Category: Miscellaneous

  • Ending the Tyranny of Biannual Time Changes

    Like most people, I hate changing the clocks twice a year, to say nothing of having to get up an hour early for Daylight Saving Time. So naturally my ears perked up when I heard about Senate bill 623, which would make Daylight Saving Time permanent. We’re still switching to DST tomorrow, but if this […]

  • Staying on Top of the Wave

    I used to work for a computer researcher who didn’t actually use computers. Academics can sometimes be quirky, you know? He just had ~/.forward set up to print every message (on paper) as it came in. One problem with this setup was that people would send him résumés as PostScript (and later PDF) attachments. The […]

  • Buying Lunch with Bitcoin?

    This weekend, I had occasion to eat at a food truck that had this intriguing sign in the window: This intrigued me, because the way I understand it, it takes 10-20 minutes for Bitcoin transactions to go through. That’s why it doesn’t work everyday purchases like, for instance, lunch at a food truck. I asked […]

  • Odd Plurals

    We all know about irregular plurals like “mother-in-law” → “mothers-in-law”, “attorney general” → “attorneys general”. I just ran across another one, courtesy of a music podcast. One of the hosts was saying that there are about 11,000 people who listen to the show, but only 100 or so write in or like it on social […]

  • Kind Of

    Do you remember, some years ago, some people had a habit of using “literally” not in the dictionary sense, but for emphasis, as in “The boss is literally breathing down my neck”? In recent months, I’ve noticed people using “sort of” and “kind of” not to mean “more or less” or “in a way”, but […]

  • “If You Don’t Agree, Unfriend Me”

    I’ve heard sentences of the form “If you [don’t agree with the blindingly-obvious point that I just made], unfriend me” a lot lately. And while I sympathize with the sentiment, I have to disagree with the tactic. The message is, if you can’t even agree that women should control their bodies / gay people should […]

  • A Mother’s Day Sermon

    I ran across “Mother and Grandmother”, a Mother’s Day sermon by one Edwin Whitney Bishop from May 14, 1911, about a hundred years ago, and was curious to see what it might say. The first surprise came in the first sentence: A VERY decided attempt is being made in many quarters to have this second Sunday in […]

  • Would You Get Off the Plane?

    There’s an old joke about an instructor who asks, “if you were on a plane, and found out that the inflight systems were controlled by a beta version of software written by your team, would you get off the plane?” Most of the students pale and say yes. One person says, “No. If it were […]

  • Thanksgiving Pho

    Yesterday, around dinner time, we started digging through the Thanksgiving leftovers to see what looked good. M wanted soup. Great. Except that we didn’t have enough noodles for a decent soup, but we did have maifun rice noodles, so we used that instead. Basically, J combined the noodles with leftover turkey, plus carrots, onions, celery, […]

  • Thanksgiving Rules

    This year, I’m hosting Thanksgiving. Hooray! I’m a grownup! I’m looking forward to it. There are, however, some rules: Smoking: As the saying goes, there is no heaven or hell; just smoking and non-smoking. To that end, there will be two designated smoking areas, one out front and one on the patio out back (but […]