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Journal Journal: I guess New Orleans really is dead 4

Just washed away and scattered. Not that it matters now, but we all know it didn't have to happen. All the technical issues were trivial. Application is left wanting. I can only lament that the same people responsible continue to be rewarded and offered one chance after the other to do more of the same to whoever remains.

It's not New Orleans anymore. It's Orleans *Coffee Crystals*. They promise they won't know the difference. Well, maybe the tourists won't...

User Journal

Journal Journal: Gimpy text and Mars

I use the Gnu Image Manipulation Program (GIMP) to design book covers. It's an excellent free open source program that has three weaknesses -- its menu structure is completely illogical (but can be gotten used to), I can't find a full spectrum palette, and its text handling is so poor as to be useless.

I have a workaround for the bad text. Open a word processor that will output a PDF file, choose your typeface and size, choose the text's color and write the text. Save it as a PDF and GIMP will open it as an image in as high a resolution you need. Just make the background transparent, situate it over your graphic, and merge the layers.

Speaking of books, I made a Mars, Ho! YouTube video. Yes, there is a pussy in it.

User Journal

Journal Journal: MSS Code Factory 2.3.12994 Service Pack 1

This release refactors and rearchitects the core objects of the system using diamond inheritance of the interfaces so that you can cast between the defining schema names for the objects and the current project's schema names. All of the methods of the new interfaces rely on the defining schema names, but you can safely cast the returned objects to your current schema names.

The goal of this effort was to make it easier to write custom GUI components that rely on the defining schema names for object interfaces, so that you should be able to just reference the jars that provide those custom GUI components, wire them to your projects GUI factories, and automatically use the customized screen components.

It isn't perfect, but it's the best I could do to address what I saw as a glaring flaw with the code base. Of course, the downside is that you may have to do more typecasting in some of your code. There are always trade-offs when designing an architecture.

Another benefit of the new approach is that it is made very clear that you are using the objects and interfaces from a referenced schema/project, an issue which was concerning me as some people might have taken the approach of ignoring the license requirements of the referenced schemas because the code gets re-manufactured into their project. Now there is a clear delineation between the referenced objects and the current project, preventing anyone from pretending they "didn't know" they had to abide by the licenses of referenced projects.


User Journal

Journal Journal: Two very simple statements: 50

1) All people born the the United States are US citizens* **

2) Opposition to equal rights and privileges under the law is bigotry

Please show any and all rationalizations in whatever refutations you may put forth.

*I am curious if anybody wants to change that.



**Okay let's print the interesting bits:

All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside.

'subject to the jurisdiction thereof'... It looks like some people are going to try and pull a fast one saying that undocumented people are 'not under US jurisdiction', which is bullshit. That only applies to diplomats and other foreign officials that are protected from the court system. Undocumented people, on the other hand, are completely subject to any whim of the state, definitely subject to the jurisdiction thereof...

User Journal

Journal Journal: I am very impressed by the lack of respect for women 17

I am very disappointed with the lack of pushback. Maybe I shouldn't be. Maybe from the individual perspective, it's no biggie, not enough to motivate any collective action anyway. The only accurate documentation we have are the voting records. Media polls and surveys are worse than anecdotal responses. There's not enough medical records. I mean, at the end of the day, the costumes come off, have some dinner, starting humping like rabbits, take some pills... and tomorrrow's just another day at the office. Why mess up a good thing? Don't believe the TV, people are happy!

But mom! He started it!

User Journal

Journal Journal: Table of Contents

I've spent the last three days working to fix the ePubs and AZW3s of Yesterday's Tomorrows. I had just ran it through Calibre and did a quick check, noting that the table of contents didn't display anything.

It took a lot of research and learning to fix the ToC, and while doing so discovered something even worse - some of the illustrations were covering up the text. Damn!

Trying to figure out the ToC I tried several things. One was installing the Write2epub extension to Open Office.

It really sucked, especially with this book. It had some ugly sans-serif typeface, and there were huge swaths large and bolded that I never told it to do. And there was still no table of contents.

While googling and reading and finding out that e'books were mostly based on HTML5, XML and a few other things, I got a little disheartened. This was going to take forever, because I had a lot I had to learn.

I ran across Google's e'book editor "Sigil" and installed it. I have no idea if it's any good, because there's no documentation and I can't make heads or tails out of it.

So I went back to Calibre and studied it some more, educated a little but not much by the internet, and saw a long string with an "and" in it, "h1 and h2" and recognised this from HTML and the rest of the garbage from programming for thirty years. Stupid Calibre was telling it to make everything part of the table!

It took a bit of trial and error to get the right parenthesis and brackets in the right spots that the conversion wouldn't crash with an error, but I finally got a working table of contents.

Now to address the obscured text. That took quite a bit of head scratching as well.

I finally just decided to make the input make the output behave, rather than trying to tweak the output itself. What finally worked was to load the offending images in GIMP and add a white space where it was covering the text. That worked.

So if you've already downloaded one of the e'books, you should delete them and download the new version.



I think I'll take the day off tomorrow.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Futurists...

I just uploaded the last item in "Yesterday's Tomorrows", a futurist essay by "the father of science fiction," Hugo Gernsback. In his essay, written in 1926, he describes the year 1976. Those of you who believe the guys who say the singularity is near or that death will be conquered within your lifetime should read it.

Futurists! Where in the hell is my flying car? Why are there no bases on the moon, like the futurists said in the 1960s we'd have by now? Why did no one see digital photography coming? Or phones in your pockets? Or the internet?

Gernsback sold electronic components, some of which he designed himself, yet didn't seem to understand "electricity, the mysterious fluid." He thought we'd be able to control the weather with it, and even more nonsensical things. He seemed steeped in the cult of Tesla, who had promised wireless delivery of electricity.

Coincidentally, Soylent News just mentioned a story about transplanting porcine hearts into humans, and the company's co-founder is a futurist. Of course, I left a comment about futurists.

I go into it in detail about futurism both in the book's foreword and the introduction to the Gernsback essay.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Robertson, Coulter, and Trump, oh my! 6

The material writes itself. CHAA! It has been a million times already. But it made me laugh this time (it's so cool and retro, like Johnny Rockets), so I have to share it with the rest of the camp.

~Bill+Dog, you are a true gem (still trying to figure out which one, but that's another JE), a real American, with an invincible, impenetrable mind. I most sincerely wish you nothing but the best.

And now for a little suggestion to the Slashdot staff,

I was just recently made aware of a couple of issues in regards to the moderation system, which actually I consider well done. The only thing I would probably, um, change, is that a person should not be able to moderate comments made by anybody in their friends or foes list. Up or down, it doesn't matta! I believe this will 'moderate' abuse of the system, making it more likely the comment will get moderated and not the relationship.

User Journal

Journal Journal: The Iran "Deal" has some good points 27

Basically it is a reconnaissance mission..

"The military option would remain on the table, but the fact is, that military option would be enhanced because we'd been spending the intervening number of years gathering significantly more detail about Iran's nuclear program. So when it comes to the targeting decisions that would be made by military officials either in Israel or the United States, those targeting decisions would be significantly informed, and our capabilities improved, based on the knowledge that has been gained in the intervening years through this inspections regime." -- some press secretary dude

I'm just not sure if spelling that out so honestly is such a good idea.

And, in true Corleone fashion, homes says:

"congressional rejection of this deal leaves any U.S. administration only one option: another war in the Middle East. I say this not to be provocative. I'm stating a fact."

By the way my friend mimics his new hero and war mongering press, and already stating his opposition to the deal, I know he prefers war, and of course, will deny that also. That's so weird, to hide ones feelings like that, out of some kind of shame? Who knows? What does one gain from that? Victory? Over what? It's just so much wasted energy propping up so many contradictions, all for an illusion... It's a double-triple life, like an airline pilot with three separate families around the globe. But they live their fantasies, maybe he's frustrated that he can't.

The unfacts, did we have them, are too imprecisely few to warrant our certitude.