Intelligence and Design

Several folks have been on a tear lately about creationism and evolution. I particularly liked this piece by John Rogers where he points out the logical conclusions of having the President of the US supporting the anti-evolution position. This is similar to what I’ve been thinking myself. I live in an area that is still suffering from the loss of textile manufacturing industry. Although my pocket of the state is relatively affluent, there are adjacent counties that today have nearly 20% unemployment. Those jobs are not coming back and the only way to power on to the future is to create new industry and embrace the changes the 21st century will bring. That will require education and that will require a deep understanding of and appreciation for basic science. When you have an agenda of undermining that, this is yet another mechanism for selling out the future by making sure today’s children will be ill-equipped to compete with the children of China and India and Korea, none of whom have this agenda.

Another take on the whole issue comes from Bill Shunn today, who gives it to Rick Santorum with both barrels. I agree with him in being angry at evangelicals who believe that they have a monopoly on the only possible path to morality. I do what I can to live morally and I’m not doing it because I either fear a patriarch in the sky or am trying to earn an eternal reward. I do it because to do otherwise makes life worse for me and everyone, and doing right makes life better.

It should also be noted that tonight on Radio Open Source, their episode will be about intelligent design and evolution. I am looking forward to hearing it.


I have farted around with Fire ANT a little lately, mostly watching videos from Rocketboom and Eric Rice. As I played with it, I thought to myself “Self, you know what would be cool? If there was a way to do this from within MythTV such that downloaded shows just entered the recorded list along with all the stuff taped from TV.” I did a Google search for such a thing when I first thought about it, but didn’t see anything promising.

Today I did the search again, but went down many pages. Turns out there is such a thing, it just doesn’t have a lot of Google juice. The project is named Torrentocracy, and it does look pretty cool. What this says to me is that I need to get a Hauppage TV card, dumpster dive me an old PC and finally set up a Myth box. I’m happy with my cable company supplied DVR which is, like, less than the cost of the subscription to TiVo and has two digital cable tuners in it. Still, MythTV seems to be so cool as to require playing with it anyway.

PS – Every single time I blog a link to the FireANT project, I look at their URL and think “Anti Snot TV? WTF? Oh yeah, Ant Is Not TV.”

More on Ads

I’m doing an experiment for the month of August. Since I recently put the Google ads back on, they have been performing better than when I took them off but not wildly better. I saw a reference to Adbrite the other day, and signed up. This is the ad company started by Pud of Fucked Company infamy. That site kept me going with gallows humor in my dark days of getting laid off and not finding a job, so I have a store of slack built up for him.

Right now, there is a coin-flip in the PHP code that renders the sidebar. Heads, it will show the Google Ads and tails it will show the Adbrite ads. We’ll see how it goes, both from a revenue standpoint and from an aesthetic one. The thing Adbrite does that Google doesn’t is that it has a “Your Ad Here” link. If you want your ad specifically on this site, as opposed to being served out by the network to anyone, you can do that. I’m withholding my opinion so far, and will just let the data speak for itself.

Beat Writers Haunt the Web

Recently I blogged about my geeky writing of a computer program to do Burroughsian style cutups nearly 20 years ago. Now I’ve found a website with lots of cool stuff, including a cut-up generator at Language is a Virus.

Something else I really dug was this list of Kerouac’s Belief and Technique for Modern Prose. Crazy beat generation wisdom, daddy-o!

Voiceover Madness

Here’s a funny film about voiceover artists, from Don LaFontaine’s website (via Mark Evanier). You know Don’s voice, even if you don’t know his name. Any time you hear a movie trail that starts “In a world…”, that’s him.

A while back I heard Paul Harris of KMOX in St. Louis interview LaFontaine and Joe Cipriano, who is the guy who announces the CBS shows. It’s really interesting and fun. Don is good, if a little big-headed. I guess dominating your industry for a few decades will do that for you.

I have some fascination with the voiceover world and at one point was considering making that part of my career, like as a freelance software contractor and a freelance voiceover guy doing whichever ones I had available. That might could have worked in Atlanta but it sure won’t work in the boonies. Despite that, in the local coffee shop where they have the rack of business cards on the counter, every time I see this card for a local voiceover artist and laugh. How much work could there possibly be in Conway, SC and environs?