- It’s opening day for Major League Baseball [popups] (except for the Texas Rangers and the California Angels who played last night). The Twins [popups] open on the road, and the home opener is this Friday. But why the hell does MLB have all those popup ads on their site advertising other crap? When I go there, I want to know about baseball, not about some crappy ad served up seemingly at random.
- Yesterday began Daylight Saving Time in Europe. Next Sunday here in the U.S. Just a reminder.
- Speaking of DST, Daylight Saving and MovableType points out just how hard it is to know when Daylight Savings Time starts (and ends), and it depends very much on where you are. [boing boing]
- Why Apple Shouldn’t Vote for Gore [popups]:
The failed Presidential contender is a business novice whose board nomination raises more questions about Apple’s governanceand also points out that Steve Jobs doesn’t really take the board very seriously. In fact, a pretty good rule to live by might be to
short the stock of any company employing a former Tennessee senator on its board,since the record of companies with such board members has been pretty uniformly poor. [some guy]
- Hmm. According to BlogShares, Dave’s Picks was worth $80 last Friday. Back to under $60 today. Oh well, easy come, easy go. [scripting]
- Skot describes The Fine Art Of Hemorrhaging Money on a vacation in Las Vegas. Damn if he doesn’t make the place sound awfully attractive.
- Copyproof CDs moving to market? With any luck they won’t sell.
- An engineer by any other name. There’s currently a debate in Texas over whether programmers can legally call themselves engineers. Given a lot of the code I’ve seen, I’d say many of them are lucky to call themselves programmers.
- SJSU math professor breaks barrier [popups] and proves that you can find large primes numbers that may not be twins, but that are much closer together than average. It’s not a proof that there are infinitely many twin primes, but it’s a step along the way.
- Hmm. I bet they don’t make a version of the PC 12v Cigarette Lighter Adapter Kit that would fit into a Mac. [some guy]
- Have you seen my new soldering Iron? It looks remarkably like a toaster oven. Well, not mine. But it’s pretty cool. [flutterby]
- The Computer History Museum is having a reunion of ex-Apple employees, but since they define history as
more than ten years ago, I don’t qualify to go. Oh well.
- A Developer’s Perspective on Apple’s 12-inch PowerBook that I bought. It’s a pretty good machine in my eyes, and I’m not really bothered by any of the shortcomings pointed out in the article. I was willing to give up a little to have a tiny box. Size matters. Gigabit ethernet built into the box doesn’t matter so much. I still haven’t connected it to an ethernet. Why should I when I’ve got wireless? And since I got a laptop, I was looking for a bag for my laptop last week, and I wrote up what I found.
- Permanet, Nearlynet, and Wireless Data explains the different strategies for getting people unwired. It’s about the first I’ve heard of G3, and explains pretty well why I don’t really care about it.
- How to make it yourself with duct tape includes a section on duct-tape roses. Better study up for the next duck-tape night at the Saints.
- Went out for beers last night with some friends. I ended up staying awake until the wee hours (Wee!), so I’m getting a late start today.
- What Would You Do If You Saw Your Nation Going Fascist? Germans had to worry about this in the 1930s. Not necesairly an easy choice. [endwar]
- Use a Firewall, Go to Jail. It’s what could happen if various DMCA clones pass at the state level in MA, TX, SC, FL, GA, AK, TN and CO. They’d outlaw encrypted mail or NAT and not just using it, but also the sale or manufacture of them. Why? To protect copyrights. [boing boing]
- House approves elimination of Arabic numerals. Heh!
- Pawlenty puts price on protest arrests, saying that judges should require restitution to cover the expense of arresting protesters. Is it constitutional? Maybe. Is it a good idea? No.
- It’s time to start Bracing for Bush's War at Home. I mentioned Patriot Act, Part II before. It’s as ugly as I thought, or maybe uglier. Beyond just the attack on the Bill of Rights, this legislation would seriously tilt the balance of power to the executive branch of the government. [metafilter]
- FBI seeks Internet telephony surveillance, but as John Gilmore points out, if you’re watching everybody, you’re watching nobody . [boing boing]
- Use misleading domain name, go to jail? That’s what’ll happen if an unrelated child-abduction bill passes. Whitehouse.com will be in pretty deep trouble, because the bill outlaws using an innocent sounding domain name to drive traffic to porn sites.
- It's Easy Seein' Green–Night-vision scopes make your closet the color of Baghdad, and for under $200 you can watch the raccoons tearing through your trash, or see the glow from the night-vision in the suspicious van parked outside the party.
- First, in local news: Winter returns, but it won't stay long. The four-to-six inches ended up being an inch, or maybe two. Most of it fell as rain instead, and the ground was warm enough that a lot melted, too. [strib]
- So it was pointed out that the New York Post had said that Gina Gershon had to wear a floor-length gown to the Oscars because she fell off a Segway (you’ll have to scroll down). Okay, I’ve always thought that Gina Gershon was a hottie (especially after seeing Bound), but she’s a clumsy geek, too?!? Be still my heart. [Gothamist, via Gizmodo]
- Babes breeding ‘Les Boom’ (and that's not french):
…gorgeous women like Russian teen duet Tatu and pop diva Ayumi Hamasaki are leading many to the realization that Japan likes dykes.[fark!]
- Super Onanism Machine rubs the lonely the right way. Of course there is a danger to automatic sex-toys: Man dies in sex toy shocker. [fark!]
- Give it to me, molto agitato reviews a performance of The Porn Orchestra in San Francisco. Improv musicians performing spontaneous soundtracks to porn movies. [some guy]
- Privateathome [not safe for work] seems to be a NetFlix for porn. The
all Europeantitles are all from Private Media, Inc. [boing boing]
- I’ve updated the news about Apple’s WWDC schedule change one final time. The short version is that Apple went to pretty great lengths to make sure I could go in spite of the schedule change, and I’m (once again) impressed by the dedication of the folks in Apple Developer Relations. I still think that changing the conference dates was a pretty bone-headed maneuver, but at the moment, I’m feeling okay.
- Heavy snow aiming for Twin Cities:
We can’t rule out four to eight inchesby tomorrow evening. So much for the spring-like weather we’ve been enjoying lately. [strib]
- The Atlantic has some suggestions on Caring for Your Introvert.
- College Media Group Cautions That 2 Copyright Laws Could Collide. Seems the DMCA is in conflict with another law designed to enable educational institutions to use copyrighted material for teaching.
- In Bursting an old bubble, Colby Cosh unearths what really happened to John Bender, who didn’t actually drop dead while on the mound during a baseball game. [colby cosh]
- I really like yesterday’s Doctor Fun. Not sure why, just do.
- Mass e-mailer ordered to pay 6.5 mil. yen compensation. That’s US$54,000, and it’s based on the cost to handle the undeliverable spam.
- Israeli military experts assess the U.S.-led invasion and conclude there’s so much disinformation flying that it’s impossible to say how the war’s really going.
- How up to date are you on issues regarding the Iraq war? Take the Iraq War Quiz and find out. [Jim]
- It’s been decided: Spunky MacHack stays on Calendar Despite Apple WWDC Move. I applaud the MacHack committee for deciding to stick to their guns and not reschedule the conference, but now I’m faced with the decision of how I deal with it. I’ve moved all my comments on the WWDC schedule change to Apple’s monkey-wrench in my summer.
- 68 arrested at Minneapolis war protest. They were blocking entrances to the U.S. Courthouse. Nothing like the protests in SF, but pretty big news around here. [strib]
- CWD turns up in Wisconsin elk imported from Minnesota. Again, there’s still no proof that CWD will jump from deer or elk to humans, but that’s what they said about BSE in England at first, too. [strib]
- Lyme disease total soars in Minnesota. 2002 saw 88 percent more cases than 2001. This’ll be a good year to make sure you don’t get bit by ticks.
- Bush administration endorses McVeigh Doctrine:
The latest Bush propaganda philosophy goes like this: if you have a tyrannical government you’re trying to get rid of, anywhere in the world, you bomb its government buildings, target its leaders, and label yourselvesSounds vaguely familiar… [endwar]
freedom fighters, and you can morally do anything you want.
Once, I thought that the republic was governed for the people and by the people. Today, I realized that people are the very last thing that this republic cares about.[metafilter]
- Face recognition gets lift, says U.S., so soon we’ll be at the point where your face can be picked out of a crowd. It’s better at picking out men than women, and older people more easliy than younger ones.
- Since the English-language version of Al Jazeera has been hard to reach (and now they’ve been banned from the NYSE floor, too), you may want to look at Dar Al Hayat news. It’s been suggested as an alternate news source for following current events. [endwar]
- Hacking PalmOS 5 by Jesse Donaldson
- How to Hack Mac OS X by Jonathan 'Wolf' Rentzsch
- Integrating a Virtual File System with Mac OS X by Andrew S. Downs
- LAMP (LAMP Ain't Mac POSIX) by Joshua Juran
- Risks in Using Commerical Wireless Networks by Dennis Luxen
- Signing Executables in Mac OS X by Miro Jurisic
- Systematic Error Handling and Exception Safety in Mixed C++/Objective-C by Mac Murrett and Andrew Pontious
- School’s back in session at the University of Minnesota today after spring break. It’s a big change in the neighborhood. Over the weekend there were many more signs of life. Parties, roving bands of kids and empty beer bottles on the street in the morning are signs that school’s back in session and the weekend weather was nice enough for people to be out wandering around. Last week, there was abundant parking on my street all week long, all through each day. Today, at 8am, the parking spots were already all taken. I like the energy of living this close to the University, but there are plenty of headaches that come with it.
- IMF-no clear proof globalization helps poor countries, and in many cases seems to actually hurt. The only surprising thing is that the IMF said it. [metafilter]
- Razed and Abandoned takes another look at the mess that is the new downtown Minneapolis Library.
- Cory talks about how Danger relaxes SDK terms, still getting it wrong. It’s a good commentary on what’s wrong with the Danger SDK [boing boing]
- Junk fax ruling may help antispam effort. The law restricting junk faxes has been declared constitutional. And yeah, it involves fax.com. Hope the MN Attorney General can move forward now.
- I suppose I should look at this RSS Version Comparison and make sure I’ve implemented everything that’s required. But not today.
- Once and Future Fool
Cliff Johnson is making a sequel to his celebrated 1988 puzzle game The Fool’s Errand, and has also made that and other classic titles free for download from his website.Oh man, there goes all my non-existent free-time.
- But first, I sat down yesterday and decided it was time to add a RSS feed to Dave’s Picks. It’s RSS 0.91, and I think I got it all right, but I haven’t really done much in the way of testing yet. Please let me know if you spot any problems with it. I’m not saying I’ll fix them right away, but I’d at least like to know about them.
- If you wanna watch current events by way of blogs, Dave Sifry’s Technorati: Current Events, with context is pretty handy. It’s a DayPop for the past two hours, complete with some context. [doc]
- The San Francisco Chronicle has a great article showing how demonstrators used affinity groups to paralyze the city on Thursday. This type of tactic will, most likely, start to spread throughout the country especially if there’s a protracted war (perhaps unlikely) or a succession of military actions by Herr Bush (perhaps likely). [Jim]
- After a few days of silence, Kevin Sites has announced that he’s been asked to suspend his blogging for now. Kevin’s a CNN reporter who’s in Iraq.
- Don’t despair though. Iraq Conflict Coverage Weblog -- Great Work Gallery has a list of embedded journalists, blogs and maps. One stop shopping if you want to know more about the war. [fark!]
- Nick Denton is Mapping the invasion. I find myself wondering why one of the major news services isn’t doing this? [scripting]
- Finally, from Jim: I attended two rallies in St. Paul yesterday. First off there was a call on Indymedia for a counter demonstration at the pro-war rally put on by liberateiraqsign.com. Unfortunately the counter demo didn’t really happen. There were maybe a dozen people compared to a crowd I’d estimate at (high end) 2000. Officially this was a
Support our Troopsrally, but the guy selling
Bomb Saddamsigns was doing a brisk business. There was also a racist element in the crowd that jeered a Muslim speaker. More people showed up after I left (just as the rally started) but the Strib’s of 17,000 is a prevarication at best.
A peace rally crowd that looked much larger to me marched through St. Paul neighborhoods. The Pioneer Press said that crowd was 5,000-10,000.
Also of interest is the unscientific survey and done at both rallys posted on TC Indymedia. [Jim]
- BallParkWatch, strangely enough, watches ballparks. New ones. Proposed new ones. Teams holding cities hostage (well, not so much of that). All kinds of interesting news if you’re planning a baseball-viewing road-trip. There’s even a ballparks of the past section with a writeup of Met Stadium that’s pretty interesting to someone who can barely remember seeing games there (I think the games I attended were all while I was living in Monticello, so that’d be 1973-1976).
- Tom’s Hardware Guide Processors: Hot Spot - How Modern Processors Cope With Heat Emergencies like having a heat-sink that isn’t actually attached to the CPU. Includes a video. [metafilter]
- Am I a Stress Monster? Apparently not.
- Fudtz Sign Language has some signs you may not have been aware of. [some guy]
- Paul Boutin put together a quiz asking Which Spam Filter Are You? Kinda fun in the way those things sometimes are.
- Intuitor Insultingly Stupid Movie Physics. I think I’ve linked to it before, but what the hell, it’s worth a rerun. [some guy]
- Here’s another reason not to trust the news. Make sure to scroll down the comments to hear what actually happened (look for Tom B’s comment). Sheesh. [colby cosh]
- Finally, among all the other computer things that have been happening recently, I ordered enough RAM to max out my G4. I figured at $189 per gig of RAM, what’s to lose? Well, I discovered what I lose with that much memory. I lose Virtual Memory in Mac OS 9.
- As a followup to yesterday’s story about the urgent patch for a Microsoft security hole, today it comes out that the Microsoft patch freezes some systems, including a friend of mine who’s now told that her copy of XP is not valid. The hardest hit seem to be those who acquired their copy of Windows with a yo-ho-ho and a bottle of rum.
- In further geek-news, Virus writers take advantage of war to release a new worm called Ganda. It’s going out in emails with war-themed attachments. It hits Windows, and needs outlook to propagate talks directly to your SMTP server after pulling adresses from your address book. Where do you want to go today? Hell, if you’re running Windows, maybe it’s just time to shut the computer off for a while. Or install Lindows.
- In local news, Minneapolis Council may oppose Patriot Act:
The Minneapolis City Council may decide today whether to ban using city resources to enforce homeland security measures that some council members contend are unconstitutional.Good for them. And while Mayor Rybak has opposed the city weighing in on national issues (which I’ve agreed with), this is a local issue. It’s opposing the use of City of Minneapolis resources to attempt to enforce unconstitutional federal laws. If you’re a local, it might be time to email or phone your councilmember. [strib]
- Meanwhile, there’s a budget battle going on in D.C.: House moves toward approval of GOP budget; Senate effort to trim Bush tax cut fades. Just one of the other news stories you probably won’t hear about if you’re busy getting your war on.
- I know I said I was going to avoid war coverage, but the BBC NEWS Iraq At-a-glance page is pretty handy if you want to find out what’s up with the war. Yesterday’s is at BBC’s Iraq latest: At-a-glance. The page location changes every day at midnight GMT, so you can’t just bookmark it for tomorrow.
- Protests swell in wake of war, and More than 1,300 arrested in San Francisco protest. The jail’s full up. More on the arrests from the San Francisco Examiner.
- Finally, if you’ve had your fill of pro-war propaganda, here’s some 1940’s Propaganda Remixed. Tasty quotes like
Be a good American—Don’t try to think!and
Americans Used To Fight Against Tyranny.[some guy]
- What to do if there’s a Red alert? Stay home, await word. If you venture out, you’ll be presumed to be “up to something.’ At least if you’re in New Jersey. Somehow I suspect that here near the U, there would be a huge crowd of kids out wandering around celebrating a day with no classes and no work. I'd expect that today, except we’re in the middle of Spring Break, so things are pretty quiet around here. Red Alert? First stop, liquor store. So far we remain at orange. [metafilter]
- War on Iraq begins with a few cruise missiles hitting Baghdad. As I write this, President Bush is talking to us all. I’ve had problems with this war all along, but there’s a certain feeling of relief that the shooting has finally started, rather than just sitting and waiting. But I still think that attacking Iraq and Saddam Hussein is a mistake. If the U.S. government wants to find the people who made Al Qaeda a threat, Langley or Riyadh are probably better places to look than Baghdad. That’s not to say that there isn’t good reason to wish Saddam Hussein out of power, but I still wonder why he’s next on the list after the Taliban in Afghanistan. In any case, the plan around here is to stay away from war coverage now that the initial bits are out of the way.
- Windows users warned about serious new software flaw. Of course if you never use your Windows machine to surf the web or read email, you’ve got nothing to worry about. [strib]
- Business 2.0 presents The 101 Dumbest Moments in Business [warning: popups]. There’s some fine reading here, pointing out the stupidity of big soulless corporations. And smaller souless corporations. Funny. They don't mention “standardizing on Windows” anywhere on the list. [boing boing]
- Larry Lessig passes on a story about the good that MIT does. See there’s this book that’s being published by the MIT Press. It includes a dozen one-line snippets taken from various songs. After asking the copyright holders for permission to use the lines and getting a stack of forms, an outright refusal, and a demand for $10,000, they said
screw itand decided to just go ahead and publish the book and maybe set a nice little better precedent for fair use so publishers don’t worry so much. [boing boing]
- Jason Kottke has some thoughts about The war. Well, there it is then. [holy schmoly]
- Speaking of war, Baseball won’t open in Japan.
Bud Selig canceled season-opening games scheduled for March 25 and 26 between the Seattle Mariners and Oakland A’s at the Tokyo Dome.The games will be held in the U.S. instead. [strib]
- Wireless numbers to be added to 411 sometime in the next year or so. Well, crap. There goes one of the reasons to have a cellphone.
About 5 percent of U.S. households have gone totally wireless and eliminated traditional landlines…probably to get an unlisted number that’s not going to be called by some telemarketer just about the time you’re puttin’ the moves on that double-pepperoni pizza the delivery guy just brought. Of course it’ll cost extra to have an unlisted cell-phone number, and it probably won’t really be unlisted either. Feh.
- The Danger Hiptop SDK is finally available. It’s not a perfect plan, but as Andy Rubin from Danger explains, they’re doing what they can. [boing boing]
- One other bit of news I should mention. Last night at my neighborhood association meeting, it was decided we should weigh in on the proposal that’s been floating around to change the name of Marcy Open School to Wellstone Open School. As far as I could tell, the proposal had a few very vocal advocates, but no broad-based support, and the meeting confirmed that. A motion was presented saying to basically leave the name as is, and it passed with no dissent.
- Sorry for the lack of update yesterday. After the fight with the server on Saturday, I went out for some dinner and a beer or two, as I was too tired to even think about cooking without accidentally setting myself on fire with the can-opener. A couple beers turned into more, and I not only missed a friend’s birthday party Saturday night, but I slept through most of the day yesterday. My Friday plans to get my trike ready for a Saturday afternoon ride are still nothing but plans. In any case, I needed a break from computers, and yesterday was it. Now it’s time to try and get back on track for this week. I probably won’t make it to the Boiled in Lead 20th Anniversary Concert tonight at First Avenue, either. But in what’s good news for those of you with any æsthetic sense at all, I also didn’t have time to prepare a special color-scheme for today.
- When Hackers Meet Soldiers. The tale of how OpenBSD is getting a boost from the military. A real paranoid type might suggest that’s why I had so many problems upgrading the server over the weekend, but I don’t think blaming the military’s the right answer at this point, and I’m glad to see Theo getting some extra funding to work on the OS.
- Telemarketers keep slipping through state do-not-call list, partly because there are too many loopholes, and partly because people who report telemarketers don’t always have all the information they need. In related news, the complaint I filed with the FCC about a junk fax I received last month has been acknowledged. They’re probably not going to do anything about it except add it to the list of complaints against fax.com. [strib]
- Back in February, VeriSign, RSA in court over patents owned by a guy who claims to have invented the technique behind SSL The applications were filed in 1992. SSL was invented in 1994. The patents were granted in 1998 and 1999 and he started filing suits in 1999. Verisign and RSA stood up to him and refused to pay. Last week a jury denied his claims against them, and now the trial deciding the validity of his patents has started. If you’re looking for an example of how the patent system in the US is broken, this is a pretty good one.
- New Mexico HJM040 looks like a rare good law. It not only directs law enforcement in the state to avoid participating in any illegal actions undertaken by the federal government, but also direct them to pester the feds about any New Mexicans who are being held. Nice work. [boing boing]
- You know that FBI plane I mentioned yesterday that was mistaken for a terrorist? Well, the FBI has a fleet of aircraft tracking terrorist suspects totalling 80 planes, not just the one in Bloomington, IN that got caught. [strib]
- Four guys are Bowling to Vegas. A road trip that involves bowling and drinking from Chicago to Vegas. Sounds like a good plan to me. Definitely better than spending my weekend working on the server.
- USDA to keep some food recall data from US consumers [warning: popups] because we really don’t need to know which grocery stores, restaurants and butchers are selling tainted meat. Ulch! How about just letting me sue when I get sick and putting enough information on the package so I can tell who produced it? No way. That’d be way too simple. [metafilter]
- Natalie Merchant, No Strings Attached. She’s said to heck with her label, and is releasing her next album herself. She only needs to sell 50,000 copies to break even, so she’s pretty sure she doesn’t need a label.
Why subject myself and the work that I do to that kind of environment when it really doesn’t matter any more?[boing boing]
- AP Protests Gov't Seizure of Package. Customs seized the package, which contained a copy of an unclassified FBI report being FedExed from the AP office in Manila to the one in Washington. Nobody told AP, and the FBI just kept the package. So now the FBI’s trampling the first and fourth amendments.
- FBI Plane Mistaken For Terrorists. Hey, they said we should watch for suspicious behavior…
- 'Google Stalkers' Troll for Lost Acquaintances. Reuters is apparently just figuring this out. Yep, they’re right on top of the news. [metafilter]
- There was a show on the History Channel sometime recently (I watched it last night) about the Save Our Sounds project. Good stuff they’re doing. I just wish it was easier to find all the stuff they’ve released on their Folkways label. At $20 a pop, a burn-on-demand CD-R seems like a good way to support the effort.
- Speaking of cultural artifacts, Cassius Marcellus Coolidge—the man behind Dogs Playing Poker. You knew there had to be a website about it out there, and now I’ve found it, thanks to MetaFilter. Be sure to check out the gallery, too. [metafilter]
- Nope. I don’t think I’m going to buy a Turd Twister!
If you are a fan of gag gifts… this will surely make them gag!almost sold me, but not quite. [metafilter]
- So here’s the longer explanation of yesterday’s outage. Seems at the building that houses my ISP, they were plowing snow about 3am yesterday morning. Seems the snowplow hit a bundle of wires. Seems that bundle contained about 400 pairs of wire feeding the building’s phone system and my ISP’s DSL lines. It apparently took Qwest until about 3pm to get all the wires spliced back together. Oops.
- Shortfall may close 4 Minneapolis libraries, including the one in my neighborhood. But I don’t think it’s really that big of a loss. The current southeast library isn’t handicapped accesible and is pretty small. Only a few blocks away, there’s the University of MN, and while you can’t check books out without a student ID, that’s never stopped me from walking into a library on-campus and reading something there. [strib]
- The top five Bum Wines. Choose carefully. Your hangover depends on it.
- Heard about The Contiki Operating System and Desktop Environment yet? Runs on a C64, fits in 48k, including a TCP/IP stack and web-browser. [holy schmoly]
- The darkest side of ID theft. It was his word against a police database. Guess who lost. [boing boing]
- RFID tags: Big Brother in small packages. Just guess what products you’ve bought that may already have RFID tags in them.
The privacy threat comes when RFID tags remain active once you leave a store.And that seems to be the default at the moment. [metafilter]
- Despite American efforts, world criminal court is born.
The International Criminal Court will have jurisdiction to punish war crimes, including genocide, in any country that has ratified the statute–but only if that country has refused to prosecute suspects itself.So will we see Henry Kissinger hauled before the dock to answer for Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos? Probably not. But hey, The Pentagon Papers [requires flash] was a decent movie. [metafilter]
- Speaking of flash, Revamped Macromedia site irks customers because it uses too much flash (aren’t Macromedia’s customers the ones who are putting too much flash on other websites? Why does the phrase
taste of their own medicinecome to mind?) Oh, and it doesn’t work with Safari.
The load time is so long I gave up trying to find anything.[metafilter]
- Survey profiles a typical Internet user. Let’s see… a typical user spends 45 hours per month on the internet. That’s about 3 days for me. Spends 32 minutes online per
session–compare to my couple hours minimum. Yeah, I knew I was far from typical but, in so many cases I’m like ten times the typical. Oh, and when my DSL is down like this morning, I get distinctly grumpy. I think maybe I need a life.
- Local activist groups held a press conference to respond to being placed on a list of
groups of interests that may affect communitiesduring a seminar for law enforcement officials on domestic terrorism. Star Tribune columnist Doug Grow has more. [Jim]
- Dow sues Bhopal survivors for protesting at Dow HQ in Mumbai and asking Dow to clean up the mess made in Bhopal by Union Carbide (which was later bought by Dow). [boing boing]
- Bush signs “do-not-call” list bill, making that list a reality. It should be up and running by this summer. Fines could be up to $11,000. That’s Eleven Thousand Dollars. [fark!]
- Allen Hutchinson gets a lot of spam (like most of us). He decided to do something with it. The result is SpamKu -- SPAM Haiku. A new one is generated every fifteen minutes. [flutterby]
- What About Three-Strikes-and-You're-Out for Corporate Criminals? Sounds like a darned good idea to me.
Just as street criminals will break the law over and over if they are not presented with an adequate deterrent, corporate criminals will do the same.More information is available at the California Corporate 3 Strikes Initative Campaign . [metafilter]
- The Transportation and Regional Growth Study has the info on why traffic around here’s gotten so bad, and what could be done about it. [strib]
- Baseball literary magazine a field of dreams for fans talks about Elysian Fields Quarterly a magazine produced in St. Paul. Sounds like a good magazine. I think I’ll have to look for a copy somewhere. [strib]
- Why are sports' newest superstars paunchy white men? And how did they take over your TV? Well, by driving fast cars around in circles.
NBC NASCAR producer Sam Flood told a reporter last year that he wasYep. Even though I watch NASCAR races on my TiVo, and mostly skip the commercials, by June I’ll be able to tell you the sponsors for over ¾ of the drivers in any given Cup race. There’s a reason it’s worth a lot of money to the sponsors. As for why the racing’s popular, there are a lot of folks who are ignoring the geek-factor. Setting up a car is a complicated thing, but there are a lot of geeks who do virtual racing over the ’net and spend a ton of time trying to get the setup on the cars just right. [metafilter]
amazed to find that ratings for Winston Cup rain delays outdraw the NBAThey’d rather watch a rain delay than the NBA.
- Jim is not at all surprised to find that he’sa member of groups that have were labelled
domestic identified groups that may affect our communitiesin a report on
Terrorism in Minnesota. Minnesota McCarthyism has more information. [Jim–a former Arise! Books Collective member]
- “Expert Identifies extreme groups in state” includes the quote
Arise wouldn’t align itself with any violent tactics–so I guess I’m an extremist, but I’m not violent. Good to know. [Jim]
- Driver’s license: It's not just for driving anymore as more and more non-transportation information makes it onto the licenses. Minnesota is kind of rare (one of six states) that doesn’t have your social security number associated with the license, but Dick Day, the Senate Minority leader wants to put more information on there. [strib]
- Guard says he lost job in T-shirt flap.
The security officer at Crossgates Mall who signed a trespassing complaint against a war protester was fired Friday.He says he was just doing what mall management told him to do, and now he’s been fired for it. [endwar]
- Strummer News has ongoing information about the late great Joe Strummer–tributes–including March 21st at The Turf Club in St. Paul featuring Plate O Shrimp and a webcast station featuring some of Joe’s faves and some of Joe’s stuff.
The Clash will be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Monday. [Jim]
- World of Ends is a sort of updated cluetrain aimed at people like the MPAA and RIAA who don’t get the Net. The only problem is that it, like the ClueTrain, talks at its audience, rather than talking to them. But then that’s what manifestos do. [boing boing]
- In response to the World of Ends, Stavros gives us a World of Assholes. [emptybottle]
- Several inches of snow in central, southern Minnesota plus temperatures below zero tonight, and Minneapolis has declared a Snow Emergency.
- Due to the snow emergency, I had to go outside to do the car-shuffle. It’s actually pretty nice out there. A blue sky with just enough clouds to make it interesting, almost no wind, and while the temp is in the single-digits (Fahrenheit), it wasn’t that brutal. The snow was light and fluffy and because it’s a Saturday, it wasn’t packed down too much yet by people walking to school, and Brad from the church next door had gotten out the snowblower and cleaned the sidewalk the whole length of the block, so I only had to shovel the stretch from the front-door to the sidewalk. In any case, it was an inspiring day, leading me to bang out a few more essays for the geography section.
- In Garcia's Shadow, the Dead's New Guitarist Has His Own Sound. Long article about Jimmy Herring, the guitarist who’s playing with the Dead (no longer the Grateful Dead). [scripting]
- Check out the IMDB worst movies of 2002. Vote early. Vote often. [fark!]
- ACLU in Hot Water for Potential Privacy Violation by revealing personal email addresses in a mass-mailing. Two years ago, they criticized Eli Lilly for the same stupid mistake. [fark!]
- HoJoLand chronicles the decline and fall of the Howard Johnson’s empire. Did you know there are only 11 restaurants left?
- Beverages & More! The amazon.com of the alcoholic? It looks like it may be.
- Man fakes choking to pick up ladies. Well, there’s one approach. [fark!]
- Metro area’s big mismatch: home, job now farther apart as the center of new housing shifts toward the eastern suburbs (Woodbury used to be big–now it’s western Wisconsin that’s growing fastest), and the center of employment is moving from Minneapolis toward Eden Prairie. [strib]
- Who gets the blame for the library fiasco? Remember how I took pictures of the old library coming down ? Well, now it looks like the city won’t be able to afford to run the replacement they’ve been planning to build. All fingers are pointing to Gov. Pawlenty for slashing the LGA money Minneapolis was dpeending on. The big question is why someone hadn’t noticed that earlier. [strib]
- Minneapolis police chief says cuts may be ugly. Again, the LGA cuts made by Gov. Pawlenty are being blamed, this time for cuts of 150 Minneapolis Police Department employees. [strib]
- Stepping back to look at the big picture, The Pentagon’s New Map does a good job of explaining where (and why) the conflicts of the next few decades will probably be.
- Official Hired to Improve U.S. Image Resigns. So that’s why things look so bleak lately!
- Because links in the title don't work so well: Know Your Rights.
- I know I’ve been harping on how our rights are being trampled more than a bit lately but I think this is some pretty important shit. I’m not quite ready to succumb to full-on paranoia and move into a Unabomber Shack in the woods or anything just yet (as if moving to the mountains would help anyhow), but the outright trampling of the Bill of Rights in the name of
Securityover the past couple years has got me worried. And I think it’s just going to get worse as the gummint continues to fight the War on Terror.
- It just seems as if Defending the Bill of Rights is turning into a losing battle. Sigh. [some guy]
- U student antiwar group finds itself on watch list
because of an alleged plot by members to leave cars in intersections to block traffic at a future demonstration,but apparently that’s not an idea they’ve had or discussed.
- Terror is more hype than risk, according to 85% of businesses insured with the Hartford, who have mostly declined to take on
Terrorism Insuranceeven though it’s less than an addition 10% in cost.
- Mall Wants to Drop Peace T-Shirt Charges [warning: popups]. They desperately want to drop them. Remember when Ari Fleischer warned that Americans need to
watch what they say? Well, apparently we need to watch what we wear, too. [fark!]
- If you catch this early enough in the day, and think it might help stop a U.S. invasion of Iraq, go sign the Emergency Appeal to the U.N.. Personally, I don’t think it’ll stop the wheels that have been in motion for over a year, but maybe I’ll be surprised.
- The Nathan Hale blog is the blog of a foreign policy discussion group begun by a bunch of Yalies and their friends working in foreign relations in Washington, D.C.
- Hey, it’s Ash Wednesday already. And I almost completely missed Fat Tuesday. Then again, with the goofy sleep schedule I’ve had lately, I’m surprised I even know what day it is. I started correcting things last night by managing to stay up until 10pm, almost four hours past when I was tired and felt like going to bed. The only real alternative was to wrap around the other direction, and I didn’t feel up to that.
- I’ve gotten back to adding to the Geography section of the site, adding The West Bank and a couple others to the list. I'm slowly filling in the blanks.
- Hard Times at City Hall in Minneapolis. Basically what the city’s done is rack up a ton of debt over the past ten years or so, and now with a drop in income, the monthly payments have gotten unmanageable.
- Warren Buffet talks Avoiding a ‘Mega-Catastrophe’. He’s worried by the huge derivatives market and the domino effect that can bring down seemingly unrelated companies when one runs into trouble. I agree that there’s a problem, but (yeah, I’m about to argue with the Oracle of Omaha) I think Warren misses the mark on what the real problem is.
There are two problems that make derivatives dangerous. The first is a lack of information—the current highly-regulated financial markets require disclosure, but the GAAP leave so much room for obfuscation that figuring out an annual report is beyond most people. I think this is a problem that can be solved.
The second problem is a lack of (personal) responsibility. Given the current law in America, corporations have the same rights as individuals, but lack the responsibility for their actions that individuals have. The lack of balance between rights and responsibilities for corporations makes them easy (and profitable) to abuse, and derivatives are a symptom of that imbalance. Correcting the problems with derivatives would mean addressing this imbalance. Don’t hold your breath waiting for that reform. It wouldn’t be good for business. [some guy]
- Yesterday I tried to stop by TCF Bank to add the Better Nerds d/b/a to the checking account there. After sitting and waiting for more than a half-hour to see someone, I got told that the photocopies of the state form I’d brought with weren’t good enough and they had to have the originals. Fine. Apparently banking there for most of the past twenty years doesn’t count for anything (like maybe giving me the right information when I’d phoned ahead asking what I should bring). So I went home, picked up all the corporate papers, and walked over to Eastbank. In less time than I’d spent waiting at TCF they’d set up a shiny new business checking account for me, complete with the d/b/a. That’s how it’s supposed to work.
- After dealing with the banks, I was just tired. I ate some dinner, watched a little (like 45 minutes) TV, and crashed about 8pm. Thus the early update today. I was wide awake at 3am. Bad planning on my part.
- I picked up some Mrs. Freshley's hamburger buns the other day. Blegh. They were dry, and almost biscuit-like. I see on their website where they
reformulated their product linewith the goal of an
increase in product shelf life.Well, the reformulation seems to be to leave out as much water as possible so nothing can rot. It doesn’t make the stuff very edible, though.
Speaking of bad bread experiences, I tried some Brownberry Dutch Country Multi-Grain bread the other day. Christ on a crutch, what is it about multi-grain bread where the manufacturer decides they don’t actually need to grind the flour? I mean this stuff kinda looks like bread, but when you take a bit into it, you’re going to have little sharp kernels of whatever grains they put in there chewing up the inside of your mouth. I mean it tastes alright, but it hurts. Not recommended.
Tasty Gravel 150x200(14k)
- And now in more
realnews, WNMR - War No More Radio! is broadcasting over the net on a part-time basis. It’ll probably go full-time when the shooting starts. [some guy]
- Senators Seek Moratorium on Government Data-Mining which may help in the fight against CAPPS II. And since Delta’s the first airline to announce they were going to implement CAPPS II, perhaps avoiding flying on Delta would be a good start. [boing boing]
- Net Hacker Tool du Jour: Google.
When your medical records are indexed in Google, something’s wrong.Indeed. [scripting]
- Are those people flying to Iraq Human Shields or Mercenaries? Looking at the Geneva Convention, it’s quite possible that they should be considered mercenaries. [flutterby]
- The Mill City Museum won’t be opening until September 13th, but they’ve got their website up and running already so you can find out what’s up. That’s quite a change from even a few years ago, when a project like this probably wouldn’t have a website until months after the museum had opened.
- Guidebook author hits oddity bonanza in Minnesota, including goodies like the world’s largest otter (in Fergus Falls), the Spam museum (in Austin), and the sandpaper museum (in Two Harbors). Yeah, there’s plenty of goofy stuff here in MN. [strib]
- For the first time ever, The America's Cup has been won by a country without a coastline (Switzerland). [fark!]
- The Anti-Bloggies for 2003 have begun! The only award that matters! Well, except for all the others. [davezilla]
- Stavros the Wonderchicken spews out Dirt Stick Stone. He’s talking about the latest attempt at viral marketing, and in this case, it’ll probably get the product some publicity. But in the long run, it will help identify the shills in the blogging world, and people can choose to pay attention to them or not. [emptybottle]
- Hey, the Southeast Angle now has their stories (well last month’s stories) online, and apparently has been doing this since April last year. I found out about it by reading the paper version. Once again, I wonder why I was not informed.
- Lysistrata is a 2300+ year old anti-war comedy by Aristaphones. The Lysistrata Project is an event–performances and readings of the play will take place on 03⁄03⁄03 in 807 locations in 49 countries (the count keeps going up).
There are 16 readings in the Twin Cities followed by a procession from the Theater Garage (711 W. Franklin Ave) to Beyond Lysistrata: A Concert for Peace and Justice at The Historic Pantages Theater. Admission to the concert is $10 and money raised supports Move On. [Jim]
- On the other side of the war question is LiberateIraq. The freedomdogs have some pictures of them distributing posters. When I hear someone say
Free Tibet), I always think of it as a special offer.
Hurry! Quantities are limited![some guy]
- When Cops Play Soldier, Protesters Become the Enemy describes how police dealt with protesters on February 15th.
But protest organizers, lawyers, and scores of demonstrators say they witnessed problems that run far deeper—and that are far more troubling—than the rudeness, overzealouness, and occasional violence from individual officers that often surface at demonstrations in New York City. They see a pattern—and even a policy—of civil liberties infringements that does not bode well for a democracy, especially in a time of unpopular war.Also check out the related articles cited at the end. [endwar]
- Feds Testing Air Passengers Check System has more on CAPPS II, including some comments on why profiling doesn’t work:
I had some air-travel planned for May. I’m currently rethinking it and wondering if I shouldn’t just drive and avoid the TSA entirely. [endwar]
The whole track record of profiling is a very poor to mixed one,Hudson said, noting profiles of the Unabomber and the Washington-area snipers were wrong.
- Is John Ashcroft Out of Control? It sure seems like it. But he’s probably not the only one in government who’s trying to turn this country into a police state. [scripting]
- The current police-state atmosphere has got me thinking more about H. L. Mencken’s take on The Land of the Free.
- Enzi aims to exempt hobby rockets from [Homeland Security] bill. If the exemption isn’t passed, you’ll need special ATF permission to launch model rockets. [fark!]
- Coming soon at an airport near you: Passengers To Get Their Own Terror Warning Labels. Get a red flag on the background check (which includes your credit history), and you won’t be able to fly.
- In Liars Club, the City Pages looks into the case of John Knight, a candidate for the sixth district seat on the Hennepin County Commission who lied in a campaign statement. I don’t know that criminal prosecution is the right answer, but if he’d been elected, I think it would be serious enough that he should have been thrown out of office. Then again, I think that legislators who break their oath to defend and uphold the Constitution should be tossed, too.
- Wired has an interview with Ralph Nader, Patent Buster. In it, Nader talks about the expenses of dealing with bad patents. It fills in the details I hinted at yesterday.
- The Copyright Office has posted Reply Comments on Rulemaking on Anticircumvention. These are the comments people sent in explaining why the DMCA prohibitions of circumventing copy protection are Bad Things. [boing boing]
- Buffy Slayed after seven seasons. Major Bummage. [flutterby]
- Make Cthuugle Ph'nglui Search Fhtagn! your search engine of choice! Or maybe not. [davezilla]
- Last Month
The official press release is now online at http://www.machack.com/pr/3_25_03.html.
For Immediate Release:
Spunky MacHack stays on Calendar Despite Apple WWDC Move
Dearborn, Michigan – Where does a 600-pound gorilla sit? Anywhere it wants is the punch line to that one.
What does a small, focused and vital programmers' conference do when Apple's Worldwide Developer Conference suddenly reschedules to an adjacent date?
MacHack, the Advanced Developers Hands-On Conference, keeps its date and tries to make things work for all attendees.
Leadership and management of MacHack announced today that it was retaining its traditional dates in the third week in June, and will meet June 19-21 as scheduled.
Speakers, sessions, travel plans, people have had arrangements in place
for months now, Dave Koziol, conference chairman said.
Our dates may
make it difficult for some to attend both conferences, and we intend to
work with them to find ways for them to continue to participate. MacHack
offers many things to attendees beyond what they can learn at WWDC. There
is plenty of expertise in a lot of areas committed to a strong MacHack.
MacHack organizers intend to continue offering attendees the unique experience that the show has rendered to developers since the early days of Macintosh success with System 3.2. The show continues to garner fierce loyalty from its supporters.
Miro Jurisic, a five-year attendee of the show, said
I wouldn't be who I
am today if it weren't for MacHack, and I don't want to lose that
opportunity to learn and interact. I would reschedule every other event in
order to attend MacHack.
MacHack traditionally consists of three days of intense sessions and off-the-cuff development of innovative programs that are showcased at the Friday night "Best Hack Contest."
Avi Drissman, this year's MacHack Sessions chairman, said the experiences at MacHack allow developers to truly reap the benefits of Apple hardware and software, and give expert users a chance to go beyond customary marketed capabilities of Apple products.
What Apple says at the Worldwide Developer Conference is all nice theory,
how things should work; what our sessions do is delve into how things _do_
work. Sessions like these provide the return on investment for companies
and individuals, Drissman said.
Technical papers formatted in academic style are also part of the MacHack experience. Each year, 10 or more formal papers give in depth looks at current developer issues. This year's papers already under development include safeguarding use of commercial wireless networks, hacking possibilities of Mac OS X, extending Palm OS 5, and building POSIX features in a Mac way.
Scott Boyd, co-founder of The MacHax Group, and ringleader of the annual Best Hack Contest, loves the creative chaos of the contest, and the long-term friendships that result.
Nowhere but MacHack can you sit down with and get to know such an amazing
array of experts who so freely share what they know, Boyd said.
nothing like working with talented people to pull off a great hack!
Past entries have ranged from the bizarre and twisted to the simply-useful. Rendering the whole screen in ASCII in real-time, a shooting gallery of icons during boot time, NetBunny, Pong in Open Firmware, and even Undo in the Finder (back when that was unheard of).
Collaboration in an environment where there's always somebody with the
right answer, mixed with a bit of caffeinated, sleep-deprived time
pressure, is a sure-fire way to make friends, cement working relationships,
and have a blast, said Boyd.
This year's MacHack will continue the proud tradition of wackiness and intensity that attendees have praised since the early days of Juggler and MultiFinder.
Up to date information on the conference can be found at http://www.machack.com/
Papers to be presented at MacHack 18: A partial list.
Well, last weekend, beautiful weather. This week, rain and sleet. But now the days are longer than the nights again, and it’s officially spring. War or no war, that’s something worth noting.
Welcome to everyone coming from Scripting News and TidBITS!
I've moved all the information about the WWDC change to Apple’s monkey-wrench in my summer.
I’m finding it a bit frustrating that I can’t find a site online where I can point to today’s weather. You’d think NOAA or someone would have an archive so I could look at what the weather was like in Minneapolis a year ago next Monday. Anyway, after the nice warm weather of last weekend, all the added moisture in the air from the melting snow has meant foggy mornings so far this week. Today it’s just clouds, and I have no hope that the fog is going to burn off.
Gray mornings make it tougher for me to get going in the morning. There’s no real sunrise, but rather just a gradual lightening, and it seems to add at least an hour to the time it takes me to really feel awake in the morning. Couple that with a day where the forecast is for rain, and all the talk about the imminent shooting in Iraq, and even though I feel as though I should have a productive day today, it’s feeling like a good day to curl up under a blanket with a book.
Flaws Put Open Source on Hot Seat talks about the security hole that I spent most of the past 20 hours fixing. It was a simple patch that should have just dropped in, but when I applied it to the source for my OS, I suddenly lost the ability to compile sshd (which I use to connect to the server). Things rapidly went downhill from there, and the upshot was that a simple update that I started at 8pm yesterday took until almost 6pm today to get applied and get the server running correctly again.
Problems along the way? Flaky CVS servers meant that when I was trying to first fetch the patches, and then later fetch an entire new source-tree for my OS, I was getting partial updates that wouldn’t build. I tried to reinstall the OS from CD, but that left me vulnerable to the security hole, and I still couldn’t recompile. The I upgraded my OS, and got things partly working, but because the new version of the OS has a chrooted web-server, tons of my web-stuff stopped working. Also, the default install of the web-server didn’t include PHP so I had to recompile to get that into the mix. And in PHP, the htmlspecialchars function changed behavior, so any place I had a form that accepted text from the user changed how it behaved suddenly. It took another hour to find that and go back and add in the extra parameter I needed so it would behave the way I expected.
All of these problems were compounded by the fact that I tried to apply the update on a Friday evening, and didn’t leave enough time to get things done correctly. Oh well, at least it was a weekend when I had a number of my customer’s sites dead in the water (and then only for a while this afternoon). In all, a pretty unsatisfying experience, though. I think the answer is that I need to set up a second server again so I can apply updates to that first and verify that they actually work before updating the production server. Yeah, it’s extra hassle, but it’s got to be better than the software hell I’ve been dealing with yesterday and today.
I've got some serious server hose-age going on at the moment. The websites are all fine, and I got mail working again (kinda), but if you were experiencing problems last night, I'm aware of them. And I get to spend my weekend trying to make the server work right again. Ugh.
Skot over at Izzle! Izzle pfaff! is pretty amusing. You should maybe go read some of his stuff today, because I got nothin’. No linky goodness. No updates on the site. I spent yesterday writing some more code to make it easier for me to rant at you, but it ain’t finished. I don’t even have a good ramble about just how much nothin’ I got. [emptybottle]
My DSL connection from home was dead this morning, so the update today was late. Stone knives and bear-skins to even get this much posted. Ugh.