at their MTSOs. They've *even* worked out a way to do it with Nextel DC -- hopefully that turns into a toolkit; I can see lots of uses for external interface to DC.

The carriers are even going to sell and bill it -- and I'm likely to sign up.

I'll probably write an e-pinion about it if I get it.

Friday, August 15, 2003 @ 12:00 p.m. - Comment


Spam, spam, spam, spam

beautiful Spam<tm>, wonderful Spam.

Ever wonder why?

Read this.

How can we stop it?

Well, how about a real-time tarpit, that slows down the incoming SMTP connection *only for spam*. The normal SMTP timeouts would cover this, for normal mail, but spammers turn those down, cause they can't afford to wait.

The arguments in this paper are *excellent*; I can't imagine that if the top 20 ISP's implemented this on their inbound MX servers, that they problem wouldn't completely disappear within 3 months. Moreso than anything else I think I've *ever* posted in 4 years, this is a meme I'd like to see spread.

Friday, August 15, 2003 @ 11:48 a.m. - Comment


If you're in New York

don't read this entry.

:-) Power's out in the Northeast. Wow; that hasn't happened since... oh, about this time in 1965.

Running reports at Metafilter, of course.

Thursday, August 14, 2003 @ 07:58 p.m. - Comment


New E-pinion

(finally)

Tom Clancy's The Teeth Of The Tiger

Wednesday, August 13, 2003 @ 10:00 p.m. - Comment


The Passover Effect

is the name given by sociology professor and observant Jew David Phillips. In a 18 year study, he found that the death rate among observant Jews dropped by a remarkable 35% the week before passover, peaking by a matching amount the following week. The obvious conclusion: if there's something important enough coming up, you can put off dying for a week or so.

You know... like 'Cats'.

Wednesday, August 13, 2003 @ 07:40 p.m. - Comment


Some link-luvvin in return

to Dan, at Flutterby, where he has a link to a page showing how much retouching some fashion photos get.

Yikes.

Except for all those pores, I'm pretty happy with her the way she was...

Wednesday, August 13, 2003 @ 02:53 p.m. - Comment


For Alan, my biofuels guy

a link to the Cytoculture Biodiesel Handbook.

Wednesday, August 13, 2003 @ 01:00 p.m. - Comment


@ - Comment


I am very disappointed

that this story wasn't better illustrated...

Tuesday, August 12, 2003 @ 12:50 p.m. - Comment


End of an Era, Part CCCLXVIII

One of the first Internet Telephony program was a package called Speak Freely, originally written and maintained by John Walker, of Autodesk (the AutoCAD people).

He's made an end of life announcement for it, and it's worth reading, even if you have no special interest in the program itself.

The Internet, regardless of its state of development, is in the process of metamorphosing into something very different from the Internet we've known over the lifetime of Speak Freely. The Internet of the near future will be something never contemplated when Speak Freely was designed, inherently hostile to such peer-to-peer applications.

I am not using the phrase "peer to peer" as a euphemism for "file sharing" or other related activities, but in its original architectural sense, where all hosts on the Internet were fundamentally equal. Certainly, Internet connections differed in bandwidth, latency, and reliability, but apart from those physical properties any machine connected to the Internet could act as a client, server, or (in the case of datagram traffic such as Speak Freely audio) neither--simply a peer of those with which it communicated. Any Internet host could provide any service to any other and access services provided by them. New kinds of services could be invented as required, subject only to compatibility with the higher level transport protocols (such as TCP and UDP). Unfortunately, this era is coming to an end.

The worst part isn't that he's dumping it... the worst part is that he's right.

Monday, August 11, 2003 @ 11:25 a.m. - Comment


Ok, *now* I've got it figured out...

All I have to do to get women is 1) look like Michael Douglas and 2) become President of the US.

Got it.

This has *got* to be the world's best date movie...

Sunday, August 10, 2003 @ 06:20 p.m. - Comment


Dean on the Issues

Of course it would be Business Week that would carry a Dean invu that actually tells you something...

Friday, August 8, 2003 @ 12:45 p.m. - Comment


Only in California...

Hottie for Governor!

More power to her; it would be *really* fun if she won.

Friday, August 8, 2003 @ 12:29 p.m. - Comment


Ok, that's it.

Stick a fork in the Roman Catholic Church.

A CBS reporter has broken a story revealing a 41 year old blueprint for concealing sexual abuse charges against priests.

Morons.

Thursday, August 7, 2003 @ 08:52 p.m. - Comment


I've been saying for some time now...

at least since 1999, that I gave Microsoft until close-of-business 2005: they either won't be in the same business they're in now...

or they won't be in business at all.

Some of the comments in this Cnet piece about Longhorn server cause me to continue to be perfectly sanguine in that judgement. Longhorn, you remember, is the replacement for Windows Xtra Problems on the desktop -- the version which reportedly will not be backwards compatible with any older version of Windows' programs.

Monday, August 4, 2003 @ 04:22 p.m. - Comment


Aw...

fuck.

[ Thanks to Flutterby. ]

Sunday, August 3, 2003 @ 05:43 p.m. - Comment


Proof

... that the favorite sport of terrorists is... cartography?

Sunday, August 3, 2003 @ 04:18 p.m. - Comment


Yikes!

This is one pissed off friggin cow.

Wednesday, July 30, 2003 @ 04:41 p.m. - Comment


I'm sorry... the announcer you have reached

is no longer in service.

RIP Jane Barbe, the Voice of The Phone Company, dead of cancer at 72.

Wednesday, July 30, 2003 @ 03:37 p.m. - Comment


Thanks to Dan

at Flutterby, always a haven of sex-positivity, Every Girl Needs a House Mom...

Wednesday, July 16, 2003 @ 11:02 p.m. - Comment


My Stories

That's the old-lady joke about soap operas.. "I have to go watch my stories..."

In my case, they're more likely to be erotic stories, and one of the rare comment emails I get from here (which is mostly because I'd screwed up the comment email address; since fixed) pointed out a new site to me, which seems quite well run, and quite well stocked.

Those of you who are into such things can check out StoriesOnline.

[ Thanks to Lisala ]

Wednesday, July 16, 2003 @ 10:27 p.m. - Comment


Well, I've been pounding my beat...

...being an opinionated bastard on the Dean campaign weblog, and also the candidate's guest appearance on the Lessig blog, where he's sort of getting skewered -- and rightfully, they miscalculated the time and energy necessary to impress that particular audience -- and it's been unexpectedly beneficial to my hittage.

Interestingly, much more repeat business than is customary around here. I don't know if that's good or bad; I guess it depends on whether any of those hits came from fbi.gov. :-}

In any event, if you're new, hello. It's been more read- than write- this month; hopefully I'll get back on my horse shortly. I've actually got a couple of off-line written pieces I need to post...

Wednesday, July 16, 2003 @ 10:17 p.m. - Comment


Finally!

After driving around town looking like Captain Dork of the Weenie Patrol for almost 3 years, someone noticed.

I know there's a dangling modifier in that sentence, but I can't quite figure out how to fix it.

[ UPDATE: <*reads further down logs*> and she has *lots* of friends... ;-) ]

Wednesday, July 16, 2003 @ 09:55 p.m. - Comment


And women say that

*men* are stupid.

Meet Nippits, perhaps the most reviled (by men) consumer product in history. Of course this was invented by a woman...

Friday, July 11, 2003 @ 01:30 p.m. - Comment


@ - Comment


Yet another

security bug that won't bite you if you use Netscape.

Wednesday, July 9, 2003 @ 05:37 p.m. - Comment


No pictures!

Denied!

Wednesday, July 9, 2003 @ 05:21 p.m. - Comment


Britney says

she slept with Justin; needs time alone to learn to masturbate....

Well, that's what it sounded like to *me*... :-)

Wednesday, July 9, 2003 @ 05:17 p.m. - Comment


42 Reasons why Implants are Bad

Conveniently illustrated for your ... well, convenience.

Wednesday, July 9, 2003 @ 03:23 p.m. - Comment


Ok, it's not bad enough

we have Real Dolls...

Here's a page now from a guy who does surgery on them.

Wednesday, July 9, 2003 @ 03:15 p.m. - Comment


eVoting - trusting trust

Ok, this month's hobby horse is obviously eVoting, and why it sucks.

Dr. Rebecca Mercuri, whose PhD is on this topic, has a bunch of good stuff written, which I'll link to as the days go by. The current piece ties electronic voting machine implementation into Ken Thompson's classic September 1995 ACM piece "Reflections on Trusting Trust", which basically says that you can't trust a computer system if you didn't write *every piece of code down to the microcode yourself, and install it on bare metal*.

Since this is obviously not gonna happen with Voting machines, the only possible solution is to take the machine out of the trust loop -- which turns out to be pretty simple.

Wednesday, July 9, 2003 @ 12:21 p.m. - Comment


Gawd... you gotta love

Weather Guys.

[ Thanks to Sandra, from the Dean Blog ]

Wednesday, July 9, 2003 @ 10:45 a.m. - Comment


Ok...

now, we have gone off the deep end...

Wednesday, July 9, 2003 @ 10:33 a.m. - Comment


Kiss Me

Kate.

Record 4-time Oscar winner Katharine Hepburn, dead at 96.

RIP.

Sunday, June 29, 2003 @ 08:06 p.m. - Comment


Do Not Call

... operators are not standing by

Sunday, June 29, 2003 @ 05:05 p.m. - Comment


And you thought

*your* closet had some screwed up things in it.

Thursday, June 26, 2003 @ 05:02 p.m. - Comment


Dean For President!

Ok.

I've seen him talk and answer questions now. I can support the man. Here's my report of the Announcement House Party tonight:

Just got back from Pinellas For Dean's house party, which drew 50 people to a house in Seminole. Our screen was in between, not a 9" B&W Sylvania, but not as big as some people's projectors, either.

But we all had fun watching it. Local MeetUp/Steering Committee chair Tom Lally opened with some remarks explaining what was going on, and making sure that everyone knew we had a computer set to MoveOn.org for signups for those last few people.

The Action page shows us with 40 signups, but we actually ended up with over 50 people in attendance; I'm not sure how typical that is, but I'd guess it wasn't uncommon.

We watched the announcement speech, which drew applause in all the spots you'd expect, and some great amusement about the Green heckler... The entire crowd adjourned to the front lawn for a picture in the last light of day (which will be enroute to Burlington sometime in a day or two, I suspect), and then some of the hard core came back inside to watch the Meet The Press and Early Show tapes.

Frankly, while we thought Russert laid a glove on him once or twice, I don't think anyone thought his explanations were unreasonable -- once he got to make them.

But the Guv is *not* the sound bite candidate, and making that not work against him will be a *rough* trip for the campaign staff.

A great time was had by all (I've always wanted to say that :-), and I'll be back to read the rest of the comments after I take the day's second shower. (I forgot, being The AV Guy is much sweatier work than programming computers. ;-)

And finally, and most important -- our participants donated *$1644* to the campaign! Our treasurer is bundling up the donations and forms, and I think we'll be FedEx'ing the checks and money orders to Burlington in a day or two.

Monday, June 23, 2003 @ 10:31 p.m. - Comment


Another in an occasional series

If you think this is cool, you need to seriously re-evaluate your geekiness level. Joing Geeks Anonymous may be called for.

Monday, June 23, 2003 @ 02:22 a.m. - Comment


Nice to know they get it right in Enzedd

George Bush.

Professional Fascist.

Monday, June 23, 2003 @ 12:58 a.m. - Comment


One Last Chance

to fix the supreme court. (Lower case, they don't currently deserve the capital letters.)

Do Something Now.

Saturday, June 21, 2003 @ 04:41 p.m. - Comment


I do so enjoy

analyses of song.

This month's song is late Canadian folkie Stan Rogers' "The Mary-Ellen Carter", and the analysis is by Steven Wacker.

I first heard this song when Brendan Nolan played it at the late, lamented, Harp and Thistle Pub (the search for the link to which turns up a potential surprise) in St Pete(rsburg, damnit!) Beach many moons ago.

Brendan is a really cool guy.

How cool?

I commit karaoke on a fairly regular basis, and I've wanted to sing that song almost as long as I've known it. But, unsurprisingly, no one had ever tracked it. Brendan has been kind enough to record it for me, sans vocals; I'm going to lay a disc of it down and hit the circuit. The results should be... interesting.

But I'm not sure whether I'm brave enough to sing the filk version live...

Saturday, June 21, 2003 @ 02:47 a.m. - Comment


Ian Lance Taylor

is a name that will be familiar by and large, to Unix geeks. He wrote, among other magnum opii, a complete replacement for the Unix UUCP transport subsystem.

This, in many people's opinion, entitles him to have opinions... which is why Don Marti at Linux Journal got him credentialed to see SCO's dog and pony show on the purported IBM Linux Code Heist.

In poking aroung a little and applying Ashworth's Law, I ran across his explanation of how he became an atheist. It's interesting reading, unless of course you're a hyperreligious rightwing crackpot. How can you tell if you are? Read it, and see if you get pissed off.

If you do, you are.

Oh, and don't come crying to *me* about it...

Saturday, June 21, 2003 @ 02:12 a.m. - Comment


Senator Orrin Hatch wants to blow up your computer

If you "download copyrighted material" that is. (I note with amusement that he *doesn't* say "illegally"; if you are an Apple iTunes customer, duck!)

But, as someone noted his own senate website uses someone else's copyrighted menu code... without apparent authorization:

Not only does he not include a link to the software's home page, but his software's out of date. Close enough for government work, I guess, and he's too busy threatening to blow up copyright violators' computers to have his technicians maintain their systems (the software is actually up in the 3.4.x release level now, if I'm correct)

Friday, June 20, 2003 @ 04:11 p.m. - Comment


Want \$10 Million?

No problem.

Just build a ship and fly it into space.

Thursday, June 19, 2003 @ 06:10 p.m. - Comment


More from Dave

The Periodic Table of the Condiments

Wednesday, June 18, 2003 @ 09:42 p.m. - Comment


Had a knock-down

drag-out with my friend Pauline last night about, ghod help us all, calculus. :-)

So, in searching for a better definition of "secant line" (can it cross through *more* than 2 points? do they mean 'secant line-segment'? or are not all lines that cross a curve more than once actually secant?), I came across Calculus on-line 101, courtesy of our (plastic) pals (who are fun to be with) at MIT.

More When I Know More<tm>

Wednesday, June 18, 2003 @ 05:42 p.m. - Comment


How fast is *your*

link?

Wednesday, June 18, 2003 @ 04:36 p.m. - Comment


Sick of 'president' Bush?

I am. I'm mad as hell, in fact, and I'm going to... well, you know.


RSVP and come to a Dean declaration party next Monday

Come on out and, um, Take Back Your Country.

Wednesday, June 18, 2003 @ 04:01 p.m. - Comment


Steve Gillmor

(any relation to Dan?) writes in a piece on RSS for the Magazine Formerly Known as Computer Reseller News, that he thinks that

[ ... ] email will become a subset of the RSS space.

I'm pretty sure I think he's wrong, no matter what he thinks he means by that. The factor which has always distinguished email and netnews from the others is that they are *asynchronous* WRT the audience -- you can (within limits; mailbox quotes, and expire times) get to the information any time it's convenient.

Since, by and large (as I understand it), RSS is more of a "current hits" thing -- an RSS file often contains only the headlines for the "last N stories", you have to poll it, filter out the stuff you've already for, and database it, if you want the same behaviour.

I suppose I could misunderstand him, but the remainder of his 3-part article doesn't do much to unconfuse me...

Tuesday, June 17, 2003 @ 11:10 a.m. - Comment


Now here is a pretty cool

toy: drugstore.com's automagic drug interaction checker. Why can't they put *this* in my Palm Pilot?

Tuesday, June 17, 2003 @ 12:14 a.m. - Comment


Got some important old

CP/M programs you gotta run? :-)

Run 'em on Linux.

Monday, June 16, 2003 @ 08:02 p.m. - Comment


Jeeves...

has gotten cleverer.

Monday, June 16, 2003 @ 06:41 p.m. - Comment


If there is any way

you can arrange your affairs so as to avoid melting an entire bag of miniature peanut butter cups into a big lump in a hot car then this is almost certainly the course your life should take.

Monday, June 16, 2003 @ 06:27 p.m. - Comment


Well, *that* was a nice little chat

I am almost unreasonably happy, now. :-)

<dance type="Snoopy" mood="happy">

Monday, June 16, 2003 @ 03:10 p.m. - Comment


Soft gum...

that gets you hard.

[ Today's hit from Dave... ]

Monday, June 16, 2003 @ 12:20 p.m. - Comment


A name that's a triple pun

Gotta love that. Pioneering voice-over-Internet program Speak Freely appears to have been taken back over by it's longtime developer, John Walker at Fourmilab.

SF is available for both Windows and *nix -- primarily Linux, but I gather that if you have audio hardware and know what you're doing, you can run it other places, too -- and it's pretty nifty.

Speak Freely is a public domain, cross-platform Internet telephony application which conforms to all relevant standards, implements most principal audio compression algorithms, and provides military-grade encryption with AES, Blowfish, IDEA, and DES with keys as long as 256 bits.

Speak Freely is available for Unix-like platforms (Linux, FreeBSD, Solaris, IRIX, etc.) and Windows machines. Both versions are completely compatible and interoperate. In addition, Speak Freely supports the RTP and VAT protocols, and can communicate with any compliant Internet audio application.

So, if you're reading this from outside the US, I'm probably a criminal now; if I drop offline for more than a week, send the anti-black-helicopter squadron in to rescue me. 1/4 :-)

Monday, June 16, 2003 @ 11:53 a.m. - Comment


For Alan

Active Noise Reduction headsets: you [don't] get what you [don't] pay for.

Monday, June 16, 2003 @ 10:37 a.m. - Comment


The History Of The Internet

Well... almost.

1996: Instant messaging created as a way for people all over the world to interrupt each other.

[ Note: this page tickles the "images overlap text" CSS bug in my copy of Konqueror. Courtesy of Voidstar. ]

Monday, June 16, 2003 @ 10:19 a.m. - Comment


Here's a *great* idea...

for getting yourself arrested as a terrorist (:-) -- life-size role playing games.

Monday, June 16, 2003 @ 09:44 a.m. - Comment


We call it AOHELL for a reason...

And many of the things behind it are covered in this Washington Post piece, courtesy Ars Technica and Freshnews.org.

There was so much to David Colburn, all of it so outrageous and comical and scary and brilliant and successful and charitable, that he almost defied human description. And yet there he was, an open book, a raging, exploding caricature of a personality, a combustible force of nature. It was who Colburn was, or wanted to be, or couldn't help being.

At AOL, his stature grew to such epic proportions that he earned a nickname: God.

Sunday, June 15, 2003 @ 04:14 p.m. - Comment


I have *got* to stop

posting things from my sister's computer.

From the Disclaimer Hall of Flame: this one, from Virgin Mobile.

Sunday, June 15, 2003 @ 04:11 p.m. - Comment


Do not

use your Mom's computer when you're grounded.

Sunday, June 15, 2003 @ 03:54 p.m. - Comment


Just when you thought it was safe

The Voluntary Human Extinction Movement.

If this one shows up on Dave Barry's site, I'll know he's mining me. ;-)

Sunday, June 15, 2003 @ 03:28 p.m. - Comment


Spam, and how (not) to get some

I thought I had linked to this report before, but couldn't find it the other day when someone asked.

The Center for Democracy and Technology performed a study to figure out where email addresses are getting harvested from by spammers... and the answers weren't necessarily what you might expect.

But none of the addresses that were [ posted on a website ] obscured, whether in "human-readable" or "HTML-obscured" form, received a single piece of spam, leading us to conclude that e-mail address "harvesters" are not presently capable of collecting such addresses. While this may change as time passes and technology develops, for the time being it appears that obscuring an e-mail address is an effective means of avoiding spam.

Sunday, June 15, 2003 @ 02:59 p.m. - Comment


Courtesy of the ADL

Keeping your $FAITH institution safe.

Sunday, June 15, 2003 @ 02:43 p.m. - Comment


Folo - 515 languages

This 404 page isn't in *quite* as many languages -- and they're all natural ones -- but it's pretty cool anyway.

Sunday, June 15, 2003 @ 02:40 p.m. - Comment


Vote Buying?

In this day and age?

It's one of the important things an electoral system must protect against -- and one of the major holes in vote-at-home-over- the-Internet schemes proposed by many -- you have to prevent the possibility of people buying and selling votes.

To date, it's not been that difficult -- no one gets a receipt, and they're alone in the voting "booth" -- so it's hard to prove to a potential vote buyer that they got what they paid for.

Until -- yes, that's right, folks -- cellphones with cameras. See, you can send a picture of the ballot to the guy who paid you for your vote.

But, of course, this is not the *first* anti-social behavior that camera-phones have been implicated in...

Sunday, June 15, 2003 @ 02:29 p.m. - Comment


Know your Enemy.

That's what the banks say. Oh, sorry... that's "Know your Customer".

In any event, the new Counterpane monthly is out, and points back to a nice older column on the Honeynet Project

Sunday, June 15, 2003 @ 02:18 p.m. - Comment


Anonymity, Privacy and email

courtesy of the fine folks at O'Reilly.

Saturday, June 14, 2003 @ 06:20 p.m. - Comment


I usually take pride

in having the highest batman factor of anyone you've ever met, but I am not the all time champion.

Saturday, June 14, 2003 @ 04:48 p.m. - Comment


Don't fix auto exhaust and aerosol cans...

Fix cows.

[ Thanks to Dave Barry; no link, cause I'm already jealous that he gets 4500 hits a day. ]

Saturday, June 14, 2003 @ 03:47 p.m. - Comment


Search results, part 1

The "We're not wrong" quote is from "The Truth About Men", by Tracy Byrd, and a couple of his friends.

Courtesy of a friend of my sister's, I do have copies of many Spenser TV eps on VHS, though they're sort of rough.

I don't know where my Portege 3010ct *is*, and I'm replaing it with an Armada 4220t.

I still have Earthlink Wireless CDPD service with the Minstrel S on my Visor Prism.

I've posted the Zero Tolerance rant, finally.

And no, alas, I don't have any idea what the Nymphokitti is doing anymore. Her LJ is friends only, and I ain't one.

Wednesday, June 11, 2003 @ 07:27 p.m. - Comment


Best. Auction. Description. Ever.

Can't top that headline.

Wanna buy some speakers?

Wednesday, June 11, 2003 @ 01:57 p.m. - Comment


Hey, look!

I'm a celebrity!

Monday, June 9, 2003 @ 07:07 p.m. - Comment


Remainders...

they're every reader's dream: 90% off of good books? I'm there.

There, as it turns out, is Daedalus Books.

If you buy books, go here.

[ Update: unless you're broke. :-) ]

Sunday, June 8, 2003 @ 02:11 p.m. - Comment


Here, assuming it's up when you look

is a pretty good primer on low-end video production. The writer does his for a church, but the lessons are applicable no matter who (or what) you're shooting.

My only comment would be: buy your SCSI drives on *eBay*. We've had very good luck, and the cheapest retail sellers are there anyway.

Notably, Bason Computer and Hard Drive Outlet are there.

And, finally, get SCA-80 connector drives, and removable trays. Being able to swap a project on and off line is *essential* for productivity.

Finally, check out Cinelerra, which used to be Broadcast 2000. Runs on Linux; looks stunningly cool.

Thursday, June 5, 2003 @ 07:45 p.m. - Comment


Microsoft shoots themselves in chest

They're getting closer and closer to the head..

Standalone IE to be discontinued

Wednesday, June 4, 2003 @ 01:27 p.m. - Comment


TETRA

Nextel done right.

Tuesday, June 3, 2003 @ 06:46 p.m. - Comment


We're selling

$US15.2 million worth of Motorola radios to the Baghdad Police.

Whoever they are...

Tuesday, June 3, 2003 @ 06:41 p.m. - Comment


Saints... and Sinners

That's the name of the local indie film festival put on by the boys at Renegade Films. It makes their own work ineligible -- which is a shame, because their Web Of Darkness (filmed in part at our own State Theatre -- which is weird, when you're watching it) is pretty decent, even in rough cut stage.

The winners this year were the much awaited (by the rest of the audience, at least) Filthy (which also to 13 other awards), in the Sinners (horror/gore splatterfest) category, and, in somewhat of a surprise victory, the Saints entry I'll Save You! (sadly, with website support) -- which only won two other awards, but got the strongest audience reaction of the night.

It's the story of a woman being held up by a mugger in Manhattan... which, you see, has a higher superhero/normal human quotient than any other city on Earth. Sometimes, alas, they get in each others' way.

I told the producer/director that the screener was in my pocket, and he couldn't have it back until he agreed to cut me a dub. ;-)

In any event, there is one thing that this festival taught me...


Kelsey looks as good after (she's had :-) 4 beers as she does sober :-)

Sunday, June 1, 2003 @ 11:56 p.m. - Comment


End of an era... part 1

Air France's last Concorde flight.

Friday, May 30, 2003 @ 05:23 p.m. - Comment


Well, the new law

concerning privacy of health care computing has gone into effect.

You know, the one that makes WinXP SP1 and Win2k SP3 illegal...?

Thursday, May 29, 2003 @ 01:24 p.m. - Comment


Someday, the mountain might get 'em

but the law never will.

A pictorial explanation of the SCO fracas, with a bit o'help from "the boys". I had fun with it; I kicked the boy a couple bucks. You should too.

Wednesday, May 28, 2003 @ 04:45 p.m. - Comment


You will almost certainly

not be geeky enough to appreciate this.

"99 bottles of beer on the wall -- one program in 515 languages."

Wednesday, May 28, 2003 @ 01:11 p.m. - Comment


Big Brother

is firing you.

[ A bit out of date, yes; I'm mining Cam's old stuff, having tripped over him in a search for CMS software. ]

Tuesday, May 27, 2003 @ 07:21 p.m. - Comment


Everything you own

belongs to me.

That, according to local writer Bob Andelman, is what all high stakes career criminals think. If you've lived in Tampa Bay for any length of time -- and you read -- you can hardly have avoided seeing Andelman's name on *some* byline; he's written for just about everybody in two decades, even a couple of books.

And of course, he has a website.

Why the hell not? If you like his stuff, you can go there and find links to... well, most of it. SO what else is new.

Tuesday, May 27, 2003 @ 06:45 p.m. - Comment


Two jurisdictions

around with whose law enforcement you don't want to screw are California and New York State.

One excellent reason is NY AG Elliott Spitzer, who's taking on spammers and other cybercreeps with already existing laws.

Hey! What a great idea. Too bad no one else thought of it...

Monday, May 26, 2003 @ 04:49 p.m. - Comment


This page optimized

for arguing with customers.

More great stuff from Rick Moen and the LinuxMafia.

Monday, May 26, 2003 @ 04:08 p.m. - Comment


Lemmings.

That's what we are...

We're all lemmings.

...marching over the cliff.

Monday, May 26, 2003 @ 03:53 p.m. - Comment


Please, please, PLEASE

tell me that the current administration is not this stupid.

Is it time to haul Bush up on treason charges yet?

Sunday, May 25, 2003 @ 04:08 p.m. - Comment


Micropayments are Dead

Long Live Micropayments.

Friday, May 23, 2003 @ 12:07 p.m. - Comment


I have zero tolerance for Zero Tolerance

[ herewith a rant I *thought* I'd posted, but couldn't find; found it offline]

Zero Tolerance.

They're words we hear fairly often these days. "Zero tolerance on drugs." "Zero tolerance on guns and knives at school." "Zero tolerance on seat belts and child seats."

The intentions behind zero tolerance policies seem good, in the abstract: people are prone to make up excuses when we try to bust them for things they shouldn't be doing -- to try and take advantage of the better natures of whomever it is that's busting them for whatever they shouldn't have been doing. ZT policies are an attempt to counter that; to make sure that "people get what they deserve".

Well, I think that as a society, if we continue to encourage, and indeed, to permit, ZT policies, we're going to get what we deserve, alright. It's just not what we *expect*.

It goes back to school, really. School-age children, and especially elementary age ones, are given rules to follow, and very little -- if any -- leeway in following them, because the younger you are, the less capable you are (and are considered to be, though they're not always in sync) to exercise good judgement.

That's the goal, right? Teaching kids good judgement.

So, how, exactly does *not ever allowing them to break the rules to see if they've figured out what constitutes good judgement* contribute to that? That's how you grew up, right? You decided you were "old enough" to break the "don't *ever* touch the stove" rule, or the "only cross at lights" rule, or the "don't have sex" rule, and you lived to tell about it, and the costs, if any, weren't too high.

But in a ZT environment, You Can't Do That. In fact "you can't do that" is the slogan of the zero tolerance movement.

But it's even worse than that.

Completely ignoring for a moment those ZT rules that apply to *adults*, the ones that apply to (let us say) high school age kids have their own problems -- you know, high school age kids like the valedictorian who was suspended, blew her perfect attendance record, wasn't allowed to walk at commencement, and lost her scholarship to college from the state because her Bright Future was tarnished by... a left over butter knife on the floor of her car (from a weekend move to her own first apartment).

She was almost arrested on *felony* weapons charges in the bargain.

And there's nothing the administrators can do about any of it, because they have zero tolerance rules about weapons on campus.

Weapons.

A butter knife. Not even a sharp edge, there, folks.

What do these zero tolerance rules actually tell these kids?

Well, I think they tell them that their Adult Supervision... needs adult supervision. When we tell the kids we're trying to teach that we don't trust their teachers, administrators, and even the police and judicial system to exercise mature judgement, why should we be surprised when so many of them seem not only not to aspire to the things we aspired to as children... but not even to care much at all about anything in life.

We're getting exactly what we asked for. It's just not what we wanted.

Guess we exercised bad judgement, eh?

Thursday, May 22, 2003 @ 01:01 p.m. - Comment


Damn!


Courtesy of Fiona
You go, girl.

Wednesday, May 21, 2003 @ 10:04 p.m. - Comment


Oh, and for the cynical bastards

who think the Honda ad, "Cog", was camera tricks, rather than the 606 takes the shooters said it was... here's a page about their 1987 30 minute long Rube Goldberg film "The Way Things Go". No tricks there, either.

Wednesday, May 21, 2003 @ 09:35 p.m. - Comment


Fun with Flash

Pre-war style. Not the best lyrics in the world, but it'll do...

Wednesday, May 21, 2003 @ 09:26 p.m. - Comment


Wow. I say it here...

it comes out there.

Where, by there, I mean Snopes, the source of all good bits about urban legends.

Ok, I probably wasn't *solely* responsible for calling it to their attention, but it wasn't posted when I wrote to them about it, and their commentary, above, corresponds roughly with what they said in their reply to me. Hey... it could have been me, so it must have been me. :-)

Wednesday, May 21, 2003 @ 08:57 p.m. - Comment


There are over 206,000 people

who aren't bright enough to change the default name on their web pages.

Welcome to Adobe GoLive 5 indeed...

Wednesday, May 21, 2003 @ 05:19 p.m. - Comment


If you cannot win by the rules

Don't *Play* by the rules.

Buffy met her Kobayashi Maru test tonight... and, of course, she passed. And in the end, Anya, the only Scooby ever to be immortal was the only one who died.

Nice, Joss.

Tuesday, May 20, 2003 @ 11:35 p.m. - Comment


The Great Capacitor Scare of 2003

This one's gonna get interesting.

Industrial espionage. A formula gone wrong. Electrolytic caps that are blowing up all over the place, 10-50 times as fast as they should...

There's a roundup here, and... ask yourself: did the people who make the the Black BBox in my *car* buy caps from Taiwan? How about the contractors who work on the Space Shuttle?

Tuesday, May 20, 2003 @ 04:49 p.m. - Comment


Heads Up

We might see ThreatCon Orange (or even Red(!)) in the next day or so, after the Saudi stuff...

Tuesday, May 20, 2003 @ 12:43 p.m. - Comment


I'm a little surprised

Dawn didn't want to keep this outfit...

Tuesday, May 20, 2003 @ 11:40 a.m. - Comment


Apparently,

there's lots of chatter about torrential rains in the Saudi Arabian Northwest.

Tuesday, May 20, 2003 @ 11:22 a.m. - Comment


Can't beat the Times'

headline: It's hard to slay goodbye...

And I have to *make* television tonight, so I gotta watch it on tape. <pout>

Tuesday, May 20, 2003 @ 11:17 a.m. - Comment


No one

does it like Mike.

Monday, May 19, 2003 @ 11:40 p.m. - Comment


In light of Microsoft's

recent email that's going to get them in *very* deep shit with the European Commission -- it says that there's a "fund" for bankrolling price cuts to keep Linux off the desktop, and that sort of thing is *illegal* in Europe -- I was reminded of the Halloween series of memos collated by ESR at the OSI's website.

But I'd missed his companion jeremiad. It's sorta fun, actually, if you're into rants.

And the worst -- the absolute worst -- is that he's conditioned computer users to expect and even love derivative, shoddily-implemented crap. Millions of people think that it's right, it's normal to have an operating system so fragile that it hangs crashes three or four times a week and has to be rebooted every time you change anything deeper than the wallpaper. Dammit, we knew how to do better than that in 1975!

If you're not an engineer, maybe you can't understand how deeply offensive most techies find this kind of thing. It gives me actual pain to see what Microsoft has done to the computing world, to the expectations of users, to the craft of programming that I love. But most of all, it disgusts me to the point of rage and nausea to contemplate living in the Microsoft-only future Gates has planned for everybody.

Monday, May 19, 2003 @ 09:20 p.m. - Comment


<pout>

I found a fast one named Katie...

and she got away.

Jantonio; I barely knew ye...

Monday, May 19, 2003 @ 05:34 p.m. - Comment


Sex.

Yup, it exists. And anyone who's too embarassed to talk about it in public deserves what they get.

My favorite talker-about-it, along with a guy who goes by the name of Friar Dave, and is Long-Lost<tm>, is another guy named Michael K Smith. He was long and lost for a while too, after some tenure on Usenet, when "a fan" -- whom I'm *almost* certain was me :-) -- tracked him down and hooked him back up.

If you like smut, you're likely to like his.

Sunday, May 18, 2003 @ 11:00 p.m. - Comment


Finally!

I've been trying to re-locate the page with links to transcriptions of my favorite movie soliloquy's for some time; I think this is it.

"Let me tell you something: I am God."

Sunday, May 18, 2003 @ 10:34 p.m. - Comment


Cucamonga!

Slowly I turned. Step by step.

Inch by inch.

Apparently, though, it's actually Niagara Falls.

Niagara Falls?

Slowly I turned...

Sunday, May 18, 2003 @ 03:43 p.m. - Comment


All I can say is...

Sweeeet...

Friday, May 16, 2003 @ 10:56 a.m. - Comment


Be afraid.

Be very afraid.

This is the sort of thing I use to explain to people the thinking behind "carry a big stick".

Friday, May 16, 2003 @ 10:28 a.m. - Comment


More stuff you will only

find funny if you're a geek.

A crypto geek, in this case.

Thursday, May 15, 2003 @ 06:32 p.m. - Comment


Proving that he's not averse to controversy

... no, no... ESR has updated the Jargon file to version 4.4 (:-), in the process deleting a whole cruncha buncha entries. I expect a few people will get pissed off along the way -- me, I'm gonna keep my old editions; I think he only deleted them so as to make the paper version small enough to keep in print...

And *my* opinion is he should have fought for the page count; the historical information is still useful, as long as it's flagged properly.

Thursday, May 15, 2003 @ 05:10 p.m. - Comment


It would appear that I'm not

the only one who has zero tolerance for Zero Tolerance.

I have a rant on this somewhere, but I can't find it just now. I'll post it later.

Thursday, May 15, 2003 @ 03:38 p.m. - Comment


Buffy is going away

but You can still keep a piece of the show close to your heart.

If you have *lots* of money...

Wednesday, May 14, 2003 @ 10:06 a.m. - Comment


I'm shocked!

Shocked, I tell you...

Wednesday, May 14, 2003 @ 09:41 a.m. - Comment


Alas, to my dismay

MSN isn't really going into the toilet, after all.

Tuesday, May 13, 2003 @ 12:17 p.m. - Comment


*Just* what you always wanted:

the "God will roast their stomachs in Hell" barbecue apron.

That, courtesy of the folks at www.WeLoveTheIraqiInformationMinister.com

Monday, May 12, 2003 @ 11:48 p.m. - Comment


A reminder

you might get popup windows even if you use Netscape 7... and then again, you might not, and your computer might just be telling someone every where you go.

Many "free"ware Windows packages are free because the developer includes "ad-ware" with the install, which pops up windows over your browser, or reports on your tracks.

Revenge? (Oh, yeah, we're calling that 'retribution' these days...) Ad-aware, the software from Lavasoft in Germany that scans your machine for such trash and can remove it if you ask it to.

A good idea to run in addition to your anti-virus program...

This has been a public service announcement.

Monday, May 12, 2003 @ 10:44 p.m. - Comment


What a great name for a blog

Emphasis Mine. Politically inclined, as suits that I got it from the PoliGeek, whom I may or may not have remembered to mention earlier.

Both well written, thoughtful, and intelligent. Which I guess means I think they agree with my politics. :-)

Monday, May 12, 2003 @ 04:12 p.m. - Comment


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