Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Random Internet Quote Of The Day

"I am Malaysian, where people give so damned high expectation for teacher.In their eyes, teacher is a robot or angel."

Friday, October 20, 2006

Now THAT's Color.


Thursday, October 12, 2006

Shock and Awesome

This image is not animated. It's an optical illusion. Pick one of the red dots and look at it steadily to make it "stand still".

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Monday, September 25, 2006

For Your Amusement

I found this on the interwub... and thought it was amusing.

Monday, September 18, 2006

Can You Solve It?


Press the blue circle to start. You have to get everyone across the river. Here are the rules:

1. The father cannot be left alone with any daughter (without the mother present).
2. The mother cannot be left alone with any son (without the father present).
3. The thief cannot be left alone with any family member (without the cop present).
4. Only the father, mother, and cop can operate the boat.

I solved it, can you?

Monday, August 14, 2006

Ah, Rhetoric

Colbert to Stewart: "What are you implying, Jon? That O'Reilly and Geraldo are narcissists enthralled with their own overblown egos? Projecting their own petty insecurities onto the world around them? Inventing false enemies for the sole purpose of bolstering their sense of self-importance? Itty-bitty Nixons minus the relevance or a hint of vision? How dare you!"

Ciceroan, I daresay.

Monday, July 10, 2006

The Move, Part II

The bedroom, packed:

The bedroom, emptied:

The closet and bathroom:

The boxes (oh god, the boxes):

Finally, look how long my hair is! (Move Part III will be posted when everything is unpacked):

Friday, July 07, 2006

A Real Conversation

Erin: so do we need to buy a new vaccum?
me: yes
Erin: i'm making a list for sunday
what did you do to it?
3:03 PM me: i cleaned it out, completely disassembled it and put it back together and there was still no suction
i took about half a pound of your hair out of it
Erin: :)
well i think we should try to have it fixed - i'm guessing it wasn't cheap
me: that would be an option if i hadn't thrown it away
3:04 PM Erin: i hate you
me: we need a new one
Erin: well now we do
me: oh, i'm sorry, you hate me?
Erin: yes
me: perhaps you'
Erin: yes....?
me: perhaps you'd like to move two people's worth of stuff across town by yourself while I go home to relax, and then we'll talk about who hates who
Erin: two things
3:05 PM you know that really just makes us even for all the stuff i've done in the last year
and two, i'm going to end up unpacking it all and setting up the apt.
and i'm unhateable
me: that's three things you dumb girl
3:06 PM Erin: the third was more of an afterthought
me: i can understand that
takes one to have one
Erin: i hate you
me: you better love me, i've got your keys
3:07 PM skankwad
Erin: hmm, a good point
me: what, that i have your keys or that you are a skankwad?
either way it's nice that you agree
Erin: yes, i agreed that i'm a skankwad
3:08 PM me: ...
blogger here i come

Erin: i'm going to kick you in the balls so hard when i get home
me: ahahahahaha

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Endless Possibilities

The scene in the Oval Office and the limits of John's power popped fully formed into my head about 15 minutes ago. This is the result:

John teleported into the middle of the Oval Office, grinned at the President, and teleported out just as the astonished Secret Service agent standing unobtrusively in a corner regained control of himself and began drawing his sidearm.

Two minutes later he reappeared in a stretch limousine cruising at over 90 mph in a subterranean tunnel running deep beneath the streets of D.C. Once again he grinned at Alfred Insbrook, the current President of the United States, and with a mental flick sent the bullets in the standard-issue Berettas belonging to the 3 agents riding along to the far side of the moon. After a few seconds of rapid, violent clicking noises, one of the agents caught on and launched himself across the limo. He blinked and found himself rapidly, wetly descending a water slide in southern Florida.

"Good afternoon, Mr. President," John began calmly. "Might I have a moment of your time?"


Two weeks later, John was eating lunch with NASA's chief space infrastructure engineer. "So is there any limit to how much you can move, and how far you can move it?" Bob Haskell was a largish man with a fuzzy beard and the kind of quiet, intense eyes which indicated a cautious yet powerful intellect. He was busily chowing down on a roast beef sandwich, and he slurped noisily on a can of Coke before continuing. "The reason I ask, is that given the demonstration you gave us this morning, it seems like we could colonize the solar system within your lifetime! Which reminds me, have you ever met anyone else with your abilities? Do you think your progeny will inherit them?" He faltered as he spoke this last sentence, then lowered his eyes to his sandwich. "Sorry," he mumbled.

"It's fine," John replied. "The administration and I have reached an agreement about that." The past two weeks had been a finely balanced negotiation with the Insbrook Administration, whose Secretary of Defense had adamantly demanded that John be "studied" in a thoroughly invasive sense. When John disappeared for two days after that little suggestion, (taking a short trip to a beach in Vietnam which served, quite literally, the best Mai-Tais on the planet) Secretary Kostin had changed tack, suggesting that if John wasn't prepared to go under the knife, he could at least supply the government scientists with a blood sample. John refused this as well, at least for the time being. Kostin had next attempted to persuade him with less classically respected means; when John returned to his home in Tenessee, he found no less than 5 stunningly attractive women in his bed, practically begging him for a romp in the sack. He resisted the temptation, however, and sent the women north to the Secretary's bedroom. He imagined Mrs. Kostin was not amused.

After that Alfred Insbrook threw up his hands in defeat and asked John "just what the hell" he wanted.

That had been yesterday. After making clear that his genetic makeup and future family prospects were totally and unexceptionally off limits, John had laid out for the President his goal of lifting mass into orbit for NASA. This morning he had been introduced to NASA's mission director for Mars Robotic Exploration. Upon inquiring if he might view a live feed, Roger Simmons had directed a video tech to bring up the Inspiration Rover's feed. His eyes had seemed to bug out of his head when the feed displayed an American flag plunged into the Martian soil next to a plaque which read "Thanks, Roger."

Which brought him back to lunch...


"I seem to be able to move smaller objects anywhere within the solar system. I tested myself once - I moved a dust mote about 2 light years, and then I blacked out. There seems to be a relationship between mass and distance; there's some limit to what I can do. For example, I can easily move a flag or a plaque - " and here he grinned easily to take some of the sting out of his words - "to Mars, but moving something like a pickup truck would be a strain. I think I could move about 10 tons as far as the moon, but again, at that point things become difficult. Earth orbit is much easier, of course, since it's so damn close. I'm pretty sure I could move a mountain range into orbit, if I had a reason to do so. I should also point out that I've been getting stronger since my abilities first manifested themselves, and the acceleration of that growth is non-negative. I'm frankly a little terrified of what I might be capable of by the time I'm 30."

A piece of roast beef, drizzling mustard onto the tablecloth, hung from the corner of Bob's mouth, which was opened in a wide "O" of shock.

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Can You Say "Inspiring," Children?

Fred Roger's 1969 testimony before a Senate subcommittee in support of funding for public television. As moving and relevant today as it was then.

Saturday, June 24, 2006

SF Novel - Possible Opening Chapter

"Hey Dad," Johnathon said, "My astrophysics class is taking a trip to the space elevator in the Spring. There's 2 weeks at sea studying marine biology and astronomy on the way to and from the base station, and we get to spend a whole day and night at Smitherman Station. You can see the curvature of Earth from up there! Can I go? Please please please?"

Edward Staunton smiled bemusedly at his son from a leather armchair. He was re-reading a classic work of fantasy from the late 20th century entitled "The Wheel of Time". "Have you asked your mother yet?"

Johnathon replied "She said it was fine if you were willing to foot the bill..." and trailed off.

Edward smirked. "Unbelievable. You kids these days, you have no idea how lucky you have it. I was around for the release of Firefox 1.0, you know. That was in the old days, before the MeshNet. You kids can't even imagine the government telling you how to run your network. I prayed for the day I might see the Space Elevator turned into a reality, and now you kids are taking a field trip there! In High School!! I shed tears when the first one launched, you know. It's like Disney World to you!" Watching the pleading look on his son's face, Edward relented. "Oh all right then, how much is this going to cost me?"

"Only... $2000.00..." Johnathon said in a small voice.

Edward let him sweat it out for a minute, then said "John, I couldn't possibly let you miss this opportunity. Of course you can go. But you're contributing 200 hours of this summer vacation to a community software project, in exchange. Got it?"

"Thanks Dad!" Johnathon exclaimed. "I was going to build some new teleport effects for Google Matrix, does that count?"

"Only if you don't charge teleport owners for the upgrade," Edward said, and watched his son dash up to his room with an affectionate grin.

ATTN: J-Bent

GAINAX released Gunbuster 2 in 2003 as a 20th Anniversary gift to fans. They spent lavish amounts of money on the animation quality and writing talent. If you haven't seen it yet, the first couple of fansub-torrents are available. The last 15 seconds of the first episode made me laugh my ass off, out loud, for a whole minute.

The Move, Part I





Friday, June 23, 2006

Aaron Sorkin, Eat Your Heart Out

I had an idea for a play in 2 acts, but I got stuck after writing two lines of dialogue. It’s kind of a mess, but anyway:

Setting: Brighton, Colorado

Owned & Operated by the United States Military Command

Background: In 2017, the Secretary of Defense initiated a secret project code named “Project Eureka.” A very small town was built at fantastic expense in the foothills of the Colorado Rockies. It was populated with actors, arranged into “Families”. Each “family” was given one baby. And each baby was a genetic clone of a 20th century genius. The children were all home- schooled and analyzed at all times by psychiatrists. These mental health guardians watched 24/7 feeds of all the children, both to ensure all the clones remained happy and well adjusted, and to custom tailor a broad, deep education for each child, with a mild focus on their previous fields of genius. However each child was allowed to learn anything they chose; an interesting character trait of Al’s is that he is very good at math, this time around. Today is the first day of high school, and all 30 clones are arriving at Brighton Public High School. There are roughly 100 other students (actors) playing the sophomores, juniors, and seniors, and other actors play the roles of teachers and assistance staff. This is the first time any clone has met another clone. They’ve had friends and school, but until now there has been nothing real or genuine in their lives.

The Pentagon’s motivations, as well as their ultimate ambitions, are intentionally left vague so that the actors may apply their own creations.

General outline – the government underestimates the clones, believing that 14 years of conditioning should force them to believe their lives. They have a specially trained agent, Ms. Macintosh, acting as the home room teacher. The truth is that by now, almost every clone has noticed their parents saying things oddly or falsely, recognized that something very strange was going on, and decided to play along until they understand what’s happening. A few of them have even realized that nothing in their life is real. This is what makes Mary (a clone of Marie Curie) so antagonistic towards all of her classmates throughout the play. She believes them to be “just a better lie”, designed to placate her – even as the other clones begin to decipher their surroundings, she refuses to be sucked in. Tom, who is a clone of Thomas Edison, hasn’t figured anything out yet. And Albert (Einstein’s clone) figured everything out at age 3 and decided to love his family and live his life anyway. Albert’s parents have grown distant lately; he is pondering this as he meets Tom.

The first scene is just Tom and Al, in the classroom, meeting early in the morning and getting to know each other.

Scene 2 is two months later. Al, Tom, and Marie are taking atomic chemistry together with Ms. Macintosh. Al and Tom discuss how the freshman class is different from all the other people in their lives – Al gently guides Tom towards the truth. Marie makes sarcastic commentary under her breath – “just “figuring” that out now, eh? You two should have your pay grade cut down to E-1.”

Act 2 has 3 scenes –

1 – Ms. Macintosh reports to her superiors that she suspects the clones are wise.

2 – Marie realizes the truth about Albert and Tom, and has a breakdown.

3 – I Do Not Have An Ending

(half an hour before class begins.)

As the scene opens, Tom is clearly snoozing on his desk. Another boy, Albert enters after 10 seconds. The door awakens Tom, who glances up at Albert.

Albert : "Hi, I'm Al."

This is how I imagined this stage direction:

Tom stares blankly, and Al, confused, sits down in the next row.

Then I thought, "What if I let the actors decide what happens here?" and wrote this:

Albert sits down.

Then I wondered if I was being a pussy about writing that much detail into stage notes (as if I were a director) and got confused. I’m also not sure if I should start this without an ending in mind. I’ve tried to design the characters first and the scenes second, but I don’t know these people well enough yet to know how this is going to end. I am toying with the idea of changing scene II-1 so that the ending can be Ms. Macintosh loving them in spite of herself and revealing all. If I don't reveal it to the audience that might do. But I don't want to add a 5th character. I want 2 guys and 2 girls. What do you think?

P.S. Obviously this was inspired by clone high. Is it too much of a ripoff? Or can I definitely claim this is original work? The idea for the play is mainly a character-driven black comedy. I feel like clone high is more of a satire.

Friday, June 16, 2006

Good Friday

I had a really great day at work today. I decided to go nuts and turn the project I was working on into a full-blown experiment. I wrote several cool widgets for this application, using AJAX - Asynchronous Javascript And Xml. It's a new approach to client-side UI, and I got it to do some really cool things.

The idea behind it is that on many modern web pages, the entire page has to refresh in order to get new data onto the screen. With AJAX, only a teeny tiny bit of data is called directly from the web browser, so the results are very fast and much smoother. Google Maps uses AJAX heavily, as an example of what can be done with this technology.

Anyway, just trying to get back in the habit. This post was more for me than you lot...

Monday, June 12, 2006

Clone High

Principal Cinnamon J. Scudworth, Ph.D: "How can I get close to the students?"

Mr. Lynn Butlertron: "I try to listen with compassion, instead of killing them."

Thanks to Jeremy Bent, or as edub calls him, "The Bringer Of All Good Things".


One of my co-workers, a guy named Brian, has two pet clownfish. They are named Percoset and Percodan. :)

Thursday, June 08, 2006

Still Alive

I will be getting back in the habit of posting here fairly soon. I have about 8 pages of notes I've been making and a lot of that is coming here. However instead of adding to the pile, I think I'll post this thought I had directly, in hopes of momentum (as it were).

If you've ever seen a sports anime, then you have a pretty good idea of what Eyeshield 21 is all about. It introduces the hero, a young man entering junior high, who has been bullied his whole life and therefore learned how to run very fast and dodge enemies. Naturally, he immediately becomes the star running back on the school's American Football team. They then progress through a series of ever-more challenging opponents until the dramatic finale at the national finals.

The reason I came to post was that something happens in a later episode: the team travels to America for a friendly match with an American team who is hosting them, and as soon as they step out of the airport, a thief snatches somebody's purse and runs off - and a lady cop _shoots_ him. The team runs away, muttering "America is too scary!".

Apparently in Japan they think American cops are gunslingers. This anime is unintentionally hilarious in its prejudices about America - it's interesting to see how we are viewed internationally.


Later on, the hero has to run across the city to the beach to find an obstetrician who is on vacation, and who is also (again, apparently) the only person in Houston, Texas who can deliver his friend's wife's baby. Tres drole.


Next episode, they play the Houston Sexy Queens at the Beachfront Football Tournament.

Monday, May 08, 2006

Tickled My Fancy

Go search google for "worst president ever". No really.

Monday, March 27, 2006

Other People Are Morons

Today's link is bash.org. This site aggregates funny chat snippets from around the world, and lets users vote which ones are their favorites. A few selections:

< Zybl0re> get up
< Zybl0re> get on up
< Zybl0re> get up
< Zybl0re> get on up
< phxl|paper> and DANCE
* nmp3bot dances :D-<
* nmp3bot dances :D|-<
* nmp3bot dances :D/-<
< [SA]HatfulOfHollow> i'm going to become rich and famous after i invent a device that allows you to stab people in the face over the internet

t0rbad> so there i was in this hallway right
BlackAdder> i believe i speak for all of us when i say...
BlackAdder> IM SICK OF YOU
BlackAdder> IN FACT
*** t0rbad sets mode: +b BlackAdder*!*@*.*
*** BlackAdder has been kicked my t0rbad ( )
t0rbad> so there i was in this hallway right
CRCError> right
heartless> Right.
r3v> right

* ab is away - gone, if anyone talks in the next 25 minutes as me it's bm
being an asshole -

< Night-hen-gayle> I gotta go. There's a dude next to me and he's watching me type, which is sort of starting to creep me out. Yes dude next to me, I mean you.

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Who What?

Well, it's been several months since my unfortunate employment lapse, and I am now in my third week at Latham & Watkins, LLC. I am not quite in the mindset to jump full scale back onto the blogwagon, but here's something I just had to share:

Monday, January 02, 2006

Hail to the Chief

"I want to thank my friend, Sen. Bill Frist, for joining us today. … He married a Texas girl, I want you to know. (Laughter.) Karyn is with us. A West Texas girl, just like me." -— United States President President George W. Bush, Nashville, Tenn., May 27, 2004

Other Bushisms.