This Day In History: 06/03

Monday, June 03, 2002

Apparently the phrase, "updated weekly", is French for "updated whenever I have time". I'll post a real update this coming weekend, but you can rest assured that nothing of great importance has happened since my last update.

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Thursday, June 03, 2004

With the new WWII memorial a popular success, Bush has now decided to compare the war on terrorism with WWII . An excerpt from the article:

    Just as events in Europe determined the outcome of the Cold War, events in the Middle East will determine the fate of the terrorism fight, Bush said in a 45-minute foreign policy speech.

Wasn't the Cold War caused, in part, by the interactions in WWII? I guess that causing something is one way to determine its conclusion, but that seems like a stretch even for a seasoned marketer. Also, didn't we already try to apply WWII's Domino Theory to the Vietnam War? Didn't we crash and burn and then find that the theory didn't hold true? Bush seems to be saying that we need to kill terrorists to prevent future terrorist states, without realizing that it's our own interactions with the states that are getting them all riled up and resorting to terrorist actions.

If the Domino Theory could be applied to terrorism, then having us recant and go home would eventually turn all of the Middle East terrorist. However, if we stop sticking our heads into other countries' business and fix our own country instead, the terrorists would have nothing to fight for. Therefore, using my degree-enhanced mathematical proof skills, the argument is false.

A lot of people argue that it's not our responsibility to go around policing the world. I think a better argument for our current times is that it's not our RIGHT to do so.

On a very special episode of Cops
Chavez calls Bush a pubic hair

tagged as newsday, politics | permalink | 3 comments

Friday, June 03, 2005

By the time Friday rolls around, I always seem to have a plethora of leftover news stories.

Survey ranks states with dumbest drivers
Arnold is executive director of getthekidsout.org.
Police "accidentally" shoot suspect with Taser-like gun
Man sets fire to end party
Mom hires stripper for son, 16
Bush blames India for high oil price, because it couldn't be our fault

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Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Flyblown: (adj.) Tainted or contaminated

My Composition (0:30 MP3)

The word, "contaminated", feels blatantly dangerous and intimidating, like nuclear waste or a brown swimming pool. However, "tainted" feels less apparent and more insidious, like getting food poisoning on a cruise ship from tainted meat. I tried to cover both words in today's Museday selection, which is for piano, vibraphone, trumpets, trombone, bass, steel drums, and percussion.

Beware the thong bandits
Fullerton teacher framed with shotguns and pills
Frost house vandals learn about poetic justice

tagged as museday | permalink | 0 comments

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Memory Day: Junior Year Awards Ceremony

As if sitting through an elementary school assembly in a multipurpose gym/auditorium smelling of feet while kids were awarded for perfect attendance wasn't bad enough, the assemblies only got worse as the years went on. By the time I'd gotten to T.C. Williams High School, the awards program was fifteen pages long (16 with an addendum) and had awards for every class and every subject, as well as scholarships, Book Awards, and other ridiculous categories. Having a technical school on the premises didn't help matters, as there were awards for "Auto Mechanics I" and "Air Conditioning Repair" interspersed with the smarty awards.

By this point in my academic career, I was over awards, and rarely tried to get more than the occasional band or art award. For some reason, I still attended the ceremonies anyhow, sitting through interminable recitations of "please hold your applause until the end" before standing up once to get a certificate. I reached the pinnacle of phoning it in during the year when I was chastised by a teacher for coming in shorts and a T-shirt. "You may not think these awards are a big deal, but this is the high point of some of these students' lives!"

To pass the time during the assembly, I would always litter my program with cartoon sketches. Here are a few from the 1995 Program:


Chadians get fangs into 'vampire'
Store owner gives robber $40 and some bread
Plano teen dared to eat pig testicles

tagged as memories, media | permalink | 2 comments

Thursday, June 03, 2010

Yesterday was a 13-hour work day, so I didn't have time to write today's update. However the topic would have come from the following list:

  1. List Day: 5 People I Regret Ever Meeting

  2. Stuff in My Drawers Day: 10 Years of Walmart receipts

  3. Name That Tune Contest: Third Trumpet Parts in Wind Band Music

  4. Review Day: Ketchup Comparisons

  5. Purrsday Thursday: Pictures of Booty

The world's strongest beers
Loyalty takes butler from poor Nepal village to NY
NC billboard attracts with charcoal, pepper scent

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Friday, June 03, 2011

Friday Fragments

a tungsten filament of insight

♠ Last night saw the release of DDMSence 1.9.1. This release provides a seamless interface to all of your social networking sites, allowing you to "friend" a Myspace user from Facebook or play Farmville from Linkedin. Actually, I'm kidding. This library has no mainstream crossover appeal at all, not unlike Dennis Kucinich in 2004.

♠ The next release of DDMSence will be 1.10.0, because in the technology world, periods are separators, not decimals. Perhaps I should start working some planned obsolescence into the numbering scheme with DDMSence 2011, or some immediate obsolescence with DDMSence Vista.

♠ One in five of the computers in my household still runs Windows Vista, mainly because that's what it came with and I'm too cheap to upgrade. I'm still not completely sold on Windows 7 either. It may be an improvement over Vista, but that's like saying that Honors English in public school is better than normal English in public school -- while that may be true, neither one is going to get your kid into college after he fails the personal essay because his most intensive writing activity growing up was texting.

♠ Cumulatively speaking, I think I'm well under my monthly limit for texts on the phone I got last October -- I'm allowed 250 per month, and have probably sent a total of 40. Perhaps I should donate the remainder each month to a worthy cause, or create an Internet startup that sends fortune cookie messages to your phone.

♠ I don't have any major plans this weekend, and Rebecca will be in Delaware for a bachelorette party. I'll probably preoccupy myself with the mundane, like mowing the lawn and preemptively spraying the backyard with malathion to fight the wave of mosquitoes that should be appearing any day now -- this is the one downside to living adjacent to a forest.

♠ Have a good weekend!

Photos from stolen laptop lead to arrest
ATM repairman accused of loading fake money
3-foot shrimp dominated the prehistoric seas

tagged as fragments | permalink | 1 comment

Monday, June 03, 2013

Weekend Wrap-up

Rebecca spent the entire weekend at a review course for her upcoming state PTA exams, leaving me with plenty of time to write code and exercise Booty in between rain storms. After 173.5 hours of development, I've released , which adds audit histories, the ability to submit comments by email, and various AJAX bells and whistles.

I'll get a demo site up sometime in the next couple of versions. The work is still intriguing, sometimes tedious, and always rewarding. Had I started writing open source software years ago instead of farming for my epic mount at level 59, or devising a well-lit interstate system across a Minecraft planet, I probably could have taken over the world by now.

tagged as day-to-day | permalink | 2 comments

Tuesday, June 03, 2014

Nostalgia Day: Warcraft Maps

Ten years ago, on June 1, 2004, the custom Warcraft III map, Footmen Frenzy v2.0 was released. Originally created by Fox^1, development eventually took on a very open-sourcey turn with multiple mapmakers, rapid releases, and community feedback. For a few months, I was heavily involved in development, although my more important role was to write documentation, battle reports, and keep track of all the random tweaks in order to write Patch Notes. My main technical contribution to the map was a trigger-based spell called "Call of the Gods", which never worked quite right and resulted in a neverending list of bugs to fix as the months went by.

I eventually did get better at mapmaking, and went on to create several maps that were more technically competent, if not widely played:

  • Micro Frenzy: Build a little army, and then fight your opponents in turn in an arena, to see who has better micromanagement skills.

  • Burrow Command: Based on the ancient Starcraft map, Bunker Command, conquer little bunkers all over the map to amass a bigger army.

  • Caravan Assault: Competing armies battle to drive a caravan shipment back to their base.

  • Onslaught: Channel a beam of light across the battlefield to your enemy's altar. It can only be destroyed when the beam of light is uninterrupted.

Onslaught was my magnum opus, replete with JASS-based programming for the complicated triggers, but it wasn't quite simple enough to teach public players on battle.net. Then, 14 days later, I purchased World of Warcraft and stopped making (and playing) Warcraft maps forever.

tagged as games | permalink | 2 comments

Wednesday, June 03, 2015

Memory Day: Twenty Years Ago Today

June 3, 1995 was a productive Saturday in the life of this junior. In the morning, I went down to the Alexandria DMV on Eisenhower Avenue to take the written test for my learner's permit (at the time, the age threshold was 15 and 9 months). I passed but got 4 of 35 questions wrong, and all of the questions I'd gotten wrong were about drugs and alcohol. I didn't study that section of the manual because I naively never expected to ever encounter drugs or alcohol in the world (then I went to Virginia Tech and became a music major).

After lunch, I created this poster for my upcoming end-of-the-year party, to be hung on the front door as guests arrived.

I had not actually had eleven annual parties, but I was finishing eleventh grade so that was close enough. While working on that poster, the mail arrived and I received my SAT scores:

This score was probably lower than it could have been. However, I was jaded, having taken some form of the SATs every year since the sixth grade as part of the "Talented and Gifted" program (probably called the "Wow, You Worked Really Hard At That!" program today), so I didn't put as much effort in as I should have. Also, I always liked to be the first person to finish tests, so I probably lost a cumulative 10% of credit across all tests in high school simply through careless mistakes and not reviewing the answers. However, I was excellent at analogies, as you can see from the detailed score breakdown.

BU : Analogies :: Ghengis Khan : Eurasia

In the evening, Jack W. and I went to the movie theatre in Bailey's Crossroad (where the Target is today) to see Die Hard With a Vengeance, which had been released just two weeks earlier. It was actually the first Die Hard movie I'd seen, and to this day, I've still never seen #2 or #5.

tagged as memories | permalink | 3 comments

Friday, June 03, 2016

Fri Day

I didn't have the opportunity to write today's scheduled post (Why Amazon is Better Than Google) because my Comcast Internet went out for a full five hours yesterday. It doesn't seem like five hour outages should be happening in the year 2016, but it gave me ample time to reorganize the kitchen drawers and lie on the floor with Booty.

What are your plans for the weekend? I plan to learn about Apache Spark Streaming, go on a hike, visit with the visiting Edwardses, and go to a party of Rebecca's yoga people.

tagged as day-to-day | permalink | 3 comments

Monday, June 03, 2019

List Day: 4 Major Adjustments Since Having A Kid

  1. Massive uptick in having to drive while other people are on the road: After years of traveling everywhere at 5 AM to avoid society, Maia's naps now take me into the thick of congestion. I now embrace what I once referred to as a "Tax on the Entitled Class and People Too Lazy to Wake Up Early Like the Rest of Us" when driving Maia to her grandparents' house. $20 to skip 20 minutes in a 2-mile traffic jam with a toddler in the back? Yes, please.

  2. Greatly reduced tolerance for movies and TV shows that are a "slow burn": Every minute of my time where I'm not actively parenting is precious. I'm much more likely to turn off a plot going nowhere fast, a show with 20 minutes of lingering reaction shots and montages, or a show with any subplots involving the dumb teenage children of the protagonist. Had Bloodline come out in the last two years, I would not have made it past the opening credits. Time is money, friend!

  3. Significant reduction in preventative maintenance: Before Maia was born, I had so much free time that I was always on top of things like checking tire air pressure, A/C filter replacement, and organization of clutter. Now, even penciling in a recurring task like mowing the lawn or getting a haircut seems like a huge disruption.

  4. Reduction in the retention of social knowledge: Taking care of Maia saps a huge chunk of my social energy, such that when I am at a party or conversing with real adults, I struggle to retain even half of what was discussed in my long-term memory. Usually it's all forgotten by the time we're driving home and I'm narrating all of my street turns in an impressive attempt to keep her awake in the backseat 5 minutes before bedtime.

tagged as lists, offspring | permalink | 2 comments

Wednesday, June 03, 2020

List Day: 10 Children's Books You've Never Read


An instructional text for young readers, reminding them that everyone occasionally gets constipated -- it's perfectly natural and nothing to be ashamed of. Light-hearted pictures illustrate the various ways to combat a backed up drainpipe, from bran muffins to enemas.


Gently normalizes the lifestyle of a single mother and her daughter as they flee from state to state, avoiding unsympathetic judges, and the custody rights of a deadbeat father.


A cautionary tale of a puppy's encounter with childhood obesity, from playing too many video games and watching Blue's Clues.


This picture book describes one child's farewall to our sun as it transitions to a red dwarf star and eventually goes out, abandoning the Earth to eternal darkness and chaos.


The heartwarming tale of a little puppy who dreams of someday becoming a member of the LAPD K9 Unit.


A cautionary tale of daddy's sexuality set against the backdrop of the Renaissance, when daddy is accosted by a charming dandy at the local tavern.


A clever retelling of the classic Ugly Duckling tale, in which the ugly duckling's siblings post cruel remarks on her Myspace page for their own amusement until she commits suicide.


A delightfully subversive right-wing tale of a little steam engine re-equipped with the latest in Green solar panels that fails to make it over the biggest hill in the land after the sun goes down and it starts to snow.


An early introduction to the concepts of water conservation, concluding with a whimsical comparison of toilet tank cleansing products.

This unauthorized biography traces the early years of the Grey's Anatomy star from her humble beginnings as a simple Swiss farmer's daughter.

tagged as green (recycled) content, lists | permalink | 1 comment

Friday, June 03, 2022

Maia's Art Day

Portraits of the artist as a preschooler

I particularly love the evolution from "I have exactly 20 fingers and toes" to "Drawing all the fingers and toes is boring" to "I'm polydactyl!"

tagged as offspring, media | permalink | 2 comments

 

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