Saturday, June 28

Grateful Dead Song Lyrics!: "Casey Jones

Driving that train, high on cocaine,
Casey Jones is ready, watch your speed.
Trouble ahead, trouble behind,
And you know that notion just crossed my mind.

This old engine makes it on time,
Leaves Central Station 'bout a quarter to nine,
Hits River Junction at seventeen to,
At a quarter to ten you know it's travlin' again.

Driving that train, high on cocaine,
Casey Jones is ready, watch your speed.
Trouble ahead, trouble behind,
And you know that notion just crossed my mind.

Trouble ahead, Lady in red,
Take my advice you'd be better off dead.
Switchman's sleeping, train hundred and two is
On the wrong track and headed for you.

Driving that train, high on cocaine,
Trouble ahead, trouble behind,
And you know that notion just crossed my mind.

Trouble with you is the trouble with me,
Got two good eyes but you still don't see.
Come round the bend, you know it's the end,
The fireman screams and the engine just gleams..."

Guardian Unlimited | The Guardian | The final irony: "Germans and irony
Not speaking German, nor watching much German TV, nor having read any German literature apart from Bernard Schlink who, let me tell you, is about as ironic as a dog chasing a squirrel, it's difficult to tell whether or not there's any truth in the rumour that they have no sense of irony. However, since they invented it (well, they invented Schlegel), it's more than likely that they've got plenty. To anyone who thinks I'm insufficiently bigoted, I have serious doubts about the French. "

Thursday, June 26

Wired News: Pulling Up by Their Sandal Straps: "
Success created other problems. Some of the firm's managers misappropriated money, corrupt police shook down Ecosandals' workers, and armed robbers raided the company's offices. Although no one was injured and little was stolen, the robbery scared the workers so much that the company had to move out of the center of Korogocho into a guarded building with locks on the doors.

Even with the revenues flowing in, local realities made it difficult to save and invest.

'The sandal makers are so poor, and their neighbors are so poor. It's very difficult to leave 100,000 or 200,000 shillings (about $1,400 to $2,800) in the bank when you know that people need medicine to survive,' said Meyer. It is not uncommon for Kenyans to die because they cannot afford medications for treatable ailments.

Take an existing p2p app like
Gnutella. Add some sort of metadata
to the id3 tag, like "copyrighted: no"
and then use it to distribute and find
uncopyrighted music.

Give users the ability to rate songs or
mark them as illegal copies.

Eventually, people just start sharing
tons of good, free stuff.

Oh, and I want it to have some sort
of collaborative recommendation
engine. And a puppy. - N.J. man pleads guilty to posting `Hulk' bootleg: "
Gonzalez told U.S. Magistrate Judge Gabriel W. Gorenstein that he knew what he was doing was wrong. Asked by reporters afterward whether he liked the movie, Gonzalez said: 'I haven't even watched it.'

'Just don't make him angry,' his attorney, Matthew V. Portella, joked to reporters later. 'You won't like him when he's angry.'

Tuesday, June 24

Tropism - QuickTopic bulletin board

Well, it's all relative, isn't it? When I was in college (taking a full courseload and working 20 hours a week), writing 5,000 words a day was not even remotely extraordinary. 8 and 10,000 word days were pleasant but far from unheard of. I did 15,000 words one day (and that was after working 4 hours in the morning at an office job).

Now? Now I get a thousand words a day if I'm extraordinarily vigilant. Which I haven't been lately.

And, lest you be tempted to believe that there is some quantity/quality trade-off, I'll note that many of the stories in the collection were written during that period of great productivity. I started to slack off in the year 2000, as near as I can tell... when I moved to California, more or less.

And I'm not just writing less -- I'm writing more *slowly*. I used to have a comfy cruising altitude of 2,000 words per hour. Now it's more like half that. I'm worried the progression will progress. As I get older, I gain weight and write more slowly. It kind of sucks.

Monday, June 23

Division of State History / Utah Heritage Tourism Toolkit - Forest Service Cabin & Lookout Rentals
The USDA Forest Service allows the public to rent surplus historic properties on the National Forests for overnight use. Over 150 properties are available, mostly in the western USA. Fees collected are used for the maintenance and preservation of the properties. Some properties are managed by local nonprofit organizations or commercial campground concessionaires.

Heritage Resources: Fire lookout towers are perhaps the best-known of the Forest Service's historic structures. They come in a variety of styles from ground cabins to small cabs atop 70-foot steel towers. Some are accessible only by foot or snowmobiles in the winter. All are situated atop mountains where they have a clear view of their surroundings. The majority of rental properties are surplus ranger stations, rustic frame or log buildings located by themselves or in small compounds in wooded settings through the national forests. All are accessible by car. Most lookouts and ranger stations were constructed by the Civilian Conservation Corps in the 1930s.

Curta Handhelds
The Curtas originally came in padded metal cases sealed with gaskets. (Later models came in plastic cases.) The Model I had an 8 column "keyboard" (8 slides), 11 digit results and a 6 digit revolution counter. It was 2.1" in diameter by 3.4" long and weighed 8 oz. The Model II had an 11 column keyboard, 15 digit results and an 8 digit revolution counter. It was 2.6" in diameter by 3.6" long and weighed 12.5 oz. Curtas survived the early electronic desktop calculators due to their portability and lower price, but pocket electronic calculators killed the Curtas in 1972. The samples shown are from the 1950s.

Blogging as a Course Management Tool

Sunday, June 22

Street Tech :: hardware beyond the hype This all in one device has changed my life from being a backpack carrying computer gadget man to simple phone carrier, which includes a digital camera, photo album, MP3 player, access to my POP3 email and always on internet access. While the phone is a bit on the bulky side, the fact that it can replace so many devices makes it a device well worth having.

new G5s | Metafilter
While it may be that True Artists Ship, the help knows that Only Steve Unveils.

Friday, June 20

radio free tivo - QuickTopic bulletin board

Wednesday, June 18

Easily Distracted

When all is said and done, I love academia, but still, it hasn?t always been what I sometimes imagined it would be.

I thought I was choosing my dreams and rejecting security, but it turns out I was choosing security at the possible cost of some of my dreams.

What Mostern most accurately identifies is the strange absence of talk between academic professionals about their own work or the larger weave of their intellectual interests. To some extent, this has to do with time, or the lack of it. A professor is also of necessity an administrator and a teacher and a scholar. The work expands to fill any time vacuum: clear a space for some purpose and you quickly find unsought obligations filling it.

As Mostern notes, however, that?s not an adequate explanation of the problem. It?s the alibi that everyone uses to lightly explain away the puzzling vacuum at the heart of academic life.

I had a chance a few years ago to attend a dinner for a guest lecturer. Some of my favorite colleagues from Swarthmore were there. The conversation started with issues that were fairly specific to the speaker?s presentation and work, but very rapidly grew into a fast-paced bull session aimed at the primal question, ?What is a good society?? Afterwards, I talked with one of my colleagues who hadn?t been there about how this had been the best discussion I?d had since I was an undergraduate, and my feeling of melancholy about how rare and odd this conversation actually was. My colleague looked puzzled and said, ?Sounds awfully simplistic".

Why Journals Suck The Everyready Battery Bunny article.

I'm always thrilled to encounter a seminal article which compactly rearranges my thinking about a particular subject. I'm less thrilled when I encounter it in its fourth or fifth incarnation in journals and anthologies, mutated only slightly by cut-and-paste necrophilia.

It's one thing to use journal articles to work on different aspects of a single theme or issue, and another to basically regurgitate the same article repeatedly. This republication isn't usually done with dishonest intent--once a single influential article appears in print, the author often finds himself or herself fending off multiple invitations to publish something very similar to the original. However it happens, this increasingly common kind of publication adds little shelf life to the journals themselves: no need to have six issues of various journals with approximately the same content.

* The Cliff Notes for Scholars Too Busy to Read About the Latest Thing article.

There are scholars--and journals--that specialize in publishing articles which do little more than summarize (and cannibalize) a number of recent arguments on some hot topic without adding much in the way of original analysis to those debates. This kind of synthesis article is typically choked with citations and offers few insights on its subject matter. It therefore has little or no lasting value.

Rock Canyon - Utah Description of hike: This is a good hike through some beautiful country. This hike is good for families with young children. You can stop at any time and turn around. There is a good parking lot with facilities at the trail head. This is a popular canyon for rock climbers so there is oportunity to watch the climbers. In the early spring and summer there is a stream that follows the trail and is very fast and cold. The trail will end at the Rock canyon campground that can be reached by dirt road up the Squaw Peak Road from Provo Canyon

Uinta National Forest Supervisors Office
88 West 100 North
Provo, Utah 84601

Tuesday, June 17

Digital SARS folk art: BoingBoing call for entries - QuickTopic bulletin board
Does anyone else think that this is way overboard? Xeni's SARS coverage is considered to be highly distasteful among my asian friends -- they liken it to a Chinese web site calling for cartoons of September 11th.

I'll bet Xeni's media-whoring hasn't mentioned that a lot of the posts on BoingBoing have called for this to stop or have been against SARS art on grounds of taste and quantity.

HBS Working Knowledge: Innovation: Steve Jobs and Jeff Bezos meet "Ginger"
When the study hall ended, Bezos held up Brian's handout. "I think this plan is dead on arrival," he said. "The U.S.A. is too hostile." The "car guys" were going to lobby against Ginger and they were going to win.

"No they're not," said Brian, smiling.

Bezos suggested starting slow, using one city or country as an experimental station. Once Ginger's benefits were clear, the company would have a wedge to pound into U.S. regulations. The perfect place to begin, thought Bezos, was Singapore. "You only have to convince one guy, the philosopher king, and then you have four million people to test it."

Sunday, June 15

Did You Hear the One About the Suicide Bomber?
But the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks changed everything. Initially, she ceased performing on the logic that this might not be the time for gags about Ramadan or, for that matter, anything funny a Muslim had to offer. Three weeks later, though, she took the stage in a Soho club called Amused Moose and, with a single joke, found the very, very thin line between acceptable comedy and abominable taste: ''My name is Shazia Mirza,'' she said. ''At least that's what it says on my pilot's license.''

Wednesday, June 11

Complexity Digest

Tuesday, June 10

Kick Their Ass and Take Their Gas: Democracy Comes to Iraq
Yet if history is any guide, the people of Iraq will not submit meekly to this latest form of tyranny. Resistance will escalate, and so will repression.

Bremer, arriving in Baghdad with a mandate to restore order and security, is a counterterrorism specialist who favors hardline measures, including "targeted killings." So the near future isn't hard to guess: dissenters will be jailed, "disappeared," assassinated, or simply mowed down with automatic weapons.

They will of course be branded as recalcitrant Saddamists, Iranian spies, and al-Qaeda terrorists. Given what we know about the goals and nature of the occupation government, it might be more accurate to call them freedom fighters.

Sunday, June 8

Salam Pax Is Real - How do I know Baghdad's famous blogger exists? He worked for me. By Peter Maass
In early May, I agreed to hand over a fantastic interpreter I had been working with to a colleague who could offer him long-term employment, as I would be leaving the country at the end of the month. I needed a new interpreter to fill the gap for two weeks or so, and the colleague mentioned that he had just met a smart and friendly guy named Salam. I quickly traced Salam to the Sheraton Hotel. Salam—this is his real first name—was sitting in a chair in the lobby, reading Philip K. Dick's The Man in the High Castle. I knew, at that moment, that I would hire him.

Monday, June 2

Guardian Unlimited | Special reports | Salam's story
Screens cover the windows to keep the midday sun away from his three computers, each of which has been opened up into a sprawling tangle of wires and circuit boards. A poster from the film The Matrix hangs on the wall, looking down on a jumble of computer books and CDs strewn over the floor. Pages of website addresses and computer commands are tacked to the wall above his screen. It was here that Salam would sit and talk endlessly about the impending war with Raed, who returned to Baghdad before the war, and the friend he describes only as G - Ghaith, another young, intelligent, eloquent architectural graduate who spent much of his adult life dodging military service. They talked eagerly about the demise of Saddam, but they were scared too. Scared of being called up for military service because all young men were reservists, and scared of being obliterated by an American bomb.

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