Thursday, April 27, 2006

Why the choppers above Westlake Village? Bears, of course.

The explanation for the five helicopters circling above my workplace earlier today?


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Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Coca-Cola BlaK

Ever hung around late at party, where someone has started to clean up, and they've consolidated a bunch of partial drinks into a single cup, containing leftover soda, coffee, and maybe even a cigarette butt or two? Have you ever accidentally taken a sip out of that cup?

On a completely unrelated note, I just tried Coke's new coffee/cola fusion drink, Coca-Cola BlaK! I would tell you what I think it tastes like, but I don't want to spoil the surprise!

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Tuesday, April 25, 2006

A question that no machine has been able to answer.

The other day, the "Gmail Sprite" posted a response to my whining about Gmail.

Who knows; with a quarter million processors reading and processing all of human knowledge, someday Google might become conscious. If it hasn't happened already--maybe the post by "Gmail Sprite" wasn't a joke!

That got me thinking about this article about Paul Ford's article on the semantic web, which includes the Googlebot comic I included in this post.

And that got me thinking of the classic super-short science fiction story "Answer" by Fredric Brown, which you should all go read now. GO!

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Sunday, April 23, 2006



Friday, April 21, 2006

It's freakin' Earth Day.

It's Earth Day! Celebrate now, because there are only so many years left before we have to change it to "Earth Gets Revenge Day."

I bought a TerraPass, mostly to assuage my guilt over a recent purchase of a not-very-efficient car. I'm also going to remember to "Cache In Trash Out" during my geocaching. And I might get one of these bitchin' Voltaic solar backpacks.

TerraPass is actually a pretty cool idea: the company buys technology to reduce greenhouse gas pollution equal to the amount of greenhouse gas your car makes. (For example, they'll pay for a methane scrubber on a factory.) Does it work? Well, it has detractors, but it still seems like a good first step.

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Monday, April 17, 2006

Gmail capacity graph

A while ago, I complained that my dad was out of space on his Gmail account, and even though Gmail accounts have a growing maxium capacity, the growth rate was not as much as it once was.

Someone else noted the same phenomenon and created this graph of the Gmail storage capacity.

Unlike last year, all we got for Gmail's birthday was a temporary new birthday-themed Gmail logo. And now I learn we won't hit a 3GB limit until 2008? I'm going to demand my money back!

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Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Maciej's "Argentina on two steaks a day"

A lengthy, almost pornographic, description of Argentina's cuisine:
When the meat is cooked, it is roasted in thick pieces over open coals by obsessive meat chefs who have been cooking meat all their lives, for other people who have been eating meat all their lives, in a country that takes its meat extremely seriously. You are not likely to be disappointed.
Joe and Kendra, read the whole thing. ;)

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Monday, April 10, 2006

My take on the immigration debate

The U.S. has had impractically low legal immigration quotas for the past 20 years.

Xenophobes, racists, and those who fear change have demanded that the legal immigration quotas be kept low. So lazy politicians pass impractical quotas, just to keep their constituents happy.

But businesses need those employees, and are against any actual enforcement. So lazy politicians skimp on the enforcement, just to keep businesses happy.

The U.S. should want to spread the American dream; since it's clear we need workers from Mexico, we should provide them with a path to citizenship and allow immigration at realistic levels. It's a very bad idea to create an unofficial "second-class citizenship" in the form of a guest-worker program. (An idea we're copying from France!) If someone wants to be a part of this country, and is willing to work for it, we should do everything in our power to let them. A permanent class of non-voting outsiders is a recipe for disaster.

The U.S. has to stop lying to itself and admit that we need these 11 million immigrants, and we need to figure out how to assimilate them as soon as possible.

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Wednesday, April 05, 2006


In the comments of the previous blog entry, Kendra asks, "What were you doing up at 1 am on a school night?", and the answer is worthy of its own entry:

I was up talking to a friend, trying to convince him to move to California from Tennessee. On the other hand, he was trying to convince me to do the opposite. His position is that Tennessee, with a much lower cost-of-living, is a much better place to live. He asked, "What did you do today that you couldn't have done in Tennessee?"

Sadly, I didn't really have a good answer to that. But I promise to start taking more advantage of Cali, because I really don't want to have to move to Tennessee.

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I was up at 1:02:03 04/05/06

FYI: It was totally awesome.

Monday, April 03, 2006

Man, I hate centipedes

A followup to "Man, I hate spiders." You've probably already seen the video of the South American giant centipede eating the house mouse, but in case you haven't, prepare to be horrified:

I'll admit it: I'm a mammalist, and believe that mammals, as the higher life form, should not be eaten by insects. I thought, "At least we don't have anything like that in the good ol' U.S.A!" Man, was I wrong. Presenting the Giant North American Centipede.

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Saturday, April 01, 2006

Alarm clock that doesn't suck

About a month ago, Slate published an article that I found from a link labeled "Are there any alarm clocks that don't suck?" I just got the second-ranked iHome (in stylish black, to match my iPod), and as much as is possible for an alarm clock, it's bitchin'.

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