The Sock Diary

Musings of a part-time Sweaty Sock.

Friday, April 29, 2005

I am a bit drunk

I am not drunk, merely intoxicated... the words of my Junior 4 semantics teacher live on. According to SocksWife I am "shitfaced" and should be in bed. Hurrah for half days off with old buddies from millions of years ago when the world was young and I wasn't 34. 34 goddamnit. That's really old. I was supposed to be dead by now due to my lifestyle.

Glad I'm not cos Mrs M (SocksWife) is great and I wouldn't have met her if I was dead. Further lesson on stating the bleeding obvious available on request after buying me four pints of bitter, preferably something from Badger brewery, although 6X is gooooooood.

Archaeologists, new definition, "those people that dig up stuff that's old, I know it's not architect", from me drinking buddy this arvo.

Oh yeah, DeadAirCrew mentioned the VW advert from a recent post today. Cool.

Must sleep. Mmmmmmm, lovely bed.

Wednesday, April 27, 2005

Blogger Ran Out Of Memory

Oh yeah, and Blogger was down earlier on and off because it ran out of server memory. Shaking my head here. I'll post the full exception message to anyone who asks for it. Suffice to say here that the Apache server couldn't create any more threads as it ran of RAM to run in.

CD Baby - CD delivered!

After ordering my new CD from CD Baby to try out the site, and buying it from the US no less, I got it today. All in about 15 dollars inc delivery and got it within 5 days. Amazing. Very impressed.

Have bunged the CD onto the ipod. Will listen on way into work tomorrow (as my unlistened to podcast playlist increases again as I have been rediscovering Pink Floyd - Pulse, U2 - Under a Blood Red Sky, Boy and War. Brilliant albums all).

Attorney General's Advice

Further to my previous post:

The Beeb also have the leaked document and had a comment from the Attorney General saying the document just backed up what has already been said about his advice by the Government. Not quite sure how a document giving both sides of the argument, with strong caveats about the legal repercussions of going to war within a 2nd UN resolution and substantial proof can be claimed to back-up the document which had no caveats and assured the Cabinet and Parliament that the war was legal under international law. Is this the WMD dossier (JIC report) argument writ larger? The caveats had also been removed from that, allegedly by the Labour government. There's a theme developing here.

Still can't believe I saw Blair on Sky saying he'd never lied!

Prince Charles and Ellen MacArthur Highlight Endangered Albatross

Prince Charles and Ellen MacArthur (the yachtswoman) have taken part in a RSPB dinner tonight, joining the campaign to highlight the massive toll taken by long-line fishing on albatross and other seabirds. Hopefully we'll avoid another extinction event to rival the dodo. Hopefully celebrity endorsement such as Prince Charles and Ellen MacArthur will help highlight the problem.

I have to admit an interest here as SocksWife works for the RSPB and is more than a little miffed that the coverage of the event expected tonight on the various news programmes appears to have been bumped by the leak of the Attorney General's advice to Tony Blair. Another reason not to vote Labour ;).

Mind you, Michael Howard's performance on being told of the leak was pretty dire. Between him, the "policy" of shameless populist rabble-rousing and FUD over immigrants, and our district councillor and county councillor's rude behaviour to three of their consituents at the Parish Council meeting (among other things, Mr Baker gave his report completely with his back to us, and didn't even turn round to listen to or answer our questions, basic courtesy), I won't be be voting Conservative either. Not going to have a hell of a lot of choice at this one.

Legal advice on Iraq War - Did Tony Lie?

Bloody blogger, internal memory ran out. Will post on that later, but now: Channel 4 News has got hold of a copy of the legal advice from the Attorney-General presented to Mr Blair the week before the Cabinet meeting (when the "unequivocal" report was given to the Cabinet saying war was legal). This document Ch 4 have, which was, to paraphrase the Labour spin machine, substantially unchanged the following week when presented to the Cabinet, has numerous caveats, and, to my jaundiced eyes anyway, introduces reasonable doubt... and was never shown to the Cabinet. They got the unequivocal one.

Meanwhile Tony was on Sky News saying he's never lied. There's a burlap sack of jokes in there I reckon.

The Government haven't commented yet. More when I can.

Tuesday, April 26, 2005

Channel 4 Alternative Party Political Broadcasts

These were done by the guys that did the spoof VW advert for Channel 4. They're wmv only, really annoyingly, and the links off the page don't like Firefox much, but direct links are: Labour, Conservative, Lib-Dem

The Tory one is the best, then Labour, then Lib-Dem (hard hitting but a bit pants after the others). The VW one still creases me up though, and I know it's not PC to say so, but bite me. It is funny.

Monday, April 25, 2005

Institute for Backup Trauma

Institute for Backup Trauma. An excellent advert, but that's beside the point. John Cleese being brilliant, as usual.

Friday, April 22, 2005

What is relativism?

BBC NEWS | Magazine | What is relativism?. Interesting article. The comments at the bottom are worth reading. Mr Mark La Vardera, UK, makes the point for his opposition I feel.

I believe the old motto "All things in moderation, including moderation". The answer is not pure relativism, but neither is it staunch unbending absolutism. Walk the middle path, using the tools from the toolsets of both where appropriate, and hey presto, real life, sans bigotry with any luck.

I think relativism is a luxury we in the "developed" world have the time and education to think about. Imagine being a farmer who never went to school, subsisting only on what your poorly irrigated fields may or may not supply you with, hard manual labour every day. You wouldn't have a lot of time to develop a personal moral philosophy, and a priest telling you absolutely that you will get your reward in heaven for the hell you're going through on earth must be easy to accept, or at least, not argue with because you haven't the energy. Asking deep questions about meta-physical things used to be an elite sport when most people in the world were uneducated labourers, before the industrial revolution. Huge technological change has massively reduced the need for demanding physical labour, and what work remains no longer takes all our time (for most people), so we have more time to think about... stuff, rather than how to feed the kids tomorrow.

I don't think the Church can afford to ignore it (which they're not doing, just seeing any change is like geological movements). However, they will be able to delay any changes indefinately if the world has the predicted levels of water-shortages and global climate change in the next thirty or so years, as everyone will be back in suurvival mode, and in need of a quick, simple, absolute assurance.

Hope that made some sense.

CD Baby

Remember the US buying experience I was going to check out? So far so hilarious. These guys sound good.

Excerpt from email no 1:
This is just a happy automated email to let you know a real person will email you as soon as your package is sent, and you will also
receive a paper receipt with your order in the mail.

Exceprt from email no 2:
Our packing specialist from Japan lit a candle and a hush fell over the crowd as he put your CD into the finest gold-lined box that money
can buy.

The rest of email is hilarious, and all the details seem fine If they take half as much pride in getting it delivered as they do in the ordering process, I'll be a very happy bunny.

Transformers Film?

CNN say that there may be a Transformers film in the works. I say "Oh dear".

Open Source Methods Useful Way Beyond Software

Slashdot | Open Source Methods Useful Way Beyond Software. I recommend changing the Threashold to 4 and reading the comments submitted. Some funny, some thought provoking. The basic suggestion is Open Source is nothing new, and is an idealised form of communism, although some disagree.

Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy Review

The BBC aren't that bothered by it.
A charming mess maybe, but a mess all the same.
That's a shame. I'm going to see it anyway.

Email destroys the mind

Apparently the "messaging" life style destroys the mind faster than marijuana. The constant context switching required for reading emails and getting back to work/conversations is assisting in dropping people's IQ by 10%, more that twice that observed in dopeheads. I think I know what... eh, um. Gotta go and, er, yeah, whatever.

It is something I have observed happening in myself. My concentration span is way down since I got a Blackberry, and started subscribing to RSS feeds. When I started blogging and listening to podcasts, I got overwhelmed initially. However, with a bit of patience, and judgement, and if you're lucky, decent email subjects, I found I trained myself to sift information quite fast. However, there's still too much at the moment, and I am having to make decisions about binning certain rss and podcast feeds, on the basis of how perfunctorily I listen/read them.

With the Blackberry it is possible to filter the mails that are delivered to the heandset when you're out of the office. I use the filters to remove newsletters and forum posting notifications, as well as what I consider spam, but the work spam filters don't. This means the Blackberry now tends only to get 30 odd emails a day, rather than the 100 it started at.

The number of podcast feeds I subscribe has dropped from about 35 at it's height to 18 now. I'm working on the basis that if I skip through more than two episodes of podcast, drop the feed. I'll definitely keep openpodcast, the Daily Source Code, and Morning Coffee Notes feeds as they provide a zeitgeist to the whole podcast movement, and openpodcast usually has a couple of gems every two or three days.

The number of RSS news feeds I subscribe to was about 55 at it's height, but is now 13, some of which are essayists who update once a month or so, while others are Slashdot, the BBC, and the Register. This balance, in tandem with Today on Radio 4 and the various newspapers I see during the day, seem to keep me reasonably in the loop, without introducing a massive bias either way in reportage. News feed are a bit different from emails as I decide to look at them, rather than being alerted, and I can scan the headlines and zero in on anything that seems to need a bit more explanation/tickles my fancy.

Wednesday, April 20, 2005

So Long And Thanks For All The Fish Starts May 3rd

The Pentaquark Doesn't Exist!

The Register is reporting that the pentaquark, theorised in 1997 and "identified" two years ago, doesn't actually exist after all.... Damn.

Google Releases Search History

Google have released a very nice sounding app that remembers all your searches (and which sites you selected to view) and groups them up for you in various, pretty cool, ways (darker green colour == more searches on that term). I'm not sure how I feel about this. Hell, I still haven't made my mind up about how I feel about gmail, although I use it all the time. That's because I'm a sucker for cool technology (and weak).

Frighten drunken yobs?

Frighten drunken yobs, say Tories (and Labour say they're already doing it or will be soon).

Bring back the birch, that'll larn 'em. And while we're about it, let's dust down the stocks and put them back up on the village green.

Seems to me scaring people, or chucking rotting tomatoes at them, or chopping off bits of limbs, or anniafrying them doesn't make an awful lot of difference to the crime rates. Learning a bit of respect for other people and property seems to work wonders. Maybe the politicians could work on that new and shocking idea, perhaps with a bit of leadership by example, rather than chopping more bits off the rotting dead horse and saying "boo".

Hope in pipeline for car workers

Hope in pipeline for car workers, until the North Sea runs out of gas and oil in the next few years. Can't remember where I saw it, Independent on Sunday I think, but apparently we (UK) are going to be net importers of oil as of next year (I think) for the first time since the North Sea stocks were discovered.

Babelfish - Japanese to English

I love Babelfish. Got it to translate the Thanko press release for the iCombi Bluetooth iPod headphones.

If music lover having, natural, it is iPod, but there are no times when it is bothered in the cable of the head phone which extends from the bag, probably will be?

Foppery iPod and become unbalanced tend, surroundings of the cable "iCombi™ If "you use, because it becomes smart wireless connection, MusicLife spreads until now above.

"Foppery"?!?! Translation software may have a way to go :)

Pitch Black Dream and a US "buying experience"

Pitch Black Dream - Ambient Hypnotic Electronica NYC as recommended by my aging (but still hip and with it) uncle. It's by a lady called Bernadette McCallion and a chap called Rich Gaglia. Sounds good from the snippets on the website.

I'm buying it from cdbaby, a US site. First time I've bought something off t'internet from over the water I think, so we'll see how they do.

They can't be any worse than my Argos internet buying experience - bloody awful, I ended up taking three days off waiting for them to deliver at various promised times. When they finally turned up it was with only half the order, so I cancelled the other half ("But Sir, it's on the lorry", ya? bothered?). I think they offered me 30 quid compensation, told them to stick it.

Anyway, I emailed Bernadette and she replied really quickly, maybe because we have the same surnames (she's no relation). Apparently she's getting a lot of emails from McCallions recently :)

Tuesday, April 19, 2005

NASA World Wind

I'm sure this is lovely. NASA World Wind. Unfortuntely it's a .Not application. I haven't booted the PC in about 4 weeks, and I'm not starting again now. Harumph.

SMART-1 finds possible moon-base

SMART-1 finds possible moon-base | The Register. Cool. We need to get some of our eggs out of the Earth basket soon as possible.

Monday, April 18, 2005

H2G2 Trailer

The good one, not the crap one on the telly. Can't believe I forgot to post this before I went on holiday.

Back From Holiday

Oh yeah, and we're back from holiday. It was great. Selling the dogs for medical experiments though. I thought 60 free fags a day sounded good (for the dogs, not me).

Dogbert's New Ruling Class

If you're not a member of the DNRC yet and you're reading this, you should be, as you're obviously qualified (if you don't know who Dogbert is, get over to immediately and read up. It's important). Loved this part of the most recent newsletter:
Sometimes my brain ties together things that are better left alone. Here are three things I've thought about recently:

- Microchip designers often embed microscopic messages on the surface of the chip as a way of signing their work.

- DNA has a lot of "junk" parts that don't seem to have any function.

- A lot of people think evolution is obviously "designed" by someone.

I wonder if any cryptographers have looked at that junk DNA to see if it's a message from the designer. I'm guessing that it's a code that says something like, "I am Kaloopah, from the star system Nebulon IV. I have sent this evolution program into space as my eighth grade science project."

Sunday, April 17, 2005

Shanghai Automotive

I was going to have a read of the Shanghai Automotive website (the lot who were going to buy Rover allegedly), but I can't get on their site, Chinese or English.

Top quiz. Is it slow/down because:

a. it's a crap site that takes ages to load?
b. it's Internet Explorer only?
c. it's been crashed by journalists checking them out?
d. it's been slashdotted.

Answers on a postcard please....

Edinburgh Tower Block Blown Up

I bet that was fantastic. Anyone see it (on telly or live)?

I haven't got National Geographic (not on the FreeView channels yet, and I'm not paying Murdoch for his view of the world, so pity poor me:).

Wednesday, April 13, 2005

Dial-up T'Internet

On a dial-up line at the Gosford Public Library. Definately going to McDonalds tomorrow!

I hope Lego doesn't fail. All kids should have some lego. It helps build an inquiring, and problem-solving mind I think. And it's better than Meccano ;).

I was pretty much brought up on Lego, still play occasionally now, with my Lego Robotics System (excellent toy, well worth it). In fact she-who-is-gorgeous built the Technical Lego car the other day. I bought it in 1989 with my first overtime payment (£40 quid) from my first permanent job. Ah youth!

Monday, April 11, 2005

Internet Access

Finally found somewhere. Tourist information and public libraries are great. I'm using a PC (yuck, yuck) in the Egremont public library. Had to do some jiggery pokery to get a couple of web windows up (multiple IE instances blocked by default, but firing new ones up from Word works fine ;) and got the posts across from the Mac using an SD card and a card reader.

Have checked MacStumbler to see if there's a wi-fi point in here, but no joy. Apparently there's a pub down the road with wi-fi access whihc I may have to sample the wares of befroe leaving lovely Egremont.

So much to do, so little time. Only 1/2 hour until the thing shuts down and I've used 20 mins getting everything uploaded (except photos, couldn't face the pain. You'll just have to wait).

Walked down to the village pub last night. Proper dark. No street lights. Total pitch black when we walked back. Nice.

Sunday, April 10, 2005

Ipod Update

Ipod kit that I brought up with us:

1. Ipod
2. Cardock FM
3. Belkin Cassette Adapter
4. Monster cable for plugging into an Aux ports I find

I brought no CDs and no tapes.

So far, so good. The Cardock is the business in the car (as long as we're in the US of A of course, since I wouldn't want to break any laws in Britain, broadcasting five foot from inside the car). There is no interference and it is a strong signal. Have to turn up the volume on the stereo a lot for quiet parts of songs/podcasts, but normally no problem. That could be a factor of the cabin noise, as Subarus aren't really the quietest at 90mph (that would be a fiction Mr Officer sir, I was doing 70 honest).

The cassette adapter is doing the job at the cottage. The only noise is the hiss of the tape deck and amp itself, which is an ancient Philips boombox.

Hardly an audiophile's dream, but to my less than pristine hearing, it's good enough.

No Internet Access!

Went to the wi-fi access point and pub for lunch. Beer was divine, food was excellent (lamb and beef cavery, oh yes). No access point. Goddamnit. Apparently not enough people were using it, so they binned it. I bet that was last year. If they tried again now, with the broadband rates being so much cheaper, and wi-fi devices much more embedded, they may have a business in it. Disappointed, and feeling like a junkie going cold turkey.

Wardriven the entire valley, and half the next one. No joy. McDonalds at Whitehaven tomorrow morning for breakfast I think.

Stumbling for Wi-Fi

"War-driven" the village, no joy. We're going down to the wi-fi access point four miles away (a pub :) for lunch and some uploading. I'll keep SocksWife on access point duty as we drive down there though. You never know.

Birdwatch Update

Now have a blue tit, a pair of great tits, a siskin (?) and a robin to add the haul. Stop tittering in the back there.

Saturday, April 09, 2005

Holiday... and Sheep-Worrying

We got here, and it's beautiful (and raining). The cottage is at the foot of a fell, with the front windows looking out onto a small wood, full of various birds. SocksWife has identified a coal tit, a pair of chaffinches and various others that I haven't noted.

It was a long old drive. About 5 and 1/2 hours to cover 305 miles. The last hour and a half was winding, up-hill-and-down-dale lanes, laughingly called A roads (SocksWife pic/video to be added when I have wi-fi access). Good clean driving fun that.

We listened to the ipod on the way up using our new CarDock FM (obviously we were in the US as it's not allowed in Britain). Stuck it 88.1 and it didn't glitch once. Listened to some podcasts, a bit of opera (a result of SocksWife watching a FlashMob opera, wasn't bad actually), and some of my largest playlist - Not Listened To Yet. The CarDock beats the iTrip into a cocked hat. The quality and strength of the broadcast is way better, it's easy to retune with the buttons, unlike the iTrip, and no faffing around trying to find somewhere to mount the ipod while driving.

When I transferred all my data to the Mac, I also moved the iTunes library. The way I did it meant that all my playlists, play counts, and ratings were reset (d'oh). I also embarked on a reasonably aggressive burning of the rest of our CD collection, which I hadn't got round to putting on the PC. Warning, before reading further, please note these CDs stretch back to when CDs first roamed the earth, so some song references may distress those of a delicate disposition. This has resulted in the Not Listened To Yet playlist which is set up to list anything with a play count of zero and a genre not including Podcast. Set the ipod on random play, press play. Can be really good, can be really horrible (part of the Four Seasons followed by Billie Piper - Because We Want To anyone? Shudder). Only 1487 tracks to go, amongst which I note many Abba songs (ouch), a couple of Backstreet Boys tracks (neeeeerr), Gerry Halliwell, Adam Ricketts, 911, Honeyz, arrrrrrgggghhhh. One too many Now That's What I Call Tat No 23's I think.

When we got here I was knackered, but we decided to go for a walk up onto the fells just to make sure we didn't want our money back ;) (couple of pics when I get access). It's a hell of steep path up, but worth the five mins of agony to get there.

I made the decision to let the dogs off the leads on the way back down, as the sheep are safely in their fields at the moment as it's lambing time, so they're not wandering free around the fells as usual.

We took the long way back, should have been 10 mins, but Kate (small golden dog) turned into a olympic high-jumper and a "his dog" from "One man and his dog", without the man, or the training, but - horrifyingly - with the sheep.

She evinced no interest in the sheep in the field next door at all, sauntered off back towards the house, then turned, pawed the earth like a fast bowler starting his run up, and launched herself at the dry stone wall. Everything went slow motion as I realised where she was going: cue lots of slow moving flailing arms, slowed down voices saying "Nooooooooooooooo", and a very excited little dog.

Kate made the jump and set off after her first sheep, who, sensibly I felt (sense being something I don't often associate with sheep), legged it towards the farmer's house, four fields and two valleys over, baa-ing about the indignity of it all and collecting other sheep every 50 yards. Kate was loving it. I hurdled the wall and set off after her at a run, visions of dead sheep, throats ripped out, and a bloody Kate being shot by an irate farmer at point blank range.

Running across the first muddy field, cursing Kate, cursing Philip Morris and Co, I watched her disappearing over the top the next hill, ten sheep running like stink in front of her, baa-ing their hearts out. To cut a long, soggy, muddy, bog ridden story short, I got her back, berated her soundly (she's been really good since), and dragged her back across three fields by her collar cos I'd dropped the lead when I hurdled the wall. There were no sheep killed, although they'll probably be in counseling for the next three months. I really thought she was dead. They're both staying on the leads for the rest of the holiday. Nothing pisses off anyone more round here than sheep-worrying dogs. It's completely legal to shoot them on sight, and rightly so. I've learnt a lesson.

One day we'll laugh about this....

Rather excellently, there's a leaflet advertising wi-fi access 4 miles down the road. I am going NetStumbling on my way there. Hopefully someone in the village will have an unsecured wi-fi net I can piggy-back on. I'll try and find out who it is so I can ask nicely.

To blogging matters, I tried to start up Radio Userland before writing this, but it needs a net drop to set itself up properly on the first run, so I'll have to try it later. This was typed up in TextEdit and will be pasted into Blogger when I get net access. Hopefully I'll be able to upload a couple of photos to Flickr too.

Friday, April 08, 2005

What phone would Luke Skywalker use?

Next Stop: Gizmoville | The Register. It appears Orange have the answer. Also quite good is the guitar that teaches you to play it (down the bottom).

Bluetooth iPod Set

Thanko iCombi Bluetooth iPod Set : Gizmodo. Bluetooth headphones for the iPod, with remote controls on the headphones - please sell them in Britain, please, please. I hate wires.

Promotional penis

Promotional penis pops up on eBay | The Register. Things like this are seguing into the cyberpunk vision of the future. Nihilism rules... bovvered?

Charles shakes hands with Mugabe

What an idiot. Charles shakes hands with Mugabe. I've been defending this guy to anyone who says stuff about his wedding, his bride, his attitude to the press, etc. But shaking hands with Mugabe? Indefensible. Like Jack Straw who did exactly the same thing.

The justification from Straw was that it would be "rude or discourteous", from the Prince's office that he "was not in a position to avoid shaking Mr Mugabe's hand". Does either of them shake hands with multiple murderers when they visit a prison?

Blogging Anonymously

The EFF have an article about how to blog anonymously, with some (mainly US) notes about your legal position. It does explain how to make it difficult to track you down using IP addresses, etc. Interesting.

I'm becoming less worried about anonymity as I carry on with this. My family and some of friends know who I am, and anyone with a bit of spare time and some internet savvy could probably track me down. I think I'm not really worried about it now, although I was originally. I'm not sure why I'm getting less worried about it. Maybe because I'm seeing how many people aren't worrying about it. I still wouldn't like my employer, or a potential employer to know though, even though I'm pretty careful about not posting anything that could annoy them, you never know with big business really.

Thursday, April 07, 2005

Confusion over MG Rover's future

BBC NEWS | Business | Confusion over MG Rover's future. Whatever is going on, it looks bad for MG Rover. The last real Brit car company looks like it's biting the dust. Bummer. I thought they'd sussed it.

Star Wars Episode III has the newish trailer which is great. Not that I'm excited in any way. No, no, not at all. Only been waiting for about 26 years to find out why Darth Vader sounds like he's in a downstairs toilet.

Prepping for the holiday

Going into the deep dark wastes of Cumbria, where there isn't a Starbucks or McDonalds with wi-fi for 20 miles-ish. Am going to see if I can borrow someone else's access if anyone's been nice enough to leave one open. MacStumbler seems to fit the bill.

SocksWife is seriously unimpressed that my only prep for the holiday has been to lookup pubs, coffee shops and restaurants with wi-fi and download wardriving components. In future, obfuscation may be the key. I'll pretend I'm creating playlists on iTunes for the journey up... or something. Anything to avoid the packing.

British Standard Tea

Be warned, your liberty may be in danger.
BS 6008: Method for Preparation of a Liquor of Tea
BS 6325: Glossary of Terms Relating to Black Tea
BS 5987: Methods for Sampling Tea

I understand these methods will be becoming law in the EU (using ISO 3103 which adopts BS 6008). If you fail to make tea as specified in the standard, the Tea Police will be banging you up in Broadmoor under the Prevention of Terrorism Act 2005 without trial for endangering the British Way of Life.

Immigrants will be taught this tea making standard as part of their induction. No British residency or work permit will be permitted until they can make great tea, fully conforming to the law. Failure to master this will result in deportation.

So just think carefully before making your next cuppa. ;)

Also, be careful about your toilet habits:
ISO 8099:2000 Small craft - Toilet waste retention systems

Space Station Crew Photographs NASA Shuttle Discovery's Rollout to Launch Complex 39B - From Orbit

Wednesday, April 06, 2005

How to Create a Podcast - Soup to Nuts

Podcast Corner :: View topic - Creating a podcast - an outline.

This is the best, most complete, outline to making and publishing a podcast I have seen. I don't like GarageBand very much for recording voice, but that's just my preference. I use Audacity now, which you can get for the PC, Mac, and Linux (it's GPL'ed).

Nice job Si.

US Senator (continues) Attack on Judiciary

The New York Times > Opinion > Editorial: The Judges Made Them Do It:
Senator John Cornyn, a Texas Republican, rose in the chamber and dared to argue that recent courthouse violence might be explained by distress about judges who 'are making political decisions yet are unaccountable to the public.'

It seems the Legislative branch wants to take out the Judicial branch. The Executive branch seems to be conspiring actively to help and generally it's all pretty terrifying as the whole idea of the three branches of government, set up in the US by the Constitution (I think), is to stop the kind of erosion of freedoms being seen at the moment. Of course, I'm not a USA constitution scholar, I don't get half of what goes on with the the various branches, but it seemed like the three branch government model worked worked reasonably well until recently. I really think this is the (thickening) thin end of the wedge towards a police state. You heard it here... 22nd or 23rd, probably.

Tuesday, April 05, 2005

Short and Sweet

Just a quickie note tonight to say I'm still here, but have been far too busy drinking and smoking (curse you DeadAirCrew) to blog the last few days. Best friend from school and his wife were over at the weekend (we were total lightweights). Two of the SockBro's were over last night for a Monday night sess, which, as they're far younger than me, they got away with. I, however, was less than useless today. I am an old giffer.

Anyway, going on hols at the end of the week (with lashings of ginger beer) and haven't got a RSS aggregator currently (it's a long story). Will be looking at Bloglines and Radio Userland to see how I want to play it. Very much like the Bloglines registration process. Really simple and relatively non-intrusive, and results in a totally portable newspaper. Could be a bummer if no wi-fi nearby however.


Friday, April 01, 2005

Make a virus for a Mac?

The Mac community has been abuzz with angst, loathing, and not a little trepidation since DVForge issued a challenge for virus writers to infect two of their Macs. The competition (25 grand US prize money) has been closed, many think, and Jack Campbell, the CEO, explains, due to the potential legal pitfalls. The CEO issued a statement to explain what's going on.

My tuppence worth? If it can be done, it will be done. I'm with Jack Campbell (except I haven't got as much dough as him:)

Plus, DV Forge has some most excellent toys. None of which I'll be buying, honest Mrs Sock. Wow, is that an ipod amp for a guitar? I never knew I needed one. ;)