Posts Tagged ‘technology’

Elizabeth asked, in response to Ask Roger Anything (and YOU still can):

Why do they call the Autumnal Equinox the beginning of Fall when it is already Fall? Likewise the Winter Solstice isn’t the beginning of winter but well along into winter?

Why do “they” say anything? Why do they still use foot/pound? From the Wikipedia: “Some cultures regard the autumnal equinox as mid-autumn, others with a longer lag treat it as the start of autumn. Meteorologists (and most of the temperate countries in the southern hemisphere) use a definition based on months, with autumn being September, October and November in the northern hemisphere, and March, April and May in the southern hemisphere.

“In North America, autumn is usually considered to start with the September equinox. In traditional East Asian solar term, autumn starts on or around 8 August and ends on about 7 November.”

The answer, therefore, is Read the rest of this entry »

Every once in a while you read a blog post that you not only enjoy, it edifies your very being. I’m talking about Dustbury’s post Demotional rescue. Now you need to know that Chaz, who runs the joint, has been online close to 20 years, and he’s approximately 314.15 times more savvy, technologically, than I will ever be. And I’m OK with that.

Still, Chaz installed OpenOffice 4.0.0, only to discover Read the rest of this entry »

see?

I was waiting for the bus after work. Ofttimes, I’d pull out a magazine or newspaper to read, and I almost ALWAYS have something to read. But on this particular day – and it was a particularly lovely afternoon – I just didn’t feel like it. Using my backpack as a pillow, I lay on this granite slab in front of my work building and just observed. My goodness, the New York State flag is REALLY frayed, much worse than the US flag. I had never even noticed this before.

I tend, I think, to observe more than the average person, some of it Read the rest of this entry »

My birthday week (last month) became quite busy, though entertaining. On my birthday itself, my wife and daughter took me out to go bowling. I used to love to bowl, going back to when I was in a league when I was just ten years old. My game was definitely off, but it HAS been over five years.

That evening at choir, we had a dearth of tenors, and I was requested to sing in that section, rather than with the basses. Fortunately, the parts aren’t TOO high, or too difficult. The snow that fell that night was wet and slippery, but was largely over the next day.

Friday night and Saturday morning, I helped with the setup Read the rest of this entry »

I was putting together my monthly list of links, when it struck me that some of the pieces were of a type. They were all about information of one form or another and how sometimes, it goes away.

JEOPARDY! wiz Ken Jennings – he won 74 games in a row – gave a TEDx talk at Seattle University in February 2013 called The Obsolete Know-It-All. It runs about 18 minutes, in which he discusses the JEOPARDY! competition with Brad Rutter (human) and the IBM computer named Watson, as. He talks, among other things, about how a part of the brain shrinks when one uses GPS, or uses the cellphone to look up your friends’ numbers. This is one of those issues I respond to viscerally. Looking it up on Google may be more “efficient,” but it doesn’t compare with knowing stuff.

If the technologies fail us – power grid crashes, computers compromised by cyberattacks – what will we still know? What does it all mean in terms of our human interaction? By contrast, 5 ways robots can improve accuracy, journalism quality.

Andy Marx writes about the day he and his grandfather Groucho saved the television show ‘You Bet Your Life’ from ending up in a Dumpster. If he hadn’t answered the phone, the shows would have been lost forever. In the comments, there was an interesting link to a story of how much of our cultural history depends on one person’s decision to preserve something instead of throwing it away.

Speaking of TV, Ken Levine’s comment about the late Bonnie Franklin, and her TV show ONE DAY AT A TIME falling between the cracks prompted the question about why some shows remain perennially popular while others fade out. “It doesn’t necessarily seem to be question of quality.” Interesting responses in the comments section.

Mark Twain Captured on Film by Thomas Edison in 1909. It’s the only known footage of the author.

Finally, since Jaquandor inspired this with his lazy linkage, I appreciated reading what he has to say: When going back to edit your writing, how do you determine what to keep and what to weed out? I imagine novelists in particular whether to exorcise a scene, or just save it for another book.
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My first thoughts about the end of this year’s Boston Marathon. Probably not my last.

Some days, I work hard to bring you a well-crafted thought process. Other days, the piece just writes itself. This is what happened on Monday, March 4, 2013:

I get the Daughter to school barely on time (too long a story), and just catch the #10 Western Avenue bus. I would not have if people were all using bus swipers; fortunately, the cash users slowed the process down sufficiently. Read the rest of this entry »

I have a love/hate relationship with techies. In my experience, 60% of them are condescending twits who seem to relish making people feel as though they are idiots. Worse, about half of them, I’m convinced, don’t even know what they are talking about.

Then there are the good guys. One in my office helped me discover that the podcasts I had played was eating memory on my hard drive. He showed me where it was stored, and better, how to empty my recycle bin.

I don’t think of myself as particularly adept at technological stuff. The highlight of last year Read the rest of this entry »

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