June 30, 2008
My Girl

Posted by Ellen at 09:04 PM | Comments (1)
Wall-E Doesn't Remember

And let that be a lesson to you. Never, no matter what you think of your super-awesome sysadmin skillz, turn off a Vista computer before it shuts itself down. Otherwise you end up having to start all over from scratch. Just because you got away with it twice during your XP days...

Well, if nothing else, that nagging suspicion that I might've had some spyware snuck onto this thing is now well and truly laid to rest.

On a lighter note, kudos to Dell for putting a recovery partition on this thing big enough for me to "lifeboat" the vacation photos over just before the TitaniC: went down. The 40 GB of porn... well...

Let the updating begin!!!

Posted by scott at 06:19 PM | Comments (2)
Red in Tooth and Claw

Personally, I've always thought it was quite possible for women to rape men. Hasn't happened to me (sound of wood knocking), but just on principles I could picture it happening even before I read this article.

The fact that more than one member of the peanut gallery has scoffed at the mere mention of the subject is why I'm linking it here. Since self-correction is something most gallery members think only happens to me, I'm not counting on much. But I can hope!

Via Instapundit.

And yeah, Jason, you're pretty much going to hell. On the bright side, we have jackets!

Posted by scott at 02:24 PM | Comments (2)
I Shall Call it, "GoogleQuake"

In a kind of reverse geocache, scientists have come up with a way to quickly locate an earthquake by tracking the locations of IP addresses on a major earthquake watch site. It even seems to provide at least some information on areas that got hit so bad they don't have electricity or internet access.

Who would've thought that would be possible back in 1996?

Posted by scott at 01:14 PM | Comments (0)
Still No Cure for... Oh, Wait!

Scientists who have developed an innovative cancer treatment have now moved to human clinical trials. By using a specific sort of white blood cell, called a granulocyte, taken from healthy young mice and transferring them to mice with cancer, researchers were apparently able to affect a 100% cure rate. Whether or not the technique will work with humans is another matter, but previous lab-based tests seem to be promising. A cure in our time? Probably not, but it definitely sounds like a new weapon is about to be brought to bear on the problem.

Posted by scott at 11:42 AM | Comments (0)
Well, at Least Alcohol Wasn't Involved

Strangely enough, it appears we have a sort of "bicycle vs. bear" trifecta now in play. The results were pretty much the same as last time, only at night, and on a mountain bike. Everyone say it with me, "wtf?"

Posted by scott at 10:27 AM | Comments (0)

Ron gets a no-prize that'll keep on truckin' for bringing us this brief bit of '70s nostalgia. I wonder where they put the 8-track?

Posted by scott at 08:10 AM | Comments (4)
June 27, 2008
Blutarskitty... Zero... Point... Zero...*



* It's a reference. Oh go look it up!

Posted by Ellen at 10:15 PM | Comments (4)
Fact Finds

It's taken a helluva long time to complete, but it seems a massive archive of WWII Nazi documents is finally being mined for information. From the article:

The gray metal shelves and cabinets contain 16 miles (25 kilometers) of transport lists, camp registries, medical records, forced labor files and death certificates of some 17.5 million people subjected to Nazi persecutions.

It'll take lifetimes to pry out everything the archive can give, but it definitely seems like a project worth doing.

Posted by scott at 03:19 PM | Comments (0)
I Wonder if It'd Make Your Pee Smell as Much?

The latest data from the Mars Phoenix lander seems to indicate life is at least possible using Martian soil. Specifically, for reasons not quite clear to me, asparagus. But not tomatoes. Scientists have a weird sense of humor, sometimes.

Posted by scott at 02:00 PM | Comments (0)
A Terrible Glass, Half Full?

While I'm nowhere near as optimistic as this guy, I do think it's time to break down and admit we may have started to (finally) make solid progress on the war on terror. He definitely makes some good points, in my opinion.

Via Instapundit.

Posted by scott at 12:55 PM | Comments (0)
No-Seeum Paint

A Greek company has come out with a paint-on product that substantially reduces the IR signature of anything underneath. If the company's claims are to be believed, they've got another product that'll do the same for radar cross-sections. I wonder if it'd be any good at defeating laser speed guns?

Posted by scott at 11:56 AM | Comments (0)
Paging Algernon, White Courtesy Phone Please

Scientists have discovered a drug which is already on the market for a completely unrelated treatment may be useful in reversing certain forms of autism. Scientists realized that since rapamycin, a medication doctors prescribe to patients who have had transplants to prevent their bodies from rejecting the new organs, works on the same gene affected by tuberous sclerosis complex (TSC), a rare genetic disorder that causes brain tumors, seizures, learning disabilities, skin lesions and kidney tumors, it might be a useful treatment for that disease. Sure enough, in mice at least, affected subjects exhibited a complete turnaround in less than three days.

A human trial is already underway in England, although no word on the results of that are in the article.

Posted by scott at 10:08 AM | Comments (0)
Now that's Something a Helmet Won't Help with

Black bear: 1, cyclist: 0. Yet another case of a cyclist getting splattered because he didn't slow the f- down going around a corner at speed.

Your brakes, let me show you them.

Your brakes.

Posted by scott at 07:53 AM | Comments (0)
June 26, 2008
Insert TLC Reference Here

I thought the pictures I glanced at today that had a waterfall pouring from the Brooklyn Bridge were photoshopped. I'm sure you will all be surprised that I was wrong. It happens so infrequently!

Posted by scott at 01:49 PM | Comments (3)
Nom Nom Nom

For the first time scientists have found conclusive evidence of galactic cannibalism. Yep, you read that right, galactic cannibalism. Take that, Galacticus!

Posted by scott at 12:50 PM | Comments (0)
Rrrmm... Okay...

Fans of "Kitty Cat Dance" may find this amusing. Sort of. Suddenly I have an urge to exercise and drink a strawberry milkshake.

Posted by scott at 11:34 AM | Comments (0)
Come on Bugs!

Bacteria-diesel seems to be on its way to becoming the darling of the science press. Now people are openly discussing introduction dates (2010 and 2011 seem to be the favorites). Here's to hoping the product lives up to the hype.

Posted by scott at 10:27 AM | Comments (0)
Mars Go Boom

Pat gets the coveted Lucifer's Hammer no-prize for bringing us new developments in early Martian history. It would seem scientists have found even more evidence that very early in its history Mars was smashed by a huge object, fundamentally changing its geography.

Posted by scott at 08:00 AM | Comments (0)
June 25, 2008
God 2.0

They subtitle says it all: Can emergence break the spell of reductionism and put spirituality back into nature? I've thought for quite some time that there are some awfully peculiar coincidences in physics and nature which could not be explained by science. It's nice to see someone much smarter than I am apparently has done a much better job of explaining them, and what just might be "behind the curtain."

Posted by scott at 02:49 PM | Comments (0)
Sea of Time

By using a technique called "time reversal", scientists have created devices that can transmit data under water many times faster than existing technologies allow. However, at 20kb per second, I don't think it's going to worry our current broad band providers very much.

Posted by scott at 12:33 PM | Comments (0)
A Barrel's Silver Lining

Globalization worked because transportation was so cheap it allowed businesses to leverage foreign labor for domestic goods. Now that transportation ain't cheap, globalization is slowly reversing. It's happening slowly and without as much dislocation as, say, protectionist policies advocated by labor unions and various watermelon environmental groups.

Posted by scott at 11:38 AM | Comments (6)
Posterize Me!

Abstracting the federal budget into a poster definitely sounds like a neat idea to me, I just wish they made their example a bit larger. Then again, considering they're out to sell the things, maybe it's for the best. A poster you can stare at for hours, that gets refreshed once a year. Not too shabby!

Posted by scott at 10:47 AM | Comments (0)
When Alligators Attack

No, really, when alligators attack:

Okeechobee - Kasey Edwards said he never paid "too much mind" to alligators swimming in canals in Okeechobee County.

But early Sunday morning, an 11˝-foot alligator had his full attention as Edwards, 18, struggled to free his left arm from the jaws of the reptile.

Those who put their money on the "alcohol involved" outside bet before the spin can now collect your winnings.

Posted by scott at 08:31 AM | Comments (0)
June 24, 2008
Birthday Hugs From Cornbread


Master CB (1.8 pound cornsnake of DOOM!),-ahem... of LOVE )and his girl he protects at night from 'monsters in the closet and under the bed'. CB, you do a great job! O loves ya!

Posted by Ellen at 08:14 PM | Comments (1)
Insert Beatles Reference Here

Happy 5th birthday to Olivia!

She's getting old enough now she'll soon be able to read these herself.

Per tradition, we've now gone from this:

To this:


Onward and upward!

Posted by scott at 06:17 PM | Comments (10)
Pressies From Grammy and Poppy

Posted by Ellen at 05:45 PM | Comments (1)
When Bloopers Attack

Remember folks, news anchors just have to be pretty. They don't have to be smart. Damned good thing too, eh?

Posted by scott at 02:23 PM | Comments (1)
Exit the M4?

It would seem the on again, off again attempts by the Army to replace its main carbine is on again. Advocates of the 7.62 round shouldn't get their hopes up... the Army long ago decided the 5.56 is the way to go, and no amount of shouting has made them budge even the slightest in, what, fifty years?

Posted by scott at 01:24 PM | Comments (0)
Picture a Scoop

Scientists have used an innovative photographic technique to reconstruct a scoop that can dig stuff up on the Moon. The thing is, I'm just about certain there are several engineering models of the Surveyor space craft hanging from the ceilings of various museums around the country, including A&S downtown. Perhaps those just don't have the scoop attached?

Posted by scott at 12:36 PM | Comments (0)
My Lawn: You Get Off it

My lawn:

The owner of a tiny island in off Scotland declared its independence from the United Kingdom on Saturday, saying he wanted the territory, population one, to be a crown dependency like the Channel Islands.

The British have a long and varied tradition of cherishing eccentricity. Looks like they've got yet another entry right here.

Posted by scott at 11:33 AM | Comments (2)
When Reality Attacks

Whodathunkit? Free-ranging "organic" pigs end up with lots more nasties inside them than farm-raised pigs given antibiotics. If a more obvious conclusion could've been drawn, I don't know what it might be. Then again, this is the environmentalist movement we're talking about here. It's much more important to stick it to the kulaks and prols every way we can than to let things like facts and reason cloud our judgment, donchaknow?

Posted by scott at 10:04 AM | Comments (5)
June 23, 2008
Fun with Species

Annie gets a no-prize Ellen can't have for bringing us this top 10 list of new species discovered this year. Fans of Terry Pratchett's The Last Continent will be little surprised to find out most of the new Australian species found are viciously venomous.

Posted by scott at 03:37 PM | Comments (0)
Not So Lost After All

While I'm not particularly surprised that "lost and completely uncontacted" tribe that made the rounds a few months ago, well, wasn't, I am annoyed at the completely uncommented paternalism which triggered the whole episode:

Indigenous tribes expert, José Carlos Meirelles, said the tribe had been known of since 1910, and had been photographed to prove that they still existed in an area endangered by logging, The Guardian reported.
"When we think we might have found an isolated tribe, a sertanista (tribe expert) like me walks in the forest for two or three years to gather evidence and we mark it in our (global positioning system)," he told Al Jazaera in his first interview since the images were released.

"We then map the territory the Indians occupy and we draw that protected territory without making contact with them. And finally we set up a small outpost where we can monitor their protection."

These are not rare jaguars or gazelles, they're people, just like you and me. They are people, moreover, who I would imagine would appreciate knowledge that would help more of their children survive their first year, if nothing else. They don't need protection, they need opportunities.

Meh. I'll bet you dollars to donuts they've been so isolated for so long not because of any government or NGO "protection", but because the place in which they live is so miserable and hard to reach nobody wants to contact them. Some Amazon tribes also have an extremely well-deserved reputation for being such miserable examples of the human race nobody else wants to contact them either, at least not for very long.

Ah well. It's not my tax dollars being spent to "protect" people who're just as smart and clever as I am. "I say, let 'em crash."

Posted by scott at 02:09 PM | Comments (0)
~ Come on in and Cover Me ~

Mark gets a no-prize that'll make his ears bleed for bringing us news of the worst, and best, cover songs of all time. For now. According to them, at any rate. I could've sworn I'd heard the top worst pick somewhere along the line. Maybe it was all just a bad dream.

Posted by scott at 12:41 PM | Comments (3)
"Interest"-ing Times

Interest on the national debt: there's a lot more to it than you'd think:

Next time someone is wondering what we bought for the interest [on the national debt], I wish they'd also wonder what we bought with the principal that interest is supporting. Although it's impossible to pinpoint, I bet we have a Nimitz carrier, a few intelligence assets, several thousand more college-educated GIs, and a few more Head Start activities in the works because of the principal we were able to borrow -- all because we have been steady and reliable in paying interest on our debt.

To paraphrase a favorite song of mine, debt isn't always evil, and it is not always wrong.

Posted by scott at 11:51 AM | Comments (2)
There's Water in Them Thar Hills

The Phoenix space probe has discovered conclusive evidence of water ice in the area of Mars in which it has landed. It would seem the probe itself has had a few glitches in its first month of operation, but things seem to be rapidly sorting themselves out, allowing for "mo' bettah" science to continue.

Posted by scott at 09:49 AM | Comments (1)
Well that Just Stinks

George Carlin died yesterday, at the age of 71. While he's best known as a comedian, around our house we'll always remember him as the voice of dozens of animated characters scattered across the various movies Olivia loved to watch over and over again.

Fly away, Stanley. Be free!

Posted by scott at 08:16 AM | Comments (0)
June 22, 2008
Orlando Science Museum



There was a Norman Rockwell exhibit up at the Orlando Science Museum on Friday. LOTS of hands on stuff! Highly recommended!

Posted by Ellen at 08:47 PM | Comments (0)
The Chlorine Mermaid 5.0


Posted by Ellen at 07:47 PM | Comments (0)

I'm not quite old enough to remember it, but I've read enough different histories of the times to agree with this without question:

I can remember how opponents of the Vietnam War simply tuned out news of American success when at Richard Nixon's orders Gen. Creighton Abrams pursued a new strategy. Opponents of the Iraq war, including Obama, seem to have been doing the same.

Sounds a lot, a lot like the conversations I've had with certain members of the peanut gallery. Even ones who agree that Abrams got the short end of the stick.

Historical perspective is, after all, something that happens to other people when The Gallery is proven wrong.

Posted by scott at 12:22 PM | Comments (2)
The Most Important Meal of the Day

It's not (necessarily) the cereals in this retrospective of kid's cereals that's fun for me. It's the toys. I swear, I remember just about every single one. Even (especially!) the Nautilus. You had to put weird pills in it to make it work!

Posted by scott at 12:10 PM | Comments (2)
June 21, 2008
Goodbye Florida

We are home! After being at the airport since 11:15 AM for a 1:55 PM flight, getting delayed a few hours due to a signature Florida thunderstorm, we are finally in our own house!

We hope to have some more photos and blooper pixes up this week!

Posted by Ellen at 09:54 PM | Comments (1)
June 20, 2008
Chew on This!!!

155mm Howitzers. Deadly, and cool. Seems to me the trick is not pulling the trigger, the trick is keeping the camera shake down. But WTF do I know?

Posted by scott at 06:11 PM | Comments (0)
Jail Escape Planned Tomorrow

Posted by Ellen at 05:09 PM | Comments (1)
June 19, 2008
Beauty and the Beast

If that doesn't provide a sense of scale, I'm not sure what will.

Olivia was intimidated, even a little frightened, the moment she saw the Saturn V. Once I pointed out the monstrosity in front of her was just like the toy she'd bought at the gift shop, she burst out, "daddy... this thing is so awsome!!!"

Posted by scott at 09:00 PM | Comments (1)
Lest You Think it was All Peaches and Cream


Olivia decided she wanted to wear her new pink NASA cap and her tiara. Problem? She made this decision when her tiara was in her bus seat, while she was on the steps of the bus entrance, with thirty people behind us. This was the result of the no she got. Note the position of the cap. I'm surprised Ellen didn't make her a permanent resident.

Posted by scott at 08:52 PM | Comments (1)
Very well. Since you're all out of perspective and no one else seems to have it in this BLOODY TOWN, I'll make you a deal. You provide the food, I'll provide the perspective...




Posted by scott at 08:49 PM | Comments (3)
Did We Mention KSC is in the Middle of the Country's Biggest Game Reserve?





The "turtles on a hot... something... was completely unplanned, obviously caught from the bus. Best of all was the hyper-annoying power-mom sitting in front of us, talking to her six year old snowflake (and I am not making this up): "Oh Bobby, look, it's an aligator!"

Bobby: "No mommy! It's turtles. It's two turtles! What are they doing?!?"

HAPM: "Oh. Oh? Oh!!!"

I'm not sure, but I think she covered his eyes.

Posted by scott at 08:48 PM | Comments (0)
Oh. My. God.


Well, now we know where Ron's actual family ended up. Goddamned NASA parking lot, that's where!

Posted by scott at 08:34 PM | Comments (1)
Hula Hoop Part Deux!
Posted by Ellen at 07:42 AM | Comments (0)
Peter Pan

Posted by Ellen at 07:38 AM | Comments (0)
Three Princesses

Posted by Ellen at 07:35 AM | Comments (0)
Snow White

Posted by Ellen at 07:29 AM | Comments (0)
Tomorrow Land

Posted by Ellen at 07:26 AM | Comments (0)
AMCGLTD On Vacation!

As you can see we are on vacation. Hey everyone deserves on at least ONCE per year, and the site is being updated with photos for you all on just how dorky we really are!

We hope to resume normal activity this weekend once we return home Saturday evening.

Posted by Ellen at 07:21 AM | Comments (0)
Hula Hoop


The only other person I know that can hula hoop really well is NY Grammy!

Posted by Ellen at 07:19 AM | Comments (2)
June 18, 2008
Olivia And The Cinderella Master Card Moment


$160.00 for park tickets.

$50.00 in food, drink and icecream.

$20.00 in souveniers.

9 hours of standing in line for rides and autographs.

$110 in a dress, shoes and tiara.

Actual amount spent: Priceless.


Posted by Ellen at 10:57 PM | Comments (6)
Olivia's Most Favorite Princess

Posted by Ellen at 10:38 PM | Comments (0)
My Friends Tigger And Darby


Olivia LOOOOVEES Darby from the new Pooh Bear show.

Posted by Ellen at 10:30 PM | Comments (0)
Olivia and Pooh Bear


Posted by Ellen at 10:20 PM | Comments (0)
The Tea Cup Ride


Posted by Ellen at 10:12 PM | Comments (0)
Olivia and Buzz Lightyear


We are really surprised that she was really into meeting the characters.

Posted by Ellen at 10:01 PM | Comments (0)
The Astro Orbitor



I'm a dork trying to have fun with my girl, what do you expect?

Posted by Ellen at 09:54 PM | Comments (0)
Olivia and Stitch

Posted by Ellen at 09:31 PM | Comments (0)
The Magic Kingdom Pix

Posted by Ellen at 09:28 PM | Comments (0)
June 17, 2008
Pets A'Hoy!


As Scott would say:


~Really cute pet show at Sea World.

Posted by Ellen at 09:41 PM | Comments (0)
Tunnel O' Fish


One of the highlights at The Shark Cove.

Posted by Ellen at 09:32 PM | Comments (0)


O and I played in the sprinklers at Sea World for a bit just to cool off!

Posted by Ellen at 08:59 PM | Comments (0)
Shamu Or Bust!


The Shamu show was a bust this year. We waited an entire hour in the stadium for the show to start, and one of the whales decides the show needs to be canceled. So what happens? The show got canceled since they could not get a certain whale in a pen where she needed to go.

They may act like cats, but when they weigh several thousand pounds, well, you just let the whale do what it wants.

Posted by Ellen at 08:51 PM | Comments (0)
It's HOT Out!


I will say this... WEAR A HAT IN FLORIDA!

Posted by Ellen at 08:42 PM | Comments (0)
Scott And Olivia



Posted by Ellen at 08:08 PM | Comments (0)
The Blue Hat

Posted by Ellen at 06:54 PM | Comments (0)
Family Portrait 2008 Sea World


Well what do you expect from us? A real photo? :)

Posted by Ellen at 06:51 PM | Comments (1)
You'd Think Someone Would, You Know, Notice That Was Missing

Sometimes the headlines, they just write themselves: fifth foot found on British Columbia's south coast. Bonus: police have no clues as to just to who the feet belong. WeIrD!

Posted by scott at 08:02 AM | Comments (0)
June 16, 2008
Get Off My Lawn!

Posted by Ellen at 09:29 PM | Comments (0)
Fell Off The Ugly Tree...

Posted by Ellen at 09:23 PM | Comments (0)
Some Sort Of Egret

Posted by Ellen at 09:18 PM | Comments (1)
Egrets! Lots Of Them!

Posted by Ellen at 09:04 PM | Comments (2)


It's FAKE people!

Posted by Ellen at 08:55 PM | Comments (0)
What Do You Call A Bunch Of Alligators On A Dock?

Posted by Ellen at 08:46 PM | Comments (0)
Baby Pool


Posted by Ellen at 08:42 PM | Comments (1)
Gator Land!


Posted by Ellen at 08:33 PM | Comments (0)
Window Seat!


On the way to Orlando!

Posted by Ellen at 08:26 PM | Comments (0)
Burnable Bug Poop

It would seem the race for biologically-generated oil has another contestant. This is, what, the third company we've linked that's doing this? Suddenly this is changing from a pipe dream to a "matter of time" sort of thing. If it puts Hajji and his Merry Band of Detonating Dervishes that much closer to a bread line, I'm all for it!

Posted by scott at 07:12 AM | Comments (1)
Dude. Wait, What? XI

So, really, what is it with these urban tigers? No, really, urban tigers. There's video! I swear!

Ellen would've tried to "step up" the hawk (command it to perch on her hand). Knowing her, it'd probably be in a cage in the corner within the hour, happily "nom'ing" one of the snakes' rats.

Posted by scott at 06:51 AM | Comments (0)
Fun with Transports

The C-17 is one versatile aircraft. I can remember, before it became operational, the usual anti-military suspects making all sorts of noise about how it would be over-priced and under-whelming. Yeah, they're not talking too much about that anymore.

Posted by scott at 06:48 AM | Comments (0)
June 15, 2008



Posted by Ellen at 06:47 PM | Comments (1)
Olivia All Cozy


We got a nice COZY and SOFT bed tonight at our hotel before flying out to meet Scott.

Posted by Ellen at 03:48 PM | Comments (1)
List<Money> fml = SoonParted(from f in listOfFools where f.moneys.count > 0 select f);

Coming to a hi-fi wanker store near you: $500 "audiophile" ethernet cable. Directional, even! Ok, the CAT-5 equivalent of lamp power cord is a bit more expensive than, well, lamp power cord, but it'll transmit your data just as well as the cord transmits electricity to your speakers, and it'll all sound just as good as the idjit who spends $5k on his interconnects.

Oh, and I couldn't quite think of how to express the "fool and his money" adage in a single line using a lambda. After 12 years using the real thing, I'm just too comfy with pseudo-SQL. I'll leave alternatives as thought exercises for the peanut gallery.

Posted by scott at 07:28 AM | Comments (13)
A Promotion, for the Rest of Us

Three words: Farming with Dynamite. Does the real chance of dying from some weird disease that today would only require a shot balance out with having high explosives available for purchase at the corner hardware store? I'm just not sure...

Posted by scott at 06:49 AM | Comments (1)
June 14, 2008

Ron gets a beautiful yet obscure no-prize for bringing us news that what is widely considered one of the most beautiful sports cars from the 1950s is available again in sophisticated kit form.

Which, of course, you've never heard of. Because you're a philistine with totally screwed up priorities.

Posted by scott at 07:51 PM | Comments (0)
I Can Has Carousel?

Now why didn't I think of this? "Renewing" your cat wouldn't work for us... I'm pretty sure the only reason Swoozie is still around is because our bunch is too fat, lazy, and old to care.

Posted by scott at 07:02 AM | Comments (0)
Ok That's Just Tacky

It was bound to happen eventually. Someone's come up with a "sock Obama". It's got that great racist fizz!

Posted by scott at 06:56 AM | Comments (0)
June 13, 2008
Mah Tinz Cup...I dropz it.

Posted by Ellen at 08:47 PM | Comments (0)
Dinner Is Served!


Caught on cam!

Posted by Ellen at 08:25 PM | Comments (0)
I Shall Call it, "Bananazone"

What a central Florida Mom & Pop calls a "calzone." They even gave me salsa for a dipping sauce! Still plenty tasty, much better than Pizza Slut. But darned weird looking.

Look, ma! My laptop has a camera innit!

Posted by scott at 07:07 PM | Comments (0)
Sipin' a Sangria

Posted by Ellen at 03:36 PM | Comments (0)
Tiki Bar Hotel


There she is!

Posted by Ellen at 03:29 PM | Comments (2)
The Tiki Bar


We dropped Swoozie off to DJ Feathers today for her vacation stay at the Tiki Bar. If you look closely, she is in the middle cage on the left side of the bar closest to the doorway in the back.

Posted by Ellen at 03:22 PM | Comments (0)
Armored Up

An Israeli company has created a full-featured electronic defense systems for UAVs that weights only 36 kilos. While nearly 80 pounds is nothing a person might want to carry, the average system providing this capability weighs nearly five times as much.

Posted by scott at 07:10 AM | Comments (0)

Like a child who refuses to clean up her room until her trip to the movies is threatened, it would seem China really can control counterfeiters, if they're given a reason. If I were Microsoft or Sony, I wouldn't hold my breath waiting for this newfound efficiency to "bleed over" into any of my piracy cases. They do have their priorities, donchanknow?

Posted by scott at 06:58 AM | Comments (0)
When the Judiciary Attacks

Leave it to California to take a small mess, grow it into a medium mess, and then make it a big one. I'm ambivalent about gay marriage, but I am certain on one thing: this is a matter for legislative, not judicial, action. Put it another way: it's not like you need to give the lunatics on my fringe another set of targets to bomb, eh?

Posted by scott at 06:43 AM | Comments (0)
As God is My Witness...

Turkey: 1, School bus: 0. Day 2 of "news so slow it makes me worry."

Posted by scott at 06:39 AM | Comments (0)
June 12, 2008


Normally I would not post a dorky pix of myself unless requested. Well a certain AMCGLTD member is in FL and made a request.

Posted by Ellen at 07:58 PM | Comments (2)
If It Could Cook, I'd Marry It

Damion gets a no-prize he can captain a starship with for bringing us the absolutely ultimate in gaming workstation setups. I particularly like the clamshell adjustment. Hey, you think if I stuck a cat sticker somewhere on it???

Posted by scott at 06:51 PM | Comments (3)

Ron gets the coveted Mountain Goat No-Prize for bringing us news of the ELSORV, the army's for real off road vehicle. Considering the Humvee's reputation for best-of-class off roading, I can only think this thing must be able to climb trees or something. Just how nasty are those freaking Afghan mountains?!?

Posted by scott at 06:49 PM | Comments (2)
Now You Know...

whats on the other end of a 900 number.

Posted by Ellen at 02:46 PM | Comments (0)
I Can Has A Burlesque Dance Too?

Watch the cat!

Posted by Ellen at 12:29 PM | Comments (1)

The Skeptical Optimist:

Why aren't we hearing more from the candidates about how their proposed policies would help to grow the economy, and therefore the average worker's take-home pay -- as well as the government's tax receipts? Why doesn't Obama take the muzzle off Austin Goolsby? Why doesn't McCain fire the Concord Coalition from his team, and get them out of Jack Kemp's way?

Bonus: a brain teaser that even the luddites on the left side of the peanut gallery may finally get. Then again, I won't hold my breath waiting on them.

Posted by scott at 07:29 AM | Comments (1)
First Flight

The F-35B has finally made its first flight. The video seems to be identical to the one we linked a few weeks back. However, it seems it will be some time before the -B does anything the -A hasn't already done.

Posted by scott at 07:24 AM | Comments (0)
I Guess that's a Good Thing

Seems giraffe meat is kosher. Who knew?

Ok, I'm officially nervous now. When a news day gets this slow, it usually means something awful's in the offing. I'd say, "be interesting!", but that'd probably just set it off.

Posted by scott at 07:18 AM | Comments (0)
Down They Go

Ever wonder what an SRB separation looked like? From the shuttle's booster's perspective? Wonder no more. Don't know why, but I was surprised to see the sky is black when they pop free. From the ground, it all still looks blue. Must be because the blue is between me and them, eh?

Posted by scott at 07:12 AM | Comments (0)
June 11, 2008
Take A Pix...No Matter What She Is Doing...


For a certain Daddy out there that has to sit through 'live' T.V.

Posted by Ellen at 08:10 PM | Comments (1)
Mouse Ear Base Here, the Sysadmin has Landed

This year, convention's in Orlando. Unlike last year, Ellen & Co. will fly out Sunday, thereby avoiding much drive-by kissing & staring at the walls. I, on the other hand, will have the joys of 12 hour days spent helping people hook LCDs to laptops. Whee!

Meh. Could be worse. This year I have my gaming laptop! Fragfest!!!

Oh, and if anyone has dining recommendations, leave 'em in the comments. Even if they're downtown or something, that's OK, because we'll have a car after Sunday.

Posted by scott at 07:18 PM | Comments (1)
Well Duh!!!

So just what would happen if each side of Congress had it all its own way trying to lower the cost of oil? About what you'd expect. Of course, Republicans would figure out how to piss away our money in a different way. If it weren't the world's largest demonstration of a Chinese fire drill, it wouldn't be Congress!

Posted by scott at 08:58 AM | Comments (0)
A Flex Car, for the Rest of Us

Leave it to BMW to come up with a car who's body hearkens back to the days of SPADS, Camels, and Triplanes. Will we ever see anything even remotely like this on a production car? Oh hell who knows? I just like the whole concept of a morphing car!

Posted by scott at 08:51 AM | Comments (0)
Just What I Always Wanted

While a pro-Israel statement from a neo-Nazi organization may at first seem contradictory, I'm not so sure it is. After all, they're supporting Jews in Israel. This would be quite similar in word and spirit to the KKK announcing it's support for black folks in, say, Liberia. "Not in my back yard, for racists."

Posted by scott at 08:24 AM | Comments (2)
June 10, 2008
Olivia @ The Spa


Ok, ok... so it is the HOME SPA! We had fun with the mud mask anyway.

Posted by Ellen at 09:53 PM | Comments (1)
The Notorious Tray Dance


This is my new dance tray, much lighter and dirtier than than the last one! That gives it a double thumbs up!

Posted by Ellen at 05:35 PM | Comments (1)
I Shall Call it, "Pre-Bang"

Scientists are claiming to have discovered evidence of a time before the "Big Bang." Folks have been postulating that universes could be formed in "bubbles" of space time for... oh, gosh, I don't know when the first time it was I read about that. Say, thirty years at least. Nobody, until now it would seem, could come up with any way of testing the idea. While it does seem to neatly account for some previously observed quirks in the cosmic background radiation, it remains to be seen if the theory makes testable predictions.

Posted by scott at 04:12 PM | Comments (0)
If That Doesn't Define "Karma's a Bitch"

Sometimes when you're stuck on jury duty you end up sitting for an interesting murder case. Most of the time, you either sit until they turn you loose or you help adjudicate two boring people with a petty problem. Then, just every once in awhile, you hit the poo lottery. And I mean poo lottery in almost it's literal form.

Inveterate peanut gallery member Ron is justly famous for his bathroom humor. However, something tells me even he'd have his limit, and some girl crying covered in the stuff is probably six or seven notches beyond it.

Me? Hey, if everyone's happy and I'm not forced to watch it, you do what you want. But as far as I'm concerned, when one of the participants is filmed being upset? Yeah, that's not art. Not by a long shot.

Posted by scott at 04:00 PM | Comments (1)
Well Why Not

Problem: Gummint doesn't pay attention to yer self-righteous pedaling ass.

Solution: Interest group, baby. Interest group.

Well hell, if a bunch of cranky old white people can do it, why can't cyclists?

Posted by scott at 03:55 PM | Comments (0)
WTF Mate?

Well, that's what you get when your internet service goes legs-up, causing the "whattabahgain" wireless router to do its own dead bug imitation in sympathy. Yeah, and there was much swearing. We're back now, so the fragfest should resume momentarily.

Posted by scott at 03:28 PM | Comments (0)
June 09, 2008
Hip Twist With A Flourish

Posted by Ellen at 09:23 PM | Comments (0)
And the Space Probe Goes, *Choke* *Wheeze* *Gak*

Phoenix has already made an inadvertent discovery about polar Martian soil, it would seem it's a lot clumpier than originally thought. Having the very first soil sample clog the filter is apparently not as bad as it would at first seem. Considering how far away the nearest repair man is, it's a good thing!

Posted by scott at 03:36 PM | Comments (0)
Bomber Go Boom

Ares has the latest on the B-2 crash investigation, with video of said crash! According to this AvWeek summary, the cause was moisture in some of the wing sensors of the plane. Crews long ago learned a quick and simple fix, but nobody bothered to write it down. Considering the consequence was the loss of a very expensive bit of weaponry, something tells me there's a whole chain of noncom maintenance people who are in one helluva lot of trouble.

Posted by scott at 01:45 PM | Comments (0)

Mark gets a no-prize which he'd do just as well tossing for bringing us this article on seven things most people think are recyclable, but really aren't. Ellen is absolutely obsessive about putting just about everything in the recycle bin. Now, maybe not so much.

Posted by scott at 12:41 PM | Comments (1)
Feets Don't Fail Me Now

British engineers are considering deploying "micro generators" in tube stations. The result? Power big enough to light 6500 light bulbs. Something tells me, however, that the tech is a lot more expensive than they're letting on. What good does powering 6500 light bulbs do if it required 30 years to pay off the investment?

Posted by scott at 11:40 AM | Comments (0)
It's not Like There's Anything Else to Do

Annie gets a well-protected no-prize for bringing us just what, exactly, the very last shipment of goods this season to our antarctic research base contained. Jiggidy!

Posted by scott at 10:38 AM | Comments (0)
Not So Small Any More

Self-professed atheist Terry Pratchett seems to have walked right out the other side and found something there. We all come to faith in our own way and our own time. While not as spectacular as meeting the savior on an old country road, finding it while walking down the stairs will definitely do.

Posted by scott at 08:42 AM | Comments (1)
Rhythm & Cues 2008 Celebrate Fairfax

Posted by Ellen at 04:44 AM | Comments (0)
June 08, 2008


This is what happens when you have a poor stage, 102 degree heat and bare feet!

This occurred in the first 10 minutes of dancing. I totally sliced a part of my foot off.

Posted by Ellen at 10:27 PM | Comments (0)
Dynamic Duo!

Posted by Ellen at 10:16 PM | Comments (0)
Me and My Baby Doll! 2008

Posted by Ellen at 09:56 PM | Comments (0)
Re Shamka

Posted by Ellen at 09:47 PM | Comments (0)
102 Degree Spin

Posted by Ellen at 09:30 PM | Comments (0)
Holy Crap Is It HOT!!


We danced at a major festival in Virginia today. It hit 100 degrees today and we were NOT happy!

Here is the moment of us just before heading outside.

Posted by Ellen at 08:46 PM | Comments (0)
June 07, 2008
Mark Your Calendars

For, on this day, the seventh day of June, 2008, Olivia has proved her fundamental usefulness to daddy.

She got me a beer. Out of the fridge! Threw away the bottle cap too! I knew this kid would be useful some day.

Oh, don't worry, I'll cherish it while I can. I'm only, what, eight years away from her telling me to f- off three times in two sentences? Heck, it's what her mom does just about every day lately. She'll have learned from the best!

Posted by scott at 06:20 PM | Comments (1)
June 06, 2008
Oh Noes!!!

I think this one pretty much defines "so scared you scream like a girl." Since she is, and does, and is, well, there ya go. Me, I'd be hooting and hollering like a goddamned chimpanzee, but I'm special that way.

Posted by scott at 02:26 PM | Comments (2)
TTFN, Motorized Edition

India has premiered what it bills as the cheapest car in the world. No, it'll never play well in Peoria, but it should do the trick in the choked streets of Bombay. And get a load of the build quality when they show the inside door handle. Gaps are not your friend!

Posted by scott at 01:36 PM | Comments (0)
Titles Titles Everywhere


The core belief of Masonomists is in spontaneous order. We embrace change that emerges from an evolutionary, trial-and-error process. We trust the process of entrepreneurial creative destruction, market solutions to market failure, and technological progress. What we distrust is central planning by experts. And I am sure that Pete Boettke would want to remind me of our intellectual debts to Austrian economists.

Posted by scott at 12:40 PM | Comments (13)
~ Keep Them Martians Rovin / NASA ~

Mark gets a no-prize that'll descend on him using a clever bungee-rocket thingamajig for bringing us this nifty summary of what's up next in Mars exploration. Mostly, it's about the one-ton rover (!) scheduled to land there in 2010. Hopefully it won't run over the little ones which've been puttering around for the past few years, eh?

Posted by scott at 11:45 AM | Comments (0)

Anti-submarine aircraft get away with being fat, slow, and clumsy because their prey can't shoot back. Leave it to the Germans to come up with what would appear to be the first workable solution to that problem. Having a missile pop out of the water and head straight for you while you're in a hover 50 feet off the water holding up 1000 feet of cable and a dipped sonar would seem a pretty good way to increase the ol' pucker factor, donchaknow?

Posted by scott at 10:00 AM | Comments (2)
Dude. Wait, What? XI

Seems they're putting women's parts on just about everything these days. Puts a whole new spin on all those "do you wanna ride?" pick-up lines.

Posted by scott at 08:38 AM | Comments (1)
June 05, 2008
But What About "Supercalifragalisticexpialadocious?"

While I knew the correct definition for most of these "9 words that don't mean what you think they mean", there were still a few surprises. I have, fortunately, grown out of the habit of correcting people about them. Having a wife who can tell her husband to f- off three different ways in two sentences will teach one to maintain one's own council about such things, donchaknow?

Posted by scott at 03:44 PM | Comments (1)
More Alfa Updates

Looks like Alfa's Mini-killer, the MiTo (mee-too), will be heading our way for 2010. The rumored price target seems to be in the mid-20s, which, if true, makes it a darned tempting idea for me. The Cruiser's getting a little long in the tooth as a daily commuter, and since Ellen's been looking at Minis for awhile, well, maybe this will be a much nicer storm than we had yesterday, sort of thing. :)

Posted by scott at 02:55 PM | Comments (1)
There's Oil in Them Thar Hills

If this seemingly even-handed look at the Bakken oil formation in Montana is on the right track, it would seem we're a few generations of drilling technology away from a very significant oil deposit right in our own back yard. Of course, there will be a ton of "ifs" involved, not the least of which is an environmental movement which will vehemently appose any attempt to expand supply. Will the state of Montana use it's famous "going-to-do-it-my-way-f-you-very-much" attitude to stymie the watermelons' ongoing efforts to strangle the kulaks? We'll see.

Via Instapundit.

Posted by scott at 12:39 PM | Comments (2)
A Different Sort of Birthday

This month marks the Intel x86 architecture's 30th birthday. What started out in 1978 with the 8086 has, with time, money, and innovation, ended up the de-facto standard for desktop computing. Considering the radically different environment at the time, it's remarkable the instruction set has survived. The article goes into at least some of the reasons why.

Posted by scott at 11:40 AM | Comments (0)
And so it Begins...

After years of big subsidies, India is being forced to raise fuel prices. This is one of the 800 pound gorillas which is actually causing the spectacular and sustained rise in gas prices. The other is China. Both heavily subsidize fuel prices, helping their countries sustain spectacular growth rates, but at the same time insulating their populations from supply signals prices provide. They do not conserve, they do not become more efficient, because they have no incentive to do so. And, as long as their respective governments continue to insulate them, they never will.

The story was, of course, buried deep inside the Post. I wouldn't be surprised to find out it wasn't reported at all in other places. It doesn't fit with the "it's the Evil Oil Companies / Vast Right Wing Conspiracy / Wasteful Lazy SUV-driving Americans that cause our suffering!!!" theme. It's not us, it's them, and until economic pressures squeeze their government subsidies on fuel out, things won't change.

Of course, Indian people aren't really that much different than American people or European people or any other people, so instead of bucking up, tightening their belts, and using less fuel, they're raising hell, blocking traffic, and jangling the cage of every politician and reporter they can get their hands on. It'll be even worse in China, because that nation does not have the mechanisms in place for peaceful regime change or even (relatively) non-destructive civil disobedience.

In other words, it's not over yet.

Posted by scott at 10:53 AM | Comments (3)
That's One Way to do it

Problem: In public-transit-friendly Germany, seniors affected with Alzheimer's can end up half way across the country before anyone knows they're gone.

Solution: Decoys.

This probably wouldn't work well in the US, because our public transit systems aren't as strong or extensive. But it is a thought.

Posted by scott at 08:51 AM | Comments (2)
June 04, 2008
Crash Bang Boom!

Thunderstorm cells crashing through the neighborhood does not a happy sysadmin make! Years ago, having the power blink a few times was equivalent to taking a sledgehammer to the network and whacking it a few times. Amusing things would come tumbling out the other side. Nowadays, things are much more robust, but old reflexes die hard. Now I gotta ride metro home. Whee!

Posted by scott at 03:42 PM | Comments (0)
Ok that's Definitely Going to Chafe

What is it with these chicks and their land marks:

Erika La Tour Eiffel, 37, a former soldier who lives in San Francisco, has been in love with objects before ... But it is the Eiffel Tower she has pledged to love, honour and obey in an intimate ceremony attended by a handful of friends.

Methinks there's a reporter or two who have too much time on their hands.

Posted by scott at 12:42 PM | Comments (2)

Scientists have developed a "tongue display" to help people with balance problems stay up and those bound to wheel chairs avoid pressure sores. The idea is to use small electrical pulses on the tongue to substitute for lost sensations in the affected areas. The device would appear to be very small, easy to learn, and (one would hope) affordable. What will they think of next?

Posted by scott at 11:38 AM | Comments (0)


Scott created a monster. He found her in the pantry ONCE. Now every time he is in the kitchen, she has to fly over and bat her birdy eyes at him to open the pantry door.

This is what happens when you try to remove her from it.

Posted by Ellen at 10:01 AM | Comments (1)
Conducting Supers

Remember that new superconducting material we linked up awhile ago? It's still providing surprises:

[Frank Hunte, a postdoctoral associate at the National High Magnetic Field Laboratory's Applied Superconductivity Center] and his colleagues thought the world-record [45-tesla Hybrid] magnet would be more than sufficient to test the field tolerance limits of the new material. They thought wrong: The iron oxyarsenide kept superconducting all the way up to 45 tesla, far past the point at which other superconductors become normal conductors.

Magnetic resistance is one of the three elusive requirements for making large-scale use of superconductors practical. Will this new material provide the other two as well?

Posted by scott at 07:58 AM | Comments (1)
June 03, 2008
Searching for Gray Ladies

The Navy has finally admitted its role in the discovery of HMS Titanic in 1985. It seems Ballard's original mission was to make detailed surveys of the lost submarines Thresher and Scorpion. Ballard finished ahead of time, and, since Titanic was thought to be between the two wrecks, he sort of took the long way home.

I'm not completely sure this is all of "the rest of the story," as I recall reading vague references to Ballard's mission being used to "send a message" to the Soviets about certain capabilities the Navy had developed. Nobody that I know of has been specific as to what these were.

Another "Western Union by Other Means" test that I've heard of is STS-2, space shuttle Columbia's second flight. According to things I've read, the widely-publicized radar test which revealed the presence of ancient riverbeds crisscrossing the Sahara was actually meant to demonstrate the US's ability to image hidden Soviet bunkers and missile silos. At least, that's what I've heard at any rate. YMMV!

Posted by scott at 02:53 PM | Comments (0)
Toothy Hearts

A company has announced the development of a heart stent coated with a substance found in tooth enamel. The hope is the new device will offer superior protection and fewer side effects when compared to metal-only stents. If it keeps the ticker tickin', I guess it's allright with me.

Posted by scott at 01:32 PM | Comments (0)
That Can't be Good

The latest shuttle launch appears to have caused "extensive" damage to Pad 39A. Complete with bits of said pad splashing into the lagoons surrounding the complex, no less. Apparently NASA officials are confident they'll be able to repair the damage in time for the next launch, currently scheduled for October. However, it seems nobody has a clear answer as to why, after some 80+ launches, one of the pads would fail in this fashion.

Update: More detailed pictures can be found here... It would seem the bricks departed with enough force to tear apart a stout-looking chain link fence.

Posted by scott at 12:23 PM | Comments (2)
I'm Actually Surprised it Took this Long

First it was scancats, then lolcats, now I guess we'll have to call them "sinkcats". If they weren't so damned goofy pretending to be elegant, I'm not sure this stuff would be near as much fun.

And yes, I know I need to get out more. No need to whack me toward the door with a broom, thank you.

Posted by scott at 11:32 AM | Comments (0)
Parrot of DOOM!!!

Leave it to a small English town to generate a story about a parrot "terrorizing" a neighborhood. Praising quirkiness for its own sake is a famous English past time, but there have to be limits somewhere. Do you know how much one of those things costs?!?

Posted by scott at 10:38 AM | Comments (0)

Drunk driver: 1 & 10, cyclists: 0. I wonder if they'd even closed the highway for the race?

Update: This video seems to indicate it was a decent-sized event. It would appear the well-earned reputation of Mexican police has withstood yet another test of incompetence.

Posted by scott at 08:07 AM | Comments (0)
June 02, 2008
~ [It's Martian] Ice Ice Baby ~

Phoenix may have already discovered ice. Pointing retrorockets at dusty tundra and punching go will tend to do that, I would think.

Posted by scott at 03:10 PM | Comments (1)
~ Daylight Come and Me Got No Home ~

Today's "commercial crop threatened by some wicked disease" is brought to you by Dole. The fruit company, not the ex-senator, that is.

Posted by scott at 02:14 PM | Comments (0)
Getting a "Pisa" Stability

Mark gets a no-prize Renaissance Italian scientists will want to use to drop various objects from for bringing us news that the leaning tower of Pisa has been stabilized. For now, at any rate, and for the next 300 years, according to the engineers in charge.

Which is all well and good, but to me the lesser-known leaning towers of Bologna are much more interesting. Statics: there's a reason why it's a required course for engineers, ya know?

Posted by scott at 12:55 PM | Comments (0)
Taking that "Every Man's Home" Thing to its Logical Conclusion

What with the Northeast's reputation for meddlesome property activism, I'm rather surprised this guy's neighbors didn't object more strenuously to his building a castle on his property. Here in good ol' Northern VA, our anti-development professionals would by now have tied him down with six or seven lawsuits, complete with dramatic "granny showing up with a noose around her neck and her mouth taped shut" appearances at zoning board meetings.

Well, actually, probably not. Like most rich American communities, it's not ostentatious construction by a like-minded (and usually, but not always) like-raced fellow gentry owner that is treated so dramatically here in NVA. Rather, it's the housing for all the brown people who service said demesnes which undergo draconian scrutiny. We Must Not Have the Wrong People Moving Next Door to Our Mansion, that sort of thing.

Posted by scott at 11:54 AM | Comments (0)
~ Old Love / Leave Me Alone ~

It would appear having an older dad is just about as bad as having an older mom. It seems Olivia just skated in under the deadline, as it were.

Posted by scott at 09:32 AM | Comments (0)
June 01, 2008
3 Little Kittens...


Look, WE will pay the toll if you just take them off our hands!

Posted by Ellen at 08:48 PM | Comments (0)


OM eating his tortoise biscuits. He loooooves his biscuits.

Posted by Ellen at 08:06 PM | Comments (0)
Eighth Sign of the Apocalypse?

If The Washington Post is running unabashedly positive reports on Iraq, something good must be going on over there, eh? Lately I've noted a certain amount of bitter admiration of the Bush administration from several of his other implacable critics. However, the left side of our own peanut gallery continues to collectively roll its eyes and froth on cue whenever our not-quite-departed president is mentioned, so at least something is still right in this world.

Were it otherwise I'd start rushing outside to see if angels were arching across the sky.

Via Instapundit.

Posted by scott at 10:50 AM | Comments (7)
And the Winner Is...

The 2008 Darwin Awards are out. When the going gets tough, the stupid get dead.

Posted by scott at 10:34 AM | Comments (0)