Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Music I'm listening to

Monkey Swallows the Universe. I heard their song "Science" and started looking for more. So far I'm liking them a lot. Nice voice, and the cello's a nice touch.

Bishop Allen. I went to their show a few weeks ago. Definitely very fun, but I was surprised by how little vocal work their female singer did. All the same, I picked up their first CD and liked it too. You might've heard their one song, "Click, Click, Click, Click".

Bitter:Sweet. I first heard one of their songs from a champagne commercial. Another found its way into an episode of Smallvile.

Earlimart. So far okay. I don't think I've run into a song I've been crazy about yet. Not bad tho.

Aimee Mann's latest I didn't find that great.

Tilly & the Wall. I'll be going to see their show in July. Their latest CD was pretty good. They actually included a hand drawn/painted insert for their album cover. Pretty neat.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Intelligent Theists vs. Unintelligent Theists

Christians can and do believe in evolution. But some Christians don't. Some, perhaps most that don't believe, are Fundamentalist Christians. From this, I put forth that belief in the theory of evolution is not a religious issue, or at least not at the core. It's dressed up in creation myth to stir up controversy, but really, it's about people who take the time to think and incorporate knowledge of their world into their belief system and people who believe what they're told and write off any other factual evidence.

I refer to the religious that think as "intelligent theists". From what I can tell, this probably describes a majority of Christians, who could also be called moderate. This is contrasted with, of course, those that don't think which I refer to as unintelligent theists. The problem with this group, however, is that the unintelligent have taken it upon themselves to be very vocal, and the moderate, by and large, aren't.

Expanding it out though, of course this is just the same fight that has been raging on for forever, which is just the knowledgeable versus the ignorant, or perhaps just a subset; the loud and stupid versus the smart but meek. Really, truly, if there really does exist this silent majority of moderate, intelligent Christians in America, I wish they'd speak out and tell the unintelligent to shut up. Or better yet, teach them.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

So frustrated, so depressed, so angry

It's just that I participated in voting today. I spoke with my coworkers about the candidates/issues. Our ideological differences are much clearer, and it's disheartening. Who knew there were so many straight-ticket party-liners? Hell, I don't think one of them was even going to look at the issues before casting his vote.Who knew they cared so little about our civil liberties? One of them called Benjamin Franklin a fascist, seriously.

There was a quote from some anarchist, paraphrased, "If voting actually worked, they'd make it illegal." But for all its flaws, I think America can still trudge along the path to enlightenment and reason. If not then maybe there'll be no choice but to vote in another

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Pervez Musharraf

Man, I am just so impressed with this guy. Just listening to him speak, it sounds like there's so much thought that goes into what he says. And the thing is, what he's talking about is the things that he has done or is doing, and his actions and policies also sound like he's put a lot of thought into them. Of course this is a painful contradistinction to our own president.

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

The other side of the story

I wrote about a book about Jerry Siegel's life some time back. In response to the book, Siegel's second wife, Joanne Siegel (and model for Lois Lane), wrote a response. It certainly does paint Jerry in a much different light. If it's true, it seems like Jones should have a case of libel on his hands...

Monday, May 08, 2006

A Peer-review Patent System

The meat of the idea seems to be discussed here.

The biggest thing I was worried about was a lack of legal understanding on the part of participants in the system, but they seem to have that pretty well addressed. Basically, their heart is in the right place, but they think that people will do this out of the kindness of their hearts and devotion to the betterment of society. Or, essentially, for recognition.

While there are people like that out there, I have a feeling that when it comes time to put up or shut up, there just won't be enough people to sustain the system. The truth is, patents are quite boring, but they're also quite lucrative, which is why there are so many people actually involved.

Another worry I had is the amount of time that such a system would require, both on the part of the peers and the examiners. Things like, "Those who submitted will be sent an email requesting their participation over a 4-week follow-on period in an expert panel.", "Once convened, this online panel will have one month in which to discuss the patent application.", and "In every case, the participant should receive feedback from the examiner about the final results of the process." seem to lengthen the examination process, not expedite it. It seems that this peer process is highly concerned with quality, but is willing to sacrifice timeliness. One suggestion was to start the process prior to when the examiner takes up the case. That really seems like the only practical solution, though I doubt there'd be any time for consultation after or during examination.

At any rate, it'll be interesting to see what will happen. Generally, I think the submission of relevant prior art by an expert public is a great idea, but in practice really won't happen all that often. First, there needs to be a large, dedicated community. Second, that community has to be as broad as it is deep, with regards to the subject matter. Thirdly, that community has to be willing to deal with learning not only patent law, but also the peer review system.

I think what will actually happen is that certain computer technology savvy individuals will at least be initially interested in computer technology fields of patent endeavor. A few other subject areas will also see some interest, but probably won't reach the level of peer review desired for discussion. Some companies/inventors will receive a disproportionate amount of attention. A lot of irrelevant, unranked art will be submitted. Eventually people will mostly give up on trying to affect the patent system as a whole, but importantly, sometimes some application will spark some public interest and a system may be in place for interested members of the public to affect its prosecution.

Friday, April 28, 2006

Some more horrible images

Horribly funny that is. Everything I know about 'em are in the filenames...