Tuesday, 9 January 2007

06-01-2006_06-30-2006

Friday, June 30, 2006

Getting Hits For The Diet
Noticing that a few visitors have been searching for terms like prostate, cancer, arteriosclerosis on the site here, and those words haven't been on the site for almost a month now. Goes to show how far behind the spidering robots can get...
Anyone looking for the diet should go to http://www.zencookbook.com/ for more information. It's very slow because it's still hosted on a slow connection but that URL will soon point to a faster hosting service and much more of a website with a lot more features.
Categories - ::/:: posted at 1:24 PM Ted
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Thursday, June 29, 2006

Must be True, Believe It Or Not.
Found on the daily Believe It Or Not release -
"In 2005, a man in Ogden, Utah, had his house cleaned after amassing 70,000 empty beer cans collected over eight years of living alone."
Wow, that's like, 23.956194387405886379192334017796 cans of beer per day, close enough to a carton a day. I wonder why he was alone for eight years then?
Categories - ::/:: posted at 12:18 PM Ted
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Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Today's Musement
Had a great Prawnheads lunch today as is our wont on a Wednesday, and as we left the restaurant we watched the malcontented workers who were protesting Howard's crap IR legislation as they marched past. Had a coffee and watched the malcontented workers who were protesting Howard's crap IR legislation as they marched back again. Not sure if they were lost or just driving the rally home, still, they had lots of policemen to ask for directions so I guess they were okay... %)
On the way back to catch the bus back to work, I was accostd by some hairy guy who quivered and trembled a lot and was smoking a cigarette outside what used to be Hoi's Kitchen. "Got a spare hotdogs?" this bloke fumbled out. He obviously was too f*cked up on whatever his particular poison is to work out that he should have been asking for the money to buy a hot dog...
I stopped to look him up and down a bit, saw that he had a pack of tailor-mades so he wasn't that broke, (and besides - come on! - hot dogs! - do you know how UNHEALTHY those fluoro things are?) and patted all my pockets carefully. Gave him a smile and said "you know, I think I must have left my last one behind" and walked off.
I'm not sure if he figured out yet that he's asking for the wrong thing, that you can't buy booze or drugs with hot dogs. Anyway maybe I should have given him a few bucks, cos when I go to the Yellow Cat stop I found out that the run had been stopped due to the marchers. Ever watch a guy with emphysema walk from the train station to east Perth? I'm sure if Mr Drugwrecked could have seen me he'd have seen the funny side. Sometimes karma sucks...
Categories - ::/:: posted at 4:06 PM Ted
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Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Here's A Thought To Not Be Sorry ABout
Just watching the ad for the zillion DVD set, you know the one, for Dad's Army. And I had the thought that they'd better hang onto those DVDs because we may be the last generation of old guys. Our grandkids will watch those shows without knowing that those old folks aren't a different species...
Categories - ::/:: posted at 8:19 PM Ted
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Here Are The Latest -
The latest on my diet book: I've got the draft to publisher-ready as I said, and there is now a website at Zen Cookbooks dot Com which is slowly getting to the stage of being useful. Read about the change at the old blog-based site, then go there for a visit.
The latest reviews: Several reviews at the food blog. Especially I'll recommend the Zanzi Pizza Bar in Southlands shopping centre, and just want to advise people that this site too will soon be moving to a more dynamic website and domain, with a LOT more reviews and interesting news.
The latest soccer results: Nope, not even gonna touch this one with a barge-pole. *sniffle*
Categories - ::/:: posted at 10:59 AM Ted
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Thursday, June 22, 2006

How To Fail Food 101
Having just researched and tested recipes for the diet book, especially the simple ones that take almost nothing to get right, it's disappointing to head to the fresh food deli in Royal St (not sure what number, somewhere around 105 I suspect, it's alongside the carpark building) and see something that looks so delicious but shows that the person making it didn't have a clue...
Stuffed capsicum (capsicum yermestas or somet similar word to the Greeks) is easy to make. They looked damn delicious sitting in the bain marie, too. Smelled damn fine as well. I've made three lots of yermista, two capsicum and one tomato, with fillings as diverse as vegetarian, lamb, and beef. And even for a culinary thrombosis like myself, they turned out delish. (culinary thrombosis? my term for a clot in the kitchen...)
So imagine my disappointment. The tasty brown on top wasn't cheesy, for example. But composed of burnt slivers of cloves, yes. Cloves? Who the holy stove rollers puts cloves in a stuffed vegetable? And no cheese on top to brown? And there was more.
As I worked my way down I realised that the rice had been cooked, and then raw vegetables thrown in on the theory that the roasting process would cook them. Bzzzzt people... Nada doing... Raw onion tastes effing awful with burnt cloves. Take it from me...
And using the same rice they use for the curries, too. Bit of a slapdash attitude all around.
Sorry - I know they are "only a deli" but fark me folks, the word "deli" is a contraction of delicatessen, which is translated from the Germna phrase for "Fine Foods" - I am really disappointed. Not the first time I've bought crap food there thinking they knew what they were doing, seems that some people just shouldn't try to do food...
Categories - ::/:: Edited on: Thursday, June 22, 2006 1:39 PMposted at 1:33 PM Ted
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Out of 205 FIFA countries
First, let me say that Flickr r0xx0rs. Some great pictures of the World Cup there. Notice we're the ones sitting in that pool of sunshine? Trust us Aussies...
I never knew there were 205 FIFA countries, either. But now I do, and I know who the base of the ladder consists of... hehehe Apparently we're at least 31 - 0 better than some of those. Good effort so far, getting in amongst the elite as we have!
Categories - ::/:: posted at 9:07 AM Ted
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Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Ray Kurzweil. Future. Ist
This makes a good read. Lots of the same ideas I hawked around a few years ago when they were new and gee whiz ideas, but still around seemingly. Just a few things to get fired up on.
RK: Every one of the speakers except for Bill Joy and myself used the last 50 years as a model for the next 50 years. But that is demonstrably wrong. According to my models, the paradigm shift rate (roughly the rate of technical progress) is doubling every decade, so we will see about 32 times more progress in the next 50 years than the last.
Me: Given that earlier discussion in this article impinged on AI and the speed of development of an AI or a simulacrum of the human mind, let's see now, hummm ...
RK: We get a very different answer if we consider the apparent complexity of the brain versus the complexity of its design. The amount of information represented in a mature brain is thousands of trillions of bytes, which is a lot of complexity. But the design is a billion times simpler. How do we know that? The design is in the genome and with lossless data compression the genome only has 30 to 100 million bytes of information. Moreover, we're showing that we can create mathematical models and simulations of brain regions for which we have data from high resolution scans and other forms of reverse engineering. There is a simulation of 12 regions of the auditory cortex and the cerebellum, which comprises more than half the neurons in the brain. I make the case in chapter 4 of Singularity is near that we will have the models and simulations of all several hundred regions within about 20 years.
Me: "The amount of information represented in a mature brain is thousands of trillions of bytes, which is a lot of complexity. Not it's not, Any two IDE or SATA drives today can add up to a terabyte, so two thousand hard drives will hold that much data already. Given Moore's Law we will have 100Tb drives by the end of 2007/early 2008. Two hundred drives would hold all our data, and probably better than we do... Also, memory has been shown to be function of impact - either a large single impact or just repeating something over and over. And our brains therefore do some thing that hard drives don't tend to do. They forget things, That means that out of that thousand trillion bytes in our memory, probably only two out of the thousand trillion bits of data are current. The only way to maintain a memory is to re-experience it often,
Sory - got toooooAaaaww goooaa-AAww sleep... Willfinish this when not so tired,...
Categories - ::/:: posted at 11:56 PM Ted
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Catch 22 of the Publishing World
So I have the publisher's draft of the diet book ready. That's actually quite exciting for me because it means it's ready to hand to some publisher, and see what they think.
Kewlness. The problem is that the publisher that would really benefit from this, is also the most like the traditional "up yours" publishng houses of the last century. Penguin Books really are the most ignorant pack you'll ever come across.
Why would they benefit most? Well, because I refer to one of their other diet books a lot in mine. They would drive up a second wave of sales on that book as well. Bear this in mind - I wouldn't get a cent out of the sales of that other book but Penguin would get rich a second time, might even have to go to a 2nd edition of that other book.
So I went to their site with a really good feeling. "The xxxxx (insert any section) section is not accepting unsolicited manusacripts at this time. To get published, see our "Getting Published With Penguin" page." That section basically says "The xxxxx (insert any section) section is not accepting unsolicited manusacripts at this time." So you go to the section that says "I read your "Getting Published With Penguin" page - now what?" and the response is "To get published, see our "Getting Published With Penguin" page. Have you read the "Getting Published With Penguin" page yet?"
And that's not even scratching the surface of the deliberate Catch-22ism. I still think they should publish this book, so I phoned their head office in Australia. Conversations goes a bit like this:
"... sorry we don't give out that information."
"Okay - but what does one do to be solicited to provide a manuscript?'
"Sorry but we don;t actually do that."
"So how does a writer get a book to you for consideration?"
"We don't actually do that, it's best if you go to an agent, saves a lot of time."
"Okay - which agents do you accept previewed subsmiisions from?"
"I'm sorry we don't actually give out that information..."
As it is, I'm going to be spending the next week writing their other book right out of mine, and to hell with Penguin Books.
I've actually got two other publishers each of whom have asked for a synopsis and possibly sample chapter so I'm not exactly starving for choice. I just wish the traditional upright forthright and honourable (and hidebound!) publishers would take a deep breath and take the plunge and get into at least the 20th Century...
Categories - ::/:: posted at 10:26 AM Ted
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Saturday, June 17, 2006

Sneaky Manufacturers...
I've just realised, with something between admiration and horror, that food manufacturers in Australia (a bit like petrol companies actually, now that I come to think of it) must be piddling themselves laughing at having pulled another fast one over our stupid useless totally ineffective Government.
First the food manufacturers. Were you tuned in a while back when our stupid useless totally ineffective Government required that manufacturers of foods must put a "nutritional information" panel on all products? Well, it's happened, anyway.
So now I can pick up a jar of fruit and read the nutritional "information" on the back label - 0.2g protein per 100g, for example. And the sugar, 17g per 100g. But you know what? Call me an oldtimer sentimental fool but I remember that the packaging had a list of ingredients on it once...
So now while I know that the tinnede pears have 0.2g protein, I'm not sure if that's composed of pickled rat that fell in the vat, or from the fruit, or was added as lecithin E322 from some chemical plant, or what. If I want to know if they used E221 sodium sulphite in the process because I'm allergic to it well tough shit apparently. Worried if they are using E951 Aspartame as a sweetener? Sorry, can't tell, all we have to tell you about are the "sugars" in the product...
Since all our products are now labelled like that, I have to assume that the manufacturers have discovered a loophole left there by our stupid useless totally ineffective Government. Or maybe our stupid useless totally ineffective Government left the loophole because it wants us all to be slowly building up our toxin levels and getting unhealthier and unhealthier, who knows what they want?
They've proven they can't rein in our petrol prices, they can't stop banks screwing us over by fleecing "fee for deducting other fee fees" from our account, and now, our stupid useless totally ineffective Government has proven that even a bottling plant CEO is smarter faster more mobile and less stupid useless and totally ineffective than they are.
Am I sounding a bit harsh on our stupid useless totally ineffective Government? I'm sorry, but when I realise that my taxes are paying for these tossers to totally stuff things up and make it possible for said bottling plant CEO to sell me pondscum in a jar and then my stupid useless totally ineffective Government takes a percentage of the price of that as GST so that they can continue to pay someone to mess with my wellbeing and that of my family and friends by being stupid useless and totally ineffective, I get a little bit anti our stupid useless totally ineffective Government...
Resign John Howard and let someone with a backbone run the country for a while! Bring back Bob Hawke! At least a beer in his time was made of beer not "33g/100g sugars 22g/100g carbohydrates 17g/100g proteins!"
Categories - ::/:: posted at 4:25 PM Ted
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So does this mean He doesn't, then?
This could be a problem for the churches:
THIS IS ONLY A TEST: "The man shouted 'God will save me, if he exists', lowered himself by a rope into the enclosure, took his shoes off and went up to the lions," confirms a zoo official in Kiev, Ukraine. The lion enclosure is on an isolated "animal island", and the zoo was "packed" with visitors. "A lioness went straight for him," the official continued, "knocked him down and severed his carotid artery." The man, who was not named, was killed almost instantly. (Reuters)
I mean, if God exists then surely he should do something to prove that he does? And therefore, the fact that nothing happened means that He doesn't?
It seems to me the churches now have a difficult choice to make - to admit that their teaching of blind faith in God to look after His flock is not based on proveable fact in any way, or else to denounce one of their flock as mentally unstable and not able to grasp the concepts which the church teaches. And that implies that their teachings may in fact cause mental instability and therefore renders a faithful follower incapable of discriminating between truth and fiction, certainly in the area of faith and religion. And since all the church laiety are by definition of the faithful...
I'd love to hear a good answer to why that happened, I really would...
Categories - ::/:: posted at 12:19 PM Ted
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Friday, June 16, 2006

Terminator Precursor
Just watched Volvo excavators being made, and they are definitely nice pieces of machinery, makes me want to own one just for the toy value. These things are half produced on a robotic assembly line, half by hand and crane, and they are versatile. The boom can carry any of the different tools, and the master control block for the hydraulic is actually flown by wire, i.e. a computer accepts your joystick signals and adjusts the MCB spindles to provide hydraulic pressure as required.
It was the offhand way that the announcer said that the MCB AI decides how much oil goes where that started me thinking. Add another computer running a better AI and add a few smaller booms holding cameras and small manipulators and you could already turn these things loose on rescue dig sites, waste dump management, or even building site preparation and levelling, without an operator.
Take away the large operator cab and the machines could fit into smaller spaces to operate. If they wanted to...
But seriously - these machines (and all those cute pastel coloured pocket excavators you see these days) can be made pretty cheaply, and probably cheaply enough that any interested High School or University should be able to get hold of one or two to design robots on. These are an ideal platform, the hydraulics and motor systems are already there, it just needs some sensors and cameras added and a controller with a bit of smart programming.
Skynet became aware in 2007...
Categories - ::/:: Edited on: Friday, June 16, 2006 1:11 AMposted at 1:07 AM Ted
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Monday, June 12, 2006

Time To Spay Or Pay In WA?
Just saw a snippet online which apparently makes Rhode Island the first state in the USA which requires cat owners to spay a cat over six months old, by law. Anyone wanting to breed their cat pays a $100 breeder's license. Anyone not spaying nor paying will face fines of $75 per month, so they would end up paying anyway...
I dropped off one unwanted cat at the Cat Haven here, and I felt bad about that because I know she was not the kind of cat that finds a home. But she was abandoned by a previous tenant of the house I was renting at the time and she'd had a kindle of kits and messed up the house so - we kept two of the kittens, gave the others to the local pet shop (they all found homes) but they wouldn't take the old tortoiseshell and so I took her to the Cat Haven with a $50 donation and a stock of cat food and asked that they give her every chance to find a home...
It was really heartbreaking, because if the previous tenant had cared about the cat, they would have spayed her. And once you've spent the spaying fee, you'd be less inclined to abandon the cat. And even if you did, the person after you might look more kindly on keeping the cat.
The kittens? She was a rare ginger she-cat and the pet shop said they would take any kittens from her, the other was her brother Fwuffeeee. We had Fwuffeeee fixed almost immediately, and let Missy have two litters of kittens, then had her spayed as well. And we kept two of those kittens, also a sister and brother, and had those spayed. Our cats live harmoniously, there are fewer fights with neighbouring cats (most of whom are neutered as well) and the only thing they do which is still antisocial is to manage to catch the occasional bird. But that's offset by the number of rats and mice they hunt down out of the neighbourhood palm trees.
So you could say I'm a "Spay Or Pay" evangelist. It means that the Cat Haven would be able to close its doors on the grisliest part of their establishment, and less feral cats causing problems in the bush.
(Oh and to the people who want to say that cats aren't a "native" species and should all be eradicated, I say tough shit, just deal. I get so tired of all those "after the fact" ecosystem preachers and activist tosspots. We've brought dogs and bunnies and foxes and cane toads and tilapia and a huge range of insect pests and horses and donkeys and camels and goats and - the worst pillagers of the Australian bush - sheep and cattle into this place. We've cut down so much bushland that our farms are now suffering the rise of salinity and we've replaced it with wheat and barley and lupins and fruit and nut trees. You can pretty much face the fact that if we go to Mars and terraform it we won't be stressing over any local bacteria we wipe out by introducing food and companionship animals to there. It's what we humans do, for better or for worse. Start by eradicating yourself if you're so worried...)
Categories - ::/:: Edited on: Monday, June 12, 2006 9:17 AMposted at 9:11 AM Ted
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Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Eddie The Axe
Read in The West Australian today that Eddie's finally turned management. Reckons he can easily trim 86 news-related jobs at his new "nimble" Nine network. (He really said nimble in the article, he really did.) All I can say is, thank your lucky stars news people here in STW-9 here in Perth that you're not part of Network Nine.
Eddie be nimble, Eddie be quick,
Eddie give 86 people the flick...
Categories - ::/:: posted at 9:26 PM Ted
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