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December 2008


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Goodbye, LJ...

All good things come to an end -- bad things are forever
Massimo (formerly known as Okham)

This blog has moved.
Comments on this journal are now disabled -- if you wish to comment, please proceed to my new home.

Updated on 2/26/2009: most of the posts on this blog have been moved to my new blog. For some of them there are links

The time has finally come for me to do what I have been meaning to do since... hmm... maybe a day after I started blogging on LiveJournal, i.e., move my blog somewhere else. It has been clear to me for a while that LJ does not offer the same functionality of ... well, just about any other blogging site. Don't get me wrong, there are things about it that I like (such as threaded comments, and... er... uh... did I mention threaded comments already ?), but for the most part, let's face it, it sucks.
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Who writes these things anyway ?

The litany of ridiculous memes continues. This one was I saw at Faraday's cage is where you put Schroedinger's cat.
OK, now, I can understand all the nerdy stuff; I am not particularly keen on biophysics, nuclear physics, astrometry (what the heck is it anyway) or parasitology, nor are they listed among my interests, but hey, I can see how all of these -ologies would come out.
And look, OK, fine, my good hair days are long gone, I could see how someone may think, from looking at my user pictures, that I might have had an interest in dermatology, at some point. But, for the life of me, where the hell did that come from ?
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shoveling snow off the sidewalk

Twelve months of K.I.S. (2008)

It kind of feels like I have been blogging forever, but actually my first blogiversary is fast approaching, and what better way of celebrating it than tagging myself for Drugmonkey's twelve month meme ? (This is my original default picture, by the way...).
The rules for this blog meme are quite simple. Post the link and first sentence from the first blog entry for each month of the past year. So, here we go (yes, academic term is over... how did you guess ?):
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iPhone and Projector

I have searched the web extensively but have not been able to find a definitive answer to this question:
Is it possible, or rather has anyone succeeded at connecting an iPhone to a projector ? To put it more clearly, can one use the iPhone to deliver a presentation, by connecting it to a projector and running the presentation off of it (e.g., using Adobe Reader) ?

I am wondering about it because, if it were possible, I think that many some one maybe a few cheap skates demanding and alert consumers, who may so far have refused to purchase those irresistibly slick gadgets potentially useful devices out of sheer outrage at dissatisfaction with the absurdly expensive less than aggressively priced plans offered in Canada by that evil company that shall remain unnamed on this blog Rogers, may use this as an excuse to justify the satisfaction of a preposterous whim have found a compelling reason for going forward with the acquisition of one of those fine looking hand held cellular phones/ personal organizers/wireless internet/oh stop it gizmos.

To LJ or not to LJ ?

My paid subscription to LJ will be expiring soon, and, being less than content with it (apparently I would not be the first one to leave), I am seriously considering migrating to some other blogging site. I am open to suggestions, in fact I would greatly appreciate useful pointers.
I do have a list of requirements for the new site:
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Another one of those...

Oh-kay.... seen at Back Reaction...
Apparently it is possible to assess someone's personality from a statistical analysis of words and sentences in that person's blog. Well, at least this is what is alleged at this site. Being the sucker that I am for this type of nonsense, I typed in my blog address and here is what I found out:
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Oh, all right...

Tagged by R.E.S.E.A.R.C.H.E.R.S.:

Five things meme

Five things that I was doing ten years ago:
1. Buying a house
2. Trying to figure out how to do research at a teaching institution
3. Applying for funding (with mixed, but some success)
4. Attending boring community council meetings
5. Driving across California for fun, with my wife of then three years

Five things on my to-do list today:
1. Go for a run
2. Meet with students at 11
3. Seminar at noon
4. Meet with visitor at 2 pm
5. Teach at 5 pm

Five snacks I love
1. Granola bars
2. Bananas
3. Pears
4. Huge chunks of Parmesan cheese
5. Nuts

Five things that I would do if I were a millionaire
1. Buy new tires (actually, only the front ones -- back ones are still pretty good)
2. Get an iPhone. No, scrap that -- as a millionaire I still could not afford Rogers' plan
3. Hire someone to mow the lawn
4. Give to friends and selected relatives
5. Give to charity

Five places where I have lived:
1. Genoa (Italy)
2. Kinshasa (Dem. Rep. Congo -- although back then it was named Zaire)
3. Tallahassee (Florida)
4. San Diego (California)
5. Edmonton (Alberta)

Five jobs I have had:
1. White collar job a-la Dilbert (I lasted six months)
2. Teaching assistant
3. Research assistant
4. Postdoc
5. Faculty

(I guess 2-3-4 are not real jobs... oh well..)

Five people I am tagging:
To the first five people who read this: consider yourself tagged.

This is so not true...

I don't even know why I keep taking these stupid tests... Among the many blatant inaccuracies, I could just mention:
I look way better than this guy.
I do not read Chinese.
I do not wear ties.
That's a ridiculous chair.

Oh, and by the way... those glass frames are a fraud -- you touch 'em, you break 'em...

Your result for The Nerd? Geek? or Dork? Test...

Pure Nerd

You scored better than half in Nerd, earning you the title of: Pure Nerd.


"Everything that could have been invented has been invented"
Charles Duell, 1899

A discussion that has been going on and off for the past few months at Incoherently Scattered Ponderings, about careers in science, and whether there is something fundamentally broken with the "system", given the (relatively) low percentage of PhD scientists who end up pursuing a career in scientific research, has prompted me to think back of the time when I was a postdoc, about (sigh) fifteen years ago...
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On being an atheist

"When did you realize that you are actually God ?"
"It was while praying -- I suddenly realized that I was speaking to myself"

(British actor Peter O'Toole in some ridiculous movie)

Tagged by R.E.S.E.A.R.C.H.E.R.S:

Can You Remember The Day That You Officially Became An Atheist?
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