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: Last night I recorded a song for Jake's birthday tape (which is currently about 3/4 full of songs and spoken word pieces and which I should be able to send off soon, a mere few months late) called Jake's Answering Machine Message, which is supposed to be sung all in one breath but there's no possible way anyone could do so. It goes:

good morning this is jake berendes i am not here at the moment i am at the chinese bakery i am at the outdoor market i am at the ymca i am at the barbeque and i am playing in the park and at the worcester petting zoo i am not here to take your call please accept my apology i am here at the museum of science and technology i have a lot to do today and several places i should be so if you'll leave a message i will pass it right along to me i need to fix my bicycle i need to build a robot which will destroy all my enemies if i will only flip a switch i need to find a postcard of a record of a movie of a novel that i heard of while i was drunk at a party when i have completed all these tasks i will hijack a limousine and take it to a place in pennsylvania that i've never seen i'll hitchhike home and push a button which will play the words that you should whisper to your telephone regarding what you called me for beep
I'm quite proud of it [the song].

: Several people have emailed me saying that they managed to sing Jake's Answering Machine Message in one breath. To avoid further damage to peoples' lungs, I am obliged to state that it is indeed possible if you speed up the tempo a lot. Which I may end up doing.

: If the plot points in 50s B-movies were covered by the BBC, you'd get headlines like Double-Headed Creature Revealed.

: I'm going to write an arcade emulator. Existing emulators emulate specific games, but only my emulator will emulate the entire arcade. It will be very loud and cost a lot of money and all of the good games and pinball machines will have been replaced by dumb fighting games.

: Pictures from Brisbane are up.

: You too can Guess the Right Verb!

: In foosball, is it legal to rotate and move your opponent's shish kebabs of players? Best to settle this before it comes up, methinks.

: I keep wanting to unsubscribe from the NewsTrolls newsfeed, but they, like the Tourbus Internet-for-newbies newsletter, come through with enough good stuff to keep me on there. Like this usability study of Magritte's The Betrayal of Images: In Color!, complete with preachy disclaimers.

I unsubscribed from the Freshmeat newsletter because it was just too much information. I have no idea what new software has been released in the past five months.

: A while ago, Google turned up Microsoft on a search for More evil than Satan himself. Be Dope did a story on this, and correspondingly Mike informs me that Be Dope now turns up tops on a search for More evil than Satan himself. Behold how the barbs of the ungodly turn and strike those who launched them! Or words to that effect.

: I read a post-mortem from the Diablo 2 dev team on a game site, and it looks like a really cool roguelike game. I like roguelikes like Zangband and ADOM that give you a bunch of interesting places to die, and Diablo 2 looks like it fits that bill. So I'd like to try it; the only problem is it's a Windows game, and the only Windows machine I have avaliable is the clunky old laptop I got from MAP, which is currently upstairs providing Leonard's dial-up Internet access. So it looks like it'll be a while until I try Diablo 2.

: The subject matter of the previous entry but one has been immortalized in a Be Dope story.

: Segfault: A Vote For Nader Is .36 Of A Vote For Bush.

: A fun toy I found linked to on Technocrat: Spam Mimic stegonagraphically encodes short messages in spam mail.

: I've been able to laugh along with everyone else at the way George W. Bush puts sentences together, but it wasn't until today that the realization hit me. He uses the same algorithms used by the early versions of KatzDot, when it was Dan's goal to have it generate first paragraphs of Jon Katz articles as well as headlines. All it did was smush orthogonal sentence fragments together to give sentences like "Unapproachable information is over-reaction," so Dan gave up, but I think Dan (a known Nader supporter) has since gained control of some mind-control technology and is using it to influence the outcome of the election.

: From CollabNet IRC:

<leonardr> the electoral college makes me think of the knapsack problem
<leonardr> in fact it is the knapsack problem
<susank_h> Knapsack the band?
<leonardr> no, "the knapsack problem" like "the p=np problem" or "the halting problem"

: I found a great site with lots of Chinese propaganda posters; very cool, as I had previously seen only American and Soviet propaganda posters. My favorites are the ones featuring guys who create hazardous workplace conditions due to their penchant for showing off their copies of Chairman Mao's Quotations at inappropriate times.

: I'm staying home this morning waiting for someone from Covad to come and set up my DSL. So I'll be working late tonight. Like I wouldn't be anyway.

: More IRC fun:

<susank_h> I have to go EXTREMELY soon
<leonardr> susank_h: can you hold it til the next rest area?
<susank_h> no
<leonardr> pull over, dlr
<dlr> hehehe
<susank_h> not quick enough!
* dlr offers susank_h an empty milk carton
<susank_h> the back seat is drenched!
<leonardr> geez, susank_h
<susank_h> sorry!

: I have DSL working, at least on the Linux machine. Total size of Linux PPPoE RPM: 60k. Total size of Windows PPPoE setup software: 4.25 megabytes. I decided it would be faster to set up PPPoE on the Linux machine, download the Windows software, split it up, and move it over on floppy to the laptop. But I haven't done that yet.

I'm hoping to get some work done on the Sequim travelogue today. I've put up the first three days' worth of photos. Includes many photos not previously released, so act now for great savings. I'm going to make breakfast now.

Oh yeah, the Roaring Penguin PPPoE client has a nice set of default ipchains firewalling rules. Pretty nice. I can't get it to let SSH traffic through, though.

: I've been real busy today, too busy to write in here, but I should mention that Daniel Rall did a big merge yesterday, with the effect that we're now doing Helm development on the public tree at tigris.org instead of the internal Sourcecast tree. This means that I am now a big-shot* open source developer, with thousands of lines of contributed code to my name.

*Size of shot may vary.

: Enterprise headline-writing solutions with KatzDot technologies: Comdex to confirm rise of open-source Linux

: The UK's Home Secretary is named Jack Straw. For the longest time I thought this was not the name of a real person, but rather a name given to a personification, like Johnny Reb or Uncle Sam. Reading all the Register stories blasting his policies, it seemed too ominous and stereotypically English to be someone's real name.

: I figured out the problem. I was denying all TCP packets to privileged ports, so I needed to give ssh the -P option to have it run on an unprivileged port. So woohoo! I'm going to try working from home today.

: Today's bonus for insane people with lots of bandwidth (a very profitable demographic): You can now download a 33-megabyte MP3 of my 1998 magnum opus Jake's Birthday Party. Notlame makes it easy! (To encode huge MP3s, not to download or listen to them.)

: "For 30$ USD [sic], you get a nice big blanket that's warm." I should hope so.

: A headline I've had for years but have never been able to turn into a Segfault story: Katz to Rampage, Destroy All in Path.

Tomorrow the results of the IF competition. Since everyone will win a prize (due to a surplus of prizes rather than to any touchy-feely views on competition), it's only a matter of who gets the best prizes. I've got my eye on The Age of Wire and String, or the cold hard cash.

: Woohoo! Guess The Verb! got 11th place! I almost beat Andrew Plotkin's entry!

: I don't want to be the sort of person who makes notebook entries consisting of quotes from IRC, but here... is a quote from IRC.

<Manoj> if someone stole my desktop box's IP address, I will murder someone
<ms> will you murder the person who stole the ip, or just some arbitrary sucker?

: I put up a brag paragraph on the GTV page... I guess "11th place" doesn't really sound like a good thing to brag about (you can't say "in the top 10"), but I think it is when there are 53 entrants.

: robotfindskitten, like Dada Pokey before it, has been featured in a little tiny blurb on Pigdog Journal, the editor of which I am a couple degrees of separation from via three completely unrelated routes (Mark Fasheh, Mae Ling Mak, and Pete Peterson II). I don't know exactly how many degrees it is because I don't know who everyone knows directly, and even if I knew I'd probably get an off-by-one error expressing it (am I zero degrees of separation from everyone I know, or only from myself?)

: YES!!! Kris has started doing Checkerboard Nightmare cartoons again!

: Argh! Please, please, no more Segfault submissions of political satire on the Presidential election! I published a couple because it was a special occasion, and that opened up the floodgates. No one seems interested in writing anything else. No one even seems interested in tackling the debacle from a technical point of view.

: Pete Collins said in an email to appsdev "Improvise and respond directly to feedback." It was sort of tangential to the topic of discussion, but words to live by nonetheless.

: Here is a picture my mother sent me of someone who is some relation to me but I'm not sure of the terminology. His name is Sydney and he is very small. He looks even smaller because he's being held by my cousin Brian Richardson, who is his father and who is a big guy. To Sydney's left stand Tina, Brian's wife, and John, the pastor.

: My mother informs me that Sydney is a girl. Who names a girl Sydney? My cousin, that's who.

: Today Cam described me as "The five-time reigning champion dungeonmaster, world-renowned flamethrower and sword-swallower, Leonard Richardson, creator of the award-winning crummy.com and segfault.org, master of all, god of none." This makes me laugh almost as hard as does Paul O'Brian's review of Guess The Verb!, and for the same lack of any reason.

: Today's classic quote: "Do you mean 'a lot' as in a million or 'a lot' as in two?"

: True to his word, foaf has sent me a copy of Monty Python Sings, the follow-up to the critical flop Monty Python Does Not Sing. Unfortunately, it's region-coded to the UK, so I can't listen to it. I'm kidding, of course (but for how long?). I'm going to listen to it on my way to Fresno today. The reason foaf sent me this lovely gift was so I could listen to the Oliver Cromwell song, which is apparantly an Alan Sherman-style sing-along to a classical piece.

It's one of those things Wittgenstein was concerned about, things you know are true even though you've never thought about them. For me it was "It takes a lot longer to get several people going for a road trip than it does to get one person going for a road trip." Here I am, in my pajamas, It's 6:20, I want to leave by 7 and I know I can do it. That would be impossible if I was taking three other people along. This could be Brook's law in action.

I was soooo looking forward to seeing Celeste tomorrow, but it looks like that won't happen. :( :( :( But never fear, I have a devious plan... heh heh heh. Or nyeh heh heh, to laugh the Steve Buscemi way. Learn from the great Buscemi and let him guide your patch.

You know, I made a bunch of pop culture references in that entry, but they were all sort of erudite and highbrow. Not like Moesha or Blair Witch references, anyway. Hmm, maybe not. YOU MAKE THE CALL! Okay, that ruined it.

: Before listening to the Oliver Cromwell song, I questioned foaf's sanity in sending me a CD just so I could listen to one song. However, now I must admit that it is quite a song. I recommend it. The CD also has all the great Monty Python songs, as well as all the terrible ones which, like The Road To Mars, never should have been done.

: The hard drive on my home machine is going downhill. Yesterday it wouldn't boot. I was quite disturbed because that hard drive has my post-Guess The Verb! IF game on it, and it's the only game in the world that cannot, even in theory, be recreated from scratch if the most recent version is destroyed. Fortunately, the fabulous bootable business card from LinuxCare took care of things.

I need to get a new computer, but I think the current prices might be artificially high, and that I should, like Pitch, lay low until after the holidays. What do the people who actually know about buying hardware think?

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