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Giza aka Douglas Muth's LiveJournal
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19th-Jul-2009 03:35 pm - I have a reading problem
Leopard White Mage
I went to see the movie Moon yesterday with some local furries (alsaihn, Turtyl, desteredra, and finnishfox), and if you like science fiction, you should see it too! I can't say too much without giving things away, but the movie explores a scenario which could happen in the near future.

After the movie, we wandered around Bryn Mawr and visited the local Borders, where I picked up a few things:

This was partly because I was running out of things to read, and partly because I wanted to say "screw you" to Amazon's online presence. For those who haven't heard about the current controversy with the Kindle, Amazon recently took it upon themselves to remove purchased content from the customers' Kindles. There was no warning or announcement, just *poof*, and peoples' purchases disappeared.

While customers were refunded their money, that's little consolation for someone who might have been halfway through reading the book in question. Furthermore, I find this sort of unilateral action on Amazon's part to be very disturbing. It would be like if Borders employees were to walk into my apartment and remove the books I just purchased. It's one of the reasons why I feel DRM on "purchases" is illegal. ("rentals" are another story) Anyway...

Some folks might find my purchase of books on Calculus and Physics to be surprising, but that's because my background in higher math is kinda weak. The furthest I went in school was pre-Calculus in the 12th grade. Part of the problem is that during that period of my life, I had a real attitude problem and didn't try very hard in school. If I wasn't going to use something in real life, I didn't see the point of trying to learn it.

Recently, I was having that discussion with a colleague at work, and he pointed out to me that not knowing calculus can still be a problem, because if I don't know something, I won't know when it's a skill that I might need to solve a real life problem. So I figured it can't hurt to buy this book and try to educate myself a little more about that particular field.
Leopard White Mage
For the crowd that used to read "Choose Your Own Adventure" books in years past, the series has finally made its way to the DVDs. The first book to be made into a DVD is The Abominable Snowman, based on the original action/adventure Choose Your Own Adventure book of the same name by R.A. Montgomery.

The story starts out with the three main characters, Benjamin, Crista, and Marco who travel to the Himalayas to find their Uncle Rudy has turned up missing while searching for the mythical Yetis. I can't go into much more of the plot without giving anything away, because at every key point, the viewer is presented with a choice, the same as in the original book series. The choices you make determine what direction the story takes and how it ends. There are 11 possible endings in all. When the end of a particular branch has been reached, you are given the opportunity to work your way backwards through each choice you made and choose new paths.

The intended audience for this DVD is the 11-15 year old group. However, any adult who enjoyed the original books as a child will probably also like the DVD. The DVD also includes some bonus features, such as 28-minute documentary about Nepal that as an adult I found rather educational.

To learn more about the DVD, see clips from it, or purchase a copy, their website can be found at
18th-Jul-2004 11:47 pm - PowerBooks and Fahrenheit 9/11
Leopard White Mage
  • I've decided that I'm going to get a PowerBook as my next machine. Between seeing justincheetah's and reading more about the PowerBook tech specs, and I'm getting more and more impressed with the thought that Apple has put into their products.

    At this point, I've pretty much narrowed it down to a 15" 1.5 Ghz G4 PowerBook with SuperDrive, getting a 512 MB stick of RAM in it, buying an additional 512 MB stick from someplace else, buying AppleCare, and possibly buying the JBL "Creature" speakers that I saw at the Apple Store tonight. Probably a printer, too. That should keep me in the technology game for the next few years, and hopefully make the new machine be an investment in my career.
  • Earlier this week, I bought a network card for my current machine (P3-450) and got that working. I was surprised that 10/100 cards go for $10 or so these days. And Linux had no problems seeing the card, either. :-)
  • Earlier today, I also picked up a WRT54G router from Linksys. This router can do a number of things for me which include: 1) Playing the part of a 100 BaseT switch, 2) doing DHCP and NAT for a Broadband connection, and 3) Acting as a wireless access point. #1 was easy enough to make work, and #3 is working (and locked down) thanks to jouva's help. #2 will be working fully as soon as my DSL circuit is installed. I ordered DSL last week and have to wait 10 business days for the shit eaters formerly known as Verizon Verizon to flip a switch in their CO.
  • Finally, I got the chance to see Fahrenheit 9/11 over this weekend. It wasn't as graphic as I thought it would be, and I found it to be quite educational. It pointed out the sort of things that the American media didn't cover. Like... how the Bush Family has financial ties with the Bin Ladens and that Osama isn't quite that estranged from them after all. It also covered some nasty things such as the civil liberty-sucking PATRIOT act, and that very few members of Congress actually read this horrible thing that was signed into law.

    So yeah, I think Fahrenheit 9/11 is definitely worth seeing. You might not agree with all it, but you might find some parts educational, or at least humorous.
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