October 21, 2008

Movie script for people with short attention spans

Well, I did see X-Files 2: This Movie Really Sucked in the theater. To be fair, I waited until it hit the local second run so I only wasted 2 dollars instead of the normal 10. In any event, this abridged script from the Editing Room is, unfortunately, more entertaining than the actual movie. Excerpt:



INT: EAST EUROPEAN BATH HOUSE

David finds a room full of the people he knows to have been abducting and cutting up women for body parts, armed with…. a wrench. That’s right, a wrench. He gets his shit fucked up.

CUT TO:

INT: SUV

GILLIAN ANDERSON

Gee, I sure am glad that you were able to show up out of nowhere to come help me find David.

The camera slowly shows a shiny bald head from behind soon revealing MITCH PILEGGI only to give him some of the dumbest lines in the movie.

FANBOYS

Walter Skinner Zomfg! BBQ! STFU! Internet!

MITCH PILEGGI

(with a shit eating grin)

No problem sweetheart.

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Geek entry of the day

Another from the PG archives because I've got nuthin' today. As for those of you who think that that makes this day no different from any other, well, you have a point.
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Have you ever been caught off guard when someone walks up to you and asks, "What's the square root of X?" Me, too. Usually, I can remember approximations for most square roots up through, uh, maybe I won't finish that statement. Anyway, sometimes the numbers are just too damn big or I need more digits after the decimal place than I can comfortably work out. It's times like that when you really need Newton's formula:

Newtons sqrt.jpg

b represents the number for which you're seeking the square root and x is your first guess. Wanna see how it all works? Of course you do! Observe:

Let's say that you need the square root of 13 and we want to be within 0.00001 of the actual value. For simplicity, we'll make x the same as b, the number we're taking the square root of.

Iterations
-----------
x=13, b=13
NewX=7, difference is 6

x=7, b=13
NewX=4.428571, difference is 2.571429

x=4.428571,b=13
NewX=3.682028, difference is 0.746544

x=3.682028, b=13
NewX=3.606345, difference is 0.075682

x=3.606345, b=13
NewX=3.6055514, difference is 0.000794

x=3.6055514,b=13
NewX=3.605551, difference <0.000001

There you have it: the square root of 13 is approximately 3.605551.

I feel better already.

Posted by: Physics Geek at 08:44 AM | No Comments | Add Comment
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Ever have one of those days?

Yeah, it's a repost. Sue me.
=====================

When your give-a-shit factor is in the picofuckit range and dropping like a stone, here is the solution:

image001.jpg

Posted by: Physics Geek at 08:32 AM | No Comments | Add Comment
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Wanna see something really geeky?

Via Jonah comes this video of claymation style Battle Chess. I've embedded the video below the fold to prevent your browser from hanging.

more...

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October 20, 2008

So this never happened, right?

Via Treacher:


Thursday, January 27, 2005
Get to know Barack Obama

When I first met Barack Obama, he was giving a standard, innocuous little talk in the livingroom of those two legends-in-their-own-minds, Bill Ayers and Bernardine Dohrn. They were launching him--introducing him to the Hyde Park community as the best thing since sliced bread. His "bright eyes and easy smile" struck me as contrived and calculated--maybe because I was supporting another candidate. Since then, I've never heard him say anything new or earthshaking, or support anything that would require the courage of his convictions. I only voted for him in this last race--because his opponent was a pinhead. And I've been mostly alone in my views. But maybe that's changing.

Thanks, Barack. By voting to confirm Condoleezza Rice for Secretary of State you confirmed my opinion of you as someone who will not come through when it counts. You voted with the entire Republican membership rather than your compadre, Dick Durbin, and the man you supported for president, John Kerry. Your sense of collegiality is ridiculous under the circumstances.

What are all those people who thought you walked on water thinking now? I'm just wondering who's going to whisper in President CandyAss's ear when Condo's busy playing Secretary of State.

And here's a quote from Treacher:


You need to decide, Obama fans: Either this stuff didn't happen, or it happened but I'm not supposed to care. You need to pick one or the other and stick with it.

Check out the archived post.

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Useful tool for Windows

Recently, I've been dealing- a lot- with applications freezing on a semi-regular basis. The Task Manager does okay at killing the apps, but sometimes those apps also kill my OS. What to do, what to do... hey, I know! Why don't use Windows Xkill? Excerpt:


An App that your using Freezes, and your first thought it to CTRL+ALT+DEL to bring up Task manager, then you have to wade thought the processes to find said frozen app, then kill it... Or you use xKill.

Using a system wide hook in xKill, when it is running, just Press Control+Alt+Backspace, and you will see a Skull and Crossbones follow behind your cursor. When you click on the next item (say, the frozen application), it will kill it. simple.

And just because i know that people will try this out with out having an app to kill, when the skull and crossbones is up, if you choose NOT to kill any thing, press Escape, and you will exit out of xKill mode.

No external references, this app is Portable, you will know when it is running doe to the color changing Skull and Crossbones in your system tray. you can Right click on the glowing icon to either go in to xKill mode, so that you don't have to do Control + Alt + Backspace, or you can exit out of xKill.

Bringing Kill -9 to Windows. ::sniff:: I'm just so happy right now.

Posted by: Physics Geek at 11:49 AM | No Comments | Add Comment
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Political action

Actually, I originally posted this about feeling stressed at work. In any event, it seems awfully appropriate during this heated election cycle.
===============================================

How to handle political conflicts.

fight.gif

Posted by: Physics Geek at 09:44 AM | Comments (1) | Add Comment
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One more thing

Well, I resisted political blogging for a few minutes. So that's something. It tells me that I can quit any time I want to. Sure I can.

Anyway. Read this article by Orson Scott Card: Would the Last Honest Reporter Please Turn On the Lights?. Excerpt:


I remember reading All the President's Men and thinking: That's journalism. You do what it takes to get the truth and you lay it before the public, because the public has a right to know.

This housing crisis didn't come out of nowhere. It was not a vague emanation of the evil Bush administration.

It was a direct result of the political decision, back in the late 1990s, to loosen the rules of lending so that home loans would be more accessible to poor people. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac were authorized to approve risky loans.
...
Barack Obama is just another politician, and not a very wise one. He has revealed his ignorance and naivete time after time -- and you have swept it under the rug, treated it as nothing.

Meanwhile, you have participated in the borking of Sarah Palin, reporting savage attacks on her for the pregnancy of her unmarried daughter -- while you ignored the story of John Edwards's own adultery for many months.

So I ask you now: Do you have any standards at all? Do you even know what honesty means?

Is getting people to vote for Barack Obama so important that you will throw away everything that journalism is supposed to stand for?

Assuming that those last 3 questions weren't entirely rhetorical, the answers are No, No and Hell Yes!.

Posted by: Physics Geek at 09:07 AM | No Comments | Add Comment
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October 18, 2008

I AM JOE

I left the following as a comment over at Rachel's place:


Some Obama douche (but I repeat myself) was on Fox this afternoon saying that McCain had not vetted Joe the Plumber. Vetted. It was like I had taken the red pill, fallen down the rabbit hole, stepped through the looking glass and fallen into a 1960s era Jefferson Airplane acid-amplified video.

WTF? I’m serious: WTfuckingF?! Do you vet everyone in this entire country who MIGHT have opinions, or ask questions, that make the One look like a fucking jackass?

Vet the plumber? I feel like vetting someone’s head with a nail-studded 2×4.

Oh, and if you’ve checked Ace lately, you know that Team Barry is filing suit against Palin and McCain for trying to prevent fraudulent votes. I don’t know what the next step beyond batshit and bugfuck crazy is, but we’re there now.

Right now, Stalin is crying in his glass coffin because he sees now that he didn’t go as far as he could.

Iowahawk takes a break from his usual uproarious stuff to post something dead serious. Excerpt:


Politicians -- Sarah Palin, Bill Clinton, et al. -- obviously have to put up with some rude, nasty shit, but it's right there in the jobs description. Joe the Plumber is different. He was a guy tossing a football with his kid in the front yard of his $125,000 house when a politician picked him out as a prop for a 30 second newsbite for the cable news cameras. Joe simply had the temerity to speak truth (or, if you prefer, an uninformed opinion) to power, for which the politico-media axis apparently determined that he must be humiliated, harassed, smashed, destroyed. The viciousness and glee with which they set about the task ought to concern anyone who still cares about citizen participation, and freedom of speech, and all that old crap they taught in Civics class before politics turned into Narrative Deathrace 3000, and Web 2.0 turned into Berlin 1932.0.

Godwin's Law! you say? if the jackboot fits, wear it.

And here's an image that everyone should stick on their websites. Everyone, that is, who wants to show solidarity with Joe:


2951062466_672d7aff37.jpg

Posted by: Physics Geek at 07:36 AM | Comments (8) | Add Comment
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October 16, 2008

I didn't know he had it in him

McCain is funny in this speech. Very, very funny.

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Food for thought part 3

Check out this essay at Zombietime. Excerpt:


The real-world campaign involves speeches and proposals and facts and scandals and political positions and news events. These details, however, are becoming increasingly irrelevant, and have become subsumed by the meta-campaign, which consists of perceptions, polls, reactions, analyses and summations. Until very recently, elections were decided by real-world facts -- but not anymore. Facts and events in and of themselves are no longer important; what's important is how everyone reacts to them. And how do we find out the public's mood concerning this or that incident? Why, the media tells us, that's how.

Or so we've been led to believe.

We're all part of the campaign now. Every single one of us. Our opinions, our actions, are bundled together as a group and used as weapons in the race for the White House. When the media reports on what people think, either through public-opinion polling or reportage about anecdotal incidents, it becomes an endless feedback loop, in which the media's representation of most people's purported thoughts is supposed to influence everyone else's thoughts. And then they take another poll to determine how effective the first poll was in influencing public opinion, and the cycle starts all over again. Since everyone now knows that any public expression of their political opinions might be reported by the media, even the most innocent activity becomes a calculated campaign action. Saying how you intend to vote is not simply an expression of how you intend to vote, but rather a component of the public barometer of how the majority intends to vote, which is then used by the media and the blogs to influence everyone else. Nothing is done in all innocence anymore.
...
One odd thing about public-opinion polls is that there's no way to know if they're accurate or not. Except for a poll taken on the very last day of the campaign, when it can be later compared to the actual vote totals, a poll is a self-supporting statement of "fact" that can only be confirmed or disproven by taking yet another poll -- which is just as unreliable as the first one. We do not have access to some secret hyper-accurate invasion of privacy enabling us to peer into voters' hearts to see how they actually intend to vote, and to use that information to assess the accuracy of a poll. So, if a poll is taken a month ahead of time showing a candidate with a five-point lead, and then a month later he in fact wins the election by five points, we have no way of knowing whether or not the poll was simply accurate, or whether it was originally inaccurate, but fed a public perception that the candidate was in the lead, causing many voters to switch allegiances to him out of a desire to "be on the winning team." Do polls reflect reality, or do they create reality?

The entire Democratic strategy in 2008 revolves around the unproven theory that polls do create reality. Otherwise, there would be no point in continuously striving to inflate Obama's perceived public support.

The real question at the end of the day is this: Are people telling pollsters they're supporting Obama due to normative conformity (which is what I suspect) or due to informational conformity (which is what the Left is banking on)? We won't know until November 4. You can lie to a pollster. But you cannot lie to a ballot.

I hope that Zombie will forgive my taking such an extended entry, but I wanted to make certain that you clicked over to his site.

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I don't get it

So Tea Leoni and David Duchovny have split, huh? I know what you're thinking: it's because David is a sex addict. Well, no, actually. As it turns out, Tea and Billy Bob Thornton have, apparently, been bumping uglies. In Thornton's case, that's an easy task.

Billy Bob was married to Angelina Jolie and now he's been knocking boots with Tea Leoni. In both cases, he not only dated outside of his weight class, he dated outside of his species. I will assume that he's hung like a rutting Koidak bear, because he's not hitting it with such spectacular women on his suave and debonair good looks. Let's have a look, shall we?

more...

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Wanna see something really scary?

Look at the image below the fold:

more...

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October 15, 2008

Food for thought part 2

Time to provide an update to this post. I was reminded of that post due to this one over at Patterico's place. Excerpt:


What I’m about to say will, if it works out to be true, cause Lawrence O’Donnell to have a coronary on Nov. 5. In the immediate aftermath of Kerry’s loss to Bush in 2004, O’Donnell called for blue states to secede from the Union. So, we will need a volunteer in the blogosphere to stay with O’Donnell on election night with a portable defibrillator in order to zap him back to life.

ASSUMING that the pre-election polling is close to accurate, if Obama is leading in the national polls coming out of the final weekend by 52% or less, he’s going to lose. If he’s at 53% it’ll probably be very close, but he may still lose. If its 54% or above, he will win. And it’s not the “Bradley Effect.”

Why does he have to be that high? It’s the revenge of the small-states-on-steroids in the electoral college. The math is actually pretty simple, although some assumptions have to be made about turnout and victory margin in specific states (i.e., that current polls in those states are close to being accurate).

Anyway, time to update my picks:

1) Virgina: I continue to predict that McCain will carry the state, albeit by a 2%-5% margin.

2) Colorado: I still have it in the One's win column. I also stand my prediction that if Obama loses CO, he's done.

3) Florida: McCain wins. Very, very close.

4) Ohio: McCain hangs in an wins by a smaller margin than Bush over Kerry.

5) New Hampshire: I think that I might have been wrong last time. NH will probably stay blue. In fact, I think that NH flipping red would be a sign that Obama should start working on his re-election plans for the Senate. As it stands now, I don't think that will be the case.

6) Pennsylvania: This one has gotten a lot tougher. Polls show a consistent small edge for Obama, but, for some reason, he's spending a lot of time and money there, more than I would think is necessary if the race were already sewn up. And Murtha just called western PA a bunch of racists, which I'm sure will play well in that part of the state. Anyway, I think that Obama probably carries the state by the slimmest of margins, at least right now.

7) The rest of the states remain their election day 2004 color, except for New Mexico, which will flip back to blue.

Oh yeah, those one or two precincts in Nebraska and Maine which cast electoral votes in a non-winner take all manner are probably up for grabs. It would be more than interesting if those two districts actually determined the electoral vote winner.

Where does that leave us as far as electoral votes? I could look it up, but I'm lazy. I will make a final prediction the day before the election. In the interim, I plan to try and ignore politics here just so that I can retain my sanity.

Posted by: Physics Geek at 03:52 PM | No Comments | Add Comment
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Quote of the day

And it comes from Jonah Goldberg:


I have always said (even in my more anti-libertarian days) that it always pays to have a libertarian in the room to ask the question "Why, and by what right, should government do this at all?"

That question is asked far too infrequently these days. Pity.

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I've got your anti-leeching protection right here

Currently, I use the Fast Video Download add-on for Firefox to retrieve things from YouTube, Google video, et al that I would like to have on my PC. However, some sites have taken steps to prevent me from being able to do such a thing. Enter Tubemaster Plus via Freewaregenius. Excerpt:


Description: TubeMaster Plus is a free tool that can download streaming video and audio files from almost any media sharing site, including sites with anti-leeching protection. TubeMaster Plus also can convert downloaded videos to several formats, offers a video search function across multiple video sources, and offers a downloadble audio mp3 search function.

There's more. Much more.

Posted by: Physics Geek at 12:58 PM | No Comments | Add Comment
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Because I've got nuthin' today

Well, I know that some of you drop by for the geeky stuff, some for the humor (what is that?) and some for reasons which still escape me. In any event, I can't think of anything else worth writing about today, so I'm going to post more pictures of former VCU student Mircea Monroe. Images not exactly safe for work, so I'm putting them below the fold.

more...

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Debate pre-cap

The first presidential debate and the only veep debate were both entertaining to watch. The second presidential debate bored me to tears when it wasn't pissing me off, because town hall style debates devolve into panderfests, as each candidate tries to spend more of my hard-earned money than the other guy. Anyway, I followed each of the 3 previous debates on C-Span while simultaneously participating in the live blog at Ace's place. It was fun, but I think that I'm gonna pass tonight. After I finally get my children to sleep, I"m going to go for a 5-6 mile run to clear my head. I'll check out the analysis later, but I'll take a stab at how I think things will go:

Chris Matthew: OMG, I think that I just came in my pants!

Keith Olbermann: Much like during the vice-presidential debate, I touched myself repeatedly whenever our country's savior spoke.

CNN focus group: Obama's so pretty. And he's going to give me a free pony!

FNC focus group: McCain sounded like a patriot, but looked like a cancer victim. And Barry's going to give me a pony!

Brit Hume: Well, neither candidate made any gross errors. McCain had the edge on facts, but, in this television age, Obama's visual appeal might have swayed the overall score in his favor.

Chris Matthews: I don't understand what he just said because I came again while watching the tape!

Brit Hume: Uh, Chris? Maybe you could go back to MSNBC and help out your co-anchor Keith. He seems to be in some sort of physical distress.

::Keith Olbermann performing homoerotic asphyxiation while watching tape of the debate::

=======================================

Barring one of the candidates mowing down the audience with a flamethrower, I don't think we'll get much out of the debate.

Posted by: Physics Geek at 08:31 AM | No Comments | Add Comment
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October 14, 2008

You know what else would be bad?

Not being able to feed my children because gasoline is too fucking expensive.

I know that there are a large number of people who are not only okay with high gas prices, they wish that prices would spike up around $10 a gallon. To those people I offer the following helpful advice: please go fuck yourself before sticking your head in the over. Seriously. High fuel costs equals higher food costs, higher heating/cooling costs, higher clothing costs, higher pretty much everything unless you're a complete dunderhead. You might be okay with paying a buttload for everything, but I, not being rich, am most decidedly not.

You think that pain drives research into new technologies? That makes you stupid. Sure, it provides a little impetus, but if people are worried about heating/cooling their homes and feeding their families, they aren't going to spend a lot of time and money on vaporware. That includes businesses. Higher energy costs mean higher costs of doing business which means, usually, that some divisions/departments get cut. Having worked in R&D before, I can tell you that research divisions are not the most directly profitable sections of a company. Until or unless something pays off, they are usually a drain on resources.

For the record, I would love for some new energy technology to be created. However, it has to be (a) proven, (b) scalable (you keep ignoring that, don't you?), (c) affordable and (d) available 24x7 because things need to run when it's dark outside. If the technology doesn't meet those criteria, then it's worthless.

One other thing: you people who tout electric cars have really got to figure out where all that electricity is going to come from to charge the batteries, because I really want to know. Maybe from the unicorns that Obama will give us all, but I'm not really counting on that. Besides, unicorns taste like chicken.

Link via the Instamonster.

Posted by: Physics Geek at 01:39 PM | Comments (2) | Add Comment
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My 15 seconds are about over

Sure, most people get 15 minutes, but this is me we're talking about. Anyway, it's time to break out the following quote based on this post from Dave In Texas:


Physics Geek: The new pool ranking's here! The new pool ranking's here!

Dave In Texas: Boy, I wish I could get that excited about nothing.

Physics Geek: Nothing? Are you kidding? First Place - Geek, Physics! I'm somebody now! Millions of people look at this blog every day! This is the kind of spontaneous publicity - your name on Ace of Spaces HQ - that makes people. I'm on Ace of Spaces HQ! Things are going to start happening to me now.

Of course, Dave did throw a little cold water on my soon to be short-lived fame by mentioning the aliens who are sure to take me first. On the other hand, anal probe and all, so WIN!!!!

Posted by: Physics Geek at 10:14 AM | No Comments | Add Comment
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