Saturday, January 10, 2004

Here is the kilroy "screed" itself.
posted by Irdial , 9:21 PM Þ 

And this makes the "problem" go away like magic...
posted by Irdial , 9:06 PM Þ 
posted by Ken , 6:40 PM Þ 
posted by Ken , 6:35 PM Þ 
posted by alex_tea , 3:02 PM Þ 

"(Piracy) is hurting kids because kids are learning a disrespect for the basic relationship between creativity and ownership. It's hurting parents because they are in on the sham."
posted by Irdial , 11:17 AM Þ 

Dismayed. I'm really pissed now. Some of my chums...
posted by Claus Eggers , 10:17 AM Þ 
Friday, January 09, 2004

For more than 50 years, the U.S. government has seriously underestimated damage from nuclear attacks. The earliest schemes to predict damage from atomic bombs, devised in 1947 and 1948, focused only on blast damage and ignored damage from fire, which can be far more devastating than blast effects.
The Bulletin of Atomic Scientists

Have been doing a lot of reading on quantum mechanics, string/M theory, occult philosophy, epistemology, and some art theory. BRAIN SATURATED. URGH.
posted by Barrie , 7:42 PM Þ 

3d photo of mars [3d specs required]

CD.....I've had a busy week at work so haven't had the opportunity to compile a cd for you yet. Will make the time over the weekend though and it should be with you by the end of next week.

Finally, the BBC drops the useless piece of driftwood. Shame they will only fill the void with more though.

posted by chriszanf , 7:24 PM Þ 
posted by captain davros , 12:34 PM Þ 
posted by Irdial , 10:17 AM Þ 

My name is, erm, in a comet. Or going to be anyway.
posted by captain davros , 10:11 AM Þ 

Flashing unfurled 3D geometric shape.
Wikki served up behind an SSL connection.
... ... ...
Candy Colored Clown!!!!
Puff Puffff Puuuuffffffffff!!!!!!!
posted by Irdial , 12:44 AM Þ 

Azimov gets the hollywood treatment:
posted by Irdial , 12:25 AM Þ 
Thursday, January 08, 2004

meau2, you are always reading my mind. I had woke up to a story about Monsanto on the radio this morning, something about GMO soybean oil to replace trans fats in foods, and then I forgot the name of the company. And then you reminded me, and then I went for lunch, and saw this story.

It's not pretty.

posted by mary13 , 10:19 PM Þ 

Before I begin, allow me to first quote directly from the Irdial~Disc web site:

"Irdial~Discs is a world renowned publisher, driven by a relentless, ferocious and uncompromising vision of what the public should expect from music, sound recordings, print and publishing.

"During its long history, Irdial~Discs has been responsible for exposing the public to many revered artists and the most extraordinary and important of historical sound projects.

"This year's projects will see us consolidating our position as one of Europe's greatest labels, with new releases and surprising collaborations to come."

Obviously, the people who run Irdial have no problems bragging. But is their audacity justified? In one area, it is: found art, or art not directly created for aesthetic reasons but nevertheless possessing many aesthetic qualities. Two releases from Irdial's immense catalogue are perhaps the finest examples of found music ever released. The first is a work I've reviewed at this site, one I've discussed on many occasions: The Conet Project: Recordings of Shortwave Numbers Stations. This is an unbelievably important release that not only sheds light on an area of the Cold War (and beyond) otherwise ignored by historians but also possesses an amazingly creepy aura that sucks the listener in and doesn't let up for any of the release's four disks. It is, I think, one of the greatest recordings of all time. Another Irdial release of found art that deserves attention is Electric Enigma: The VLF Recordings of Stephan P. McGreevy. VLF signals are radio signals produced by the Earth's magnetic field, most prominently evident during the so-called "northern lights" displays. These sounds are very low in the radio spectrum, but Stephan McGreevy built a device to listen in to the signals, and this release documents some of his more interesting recordings. The sounds are amazing: sounding like crickets at one point, like tin whistles at another, and like warm, rumbling overtones at another.

So, Irdial's found art is fantastic. What of their more traditional offerings? Well, it's not as impressive. They've released about 70-odd works over the 15 years the label has been in business. Some of the work, like InSync's "Storm," is certainly interesting and challenging and even (at times) extraordinary. But most of these releases are simply mediocre works that don't really impress me all that much.

Of course, feel free to ignore my comments and check the music out for yourself. The best feature of Irdial~Disc is: free music. Yes, that's right: most of the label's back catalogue is available for download on their web site. This includes The Conet Project and Electric Enigma, by the way, along with other Irdial artists such as InSync, Aqua Regia, Anthony Manning, and a bunch of others.

Why do they do this? Well, as they note, "Irdial~Disks embraces the Free Music Philosophy," a philosophy founded upon "the idea that creating, copying, and distributing music must be as unrestricted as breathing air, swimming in the sea, or basking in the rays of the sun." Air? Sea? Sun? Hmm. No wonder their found music is so good!
posted by Irdial , 9:20 PM Þ 

My name is on Mars!

I remember doing that, too.
posted by Josh Carr , 7:52 PM Þ 

My name is on Mars!

And I wish the rest of me was there too!
posted by Irdial , 6:42 PM Þ 

monsanto accused of price fixing

Monsanto, the corporate driving force behind the development of genetically modified food, held frequent meetings with its chief competitors and persuaded them to raise the price of GM seeds, it was reported ...

posted by meau meau , 6:29 PM Þ 


This is missing from the minds of most american pundits.

Logically, if evey country on earth is required to have either thier fingers printed or a biometric passport containing fingerprints, is there not one american pundit that understands that it would be illogical for all the other countries to accept american passports that are free from biometrics?

That means that every american that wants to travel abroad will have to either be scanned on arrival at the destination country, OR they will have to be issued with biometric passports which means that every american will be required to be fingerprinted and retina scanned if they want to travel.

americans normally would not stand for this. They have rejected ID cards regularly, rightly, as being a terrible system whose only value is a tool to abuse human rights. Asking them to be fingerprinted just to travel will make them blow a fuse.

The next event to do with this flows logically from biometric passports and population numbering. It makes no sense not to have the DNA of every citizen registered along with thier biometrics. This way, all sorts of crimes can be detected after the fact. To not impliment this would be illogical. Having already submitted to compulsory numbering, retina scanning and finger printing, it will be a small step to add DNA to the biometric mix.

Logic Logic Logic, If you apply it, you can see why it is imperitive that this insanity is stopped now before the momentum builds to critical mass. The key to stopping this is to inform the americans that they will all be fingerprinted either in their own country or a foreign country if they do not speak up right now.

I suggest that if you know any americans, you speak to them about this immediately.

The silence on this subject is profound...and I cant stand it!®
posted by Irdial , 6:11 PM Þ 

It's fine that you are all deep into music. But there's something deeper and if you would go deeper, if you go to the source of where the music is being made, you'll find something even more interesting. At the source, everyone's individual music is made. If you ask what the deep place is, it's your own life and it's knowing your own life, that own way that you live.
posted by Josh Carr , 5:48 PM Þ 

I think Frank Sidebottom was also on the The Word or something else early - mid nineties because I do remember hearing and seeing him move rather than just in the comic book.

Tell me about it...
Wow. You cataloged it, that's very good. These tapes had no writing on them, save for the year. It was quite fun really, especially my friends excuses for taping Babylon Zoo (twice!), Northern Uproar and Oasis.

Xbox Linux
Slipslap.. Thanks, my friend has an XBox which he's modded and uses as a media centre/DVD player but it's still using MS's OS. It's a good idea except a: I want a GameCube and b: XBox's are ugly.

posted by alex_tea , 5:36 PM Þ 

Alex, I remember Frank Sidebottom. I think I first saw him on The Tube (there was also a strange guy on there called "Mark Miwurdz" who gripped a match in his forehead for some reason), and he also had a huge load of stuff on Mark Radcliffe's "Hit the North" show which was on in the early days of Radio 5 circa 1991. I caught a snippet of him singing along to "Peaches" by The Stranglers, going "Standing on the beach, looking at me peach, by the water's edge, with me fruit and veg...". He also used to have a puppet called "Little Frank" and everything seemed to go on in Timperley which I presume is a neighbourhood of Manchestah. recent excursions into 'vintage' TV

Tell me about it...more 1985-86 in this instance...

posted by captain davros , 3:33 PM Þ 

There are alternatives to Pop Idol or Big Brother-style gimmicks. Voters
should be more directly involved in the way we are governed. On big
constitutional issues that now means holding referendums, though it
would be helpful if politicians could agree some ground rules on what is
"big". On other matters, the internet and direct access would allow the
public a continuing say. MPs should still decide, but they now have to
listen, if they are not increasingly to be ignored. [...],,482-955416,00.html

As long as representatives are allowed to decide anything independently, democracy is dead in the water. Direct control over represenatative votes is the only way that democracy can be implimented. Note that I say implimented and not restored.
posted by Irdial , 3:14 PM Þ 

The US has condemned a Brazilian order for the same to be done to US visitors to Brazil as being designed to "punish" Americans. [...]


Contemptible unscrupulous evil hypocrites.
posted by Irdial , 3:09 PM Þ 

What are they going to do with my finger prints, how on earth will recording my finger prints do anything worthwhile?

How long are they going to store them for.
Who are they gonig to share them with.
Do you have a right to view this data.
Do you have a right to destroy your database entry.

These are just some of the questions that are not being asked. It seems that no one in the uk understands that they are going to be fingerprinted and retinascanned as a matter of routine by 2005. Wake up you fucking idiots!
posted by Irdial , 3:03 PM Þ 

I was planning on traveling to NYC next month for business. Nothing has been confirmed, not even the dates, so I'm not sure if I'm going yet, but I'd like to. This whole fingerprinting/retina scanning fear mongering crap is making me have second thoughts though.

I don't want to be finger printed. I have nothing to hide, but that doesn't necessarily mean I have to show everything does it?

What are they going to do with my finger prints, how on earth will recording my finger prints do anything worthwhile?

BBC NEWS | UK | US urged to extend visa deadline
posted by alex_tea , 3:00 PM Þ 

Does anyone remember Frank Sidebottom? I used to read Oink when I was younger, and Frank was a complete anomaly, in a vacuum, I had no idea where he came from or why. Today I learnt he was created by Chris Sievey from the Freshies.

Chris Sievey/Frank Sidebottom are also connected to Mrs Merton, which fits in weirdly with my recent excursions into 'vintage' TV - going round to my friends' flat and watching their video tapes from 1995-1996 chronicling the British pop scene as it was then. One video had nearly every appearance of Blur on TV during their Country House promo rounds, including all mentions on the news and an special episode of The Ozone.

Obviously this means nothing to any of you as you weren't spotty Britpoppers back then.
posted by alex_tea , 2:26 PM Þ 

It saddens me to read of the rude and outright racist treatment for international travellers to the US.. Yes, we do have a very much "us ves them" attitude in government functions and I wish to publicly express my regret to all who have suffered. However, what I do see coming, in the US and soon worldwide, is a technological driven approach to ALL security. The computer will be more and more making the "selection" of what is allowed and the human being will gradually assume a "cargo" like status. In the end you might avoid the US, avoid terrorists, but no-one will escape being photographed, fingerprinted and I.D.ed. It is the perfect tool for, not crime control, but domination.
Sgt. Charles Mungovan/La. Cap. Police, New Orleans, Louisiana, USA [...]

From the mouth of a Policeman.

And the rest...

Anyone who has ever been to the US knows about the long immigration delays and the way the officials behave suspiciously and cause unease even among ordinary people. Personally it is always a stressful time for me, even though I know I have nothing to worry about. After the stress of flying, one wrong move such as an irritated answer to a question can land you in a heap of trouble. These further checks guarantee travellers of all origins further delays as immigration queues do not distinguish between "aliens". For my part I have decided not to visit the States again even though I have family there and I have enjoyed it as a tourist destination for many years. We are obviously not welcome any more. I will take my money elsewhere.
TDP, Brussels, Belgium [...]
posted by Irdial , 2:15 PM Þ 
posted by Irdial , 2:06 PM Þ 

If you are going to do that ho test, close the font tag cause the person who created it is not a HTML ho.
posted by Irdial , 2:05 PM Þ 
posted by Alison , 2:00 PM Þ

All tourist visa applicants visiting French consulates abroad would have to give their fingerprints, which would be stored in a data bank in Paris. [...]

About 15.1 million tourists entered the US under the visa waiver programme last year, accounting for two-thirds of spending by foreign visitors. [...]

For the American Government there can never be too many checks. Air travel may now be more complex but the US administration is adamant it will not deter visitors from heading to the US. [...]

Lets see.

One thing is for sure the whole world has gone MAD(er)!

Now the British are going to be fingerprinted and photographed when they enter the USA. Lets see who, if anyone, complains loudest.

And another thing, in order for these fingerpriinting databases to be effective, mobile finger reading devices are going to have to be deployed to every cop in america. This way, if they catch someone in the street, they can "run their prints" on the spot to see if they are in violation of any immigration laws.

This would be a clear violation of the scanees human rights. Think about this carefully; what happens if the scan turns up as "no record found"? Does that mean the police haul the person in for further examination? Without being charged with any crime? Obviously, for the system to work EVERYBODY has to be fingerprinted so that they only people who are NOT fingerprinted, the "no record found" niks are marked as criminals because they have no scan on file.

Once you fingerprint one group of people you have to fingerprint everyone for completeness of the system. It seems that the british government have already understood this.

Its a huge win for Shlumberger Sema, who will be providing the equipment for this in many jurisdictions.

Jesus H Christ, WHAT A MESS!!!!!
posted by Irdial , 1:51 PM Þ 

An engineering PhD known for outsized energy and gifts, Tamimi, 47, designed and built a new short-range missile during Iraq's four-year hiatus from United Nations arms inspections. Inspectors who returned in late 2002, enforcing Security Council limits, ruled that the Al Samoud missile's range was not quite short enough. The U.N. team crushed the missiles, bulldozed them into a pit and entombed the wreckage in concrete. In one of three interviews last month, Tamimi said "it was as if they were killing my sons."

But Tamimi had other brainchildren, and these stayed secret. Concealed at some remove from his Karama Co. factory here were concept drawings and computations for a family of much more capable missiles, designed to share parts and features with the openly declared Al Samoud. The largest was meant to fly six times as far.

"This was hidden during the UNMOVIC visits," Tamimi said, referring to inspectors from the U.N. Monitoring, Verification and Inspection Commission. Over a leisurely meal of lamb and sweet tea, he sketched diagrams. "It was forbidden for us to reveal this information," he said.

Tamimi's covert work, which he recounted publicly for the first time in five hours of interviews, offers fresh perspective on the question that led the nation to war. Iraq flouted a legal duty to report the designs. The weapons they depicted, however, did not exist. [...]

But investigators have found no support for the two main fears expressed in London and Washington before the war: that Iraq had a hidden arsenal of old weapons and built advanced programs for new ones. In public statements and unauthorized interviews, investigators said they have discovered no work on former germ-warfare agents such as anthrax bacteria, and no work on a new designer pathogen -- combining pox virus and snake venom -- that led U.S. scientists on a highly classified hunt for several months. The investigators assess that Iraq did not, as charged in London and Washington, resume production of its most lethal nerve agent, VX, or learn to make it last longer in storage. And they have found the former nuclear weapons program, described as a "grave and gathering danger" by President Bush and a "mortal threat" by Vice President Cheney, in much the same shattered state left by U.N. inspectors in the 1990s. [...]

Washington Post
posted by Irdial , 1:41 PM Þ 

They should go down on their knees and thank god.

The Express doesnt have a website with its rag content on it, so we cant pull the entire article to rip it t shreds....but then why should we? We know there are idiots everywhere, this is not news.

What IS important is the fact that the people who believe this and say nothing are running almost every western country. They are also willing to act, ilegally, on these ideas, and while everyone is paying attention to TV presenters, Musilm council leaders included, while these rouge regimes get away, literally, with murder.

THAT is the issue.

But you know this.
posted by Irdial , 11:59 AM Þ 
posted by alex_tea , 11:50 AM Þ 

Are You a Ho? Find out @ She's Crafty

Thank God!
posted by Irdial , 11:50 AM Þ 

Barrie, look here for an explanation. Then, since you are a macman, look here.
posted by captain davros , 9:50 AM Þ 

If I may ask, is that a shortwave radio hooked up to the laptop? If so, what is it doing? I am interested.
posted by Barrie , 2:59 AM Þ 

Hello there

Tonight I have been mostly retrocomputing...

posted by captain davros , 12:20 AM Þ 
Wednesday, January 07, 2004
posted by Irdial , 10:18 PM Þ 

Tubby is a CHM file expander. It opens Combined HTML Help files and outputs their contents in a folder of the same name.
posted by Irdial , 8:41 PM Þ 
posted by Irdial , 7:29 PM Þ 
posted by Irdial , 7:19 PM Þ 

Wondering why you can't always get the highest resolution images and video? By early Tuesday, visitors downloaded nearly 15 terabytes of information from NASA/Mars Websites. To hold 15 terabytes, it would take a stack of more than 20,000 CDs - without cases - reaching more than 100 feet high! Keep checking back as traffic gets lighter. [...]

Ive asked them to torrent thier big files. Its pointless to bellyache about bandwidth when Bittorrent solves this problem completely. Not that they are bellyaching, but honestly, its not like they didnt know that the rover site was going to be hammered, and Bittorrent has been around for ages now. Torrent those files!!!!

And then, they have this file:

Which is a two color line graph, weighing in at, wait for it, over SEVEN MEGS. If it was posted as a pdf made of beziers, it would be absolutely TINY. Come on guys!!!!
posted by Irdial , 7:13 PM Þ 

ahh, such happy memories
Its tarts all round.

The slip is buried in my office, which is being transformed.

And thats NOT a trip.

But it is a trip!
posted by Irdial , 7:00 PM Þ 

It seems to be flatter or rather the resistance to forward motion seems to have disappeared and the fleeting images seem to spread to the edge of the canvas rather flowing over and around the body. Where has behind the body gone?
posted by meau meau , 6:43 PM Þ 

"becomes startled by something on the floor..."
ahh, such happy memories
posted by a hymn in g to nann , 6:43 PM Þ 

It's the "Stupid factor," the S factor: Some people -- sometimes through no fault of their own -- are just not very bright.

It's not merely that some people are insufficiently intelligent to grasp the nuances of foreign policy, of constitutional law, of macroeconomics or of the variegated interplay of humans and the environment. These aren't the people I'm referring to. The people I'm referring to cannot understand the phenomenon of cause and effect. They're perplexed by issues comprising more than two sides. They don't have the wherewithal to expand the sources of their information. And above all -- far above all -- they don't think. [...]

The "problem" with this is once you accept these ideas as facts, you instantly come to the neocon/new labour conclusion that people are cattle to be numbered fleeced patted on the head and controlled like animals. "Unfortunately" these sheeple already have the vote, though only at the last possible opportunity. Did you know that in the 1700s you could not vote unless you owned land? Hmmmm!!!
posted by Irdial , 5:52 PM Þ 

Its all about round, about shape...its about orange, but not only about orange but ooohhhhhh!
posted by Irdial , 5:35 PM Þ 

Maybe you're a gay woman?
Trust me Alex I am far from beeing a gay woman, I love men way to much and all the times I have been in love, it was in a man...
posted by Alison , 5:26 PM Þ 

Bush in 30 Seconds
I know, I'm a tad late with this one...
posted by Claus Eggers , 5:18 PM Þ 

A lithium-ion battery provides 300-500 discharge/charge cycles. The battery prefers a partial rather than a full discharge. Frequent full discharges should be avoided when possible. Instead, charge the battery more often or use a larger battery. There is no concern of memory when applying unscheduled charges.

That was one of the most useful articles I have ever read.

What I want to know is, why are there no "smart chargers" that can take care of battery management for you? Think of the saved waste if every charger was fitted with one.

My G4 funs (yes, FUNS) at 140° at when its on the charger, or to be more accurate, its done so about 7 times. Needless to say, after reading that I will never run my laptop off of the mains again.

The mac charger appears to be smart, but often it will not stop charging when the battery is full. Clearly it needs to know the temperature of the laptop so that it can turn itself off when the battery gets too hot.

I am goiing to get one of these...just for the hell of it.
posted by Irdial , 5:18 PM Þ 

People like you, who walk the scary line between man and woman, are *very* helpful in understanding exactly what it means to be human. Thanks, and good luck.

Good luck?????
posted by mary13 , 5:16 PM Þ 

I recieved an iPod as a gift this past holiday and I use ephpod to interface with my computer rather than iTunes or MusicMatch. One can find a lot of useful ephpod (and other iPod alternative software) information/help at the ipodlounge forums. Media Center 9 seems another useful option (especially with its smartlists, but I've yet to try it out).

I read the site but then found the iPod battery faq and am particularly interested in this. One just needs to know how to treat one's lithium-ion battery right.
posted by Josh Carr , 5:10 PM Þ 

"A man of the opposite sex"
posted by Irdial , 4:45 PM Þ 

"I must be a gay man then... "

Maybe you're a gay woman?
posted by alex_tea , 4:01 PM Þ 

took this gender test and I am a man... Definatly a man! I must be a gay man then...
posted by Alison , 3:40 PM Þ 

Apple's 1984 advert, 2004 edition, complete with iPod accessory!!
posted by alex_tea , 3:34 PM Þ 

HAPPY 2004 fellow bloggers

Things to do in 2004: learn programming and make homepages, write for the danish rock dictionary and maybe (keep your fingers crossed) even get to make an electronic music dictionary... I want to dive deeper into cyberspace and I have mIRC installed now on my computer... support Christiania even more (mummy, pass the joint, please)... Love more, kiss more, write more, take more pictures, maybe learn to beatmix, buy more vinyl and learn more about instruments

Test-Achats, the Belgian consumer organisation, is suing the four record companies after receiving several hundred complaints about CDs that prevent copies being made on blank discs.

Women can't drive either
Claus, dine briller dugger!
posted by Alison , 2:59 PM Þ 

AskTog: A Quiz Designed to Give You Fitts

Located on that fine 1px border between immensely engrossing or mind numbingly dull.
posted by alex_tea , 2:13 PM Þ 

Mr. Paine's article on the Warblogging site is absolutely terrifying. I feel rather ill now. It's time to go to bed.

We all know that the Kamikaze pilots had legitmate VISA status and real IDs

This is what I thought, though I was unsure how legit they were. If the US doesn't realize that anyone who's capable of damage is going to use the system, not circumvent it... ugh. I can't finish that sentance. The US doesn't care. They want control. This is too big for my brain!
I was speaking with a friend today, and the term "Corporate Fascism" sprung to mind. How's that?
posted by Barrie , 7:18 AM Þ 

Women can't drive either
posted by Claus Eggers , 1:19 AM Þ 
Tuesday, January 06, 2004

I don't know if you noticed
I know and I noticed.
And not in that order.
posted by Irdial , 11:06 PM Þ 

I will get GarageBand and rock it. Possibly.
posted by Claus Eggers , 10:47 PM Þ 

Akin, I don't know if you noticed, but you are refering to the individual who spent the $24,5k as 'she'. Do you know something we don't?
posted by Claus Eggers , 10:43 PM Þ 

Ah yes, no doubt we will have an onslaught of "compositions" made with GarbageBand, along with the ones made with Pro Fools!
posted by Irdial , 10:41 PM Þ 
posted by Irdial , 10:37 PM Þ 
posted by chriszanf , 10:24 PM Þ 

I feel sorry for the grunt they employed to catalog 25,000 photos. That would be a thankless task.

I missed the first half hour, new iPhoto looks good, works like it should, iPhoto has always felt a bit lacking and soooo slow. Hopefully that will change.

Garage band has an awful name, also it doesn't interest me at all. Might be of use to people who's ($age < 15 || $age > 40) I dunno. Anyone who can get hold of any other digital music software can use it. Logic, Cubase, Reactor, Reason, Live, Acid, ProTOOLS, etc, etc.

I hope the new iLife things are free.

Mini iPod looked a bit gimmicky. G5 XServe looks sexy. I want 1100 G5s.

No colour iPod / iTV (with built in Bluetooth and Airport). No iPhone. No iNewton/iPad.

Pah. Oh well, go Steve!

Slashdot | Apple's iTunes DRM Cracked?

I fell asleep listening to Anthony's oeuvre on A212 via the DVD player and had amazing vivid, lucid dreams that I was living in his old house, in which he had left loads of belongings including a massive box full of hundreds of felt tip pens all colour coordinated and stuck together with the sticklebrick like lids making beautiful clusters. The house/flat was in a big round tour, outside there were balconies which sloped and connected the floors together, also they went into other people's flats. I knew that must have been a dream, but I really believed the rest of it was real. Bizarre.
posted by alex_tea , 10:04 PM Þ 

And they are ALL DRM locked. What an idiot! She would have been better off spending 24,500 on CDs and the other 5k for someone to rip them all and catalog them for her.
posted by Irdial , 7:48 PM Þ 

The highest resolution image ever taken on the surface of another planet.
posted by Irdial , 7:47 PM Þ 

Yeah I'm like, Goddamn, that's a lot of songs.

(What is victory? Friend of mine said "pretty ass situation when Pat Buchanan makes sense ... then again he's an isolationist conservative, not a war monger")
posted by Mikkel , 7:45 PM Þ 

29,5k - who is that guy!
posted by Claus Eggers , 7:27 PM Þ 


now THAT is awesome!
posted by Irdial , 7:18 PM Þ 

Awesome. See that new iPod? That's pretty damn cool.
posted by Mikkel , 7:05 PM Þ 

ic Wales - Study backs information register plan

They don't ask and they won't listen
posted by meau meau , 6:42 PM Þ 

His Steveness keynote in one hour! Be there or be square!
posted by Claus Eggers , 4:09 PM Þ 
posted by Irdial , 3:01 PM Þ 

"We want people to come into the country -- to our country to work and to study and to visit," Ridge said. "We want to keep our borders open, but we also want to keep our country secure. So we need an accurate record of who's coming in and when they're leaving." [...]

Illogical. An accurate record of who is coming in and leaving the USA will not make you more secure, any more than knowing precisely which flavour and manufacturer of boiled sweets entering your mouth will prevent tooth decay. The only way to prevent tooth decay is to not eat sweets in the first place. That means refraining from interfeering in the affairs of other countries. Period.

We all know that the Kamikaze pilots had legitmate VISA status and real IDs; its clear that identity checks will not prevent anything at all. It will however, make millions for contractors who very probably get a per scan commission.

What is also perplexing is the sudden need to address the problem of airplanes and "terrori$m". Lockerbie, is only one example of planes used as a tool in this way, and from the seventies on there were many many hijackings, none of which spurred the inception of this sort of mass scale human rights abuse. What is it in particular that has changed between now and then? "911" is in no way enough of an event to make these changes come into force, indeed, nothing short of real actual war should trigger these sorts of controls, even then, they are always temporary and for a specific purpose that when the need finishes so to end the impositions.
posted by Irdial , 1:16 PM Þ 

This is Beautiful.
posted by Irdial , 12:40 PM Þ 
posted by Irdial , 12:32 PM Þ 

I went to the bank today. My debit and ATM card had stopped functioning on New Year's Eve. I was told, in no uncertain terms, that I must visit the bank to review my account because of "possible fraud".

I arrived at the bank and went to my banker's office. He saw me coming in and said "Hello, Mr. Paine, it's been too long." Once pleasantries were out of the way he asked how he could help me. I explained that my card had stopped working and that I had been informed over the phone that I would have to come in and look over my past transactions, that I would have to look for anything suspicious. That only then could my ATM card -- my sole link to cold, hard cash -- be reactivated.

So he pulled up my account on his computer and rotated the monitor so that we could both see the details of my financial life. He rolled the history back several months and, together, we set to find anything suspicious. As the pages -- the days -- rolled by on-screen I realized that these transactions, these little digital notes, brought back memories. There was that time, at that place, where I was with that person. It was all there, in green and black.

I mentioned to him that these transactions brought back memories. He gave me a knowing smile. He began to extrapolate details of my life, little vignettes, from the transactions on the screen. He said "So, here, on December 13. You get a cup of coffee with a friend. You head a few blocks away and get some Sushi. I hear that restaurant's good. Then you go and take in a show. Oh, here, yes. You have a couple drinks afterward."

I look at him, thinking. The man's right. That was, in fact, exactly what I did that day. As we flipped through the days we started examining Christmas shopping. He asked if the recipient of a particular gift had liked it. I said that she did.

This man, my banker, knows some very private details of my life. He knows where I eat dinner on a daily basis. He knows where I get my coffee. He knows what bars I go to, and when I go to them. He knows where and when I travel. He knows how long I spend in various places, he knows where I like to buy books. He knows that I have donated to political campaigns, he knows which campaigns, and he knows how much I have donated. [...]
posted by Irdial , 10:03 AM Þ 

I kinda cut my hair.

en face
posted by Mikkel , 8:04 AM Þ 

"As the world community combats terrorism ... you're going to see more and more countries going to a form of biometric identification to confirm identities," Ridge said.
Whoaaaa! The world community? More countries using biometrics? Sounds like a nightmare to me! What on earth do we need our identities confirmed for?!!! How is that going to help anything but identity theft?

The United States has cheered Brazil's new role as a leader of poor nations,

Yes, poor nations with terrorists. Why else would they want to fingerprint and verify eyedees?
How could anyone possibly read this as anything but insulting and degrading? No one needs to tag along with whatever the united states does. No one needs to suck up to them as if they are some kind of rich mac-daddy.
Hopefully Brazil shows that it really does have the minerals. I think this is major, and needs to be duplicated by other countries.
posted by Barrie , 2:25 AM Þ 

Fingerprint Order Weighs on Brazil-U.S. Relations
Mon January 5, 2004 06:08 PM ET

BRASILIA, Brazil (Reuters) - A Brazilian federal judge's order to fingerprint U.S. visitors in retaliation for new U.S. anti-terrorism controls is popular on the nation's streets but is straining diplomatic relations with the United States.

Brazil's center-left government, while not shy of confrontations with Washington, met on Monday to consider revoking the order by Federal Judge Julier Sebastiao da Silva after receiving complaints from the U.S. Department of State.

Ordinary Brazilians, tired of struggling for visas to enter the United States and tough checks when they arrive, supported the order to "reciprocate" a new U.S. system to fingerprint and photograph visitors who need a visa to enter the United States.

One newspaper survey showed 98 percent in favor of the identical controls on U.S. visitors, which began Jan. 1.

After a successful 2003 White House meeting with President Bush, and advances in global trade talks, President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva has signaled he may not want to waste bargaining power on the issue.

"We are looking at the consequences of this order," said a foreign ministry spokesman, adding that the government could appeal the ruling in Brazil's justice system.

The United States has cheered Brazil's new role as a leader of poor nations, even though Lula's one-year-old government is leading them in a fight against U.S. farm trade barriers.

Indeed, former factory worker Lula was welcomed at the White House for his push to cut global hunger, even though he says the world must fight terrorism with food, rather than bullets -- a subtle criticism of the U.S. war on terror.

Washington has been upset by Brazil's tit-for-tat reaction to the US-VISIT system that went into force Monday with digital technology after a year of preparation.

U.S. travelers have complained of up to nine-hour delays at Rio de Janeiro airport where Brazilian immigration authorities, only told of the order last week, are using inkpads and paper.

"We regret the way in which new procedures have suddenly been put in place that single out U.S. citizens," said a statement by the U.S. embassy in Brazil. "Brazil is not being singled out."

Brazil's government has tried to make it clear the move to fingerprint and photograph all U.S. visitors is the decision of a 34-year-old regional federal judge, not foreign policy.

"The risk is that all of a sudden you begin to erode a very privileged bargaining power with the United States," said Mario Marconini executive director of the Brazilian Center for International Relations in Rio de Janeiro.

Regional federal judges have wide-ranging powers in Brazil. In the past they have banned smoking on domestic flights and halted privatizations. But their decisions have also often been overturned.


The real risk is that no one stands up to a bully in the vain hope that he will not beat the living shit out of you, or, hand you some loose change.
posted by Irdial , 1:40 AM Þ 
Monday, January 05, 2004
posted by alex_tea , 6:47 PM Þ 
posted by Irdial , 6:39 PM Þ 

Capt Dav. - If you have Soundforge you can auto-region the WAV using an amplitude threshold then extract and save the individual regions. There is also an 'auto-trim/crop' feature that removes silences without creating regions. You might be able to do this with Audacity which is free...I'm not sure though. Will look into it.
posted by chriszanf , 5:57 PM Þ 

Up to 28 million visitors to the United States now have to stop for photographs and fingerprinting under a new government program launched Monday and intended to make it harder for terrorists to enter the country.

Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge said the new US-VISIT program applies to any visitors who must have a visa to enter the United States. By October, all visitors will be required to have a machine-readable passport or some other method of biometric identification, such as fingerprints or retina scans.

"As the world community combats terrorism ... you're going to see more and more countries going to a form of biometric identification to confirm identities," Ridge said.

Citizens from more than two dozen countries, mostly in Europe, aren't required to carry a visa if their visit is less than 90 days. Visitors from those countries are exempt. [...]

In reaction to the U.S. policy, Brazil last week began fingerprinting and photographing American visitors arriving at Sao Paulo's airport. Brazil's Foreign Ministry has also requested that Brazilians be removed from the U.S. list. [...]


This, together with the insane cancellation of flights means that anyone wanting to hold an international conference will put the america LAST on the list of candidate host countries.

Why on earth should representatives going to any conference for any reason allow themselvs to be delayed and then photographed an dfingerprinted like criminals when the same event with identical facilities can be held, for example, in Toronto or Vancouver Canada, where you are treated in a civilized way?

It cant be long before we hear about the effect this is happening...

Yay once again to Brazil for retaliating.

posted by Irdial , 4:16 PM Þ 

A question; I have a large WAV file with (for various reasons) lots of long silences in it. I wish to delete these but find the task too tedious to do by hand. Does anyone know of a tool (pref windoze) to go over the WAV, feel the silence and snip it out? Let me know.
posted by captain davros , 1:08 PM Þ 

Alex; re self-building a media player - make a second-hand x-box useful by slapping linux onto it :-)
posted by slip , 12:40 PM Þ 

"No license is required to use the TrueCast Player."

Hmmmmmmm thats a lie, because when you run the installer, it asks you to accept a licence agreement.
posted by Irdial , 11:05 AM Þ 
posted by Claus Eggers , 10:50 AM Þ 
posted by Irdial , 1:47 AM Þ 


MacOS X at amazing work yet again. I of course couldn't run this on my computer... too slow to handle such a big transparency.
posted by Barrie , 1:15 AM Þ 
Sunday, January 04, 2004

Hi all,

Back from the mountains. It was an excellent trip, the skiing was just divine. I did my first jump and first black diamond run! But it was bloody cold up there, -17 at the top one day.

2004: more love, less apathy, more focused, less wasteful spending, more healthy choices. More mores, less lesses.

a sufficient threat to the US
posted by mary13 , 6:21 PM Þ 

posted by Claus Eggers , 5:36 PM Þ 

"Mr Darling said: "I fear that for many years to come we are going to be living in an age where there is going to be a heightened state of alert. "


Alistair Darling. This is not speculation or prediction; it is a promise.

War forever.

We wont have it®.
posted by Irdial , 5:23 PM Þ 

Planes - as far as I have heard no one has actually been prevented from flying, so that must mean no one is of a sufficient threat to the US to stop them flying, so that must mean the 'flagging' process is a load of bullshit designed to keep the notion of 'threat' in the public mind or doesn't work because US intelligence is a load of crap.
posted by meau meau , 11:41 AM Þ 
posted by a hymn in g to nann , 9:38 AM Þ 
posted by Claus Eggers , 2:46 AM Þ 

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