February 26, 2003

[from slashdot] Amazon.com has been granted a software patent on threaded dicussions as they pertain to items for sale.

Guess I better not offer any items for sale, or the developer of Sensus Plenior will be liable. Maybe he wants it that way and has already applied for a license.

Most of his users only offer intangible religious benefits. So he's okay for now.

February 25, 2003

Dorothy Parker wrote,

He who loves his love o'er well
will gaze in Helen's eyes
in Hell.
But he whose love is dry and wise
shall see John Knox in Paradise

Useless thing accomplished: I finished playing the single-player campaign in Neverwinter Nights last night. Finally. It was a fun game with some pretty good moments, but also dragged in places, in the very repetitive Troll Caverns for instance. I agree with those who felt the finale was a bit lacking, particularly in leaving plot threads unresolved.

The best bit about the finale was that your henchman has a final word with you about how you've been an inspiration and how they are glad to be with you in this final confrontation no matter what, etc. And true to form, you can say "thank you", or something like "yeah, yeah, whatever". There might be replay value in going through the game again being much more sarcastic. Also with a different charcater type. But I'm not going to anytime soon. Or even play the online version at least for a while. I was close enough to the end last week that I thought finishing it would resolve the tempatation to "just play something" when sitting down at the computer instead of using it usefully.

Usefull thing accomplished: Took the car in for state inspection and for an oil change. I don't drive it much, so it hasn't had one in 2 years.

Thank God for the internet: I was able to renew my registration on-line this morning, which I needed for inspection but procrastinated on.

On the war: If you want to argue that "Bush wants Iraq's oil", you have to realize why he might. Its not really to sell it, but to keep some control over if it gets sold. If Iraq were freely selling oil, prices would be way lower than now. The "controller" would get money, but not a very good price, nor would any other producer. I say this as an oil producer who likes the $36 a barrael rates now, even if I'm paying $1.60 at the pump. When gas is $0.99 a gallon, its would be more economical for me to cease producing and wait for higher prices, if I had that level of control.

February 24, 2003

The only reason Saddam isn't disarming is he wants to keep control of the region's oil.

(well, duh)

This essay addresses the meta-issues on the table when talking about controversial issues like Iraq or medical ethics. Based on his description of the conversation with the dutch guy I'd have been very irritated.

Out of context, but funny (from Lileks) "Somewhere in a Republican Guard bunker, the hard men confess: they have heard rumors that the US will use postmodern weapons! Missiles that dissolve context! High-powered electronic beams that underscore the relationship between power and culture! Rockets that can destroy the legitimacy of the authorial voice within a two-mile radius!"

February 21, 2003

Wow. The website http://www.coxar.pwp.blueyonder.co.uk/ has new details on the location of Iraq's Weapons of Mass Destruction. Check it out.

The internet. Filling our need for personal attention and connection. And emotion.

February 20, 2003

Even though I'm in favor of expanded privacy protection, I think ebay's policies described here are a good thing.

Ebay is a marketplace, and marketplaces need scrutiny in proportion to their abuseability (which is high for sites like ebay).

February 19, 2003

Nothing like friends of aquaintances at church who call you up and want to sell you insurance/"wealth creation" instruments.

This bit from The Onion is funny, but I'm not sure why. [offensive word warning]

February 14, 2003

O wondrous love, whose depth no heart hath sounded,
That brought Thee here, by foes and thieves surrounded!
All worldly pleasures, heedless, I was trying
While Thou wert dying.

O mighty King, no time can dim Thy glory!
How shall I spread abroad Thy wondrous story?
How shall I find some worthy gifts to proffer?
What dare I offer?

For vainly doth our human wisdom ponder, --
Thy woes, Thy mercy, still transcend our wonder.
Oh, how should I do aught that could delight Thee!
Can I requite Thee?

Yet unrequited, Lord, I would not leave Thee;
I will renounce whate'er doth vex or grieve Thee
And quench with thoughts of Thee and prayers most lowly
All fires unholy.

But since my strength will nevermore suffice me
To crucify desires that still entice me,
To all good deeds, oh, let Thy Spirit win me
And reign within me!

I'll think upon Thy mercy without ceasing,
That earth's vain joys to me no more be pleasing;
To do Thy will shall be my sole endeavor
Henceforth forever.

Whate'er of earthly good this life may grant me,
I'll risk for Thee; no shame, no cross, shall daunt me;
I shall not fear what man can do to harm me
Nor death alarm me.

But worthless is my sacrifice, I own it;
Yet, Lord, for love's sake Thou wilt not disown it;
Thou wilt accept my gift in Thy great meekness
Nor shame my weakness.

And when, dear Lord, before Thy throne in heaven
To me the crown of joy at last is given,
Where sweetest hymns Thy saints forever raise Thee,
I, too, shall praise Thee.

Somtimes when you blog you just feel like a kid going "look what I found!"

Like this

February 13, 2003

Right now on Amazon, obscure Reformed Christian author Peter Leithart's books are all ranked as better sellers than Al Gore's Joined at the Heart (ranked 606,260th).

Here's a sampling:

Blessed are the Hungy, excellent short meditations on Communion (ranked 286,060th)

Heroes of the City of Man, one I haven't read, on the heroes of classical literature. (ranked 236,678th)

A House for My name, an excellent survey of the Old Testament. (ranked 144,630th)

Wise Words, which Amazon describes as "limited availability"; some great childrens stories. This one has a screwed up editorial review from amazon, btw. (ranked 567,079th)

I'm somewhat suprised to see that Lasalle University is on the list of Catholic colleges who are partipating in "v-day" celebratory performances of the V*g*na Monologues. Joel?

(verbal devoweling for search-engine frustration purposes only)

This cartoon states some of my reservations pretty well. But on the margin, plastic sheeting could be helpful for some cases. Always remember the marginal case.

Oh, and I found out the idea is to hunker in one room, so I don't have to cover the whole house. Makes more sense that way.

February 12, 2003

I have a bunch of old Traveller Roleplaying Game junk up on ebay. No icky fantasy stuff to worry about. Unless you're bothered by aliens visiting the planet 300,000 years ago and being taken off to serve these guys.

I sure hope a terrorist attack doesn't happen in the middle of this. I could use the cash.

I only have one roll of duct tape, and decided I wouldn't be able to sheet up the windows in fast enough response to an attack. It would probably save on heating though... hmmm...

Permalinks fixed. Now "somebody" will be able to keep linking to me to get an otherwise available quote from the SOTU speech.

February 11, 2003

If this show existed I'd watch it with my wife every week.

February 07, 2003

Snow Day! This time I have not thrown my back out, so I could do the shovelling and enjoy sledding with my kids. My son didn't enjoy it much though.

February 06, 2003

Lileks: "Cue the Madonna song: The U.N. is immaterial now, and this is a material breach."

February 03, 2003

"It turns out inconvenience was a really important part of our lives, and we didn't realize it." Siva Vaidhyanathan, assistant professor, New York University, on the social role of Google in immanentizing what was once considered water under the bridge.

De script shun




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