parilafk: (Default)
My coworker went on vacation to the Dakotas to take a tour of where her grandparents and parents used to live. At one point, they were in a schoohouse that her grandma went to, which had been converted into a museum.  Hanging on the wall was this map, created by Orlando Furgeson in 1893. 

(Not the actual picture my co-worker took - that comes later.)

This was so fascinating to me that I spent the next hour reading about the geocentric model of the universe, trying to understand how this illustration came to be. Apparently, it's based on a Biblical passage (Revelations) that talks about angels on the "four corners of the Earth":
“After this I saw four angels standing at the four corners of the earth, holding back the four winds of the earth to prevent any wind from blowing on the land or on the sea or on any tree.” (Revelation 7:1)

As you can see, this Earth model has the northern hemisphere as a convex shape inside a concave one (the southern hemisphere).  I assume that the concave shape prevents the oceans from leaking into space, but wouldn't that also mean that Africa and Australia are constantly under water? 

I'm sad to report that I still don't have an explanation for the shape and placement of the Earth in this illustration.

My favorite part was this "debunking" of the theory that the Earth moves through space:

I highly encourage you to visit this website, which has taken the time to review the current International Flat Earth Society's website for humorous rationale and a marvelous FAQ.  (No sense in giving the IFE any ad revenue.)


Apr. 29th, 2010 07:02 am
parilafk: ([drama] LJ - drama)
Thanks to [ profile] midnightmadness for the following:

LiveJournal has started "spying" on you - nice of them to, like, let US know

How To Fix This Invasion of Privacy and Potential Browser Function Fuckery
For those that just want to fix, it go to the following page (while you're logged into LJ)
and enter
set opt_exclude_stats 1
(copy and paste that last line and hit return).

If you run NoScript or an AdBlocker, also add to it these links

What's Going On
It doesn't matter who you are, or if you're a paid/permanent user, LJ recently, sneakily and underhandedly, added a piece of javascript code into all of the pages generated on LJ - unlike many of these advertising related features, this one DOES affect paid/permanent users (though, do note that not every user/LJ server had this implemented, so it *might* not be on your LJ - still, you should opt out right now even if it isn't as, presumably, any stuff like this will be implemented site wide in time). They're using a service to spy on every link you click on LJ. They didn't tell the users about this, which also was another hit of fuckery against me as I block all "services" like this by default and it was messing up my LJ until I fixed it.
parilafk: (Default)
 I answered my work phone at 5:05pm and ended up working until 9pm.  

In other news, the HTC phone commercials re-ignited my love for Nina Simone's "Sinnerman". Man, this is such an amazing song.

And so is this, by the way:  Watch to the end, when Letterman is so tickled with the awesome performance that he asks them to continue for a little longer. 

As someone on Reddit said: Go on, rock out with your cock out!
parilafk: (Default)

Scrabble tips and (sometimes dirty) tricks.
parilafk: (Default)
I don't know why, but I have just spent the majority of my cup of coffee + 20 minutes reading these. I started off with an interesting photo essay about the rotting and abandoned schools in the Detroit metro area and ended up reading snarky snippets that "Oh No They Didn't" would love. [some images are NSFW, NSFK]

Here's a few of the tamer ones.

This British public-schooler's smirky bravado may seem out of place, but when you factor in all the tablings and ball-blackings and bogwashes, they're basically the Navy SEALS of the international nerd community.

Wow, flip-flops, pajama pants, and the infamous crunched-up cowboy hat. That’s all there is. That’s all three. That’s like a girl being fat, ugly, and stupid.

Forget false metal, someone really needs to call for a death to false nerds. We're talking about all these frat guys and regular bitches who saw Juno and decided to retrofit their boring personalities with a bunch of shitty cartoon characters and video games they don't know the name of. Who do we talk to about getting this done? Who's the current Nerdatollah, Harry Knowles?

You have to love that the page is pretty much entirely sponsored by American Apparel, with ads that look like this:

parilafk: (Default)
I'm kind of obsessed with photos, stories, and documentaries about North Korea. I think it started with the story my (South) Korean roommate told about North Korean propaganda during a visit "reuniting" families that had been split apart during the war. The North wanted the family members from the south to feel that their families were better off in the North. The North Korean tourguides drove the South Koreans down a particular avenue that was very well kept and middle-class looking, beautiful and clean.  Everyone "living" on the street had a bicycle.... only no one was riding theirs; they were all walking them. And during the photo op, the South Korean journalists noticed that all the North Korean men's neckties were the same. It struck me as very transparent, this type of propoganda, and I've been fascinated every since.

So, anyway, I was watching this slideshow and was totally struck by this picture:

Here were my thoughts.
  • What is on the wall in the back left of the picture? Is it a punch card reader or something? Compare/contrast to the computer in the left foreground.
  • Is there no money for heat? Why is everyone wearing their coats inside?
  • It seems like this room is never, ever used. I can't imagine that the tables, desks, and walls would be that bare if this were an actual classroom.
  • It's like they pulled guys out of the mines, gave them a shower and a change of clothes, and told them to pretend they were doing physics experiments. Hell, the lighting in the room consist solely of outside natural light and bare 60w fluorescent bulbs embedded in the ceiling... I can't imagine that's enough light to do physics experiments.

Is there anything you see in this picture that makes it just a bit ... off?

betta test

Aug. 17th, 2009 08:39 am
parilafk: (Default)
I decided to try an installation of the Windows 7 beta because Vista is hinky about certain things.  There were problems with the Host process being stopped, I couldn't print to the networked printer, some flash video wasn't working (though we found out that was a WAP problem), the hard drive would grind away constantly, even though I wasn't doing anything drive-intensive, and I was having problems with sluggish performance.

The installation went fine, but I find that I'm at a loss for at least one of my frequent shortcuts: the desktop. (Minimizing all windows in one click.) If anyone knows how to get to this via Windows 7, lemme know. Also, how do you get to My Computer? If I want to browse to my external hard drive, do I have to use Internet Explorer and type in the drive letter? Maybe I just need someone to point out their favorite Windows 7-centric website?

I also need DVD authoring software. I assume that the installation came with Windows Movie Maker (haven't checked -- still trying to find my way around the Start Menu. Little known fact about me: I always revert the Start menu to the "classic" setting.), and that, in combination with the DVD authoring software are two of the most-used resident programs on my laptop.

re: the subject line, the beta test of Windows 7 comes with a background of a betta fish.

Completely unrelated... I"m surrounded by tiny ants this morning. I've killed about 50 since getting to work an hour ago.

parilafk: ([rock on] ATHF - iShake)
I want to illustrate the shift in rock music from hair metal (86-90) to grunge/ alt rock (91-95) with songs in a playlist. 

This idea grew out of my pathetic attempt to try to describe to a 13-year old what Smashing Pumpkins' "Cherub Rock" sounded like to my ears which had been previously been assaulted with Poison and Warrant.  (My year timing may be a little off, so let me know that, too.)

So, I'm looking for illustrative songs on both sides of the shift -- "Unskinny Bop" by Warrant followed by "Territorial Pissings" by Nirvana, for example. I think "Unskinny" came out in '89 and "Pissings" in '92. Just three years separated them, but their music was so far apart, it may as well have been separated by decades.

Thanks in advance!
parilafk: (Default)
[ profile] locakitty gets the "thanks for making me snort my water" prize!
"R. was sitting there looking like a loser from an Ashton Kucher lookalike contest. Although, if you are trying to win that contest, it kind of makes you a loser anyways."
parilafk: (Default)
[Error: unknown template qotd]

Andrew Bird, "Imitosis"

Early versions of this song had a couple of lyrics from the "Capital I" song -- those folks watching "Sesame Street" in the 70s will immediately recognize this song -- but he never got the rights to release that version.

lyrics behind the cut )
parilafk: (Default)
Citibank sends $27 million to a Nigerian scammer.

37-year-old Nigerian scammer Paul Gabriel Amos convinced Citibank officials to wire him $27 million belonging to Ethiopia. Rather than go with the usual Nigerian nom de plumes like prince or will executor, Famous Amos pretended to be an official with the National Bank of Ethiopia. Amos forged "official-looking" documents that confirmed his status with the central bank and instructed Citibank to await faxes telling them where to send the country's cash. [source]
parilafk: (Default)

You know how Nine Inch Nails tie the digital goods (which can be duplicated ad infinitum) to scarce goods (merch, collector’s items, signed items, etc) to engage their audience and give them a chance to choose how much they’re willing to spend and what exactly they’re getting for their money? Well, their former drummer Josh Freese has a new album, and he has decided to take the concept a couple of steps further. I’m not sure whether he’s joking or is this for real, but what he’s offering to his fans is definitely funny as hell. Here goes (courtesy of


* Digital download of Since 1972, including 3 videos


* CD/DVD double-disc set
* Digital download


* CD/DVD double-disc set
* T-shirt
* “Thank you” phone call from Josh for buying Since 1972. You can tell him what you like about the record that you purchased, or what you thought sucked. Ask whatever you want, like “Is Maynard really THAT weird?” or “Which one of Sting’s mansions has the comfiest beds?” or “Are Devo really suburban robots that monitor reality or just a bunch of dads from Ohio?” or “Why don’t the Vandals play more stuff off the first record?” It’s your 5 minutes to yack it up. Talk about whatever you want.

$250 (limited edition of 25)

* Signed CD/DVD and digital download
* T-shirt
* Signed drum head and drumsticks
* Go on a lunch date with Josh to PF Changs or The Cheesecake Factory (whatever you’re into)

Read more... )


parilafk: (Default)

Whistleblower website Wikileaks faced a dilemma this week when a list of email addresses for the site's donors was submitted as a leaked document.

The issue arose after a fund raising email on Saturday went out with all 58 addresses in the To field (instead of the bcc field). The all too common schoolboy error meant that all the recipients found out the online identities of other donors.

The list was promptly resubmitted as a leaked document which, to its credit, Wikileaks published along with the comment from the leaker that "WikiLeaks leaks its own donors, aww irony. BCC next time kthx".

In a note, Wikileaks described the list as a partial list of its donors, adding its speculation as to the likely motives of the leaker.

"A prankster, apparently connected to one of the donors, then submitted this list to Wikileaks, possibly to test the project's principles of complete impartiality when dealing with whistleblowers," it said.

Enterprisingly, the same page includes a link to make donations.

Some comments on the story try to reassure would-be leakers that the slip-up is unrelated to Wikileaks' procedures for protecting its sources.

"It doesn't reflect anything to do with the wikileaks source protection operations, which are separate to office admin," one comment states. "While the release of these addresses is not optimal, all such donations have bank records and confirmations that travel over plain email."

Other comments highlight concerns that the leaked list might be used to make life difficult for the controversial project. "Hopefully, Scientologists don't go after the people listed here. I wouldn't put it past them," one person notes.

Previous notable leaks that have come through the whistleblower website include Guantánamo Bay procedures, internal documents related to the Church of Scientology, the BNP membership list and a costing plan by Bavarian police related to a project to develop software capable of intercepting Skype traffic.

parilafk: (Default)
From Copy. Paste.


The Late Show with David Letterman has scheduled a telecast of the never-aired October 1, 1993 Bill Hicks appearance. The show was pre-taped Jan. 26th (with Bill's mom as a guest) and will air Friday, January 30th on your local CBS affiliate. We'd like to acknowledge and thank Bill's many fans and everyone who has had a hand in keeping Bill's comedy and philosophy alive. We hope everyone can tune in and experience what you may have missed or what you barely remember – Bill Hicks performing for a national audience on network television.

Thanks, [personal profile] adgy .
parilafk: ([In your face] Bloo rasberry)
It's the Foster's Home for Imaginary Friends float!

parilafk: (Default)

Order now before they sell out!

parilafk: (Default)
You know all those "Here's how to save $1000 by Christmas" blog posts that (unhelpfully, IMO*) suggested cutting expenses like eating out 5 days a week for lunch or shopping for discount airfares rather than paying full price?

The one thing that was common to them all was "Stop buying gourmet coffee drinks every day." Apparently, people actually TOOK that advice:  Starbucks' profit this quarter was down 97%.

* I say "unhelpfully" because the lists are ridiculous. Is there anyone who's looking to save money that doesn't think twice when she shells out $4.50 for a coffee or $10 on a lunch every day?

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