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February 29, 2008

Dear Easter Bunny

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Jennifer took a photo with her cell phone of a stuffed toy she wants for Easter. Update: Allie now wants one too.

Posted by Rob Kiser on February 29, 2008 at 7:44 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

Kremlin planning to rig election

This policy of Glasnost, or "openness", is quite a change from the old Iron Curtain days. These days, they still have hand-picked successors running the government, but they're much more open about it than they were in the days of Stalin. Now, they hold sham elections and openly dictate the results of the elections.

The Kremlin is planning to falsify the results of this Sunday's presidential election in Russia by compelling millions of public sector workers to vote and by fraudulently boosting the official turnout after polls close, the Guardian has learned.

Governors, regional officials, and even headteachers have been instructed to deliver a landslide majority for Dmitry Medvedev - Russia's first deputy prime minister, whom President Vladimir Putin has endorsed to be his successor.

Officials have been told they need to secure a 68% to 70% turnout in this weekend's poll - with around 72% casting votes for Medvedev. However, independent analysts believe the real turnout will be much lower - with between 25% and 50% of the electorate taking part.

It's obvious their shadowy overlords don't have the Diebold "Electronic Fraud Assurance"® technology in their polling stations.

Posted by Rob Kiser on February 29, 2008 at 11:30 AM : Comments (0) | Permalink

Barack Hussein Obama on Gun Control

http://www.ontheissues.org/Gun_Control.htm

* Provide some common-sense enforcement on gun licensing. (Jan 2008)
* 2000: cosponsored bill to limit purchases to 1 gun per month. (Oct 2007)
* Stop unscrupulous gun dealers dumping guns in cities. (Jul 2007)
* Keep guns out of inner cities--but also problem of morality. (Oct 2006)
* Ban semi-automatics, and more possession restrictions. (Jul 1998)
* Voted NO on prohibiting lawsuits against gun manufacturers. (Jul 2005)

A ban on semi-automatics. Are you kidding me? That's every gun that was ever made except for single shots.

Posted by Rob Kiser on February 29, 2008 at 9:17 AM : Comments (0) | Permalink

Reset Button for the Brain Could Cure Alzheimers

http://io9.com/361112/a-reset-button-for-the-brain-could-cure-alzheimers

With a little help, our brains can be trained to heal themselves. After a traumatic brain injury, some of your brain cells go into reset mode, reverting to a stem cell-like state. Using these "reset cells," a group of German researchers were able to coax the brains of injured mice to regrow neurons to replace damaged tissue (the images above are micrographs of the cells regrowing over time).

Though their methods are far from perfect, this breakthrough could help replace dead or damaged brain cells in people suffering from Alzheimer's as well as any type of injury. It's just a matter of extending the brain's natural self-healing powers.

Posted by Rob Kiser on February 29, 2008 at 4:13 AM : Comments (0) | Permalink

February 28, 2008

Barack Hussein Obama

obama.jpg

He won't wear an American Flag pin on his lapel, he refuses to salute the U.S. Flag, he's a socialist, and millions of Americans are voting for him. Where is Senator Joseph McCarthy when you need him?

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Posted by Rob Kiser on February 28, 2008 at 9:35 PM : Comments (2) | Permalink

Operation Northwoods

Operation Northwoods was a Top Secret plan to justify an attack on Cuba in 1962. Crazy stuff.

Posted by Rob Kiser on February 28, 2008 at 9:09 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

Hillary's Experience

http://blogs.psychologytoday.com/blog/brainstorm/200802/fear-and-loathing-the-campaign-trail-08-0

"When Hillary tells you that she has lots of experience, she doesn’t really tell you what the experience is, but you’re supposed to imagine what it must have been. She must have been sitting in the Situation Room when the Joint Chiefs of Staff were making their judgments about how to proceed in Iraq and elsewhere. She never says that but that’s what you’re supposed to fantasize... Hillary’s claim to have had a lot of experience in government is [BS]; she doesn’t have any experience. She’s been a senator for [a few] years but she’s not talking about that; she’s talking about sleeping with the president for eight years as if that’s prepared her to run the country."

And based on that experience, there's hundreds of other women that would be equally qualified to run for the Oval Office.

Posted by Rob Kiser on February 28, 2008 at 8:38 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

Hillary Implodes

Posted by Rob Kiser on February 28, 2008 at 10:23 AM : Comments (0) | Permalink

February 27, 2008

Ubuntu

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December 8, 2007: Ubuntu 7.10 at startup

This is my computer on Ubuntu 7.10.

It worked fine for about 2 weeks. After 2 weeks, it would only display in 800 x 600. Then after another week, for some unknown reason, it displayed this on startup -- which rendered it unusable.

Video card is an Nvidia GeForce 6800 GT.

Continue reading "Ubuntu"

Posted by Robert Racansky on February 27, 2008 at 1:47 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

OMG - This is Why I hate Computers!

First operand of . is NULL, so cannot access member ColumnLayout. (180,236) At WEBLIB_PORTAL.CP_HOMEPAGE.FieldFormula writeNewTabs PCPC:11194 Statement:201
Authorization Error -- Contact your Security Administrator

Posted by Rob Kiser on February 27, 2008 at 12:05 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

PeopleSoft

PeopleSoft Enterprise Human Resources 9.0 PeopleBook: Manage Base Benefits
PeopleSoft Enterprise Benefits Administration 9.0 PeopleBook

PeopleSoft (Enterprise HRCS 9.0) Documentation Library

Posted by Rob Kiser on February 27, 2008 at 10:04 AM : Comments (0) | Permalink

February 26, 2008

World's Best Scratching Post

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We got a cat recently, but had never got around to purchasing a scratching post. I heard her sharpening her claws on the couch a few times and I thought....probably better get a scratching post before she tears the house to ribbons. The larger cat scratching posts I found were around $200.00 though. I wanted to create a good scratching post for her, but on the cheap. So, I went out and whacked down a mature ponderosa pine tree, limbed it, and cut it down to size. The tree is 94" tall, and about 12" diameter at the base.

Total cost so far is only the gas in the chainsaw and the electricity in the drill, skill saw, and jig saw. So, I'd estimate I have about $2.00 worth of material in it at this point.

I'm working now on making her some circular stairs so that she can go up the tree without using her claws, as she's not crazy about climbing up and down it for some reason. When it's finished, it will have a nice, broad perch for her to watch the bird bath and bird feeder out the front window.

Posted by Rob Kiser on February 26, 2008 at 3:03 PM : Comments (5) | Permalink

Many Eyes

IBM has developed a cool web app called Many Eyes. It allows to you create Tag Clouds and other visualizations of any dataset you upload. For example, here's a tag cloud I created from the book of the best selling book Killing Strangers.

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Posted by Rob Kiser on February 26, 2008 at 1:13 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

February 25, 2008

Diebold Accidentally Leaks Results Of 2008 Election Early

Posted by Rob Kiser on February 25, 2008 at 8:45 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

February 24, 2008

Hillary's Inner Tracy Flick

In this video mashup of the movie “Election?, Hillary is Tracy Flick, one high school presidential candidate, and Mr. Obama is the mindless jock who upsets her by his unearned popularity.

Posted by Rob Kiser on February 24, 2008 at 9:38 AM : Comments (0) | Permalink

February 23, 2008

Capitals of South and Central America

Jennifer wants to get an account to play Club Penguin which, I'm led to believe, runs about $5.00. I made a deal with her that I'd get her an account when she learned all of the countries and their capitals in South and Central America. So, the other day, she complained to me that we hadn't made any progress on the geography lessons. Of course, my response was that she had to learn them and she has a computer with internet access so...

Well, sure enough, she went to google and found this website. She now knows all of the latin american countries and most of their capitals. Of course, I'm sure that once she starts playing Club Penguin, her gray matter will turn to mush and she'll promptly forget all she learned.

Posted by Peenie Wallie on February 23, 2008 at 10:26 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

Happy Birthday, Nikki!

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Posted by Peenie Wallie on February 23, 2008 at 10:08 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

One Cool Treehouse

treehouse.jpg

Some guy built a very cool treehouse on the stump of a 1,200 year old Redwood.

Posted by Rob Kiser on February 23, 2008 at 8:31 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

1943 Guide to Hiring Women

This 1943 Guide to Hiring Women is priceless:

1. Pick young married women. They usually have more of a sense of responsibility than their unmarried sisters, they’re less likely to be flirtatious, they need the work or they wouldn’t be doing it, they still have the pep and interest to work hard and to deal with the public efficiently.

Continue reading "1943 Guide to Hiring Women"

Posted by Rob Kiser on February 23, 2008 at 8:20 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

91/11: The Mathematical Terrorist

It was either late 1988 or early 1989 when I started reading The Mathematical Tourist by Ivars Peterson.

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On page 18, Peterson wrote

Alice knows the original number, 91, and she looks for all numbers less than 91 that generate a remainder of 30 when divided into her number. In this case, she can do it by trial and error, but mathematicians use a faster method based on the Chinese remainder theorem, which provides a handy way to reconstruct integers from certain remainders. She finds two pairs: ±11 and ±24. She can send either 11 or 24 to Bob. One of the numbers is Bob's number, but Alice doesn't know which one of the two is his.

Being 19 at the time, it hadn't been that long since I had to do long division in school. I was pretty sure that 91/11 is 8 remainder 3, and 91/24 is 3 remainder 13. Since the book said otherwise, I figured I was doing something wrong. Perhaps "divided into" meant I had the dividend and divisor backwards, but reversing them didn't work either (i.e. "11/91" and "24/91"). My inability to solve this problem prevented me from understanding the rest of the chapter, and I eventually quit reading the book, since I couldn't get past page 18.

Continue reading "91/11: The Mathematical Terrorist"

Posted by Robert Racansky on February 23, 2008 at 2:01 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

The Kidapult

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Today, Jennifer and Allie were using the swingset as a kidapult, launching themselves off the swingset into the snow.

Posted by Peenie Wallie on February 23, 2008 at 11:24 AM : Comments (0) | Permalink

LCD Display Screen Guards

I finally decided that it was time to put some LCD scratch guards on my EOS 40D. I hate all of the rip-off LCD screen displays that are custom cut and they ship you 1 for $10.00. Most sites want to know what you're going to put it on and then ship them custom cut. I'm like...don't worry about what I'm going to do with it. Send me several large sheets and clear plastic shouldn't cost $10 per square inch. So, I shopped around until I found these 3.5" x 3.2" Custom ScreenGuardz. You can order 15 for $10 + $2.50 shipping/handling. Then, I just cut them to size and I have a few left over so I can replace them after a year or so when they get scratched bad enough. Plus, there's some left over for the other digital trinkets lying around.

Posted by Rob Kiser on February 23, 2008 at 10:59 AM : Comments (0) | Permalink

Top 10 Quotes Against Work

http://www.alternativereel.com/includes/top-ten/display_review.php?id=00080

“It was true that I didn’t have much ambition, but there ought to be a place for people without ambition, I mean a better place than the one usually reserved. How in the hell could a man enjoy being awakened at 6:30 a.m. by an alarm clock, leap out of bed, dress, force-feed, shit, piss, brush teeth and hair, and fight traffic to get to a place where essentially you made lots of money for somebody else and were asked to be grateful for the opportunity to do so??
—Charles Bukowski, Factotum, Black Sparrow Press, 1975

Continue reading "Top 10 Quotes Against Work"

Posted by Rob Kiser on February 23, 2008 at 9:45 AM : Comments (2) | Permalink

February 22, 2008

Wendy's - Confirm Order Here

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Posted by Rob Kiser on February 22, 2008 at 10:47 PM : Comments (2) | Permalink

Skate or Die

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Posted by Rob Kiser on February 22, 2008 at 5:12 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

February 21, 2008

Hillary's Videos - WTF?


I don't know who's making these videos, or who's approving them, but these suck. What in God's name are these people smoking? I mean, don't get me wrong. I want her to lose, but - what the h3ll was she thinking?

Posted by Rob Kiser on February 21, 2008 at 9:15 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

Hillary Rodham is $7.6 million in debt :)

http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0208/8613.html

More than $2 million of the red ink is owed to chief consultant and adviser, Mark Penn. But the lengthy laundry list of IOUs also includes unpaid bills ranging from insurance coverage, phone banking, printing and catering at events in Iowa, New Hampshire and California.

Clinton’s strapped financial situation in late January meant she couldn’t invest in all of the Super Tuesday states, particularly the expensive ground operations required in caucus states.

Obama won every one of those caucus contests on Feb. 5, opening up a critical lead among pledged delegates.

You know, I'm no fan of Obama or McCain. But in the "Anyone-But-Hillary" race, this is good news. :)

Posted by Rob Kiser on February 21, 2008 at 7:58 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

Two Urchins

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Posted by Peenie Wallie on February 21, 2008 at 4:51 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

Belarc Advisor

The Belarc Advisor builds a detailed profile of your installed software and hardware, missing Microsoft hotfixes, anti-virus status, CIS (Center for Internet Security) benchmarks, and displays the results in your Web browser. All of your PC profile information is kept private on your PC and is not sent to any web server.

* Operating Systems: Runs on Windows Vista, 2003, XP, 2000, NT 4, Me, 98, and 95.
* Browsers: Requires IE 3 or Netscape 3, and higher versions. Also runs on Opera, Mozilla, and Firefox.

Posted by Rob Kiser on February 21, 2008 at 10:04 AM : Comments (0) | Permalink

Captivate vs. Camtasia

I'm looking at creating a web demo on my PC, so I'm trying to find some good software to record my PC screen sessions. "Screencasting" appears to be the buzzword. So far, it looks like the best one is Adobe Captivate or Camtasia Studio. This site lists some open source alternatives, like CamStudio and WINK.

More screencasting software here and here.

Posted by Peenie Wallie on February 21, 2008 at 9:36 AM : Comments (0) | Permalink

February 20, 2008

My Most Newest Toy

The ultimate waterproof action cam! Weighing in at half a pound (with batteries), this self-contained, hands-free digital video cam delivers full color digital video in 640 X 480 VGA at 30 frames per second - even underwater.

Snow, Rain, or a dunk in a kayak? No worries - ATC2K is waterproof to 10 feet! PC and MAC compatible, ATC2K works seamlessly with most video editing software. Expandable up to 2GB on a standard SD card, ATC2K mounts easily and all mounting hardware is included.

* Full-function, hands-free, digital recording
* Waterproof up to 3 meters and shock-resistant for extreme conditions
* Mounts easily on helmets, handlebars, and other sports equipment
* 640 x 480 VGA resolution at 30 frames per second
* USB and RCA cables included for easy playback on PC or TV (NTSC)
* SD card expansion up to 2GB – onboard memory is 32MB
* Operates with 2 AA batteries, not included
* Dimensions: 4.25L x 1.75D x 2.25H (in.)

http://www2.oregonscientific.com/shop/product.asp?cid=8&scid=107&pid=709

Posted by Peenie Wallie on February 20, 2008 at 7:13 PM : Comments (1) | Permalink

Droplifting

Today, I went and took my written driving test for my motorcycle license. (I passed, but barely). Then, I went into the local Barnes and Noble and droplifted a copy of Killing Strangers. The thing that's cool about droplifting is that you can get excellent product placement. I placed the copy where it is readily apparent in the "New Paperbacks" section. Haha. Pretty funny, huh? Would love to be a fly on the wall when someone goes to the counter and tries to buy this thing.

I've been trying to get my book stocked the legimate manner at the Tattered Cover. They claim that they go out of their way to stock books by local authors, but they don't return my calls or emails. I may have to resort to droplifting at the Tattered Cover as well.

Posted by Peenie Wallie on February 20, 2008 at 6:48 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

February 19, 2008

POPURLS

I spend my days surfing Fark, Digg, Slashdot, and Reddit. These are basically news aggregator sites where users/viewers submit content, with various methods of filtering, approving, and ranking stories and moderating feedback. Then, when I was searching the web today, i found this PUPURLS site, which appears to be an aggregator of news aggregators. I think my head is going to explode. But, it looks cool.

POPURLS - Popular urls to the latest web buzz.

Posted by Peenie Wallie on February 19, 2008 at 8:15 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

UN Investigating Parody Web Site

Apparently, the UN is so stupid, that they're investigating the parody web site MedicalAdoptions.com. The website purports to connect people in need of organs with third world children of the same tissue type for adoption. The site is clearly fake, although I have no doubt that this does go on. I have it on good authority that the UN will be checking up on the following websites next:

Posted by Peenie Wallie on February 19, 2008 at 7:30 PM : Comments (1) | Permalink

February 17, 2008

Server Crash

My web server crashed today in a big way. Jennifer and Allie were having a recording session with a USB microphone in my home office when the server freaked out. I'm not sure what happened exactly, but when they called me into the office, the monitor had diagonal lines on the screen. I shut it down and tried to reboot it but it never came back up. I yanked out the hard drives and put them into the other computers and I was able to save all of the data for the Peenie Wallie and Killing Strangers websites.

It took me about 6 hours to get Peenie Wallie up and running on one of the other computers. Now, I have to talk to Dell and see what's wrong with my server.

Continue reading "Server Crash"

Posted by Rob Kiser on February 17, 2008 at 2:43 AM : Comments (2) | Permalink

February 15, 2008

The Good News and the Great News about the 2008 Election

The good news is that Hillary Rodham will not be the Democratic nominee. Last time she got into the White House she became the focal point of so many scandals there's an A to Z Scandal Guide to keep track of them. The vitriolic despot responsible for Travelgate, Whitewater, HillaryCare, and Vince Foster's death will never see the inside of the White House again unless she breaks in with a crowbar.

The great news is that she will take Obama down with her.

The best thing for the Democratic Party would be for her to step down gracefully, following her astonishing streak of losses in the Democratic primaries. Unfortunately for the Democrats, altruism has never been her long hand.

Perhaps nothing illustrates Hillary's narcissism so much as Hitler in Paris. When it became clear to the Führer that Paris would fall, he gave orders to completely destroy the city, leaving it in "smoking ruins". This is quintessential Hillary Rodham thinking. Nothing is more important than her Machiavellian, Quixotean quest for power. Not only would she pimp out her own daughter, she would throw Chelsea under a bus if she thought it would get her more delegates.

She's already demonstrated a propensity to put her own self-interest above the party by trying to count the delegates in Florida and Michigan.

But even that wouldn't get her back into the White House. She can't win by puerile electioneering shenanigans and simple voting fraud in Florida. That's an old Democratic trick. Gore played that one to the hilt and today he couldn't get arrested.

To win her party's nomination, she'll have to commit fratricide. She'll have to turn against Obama. She'll have to actually read Obama's Blueprint for Change and start dissecting it in public. She'll have to drag Obama down from his grandiose, vague promises of "change" down into the trenches to dissect the details. And the devil is in the details.

With these two idiotic spivs arguing back and forth over how best to destroy our healthcare system and the free market economy, the public will see them for what they are - a couple of dull, effete socialists with little in common but an ill-conceived sense of entitlement and a profound contempt for capitalism.

A wise man once told me that the Republicans have a knack for snatching defeat from the jaws of victory. This race is theirs to lose.

When Hillary inevitably turns on Obama, the two will destroy each other, like two cats tied together by their tails and flung over a wire. All McCain has to do is keep his mouth shut and sit back and watch the fur fly.

Update: Clinton sharpens attacks on Obama
Update 2: Hillary attacks Obama.

Posted by Rob Kiser on February 15, 2008 at 1:53 AM : Comments (0) | Permalink

February 14, 2008

A Hungry Visitor

This guy came cruising through my yard today. I saw him at about 2:00 in the afternoon. I don't see a lot of coyotes up here. Normally, these guys stay down the hill. I believe this is a young one though, and he's probably pretty hungry this time of year.

Posted by Rob Kiser on February 14, 2008 at 5:20 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

In election 2008, don’t forget Angry White Man

http://www.aspentimes.com/article/2008198091324

"There is a great amount of interest in this year’s presidential elections, as everybody seems to recognize that our next president has to be a lot better than George Bush. The Democrats are riding high with two groundbreaking candidates — a woman and an African-American — while the conservative Republicans are in a quandary about their party’s nod to a quasi-liberal maverick, John McCain.

[snip]

He believes the Constitution is to be interpreted literally, not as a “living document? open to the whims and vagaries of a panel of judges who have never worked an honest day in their lives.

The Angry White Man owns firearms, and he’s willing to pick up a gun to defend his home and his country. He is willing to lay down his life to defend the freedom and safety of others, and the thought of killing someone who needs killing really doesn’t bother him."

Posted by Rob Kiser on February 14, 2008 at 5:16 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

Arlen Specter's Investigation - Priceless

Posted by Rob Kiser on February 14, 2008 at 11:45 AM : Comments (0) | Permalink

February 13, 2008

More Fun With ISBN's

So, I finally figured out that, although I was assigned an ISBN number, I had never registered the ISBN with R.R. Bowker LLC. So, I attempted to register my ISBN. This site wants an ID and password, which I don't have. So, I clicked on "New User? Click here to register." I put in my publisher name (Peenie Wallie Press) and hit Search and voila. It found "Peenie Wallie Press". I filled out the required information, and they emailed me an ID and Password I would need to use the system to register the ISBN. Although I received an email from them with my ID/Password almost immediately, it didn't work for about 3 days or so.

Today, I was finally able to sign in and register my ISBN. Basically, what you do is tell them the title of the book, the price, a description, availability, assign a category to the book, etc. You can also specify the book dimensions, weight, etc. So, finally, after I registered the ISBN, I understood what I was doing. Initially, I purchased a single ISBN number. All this means is a) I'm a publisher and b) I have published a book (or am planning on publishing a book). Later, you have to tell them what the book title is, how much it costs, etc. So, in theory, someone could search for my book, and if they want to order copies of the book, they contact the publisher based on the information in Books In Print.

I saved the transaction and the transaction is now in a status of "Pending". Presumably, it will be processed in a day or three. Then, I'll be able to upload a book cover once the transaction processes successfully. Also, presumably, I'll be able to search for my book title. (I think this search link only works if you're signed in as a publisher.)

Then, my assumption is that the data will roll out to other databases, like the Amazon database and the Border's Books database. Lord this has been a slow and tedious learning process. :)

Update: As of last night, the status was no longer "Pending", but I couldn't search on the title. This morning, when I search for the title, it shows up. So, I can find my book by searching on "Killing Strangers" at Bowker if I'm signed in as a publisher. But I still have not found a free online searchable version of Books In Print.

Well, there's www.booksinprint.com, which they have apparently set up, but you have to be a subscriber/member to sign in and use it. So, now I'm getting the picture. Bowker has a monopoly on assigning ISBN numbers in the U.S. They sell the ISBN numbers, and then you register the title with them. They then market this information as "Books In Print" in book format or online at their www.booksinprint.com website. They have no incentive to release the data for free. They're a monopoly. What I'm less clear about is how this data makes it's way to other companies, like Amazon, etc. I searched on Amazon and Powell's books and my ISBN does not show up there.

978-0-615-18758-7
9780615187587

Posted by Rob Kiser on February 13, 2008 at 7:54 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

February 12, 2008

Cross Country Ski Trip


Continue reading "Cross Country Ski Trip"

Posted by Rob Kiser on February 12, 2008 at 1:17 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

February 10, 2008

February

This slideshow is composed of 48 images I shot in January and February of 2008. These photos were captured with a Canon EOS 40D and a Canon EF-S 17-85mm f/4-5.6 IS USM lens or a Canon EF 100-400mm f/4-5.6 IS USM lens. The slideshow (3:55) is a 16 Meg self-playing executable named february.exe created using Imagematics StillMotion PE. The soundtrack is Cold Girl Fever by The National, off of their self-titled album The National.

Click here to download the presentation. If you have an Apple, or you're running Unix, or if you're nervous about running a .exe file from my site, then click here to download the Macromedia Flash version. The resolution is not quite as good on the Macromedia Flash version, and you can't pause and go backward and forward, but it loads faster, and it's a fairly decent presention. Click here if you need help.

Note: There is a bug in the latest version of Macromedia Flash Player. If the audio stops after about 8 seconds, this is due to a bug in Adobe Flash Player Version 9,0,115,0. To check your version of Adobe Flash Player go here. If you have Version 9,0,115,0 then the slideshow won't play properly. Try uninstalling Macromedia Flash Player and then install a prior release of Macromedia Flash Player.

To see all of the slideshows, click here.

Lyrics in the extended entry.

Continue reading "February"

Posted by Rob Kiser on February 10, 2008 at 2:53 PM : Comments (1) | Permalink

February 9, 2008

Will You Be My Valentine?

Yesterday (Friday), someone at school gave Jennifer a stuffed teddy bear and a card as a Valentine's Day offering, apparently. Reportedly, the courtship dates back to Wednesday, when one of the boys asked a friend of his to ask Jennifer if she'd be his Valentine, to which she allegedly replied "maybe". After much persuasion on Wednesday and Thursday by those seated near her, she apparently acquiesced and said "Yes". So, on Friday, she was presented with a handmade card with hearts and a stuffed teddy bear. She has yet to set the teddy bear down. Recess was a melee, with separate swarms of children descending on Jennifer and her beau, shouting, pushing, and pointing. Just hilarious, really. They were screaming to me "there he is" and "that's the one". So, I took some pictures of him. I figure that, from here on out, it's only downhill.

Posted by Rob Kiser on February 9, 2008 at 1:02 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

February 8, 2008

Laurie Maves ART

I ran into this chick named Laurie Maves today and she gave me her card so I looked up her work on the internets tonight and I have to say...I really dig her work. Check out her website at www.lauriemavesart.com.

Posted by Rob Kiser on February 8, 2008 at 8:29 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

Goodnight Moon - The Sequel

http://www.omnivoracious.com/2008/02/more-margaret-w.html

"Now that the book is a family favorite, we were excited to see that a new Margaret Wise Brown story, The Moon Shines Down, is about the see the light of day.

Thomas Nelson acquired Brown's manuscript, which was found among a "sheaf of yellow pages held together by paper clips" in her sister's attic, according to Publishers Weekly. The picture book, with Clement Hurd-style illustrations by Linda Bleck, will be available in November of this year."

I'm glad to see that there's a sequel coming out to Goodnight Moon. I just hope that they don't censor it like they censored Goodnight Moon.

Update: O'Brien posted that "Clement Hurd[the illustrator of Goodnight Moon] was always pictured without his cigarette."

This is not the case. HaperCollins digitially manipulated the image of Clement Hurd by removing the cigarette from his right hand.

"The photograph of Hurd published in the book for years showed him with a cigarette in his right hand, but in new copies brought out recently by HarperCollins Publishers, the cigarette has been digitally removed."
[snip]
"The company defends the altered photo. Kate Morgan Jackson, editor-in-chief for HarperCollins Children’s Books, said the company contends the issue is about smoking.

"One of our responsibilities is to make sure we are publishing" the book "the right way throughout the ages and making it healthy for every generation," she said."

Hopefully, this should clear things up a bit.

Posted by Rob Kiser on February 8, 2008 at 8:13 PM : Comments (1) | Permalink

Panhandling in Oregon

According to police, panhandlers in Coos Bay Oregon are making $300 a day. That works out to $78,000 a year, if they "work" 260 days a year. But, keep in mind, they're paid in cash, don't get a W-2 at the end of the year, and are therefore eligible for welfare, indigent care at hospitals, and food stamps.

Posted by Rob Kiser on February 8, 2008 at 5:49 AM : Comments (0) | Permalink

February 7, 2008

Perpetual Motion (Again)

Thane Heins has supposedly created a perpetual motion machine. I'm really happy for him. Reminds me of Joseph Newman of Lucedale, Mississippi. I saw his perpetual motion machine down in New Orleans in 1984. I went so far as to tell the mayor of Vidalia, Louisiana that the world's energy problem would be solved in the immediate future by the perpetual motion machine. This was before Joe Newman took a child bride, ran for president, and left the state.

In 1989, Stanley Pons and Martin Fleishman reported that they had achieved cold fusion in a test tube filled with Palladium and Deuterium (heavy water). I remember how they hastily called a meeting at the university I was attending and the physicists tried to answer all the breathless questions as best they could. Well, that was 19 years ago and, last time I checked, we weren't breaking ground on any Cold Fusion plants.

I'm not saying these guys are frauds or con men. I just think that they're sort of mad scientist hacks. People trying to do the impossible in the lab. I personally don't believe it's possible, but I'm in no position to tell them to stop trying.

This new "perpetual motion machine" that Thane Heins has cobbled together looks a lot like the one Joseph Newman had set up in New Orleans 24 years ago. It looks like a high school science fair project some gifted kid cobbled together in his parent's garage with a bunch of magnets and flywheels and wires hanging off of it. Plus, there's lots of scientific jargon being tossed around to bamboozle the crowds.

I'm not going to get excited about it this time around. I'm too old and jaded to fall for these fast-talking shade-tree mechanics any more. The proof is in the pudding.

If it really puts out more energy than it takes in, then you ought to be able to get it going, unplug it, and let it run itself. This seems intuitively obvious, but when I pointed this out in New Orleans 24 years ago, they were saying nonsense like "...well, the output is DC and it runs on AC..." or some crap like that. Just a bunch of smoke and mirrors of course because, if it truly puts out more energy than it takes in, it certainly ought to be able to run itself once you get it going, wouldn't you think? And if it can't produce enough power to run itself, then what good is it?

Posted by Rob Kiser on February 7, 2008 at 2:17 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

Bill and Hillary

Posted by Rob Kiser on February 7, 2008 at 3:41 AM : Comments (0) | Permalink

February 6, 2008

Yellowtail

I'm not even sure what Yellowtail is, but it's kinda cool.

Posted by Rob Kiser on February 6, 2008 at 4:28 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

A Short Course on Brain Surgery

The sad thing is that, I'm afraid we're going to have Hillarycare in the U.S. fairly soon. :(

Posted by Rob Kiser on February 6, 2008 at 4:12 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

The ISBN Racket

If you want to get an ISBN number for your book, R.R. Bowker LLC is the only agency in the United States that can issue you an ISBN number. They have a monopoly, apparently. The good news is that an ISBN number only costs $25.00. The bad news is the minimum number of ISBN numbers you can purchase is 10. So, even if you only need one ISBN number, it's going to cost you $250.00.

Continue reading "The ISBN Racket"

Posted by Rob Kiser on February 6, 2008 at 9:25 AM : Comments (1) | Permalink

February 5, 2008

Colorado Caucus

I took Jennifer to the Colorado Caucus tonight and we voted for Ron Paul in the 18th Precinct, but he only got 2 votes out of 32. :(

Posted by Rob Kiser on February 5, 2008 at 9:37 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

The Recycling Myth

http://www.mises.org/story/2855

What is interesting about this Soviet-style planned recycling is that it is officially profitable. It is supposed to be resource efficient, since recycling of the materials is less energy-consuming than, for instance, mining or the production of paper from wood. It is also economically profitable, since the government actually generates revenues from selling recycled materials and products made in the recycling process. The final recycling process costs less than is earned from selling the recycled products.

However, this is common government logic: it is "energy saving" simply because government does not count the time and energy used by nine million people cleaning and sorting their trash. Government authorities and researchers have reached the conclusion that the cost of (a) the water and electricity used for cleaning household trash, (b) transportation from trash collection centers, and (c) the final recycling process is actually less than would be necessary to produce these materials from scratch. Of course, they don't count the literally millions of times people drive to the recycling centers to empty their trash bins; neither do they count, for instance, energy and costs for the extra housing space required for a dozen extra trash bins in every home.

Economically, Swedish recycling is a disaster. Imagine a whole population spending time and money cleaning their garbage and driving it around the neighborhood rather than working or investing in a productive market! According to the government's books, more money flows in than flows out; therefore recycling is profitable. But this ignores the costs of coercion.

This is what the tree-huggers don't get. They all think recycling is the way to go, but it isn't. It's cheaper to throw everything into a hole and make new glass and paper and metal from scratch. Way cheaper. That's why you have to pay someone to come pick up anything you want to recycle. Tree-huggers don't get this, but they're usually socialists anyway, so they have no qualms about empowering the government to force you to recycle and they're no fans of capitalism, so if it doesn't make sense financially, then that's no great burden either.

Posted by Rob Kiser on February 5, 2008 at 9:37 AM : Comments (1) | Permalink

February 4, 2008

More Scientology

I don't know what to say about this. Full-on crazy. Wow. Just wow.

More Steven Fishman depositions.

Posted by Rob Kiser on February 4, 2008 at 10:35 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

The Natalie Holloway case is solved

Posted by Rob Kiser on February 4, 2008 at 8:37 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

February 2, 2008

Our New Pet

A lot of you have asked for photos of our new cat. Jennifer pleaded and begged all last year for a "kitty", so I finally broke down and bought her one as a late Christmas present. We adopted one from a local animal shelter. So, it was already neutered and spayed, or whatever they do to it. And it had it's rabies shots and all. It was the "pet of the week", at the animal shelter. It's pretty wild, but Jennifer loves it and we just have to remember to keep lots of Neosporin handy.

Posted by Rob Kiser on February 2, 2008 at 9:52 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

The Years Are Short

Racansky sent this to me today. I like it a lot. Click on the photo to see a short video from the days are long, but the years are short. Her home page is apparently The Happiness Project.

Posted by Rob Kiser on February 2, 2008 at 12:28 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink

February 1, 2008

Ice Fishing on Lake Granby

Well, OK. So, I didn't catch any fish. Ah, who am I kidding? We never even got around to drilling any holes in the ice. But it was fun riding the four wheeler.

Posted by Rob Kiser on February 1, 2008 at 4:57 PM : Comments (0) | Permalink