October 29, 2007

Separated when?

Does it bother Jessica Simpson that she looks like an early Christopher Lambert with a different haircut?

Jessica Chris

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Nature has her say

Via Defense Tech:

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Entourage 'Unknown Error (170)'

If you're like me and spend a lot of time roadwarrioring outside your corporate Exchange network, as well as spend as much time as possible working on non-MS machines, you might find this cropping up in your Entourage one day when you try to get mail. I don't know what, precisely, 'Unknown Error (170)' means or why MS thinks that's helpful, but I can tell you this: in my case, it meant my domain password had expired, and I hadn't been online on a Windows box (or other piece of software capable of handling the password change) recently enough to get the expiration warning. ,p> Logging in to my corporate VPN using Parallels provided me with a password change dialog, and once that new password was entered into Entourage it became all happy again. I had to quit/restart it after entering the p/w in order to force it to refresh the mailboxes properly, but it did so fine after the restart.

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October 19, 2007

And did they ask...

why he needed those knees replaced? Get real.

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October 18, 2007

Mukasey previews the Bush Defense

Michael Mukasey, nominated to head the Justice Department in the wake of Alberto Gonzales' long overdue departure, has show what I consider to be troubling equivocation in his testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee. According to The New York Times, when asked if waterboarding was constitutional, his inital response was to state that he did not know what waterboarding was and therefore could not answer. When Senator Whitehouse (D-RI) offered a description of waterboarding and asked if that was constitutional, Mukasey's only answer was 'if it amounts to torture, it's not constitutional.'

In other words, he intends to strictly apply decisions handed to him in the full letter of the law - but explicitly waved off any responsibility (or ability) to make the decision as to what constituted torture. The problem is that if the Justice Department isn't going to make that decision, then (as we've seen and has been stated) the decision as to what is torture will simply be made by other agencies. If the Justice Department says "Torture is unconstitutional and we won't permit torture" but also says "We won't define what torture is" then all it is is a procedural rubber stamp. The real power to define our nation's behavior as constitutional or not, and hence to shape its actions, has been explicitly passed off to whoever is writing the definition of torture - a purely semantic exercise.

As we've seen, that person will be a Bush Administration functionary, likely writing in secret.

We've just been told by the nominee to head our Justice Department that he will be explicitly offering loopholes and definitional power to those not in the Justice Department - thereby ensuring its complete impotence in the struggle to police our nation and its actions.

Why would we approve this? Why? To all those in the Congress involved in this appointment: you must answer that question before voting. You must answer it to *our* satisfaction.

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October 17, 2007

Which is it, Steve?

From Apple (check the Oct. 17 entry, they don't like deeplinks apparently):

Let me just say it: We want native third party applications on the iPhone, and we plan to have an SDK in developers’ hands in February. We are excited about creating a vibrant third party developer community around the iPhone and enabling hundreds of new applications for our users.
Woo, Steve! Great! Sucks on the delay, but okay. You know, if you'd just *said* this early on, that whole PR nightmare might have been avoided.

But lower:

Nokia, for example, is not allowing any applications to be loaded onto some of their newest phones unless they have a digital signature that can be traced back to a known developer. While this makes such a phone less than “totally open,” we believe it is a step in the right direction.

...er, wait. In other words, 'less than totally open' is a *step* in the right direction? What's the goal state? Where you are now? Confused.

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Shades of the V-1

For all those who think that stationing drones over the U.S. - say, at airports to watch for SAM threats - is a good idea, please read.

And don't tell me "but these would be automatic/safer/newer/fanfuckingtastic drones" because the particular error is irrelevant. The point is that if we build it and fly it, it's going to fall out of the sky at some point for some reason. You accept that fact every time you step on board an airplane, and you play your odds. The point is, though, that the way to cope with this is not to claim 'oh we'll fix that in the next release' because there is no way to 'fix' the fact that aircraft occasionally stop flying uncontrollably. You can, however, mitigate the risks of this fact of life.

One crucial way to mitigate this risk is to avoid stationing aircraft over highly busy and populated areas (like major U.S. airports).

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October 13, 2007


So the Fest locale has suffered a bit of an infestation. As it were.


...note that this isn't even all of them.

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October 10, 2007

Improving your Amtrak Experience

Pity about the legality issue.

Via Bruce Schneier's blog

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Hope Floats

A study shows that Americans, especially younger ones, seem to have decided that Christianity as it is practiced in the U.S. is MADE OF FAIL. Notably, it's too homophobic, too obsessed with politics, too hypocritical, and out of touch.

Fingers crossed.

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October 2, 2007

iPod Unknown Error 1416

Replacing the hard drive in my 4G 40GB iPod (my replacement one was stolen out of my car, and the car connector only works with 4G units, so resurrecting this one was called for) was a snap. I purchased an 'opening kit' from PDASmart along with the drive; for $3 I got four separate miniature screwdrivers and three plastic 'opening tools' - basically very thin-ended wedges. No problems.

When I plugged it into iTunes, it came up fine and asked me to name it, then started eagerly shoveling music onto the little white bugger. I figured I'd like to restore it to factory settings, so I told iTunes to do that. It thought about it for a while, then produced this message: "Unable to restore. Unknown error (1416)." While the iPod seemed to work, every time it booted it flashed the 'support URL' message before continuing with the boot.

Solution: don't use iTunes to restore it. Download and run the 'iPod Updater' and use the 'Restore Factory Settings' option first, then update the firmware as required. That did the trick; Gir is all happy now.

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Must...control...fist of death...

I am really, really, REALLY downhearted after watching the numerous video clips from the Underworld Central Park show that have shown up on YouTube. It looks like it was a completely classic Underworld experience...and I was in Vermont at a friend's wedding. I still think I made the right choice.

But it hurts to watch those videos.

WHY? Why only two dates in the Eastern U.S., on consecutive nights? WHY THAT WEEKEND? **sob whimper moan**

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October 1, 2007

No, AT&T is a perfectly fine solution!


Money quote: "Note: If you are indoors, trying going outdoors or moving closer to a window."

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