24 April 2007

Declaring email bankruptcy

Got too far behind with your electronic inbox? Fess up and restart - sounds very liberating.
clipped from valleywag.com
  • Lawrence Lessig: The highest-profile email bankruptcy to date. The copyright attorney (who fought a Supreme Court case against a 20-year extension of all U.S. copyrights) sent a mass e-mail in 2004 asking anyone with important unanswered e-mail to reply, which would flag their mail as important. He carried off the task with aplomb, apologizing for failing to maintain "cyber decency." But rumor has it that Lessig still went through much of his "bankrupt" e-mail.
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    One more thing you didn't know there was a law about. Interesting that Christian Scientist and Muslim emblems are not shown owing to copyright problems. WTF?
    clipped from www.cem.va.gov

    Available Emblems of Belief for Placement on Government Headstones and Markers

    MUSLIM (Islamic 5 Pointed Star)
    Not shown because of copyrights.
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    20 April 2007

    Yep, you read that right

    "catsthatlooklikehitler.com". Of course.
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    Broken Gmail spamfilter

    Dear Gmail spamfilter designers,
    1. Any email with the word "lottery" in the title is SPAM. I don't want to read it.
    2. Any email with "huge rock hard schwinging schlong" in the title is SPAM. I do not want to read it.
    You used to know this. What happened?
    Yours sincerely,
    Aardvaark A. Willowbucket

    18 April 2007

    May bee not?

    Now I know what I said before but this seems a little far-fetched even to me who is missing the bees.

    Making bees all but extinct would be a swift and plausibly deniable method of enacting global population reduction long dreamed of by the maniacal sociopaths that control the world.

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    15 April 2007

    Disappearing Bees

    You know what? For some reason this strikes me as the most worrying thing I have read in months. Really. I'm not so much into apocalypse scenarios these days but for some reason this strikes me as very alarming.
    clipped from www.spiegel.de

    As far back as 2005, Haefeker ended an article he contributed to the journal Der Kritischer Agrarbericht (Critical Agricultural Report) with an Albert Einstein quote: "If the bee disappeared off the surface of the globe then man would only have four years of life left. No more bees, no more pollination, no more plants, no more animals, no more man."

    Mysterious events in recent months have suddenly made Einstein's apocalyptic vision seem all the more topical. For unknown reasons, bee populations throughout Germany are disappearing -- something that is so far only harming beekeepers. But the situation is different in the United States, where bees are dying in such dramatic numbers that the economic consequences could soon be dire. No one knows what is causing the bees to perish, but some experts believe that the large-scale use of genetically modified plants in the US could be a factor.

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    Spring Sprung

    Global Warming

    OK, I’ve been struggling with this for a long time now – here, on an unusually warm April day, are my two pennies worth (bear with me on the first):

    Point One: Hand driers. They are replacing a set of hand driers in one of the myriad toilets at work because the new ones are low energy and they are trialling these to see if they should roll them out across the organisation. A generally Good Thing? Well, who knows? I’ve asked, but no one has replied yet – I will keep you posted. What I asked was when the energy saved by the new driers will equal the energy used in the manufacturing, transporting and fitting of them and the taking away and dumping of the old ones, particularly if there was any life left in them. I know, I know, I’m a mad old git going on about bloody hand driers, who cares? Thing is, it is symptomatic of shoddy thinking (or, worse, duplicity) if the driers being replaced still have any life in them because I suspect that it would be decades, if ever, before the energy saved by the new driers equaled the energy used to make, transport and fit them. That isn’t to say that the organisation won’t save money on electricity bills because the energy costs where and when the machines were made may well be less than where and when they will be used (I don’t know – it is speculation so of course I might well be completely wrong about all this), but that isn’t the same thing as saying they will be good for the environment. If you want to save money on energy costs fine, then say so, but don’t try and pretend that this is for the good of the planet unless you can prove that this is actually the case.
    Why, apart from being an old git, do I highlight all this? Because if we are choking the planet then directives about hand driers that actually use more energy from point of manufacture to point of expiry (taking into account destruction of old driers) are not going to save us.

    Point two is a bit more complex and I’m not sure I am up to the job intellectually but here goes, my simplistic observation: The current economic system that dominates the world and about which there is an agreed positive view (in the West at least, where I like living) is democratic capitalism. This values individual freedom and profit. Now, if the world is choking and we are causing it, it is this system that is giving rise to the problem. The question is whether it is possible for the same system to fix the problem. I don’t think it is. That is not to say that recycling paper, tin and the like, using public transport and walking to get the shopping etc are bad things – on the contrary I’m in favour of those, they seem like a good idea even if the world wasn’t / isn’t warming. But they are a pitiful response to a planetary phenomena. Yes, I know we should all be doing our bit and so on, and carbon trading (from the little I understand of it) offers some hope. But I simply cannot see how these two things can go hand in hand with a system built on consumerism, increased longevity and MORE of everything all the time. Sure, go and buy a Prius, but the energy costs involved in the manufacture, marketing and shipping of this are going to be huge whichever way you cut it – you might feel better because you are using less fuel but you are still using fuel, you still sold another perfectly reasonable car to get this one, and you probably won’t keep this one until you die. Yes of course from an environmental point of view a Prius is better than a Humvee but it isn’t saving the planet, it’s just destroying it more slowly.

    Not buying a car (or hand drier) in the first place, now that might be a Good Thing.

    13 April 2007

    Mrs Lemon: No no no no no

    You can't come in here with your pictures and your opinions! Go right away!
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    What is the matter with her teeth?

    They are frighteningly white. I know I'm English and all but please, you shouldn't need eclipse equipment to have a conversation with Cally.
    clipped from www.youtube.com
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    3 April 2007


    I'm not sure. Seems like the idea is like MySpace and all those other social networking sites: you have 10,000 "friends" ("contacts", whatever) none of whom you've met and most of whom link to you / comment on your pictures because you have done the same to them. Like Eyore (sp?) walking round the tree in the snow in search of the Heffalump.
    Speaking of which, blogging.....

    2 April 2007

    Accommodation a little cramped?

    Nr. Waterloo Bridge

    Again from Waterloo

    View from Waterloo Bridge

    Poor Javad

    I think I shall send him my bank details forthwith:

    From Javad Tajmar Riahi

    As you read this, I don't want you to feel sorry for
    me, because, I believe everyone will die someday.
    My name is JAVAD TAJMIR RIAHI a merchant in London,
    I have been diagnosed with oesophageal cancer.
    It has defiled all forms of medical treatment, and
    right now I have only about a few months to live, according to
    medical experts.

    I have not particularly lived my life so well, as I
    never really cared for anyone(not even myself)but my
    business. Though I am very rich, I was never
    generous, I was always hostile to people and only
    focused on my business as that was the only thing I
    cared for. But now I regret all this as I now know
    that there is more to life than just wanting to have
    or make all the money in the world.

    I believe when God gives me a second chance to come
    to this world I would live my life a different way
    from how I have lived it. Now that God has called
    me, I have willed and given most of my property
    and assets to my immediate and extended family
    members as well as a few close friends.

    I want God to be merciful to me and accept my soul
    so, I have decided to give alms to charity
    organizations, as I want this to be one of the last
    good deeds I do on earth. So far, I have distributed
    money to some charity organizations in the U.A.E,
    Algeria and Malaysia. Now that my health has
    deteriorated so badly, I cannot do this myself

    I once asked members of my family to close
    one of my accounts and distribute the money which I have
    there to charity organization in Bulgaria and
    South Africa, they refused and kept the money to
    themselves. Hence, I do not trust them anymore, as
    they seem not to be contended with what I have left
    for them.

    The last of my money which no one knows of is the
    huge cash deposit of Four million eight hundred thousand dollars
    $4,800,300,00 that I have with a finance/Security
    Company abroad. I will want you to help me collect this
    deposit and dispatched it to charity organizations.

    I have set aside 20% for you and for your time.

    God be with you.

    Note reply to: calltocharity1@yahoo.es

    Javad Tajmar Riahi

    M, Soho