Monthly ArchiveJune 2002

Uncategorized 18 Jun 2002 08:15 am

Billy Collins – Poet Laureate

Billy Collins, the Poet Laureate is great. The poetry starts about 4 minutes into the real player file. He starts with a great Pablo Neruda piece and then reads his own stuff. A lot of it is really funny. Great for a reflective moment before work.

On the 3rd clip, he talks about haiku, and how we probably unintentionally speak 17 syllables about something at least once or twice a day. He then gives an example of overheard, unintentional haiku. Two students were passing him on campus one day when he was getting ready to speak about haiku. He heard this:

When he found out he
was like “oh my god” and I
was like “oh my god”

Uncategorized 18 Jun 2002 07:40 am

Thomas – Info on Laws and Bills in Congress

THOMAS — U.S. Congress on the Internet a searchable index of bills and laws going or gone through congress. Very useful in understanding how we get represented.

Also, a few searches in this make it easy to see how easily a congressperson could lose sight of their mission, to represent their constituents. Too many trees, and not enough forest.

Uncategorized 18 Jun 2002 07:36 am

A small show of sense

The BBC is running an article, “‘Snoop’ climbdown by Blunkett” that reports a piece of legislation that has been shot down in Britain for being overly-intrusive into individual privacy. The proposed legislation sounds way overboard, and it is good to see that people can stand up and get things changed. Admittedly, it was other MP that got the change, not common citizenry, but still the cries for its defeat seem to be over the real privacy concerns it presents.

It’s good to be able to find stories about victories for individual rights when there is so much motion towards protecting societies at large at the cost of the individual.

Now if we can get American citizens to stand up and repeal the Patriot Act and the Digital Millenium Copyright Act.

Uncategorized 14 Jun 2002 06:09 am

Cool site

i-move-u very cool site. Nice games too. Unfortunately, it keeps crashing my browser. If you have other windwos with stuff you care about, you might want to save the links before you check it out, but definitely check it out.

Uncategorized 14 Jun 2002 05:26 am

All my jpegs are belong to Perrun… or something.

JPEG virus. Wow. so let me see if I write a program, a virus, that installs itself into the Microsoft registry (a bad idea in its own right), and it puts virus data in other files on the system, then that is just old news.

If! however, I put the virus data in an image file (people have been putting extra information in image files for quite some time, then it is big news, because none of the news media understand how image files or computers work at all, even after the big scare designed to get everyone in an uproar over steganography.

Uncategorized 14 Jun 2002 05:03 am

The US in the world

Guardian Unlimited | Special reports | A world without optimism is a truly dangerous place succinctly captures many of my own concerns about the state of the world.

Uncategorized 14 Jun 2002 04:56 am

Civil Rights Statement and the politics of power

Guardian Unlimited | The Guardian | We won’t deny our consciences presents a statement signed by several artists and teachers in the US voicing upset at the war policies and civil rights abridgement promulgated by our Chief Executive.

I agree. Some of the language annoys me and comes off as overly dramatic. On the other hand, the message is good, and the subject is definitely worthy of drama.

I am still writing letters to my Congress people to let them know how one part of their constituency feels, and I still talk to people some about the horrid laws that have been enacted, but I haven’t been as active in working for change as I started out trying to be. I need to resume that.

If we all sit on our duffs, then those with an agenda for increasing their own power will go right ahead. You see this behavior everywhere. I think of my workplace.

Many folks are trying to rise to the top of the organization. No matter that they are not competent at the “lower”, albeit more important, part of the organization for which they were hired. They want to be “leaders”. Why? Presumably, there is the power that comes with it, and the privilege of getting to have a more bearing “say” in the direction of events, oh yeah and it is the only way to get a raise.

So, the money thing is understandable, who doesn’t wnat to have more financial security.
the leader thing, I think is the part that everyone misses. Everytime I have been in a leadership position, I have had to work my butt off. I didn’t really have to, but I felt compelled to do the best to lead the group in the right direction. I wanted to make the project succeed. Usually, this responsibility more than outweighs the financial gain if it is taken seriously. So, it is actually a deterrent to aware people who approach the throne, as it were.

The power is the other perceived reason to become a leader. To get more control, and make things go the way you would like. I am not sure how that plays in, because in Silicon Valley, if you have a good idea and you do it, people will pick up on it. You invent power by inventing good things. The people who rise through the ranks by merit, are the only ones who are respected. The rest are seen as illegitimate power grubbers.
So, real power does not come from the position either.

Uncategorized 07 Jun 2002 12:23 am

An offer they won’t refuse

So, we thought last week that there was finally a Papa John’s that delivered to our house. We were excited. We don’t order it that often, but when we do, we have to go pick it up. It’s good pizza and worth the drive, but we were really excited to get the luxury of good pizza delivered.

Well, alas, tonight we found out that just because their area map shows it, does not mean that they deliver to it.

However, on a slow night with the promise of a large tip. It’s amazing how many pizza delivery drivers will go an extra half-mile outside their coverage area to deliver a pizza.

Well, I don’t know how many would do it, but one did. Whoohoo. Papa John’s delivered.

Uncategorized 06 Jun 2002 07:11 pm

What you know may hurt you

Some think that education for all will be the downfall of us all :-). Actually. that is a gross mis-interpretation of the review’s contents. Even without the sensational mis-interpretation, I still want to read the book.

The book attacks the premise that ‘higher education for the masses is a tool for economic growth’. The few points mentioned in the review do seem plausible problems with the premise. I hadn’t really thought about it before. I will be watching how it turns out for Britain as it appears that education is PM Tony Blair’s solution to economic woes in Britain.

I wonder though, if unintended, “emergent” benefits of a substantially more educated populace might overcome the problems observed by the book? The egalitarian in me wants to believe that a more-educated people would obviate the problems of declining growth by doing something sensible like say, adopting policies for economic reform that focused on sustainability instead of constant expansion.

Naaaaahhhhh. That could never happen.

Uncategorized 01 Jun 2002 04:01 am

Jamming Reception

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