November 30, 2002

Bits and Pieces

~ Quote for the day ~
What humbugs we are, who pretend to live for Beauty, and never see the Dawn!
~ Logan Pearsall Smith ~

*** Pascale goes out on a limb, in a most even handed way, acknowledging that sometimes our enemies can tell us things our 'friends' won't. Even so, the hawks of the blogging world seem to see any admission of shortcomings on the part of our countries' policies or leaders as 'capitulation to the enemy'. To thine own self be true...

[...] Are we hypocrites? Do we tolerate in our friends and allies things we excoriate in our enemies (ignoring UN Resolutions, weapons of mass distruction... )? Yes. We have committed serious crimes in the past, and no doubt some of what we do now will be also judged unfavorably by history. We are vulgar, we are commercial, we are arrogant, and exploiting what can be exploited is all in a day's work for us. We are far from a perfect society, and at present our increasing paranoia is making us increasingly less perfect.
*** And from Peter's Hip Pocket, by way of Rebecca Blood, the question: how much information is enough, and how much of it is appropriately 'filtered'?
Rebecca Blood: "I think that at some point, turning off information is going to be a huge luxury. But it's clear that a shift has occurred. The game is no longer about access to information, it's about access to reliable, pertinent information. Filters will become more and more important. And, at some point, people will start trying to identify what level of information is optimal. My hunch is that there is a rate at which even useful information moves into diminishing returns. At a certain point, the man who knows less is better equipped to make a good decision."

*** And, found via link from Pascale, another wide-ranging smart weblog from Vancouver,, comes this techno-tale of instant Rosetta Stone interpretation.

Cracking the ancient code of hieroglyphics was once considered one of the greatest feats of cryptology. But thanks to a group of academics from Scotland the secrets of the Pharaohs are set to be revealed in a matter of seconds.

[...] A digital photo of a hieroglyph can be taken with a mobile phone, sent to a computer and translated into English in seconds.

Finally, in researching a Floyd history topic, I ran across this better than usual local cycling piece. It includes some local history, some pictures of 'town' (not very flattering) and the Dry Goods place that was about a mile from our first Floyd Home on the Parkway. This bike trip follows a good bit of our route from Goose Creek to Floyd, on those big occasions when we go to 'town'.

Posted by fred1st at November 30, 2002 05:53 AM

Fred, I liked the cycling piece. The main street in Floyd is much more impressive than the main street in Atalissa, IA.

I wonder, though, at the reporter's use of "charming." What the heck is "charming" anyway? What does it reveal about his expectations?

You always give me much to ponder and for that I am thankful. All the best!

Posted by: Deb at November 30, 2002 10:35 AM

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