Increasing decrepitude

Today at lunch time I got my first pair of glasses ever. Not very strong ones, but they will supposedly make it easier for me to read. I had been promised them within 5–10 working days from prescription, but in fact they arrived in less than three.

What confuses me a bit is that the optics themselves seem not to cost anything, in spite of the necessity for grinding, surface treatment etc—the expensive bit is the frames, which basically are mass-produced pieces of plastic and/or metal. And of course, as such things go, frames that don't make you look like an idiot are expensive. I'm sure there is something strange and unwholesome behind this, but I'm not quite sure what yet.


So much talent out there

One of the things with web comics is that they often are drawn by geeky people with the same concerns as oneself and thus tend to speak very directly to one. I just spent several hours reading Something Positive, grabbed by whatever it was in the stories of friends and enemies, sometimes outrageously exaggerated in their behaviour, sometimes so very everyday, but with the underlying certainty that It Won't Work Out In The End.


Knowledge is power!

British educational television has always impressed me greatly, both in that it is well done and in that it is sent on prime time as a matter of course. So it's only perfectly fitting that BBC should produce excellent educational television parodies as well, to wit: Look Around You

Start with the first episode, on Maths:


Veckans ord: kommunaktionsteknik

Med jämna mellanrum är det en kommunalstyrelse som bestämmer sig för att lägga ner ett dagis, bygga köpcentrum i ett grönområde eller vidta andra impopulära åtgärder. Då brukar snart uppstå en proteströrelse som går till aktion i kommunen. Dock kan man ju inte villa runt hur som helst om man vill uppnå resultat, man bör därför lära sig effektiv kommunaktionsteknik.


Veckans ord: handeldning

I min barndom läste jag historien om Gaius Mucius Scaevola, den romerske yngling som skulle döda den etruskiske kungen Lars Porsenna men blev fast och därför skulle torteras till döds. För att visa sin likgiltighet inför detta öde körde han då sin högra hand i kungens fyrfat och lät handen förtäras av elden utan att röra en min. Jag blev mycket imponerad av denna handeldning.


XH558 back in the air!

Avro Vulcan XH558 has returned to the air! I saw (and heard!) it do high-speed taxis at Bruntingthorpe in 1995 when it seemed it would never fly again. It is now absolutely mandatory to go to England during next summer's airshow season.


Civil war in America

Paul Harris writes about guns in USA in the Observer. The money quote:
Since the killing of John F Kennedy in 1963, more Americans have died by American gunfire than perished on foreign battlefields in the whole of the 20th century.

I don't really need to say anything about the war on terror, or anything, do I?


Mutating Genre Meme

A blogging and scientific experiment.

There are a set of questions below that are all of the form, “The best [subgenre] [medium] in [genre] is …”.

Copy the questions, and before answering them, you may modify them in a limited way, carrying out no more than two of these operations:
  • You can leave them exactly as is.
  • You can delete any one question.
  • You can mutate either the genre, medium, or subgenre of any one question. For instance, you could change “The best time travel novel in SF/Fantasy is…” to “The best time travel novel in Westerns is…”, or “The best time travel movie in SF/Fantasy is…”, or “The best romance novel in SF/Fantasy is…”.
  • You can add a completely new question of your choice to the end of the list, as long as it is still in the form “The best [subgenre] [medium] in [genre] is…”.
  • You must have at least one question in your set, or you've gone extinct, and you must be able to answer it yourself, or you're not viable.

Then answer your possibly mutant set of questions. Please do include a link back to the “parent” blog you got them from, e.g. Aardvarcheology, to simplify tracing the ancestry, and include these instructions.

Finally, pass it along to any number of your fellow bloggers. Remember, though, your success as a Darwinian replicator is going to be measured by the propagation of your variants, which is going to be a function of both the interest your well-honed questions generate and the number of successful attempts at reproducing them.

The best epic novel in SF/Fantasy is: The Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien.
The best sexy song in R&B/Soul is: "Come With Me" by Rare Earth.
The best cult novel in fantasy is: Small Gods by Terry Pratchett.
The best supersonic transport in history is: BAC/SA Concorde.

My ancestor 1 is Pharyngula.
My ancestor 2 is Metamagician and the Hellfire Club.
My ancestor 3 is The Flying Trilobite.
My ancestor 4 is Life Before Death.
My ancestor 5 is Aardvarchaeology.

I tag
Another CyborgManifesto
Trauma Queen
Occasional Kvetch

Veckans ord: intresseveckande

Ibland rynkar man pannan inför något så förbryllande och fascinerande att det är intresseveckande.



How could I resist a band called Flight of the Conchords?


Veckans ord: skarpsinnlig

En njutningsfylld upplevelse som är så precis att den är som ett rakblad genom hjärnan: skarpsinnlig.