the more you know
Posted on 2008-07-09 19:05:00
PSA: If you order furniture from the JCPenney catalog you only have 7 days from the date of delivery to return it as defective. Very glad I called today and not tomorrow!
not the ideal situation for starting 3 solid weeks of rehearsals
Music: Nas - "Black President"
Posted on 2008-07-09 13:33:00
Tags: asmc worldofwarcraft programming politics links sleep
I've been unable to get to sleep the last two nights. Last night was particularly bad so eventually I got up and programmed some and played a little WoW. (won a close AB battleground on my 46 pally) Even then after returning to bed it took me a while to sleep. I had no sodas yesterday, which is the most common cause of insomnia for me. Hopefully it just kinda disappears. The alternative is that I get so tired that falling asleep is no problem, but I'd kinda like to avoid that :-)
White House, 2005: Setting the Record Straight: Democrats On An Artificial Timetable In Iraq
The President Explains Why Timetables For Withdrawal Are Bad Strategy. PRES. BUSH: "Setting an artificial deadline to withdraw would send a message across the world that America is a weak and an unreliable ally. Setting an artificial deadline to withdraw would send a signal to our enemies - that if they wait long enough, America will cut and run and abandon its friends. And setting an artificial deadline to withdraw would vindicate the terrorists' tactics of beheadings and suicide bombings and mass murder - and invite new attacks on America." (President Bush, Remarks On The War On Terror, Annapolis, MD, 11/30/05)
Iraq's national security adviser said Tuesday that his government would not sign an agreement governing the future role of U.S. troops in Iraq unless it includes a timetable for their withdrawal.
a short list of things that anger me
Posted on 2008-07-07 14:44:00
Tags: work programming
- Visual Basic 6
- bugs that don't happen when you set a breakpoint but do otherwise
- bugs that make you think you're losing your mind
- Visual Basic 6
Posted on 2008-07-03 20:28:00
Tags: movies politics links
Wow, I can't remember the last time I posted on a weekend. (ooh, maybe my LJBackup stats page should have a day of the week analysis!)
Obama's been taking a bit of flak for saying he'll vote on the FISA bill - here's his well-written response. (some analysis)
I'm really excited about The Dark Knight, mostly because I loved Batman Begins. We saw Wanted today - it was pretty good.
Posted on 2008-07-02 09:40:00
Tags: work programming
Yesterday I was going to say that, when debugging a problem, I had caused another problem by popping up debugging MessageBoxes. (tip: VB6 does not like coercing non-string-like objects to strings implicitly) But after I fixed that, it turns out that popping up MessageBoxes actually seems to fix the real problem. Arrrrgh.
Happy 4th! Here are 21 hilariously hyperbolic pro-America songs. I recommend "America, Fuck Yeah" (number 21).
Just so we're clear
Posted on 2008-06-27 16:21:00
John McCain wants to repeal gay marriage in California.
Also, the Federal Marriage Amendment was introduced again. Hilariously, the group of people who "want to defend the sanctity of marriage" or whatever includes Larry Craig and David Vitter!
I, for one, welcome our new baby seal overlords
Music: yet another LOST podcast
Posted on 2008-06-26 08:58:00
Don't get me wrong, I love robots. Last night the TiVo went to live TV and the Futurama episode where Bender becomes Calculon's hot water heater came on, and I just love the line "Look, I'm programmed to be very busy".
However, this NPR story about robot baby seals creeps the hell out of me. Basically they're introducing them to nursing homes (who don't allow real pets) and the seal reacts kinda like a pet. The residents know it's a robot but still treat it like a pet. I guess there's nothing wrong with it, per se, but it's creepy, no? I hope the robots aren't implanting subliminal kill commands or something. That would be just like them!
not in a talkative mood
Posted on 2008-06-24 10:32:00
Tags: pictures whereslunch projects
Pictures from weekend before last
Big Bad John
Music: "Biig Jooohn"
Posted on 2008-06-19 13:46:00
Tags: politics links
I'm no fan of John Cornyn (although I do like his government transparency efforts - even cosponsored a bill with Obama!), but this ad of his is being unfairly maligned. Isn't this like the best ad for a Texan ever? Now I'm going to be humming "Biig Jooohn.....Biig Joooooo-oohn" all day!
Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull: The Abridged Script (via kottke)
best day ever
Posted on 2008-06-17 09:16:00
Tags: movies rant links
You can download Firefox 3 starting at noon our time. (you might be able to Help->Check for Updates... as well - not sure when that will be turned on)
Gays can marry in California today! Here's an interactive map of the legal status of gay marriage/civil unions in all 50 states.
Last night at Kung Fu Panda (which is still good, by the way, I'd probably even see it again) we saw a trailer for Fly Me to the Moon which is about three stupid flies that tag along on the first moon landing. This makes me angry. The graphics quality looks meh, it's filled with bad and stupid and pointless puns and the smart fly is named "Iq". Judging by the trailer, you're supposed to think that the idea of the fly on the moon is just so awesome, we'll have a bunch of characters say "Nat's going to the moon!", "Your boy is going to the moon!", "We're going to the moon!", etc.
Also, (and here's where I go off a bit) apparently there's some problem with the capsule and the flies have to save the day. This (aside from being stupid) I find offensive - it took years and years of hard work and dedication and lost lives to get us to the moon, not some stupid-ass flies fixing some problem or whatever. Next up: some scorpions are going to Normandy! And the Allies can't win the battle without them! So they go around and sting some Nazis or something! After that: well, you get the idea.
Maybe the 3D will make it way more awesome but somehow I doubt it.
In the vein of bad movies, a review of The Happening that contains all the spoilers.
Acceptable prefixes for local businesses
Posted on 2008-06-13 15:05:00
fight the smears!
Posted on 2008-06-12 17:23:00
Tags: activism politics
Obama's new site fightthesmears.com is a good list of rebuttals of the emails that have been going around about him. If you get those forwards, reply with a link to it!
Another impressive aspect of Obama's campaign is the new matching gifts thing. When I donated last week, apparently my money (since I had donated before) was used as a matching gift to a first-time donor, and I even got an email from the people whose gift I matched. They live in Oregon. Pretty easy way to make my gift feel like it means something.
habeas corpus is alive and well, barely
Posted on 2008-06-12 16:37:00
Tags: essay politics
Today the Supreme Court ruled 5-4 in favor of habeas corpus for detainees/enemy combatants, which means that people held at Guantanamo have the right to challenge their detention in a civilian court (as opposed to a military tribunal where defendants can't have a lawyer or see all of the evidence against them). This, to me, seems like a huge step towards rolling back all the Orwellian things that have taken place in the US recently. Here are some excerpts from the decision.
The 5-4ness of the decision is a little more frightening - unsurprisingly Scalia, Thomas, Roberts and Alito were the dissenters. And, from the article:
Three of the five Justices in the majority -- John Paul Stevens (age 88), Ruth Bader Ginsburg (age 75) and David Souter (age 68) -- are widely expected by court observers to retire or otherwise leave the Court in the first term of the next President. By contrast, the four judges who dissented -- Antonin Scalia, Clarence Thomas, John Roberts and Sam Alito -- are expected to stay right where they are for many years to come.
John McCain has identified Roberts and Alito as ideal justices of the type he would nominate, while Barack Obama has identified Stephen Breyer, David Souter and Ginsberg (all in the majority today). It's not hyperbole to say that, from Supreme Court appointments alone, our core constitutional protections could easily depend upon the outcome of the 2008 election.
Firefox 3 approaches!
Posted on 2008-06-12 13:58:00
Firefox 3 will be released on Tuesday. If you haven't tried the betas, it uses up noticeably less memory than Firefox 2 and is a lot more stable. Here's a broad overview of new features. I'm pumped!
sleep to dream
Music: "1979" (IMH)
Posted on 2008-06-11 10:01:00
Tags: health dreams
My dreams have been bad lately - not nightmares, but unhappy enough that I toss and turn and wake up a lot each night. (or is that causing the bad dreams?) Example from last night:
I was with the Phils (including wildrice13!) and we were about to go on stage before a lot of people at a talent show or something. In the dream, I had been out of the Phils for a few years and it was sort of an alumni performance. (but most of the people were in it now and knew what was going on) We were just about to go on and Kevin (the director when I was there) took the piece of paper that had the set list on it and cut each song on a separate strip and rearranged them, and it was about that time I noticed that I didn't know some of these songs, and I hadn't sung any of them in a looong time.
So we went on and were about to start and I panicked and it went horribly. We started off from each other and sorta tried to fix it and we should have stopped singing and started over but we didn't. We finished the whole song that way and did a few more that were also horrible. We did a gimmicky "1979" and "1975" set (in the dream, "1975" was a song) so I got to sing with wildrice13.
That was pretty much it. It seemed a lot worse during the dream, of course. I played some GTA last night and "1979" came on the radio so I guess that's where that came from?
On a random note, I had some fillings done yesterday. They had to numb my gums an extra time since I felt a little bit at first so my cheek was numb for hours afterwards. And because my back molar needed filling and it was right below a salivary gland it took them three tries to fill (and they eventually had to use a different kind of filling).
Happy WWDC day!
Posted on 2008-06-09 09:09:00
I can't wait!
starting to lose my mind
Posted on 2008-06-04 16:51:00
bomomo.com is pretty neat (requires Firefox)
speeches last night
Posted on 2008-06-04 10:04:00
McCain's (it is boring) - wow, he sounds really insincere when he says "that's not change we can believe in". Ugh. Reviews are very very bad...
Clinton's (haven't watched yet)
Obama's (haven't watched yet)
A good contrast of policy differences between Obama and McCain. (although the image itself is muddy)
target probabilities - done!
Posted on 2008-06-04 08:59:00
Tags: math projects
Check it out! Or, if you're in a hurry, at least check out the awesome graph! (I spent a while coming up with a decent algorithm for label placement...)
Onward to...something else!
seriously, things are getting busy
Posted on 2008-06-03 14:28:00
A funny review of Kathleen Parker's new book about why women suck and men are awesome, or something.
people like talking to people they don't like
Posted on 2008-06-02 13:04:00
Tags: math projects politics
According to a new Gallup poll, 67% of Americans believe the president should meet with the leaders of enemy countries, and 59% of Americans believe the president should meet with the president of Iran. (I guess that means 8% of Americans don't think Iran is an enemy?) That seems like a pretty firm rebuttal of McCain's attacks on Obama for wanting to do just that.
The Target probability page is really filling out now. I think I'm going to give up on justifying the counts for a mixed straight (a 4 card straight including cards of all 4 suits) which seems really really tough to count, and maybe the 3 card and 4 card straight flush of any suit (which are only really tough to count, but still more than I'm up for). After I calculate the numbers I'll do a graph and try to figure out what the dividing line is of which targets are worth which points, and see if any are "misclassified".
Posted on 2008-05-31 15:06:00
Tags: 23andme proandcon genetics
I've kinda peripherally been aware of this, but you can get your genome sequenced from 23andMe or deCODEme and get back a full report on genetic risk of diseases and stuff. And then you can compare the raw data with known genetic datapoints at SNPedia. This is like super cool. I'm like vaguely considering having this done.
Pro: This is like wicked awesome. A 2MB zipped text file with all of my genes? Awesome.
Con: There are some privacy concerns, although both companies stress their commitment to privacy and all that.
Con: It costs $1000, which is a lot of money for a science experiment.
Pro: Did I mention it was wicked awesome? Think of all the interesting things I could learn!
Con: I'm a little bit of a hypochondriac and I can't imagine this would help.
Pro: In theory I could be on the lookout for warning signs for diseases I'm prone to. (but see "hypochondriac" above)
Con: Still, $1000.
So I think that's a "no" for now. Maybe when it gets a bit cheaper I'll revisit it.
The good news
Posted on 2008-05-29 13:07:00
Tags: work links
I'm feeling pumped! Got a debugger working that should help me out and one of my problems looks like the same as another problem someone else is looking at. Also, I think I finally got the right number for 3 card straight flushes of a specific suit!
Other things that make me happy:
- Making good progress in GTA IV. (incidentally, so far it's affected my brain less than Katamari Damacy...after playing that game for a while I kept looking for things to roll up!)
- Six Degrees of Wikipedia - very interesting. Billie Jean King is better connected than the United States!
- New York state will recognize gay marriages performed in other states!
- This clip from 30 Rock about the uncanny valley.
- This Starbucks commercial. Glen! Glen!Glen!Glen! (think "Eye of the Tiger", here)
an early midlife crisis?
Posted on 2008-05-27 12:41:00
Tags: whereslunch essay xkcd math projects
Lately I've been feeling a lack of...something. A desire to build something great, some awesome website or something. I don't know where it's coming from and maybe it'll just fade away. Drive isn't bad, but it's kinda inconvenient. I just don't have a whole lot of time to devote to stuff like that.
Although, keep your eyes open for whereslunch.org after I finish my current project!
Speaking of which, last night in bed I finally figured out how to use inclusion-exclusion to calculate the number of 3 card straights, etc. The key is to make your sets "hands that don't include a green 0", "hands that don't include a green 1", etc., figure out the number of hands in the union of those sets and then take the complement. I guess it's been a while since I've done this combinatorics stuff. I also filled out some more entries in the table with explanations.
xkcd story in the NY Times!
really close to unpacked!
Posted on 2008-05-26 17:08:00
Pictures and a video tour of the house.
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