log (2008/09/05 to 2008/09/11)

So I was listening to News Arrrrr on the BBC on NPR on the radio this morning, and they had a nice piece on the Large Hadron Collider and how the first beam got working quicker than expected and they were starting to work on the second beam and in just a couple weeks or so they will cause them to collide with each other, reproducing conditions at the moment of the Big Bang, and thereby bringing into existence a whole new universe, which will expand in all directions at the speed of light, destroying the Earth and the solar system, and eventually the entire galaxy and so on.

(Although this is sort of a problem in the short term, and for that matter in the long term, I agree with those scientists who say that it's still "pretty cool".)

I hope they get it working and the Earth destroyed before the U.S. Presidential Elections. (A pity they didn't get it done before tomorrow's Endless Stream of 9/11 Footage Displayed on Every Vertical Surface in the Nation, really.) You can keep track of whether the world has been destroyed yet here.

Okay, I know, the end of the universe has already been widely blogged ("blogged"). But I keep meaning to post here, and so I save up stuff and then I don't post for so long that it gets old, but I'm sort of fond of it so I post it anyway. For instance:

Now both Presidential candidates are talking about CHANGE, but they've been awfully vague about it. I hereby offer to either candidate (the one with the Boring Old Guy VP, or the one with the Excitingly Female VP) the following list of True Changes:

  • Painting the White House orange,
  • Making Estonian the official language of the United States,
  • Outlawing the automobile,
  • Cigar rationing.

Now those would be changes that the American People could see firsthand! They would really make a difference in our lives!

Tasteless political joke: With McCain's VP pick, it looks like for the first time we'll have either a black man or a woman as President of the U.S.!

Also tasteless: Wondering about the effectiveness of abstinence-only sex education? Just ask Sarah Palin! (And the related Juneau / Juno jokes.)

Okay, that's probably the end of the old stale stuff. Well, the obviously old stale stuff anyway.

So much has happened! We dropped the little daughter off at school 'way back Saturday before last. She's been emailing and phoning now and then, and she always sounds happy and busy and excited. Classes start tomorrow, and she's actually taking a programming course! She will probably learn Java! Woot!

But I'm not going to write down all the details of her going off to, being off at, college, because it's still too immediate and personal and emotional and I haven't nearly processed it enough to really write down.

I've been using Google's Chrome browser, and it's really neat (hm, I guess Chrome is old stale news by now too, isn't it?). Who could resist a browser that's introduced with a comic book?

Let's see, virtual worlds stuff. I've been doing various things in Second Life, as usual. Here are some lawyers specializing in Virtual World law, which is kinda neat. Here's a picture from Burning Man which looks an awful lot like it's from Second Life.

Oh, right! So the other day in SL I was a girl with long demon horns dancing on a dancepole, talking to other interestingly-dressed people, looking at the colored lights and the fog and all, and listening to live music (or at least a live DJ). And then the next day in RL I was a boy with short stubby devil horns, walking through a crowd of people in leather and swords and faerie wings, listening to live music and playing games and generally being entertained and amused and impressed. That latter was, of course, our local Renaissance Faire,

Burning Man and the Ref Faire are the two things in atomic life that Second Life reminds me most of. And they're both things that I've heard about for a long time and wished I was part of (never been to Burning Man, and have been to a couple of Ren Faires but always dream about having been Really Into It in my youth 'cause I think that would have been awesome). Which goes very well with my current Second Life addiction. *8)

At the Ren Faire (I went with the little boy, but he went off with1his friends, so I was wandering happily by myself most of the time) I got some little devil horns and a little reed pipe, and ate and drank things, and watched the fire show and some jousting and the very wonderful Flirts of Fancie and all, and admired all the costumes and general wierdness, while at the same time wishing that IM and TP and profile viewing were working. And flying, for that matter.

I mean sure, the atomic world has the resolution and sensory bandwidth down, but the general feature-set leaves alot to be desired otherwise!

Speaking of the atomic world, sigh:

In the house that had just been raided, those inside described how a team of roughly 25 officers had barged into their homes with masks and black swat gear, holding large semi-automatic rifles, and ordered them to lie on the floor, where they were handcuffed and ordered not to move. The officers refused to state why they were there and, until the very end, refused to show whether they had a search warrant. They were forced to remain on the floor for 45 minutes while the officers took away the laptops, computers, individual journals, and political materials kept in the house. One of the individuals renting the house, an 18-year-old woman, was extremely shaken as she and others described how the officers were deliberately making intimidating statements such as "Do you have Terminator ready?" as they lay on the floor in handcuffs. The 10 or so individuals in the house all said that though they found the experience very jarring, they still intended to protest against the GOP Convention, and several said that being subjected to raids of that sort made them more emboldened than ever to do so.

Because, hey, if we don't use the police to stifle domestic dissent, then the terrorists win! Or was it the other way around?

And to end on a lighter note, a reminder (from a Plurker) that the Internet is for porn, and the fascinating story of The Great Hatsby.

cya later, eh?