next dinner

I'm pretty sure we can make a delicious dinner from scallops, shallots, and scallions. We might have to throw in some capers too.

yes yes, I know. I am a genius*.

*or you know, a dork :-)

follow up

I ordered this thing.


I'll try to let you know how I like it.

when I redesign my keyboard

these will get their own key:
  • copy
  • paste
  • cut
  • undo
  • redo
And these will be banished from my reach, if not entirely:
  • caps lock
  • insert
  • num lock
(scroll lock, pause/break, print screen are assumed to have been already banished.)
I actually use the windows key, but it would be nice to disable it per-application (i.e. for games).
I do not require a button to order pizza.

It might be fun to own a company that prints custom keyboards for various industries. 

a good problem

I've been worrying a lot lately about what to do with my money; I'm earning more than I'm spending and I don't have a lot of debt left to pay off. I'm not complaining, and I'm trying not to brag, but I think it's funny.

I guess I'm saving towards a house.
I started an orange savings account.
I don't feel comfortable in the stock market right now, especially since my major investing goal is short term (buy a house.)
I'm interested in microcredit, because it seems relevant to my interests generally.
I'm trying to convince myself that I don't need a new car, but I probably do need to put it in the shop for a few days in order to get that to fly.
Generally I need to find ways to lock my money away so that I'm not tempted by it, but so that I can still get to it in fairly short order when it's time.

I find myself thinking about it a lot, but not in a very organized way. Perhaps I should make a spreadsheet! That's what people do to think about money, right?

a good laugh

We were playing Apples to Apples last night. The word was "speedy," I was the judge. A bunch of moderately fast things were played, and then came "babies." Annie made this great racecar-driving-by sound. Everyone started laughing. I couldn't stop laughing. "Babies" won the round. (It wasn't Annie's card.) In conclusion, I'm going to make it a point to get more of those belly-aching laughs.

programmer's nostalgia

Something I guess I never thought I'd say:

"I miss the days when we were writing our own proprietary blazingly fast C++ socket server to act as a back-end to our gaming empire."

Now that we are trying to squeeze full-scale MMO data requirements through a combination of java sockets and restful HTTP webservices, writing a stateful C++ beast doesn't seem so insane. It seems positively prudent.

Luckily, making the camel fit through the needle's eye is not my job. :-)

the abdication of common sense

Let me tell you what is wrong with society today.

Most people are all too willing to surrender their judgement to a real or imaginary superstructure, which is usually an amalgamation of their company and the government.

I made a mistake today*, for which there were few consequences, but I'm bitter about it, and I'm going to blame it on society.

*I brought in a small grill to do a barbecue at lunch on top of the parking structure for our building. The top floor is always empty of cars, and there are some tables up there too. But the building management** shut us down.
**The building management also charges $5 for each key to the bathroom, and the bathroom keys have "do not duplicate" stamped on them, so that you cannot just make your own copy. Oh it is on***.
***I can see that I'm going to have to take it up another notch or two, my thinking so far has been way too linear.

zombie update

I had a really good Left4Dead versus game last night, playing with a bunch of people who were friends with eachother. Yeah, I was the odd man out, but they were good about it, and the match was really even.

I've been reading Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, which is reasonably well written, if a little forced once in a while.

Annie has been reading World War Z, which is very well written.

This has been your zombie update?

oh my yes

Thank God | TPM:
"Have you gotten one of those phoney-baloney robocalls trying to trick you into believing your car manufacturer is giving you a last chance to extend your warrantee? Apparently they made the mistake of calling Sen. Schumer's cell phone and he sicced the FTC on them...."

kill bank of america

I am a bank of america customer.
I hate bank of america.

I have for a long time, and I don't have an amusing new rant for you. But today, I did my tiny, tiny part to destroy them. I started the process of taking my money out of their system, and putting it in to someone else's system. This process will probably take a long time, but I'm glad I got it started. 

I should have done it a long time ago. The thing that pushed me over the edge, honestly, is the fact that Bank of America is vulnerable right now. If I could I would love to start a movement to kill it before it can get back up.

this is fantastic advice

This is fantastic advice, and I will follow it.  This guy is a huge weirdo.

i love my industry

we are serious business.

an email I got today:
Hi Everyone,

It has been brought to my attention that we are completely out of Rockstar. I placed a drink order today and I was notified that the company is no longer distributing Rockstars. They will eventually be offering Monster, but that wont be until later on.  The only energy drinks that we have available to us are Full Throttle.  

Just wanted to let you all know. 

social capital tracking

Stack Overflow is doing some cool things with community building within the programming Q/A niche. Specifically, their reputation system works pretty similarly to how I envision XP working for questor: more reputation means more access and privileges at the site. They have some high quality stuff going on, I'm taking notes.

real estate!

Here is a map showing percentage increase and decrease in average real estate value, sorted by city.
The map is color coded by trend, the size of the boxes represent the size of the market. You can see that large swaths of LA have lost a lot of value, but there are enclaves, especially along the coast, or around Pasadena and Arcadia, that have held up pretty well. Manhattan Beach and Hermosa Beach are actually still going up!

I think it's interesting to see how the crash hits different places in different ways, and it mostly makes intuitive sense to me. But I'm not convinced that the beach cities have completely escaped. In fact I'm betting that over the next year there's a second correction that hits these areas. They may not end up taking the same percentage hit, overall, as the rest of the region--the prices here are high because people actually desire to live here--but there's still a bubble mentality to the real estate near the water, and at some point it's going to have to pop.