Archive for March, 2008

Dogs

The highlights of the chart of the most downloaded Classic Rock tracks on Amazon.com:

  • Number 01: The Wall by Pink Floyd. Go on, listen to them on your stupid iPod Shuffle, mixing Vera Lynn with One of My Turns with In the Flesh, when what you really wanted was Another Brick. And that’s if you put nothing but The Wall on your iPod, but you probably put 5000 other songs there, so you get those songs in between others, which have totally nothing to do with The Wall. Congratulations—you are an iAsshole. Of course, you could also listen to it in your stupid Windows Media Player, which is very helpful at showing you where The Happiest Days of Our Lives ends and Another Brick part II begins. If you don’t understand what i mean, you are lucky.
  • Number 02: Pop Up by Yelle. What by what?
  • Number 10: Dark Side of the Moon by Pink Floyd ($7.99); Number 23: Dark Side of the Moon (2003 Remaster) by Pink Floyd ($8.99). If you downloaded number 10, see what i wrote above about The Wall. If you downloaded number 23 and payed one dollar more for it, the you are a truly unbelievable idiot, because you paid extra for an album that was in the first place one of the most meticulously recorded pieces of music ever, and in 2003 was remastered for playing on special high definition players, and then was converted to a lossy format, which pretty much throws all that sound quality out the window. But you are a part of a rather big group, because 23 is still a pretty high ranking. A study should be conducted on this group, trying to understand—what the fuck causes people to do such stupid things. It will surely win an Ig Nobel.
  • Number 19: Communism Is Fascism by Undercover Slut. See number 02.
  • Number 39: August & Everything After by Counting Crows. Classic Rock, anyone?
  • Number 42: 1984 by Van Halen. I ain’t the worst that you’ve seen. Oh can’t you see what I mean? Might as well jump. Jump! Go ahead, jump. Jump!

Who wept at the romance of the streets with their pushcarts full of onions and bad music,
Who thought they were growing old and cried,
Who sang out of their windows in despair,
Who vanished into nowhere Zen New Jersey,
Who conversed about America and Eternity, a hopeless task.

Pigs (Two Different Ones)

There was a competition of sculptors.

The sculptors sat in a backstage room and received assignments from the public, performed them as quickly and beautifully as they could and were scored in both categories.

One of the assignments was to create a sculpture of a pig from soft clay. One young sculptor created a big beautiful sculpture of a boar very quickly, but it was heavy, so he asked the stage worker to bring the sculpture to the stage.

— “I have bad experience with this”, said the stage worker, “If I drag it to the stage, the soft clay will lose its form before i get to the stage. Are you sure you want to do this?”

— “Yes, of course! Do it already!”

The stage worker did as the sculptor asked. The beautiful statue of a pig lost its form completely until he got to the stage. The sculptor was booed and lost all the points.

Another sculptor saw what happened and decided to avoid it. He created a small statue of piglet, put it on a tray and carried it to the stage himself. The statue kept its form, but it was so beautiful, that the piglet became alive and ran away.

Goats

Two years ago there were Knesset elections in Israel.

5,014,622 had the right to vote.

3,137,064 cast a vote.

690,901 voted for the Kadima party, more than for any other party. As usual, Kadima was designated as the ruling party by the president, because that was the people’s choice.

No, it wasn’t.

1,877,558 didn’t vote for anyone. That’s more than twice as much as what Kadima got.

Kadima got 22% of the actual voters and 13.78% of eligible voters.

Apparently, 13.78% is a majority.

Cats on the Wing 1

“Nini doesn’t go into the bedroom when we’re not home”.

Nini in Hadar’s Physics binder

Hadar, who has a Master’s degree in physics, has solved Schrödinger’s cat paradox.

Collegiate

My number one favorite dictionary of all time is Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate. I often read it for fun. I don’t think that there is a single page in it that i have never opened. Its consistency is uncompromising. Its completeness and attention to detail are remarkable. Its definitions are so precise, that you could take nearly any word in an English text, replace it with the definition from Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate, and the meaning of the text would remain virtually intact.

But! Apparently i didn’t know how to pronounce the word “Collegiate” correctly. I though that it’s \ˈkä-lē-jət\, like “college” – \ˈkä-lij\. Apparently it’s \kə-ˈlē-jət\.

Damn it.


(N.B. In this entry i used M-W’s own pronunciation symbols and not IPA.)

Lliure

One of the places in which the Catalan presence is very strong is Free Software. Nearly every project and website related to Free Software has at least a partial version in Catalan – GNU.org, Wikipedia, WordPress, Mozilla, 7-zip and countless others. There’s a also version of free-culture.cc in Catalan – culturalliure.cat, where two hours of (pretty good) Catalan music can be downloaded under Free licences; that site is even somehow indirectly sponsored by the Generalitat – the government of Catalonia.

So i was very disappointed to find out that the website of Ramon Llull Institute doesn’t work in Mozilla. I tried to register for Catalan certification examination there, and it didn’t work; i’m almost sure that the website was programmed for Microsoft Internet Explorer only. I sent them a notice:

Hola,

Voldria inscriure’m a l’examen de català. Vaig anar a https://www.certificats.llull.com/Llull2/iniForm.jsp , vaig escriure meu número de identificació, vaig fer clic al continueu, i llavors va aparèixer pàgina buida amb res tret de títol “certificats de llengua catalana”. Potser aquest web no treballar bé en Mozilla Firefox, peró a meu ordinador tinc només Linux amb Mozilla Firefox i no puc provar-ho amb altres navegadors. Podeu ajudar-me? Gràcies.

I don’t think that a translation is really necessary. (And i’m sorry if i made any mistakes.)



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