Friday, February 29, 2008

A day in Metro Cebu

A day in Metro Cebu

 

Written by Jaime R. Vergara, it’s a powerfully written exploration of life in a remote portion of the Philippines. Well, not as remote as it was when I lived in Subic Bay and San Miguel (mid-to-late 1970’s).  Anyway, it’s a good read and brought back many memories. It also makes me reflect on the economic disparities that exist in our world, and how many of them are exploited.

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Introducing the Chumby

My first thought about seeing this was something akin to “what the heck is it?” And, after reading this bit from CNet, I still have that question. I can answer the basic question, that it’s a linux based internet appliance, one part clock radio and mp3 player (an mp3 player that has no battery , though it has the ability to add one if you can splice and solder your own – no portability cripples this thing), another part widget player (Flickr photo viewer, etc) that you can’t edit from the device – you need to go to a internet connected computer and adjust the setting through the company’s website.

 

This is, still, an important device. First, a mainstream device with a customized linux interface is important (Palm can’t have all the fun). Also, since this thing is built on open standards (not just linux, but also Adobe’s Flash Lite), the possibility of someone crafting the perfect app for this is immense. That just depends on gathering enough geek attention for someone to craft something useful. I’m not going to drop $179 for this, but I might be willing to play around with something like this were the price to drop lower.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

My World View






What is Your World View?
created with QuizFarm.com
You scored as Cultural Creative

Cultural Creatives are probably the newest group to enter this realm. You are a modern thinker who tends to shy away from organized religion but still feels as if there is something greater than ourselves. You are very spiritual, even if you are not religious. Life has a meaning outside of the rational.


Cultural Creative


81%

Postmodernist


75%

Materialist


69%

Idealist


69%

Romanticist


63%

Existentialist


44%

Modernist


31%

Fundamentalist


25%


Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Scientology Today

Some insights into the methods and concepts of our Scientology neighbors. Let me introduce you to the E-meter. I found this from a link in a Slashdot story about Scientology being granted access to eBay’s database.

 

 

Monday, February 18, 2008

Extract: The Year of Living Biblically

Extract: The Year of Living Biblically

 

One of the more interesting notions I’ve run across in the recent past. Spending a year running around London in robes trying to live according to biblically state principles is an interesting use of one’s time, of what value I’m unsure. Anyway, the excerpt is compelling if a bit strange (he talks about stoning adulterers and Sabbath breakers with pebbles since tossing larger rocks is rather unsavory to him). An interesting read, though I don’t know if I’m inclined to spring for the book.

First, Let’s Toss Out All the Yahoo Board Members | Kara Swisher | BoomTown | AllThingsD

First, Let’s Toss Out All the Yahoo Board Members | Kara Swisher | BoomTown | AllThingsD

Can you say "shareholder revolt"?

CTV.ca | Carly's Writings

CTV.ca | Carly's Writings

Reading the experts respond to Carly's writings shows me (at least) how little we, as a collective, know about autism...even the experts.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Australians unite, almost, on Aboriginal apology

Australians unite, almost, on Aboriginal apology

It's sad how little of this I've heard in the US media. It is a critical moment in world history, and in the global movement for aboriginal peoples.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

UW forced to defend actions in alleged rape

UW forced to defend actions in alleged rape

The University of Washington's actions here simply disgust me. I've always felt a strong affinity for the school (my parents met there, and I've spent most of my life in its shadow), however the behavior of its leadership in these cases is reprehensible. It smacks so very much of the Roman Catholic church's response to sexual abuse by its priests.

Additionally, the way many organizations (UW, Seahawks, Texans amongst others) have used the idea of a "second chance" to mean that there should be no repercussions is deeply disturbing. I guess, if nothing else, Mr. Alexander has strong motivation to continue to excel as an athlete. As soon as his sports performance fails, he's going to find few people willing to exert their influence (and reputations) to assist him.

Monday, February 11, 2008

Official Google Blog: orkut going more social

It's good to know that Google hasn't given up on this space, even with the dominance of Facebook and Myspace.

'Mobile, coffee don't cause cancer'

'Mobile, coffee don't cause cancer'

 

Brendan Stewart, a professor at the University of New South Wales, has released a study that refutes the idea that cell phones, coffee, and deodorants cause cancer. It also damns tobacco as the worst carcinogen, stating it worse than asbestos.

The Anglican Church, Archbishop Williams, and Sharia Law

The Archbishop of Canterbury says the adoption of certain aspects of Sharia law in the UK "seems unavoidable".

 

I feel a bit negligent that I just noticed this dust up over that really started last week. I’ve had a great deal of respect for Archbishop Rowan Williams, and certainly don’t envy the fault lines he needs to navigate in the current state of the Anglican Communion.  What I find most compelling in his statement is the idea of multiple tiers of “the law”.  This debate really seems to be concerning the limits of the state. Should a non-governmental agency have the ability to offer up some type of judicial action, or is that only reserved for state sanctioned courts? Personally, I see the state in charge of minimally necessary social laws (private property rights, what-have-you), perhaps leaving room for some other level of social governance. However, for these entities, people should be able to engage and disengage at will. In other words, if someone converts from Islam, they would no longer be subject to the Sharia court’s jurisdiction. I guess this could be viewed as a secondary social compact. Anyway, with this, just because someone might be able to disentangle themselves from this court doesn’t mean that they would be free of recrimination for violating the covenant they engaged in, whether ostracization or something else. The state would just provide limits on the level of punishment. Interesting ideas, really. This is just what rattles off my fingers at the basic, first read. I’d be interested in hearing what others have to say, of course.

Saturday, February 09, 2008

KITT

I wondered this back in the days of Knight Rider!



Friday, February 08, 2008

Canned Burger

This is one of the most bizarre products I’ve seen in ages; a canned cheeseburger! Now, if they come up with canned French fries, these folks might get the Nobel nod. Thanks to Lindsey for the link, uh, well, I think.

Explorations

I’ve had this Blogger account for several years, and it’s mostly been satisfying. However, I’ve been playing with the idea of shifting my blog’s hosting from Blogspot to something with a unique domain (I don’t know if I’d use Questionsall.com or something else, like flyingmonkeys.com or whatever). The biggest thing, it seems, is whether I want to start from scratch, or port this blog over. Porting no problem, and I could simply utilize my Blogger account, blah blah. I wonder, though, about Word Press’s tools. A number of my friends swear by them. From my limited messing around, they seem quite solid. I’ve event found some sites that explain ways to port Blogger info into Word Press. We’ll see, I guess. I still have a great deal of deciding to do, and my brain’s bandwidth is rather strapped right now.