Tuesday, 20 May 2008

Linkage

Next blog meetup: June ??


Roberta X is nailing down the exact dates.

Previously.

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Linkage

Weasel’s Damien has gone A.W.O.L.


Just when she’s getting ready to head for England.

Go read the story, and leave some good thoughts:


Back when I was a kid, my sister’s tuxedo tomcat disappeared for three weeks, returning home covered with dust, but otherwise none the worse for wear. We never did find out where he’d been.

And, Weasel, props for comforting the shelter kitties.

Posted by: Old Grouch in Linkage at 19:32:08 GMT | No Comments | Add Comment
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Radio

“Potemkin village” demos for HD radio


HD Radio: Finally, buyers get to experience the technology:

In several hundred stores, [iBiquity, HD’s developer] has placed “retail demonstration modules” (RDMs) that connect to up to 10 HD Radios at a time to walk consumers through a simulated demo delivered through the radio’s own speakers. The demo includes a recorded explanation of the technology’s benefits, a recorded A/B comparison of analog and digital reception, and a demonstration of multicasting and metadata capabilities...
Now they’re not hearing the real programming. Stores often can’t demonstrate HD because
Most... lack outdoor antennas because for decades, “consumers have not needed FM demonstrated to them,” [according to Bernie] Sapienza [iBiquity VP for retail business development]... The antennas are often needed, however, to pull in digital AM/FM signals through the walls of commercial buildings and through a cloud of RF interference generated by flat-panel TVs and other electronics in a store.

Well, I dunno. This does address the problem of finding a working HD demonstration. But iBiquity’s decision to create its own “station” out of whole cloth, rather than simply figure out a way to get existing broadcast signals to the radios, doesn’t say much for its confidence in either the radios’ real-world performance or in the attractiveness of the HD programming that the stations are delivering. It fails to answer the buyers’ next question, “OK, the technology is neat... now what can I actually get on it?” And I wonder what the local HD broadcasters feel about iBiquity’s no-confidence vote.

Retailers already have problems with HD sets being returned because of poor sensitivity. I wonder how many radios will come back because buyers think the programming sucks?


Via: The Infinite Dial

Previously:

Posted by: Old Grouch in Radio at 01:23:22 GMT | Comments (4) | Add Comment
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Monday, 19 May 2008

Dear Diary...

Finishing up the “telco” toolbox


Spent a couple of hours Sunday afternoon helping a friend chase down a landline problem.

Which gave me a suitable excuse for an addition to the test gear department.
more...

Posted by: Old Grouch in Dear Diary... at 16:58:32 GMT | No Comments | Add Comment
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Linkage

Two different worlds


Teresa explains the distinction between being “from Illinois” and being “from CHICAGO.”

Posted by: Old Grouch in Linkage at 16:20:34 GMT | No Comments | Add Comment
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In Passing

If we were serious about energy independence...


...in this time of record food prices, we’d spend $300 billion to fund Jerry Pournelle’s “100 1000-megawatt nuclear generators” energy program, instead of on a farm “aid” bill that will force us to pay inflated prices for sugar to make ethanol.

Of course we won’t do that.


Related:


HT:  Daily Pundit (for the Examiner link), “oa,” in comments at VFTP (For the reminder about the Frank James post).

Posted by: Old Grouch in In Passing at 15:55:53 GMT | No Comments | Add Comment
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Saturday, 17 May 2008

Reviews

Losing the Context: What’s so funny?


A search for an illustration the other day (this one, if you must know), sent me thumbing through my ancient[1] copy of The Humorous Verse of Lewis Carroll, Dover, 1960The Humorous Verse of Lewis Carroll. This Dover reprint of a 1933 Macmillan edition includes all the standard poems (“Jabberwocky,” “Father Willliam,” “The Hunting of the Snark,” etc.), along with 100-some more obscure ones. Re-reading them (along with the book’s limited annotations) left me (again) suspecting that I was often missing out on the joke: For some poems (“Hiawatha’s Photographing”) it remains instantly obvious, but in many others– some of them quite elaborate productions– the humor is a bit opaque to my own late 20th-Century background.  That is not surprising. Before Martin Gardner[2] I was unaware that Alice’s two recitations (“How doth...” and “’Tis the voice of the lobster...”) parody a pair of Isaac Watts’s Divine and Moral Songs for Children, songs that, while doubtless familiar to any English child growing up in the last half of the 19th century, were unknown to me.  Aha!  Making fun becomes more fun when you know what’s being made fun of.

Well, after all, Carroll wrote almost 150 years ago.  Lot of water over the dam since then; time passes and references lose meaning.

But it really brought me up short when I discovered a loss of context related to something within my own lifetime.
more...

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Friday, 16 May 2008

In Passing

Last night’s internet geekery


Seems a CMU research assistant, possibly named Tae Yano, is working on an artificial intelligence project (partially funded by DARPA) which involves analyzing posts at Little Green Footballs (among other sites). Seems she left her permissions “public.” Oops!

Dear,
We here at LGF have been rollicking through your files. Interesting stuff! Would you care to let us in on the purpose of your experiment involving LGF and other blogs? If not, how about just the methodology, You have sparked quite a conversation.

*All* of your files seem to be wide open to the public. You need some CHMOD, and quick (of course, I can only speak about the files in directories I can see--but nothing seems to be missing, heh!).

Good Luck,
hakkondahl

Posted by: Old Grouch in In Passing at 19:17:03 GMT | No Comments | Add Comment
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Linkage

Dutoit nails his theses to the capitol’s doors


Indicting the congressional Republicans:

  • Your party’s standard-bearer going into November is the senator who has stabbed the party faithful in the back more times than we care to remember...
  • You introduce legislation which is a “compromise” between a Republican and a liberal Democrat like Ted Kennedy...
  • You talk about “immigration reform”—which we all know is really a disguise for an amnesty for millions of illegal immigrants—and when over 70% of the country’s voters tells you that such legislation is repulsive, you wait awhile, and reintroduce almost the same legislation...
  • You made no serious attempt to reform the iniquitous tax code...
  • You allowed your original mandate of smaller, frugal government to be corrupted into a free-spending, licentious and lawless atmosphere, where anything was acceptable as long as it wasn’t as bad as what the Democrats were promising...
  • The current President (a man who promised to be conservative, and then turned out to be anything but) did not groom a successor while in office... thus leaving the Election 2008 field open to a bunch of RINOs like McCain and Romney.
Did you think we were asleep while you were doing all this stuff?
He also has some advice, not that anybody’s listening.


UPDATE 080516 17:54Dan Collins:
...The Republican Congress... has nobody to blame but itself, for being a pork-ridden, craven, lard-assed bunch of ninnyhammers.
Well said!

Via:  Daily Pundit

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In Passing

If we were serious about reducing energy prices...


...we could end the moratorium on oil shale development in Colorado.

Of course we won’t do that.


Via Instapundit, who asks, “Are these guys on the Saudi payroll, or what?”

Previously:

Posted by: Old Grouch in In Passing at 15:06:32 GMT | No Comments | Add Comment
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