Sunday, February 26, 2006

Bow Ball Beau

Up in Ottawa, on Dave Scrimshaw's blog, you can find this sketch of one of us.

This one's a fiddler. Michael drew the bow and Dave drew Michael.

As Dave puts it:
When I play my horn, my mind often wanders all over the place, but when Michael plays you can see that his entire being is absorbed with the music. Even when he's playing bass and plucking slow whole notes.

As for his fiddle playing, I've heard people play fiddle faster than he does, but no one with his sweetness of tone. Every time he plays the Lover's Waltz, my eyes tear up, and I don't even know if the song has any words.

Friday, February 10, 2006

Don't Let Friends Drive IE

Get Firefox!
I keep Internet Explorer hidden on my various boxes, but use the vastly superior Firefox. There are a very small number of sites that are sooooo 20th Century that they require IE.

A new report provides yet more proof that you want to use Firefox. The short of it is that protects much better against spyware.

More specifically, two University of Washington professors had Web crawlers hit 45,000 sites. They then "cataloged the executable files found, and tested malicious sites' effectiveness by exposing unpatched versions of Internet Explorer and Firefox to 'drive-by downloads.' That's the term for the hacker practice of using browser vulnerabilities to install software, sometimes surreptitiously, sometimes not."

Because they started with unpatched versions of both browsers, the pair won't just say Firefox is safer. I have no doubts from experiential knowledge. For example, I keep on isolated PC at home that two kids use. They frequently use security patched OS and IE on it. When I run the sphere and Adair checkers on my systems, that box invariably has large numbers of sphere and sometimes malware installs. The two I have that are almost exclusively Firefox machines have one none if I have not used IE and a few if I have used IE.

Regardless, Firefox has many more features (like the indispensable tabbed browsing). If you haven't switched, click up top here

Friday, February 03, 2006

Thai 2 Mike

Thailand's spirit houses were the subjects of a post by one of us, from Bangkok, in his NOODLESFOREVER blog. He writes, in part:
Most Thais believe in a fourth dimension of nonliving souls - or ghosts - existing alongside the living. While many deceased spirits are regarded as being benevolent, Thais, much like westerners, are still pretty spooked by the thought of having to share a kitchen with a long-dead white-haired granny.

To appease the spirt (or spirits) who reside within its walls, every Thai structure -from office tower to teak shack - has a spirit house. The spirit house is a shrine of sorts that generally sits somewhere in front of the building's main entrance or off to the side. While some of these shrines are mere platforms which rest like tiny treeforts between a nearby tree's branches, most are independent structures, usually looking like a miniature temple sitting atop a one-legged table.
He claims to be 25 and his about-me simply reads virginiadelphian.

His writing is staccato, entertaining and varying in length post to post. He's gone to places I have not. So most posts are a snippet of education.