Archive for April 2007

One man's experience with abortion

Normally I’d be content to just leave this in my linkblog, but this story is too powerful, and you need to go read it for yourself, now.

One small for step for man(s)…

It’s not the end goal, but it’s a step in the right direction:

A same-sex relationship register should be in place in Victoria by the end of this year, Premier Steve Bracks says.

He said he remained opposed to gay marriage, but said the register would allow improved legal recognition of gay couples and also those in defacto and long-term care giving relationships.

“What we’re saying is we’re not going to (take) any step in relation to civil unions or gay marriages, we actually have made a statement about removing discrimination,” Mr Bracks said.

The Victorian Equal Opportunity and Human Rights Commission described the planned register as a critical step in reducing discrimination.

“Federal laws are standing in the way of true equality for gay and lesbian couples across Australia who have to contend with partial social acceptance and limited legal protection,” Commission chief executive Helen Szoke said.

She said couples on the register would receive a certificate which proved their relationship in dealings with government, courts and agencies.

All old things become new again

When I was in high school, I learned about a feature of Excel called “Conditional Formatting”. It’s a very useful feature, and it’s pretty much self-described: it varies the formatting of cells based on which of a set of conditions the contents of the cell match.

For instance, when doing a budget, you can have any negative amounts automatically coloured red; any cell containing “John” could turn blue, while cells containing “Mary” turn pink.

8 years later, it’s good to see that this tried-and-tested feature isn’t considered old, stale or passe – no, it’s still a new feature!

Is it false advertising to lead users to believe that a feature only belongs to the newer version, which they have to pay money to upgrade to, when it’s in fact an old feature that they’ve been able to use for the better part of a decade?

Google Web History != evil

I just saw the Google blog post about Google Web History.

I’ve not seen anyone else comment on it yet, so I’m going to jump in and forestall the OMG-Google-Store-Huge-Amounts-Of-Data-About-Me-I’m-So-Scared raving loonies that are inevitably going to come out of the woodwork:

Google Web History is not evil for two reasons:

A) It’s explicitly opt-in

B) It doesn’t represent Google collecting more data about you; it represents Google giving you more access and visibility of data they collect about you anyway.

To use Web History, you have to first download the google toolbar; then, you have to explicitly choose to enable the PageRank button feature. It’s not turned on by default, and the screen which asks permission turns it on explains that if you turn it on, Google will know about every page you visit.

After that, you may need to go to the link above and choose to enable the web history feature – although I’m not certain whether this just turns on displaying of your web history, or if it controls whether the web history is stored at all.

Assuming you download and install this toolbar, and assuming you then choose to turn on the PageRank button, Google will be collecting this data about you. If they’re collecting it anyway, which would you prefer – that you have no idea what they’ve collected, or that they show you what they know about you.

Google Web History is not evil. It does have privacy implications, and you should heed the warnings you get when turning on the PageRank button in that toolbar. If you’re not comfortable with Google having that much information about you, don’t enable PageRank.

Sorry for the comment spam

My apologies to anyone who reads my comments feed. There’s been a lot of spam comments lately, and an some of it has bypassed the spam filters and shown up in the comments feed.

I’ve just made a few changes that should improve the efficiency if the blocking. If this doesn’t work, I may have to go back to moderating all comments by non-logged-in users 🙁

God Hates The World

Courtesy of Youtube, the latest hit video from the Westboro Baptists

My favorite lines are… well, there are a couple

God hates the world (He hates you!)

And all her people (That means you!)

You’ll eat your kids (Yeah, you’ll eat them)

You hateful people

You every one face a fiery day

For your proud sinning (so just stop it!)

Enjoy it, it’s hilarious!

Yes, this is genuinely from them: it’s even listed as “featured” on their website.

Wow.

How to win friends and influence people – NOT!

Linux kernel driver developer sends email to OpenBSD driver developers, asking them to explain why their code looks suspiciously like it was copied verbatim from his code, violating the GPL.

Apropos of nothing, Lord High God of OpenBSD Theo De Raadt decides to get involved.

From Fag on FOSS

How to win friends and influence people

> I want you to respect my copyright. Fullstop.

No, your message offered that he can come begging, because that is the

best that thieves may do.

Come little dog, come beg for forgiveness.

You are a very poor example of humankind.

Theo de Raadt, reaction to GPL violations in OpenBSD

Worst photo of me, ever!

From Sych’s LJ pics:

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This text added because Drupal insists that I have 10 words in my post.

Bartlett for President

This is yet another reason why I think Bartlett is the best senator we have at the federal level today.

I must say my initial feeling was that a guilty plea wasn’t very informative. After all, a key purpose of show trials is to gain a guilty plea or a conviction. In the absence of a fair trial, such a result in itself doesn’t tell us a lot either way about the guilt of the accused.

Whilst the guilty plea has changed the political dynamic (as well as dramatically improved the situation for David Hicks and his family), if anything the public and media reaction seems to have got even more incredulous.

To quote Malcolm Fraser,

Both governments will say: Hicks has had his day in court, he pleaded guilty, he has been justly treated. What we really need to concentrate on and to understand is that Hicks did not have a day in a court. He had a day in a fraudulent tribunal, controlled by a special law, which the Americans would never dare to apply their own people.

From The Bartlett Diaries

Quote of the day: The English are notoriously homosexualist

The English are notoriously homosexualist.

With the exception of our esteemed colleagues in Christ, the English as a whole are infamous for their tolerance, if not outright preference, for homosexualism, particularly amongst the so-called governing class. That the nefarious agenda of these disgusting reprobates has now stretching its dripping tentacles into the schoolroom comes as no surprize to me. After all, the homosexualist, in his perversion, is only one short step away from paedophiliaism, and the powers that be on that stunted island are clearly seeking to turn English young from a healthy lifestyle for their own depraved interests. Even the French, renowned for their perversion, consider the English moral retards in the eyes of the Lord, and for once the surrender monkeys are correct. I foresee the day when the inhabitants of that previously stalwart nation are mocked throughout the Christian world for their effeminacy. Frankly, given the increasing trend toward this type of unGodliness, I fully expect the English to become full allies with the Arabs within fifty years.

From True Christians Unite!!! forum, via Fundies Say The Darndest Things