Tuesday, December 28, 2004

The central fact of our epoch is that knowledge has grown; man's brain has not.

Geoffrey Pyke 1931

Sunday, December 26, 2004

Life enigmatic with Bill Murray

This interviewer confuses her interview experience with the character of Bill Murray en total. Still, it's an interesting slice of him.

I've always liked Bill Murray, and I am interested in him personally, in a shocking change from my usual disinterested pragmatism vis a vis entertainers. He remains a comic actor with wonderful reserves as well as manic energy. project selection well below the usual 'money whore' level of many actors.

I'll pay full price to see The Life Aquatic, and we'll see. But I imagine I'll like it. Just because. Sometimes there are intangibles to movie experiences that are not easy to communicate or share. Subjectively, they are still worth a great deal to me.

For more objective quality, unfortunately, the holiday season is a little spare. The Incredibles are zippy as any Pixar movie, but their effect on viewers is more spotty than usual. As a superhero geek, I of course am required by union regulations to enjoy the movie. The action movies are quite a bit more easy to categorize. Blade Trinity is hogwash capitalizing on the good reputation of the first movie, and the energy of Guillermo's directing on the second. National Treasure is bland adventure action with Cage's usual mugging and acting points. Ocean's Twelve is as stylish as the first, with total nonsense for plot. The tricks and twists unfortunately are much less planned and not obvious at all in retrospect. They are quite tacked on, just to provide the atmosphere of twisty cleverness.

ah, Movies, they grab your time and sometimes in return give you a hint of enjoyment and inspiration. I used to watch many more of them.

Tuesday, December 21, 2004

EPIC 2014

Some Competently presented luddite fears. Requires Flash

Sunday, December 19, 2004

Jack Chick Explains White Wolf's New System

Only for the geekiest gamers, Jeremy in particular.

Thursday, December 16, 2004

"Ignorance is not so much bliss, as it is certainty"
~Joshua Truett

Monday, December 13, 2004

Hooker Heroes

an unusual history lesson from an unabashed advocate of prostitution, Playboy, and... Calorie Restriction? Looks like a dead website, and there's no way to contact the author, but he's interesting, and the history is provocative, if not impressively scholarly.

He's also got an ode to skinny women, extolling pornographic magazines as promoting a healthy, sustainable female form.

Unusual fellow. Surprising what that web throws up sometimes.

Personally, I think that prostitution is greatly marginalized by being illegal, and that the many women and girls (and boys, oh my) that are hurt, socially ostracized, and otherwise badly damaged in that context would be in much better shape if it were a daylight, socially visible activity. The few legal prostitution examples in the first world, as he rightly points out, are strikingly free of disease, victimization, and connection to other crime.

For the feminist and otherwise morally outraged, I can only say that I believe the purpose of a legal system(if it has a purpose) is to protect our rights as individuals. Nothing more.

It falls to morality to influence our choices, not our options.

If you don't like it, don't do it. Try to convince all the peole you care about that it's no good either. If you're right, it'll die a slow death from lack of interest. If not, you didn't have to do it anyway, so why worry?

Wednesday, December 08, 2004

MPrize - Welcome!

I don't think I've ever seen anything as cute as that logo in the upper left hand corner, an old mouse with a cane, wonderful.

Aubrey De Grey is a good guy, and very ambitious in all the right directions. He's pure bioscience, despite being a former CS guy, but I can't fault his enthusiasm. If for some reason AI and Nanotechnology is very very difficult, I will likely be in his hands. Or those of his scientific progeny.

Regardless, this is a wonderful effort, and you should check it out.

Friday, December 03, 2004

Physics Today December 2004- The Hydrogen Economy

Energy Production, as it relates to consumer use, manufacturing, and utilities we all use daily, like internet access and telephony, is a major interest of mine. The Hydrogen Economy is a big idea that has been a long long time coming. It's not clear, despite it's persuasive nature, whether it will eventually make it all the way to the real world.

Portions of it obviously will. This is a state of the art article on the prospects and challenges such an integrated solution will have.

Something that isn't considered very often is partial introduction of hydrogen as an energy carrier within an isolated industrial process. If hydrogen can be commercially successful within a limited context, the powers of standardization and mass production can drive the spread to other processes, and other industries. Trying to build an integrated solution will probably always fail, because people who are reading your 'complete manifesto', interpret it within the context of their own applications, and it never is quite tailored, or quite useful enough in the details. The trick to to make them come to you. When people design processes, they design them with a hundred assumptions and design limitations. The trick is to become one of those design goals, and then you're not a cost, not a change, just another constraint, and another compliance.

Good luck to em, though. The Hydrogen economy is extremely intertied with efficiency, intelligent design, renewable energy sources, and decentralized design, across the board. A few successes in their camp means many in all of the above.

And that would be significant.