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I haven't discussed it at all, but should you find yourself on a Discordian bent, you might enjoy Strange Daze, which is sort of like...

Well, I have an anecdote that will explain my comparison, and then I'll compare it.

Once, while heading into my Local Game Shop (the Wizard's Den, a great place to get game stuff should you be a pen-and-paper or board or figure gamer), I asked the proprietor (hi, Tom!) whether I should pick up _Illuminati_ for my ongoing GURPS campaign.

"Well," he said. "You know Black Ops?"

"Yeah," I said. I'd skimmed it at the time; I've purchased it since.

"Well, this is sort of Tutti-Frutti-With-Yellow-Polka-Dots-and-Blue-Lightning-Bolts-and-Smiley-Faces Ops."

So I say to you: Think of a comic strip which is funny but perhaps a little...pedestrian. Now imagine that comic strip plus mad gods, chaos magick, advanced theoretical cybernetics, parallel universes, and demonically posessed beer bottles.

That would be Strange Daze.

  posted by Gregory @ 2:06 PM


31.5.02  

 
Oh, how the mighty have fallen.

I'm referring to Frasier, of course.

No, I'm referring to the poor schmoes who set out to make a great TV series or movie or whatever and end up having to pandor to advertisers. Someone else should pander to the advertisers for them, someone who can't necessarily write a screenplay.

Regardless, this is an overdue change. Much like the media is learning that you can't sell what people will get on their own, word-of-mouth has become an explosively expanded method of finding out what to buy. TV essentially begs your passivity, making you ready to recieve; more often than not, you're not in a receptive mood when you're on the net, you're in a constructive mood. You're doing something, so why pay attention to that bothersome advertisement?

In a more down-to-earth possibility, picture trying to sell a show that's got (say) that annoying shit from the Verizon commercials embedded in it. ("Can you hear me now? Good." Yes, I can hear you on my television. If I ever hear you in real life, it'll be the last thing you say, you snotty heap of parrot droppings.) Picture, specifically, trying to sell it to a station that has already made an exclusive deal with some other cellphone provider.

You won't.

In the best case scenario, you'd get an edited version. In the worst case, there would be lines drawn, like the Chevy/Ford lines that still dominate within some people's concept of motor vehicles; people would be linked to one brand or another due to brand loyalty, and then stuck with a bunch of other brands they may or may not like so much. "I watch NBC, I have a Verizon cellphone, I drive a Saturn and I only buy Sony electronics!"

This is a throwback to the glory days of advertising, when it was overt and clumsy and hilariously stupid. "Zuke Farkell had another delicious bottle of Old Jack Whiskey," the radio would intone in the middle of the Zuke Farkell and Old Jack Whiskey Hour™.

The difference now is clear; the radio (and the television after it) made advertising think that it had a good game that would run forever. (Much like, ohhhhh...I don't know...? The MPAA?) People have options; they won't watch your one stupid network if all it has is placement and the hopes that nobody will notice directly. They'll watch the network which does have decent shows.

People don't want to watch advertisements. They never did. They never even wanted to hear them, it was just some way of hearing about new things.

There's another way to hear about new things, now. The gap that was filled by advertising can be filled by accurate, more trustworthy word of mouth, and when people have to choose between scanning a forum about something and watching an ad, they'll pick scanning a forum -- while they download another Eminem album off the next KaZaA, and blog their waverings and final decisions.

You'll note that the only people involved in that exchange are content providers and content consumers. The middlemen are being replaced by technology, and it's high fucking time.

  posted by Gregory @ 10:01 AM


30.5.02  

 
Oh, sure, you read Penny Arcade. Maybe even stuff like V.G. Cats and 3 Finger Salute, they've all got a liquid gaming core.

What do you know about the real old school? So old they didn't replace their 'ch' with 'k'? So old that the word 'Infocom' means something to them?

Perhaps I sound codgerly. Perhaps. Perhaps my l33t twitch was bested one too many times by a newfangled videogame lately. Perhaps. But -- and I speak with a small but extremely ardent minority's view here -- perhaps there's something to my rant. Perhaps you should go look at the Society for Promotion of Adventure Games, a group of people dedicated in some fashion or another to keeping text-based games alive and kicking ass.

(Those of you who understand the secret code word 'Zork' will be happy enough scrambling through The Chronology Of Quendor, written by the detail-oriented Robin Lionheart.)

And, should you believe that text gaming is somehow beneath you, I direct your attention to the Underdog profile on Infocom, and I'll quote the SPAG Constitution:


"The Society for the Promotion of Adventure Games is hereby formed in order to maintain and encourage the spread of text adventures to a new generation, and to reintroduce the Infocom fans of the 70s and 80s to this versatile art form. World domination would be nice too, if there's time for it."


I suggest you play very nicely with these people, and go download some of their games now, before they decide that you're an enemy.

  posted by Gregory @ 8:02 AM



 


A meeting with the FBI in Washington revealed that American citizens are unwilling to participate in similar police DNA intelligence screens, seeing them as an invasion of privacy. British public opinion could be similarly eroded if there are insufficient safeguards maintaining the security of the information.

Broad anti-discrimination measures are needed to outlaw genetic discrimination in employment, insurance and other areas of day-to-day life.



Feh. "You just need laws in place to protect privacy. Nobody would disobey laws, least of all the people who write them." This is either just pure naivete on the part of Helena Kennedy, chairwoman of the human genetics commission, or else it's sinisterly misleading.

Kennedy continues:


This would convince people that human genetics is not a threat and that they can take advantage of clinical genetic tests and participate in research without worrying that the results of such tests will be used against them. It is now up to the government to secure public trust.


It's impossible for the government to secure trust. It has secured faith already.

My uncle asked me once if I had faith in my fellow man. I told him yes; I have faith that my fellow man will lie, cheat, and steal, gender bias irrelevant. I'd like to believe people won't do bad things, but I'm not willing to pretend that laws somehow prevent them. Laws don't prevent bad things; they make bad things have extra consequences. If laws prevented things, you'd hear about it. "Murder outlawed; completely stops all murder." You don't see headlines like that because they could not exist except in the fever dream of the most ardent supporter of legal crap.

The reality is simple. Laws will prevent some bad things. They cannot possibly prevent all of them. This is why police forces are necessary.

The irrevocable faith of a certain group of people that their government is made of liars, thieves, and cheats is in place. The government cannot possibly get the trust of these people, because they've seen the government at its worst already; they've had their rights violated in some way. Maybe it was with the IRS (it does happen). Maybe it was with a local sheriff. Doesn't matter. They don't trust their government, and they never will.

Whether they "should" or not is completely irrelevant if the discussion is to be about reality; they won't.

As for the genetic testing itself: Good thing to eliminate a small cluster of suspects from criminal guilt. Not as good thing to eliminate, say, everyone in a village from criminal guilt. Terrible idea for a bank of samples from everyone on Earth, unless some form of security stays in the hands of the violated (say, encrypted tag keys on samples, no names...you can only access the DNA from the security bank if you have the proper public key, and you can only get details with a private key...this would run into the major problem with public key cryptography, namely that losing your private key is tantamount to never being able to securely send a message without great rigmarole). Until something like that happens, there is a certain faction of people that simply will not accept being genetically profiled.

They don't trust the people at the wheel. Good thing, too, because some of them shouldn't be trusted. (Senator Hollings, we hear your name being called...)

  posted by Gregory @ 8:55 AM


29.5.02  

 
Truthfully, I question the motives of anyone who claims pure selflessness. Altruism arouses my suspicion.

Me, personally, I have both selfish and selfless motives, and I try not to kid myself about that. They mesh. On the best of days, they positively intertwine.

But the motives that push me are the selfish ones; the way I resolve them has to do with my selfless ones. I want this, this mental shift where the code is your mind and you think in it, where the puzzles have become your reality at the expense of real reality. I want that so bad. I've had it before. I get it writing sometimes; even now, asking people in IRC to help me find a certain word or somesuch. I remember getting it with code sometimes. I remember it well with the BASIC implementation on the Laser 128, my first "computer". The word hardly seems applicable these days, but it was quite a machine and -- like a small dog -- it served me as well as it could, considering its power.

But I remember distinctly what it felt like, coding then, being totally absorbed in the details and finding it difficult to return to English sometimes.

I've felt the mind-meld with others, too, but not specifically within the realm of coding things.

I suppose this is rambling. Perhaps. But it comes to me as a revelation long lost; I had started to forget why I wanted to do this so badly in the first place, and selfish motives move you more than selfless ones; being selfless 24/7 is a great way to feel like you don't count at all except as an accessory to others.

Also, a quick review of a column or two on Dvorak keyboard layouts has made my mind itch again. I suspect I'll give learning Dvorak layout another try sometime soon.

  posted by Gregory @ 10:09 PM


28.5.02  

 
The joys of the job hunt.

Well, I'm being unnecessarily (or at least pointlessly) bitter. Sure, I could be somewhere more remote (more remote than Maine? Yes, it's possible), and sure, things are a lot better now (in terms of remote work possibilities) than they used to be.

Based on that, I'm making applications at a few local places (such as Microdyne and Best Buy), as probably-where-I-will-end-up jobs, and making a few off-the-wall inquiries to places for jobs in things that I'm good at but have no real proof of (such as for writing or researching). I'm also building up a library of places to look for new posts, with the faint, desperate hope that I can build an agent to crawl them for me someday and with the distinct, concrete hope that I can start making money before another month goes by.

On the up side of things, I'm very pleased with RedHat 7.1's partitionless installation method so far. Happy times to be had, Gimp for all, and it was raining to beat the band...or something like that. Seriously, though, I feel a certain ache under my fingers when I'm booted in Linux -- the ache of power waiting to be tapped.

Okay, I'm waxing poetic, but my Poetic License is in good standing. :)

  posted by Gregory @ 12:51 PM



 
It may not excite some people, but then, I've never been known for normalcy. Slashdot ran a story on the stable release of FreeCraft, which is an isometric RTS engine being hawked on Sourceforge right now. "It successfully runs under Linux, BSD, BeOS, MacOS/X, MacOS/Darwin and MS Windows."

Now, I probably don't have to explain why this is a good thing, but I'll do it anyway.

The possibility exists now for someone uninterested in money but interested in being read to produce a novel (note Scalzi's effort in that department, a novel called _Agent To The Stars_. _Agent_ is a good read, and I'm planning to do an in-depth review sometime soon. I read it a damn long time ago, when my memory problems were worse.) This possibility is becoming more probable for other media, slowly; movies and such. Games have always had this to some degree, in the mod and levelbuilding communities, and to a lesser extent, previously in the developer arena.

The problem was always that the Average Geek (like myself) can be impressed by a lot of things that the Average Consumer wouldn't touch in a million years, like Nethack. Nethack couldn't impress the usual computer user.

FreeCraft could.

Now, as much as I'd personally like to be valued on my abilities and not necessarily my pretty face (insert bitter laughter here), I also don't pretend that social systems are nonexistent. It never hurts to understand the impact of something upon social consciousness, if only because it'll decrease the chance you'll be burned at the stake.

FreeCraft is something that could concievably become really popular, and with the cross-platform-ness of it, provide sort of a mental concept of completion to the unwashed masses. Anything which reinforces this will result in better Open Source in the long run, partly because the majority of people elect social whores to Congress, and the social whores in Congress want to stay in Congress. If the majority of people want Open Source, then the government will politely tell large media to sit on their upraised middle finger and start rotating.

Which -- anybody who isn't a middleman for an artist of some form will tell you -- is a damn good thing. Less Middlemen, More Artists. (LMMA...LeMMA? I feel an organization coming on.)

  posted by Gregory @ 7:53 PM


27.5.02  

 
Time for a few tests, in honor of Memento's deranged menu system. (Memento is a painfully beautiful movie in places. I've heard it said before that "gimmicks don't work", and perhaps that's true, but before a gimmick is a gimmick it's a trick, and tricks are entertaining. Memento is a trick, a hard one to pull off: Not only is it a movie in reverse, but you watch something happen in the very beginning and the true nature of the situation isn't apparent until the very last minute of the film. That's hard to do in regular time, much less in reverse time.)

Here is the result of your Weirdness Purity Test.


You answered "yes" to 53 of 116 questions, making you 54.3% weirdness pure (45.7% weirdness corrupt).


According to the scoring guide, your weirdness experience level is:
Highly ‘Out There’ - But at least you can walk among us (if you’re careful).
The average purity for this test is 60.0%.




To The Armory's Purity Test Page

Go to the Armory Home Page

Next up: D&D. Gotta geek somehow...

I Am A: Lawful Good GnomeBard Thief


Alignment:
Lawful Good characters are the epitome of all that is just and good. They believe in order and governments that work for the benefit of all, and generally do not mind doing direct work to further their beliefs.


Race:
Gnomes are also short, like dwarves, but much skinnier. They have no beards, and are very inclined towards technology, although they have been known to dabble in magic, too. They tend to be fun-loving and fond of jokes and humor. Some gnomes live underground, and some live in cities and villages. They are very tolerant of other races, and are generally well-liked, though occasionally considered frivolous.


Primary Class:
Bards are the entertainers. They sing, dance, and play instruments to make other people happy, and, frequently, make money. They also tend to dabble in magic a bit.


Secondary Class:
Thieves are the most roguish of the classes. They are sneaky and nimble-fingered, and have skills with traps and locks. While not all use these skills for burglary, that is a common occupation of this class.


Deity:
Garl Glittergold is the Lawful Good gnomish god of mischief, cleverness, battle, and gemstones. He is also known as the Joker, the Watchful Protector, the Priceless Gem, the Sparkling Wit, and the God of Gnomes, as he is the head of their pantheon. His followers enjoy a good laugh and a good prank, perhaps even more so than a normal gnome, but also work to make the world a better place. They are extremely fond of gems. Their preferreed weapon is the battleaxe.


Find out What D&D Character Are You?, courtesy ofNeppyMan (e-mail)





--------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Detailed Results:

Alignment:
Lawful Good ----- XXXX (4)
Neutral Good ---- XXX (3)
Chaotic Good ---- XX (2)
Lawful Neutral -- XX (2)
True Neutral ---- (-1)
Chaotic Neutral - X (1)
Lawful Evil ----- XXX (3)
Neutral Evil ---- (-3)
Chaotic Evil ---- (0)

Race:
Human ---- XX (2)
Half-Elf - (0)
Elf ------ XX (2)
Halfling - XXXX (4)
Dwarf ---- XXXX (4)
Half-Orc - (-3)
Gnome ---- XXXXXXXXXX (10)

Class:
Fighter - (-6)
Ranger -- (0)
Paladin - (-5)
Cleric -- XX (2)
Mage ---- XX (2)
Druid --- (-2)
Thief --- XXX (3)
Bard ---- XXXX (4)
Monk ---- (-5)


And one last jab at the very borders of my consciousness:

You are bisexual.
Take this quiz or visit survey.JUNKIE for more surveys!


  posted by Gregory @ 9:24 PM


26.5.02  

 
Sure, this article says it's about neuroscience, but how much of it is just outright fear? "Yet when it comes to neuroscience, no government or treaty stops anything." "A public debate over the ethical limits to such neuroscience is long overdue. It may be hard to shift public attention away from genetics, which has so clearly shown its sinister side in the past." Uh, what? Sinister side shown where? I see no clone armies. Unless they mean in the novel _Jurassic Park_ or something...

Don't get me wrong -- there are some excellent points about drugs ( "The National Institute of Mental Health, one of its component bodies, has seen fit to finance a workshop on the ethical implications of “cyber-medicine”, yet it has not done the same to examine the social impact of drugs for “hyperactivity”, which 7% of American six- to eleven-year-olds now take.") Think carefully about this: If one of the long-term side effects of hyperactivity drugs is something like "extreme fits of violence" or "explosive diarrhea", imagine how much shit we'll be in someday. (Figuratively and literally, respectively.)



  posted by Gregory @ 8:55 AM



 
A few notes, sort of to myself, sort of intelligible, so I'll post them here.

The first mosquito bite of the season! Time to apply my time-honored "ignore the fucking things" mental mechanism, because otherwise I will have raw red welts the size of my forearm all over my body.

There's a certain mental schisming that seems to accompany multiblogging. I've noted it for a while now, what with the (three infrequently updated and two frequently updated) blogs that I keep.

To add another word to the salad (so to speak), I just started keeping a private diary (really simple, laid out like old-timey SR2 supplements, where each entry is namestamped and timestamped) on my machine, something to follow my current progress in something I'm not sure I can talk about publicly. Assuming that I can't, I have built a little Perl/Tk GUI that takes a multi-line text entry and appends it to the current diary file, adding the formatting changes and timestamp and whatnot. Should I get awfully bored someday, I'll probably add other things, like a little editable to-do list and encryption functions, and offer it up at the Monastery as a neat piece of code.

I have been notified by an old, old friend (which is to say, not an old person that's a friend of mine, but a person with whom I have been friends for...oh, hell, you knew what I meant) that, should they start another webzine, they will be depending upon me for some content. In reaction to that, I form the mental image of a Looney Tunes scenario: Elmer Fudd is chasing Bugs Bunny off a cliff. He pauses, in midair, and looks down. Waves his hand, sadly, and suddenly falls to the chasm floor below.

Careful what you depend on, 'sall I'm saying. ;P

  posted by Gregory @ 8:16 PM


23.5.02  

 
I just can't seem to keep my lust for weird science down; case in point, the Indiana Hum. Assuming this is a mad scientist and not a natural phenomenon, there are a couple; the article details similar hums (and similar health problems) in Scotland and Taos, New Mexico.

  posted by Gregory @ 12:24 PM



 
What wonders has technology wrought for us?

First, markers are circumvention devices; also, it's not okay to threaten to kill people and (to the great chagrin of high schools everywhere, I'm sure) censorship doesn't work any more. And, finally, a tragic article, its only bright spot being the donation of the phrase 'artificial anus' to the English language.

I wish I was making that up.

Oh, and in case you never learned physics or chemistry, don't bother, it appears they're being updated.

  posted by Gregory @ 11:53 AM



 
The Race Is On

I have a LOT of things to do over the next three weeks. First, there is a the Enormous Secret Project (which I can't tell you about yet, it's a secret). Second, there is my CGI In Perl class (which has been going very well, but I'd like to ensure I score an A in the class). Third, I must have a job within two weeks. Fourth, I have to finish writing a comparison of logic programming languages. Only the Secret Thing is news to me. There are other things, but nothing else currently has any deadlines to it except these four. For the next few weeks, I'm going to be living these four things, at the expense of piddly things such as Eating and Sleeping.

That's okay. I've been looking for something to throw myself completely at; the fact that it's four somewhat disparate things just makes it more interesting.

Into the breach we go...

  posted by Gregory @ 8:18 PM


22.5.02  

 
Been riding the car easy. Friday I'll be able to talk to someone who might be able to take the car in Monday. I may be able to get my car fixed within budget.

My father was supposed to call this morning; he didn't, and when I called him noonish he said that Sue had taken ill again and he didn't want to leave her alone. We rescheduled for tomorrow.

One of the things I love about _Halo_ was that it made a game on a ringworld, and I love the concept of a ringworld. I can't help that. I felt a very real sense of wonder when I realized that I was flying past the bridges I'd covered on foot so many levels ago; the game scales that much.

I always wanted to build a game on a ringworld and have it be completely navigable, where you could (were you willing to spend years of game time and maybe a year of real time) explore, in FP, every damn part of the ringworld. I knew nothing on the scale of Larry Niven's ringworld could be constructed (considering how much more surface area would have to be simulated than even Earth's surface), but I had always wanted to see something vast, vast, vast.

I envision an RPG set on a ring like this, where you start off crashing in an escape pod with a pistol, or maybe a flare gun. You can attempt to fight your way through life, or attempt to talk your way through life, or attempt to tech your way through life, but you could eventually rule the ring. Doing it through technology implies a quest for a control center of some form; doing it through politics implies internal struggles as you attempt to unite the ring; doing it through combat implies that you kill all who oppose you. All three ways are valid ways of winning the game and ruling the ring.

Of course, it goes without saying that this requires storage and processing far beyond what currently exists in the gaming world (although the limits of the Serious Engine may offer some of the necessary features). It's an enormous concept, one I could not possibly implement yet, maybe not ever.

  posted by Gregory @ 12:36 PM



 
My mother, in her...maternal wisdom has decided I don't look proper. Despite my extreme insistence that I did not need clothes, but needed a brake job, she made me get some. I'm not good at shopping for clothes, so Laura and my mother essentially fight over what I'm going to wear for the next couple years.

Regardless, I have clothes that at least look like they were purchased recently to go job-hunting in. That is indeed a good thing, I suppose.

Got an estimate on the car. $200+ for a rotors and something else, another $300+ for replacing the rack. $500+ brake job.

I don't have that kind of money, needless to say. I'm going to try to figure something out, something cheaper.

  posted by Gregory @ 1:11 PM


21.5.02  

 
Sipping on Bacardi Limon and lemon juice.

My father's moved back up with his new wife; they're looking for a house, and I have no doubt that I'll be invited over sometimes and expected to show up on occasion. I wouldn't mind so much if I were better at social occasions; I have a habit of watching them happen, instead of participating.

That's not why I sip Limon. I sip Limon because I have a genius cousin. I realize I'm not unique in this, and I never lived in the same town as him or anything like that, so I didn't actively experience The Shadow Of Daniel Pendergast or some such like that. I just can't help but feel that I'm years behind on life whenever I find someone who's done more than me.

On the bright side, there is Hoboball. Holy shit.

  posted by Gregory @ 7:26 PM


19.5.02  

 
Sure, I don't have time to expound (and pound) upon the public school system again -- but I sure have enough time to serve up a better version of my rants, by someone who knows better -- one of the insiders.

  posted by Gregory @ 6:44 PM


18.5.02  

 
I still can't quite shake this gnawing feeling whenever I visit Leonard's place, much like the sensation that you need bologna or are about to die.

Note to self: Bring bologna on next death mission, see if that helps.

Regardless, said Leonard is working in Inform, a language I heartily recommend should you be needing something to create a text-based game in. Text-based games, for those of you who hearken back to the days of Zork, need no introduction; for those of you who hearken back to, say, Zork: Nemesis, well, it was like that, without graphics. Those of you who played nothing but Leather Goddesses Of Phobos, well, Steve Meretzsky thanks you and I pity you.

Inform's pretty damn spiffy. Details escape me at 4:41 my time AM, but I recall it being C - ish, object-oriented, and I actually built some basic stuff in it that worked, so I was damn impressed at the time.

Perhaps I should dust off my old Inform compiler and see about re-locating a Win32 Z-Machine. Hey, I think there's a Perl-based one, actually...

  posted by Gregory @ 1:42 AM



 
Okay, look. I've been awake for a different reason than my standard insomnia. The people downstairs may have had someone try to get in their house. This would be non-noteworthy except that means they were, technically, in my house as well.

Tomorrow a new set of locks goes on their door, preferably one with a deadbolt. Tonight, I just stay up until I can't keep my eyes open, just in case this joker shows up again.

  posted by Gregory @ 1:02 AM



 
I was setting up the new template for writer's blog and asked for opinions in IRC -- and I quote:


::chaoticset:: I almost have the new template all ironed out...any opinions?
::amanda-:: it's sexalicious

The people have spoken.

  posted by Gregory @ 10:42 PM


17.5.02  

 
It's easy to get disgusted at the world sometimes.



The World Health Organisation estimates that depression is soon to become the second leading cause of disability - behind ischaemic heart disease and ahead of road traffic accidents.



I don't know who to be more angry at; the medical side of humanity for doing what we always do and over-applying a solution (drugs), those treated for blindly accepting everything told to them by their doctors ("Take this, it'll help you. There, there."), or the drug companies for taking legal drugs and pushing them like they're crack for respectable people.

If I had to choose, I guess I'd be angry at the drug companies first, the doctors second (but more so). The drug companies are supposed to be selling products, so the doctors are supposed to expect this kind of sleazy behavior. Still, this all smacks of people concerned about money and not about caution.

  posted by Gregory @ 8:54 PM



 
Okay. This is a really simple lesson, and one people should get the hang of. I debated for a long time before I decided exactly what was happening, but I think I've got it nailed down.

See this story about a guy who was essentially really unattractive? See this placeholder, where Dooce used to be?

Once upon a time, there really was a divide. Most people didn't own computers. ("Most" still don't, but there's enough public terminals these days that you can assume everybody you know, should you be reading this, can get to a computer and access your blog, even if they're your mother or grandmother or something.) People On The Net, People Off The Net. Not anymore.

These things are the byproduct of an outmoded mentality interacting with reality. "Joel" and Heather both didn't think that anybody would read their stuff. This is a side effect of not thinking about what other people do and thinking that Only Your Friends Could Find It.

The whole thing about Joel was not the sexual fantasies. (Please. Only the most naive people could pretend they think other people don't have sexual fantasies, and that some might star them.) The issue was that he, as a package, was unattractively presented in his blog.

There's not anything wrong with being insecure; but if you're going to be nothing but insecure in one place, make a note of it, so that other people don't get the impression that insecurity is your prime mode.

I can hear someone, someday, saying: "They shouldn't judge you just because of your blog." Wrong. They should. People should be judged on their actions and their thoughts; their actions are obvious, and their thoughts are sometimes too.

I'll probably rant on this more later...or not. Probably not.

Well, then.

  posted by Gregory @ 10:58 AM



 
I'm feeling guilty.

No, not guilty because I haven't been blogging; guilty because I've been playing _Halo_.

How, you might ask, does one play _Halo_ if they don't have an Xbox?

They buy one.

Laura's state tax return came back, and with it we purchased an Xbox, an s-controller, a copy of _Obi-Wan_, and a copy of _Halo_. (This was the result of fate delivering Laura's check the same day the Xbox price dropped 100 dollars. Damn you, fate, damn you!)

I have been playing _Halo_ essentially all day. I remember distinctly that Tycho hated it after a while, and I guess I haven't reached that bit yet, but I'm very, very impressed with _Halo_ so far.

Despite the wracking, intense guilt. Guilt because I've been unemployed for so long, guilt because there were better ways to spend the money.

All of that aside, there is one little point I do see in favor of the thing.

I got out of bed the instant I woke up this morning to go play _Halo_. I don't get out of bed for anything, not a train going by or a car wreck in front of the house. So that's quite something.

I thought it over (while I fed bullets into the corpse of something that just would not fucking die), and decided that if something drags me out of bed hours earlier than normal and gets me mentally active, then I could do a lot worse than to have it and play it an hour every morning.

The problem, of course, will be learning how to stop in time to effectively produce code. :\

  posted by Gregory @ 10:50 PM


16.5.02  

 
Okay, sure, it's sort of cool that a combination of ultrasound and haptic devices can let you touch a baby inside the mother, mostly because this is a way to touch things you can't touch. That's not the coolest thing.

This was the coolest thing, but it was in March. I only wish I could have been there; if it happens next year, maybe I will manage to get there somehow.

  posted by Gregory @ 12:38 PM



 
Revelation The First: There's a Seven Degrees machine, one that scans who was in a movie with who.

Revelation The Second: Most of those links are Mickey Rooney, though.

  posted by Gregory @ 9:51 AM


15.5.02  

 
I don't want to sound obnoxious, but I had this idea two weeks ago. A core set of components that can be plugged into accessory bases, so you don't have to sync stuff or worry about people stealing the copy you have on your desktop -- the core moves with you.

Combining this with the cybernetic experiments that Kevin Warwick's doing and 802.11, and you can have a fairly massive storage unit that's embedded in your lower torso, that automatically links with the proper wireless station, and even acts as a web server (as long as you're not worried about someone hacking your intestines, so to speak). ;)

  posted by Gregory @ 8:06 PM


14.5.02  

 
Note some spiffy new links to the left that I finally got around to adding to the template. Didn't add a webcomics section (yet?), mostly because my perlmonk presence covers that. I need to update it or else trash it and do a webcomics section here, though, because it's about fifteen comics out of date. (I don't follow most webcomics daily any more. I graze and chomp, picking some webcomic I haven't seen in two weeks and getting up to date with it. I like being able to read five or ten strips all in one day.)

  posted by Gregory @ 4:13 PM



 
Testament to the selling power, it would seem -- the domination by Pro blogs of the recently updated list wasn't permanent.

I'm toying with the idea of going Pro on Fifty/Fifty, but I haven't decided one way or the other yet. Some of the features look nice, don't get me wrong...but some seem unnecessary, and I'd be paying for the extra space anyway (I'm apparently long-winded! Whodathunkit?)

  posted by Gregory @ 3:27 PM



 
Perhaps I'm just paranoid, but the Blogger front page has nothing but Pro blogs on its "who recently updated their blog" block. Maybe that's a testament to the selling power -- that so many have bought Pro subscriptions that Pro blogs occasionally blanket the recent updates. Maybe not.

Time will tell.

  posted by Gregory @ 7:53 AM



 
Leonard Richardson is apparently being funded by wealthy investors looking to promote sheer insanity. Issues doesn't cover it with this one.

  posted by Gregory @ 5:45 PM


13.5.02  

 
Boy, going to Penny Arcade sure does have nice side effects sometimes. :)

Tycho gave a link to Strange Horizons, and I think I'm going to make some submissions. Most notably the Russell and Mouse stories, assuming I can even find the fucking things again.

One of these days I'm following through on my promise of building a personal data repository somewheres. One of these days...

  posted by Gregory @ 5:42 PM



 
I'm moving the Linux Deadline up to December 2003: By then, I expect to run some form of Linux as an OS.

Why, you might ask? Especially if you're Laura, my fiancee. She seems to think that it's normal -- nay, healthy to reboot constantly, to have to wipe the whole system and reinstall from scratch every half-year or so. She thinks it's normal for the OS of a computer to play nice with her, to let her click willy-nilly, to...

I probably sound about eighty right now. The point is simple: Do you want a car that works, or one that you have to replace the engine in on a regular basis? Right. One that works.

I keep hearing these magical stories about how someone will have trouble with Linux, and then they figure out why. You don't hear those a lot with Windows veterans. With Windows veterans, you hear a lot of "gee, well, it went away after a while" or "oh, you just have to reboot every hour or so, no big deal" or "yeah, just use half the screen...I don't know why the other half doesn't work, just stay on the left."

This is like hearing someone come out of a hospital and say: "Yeah, I got used to how they reattached my arm to my face." or "Y'know, life without kidneys isn't as terrible as some people say". It's not a confidence-builder.

Yeah, I know. I grew up on Microsoft. I lived with it for years. This is true, and I'm not going to say I didn't have a certain amount of fun and learn a lot of things.

MS was fine. Was. The fact that they're not even trying to support older products, along with the fact they roll out new products for the sake of extra money, along with their stubborn, crazed refusal to share source code, along with...

...I think you get the picture.

The only real problem I've seen in terms of this with Linux is that "if it's not supported, you might have to figure it out yourself". Which is possible with source, thank you very much. Plus, it takes a long damn time for open source software to become "unsupported", because the people who put it together did so lovingly and thoughtfully, and hate seeing it die. (IMHO.)

Hopefully I'll be able to (now that my installation is stable) clean up some of the drive, repartition it, and install RedHat from the CD on my near right. It's not a recent version, but it'll be something to noodle around with.

  posted by Gregory @ 2:44 PM



 
New philo blog post, and hopefully new perspective from same.

  posted by Gregory @ 11:55 PM


12.5.02  

 
I haven't blogged most of the day, but I have a really good reason.

For most of the day my machine's been unbootable.

Those of you who have read this thing often enough recently will recall Laura's dabbling with viral risks; there may be a virus working this machine over, yes, but I don't have strong enough mojo to deflect it. If there is one, it's doing a damn fine job of hiding.

The hard drive was giving boot problems before; I shrugged this off to "Don't Know Land" for a while, then to "Can't Fix Land", then to "Technical Support Land", and it finally touched back down in "Works Okay Mostly Land" until yesterday.

Some fuddling has resulted in...well, this. Access, albeit temporary. Something keeps crashing the boot process, and only by madly scrambling to kill off half of the startup processes can I prevent that. It's slipshod. It's not right.

It will be fixed.

We've got a big pile of blank CDs. Over the next day or two, Laura and I will burn everything from this drive. I will then format it and reinstall -- clean -- from the recovery CDs.

With the added bonus that I can now create a second partition (now that my drive won't be b0rked any more) and install RedHat 5.1, which (hopefully) I'll be able to update, or play with, or something.

Wish me luck. Lotsa luck, under starry skies above, don't fence me in--

Wait, wrong idiom...

  posted by Gregory @ 10:58 PM



 
Maybe I'm just a sucker for damage control or something, because I know that had the morning gone normally, I probably wouldn't have done anything more industrious than work on Tk today.

But no. The words that drag me from slumber this morning are: "Wake up. I think I got a virus on the computer."

Now, look. Laura has her faults. Laura is pigheaded occasionally. Laura refuses to listen to people sometimes. Laura, when refusing to listen to people has caused her to fuck something up, will then be extra angry, as if somehow that person was supposed to strike her unconscious, they knew better.

*pause*

I was going somewhere with this.

Right, okay. I love her, though. I don't want her to say something like "I'll just never use the computer again" because A: I want her to be MORE geeky, not less and B: It's just not true. I want her to absorb that she made a mistake, carefully figure out what the problem was (downloading and running a .PIF file, in this case) and NOT DO THAT THING EVER AGAIN.

Seems simple, right?

Perhaps someone stuck a cattle prod up her ass every time she did something wrong, though, because she never seems to examine her actions. She's always just yelling and huffy. The Perfect Business Person.

The upshot of all this is that I will probably spend three or four hours working with this machine, trying to ascertain the spread of infection, what actually happened, etc. because Laura cannot tell me. Every time I have asked her to describe what happened, she tells me something different.

(Better than that fact is the fact that -- should she ever read this -- she will immediately respond "No I didn't! I told him..." and launch into something totally unlike what she's told me before. If you're reading this, Laura, you're laughing right now, because I pegged you right, and I guessed your reaction. So there. :P Go tell me you love me.)

  posted by Gregory @ 8:17 AM



 
After a suit due to the lack of water stations to facilitate illegal border crossings, a flurry of similar litigation has followed, including a suit filed by mafia heads to have ammo dumps placed at convenient locations in the inner city.

Lawyers for each of the plaintiffs of each of the suits said, in unison, "Well, hey, you never know. We might win. What the hell." in response to the question of why the suits were being filed when they made so little common sense.

"Please, you've got to understand. The American government knows that the Mafiosa exist, they know they're going to shoot people. The least that could be done is to provide them with ammunition should they be too short-sighted to prepare for their illegal activites properly."

In a related note, the families who filed the original suit are now filing a request for delicious picnic lunches to be provided to them, preferably dropped by helicopters which would patrol the desert and provide relief food to incoming criminals.

  posted by Gregory @ 8:25 PM


11.5.02  

 
I've been fiddling with the notion of trying to build a rudimentary RPG codebase in Perl/Tk (mostly because it would be ultra-portable shit, maybe even robust enough to build real-time netcode underneath and make it something you can play with a bunch of other people...)

Oh, and there were several leather briefcase-y things on sale at Laura's work for small small amounts of money. My current bags are the woven-nylon superstrengthy composite, very well designed, but...sometimes you just need a briefcase. Besides, I figure it'll help me think I'm actually successful if I'm trotting along with one, instead of thinking I'm a hyper-Slack™ college student.

Enjoy the great taste of Slack™!

  posted by Gregory @ 7:35 PM



 
Oh, yeah. Yesterday skwerrel in #3fs asked me if I wanted a link and a slot on his banner exchange.

Now, I'm both insane and shameless, so I made a banner for Fifty/Fifty.



I have issues.

  posted by Gregory @ 8:01 AM



 
I should go check my grades today, but I don't want to.

I've been working on a picture of myself as a zombie. Good feedback so far ("is that makeup or photoshop?") but there's still a lot to do. I'll post a small version here when I'm done.

  posted by Gregory @ 5:52 AM



 






What 8-Bit Theatre
character are you?
at LeetAssQuotes.
NecroVMX


Well of course.

  posted by Gregory @ 6:41 PM


10.5.02  

 
The sad bit is just how obligated I feel to comment on things. Like, say John Scalzi mentions he has a birthday in May? I'll comment on it. "My birthday is in May too," I'll say. Hell, it's even true.


I dread my birthday. Not because I'm getting older, not because 23 is the year of your life when the Illuminati reveal all the secrets of reality to you...just because it's around my birthday when a little voice starts nagging me a little louder. "23 this year. Done anything special yet? Huh? Didn't think so."


I really should get around to working on my runes, but I'm afraid to do so without a decent engraver bit. I'll probably rectify the situation after my birthday passes.


Nanodrives being built is a good thing; but lessening the cost of leaving Earth's gravity would be better.


Between the much-hyped letter from Peru, the new German policy, and some school systems moving to Open Source Software Solutions, I see the distinct possibility that Microsoft's stranglehold on the industry is being dissolved from the middle down. (That is, medium businesses and educational systems starting to use it = people educated in it = reason for big players to shift strategy.) I have always thought that if you offered people a viable, cheaper alternative, they'll take it. Lots of Open Source things are becoming viable, and lots more are on the way.

  posted by Gregory @ 1:33 PM



 
See, going through referrers isn't totally useless. Sometimes you find out that you're the top of a Google search, like a search for the phrase 'i always do this. i always fuck up some mundane thing.'.

Look, Ma! I'm Number One!

  posted by Gregory @ 11:35 AM



 
Man, there's just good news all over the place.

An offshoot of the study of games, Ludology is apparently the study of video games. Good deal, but that word needs work. Maybe Lud0x0r0l0gy?

Abiword 1.0.1 has been released. I firmly agree with John C. Dvorak about one thing: Business software is what Linux needs. Besides, it's got export to Word and WordPerfect formats, and can read them as well. It's worth a look; should I note anything interesting in my travails with it, I'll make sure to relate them here.

And -- last but certainly not least -- it would appear that there's a new menu item at McDonald's. :)

  posted by Gregory @ 11:11 AM


9.5.02  

 
Oh, and I hadn't mentioned it, no, but I made a Freaktech account.

The much-feared "continuity" monster struck at Penny Arcade; note hilarity one and hilarity two. I don't know about other people, but I like continuity.

Got Moby's _Early Underground_ CD on heavy rotation in my Winamp and my head. (Did I mention that I recently found the coolest Winamp skin ever?) I recently purchased this fine example of musical enchantment at my local Bull Moose Music. Neat place, and if I didn't feel like I was under-dressed to go there most of the time, I'd probably make more purchases there.

  posted by Gregory @ 9:04 PM


8.5.02  

 
That's it. Two take-home finals and a take-home quiz -- plus a medium-sized dental filling -- all done in the space of...

*tries to count from when he started, counts seven fingers on one hand, gives up*

...less than 24 hours, let's just say.

I'm feeling quite "Dave Attell" right now, let me tell you. References to goat sex are bounding through my mind like you can't even believe.

My four-day caffiene high, culminating in my inability to sleep or think or DO ANYTHING last night, is finally fucking over. I can get back to my nice, laid-back constant addiction. Yay me.

So fucking tired. Not physically; physically I feel like I could go running down the streets screaming. Mentally, I'm done, I think. Done for the day.

As for the photoshoppin' for the art show...unlikely. I don't have a high degree of confidence in Photoshop, art, or photography, so doing photoshopped photograph art is probably going to cause ego problems for me. Plus, I'm really not trying to become an artist, yadda yadda yadda, etc., plus the only good idea I have is way beyond my photoshop skills.

And, now that I have shot the idea to shit, I'll probably do it just to spite myself.

  posted by Gregory @ 7:49 PM



 
You know, I actually like the effort made by Acutecut to make sure the reader is appropriate for the blog.



  posted by Gregory @ 5:17 PM


7.5.02  

 
I still feel pretty damn awful. I may try to put a little something together in Photoshop for an art show at my school, but probably not.

  posted by Gregory @ 2:46 PM



 
I feel ill.

Most likely, this is the result of chugging nothing but Dew, coffee, and a bare minimum of food for four straight days; less likely, it's a psychosomatic response to my school situation.

Maybe a combination. Who knows.

Antiirregardlessly, I provide you with MANY LINK!

First, a disturbing occurrence: Apparently Daily Rotten linked this as a story about dying bioweapons researchers, when in reality the link is a search query that results in a story about a biker (right now, anyway). Some digging on the site may reveal the correct story -- or a CONSPIRACY!

Sorry. I've recently caught Conspiracy Theories. I got Poetry once, but it was never this bad.

To continue, there's apparently a reason that baby seals are being killed, and it's for some weird meat program. Read the article if you want an explanation and opinion of the situation. Personally, I'm never surprised at the bizarre shit people do any more.

The article's easily found if you do a search on the site for the word "conspiracy". Apparently newspapers don't want people linking them, feeling somehow shortchanged. Fuck them. It's not our fault that their advertising model is pathetic and easily avoided. As of right now, this is where the story is, but if you come up with something else, you'll have to search it up at the Globe And Mail's site yourself. Good luck, and send their editors nasty letters.

  posted by Gregory @ 2:05 PM



 
Okay -- now Kris Straub has gone to a new, safe format in protest of Judge Ronald Klein's stupid ruling concerning webcomics and free speech.

What I'd really like to see is a webcomic titled "Judge Ronald Klein's Wacky Adventures". It could be -- pardon my Monty Python -- "the madcap adventures of a zany judge". Get some photos, do the art, etc., make it about this schmuck.

I wish Kris had a link...I'd try to get it on Slashdot.

  posted by Gregory @ 7:13 AM



 
Oh, and I took this.





Which Royalty Are You? Find out! By Nishi.


Found it at another blog, one with a fair chunk of haiku splattered across the front when I read it.

  posted by Gregory @ 6:26 AM



 
It's easy to just claim that I'm obsessed, that blogs and quizzes and such are the shiny things of life to me. That would be an easy thing to say.

It's not entirely true, though.

I think something is changing. I think blogs are the beginning of something important, because they're a way to write that's made easy and popular.

And yes, when things get popular they have a tendency to suck; but, when things get popular, they are also given second (or third) chances to make it that they might not have before. Look at _The Simpsons_ and the various animated series it allowed to get made over time; sure, a lot sucked, but there were several with very real charm. Were it not for the popularity of _Simpsons_, those shows might never have gotten made.

And so it is with blogging, in a way: Were it not for blogging becoming popular, plenty of people who would find no outlet to write are writing. Writing is a good thing, especially when you're journaling, because it speaks to you in a calm, seductive voice. "Rewrite things," it says. "Fictionalize. Nobody will know." or "See? There's a pattern in your life. It's almost like your life had a plot."

Yeah, I think it might cause more printed material, more submissions to editors, and therefore more competition for my written novel when--

STOP BLOGGING! STOP RIGHT NOW!

  posted by Gregory @ 6:21 AM



 
Furg. Fruitless time spent; I'm going to lay down, skim through _Learning XML_ a little, try to relax, finish my coffee. Maybe in a few hours I'll be useful again.

never going to cut the mustard as a web designer if you can't marathon once in a while, get the lead out

Which reminds me -- that episode of The Twilight Zone was on Sci-Fi again recently, the one with Jonathan Winters as the dead pool legend and Jack Klugman as the angry young pool player who wants to be the best.

I spent many years playing chess, then playing Magic: The Gathering, pushing myself and trying, trying, trying to get good enough to be able to be significant at it. I realize now that chess -- and maybe Magic as well -- is a game you have to start at around 8 with unless you're an "exceptional case". Which I am not.

Well, there's debate on that point.

Regardless, I know one thing: I don't play well enough. This is because when something is important -- really important -- I have a tendency to choke up, to overcompensate and doubt courses of action. My immobility usually gets me killed, just like parking in a busy intersection if someone spills coffee in your lap will get you killed.

It's something I'm slowly overcoming; I managed under pressure this time, but less pressure, and not as much managing as I'd liked.

I just wonder if I'm doing it again -- can't seem to get started, can't seem to get going, can't seem to figure out a plan of attack. Is this because I know I have a 100 on the final project already, and somehow think I can't live up to it?

Can't live up to that crappy site I kludged together over two days' time? Feh. I can greatly outdo it. Christ, most of the exercises are essentially straight out of the book, no strategy at all. Just "do this", and do that, with minor reference to the Barebones guide should I louse up an attribute (some have easily remembered synonyms).

I can do that.

But I'll relax for a little while first. Maybe do it tomorrow.

  posted by Gregory @ 6:44 PM


6.5.02  

 
CIS 131 final project in, got a 100 -- now, I just have to get 1/3rd of the homework that I didn't do done and get an A or B in the course.

Problem is, I can't seem to do it.

I'll try for another hour, and if it hasn't fired the engine, I'll get to bed early, get up around 6, and try again in the morning. I have a little wiggle room here; very little, though.

I haven't looked at slashdot for two days. I feel old suddenly. ;)

  posted by Gregory @ 5:39 PM



 
What, you ask, am I doing here? Even you, faithful reader, know that I have to get my 131 project finished. Considering that I've got to add CSS and imagemaps and whatnot to the current work, it's no small task. Why am I here?

Because -- if you're like me, paranoid -- then you'll love the idea of the Dead Man's Switch. It's Win32, so please keep that in mind.

The program will notify forums/sites/etc that you've kicked the bucket after you die.

I'll look at details later and fill some more space here, but I wanted to make sure I recorded the link and idea for now.

I wonder if it handles IRC rooms? I wonder if I could build something like that, only maybe secure and in Perl?

Hm.

  posted by Gregory @ 6:31 AM



 
Final project for my webapps class, need to do a whole website. Looks like I'll try to do a rough draft of what my business site will look like; hopefully it won't suck too badly.

  posted by Gregory @ 10:04 AM


5.5.02  

 
All right. Here.

I understood Mulholland Drive. I don't mean I knew how to feel. I mean I know what it was about.

It was about a young wannabe actress (Diane) who fell in love with another actress (Camilla). When Camilla left her and was going to marry a director (Kescher), Diane had Camilla killed.

You might ask why such a straightforward movie was presented with an enormous dream sequence. I can answer that, too. Most of it was shot to be a show called Mulholland Drive, which (in my eye) looked like a whodunit wrapped in bizarre dreams wrapped in quirky characters. Standard Lynch. (If there can be such a thing.)

The show would have been a lot brighter. The show would have had two cops trying to get to the bottom of the mess, trying to find the missing car wreck victim, etc., while two hopefuls dash around Hollywood trying to get parts and trying to stay alive.

When your dreams are bright and cheery, sometimes your life isn't, though.

Mulholland Drive stands as a testament to wracking guilt, disillusionment, remorse. It's not everyone's cup of tea, certainly, but it does have its advantages.

Standard Rating: 4/10 (the average person who watches this is going to be lost, so if you like movies about kicking things, don't bother)
Movie Buff Rating: 9/10 (a great piece of work from Lynch, even if he feels it had a horridly Frankensteinien conception)

  posted by Gregory @ 8:49 AM



 
Short version: I saw _Mulholland Drive_ tonight.

David Lynch, I know you're out there, you son of a bitch. I saw _Blue Velvet_. I just saw _Mulholland Drive_.

I'm on to your games. I understand your work now. Not just in the way that Brad Pitt in _12 Monkeys_ understood what Bruce Willis meant, oh no. No, I understand them like I live them. You think you've made such a puzzle of a movie. You think nobody gets you.

I get you.

Long version: Forthcoming tomorrow, after minimal sleep.

  posted by Gregory @ 11:20 PM


3.5.02  

 
Sigh.

It's frustrating to read about some new geeky thing (say, an instant messaging protocol) and have a whiny little voice in the back of your head going, "Is there a GUI for it? Text is difficult to mentally process!"

It's not something I'm proud of, the GUI Whiner. Trust that I'm not asking people to make more GUIs for their various things. This is a cry for help. Would any enterprising psychiatrists be willing to attempt a therapeutic excision of the Whining Voice?

I keep thinking of how my life could have been different if a Linux distro had shown up in my mail by accident back in '92 or something. There's so much stuff to learn and I don't have any goddamn time to learn it in.

Patience, determination. With patience and determination I can do anything. I can learn bash, I can learn rocketry, hell, I can learn to fly...just not for very long, and only straight down. ;)

Maybe.

  posted by Gregory @ 9:26 AM



 
Today's To-Do List


  • Email Robin about Exam and Possible Job
  • Talk to Krissy, see if she wants to go apply at Microdyne today (gotta have a backup plan)
  • Email Pat about Possible Job
  • Find Something On jobs.perl.org and apply for it
  • Do Monday-Due final project


That about covers it.

  posted by Gregory @ 8:52 AM



 
Yeah, okay, I'll admit it. I want to see Spider-Man. I realize that movies based on comic books have this unfortunate tendency to become director's pets in one way or another (Batman, a movie so poorly lit that anything could be happening sometimes) but I like Sam Raimi. I honestly think this is the kind of thing (along with Evil Dead, of course) that could benefit from his unique vision of film.

Man, I must sound pretentious.

Look. Sam Raimi = Cool. Tobey Maguire = Decent Actor. Kirsten Dunst = Decent Actor. Willem Dafoe = Great Actor. There's no reason to think that this thing will bomb. Nice solid cast, great director, and the CGI doesn't appear to suck balls. That's important for a movie about a guy who can shoot webs from his body and swing through the New York skyline, n'est-ce pas?

I'm looking forward to it. I'll probably hold off until it hits the cheap seats, sure, but I'll probably see it twice if the first showing treats me well.

  posted by Gregory @ 8:42 AM



 
"Chaoticset," I hear you say, "this Perl thing, where's it getting you right now? What's it doing for you?"

I'll ignore the intense self-interest bent to your question and answer it directly.

Reading use.perl; journals brought me to the journal of one Kevin, who points out that in his other journal, he has an advance review of Spider-Man, because he saw it early.

Never doubt the power of Perl.

Oh, and in other good news: The dog on the abandoned tanker survived.

Never doubt the power of Dog. ;)

  posted by Gregory @ 8:34 AM



 
Forgive my cynicism, forgive my flip attitude, forgive my inability to be polite with incompetent tyrants -- but this is a good example of what happens when child care is mandated by a police force.

I mean, had she been with her parents, at least they'd have killed her and cried in court. Maybe said they were sorry, too -- but will the government? No. The government will say, in effect, "Well, shit happens. It's sad, but we weren't at fault! People slip through the cracks sometimes."

This is precisely why civil service jobs should carry a distinct responsbility. Perhaps, one as crazy as I might think, a death sentence of their own. The more I think about mandatory executions for unelectable officials, the more sense it makes.

Just get rid of the drones and hacks and assholes and robots and tyrants and shitheads and morons...and maybe the system would work okay.

  posted by Gregory @ 4:32 PM


2.5.02  

 
My four classes are almost finished. Feels about time for a philo blog post on the school situation, really. I don't think I did terribly bad but I also don't know how well it went.

  posted by Gregory @ 3:24 PM



 

There. It's done. Felt like a 70.

  posted by Gregory @ 3:03 PM



 
I'm perhaps five minutes before I have to give my presentation. It's five minutes. I have most of it on paper; really, I just have to read it.

I shouldn't be this nervous, not for any reason. It doesn't even affect my grade (supposedly), because my grade's apparently already calculated.

Let's find out.



  posted by Gregory @ 1:28 PM



 
This is a demonstration entry for Krissy Andrade, so that she might see the Power Of Teh Blog! Ph33r teh mighty BLOG!

  posted by Gregory @ 12:17 PM



 
First -- allow me:
Hula Hoop


This quiz says absolutely nothing about your personality. Take it!


As for something that does say something about my personality, allow me to pontificate upon the Miracle Wonder known to the world as Sunglasses, Sun Glasses, or, alternately, Shades. I'm obsessed with sunglasses. Out of all the vices I wanted to have, I let myself have three, and they are Caffeine, Geeky Things, and Shades.




Whenever I'm in a store and I see a sunglasses rack, I try at least two or three pairs on. Buying sunglasses isn't a great way to spend money, sure, but it's a lot cheaper than smoking crack, and you only have a 50% chance of looking stupid. :) Plenty of things cost much more with a much higher stupidity rate.

  posted by Gregory @ 12:08 AM



 
Y'know, if you loved me, you'd go register at the forum where I submitted a photoshop entry and vote for chaoticset's entry.

If you loved me.

  posted by Gregory @ 6:04 PM


1.5.02  

 
Guess what your local radio station pays to play various music?

Nothing.


Traditional radio stations pay no performance royalties for music played on air because they have proven promotional value.


Guess what they want webcasters to pay? 14/100ths of a cent per listener per song.

Before somebody jumps on me and starts hammering "it's their content, they can do what they want to" into me, I wholly agree. If they want to charge people for broadcasting their music, they have that option. When radio stations are paying those costs, I will gladly concede that webcasters should too. Until then, feel free to rakk off.

  posted by Gregory @ 1:47 PM


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