Thursday, June 26, 2008

"iGoogle Gets a New Look" but no httpS

Why can't I access iGoogle and all its components via httpS? I can go to https for Gmail, Greader, and Gcal; even Remember the Milk. But iGoogle doesn't support this. Boo.

via Lifehacker by Adam Pash on 6/26/08

new-igoogle-1.pngGoogle will start rolling out the new version of iGoogle this month, with a full roll-out in July, integrating chat like Gmail, a sidebar, and several other features worth a look. [via]

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

"Cutting the W88 - The Right Target"

Commented on this over at their post. It's not about the # of contractors per se, it's about how good and ethical a job they do. It's about actual government oversight of contractor work.

And WTF to NNSA, they can't make an assessment cohesively???

via The Project On Government Oversight (POGO) Blog by Michael Smallberg on 6/25/08

The House Energy and Water Appropriations Subcommittee has taken a step toward sanity in the U.S. nuclear weapons complex. The Subcommittee is now saying that there is no more money for building plutonium pits, which are at the core of the W88 warhead that is carried aboard U.S. nuclear submarines. The Department of Energy (DOE) had planned to produce between 10 and 50 pits annually over the next four years at Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL).

Before it was made public, the Albuquerque Journal obtained a copy of the Subcommittee's report, which states that the weapon "serves obsolete Cold War concepts rather than current or future needs." In addition, DOE kept making the pits even when their viability and safety were questionable.

Early this year, POGO learned that LANL asked for 72 waivers for the pits manufacturing specifications. LANL claims everything is fine because the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) accepted all of the 72 proposed changes. Yet, sources told POGO that NNSA has no capability to independently evaluate the impact of each of the 72 waivers on the eventual reliability of the pits. For its assessment, NNSA is totally dependent on the design lab (LANL).

"Should You Get Paid Overtime for Checking Work Email at Home?"

HECK NO! You aren't obligated to do so, so don't. It's THAT simple.

blackberry.pngABC News writers recently demanded overtime pay for bringing work home with them—including attending to work-related email on their BlackBerries after hours. The spat between the Writer's Guild and ABC was settled (writers don't get paid for checking their email for a minute, but do for any major work commitments at home), but it brings up an important question: Where's the overtime line when we're all connected to the office via email-enabled cell

Workplaces to see more spats over after-hours work [Yahoo! News]

Friday, June 20, 2008

"Is Google Changing Your Brain?" Only if you're an idiot

These "the internet is bad" arguments are so palpably weak.

My retort via the comments:

"The internet isn't the problem, it's just an enabler. People are the problem.

Let's not all pretend that before the internet no one ever multi-tasked, or had a short attention span. The 'net is just a convenient place to fix the blame.

There are a number of widely used internet tools that can actually help you focus more (Remember the Milk for one). I use Google Docs to help me set my weekly priorities (ala "First Things First"). I use Google Calendar to set a weekly schedule that focuses on my priorities and keeps me on track.

Those who are mentally weak will allow the internet to throw them off. Those who are strong, use it for benefit and enhancement. Look to the weak of mind and spirit and you will see the cause..."

For those who will get sidetracked, if it weren't the internet it'd be books, or tv, or magazines. It's whatever. The tool is never the enemy, it is the user of the tool, the craftsman is always to blame.

via by Lew McCreary on 6/19/08

Nicholas Carr feels our Google-induced pain in an essay for the July issue of The Atlantic: The once-unified attention span has been fragmented, leading us to skim across the surface of information whose depths we'll never penetrate; or else to penetrate straight to some particular depth without passing through all the others—a journey without context or commitment. In the article, Carr asks "Is Google Making Us Stupid?" He doesn't quite answer the question, but it's a good one.

Google isn't really entitled to be the solitary villain in the piece, but because it functions as the Internet's index page it is surely the hub of our Great Distraction. Carr therefore strikes a chord (I was unable to read the piece in one sitting). Of his friends and acquaintances he writes in his essay, "The more they use the Web, the more they have to fight to stay focused on long pieces of writing." Of himself, he writes, "Once I was a scuba diver in the sea of words. Now I zip along the surface like a guy on a Jet Ski."

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Dear Google Reader Mobile, can we please help make you better?

My wife can attest that I spend a little too much time on Google Reader Mobile from time to time. If I have time to kill, and nothing to say to anyone around me, I'm checking that puppy out. And since I read Robert Scoble and Lifehack, I get a LOT of items everyday (though for good or bad, Robert's mostly over on FriendFeed these days. I miss his "shared with note" items in Google Reader. I liked getting what he was reading, but I liked his 12 second thoughts on items even more.").
What are my major gripes with Google Reader Mobile?
1) I can't sort the feed items. It's newest first, and that's it. Heaven forbid I wish to read the oldest item without clicking through pages of undread items. Not like loading multiple pages on a phone is slow...
2) No ability to email the articles. If I'm using my Blackberry (because remember, the iPhone is popular to talk about, but NOT the most used wireless device) clicking on "email the item" should readily allow me to email the item.
3) No "share with note", how hard could this be? Make it happen.
4) No search. Ugh, Google, that's what you do. Let me search! If we're going to use horrible busines jargon, search is your "core competency". Right?
5) Can't look at my "Starred" items. If I know the URL of my shared items feed, I can look at that (assuming I share interesting things). But what about all the gems I have starred and not shared? Can't get to them.

There are 5 concrete ways to make Google Reader Mobile better. Do it. Do it..... Do it!

Monday, June 16, 2008

Neisha Thai Restaurant

Decent thai with a cool logo.

Sent via BlackBerry by AT&T

Saturday, June 7, 2008


Went painyballin' for a friend's bachelor party and took a good shot to the facemask. (No, it didn't taste good)


JUST got my seat assignment, almost the last person to board the plane. They had 2 weeks to get me a seat before the day of the flight, then a day after I "checked in", then 2 hours after I printed my boarding pass at the airport. Now I'm in the back in a middle seat next to a complaining ******.

WTF? I wonder why people HATE airlines...

Friday, June 6, 2008

Family Crest

Our family crest

Thursday, June 5, 2008

You can't tell

But there's a bright red Robin in the middle of this picture that was greeting me in our backyard this morning.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

EFC news reporter

Here is an unidentified reporter doing her make up as her tech sets up their satcom link.

More to come at 11...

Waiting in EFC

News channel 8 reporter (TBD) will be reporting 1000 people in EFC waiting to get to where they are going.

I watched her "interview" a passenger asking "So you'd say there are what, 1000 people here at least?" And then jot down the quote.

Increasing towards mayhem in EFC

Starting to rain, this is going to end up very messy with lots of soaked wet Metro passengers.
Sent via BlackBerry by AT&T

Cluster "F" in East Falls Church

The powerful storm in the DC area is wreaking havoc on commuters. Here's just one tame picture of the mayhem.

Favorite beer company

And what might be their best beer.

Custom developed by John Gasparine.

Sent via BlackBerry by AT&T

Family fun day

2008 Sondy Bday, originally uploaded by ckstevenson.

It was may Aunt's birthday, or at least her family party, this past weekend. A number of us were able to get together and celebrate.

Some wise cracks were made as to the number of candles on the cake.

It took 10 minutes to get my cousin in the baseball hat to show me his full baseball delivery.

And I learned of a really scary way that kids are using text messages these days.

So yeah, a fun and "interesting" night.

Softball or Hurricane?

rain, originally uploaded by ckstevenson.

Based on this picture, I'd say the Hurricane wins...

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