Sunday, February 20, 2005

- Hunter S. Thompson committed suicide today. I was a fan of his writing, despite him being a drug addict, alcoholic, and proponent of the most vile left-wing politics. He invented a style of writing called "gonzo journalism", which involves over the top descriptions of actual events with the author including himself in the affair. He was portrayed by Bill Murray in the movie Where the Buffalo Roam, and by Johnny Depp in Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas (both dreadful movies.) I first discovered his writings while reading, where he did a semi-regular column (getting Hunter to do anything on a regular schedule was a monumental task.) Here is a link to his articles at, and a link to his article about the 2001 Kentucky Derby. His description of the derby is legendary:

UPDATE...ESPN (owned by Disney) has decided to cash in on the death of Mr.Thompson. They have turned these articles into subscriber articles, which means you now have to pay money to view them. When I wrote this Sunday night (2/20), these articles were free. Gee, I wonder how Hunter would have felt knowing that ESPN is cashing in on his death.

- I truly love the internet. I cant imagine life without it. Not for its practical uses, like checking your bank account, buying airline tickets, or looking up sport scores. No, I love the internet for all of the little things I find on it. Here is a webpage that will show you how common a person's first name is. Simply type in the name, and you will get a graph showing how many people were given that name during each decade of the 20th century. My first name was fairly popular during the 60's and 70's, but has fallen dramatically since then. I have only myself to blame.

- Some day, in the not so distant future, we wont worry about the number of soldiers who die in Iraq. We will worry about how much money we are wasting on robots who are doing the fighting for us. The American military is already working on using robots, instead of humans, to fight our future wars. Here is an article with more information:,1,1160052.story?coll=orl-home-headlines&ctrack=1&cset=true

Wednesday, February 02, 2005

Big update today. Lots of good stuff...

- The Oscar nominations have been announced. If there is an awards presentation in this country, that is needlessly affected by politics, it's the Oscars. I am happy to announce, however, that this year's nominations seem to be free of politics and political-correctness. I think the nominations this year are rather good. Michael Moore, thankfully was shut-out of the nominations. There is even a rumor floating around Hollywood that the big-wigs who run the movie studios are sick of making movies that only appeal to the "blue states" and want to start making movies that appeal to everyone. Apparently there are a few people in La-la land who prefer to make money. I will believe it when I see it. Anyways, here are my picks for the winners of each major category, and a link to the nominees for all the categories for 2005. This is a tough year to pick. If you scroll down, you will notice that my picks from last year were all correct. There is little chance of that happening this year:

Best Picture: The Aviator
Best Director: Martin Scorsese
Best Actor: Jamie Foxx
Best Actress: Anette Bening
Best Supporting actor: Morgan Freeman
Best Supporting Actress: Cate Blanchett

- Holograms are tough to create in a real-world setting, but a company recently created a machine no bigger than a computer, which creates wonderful holograms. Here is a link explaining how the machine works:

- Can you beat a polygraph? Here is an article from someone who tried several tips for beating the machine. Perhaps the most interesting information from this article is that the person who invented the lie-detector also created the comic-book character Wonder Woman! Now I know where the golden lasso comes from.

- Certain people who read this website (and they shall remain nameless) will love the beginning of this next article. In many parts of the developed world, populations are dwindling. The reasons are numerous, and important to all of us. An ancient prophet once wrote that in order for man to ascend to true greatness, he must become extinct. Well, some countries are accidentally fulfilling this prophecy. Their economic and political models are causing their populations to decrease, instead of increase. If a country's laws help its citizens, then naturally a country's population should increase, since its citizens are well-off, and have the necessary resources to bear and care for children. I wrote about this topic several months ago, but this article does a much better job of explaining the situation than the last article I linked.

- Happy Groundhog's day! Read the following article to learn more about Groundhog's day, and then read the 2nd article explaining why the movie Groundhog's day is a true gift to humanity (this article completely over-analyzes the Bill Murray classic. I like the movie, but geesh!) By the way, my family has a tradition very similar to Groundhog's day. During the first phone call I receive from my parents on February 2nd, if either my mother or father tells me how "dreadfully disappointed" they are in me, then I know there will be six more weeks of winter.