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10 December 2010 @ 06:13 am
I was wrong. President Obama shouldn't have to watch "Let Bartlet be Bartlet" until he gets it. He should have to watch "On the Day Before." It's all about negotiation. It's also all about not letting people get away with abusing you.

Yeah, President Obama should watch that one a few times. And not wait until his term ends, either. He should have learned those lessons before he ran for the office in the first place.
Current Mood: angryangry
30 November 2010 @ 07:04 pm
A Russian computer scientist named Dmitry Sklyarov likes to crack systems to show that they're not reliable. Recently he did this to a system used in some Canon digital cameras. The cameras use a digital signature system to prevent tampering with photographs; thus, the photos are admissible as evidence. Sklyarov has now proved that they should not be, because it's possible to circumvent the digital signature.

He and his company put up some examples; photos they photoshopped and signed so they look legit. Their choices show they have a good sense of humor :)


Current Mood: amusedamused
30 November 2010 @ 05:20 am
If you could make a cameo appearance on a TV show, which show would you choose, and what type of character would you play?
I'd want to appear as some kind of (print!) journalist on West Wing, asking an incisive question.
28 November 2010 @ 10:29 am
I am Mr. Peanut, and I can be silent no longer. While I have only the greatest respect for Mr. Levine, who is the senior director for marketing at Planters, I cannot live a lie. I'm a gay nut, and Benson and I are in love.

And much, much more, all screamingly funny.

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Current Mood: highly amused
In the course of requesting suggestions for holiday gifts:

Isn't there anything else besides books that you would like to have?

My reply:

Sure. An end to the Iraq War. George W. Bush on trial at the Hague. Obama, ever putting any of the Bush-era war criminals on trial for anything. Rupert Murdoch in retirement or dead. The average American citizen sitting down and thoughtfully reading a book instead of listening to lies told by crazy people on TV every day.

They'd all be nice gifts, but I don't think you can get them for me. C'est la vie. Thanks anyway. Have a nice day.
22 November 2010 @ 06:20 am
My Dad had a birthday last month.

He's a fairly conservative Republican, opposes same-sex marriage, and never reads books. (Somehow, I don't think these facts are unrelated.)

We had been hanging out a month before, for Mom's birthday. He was cooking on the grill and I was helping him. We talked about things.

We "had a moment."

It made me think of a book I'd read, where a daughter and her father have a moment.

So I gave him Fun Home for his birthday.

Didn't think he'd like it, or read it, but I had to give him something, and it put a couple of dollars in Alison Bechdel's pocket. It beat the usual restaurant gift certificate, anyway.

He read it.

He liked it, mostly.

He did say, when I asked if he'd like more graphic novels for future gifts, that I might want to go with different subject matter. I doubt he cared for the explicit sex scenes -- some just Alison by herself, some with her girlfriend Joan.

Still, it's pretty amazing that he liked it at all. It's a fairly deep book. Lots of literary references. Lots of psychological and philosophical musings. Maybe he just let all that go by and stuck to the biographical narrative.

Nice that I got him to read something, anyway.

People. Never know when they're going to surprise you.
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21 November 2010 @ 04:55 am
I suspect aspies would be one group with a much higher than usual rate of asportuality. I'm certainly not interested, and with one exception, I can't recall knowing any other aspies who are. The exception is an engineer I work with, who seems pretty aspie-ish to me, and who is at least somewhat interested in sports -- I know he was following the World Cup.

Must admit, I do like figure skating; but that is a very graceful sport, often done to fine music, and strikes me as more of an art than a sport.
20 November 2010 @ 03:59 pm
A strong and very well-written statement in support of liberal education, in response to a foolish and shortsighted decision, by the president of SUNY Albany, to suspend and eventually close five humanities departments for budgetary reasons.

It's not entirely accurate; the programs in question are thus far only suspended. It is expected that they'll be phased out, but it's not final yet. [Source]
14 November 2010 @ 04:33 am
Was just browsing Google News. Ever notice the overuse of the phrase "brutal murder"?

Is there such a thing as a murder that isn't brutal?
Current Mood: puzzled
14 November 2010 @ 04:25 am
Today, children, we will learn how to be deliciously snarky about a fool and her new TV show (and, in passing, assorted other current foolishness), while simultaneously remaining entirely cultured.


But wait! There's more! At no extra cost, we present "The BP 'I Hate to Clean Up' Cookbook"!

Current Mood: amusedamused