packbat: One-quarter view of the back of my head. (Default)
2011-10-31 12:29 pm

Two Drops of Water [NaNoWriMo]

Why did I sign up for NaNoWriMo again?

*rolls Will save vs. panic*

(p.s. not dead, just very, very distractable.)

Edit: Ping me if you want in on (or out of) my NaNo11 filter.
packbat: One-quarter view of the back of my head. (quarter-rear)
2010-12-09 02:52 pm

(no subject)

One Chance.

Short game. No replay. No undo. Controls are the arrow keys and a spacebar.
packbat: Headshot looking serious and superimposed on the Gettysburg Address. (gettysburg)
2010-11-29 10:12 am

Pricing Health Care Mandate Fines

Okay - so you know how the new health care bill is supposed to charge people who voluntarily refuse health insurance (so as to encourage people to sign up)? And you know how emergency rooms have to provide care, even to the uninsured?

How about this: have insurers bid for their price to cover the costs of treating the uninsured in each state. The lowest bid gets their cost divided among the uninsured in that state. That way:
  • The cost to hospitals of emergency room care is paid, and
  • The cost to individuals of refusing health care is controlled by market forces.

    Any obvious flaws?
  • packbat: One-quarter view of the back of my head. (quarter-rear)
    2010-09-25 06:46 pm

    Quick, belated thought on book-burning:

    What is wrong with book-burning is not that a book has been set on fire - it is that the book is no longer available to be read.

    Consider a few cases:

    1. A government deems a particular book to be subversive literature and orders every copy burnt. Agents of the government seize all copies found in libraries, bookstores, or private residences and commits them to the fire. This is wrong.

    2. An ideologue arranges to purchase every copy of a rare book and burns them. This is wrong.

    3. An ideologue arranges to purchase several copies of a commonly-available book and burns them. This is not wrong.

    Apologies to everyone who got sick of the whole debacle over two weeks ago.
    packbat: One-quarter view of the back of my head. (Default)
    2010-09-13 10:26 pm

    Say Cheese!

    When you read this, you're tagged! Take a picture of yourself in your current state - no changing your clothes or quickly putting on makeup, and absolutely no photo-manipulation. Show your F-List the Real You!


    (caught this today from a post by [livejournal.com profile] ladibug21 a few days back)

    packbat: Coming into the finish line after a mile race - the announcer can be seen behind me. (running)
    2010-06-20 08:08 pm

    LJ Paid Account Expiring July 1st

    As you know, Bob, I have been switching from Livejournal to Dreamwidth as my primary social network blogging hub, due to repeated unkind behavior by the LJ overlords.

    Well, part of that is canceling my paid subscription. I will no longer give Livejournal my money, and as of July 1st that will mean that my LJ account will be reverting to some kind of basic presumably-ad-supported form. Please do not buy me a new subscription.

    Thank you for your time and trouble.
    packbat: One-quarter view of the back of my head. (quarter-rear)
    2010-04-24 10:13 pm

    99.2 °F

    I feel simultaneously terrible and 0.7 F° short.
    packbat: Wearing my custom-made hat and a smirk. (hat)
    2010-04-18 09:08 am

    FE Exam yesterday!

    For those of you who are not engineers: professional licensure in engineering is a four-step process - first, you obtain an engineering education (currently a Bachelor's degree, although I have heard a rumor that this will grow to a Master's in a decade or so); second, you take the eight-hour Fundamentals of Engineering exam to become an Engineer-In-Training; third, you obtain five years working experience in a position of responsibility; and fourth, you take the eight-hour Principles and Practice in Engineering exam to become a P.E.

    The first I completed some time ago, and the second ... well, it will be approximately 120 days before I know, but I think I did well!

    ...and then I went home and slept like a log. (After checking the Interwebs, of course.) (:
    packbat: Wearing my custom-made hat and a smirk. (hat)
    2010-04-13 08:54 pm

    Tomb of Horrors, Attempt 1

    I visited the Tomb of Horrors for the first time today!

    I think I may go back sometime, if only to see if I can make it out of the iron box with three levers - so don't tell me anything that happens next! (Or even lie about it, actually - that always makes me uncomfortable when I think I've been "spoiled".)
    packbat: One-quarter view of the back of my head. (quarter-rear)
    2010-04-04 07:21 pm

    Math trivia: give the first five digits of pi

    A warm, uplifting tale about elementary school educators.

    Go ahead and back out to the original article the above comment is on, if you like.
    packbat: Headshot looking serious and superimposed on the Gettysburg Address. (gettysburg)
    2010-03-25 08:44 am

    Politics link: What is this "governance" thing of which you speak?

    Hat-tip to [livejournal.com profile] circuit_four here: HuffPost: GOP Senators Refusing To Work Past 2PM, Invoking Obscure Rule.

    ...two things.

    One: Key Republican Senators apparently (a) don't care about doing their job, and (b) believe the Democratic Senators do, and therefore (c) are willing to enforce a work stoppage to make the Democrats do what they want. This does not reflect well on the Republicans. The first metaphor that comes to mind is if a police department decided to blockade the fire station in order to get their 'support' for changes to the city budget.

    Two: How stupid are the Senate rules, anyway? You can't make Senators actually filibuster, you can't make Senators actually work more than two hours a day ... this is not how governance happens.

    Politics is an important, valuable activity - but this ain't.
    packbat: Leaning on a chain-link fence, looking to my left (your right) with a neutral expression. (spectator)
    2010-03-24 06:59 am

    Link: "There just has to be something more, you know?"

    Academian on LessWrong talks about the apparent disconnect between our experiences and philosophical materialism. 2227 words. The author edited it down to 771 words.

    Please comment there or here if you read it - I have my own opinion, but it's not written for me.
    packbat: Coming into the finish line after a mile race - the announcer can be seen behind me. (running)
    2010-03-14 01:13 pm

    Repairs!

    My phone WiFi has been broken for some time, so I decided to break out my bike and ride to the Bethesda Apple Store.

    After a day and a half of rain.

    Brilliant, I am not.
    packbat: One-quarter view of the back of my head. (quarter-rear)
    2010-02-14 01:36 am

    I don't know why I didn't think of this earlier

    I have wondered online a number of times about how to describe pithily that state of physical and mental deterioration that results from staying up too late without sleep - the analog in many ways is being drunk (key difference: lacking sleep doesn't imbue a false confidence in your current abilities), but "sleepdrunk" is weak, and the other terms are all obscure and obsolete.

    Except they aren't - there's already a widely-used term for that state. It's called "wiped", as in "I'm sorry, I tried to push through an all-nighter, but I was so wiped by one a.m. that I just passed out."

    This has been your wiped-post of the wee hours of the morning. Carry on.
    packbat: Leaning on a chain-link fence, looking to my left (your right) with a neutral expression. (spectator)
    2010-02-10 12:46 am

    Admittedly, it is a very Applish kind of fiery crash.

    Does anyone know why, when a MacBook Core 2 Duo running 10.5.8 crashes hard - so hard that even a Vulcan nerve-pinch is ineffective - that the iTunes will keep playing until it finishes the song?
    packbat: Wearing my custom-made hat and a smirk. (hat)
    2010-02-07 08:47 pm

    Power returns

    Okay, so strictly speaking, it returned five hours ago ... but it's back!

    No heat, though. And we're still so socked in with the weekend blizzard (over 20 inches) that school's closed tomorrow. And another five inches of snow is on its way Tuesday/Wednesday.

    ...yay, electricity!