It's cool that there's no confirmed head of the FAA because Trump wanted to give the job to his personal pilot and senators told him no so then he just lost interest in the subject.
God brought them out of Egypt; he hath as it were the strength of an unicorn.
Also the typo-fixing mechanism is way too aggressive.
Poking around at least I found a way to display the entire URL. Hiding that and just showing the site name was a weird design default.
RIP Chuck Berry.
(Great song I discovered for myself last month below- bits of it will sound familiar to Beatles fans where Lennon borrowed)
Related: Melissa thinks it's odd that I don't know of a difference in pronounciation of "Berry" "Barry" or even "Bury"... how distinct are they for you?
http://www.qwantz.com/index.php?comic=2953 -- I really liked this comic and the 2 that came after it, showing kind of amusing dark sides to the dream of 'immortality'...
I think my inner child is reluctant to give up any chance to say something that shows off, and/or that might miss "increasing his value among others by being a source of 'interesting' points". On the one hand that's obviously a flawed or at least incomplete strategy. On the other, I have to get over my fear that someone how mending my ways is not being true to myself.
http://www.printfreegraphpaper.com/ Today I realized that if one has a need for a small amount of graph paper, and one has access to the Internet and a stocked printer, one no longer has a need for a small amount of graph paper.
http://www.businessinsider.com/check-out-the-earliest-work-of-apples-design-leader-jony-ive-2013-11 Is that really the famous Jonny Ive Pen? Doesn't look as amazing as I'd hoped.
"In keeping with Schrute custom, I will either invite you to Saturday's funeral by sprinkling red, fertile dirt in your face. Or, I will ask you to keep a respectful distance during my time of grief, with a dusting of black, slightly acidic soil"
"I get red dirt. Nobody is getting red dirt. I should have kept my mouth shut. We're not even that close! I've only know Dwight, twelve years--
--Twelve years... time is a son of a bitch. "
Found a torrent for the full of "Enter: the world of computers and new technology", a Children's Television Workshop magazine from the mid-80s. It made me mourn the days of built-in BASIC and small type-in computer programs. Demonstrating that it was easy to make computers do stuff you told them was greatly empowering.
Man kindle app for iPad keeps getting worse. Now it's "cloud" not archive, so you can't see just non-downloaded stuff. Where are Collections?
Be careful what you get good at doin' 'cause you'll be doin' it the rest of your life.
--At the risk of ODing on Star Wars parody tomorrow I may well watch the whole sret of Family Guy's take on the Original Trilogy...
http://www.slate.com/id/2288248/ - moving story of Japanese Coastal City's tweets before and during the crisis.
Weirdly I had two offers at around the same time... the other was for a company called Media Friends Inc. They have some awesome products and I may be missing out on a big stock payday by not going with them, but ultimately it wasn't the techie lifestyle I wanted. (They liked my history in diverse tech environments, and my first job there would have been in the language "Lua" (which I've never used) porting their SMS-based tv-channel chatroom app for a new bigname client.)
It is surprisingly stressful to have two awesome sounding job offers at once. In some ways, it is probably more stressful than (a short or medium length time of) having NO job offers; you have a binary decision to make, and it will affect your quality of life in ways you can't triangulate now.
I made a big list of pros and cons and polled friends and sweated it and at one point even just about went all the way down the other path. But ultimately, Pearson brings me to 4 places I want to be:
- Java (where I am now)
- UI (where I'm realizing is what I want to focus on professionally)
- Education (and Academia)
- Boston (proper, vs. a "reverse commute" up 93)
This will be my ninth job since graduating in 1996, which is kind of a lot... I got to thinking about where I'd been, and why I left...
|company||how found||how long there||why left|
|IDD||personally recruited||2.5 years||personal growth|
|Banta IM||sent resume||2.5 years||personal growth|
|Event Zero||personally recruited||1 year||layoff|
|Gale||personally recruited||1 year||layoff|
|Taxware||headhunter||3.5 years||personal growth|
|Refresh||personally recruited||1 year||layoff|
|Lincon Peak||personally recruited||1 year||personal growth|
UPDATE: I miscounted, I was at Taxware 3.5 years, not 2.5, which puts a slightly different spin on some things -- I think I do like putting roots down (though come to think of it, I had been searching off and on during my stay at Taxware, which wasn't a super exciting business domain, and a grinding commute to Salem.)
And I guess the numbers bear out the idea that networking is better than headhunters for finding jobs, though that's tempered by how hit and miss it is - headhunters are generally reliable at finding SOMEthing, even in rough times. There were 6 personally recruited jobs, but only 2 of those were after layoffs, when I was proactively looking. (I'm not counting IDD... though the personal recruitment from there is what made me pick them with 7 other offers on the table, I kind of overdid it after college, and had a kick ass resume for someone my age.)
Sometimes I wish I had kept closer track of where all I applied over the years, though that might depress me a bit -- especially during the Taxware years, I had a number of unsuccessful interviews. I guess overall that would bring the hit ratio for headhunters way, way down, I've only had a few attempts at personal recruitment that didn't payoff.
(But I'm proud to note that both of the companies I worked at as a consultant in the past year made implicit or explicit suggestions that they would be happy to try and get me a fulltime gig there.)
Now, to deal with this endless stream of random search-engine-using recruiters trying to get me to go to Virginia and California and what not...
a. All babies are illogical
b. Nobody is despised who can manage a crocodile
c. Illogical persons are despised
So: babies can't manage crocodiles
Unrelated note: Lex seemed to like the colors I was using yesterday. Do people think various colors look better than the stark black I usually used?
Anyone want an unlocked Nokia E61i cheap? Includes charger and (wired) handsfree thingy. (Not a bad smartphone, but it's no iPhone.)
"Burn After Reading" - Ah the Coen brothers, lettings us watch lives of quiet desperation go noisy.
- I know I scanned this once, and may have even posted it, but one of my favorite New Yorker cartoons is just a brick with this caption above it:
FOUR HUNDRED SELECTIONS OF THE WORLD'S FINEST MUSIC, OVER ONE THOUSAND FULL-COLOR REPRODUCTIONS OF MANKIND'S GREATEST PAINTINGS AND SCULPTURES, AND TWO HUNDRED AND THIRTY-ONE TIMELESS CLASSICS OF WESTERN LITERATURE COMPACTED INTO A TWO-BY-THREE-BY-SIX INCH BRICKYou know... I'm sure it misses the joke but you could probably get that all on a 100Gb drive these days.
- Random idea I had for a short story: a very realistic study of a guy's reaction when a teammate on his football team does something incredibly and surreal-y awful to a member of the other team, like knock him unconcious and rip off his testicles.
- You can't get too much geekier than a Geocities page full of alien fonts from the scifi show Babylon 5
Travelog of the Moment
Open Photo GalleryRunning late but I wanted to get this in... sorry if some of the descriptions are rushed --
View of the palace from my hotel room in Hiroshima. Not bad! But I wasn't brilliant at managing my time that day (too much walking, and anxiety at making it to the train station) so I didn't go for a tour there.
I walked to the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park. This is women attending to the Memorial Cenotaph.
I then went to the Hiroshima National Peace Memorial Hall. Some moving stuff there, giving the background and results of what happened in an even-handed manner that makes it even more wrenching. This is a large (oh jeez, I was going to say "blown up") panoramic view a few weeks after the blast.
A model of before the blast...
After every nuclear test, the mayor of Hiroshima writes to the leaders of that country urging them to stop such tests and strive for nuclear disarmament.
The nuclear powers...each of the large missiles represents a large number of missiles. I was also struck by the "globe on its side" view, useful since all the nuclear players seem to be in the Northern Hemisphere.
A full size reproduction of a shattered building. They had some more gruesome reproductions of horribly burned victims walking through the ruins...
One word I hadn't heard before my time in Hiroshima: "hypocenter", a strict word for "ground zero". This is a smaller model of the city, with a red ball indicating where the blast occurred. (One letter made reference to girls watching the parachute, which seems such a human thing to do, and that would be the last thing they would see.)
Model of Little Boy.
Hiroshima Rooftiles... the sign says you can touch, and reassures you they are safe.
The Memorial Park is laid out in a line; I'm in the museum, there's the cenotaph, the eternal flame, and the atomic dome.
I then decided to walk to the Museum of Contemporary Art. I admit my bias about art and culture, the present usually catches my attention more than the past.
Yet another vending machine. With some of these machines and in convenience stores, coffee in can comes hot or cold.
Gas station. Gas is very expensive, about 6 bucks a gallon (though America is working its way up there.) I was kind of struck by the high-mounted gas hoses, but I guess that was just a quirk of this place. Also, highway tolls work out to be about a buck a kilometer!
Walking on my own, I'd take reflection shots, a kind of "dude! YOU'RE IN JAPAN" reminder to maintain a sense of wonder and observation.
I was a bit surprised what a climb the museum turned out to be...
The city below, with a cemetery nearer.
I haven't put TOO much "Engrish" here, as it seems uncharitable; I'm grateful for all the English they provide. (Actually I realize I start to take Romaji (transcription into the Latin alphabet) and odd English words for granted, its so prevalent that when it almost seems more striking when it's not there.)
I couldn't take photos of the temporary exhibition. But I think this work was "Atomic Dome Model 5", an obvious reference.
Heh, ok, less artsy. Just a note, Japanese public restrooms tend to have full doors, like little closets, and Josh mentioned Japanese visitors to the USA tend not to like our half-walled stalls. I can see that!
In the permanent exhibit, Venus Bleue by Yves Klen was SO very blue. I guess they had to put her in glass or everyone would touch.
There were so many attendants (guards? what's the term) sitting so still and quietly that it struck me as a form of performance art itself.
Ugh, don't have time to look up this yellow guy, but a variety of works featuring him (it's some kind of radiation suit, and this is him supposedly in Chernobyl) were the center of the temporary exhibit.
Outside, "Little Bird".
Woman taking photo of some cats.
Another view of a cemetery. I'm struck by how much they resemble model cities.
Also way up in the same park: a Manga Library! I had no idea they would have libraries just for that form, it seemed pretty busy in there.
Inside the library, they had what I assumed were the winners of a local single panel manga contest. Here is a Japanese view of MLB taking away Japanese players:
I had an easier time descending when I found this giant escalator.
More names a native speaker of English might not pick:
A few places (like a train station barber shop) I've seen this idea: a tall glass window will return some privacy by a carefully placed painted section. It works surprisingly well.
I just liked this billboard as I walked back to Hiroshima station.
The poster reminded me I wasn't having enough fruit this trip! So I bought a bag of something that might be clementines.... maybe something different? They had a certain, sharper, "cactus-y" tone, just subtly different.
Oh, Hiroshima. I'm sorry what you had to go through, and how that mighty mushroom cloud might influence some of your public art, but... this looks like a butt.
The sleek nose of a bullet train.
For being a country known for working well on a small scale, I've seen more impressive cavernous indoor spaces this trip... this is Kyoto station.
Finally, this poster (I'm still not sure if Porta is the shopping center or what) had many slogans in English: "Catching my breath for this good taste.", "Delicious stuff is all around here.", "Things I want to have-there are a lot of them here", "I have found my favorite thing.", "I'm in a good mood, full of joy.", and "Pleasure to find something." I guess that's the power of positive thinking!
"All the Finches did bible-dips. It was like asking a Magic Eight Ball a question, only you were asking God. The way it worked was, one person held the bible while another person thought of a question to ask God, like, 'Should I get my hair cut short?' Then the person holding the bible opened it at random, and the person asking the question dropped his or her finger on the page. Whatever word your finger landed on, this was your answer."I've created an online virtual Bible-dip tool. Here's a miniature embedded version. Think of the question you'd like Divine guidance on, click the "select bible passage" button, then let your finger drop on the gray box. The word you're pointing at is your answer, subject to your interpretation of course...
Believe it or don't, I'm pretty sincere in how I'm offering this. Sure, I have my doubts about it being a direct line to and from God, but even without that faith it seems like a potentially useful tool.
At one point, we tried to have phone sex. I felt incredibly awkward and had no idea what to say. I started, "Okay, I'm taking off your shirt. Wait, what are you wearing?" I was supposed to establish that. "Okay, good. I'm taking off your shirt. Now, I'm having sex with you. Okay, I'm done. Want to phone cuddle? Phone sleep?"
The icing on the cake was when we decided to role play. I told her to be the nurse, and that I would play the husband who cheats on his nurse wife.
She calmly explained that we needed to express what we wanted from each other, adding, "I wish you would be more sensitive."
"Fair enough," I said, "I wish you would be Asian."
"Oh, come on, it can't be that hard. I see little kids doing it!"
Tongue Twiser of the Moment
"She stood on a balcony inexplicably mimicking him hiccuping and amicably welcoming him in."Thought of the Moment
Cleaning the apartment in preperation for a get-together tomorrow...one of the downsides to A. having the attention span of a gnat and B. trying to adopt a "if it's not going to be easie or otherwise improve the situaion to put it off, DO IT NOW" is that I it's really hard to stay just doing one focused medium-long-term task during cleaning. Go to pantry/closet, see that I meant to put rechargable drill back in case. See black tape...remember I want to "enhance" my wallet so cards don't fall out of the front...grab tape. Stay on target stay on target...put drill away, grab tape, grab PC where it's going to go in back room, stop at computer to write this up for kisrael...it's a little crazy!
It's kind of like a computer task scheduling algorithm...ideally it's like a "stack"--start task A, see task B, start task C, finish, resume and finish B, do task A. In reality you get a bunch of parallel tasks, finishing up things as they randomly drift into mind...
Actually, the shortness of my attention span scares me...like I'm putting music on to get some energy to do all this stuff, using my DVD player as a CD player. Except unlike my car CD player the music doesn't automatically start. And sometimes it's like 15 minutes later before I think "hey, shouldn't there be some music on?"
Kind of freaky NASA technology that hears words even before they are quite spoken...
Article of the Moment
Bill the Splut linked to an article on the stone heads on Easter Island and how the ecological devastation of the island might serve as a cautionary tale to us, assuming the general issues 'scale up', and I think they might.
Quote of the Moment
Semi-related quote: "There are two things I hate in this world: racial profiling, and Arabs on my plane."Politics of the Moment
I kind of hate to admit it but I think slate.com has a much better hit rate (in terms of articles that I find worth reading) than salon.com--often I go to Salon, skim the contents, and just check out the cartoon or "Ask The Pilot". Anyway, Slate had this fairly damning overview of the latest round of political ads, and this story with a big list of actual graffiti from Iraq really gave me some new perspectives in what the people may be feeling there...at least the ones who are willing to write on walls.
Shirts of the Moment
Josh at Salisbury Sales wanted me to mention a today-and-tomorrow only deal on white t-shirts $2.30/shirt for 50-100 shirts with a 1 color imprint. Like I said, making up custom T's can be a lot of fun.
Oh, and terrorism is cheaper and more resourceful in some of its tools. This and the lack of warning are the only way we have of calling ramming a speedboat into a US Cruiser "terrorism"...I mean hell, the people on the boat thought they were at war. Also, it's not like surprise is exclusively the domain of terrorism, individual battles in normal war often rely on it as well.
I mostly mention this because "we don't negotiate with terrorists", but we kind of hope Iraq will see the force we're presenting.
Anyway. Move over Bert, it's time for threat level Ernie...how I've missed him...
Gaming Article of the Moment
Salon has a piece on Dani Bunten who made the all time classic computer game M.U.L.E. She was Dan at the time, but I that might not explain how poorly the industry treated her in the years after.
Link of the Moment
Yahoo's most e-mailed photos makes for some interesting browsing. As does Yahoo Italy's, which tends to have a bit more skin.
Speaking of skin...yesterday I saw my first exposed shoulders and back of the season, a young woman in a dress at Alewife T-station. Man, that really gave me hope for the season changing.
Grammar of the Moment
This is going to be quantum times more accurate and quantum times more lethal in the first 24 hours of this war than it was in Desert Storm.Look, I can deal with quantum meaning metaphorically large, even though quantum is generally the very very small, because maybe people really understand the concept of "quantum leap". But "quantum times"? Yeesh.
I gotta wonder...if we're gonna work so much "shock and awe" in so quickly, how will that whole "our forces will give Iraqi military units clear instructions on actions they can take to avoid being attacked and destroyed" thing work out?
Hey, remember when it was "Desert Shield", and everyone thought the next phase was going to be "Desert Sword", but it turned into "Desert Storm" instead? Man, those were the days.
Images of the Moment
They finally found the girl (now woman) with the piercing gaze whose portrait was one of the most famous cover images for National Geographic. They made a positive ID via the pattern of her irises. It sounds kind of stupid to say, but you can tell she hasn't had an easy life of it.
Quote of the Moment
Uncertainty is the normal state. You're nobody special.News of the Moment
Suddenly, I don't feel so bad for not having gone to an ivy-league school...
At this very moment I'm listening to this interesting radio essay on Fresh Air Weekend, an NPR show. It's linguist Geoff Nunberg. The piece is a bit of a defense of the word "like". He points out that it's not just a lazy filler as is "umm" and "you know", but rather it's a frame for a bit of a performance. When you say "and then he said" you're getting ready to quote words, when you say "and he was like" you're setting up a re-enactment. I had this same thought when I was in the British Isles with my family in 1995. I was near Catle Blarney it, come to think of (it's where I came up with "I just kissed the blarney stone, and now I'm wicked eloquent.) The Blarney stone is interesting, you have to lie on the floor high up in this castle, and bend at a very odd angle to give that thing a smooch. The tourist tradition is kissing it they say, and the drunk local's tradition is to pee on it...
Anyway, Nunberg traces back use of the word 'like' way back to the fifties hipsters. There might be a philisophical edge to the use of this word, that it also says we really don't know much of anything, but we can still identify traits and make guesses.
Link of the Moment
Project Omni, a brilliantly written (at least for the first few pages) account of some 20-something guys taking apart a 1981 Dodge Omni in the summer of 1997. Laugh out loud funny in parts.
(via Cruel Site of the Day)