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Favorite posts
halloween 2003 roundup (coming soon)
halloween 2002 roundup
the future of online gaming
star wars cereal review
japanese culture link of the day (12/6/2002)
japanese culture link of the day (12/23/2002)
reviews: hentai games sux0rz
anime term of the day (fan service, 02/17/2003)
retro gaming link of the day (battletech)
20 favorite movies since 1980
second japanese culture link of the day (11/20/2003)
 

Recent posts at Destroy All Monsters
Check out today's news posts at Destroy All Monsters
 


Recommended:
destroy all monsters
megatokyo
sinfest
8-bit theatre
the onion
mac hall
penny arcade
twisted kaiju theater
this modern world
dilbert
giant robot
8bit joystick
retrolounge
teleport city
stomp tokyo
cold fusion video reviews
kung fu cinema
anime web turnpike
random abstract
radio paradise
neil gaiman
william gibson
greg costikyan
xeni jardin
nasa's astronomy picture of the day
techrepublic
u.s. constitution
the democratic party's blog
indiana democratic party
center for american progress
donkey rising
tompaine.com
fark
boing boing
metafilter
kuro5hin
the hoosier review
misleader
spinsanity
the daily howler
this modern world
the joe bob report
gamespot
quake 2
 

Blogs:
nextblog (random)
blogdex
memeorandum
daypop
the truth laid bear
technorati
the lefty directory
indiana blogs

#!-usr-bin-girl
alas, a blog
altercation
andrew hagen
angry bear
annatopia
asymmetrical information
bertrand russel
blah3
blog left
blog of the moderate left
blue streak
body and soul
bookslut
brut4c
busy, busy, busy
byzantium's shores
calpundit
charles murtaugh
chris c. mooney
collaboratory
confessions of a g33k
cooped up
corrente
counterspin central
critiques of editorials
crooked timber
cut on the bias
daily kos
daniel drezner
demagogue
democratic veteran
destroy all blogs
die puny humans
d-squared digest
electrolite
eschaton
etched in stone
fester's place
flit
founding issues
geisha asobi blog
gorilla-a-go-go
how appealing
hullabaloo
insanekungfu
intel dump
interesting times
ipse dixit
it's still the economy, stupid
jack o'toole
juan cole
kieran healy
late night thoughts
legal fiction
lillianchan
long story, short pier
making light
mark byron
mark a. r. kleiman
matt welch
matthew yglesias
meryl yourish
min jung kim
modulator
monkeywatch
mydd
nathan newman
never trust a monkey
nitpicker
no more mister nice blog
notes on the atrocities
not geniuses
off the kuff
oliver willis
oni blogger
onye's livejournal
open source politics
orcinus
pacific views
pandagon
peevish
pharyngula
philosoraptor
p.l.a.
political aims
political animal
political wire
quaker in a basement
reachm high
roger ailes
royal blue
ruminate this
rungu
sadly, no!
scoobie davis
seeing the forest
self made pundit
semi-daily journal (brad delong)
shadow of the hegemon
sisyphus shrugged
sixdifferentways
slacktivist
skeptical notion
skippy the bush kangaroo
south knox bubba
swanky conservative
tacitus
talking points memo
talkleft
tapped
tbogg
terminus
testify!
the 18 minute gap
the adventures of accordionguy in the 21st century
the agonist
the american street
the avocado couch
the blog of chloë and pete
the campaign desk
the gadflyer
the gamer's nook
the left coaster
the light of reason
the peking duck
the people's republic of seabrook
the poor man
the power pill
the right christians
the rittenhouse review
the road to surfdom
the sideshow
the talking dog
the volokh conspiracy
thinking it through
through the looking glass
to the barricades!
to the point
tristero
uggabugga
unmedia
unqualified offerings
very big blog
very very happy
wampumblog
warliberal
whatever
whiskey bar
wiley wiggins
wil wheaton
wonkette
worldgonewrong
 

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  xSaturday, August 31, 2002

this weekend's excuse


We're painting the girls' room today, so further posting will be sporadic to nonexistent.




  x

smart suspect dies


Richard Albert Ricci, who was being held in connection with the disappearance of 14-year old Elizabeth Smart, died after suffering a brain hemorrhage in his jail cell. Doctors took the 48-year-old handyman off life support after conferring with family members on the results of tests showing little chance of recovery despite emergency surgery. Police said Ricci's death throws a serious roadblock in their investigation of Smart's June 5 kidnapping at gunpoint from her bedroom.




  xFriday, August 30, 2002

fbi may have lost moussaoui email evidence


This is weird...according to this Wired article, the FBI may have missed a Hotmail email account allegedly used by terrorist conspiracy suspect Zacarias Moussaoui. Moussaoui, who is defending himself, claimed that email from the account would provide him with an alibi, but FBI agents had no record of it...and by the time they looked, the account had apparently been automatically deleted due to its inactivity.

This is a really tough one to make a call about. On the one hand, the FBI has proved notoriously inept at handling technical evidence; on the other hand, Moussaoui has been eccentric, to say the least, in his handling of his defense.




  x

aviation innovation


eclipse business jet
Here's a neat article on hi-tech innovations that led the creation of a new business jet that can sell for one-fourth the price of current models (the low, low price of $850 grand) and can operate for about one-fourth the cost (around a dollar a mile).




  x

ibm unveils cyberlaundry


Great googly moogly! Technology from IBM would hook college dorm washers and dryers to the Internet, allowing college students to monitor the progress of their laundry from their dorm room, classroom, library or even their cell phone.




  x

it seems...


The anime that suits me best is


Love Hina (find out more)

Find out What Anime Best Suits You by taking the quiz yourself!



...guess I'll definitely have to buy it, then.
(via Onye's LiveJournal)




  x

it seems...




The B-Movie That Suits Me Is:


Mr. Vampire: Hong Kong, like Hollywood, is not known for creativity. Although similar to A Chinese Ghost Story, this movie is unique in many ways. Well written and played out, this funny horror is a true treat.

Find out which b-movie suits you.

Although I'd absolutely disagree with calling the awesome Mr. Vampire a B movie.

(via Alphazero's LiveJournal)




  x

baseball strike averted


In case you hadn't heard, an 11th-inning agreement has averted a possible baseball strike.

And yes, I only posted this so I could use that metaphor.




  x

jeanne d'arc (as usual) gets it


Body and Soul has a great piece on why there isn't a leftist Ann Coulter.
Leftist politics has its roots in compassion; we'll never be comfortable or convincing selling meanness and hatred. More than that, I think in the long run, nastiness is counter-productive. Ann Coulter's political pornography may feed the lusty anger of bigots and gun nuts, but I doubt she's ever lured a single person off the fence. She's a whore, not a siren. There may be some value for the right in holding the interest of its angry, resentful base, but the left's base isn't angry or resentful. It's frustrated and ready for change, but it isn't inherently angry. It isn't entertained by hostility. And that leaves very little for a left-wing Coulter to feed on.





  x

i want!


mach 5
You can now order a 385-horsepower replica of the fabulous Mach 5 from Speed Racer. Sw33t!

(via Blogdex)





  x

rhino knows


Rhino Records is one of the all-time coolest record labels. They not only keep cool music like vintage Ray Charles and Elvis Costello available with CD reissues but create sw33t compilations of funk, new wave and other musical genres--not to mention Gen-X touchstone Schoolhouse Rock. Rhino's Web site lists (approximately) 101 albums and movies the gang there considers must-haves.

(via FARK)




  x

more than one-third of all email is spam


According to ZDNet, more than one-third--36%--of all email traffic is spam, and the proportion is likely to increase by the end of the year.
Once considered a productivity-enhancing tool, sorting through e-mail has become daily drudgery as employees separate wanted messages from heaps of spam. Market research firm Gartner estimates that a company of 10,000 employees suffers more than $13 million worth of lost productivity because of internally generated spam. Add the Internet, and the problem gets much worse.

"A year, year-and-a-half ago, spam was an annoyance; now it's a productivity drain," said Maurene Carson Grey, research director for e-mail and messaging at Gartner. "A lot of the spam has become quite distasteful, and it's a drain...not just on bandwidth, but on storage."

Sheesh.

(via FARK)




  x

i assume they don't have kids...


Researchers have found that babbling baby talk isn't just random sounds but a deliberate attempt at language. By studying babies 5 months to a year old, researchers found that the sounds babies make are controlled, not just random.

Shoot, I could have told them that. My youngest daughter is a little more than a year old now, and while she has a few words, she mostly speaks what I call "Babish." But there's no doubt that as far as she's concerned, she's saying things...she'll rattle off a whole sentence or two in babish.

I've actually wondered if my youngest isn't really saying more words than we think, and we're missing them. When our first daughter began to speak, we were listening so closely to her speech that we could really pick out when she she said recognizable words among the babish. Now she's three and quite the little chatterbox, so there's a certain amount of competition (and distraction) for our attention. On the other hand, The Baby has one more person talking to her, and I'm sure that helps too.




  x

sue me


I love it when I notice a search in my referral logs that actually pertains to something I've discussed in my blog (as opposed to searches that hit on unlikely and unrelated word combinations, like "tales for the l33t flash soundtrack" and the ever-popular "cowboy bebop nude").

So checking this morning, I saw a hit from someone searching for "etsuko shiomi," the Japanese action actress. I'd linked to a review I wrote of Sister Street Fighter, and posted a few pics of my own as well.

sister street fighter wallpapersue shiomi wallpaper
Looking at the other search results, I found this incredibly groovy site of Sue Shiomi wallpaper!
angela mao wallpaper
And as a bonus, there's wallpaper of posters from kung fu queen Angela Mao movies (she played Bruce Lee's sister in Enter the Dragon)!

w00t!




  x

unnoticed


The WaPo's Media Notes column pointed out an interesting little airport-security goodie that I'd never have spotted, as it was on page E3 (not that it matters, as I read the Web version).

Airport screeners will no longer ask passengers whether they've kept a close eye on their luggage or if anyone has asked them to carry something on board the aircraft. The questions are being phased out becasue they wast 20 seconds per passenger, according to Transportation Security Administration head James Loy.

"Over the years they have lost whatever original value they contributed and can now be safely eliminated," Loy said.

I'm still not flying this Thanksgiving, though.




  xThursday, August 29, 2002

new review at dam


Destroy All Monsters has published my review of the awesome kung fu flick Iron Monkey. Check it out!




  x

very pleasant


I just had coffee with Dodd, who was driving thru on his way to Chi-town to see the Dave Matthews Band (he even offered me his extra ticket--unfortunately, I have a meeting for my daughter's preschool tonight--drat!). We sat outside the $tarbucks on Monument Circle and enjoyed a pleasant cup and conversation. Have a safe trip and enjoy the show, man!




  x

cover me


PopCult Magazine has an article pining for the days when people put some creativity into magazine covers instead of pasting up some celebrity's picture, and has a gallery of then-and-now comparisons to prove its point (at least The New Yorker is still bcking the trend...).

(via Blog of a Bookslut)




  x

wwii-era japanese sub found


wrecked mini sub
Divers on a research mission have located a sunken Japanese mini-submarine off Hawaii in a discovery that may rewrite the histroy of WWII.

The submarine, which still has both of its torpedoes and is marked by bullet holes, may be the one sunk by a US Navy destroyer early on December 7, 1941. Its discovery may lend physical evidence to the contention that the US destroyer firing on the sub were the first shots in the United States involvement in WWII.

The remains of two Japanese sailors are believed to be inside the sub, which is said to be in excellent condition at a depth of 1,200 feet.




  xWednesday, August 28, 2002

caution: fanboy alert


the animatrix
the animatrix
the animatrix
Oh, wow. I mentioned the other day that several noted anime directors are preparing a series of shorts set in the world of The Matrix. The Matrix Web site now has more details about the Animatrix project--a direct-to-video (and DVD) set of nine short films by seven directors (including Square USA, creators of the Final Fantasy movie). They've even posted a highly impressive trailer.

As Jules said in Pulp Fiction, "I'm going. That's all there is to it--I'm @#$%^&*! going!"

(via Destroy All Monsters)




  x

movie adventures


For the first time in weeeks, I didn't rent anything at my local video store's two-for-99-cent Tuedays. That's because over the weekend I reaped a massive haul (well, like seven or eight) of DVDs that'll take me a while to watch. Also, I've decided to stop renting so much until I actually sit down and write more reviews of the stuff I've watched so far. (For example, the Record of Lodoss War review I wrote for Destroy All Monsters was the result of renting the entire series over the course of several weeks).

Of course, it's been longer than that since I've posted any of the stuff I've picked up on Tuesdays. I decided to quit, not only because it probably isn't that interesting, but also because, again, I'd rather discuss movies in more detail instead of just name-dropping. I'm still keeping track of my rentals--along with permalinks to my external reviews--on my movies page.

For my birthday, my wonderful wife got me the DVD set of Record of Lodoss War (and I still owe Musashi at Destroy All Monsters an update on the DVD contents--sorry, Musashi!). My in-laws got me DVDs of Say Anything (wonderful, wonderful movie) and Iron Monkey, an utterly magnificient kung-fu movie. w00t!

Now, you might think that, plus the Our Man Flint and Poseidon Adventure DVDs I picked up the other day, would satisfy me. If you thought that, I'd say you haven't been reading this blog long enough. So as we were heading out to get my anime cel framed, we passed a roadside stand advertising 5 DVDs for $19.95. I'd passed stands of this type while I was on my self-imposed movie-buying hiatus, but now I had the opportunity--and the 20 smackers cash--to take a look around. I'd suspected they might be pirated (or just outright stolen), but it turns out that it's just cheapo DVDs by the box. Of course, one of the things about cheapo DVDs is that there are a lot of them of obscure kung-fu flicks, which , of course, is me all over. I was even more pleased to find a DVD of Godzilla vs Megalon--far from the best Godzilla movie (as the boys at Stomp Tokyo would tell you), but one of only two I have on DVD now and four lousy dollars!

I was disappointed not to find more horror films, but I very easily picked up four...since their individual price as five bucks, that meant that any other movie I got was essentially free, and since it was starting to rain, I just grabbed a random kung-fu flick and split. The haul:

  • Godzilla vs Megalon

  • Dragon Princess (Sonny Chiba and Sue Shiomi! w00t!)

  • The Asylum (A British horror anthology with Peter Cushing)

  • Deadly China Hero (A Wong Fei Hung story starring Jet Li and directed by Yuen Woo Ping)

  • Dragon vs Vampire (A random, obscure kung fu movie starring nobody I've ever heard of)


I'm about to take a break, in fact, and check out that Jet Li DVD. Cheapo DVDs are nearly always dubbed from videotape, so the quality can be spotty and there's almost never goodies like subtitles or alternate language tracks, but the tape this one is from was in Chinese with subtitles already, and that's pretty keen.




  x

riaa site h@x0r3d


w00t! In the couldn't-happen-to-nicer-folks department, the Web site of the Recording Industry Association of America was h@x0r3d (hacked) today. Here's an image of the hacked site. The irony, of course, is that the RIAA is pushing for Congressional legislation to make it legal for it to hack PCs of file sharers.

(via annatopia)




  x

wallpaper link of the day


kristine sa wallpaper
My Destroy All Monsters colleague Alphazero sent me this link to wallpaper of jpop star Kristine Sa, who will appear this weekend at Anime Fest. Personally I'm not familiar with her work (a Google search should take care of that) but the wallpaper is cool.

Although this week I have Iron Monkey on my desktop at work.

Update: Kristine Sa picture gallery




  x

den beste on education study


USS Clueless has an impressive piece deconstructing the apparent political agenda behind a recent Harvard study of merit scholarships. As always, Den Beste's full piece is worth reading in its entirety, but here are some key quotes:
What Harvard's researchers discovered was that the administrators responsible for these programs were administering them honestly, and awarding the scholarships without regard to race or financial means, based on academic performance and test scores. That's what the Legislators said they wanted when the programs were set up, and that's apparently what the administrators have actually been doing...it's not that these programs are broken, but rather that Harvard's researchers disagree with the goals of the programs

They did their studies of recipients and discovered that since the poor and blacks did worse in school, they also got disproportionately fewer of the scholarships. Harvard's researchers think these programs should not be merit based, but rather be means-tested, and deliberately should seek out non-whites and the poor irrespective of their academic merit.

But that's a political opinion, not a scientific observation. They think that these programs should be changed, but their study doesn't do anything to prove that, because that's not susceptible to proof. Rather, this study is just an attempt to embarrass the leaders of the states with uncomfortable statistics.

Full disclosure: I received a merit scholarship myself, and used it to attend the university of my choice. And frankly, I feel I deserved that scholarship and that my subsequent economic activity has returned its value to the state of Kentucky, which was not part of the Harvard study.




  x

latest salvo in console price war


Miscrosoft and Sony have both reduced the price of their console video game systems, the Xbox and PlayStation 2, in Europe. The move follows high-porfile price reductions in the US market in May.

Although it certainly looks like there's a price war going on, calling it the "console wars" is something of a misnomer. Sony has shipped 33 million PS2 units worldwide since its Japanese launch in March 2000. Microsoft claims it has sold 3.9 million units worldwide in the 7-1/2 months the system has been available.





  x

recommended reading


During this lull in posts, you could surf on over to Destroy All Monsters, where Musashi has posted a couple of news items I tossed his way. And there's always my reviews of Record of Lodoss War and Lord of the Rings, as well as several other (double-dip link) groovy anime reviews.




  x

morning mention


I have a couple of projects to complete this morning, so posting will be sparse until the afternoon. I want to get things done so I can spend some time here without the pressure of looming deadlines.

megatokyo art
image courtesy fredart studios
One of my favorite links is MegaTokyo, an online comic about two American computer game/anime fans who travel to Japan on a whim and are forced by circumstances to stay much longer than expected. The strip is funny, with an utterly engrossing story line and interesting, sympathetic characters. I've recently bookmarked a couple of excellent resources for MegaTokyo fans, especially new ones. The MegaTokyo Fan Network is a Web site run by, not surprisingly, fans of the strip. It hosts fan art and a handy FAQ that, in addition to introducing the strip's characters and plot, defines common anime and computer geek terms that get thrown around in the strip.

Another site of note is the Reader'sGuide to MegaTokyo, an impressive compendium of links to strips in chronological order with many annotations.

In addition, there are always lively discussions going on in the MegaTokyo Forums, and they just got a brand-new server, so performance is much better.




  xTuesday, August 27, 2002

w00t!


Sony launches online gaming for the PS2 (triple-dip link).




  x

s-m-r-t...i mean, s-m-a-r-t


As CNN reports that SAT math scores are at a 30-year high, I dust off my old SAT skills to score 4 out of 4 on the accompanying sample test. Booya!




  x

just noticed


Greets and thanx for the link to dustbury.com!





  x

strange site of the day


paperback
Strange Sisters is a collection of cover scans from retro lesbian-themed paperbacks (not the books themselves, and not safe for work).

(via BoingBoing)




  x

jeanne d'arc gets it


Body and Soul offers a handy executive summary of ways the President can put his money where his mouth is in support of women's equality.




  x

kournikova loses


anna kournikova
Anna Kournikova suffered an embarrassing defeat in the first round of the U.S. Open. Meanwhile, Sports Illustrated columnist Jon Wertheim asserts that Kournikova has jumped the shark.

(via FARK)




  x

dvdomination


According to this article in the Dallas Fort Worth Star-Telegram, DVDs seem to have reached a point of critical mass.
According to industry projections, Americans will spend nearly $3 billion more on DVDs this year than they did last, an increase of 50 percent. Some recent hit films...have earned more from their DVD releases than from their first-run theater engagements. And for the first time, DVD sales have surpassed those of videocassettes, even though DVD players are in only about a third of American households, compared with a saturation of more than 90 percent for videocassette players.

In the face of this, American retailers have shown the first major signs of making a per- manent shift to DVDs from videocassettes, much as they did to CDs from vinyl albums a decade ago.

"It is the most successful home entertainment device in history," said Warren Lieberfarb, president of Warner Home Video. "In five years, it has gone from zero to 30 million households, and a quarter of those have more than one DVD player. Nothing else has come close to doing that in such a short time, not CDs, not VCRs, not personal computers, not even television itself."

Early estimates in 1997 and 1998, the first years that DVDs were on the market, projected that it would take substantially longer for the new format to assert itself. But no one foresaw how quickly Hollywood studios would move to put their recent releases and extensive libraries onto the shiny new discs. By decade's end, all of them had.

The article also cites the unprecedented price drop of DVD players; units that averaged $600 to $700 in 1997 now go for about $150 and as little as $79. Also, next-generation video game systems like the PlayStation 2 have DVD capability built in.

Correction: I misidentified the newspaper as the Dallas Star-Telegram; thanx to anna for the correx!
(via FARK)




  x

gr00vy!


new vw microbus
VW is bringing back the micro-bus.

(via FARK)




  x

another blogosphere birthday


Happy birthday, Glenn Reynolds!




  x

comment update


enetation had a notice on its site over the last few days that the frequent failures of its comments system were due at first to problems andthen to a massive system upgrade. Comments appear to be functioning at present, so I'll take back--at least for now--my assertion that enetation sux0rz.

I'll be checking over the comments, so if you've wanted to sound off on a previous post, now's your chance.

Update: One of my referrals was "enetation down"...apparently so the enetation Webmaster could leave a comment on a random post assuring me that things should be smoother with the new hardware. Now that's service!




  x

too much static


japanese gas station
Full-service gas stations--practically nonexistent in the U.S.--are still the norm in Japan. As companies have been experimenting with self-serve gas stations, they've encountered a problem: increasing numbers of accidental fires. Authorities speculate that static electricity sparks flammable gasoline vapors, leading to seven fires breaking out since April. Oil companies and consumer groups are teaming up to educate motorists on how to operate gasoline pumps safely.




  x

piracy spotlight


Pirated-sites.com provides links to and thumbnails of original sites and imitators that bear an uncanny resemblance.

(via People's Republic of Seabrook)




  x

swank site of the day


retro pin-up retro pin-up retro pin-up
Tracing down the EC cover art from the previous post, I discovered a Web site that seems to belong to a comic colector. It contained this groovy gallery of retro pin-ups and Finnish versions of pulp book covers (generally, but not entirely, work-safe).





  x

batman link of the day


the dark knight returns
Here's a c00l article on Batman: The Dark Knight Returns, which was evidently re-released back in 2000.

(via Blog of a Bookslut)




  x

amuro namie update


amuro namie--click for picture gallery
I mentioned back in July that Japanese pop star Amuro Namie is getting divorced. I just found an article in the Mainichi Daily News that profiles the jpop star and chronicles some of the difficulties she's had.




  x

just plain wierd


Joe Bob Briggs would love this--a CNN story on the person who became a mother at the youngest documented age: five years old. According to the story, the Peruvian girl was suspected of having a stomach tumor when her pregnancy was discovered; she delivered a baby boy by Cesarean section in 1939. A new book on her case may result in the Peruvian government granting a pension to the woman, who is now 68 years old.




  x

cool site of the day


Joe Bob Briggs' Web site is a compendium of odd news, movie reviews, rantings and "The Ultimate B-Movie Guide." Groovy!

(via AintNoBadDude)




  x

quote of the day


"It's just not the kind of training that is needed, nor is it the kind of story that inspires confidence with the traveling public." (emphasis mine)

Reaction to revelations that bagage screeners at Norfolk International Airport had, in some cases, a scant 15 minutes of training. And who issued this vote of no confidence--an Administration critic? A lefty blogger?

Nope--Homeland Security figurehead Tom Ridge.




  x

oh, now i feel better...


Vice President Dick Cheney has assured us that there's "no doubt" that Iraq not only posesses weapons of mass destruction but is planning to use them against the US.

Ah, but listen to how Cheney defines weapons of mass destruction: "What he wants is time, and more time to husband his resources to invest in his ongoing chemical and biological weapons program, and to gain possession of nuclear weapons," (emphasis mine) Cheney said.

Of course, ever since Iraq booted international inspectors, it's been reasonable to assume that some of Iraq's chemical and possibly biological weapons capability remained intact. Notice how Cheney uses the presumption of chemical weapons to overshadow his own statement that Iraq doesn't have nuclear weapons. And as I've pointed out before, he presents the choice of either military action or doing nothing, a dichotomy I simply don't buy.




  x

betam-axed


Sony Corporation has announced it will discontinue the Betamax video tape recorder after 27 years of production. Although dominated by the VHS format to the point that it is no longer sold in the US market, the increasing popularity of DVD players proved the death knell for the Betamax. Sony has pledged to continue to support existing units and manufacture blank tapes.

The funny thing is, I didn't know they still made the Betamax...




  xMonday, August 26, 2002

it seems...





Which Star-Crossed Marvel Lover Are You?


(via alphazero's livejournal)




  x

many thanks


revolutionalry girl utena
Thanks to Susanna of Cut on the Bias, who thoughtfully sent me a very sw33t e-card. Revolutionary Girl Utena--excellent choice! Thanks again, Susanna.

By the way--for some reason the image didn't display, but I was able to track it down by viewing the source code.




  x

scarlet letter


I didn't think the ranting in the so-called "Open Letter to America" deserved the dignity of a response, but Wil Wheaton has some interesting thoughts connecting it to a personal experience of his.

(via Shadow of the Hegemon)




  x

anti-spam tool, or not?


As you may know, bots scan Web pages searching for email addresses to add to spam mailing lists. The folks who run this site (in German--translate at Babel Fish) feel we should help them out--by adding a PHP script to a Web page, you can populate it with a number of randomly generated fake addresses (the default is 20), which would result in spam lists clogged with junk.

However, I'm not sure if anna of annatopia--who works at an ISP--would approve. The failed addresses would bounce back, generating extra message traffic for ISPs along the route, I would imagine.

(via MetaFilter, where there are several posts to the discussion thread questioning the tactic's effectiveness.)




  x

congratulations!


A belated congratulations and best wishes to Charles of SixDifferentWays, who married the fabulous Denise Aug. 23.

(via SixDifferentWays, naturally)




  x

obvious post of the day


anna kournikova cover
Sex appeal cited as key to success in women's sports. Oh, athletic ability also counts.

(via FARK)




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oops...


...I was supposed to go through my links in reverse. Next time.




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instapundit (as usual) gets it


InstaPundit's Glenn Reynolds has a superb column in which he decries one of the most egregious failures of the so-called War on Terrorism: The fact that stupid harrassment in the name of security hardly makes air travel safer, but is merely a show designed to make us feel safer on the grounds that all this hassle must be accomplishing something. But it isn't--take this Aug. 25 example (via FARK) of a woman who carried a .357 onto an airliner in her carry-on. Worse, Americans aren't buying it and are voting with their feet--er, wheels--to the inevitable detriment of the airlien industry.

Count me in, buddy. We visit my mother's family in New Orleans each Thanksgiving, and this year we're driving. All the way from Indianapolis, 12 glorious hours. Until last year, the expense and discomfort of a flight was balanced by the quicker trip--but this year, we're looking at eight, maybe 10 hours for all the "security." In the immortal words of Edmon Rostand's Cyrano de Bergerac, No, thank you! No, I thank you! And again, I thank you!

Update: The supervisor of security at the Atlanta airport who hand-searched a woman's carry-on and yet missed a .357 pistol has been canned.




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neuromancy


Charles Murtaugh comments on the continued prescience of William Gibson's 1984 science fiction novel Neuromancer, which helped define the cyberpunk genre.




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louisville wins little league world series!


w00t! The Little League team from my home town of Louisville has won the Little League World Series with a 1-0 victory over the team from Sendai, Japan, becoming the first U.S. team to win the title since 1998.

(news via my dad; link via Brut4c)




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banner ads spoofed


parody banner ad
Valley of the Geeks has a great parody of Internet banner ads--actually, several of them.

(via BoingBoing)




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ready to iraq and roll?


Here's a handy compendium of, er, evolving Administration quotes on Iraq.

There's been a whole lot going on with the, er, evolving Administration position on Iraq that I've neglected to comment on. However, I do want to make a couple of points, briefly, which I plan to support in more detail later on.

  • I don't believe for one second that Bush hasn't made up his mind on whether to attack Iraq. I suspect that he hasn't decided quite how to sell the attack.

  • It's sad that it'd be necessary to point out that opposing Saddam isn't a dualism between invading without provocation or doing nothing. However, given that advocates of the attack tend to draw just such an either/or line, I question their intellectual honesty.

  • Again, it's sad that this even needs to be said, but I'd need more than airy administration assertions that Iraq poses a threat. The proof--no, the evidence--would be....exactly what, now?

  • I'd be a lot more confident of the Administration's ability to manage a "regime change" if it were doing a better job in Afghanistan, where the government we helped install controls little outside the capital, and barely that. A situation, by the way, whose resulting anarchy previously had paved the way for the Taliban...

  • Finally, the history of warfare suggests that we should be deeply skeptical of predictions of quick and easy victory, especially because "regime change" would entail doing exactly what we never did in Gulf War Mk I--going into the cities, rooting out entrenched forces well camoflagued among a civilian population, and a lengthy occupation to nurture some kind of replacement regime. We chose not to do so when we had a grand alliance behind us; I have yet to hear how this Administration expects to accomplish these tasks alone despite its evident willingness to do so.



(via Body and Soul, who has a much more eloquent post)





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not nepotism, just politics


Presidential advisers are quick to dismiss charges that the favors President Bush is doing for Florida have nothing to do with the fact that his brother Jeb is governor--they're just political favors for a state where Dubya was awarded won the 2000 election by the slimmest of margins.
Republicans say George W. Bush would be doing Florida favors no matter who was in office because he'll want to carry the state in 2004 by more than the disputed 537-vote victory in 2000.


However, state GOP chair Al Cardenas acknowledged that the fraternal ties beenfit Florida to some extent.
"We don't have a magic wand to know where this relationship goes the extra mile, but I know that it does and it has to do with the fact of the governor's unlimited access," Cardenas said. "Just the fact that his brother can get ahold of him to discuss these matters is very helpful to Florida."


For someone (an elected official, no less) who campaigned as not being a politician, in this case it seems Dubya is learning quickly.

(via Body and Soul, who comments "Gee, it's great to see ethics back in the White House.")




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bill gets it


Excellent commentary about What Separates Us From Them at Bill's Content:
CNN reports that federal authorities arrested a Florida man who planned bomb attacks an Islamic education center. I post this article knowing absolutely nothing about the Islamic education center in question. More than likely, the people who attended this mosque were law-abiding and peace loving as any other Americans. Perhaps, but probably not, it was a hotbed of anti-Americanism. It. Does. Not. Matter. The Feds jumped in to protect people, regardless of their religion or politics and that is as it should be. I was never more proud to be an American than I was on Sept. 11, when President Bush -- a man I neither not liked nor respected previously -- made it clear to the American people that his administration would not tolerate acts of vengeance against people or Arab decent or those who practice Islam. In Germany, police stormed the Iraqi embassy to free hostages. The hostages were pro-American and anti-Saddam. It. Did. Not. Matter. Civilized nations obey the rule of law. This is a foreign concept to those nations who foster terrorism. This is why we are the good guys and they are the bad guys. There is no moral equivalence between us and them.

Bill Dennis also comments on one way to get more hits: "First, read other blogs. Second, steal their work (but post a link)." Hope you don't mind me taking your advice!




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more publishment


TechRepublic has just published an article I wrote on controlling the size of Office documents when using Object Linking and Embedding (OLE). They also have an article by my friend Hardin on performance reviews. Sorry, registration is required.




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cool movie review site of the day


I just discovered the movie review site Radi0active Death through a guest review at The Bad Movie Report. Like permalinked favorites Teleport City and Stomp Tokyo (which hosts the Bad Movie Report), Radi0active Death concentrates on horror, kung fu, Hong Kong-style action flicks and other assorted goodies--in short, my kind of stuff.

Here's his review of Hong Kong horror flick Bio-Zombie, which I reviewed (somewhat more favorably) at Destroy All Monsters. Also check out his review of Mr. Vampire, the seminal comedic kung-fu vampire film.




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referral retrospective


Just to ease into things, let's take a look and see where people have been coming from during my slow week.

Odd, but welcome nevertheless, the hits for anime pr0n seem to have dwindled to nothing, and there's only a couple for former Miss North Carolina Rebekah Revels.




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i'm back


OK, sports fans, as you can tell, on top of the utterly un-swank sparseness of last week, I took the weekend off. But I'm back and gearing up for a heads-down week of serious blogging, so stay tuned!

In the good news/bad news department, the blog is loading a lot quicker these days. Unfortunately, the reason is that enetation seems to be perpetually down/busy/supposedly upgrading/whatever. I've decided that enetation pretty much sux0rz; of course, at the time it was the only comment system that had openings. Now I know why. I'll be shopping around for a new one; obviously if enetation is down, you can't make any suggestions through the comments, but you can email if you please. Fear not--although comments are usually fairly sparse, I'll save all the ones that have been posted so far and either append them to the posts or transfer them to the new server when that happens. Updates will be provided, of course, as they occur.