Friday, November 28, 2008

Over 1000

Google reader is a good indication of how busy I am. If the number of items posted greatly exceeds the number I read, then odds are I didn't sleep that night. Last week was pretty intense. I did have a lot of free time yesterday though, and caught up.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

I Want My Time Back (pt. 2)

Part Two of a series that will continue as long as people are dumb.


The device or person in question has to fill all these requirements to be considered a total waste of my time.

1. Posted on at least 3 blogs in my feed.
2. Adds nothing to humanity in terms of knowledge or culture.
3. Does nothing even remotely useful.
Bonus Points: Excessive or inappropriate use of technology.

I'd like to extend this award to everyone who's come up with a [insert material here]iPhone stand, and published instructions. Possibly excluding the first person, because at least when he did it, he could call it original.

These devices hold up your iPhone, using some material. So far k'nex, cardboard, the phone's packaging, and money have all been used. Apparently, this is a novel idea for just about everyone, and so 1/5 of all new iPhone owners feel the need to tell us all how they made a sweet stand. A 5 year old could do this with only the barest of instructions. But, if you absolutely, positively need detailed instructions, make, lifehacker and instructables can help you out: there are 18 different sets of instructions for stands/docks on instructables alone.

Undoubtedly someone will call me out, saying that a stand is useful, and thus doesn't fulfill requirement #3. Sure, the stand is useful. The instructions on the other hand, are roughly on par with writing, "Please, for the love of god, don't smack yourself really hard in the face with this!" on a hammer. If they can't figure it out on their own, then they likely won't be able to read the instructions.

Sadly, none of these qualify for the excessive or inappropriate use of technology bonus points.

I'm not linking to these things. If you really want to see it you can google it. But I'm warning you: you'll want your time back.

Friday, November 14, 2008

The dead parrot sketch: 1600 years young.

Reuters has the whole story, but the long and the short of it is that the dead parrot sketch's lineage has been traced back to the Ancient Greeks.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Posh Nosh

I'm quite taken with "Posh Nosh". It is an excellent satire of cooking shows done by the BBC. The dynamics between the hosts is also really well done.

The episodes are only about 10 minutes long, and it only ran for a year.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

UCSC Library: Greener than ever.

McHenry Library is putting old card catalog cards next to the computers as scratch paper. Is it ironic that I'm writing call numbers on the back of this card?

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Voting Makes Me Feel Dirty

I voted today, for the first time in my life. I'm 21.  Prior to this, I deliberately did not vote.  I'm nominally an American history major, and practically the first thing I learned was just how terrible our voting system is, particularly on a national level.  The electoral college is a political hack that was slapped into place to get the constitution signed and we should really remove it.  For those who haven't been paying attention in the past two elections, this is how a candidate can lose the popular vote and still get elected.  Clearly, that is not how this should work.

I'll grant it to those who have beleaguered me about voting, that it is more pure on a local level.  It's still flawed though, and so I felt (and still feel) that voting is largely buying into a rigged game.  As a result, when I voted today, I felt dirty: I had sold out. I'm now a registered, voting chump.

I'd argue for more direct action, but I think the time for that has passed.  It may be time to start a new government on an island somewhere, pending the results of this election, and the next 4 years.  One where voting either matters or is outlawed, none of this wishy-washy middle of the road stuff.