Archive for June 26th, 2008

B&W Creepy Carousel Photoblogging

Some photos from a carousel thingy at the Three Rivers Arts Festival. When will these people learn that elephants and merry-go-rounds don’t mix???

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Not only is it creepy, but it’s not really functional, either. I don’t see any way a kid could sit on that, unless it’s, like, a fetus. The CAUTION tape really adds to the whole overall kid-friendly vibe.

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…A gecko fetus.

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Ah, here’s the seating. Surprisingly cushy-looking, really.

June 26th, 2008 at 08:41pm Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Iraq,Photoblogging,Pittsburgh

Great Moments In Negative Campaigning

Well. Dick Zimmer, Frank Lautenberg’s Republican Senate opponent, has hit back hard against Lautenberg’s vote against cloture on the awful FISA “compromise”:

Press Release

LAUTENBERG VOTES TO TAKE AWAY TOOLS TO TRACK DOWN TERRORISTS

By ZimmerforSenate – June 26, 2008 – 12:49pm

Tags: DICK ZIMMER, U.S. Senate, Frank Lautenberg,Top Story: Breaking,
Release Date: Jun 26 2008

Normal 0 false false false MicrosoftInternetExplorer4 st1\:*{behavior:url(#ieooui) } /* Style Definitions */ table.MsoNormalTable {mso-style-name:”Table Normal”; mso-tstyle-rowband-size:0; mso-tstyle-colband-size:0; mso-style-noshow:yes; mso-style-parent:””; mso-padding-alt:0in 5.4pt 0in 5.4pt; mso-para-margin:0in; mso-para-margin-bottom:.0001pt; mso-pagination:widow-orphan; font-size:10.0pt; font-family:”Times New Roman”; mso-ansi-language:#0400; mso-fareast-language:#0400; mso-bidi-language:#0400;}

Now, I know there’s a lot of opaque political jargon in this statement, but I’m going to take a stab at unpacking some of the highlights:

o Frank Lautenberg pretends to be a normal person, but is actually a serial liar.

o Frank Lautenberg wants to tell us how to behave, and define what style clothes we can wear, and what kind of tables we can eat off of.

o Frank Lautenberg is frequently a no-show for important floor votes. (Either that, or he’s an absentee parent; like I said, this political jargon can be pretty tricky.)

o Frank Lautenberg padded his resume with bogus achievements (or, alternatively, is padding his campaign funds with cash from from questionable sources).

o Frank Lautenberg hates widows, orphans, and families.

o Frank Lautenberg is so imperious and bloodthirsty that he’s like a modern-day version of an ancient Roman.

o Frank Lautenberg is a tool of shadowy Far Eastern interests who want to subjugate the US and force us to speak their language.

I look forward to seeing Lautenberg respond to these allegations, hopefully in the same kind of highly charged political language.

(h/t Blue Jersey)

June 26th, 2008 at 06:23pm Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Elections,Politics,Quotes,Republicans

Even Bill Gates Hates Microsoft!

This is great.  The Seattle Post-Intelligencer’s Microsoft blogger found an e-mail from Bill Gates to the rest of Microsoft senior management from 2003, complaining about the awful design and total unusability of Windows and the Microsoft website.  Some highlights:

I am quite disappointed at how Windows Usability has been going backwards and the program management groups don’t drive usability issues.

(…)

I decided to download (Moviemaker) and buy the Digital Plus pack … so I went to Microsoft.com. They have a download place so I went there.

The first 5 times I used the site it timed out while trying to bring up the download page. Then after an 8 second delay I got it to come up.

This site is so slow it is unusable.

(…)

I tried scoping to Media stuff. Still no moviemaker. I typed in movie. Nothing. I typed in movie maker. Nothing.

So I gave up and sent mail to Amir saying – where is this Moviemaker download? Does it exist?

So they told me that using the download page to download something was not something they anticipated.

(…)

I thought for sure now I would see a button to just go do the download.

In fact it is more like a puzzle that you get to solve. It told me to go to Windows Update and do a bunch of incantations.

This struck me as completely odd. Why should I have to go somewhere else and do a scan to download moviemaker?

(…)

Then it told me to reboot my machine. Why should I do that? I reboot every night — why should I reboot at that time?

So I did the reboot because it INSISTED on it. Of course that meant completely getting rid of all my Outlook state.

(…)

So now I think I am going to have Moviemaker. I go to my add/remove programs place to make sure it is there.

It is not there.

What is there? The following garbage is there. Microsoft Autoupdate Exclusive test package, Microsoft Autoupdate Reboot test package, Microsoft Autoupdate testpackage1. Microsoft AUtoupdate testpackage2, Microsoft Autoupdate Test package3.

Someone decided to trash the one part of Windows that was usable? The file system is no longer usable. The registry is not usable. This program listing was one sane place but now it is all crapped up.

But that is just the start of the crap. Later I have listed things like Windows XP Hotfix see Q329048 for more information. What is Q329048? Why are these series of patches listed here? Some of the patches just things like Q810655 instead of saying see Q329048 for more information.

What an absolute mess.

(…)

I enter it all in and because it decides I have mistyped something I have to try again. Of course it has cleared out most of what I typed.

I try (typing) the right stuff in 5 times and it just keeps clearing things out for me to type them in again.

So after more than an hour of craziness and making my programs list garbage and being scared and seeing that Microsoft.com is a terrible website I haven’t run Moviemaker and I haven’t got the plus package.

The lack of attention to usability represented by these experiences blows my mind. I thought we had reached a low with Windows Network places or the messages I get when I try to use 802.11. (don’t you just love that root certificate message?)

On the one hand, I think it’s great that Bill Gates has the same kind of awful, frustrating experiences with Microsoft that the rest of us Windows users do (shut it, Mac & Linux people).  On the other hand, it’s pretty pathetic that five years later hardly anything has changed.

(h/t Engadget)

4 comments June 26th, 2008 at 11:39am Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Coolness,Technology

Dispatches From Bizarro World

Today’s installment is from one of Bizarro World’s leading citizens, Rush Limbaugh:

You want to know why the Republicans are willing to say, “Screw you,” to 30 percent or more of their voters and yet Democrats will bend over, grab the ankles, and say, “Have your way with me,” for 10 percent and 2 percent of the population [black people and gays]?

(…)

There is an answer to your — basic question is, “Why don’t the Democrats say, ‘To hell with you, you wacko nuts in the base,’ like Republicans do?”

(…)

The — there’s a complicated answer to this… but one of the simple answers that will require some elaboration is that a lot of money is coming from these kooks — and I’m not talking about just the blacks — I’m talking about a whole kook-fringe base because George Soros is running it… and they need the money.

(…)

…[T]he Republican Party, especially as currently constituted, is doing its best to deemphasize the importance or the influence of the traditional conservative base, which is not just the so-called evangelical Christian Right or the pro-lifers or whatever. But you have all kinds of people in the Republican base that are conservatives, from values conservatives, social conservatives, even fiscal economic conservatives. Conservatism has been the base of the Republican Party and because the conservative base does include pro-lifers and because many of them are from the South, there are many in the Northeastern corridors of power in the Republican Party who are embarrassed to be in the party with those people.

(…)

…[T]he politically active gay community on the left is worth a lot of money. These people send the Democrats more money than you can possibly imagine. A lot of it from Hollywood, and the arts and entertainment. They’re not — money — you know, key number one, you might be saying, well, don’t the pro-lifers donate a lot of money to the Republicans? Yeah. Yeah, they do. But it still embarrasses them. It still embarrasses a lot of the country club Rockefeller types.

The Democrats — what are they embarrassed about? They’re not embarrassed about anything. The Democrats have never set any standards for themselves. As far as they’re concerned, everybody’s a victim, even on their side. So, I mean, yeah, these victims are just fighting to be heard. Fighting for their rights, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. The conservative rights — conservative right is viewed as trying to deny people rights, blah, blah, blah, you see.

But in addition to the money aspect of this — and don’t forget, the left-wing base is not even talked about by Mickey Edwards there — is the anti-war kook fringe. And it is huge. From MoveOn.org to Think Progress to My Base Book — whatever these things, these things — well, maybe not MySpace or Face, whatever it is. But, there are so many of these 527 groups out there that are just raising money left and right and the Democrats are scared to death if these people take their money and go away or go to a third party or what have you. And so they will cater to them left and right.

Wow.  That almost makes me wish I lived in Rush Limbaugh’s universe, where Democrats bend over backwards (or, if you’re Rush, forwards) for their progressive base while Republicans tell conservatives to get lost.  Because George Soros and the Hollywood gay community give progressives such a huge money advantage over conservatives, who only have the world of corporations and ultra-rich people to draw from.  Those poor conservatives, they can never get a seat at the table, and progressives are in control of everything.

Which is why the Democratic Congress allows the Iraqupation to continue, and is inches away from passing a FISA revision which gives Dubya all the spying powers and unaccountability for past spying crimes he could have ever wanted.

But other than the clueless reference to “My Base Book,” I think my favorite bit is the part about how huge the “anti-war kook fringe” is.  Well, yeah, it’s huge – about 60-70% of the country are anti-war kooks now.  And they are so totally calling the shots, too.

1 comment June 26th, 2008 at 07:09am Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Democrats,Media,Politics,Republicans,Wankers


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