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Interestingness rant...AGAIN!

When I went to Cuba for the seventh time, a few months ago, I took almost 800 photos. I went through them & culled them down to a few that were worthy of posting online, on my favorite online photo sharing site, flickr.

If you don?t know the history of flickr, they used to be a Canadian company, based in B.C.. They had some marvelous technology, but a larger American company, Yahoo, bought out flickr. So, Flickr is no longer Canadian, it?s now American.

Flickr has this thing called ?Interestingness?, which lately anyway, has become complete bullshit & is increasingly becoming more & more stupid and ridiculous. The idea is that out of the thousands & thousands of photos that are submitted daily, the top 500 ?most interesting? photos are featured in ?explore? or ?interestingness? as they are called on this web site.

Now, they supposedly have this logarithm for figuring things out, you know, to see what makes it. Well, they?ve changed it lately & it just SUCKS. There seems to be no rhyme or reason to it. A picture with 12 views, 2 comments & 1 favorite may make it, while one with several hundred views, 30 comments and 20 favorites may not. Not only that but, images that are not even photographs are making it. I mean, screen shots? COME ON!!! Someone once asked me how to make ?interestingness?. I said, ?Take a picture of a cat?.

I mean, give me a fucking break. What genius decided that screen shots, mosaics and things that just aren?t even photographs should make it to a photographic site ?interestingness? section?

I?ve heard it?s based on ?tags?. Tags are key words that describe what your photo is about. The hot tag these days is HDR, which stands for ?High Dynamic Range?. It?s basically three pictures taken at different exposures then blended together with software. Again, not really photographs, but images. It seems ANYTHING with this tag will make it, no matter if it?s good or not. The dullest ordinary landscape will be high on the list, as long as it has the HDR tag.

My Cuba pictures, naturally, are tagged with ?Cuba?. Some of them are quite good, so I have been told, and the number of views, comments and favorites I have received confirms that. Some have even been, at prompting from my contemporaries, entered in photo contests. Despite the accolades of my peers, the hundreds of views, comments and favorites, to a photo, they are devoid of ?interestingness?.

NOW?a lot of them made it early on (the photos change over time), but were almost immediately dropped. I have had well over 100 of my posted photos, about 20% or so featured there at one time or another, but these latest ones, some of which are my best, have the most views, comments & favorites (the ones tagged CUBA), are seemingly banned from this selection of work. Remember it?s an American company now. CUBA is a pretty politically incorrect word for America. Gee?they aren?t there! What fucking bullshit.

They wonder why a lot of the rest of the world hates them.

Go figure.

Filed under General, Apr 4, 2006
 

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Pizza

So I order a pizza for dinner the other night from some place that is named after a popular game played with pieces with dots on them. Well, several actually, it seems you can?t order just one anymore. It?s two for one, or two with some special feature, a six pack of pop or garlic bread or some special ?finger? bread, or some other stuff. The place, well corporate entity actually, I ordered from advertised in a flyer that for $18.99 (remember this price), you could get two MEDIUM pizzas and an order of some sort of ?special? bread.

OK, I?ll bite; we?ve been out all day out of town and are tired. I?m up for Chinese, but apparently to my beloved wife, pizza is easier. Granted. No plates, no hassle. (But wait)

I pick up the phone & order the $18.99 special, two medium pizzas, some sort of ?special? bread (who cares), yes?please deliver that (why the fuck else would I order pizza?) I pay by credit card. How much I ask?

$26 he says?..

WHAT THE FUCK?????

How does $18.99 turn into $26???? That?s like over 30% more!!!!!

Taxes & delivery. Well, Taxes I can understand, after all we have to pay the universally hated Grab & Squander Tax (GST) instituted by Brian Mulroney in a Conservative Govt. some years ago (if you voted conservative, I blame YOU for this, those people are in power again and who knows what evils they will inflict on the country this time), and then DELIVERY.

Excuse me? Delivery? This IS pizza isn?t it?

I remember a time when pizza was a deal. When you ordered a (one) medium pizza, it would feed three or 4 people. A medium was a medium, not some dinky little disc of ingredients barely warmed because they have to get it to you before ? an hour is up. The crust was crisp & tasty. The ingredients perfectly proportioned and elegantly presented. And delivery was FREE!!!!

While this particular order was tasty enough, ingredients nicely proportioned & presented, the miniscule discs we received were sorely lacking in substance. This apparently, is a common phenomenon in today?s corporate pizza world.

I sure miss the independently run family pizza places. Where a medium was a medium, not a small, where delivery was free, where ?extra? stuff, like ?finger bread? wasn?t necessary because the product you received was so excellent.

The dotted game piece pizza place that charges over 30% more than they advertise will never receive an order from me again!

Filed under General, Mar 11, 2006
 

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Remembering

Do you ever have a hard time remembering things? Does your memory fail you from time to time? Join the club. Now try & imagine, trying to remember great lengths of text, verbatim.

I think that the older you get, the harder it is. I don?t remember having that much trouble as a kid remembering poems that were required to be memorized (but then again, it was so long go I don?t really remember?LOL) but lately, I seem to be having difficulty remembering things I?m trying very hard TO remember.

The funny thing is, as I recite the text I?m trying to learn, I recall it all perfectly in my mind, but speaking out loud, particularly in front of someone, makes my mind a blank slate & the prose I had so diligently practiced for hours is nowhere to be found in my addled brain. I find in the morning hours I am fine, but as the day progresses, my head starts to ache and the forgetfulness sinks in.

The weird thing is, is that the next day, I am miraculously able to recall the very things that I had been unable to commit to memory the day before.

Weird.

Filed under General, Jan 24, 2006
 

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Politics

Election.

What does this mean?

Well, in this case it means that some whining hypocritical toadies, lets call them ?Progressive? Conservatives, weren?t happy with being relegated to almost non party status because they completely pissed everyone off by instituting the G.S.T (Grab & Squander Tax) and almost destroying the Country, decided to back stab & snipe the ruling party who have brought the country back into the world political arena & made it the envy of the world community. I mean, if you say you are Canadian, people respect you, and feel that you are lucky to live in such a free, socially responsible, democratic, and Liberal, (not close minded and single purposed) thinking nation.

So, lets go on track record?

PC.s

(read hypocritical back stabbing toadies)?It basically sucks..A Tax everyone hates, almost destroying the social safety net Canada is famous for, privatizing health care (American Style, we KNOW that doesn?t work!) back stabbing, hypocritical, political assassins, lets get in power no matter what by a smear campaign because we don?t have a good track record & want to fool stupid uninformed forgetful people into voting for us.

Liberals

Bringing Canada back onto the world stage, re-enforcing the social safety net, keeping the world famous health care going, continuing to make a strong economy, making Canada a great place to live & be proud to be from.

NDP

Pretty well the same as the Liberals except they don?t realistically have a chance?yet!

Green Party

Nice concept, no real track record, but a wasted vote the way our political system works.

Bloc Quebecois

They used to hang traitors didn?t they?? Or, at least shoot them. These days I think it?s lethal injection. I think anyone who is trying to break the country up is a traitor and should be dealt with as such. I can?t believe they made up the official opposition in the last parliament. These folks are trying to destroy Canada (see above under P.C.s for the subtrifuge rather than outright treason). While I agree with free speech, treason is a crime?. isn?t it?

You may not, but again you may, agree with my own personal political views. Please?make up your own mind. Your views are your own, Just make sure they are informed, unbiased by political rhetoric and advertising from ALL parties, and from your heart. That?s what makes a democracy great. ?

Just make sure you VOTE!!

(Guess whom I?m voting for)

Filed under General, Jan 18, 2006
 

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Three Times Lucky

Talk about 3 times lucky. I guess this sort of fits in with the
things happen in threes rant. It started a few nights ago. I?ve been waiting with some degree of angst, nervousness and anticipation for my initiation into a brotherhood of men. It was all set for next Monday & this Monday after work over a few libations I had a nice discussion with a friend & colleague about ?stuff? pertaining to the craft. I was feeling pretty good about things & settled down after supper & a few beers to a nice evening surfing & watching the tube. I was feeling pretty comfy, if you know what I mean, when the phone rings about 8:00 & it?s my friend. Apparently the candidate who was scheduled to have a date with the goat that evening was a no show, so he was pleading with me to make an appearance a week early. Well, adrenaline city & I whip on a suit & make my way to the meeting, a week early, all of a sudden, no time to even think about it. That?s a stroke of luck I guess as I saved all that angst and nervousness of the build up. That?s one.

Later in the evening, after the ceremony, we all retreated to a nicely appointed hall for food and drinks. It seems that there is a draw for a bottle of Scotch,

$5 for 3 tickets. Tonight there are two draws however, a second for a cane that would be donated to an older member who was in need. So, I have three tickets. As the new guy, I am asked to make the draw. The tickets are mixed up & held in a tub above my head so that I can?t see them. Well, I draw one of my three numbers as the winner! LOL?I get the Scotch (to be shared among everyone, it disappeared rather quickly). I make a second draw, ANOTHER one of my numbers! You can?t win twice I?m told, so draw again. The tickets are mixed again & I draw one more time. ANOTHER one of my numbers! I?ve drawn all three of my numbers in a row! LOL?I was told to go out & buy some lottery tickets immediately! LOL?That?s two.

The next day, home on lunch break at noon, my computer spontaneously reboots & won?t find the hard drive. I figure I?ll reboot & get into the cmos to force it to recognize it. It won?t even open the cmos. YIKES! I?m thinking this is probably a karma thing regarding the run of luck I had the previous evening. My entire life is on there, if I lose my data I?m pooched. Over a months worth of digital photos; complicated spread sheets, mailing lists?the works. I take the machine in to the genius we take our stuff to & he says he?ll have a look at it. I?m thinking at this point that it might not be the hard drive, perhaps the mother board as the inability to access the cmos was suspicious. There may be hope yet! I go in the next day (today) & am told good news & bad news. The good news is, he can?t find anything wrong with it. The bad news, he doesn?t know why it would reboot like that & not access my hard drive. ?No Charge? he says, but I take the opportunity to buy an external hard drive case you can swap hard drives in & out of & a spare hard drive just to be used for backups. No sense-tempting fate! I figure. That?s the lucky three!

Filed under General, Jan 12, 2006
 

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