...more recent posts
Yes, we experienced a fairly severe problem this morning. The server our site is hosted on went down. I'm still unclear as to the exact time (any help?) as I didn't check in as early as I usually do. From examining the logs, I believe the server was up as late as 8:18 eastern time this morning. Sometime after that it went down, and then it was back up again 12:52 pm. Not terrible, but I was a little paniced because I could tell that it was not an intermediate router that had failed (which is what usually happens when the site is slow or unreachable) but acutally our host server. Luckily everything seems to be O.K. Knock on wood, and maybe say a little prayer (or whatever you do) to the magic elves at hurricane electric for basically keeping everything working pretty well.
the prisoner appreciation society
official sister site
(From the very nice blog Dave linked to: Wood S Lot)
"NASA's main goal [in the Mars program]
is looking for life. And so life means looking
for water," said Arizona State University geologist
Phil Christensen. --AP Story
Every popular press article on Mars has a similar
quote, or line of argument. Mars-Water-Life.
Mars-Water-Life. (Christensen reversed the usual
order, but whatever.) Journalists fear that if they
don't raise hopes of finding ET in the first
paragraph, the public won't read the rest of the
story ("It's just about boring rocks and stuff"),
and scientists are afraid of losing their funding.
We're desperate, as a species, for an
extraterrestrial Daddy figure who's going to explain
it all to us: God's been something of a
disappointment the past few thousand years, so now
we're pinning our hopes on gnarly little beings with
big eyes and chicken hands. I keep hoping some
scientist will tell the Times, "Look, stop putting
words in my mouth about water and life
and all that crap. Chances are excellent
that Mars and Europa and every place else in the
solar system we're looking at are dead,
dead, dead as fucking doorknobs. Please tell your
readers that what this is really about is
astrophysics, geology, chemistry, and other
subjects they slept through in school."
It'll never happen, but I can dream.
wkcr (89.9)is playing non-stop billie holiday today, tonight and into the wee hours of the morning, so if you are home, tune in. she would have been 86 today.
Just keep in mind,there is "no known medical use" for this substance, plus you can theoretically be put to death in the U.S. for possession. Oh yeah, and it's also natuarally occuring in everyone's brain where it plays a key (if not quite understood) role in memory formation.
I say we just cut to chase and lock everybody up. (thanks to bruno for the link.)
Ed "Big Daddy" Roth, godfather of hot rod culture, dies at 69
By Paul Chavez April 6, 2001 | LOS ANGELES (AP) --
Ed "Big Daddy" Roth, whose fantastic car creations and anti-hero Rat Fink character helped define the California hotrod culture of the 1950s and '60s, has died. He was 69. Roth died Wednesday at his studio in Manti, Utah, said Joe Bennett, a dispatcher with the Sanpete County Sheriff's Department. The cause of death wasn't immediately given. A generation of teen-age rebels across the country found a hero in Roth, whose chrome and fiberglass creations stirred awe at car shows. Many adopted his airbrushed anti-hero, the bug-eyed, menacing Rat Fink, who became a cultural counterpoint to Mickey Mouse. While Roth worked on custom cars in his garage-studio near Los Angeles, youngsters across the country broke out the airplane glue to work on intricate scale plastic models of his "Outlaw" roadster, bubble-topped "Beatnik Bandit," or futuristic "Mysterion." As a designer, Roth was considered a genius and visionary, not only for his radical designs, but also for his pioneering use of fiberglass in car bodies. He was described by author Tom Wolfe in his 1964 essay "The Kandy-Kolored Tangerine-Flake Streamline Baby" as the "most colorful, the most intellectual and the most capricious" of the car customizers. "He's the Salvador Dali of the movement -- a surrealist in his designs, a showman by temperament, a prankster," Wolfe wrote. Roth created Rat Fink and a host of wild characters to help finance his car design work. In 1974, he converted to the Mormon church and abandoned his rebel lifestyle, however he continued to work on car designs. "My fanaticism with cars has just destroyed my personal life," he told The Associated Press in a 1997 interview. "It's an obsession, an addiction. Every day I pray to God, `Release me from my calling!"' David Chodosh, a friend and business associate, said Roth was still working at the time of his death and was hoping to tour a new car in 2002. "The guy over the years has epitomized cool," Chodosh said. "Even now, in so many ways, he is still the Boss Fink."
I'm thinking that one of these days it would be fun to take a train up to the Harvard museum to see the
glass flowers which are currently being refurbished.
In 1886 the museum's first director, Mycologist George Lincoln Goodale, commissioned Leopold and Rudolf Blaschka, a father-and-son team of German artisians to create the glass models.
Is any one in the treehouse interested in going up there?
This letter was in my in box this morning. I've been a fan of Bibliofind for the past couple of years, not sure I'm happy about this merger.
Dear Bibliofind Customer,
As one of our valued customers, we'd like to thank you for making Bibliofind a leading destination for buying used, rare, and out-of-print books. We are proud of the integral role Bibliofind has played in developing rare and used bookselling on the Internet and appreciate the support of our community of dealers and customers. Today we are pleased to announce that as of May 7, 2001, Bibliofind will unite with Amazon.com through Amazon's Marketplace and zShops operations. This move will better serve Bibliofind customers by offering the unparalleled selection and ease-of-use for which Amazon.com is famous, while continuing to provide access to many of the Bibliofind dealers you already know and trust. As of May 7, 2001, customers will visit a new Bibliofind home page where they can search for millions of rare, used, and out-of-print books presented by a network of independent booksellers through Amazon Marketplace and zShops. Please note that although we are joining our service with Amazon.com's we will not transfer any personal information that you gave Bibliofind to Amazon.com or to any other party. Thank you again for your support of Bibliofind. Sincerely, Bibliofind.com
"continuing to provide access to many of the Bibliofind dealers you already know and trust." I guess this means not all of them. I thought Amazon was going out of business.
Thursday at Rivington St.? Bereket; out by 12:00? Opinions, complaints, suggestions, modifications, updates, confirmations, alternatives, questions, lewd comments, propositions, squabbles, rants, or raves?
Someone had suggested we meet at the Top of the World. I like this idea, but I was hoping to invite a few new people along this week, and I fear that might make us a bit too big to be out on the town en mass. But if this, or any other week, turns into a light turnout maybe we should attempt this. What say you Bill, master of the WTC, is the view worth it?
Dirty detritus for filthy lucre:
Antiques Roadshow is coming to town! (Does ebay tour?)
Slow as molasses. Yes I know. Made some changes this morning in an attempt at a stop gap solution to the speed problems we've been having. Didn't seem to help too much but your mileage may vary (I can always hope.) Anyway, we are close to a solution to this problem, so with the risk of sounding like a broken record, hang in there for just a little bit longer. I'm going to fix the problem with the only sure fire solution available to someone who's not that good at building faster software - I mean, of course, I'm going to throw more hardware at it. Soon. Soon.
On a related note, I'd appreciate some feedback on possible dates for a slightly larger than average gathering. This would be something like a launch party if this were a real site that did things like have launch parties. I'm thinking sometime after the second week of May. We should be running the new software on new (dedicated) hardware by then. I guess I'd like this to be a Friday or Saturday night. And of course I'd like as many of you as possible to be able to attend. Any late May scheduling conflicts that anyone is aware of at this point? Take your time. Thanks.
couldn't get you a link to this upi story, but here is a more technical paper from the authors, and here are some highlights:
“Spanish and American astrophysicists claim the universe we inhabit contains an infinite number of other universes like our own, called O-regions, that we will someday be able to contact. Jaume Garriga, of the University of Barcelona, and Alexander Vilenkin, of Tufts University, call the concept "many worlds in one."
…these universes are likely similar to our own -- share similar life forms, for instance – because they share a key feature with our world: a finite number of distinct histories. A history is the way something has evolved in time and will continue to evolve. Until now, physicists have never been able to make such an assertion.
Are these ideas far-fetched? Alan Guth (MIT) says no. "Do I think that the ideas are viable? Definitely yes. In fact, I very much admire the precision with which the ideas are expressed. I consider the work of Alex Vilenkin and his collaborators to be the leading work in this field."
”Whenever a thought crosses your mind that a terrible calamity might have happened," Vilenkin told UPI, "you can be assured that it has happened in some of the other O-regions." Furthermore, since some O-regions have histories identical or nearly identical to our own, "if you nearly escaped an accident here, then you were not so lucky in some of the O-regions with the same prior history," he said
Guth also believes the many-worlds hypothesis has profound philosophical implications. "We already know that our planet is merely a tiny speck in a vast cosmos, but now we are being told that we do not even hold a unique copyright on our own identities," Guth told UPI. "Instead, each of us is actually only a single copy of an infinite number of beings that are completely identical to ourselves."
More collectibles as entertainment.
I possess nothing of value, but Antiques Roadshow has become my excuse for never cleaning anything, just in case it might be worth a fortune.
Hello Monday. Any plans for the weekly IRL meeting? I think last week was a pretty big success. Bring your own Bereket seemed to work well. But there was some talk (I think maybe I started it) of going to Grand Szechun International (hereafter: GSI.) Anybody ready to think about this yet? I know it's only Monday, but you can't start planning for the weekend too soon (and yes, I realize that by counting Thursday as the weekend I might be pushing it.)
Mmmmmm... sea cucumber.
Can you beat Joe D? (Winner gets a virtual night with MM (not Mickey Mantle)).
Steve, Bill, and I are expecting to meet at the Local tomorrow (Thursday 3/22) after work (5:30 PM). Show up, or let us know if you've got another suggestion.
Oh that clumsy(?) CIA.