Wednesday, July 22, 2009


I'm driving the digital highway,
my passengers on my back,
I must do this every day,
protecting them against hacks.

Precious data I carry,
they all depend on me,
the bandwidth always varies,
it's always my fault you see.

Holding up this digital place,
by sheer will alone,
so many things I must face,
like being crushed by a stone.

It all moves too fast,
struggling to upgrade,
I don't think I'll last,
how many errors have I made?

Crashing always on my mind,
as I struggle to keep this fear in check,
will I avoid it this time,
or will it all end in a horrid wreck?

I must go faster,
I must keep them all safe,
or it will end in disaster,
a rest I can never take.

This digital highway began so nice,
with many wonderful places to explore,
now it is the source of total fright,
filled with so many things I can't ignore.

The data stream is one way it seems,
it just doesn't seem fair,
no longer what I once dreamed,
I can't escape anywhere.

The archive bit is TRUE,
the backup will run,
what can I do,
but wait for it to be done.

Stored onto a tape,
tossed to the side,
then it's too late,
forgotten in time.

Stashed away like others before,
I slowly degrade,
one day unable to restore,
I'll just fade...

What of the data I carry,
when I am replaced,
the possibilities are scary,
something I don't want to face.

Running at overclocked speeds,
the need is great,
no rest in sight that I can see,
such is my fate.


Friday, October 17, 2008

Barstool Economics

Our Tax System Explained: Bar Stool Economics

Suppose that every day, ten men go out for beer and the bill for all ten comes to $100. If they paid their bill the way we pay our taxes, it would go something like this:

The first four men (the poorest) would pay nothing.
The fifth would pay $1.
The sixth would pay $3.
The seventh would pay $7.
The eighth would pay $12.
The ninth would pay $18.
The tenth man (the richest) would pay $59.

So, that's what they decided to do.
The ten men drank in the bar every day and seemed quite happy with the arrangement, until one day, the owner threw them a curve. 'Since you are all such good customers,' he said, 'I'm going to reduce the cost of your daily beer by $20.' Drinks for the ten now cost just $80.
The group still wanted to pay their bill the way we pay our taxes so the first four men were unaffected. They would still drink for free.
But what about the other six men - the paying customers? How could they divide the $20 windfall so that everyone would get his 'fair share?'
They realized that $20 divided by six is $3.33. But if they subtracted that from everybody's share, then the fifth man and the sixth man would each end up being paid to drink his beer.
So, the bar owner suggested that it would be fair to reduce each man's bill by roughly the same amount, and he proceeded to work out the amounts each should pay.

And so:
The fifth man, like the first four, now paid nothing (100% savings).
The sixth now paid $2 instead of $3 (33%savings).
The seventh now pay $5 instead of $7 (28%savings).
The eighth now paid $9 instead of $12 (25% savings).
The ninth now paid $14 instead of $18 (22% savings).
The tenth now paid $49 instead of $59 (16% savings).

Each of the six was better off than before. And the first four continued to drink for free. But once outside the restaurant, the men began to compare their savings.
'I only got a dollar out of the $20,'declared the sixth man. He pointed to the tenth man,' but he got $10!'
'Yeah, that's right,' exclaimed the fifth man. 'I only saved a dollar, too.
It's unfair that he got ten times more than I got' 'That's true!!' shouted the seventh man. 'Why should he get $10 back when I got only two? The wealthy get all the breaks!'
'Wait a minute,' yelled the first four men in unison. 'We didn't get anything at all. The system exploits the poor!'
The nine men surrounded the tenth and beat him up.
The next night the tenth man didn't show up for drinks so the nine sat down and had beers without him. But when it came time to pay the bill, they discovered something important. They didn't have enough money between all of them for even half of the bill!
And that, ladies and gentlemen, journalists and college professors, is how our tax system works. The people who pay the highest taxes get the most benefit from a tax reduction. Tax them too much, attack them for being wealthy, and they just may not show up anymore. In fact, they might start drinking overseas where the atmosphere is somewhat friendlier.

David R. Kamerschen, Ph.D.
Professor of Economics
University of Georgia

For those who understand, no explanation is needed.
For those who do not understand, no explanation is possible.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

War on Piracy and Faked Figures

Have you ever wondered where the MPAA and RIAA get their numbers for lost jobs due to piracy? Lost income? I ran across an interesting article written by Julian Sanchez who went looking for these answers in his in-depth article.

In short, the numbers quoted are often extremely bad 20+ year old guesstimates from poorly done studies using limited questionnaires sent out to businesses, passed around from agency to article, each quoting or misquoting their source, and sometimes not even quoting at all. It all comes down to childish games, pure and simple. Especially when you consider the following...

Neither figure is terribly plausible on its face. As Wired noted earlier this week, 750,000 jobs is fully 8 percent of the current number of unemployed in the United States. And $250 billion is more than the combined 2005 gross domestic revenues of the movie, music, software, and video game industries.

It boggles the mind. Seriously though, read the article for the big picture. It'll make you want to trout-slap quite a few people in govt. as well as IP industry.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

City uses DNA to fight dog poop

Yet another broken light bulb award goes to this city in Israel. With all of the crap going on over there, you'd think they would have better things to do than to worry about dog poop. I suppose the job of dog poop analyzer could be given as a punishment for certain crimes...

PETAH TIKVA, Israel (Reuters) - An Israeli city is using DNA analysis of dog droppings to reward and punish pet owners.

Under a six-month trial programme launched this week, the city of Petah Tikva, a suburb of Tel Aviv, is asking dog owners to take their animal to a municipal veterinarian, who then swabs its mouth and collects DNA.

The city will use the DNA database it is building to match faeces to a registered dog and identify its owner.

Owners who scoop up their dogs' droppings and place them in specially marked bins on Petah Tikva's streets will be eligible for rewards of pet food coupons and dog toys.

But droppings found underfoot in the street and matched through the DNA database to a registered pet could earn its owner a municipal fine.

"My goal is to get the residents involved, and tell them that together, we can make our environment clean," said Tika Bar-On, the city's chief veterinarian who came up with the idea for the DNA experiment.

Bar-On said the DNA database could also help veterinarians research genetic diseases in dogs, investigate canine pedigree and identify stray animals, replacing the need for electronic chip identification.

Thursday, September 11, 2008


This is a painting of my father-in-law's dog. An old beagle. It's a shame the camera doesn't really capture the translucent effect I painted into the eyes. Come to think of it, I wish the eyes hadn't turned out quite so lopsided, but she sometimes looks that way. I'm not sure if that's due to the angle of the photo I had to work with, or the saggy fur around the eyes. She is old, but a cute, lovable dog.


My first attempt at a space painting. It's just your average imaginary comet flying through space. It turned out better than I thought it would, but yeah... it's just a comet. Nothing more to see here, move along... :p


Now what aspiring artist hasn't painted a sunflower? I just had to give it a try. I painted this one on a clay tablet. Making the tablet was an interesting adventure in itself. It was also odd painting on it. Acrylic paint behaves differently on it, but I like the effect I got out of it.

Lighthouse at the Beach

It turned out a bit more geometric than I wanted, but I learned a bit more about painting cliffs and the sky. I gave this one to my dad since he loves lighthouses.

Beach in the Afternoon

This one turned out better. It has that dream-like quality I was going for at least. It was also fun to paint.

My First Acrylic Painting

Yeah ok, I know it isn't that great, but I think I did halfway decent for my first attempt.

The Daily Fortune

Ok so it's not so daily. I've been busy with *gasp* real life! EEEK! Anywho, here it is, in all it's horrible splendor. Enjoy.

[databat@ebob:~] % fortune
Almost anything derogatory you could say
about today's software design would be accurate.
-- K. E. Iverson
[databat@ebob:~] %

Friday, August 3, 2007

The Cyber-Slang Compedium - 1st Edition e-book

This Compedium is packed with 41 pages of confusing acronyms, slang, and other odd terms that are or have been floating around the internet, and in sci-fi/cyber-punk novels. Don't be a "bottom feeder"! Grab this Compedium and cut your way through the "bit-slag" faster than you ever thought possible.

Spend hours reading and laughing at some of the rarely used and/or older terms. This is one purchase you won't regret. It comes in a searchable and printable pdf file. Keep one copy on your hard drive for quick access, as well as a hard copy in a notebook for showing off to your friends!

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

The Daily Fortune

[databat@ebob:~] % fortune

The Daily Fortune isn't daily if you forget to post it, dummy!

[databat@ebob:~] %

Wha??? *boggle*
*blink* umm.....
*turns off the computer and slowly backs away*