Adam Fields (weblog)

This blog is largely deprecated, but is being preserved here for historical interest. Check out my index page at adamfields.com for more up to date info. My main trade is technology strategy, process/project management, and performance optimization consulting, with a focus on enterprise and open source CMS and related technologies. More information. I write periodic long pieces here, shorter stuff goes on twitter or app.net.

10/30/2004

Piggyback heart transplants

Filed under: — adam @ 1:47 pm

"Double hearts are a good choice for patients whose heart problems
cause extremely high blood pressure in the pulmonary artery [...] Such
a problem generally can’t be solved by replacing the ailing heart with
a donor heart because the new one can’t adapt quickly enough to handle
the excess pressure built up in the lungs."

Via Anne:

http://www.lpch.org/newsEvents/NewsReleases/heterotopic.html


Oni was not a flop!

Filed under: — adam @ 11:44 am

Kotaku has written a harsh review of Oni.

I think this is unfair. Quite to the contrary, I thought that Oni was one of the best games I’d ever played. Perhaps the PS2 version didn’t compare, but the PC version was outstanding. Maybe the levels were “featureless”, but the overall architectural design was impressive, the levels were large and engaging, and very well laid out for interesting fights. The controls were a bit difficult, but very satisfying once I got the hang of them (and configurable, a rarity for other games I was playing at the same time). The focus on hand-to-hand combat (with very smooth physics, also a rarity among other games) meant that stealth and strategy were important, and you couldn’t just charge through the combat. The plot was engaging and interesting, and the pacing was very good.

Come on – is it really fair to pick on a game for ending up in the bargain bin when it’s over 3 years old?


Playable HHGTTG text adventure on the BBC site

Filed under: — adam @ 10:43 am

I loved this game. There are a number of versions out there. This one
is nicely illustrated.

Via Anne:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/radio4/hitchhikers/game.shtml


10/29/2004

Drug delivery via contacts

Filed under: — adam @ 8:40 pm

http://www.newscientist.com/news/news.jsp?id=ns99996597


Gmail security breach

Filed under: — adam @ 7:43 pm

There’s a Gmail exploit that allows an attacker to steal your Gmail cookie, which thereafter identifies them as you to the system, even if you change your password.

This seems like a huge problem for Google, above and beyond the actual security breach. Remember that Gmail uses the same unlimited lifetime Google cookie. The data in that cookie is, presumably, extremely valuable for their tracking efforts, and I’d guess that this will be difficult for them to fix in a way that maintains that.

http://net.nana.co.il/Article/?ArticleID=155025&sid=10


Clocks fall back this weekend

Filed under: — adam @ 5:53 pm

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Daylight_saving_time
http://www.timeanddate.com/time/dst2004b.html


Find your polling place

Filed under: — adam @ 1:02 pm

http://www.mypollingplace.com/find.php


Department of Please Waste My Money

Filed under: — adam @ 11:43 am

The newly formed DPWMM shall be charged with enforcing any copyrights and trademarks that may have been erroneously allowed to expire.

http://www.oregonlive.com/news/oregonian/index.ssf?/base/front_page/109896512934940.xml


Statistical analysis of concert coughing

Filed under: — adam @ 11:36 am

http://www.sandybox.com/rdp/000005.html

(Update: James pointed out to me that this is pure probability analysis, not statistical. My bad.)


Senior NASA physicist/image analyst says the bulge is a device

Filed under: — adam @ 11:09 am

Of course, to his credit, Bush didn’t lie about this. It IS a poorly tailored shirt – a well-tailored one would cover up the thing underneath it.

‘For the past week, while at home, using his own computers, and off the clock at Caltech and NASA, Nelson has been analyzing images of the president’s back during the debates. A professional physicist and photo analyst for more than 30 years, he speaks earnestly and thoughtfully about his subject. "I am willing to stake my scientific reputation to the statement that Bush was wearing something under his jacket during the debate," he says. "This is not about a bad suit. And there’s no way the bulge can be described as a wrinkled shirt."’

http://www.salon.com/news/feature/2004/10/29/bulge/index.html


10/28/2004

The Economist endorses Kerry

Filed under: — adam @ 5:33 pm

But you know, that’s just more left-wing propaganda.

Via HK:

http://economist.com/printedition/displaystory.cfm?Story_ID=3329802


Mail ordering

Filed under: — adam @ 2:42 pm

Jeremy Zawodny asks “is your inbox a stack or a queue”?

I’d have to say it’s a loosely linked queue with some arbitrary graph functionality. I use mutt for the majority of my mail, with the newest messages at the bottom. More importantly, I use mutt’s threaded viewing, which I’ve illustrated with an example of why this is important here.


Cary Tennis on why you should stay

Filed under: — adam @ 11:58 am

I felt sad for the loss of the Mr. Blue column, and I was initially not happy with Cary Tennis as a replacement. But he’s grown on me.

http://www.salon.com/mwt/col/tenn/2004/10/28/politics/index1.html


Indoor cat food

Filed under: — adam @ 11:50 am

As you may know, we have three cats.

We switched to Nutro Complete Care Indoor Senior food about two months ago, and it’s worked great – the litter box smells less, they have many fewer hairballs, and there’s generally a lot less shedding.

Highly recommended.

http://www.nutroproducts.com/ncccis.asp

If you have cats younger than 7 years old, use the regular formula:

http://www.nutroproducts.com/ncccia.asp


My eclipse photos

Filed under: — adam @ 11:36 am

Wish I’d had a longer lens or a telescope with a photo mount, but some of them came out pretty good.

http://www.aquick.org/gallery/lunar_eclipse_2004


City Lights competition winners

Filed under: — adam @ 10:25 am

Remember that contest to design a new NYC streetlight?

Here are the winners:

http://www.nyc.gov/html/ddc/html/citylights/winners.html

Cool!


Misaddressed emails from the Bush campaign

Filed under: — adam @ 10:19 am

I find it incredibly ironic that, yet again, Republicans don’t understand the difference between corporate and non-profit.

Them internets is confusing.

http://www.georgewbush.org/deadletteroffice/


10/27/2004

Yes, Bush Can switches sides

Filed under: — adam @ 4:44 pm

Perhaps there’s still hope for the Billionaires for Bush.

http://www.yesbushcan.com/


Revenge of the Sith preview

Filed under: — adam @ 4:42 pm

I must admit, against my better judgement, I’m getting excited for Episode III. The Darth Vader special on the box set extras disc sent familiar chills down my spine. I haven’t read the actual review, since I don’t want any spoilers (and if you respond to this, and know anything, please keep it to yourself).

http://www.themovieblog.com/archives/2004/10/first_star_wars_episode_iii_revenge_of_the_sith_review.html


Baggins… Shire

Filed under: — adam @ 3:49 pm

"Hobbit" remains found in Indonesia.

http://www.newscientist.com/news/news.jsp?id=ns99996588


According to the NRO, people who live in cities aren’t "real"

Filed under: — adam @ 3:21 pm

Wow.

http://www.salon.com/politics/war_room/archive.html?blog=/politics/war_room/2004/10/27/nro/index.html


The insecurity of RFID passports is intentional

Filed under: — adam @ 3:01 pm

Article from Bruce Schneier’s blog about how he came to the conclusion that the RFID functionality in the new US passports is intentionally weak:

"The Bush administration is deliberately choosing a less secure technology without justification. If there were a good offsetting reason to choose that technology over a contact chip, then the choice might make sense."

http://www.schneier.com/essay-060.html


Frightening consolidation of data

Filed under: — adam @ 1:52 pm

Google acquires Keyhole, a company specializing in high-resolution satellite imagery.

Add to the list of things Google knows about you: Where you live.

http://www.google.com/press/pressrel/keyhole.html


Caseless mod

Filed under: — adam @ 9:36 am

Computer components held together with old cat5 cable and wire
hangers.

http://liquidcode.org.nyud.net:8090/~lostman/stuff/sky_puter/index.html


10/26/2004

New Yorker on Bush failures

Filed under: — adam @ 6:34 pm

Facts. Facts. Facts. (Lies.*) Facts.

The New Yorker steps back for a minute, and examines the actual record of the Bush administration. Read this.

Via Mayur:

http://www.newyorker.com/talk/content/?041101ta_talk_editors

(Incidentally, Mayur put it in slightly looser terms, but who else is psyched that the mainstream media has finally grown some fucking balls?!? Imagine that!)

* (You can’t see me!)


XM MyFi

Filed under: — adam @ 5:27 pm

The world’s first portable satellite radio. We have an XM radio in the car and a PC receiver. I really like XM Radio, for no reason I can articulate other than "I can always find a station I’d rather stay on than turn off". There you go.

http://www.xmradio.com/myfi/index.jsp


The Tasting Room gets a little big for itself

Filed under: — adam @ 4:27 pm

I trust the Zagat ratings less and less as time goes by. The Tasting Room is good, and it’s certainly cozy (that’s code for “one too many tables packed into this tiny space but you have to forgive them because running a restaurant in NYC is really hard”). I enjoyed my meal there a lot, but it really didn’t take my breath away, and I can’t say that I think they deserve such a high rating. Granted, they aim high. But if you’re going to serve foie gras, you’re going up against some masters. It goes without saying that the foie gras at Per Se was better, but that’s not really a fair comparison. But in the same price range, I preferred the foie gras at Le Jardin Bistro.

The Hot Plate : Just a Taste
http://www.typepad.com/t/trackback/1321918


This ring opens up into brass knuckles

Filed under: — adam @ 1:44 pm

http://www.redstartdesign.com/SubtleSafety.html


Are Republicans less fertile?

Filed under: — adam @ 1:43 pm

Okay, that subject line is a bit facetious, but this is a cool population change map from April 2000 – July 2003.

http://www.census.gov/popest/gallery/maps/perchg_c1.html


10/25/2004

Rehnquist hospitalized with thyroid cancer

Filed under: — adam @ 5:27 pm

What happens if a justice is too ill to vote?

http://msnbc.msn.com/id/6329051/


Uno Attack!

Filed under: — adam @ 4:15 pm

Apparently, card games weren’t exciting enough. The new version of Uno has a special launcher that shoots a stream of cards at you if it decides it doesn’t like you.

http://www.mattelgames.com/uno/nonflash/attack.asp


Why market forces can’t correct DRM

Filed under: — adam @ 11:04 am

Cory Doctorow talks about why market forces can’t do anything about
DRM. DRM is an interoperability issue that only really exists when
devices try to talk to each other. Even worse, it can be
retroactively applied to machines you’ve already bought.

‘When this guy goes back to the store, what should he do to protect
his next investment? Say he buys an HP device next, having concluded
that Gateway won’t look out for his interests. He takes it home and
finds that it works fine for his purposes (maybe HP has a "better"
deal with HBO that will let him burn more-restricted DVDs from his HP
media-centre), then, a couple months later, the cablecaster switches
on another flag and suddenly his video won’t work.

Where’s the market-force here? Should he stop being an HBO customer? A
cable customer? A customer for only those PCs that he builds himself
and installs a copy of GNU/Linux on? ‘

http://www.boingboing.net/2004/10/24/why_marketforces_can.html


Ken Iverson dead at 83

Filed under: — adam @ 9:55 am

Moment of highly efficient matrix calculation.

http://www.interesting-people.org/archives/interesting-people/200410/msg00202.html


Tabbed browser flaws

Filed under: — adam @ 9:13 am

Apparently all tabbed browsers allow any window to pop a dialog
without saying which window it comes from, and let inactive windows
get focus in form fields (so you can be typing, and not realize that
you’re sending data to a window in the background). These should be
relatively easy to fix, but in the meantime, it’s probably a good idea
to not visit "trusted" sites when other tabs are open in the
background.

http://www.internetnews.com/security/article.php/3424491


FluMist

Filed under: — adam @ 8:55 am

Healthy people should take the Flu Mist inhalable vaccine. It’s not
approved for the high-risk groups anyway, so you won’t be taking
anything away from anyone who needs it. It will make you feel like
crap for a day or two.

http://www.flumist.com/


How Sarah McLachlan spends $150,000

Filed under: — adam @ 12:52 am

http://www.worldonfire.ca/


A man, a plan, a plane, a jar of rat brains

Filed under: — adam @ 12:02 am

http://www.wired.com/news/medtech/0,1286,65438,00.html?tw=wn_story_top5


10/24/2004

Paul Graham on hackers

Filed under: — adam @ 11:59 pm

Interesting read:

http://paulgraham.com/gba.html


EU to start using very graphic anti-smoking warning labels

Filed under: — adam @ 11:55 pm

http://europa.eu.int/comm/mediatheque/photo/select/tabac_en.htm


More bodypainting

Filed under: — adam @ 11:53 pm

http://www.multiart.nu/bodyart/english/galleri.html


WTC rescuer sues Bush for complicity in 9/11 attacks

Filed under: — adam @ 11:52 pm

http://www.truthout.org/docs_04/102404K.shtml
http://www.911forthetruth.com


On the internet, everyone can know you’re a wolf

Filed under: — adam @ 6:51 pm

The wolves claim support for Kerry.

http://www.wolfpacksfortruth.org/


Kaboom! Google Desktop Proxy

Filed under: — adam @ 6:40 pm

Google Desktop limits your searches to just your local loopback
interface to prevent people on other machines from querying your
index. Hah! Along comes the Google Desktop Proxy, which allows open
searches from other machines. While this is theoretically meant to be
used for your benefit, I will NOT be surprised if this or something
like it shows up in an email worm somewhere along the line.

http://www.projectcomputing.com/resources/desktopProxy/


10/22/2004

Cool bodypaint photos

Filed under: — adam @ 9:44 pm

http://mstu.cz/~bozek/obrazky/Bodypaint/


Crap.

This is a HUGE HUGE HUGE point in favor of open source software. "But legitimate companies wouldn’t try install anything without your permission – they’d lose customers". Adware companies are starting to buy game companies and tack on spyware to their games. This post makes the very good point that lots of adults buy games for kids without knowing the first thing about them, and the kids aren’t necessarily sophisticated enough (or interested enough – not that most adults are either) to read the fine print in the EULAs. Bang! You’ve got an uninterrupted chain from malicious attacker to unsuspecting pawn to mistakenly trusted installer, and there’s your next round of spam zombies.

http://www.gamejournalism.com/archives/2004/Oct/21/adware_firms_expand_foothold_in_gaming.html


Filtered water

Filed under: — adam @ 5:41 pm

"NEWater is the product of Singapore’s new water-treatment system, and
it is wastewater that has been purified through advanced synthetic
membranes called ZeeWeed. That’s right: The crystal-clear NEWater that
gushes through the country’s faucets isn’t gurgling from a mountain
spring. Most recently, it was flushed from a toilet."

http://www.salon.com/mwt/the_big_idea/2004/10/22/big_idea_10_22/


I love the term "resistance to information"

Filed under: — adam @ 5:21 pm

Although it scares me.

‘The roots of the Bush supporters’ resistance to information," according to Steven Kull, "very likely lie in the traumatic experience of 9/11 and equally in the near pitch-perfect leadership that President Bush showed in its immediate wake. This appears to have created a powerful bond between Bush and his supporters–and an idealized image of the President that makes it difficult for his supporters to imagine that he could have made incorrect judgments before the war, that world public opinion could be critical of his policies or that the President could hold foreign policy positions that are at odds with his supporters."’

I have to add here – my personal opinion is that if you were not within the radius of the dust cloud on 9/11 and you use the "traumatic experience" to get behind this bumbling warmonger, then please get your head out of the fucking sand! It may make you feel better, but it’s not helping anyone else.

http://www.pipa.org/OnlineReports/Pres_Election_04/html/new_10_21_04.html#1


Method of shared erotic experience

Filed under: — adam @ 5:02 pm

I’m at a loss for words.

http://patft.uspto.gov/netacgi/nph-Parser?Sect1=PTO1&Sect2=HITOFF&d=PALL&p=1&u=/netahtml/srchnum.htm&r=1&f=G&l=50&s1=6805663.WKU.&OS=PN/6805663&RS=PN/6805663


Total lunar eclipse on 10/27

Filed under: — adam @ 9:43 am

The moon will turn bright red.

http://www.nasa.gov/vision/universe/watchtheskies/13oct_lunareclipse.html


10/21/2004

Tenet reportedly admits Iraq war was wrong

Filed under: — adam @ 9:20 pm

http://www.salon.com/politics/war_room/archive.html?blog=/politics/war_room/2004/10/21/tenet/index.html


It’s not so much the lies, as it is the lack of shame.

Filed under: — adam @ 9:14 pm

Okay, it’s the lies.

Video of Bush joking about not finding WMD in Iraq interspersed with
pictures from Iraq.

http://www.buzzflash.com/contributors/04/10/con04438.html


Giant sunfish

Filed under: — adam @ 6:06 pm

Freaky!

Via Anne:

http://www.stuff.co.nz/stuff/0,2106,3070756a10,00.html


Wal-Mart bans "America: The Book"

Filed under: — adam @ 6:06 pm

They didn’t find the naked SCOTUS funny (but it is).

http://www.usatoday.com/life/books/news/2004-10-19-stewart-book_x.htm


Republican switchers

Filed under: — adam @ 3:00 pm

New blog chronicling Republicans (or previous Republicans) who endorse
Kerry.
http://inprogress.typepad.com/republicanswitchers/


Out of touch, out of mind.

Filed under: — adam @ 10:59 am

‘The founder of the U.S. Christian Coalition said Tuesday he told President George W. Bush before the invasion of Iraq that he should prepare Americans for the likelihood of casualties, but the president told him, “We’re not going to have any casualties.”‘ (Hyperlinks added by me.)

CNN.com – Robertson: I warned Bush on Iraq casualties – Oct 19, 2004


The Bush Bulge

Filed under: — adam @ 10:46 am

This is interesting to me only because it’s obvious he’s wearing “something”, and the administration’s official response isn’t “he’s wearing something, but we can’t tell you what it is”, but instead “he’s not wearing anything”. My feeling is that if you’re going to make stuff up, at least make it sound like it could be the truth.

The Box on Bush’s Back – Rumors, denials, and wild speculation%u2014a comprehensive guide. By Louisa Herron Thomas


Faceless and legless corporations

Filed under: — adam @ 10:26 am

This is a blog post about Queen of Sky, a Delta flight attendant who was fired with no notice and no chance to make amends for posting “racy” pictures of herself on her photoblog. She has filed a discrimination lawsuit against them, claiming that the pictures are no different from the many others that male flight attendants have made publicly available. I can see her point – the pictures (at least the ones I’ve seen) are not porn. I can also see Delta’s point – companies would like to control their public image. I haven’t made up my mind yet about who’s right here. Technically, I suppose it comes down to whether Delta had a published policy on employee communications that was clear and understandable. But, on the other hand, lots of people have blogs, and that number is growing daily. Blogs mean publicity that can’t necessarily be controlled, and corporate policies will need to deal with that.

Cathy’s World


10/20/2004

Bonsai Trees

Filed under: — adam @ 5:19 pm

Beautiful bonsai trees, beautiful pictures.

Via Anne:

http://www.andyrutledge.com/worlds2/index.html


Bush relatives for Kerry

Filed under: — adam @ 12:52 pm

A group of Bush’s second cousins has apparently put up a website supporting Kerry.

Boston.com / News / Nation / Bush relatives use website to show support for Kerry


Massive data breach at Berkeley

Filed under: — adam @ 12:26 pm

"The FBI is investigating the penetration of a university research
system that housed sensitive personal data on a staggering 1.4m
Californians who participated in a state social program, officials
said on Tuesday."

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2004/10/20/california_security_breach/


Salon on Ron Suskind

Filed under: — adam @ 12:10 pm

Salon followup interview with Ron Suskind, author of the NY Times piece on the administration’s rejection of facts, which I previously blogged.

Salon.com News | Reality-based reporting


10/19/2004

A misguided Democrat for Bush

Filed under: — adam @ 6:52 pm

This is an article about a Democrat who’s voting for Bush, on just one argument – the “War on Terror”. She thinks that Bush will find the terrorists and “bring them to justice” or something, and that Kerry just doesn’t have the chops to fight the war.

She says: ‘I will be one of the millions voting for Bush because I trust the president�s judgment on the war on terror more than Kerry�s. In this election, I am a single-issue voter. It is that simple. Even in the New York metropolis, there are more of us out there than he imagines.’

This makes no sense to me. The “War on Terror” has been an unmitigated disaster, and worldwide terrorism is up. There are lots of references out there. Here’s one. Who’s safer? I certainly don’t feel safer. I feel incredibly freaked out by the misguided vague “terror warnings” that our government has been putting out. Does a “general sense of Orange alert” really help anyone? Does unquestioned jailing of people who later turn out to be innocent really help anyone? Does the sacrifice of civil liberties for “security” really help anyone?

Okay, I’ll admit that there were fewer terrorist attacks in the US this year than there were in 2001. I don’t believe that it’s because of the steadfast policies of this administration. Unquestionably, this nation was led to war on false pretenses (whether or not ousting Saddam Hussein was a good idea “in general”), with a web of misinformation and, yes, let’s call them – lies. Lies lies lies. When people lie, I have this nasty habit of expecting them to lie again, and I believe that we’re less safe as a result.

Sorry, but… just sorry. I walked away from the towers collapsing, and it happened on their watch. I sat in shock, covered with a memory of the fine grey dust, as I found out that this man, who was supposed to lead us, sat for a while reading to a classroom of children after finding out that we had been attacked. I watched in awe as our attention was turned back to the bugaboo of the past, ignoring a cornered, cowering enemy in the mountains, and squandered the goodwill of the rest of the world. America is supposed to lead, and instead, we trample.

Sorry, Mr. Bush, you don’t speak for me.

Times Online – Sunday Times


Eloquence lost

Filed under: — adam @ 6:18 pm

Look, I’ll stay away from the debate about whether or not the man is sick or worried, or what. I don’t much care. It certainly can’t be answered without a medical examination (which he’s pushed until after the election) even if then. But that’s also not the point. The point is this. In side-by-side video comparisons, George W. Bush was eloquent, agressive, and coherent 10 years ago, and he is no longer.

Program Details for What’s happened to George W. Bush after 10 years

Direct link to the movie.


I am crushink your… er, coins

Filed under: — adam @ 3:12 pm

Using incredibly strong magnets to crush coins. Via boingboing.

Neato!


TV-B-Gone

Filed under: — adam @ 11:09 am

I totally need one of these. I find it nearly impossible to draw my eyes away from TVs in restaurants, bars, etc… It’s really distracting.

http://www.wired.com/news/culture/0,1284,65392-2,00.html


Dungeon Majesty

Filed under: — adam @ 10:55 am

Dungeon Majesty is a show about 4 girls and a guy (DM) who play D&D, interspersed with renfair-like clips of them acting out what their characters do.

Heh.

http://www.dungeonmajesty.com/indexer.html


Tucker Carlson thinks Jon Stewart looked ridiculous

Filed under: — adam @ 10:22 am

I suppose it’s too much to ask for the guy to come out and say “yes, I’m a tool”.

Ottawa Citizen – canada.com network


Software restriction policies

Filed under: — adam @ 10:20 am

It has come to my attention recently that recent versions of Windows allow the use of a “software restriction policy” that only allows certain programs to run. Interesting!

It looks like it’s a bit of a pain in the ass to set up and maintain, but why has this not been more promoted?!?

Microsoft Windows XP: Using Software Restriction Policies to Protect Against Unauthorized Software


Privacy implications of social networking services

Filed under: — adam @ 10:15 am

This is an interesting examination of some of the aspects of social networking services, using Plaxo as an example:

Roger Clarke’s ‘Little Black Books’

I see this as a pretty big and growing problem. Not only have we not adequately explored the consequences of using these services, or the aspects of society that they reveal (or cede control over), but we have pretty close to no legal precedent for how they interact with one another.

As my recent post on orkut touched on a bit, it looks like the problems associated with these services are not limited to they way they deal with your data, but also in the way that they interact among themselves, in relation to your data. Certain services, because of the terms they dictate, can act as sinkholes to corrupt the practices of other, “gentler” services if they ever interact.

I can’t think of an example yet where this has been a problem, but let’s watch out for this.


10/18/2004

Now THAT is a very good question.

Filed under: — adam @ 5:18 pm

Bush supporters, there’s a question for you – ‘why does the Bush-Cheney campaign assume people wearing shirts that say “Protect Our Civil Liberties” are opposed to the president’s re-election?’.

Salon.com Politics


Thoughts on Farscape: The Peacekeeper Wars Part 1

Filed under: — adam @ 3:15 pm

Thoughts on the Farscape miniseries part 1, some spoilers inside.

(more…)


Bush Killed Superman

Filed under: — adam @ 11:13 am

“Because George W. Bush created simple-minded rules founded in personal religious dogma. His ban on federal funding of new stem cell line research prevents the full scientific exploration for cures to human disease. Now we will never know: Christopher might be alive today if George W. Bush didn’t make such a wrong-headed decision.”

Bush Killed Superman


D&D 30th anniversary this weekend

Filed under: — adam @ 10:56 am

Many many hours spent warping my brain, but you know, it’s really hard to kill a lich. So it was totally worth it.

MSNBC – Dungeons & Dragons marks 30th anniversary


Sushi USB drives

Filed under: — adam @ 10:52 am

Sushi USB drives.

Via .


p2p-politics

Filed under: — adam @ 10:43 am

New site for aggregating and distributing political videos:

http://p2p-politics.com/


Tampa Tribune withholds Bush endorsement

Filed under: — adam @ 10:35 am

Apparently, the Tampa Tribune is pretty conservative, and they’ve just
run an editorial entitled "Why We Cannot Endorse President Bush For
Re-Election".

‘[...] we are unable to endorse President Bush for re- election
because of his mishandling of the war in Iraq, his record deficit
spending, his assault on open government and his failed promise to be
a "uniter not a divider" within the United States and the world.

Neither can we endorse Sen. Kerry, whose undistinguished Senate record
stands at odds with our conservative principles and whose positions on
the Iraq war – the central issue in this campaign – have been
difficult to distinguish or differentiate.’

http://tampatrib.com/News/MGBU3UEHF0E.html


Testing your digital camera’s resolution

Filed under: — adam @ 10:00 am

This is supposed to be a free non-commercial version of an ISO12233
resolution testing chart. I don’t have any experience with "official"
ones, but this seems like it might be useful.

http://www.graphics.cornell.edu/~westin/res-chart.html


Marvel Comics animated Avengers movie voice talent search

Filed under: — adam @ 9:50 am

Marvel Comics is running an open voice talent search for Black Widow,
Captain America, Iron Man, Nick Fury, Thor, Giant Man, and The Wasp.

http://www.marvel.com/publishing/stories/showstory.htm?id=4


10/17/2004

The perfect corn bread recipe

Filed under: — adam @ 4:55 pm

I found this on the internet, but it’s gone now. Luckily, I printed out a copy, and supplemented it with my notes. I think this is the best corn bread I’ve ever had. Here it is:

3/4 cup oil (I use grapeseed)
1 1/4 cup sugar
3 large eggs
1 cup soured milk (add 1 tbsp lemon juice to a measuring cup, fill
with milk to 1 cup, let stand for a few minutes)
1/2 tsp. vanilla
2 tsp. lemon zest, finely minced
1 tsp. kosher salt
2 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda

1 1/2 cups ap flour
1 cup corn meal

Preheat oven to 425F.

Oil a 10″ cast iron skillet (not the 3/4 cup, use a little extra). Line bottom with 2 layers of parchment. ( These are helpful: http://fantes.com/pan_liners.htm#circle ).

Do the following with a mixer on low (I use a kitchenaid on 2-4):

Blend oil and sugar together. Mix in eggs, sour milk, vanilla, and lemon zest. Fold in salt, baking powder, baking soda, flour, and corn meal. Pour batter into skillet. Bake until edges are lightly browned and top is just firm (it may crack), and springs back when touched. In my experience, this is typically around 25 minutes. On occasion, I’ve missed the timer and let this go for longer and the outside burned a bit (dark brown, not black). This, surprisingly, didn’t ruin it.

Enjoy!


NY Times officially endorses Kerry

Filed under: — adam @ 4:35 pm

I can’t do it justice with an excerpt. Go read the whole thing.

http://www.nytimes.com/2004/10/17/opinion/17sun1.html


Farscape returns tonight!

Filed under: — adam @ 4:19 pm

Farscape: The Peacekeeper Wars airs part one tonight.

Farscape is easily the best SF show in a LONG time. The characters are great and interesting, the acting is generally solid, the plots are interesting, and the universe has state from episode to episode. For maximal enjoyment, watch the shows in order – things change, and they usually don’t go back to explain why. Characters change sides or grow, stuff is created, stuff is destroyed, and everything has consequences of some form or another.

If you’re not caught up, I suppose that the folks at FarWhat? can help you out, although this is a far cry from seeing the actual episodes.


Google Desktop Sharing could be really really bad

Filed under: — adam @ 1:45 pm

It’s possible that Google might want to network the various installations of Google Desktop into a P2P network. Google already has all of the pieces to make this work – the Hello software that’s part of Picasa already does it. It does raise the question of this – if they use Orkut to enable file sharing with Orkut friends, does the content you share then fall under the Orkut policies? Probably, which means that then, if this happens, and you use it, Google has silently acquired a “worldwide, non-exclusive, sublicenseable, transferable, royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right to copy, distribute, create derivative works of, publicly perform and display” any of your files. “Don’t be evil, my ass”.

The orkut terms of service is extremely one-sided (much more so than any of the other Google services), and any attempts by Google to incorporate orkut into any of its other services should be watched carefully. Or, even better, it should probably be stricken from this world.

Paolo Massa Blog: Enormous P2P Network by Google

The orkut Terms of Service

My earlier analysis on this.


Escher tomatoes!

Filed under: — adam @ 1:20 pm

This person bit into a tomato, to find that all of the seeds inside
had sprouted little tomato plants. Trippy!

http://www.cookingforengineers.com/2004/10/off-topic-surprises-in-snacks.html


10/16/2004

Mr. Bush, you dont speak for me.

Filed under: — adam @ 12:38 pm

This really isn’t news, if you’ve been paying attention, but it looks like the NY Times has finally gotten the message.

This is an analysis of the Times’s very long article on the agenda of the Bush White House, and their rejection of facts, logic, and oh, pretty much all science.

Beliefs are one thing, but as President of the United States, you speak for hundreds of millions, distilled into one path of action. That does not mean “follow the will of the majority”. That does not mean “follow those who will pay for your re-election”. That does not mean “follow your own beliefs”. That means “find the best compromise for the best possible benefit of every single last citizen”. In my opinion, this administration has utterly failed to represent its constituency, and it must go.

It is time for all of us to stand up and say “Mr. Bush, you don’t speak for me.”

Daily Kos :: Political Analysis and other daily rants on the state of the nation.


The Japanese are very strange to me

Filed under: — adam @ 10:55 am

Following closely on the heels of giant balls of garbage, I give you frozen Japanese wax battling. Awesome.

http://www.muchosucko.com/video-japanesewaxfun.html


Make your own wifi booster out of chinese cooking implements

Filed under: — adam @ 9:29 am

http://www.usbwifi.orcon.net.nz/


The Ketchup Conundrum

Filed under: — adam @ 9:27 am

This is a great article about why Heinz ketchup is the way it is, and why it dominates its space in the market. I love Heinz – nothing else really qualifies as “ketchup” for me.

The Ketchup Conundrum

(No word on the ketchup vs. catsup debate.)


Ooops, dart in your neck.

Filed under: — adam @ 12:55 am

Just for the record, Sealab 2021 is one of the funniest things on TV.

Pod Six.


10/15/2004

Please don’t install Google Desktop

Filed under: — adam @ 11:54 pm

Google has repeatedly, across all of their recent product launches, failed to properly address privacy and security concerns.

“Don’t be evil” doesn’t cut it.

Google Desktop privacy branded ‘unacceptable’ | The Register

On top of that, there’s a larger issue at hand which has not been properly addressed. There is a difference between network content and desktop content. There is a security/privacy difference (who do I want to see this?), a latency difference (how long does it take to see this?), and a control difference (will I always be able to see this, in this form?), at the very least. Treating network content and desktop content as the same thing is a leaky abstraction at best. Blurring the line without properly addressing these differences is an invitation to disaster. But sure, it’s easier than teaching people what the differences are.


Computers shouldn’t need to reboot.

Filed under: — adam @ 11:40 pm

Scoble thinks it’s okay for Windows Update to reboot your computer without your permission.

http://radio.weblogs.com/0001011/2004/10/15.html#a8422

Haven’t we moved past the point where computers need to reboot, ever?


The sad state of politics and media

Filed under: — adam @ 10:47 pm

Jon Stewart appears on Crossfire, and tears them a new asshole.

While we were sleeping, all of the “serious” media was co-opted by those with an agenda against that of the common good. Ironically, the humorists are now painting the only realistic picture left, and most of the “real” journalists are part of the soulless charade. This spectacle of blithering partisan nothingness sickens me to my very core.

God save the funnyman!

Now, more than ever, is the time to call out the lies for what they are. I’m sorry, but not all opinions are equal. There may be more than one right answer, but some are just wrong. All I ask, and what we need, is a little honesty. No, a lot of honesty.

“We need help… from the media… and they’re hurting us.” Jon, I feel your pain.

Salon.com Politics

CNN Transcript

Video Clip (more on boingboing.net if this one doesn’t work.)


Software Development offshoring

Filed under: — adam @ 6:34 pm

This pretty much echoes how I feel about the whole offshoring debate. Software development is REALLY HARD to do well, and more than anything else, requires a lot of face to face and realtime communication.

http://www.legadoassociates.com/softwareoutsource.htm


Journalistic credit

Filed under: — adam @ 6:10 pm

I find it a little unsettling that Salon has been fairly assiduous in taking credit for “discovering” the Bush bulge story.

They had an article on the “isbushwired.com” site on Obtober 8th.

Then, they referred to that article with “Not long after Salon gave birth to the intriguing little campaign story-that-could late last week”

http://www.salon.com/politics/war_room/archive.html?blog=/politics/war_room/2004/10/12/dave_bulge/index.html

Then, again, today, they had another followup piece, in which they reference the original article with “Since Friday, when Salon first raised questions about the rectangular bulge that was visible under Bush’s suit coat during the presidential debates”.

http://www.salon.com/news/feature/2004/10/13/transmitter/index.html

Does anyone else think this credit is largely undeserved? Granted, they’ve done some investigation since then, but it’s not like they did the initial analysis, or even came up with the idea.


Copyright law is in danger

Filed under: — adam @ 6:04 pm

A whole host of legislation is pending, to criminalize a lot of the behavior we take for granted.

http://www.publicknowledge.org/


I don’t know if this actually qualifies as art…

Filed under: — adam @ 6:02 pm

Framed pictures of original 1979 Star Wars pictures next to the 1997 versions.

Figures


Why a new blog?

Filed under: — adam @ 3:48 pm

I have a bunch of places where my writings and postings and whatnot are scattered throughout the internet. I spend a lot of my effort on maintaining several private mailing lists for my close friends (going on almost six years now!), where most of the stuff I find goes. Im still doing that, but I think its time to open up some of these things for public consumption.

The livejournal blog is fine for random mutterings, but very few people that I know actually use livejournal, and I dont seem to be a club kid, bdsm enthusiast, or high school student, so its never really built up a sense of community for me. So, here we are.

As with any of these things, I dont know yet what this will be. Stick around, subscribe to the rss feed, and help me find out.


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