Critical Section


Monday,  01/24/11  09:52 PM

Hidden Valley at sunset(yawn) Just toddling off to bed; early morning tomorrow.  Managed to watch both of the football games Sunday, have a nice dinner party, and get some work done, so that was a good day.  Still Mondays always seem to dawn with regrets; it felt like I could have gotten more done over the weekend.  Now that is a workaholic creed, right?  And today I ended up spending most of the day fighting a fire I didn't even know about when I woke up.  Best part of the day was a nice ride through Hidden Valley as the sun set (pic at right); that was nice.  So be it, onward!

Soldier Field - a cold day in Chicago as the Packers freeze out da BearsLet's do football first: I liked this aerial picture of Soldier Field in Chicago, a bright little spot in a field of snow.  And yeah that's Lake Michigan on the right.  It was a cold in Chicago as the Packers froze out the Bears in the NFC championship.  This game was never in doubt, the better team played better. 

And in the other game, the Steelers pulled ahead of the Jets 24-0, but the Jets nearly came all the way back before losing 24-19.  It was sort of a slow-motion affair, a defensive struggle despite 43 points being scored.  Hard to say Pittsburgh was the better team, or that they played better either.  Maybe I'd say the Jets played worse?  Anyway I was rooting for them but they didn't play well enough to win.  I will be rooting for the Packers in the Super Bowl!

How I Killed Pluto, and why it had it comingI have a book recommendation for you: How I Killed Pluto, and why it had it coming, from Caltech Astronomer Mike Brown.  He's the guy who discovered Quaoar, then Sedna, then Eris (aka Xena)...  Kuiper Belt objects which made it obvious that Pluto was not a planet, but simply a large, close KBO.  It's a great read, he's a pleasant writer, and I enjoyed the IAU's struggle with balancing the cultural and scientific definitions of "planet".  In the end - as you know - we now have eight planets (four little ones and four big ones), as well as some other objects called "dwarf planets" which are really KBOs and Asteroids.

How not to solicit a renewal: I got the following email from Salon Premium:

Dear Ole,<br/><br/>Unless you take action, your Salon Premium membership will expire indays on February 6, 2011. <br/><br/>Please renew your membership so you can continue to support Salon's independent reporting. We rely on loyal members like you to continue being the media organization that tells you What Matters Now.<br/><br/>https://sub.salon.com/renew<br/><br/>To review your Salon Premium member rewards, click here:<br/><br/>https://sub.salon.com/offers<br/><br/>Please take a moment to renew your Salon Premium membership. Thanks to the support of members like you, Salon has published independently for nearly 15 years!<br/><br/>We appreciate your past help and we hope you'll continue to directly support our efforts.

Yeah, that's it, verbatim.  Somehow they sent an HTML email without the right MIME type, and it came across as plaintext.  This is a mistake anyone could make - once - but how can you make this mistake for a mass renewal mailing?  Incompetent, right?  I am [strongly] tempted not to renew [anyway].  As my interest in politics has waned, so my interest in Salon.

the iPad is introduced!I have been reflecting on the amazing success of the iPad recently, and came across my post from a year ago, when the iPad was introduced.  Apple has now sold 15M of these things, and they've driven sales of 10B apps.  I don't think even Mr. Jobs anticipated this, a complete revolution in computing.  Rereading my post, I think I nailed it.  And it is funny to see how negative the pundits were..

So I am working on iPad apps, and yes it is *hard* to test them live.  TestFlight makes it easier, simple, over-the-air app beta testing.  Yay!

re-enter the Matrix? For Matrix 4 and Matrix 5 ... !OMG according to Keanu Reaves, Matrix 4 and 5 are coming.  So ... Matrix was awesome, but Matrix Reloaded not so much, and Matrix Revolutions pretty much sucked.  The trend is down.  On the other hand, I will watch them anyway, and who knows?  They will no doubt be in 3D :)

Joel Spolsky reviews Stack Overflow in 2010; wow, amazing the traction and growth that site has experienced.  Yeah, I use it, don't you?  It is a sort of realtime Wikipedia for nerds.

new HTML logo :)The Oatmeal: State of the Web, 2010.  I love it!  (Notice how much of the recap is Yahoo screwing up?  Wow.)

That sinking feeling: Name your iPhone Titanic, plug it in, and your computer will report "Titanic is syncing".  Tap tap, crash :)

ZooBorns: baby Egyptian tortoisesZooBorns of the weekend: baby Egyptian tortoises.

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