Quoting Thomas Jefferson

6:16 pm - Jason G. - Quotes

I predict future happiness for Americans if they can prevent the government from wasting the labors of the people under the pretense of taking care of them.


Hybrids Currently Less Energy-Efficient than Hummers

9:27 pm - Jason G. - Humor, Politics, Technology

Saw this over at TreeHugger:

Treehugger: Hybrids Currently Less Energy-Efficient than Hummers

They looked at the total cost of production as well as the ongoing cost of use. Guess what, it’s more expensive (energy wise) to construct a Prius. Of course there’s a catch, but you can read the article for that…

Hezbollah Fighting from Suburbs

2:42 pm - Jason G. - Politics, Rant

Take a look at this article by the Australian Herald Sun (found at digg.com). Hezbollah is fighting their side of the war from the suburbs. All the outcry about the war should keep this in mind — Hezbollah doesn’t care about making targets out of civilians on their own side. They want the Israelis to strike at them and then cry out in the international media about how Israel is attacking civilian areas.

This is yet another reminder that Hezbollah is in fact a terrorist organization. Israel is not at war with Lebanon, they’re at war with the terrorists who are occupying Lebanon. As such, I certainly understand why they feel the need to fight them. Is it justified? I’m not sure, but we do need to remember that Hezbollah embodies a culture of violence and has very little values for human life (on their side or on their enemies’ side).


Where Did All the Engineers Go?

12:03 pm - Jason G. - Politics, Technology

I’ve certainly read a lot about how America will quickly be subsumed by the vast number of Indian and Chinese knowledge workers… Quit incorrect, Fuqua researchers have found. There are quite a few problems with the numbers being bandied about, in fact most of them are just plain wrong. Here’s a quote:

One would expect that the numbers used in such debate would be defensible and grounded. Yet researchers at Duke University have determined that some of the most cited statistics on engineering graduates are inaccurate. Statistics that say the U.S. is producing 70,000 engineers a year vs. 350,000 from India and 600,000 from China aren’t valid, the Duke team says.

We found that the U.S. was graduating 222,335 engineers, vs. 215,000 from India.

You can read more in the Business Week article or from the original research at Duke.


Turning off Windows XP Services

1:38 pm - Jason G. - Technology

Go here and turn off all the services you don’t need.


Monopoly ditches cash, goes plastic

9:07 am - Jason G. - Humor, Technology

Gotta love the progress of credit cards, and the programming of credit culture into our games and entertainment. (Engadget)


Amazon vs. Audible – Who Can Charge You More?

9:42 am - Jason G. - Books, Rant

I just looked at a book on Amazon.com and noticed that it had an “audio download” version available for $9. When I clicked on the link, the price of the audio download jumped to $19.95?!?! What up with that?

Ahhh… the curse of e-commerce partnerships. I am a subscriber to Audible and was currently logged in. If I weren’t logged in, I would see the $9 price. But, since I dutifully give Audible money every month as part of my subscription, I am subjected to a higher price.

Nice job Audible and Amazon. You both appear shady as hell when you pull stunts like this.


Apocalypse Now

12:31 pm - Jason G. - Quotes

One of the best scenes of dialog from the powerful film Apocalypse Now:

[napalm falling in the distance]

You smell that?
Do you smell that?
Napalm son.
Nothing else in the world smells like that.

I love the smell of napalm in the morning.

You know, one time we had a hill bombed, for twelve hours. and when it was over, I walked up. We didn’t find one of ’em, not one stinking dink body. That smell… you know, that gasoline smell… the whole hill… smelled like…


Someday this war’s gonna end.


Waste to Energy

10:28 am - Jason G. - Commentary

Just read this interesting piece on Waste-to-Energy over at the Rude Awakening. They profile a company called Covanta who have a pretty good business converting trash to energy.

Some quotes:

The Environmental Protection Agency has declared that the
waste-to energy process has “less environmental impact than
almost any other source of electricity.” A combination of
strict regulations and mature technology have made waste-
to-energy plants both green and efficient.

The United States turns roughly 12?15% of its solid waste
into electricity each year ? that’s more than 100,000 tons
per day ? and generates enough energy to serve 2.8 million


On AJAX and Hype

10:37 pm - Jason G. - Commentary

Found this amusing but poigniant comment:

Steven, a young web wiz, has just celebrated his bar mitzvah. He received a dozen gifts and must write a dozen thank-you notes. Being webbish, he creates an on-line ?Thank-You Note Generator.? Steven shows the site to his friends, who show it to their friends, and soon the site is getting traffic from recipients of all sorts of gifts, not just bar mitzvah stuff.

If Steven created the site with CGI and Perl and used tables for layout, this is the story of a boy who made a website for his own amusement, perhaps gaining social points in the process. He might even contribute to a SXSW Interactive panel.

But if Steven used AJAX and Ruby on Rails, Yahoo will pay millions and Tim O?Reilly will beg him to keynote.

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