4 03 2013

Open Mind

Anybody can do it.

Fake “skeptics” of global warming do it all the time. One of the latest and most extreme — this one is a real doozy — comes from John Coleman. Of course it’s regurgitated by Anthony Watts.

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24 05 2012

Unfortunately, WordPress has not written a quick and simple shortcode for Flickr slideshows. This is really the next best thing to that and it made it easy to add a Flickr slideshow to my Photos page.

wordpress tips

As explained in part 1 of this series of posts, the gigya shortcode allows you to use flash objects in a wp.com blog.

“Flash objects” includes Flickr slideshows (but be careful with copyright issues).

If you have enabled auto-embedding in Settings>Media, then you should be able to insert a Flickr slideshow simply by pasting its URL (http…etc.etc…/show/ ) in the HTML post or page editor (thanks to Jennifer for pointing out). If this won’t work, you can use the workaround described here.

The URL model for a Flickr photo set is this:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/USERNAME/sets/ID NUMBER/

To insert it as a slideshow, you need this shortcode model:

Paste into HTML post or page editor, or into a text widget. Where I’ve…

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21 02 2012

Post I wrote for Science and Shit yesterday. Enjoy!

Science and Shit

A brilliant astrophotographer named Randy Halverson took some amazing time-lapse video of the night sky at different locations. Then he put them together in a video. Then he sent that video to Battlestar Galactica composer Bear McCreary, composed music to fit the video.

What resulted from this collaboration is so beautiful and stunning that it sent chills down my spine. It has been nearly a week and I cannot keep myself from playing this again and again.

(I recommend watching it in HD.)

The universe can be so majestic. We often get so involved in our own lives that we forget to look up, watch, and put ourselves in our place. Things here on Earth can seem so important, but it is important to have a cosmic viewpoint, to see yourself and those around you in perspective.

I find it interesting how music and video can come together in a…

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22 06 2010

Is there any indication we shouldn’t be depressed? Are you living on the same planet that I am? Do you ever think that depression might be the reasonable human response to the crap we’re going through as a species, meant to propel us into the next evolutionary step or, at least, into taking some different course of action, so that we might survive? Do you ever think that maybe it’s the happy people that are really screwed up in the head?

-Marc Maron

Check out Maron’s original routine on having a manic depressive father. It’s actually really funny.

The dangers of laziness

20 11 2009

When I see the state of the world, I am filled with mixed feelings: optimism and despair, hope and fear. It is my opinion that most people are well-adjusted and sympathetic human beings who just want to be left alone as they go about their day. However, there are others, a vocal minority who tend to destabilize things on local or global scales.

I see two possibilities. We can die out as a species because nature selects us for extinction. The other possibility is that we drive ourselves into extinction by means like war, genocide, weapons of mass destruction, and the like.

Humanity can have such a rich and long future, but only if we make the right decisions now. The first thing that we have to get over is the notion that the world’s problems are permanent. With enough discipline, anything is possible.

Really, this whole situation could go either way. We could destroy ourselves or not. I much prefer the latter option.

Advantages of being an intern

4 11 2009

It seems like most people in my position, those who are just a few short months from graduating from college, are looking for a real, full-time job. However, if their experience is anything like mine, they find themselves feeling unprepared and under-qualified. I plan on getting into some type of development. Ideally, I would like to work for University Information Technology Services at IUPUI. Like most employers in this area, however, they require a year or two of experience. This leaves me with a Catch 22 to contend with.

Internships offer a great opportunity for students or recent graduates to get real-world experience. I apologize if that sounded like a line from a brochure, but it’s true. Earlier this year, I did a four-month internship at Mobi and I learned a crazy amount of stuff in that time. Many of these internships are paid internships and they may or may not provide enough income to live on your own. In this sense, an internship can provide the best of both worlds from a regular job and school. You are essentially being paid to learn and gain real-world experience beyond what any class can ever provide. Internships are a pretty good deal for students.

The advantage is not entirely the intern’s. The company providing the internship can have someone to perform tasks that do not require a high level of expertise, allowing them to delegate more experience employees to more challenging tasks. At the end of the internship, they will also have a person on their hands who will probably be in the workforce for the next forty years and will be well-trained in recent technologies and will be familiar with the company’s policies and customs. Internships are a pretty good deal for employers.

I am looking around for a second internship before I move into the regular workforce to build up my skills a little more. If you are about the graduate, start looking for internships in your career area. You will not regret it.

Positions at UITS
List of Job Boards from the IU School of Informatics at IUPUI

Photos from Depue

12 08 2009

I went to the 2009 APBA PRO Nationals in Depue, Illinois. It was a spectacular event. Here are the photos I took.