14 May 2023

Link round-up for 14 May 2023

Various interesting stuff I ran across on the net over the last week.

o o o o o

Accidents are funny if you're not the person they happen to.

Don't call them bananas.

Cremation jokes here, plus a nice tulip.

Meet the new Twitter CEO.

Hey, you're supposed to do that in the woods.

Dogs face life.

Truly these are signs of the times.

He's losing the fight, but putting his own spin on it.

You're never too old to get your first job.

Where wild critters encroach, large amounts of poo will follow.

She has a larger-than-average cat.  And she likes big kittens.

Something fishy going on here.

Mama shows off her baby.

Convert potential energy to kinetic energy.

No cage can hold this mighty beast.

Beneath the rocks, abominations lurk.

There is such a thing as a fish philosophy hat.

Could you pass a reverse Turing test?

Slower would be smarter, frankly.

View a compendium of vile birds.

Cool furniture.

They're doing their part to keep Portland weird.

Harry Potter miniatures here, suitable for dollhouses or decorations.

Gripping high-speed motorcycle chase here.  I'm guessing this is Brazil.

It was justifiable landlordicide.

She's a great big sister.

Gigantic map of the internet here.  I can't believe the amount of work that must have gone into this.

This is the Wiblingen monastery library in Germany.

Paris has an abundance of exhibitions beyond the Louvre.

Newly-released photos here of the real Egyptian Book of the Dead.

Birds are reptiles.

Wild chimpanzees do have the beginnings of rudimentary language (found via Miss Cellania).

Beware of wild animals that seem oddly tame or friendly.  That can be a sign of early-stage rabies.

Before you get rid of an old computer, you need to wipe the data -- but that's harder than you'd think.

AI is a disappointment, but will still destroy millions of jobs.

Never cheat a computer expert.

Boycott update -- for the week ending April 29, Bud Light sales in the US were down 23% relative to the same week last year, worse than the 21% drop for the previous week.  Sales of other Anheuser-Busch brands are starting to drop as well.  Given the success of the boycott, there are now calls to similarly punish other companies.  This report claims that a couple was assaulted in Canada because they were believed to have bought Bud Light, and that Anheuser-Busch facilities in the US have been getting bomb threats.  If true, this is an outrage.  Violence and intimidation are never a legitimate response to differences of opinion.

Here's the latest un-asked-for desecration of a popular story.  If they wanted to explore such themes, why not just make something original instead of trashing Winnie the Pooh?

Disney will soon start removing content from its streaming services.  Get the stuff you like on physical media like DVDs.

Librarians explain why you shouldn't write in library books.

Bigots are stupid.

Don't confuse social media and online obsessions with the real world.

If Hollywood claims to be using AI to write shows during the writers' strike, don't believe them.  It's not only impossible but would create copyright problems.

Improve education by banning cell phones in class.

The claim that rights are "God-given" raises some questions.

Yes, this is totally normal behavior and not the least bit flaming-batshit insane.

Useless CEO meets Tumblr defiance, one billion dollars goes poof.

Don't call children things they cannot be.

Gods resemble their creators.

Dead Wild Roses dissects a nihilistic lunatic who wants to overthrow the government and destroy everything.

Face recognition technology is getting disturbingly advanced.

A liberal speaks out against performative faddism (see this comment too).

We are morally obligated to denounce evil when we see it.

Unions fight back against the menace of private equity parasitism and destruction.

Don't let conservatives take away no-fault divorce.

More and more prominent leftists are starting to speak out against gender ideology.

Good overview here of the DeSantis-Disney war.

Bullshit like "words are violence" or "silence is violence" can only take root in places where most people have very little experience with real violence.

The Southern Baptist Convention is suffering an accelerating shrinkage of membership.

Georgia is going big on green energy, and many Republicans are on board (the article is from a religious perspective, but the info is solid).

"Gender identity", like the presence of God, is a subjective inner feeling of something that is probably imaginary -- the non-indoctrinated don't experience it.  The man who originated the concept was a perverted monster (found via Aunt Polly).

House Republicans are trying to sabotage the US transition to solar energy, but probably won't succeed.

Even the world of science is now increasingly bogged down in woke nonsense (link from commenter NickM).  I suspect this problem is confined to the West -- science in other, competing nations is free to forge ahead unencumbered by such drivel.

To understand the Second Amendment, consider the First.

In sports, nurture a positive environment.

Democrats need to get tough on the debt ceiling -- and taxes.  The stakes are very high.  A default could delay all payments, even Social Security.

DeSantis nominated a belligerent religionist as a trustee at a major Florida college.  That was too much even for the state senate, which rejected him.

Don't believe claims by fossil-fuel-industry toadies that offshore wind power endangers whales.

Oregon will protect gender transition, but not detransition.

Who is really the ultimate narcissist?

The federal government is no longer using private prisons.

This senator is dangerously soft on militant racists in the US military.

Montana's supreme court has unanimously upheld abortion rights in the state.

This is terrorism, not activism.  And this is indoctrination, not education.

National Review laments the decline of sex among teenagers.

CNN is helping Trump distract the country from his crimes.

Rising food prices are caused by corporate price-gouging, not by rising wages.  The Fed must stop its useless and destructive interest-rate hikes.

No, Florida's proposed new custody law would not allow the state to seize kids at risk of being transed.

Here are the major George Santos scandals.  There are a lot.

We're probably stuck with a wingnutized Supreme Court until about 2065 unless it's expanded.

For this guy, even the death penalty would be too lenient (disturbing story).

Things are pretty bad when even the journalists' union won't defend freedom of the press.

Before the coronation in the UK, anti-monarchy protests were forcibly suppressedThis arrogance is unworthy of a free country.

A British Starbucks manager went completely flaming nutzoid on a customer (video included, or click here if it doesn't load).  He's been fired.  He already had something of a reputation.

Scotland is sounding a lot like Iran these days.

Here are the top five suppliers of tanks to Ukraine (found via Hackwhackers).  The #1 country will surprise you, but shouldn't.

The Russian internet is getting hysterical about the war.

Putin wants to make Russia more attractive so people stop leaving.  I'd say the only way he could do that is to resign.

In Iran, not only women but also businesses are ignoring the hijab laws.  As I've observed before, laws which are seriously at odds with a society's mainstream values become unenforceable.

A new mass shooting targets a synagogue.

Today's election in Turkey is probably the Turkish people's last chance to get rid of Erdo─čan and restore full democracy and the rule of law.  Twitter seems to be censoring opposition accounts at the government's request.

Japan and South Korea, mutually hostile since World War II, are being brought together by common enemies.

China's young people sink into despair and alienation.

More links at Fair and Unbalanced and WAHF.

My own posts this week:  an image round-up, a new Lone Animator video, and the modern free press.

o o o o o

Poetry corner:

[Image at top:  Istanbul, Turkey]


Blogger NickM said...

I like facial recofnition on this here laptop. Not only does it secure my machine in an easy way but, when it starts failing to recognise me, I know it's time for a haircut!

14 May, 2023 02:26  
Blogger Ami said...

The high speed motorbike stuff made me wonder how they say 'donor cycle' in other languages.
As always, thank you for taking the time to do this weekly post. I was up at midnight last night and kept checking to see if the post was up before I finally had to go to bed.

It usually takes me the better part of a week to fully appreciate all the stuff you link to, I come back several times so I can see everything.

14 May, 2023 13:31  
Blogger NickM said...

As to computer HW...

That sign, "Rage against the Machine" is absolutely spot on. I have never used a printer since my 9-pin dot-matrix (which was slow, no sheet-feed, low quality and made a Hell of a noise) which wasn't almost as much of a pain in the arse as if it had been inserted there by King Kong. And that is 30 years of Epson, HP, Brother, Canon, Lexmark...

Erase an HD. Go route one. I recently had to do this. Download "Darik's Boot and Nuke" (free for the basic version*), just Google it, download, burn to CD and boot from it (you'll probs have to change BIOS/UEFI settings for that). It operates it's own little Linux shell so it probs works on x86 Macs as well as PCs...

It is slow but the wheels that grind the slowest, grind the finest...

The quick option will take about an hour and is not very secure. For that you'll want to choose to use the very high period pseudo-random number generator which (if I recall) is a "623-Dimensional Mersenne Twister". Now this is very slow (maybe overnight) but clears stuff in a way Victor Frankenstein would have have enormous trouble resurrecting whilst allowing you to out technobabble Jordi LeForge and The Doctor combined. This is a bit of a double-edged sword with clients because they either think (a) Nick is real smart and easily worth what I'm paying or (b) Nick is a chronic onanist whose can only get wood after donning wearing Spock-ears and then issuing the command, "Make it so Mr Worf!"

Seriously. It may sound like bad SF fan-fic but it works like a dream.

*If I recall the free version doesn't work on SSDs, RAID or across a network. Across a network! Hell's teeth...

14 May, 2023 13:40  
Anonymous spirilis said...

China is in a death spiral stories are everywhere lately. I'm sceptical. Existential anxiety for every age. Those suburbanites did not seem as afraid of that racoon as they should have been. Still a scientific mystery as to where the rabies virus finds a reservoir since it is always fatal to it's hosts.

15 May, 2023 02:09  
Blogger Infidel753 said...

NickM: That would make me nervous. If it can consistently recognize a face, it must have a lot of tolerance for variation to account for differences in angle, lighting, etc. So it could probably be fooled by someone who bore a reasonable resemblance to you -- or had a life-size photo of you (have you tried it with that?).

I rarely need a printer, but can't do without one entirely. At least the current one is reasonably reliable, but with computer stuff, anything with mechanical parts seems to be a problem.

It still seems to me that smashing up the hard drive with a hammer is the most effective way of erasing it, but maybe I'm missing something.

Ami: It was sheer luck that those bikers (or the cop chasing them) didn't kill themselves or someone else. They must have really, really wanted to get away.

Thank you for the kind words. The link round-up is usually posted fairly soon after midnight, but sometimes something delays it. I'm not surprised the links take a long time to get through -- they're a by-product of a full week's reading.

Spirilis: Most people still seem to be stuck in delusions that China is booming and overtaking the US and about to dominate the world. I've posted quite a few videos on various aspects of China showing that that's not the case -- with supporting evidence.

The people filming the raccoon probably didn't realize what its behavior implied. A lot of people are idiots and think anything furry is just cute and adorable and odd behavior is just funny. The concept of "wild animal" never seems to have gotten into their heads.

15 May, 2023 02:37  
Blogger Mary Kirkland said...

There was a school a few years ago that made all students put their phones into a locking pouch and it was unlocked at the end of the school day. I have no problem with this. I think most schools should do this.

That tiny possum is too cute.

15 May, 2023 13:54  
Blogger Daal said...

so you squeezed a mom's day one in after all - the cute gorilla-ette - love the kiss!

15 May, 2023 16:35  
Blogger Infidel753 said...

Mary K: I agree. What possible justification is there for accessible phones during class? They're just a distraction.

That opossum looked fierce. I don't think he realizes how tiny he is.

Daal: The behavior of apes with their children is amazingly human-like.

15 May, 2023 23:04  
Blogger Martha said...

Great round-up! The gorilla mama showing off her baby was adorable. And I had a good laugh with the "signs of the times" link, especially with the sign "Go away. Go on git" Where can I get me one of those?! HAHA

18 May, 2023 04:49  
Blogger Infidel753 said...

Martha: I have a couple more gorilla baby videos -- maybe I should post them sometime.

In some stores you can get lettering which would enable you to make something like that sign. If you did it right it would be pretty durable. The spirit seems a bit un-Canadian, but Maybe I'm just going by stereotypes.

18 May, 2023 06:27  

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