April, 2002

Tuesday, April 30, 2002

Spending Plan for 2002 Laden With 'Earmarks' - "Some parents and law- enforcement officials are concerned that, beyond the dark fashions and music characteristic of that subculture, some 'Goth' teenagers are drawn into potentially dangerous behavior." - like microwaving Britney CDs without proper ventilation?

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Fun With Your Zip Program: Sort Through Texts, and More - "To demonstrate this, the researchers used a zip program to compress a text written in one language. They then appended to the original text some text written in Italian or another language and compressed that document. As predicted, the compression program did not do as good a job when the languages of the two texts were different. They tried the same trick on a group of texts all written in Italian, but by a variety of different authors. They found they could distinguish between the authors more than 90 percent of the time."

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Developer philosophy question: what's the difference between REST and model-view-controller?

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Monday, April 29, 2002

Today Slate linked to my graphic, The Lifecycle of Your Weblog. This post completes the cycle of self-reference.

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F60 - Enzo Ferrari is rolling over in his grave.

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The archives are back. The tables are gone. The site should still load quickly and work on all browsers. I am even more irritated by CSS layout now that I understand how it works.

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Saturday, April 27, 2002

Sorry, Wrong Number - "With long distance dead as a profit center, the CLECs have swooned and the ILECs are back at square one -- trying to boost profits by not spending money."

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Building A Thriving Language Program - "A week before each fall's homecoming football game, I would announce that we would be meeting to make banners at lunch and after school. I would gather pieces of butcher paper and markers, and students would write and draw whatever they wished (within reason). This included messages one might expect, such as 'Go Raiders!' and 'Let's win!'. As it was Japanese and no one else would be able to read it anyway, students also wrote such things as, 'Where's the bathroom?', 'You look like a goat,' and 'I'll bet you can't read this.' They thought this was funny, and the exercise prompted students who normally could not be bothered to turn in homework to come to me asking for such important terms as 'goat'."

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With the influx of new "bloggers" over the course of the past few months, I've created a handy key to help newbies understand what they'll be doing: The Life Cycle of Your Weblog

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Tourists pat feeding-frenzied great whites - "I am also appalled by the bizarre behavior of walking across the back of dead whales"

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Economist.com | Economics focus - "Every time we update our Big Mac index, readers complain that burgernomics does not cut the mustard."

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Flo Control - "This is Flo. Her job is testing our image recognition algorithms, although she might not be aware of this. She goes in and out of the house through a cat door (below)."

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Friday, April 26, 2002

Out with the Big Bang, and in with Cosmic Crunch - "most of the stuff in the universe is not composed of ordinary matter, nor of dark matter, but of some third species"

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Did The Universe Begin As A Fractal Instead Of A Big Bang? - "The theory is very simple, but we have had a lot of psychological barriers to overcome"

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New theory for the Big Bang - "I haven't heard my string theory colleagues complain. That's a positive sign."

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Sunday, April 21, 2002

Changing the Channel - "we came up with 10 reasons for why the Golf Channel is actually the perfect antidote to Middle East news: 1. All the commentators, particularly the instructors, on the Golf Channel actually know what they're talking about, and no one on the Golf Channel is identified by the phony and meaningless title of 'Terrorism Expert.'" - nominee for Freidman editorial of the year

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Why Free Software usability tends to suck - "The practice of releasing early, releasing often frequently causes severe damage to the interface."

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Saturday, April 20, 2002

Unsafe at any Clock Speed - "The lesson of the Y2K experience is not that our computer systems are in good shape."

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China's Growing Deserts Are Suffocating Korea - "But unlike West Africa's dust, which is carried to the southern United States by winds known as the tropical easterlies, dust from the Gobi and Taklimakan deserts in rapidly industrializing China is binding with toxic industrial pollutants, including arsenic, cadmium and lead, increasing the health threat."

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Ozzy Osbourne 'invited to White House' - "Viewers see Osbourne giving his children advice on sex, drink and drugs, arguing with neighbours who keep him awake at night by playing folk music too loud..."

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Safety fears at air traffic centre - "Nats has insisted the problem does not affect the safety of aircraft, and applied only to the controllers' working conditions."

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2002: The Carpetbaggers Go Home - "The Community Wireless movement is a fantastic example of how something unreliable can be cool, useful, self-sustaining, and utterly devoid of revenue potential."

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On the Implausibility of the Death Star's Trash Compactor - "Once ejected into space, wouldn't the flattened, living-room-sized, and extremely solid panes of trash that result from such a primitive, unidirectional trash compactor pose serious hazards for Empire starships in the vicinity?"

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Galactic gasbag - "Brackett was also adept at other genres. Her first novel, 'No Good From a Corpse' (1944), was a mystery story couched in hard-boiled prose so convincing that director Howard Hawks told his secretary to contact 'that guy Brackett' to help on his adaptation of Raymond Chandler's 'The Big Sleep.' Even when he found out she wasn't a guy, Hawks liked her work well enough to use her on several other films: 'Rio Bravo' (1959), 'Hatari!' (1961), 'El Dorado' (1967), 'Rio Lobo' (1970) and 'Man's Favorite Sport' (1962). When not writing screenplays, Brackett cranked out a stream of novels: Westerns and mysteries as well as science fiction. Prior to signing on with Lucas, she scripted Robert Altman's 1973 version of 'The Long Goodbye' and wrote one episode of a short-lived television series based on Ross Macdonald's Lew Archer mysteries. "

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Friday, April 19, 2002

Pesticide link to Parkinson's probed

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Ore. Law On Assisted Suicides Upheld - "Many of our citizens, including the highest respected leaders of this country, oppose assisted suicide. But the fact that opposition to assisted suicide may be fully justified, morally, ethically, religiously or otherwise, does not permit a federal statute to be manipulated from its true meaning to satisfy even a worthy goal."

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Monday, April 15, 2002

Don't drop the dead donkey - "The only Democratic initiative to capture the public's attention in recent weeks was Al Gore's decision to shave off his beard. Americans are pleased about that:"

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A Japanese Nuke: No Longer Unthinkable - "Koizumi has also called for a national debate about revising the occupation-era constitution to give Japan the clear right to wage war to defend its interests. A recent poll by the Daily Yomiuri newspaper revealed that some 57% of those canvassed favor revamping the constitution to make this clear."

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Saturday, April 13, 2002

DoCoMo: Are Its Glory Days a Thing of the Past? - "It's time for carriers to start boosting revenue with the business they have, instead of depending on new subscribers for growth"

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Looking for hope in the rubble - "the Palestinian Authority has ceased to exist"

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Thursday, April 11, 2002

Israel and Palestine - "Trapped in their endless blame game, each side accuses the other of killing hope. Both are right, in that both have failed."

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Krakatoa Explodes - 535 AD - The Dark Ages Start - Science is put on hold.

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Theory Explores New Cause of Dark Ages - "Within ten years, half of the world's population died"

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Wednesday, April 10, 2002

3G, or Not to Be? - "Data revenue is going to remain a fairly small percentage, because voice is continuing to grow"

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Tuesday, April 02, 2002

Today's guest editorial on current events in the Middle East is provided by... Dave Mustaine.

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Monday, April 01, 2002

Pope's decline spurs thoughts of a successor - "Martini has been identified by the media as 'the favorite,' which means it is unlikely he will become the pope. There is a saying in Rome: 'To enter the conclave a pope is to exit a cardinal.'"

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