Sunday, June 13, 2010

before you unleash your eloquent comments on the internets

please consider the damage you cause to the minds and ears of those of us who actually know and understand english grammar. despite my best efforts, there seems to be little understanding of what an english sentence constitutes. to that end, i link you to english grammar 101! for everyone who's ever slept through english classes, for those who limit their reading to i can has cheezburger and 4chan, for you who hesitate (or not at all) before writing you're, that link is for you!

Wednesday, June 02, 2010

android blues

so i got a new android device. for those technically challenged, android is, in addition to being a humanoid robot, a mobile device operating system (read: cell phone). it's cool in a number of ways, but the difficulty arises when you use it and the desktop one after the other. i find myself wanting to swap screens on my windows machine and wondering why words don't auto-correct or auto-capitalize.

Tuesday, June 01, 2010

lack of information

i had a peculiar professor back in my sophomore year in uni. he was the one to introduce us to signal analysis and he chew on his "r"s and somehow his italian education made him refer to square waves as sikware waves. despite all that he taught me something that will probably forever ring true. he asked us a question: what is information? people started giving all sorts of answers, but his question came from a signal analysis perspective. if someone gave you a number of facts, which of those is actually information? he simply defined it as the amount of surprise one finds in those facts. his example, applicable to the current (and frankly, most of the recent) historical context, was this: if you're listening to the radio and you hear "10 palestinians were killed by israelis", it's business as usual, no news there. however, if you heard something like "jerusalem has been freed" or "arabs sent first man to space", then that's news.

why i say this is because of the recent news about israelis attacking the peace flotilla (aid ships coming to gaza). i felt angry, appalled, etc, etc, but the one thing i didn't feel was surprise. what israel has been doing in gaza is a starvation war, which is apparent, so there really is no news there. what seriously annoyed me however, is the storm of twitternoise generated on facebook. i mean, most people who were posting shit are old enough to know that (a) there is no news there and (b) twitternoise is just that: noise.

my favorite comments, in ascending order, are:

4. omg lets spread the word that israelis are murderers and israel is a facist state and they should burn in hell. closely related to those were religious messages around the same topic.
really? so 60 years of occupation and doing whatever the fuck it wants, you just figured that out? why must you perpetuate the same stale bullshit?

3. join this group, join that group, we are putting pressure on the uk embassy, blah blah or some other dimwit bullshit. what pressure? are you threatening them with yelling really loud if they don't comply? or maybe come out in a demonstration? yes that's it, you will hold signs until the uk foreign office takes action. more power to you in that. turkey is no small power, yet they're just showing anger and calling it murder. european countries asked the ambassadors in. to do what? nothing, israel will just do whatever the fuck it wants.

1. announce a general strike in the west bank. i am torn between putting this or the next as number one, so they both are, but for fuck's sake, who are you striking against? strikes are designed to protest government/company actions, not starve your own people. nothing, and i mean absolutely nothing, will come from a general strike in gaza. in fact, it'll just fuck up businesses and hurt whatever tattered economy is left. stop it.

1. blame obama.
this one just enrages me. this attachment to the us, this putting hope on a single person to help, regardless of who he or she is, is the most naive thing i've ever heard. i quote: "obama: fail" (btw fail has burnt out in 2008) and things like "i am angry at myself for being happy when obama was elected". where are those people living? do they think that any single person in the us will act a certain way because of his personal beliefs? have we not learned, over and over, that the us foreign policy has always focused on (a) the acquisition of natural resources (or access to them) (b) the protection of american financial interests and (c) very closely related to (a), the protection of israel. some people think that the us protects israel out of ideological principals. well here's some information, it's all about the money. israel has the us by the short hairs of its balls by controlling key aspects in the government and the economy. a single person, even the president, cannot take any actions against that.
so who can we blame? let's wake up and see things for what they are: the arab and muslim countries are incompetent and lazy, their leaders are corrupt and they're running around in circles screaming their heads off. it's not obama's fault.