May 31, 2003

Paul Krugman, "Waggy Dog Stories", New York Times:

It's now also clear that George W. Bush had no intention of reaching a diplomatic solution. According to The Financial Times, White House sources confirm that the decision to go to war was reached in December: "A tin-pot dictator was mocking the president. It provoked a sense of anger inside the White House," a source told the newspaper.

Posted by jghiii at 07:58 PM | Comments (0)

May 30, 2003

Supersonic Transport Era Ends

The Concorde flies its last flight today. I had hoped that it would last long enough to visit Oshkosh one last time.

Over the years, the Concorde visits have consistently been one of the most impressive events at the fly-in. If you've never heard it in person, you can't really imagine the sound that comes from those massive engines. And the look of it as it approaches on short final, the fuselage tilted up at a high angle, with the adjustable nose drooping down.

I didn't see it in person, but on its first visit, the Concorde touched down and immediately went to full power, lifted off, retracting gear and rasing flaps as it surged into the air. Concorde touch-and-goes! Only at Oshkosh.

Posted by jghiii at 09:46 AM | Comments (0)

May 29, 2003

I actually got some good work done today. I'm getting close to finishing the second of the My Mom's Guides: iTunes. And I did some good website stuff.

Writing in the weblog? Not so much.

But here's an amusing piece on street names. FYI I used to live near the corner of Middle & Middle.

Posted by jghiii at 08:07 PM | Comments (0)

May 28, 2003

New way to get lost in the woods

My brother Scott has been intrigued for some time by "Geocaching". In this activity, one tries to find a "treasure", hidden in the woods, by putting it's latitude/longitude into a GPS, and following the pings.

Yesterday, he took me along on one of his quests, and we found the loot! It was a one gallon plastic bucket with music CDs in it. You're supposed to take one and leave one of your own behind.

Here's a pic of us at the treasure site. We're both surprised that you can't see the great clouds of mosquitos that were around us as this pic was taken.

Posted by jghiii at 09:40 AM | Comments (0)

May 27, 2003

About beating the Yankees yesterday.

I think that this could really be a turning point. Just about all the press is saying that this wasn't a case of Clemens and the Yanks losing, as much as it was the Sox gutting it out, finding the weakness, and hammering at it.

I think that all of Red Sox Nation could come to look at this win as a demonstration that we are not just Destiny's Plaything. We need not be the honored opponents that serve up Clemen's 300th on Memorial Day, in Yankee Stadium, with his Mom in the stands.

We can grab "destiny" by the tail and fling it over the first base stands. Damn the Curse, it need not dominate us, nothing is predestined. We can influence the outcome. Maybe this IS the year!

Posted by jghiii at 11:56 AM | Comments (4)

I enjoyed having all the nieces and nephew here. Brothers and sisters were OK too. But the nephew and nieces are fun. The youngest, North, my brother's boy, continues to be adorable. He's at that age (about 1.5???, I'm so bad about ages) where he's walking all over, exploring everything. He can't really talk, but he knows there's something to this making noise with the mouth, so he's constantly screeching and grunting. I'm sure that to him it's vocal music, just as useful as the noises that the grownups make. Of course to us it's just a sort of atonal baby jazz.

Posted by jghiii at 11:55 AM | Comments (0)

May 26, 2003

There is Joy in Red Sox Nation:

  • Red Sox win
  • Yankees lose
  • We deny Clemens win #300
  • Clemens get a Loss instead
  • Nomar increases streak to 26 games

    Posted by jghiii at 06:26 PM | Comments (0)
  • The Red Sox game where we're gonna deny Clemens his 300th win, is rain delayed. NESN is replaying the 1986 game where Clemens got 20 Ks against the Seattle Mariners.

    Scorecard Apr 29, 1986, Seattle at Boston:
    1 :: K; K; K
    2 :: F7; K-swing; K
    3 :: 4-3; K-look; F8
    4 :: Single to right; K-swing; K--sw; (1B drops routine foul ball); K-checkswing

    [They're removing the tarp in NYC so we may not get to see the entire 20K game.]

    5 :: K-looking; K-looking; K-looking (total 12Ks)

    [NESN skips ahead in the replay 'cause the live game is gonna start soon. 16 Ks after 7 innings. Score 3-1 Red Sox.]

    8 :: K-swinging; Single to center; K-swinging (18, new Red Sox K record); F8 (18 total Ks)
    9 :: K-swing; Phil Bradley K-looking (#20, new MLB record for Ks); 6-3 (Red Sox win 3-1)

    Posted by jghiii at 01:23 PM | Comments (0)

    I miss Fry's Electronics... Oh, I guess that's not the real point of this story from Russell Beattie's weblog.

    Posted by jghiii at 01:09 PM | Comments (0)

    May 25, 2003

    Lambert's Cafe, I'm gonna eat there someday. It's the only home of the "throwed roll".

    Posted by jghiii at 12:08 PM | Comments (0)

    Jerry Pournelle reports, with pics, that Burt Rutans suborbital space ship system passed another milestone.

    Posted by jghiii at 10:07 AM | Comments (0)

    May 24, 2003

    Wil Wheaton (whose book Dancing Barefoot is getting some good reviews) had this in his weblog:

    Our Thought Of The Day comes from John Kovalic's e-mail .sig: "Soylens Viridis Homines Est"

    Posted by jghiii at 12:19 PM | Comments (0)

    Ed Cone posts some guidelines for professional journalists who also write personal weblogs. Makes sense to me.

    Posted by jghiii at 11:45 AM | Comments (0)

    Rageboy & CLocke engaged.

    And who says that having multiple personalities has no upside? "We're Getting Married!!!"

    Posted by jghiii at 11:24 AM | Comments (0)

    I agree.

    Bambino's Curse weblog:

    I had forgotten how much I love Curt Gowdy. He IS the omniscient voice of baseball in my head, the voice God himself would use to call a game. Listening to Gowdy last night on ESPN 2 , I am ten years old again on a summer Saturday afternoon, my dad is stretched on the couch, fans whirr in the background, and on our new and first color tube is Fenway Park, so green I want to reach out and taste it, and filling in the spaces between is the voice of Curt Gowdy.

    Posted by jghiii at 03:51 AM | Comments (0)

    Talk about your harmonic convergence!

    Red Sox win, Yankees lose. Red Sox are now in first place alone.

    Posted by jghiii at 03:44 AM | Comments (0)

    May 23, 2003

    Convergence Update

    Children 4/5 converged. Grandchildren 1/4 (2/5) More later.

    Posted by jghiii at 06:04 PM | Comments (0)

    Starbucks Snapshot

    Larry Lessig writes about two incidents where Starbucks employees prohibited customers from taking pictures in the store: "I wonder what would happen if hundreds of people from around the country experimented this holiday weekend by taking pictures at their local Starbucks."

    Posted by jghiii at 06:03 PM | Comments (0)

    Random quote

    Rael Dornfest: "Following someone's blog is like doing a TiVo season pass for a person."

    Posted by jghiii at 05:50 PM | Comments (0)

    I still say it's W we should be worried about.

    Technology - TechWeb: "Bug In Trend Micro Anti-Spam Software Blocks All Mail Containing The Letter "P"."

    Posted by jghiii at 01:26 PM | Comments (0)

    May 22, 2003

    Harmonic Convergence

    This weekend, for the first time in a long while, the entire Hodgson Family will be gathered in one place at the same time.

    My parents, all their children, and all their grandchildren (well, almost all), will be at the lake. It's gonna be a madhouse!

    Posted by jghiii at 11:17 AM | Comments (0)

    May 21, 2003

    SciFi Recomendations

    polyglot on Kuro5hin:

    "... a list of [SciFi] authors and books that I think are more than worth the time required to read them. My main criteria here are that the books be interesting, gripping, etc. -- not necessarily of great "literary" value."

    Posted by jghiii at 09:18 PM | Comments (0)

    Buffy Series Finale

    Gail Collins, New York Times:

    But for all [Buffy the Vampire Slayer's] science fiction plots and gorgeous young cast members -- who always battled evil wearing great clothes -- the show's core was achingly true to life. The long list of people Buffy lost or killed weighed down on her, and although her wardrobe remained as spiffy as ever, her soul was battered. The series grew increasingly dark, and over the last few years there was a growing sense that she was coming to the end of the trail.

    Joss Whedon:

    After seven years [our mission statement] remained pretty much the same, or rather came full circle. We looked at the idea of power; the girl who had power that nobody understood, living in high school and how hard that was. We came back to that girl and that concept very strongly in the seventh season on purpose because we knew it was our last.

    Posted by jghiii at 02:53 PM | Comments (0)

    Well, that makes it OK.

    Boingboing: The Pentagon has renamed its $54 million "Total Information Awareness" program to "Terrorist Information Awareness."

    Posted by jghiii at 01:27 PM | Comments (0)

    Hmmm.

    eMarketer.com: "If children in the US could only have one medium, the Internet would be the top preference, according to Knowledge Networks/Statistical Research."

    Posted by jghiii at 12:15 PM | Comments (0)

    May 20, 2003

    Nice

    60 degrees at 7:30 am. Sweet.

    Posted by jghiii at 07:20 AM | Comments (0)

    May 19, 2003

    Play Ball

    Well, here we go. This season's first meeting of the Red Sox and the Yankees.

    Through a coincidence that would seem cliche even in the movies, the teams are in an exact dead-heat tie. Each with records of 27-16.

    The Red Sox optimist in me must point out that Boston has won 6 out of the last 10 games, and New York has won only 3. I don't follow the Yankees on a daily basis, but it seems that they are struggling right now. Until three days ago I would have said that the Sox are just the opposite, surging. But the just-past series with Annaheim was dissapointing, the Angels taking two out of three.

    We won last night, but we could have won the other two games as well. We lost them largely due to our own blunders. Annaheim didn't let us get away with those mistakes, and you can bet the Yanks won't either.

    So here we go. Tonight Red Sox Nation will huddle in front of the TV in the perpetual hope that "this is the year." Well, it IS dammit!

    Posted by jghiii at 11:46 AM | Comments (2)

    May 16, 2003

    The Black Flies are quiet today.

    [Summarized from www.ultimate.com. Full link at end of this item.]

    "New Hampshire is home to approximately 40 species of black flies. Of these species, only 4 or 5 are considered to be significant human biters or annoying. In some cases, black flies may not bite but are extremely annoying as they swarm about the head or body. Only the females bite and fortunately most species feed on birds or other animals...

    "Black fly species in New Hampshire exhibit two types of life cycles. One type overwinters stage in the egg stage. The eggs remain submerged in streams over the winter and hatch in spring when water temperatures reach about 40 to 50F... [The second appear] in early spring when water temperatures reach about 37 to 38F...

    "Black flies are active only during the day. They do not bite at night. Activity peaks tend to occur around 9:00 to 11:00 AM and again from 4:00 to 7:00 in the late afternoon and early evening, or until the suns falls below the horizon. They tend to be most active on humid, cloudy days and just before storms.

    "Proper clothing offers good protection against black fly bites... Light colors such as orange, yellow and light blue are less attractive to black flies than dark ones such as green, brown and red."

    www.ultimate.com/washington/wla/blackfly/

    Posted by jghiii at 04:42 PM | Comments (3)

    May 12, 2003

    Watcha doin Thursday Nite?

    AP Science: "If the weather cooperates, a total lunar eclipse will be seen across North America late Thursday...The total eclipse will start at 8:13 PDT in Los Angeles, 11:13 p.m. EDT in New York."

    Posted by jghiii at 10:06 AM | Comments (3)

    Rex Trailer's Boomtown RIP

    Animation World Magazine reports that kids watching Saturday morning kid's TV is down dramatically: "Six key factors have led to children watching less Saturday morning cartoons: more recreational sports, the introduction of cable and satellite TV, the Internet and video games, a poorer quality of animation, and a greater emphasis on family time."

    (I heard about this on Slashdot.)

    Posted by jghiii at 09:23 AM | Comments (1)

    Windows BMW

    Reuters: "Security guards smashed their way into an official limousine with sledgehammers on Monday to rescue Thailand's finance minister after his car's computer failed."

    Posted by jghiii at 08:14 AM | Comments (0)

    May 09, 2003

    An imaginative surge

    Edward Cossette: So maybe there is the perfect response to the "baseball is boring" crowd. Tell 'em, "It's an imaginative surge, something you wouldn't understand."

    Posted by jghiii at 08:53 PM | Comments (0)

    May 08, 2003

    Oops

    The Philadelphia Daily News yesterday wished Johnny Unitas a happy 70th birthday.

    Posted by jghiii at 03:26 PM | Comments (1)

    May 07, 2003

    Zzzzzzzzzz

    Quiet day. See you tomorrow.

    Posted by jghiii at 08:25 PM | Comments (3)

    May 06, 2003

    "That's right. I am dangerous."

    Maureen Dowd, New York Times:

    "Your ego's writing checks your body can't cash. You didn't need to take all that water survival training in the White House swimming pool. The Abraham Lincoln was practically docked, only 30 miles off shore, after 10 months at sea. They had to steer it away from land for you. If you'd waited a few hours, you could've just walked aboard. You and Rove are making a gorgeous campaign video on the Pacific to cast you as the warrior president for 2004, but back on shore, things are ugly."

    Posted by jghiii at 12:00 PM | Comments (0)

    TiVo for the radio

    I think I want one of these.

    "Radio YourWay is the first portable, solid-state AM/FM radio recorder! Imagine being able to record any radio broadcast like news, sports, or music and then being able to play those recordings back later at a more convenient time."
    Play/record voice and mp3s too.

    BTW, I've seen this on at least one of the blogs I read over that past few days. I don't remember which one, but thanks to them anyway.

    Posted by jghiii at 10:29 AM | Comments (0)

    May 05, 2003

    Itchy Feet Two

    The Lincoln Highway was a private effort, back in the early 1900s, to create a coast-to-coast "rock road" (paved highway) for the recently developed automobile. They never completely succeeded at building the road, but their work foreshadowed the creation of the first National Highway System (eg. US Rt 66, US Rt 1, US Rt 101) and ultimately the Interstate System. Ike's road trip in 1919 roughly followed the Lincoln Highway route.

    Posted by jghiii at 10:40 PM | Comments (0)

    Itchy Feet

    For year's I've told people about the military road-trip, that young Lt Colonel Dwight Eisenhower took in 1919, which was a big factor in the creation of the Interstate Highway System. Here's a great archive of logs and reports on the expedition. The downside is that it's mostly in PDF format, so it's awkward to read, but it's great stuff nevertheless. I especially liked the daily logs. (Kinda like a weblog from the past.) Maybe I'll transcribe some of it one of these days. It all reminds me of my cross-country trips. We took very similar routes.

    Posted by jghiii at 10:34 PM | Comments (0)

    Black Ice

    NYT: "Some of the world's biggest record companies... are quietly financing the development and testing of software programs that would sabotage the computers and Internet connections of people who download pirated music... [they] are exploring options on new countermeasures, which some experts say have varying degrees of legality..."

    Posted by jghiii at 10:27 PM | Comments (0)

    May 04, 2003

    Old Man Gone

    Sherm: "The Old Man in the Mountain fell down! It's gone! ... Damn." I agree. Very sad. CNN.com story.

    Posted by jghiii at 11:59 AM | Comments (1)

    Why I Like Thunder.

    Two things:

    First, when I was a kid, less than ten years old, we lived in Malden MA. Our house was under the final approach to one of Logan Airport's busiest runways. Around this time the Boeing 707 was introduced. It was one of the first, really popular, commercial jet airliners. All day long these legendarily loud, four-engine jets would pass over our house. I grew up associating this loud noise with the safety and security of my home, and particularly my bedroom which had its window facing the passing jets.

    Second, when I was a little older, early teens, we started spending spring through fall weekends at our home in Pawtuckaway, NH -- the place where I'm living right now. Back then the place was heated with a big, clunking, propane gas heater that sat in the living room. When the thermostat set it off, the burner would light with a whoooosh, and a big fan would blow the warm air out into the house. I'd lie in bed in the middle of the night, and when I would start to feel cold I'd wait for the heater to turn on. In the quiet of the night the sound of this fan seemed louder than ever. But it was comforting because it signalled that the warm air would arrive soon, and I'd fall comfortably a to this roar in the livingroom.

    I'm certain that these two things imprinted in my mind the idea that loud noises are a sign of safety, warmth, and security. So when I hear thunder I'll often run out to hear it better, and watch the lightning.

    By the way, don't think that I'm totally reckless to the dangers of lightning. I'll admit that I'm not as leary of it as many are, but I use what I think is good sense in things like not standing in an open field during a storm, or too close to the highest tree in the area. I know that it can hurt you, but I'm also fascinated by it.

    Posted by jghiii at 11:49 AM | Comments (2)

    May 03, 2003

    Is it?

    Apple's new online music business is still getting good reviews. I haven't tried it yet. One question I have though is, whether the "backend" server system -- that actually vends music -- is that system available to third parties that want to set up shop? Or is it exclusive to Apple and its partners? "Exclusive" would be bad.

    Posted by jghiii at 10:46 PM | Comments (0)

    May 02, 2003

    Maybe next time

    Well the thunderstorm didn't completely disappoint, but it wasn't the big rolling-boomers-with-lightning that I'd hoped for. Remind me sometime to explain why I like thunderstorms so much.

    Posted by jghiii at 08:52 PM | Comments (2)

    Rumble Boom

    Thunder! I just heard my first thunder of the season. I'm heading out to see the storm, I hope, I hope.

    Posted by jghiii at 04:05 PM | Comments (1)

    Cross-Referencing

    "Mr. Toads Wild Ride is one of Lake Tahoe's Premier technical rides. This ride is one of my favorites! It is one of the finest downhills in the Lake Tahoe region as well. It is a somewhat difficult one with over 3200' vertical feet of climbing involved, but once you get to the top it is all downhill!"

    Virginia DMV: Primer on Reckless Driving.

    "Mr Toad's Wild Ride. Please select from one of our demo tracks. Each are MP3 files and may take a while to download on slow connections."

    "We tried to SAVE MR. TOAD'S WILD RIDE but Eisner doesn't care about you. In the October 22, 1997 edition of the Orlando Sentinel , Walt Disney World sources revealed plans to close the Fantasyland staple Mr. Toad's Wild Ride in favor of a trip through the Hundred Acre Woods with Pooh and his friends."

    Reckless Driving: Mom's attempt to pump while driving leads to encounter with police .

    MouseInfo.com: "Guide to Disneyland Park: Mr. Toad's Wild Ride."

    Posted by jghiii at 03:45 PM | Comments (1)

    May 01, 2003

    Apple's Online Music Biz

    Billboard.com: "Observers are calling the launch of Apple Computer's digital music service the iTunes Music Store an overwhelming success, Billboard Bulletin reports. The service, which went live Monday, sold an estimated 275,000 tracks at 99 cents apiece in its first 18 hours, according to major-label sources."

    I think this could be the "proof of concept" for digital distribution that moves us past the tipping point for online sales of creative works.

    I do worry a little about Apple in this though. The Billboard piece quotes Apple as saying that a Windows version of iTunes is coming later this year. The iApps have been a very important differentiator to attract people to Mac hardware. If they are also available on Windows why buy a Mac? *I* know the why, but I'm not sure that the first-time computer buyers, and potential switchers do.

    Posted by jghiii at 12:17 PM | Comments (1)