snippy about IE

The previous post about Internet Explorer was clearly snappier than I really intended ;) I do stand by the principles of what I said though... IE really is a bad thing.

A few people asked for more info though... so...

  • It's the worst browser in terms of security: Wired News: Mozilla Feeds on Rival's Woes discusses the time CERT issued a formal warning... strongly suggesting that users of Microsoft's Internet Explorer should switch to another Web browser, due to "significant vulnerabilities"
  • Other browsers are just better to use... IE is old and busted software which hasn't been seriously updated in years (as i once said, imagine if Ford and Holden hadn't released a new car since 1973). Features which are standard on competing browsers just aren't there for IE - in particular popup blocking, tabbed browsing and anti-phishing measures.
  • I personally recommend Opera 8, although some people may be deterred by the Google ads in the free version (yeah, you guessed it, I have the paid version). Opera has long been the leader in browser innovation - tabbed browing? They did it years ago. Popup blocking, years ago. Full user customisation... years ago... you get the idea :)
  • There's a specific guide to Switching from Internet Explorer to Mozilla Firefox for those that are interested.

Of course I'd be talking shit if I didn't point out that changing browsers is about a quarter of what the average 'out of the box' Windows user needs to do in order to protect their computer (yeah, it's a pain in the arse - so is servicing your car). Realistically it's only a major issue if you shop online or do your banking online.

Oh yeah... if everyone stopped using IE, web developers would be very happy :) But I don't expect people to seriously care about web standards.

by the way... ie shmucks

for those of you who use crap redmond-spawn for a browser (if you don't know what that means, it almost certainly applies to you! :)), don't say i never do anything for you. the link styles now look a little bit nicer than 'fucking awful' in internet explorer. yeah i really stretched myself there :)

now go get a better browser. you can download it while your spyware sniffer is cleaning up the latest batch of crap.

around the traps

  • Judge: Parents can't teach pagan beliefs: An Indianapolis father is appealing a Marion County judge's unusual order that prohibits him and his ex-wife from exposing their child to 'non-mainstream religious beliefs and rituals.' ... Both [parents] say the court failed to explain how exposing the boy to Wicca's beliefs and practices would harm him. Apparently letting the kid decide between Wicca and Catholicism is too much to leave to chance, or even worse, the kid's free will.
  • docnuke: The Science Nazi: Much like the soup-denying character from Seinfeld, the Science Nazi will have his catch-phrase: "NO SCIENCE FOR YOU!" This will be used to deny the benefits of science to those in our society who continually seek to forgo science for mysticism, spirituality and superstition.
  • boing
  • forget-me-not panties : with sensatech technology: These panties can give you [your wife or daughter's] location, and even her temperature and heart rate, and she will never even know it's there! Unlike the cumbersome and uncomfortable chastity belts of the past, these panties are 100% cotton, and use cutting-edge technology to help you protect what matters most. Laughing? They've sold out due to 'overwhelming demand', despite the starting price of US$99 per pair. UPDATE 2005.05.31: turns out they're not real, it's part of a viral marketing contest. Gear Live | Forget-Me-Not Panties has a brief discussion and links through to the Contagious Media Showdown page. They got me, so I guess I'll leave the link in place.
  • | After 35 years, TV thief to be free: Junior Allen was sentenced to life in prison in 1970 for stealing a 19-inch black-and-white TV worth $140 ... Allen was convicted of second-degree burglary -- a crime that could bring a life sentence then but nowadays draws no more than three years in prison.
  • Netcraft: Online Vigilantes Fight Back Against Phishing Fraudsters. Basic process: Fraudsters hack into a server, change content, leave. Anti-fraudsters hack in using the same exploits, change content to something else, secure the server and leave. Interesting thing is neither action is legal.

around the traps


morning barista
thinks i look like john cusack
it's odd but not bad

quiet audience
did i harangue them too much
or just make my point?

module not installed
ends tonight's coding foray:
"undefined function"

Labels: ,

not a surprise

Corby sentenced to 20 years jail. 27/05/2005. ABC News Online:

Schapelle Corby has been found guilty by a Bali court of importing a narcotic into Indonesia, sentenced to 20 years in jail and fined $13,875.

Judge Linton Sirait said Corby had 'legally and convincingly carried out a crime'.

As the verdict was read, Corby lost her composure, slapping her head with her hands, sobbing in disbelief.

Corby's legal team has already indicated it will appeal. Prosecutors in the case say they will appeal the sentence, saying it is too lenient.

I thought they'd hand down life. Now I guess we'll see if the prisoner transfer idea goes through, to have her serve her time here in Australia. If that happened it would be interesting to see if Australian parole applied, or if Indonesia would insist on the full term as defined by their court. It's unlikely that the Australian Goverment will show any real determination to make it happen.

Corby doesn't look like she'll survive 20 years in a Balinese jail.

around the traps

how insurance companies directed the last hollywood movie you watched

Talk about a must-read article: Nicole Kidman's Knee - Or, how the insurance business runs Hollywood. By Edward Jay Epstein.

Since both independently financed and studio-financed movies require insurable stars, the companies that provide this coverage have immense power. By setting the premiums prohibitively high for a star who has made past claims, they can relegate a star to Hollywood's near-dead status: the uninsurables.


Providing coverage, however, is only the beginning of the insurance regimen. Insurers may require periodic medical examinations during shooting, including testing for illegal drugs, or even continuous medical treatment for some actors. (Kidman, for example, was required to take daily doses of medicine for her thyroid gland.) They also place stringent restrictions on what actors can do off the set?no motorcycles, surfing, or flying planes. As for what happens on set, the insurer analyzes every shot in the script for potential risks.

Once the production starts, they also station hawk-eyed agents, called loss-control reps, on location to make sure that the stars are not put in harm's way. If a shot presents the slightest danger of causing an injury that might delay shooting, the reps bar actors from participating in them. Either a stunt person substitutes for the actor or the shot is changed to eliminate the danger.

Goes on to discuss the claim that Angelina Jolie did "all her own stunts" in the Tomb Raider movies (she did all her own stunts that the insurance company allowed her to do while wrapped in bubble wrap).

Basically the insurance companies can sink an actor's career, they can stop a movie being made, they can remove the director from a set, they can change how a shot is framed and recorded... in fact, they literally control the movie from start to end. Plus they make millions doing it.

No wonder hollywood movies suck.


[NB: people who don't watch State of Origin can just skip this one. That's fair warning, ok :)]

Qld edge NSW in thriller (May 25, 2005): Queensland 24 def. NSW 20.

Origin football doesn't get much better than that! Comebacks, lead shifts, one point margins, drop goals and a golden point try from an intercept.

So I rang my Dad to have a yahoo about it :)

I'd forgotten it was golden point these days. A draw would have been an entirely accurate result: two teams that couldn't defeat each other. But I don't mind golden point so much when it's a try. *shrug* Allow draws, golden point, full extra time... it'll never be resolved.

Then there's Carl Webb monstering his way into Origin's Most Feared in the space of three tackles. Yikes. He's got the strength of Webcke and the fire of Tallis. Then of course every one of the Cowboys on the team made a huge impact; and to be fair, once again Minichiello showed just how good he is. Pity he plays for the blues.

On another note, my favourite Origin moment is clearly many other peoples' favourite too: FOX SPORTS | League | The top 25 Origin moments (May 25, 2005): No.1 Maroons back from the dead, Game 1, 1994. Mark Coyne finishes a sweeping, long-distance movement in the dying seconds to give the Maroons a heart-stopping win. [other favourites would be No.9 Alfie's Comeback, Game 3, 2001 & No.23 Maroons Silence Doomsayers, Game 1, 2001]

I'll never forget that try. Dad had gone to bed thinking the game was over, only to come dashing back out to see why I was cheering. Just goes to show an Origin match is never over until the players leave the field :)

around the traps

Now I should probably take my buzzsaw and sandpaper throat to bed. Arghkhh. Think I might need the JD remedy, strepsils and difflam hardly make a dint...

photo: hailstorm 2

Around 9pm Relapse rang me telling me about the hail drifts still sitting around through Milton. I'd assumed they would have melted away but as it turns out the temperature had dropped and the hail was just sitting. So... off I went!

milton hail

Just off Park Road there was an enourmous drift of ice, a good 30-50cm deep. People were playing in it. The drift went a good 50m up the road.

milton hail

I tried to take a few shots in the middle of an oval near my place, but there wasn't enough light. That and I was sinking into the ice and my feet were freezing. Moments later the first batteries gave out and I slid my way back up the bank to my car.

grass covered in ice

There's grass somewhere under that carpet of hail. The green is mostly from all the leaves that had fallen off the trees.

It was pretty fresh out there... the car's external temperature read about 13deg, but it would have been a lot colder off the road (ie. on the ice). On the way back through Toowong, I went past a road crew clearing an ice drift with a bobcat. Probably the biggest drift was outside the Taringa fire station, but it started raining so I called it a night.

Update: there are lots more hail photos floating around. Also.. Storm Batters Brisbane | has a shot which pretty much sums up peoples' approach to dealing with the situation: have fun! Well, after you'd got home anyway.


book meme

Relapse tagged me with the book meme, I guess it's fair play since I tagged him with the music baton... :)

1) Total number of books owned?

Umm, more than a whole bookshelf and less than a whole house

2) The last book I bought?

Gads, it's actually been a while. I think it might have been The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown, or perhaps Market Forces by Robert K Morgan. The most recent purchase should have been Robert K Morgan's new book along with the third Baroque Cycle book by Neal Stephenson. But a certain bookshop rang the wrong number at work and alerted the wrong Morgan fan ;)

3) The last book I read?

Digital Fortress by Dan Brown. -L bought it after we tore through The Da Vinci Code and Angels & Demons :) Before that a series of the Sam Vimes Pratchett books - when I need to buy new books, I often re-read Discworld novels in the meantime.

4) 5 books that mean a lot to me?

There's not a chance in hell I'll stick to five. For the purpose of the meme, take the first five and the rest are extras :)

  1. Neuromancer - William Gibson. This shouldn't surprise anyone :) I actually read Burning Chrome before Neuromancer and almost said that instead... but Neuromancer probably did more to seal my love of cyberpunk. I've read it so many times I can proudly say my copy is "weatherbeaten". I also love Gibson's new stuff. Other science fiction notables:
    • Everything by Neal Stephenson.
    • Everything by Iain M Banks.
  2. Highways to a War - Christopher Koch. This book had a profound effect on me when I read it for the first time. I enjoyed it so much I rationed myself to one chapter per day, to make it last. There are very few books which can draw me in so completely; and very few where I truly felt the joys and sorrows of the characters as the book progressed. I couldn't really explain why, but the book probably helped found my love of photography.
  3. Pyramids - Terry Pratchett. I had to put in a Pterry book; and hey I got him to sign this one for me. I don't think any other book has ever made me laugh as hard as Pyramids, particularly the bit about camels running by throwing their feet away and chasing after them.
  4. (six book omnibus) - James Herriot. Yes, these are the books which All Creatures Great And Small was based on. My grandmother gave the book to me during high school, I think it might have been after a school musical or perhaps I'd won an academic prize. Anyway, Herriot is a great storyteller and the six books progress through from the start of his time in Darrowby and through war (he trained as a pilot).
  5. Childhood favourites... I'm going to cheat and group these as one, to get them into the top five:
    • Jonathon Livingston Seagull - Richard Bach. The tale of a seagull whose pursuit of his passion results in rejection from his flock; and yet it simply drives him to work harder on his dreams. It can be interpreted in many ways, but I just remember it as a book which teaches kids that it's ok to be different.
    • John Brown, Rose and the Midnight Cat - Jenny Wagner and Ron Brooks (Illustrator). The book has some quite dark imagery but leads the reader through to a warm and cosy conclusion. It's a message of love, sacrifice and overcoming jealousy. It also delves into the love and companionship of pets.
    • Where the Wild Things Are - Maurice Sendak. Who doesn't love this book?

  6. It wouldn't be fair if I didn't mention The Hunting of Shadroth and Baily's Bones by Victor Kelleher (and subsequently every other Kelleher book I could get my hands on). My aunt gave them to me at just the right age for me to really get into them, proving her literary savvy. I was at the end of childhood reading and this was the shove into "young adult" fiction that I needed.
  7. The works of Colin Thiele were a huge part of my primary school reading; plus a few got made into TV series as well. Seashores and Shadows, Uncle Gustav's Ghosts, Sun on the Stubble, Blue Fin, The Fire In The Stone, Storm Boy... the list goes on. From memory we read/studied several of the ones which focussed on the German (Lutheran) migrants who made such an impact on South Australia. I went to a Lutheran primary school, so it makes sense :) One of my teachers did a great rendition of the older German men when he read passages from the book - I recall him booming out "Bruno boy!".... I didn't get along with that teacher too well, although things improved greatly after he got a grip on my sense of humour.
  8. Ayuamarca and Hell's Horizon by Darren O'Shaunessy . This pair of books should have been a smash hit, but the marketing sucked and the first book's title was a little too unapproachable (readers act totally dumb while choosing books). The second book is a sequel of sorts, however the storyline actually runs parallel with the first book. The two stories are intertwined in a fascinating manner and I really would have loved to read the third book; which was written but not released (I emailed O'Shaunessy and he not only replied but chatted about various things including the future of the City series).
  9. I'd have to finish off with Stardustby Neil Gaiman. I think I read this as a proof while working at Pulp Fiction; and I immediately went back and bought three copies (one for me, one for -L, one for a close friend). I also bought the graphic novel for -L. It's a fairy tale for the modern world, a magical book and everyone should have a copy.

5) Tag 5 people and have them fill this out on their ljs:

Sleebo, Drjon, Araquel, Belegdel, Andrew K.


photo: hailstorm

an extraordinary drive home, coronation drive had 'snow' drifts between all the lanes the whole way along; getting deeper the closer you got to toowong.

hail in the carpark
i stopped off to pick up indian takeaway and discovered the carpark surrounded by piles of ice and leaves.

median strip covered in ice
the median strip up high street was white with ice, although it doesn't show so well in the pic.

mist rising above the traffic
along moggill road, we drove into a thick pocket of mist. the pic is not blown out, that's what it looked like.

when i turned into my street, it was over a foot deep in ice drifts next to a cleared path up the street. i would have stopped to take a photo, but... the road was over a foot deep in ice drifts!

angus got some much better photos where he was...


musical baton (full fat remix)

The baton was actually passed to me in my secret other life as a responsible adult. To keep things reasonable over there, I posted a short, short version. But here we have the full fat, high caffeine, supercharged and vastly overwritten set of answers to simple questions.

Total volume of music on my computer

We don't have fair use legislation in Australia just yet, so none. We have a couple of really crappy online stores available, but I haven't met the person that uses them yet. Yes, that does mean everyone in Australia who uses their iPod according to the advertising pitch is breaking the law. You rebels.

Well, actually, if you get someone in America to buy tunes for you and then email them to you or something... then your iPod might be legal.

Actually now that I think about it, there's quite a few megs worth of songs by local band Tycho Brahe on my hard drive. All entirely legal since I run the website and the website has them up for free download :)

Last CD I purchased

VNV Nation's new album Matter+Form. Hurrah for GUP mail orders... although apparently Rocking Horse Records now have it in stock. The order also included New Religion by, and Dial8 (single) by Velvet Acid Christ.

Playing right now

Nothing at this precise moment, so I'll have to backtrack.

Last played at home (where I am now): Man With No Name's Earth Moving the Sun. That was last night though.

Last played at work today: Paul Van Dyke's Out There and Back. I really love the tracks Another Way and Avenue so I picked up the album.

Played in the car on the way home: Coldplay's Rush of Blood to the Head. I hated Coldplay when their first album came out, but I love their new album. Apparently they went away and got good in between. I really only came around when I watched (on TV) a recording of their live show. EDIT: I am told they just brought out a new "new" album. So I should say 'hated the first, loved the second, no idea about the third'.

Five songs that mean a lot to me

Only five? :) I actually find these questions quite hard, because I like so much music and such varied music. I'll have a crack at it anyway...

  • We Stand Alone by Covenant (the industrial band, not the metal band). We Stand Alone is the song that I remember most from our interstate trip to see Covenant play in Sydney last year. We Want Revolution (also off Northern Light) gets an honourable mention since it was played on the radio that afternoon, making me truly realise I was in another city ;) (no way would that be played in Brisbane). The trip was a bit of a turning point in my life and it doesn't seem like a year ago at all. I was pretty confident they'd play We Stand Alone at the gig, but they waited a fair while through the set. I pushed forward through the crowd in anticipation and was only a few rows back from the stage when that awesome lead-in started. stand before the gates and watch metropolis / empires come and go we live forever / and eternity is in your hidden eyes / take my broken wings teach me to fly again... / I stand alone / we stand alone
  • Honour (Juno version) (off Moonraker IV) by VNV Nation. I had to choose from a stack of dancefloor anthems and what the hell, this song kicked off the DJ set I played once that kept the dancefloor packed for the entire timeslot. Now THAT is a rush. Some other dancefloor favourites that are worth a mention: Killing Fields (Guitar Fixer Mix) by Funker Vogt, Shop (USCWF remix) by Snog, Everything's Cool by Pop Will Eat Itself, Hey Boy Hey Girl by Chemical Brothers, Breathe by The Prodigy, Tanz Mit Laibach by Laibach, Chrome by VNV Nation, We Stand Alone by Covenant (everone plays Call the Ships to Port). OK, I have to stop now.
  • Peter Gunn off The Blues Brothers soundtrack (edging out She Caught the Katy, Boom Boom Boom, Sweet Home Chicago and Hold On I'm Comin). You can't deny it's a great piece of music; with that driving bass line and fat horn section, not to mention the series of solos (each of which I can remember note for note, even if it is hard to whistle along to a muted trumpet). The Blues Brothers is my enduring favourite movie and the music was a major influence in my choice to learn saxophone at high school. Unfortunately my CD of the soundtrack was remastered, which smoothed things out too much. I need to find an older, un-remastered copy that still has a raunchy rhythm & blues sound. Think (Aretha Franklin) gets a special mention as being the last song I ever played with my school's Stage Band (being the band that played all the rock, jazz, blues and swing; although honestly we really didn't play swing so well).
  • London Calling, Rock the Casbah and White Riot by The Clash. I refuse to choose ;) London Calling still reminds me of the time a friend was DJing (I was helping choose tracks) and he accidentally put the record on at high speed - very funny. Rock the Casbah was a favourite in high school and got played a lot while hanging out with my best friend. White Riot just somehow captures the outrageous energy of punk, plus it's a track I've drunkenly discussed with DJ Fat Tony (aka 'Bubs').
  • Queer by Garbage. I have a very clear memory from my first year of uni; playing the song before setting off to a night spent drinking and discussing life, the universe and everything under the fig trees at the Normanby hotel. The album was also played a lot around the time time I met a certain girl who is wearing a diamond ring these days.
  • Homesick by The Cure was my favourite song through high school (oh the angst, hand-forehead-nail!). It's a beautiful, wistful track which is musically very rich. Other Cure tracks that have to be mentioned: The Holy Hour, Open and Shake Dog Shake... and last but not least, their cover of Purple Haze.

I know that's somewhat more than five.

Passing the baton...

  • Relapse, since you will definitely have a different set of music to discuss :)
  • Nick, although I suspect you don't "do" memes ;)
  • webheadau, fellow compilation fiend.
  • ~Sen, particularly after this discussion :)
  • Blackbishop. I don't think we've discussed music yet...

head of deakin law school advocates torture

A case for torture - Opinion - Our reflex rejection of torture needs to be replaced by recognition that it can be a moral means of saving lives. Also: Linkfrenzy 2005.05.17 / Heh. Yeah. - Now, matters are worse: The head of the Law school at Deakin University, Mirko Bagaric, advocates the use of torture.

I really don't know what to say. It could be that Bagaric and his co-author Julie Clarke simply wanted their names all over the news; or perhaps they have produced an extremely poor articulation of the idea that you have to discuss even unpalatable concepts.

Sadly, I don't think the latter is the case based on Bagaric's opinion piece. It is a series of very shaky arguments which fundamentally assume things like a) the author will never be tortured, nor in fact would any innocent person be 'accidentally' tortured; and b) that human nature is not a factor - that people would adhere to rules about when it is acceptable to ram needles under someone's fingernails. The article tries to compare torturing someone for information with shooting a hijacker who has a gun to an innocent's head. There's no comparison - the gun-to-head scenario is an extremely clear situation, whether the gun is loaded or not. The theoretical 'we must torture information out of this person to save a life' is riddled with problems... not least the fact that people will admit anything at all to make torture stop.

Torture cannot be endorsed or even given a shred of permissability. Bagaric and Clarke argue that we should allow torture to end torture. Somehow they think that if we make it ok to torture sometimes that people will stop torturing the rest of the time. I can only assume they've so completely lost touch with reality that they can't see how utterly insane their argument really is.

They don't believe in a slippery slope; they claim that the floodgates are already open. While torture does happen on a daily basis in this horrible world, torture is condemned by most nations - this certainly does not constitute open floodgates in my view. Cases of torture are viewed with horror; people expect open uses of torture to be stopped and covert torture to be discovered and stopped. Many people disagreed with the latest Iraq war, but did agree that at least it ended the torture and murder of Saddam's regime. Nobody can argue that they thought the rest of the world would think they were doing the right thing by torturing someone.

It is worth noting that The Age has published a rebuttal piece: A deeply flawed case for power abuse - Opinion - By the conclusion of Not Enough (Official) Torture in the World, Bagaric and Clarke have successfully convinced themselves of the morality of torturing even innocent people, should they possess relevant information. Their article is a deeply silly argument, but it is also a profoundly sinister one. ... Rather than defending official torture, our academics should be defending the victims.

So... do Bagaric and Clarke truly think it's morally sound to have state-endorsed torture, or did they just want some cheap headlines? Well... their email addresses are still available in public; as are their photos (see the staff profiles for Bagaric and Clarke). It could simply be a requirement for all staff to have these details online; but it also suggests either a supreme arrogance or a fundamental expectation that people will agree with them. Given their smug academic smiles, I suspect they're sitting back somewhere thinking how they are operating on a higher level of intellect and the plebs are just too stupid to understand them.

At the end of the day, it is a phenominal day when someone who teaches on the topics of human rights and moral philosophy can arrive at the conclusion that torture is a great idea. I'd almost prefer to think the whole thing is just the most base and foul media manipulation. While it is morally abhorrent to advocate suffering just to get your name in the paper; it's marginally less horrific than the idea these people truly want to see a world where torture is considered morally correct.

No matter what the motivation, Bagaric and Clarke have produced an essay so flawed it wouldn't pass an introductory philosophy assignment. Their premise is based on utterly unrealistic assumptions, their arguments are not sound and their conclusion is reprehensible.

I would say that I hope Deakin will fire their hate-mongering carcasses; however I don't really expect it to happen. I would expect the University to bunker down, citing 'academic freedom' and let their bloodthirsty academics defend their publication.

Meanwhile, anyone who is considering studying law might like to cross Deakin off their list.


news bits

  • Corby lawyers deliver Govt's letter. 16/05/2005. ABC News Online: Prime Minister John Howard says the Government cannot interfere in the Corby case and adds that the letter does not amount to that. ... While the judges in the case have said they would examine material submitted by today, they indicated they would not consider information about airports in Australia. Mighty big play by the Government there, sending a letter when the case has moved to sentencing.
  • Corby judge unmoved as PM steps in - World - But the chief judge in the case, Linton Sirait, said the letter would make no difference to the decision on 27-year-old Corby ... [he] said: 'We don't watch what happens in Australia. We just keep moving with what we are doing. We don't read Australian papers. We don't think it's important to follow developments in Australia.'
  • Girl's death sparks push for 4WD ban. 16/05/2005. ABC News Online: [The girl's father said] 'Four-wheel-drives are obviously more dangerous, I feel, than smaller cars but the wider issue to me is vehicles within school grounds. What we want to ask is why should cars or vehicles at all be driven through schools.'
  • Gender gap scores - World - Australia ranks among the top 10 countries for closing the gender gap between men and women, a new international study shows. It comes 10th in the table of 58 nations compiled by the World Economic Forum measuring patterns of inequality.

around the traps

news bits

  • I'd link to budget stuff, but... it's all politicians arguing over whether people like tax cuts. Yes, we do. Even if it is only a few dollars a week, we'll take whatever crumbs the government is willing to let go of since it all helps. Yes, tax is unfair; yes, the rich avoid tax; yes, the government's idea of "low income" demonstrates how out of touch they are. No, we can't change it. So... yeah I'll take $6/week. That's $312/year to help pay for private health cover, since the Medicare levy is extorting it out of me anyway.
  • Australia 'going soft' on whale slaughter - World - / Govt urged to fight whale hunting plan. 14/05/2005. ABC News Online: Japan wants to restart the hunting of humpback whales under what it calls its scientific culling program. Australia won't do a thing about it, since all we have to work with is Alexander bloody Downer. Japan won't stop hunting whales until they are forced to do so, the whalers have zero conscience about it so moral pressure won't work.
  • Saddam may write memoirs from jail. 14/05/2005. ABC News Online. Remember Saddam?
  • Music fans bombard scalpers on website - Technology - Basically people are pissed off at tickets being resold at vast prices on eBay. Problem with the proposed solutions is that they all require the person who bought the ticket to go to the show. That is, if you can't go you can't give or sell your ticket to someone else. Which sucks. Unless events offer to buy back tickets or resell them for the ticket holder, tickets will continue being resold later. You won't stop scalpers either way, you'd just make life hard for people who just want their money back on gigs they can't attend.
  • Schoolgirl punished for Muslim dress - National - No, that's crap. The girl is being punished for not following the rules set out by her school. All she has to do is produce a fucking note from her parents, but they'd rather beat it up into a religious debate. Schools are utter sticklers for rules and that's the whole story.
  • Roaring success on film | Movies | Breaking News 24/7 - (14-05-2005). The Narnia books are being made into movies. Watch the Christian lobby groups happily ignore the use of magic, violence, etc... since there is a fairly open Christian interpretation of the storyline.

roundup. with links.

puccini pizza pasta gelati bar. go there. original plan at work today was for puccini lunch, but nobody could be arsed driving to pick it up. yes, we're lazy shites. out of the blue L met up with a friend at work (well, at the bar near her office), who then needed a lift back to within a few streets of puccini.

pissing rain, tired, L hasn't really had puccini pizza properly... join the dots. plus there's tiramisu and chocolate gelati in the freezer. i shall have to find a long spoon to eat the tiramisu*.

and there's more beer in the fridge. hmm. tough life.

went out in the valley last night. sadly we were running late and didn't get to bar soma, i was disappointed as they had a chunky tumbler of ice and Jameson irish with my name on it ;) had been looking forward to it all day, but hey shit happens. as a sidenote so you don't think i'm some kind of 'only drinks off the top shelf poser' (hah, well you probably will anyway): since i'm usually driving, i can only have a couple of drinks. so when i get bored of light beer it's nice to get a shot of something really nice on ice and sip it slowly. that way it's not actually that much of a compromise :)

met up with friends outside new york slice and trundled down to the zoo to meet up with friends from the UK and catch their friend's band glasshouse. they played a tight and energetic set, although i found myself playing 'pick the influences' as their style is still evolving to become their own. is that harsh? hope not, they really were pretty good. zoo bar has no top shelf, accidentally ordered Jim Beam (they only had white, too) instead of Jack Daniels. bleagh.

after the bands the zoo turned on the lights and some of the worst piped in music i've ever heard. we ran away screaming "faaarrrrk! the suicide music!" and went to Ric's. weird thing is i'd never been there. i'd been past and heard the number of people in there and always assumed it was huge in there. holy fuck it's a broom cupboard. can't get over it. no top shelf there either but at least the scotch was drinkable.

much sillyness all through the night and many insane photos, some of which even turned out. thinking of stealing our friends' passports so they can't go home :)

getting to work today was a challenge |-)

[ * well done to anyone who gets the tiramisu reference.]

mixed bag

fair use to become a reality?

Australian IT - iPods prompt copyright rethink (Paul Osborne, MAY 06, 2005): Attorney-General Philip Ruddock yesterday released an issues paper to spark a debate on what changes should be made. ... 'Many Australians believe, quite reasonably, that they should be able to record a television program or format-shift music from their own CD to an iPod or MP3 player without infringing copyright law,' Mr Ruddock said.

I love the words 'quite reasonably' in there :) Sounds like he's not opposed to the idea.

around the traps

around the traps

mixed bag

long weekend roundup

  • Saturday involved getting up late after very stupidly staying up late on Friday night. Then we packed in a fast-paced shopping mission and back home for frenzied activity... -L sewing, me getting ready to dj (still managed to leave some discs at home, damnit... not to mention my GUP order didn't arrive in time for the weekend :( stupid postal "service"). Last minute change of plans saw me scoffing a Subway (not a bad thing) and -L joining the rockluts at the restaurant formerly known as topolinos. I'm told the lamb shanks were great.
  • Picked up the Strange crew and got to the Alliance just in time to get all the gear up and running (I wish people would label mixer channels and amplifier dials :)). Threw in something just to practice and we looked up to find punters already coming in. 'Errr... you better just keep going then, play whatever you want!'. Oh really? :) Played a fun set of a moody/groovy stuff, lots of tracks you couldn't play later in the evening but suit the early times nicely.
  • Strange was great. Many compliments for both of my sets; my favourite being 'help! i need musical guidance...' (emailed my setlist to him later).
  • Again pondered the problem of getting people to dance to new stuff. New music will not bite, for fuck's sake... I had someone request PWEI, so I suggested Ich Bin Ein Auslander and they said something like 'well ok, even if it is new'. New? It came out in 1995! OK, so it's 'new' PWEI compared with stuff that came out in the early 90s and late 80s... but still...
  • Photographic insanity broke out sometime near 2am, sadly fading batteries slowed my flash recharge down and ruined several opportunities for good shots. Damn! Still, lots of fun had by all.
  • Tried to sleep in on Sunday but woke up after only a few hours and couldn't get back to sleep. Stayed in bed and read Pratchett for a couple of hours. Not really a substitute for sleep, but sometimes it's all you can get. Quiet day all up.
  • Woke up today with enough time for leisurely breakfast before heading off to The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. Movie was great. I think Douglas would have been pleased with how it turned out.
  • Car breaking down when we needed to get to the cinema was not so great. $165 later, I am mobile again. Stupid damn out-of-warranty-by-a-couple-of-months batteries.
  • No car = no shopping = no food at home... Dinner at the Pig with the rockluts was fun, though :) Mmmm steak, chips and Kilkenny. Not a patch on Hog's Breath though, will have to christen the Indro HB soon.
  • Unfortunately no car also meant no going to colinmo's place after the movie, as we had originally planned.
  • Continued computer geekery. Blissing out to some goa. Damn I want more goa tunes, but there's so much crap obscuring the good stuff it's hard to know where to look.
  • -L is now happily plugged into Sly 2, albeit with occasional enraged yells of 'what the fuck??'.