Email

This email and any attachments thereto may contain private, confidential, and privileged material for the sole use of the intended recipient. Any review, copying, or distribution of this email (or any attachments thereto) by others is strictly prohibited. If you are not the intended recipient, please contact the sender immediately and permanently delete the original and any copies of this email and any attachments thereto.

Dude. If I forward this email – you are so going own my ass – legally speaking. I will be sure to not review the file you sent me called “salaries.xls”. If I do review it – I really promise that I won’t be offended when I find out that the new gimp we hired who can’t tie their shoelaces makes 3 times what I do.

The truly scary thing is that given the growing precedent around click-wrap licensing – maybe this kind of thing will actually start to stand up in court.

On the plus side – that would mean that I could put a click-wrap license on my mailbox and charge $100 processing for each spam mail I get…..

Probably not. Grrr.

Take a look in your trashcan!

No – not the one in your dock (or recycle bin if you’re a windows user) – the one in your kitchen. It occurred to me when talking to my mother-in-law recently that there are very few things you can’t recycle. All paper products, most plastics, batteries (apparently one small lithium cell can poison several thousand gallons of water – so these really should be recycled), anything biodegradable can be made into compost.

The only thing which I routinely throw away which I have no hope of recycling is polystyrene packaging, which I personally believe ought to be illegal. Whaaaa? I here you say? It ought to be illegal – because it’s not recyclable (it is reusable, but most people who get it don’t have any further need for it), and it is perfectly replaceable; either with the starch stuff that is water soluble, or with corrugated cardboard, which is both biodegradable and recyclable. Write to your senators and congress-people today!

NYTimes article on Hybrids

There’s an interesting article in the NY Times today about hybrid cars, including some talk about a diesel-hybrid sports car being developed at a university in San Diego. The prototype does 0-60 in 4.3 seconds and gets 40 to the gallon. Cool stuff. Being a diesel also means you could run it on Biodiesel or vegetable oil.

I did find the following quote really sad though:

To the extent that consumers worried about low fuel economy, it was as a matter of personal inconvenience: stopping to refuel every few days was a big hassle. Before Lexus began selling its 400h S.U.V. hybrid this spring, the company conducted a focus group to find out why would-be buyers wanted a hybrid. The reason: convenience. “The big deal was, I don’t have to stop that much to fuel up. That was a primary purchasing factor!” says Dave Hermance, executive engineer for environmental engineering at Toyota’s Technical Center. “It wasn’t so much the fact that ‘I’m going to save $600 a year in fuel savings.’ Then there was the ‘Oh, yeah, it makes me feel very, very good about the environment. When my kids come home from college, they don’t chew on me as hard, because I’m doing something environmentally correct.’ “

So the problem most Americans have with gas guzzling cars is they have to fill up all the time. If we are seriously that lazy as a country – is it any wonder that we have a declining industrial base and an obesity epidemic?

Leaf Blowers

Wired News has this article about leaf blowers which I found interesting. I watched my neighbor across the road blowing his leaves around on the weekend so it stuck a chord.

It was really amusing really – he blew the leaves off his driveway – and so they all ended up on his neighbor’s path. So he sort of leans over the 3 foot wall dividing his driveway from their path, and blasts them off of their path on, onto their very nice, just completed garden.

It stuck me that the whole notion of a leaf blower is totally false. There is very little control over where the leaves go, so it’s not really a cleaning exercise. It just pushes the problem into someone else’s yard. With the added bonus that you get to burn some fossil fuels doing so, and also disturb all your neighbors with the noise.

And people wonder why a lot of Californian towns put draconian laws in place to ban such activities.

The people of Mari being systematically persecuted by Russians

My friend Tero has written in his blog about
The people of Mari being systematically persecuted by Russians.

The Prejudice / Genocide / Oppression situation worldwide just seems to get worse:

  • The situation in the Sudan has been going on forever.
  • People in most of the united states constantly hating on gay people.
  • Hurricane Katrina exposed a lot of racial and class hate.
  • Increasing racism and nationalism is being felt accross europe.

What is the deal? Are we heading into a worldwide era of facism? Where is Team America World Police (asides from being part of the problem..?) What is the UN doing about it? Is the political lurch to the right in the US an expression of a desire for more hatred? And yet I keep hearing people go on about “moral values”.

FDA incinerates foreign aid for victims of Hurricane Katrina

I take a look at Wikinews this morning and discover that the US is burning aid from the UK over “fears” about BSE (mad cow disease).

It ought to be pretty well known by now (especially to anyone who has driven down Interstate 5 from San Francisco to Los Angeles (past the Harris “Ranch” Cow Concentration Camp) that the state of factory farming in the US is at least as bad as that in the UK. Anyways – check out the original story at Wikinews:

FDA incinerates foreign aid for victims of Hurricane Katrina: “FDA incinerates foreign aid for victims of Hurricane Katrina”

(Via Wikinews.)

Are you wearing Diesel?

Nearly everyone I know thinks that diesel cars are lame. I have always appreciated them at least for the fact that they make suicide impractical (takes about 30 years to get cancer, whereas a gasoline engine will kill you within an hour from carbon monoxide poisoning). They also hit peak efficiency at about 60,000 miles and run for perhaps 200k to 300k.

Recently I learned (from the show 30 days) that they can also run on vegetable oil. I also (through some judicious use of google) learned that it is not terrifically difficult to make biodiesel from vegetable oil.

In addition – one can get biodiesel delivered to one’s house in 55 gallon drums, for about $3 a gallon. The last diesel price I noticed was $3.65 – a couple of weeks ago.

Sort of makes me wonder why more people aren’t snapping up those old Benzes and TDIs on craigslist, and relieving themselves of a dependence on foreign oil!

RSS, Blog, Podcast, bzzzzzzzz

I had until recently thought that all this hoopla about blogging, pod-casting, RSS, news aggregators et al was all hype and not particularly useful. Having spent a little more time looking at the kinds of tools that are available, I have to say I am pretty impressed.

I have been using PHP-nuke to manage my website. It’s becoming obvious that it’s not working particularly well since the comments section get spammed. I find this really annoying. Also – nuke has a lot of features that I just wasn’t using, and the complexity of it kept me from addition additional content.

I started messing around with NewsFire a little while ago, and found that aggregating news together in one place is really useful… now I am able to get some of my friend’s blogs, and slashdot and some other news in one places, and I get notified when it updates. Very civilized. I have since switched to NetNewsWire, which is better still IMHO since it has a built-in minibrowser with a tab interface, and it is friends with MarsEdit (you can register them together for reduced $$$).

MarsEdit is nice because it’s a desktop app – which makes it easier to put a larger posting together and post it up on the site. So now I have a better and easier workflow, and I think the site looks better. So that would be good. Hopefully this will enable me to post more as well :).