Archive | January, 2011

Super Recursive Epistemological Exemplum

Posted on 28 January 2011 by Caravaggio

The little man opened the door and stepped into Schmidt’s office.

“Who let you in here?” asked the surprised Schmidt.

“I just did,” the little man said, pointing to the door.

“But that’s my bathroom,” Schmidt said, rising from his chair.

“No matter,” said the little man. “In a moment, you won’t care. Because I am about to give you the most amazing thing you have ever seen in your life.”

He held out his hand, on which there sat a small blue sphere that seemed to shimmer. Schmidt was about to protest when the little man touched the sphere and pulled on it. It grew as it followed his gesture, until it was a large globe, the continents and oceans easily recognizable, clouds moving slowly across the surface. Schmidt stopped and stared. It was so lifelike. He could see three-dimensional details in the landscape, even birds and aeroplanes as the view got closer.

“We call this the Simulation,” the little man said. “It’s quite realistic. It uses inputs from satellites, of course, but also from all kinds of cameras all over the world, cell phones, traffic cameras, webcams, television. It’s quite up-to-date. You can zoom in on anything you like.”

He gestured again, and Schmidt felt a dizzy sensation as the view swooped down through clouds to view a city, and then farther down to view a street corner with busy traffic and pedestrians, all moving and in perfect 3D. He could move his head and see behind people and objects. He felt he could reach in and touch things.

“How do —?” Schmidt began.

“It’s a simulation,” the little man said. “There’s data input, but most of it is generated. Computers, you know.”

The view changed as the little man made subtle movements with his hands. Schmidt seemed to fly through walls, observing people in their homes and at work, going about their routines. A woman brushing her teeth in front of a mirror. A couple arguing at a table in a café. A seductive woman trolling a bar in Paris. A fisherman struggling with a line in Australia.

“It’s extremely popular where I come from,” said the little man. “People fly all around, spy on people, hang around women’s locker rooms, it’s highly addictive. Hardly anything else gets done. People stop talking to each other, stop going to work, they’re just fascinated.”

Schmidt himself was getting fascinated. It looked so real. He reached his hand out and the sphere responded, moving the scenes around as he gestured. He felt like he was flying, swooping between buildings and under bridges, peering into windows, moving through solid walls like a ghost. He peeked into corporate boardrooms and spied on meetings in the Kremlin.

“But that’s not all,” the little man said. “You can go in.” He zoomed in on a doorway, until the door was life-sized in front of them. “Any door you like, you just open it and walk in.”

He reached for the doorknob, and turned it, pushing the door open. Schmidt looked in, and saw himself in a room that looked just like his office, standing next to a little man with a doorknob in his hand. He swung around and looked at the door to his bathroom, which was now open, and he could see himself looking back.

“How —?” he started to ask.

“Cute trick, eh?” the little man said, closing the door. “You can forget your corporate jet. Anywhere you want to go, you just open the door. That’s how I got here, of course.”

“That can’t be real,” Schmidt said, shaking his head.

“No, it isn’t,” the little man replied. “Like I said, it’s a simulation. All done by computers. Collecting and organizing all the world’s information, and presenting it in a nice three-dimensional user interface, with natural intuitive gestural inputs. Anyone can learn to use it in seconds, it needs no user manual.”

“And you’re giving this to me?” Schmidt asked, his gaze still held by the device, his hands still moving to direct the view.

“Free of charge,” the little man said. “No catch, it’s all yours.”

“I can see why people get addicted to this,” Schmidt said.

“Yes, that was a problem. Economy went into the crapper, people stopped having kids, food became scarce, things were really going downhill until we came up with this solution.”

“What solution was that?” Schmidt asked absently, his attention still riveted on the device in his hands.

“A computer virus,” the little man said. “Ingenious, really. It’s called infinite recursion. Like putting two mirrors facing each other, so you get a hallway stretching on forever. We put a Simulator inside the Simulator, and the computers spend all their time simulating more simulations, until they don’t have any time to do anything else. Everything grinds to a halt after a little while. The toy isn’t fun anymore, and people get back to their lives.”

“I’m not sure I understand,” Schmidt said.

“Give it a minute or two,” the little man said. He gestured, and the view zoomed in on Schmidt’s office, showing the two men gazing at the sphere. Inside the sphere, two copies of the men were staring at another sphere. “It will come to you,” he said.

“Or maybe not.”

———
Attribution: Simon Quellen Field; Nature 468, 1138 (23 December 2010) doi:10.1038/4681138a

Comments (8)

Atheism!

Posted on 28 January 2011 by Thraxxus

I personally think that Atheism is sort of a silly concept as the core of the belief is that there is no power of any kind behind any of what is going on – thus the universe has just gone on forever – nothing made it – it has just always been here. This, to me, also dismisses the idea of the big bang then, or rather can dismiss it, as it implies that this has always been here and thus there was no begining. Granted some Athiests believe that there is a cycle at work here, Big Bang, Big Shrink, rinse repeat. All that aside today I saw this poster and it made me chuckle.

Me? I am agnostic. I am here, wherever here is, and I have no idea how I got here minus being born.

Comments (6)

A Letter From Lincoln

Posted on 24 January 2011 by Thraxxus

Yesterday I did a piece on how poor of a communicator I am. ScanJack made a comment that I find to be deadly accurate:
“I like the letter writing idea. I would suggest as a good primer, people read the letters sent home by Civil War and WW1 soldiers. Can anyone being passed out of high school, or even the latest and greatest MBA program actually come close to writing so well as those men in uniform?”

The best letters I have ever read were written by Abraham Lincoln so I found one he wrote to a friend of his – Enjoy.
*****************************************************************
Letter to Joshua Speed

Abraham Lincoln and Joshua Speed met in Springfield, Illinois, during the 1830s. Although Speed returned to his native Kentucky, they remained friends throughout life. In this letter, Lincoln expresses his thinking about slavery, which contrasted with Speed, who grew up on a plantation and owned slaves.
The year before Lincoln wrote this letter, the Kansas-Nebraska Act passed Congress, repealing the Missouri Compromise of 1820, and opened the territories to slavery. The passage of this bill proved a turning point in Lincoln’s career. As he observed, “I was losing interest in politics, when the repeal of the Missouri Compromise aroused me again.”

Springfield, Illinois
August 24, 1855

Dear Speed:

You know what a poor correspondent I am. Ever since I received your very agreeable letter of the 22nd. of May I have been intending to write you in answer to it. You suggest that in political action now, you and I would differ. I suppose we would; not quite as much, however, as you may think. You know I dislike slavery; and you fully admit the abstract wrong of it. So far there is no cause of difference. But you say that sooner than yield your legal right to the slave — especially at the bidding of those who are not themselves interested, you would see the Union dissolved. I am not aware that any one is bidding you to yield that right; very certainly I am not. I leave that matter entirely to yourself. I also acknowledge your rights and my obligations, under the constitution, in regard to your slaves. I confess I hate to see the poor creatures hunted down, and caught, and carried back to their stripes, and unrewarded toils; but I bite my lip and keep quiet. In 1841 you and I had together a tedious low-water trip, on a Steam Boat from Louisville to St. Louis. You may remember, as I well do, that from Louisville to the mouth of the Ohio, there were, on board, ten or a dozen slaves, shackled together with irons. That sight was a continued torment to me; and I see something like it every time I touch the Ohio, or any other slave-border. It is hardly fair for you to assume, that I have no interest in a thing which has, and continually exercises, the power of making me miserable. You ought rather to appreciate how much the great body of the Northern people do crucify their feelings, in order to maintain their loyalty to the Constitution and the Union.

I do oppose the extension of slavery, because my judgment and feelings so prompt me; and I am under no obligation to the contrary. If for this you and I must differ, differ we must. You say if you were President, you would send an army and hang the leaders of the Missouri outrages upon the Kansas elections; still, if Kansas fairly votes herself a slave state, she must be admitted, or the Union must be dissolved. But how if she votes herself a slave State unfairly — that is, by the very means for which you say you would hang men? Must she still be admitted, or the Union be dissolved? That will be the phase of the question when it first becomes a practical one. In your assumption that there may be a fair decision of the slavery question in Kansas, I plainly see you and I would differ about the Nebraska-law. I look upon that enactment not as a law, but as violence from the beginning. It was conceived in violence, passed in violence, is maintained in violence, and is being executed in violence. I say it was conceived in violence, because the destruction of the Missouri Compromise, under the circumstances, was nothing less than violence. It was passed in violence, because it could not have passed at all but for the votes of many members in violence of the known will of their constituents. It is maintained in violence because the elections since, clearly demand it’s repeal, and this demand is openly disregarded. You say men ought to be hung for the way they are executing that law; and I say the way it is being executed is quite as good as any of its antecedents. It is being executed in the precise way which was intended from the first; else why does no Nebraska man express astonishment or condemnation? Poor Reeder is the only public man who has been silly enough to believe that any thing like fairness was ever intended; and he has been bravely undeceived.

That Kansas will form a Slave Constitution, and, with it, will ask to be admitted into the Union, I take to be an already settled question; and so settled by the very means you so pointedly condemn. By every principle of law, ever held by any court, North or South, every negro taken to Kansas is free; yet, in utter disregard of this — in the spirit of violence merely — that beautiful Legislature gravely passes a law to hang men who shall venture to inform a negro of his legal rights. This is the substance, and real object of the law. If, like Haman, they should hang upon the gallows of their own building, I shall not be among the mourners for their fate.

In my humble sphere, I shall advocate the restoration of the Missouri Compromise, so long as Kansas remains a territory; and when, by all these foul means, it seeks to come into the Union as a Slave-state, I shall oppose it. I am very loth, in any case, to withhold my assent to the enjoyment of property acquired, or located, in good faith; but I do not admit that good faith, in taking a negro to Kansas, to be held in slavery, is a possibility with any man. Any man who has sense enough to be the controller of his own property, has too much sense to misunderstand the outrageous character of this whole Nebraska business. But I digress. In my opposition to the admission of Kansas I shall have some company; but we may be beaten. If we are, I shall not, on that account, attempt to dissolve the Union. On the contrary, if we succeed, there will be enough of us to take care of the Union. I think it probable, however, we shall be beaten. Standing as a unit among yourselves, you can, directly, and indirectly, bribe enough of our men to carry the day — as you could on an open proposition to establish monarchy. Get hold of some man in the North, whose position and ability is such, that he can make the support of your measure — whatever it may be — a democratic party necessity, and the thing is done. Appropos [sic] of this, let me tell you an anecdote. Douglas introduced the Nebraska bill in January. In February afterwards, there was a call session of the Illinois Legislature. Of the one hundred members composing the two branches of that body, about seventy were democrats. These latter held a caucus, in which the Nebraska bill was talked of, if not formally discussed. It was thereby discovered that just three, and no more, were in favor of the measure. In a day of two Dougla’s [sic] orders came on to have resolutions passed approving the bill; and they were passed by large majorities!!! The truth of this is vouched for by a bolting democratic member. The masses too, democratic as well as whig, were even, nearer unanamous [sic] against it; but as soon as the party necessity of supporting it, became apparent, the way the democracy began to see the wisdom and justice of it, was perfectly astonishing.

You say if Kansas fairly votes herself a free state, as a Christian you will rather rejoice at it. All decent slaveholders talk that way; and I do not doubt their candor. But they never vote that way. Although in a private letter, or conversation, you will express your preference that Kansas shall be free, you would vote for no man for Congress who would say the same thing publicly. No such man could be elected from any district in a slave-state. You think Stringfellow & Co. ought to be hung; and yet, at the next presidential election you will vote for the exact type and representative of Stringfellow. The slave-breeders and slave-traders, are a small, odious and detested class, among you; and yet in politics, they dictate the course of all of you, and are as completely your masters, as you are the master of your own negroes. You inquire where I now stand. That is a disputed point — I think I am a whig; but others say there are no whigs, and that I am an abolitionist. When I was in Washington I voted for the Wilmot Proviso as good as forty times, and I never heard of any one attempting to unwhig me for that. I now do no more than oppose the extension of slavery.

I am not a Know-Nothing. That is certain. How could I be? How can any one who abhors the oppression of negroes, be in favor or degrading classes of white people? Our progress in degeneracy appears to me to be pretty rapid. As a nation, we began by declaring that “all men are created equal.” We now practically read it “all men are created equal, except negroes” When the Know-Nothings get control, it will read “all men are created equal, except negroes, and foreigners, and Catholics.” When it comes to this I should prefer emigrating to some country where they make no pretence of loving liberty — to Russia, for instance, where despotism can be taken pure, and without the base alloy of hypocracy [sic].

Mary will probably pass a day to two in Louisville in October. My kindest regards to Mrs. Speed. On the leading subject of this letter, I have more of her sympathy that I have of yours. And yet let me say I am

Yours friend forever
A. Lincoln

Comments (5)

My Inability to Communicate

Posted on 23 January 2011 by Thraxxus

It has become obvious to me that my ability to communicate degrades with each passing moment. I used to think that I communicated well – people seemed to understand what I was trying to say – regardless of the chosen delivery mechanism. As the world has evolved vastly in the amount of communication platforms being readily available to most people in the industrialized parts of the world one would think that I would get better at communicating. Tragically this is not the case.

It appears that even the simplest of things to convey are now totally lost in translation – and there isn’t any translation. I say something and my target audience hears, reads, or comprehends something entirely different. I can only conclude that the issue is mine – apparently I am not with the times. When someone asks me a question I try to answer that question as succinctly as possible. Yes/no question? I try to answer it with one of those two options. If someone asks me if I am hungry I try to answer that question instead of opening a debate about where they may be going has some effect on my hunger – it doesn’t. Either you are hungry or you are not regardless of proposed destination.

In business I can’t seem to come across clearly at all. When pleading with people instead I come across as argumentative or offensive. When being truly interested in what someone has to say or some input they may give people automatically assume I hate them and want them to shut up. When asked my opinion on any business subject I try to give a simple answer backed up with some basic data – if the person requires a deeper response I leave that request in their hands – this never works.

If someone wants to tell me their idea I try to shut myself down entirely so that I can listen to what they have to say. People appear to take this action as me being in pain because they are about to talk instead of the intention of making them my focus. My new plan is to simply shut up. I hope to not talk unless I really have to. If someone else is speaking I will pay close attention to them and then send a follow up communication stating back to them what I think they were saying to me. Elaboration has become dangerous. Opinions seem cheap and nobody wants them – especially mine.

Good night.

Comments (8)

Why Even Vote?

Posted on 17 January 2011 by Caravaggio

Regardless of where your political beliefs alight you upon the fairy princess-endorsed spectrum of political party affiliations, please read the letter that I recently sent to the (dis)h-o-n-o-r-a-b-l-e Missouri House of Representatives. In summation, you may feel this topic is of a “lesser importance” but hold on one cotton-pickin’ second… the Republic only works when the representatives voted into office respect the votes of the majority (res publica). When special interest begins to bend the rules, the Republic (ref. “By the People, For the People”) becomes an Oligarchy (“By the People, For the Special Interest”).

——————-

The Honorable Nick Marshall
Missouri House of Representatives
201 West Capitol Avenue
Jefferson City, MO 65101

Re:

    I vote, I pay taxes, and I said Yes on Prop B

Dear Representative Marshall:
As a voter in Missouri, I am greatly concerned that legislators are attempting to repeal a measure on which a majority voted “Yes” in November. Enough Missourians voted to pass Proposition B to make some much-needed changes to the way dogs are treated in our state.

I’m asking you to strongly oppose any legislation that would repeal or partly repeal Proposition B. I feel that the basic humane requirements of more space, exercise and veterinary attention for dogs isn’t too much to ask; in fact, it was long overdue.

I am proud to live in a state that respects the power given to its citizens through ballot measures, and it saddens me that legislators would consider using their power to repeal these basic standards of care for man’s best friend. Opponents to Prop B have tried to make the case that this new law will affect—or even eliminate—livestock production in our state, but I’ve read the language and it clearly only applies to dogs. While I believe that some voters were misled to believe Prop B will affect chickens or pigs or cattle, I know you are aware that it will not.

Please don’t let us down. Keep Proposition B in effect, and honor the vote of the people last November.

Thank you for taking the time to consider my opinion on this matter.

Sincerely,
Caravaggio

P.s.; You have already proven yourself to be an Incompetent Government Stewart by not immediately standing-up to this mounting call for repeal. You honestly believe there is a conspiracy with the ASPCA to take-over Family Farms? Ridiculous. What a laugh! Get your private part out of that Cow and do as the voting populace has ordered you to do. The funniest thing here is that you call yourself a “Republican”. Where is your civic virtue? And tell your wife to stop calling me.

————-

OK… So I really left-off the postscript when I mailed it.

Comments (3)

The Wikileaks Post I want to Read.

Posted on 16 January 2011 by Thraxxus

I am actually excited by this announcement. Why?

“Releasing the bank details of 2,000 “high net worth individuals” and companies could reveal huge potential tax evasion, The Observer reported on Sunday.” This makes me giddy especially when I read about how Google has been hiding billions of dollars using the Denmark scheme.

and

“Both American and British firms and individuals, including about “40 politicians,” will be implicated, Rudolf Elmer, a former employee of Swiss-based Bank Julius Baer, told the newspaper.” – Any time corrupt Politicians can be brought to light I get this warm fuzzy feeling.

Am I anti establishment? No.

Do I love chaos? No.

Do I want governments to fall? Only if they are filled with scum – tragically the concept of scum is in the eye of the beholder.

Do I believe in Vaccines? All my kids, my wife, and I have all been vaccinated to hilt (I am looking at you Caravaggio!) (this also has nothing to do with this article but I thought throwing it in here would be amusing) with the vaccines that are not filled with belly button lint and testicles.

Do I believe in what Wikileaks is doing? That is complicated. I believe that the scummy actions of scum bags should be exposed so those fuckers can get what they deserve. Regarding war – I believe that war is war – in fact War is the failure of politics. If you truly are at war then you should fight to win – period. Political wars are bunk (to steal a word from Caravaggio). You are either fighting or you are not fighting. So to report on the actions of those fighting as if they did something wrong to me is invalid. If civilians are killed during conflict it is a tragic thing – however if one looks at real wars (World War II) you will note that civilians die all the damned time – so this really should not be a surprise for anyone. Tragic? Yes. Standard result of war? Yes.

Releasing “secret” documents is a funny thing to me. The USA government wants to convict Wikileaks for releasing secret documents, citing something about breaking an American Law. Now understand this – I am an American and thus believe in our laws as they apply to USA CITIZENS, or those travelling in the USA. Wikileaks didn’t steal anything – leaked information was handed to them by an American Soldier – also they didn’t do it in the USA nor are they USA citizens, so really how is it USA law applies to them at all? If that is the case then why aren’t we running around the world and arresting people for other USA laws that are being broken every second of every day by non USA citizens outside of the USA? Because again the concept is bunk. Try prosecuting the dude who supposedly did it instead of going after people who actually didn’t.

And what of the USA papers that are releasing the same information? Why aren’t the being prosecuted? Seems a bit odd really. Oh wait – they are protected by this law that protects new sources. Thus I can only conclude that the argument here is that the USA doesn’t see wikileaks as a news source. More bunk really. In this digital age classifying who is a news source and who isn’t seems a bit shady at best.

In closing I can’t wait to see the new crap Wikileaks is going to put out there. Making popcorn now.

Comments (5)

“WWJD?” (What Would Jenny Do?)

Posted on 15 January 2011 by Caravaggio

“I do believe sadly it’s going to take some diseases coming back to realize that we need to change and develop vaccines that are safe. If the vaccine companies are not listening to us, it’s their f___ing fault that the diseases are coming back. They’re making a product that’s s___. If you give us a safe vaccine, we’ll use it. It shouldn’t be polio versus autism.”
Jenny McCarthy in Time Magazine, April 2009

“The mainstream media is in a frenzy over a new ‘study’ claiming that Andrew Wakefield’s 1998 Lancet paper was fraudulent. For years, the media has mischaracterized Wakefield’s work as implicating the MMR vaccine in the autism epidemic. This was never true.’
Jenny McCarthy in GenerationRescue, January 2011

Oh really?!?! The ignorance exposed in this flip-flop is mind-boggling. What micro-degree of credibility amongst the “concerned parents” out there should now be shredded. Suddenly it isn’t really about the “fact” that children’s vaccinations and autism are linked. Nope… what she said before doesn’t count now. It is really just Polio now. Naw… MMR only causes loose bowels. Let’s not look backward, shall we?

Hell, there are HOURS of video with her and her dumb-ass comedian boyfriend directly pronouncing the link between MMR and autism. No playing of semantics allowed where ignorance is actually HURTING kids.

Unfortunately a few of the participants of this very blog believed her (or, at least, her cause). The participants even cited bogus “foundations” as PROOF of this epidemic of harm being cast upon our innocent children. Upon critical examination of these foundations, it was discovered they were derived of board members and directors reflective of esteemed backgrounds such as, “Worried/Angry Father” and “Ph.D. in Hospital Management”… not a virologist, epidemiologist, physician, or micro-biologist to be found. Yet because this group called themselves “experts” and placed their pictures on a website with a focus upon the “Anti-Autism/Anti-Vaccination Cause” next to a title including the word, Foundation — otherwise intelligent people gave them a soapbox from which to be heard. And then these same individuals would engage in debates over the validity of the word “expert” as if on a some different plane of reality “Worried/Anger Father” was somehow on equal level with that of “Ph.D., Virology”. Or a Foundation run out of a strip-mall in Virginia by a “Concerned Parent” was just as valid a source of information as the CDC.

Pure Bunk.

So… some would believe that it takes a nice guy to NOT say “I told you so.” However, given the history of l-o-n-g debates taking place in BB around vaccines, autism, qualification of scientific standards, validity of “experts”, etc., etc., etc.
I TOLD YOU SO.

C’est la vie. Now that I’ve lived up to my self-appointed role of antagonist-asshole, please have a safe and happy Saturday evening – and for God’s sake stay away from the Polio vaccine. Did you see the website, “The Polio Shot is Dangerous” from that guy who cleans pools in San Diego? Holy cow, I’ll never subject my kids to this nasty conspiracy of the Big-Pharma! Evil Capitalists!

Comments (6)

Business Advice

Posted on 14 January 2011 by Thraxxus

In my travels throughout the business world I have encountered many people far more successful than me. In those travels some of those people have been nice enough to pass on some of their knowledge that they have gained through various means. I am still not what I consider to be a successful person, however I am not doing too shabby either as there are many in much more dire situations than me. That said, I figured that I would list some of their pointers here, you do what you want with them, along with a quick commentary to each point.

  1. Would you rather be right or rich? This question was posed to me by a very successful guy who works predominantly in the Automotive industry. His question was posed after he realized that my business partners and I were very good at being right about all things TECHNICAL, too right in some instances, but due to that nature we came across like arrogant prats when talking to people who wanted to invest in our company. So if you are trying to get money or advice from anyone at least act like they are bringing something other than money to the table when you talk to them.
  2. Would you rather own .5% of a billion dollars or 100% of nothing. This comes from the same guy as number one and he is referring to investors again. Investors want something for their money, that at the least being a percentage of your company. In some instances they may want a huge chunk – in those instances you have to ask yourself if you really believe in your idea and if you need their money – if the answer is yes then having a smaller percentage of something is better than a huge percentage of nothing.
  3. Do you really need investment capital? Traditional business often needed investment capital to get started as you needed things like office furniture, supplies, product and employees (this is a vast simplification). Modern business really doesn’t need much to get going and frankly investors know this, and they know it to such a degree that is is becoming increasingly difficult for them to grasp why you are even asking them for money to begin with. To make matters worse, in some instances, they don’t want to give money to start ups, preferring to hand out cash to someone who has proven their business model first. So if you don’t REALLY need the money then just bootstrap the business – once you have done that go get money to expand what you have already accomplished.
  4. Have a business model not a business plan. Many people spend countless hours writing a business plan. Having a plan is a good thing, having a business plan that you expect to follow to a point of rigidity is stupid, totally stupid. A survey was conducted recently which asked several fortune 500 CEOs “What causes most startups and companies to fail the most?” The most common answer? “A business plan.” Now that said creating a business model, which is a way that you can make money (example: I buy a pen for $1 and sell it for $2) is quick and simple, and potentially much more fluid than a 200 page document illustrating how you plan to pay for office equipment.
  5. Have a strong two minute pitch. You have heard of the elevator pitch right? Well its real, alive, and well. Recently a business partner, and friend, of mine met with one of the top Investment Capital guys in the country. The person he was with, who was presenting this long winded business plan accompanied with a 42 page Power Point presentation, spoke for about 1.5 hours. When she finished the Investment Guy told her that everything she had just said was worthless and totally boring. “Excite me. Hot or not?” Thats it folks. Make the person you are talking to excited about your prospect. Lots of charts, graphs, and numbers don’t do that. Some simple ones with a good quick story do.
  6. Get it out there. If you are making a product, take software for example, get it out there. Some how find a way to release it – even if its not as done as you want it to be. The most successful software companies on the planet often release crap – granted they try to fix it as fast as possible – but nevertheless they release something that is not entirely complete. Why? SOMEONE WILL USE IT – and you need that. Get a community of users, any size, because if they like anything you have they will tell you how to fix it and will spread the word.
  7. Be prepared to give something away. Don’t have any customers? Get some by giving them your product for free. Gordon Ramsey is a world famous Chef who helps people fix their dying restaurant businesses. One of his key tactics is to host a free dinner for prominent people of the community in which the restaurant resides to try to get a buzz going. DO THIS. You have a game you want people to play? Give away some licences to the game. You want people to eat your cheese? Give them some. Get someone using your product.
  8. Fill your team with people smarter than you – and listen to them. Try to avoid hiring people dumber than you for important positions. A great leader fills her team with experts who are smarter and more experienced than her in their respective roles, and then she listens to their advice. She may not follow their advice, but she listens, intently, and then makes an educated decision.
  9. Do it on the cheap. Trying to go from zero to large is just bad practice. Do everything you can for as cheap as you can for as long as you can. Pour your cash into your product, not your office space. You already have a computer that works, why buy another one? Working out of your basement? Good. Stay there as long as you can. Virtual business spaces are all the rage – learn how to do it and then do it.
  10. You are part of a world of business, use that. Traditional business dictates that your employees are right in front of you – now you can do business with people you have never met, may never meet face to face, and who may be in another country. I have done this and it works great if planned out well. ALL fortune 500 companies work with people outside of them – period. They know that their are talented people elsewhere who can do great things that don’t need to be micromanaged. Trust the professional you hire. If she fails, replace her. Don’t work with people you need to micromanage. Find someone to do the task or role you need no matter where they are. Get the proper documentation and contracts in order and move forward – thats it.

If you have some pointers to add we would love to hear about them.

Comments (7)

2011 – Things to Expect?

Posted on 12 January 2011 by Thraxxus

In recent times – like over the last few weeks – some various bits of news have been reported on from a multitude of disparate sources.

  1. The Price of food is expected to rise significantly this year. Link.
  2. The Price of Oil is expected to rise significantly this year. Link.
  3. Import Prices are going up, that means that the cost of import goods will go up too. Link.
  4. China is expected to enter the Currency market. Link.
  5. The weather has started getting rough and the GIANT COUNTRY was tossed. Link.
  6. A couple regions of the world are not doing so well Politically. Korea, Iran, and Afghanistan.
  7. The economy is looking… Meh.

Hey, call me a fatalist… just sharing a smidge of what is going on out there. Try reading something.

Don’t mind the poster – I just like the pretty colors.

Comments (8)

Die-offs… The End is Nigh

Posted on 10 January 2011 by Caravaggio

A floating skein of BB authors were recently sighted citing the recent spate of animal die-offs. So here is my damn post.

Here’s a list of the current primary recorded cases . Yea! There is now a Google Map. Here is a more responsible account of recent deaths (from National Geographic).

It is my understanding that anthropogenic-causes (man-made) are to blame for the Arkansas birds… and not the end of the world as an increasing number of moronic, fear-ridden, ultra-conservative, white people-focused websites have been positing. The more ultra-left leaning sites theorize this die-off as proof of climate change — which is still fear-ridden and sometimes even more moronic than the other side of the political spectrum.

More specifically – loud noises, fireworks, crashes, and an availability cascade seem to be the major hypotheses under consideration. Winter cold weather, accidental poisonings, and hypoxia have all been cited. And oh… don’t forget the dead aqua-critters… fishes and crabs.

I read one author put it nicely as “the world seems slightly more sub-Malthusian than before.” A 10-pointer for sure. If you have to google “Malthusian”, you should consider yourself a solid, formidable warrior of the Dumb-Ass Clan. And you probably drive a Hummer because you tell yourself you deserve it and not because in the back of your mind you know… you truly know… you have a small penis.

People are genetically-attuned to seeing patterns… even when there exists room for false-positive recognitions. Ask any Ornithologist or Entomologist about die-offs and they shrug their shoulders as if to indicate “nothing new here, you smelly retard”. It is only when the evil directors of mass media focus their cumulative lenses upon this news and present it as this is somehow a new event that makes the freaks come out of the woodwork. We are dealing with birds who were whipped into a frantic frenzy from fireworks, an annual (meaning regular) die-off of some fishes, etc., etc., etc. In conclusion this is coincidental clustering, you fucking morons.

If you are one of the people who have been “very concerned” about this news event or even confused as to whom to believe in this horrible course of events, might I advise you to rethink the sources with which you receive your daily news. My news comes from the National Inquirer ’cause they are the shiznick. And I will read every edition they publish until the world ends in a shit-storm of… well…. shit in 2012.

Damn… you take away the reason for screaming about vaccines because somehow normal vaccination caused some kids to suddenly drop 50 IQ points, slobber themselves, and prefer to pojo-hump their favorite blankey in the middle of the aisle at the local Target and you stupid assholes are now frantically searching for something to empathetically masturbate over. It’ll be exactly 72 hours before some brainless, ex-playboy bunny announces that her Chihuahua, named Herman, committed suicide from depression over the mass die-offs of god’s beautiful creatures. It’ll be exactly 96 hours before I’m suckered into actively debating this shit on BB.

Whatever. Go pound sand, humans.

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Violence is not the Answer

Posted on 10 January 2011 by Thraxxus

A relatively reoccurring theme in the good old U S of A these days is how much Joe Citizen is not so happy with the Politicians that are running this here shindig. It is the right of every American to think that way as the founding fathers of this great country not only believed in the right to independent thought but went so far as to write that right into the Bill of Rights and Constitution. What does this give Joe Citizen? The right to say what is on his mind. “George Bush was a terrible President!” is thus legal to say in public, and this is a good thing as without it we’d have a society that would have far greater issues than it does even today like Socialism or a Dictatorship.

All that considered some people don’t think that talking about problems solves them, they want action, and in some instances they want final action – that is him smiling in his mug shot. On Saturday one of these people decided to take his vision and make it a reality in Arizona by opening fire on some people at a grocery store killing 6 and injuring many others. One of the people killed was a Judge – yes a Judge. Another was a Congresswoman – yes a member of Congress. We will get back to those two in a minute.

Two other people that died, to me, were awe inspiring – a 9 year old girl born on September the 11th 2001, the day the towers fell – the other was a man who took a bullet for his wife of 50+ years, a wife he had met in high school and had spent his life with. The little girl was an inspiration because she wanted to dedicate her life to helping others less fortunate. The man in twilight of his life chose to give what remained of it as a final gift to the woman he loved more than his own breath.

This leads me to a question: What did either of these people do to the shooter to cause him to kill them?

Now onto the Judge  who was at the scene unannounced, supposedly, to just say hello and support his old friend, the Congresswoman. He had just left church, where he was a prominent member, and decided to swing by on a lazy Sunday to support someone whom he respected and cared a great deal for – it cost him his life. It would have been one thing if the Judge had been announced as being scheduled to be there – we might be able to reach for some conspiracy or another – but he wasn’t. He was there for a friend – the last time he’d see her.

So what then of the Congresswoman, the supposed target of this malicious assault that cost so many so much? Oddly she was a Congresswoman who was actually respected not only within her own party but also by the opposing party and the people of her state. She had recently been quoted as wanting the parties to set aside their differences to actually solve real problems in America – something obviously worth killing her for, right?

A man once said:

“I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: “We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal.”

I have a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slave owners will be able to sit down together at the table of brotherhood.

I have a dream that one day even the state of Mississippi, a state sweltering with the heat of injustice, sweltering with the heat of oppression, will be transformed into an oasis of freedom and justice.

I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.

I have a dream today.

I have a dream that one day, down in Alabama, with its vicious racists, with its governor having his lips dripping with the words of interposition and nullification; one day right there in Alabama, little black boys and black girls will be able to join hands with little white boys and white girls as sisters and brothers.

I have a dream today.

I have a dream that one day every valley shall be exalted, every hill and mountain shall be made low, the rough places will be made plain, and the crooked places will be made straight, and the glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together.

This is our hope.”

That man was shot and killed. That man, Martin Luther King Jr., is beloved and missed by many for the kindness in both his heart and his words. That man is missed as those who were murdered for no reason are and always will be.

And at the end of the day, with those people dead, just as the King, nothing will change for the good. I am not a religious man per say but I do believe that Evil acts beget only Evil things.

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If you can’t spell “Dialectical” we’re taking your kids away

Posted on 05 January 2011 by Caravaggio

The cognitive behavioral process of thinking everyone is just like you is a fundamental, yet erroneous attribute required of humans to exist around other humans. We have evolved to leverage our neocortex-enabled social abilities as a strategy for successfully surviving within the Homo sapien-dominated world. This is even with “social assembly code” that is extremely bug-ridden. When we examine the highly specialized modern world, a broad array of isolated social attributes have evolved to match that of the increased specialization undertaken by specific groups of humans. Any specialization (think: Science or Tech Discipline) requires its own defined vernacular and, sometimes even, cultural norms for properly communicating within said specialty.

This, by-and-large, presents a problem for those who inhabit the IQ bell curve right-skewed to the first quadrant. With few excepts, the world “on average” has little capacity to interpret or appropriately perceive the technical and scientific advances of current times. Upon comparing forecast birth rates with current mean IQ based on geographic region, this incapacity grows exponentially into the future (until such time as humans begin to cease procreating at a rate greater than or equal to the death rate). As a result, I offer to you that there is no way to avoid the increasing pace of Socio-Economic stratification based solely upon IQ. Within another half dozen generations, worldwide intelligence will have theoretically swung lower than it is today and this will effectively prevent the “average” (today’s defined “average” or IQ score determined range of average) man or woman of having any chance of competing with those in the aforementioned primary quadrant of innate intelligence.

Current and future power rests in the hands of socially-defined, vernacularly-independent specialists. Ergo, a hypotheses is required to act as more a rule set for humanity…. and please allow this to be presented in layman’s terms (note: we at BB are equal opportunity bastards and will never exclude our right-side bell curve brothers and sisters).

Stupid people should not hump. Please pass it around.

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Something Creepy is Afoot in Arkansas

Posted on 03 January 2011 by Thraxxus

A few days ago some birds, lots and lots of them, 4000 is the guess, just fell out of the sky dead in Arkansas. At least it wasn’t poison.

Today some 100,000 fish showed up dead in a river in Arkansas.

Now I am not one to draw a pattern normally but two major events of wildlife dying on a massive scale in the same state?

Probably a coincidence.  I can’t way for the biblical folks to start wearing signs on street corners.

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“Nuke em – From Orbit” – Aliens

Posted on 01 January 2011 by Thraxxus

Happy New Year! Apparently North Korea has decided to ring in the new year with the threat of nuclear war. Am I the only one that is tired of Kim Jong Stupid and his inbred brood of crazy? China has to have finally figured it out haven’t they? Their weird cousins to the east are as CRAZY AS A SHIT HOUSE RAT (Look at their eyes folks – the eyes don’t liez). Seriously people – these guys are totally nuts and have gone way past the concept of a pathetic cry for help veiled in the guise of strength into the land of totally insane – with the resulting potential tragedy being a massive loss of life.

Realize that if North Korea starts hucking nukes the only retort is to send them back their way which will result in the total decimation of that entire area for the entirety of human existence – seriously. The half life of nuclear waste and fallout on that scale is basically forever in the grand scheme of things. The catch here is that that is not the real danger – that being the two major side effects:

  1. Global Fallout and Environmental Impact
  2. The license to NUKE AT WILL for other Nuclear capable countries – cough hack ISRAEL hack wheeze..

The only country that can step in at this point without massive fallout occurring on any level is China and if they don’t then whatever happens is completely their fault. I have said it before and will again – China can have North Korea – just remove the nutbag and everyone related to that nutbag from the planet.

This is far worse of a situation than most people have their brains wrapped around.

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