02-28-04 - 1


People are shocked that this Steve Erwin (Crocodile Hunter) held his baby while playing with a Crocodile. Don't be a moron, of *course* he's going to endanger the life of his baby, the guy is a lunatic!

Sometimes capitalism works very badly. Case in point : IT infrastructure. Currently we have phone lines running everywhere and big expensive switch boxes, we have cable running many places, and we have the phone companies converting to DSL and ATM. We have cell towers scattered around with various networks and standards. This is all way behind what it could be, and worst of all its very redundant. If we just had one good standard, we could spend a lot less and get a lot better product. Competition doesn't work well when there's a huge cost of entry to the business. I once say the figure that laying digital cable to someone's house costs $2,000 on average. That is, setting up the neighborhood routing and wiring and such probably costs some $500,000 or something, then you divide by the number of people served. That means it will take many many years to make back that money.

Why does it seem like there are so many girls that are as dumb as nails? Where are all the guys that are dumb as nails? It seems there are all these couples with a good smart guy and a girl that's just dumb dumb dumb. Maybe the difference is that hot dumb girls can make it in the world, but hot dumb guys usually just wind up pumping gas, so I'm not aware of them, they don't enter into my social circle. If that was true, and the world was really balanced, then there should be a lot of smart ugly girls that I'm not seeing. Where are they? I see a whole lot of smart ugly guys, but nothing near an even number in girls.

I am the McGuyver of making desserts from hopeless ingredients. The other week I made berry brown betties = frozen berries, flower, butter, brown sugar, tasty. Tonight I made chocolate cake ala fondant, from just cocoa, butter, eggs, sugar, flour; the cake was mediocre but I whipped up a chocolate sauce from cocoa, sugar, half & half and some old left-over Frangelico. The sauce was surprisingly good, thickened in the microwave.


02-27-04 - 1


To do great things, you have to be a little bit crazy or stupid in a sort of over-confident, over-optimistic sort of way. If you really knew how hard an endeavor was going into it, you wouldn't even try it.


02-26-04 - 1


One good thing about outsourcing I.T. jobs is that it will help distinguish between low-level craptastic programmers (send their jobs to India) and high-level guys who can direct a project and coordinate the codebase and such (give them raises). This is the future of the American economy in general - even more stratification, even more money for the top and less for the bottom.


02-25-04 - 2


Amplified musical instruments with cords are ridiculous. How long it takes them to set up is ridiculous. All the gear should just be 802.11g wireless, then you have a laptop with a virtual wiring diagram that lets you route the guitar to the effects box to the mixer, etc. (and change the "wiring" in realtime with scripted configurations if you want). Of course the "wiring" is just a router for which data stream goes where. To set up for a gig, you just unpack your gear and start, no hookup, no layout, no testing, it's all automatically ready to go, and wireless so you can dance around. Silly people.

02-25-04 - 1


How to make games (and movies) with actually interesting characters and plots : the key is to make a lead character that's totally stereotypical, so all the dumbasses out there can relate to him. Then you put all the interesting stuff in little sub-plots and side characters. This is a pretty standard ploy (eg. Seinfeld).


02-24-04 - 1


The United States will have agile, stealthy, fast, and powerful unmanned aircraft. It's hard to say exactly when, but soon, perhaps in our next major conflict (North Korea?). We will be able to deliver lethal force (eg. bombs that kill people, blow them into bloody bits, maim them and leave their half-bodies strewn around a field of wreckage) without deploying troops on the ground or risking our soldiers' lives at all. That's incredibly scary to me, not because of any ridiculous fantasy of robots going awry and turning on us. It terrifies me because it gives us carte blanche to wreak havok on the world. We'll be able to quickly send drones anywhere in the world, transported on aircraft carriers, without even consulting the public or congress; there will be no reporters around, so all the information released will be from our military, so they can spin it however they want or keep it totally quiet, and worst of all, because there is no risk to average American soldiers, the American people just won't care. The average American seems to care very little about the lives of anyone else in the world. Cotton subsidies are contributing to the starvation of millions of Africans? eh, fuck'em, my brother the Cotton farmer wants to buy a new Dodge Ram and he needs that subsidy. Vietnam war killed 2 million Vietnamese? fuck'em, gooks, it's their own fault for messing with the US; the reason we left is because of the deaths of the US soldiers. The American public doesn't seem to care about death and depravation in the world unless it happens to someone they knew. If we can go into countries like Afghanistan and Iraq, where our government has certain interests that they think can best be acheived with force (but we really shouldn't be there, and certainly the American public wouldn't support it if people were dying), then we'll do it all the time, and it won't even be a big issue. Good lord, that's scary. I believe that the American Empire will decay over the next 100 years, but in that period it will first become even more powerful and horrible.

The Nova on UAV's was really funny. It started with some interesting background info on U2's and satellites and such. Then it gets to the UAV's, and you get all these scenes of serious military guys who are talking about model airplanes. They're using all these military acronyms and such to talk about a little balsa wood plane that someone put together in their garage - and, I'm sure Lockheed or someone charged them $5 million for that model airplane.


02-22-04 - 1


The new Quiznos adds just fucking rock. They're wacky-tastic. Comedy in the future will just be incredibly bizarre. Each year, you have to get more bizarre, because the previous stuff just seems normal. Simple gags like making fun of the TV production process, or looking at the camera, or non-sequitors, or awkward silences, etc. all are pretty old hat now, so you've got to go even more bizarre. The Simpsons used to just be hillarious and surprising; these days it looks very plain, compared to Family Guy and such. Of course it's a fine line, if you try to just go with constant non-sequitors and really delve into the "so bad it's funny", you end up just making something that's bad.

Addendum - I'm told these adds are just based on "We like the Moon". It's up there very high. Tha moon is very useful everyone. Indeed, wacky eye-bulging hamsters, indeed it is.

Addendum 2 - I think the commercial is actually much funnier than the flash. The reason is the context. When you're watching pretty ordinary TV and suddenly this crazy crap pops up, it's so surprising and funny it makes you shit your pants. When you're browsing the internet, you see wacky weird shit all the time, so it's not really out of the ordinary to see the flying hamster oddness.

old rants