Google…and Joyce

One of my favorite authors is James Joyce, and the last lines of Portrait of an Artist as a Young Man is one of my favorite quotations:

Welcome, O life! I go to encounter for the millionth time the reality of experience and to forge in the smithy of my soul the uncreated conscience of my race.
— James Joyce, Portrait of an Artist as a Young Man

This seems to jibe with Google Mission Statement – “…The name reflects the immense volume of information that exists, and the scope of Google’s mission: to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful.”

I didn’t see this before. Interesting. The “uncreated conscience of my race” sorta equals “The name reflects the immense volume of information that exists, and the scope of Google’s mission: to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful.”

I think Joyce would have loved Google and the intertubes…

Forward – Write!

Sunshine Cleaning
Starring Amy Adams, Emily Blunt

Quirky and off-beat, Sunshine Cleaning never really gets anywhere, but it’s an interesting journey.

Adams, playing the unwed mother of a handful of a son, goes into business as a crime-scene cleanup service. She employs the help of her sister, who is an unmotivated loser who’s still living at home with their dad (Alan Arkin).

As the movie progresses, you begin to get a look into how the characters have arrived at this point in their lives.

I liked it – it was a downer, but really spoke to truth, about how things are and how people get where they are.

Arkin was the only disappointment – he plays (minus the heroin) the same character he played in Little Miss Sunshine.

All movies

After all this fuss I’ve made over the past couple of months over the move from Blogger to WordPress, I think it’s time for me to shut up.

I still don’t have my blog looking anything like what I want, but it took me years on Blogger to get where I was when I uncoupled from same.

And – thanks to my mad PHP & AJAX skilz! – most of my blog functionality is back.

To me, this blog is now – for lack of a better term – stable. (My host is not as DB friendly as it should be, so the now-dynamic blog pages are, unfortunately, not as fast as the formerly-static pages. Crap…)

So – time to write! That’s what a blog is about!

Caveat – I blog for a number of reasons, writing being one of them (I enjoy the written word).

But I also enjoy the challenges building out a blog like this (or my old one) offered. That’s part of the fun. Testing out stuff here that I later incorporate at work, for example. Call me a beta tester.

So again, I’ll shut up about the platform conversion.

Add words.

Add functionality.

Try to make it pretty…


Capitalism: A Love Story
Micheal Moore, writer/director

Yep, Micheal Moore taking on capitalism – specifically, the collapse of Wall Street (and how that affects Main Street).

Yet Moore – in hyperbolic ways, in quiet discussions with Catholic clergy (what would Jesus do?) and members of Congress (eep!) – suggests that capitalism is something we can’t repair or regulate, but need to remove. He, at one point, equates it with child labor. Some – at that time – said that we (the USA) could regulate so it would be safer for children to work in factories. Fewer hours, higher pay, safety standards.

Moore – and most people – scoff at this: OK, it’s now OK for an 8-year-old to work 8 hours at a textile factory??

Socialist talk!

But he does a good job of stating his point (complete with over-the-top Moorisms); interesting film. The extras should be viewed, as well. Dig a little deeper into various areas.

All movies

I watched Micheal Moore’s “Capitalism – A Love Story” this weekend, and – yes- it was the typical Moore treatment of the subject: Non-objective, cherry-picked examples and so on.

But it wasn’t untrue. And he tried to get input from many that didn’t return his call and so on.

It was a good and long (just over two hours) movie, and it set out some facts (again, cherry picked) that were (again) not untrue and disturbing:

  • Salaries for regional airline pilots – those who keep us safe in an aluminum sausage at 30,000 feet – can be as low as $16k. This is minimum wage. Moore talked to one pilot who was on food stamps; others that had 2nd/3rd jobs. Leaving aside for a moment the (possible) injustice to pilots, do you want these pilots flying you? The pilot who just got off a 10-hr shift at Dennys?
  • More numbers about the have and have-nots: Yikes. 1% of the US population has more wealth than the combined wealth of less-wealthy 95%.

Much of what Moore railed against was the whole concept of capitalism, but I see a deeper flaw: As Moore showed with his Wall Street reporting, we’re not using capitalism to make anything but to make money.

Using existing money (bonds etc.) and leverage same to make more money.

Brilliant – but short-sighted. Which is why we’re in this melt-down.

Capitalism has its flaws – many.

But capitalism works – has worked for 200+ years here in the US.

We’re no longer a capitalistic society (yes – broad generalization) – we are a “leveraged” society: We make money off of money (derivatives etc.), and not off innovation/hard work. Wall Street is Main Street.

Gross generalization? Of course?

Am I an economist? – nope, far from same.

But I am a writer, and this is what I’ve written

WordPress Progress

The Contender
Jeff Bridges, Joan Allen

A political drama/thriller in the vein of “American President” or West Wing.

A liberal love story – with bad (very) guys on the conservative side.

Not a great movie, but a good one (with a couple of twists). But a good political drama with a person (Joan Allen) that’s never been – to me – in a bad movie.

Like West Wing, it kind of makes you hope that how DC operates (for the good guys [whomever they are] ). Probably not, but we can hope

All movies

I’ve struggled with the transition to WordPress, but I’m finally getting there.

Porting my existing apps (“Listening To”, “Pic ‘O the Day” etc) into this new environment.

Still has its challenges: All code changes to the layout files have to happen (duh!) in the directory in which the files appear. (Where blog lives.)

However, CSS changes happen where the WordPress directory lives.

Kinda funky, but – once I’ve gotten the lay of the land – can progress.

Still need to write my own WP theme, and I’m not certain all that goes into that! But it’ll be fun/frustrating and so on.

Baby steps…


iPadYep, the iPad has hit the street today.

And the intertubes are going wild.

Techcrunch’s articles are virtually all about the iPad, iPad apps and so on. Same all over the place

It’ s madness.

But it’s interesting: Will the hype (strong opinions – pro/con on the tubes even before writers had touched a physical iPad) match the reality?

In this case – and I’m one of the few geeks in our galaxy that hasn’t purchased an iPad – I think the iPad will exceed the hype. Honest.

It’s the ultimate consumption machine, and that’s what most of us do (even geeks; more downloads than uploads). Yes, I’m blogging (creating/uploading) content, but I – currently a non-journalist – spend far more time, for example, reading about the iPad than writing about same.

Now that the iPad has broken “out of the laboratory,” it’ll be fascinating to see what people do with this evolutionary (not revolutionary) tool, what killer apps emerge.

Hint: Killer apps will include Kindle killers (*sigh* including Amazon’s own Kindle app) and apps that leverage location.

This is going to be interesting.