1 January 2011

Christmas 2010: Flying to the UK

As you may have seen on the news, the UK has been experiencing some freakishly cold weather. The weekend before Christmas was marked by a sudden record breaking cold snap. Chesham in Buckinghamshire hit -26 Celsius, a temperature I don’t think I ever experienced during the years I lived in the area. Heathrow airport was engulfed in snow and ice, thousands of passengers were stranded at the airport for days, and it started to look as if our Christmas trip to see my family was going to be canceled at the last minute. ... Read more

18 December 2010

My YouCut suggestion

The Republicans have a new program called YouCut that encourages members of the public to suggest wasteful federal government programs that should be cut in order to balance the budget. Here’s the suggestion I submitted: I propose saving a minimum of $340 million a year by abandoning the use of expensive backscatter X-ray machines at airports. The scanners are easily fooled. They actually make it easier to sneak plastic explosives onto a plane, because they fail to detect objects easily uncovered by a pat-down. ... Read more

16 December 2010

iPad review

Work sent me an iPad to experiment with. Here is my review, from the perspective of a Mac user of 20+ years who firmly believes that tablet interfaces are the way of the future. (I even had a Newton.) What’s bad about the iPad Ye ghods, this thing is heavy. Sorry, but it really is uncomfortable to use for any extended period, unless you prop it up on something–a knee, a cushion, whatever. ... Read more

21 November 2010

Facebook meme: Favorite cartoon characters

I had to think a bit about my favorite cartoon character from childhood. Least favorite character would have been easy. I hate Woody Woodpecker. I also dislike Popeye, though not quite as much. Donald Duck is also particularly annoying for his malicious stupidity. As a child, I liked The Pink Panther a lot. Dastardly and Muttley were also fun to watch, particularly when they were up against Yankee Doodle Pigeon. Tom and Jerry were great. ... Read more

11 November 2010

Movie review: “Four Lions”

Chris Morris has pushed the boundaries of comedy for years, and his first full length movie continues that trend. It’s a dark comedy about a group of aspiring Islamic suicide bombers living in northern England. Like most English comedy, it’s played straight. In fact, Morris spent three years doing research–talking to police, secret service, imams, ordinary Muslims, and a former Gitmo detainee. He went along for a ride with Muslim kids on a Saturday night, and tried to learn about what their life was really like and how real Muslim radicals actually behave. ... Read more

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