It’s Just Art, Right?

The NY Post reports that the hideous scultpure of a naked female WTC “jumper” on the moment of impact has been removed from Rockefeller Center. There has been some animosity expressed by the average New Yorker, and who can really blame them?
I also wonder why I haven’t seen more media coverage of this monstrosity. I’ve seen it mentioned on Fox News and Curtis & Kooby were talking about it on WABC this morning, but other than that, where’s the outrage?
UPDATE: Here’s an earlier story detailing the statue itself (I’m still looking for a picture to link to…).


As alert readers over at LGF astutely pointed out, the Bowden piece mentioned below is actually a reprint of an article he wrote for The Atlantic, chopped conveniently in twain for newspaper consumption.
So there. Now there’s no reason for me to link to the Inq’s Sunday version. *grin*

Sun to Sell Linux PCs

In what has to be one of the worst-disguised, highly-telegraphed moves in recent IT industry history, Sun announced today that they will be selling Linux-based PCs.
These PCs will likely be beefier versions of their Sun Ray thin clients, although, who knows? Maybe they’ll sell a model intended to replace their low end Sun Blade SparcII workstations.
I still don’t know why Sun and Apple haven’t joined forces. “Macs on the desktop, Suns in the server room” makes so much sense, it’s almost ridiculous. Perhaps McNealy and Jobs don’t see eye-to-eye…

The Life of a Tyrant

I’ve managed to track down Mark Bowden’s piece Inside the World of a Tyrant (Part 1) that originally ran in the opinion section of this week’s Philly Inquirer. For those who don’t recognize the name “Mark Bowden”: Mr. Bowden is the author of Black Hawk Down and Killing Pablo, among other works. In fact, Black Hawk Down originally ran as a series in the Inquirer.
Bowden’s piece provides a good overview and some insight into Saddam Hussein’s background and motivations. While not bursting with information, it does talk about his humble upbringing, his false sense of “civility”, his distrust of his advisors and his political acumen.
A very interesting read. I’ll post the second part when it becomes available (probably Sunday or this coming Monday).

Willow Grove Air Show

My wife, two friends and I attended the Willow Grove (PA) Air Show on Saturday (9/14) and came away highly impressed.
Of note was the combined field assault demonstration put on by the military. It featured a Marines forward recon team inserted by Bell Huey in order to mark the target. Two overflights of F-18s and A-10 Warthogs served to soften the target enough to allow two Stallion helicopters to deploy two squads of Marines. The Marines’ advance was covered by two Apaches, a LAV (light-armored vehicle) and more air support from the F-18s and A-10s. A Stallion then dropped off a Hummer which the recon team used to exit the field. More air cover/suppressive fire and the Stallions returned to extract the Marines.
Also noteworthy was the Thunderbirds (the Air Force’s precision flying team). (On a side note: the turning radius of the F-16s seemed to be such that they turned around roughly right over my house 2 miles from the Willow Grove air base. I got a secondary show on Sunday afternoon just by standing on my front stoop. *grin*)
All of this served to drive two points home to me:

  1. I very much would not want to be on the receiving end of the US’s military fury. The speed, grace, agility and deadliness of the US’s air arsenal was plain for all to see. I think that any but the best equipped and most prepared foes should quake in their boots at the mere mention of US air power. But then again, I’m a bit of a jingoistic patriot, so what do I know?
  2. We are incredibly fortunate to have no personal knowledge of modern warfare on our home soil. We are blessed to not have to cringe with the sound of jet engines, to not look with fear and trepidation skyward at the sound of a helicopter’s rotors.

May it be ever so.

Greece to Ban Campers, Lamerz, n00bz

What the…?

Greece, in an effort to fight illegal online gambling, has banned all video games. All of them. No Playstations. No computers. No Gameboys. No bleedin’ Snake games on your Nokia. All because the state apparently has no capabilities to distinguish legit games from illegal gambling machines/websites.
How insane is this?
If you’re going to the Summer Olympics in Athens, be sure to leave your Gameboy at home.
And no dice. They’ll be confiscated at customs along with your toenail clippers and umbrellas. Mmmmkay?


I am in shock. After spending most of last week in New Hampshire, I returned to find an email in my inbox from my best friend, the upshot of which was: his life sucks. He took some extra time to graduate and was all set to (finally) get an engineering job that was ideally placed (i.e., a couple hours’ drive from his girlfriend). In interest of doing so, he took a complete physical. Turns out he has ITP, a fairly rare blood disease where his antibodies eat his own platelettes, making blood clotting impossible.
Since he couldn’t pass his physical, the engineering firm he was slated to work for said “Why don’t we hold off on your actually working here until you’re all better, mmmkay?”
So now, he’s up the proverbial creek, sans flat-bladed hydropropulsion device, because said firm wrote back and said “You know what? This is taking too long. Why don’t you reapply for the job when you’re ready, mmmmkay?”
Still haven’t gotten to the shocking part, though. I found out last night that his younger sister was killed in a car crash Saturday night on Route 206 near Princeton. The weather was so bad that they couldn’t medivac her; they had to take her by ambulance to Children’s Hospital in Philly.
I just don’t know how to take it. She was a very intelligent, very beautiful young woman taken from us far too early.
The Trenton Times blurb can be seen here.


Verizon (*shudder*) has switched its techies to Linux workstations, saving $6 million in equipment costs alone. Nice exposure for Linux, but why did it have to be Verizon?
In other news, Larry Ellison is still a jerk. A jerk with some valid points, yes, but still a jerk.


Been busy here at work. Have I mentioned that I hate Oracle and Perl? Have I mentioned that the current project I’m working on employs both of those?

It’s so hard to go back to Perl after using php for so long and Oracle is just overkill for what I need to do. *sigh* Oh well.