Monday, December 28, 2009
Sunday, December 27, 2009
On the environmental front, Copenhagen hosts a massive international conference aimed at halting manmade global warming, attended by thousands of delegates who flew to Denmark on magical carbon-free unicorns.
I almost fell off my chair, ROTFLMAO
Saturday, December 26, 2009
If you believe in Santa, stop reading now.
Everyone else, remember that gap from when you stopped believing, until the influx of gifts shifted from toys (read: cool stuff) to socks and sweaters? Remember trying to open the wrapping just a tiny little bit, trying to see enough of a hint to know what was inside of the package?
Watch this video, we are obviously a lot older than what we think we are. Kids nowadays have access to iPhones and other camera phones that can read and look up a barcode. What’s next? X-ray vision?
Thursday, December 24, 2009
Thursday, December 17, 2009
Wednesday, December 9, 2009
Saturday, December 5, 2009
Wednesday, November 11, 2009
Tuesday, November 10, 2009
Dawning horror tinged with self-loathing crept slowly over the face of claims adjuster Robert Pettlebaum, 42, as he described his job and by extension his life to others during a seemingly innocuous Tuesday lunch meeting. “Mostly what I do is I seek out discrepancies in the property appraisal versus the claimant’s estimate of worth and then I…then I defer outpays…with…oh, God…,
Let’s try this:
I am a lead web applications developer. My job is to read my customer’s mind to figure out what she really wants, which is usually different from both what she wrote in the email and what she told my boss she wanted. I then decide the proper course of action to deliver as close as possible to the request, well knowing that since my boss was told a different story, I will have to convince him that I am not retarded and that I am actually doing what the customer wants. Then I have to show it to the customer and convince her that this is what she wanted me to do and that yes, we can make that font bigger if needed. I will then spend the next 70% of my budget on providing the right functionality, only to be pushed on a side track because my customer’s boss didn’t like the look and feel and the whole thing has to be redesigned, regardless of how well the functionality actually performs. Finally, I have to orchestrate the transition from the current product to the new one, a comedy of horrors that involves a week of planning, dry runs, lots of CYA and about 15 minutes of pure horror.
And that is assuming that I am the only one doing the programming.
If there is more than one programmer, then it gets interesting. I have to worry about my own work, plus I have to worry that the right information is delivered to my coworkers so they can do their job, while at the same time making sure that the customer doesn’t confuse/annoy either my boss or my coworkers.
I also have to worry about blending all this work together, which thanks God is not that big of a deal because all of the programmers know what the hell they are doing, so it is mostly a traffic management exercise. Some of my peers at other companies don’t enjoy this luxury, so this step of the process is usually described as “herding cats.”
Many years ago I was told that in a software programming project, no more than 20% of the effort is spent writing code. I thought that was bullshit but now I know better. Am I horrified? No, but I know people elsewhere that are not going to make it long in this field simply because they can’t grasp this idea.
Monday, November 9, 2009
Saturday, November 7, 2009
Today, Ranking Member of the House Ways and Means Committee Dave Camp (R-MI) released a letter from the non-partisan Joint Committee on Taxation (JCT) confirming that the failure to comply with the individual mandate to buy health insurance contained in the Pelosi health care bill (H.R. 3962, as amended) could land people in jail. The JCT letter makes clear that Americans who do not maintain “acceptable health insurance coverage” and who choose not to pay the bill’s new individual mandate tax (generally 2.5% of income), are subject to numerous civil and criminal penalties, including criminal fines of up to $250,000 and imprisonment of up to five years.
Ouch, more change we can believe in.
Friday, November 6, 2009
Michael Grippo, a 95-year-old Bronx native, told reporters Wednesday that he is “worried sick” that he won’t live to see the Yankees win another 27 World Series titles. “We came so close in 1955, 1960, 1976, 2001, and 2004.
95-Year-Old Yankees Fan Afraid He’ll Never Get To See Team Win 27 More World Series | The Onion - America’s Finest News Source
Thursday, November 5, 2009
The USS New York (LPD 21), built with 7.5 tons of steel from the World Trade Center wreckage, sailed into New York City on Nov. 2. The San Antonio-class amphibious transport dock will be commissioned into the U.S. fleet at 11 a.m., Nov. 7, at Piers 86 and 88 in New York Harbor.
USS New York to be commissioned Saturday | American Legion
Monday, November 2, 2009
Don’t accept your dog’s admiration as conclusive evidence that you are wonderful.
I always assumed it was adoration, not admiration. In all my life I never felt like any of my dogs admired me much, but all of them loved me to death.
Let this serve as a warning to us all. Iceland has universal health care and now they have no more McDonald’s.
McDonald’s Abandons Iceland | The Onion - America’s Finest News Source
Friday, October 30, 2009
Thursday, October 29, 2009
The House health care bill unveiled Thursday clocks in at 1,990 pages and about 400,000 words. With an estimated 10-year cost of $894 billion, that comes out to about $2.24 million per word.
$2.24 million per word in that bill. WTF?
Dress your child in all-black costume to make him/her virtually invisible to potentially dangerous motorists.
Halloween Safety Tips | The Onion - America’s Finest News Source
Wednesday, October 28, 2009
Thursday, October 22, 2009
Mister Sandman - The Chordettes (via PomplamooseMusic)
It pisses me off to see so many talentless hacks out there with record deals for mediocre “music” while the truly talented stay underground. There should be a line of record executives begging Pomplamoose for the privilege of distributing their music for an obscene amount of money.
If you think this video is awesome, you should also check their Beyonce cover. It is simply brilliant.
Wednesday, October 14, 2009
Last year, armed UAVs circled Iraq and Afghanistan for 135,000 hours — about fifteen years of nonstop flight time. This year, they will fly 190,000 hours, double that if you include all of the military’s unmanned planes. Even as troops come home from Iraq and Afghanistan in coming years, the Air Force figures it will need more than one million UAV hours annually to be prepared for future wars. There are also drones flying antidrug missions in South America, keeping watch over ships in pirate-thick waters, and patrolling the U. S.-Mexican border. This year the Air Force will train more UAV pilots than fighter and bomber pilots combined. And the proof that warfare will never be the same again can be found in the Pentagon budget: Next year, the United States will buy more unmanned aircraft than manned, as it expands to fifty combat air patrols over Iraq and Afghanistan, flown from Creech and bases in Texas, California, Arizona, North Dakota, and New York.
Here it is, with hard numbers: Almost FIFTEEN frickin years of accumulated unmanned combat operations in just one year. And the USAF is ramping up their estimates to over a million hours of unmanned flights per year.
W.E.B. Griffin jokes that if you want to fly, you join the Army, not the Air Force. Why? Because the Army has more aircraft. This is probably going to change now, especially since the physical requirements to fly from a desk should allow more otherwise qualified candidates to go through flight school. That is unless some dumbass USAF general decides to force them all to pas the same requirements, which is costly and simply stupid.
And let’s not forget the political side of this: if you shoot down one of our UAVs, all you are doing is costing us money. There is no flag-draped casket on the news, or POW reading your manifesto on videotape with a knife to his throat. Nope, it’s just money.
Also, there’s more: we are making smaller and smaller air-to-ground rockets. Miss a drop on a 500-pound bomb and you may end up blowing up a school or hospital by accident. Newer munitions are tiny in comparison, and much more accurate. It’ll be much harder to miss, and if it does, it will be a lot less damage.
How is the anti-war establishment going to adjust to a war in which we are the ones doing the killing, our service members are safe and there is no real collateral damage? We will see about that.
Monday, October 12, 2009
Sunday, October 11, 2009
Friday, October 9, 2009
This is ridiculous — embarrassing, even. I admire President Obama. I like President Obama. I voted for President Obama. But the peace prize? This is supposed to be for doing, not being — and it’s no disrespect to the president to suggest he hasn’t done much yet. Certainly not enough to justify the peace prize. “Extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples?” “[C]aptured the world’s attention and given its people hope for a better future?” Please. This turns the award into something like pee-wee soccer: everybody wins for trying.
PostPartisan - A Nobel for a Good Two Weeks?
Thursday, October 1, 2009
Thursday, September 24, 2009
Wednesday, September 23, 2009
Monday, September 21, 2009
Sunday, September 20, 2009
Wednesday, September 16, 2009
Tuesday, September 15, 2009
Researchers have developed a device that can automatically identify autistic children as young as 24 months using the vocalizations they make during a normal day at home. Instead of waiting months or years for an appointment with a specialist, parents could get an objective diagnosis by mail in a couple of weeks.
Technology Review: A Device to Spot Autism Early
Monday, September 14, 2009
What could Barack Obama do to help Massachusetts? He owns a 14-room, 6500 square foot house in Chicago (using fossil fuels to heat 6500 square feet for a family of four in one of the coldest parts of the U.S. is apparently a demonstration of one’s commitment to reversing global warming) that presumably sits vacant nearly all year. The house is guarded 24/7 by Secret Service agents. The street is closed to non-residents. Why can’t Aunt Zeituni live there? She wouldn’t be bothered by the rabble or the press. She wouldn’t be a drain on Massachusetts citizens.
Fantastic essay by Phil Greenspun. He even offers to pick her up at her public housing, drive her to the airport, buy her a ticket and arrange for a friend to pick her up at the airport.
Tuesday, September 8, 2009
Thursday, September 3, 2009
Tuesday, September 1, 2009
One of these things is not like the other things. (via yumchuckit)
Also known as the “programmer’s song.” It is a dirty little secret for those of us that debug code for a living.
And yes, we sing the song while troubleshooting, and yes, we say “I’m so smart!” when we find the bug.
Monday, August 31, 2009
My job is so farking unbelievable. I’ll try to sum it up by first telling you about the folks I work with:
First, there is this supermodel wanna-be chick. Yeah, okay, she is pretty hot, but damn is she completely useless. The girl is constantly fixing her hair or putting on makeup. She is extremely self-centered and has never once considered the needs or wants of anyone but herself. She is as dumb as a box of rocks, and I still find it surprising that she has enough brain power to continue to breathe.
The next chick is completely the opposite. She might even be one of the smartest people on the planet. Her career opportunities are endless, and yet she is here with us. She is a zero on a scale of 1 to 10. I’m not sure she even showers, much less shaves her “womanly” parts. I think she might be a lesbian, because every time we drive by the hardware store, she moans like a cat in heat.
But the jewel of the crowd has got to be the farking stoner. And this guy is more than just your average pothead. In fact, he is baked before he comes to work, during work, and I’m sure after work. He probably hasn’t been sober anytime in the last ten years, and he’s only 22. He dresses like a beatnik throwback from the 1960’s, and to make things worse, he brings his big farking dog to work. Every farking day I have to look at this huge Great Dane walk around half-stoned from the second-hand smoke. Hell, sometimes I even think it’s trying to talk with its constant bellowing. Also, both of them are constantly hungry, requiring multiple stops to McDonalds and Burger King, every single farking day.
Anyway, I drive these farktards around in my van and we solve mysteries and shiat.
FARK.com: (4608830) Man in a van collecting stories of the recession, living down by the river,comment by McKeesport Beer Baron
Sunday, August 30, 2009
Thursday, August 27, 2009
Thursday, August 20, 2009
The #earworm of the day is actually a Freudian Slip: I was in a conference call with my boss and my ops manager and I started humming it, without thinking about the title. The boss asked me if I was humming that for the customer that I was complaining about just a minute or so before.
Wednesday, August 19, 2009
Sunday, August 16, 2009
Saturday, August 15, 2009
Thursday, August 13, 2009
Monday, August 10, 2009
Thursday, August 6, 2009
Tuesday, August 4, 2009
Thursday, July 30, 2009
Monday, July 27, 2009
Wednesday, July 22, 2009
Tuesday, July 21, 2009
Saturday, July 18, 2009
Monday, July 13, 2009
Saturday, July 11, 2009
Wednesday, July 8, 2009
Friday, July 3, 2009
The sport of choice for the urban poor is basketball. The sport of choice for maintenance level employees is bowling. The sport of choice for front-line workers is football. The sport of choice for supervisors is baseball. The sport of choice for middle management is tennis. The sport of choice for corporate officers is golf. Conclusion: The higher you are in the corporate structure, the smaller your balls become.
Sunday, June 28, 2009
The problem with defending the purity of the English language is that English is about as pure as a cribhouse whore. We don’t just borrow words; on occasion, English has pursued other languages down alleyways to beat them unconscious and rifle their pockets for new vocabulary.
James Nicoll (via srsly)
Tuesday, June 23, 2009
Monday, June 22, 2009
Paul Simon - Kodachrome (via ann6079)
Mama didn’t take my Kodachrome away, but Kodak just did. Do I miss it? Not really, Kodachrome was always a bit too expensive for me, so I shot almost all of my slides in Elitechrome. Plus I lost interest the second I was allowed to shoot some samples with what almost immediately became my first digital camera, a Sony DSC-S70.
Monday, June 15, 2009
Wednesday, June 10, 2009
Tuesday, June 9, 2009
Monday, June 8, 2009
Wednesday, June 3, 2009
Monday, June 1, 2009
Saturday, May 30, 2009
Regina Spektor - “Dance Anthem of the 80’s”
Off her latest album, Far, out June 23rd.
In a shocking, SHOCKING, turn of events, there are still some artists out there that sound distinctly unique instead of the homogenized crap that is being fed to this generation’s kids. The sad thing is that artists like Regina Spektor are maybe one in 200.
Worse it is to look back at the 60’s, 70’s and 80’s. Even with all the crap, there were still a LOT of talent acts out there. I guess that music is also going through some kind of recession.
If you haven’t tried it, check out some of her previous work. Regina Spektor is a fantastic musician, not just a pretty face singing somebody else’s lyrics to the tune of somebody else’s music.
Friday, May 29, 2009
Tuesday, May 26, 2009
Monday, May 25, 2009
V - Upfront Trailer (via rabbidtelevision)
This is too awesome. I guess Holywood did run out of ideas, so it is OK to stop trying and instead start remaking everything.
The funny thing about remakes is that there’s always a camp that will resist them with furious anger. Just take a look at Star Trek: awesome remake, anda small segment of the fans hate it under general principles.
Galactica? same thing. And now “V.”
Saturday, May 23, 2009
These children had a meeting with the President of the United States and were told to be there by 9:30 AM.
The staff waited for them until 10:30 AM. When they finally showed up, more than one hour late, they were of course turned away because President Obama HAS TO GO BACK TO THE BUSINESS OF RUNNING A COUNTRY, and can’t sit with his thumb up his ass waiting for people to show up for their meetings, late.
Lesson learned: be on time. You can’t possible tell these kids it is OK to show up one hour late for something that is so important, then whine when you lose your appointment. The real world does NOT work like that.
You schedule a meeting with me and you don’t call me to tell me that you are late, I won’t move anything in my schedule to make room for you, regardless of who the hell you are. If I find a hole later, fine. If not? Not my problem, I was at my desk on time.
This is something that I am glad that the US Army taught me. The whole idea of being late for anything, be it a work appointment, or even a routine checkup at the dentist, is foreign to me. I live 2 miles from my dentist, if I have an appointment and I know I am not going to walk into his office 10 minutes early, I call to let them know.
All it takes is a phone call, and maybe they can use that time to handle another patient while I am trying to make it to his office.
Friday, May 22, 2009
Thursday, May 21, 2009
Tuesday, May 19, 2009
Monday, May 18, 2009
Sunday, May 17, 2009
Saturday, May 16, 2009
Back in the dot-com days I used to share an office with a really nice guy who by pure chance happened to share my weird tastes in music. Probably in part because back when we were younger and dumber he used to play for a glam metal band (and as far as I can tell, he still plays to this day).
We would close the office door and blast Uriah Heep and Deep Purple for hours, we used to call it our “decadent music” time, which was great because nobody bothered us except whenever we annoyed the people in the offices at either side of our hall.
Friday, May 15, 2009
Wednesday, May 13, 2009
In this galaxy there’s a mathematical probability of three million Earth-type planets. And in the universe, three million million galaxies like this. And in all that, and perhaps more…only one of each of us.
Dr. McCoy, Star Trek, “Balance of Terror”
Tuesday, May 5, 2009
You simply can’t make EVERYONE happy, can you?
Sunday, May 3, 2009
Sunday, April 26, 2009
There’s a little box on Amazon that reads ‘Tell the publisher I’d like to read this book on Kindle,’ ” she said. “I hope no one tells the publisher.
Am I the only one that read that and ran straight for Amazon to click on the damn checkbox?
Tuesday, April 21, 2009
You have three people telling project engineers what to do, and nobody’s fucking doing anything,” Bartz said on a conference call with analysts. “We have to … get them focused on the right stuff. That’s the most important thing Yahoo’s going to do to become a big, strong, growing company.
It is sad that this kind of leadership was brought into the company so late. I especially like how she finds bloated management offensive.
Monday, April 20, 2009
Sunday, April 19, 2009
The family of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. has charged the foundation building a monument to the civil rights leader on the National Mall about $800,000 for the use of his words and image - an arrangement one leading scholar says King would have found offensive.
Friday, April 17, 2009
Thursday, April 16, 2009
Reston Tea Party—Opening Remarks (via lesliecarbone)
Let me tell you about irony:
These people were doing their little tax day protest about 1/4 mile from my house. We live in one of the richest counties in the country, Fairfax County, Virginia. Not only it is loaded as hell, but it is VERY liberal (one would expect it to be as conservative as say, Midland, Texas). The people that were in this protest probably drove to it in Volvos and Audis, to complain about paying taxes, when they support a political party that believes in raising taxes and increasing government spending.
I would understand blue collar workers in an economically deprived city complaining about getting taxed to day, but rich people in a rich county complaining about taxes is just weird.
Wednesday, April 15, 2009
Tuesday, April 14, 2009
Monday, April 13, 2009
Sunday, April 12, 2009
It must be really tough being a stupid company on the Internet. Once you make a silly decision and it’s out there, travelling via the Interwebs, you’ll pay for it very dearly - and probably would be paying for it forever, as it is likely to become the first thing that customers discover about you on Google.
#Amazonfail and the politics of anti-corporate cyberactivism | Net Effect
Wednesday, April 8, 2009
Tuesday, March 24, 2009
Saturday, March 21, 2009
The notion that physical books are ending their lifecycle is upsetting to people who hold them to be synonymous with literature and terrifying to those who make their living within the existing structures of publishing. As an editor and a lover of books, I sympathize. But why should a civilization that reads electronically be any less literate than one that harvests trees to do so? And why should a transition away from the printed page lessen our appreciation and love for printed books? Hardbacks these days are disposable vessels, printed on ever crappier paper with bindings that skew and crack. In a world where we do most of our serious reading on screens, books may again thrive as expressions of craft and design. Their decline as useful objects may allow them to flourish as design objects.
Outstanding article by Jacob Weisberg. A lot of people are freaking out about the Kindle due to a misguided idea that physical books are literature.
They aren’t. They are artifacts. Just because we have the Kindle doesn’t mean we are going to start burning our books. All it really means is that instead of having to keep a god damn wall covered with bookshelf after bookshelf of books that I bought and read once, I can keep a single bookshelf with the 50 or 100 books I own that I re-read every year or so, or books that have a sentimental value for me.
Friday, March 20, 2009
Tuesday, March 17, 2009
At first I didn’t understand why everyone was drinking lots of beer and wearing green today, but now I realize it’s because of Patrick Duffy’s birthday.
Happy Birthday Patrick Duffy | The Onion - America’s Finest News Source
Monday, March 16, 2009
Sunday, March 15, 2009
…France, he said, had made peace with Germany, had forgiven Germany for the brutality of invasion and the humiliation of four years of occupation, but it could never - never - forgive the British and Americans for the liberation.
Very good read with the historical context of the strained relationship between France, the UK and the USA.
Thursday, March 5, 2009
Jon Stewart takes a look at CNBC (via soundofflute)
You need to watch this video so you can see how terrible economy news reporting has been for the past couple of years. It is sad that we have to rely on a comedian in order to get the unvarnished truth in the news, because all that the “real” news networks are giving us is fluff.