October 2003 Archives

Victor Davis Hanson

But before I go - let me point you to here:

Hanson column

This guy is fantastic!

Tax dollars at work

Now this is cool:

CIA Used Dragonfly, Catfish as Spy Gadget Models
Tue Oct 28,12:35 PM ET Add Technology - Reuters to My Yahoo!

By Tabassum Zakaria

LANGLEY, Va. (Reuters) - The CIA (news - web sites) once built a mechanical dragonfly to carry a listening device but found small gusts of wind knocked it off course so it was never used in a spy operation.

The agency also tested a 24-inch-long rubber robot catfish named "Charlie" capable of swimming inconspicuously among other fish and whose mission remains secret.

Charlie and the dragonfly were among spy gadgets displayed at CIA headquarters in an exhibit to mark the 40th anniversary of the Directorate of Science and Technology. It is not open to the public.

"Charlie's mission is still classified, we can't talk about it," Toni Hiley, curator of the CIA museum, told Reuters on a tour of the exhibit. "All we can say is he's our work on aquatic robotic technologies."

After seeing the life-like "insectothopter," Hiley jokes that she cannot look at a dragonfly in the same way anymore.

Multiculti _BAD_

More nails in the coffin:
Why Multiculturalism Is a Fraud and a Disaster for Women's Rightsby Brenda Walker

Key points:
Multiculturalism argues that all cultures are equal expressions of our human variety. In fact, some diversity adherents even portray traditional cultures as superior to our crass western ways. Colorful ethnic attire and interesting cuisines do have a certain cachet when seen from a distance. But when the reality of women's brutal oppression worldwide is considered, multiculturalism can be seen as a fraud. Indeed, it supports the continuation of the monstrous crimes against women by its �celebration� of traditional cultures while ignoring the dark side.

While the social status of women in western cultures has improved markedly in recent decades, the experience of life for women outside of Europe and America remains largely one of cruelty and coercion. For example, Sixty Minutes reported in 2000 that India is missing 22 million women and girls because of sex-selective abortion, infanticide and the murder of adult women by their husbands for insufficient dowries. In several Latin American countries a rapist can be legally absolved by offering to marry the victim. The scourge of �honor killing� continues around the Islamic world, a practice where thousands of women are murdered for the smallest affronts to rigid social codes. An unproved charge of sexual infidelity or even a husband's paranoid dream may result in a woman being burned or hacked to death. Her murderer receives the approval of family and community for his action.

The false ideology of multiculturalism with its accusations of racism toward anyone who will not submit has intimidated Americans into believing it is desirable to welcome millions of immigrants from cultures which consider women inferior. Western culture, for all its faults, is a comparative oasis of equality for women, unlike the traditional cultures so esteemed by the multiculturalism proponents. It is alarming that some Americans are so naive or brainwashed that they seek to increase such retrograde diversity in our institutions and in the nation as a whole, evidently to prove their rejection of racism. However, the absurd preference for third-world cultures in our immigration policy amounts to importing sexism. Is that supposed to be some sort of improvement � trading racism for sexism? Don't we already have enough male privilege in this society without inviting the misogyny of the world?


North Korea



Back after World War II, there were a lot of recriminations about the Holocaust. Some said that the Allies didn�t do much because they didn�t know what was going on. Others said that they knew, but couldn�t do much anyway except try to end Hitler�s reign as soon as possible. Still others said the Allies knew, but didn�t care enough to do anything.

Where North Korea is concerned, the only choices are categories two and three above, because we can�t claim that we don�t know. As Anne Applebaum notes, a new report makes clear that what�s going on in North Korea is horrific:

The pictures that the committee has procured � and now published, together with a report called �The Hidden Gulag�� are satellite photographs of North Korean concentration camps. With remarkable clarity they show, for example, the contours of Yodok, one of the most notorious prison camps in North Korea: the barracks and �villages� inhabited by different categories of prisoners, including political prisoners; the mines, the flour mill, the farms where prisoners work; the cemetery. They also show the outlines of Bukchang, another vast camp, including its cement factory, its hospital, its punishment barracks, its school for prisoners� children. Distinct objects, including the high walls that enclose the camps, are clearly visible.
You can read more in this story: Link

good stuff...


Nice place for holiday donations - build classrooms, get musical instruments and buy toys - for kids in Iraq. I know my donations that used to go to NPR will be going here.

The Lost Tools of Learning

It's Linux for IBM supercomputer project

ZDnet news article

Linux will be the main operating system for IBM's upcoming family of "Blue Gene" supercomputers--a major endorsement for the operating system and the open-source computing model it represents. IBM's $100 million Blue Gene program is directed at creating, by late 2005 or early 2006, a new family of supercomputers that will be able to perform a quadrillion calculations per second (one petaflop).

Blue Gene/L, the first member of the family, will contain 65,000 processors and 16 trillion bytes of memory. Due in 2004 or 2005, the system will be able to perform 200 trillion calculations per second. Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory will use the system for performing nuclear weapons simulations.

The decision to adopt Linux came, in part, as a result of the growing size and strength of the open-source community. Thousands of developers around the world are participating in the evolution of Linux. Creating a new OS inside of IBM would require a massive engineering effort.

"We had two choices of operating systems for the Blue Gene family, either use a special-purpose system or Linux," Bill Pulleyblank, director of Exploratory Server Systems at IBM Research, said in a statement. "We chose Linux because it's open and because we believed it could be extended to run a computer the size of Blue Gene. We saw considerable advantage in using an operating system supported by the open-source community, so that we can get their input and feedback."

Linux already has a stronghold in supercomputers. IBM expects the Unix offshoot to be more popular than its own version of Unix, called AIX, when it comes to linking Big Blue's blade servers together to create what amounts to a single high-performance machine.

Linux has become a key operating system for IBM's server division. Historically, IBM promoted different operating systems--such as zOS for mainframes and AIX for midrange Unix servers--for the different members of its server and mainframe family.

While IBM still offers a specific operating system for each of its four server families, it also supports a version of Linux for each. This makes it easier for application developers to adapt applications for IBM's entire server line.

It's easier, for example, to bring a Linux-based application from IBM's pSeries line of RISC chip-based servers to the xSeries line of Intel-based servers than it is to port an AIX-based application for pSeries to the xSeries line.

Tailoring Linux to run on these upcoming machines will require substantial research, according to IBM. The company has, for instance, created a technique where only select processors can access the full hardware resources of the machines. IBM is also looking at ways to reduce interference between different tasks.

The IBM research team is currently running a large Linux cluster to simulate Blue Gene.

English language blogs from Iran


Tracks and bold-faces ones that have been uodated in the least 24 hours. Interesting view of their culture - one that is not reported by the media - either mainstream or alternative...

NY Times article - registration required

This is actually a good thing - Global Warming is a complex issue and there is not a simple answer. We are leaving a mini-ice age and the warming we are going through is more climate driven than human driven. The majority of the warming happened before 1940 - well before the majority of the CO2 release...

The Vatican gets it...

The Vatican released an amazing document that clearly outlines the problems with radical Islam and it's relationship with non-islamic nations.

Christians in Islamic Countries

�La Civilt� Cattolica,� edited by a group of Jesuits in Rome, is a very special magazine. Every one of its articles is reviewed by the Vatican secretary of state before publication. So the magazine reflects his thought faithfully.

In its October 18 edition, �La Civilt� Cattolica� published a strikingly severe article on the condition of Christians in Muslim countries. The central thesis of the article is that �in all of its history, Islam has shown a warlike and conquering face�; that �for almost a thousand years, Europe lived under its constant threat�; and that what remains of the Christian population in Islamic countries is still subjected to �perpetual discrimination,� with episodes of bloody persecution.

Now if the rest of Europe would wake up to the danger...

Daily Sucker - October 29, 2003

Daily Sucker for Wednesday, October 29, 2003

America's Web Site brings you another site that deals with dogs.

I'm at a grantwriting conference all day today, so here's a really simple example where almost everything is wrong and it keeps up yesterday's theme of dogs. Here's the e-mail:

I teach a film studies course at a high school in Massachusetts. I was trying to find some sources for one of my students who is interested in animal actors and animal training, and I found this:


It has been a while since I read your excellent book Web Pages That Suck, but I remember enough to know that you might get a chuckle out of this website.

I'm sure my animal rights activist daughter won't get a chuckle out of the chimps and monkeys page or too many of the other pages.

Animal Actors

Info Glut - Five Exabytes of Data Created in 2002

securitas writes "If you had any doubts that you are overwhelmed by the volume of information in your life, a new Berekley study (PDF) shows that five exabytes ...

this is good stuff...

Ad-aware v6.181

Rid your system of adware and spyware with the latest version of this free utility.

Intel Desktop Control Center 1.0

Intel Desktop Control Center 1.0

Perform stress tests to verify system stability and to conduct performance testing.
[License: Freeware| Requires: Win All | Size: 10.2 Mb]

Network Probe 1.0.1

Network Probe 1.0.1

An instant picture of the traffic situation on your network.
[License: Freeware| Requires: Win NT/2K/XP | Size: 4.7 Mb]

from the LGF website

Outrage of the Day

I�ve often wondered where the PLO gets the money to fund student groups, print posters, lobby Congress, and push their agenda with the all-too-willing US media. Now I know.

They get it from us: Your Taxes for PLO Propaganda...

Seattle PI / Congressman George Nethercutt


The editors of the Seattle Post-Intelligencer must have gotten the sports section of their newspaper confused with the hard news section. How else to explain the otherwise incomprehensible distortions of statements made by Congressman George Nethercutt except that, in the tradition of all "homers," their team must win at all costs? (The Congressman was simply criticizing the press for emphasizing the deaths of American servicemen, which he also abhorred, over reports of progress in democratizing Iraq.)

Of course, to the PI, Northcutt's words were anathema to the "home team"--some dated version of liberalism that is actually a disgrace to the word. I remember the day, and it wasn't so long ago, that liberals like me were attacking our government for supporting dictators. Now these new "liberals," or whatever they want to call themselves, attack our government for taking down dictators.

Well, it sure does sound like sports in which fans can switch sides in a heartbeat. As an LA Lakers fan, I was screaming my lungs out last night for former nemesis Karl Malone (now with LA). Good thing too--we can use him! But somehow... and maybe there's something wrong with me... I don't feel so comfortable switching sides in the political arena. I hated dictators then and I hate them now. And I always want to see them go--even if it means my party losing one election in my country. After all, I'm helping people in another country get free (and hopefully permanent) elections in theirs.

Backup for Small Business

Backup for Small Business

Let's get this out of the way first: Small- and midsize businesses need to have a regular backup routine for their servers.

Solar Flare

Heightened Activity on Sun Disrupts Technology, Lights up Sky

An extremely large solar flare erupted from a sunspot and sent a large burst of radiation directly at Earth at approximately 6 a.m. EST Tuesday morning, NASA officials say. The energy from the explosion is expected to disrupt communiation and electrical systems into Thursday. "The eruption was positioned perfectly," astrophysicist John Kohl told CNN. "A major geomagnetic storm is bound to happen."

Disney's DVD Disappointment

Disney's DVD Disappointment

Disposable DVD experiment looks more and more like a flop.

FCC's 2007 Deadline For Digital TV

Court Upholds FCC's 2007 Deadline For Digital TV

phil reed writes "According to this article on Digital Spy, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit has upheld a Federal Communications ...

software release

ACD Systems release FotoCanvas 3.0

Software: ACD Systems has released FotoCanvas 3.0, the latest version of its photo editing software program. ACD FotoCanvas is an affordable and easy-to-use program with all of the essential tools needed to enable users to make edits to their digital photos and create simple web graphics. New workflow enhancement features in ACD FotoCanvas 3.0 include the Dodge and Burn tool, the ability to add Bubble Talk to images, an easy step-by-step Photo Correction Wizard and a Professional Color...

U.S.S. Enterprise analyzed

U.S.S. Enterprise analyzed

U.S.S. Enterprise analyzed. "For StarTrek [sic] fans we tested the USS Enterprise in our super-orbital expansion tube... We perform similar tests on other models investigating dissociation and ionisation processes which occur during atmospheric re-entry."

MSFT stock

MSFT - not the high-growth story it was

MSFT is not the monster growth stock it was during the 1990s, and it is unlikely to demonstrate that level of growth again. With no fewer than nine price-driving stock splits since going public in 1987, Microsoft has been a substantial wealth generator. On October 21, 2002, shortly after Microsoft reported its blow-out quarter (resulting almost entirely from a switch to a licensing model for its software sales) I wrote on thestreet.com's Real Money Pro site that Microsoft would begin to encounter hurdles that would delay, and perhaps even curtail, long-term outperformance; And that those earlier high-growth days appear to be history for Microsoft. The PC explosion during the 1980s and 1990s was a one-off growth opportunity in this sector. While similar growth opportunities may materialize for Microsoft in other areas of tech in the years ahead, I'm not holding my breath. Previously, to make money in MSFT stock you just had to buy and hold, unless you bought at around a split-adjusted $120 between end-1999 and end-2000. The price has since steadily eroded to the $23-$30 range where it continues to trade.

Cool Website

Welcome to NationMaster.com, a massive central data source and a handy way to graphically compare nations. Using the form above, you can generate maps and graphs with ease on all kinds of statistics. What's more, you can select exactly which countries you want to include.

This is good...

Rabbis back Israeli 'guard pigs'

Until now, Jewish settlements have been guarded by men with guns and also by guard dogs.

But a new idea - guard pigs - has been thought up by an organisation called The Hebrew Battalion.

The man in charge, Kuti Ben-Yaakov, insists it is a serious proposal.

"Pigs' sense of smell is far more developed than that of dogs," he said.

"The pigs will also be able to identify weapons from huge distances, and walk in the direction of the terrorist, thereby pointing him out.

"Moreover, this animal is considered to be dangerous by Islam and, according to the Muslim faith, a terrorist who touches a pig is not eligible for the 70 virgins in heaven."


The Next Linux Cometh

Linux creator Linus Torvalds was up to his old tricks again Monday, releasing a new Linux kernel that he developed with maintainer Andrew Morton.

Solar Flare

X17 Solar Flare Sends 2B Tons of Plasma at Earth

Dr. Zowie writes "This morning a very large solar flare erupted from a large sunspot group that is crossing the face of the Sun. The explosion sent over 2 ...

More info is also available at the excellent Space Weather site...

MovableType and FeedDemon

Post to MovableType or Typepad from FeedDemon

In the FeedDemon newsgroup Jakub Kazecki shared how to post to MovableType directly from FeedDemon RSS Reader, as shown below. See also Glenn Slaven's post for posting to Typepad from FeedDemon. FeedDemon 1.0 RC2 is also now available. See today's post for links and details. (168 words, 8 links)

Web Design

World Domination for Small Web Businesses

You want to own the global Web development market? Ditch that inclusive marketing approach and narrow your focus to self-contained segments. Andrew presents the theory and practice of niche marketing, arguing that it's easy to be a big (and prosperous) fish when the pond is small.

Nikon D2H

Nikon to delay the D2H

Nikon Japan has today announced that it is to delay the launch of the D2H. First announced in July this year this is the much anticipated sucessor to the D1H. It was due to go into retail channels late this month but has now been put back to late November.

Jen's reaction


I let Jennifer know that this new blog was up and running...

Her reaction?

U R a nut!

What's not to love... :)

New Weblog

| 1 Comment

Starting this to provide an outlet for news regarding Jen's and my various hobbies and businesses and also to provide a forum for some ideas that have been kicking around in my brainpan.

Updates will be somewhat sporadic depending on available time and actually having stuff to write about.

There are some new websites going up that cover each of our plans in a bit better detail:

Black Mountain Cider is the biggie - this is what will be occupying our energies.
The Luminous Web is for my photography.
Northwest Data Securityis a consulting business specialising in business network security and administration (nothing there yet) and
Lunamusica is for my music (nothing there yet either)

This should be fun - stay tuned!!!


Hello world!

says it all...

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democrats give conservatives indigestion
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