An occasional sputtering of literary output, rants and opinion.

Thursday, February 02, 2006

Your fundamental mouth

Your fundamental mouth
Your fundamental mouth,
originally uploaded by Tatiana Cardeal.

"Your Mouth, Fundamental
Against Fundamentalism"

One of the things I really appreciate about flickr is that it brings me into contact with very talented photographers from all over the world. I'm in awe of Tatiana's Portraiture, she has a knack for getting people to relax on camera and show a glimmer of their true nature.

Me I can't relax when taking photos of people.

Thursday, January 12, 2006

A rather one-sided battle of wits

The redoubtable James Wolcott utterly demolishes one of the interns at the American Specter. It would be funny. Except that we know that another one of these skanky wingnuts will be along shortly to dish out more noxious idiocy. The tactic is fairly clear, to have disposable cannon fodder (does Fumento sound like a real name?) post personal attacks on the more effective progressive bloggers to get them riled and angry. Won't work.

Thursday, December 22, 2005

My dotcom predictions for 2006

Last year I made several predctions that now seem ridiculously waggish. But a few ideas were pretty close. I've got a feeling that 2006 will be a big year, and here are some of the reasons why:
  1. A Mt View startup is going to open our eyes to some new ways that secure inferencing can influence culture. The Economist will pick up on this and run several cover stories on the founders.
  2. Sergey Brin will be in the spotlight for his decision to support Sparql. This will upset Danny Ayers, and the blogosphere will react mirthfully. The noise will quiet before the end of the year and it will all be forgotten soon after the shock.
  3. will see their stock skyrocket after their mechanical turk business starts taking off. We've seen it coming for a while now, but 2006 will be the year it really kicks into gear.
  4. Either Google or Yahoo! will seek to expand their social networking business by acquiring Euglug. General Semantics will be overlooked in the process, and they will see a management shakeout later in the year.
  5. One of the big leaders in the Dairy industry will wake up to the opportunity in the Internet and the Web 2.0 trends. After months of speculation, they will make a key acquisition that will shake up the landscape for years to come.

Tongue firmly in cheek, do not take seriously. If swallowed whole induce vomiting and go to the emergency room.

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

A Great Day to be a Penguin

A Great Day to be a Penguin
A Great Day to be a Penguin,
originally uploaded by Aleutian Fox.
Pictures like this make it hard not to anthropomorphise other animals. Do we recognize similar emotions in our fellow beings, or are we just projecting our own emotions upon them? And most importantly could we ask the same questions of our conspecifics?

Monday, December 12, 2005

Airborne Toxic Event

Somehow flickr has become one of the places that I find out about news from the rest of the world. This picture is the second time I've had breaking news from britain arrive to me first from flickr, followed by the rest of the media. (the other was 7/7)

In my case I suspect it's because I stopped listening to National Propaganda Radio during the run-up to the Iraq War (mostly because a sense of angry powerlessness does not make me more productive).

Saturday, December 10, 2005

Space Elevator Dreams

originally uploaded by semeur.
Some call it the Railroad to the Stars, some the greatest Engineering Folly ever attempted. But there is no question that someone will attempt to build the Space Elevator.

"Ad Per Aspera, Ad Astra"

Sunday, December 04, 2005

What could possibly go wrong.

We Make Money Not Art has a post up about a guy at Simon Frazer university who is building aggressive, cooperative autonomous robots that can learn to demand electricity from their "Mothers" and are designed to collaborate on tasks requiring planning...what could possibly go wrong.?

It sounds too much like the set up for a cheesoid Robots-Run-Amok scifi flick to be for real. And yet, if I had access to a decent futures market I think I would offer a couple hundred shares of "Electricity Stealing Robot Rats infest Vancouver by 2012" and see who'd bite.