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Just checking in

Flute
It's been over two years since I posted here. A lot of amazing things are happening these days. The synchronicities and connections are downright magical.

What is my future with LJ?

Flute
From the outset it seemed that certain signs were advising me against using LiveJournal. I joined initially because I liked reading the entries of a long-time acquaintance. Within weeks of signing up for a paid account, my friend was banned from LJ. Whatever. I came to enjoy the postings of other individuals and stayed with LJ. Then, one by one, they disappeared. Still not completely discouraged, I leaped at the chance to buy a permanent account. And then Facebook seemed to take over the world by storm. People were abandoning LJ for Facebook, and I found myself spending more and more time there myself and less time with LJ. These days I hardly read or post to LJ at all. My main activity with this site seems to be deleting Russian spam postings and emails. I am sad about this.

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testing

Flute

Just testing the lj app for my new android phone. The app for my previous Windows phone never did work.

Posted via LiveJournal app for Android.

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Open Politics Political Personality Quiz

Flute

Personal Assessment



How you measured up:



Autocratic

Democratic








Big Government

Small Government








Collectivist

Individualist








Literalist

Rationalist








Narrow Focus

Wide Focus








Human-centric

Ecocentric










Collectivist

Big
Government

Small
Government










Individualist







Narrow Focus

Autocratic

Democratic










Wide Focus





Highest ranking dimension: Small Government

You believe in a government that keeps order but otherwise stays out of the way. You may have felt that what the country really needs is a government with the courage to take on some of the "sacred cows" of government spending. This may be because you have been irked by how much you pay in taxes. It may also be because you feel that excessive government support programs reward those with no initiative. Others may disagree with you because they see some people as having the system stacked against them. When politicians of your type make mistakes it is because they find it difficult to maintain the "tough love" approach when their friends and supporters ask for help.


Second highest ranking dimension: Individualist

You believe in the right of an individual to "be themself" in thought and deeds. You may have felt that what the country really needs is a politician with the nerve to tell people when it comes to controlling others, they should mind their own business. This may be because you enjoy a diversity of experiences and don �t get offended easily.
It may also be because you�ve seen people be persecuted.
Others may disagree with you because they feel a right to protect what they see as community values.
When politicians of your type make mistakes it is often because they underestimate people�s need for sta bility and safety.


Combined statement:

Based on your answers, you would prefer a state for pioneers, innovators and rugged individualism.

Thanks a lot, Radio Shack

Flute
Well, I actually went to http://www.tellradioshack.com to fill out one of those surveys that enters you into a sweepstakes and gives you a $10 coupon off your next purchase. When I finished, an image of the coupon appeared, and I hit "print." A message appeared saying this feature worked only with Internet Explorer, and Firefox froze. On restarting Firefox and attempting to return to the coupon, the following message displayed: "As mentioned to you when the coupon was first displayed, the coupon cannot be accessed after you leave the coupon page. RadioShack cannot retrieve or re-issue coupons due to failure to print or save the coupon." Great reward after buying an overpriced product and taking the time to fill out their survey.

NEEPS conference at New Paltz, NY

Flute
Since Thursday I have been in New Paltz, NY (for the first time), attending the annual meeting of the NorthEastern Evolutionary Psychology Society (NEEPS) (for the first time. It has been a great experience. It is so great to be in a large group of people, all of whom agree that seeing the world evolutionary eyes is where its at. And New Paltz is one cool, funky college town.

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Inefficiency

Flute
There have been so many times in my life that I have bemoaned inefficiency. Both my own and others. I look at my long list of unfinished projects and the semi-chaos of my office, and I wonder if I am worth what I am paid for the amount of useful knowledge I produce.

I don't know whether to feel better or worse as I scan the contents of the dozen or so journals I look at on a regular basis. My reaction to 99 out of 100 articles is usually, "Who would give a shit about this?" There was a phrase from a book I read decades ago that I think represents the triviality of most of what academics produce, something like, "Laboratories labor and bring forth microscopic mice."

I try to comfort myself by reminding myself that this is just the way life is. Thousands of scientists flounder about, exploring things from a variety of angles, and only rarely will something of great value emerge from all of this activity. If we had a formula for guaranteeing great scientific discoveries every time we undertake research, we could just apply it and very quickly increase useful knowledge.

In some ways, the progress of science is like the evolution of life itself. Amongst all the varieties, some are better able to cope with the challenges of survival and reproduction and therefore become more frequent in the next generation. But the surviving forms are far from perfect, full of useless junk DNA. They are only "good enough" to get into the next generation, just as some articles are "good enough" to get into the journals.

The arbitrariness of time cycles

Flute
So, we have just completed another revolution around the sun and have gone through the usual rituals commemorating that revolution. Of course, the planet also completed a revolution around the sun two days ago and will do it again tomorrow. It all depends on where you want to mark the starting point for the "new" year.

We also just completed a decade, which has a special significance to humans because we have ten fingers and therefore a base ten number system.

Today Les Miles is hoping his football team will win so that the program will achieve 100 wins in 10 season. That would be so much more of a milestone than 99 wins in 10 seasons.

I'm wondering why someone has not proposed a metric version of the word milestone.

Misleading subject line

Flute
Yesterday I was excited by an email that entered my inbox. The subject line read, "John, Full court records now available."

But when I read the email I found that it was not about basketball.

Windows Vista Service Pack 2

Flute
So, I turn on my laptop this morning at 6:00, have breakfast, shave, read the paper, etc., etc., and when I return to my computer there is a message from Windows Update informing me that I have updates ready to install. I click to see what it is, and am told that it is Windows Vista Service Pack 2. What is strange is that the publication date is 6/30/2009. Today is 9/18/2009. Why does it take almost three months for Update to tell me about SP2? Whatever. If this is like other Windows Service Packs, it will take forever to install and require some rebooting, so I guess I will find something else to do for the next hour while Microsoft is taking over my machine.