Monthly Archives: March 2009

Yes, I am a Data Glutton

In This Blog Sits at the: Grant McCracken is on to something at Data Glutton, Data Pauper:

I suddenly realized my problem with aggregators. When I configure my feeds, I want just about everything. … Wrap them up, I'll take them all. And then there are all the blogs. …

This informational excess is not inflicted on me by the market place, … No, this profusion of possibilility is created and sustained by me alone. Hi, my name is Grant McCracken and I'm a data glutton.

Data gluttony is a terrible condition. Everytime I turn on my aggregator, I feel like I am at an all-you-eat event at Denny's. Really, it can't end well. …

… All this “free” information is actually quite costly.

The upshot of this conversation for me was that a market in the information space is emerging. I won't pay anything for access to the New York Times. This is an interesting aggregator, but it's way too chunky for me to be exquisitely useful. I want a combination of machine and human editing that gives me all but only the things I need, and for this I am prepared to pay handsomely.

It's not that we won't pay for editing. It's becoming clear, I think, that we are now eager to pay for editing, even to pay a premium for editing. (After all, our careers now depend upon early warning, good information, timely intelligence. Not to know what we need to know in a dynamic economy, what could this cost us?)

We just don't want to pay for the editing now made available to us by the market place. …

This much is clear, there is a market emerging. It doesn't appear to have any entries. I wish they'd hurry up. Because otherwise I'm hopeless.

McCracken says he deals with his problem by turning it off, thus becoming a data pauper. I guess he's made of sterner stuff than me.

I don't think I'm ready for that.

Posted in Internet | 5 Comments

A Prosecutor’s Prosecutor

Justice Building Blog reprints the farewell email of a legendary local prosecutor in ABE LAESER RETIRES.

Mr. Laeser started as an ASA in 1973. In that farewell email Mr. Laeser writes,

Many have asked me about a most memorable moment. There have been many extremely similar moments that I have taken most to heart. I have had one single request – one that mercifully I have never had to carry out; yet it meant the world to me, because it spoke truth in its loudest possible voice. Fellow prosecutors, officers, defense attorneys, and even judges had made one request. The gist of it was: “If my family member should ever be murdered, could you personally prosecute the case?” This is perhaps the only legacy that will stay in my mind forever. It means too much for me to ever forget.

A real compliment, if a somewhat grisly one…

Posted in Law: Criminal Law | 3 Comments

Do Shepherds Dream of Electric Sheep?

I suppose this isn't the very strangest or very funniest thing I've seen online, but it's up there.

YouTube – Extreme Sheep LED Art

Posted in Internet | 5 Comments

DNC Having Some Fun

YouTube – DNC Web Ad: The Number Zero, Brought To You By The Party Of N-O

Good, light-hearted fun about a depressing response to a depressing subject.

Posted in Econ & Money | Leave a comment

Anyone Who Reads Science Fiction Knows Why This Happened

Huge Supernova Baffles Scientists, but anyone who reads science fiction knows why “this star, which lay about 200 million light years away from earth and was million times brighter than the Sun, has exploded as a supernova at a much earlier date than the one predicted by astronomers.”

The Monks got stiffed by bad customers.

Posted in Science/Medicine | 2 Comments

Random Calculator Popups in XP

Some time ago my (fully patched) XP desktop contracted the dreaded Random Calculator Popup, although in my case the calculator only pops up a few times a day, usually when I'm typing furiously.

I've scanned for viruses with Symantic Endpoint Protection, run Spybot, and they didn't find anything. There is no shortcut assigned for the program in the Start Menu under accessories. (I searched the hard drive and there is one other copy of the calc.exe program in the i386 directory. It doesn't seem to have a shortcut that I could see.)

This post suggests it could be a keyboard hardware issue, but I find that a little hard to believe.

Maybe Ed Bott will ride to the rescue again.

Or maybe I really need to find a machine on which to test Wordperfect X14 in an xVM virtual box under Ubuntu or SUSE ….

Posted in Software | 7 Comments

The Plaudits Begin to Flow

Brain Leiter approves of our new Dean:

Patricia White, the former and quite successful Dean of the law school at Arizona State University, has been appointed Dean at the University of Miami. That's a very good catch for Miami!

Posted in U.Miami | 1 Comment