08 August 2003

I didn't vote for Al Gore, and I'm just as glad that he's not running again. Still, his speech on secrecy and checks and balances is worth reading.

Posted 09:51 AM

07 August 2003

1050 words yesterday, 167,220 since January 1.

Also, there's a brief overview of chip packaging up at ThinFilmWiki:ChipPackaging. Comments and additions welcome.

Posted 12:08 PM

Remember all those poor slobs who couldn't get VC money during the boom? It turns out lots of them are still around, and they're doing pretty well.

Posted 11:42 AM

06 August 2003

4155 words since August 1, 166,170 since January 1.

Posted 08:18 PM

Following up on yesterday's item, Gene Robinson has been cleared of eleventh hour misconduct allegations, and confirmed as an Episcopal bishop.

Posted 08:14 PM

From the Barnum files, Wired has actually found people who will admit they bought products from a spammer. No, the products didn't work.

Posted 12:19 PM

05 August 2003

Chi Mei Optoelectronics has opened a fifth-generation flat panel factory in southern Taiwan. Fifth-generation motherglass measures 1.1m x 1.3m, large enough for 12 17-inch displays.

Posted 05:11 PM

In this article, the Boston Globe discusses allegations that Gene Robinson, currently standing for election as the first openly gay bishop in the US Episcopal church, engages in a variety of inappropriate behavior.

Among other things, conservative web-journalist David Virtue claims, ''Robinson's affirmation and approval of OUTRIGHT is inconsistent with his calling as a Bishop of the Episcopal Church'' because the organization's website ''rather than leading young people to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ . . . offers adolescents a church-affirmed invitation to illegal, immoral, and perverse sex.'' The perverse sex is (or was, until the article ran) supposedly on a web page six links away from Outright's.

Here's the letter I wrote to the Globe in response:

Let me get this straight. Gene Robinson is unfit to be an Episcopal bishop because an organization he founded (but is no longer associated with) is only six links away from a pornography site? That has got to be the most ridiculous attempt at a smear campaign that I've ever seen!

Some simple mathematics. Suppose I link to ten sites. (A tiny number for a functioning web page.) Suppose each of those links to ten sites. That's 100 links. If each of *those* links to ten sites, that's 1000 links. By the time you get six links away from my site, you're up to 10^6, or one million sites. If each site in the chain has 100 links, a more reasonable number, then by the time you get six links away you have 100^6, or one *trillion* sites, more than the entire web. It's utterly ridiculous to expect me to review all of the sites that lie "only" six links away from mine. Clearly Mr. Virtue was looking very hard for a way to discredit Rev. Robinson.

Of course anyone who wants to could play this same game with Virtuosity, David Virtue's site. Let's take his "friends" page as the first link, since those are all sites he could be assumed to support: -- Only four links away, and we find a Hinduist site that discusses the need to purify Vedic culture in terms chillingly reminiscent of Nazism. Is David Virtue a closet Hindu nationalist?

Probably not. But if I kept going for two more links, who knows what I might find??? Those who live in glass houses really shouldn't be quite so eager to throw stones.

Posted 01:06 PM

04 August 2003

A timely reminder from the Miami Herald. Have you backed up your hard drive lately?

Posted 11:33 AM

03 August 2003

Analysts pushed securities that they didn't believe in, in order to secure investment banking business for their firms. Sound familiar? In the stock market, that sort of thing led to the dot com collapse. In the bond market, it caused Argentina's default.

"The worst period is when financial markets have the most liquidity," Argentina's economy minister Lavagna said. "This is when countries make the worst mistakes. That is certainly the case in Argentina."

Posted 04:26 PM


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