Saturday, July 28, 2007

Strange, Stranger, and Strangest

Progressive? Or Liberal?

Just 20% said they consider it a positive description to call a candidate politically liberal while 39% would view that description negatively. However, 35% would consider it a positive description to call a candidate politically progressive. Just 18% react negatively to that term. Those figures reflect a huge swing, from a net negative of nineteen points to a net positive of 17 points.

How about “clue-free?” That works for me

Read Hillary’s mail… Well, not really. But there are interesting excerpts from her letters to a high-school friend, written while she was at Wellesley between 1965 and 1969. A former Goldwater Girl gone bad. Hell, I can relate; we had the same sort of experiences, politically. But I came back

And she’s gonna be president. Where’s the justice in that, Gentle Reader?

Hell, I use ‘em…why not?

Emoticons, the smiling, winking and frowning faces that inhabit the computer keyboard, have not only hung around long past their youth faddishness of the 1990s, but they have grown up. Twenty-five years after they were invented as a form of computer-geek shorthand, emoticons — an open-source form of pop art that has evolved into a quasi-accepted form of punctuation — are now ubiquitous.

No longer are they simply the province of the generation that has no memory of record albums, $25 jeans or a world without Nicole Richie. These Starburst-sweet hieroglyphs, arguably as dignified as dotting one’s I’s with kitten faces, have conquered new landscape in the lives of adults, as more of our daily communication shifts from the spoken word to text. Applied appropriately, users say, emoticons can no longer be dismissed as juvenile, because they offer a degree of insurance for a variety of adult social interactions, and help avoid serious miscommunications.

Emoticons: effectively preventing miscommunication since 1991 (or thereabouts). ;-)

Today’s Pic: Would you let this man and his crew of 25 or so UNIX gurus/sys admins/Wintel techies (none of whom were even close to their 30th birthday) manage your multi-million dollar commercial website? American Airlines did, along with a few other Fortune 100 companies. Stranger things may have happened in 2001, but I kinda doubt it. (I took this pic for a dating web site. And it worked, surprisingly. But only in the “losers” demographic, come to think on it.)

In my apartment in Berkeley, CA. February, 2001.


  1. Thanks for posting the article on emoticons. I found it to be very interesting. I recall a few years ago when a friend and I had an entire IM conversation using nothing but Yahoo's animated smilies. It became sort of a challenge to see who would be the first one to break and type a word.

    *Ahem* It wasn't me. (-:}

  2. Hillary as President? :(

    I like your "dating" photo, but I probably would not date a man who had better hair than me :)

  3. Lou sez: Hillary as President? :(

    I'm beginning to think it's inevitable. Hopefully, I'm wrong...

    re: hair..."better," or just more of it? ;-)

    It sure was a PITA to keep up, especially in the Green Hornet with the top down...even when I kept it tied back.

  4. So, you were involved in SAABRE? Wow. That was a real leap forward, early to mid '90s or so coincided with a real leap forward for the internwebs, for many many people who stopped using travel agents and started making their own arrangements.

  5. No, it wasn't SAABRE, Reese, sad to say. That was a seminal project, but it got along without me and my Band of Merry Men +1 (woman). My company did sys admin and management work on AA's web site. A little development stuff, too, if memory serves, but it would have been VERY little development work. AA did that sort of stuff "in house," mostly.

  6. Real leap forward.... Real leap forward. InternWebs.

    Well, I'm glad you got my meaning.

    Anyway, Kids Today don't seem to know about the shoulders upon which they stand.

  7. And she’s gonna be president.

    I'm going to remember that I read this RIGHT HERE. : )

    Where’s the justice in that, Gentle Reader?

    It's just the eternal swing of the pendulum. I and my ilk have managed to survive nearly 8 years of Bush II, and "the other side" will survive at least (another) 4 years of Billary.

    Something interesting was asked in the recent CNN/YouTube debates, though:

    How comfortable do we all feel about the potential for 28 years of just two families running things? I'm not sure how comfortable I feel about it, but then my ballot hasn't been cast for anyone, yet.


Just be polite... that's all I ask.