Critical Section

Archive: April 29, 2010

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Thursday,  04/29/10  11:25 PM

Whew, back.  Or rather on my way back; this is being blogged on United, as I make my way home from New Orleans, after a whirlwind trip in which I visited three customers, attended a conference, made a presentation, and did a lot of thinking...

barbed wire - on the border...I don't get all the opposition to the Arizona immigration law, do you?  I guess if you're opposed to the idea that there should be such a thing as citizens of a country, and people who are not citizens, and laws which govern who gets to be a citizen, then you would be opposed to this law.  There are such people, and while I disagree with them, that would be consistent thinking on their part.  But there seem to be many people who do think there should be citizens and non-citizens, and who do think there should be immigration laws, but they are still opposed to this law - in many cases, vehemently opposed.  I don't get it.

BTW same comment on policing our borders and enforcing immigration laws.  If you believe in such a thing as non-citizens then surely it follows you need borders, border police, and enforcement of immigration laws?

Chris Muir: test patternFrom the amazing Chris Muir, who draws day-by-day: test pattern.  "This is a test of the free speech system.  This is only a test."  Wow.  Click through to see the associated comic which is pretty great, too.

HP + Palm = more than 1+1And so HP have bought Palm.  I tend to take the optimist's view, this is good for HP and Palm.  I love my Palm Pre, and it pains me when I read of the company's travails and lack of resources.  Meanwhile HP is a good home; they will invest sufficient resources in WebOS and will give wider distribution to it, such as [maybe] on tablet computers.

Daring Fireball: "Strikes me as a great move for both companies."
ArsTechnica: "HP has the resources that Palm didn't have in order to keep the innovative webOS going."
TechCrunch: "Hewlett-Packard has killed off its much ballyhooed Windows 7 tablet computer."
Engadget's Liveblog of the announcement.

Brad Feld asks: Are storytellers the best programmers?  Huh.  I think perhaps storytellers are the best UI designers, maybe the best front-end software designers (and being a VC, Brad probably thinks of most software as being web software, and specifically web front-end software).  Not sure it follows generally.

Afghanistan stability diagramMisleading headline(s) of the day: Generals left baffled by PowerPoint slide.  This refers to the diagram at left, which is complicated and could well be baffling.  But in no way does this have anything to do with PowerPoint.  Does that look like a PowerPoint slide to you?  Weird.

around the world in 80 secondsAround the world in 80 seconds.  Cool video, which due to some creative editing features what appears to be a single take blasting around the world.

Ze Frank's chillout song.  Way cool.  Ze Frank is ze cool, no?

Tim Bray: Blogging at Google.  How do you give interesting reports from inside the firewall without compromising anything?  Tim is trying to find out :)

More from Tim: Flash history.  "I’m a little irritated that all those preaching about Flash are ignoring the history."  Me, too.  Some pundits seem to think Flash is just a way to play video on the web.  It was the first real workable cross-platform client-side development technology.  Yeah I get that JavaScript can do almost everything Flash could do.  But when you're writing JavaScript your constantly worried about different browsers; IE, Firefox, Safari, Chrome, etc.  Lots of work and lots of testing.

Flash on iPhoneThis was apropos Steve Jobs' open letter about Flash.  There is only one reason Jobs is opposed to Flash, and it has nothing to do with technology.  A viable cross-platform client-side development technology would undermine Apple's hegemony over their iDevice App Store.  It's pure business.

ZooBorn: Mogo's Marmosetfuzzball ZooBorn of the day: Mogo's Marmoset.


lost my brain

Thursday,  04/29/10  11:34 PM

Auguste Roin: The ThinkerTuesday night I lost my brain.  Well actually I lost my car, but in order to do so I had to lose my brain first, in an incident frighteningly reminiscent of last week when I ran out of brain

I had landed in New Orleans, hungry, and immediately after renting a car had OpenTable-d a restaurant in the French Quarter1.  Drove into downtown, using my trusty Pre's awesome GPS nav app2, and knowing parking would be tough as soon as I got close I parked my car.  From their I walked to the restaurant, guided by the Pre, and had a great dinner3.  Afterward I walked back to my car and ... wait! I didn't walk back to my car, because I *totally* could not remember where I put it!  I couldn't remember the street, couldn't remember the direction of the street, and in fact couldn't even remember what the car looked like!  Yikes.

Using Google Maps I was able to search all the streets in the area in spiral fashion, clicking the keys' unlock button so I could identify my car as I walked along, and after an hour of blundering about I found it.  You are thinking "this is a typical New Orleans French Quarter experience" and you might be right.  It didn't leave me very proud of myself.  I guess I have to continue clearing out my head so I can accomplish basic tasks.  Whew.

1 if you travel around like me OpenTable is awesome.  You can find great restaurants anywhere and make a reservation with a click of the touchscreen.  The Pre app for OpenTable is great, too.

2 yes, the Pre's GPS nav app is superior to any in-car GPS and just as cool as Garmin / Tom Tom / etc., with the bonus of being integrated with the phone.

3 The Pelican Club, and yes I had a wonderful meal there, starting with Andouille gumbo followed by Blue Crab ravioli and a trio of duckling, capped by duck egg creme brulee and accompanied by Arcadian Pinot Noir.


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this date in:
About Me

Greatest Hits
Correlation vs. Causality
The Tyranny of Email
Unnatural Selection
On Blame
Try, or Try Not
Books and Wine
Emergent Properties
God and Beauty
Moving Mount Fuji
The Nest
Rock 'n Roll
IQ and Populations
Are You a Bright?
Adding Value
The Joy of Craftsmanship
The Emperor's New Code
Toy Story
The Return of the King
Religion vs IQ
In the Wet
solving bongard problems
visiting Titan
unintelligent design
the nuclear option
estimating in meatspace
second gear
On the Persistence of Bad Design...
Texas chili cookoff
almost famous design and stochastic debugging
may I take your order?
universal healthcare
triple double
New Yorker covers
Death Rider! (da da dum)
how did I get here (Mt.Whitney)?
the Law of Significance
Holiday Inn
Daniel Jacoby's photographs
the first bird
Gödel Escher Bach: Birthday Cantatatata
Father's Day (in pictures)
your cat for my car
Jobsnotes of note
world population map
no joy in Baker
vote smart
exact nonsense
introducing eyesFinder
to space
where are the desktop apps?
still the first bird
electoral fail
progress ratches
2020 explained