Wednesday, December 16, 2009

come to think of it google, that's what I think of YOU

When someone leaves a voice message on Google Voice the service will transcribe it and send it as a text message. It's cool, and practical, because it's easier to scan a text than listening to someone talking.

Some words stump the software, though.

So, this is the reason I had a text message from a student that began, "Hi Professor crap, this is Laura...".

Thanks Google. If that's what you think of my last name.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

I am the captain of my ship

I liked Clint Eastwood's Invictus. It's uplifting, and it's an interesting comment on reconciliation.

Matt Damon plays the captain of the South African national rugby team. He's good. But you have to wonder, why him? I am sure there are hundreds of accomplished South African actors, who would have been able play the same part without having to spend all that time practicing the accent.

Someone did the math and figured that Americans wouldn't watch a movie set in South Africa if it had actual South Africans in the lead roles. Or, using American actors is a way of saying that the themes of racial tension, reconciliation, and forgiveness, have bearing on American society too.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

or, I could just 'unfollow', I guess

I am following Sarah Palin on twitter. I think for every time she mentions 'Wounded Warriors' I will mention another professional group that unselfishly spend their lives serving others. I'll start with nurses and janitors.

the angry chicken

Here is a link for anyone interested in cool, creative stuff you can make yourself. Cooking, sewing, baking, crafts. And making your own deodorant. I love this blog.

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

I am sorry, but this is just silly

Bill Cosby must have an honorary degree from somewhere because now he is being addressed, and referred to, as 'Doctor Cosby' on morning television. (Yeah, they are all serious about it too.)

Monday, December 07, 2009

so that's a first

There was snow on the mountain peaks this morning, and then in the afternoon - hail!

- Posted from my iPhone

the snl tiger woods skit

Watching this you also learn what a Swedish accent sounds like to the Americans. Turns out it sounds just like a German accent. But who cares.

Oh, wait. I do care. I don't like stereotypes any more than anyone else. And I have to admit it's a little bit startling to see strength and independence portrayed like this.

I hope she leaves him.

Something else, a very funny bit from Andy Borowitz, the Huffington Post:

In one of the largest mass demonstrations in recent history, over one million women claiming to have had sexual liaisons with Tiger Woods marched on Washington today.

Shandy Shanoyne, a 22-year-old thong publicist who had an on-again, off-again relationship with Mr. Woods, said that she organized the march to demand benefits, such as health care and workmen's compensation, for the golfer's many girlfriends.

"We are sick and tired of being told to take our names off our voicemail greetings," she said. "We have demands and they must be met. Quickly. Huge."

Saturday, December 05, 2009

from babs

skin deep: cosmetics safety database

One of my students mentioned the cosmetics safety database the other day. It's a website with a database that allows you to check the toxicity levels of your cosmetics and body products.

The skin lotion I like: 8 out of 10. Woops.

Thanks MacKenzie.

Dan, who reads fine print, suggests checking the info on the rating system, here. An excerpt:

The hazard score represents a synthesis of known and suspected hazards from more than 50 definitive databases. The hazard rating of a product can be higher than for its individual ingredients — it adds up the hazards of all ingredients, and is scaled higher if the product has penetration enhancers or other ingredients that increase skin absorption.

The "data gap" rating is a measure of how much is unknown about an ingredient. Not all ingredients have the same amount of safety data. For example, some ingredients may appear to have low hazards, but this may be due to the fact that they have not have been studied or assessed completely. Other ingredients may appear to have low hazards and have been thoroughly studied or assessed. This score helps differentiate between ingredients and products that have been studied to different degrees.

Thursday, December 03, 2009

the way we think out here in the un-real america

I am following Sarah Palin on Twitter. At 8:45 on Thursday night she has this to say:

Flying 2 Dallas now where bus meets us 2 get early start tomrrw w 1000s of good Texans who are lot like Alaskans:independent/bold/patriotic.

I like to think that I am pretty independent, and sometimes bold too. But I am also a bleeding liberal, and I was raised to believe that international solidarity is healthier than patriotism.

I still think international solidarity (or any solidarity, for that matter) is healthier than patriotism.