Cyclic Tuesdays

Criminy, what a day.
Yay – I received notification that another event is going to sign with me.
Boo – A very rough series of conversations emotion-wise, still not really resolved.
Yay – An investor has re-opened negotiations, with luck we’ll sign papers on Thursday to back my business’ expansion.
Boo – A fiber cable cut in Boston tossed us and many other folks off the net for 6+ hours today.
Yay – A presentation to a client went really well, signing off a fast, paying, complete project. Client is happy, I’m happy, they’re paying reasonably well, they may want to do some more work. Good stuff.

primark

Fright shipping company?

I need to ship a bunch of equipment all over the country in the next 6 months, going to a couple different places. I need a pointer to a shipping company that’s dependable and has good rates (or experiences from folks who have done this).
Total weight is around 300lbs, probably in 5-6 shipping cases. I need transit time to Florida and New Mexico on the order of a couple days (like, a week would be great).
I have almost no experience with freight shippers. Can they drop stuff right off at hotels?

One more nail in IE’s coffin

As reported on Slashdot, PC Magazine reviews Mozilla Firefox 0.9.1 and Opera 7.51, noting: ‘Security concerns aren’t the only reason to seek an alternative [to Internet Explorer]. IE’s slow rendering engine and dearth of privacy features may plant the thought in some iconoclastic minds that it may not be the best browser for everyone.’ 4 stars for Firefox and 3.5 for Opera, so looks like a Firefox win, although the editors do point out FF’s troubles with DHTML as well as Opera issues with JavaScript.”
PC Magazine has traditionally been a staunch Windows-centric Microsoft advertising platform. This is nice to see.

Today’s bike ride

This weekend Zach and I have been up in Maine with Tim, Morgan and Quinn. Cat was up until this morning, but left early for some social stuff at home. Today Zach and I went on a great ride, that had us going all the way around our lake. About 1/3rd of that is on regular roads, the rest is on back trails and gravel side roads. Fortunately, my brother in law had gotten me my first trail bike, so the going was easy.
This was the second day I’ve been our riding on a trail bike (well, at least since I was 13 or so),and gosh it’s a lot of fun. We rode a total of about 6 miles, but a lot of over rocks and weeds and the like, so I’d say it was equivelent to a 15 mile road bike ride.
The weather was wonderful, the company was great, and when we got back, we all jumped in the lake for about 2 hours of swimming. Deeeelish.

Kingdom of Loathing: An interview with Jick

It began innocently enough. Somewhere in the vast communications jungle
that is my interaction with the net, someone pointed me to this swords and
sorcery-ish game that ran on a website. “Fine”, sez I, “I’ll take a look”. I
didn’t think much of it, other than the odd name, ‘Kingdom of
Loathing’. To me, web-based gaming, in particular RPG games, never really seemed
to be worth getting into. I’d rather play something local.

A month later, I’m still playing the game daily. I work through my daily
alottment of moves usually before noon, and I’m learning all the little tricks to
get more Adventures so I can advance my character faster.

These guys definitely have something.

Continue reading “Kingdom of Loathing: An interview with Jick”

Geek Confessional

I, dbs, admit, here and for all to see, that when coding on my huge 21″ Nokia monitor, at the screaming resolution of 1400×1050, I zoom my KVim editor window up to full screen, hiding everything else under a vast expanse of 8pt font.

Loopy website du jour.

I try to keep up on websites that publish regular columns or articles that help shine the light of reason into the cold dark void of societal logic. Two in particular are favorites. The first of course is Snopes.com, which I’m sure -everyone- who reads my blog knows about, has bookmarked, and visit every few days, right? Their ‘Whats new’ column is a great way to stay on top of the latest fad-like rumors flying around the net (Did you know that the reason Taco Bell stopped the little dog commercials was because the dog had been run over by a camera crane? (hint, FALSE).
The other site is James Randi’s site, which has a weekly update on false mysticism, tv psychics, money scams and a slew of other examples of con artists bilking gullible people out of their hard earned cash.
Occasionally though they come up with some really fun ones. The July 2nd column includes a link to, are you ready for this? The site Our Hollow Earth in which they state “ My study of gravity indicates that our earth as well as all planets are actually hollow. ” But wait, there’s more! They’re mounting an expedition to the North Pole where there’s an opening (there has to be, because the Voyager spacecraft found that all the outer planets “emit more energy than they receive from the sun. Radiation is emited from their polar openings from their inner suns to light up auroras over their poles just like our inner sun does here on earth.“)
Well there you have it folks. Don’t dig that garden too deep, you might slip right through.

“Well, at least he beat out hitler.”

BUDAPEST (Reuters) – President Bush (news – web sites) is disliked by more Hungarian secondary school children than former Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein (news – web sites) and Osama bin Laden (news – web sites), according to an opinion poll published on Wednesday.
Bush also topped the list of most-liked foreigners with eight percent of the vote, ahead of Pope John Paul (news – web sites) with six percent.
The survey of 34,000 students, aged 16-18, from 655 high schools showed Adolf Hitler was the most disliked foreign personality with 25 percent of the vote, followed by Bush with 23 percent and Bin Laden with 16 percent.
Bush was even more unpopular than former Soviet dictator Josef Stalin, according to the poll.
The most unpopular Hungarian was Prime Minister Peter Medgyessy followed by Viktor Orban, the leader of the right of center Fidesz opposition.
Orban was also the most popular Hungarian followed by Arpad Goncz, the former dissident who became the country’s first post-communist president.

snapshot of a moment in the life of a geek…

*typitytype, clickytype, click click type…,* *RadioParadise playing in the background* *click typeitytype*
*pause*
“Hmm”
*more pause, music continues, sound of me thinking*
“Gosh, i wish Evolution‘s calendar had a quicker way to go to ‘today’ than clicking the [-> Go to…] button, and clicking ‘today’, that wo… hey… there’s another button on the toolbar, looks like a little house or ‘home’ button. Hm. *click* hey! okay, scratch that feature request, they’re ahead of me.
I love mature opensource products.

Go Bush! You’ve bankrupted us!

Apparently the administration has, in the space of 3 years, made it flat out impossible to balance the budget. In fact, the GOP has succeeded in making their very own ideology unworkable.
A deep rift in the Republican Party has left Congress unable to pass a budget this year, raising the probability that, for the third time in three decades, lawmakers will not agree on a detailed blueprint for government spending and tax policy.
[…]
There are limits to the effectiveness of spending cuts. Even if Congress had eliminated every penny of the $438 billion in domestic discretionary spending this year, every education and health program, every homeland security effort, national park, interstate highway and federal prison, the government would still find itself in the red.

The view around the block

In her Livejournal, Lyonesse mentions that John Kerry has chosen a slogan, ‘Let America be America Again’ by Langston Hughes. I read through this poem, and it is quite intense, but only if read in the view Kerry wants it portrayed in: “This is about all that GW Bush has taken away from America”. Moving, true, but perhaps unfair to the poems’ roots.
Langston Hughes was a black poet during the great depression, writing during the time of Jim Crow and economic upheaval in the US. A reader should take into account the environment that Hughes found himself in, where the freedom and hope he longed for was simply not available to him in the US. Hughes was also active in the Communist movements, as many were during this time, though he never actually registered as such.
There are many scurrilous individuals who are taking full advantage of this link, yammering that “This proves that Kerry is a communist!” and other drivel. I’m certainly not in that camp, but I feel that any campaign slogan should be also understood in it’s original context.
I think Kerry will do fine with this as his basis, but there’s a lot of interesting details behind it. 🙂

You’ve got spam!

I wonder if it’s some sign that my blog has gotten more popular that it’s getting more and more blog spam. Today I logged in to find 88 spam postings into various n sundry articles advertising a series of porn sites. Yee hah.
I finally updated my copy of MT-Blacklist, a tool designed to stop this sort of posting. I hadn’t updated since December when Lisa helped install the first copy. This new version has smarter and easier-to-update filters in it, and hopefully this’ll stop this crud from coming into my system.
Apparently something also twitched the LIvejournal RSS feed, so folks saw some postings from me from a long time ago. Sorry bout that, we’re not sure what causes that to happen, we’ll check into it.

Chatting with the Other Side

I try to keep a wide perspective on the world, and I’m finding that with the current heated political environment, it pays to see what The Other Side is saying. Being honest with myself, I’d categorize myself as a moderate liberal. I don’t fall into the neat categories that most would ascribe to ‘liberal democrat’.
In keeping with my seeming category, one of my favorite folks around is Al Franken. He’s a comedian turned outspoken left wing commentator, whose intelligence and depth astounds me everytime I read his works. He won’t say anything without -really- understanding the issue, and researching it before making the comment. Seriously, read his books, he has a whole team of folks that make sure that if he says Rush Limbaugh ate peas for breakfast – in fact, yes, he did, and here’s the cites!
I wish the right were this well informed. We have people like Anne Coulter “The Democrats want Saddam back.”, Rush Limbaugh “Intellectual Left Pushes Bush Assassination Fantasies”, and Bill O’Reilley “Hillary’s true colors show through”. (note: All these quotes were taken from the respective front pages of each site).
But, it makes sense to see what the right is actually saying or thinking, because in all things, Perspective: Use it or lose it (Richard Bach).
I’ve found that Jay Redings blog is a well written, well spoken, very good indicator of where the right is now. While I rarely agree with anything posted there, I find it important to read, and sometimes comment on things I see. Naturally I expect to get… responses to my comments, and do, but it’s all part of the process. It makes me think harder about my replies and commentary, doing the research before speaking.
By the way. The left is not without it’s own strong left wing voices ” exposes Fox for what it is: partisan spin, not news.”. Where I agree in spirit with much of what these folks are saying, I can’t wholeheartedly support them and their rabid attacks on the right. Just because Karl Rove is a master of spin and takes the phrase “If it ain’t illegal, it must be okay!” to new heights doesn’t mean the other side has to adopt his tactics.
I still disagree with much of the right’s way of thinking. I still stand in my strong disapproval of GW Bush and virtually all him and his administration has done during his presidency. However, I do see where the right is coming from in it’s commentary, though I feel it is based in narrow thinking, selfish viewpoints, and potentially destructive planning, for now and future generations.
Perhaps much of this is backlash against the Clinton years, where many on the right saw the roles reversed. The hatred and viciousness directed at Clinton during that time was unparalleled, though, as in so many other issues, the sense of balance seems to have been lost, no matter who is putting the idea forward.