Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Tiger Tanaka is gone

Any fan of the James Bond franchise will remember the character of Tiger Tanaka from "You Only Live Twice". The Register is reporting that Tetsuro Tamba, who played the part, is dead at 84 from heart failure.

Tiger Tanaka: You know what it is about you that fascinates them, don't you? It's the hair on your chest. Japanese men all have beautiful bare skin.
James Bond: Japanese proverb say, "Bird never make nest in bare tree."

They don't make movies like that any more.

Food Nazis

(Via Drudge)

The city (New York City--FH) health department unveiled a proposal Tuesday that would bar cooks at any of the city's 24,600 food service establishments from using ingredients that contain the artery-clogging substance, commonly listed on food labels as partially hydrogenated oil.

We've seen all this before--ban guns, ban knives, throw away your toiletries because someone might make a bomb on a plane, "it's for the children"--they will not be happy until we are suffocated in their bubble wrap.

And remember, it isn't really about safety--it's about power, control and dependence. They know better than you how you should live, and if they have to control every aspect of your life to make you live as they wish, then they will happily do so. In the process, you will become completely dependent--on them. And they will then have the power--over you.

Monday, September 25, 2006

Col. Jeff Cooper, RIP

Col. Jeff Cooper, the father of the Modern Technique of shooting, died today at his home with his wife and daughter by his side. Col. Cooper was 86.

I always associate him with The 4 Rules:
  • The gun is always loaded
  • Never point a gun at anything you don't want to destroy
  • Keep your finger off the trigger until the sights are on the target (also humorously know as "Keep your booger hook off the bang switch")
  • Know what your target is and what is behind it

However, his fame goes far beyond those rules, which I drill into everyone I teach to shoot. (My children are required to recite them before we go to the range, and to be able to give them to me by number. Failure means no range time--and they've never missed range time.) His book The Art of the Rifle is one of the premier textbooks of long gun use. He also authored the White-Yellow-Orange-Red continuum of readiness.

There is a good article about Col. Cooper on Wikipedia. A link to his commentaries has been on this blog since Day One.

God bless and keep you sir. Your teachings have taught many, saved many, and will continue to do so. You were one of my heros

In the year 2020

A group of experts (well, at least they say they are) have evaluated various scenarios for the future and noted the ones they think most likely. I haven't read the whole thing, but my favorite from the ars technica article is

Eexpressing belief that some who reject technology will perpetrate terrorist attacks against technological infrastructure, almost 60 percent of respondents agreed with the following scenario:

"By 2020, the people left behind (many by their own choice) by accelerating information and communications technologies will form a new cultural group of technology refuseniks who self-segregate from "modern" society. Some will live mostly "off the grid" simply to seek peace and a cure for information overload while others will commit acts of terror or violence in protest against technology."

Yeah, I can see that. As the pace of change accelerates (assuming that it continues, which is an assumption), there will be people who decide to declare the rats the winners and quit the race. I can't blame them--heck, I've considered it myself from time to time.

But here's what gets my goat:

Internet education expert and poll respondent Ed Lyell pointed out that "Every age has a small percentage that cling to an overrated past of low-technology, low-energy, lifestyle."

Overrated? Overrated by who? Just because Mr. Lyell wants to live there doesn't mean that the rest of us do. The Amish have the right idea on technology. A lot of people think the Amish refuse modern technology, but that''s untrue. What they do is restrict it's use to limit the deleterious effects associated with it.

As a parent who does the same thing with his kids (although not to the extent of the Amish--we all like our creature comforts), I sympathize with those who feel that there is such a thing as "too much technology".

Many years ago, a young man once told me that the key to having fun and never getting into trouble is to practice moderation. As I've gotten older, I've come to realize that young man (Thanks, Clay) was wise far beyond his years. All things in moderation, goes the old saying--and that should include technology.

Ready, Fire, Aim!

Apple has sent the first of what is doubtless to be a large number of cease and desist letters to a website that catalogs podcasts.

You've got 80% of the market, your product is a household name, and you want to hammer the people who are creating and publicizing content for it? Because they've adopted the word "podcast" and come up with a spiffy piece of software called "myPodder"? (Man, the ipodder folks better watch out, because they really are going to be toast.)

I suppose that now Apple will try to lay claim to any word that has "pod" in it, especially if it's connect to technology in any way. Geeze.

Dumb. Real dumb. But hey, that's Apple--they "Think Different".

Dunn for reports that Patricia Dunn has resigned her seat on the board of HP. A welcome step forward, but only a step. However, it appears that HP's ethical issues indeed go deeper than Dunn's behavior:

However, Hurd also confirmed on Friday that he knew about several key phases of the investigation and attended meetings at which the investigation was discussed. Hurd said he was e-mailed a report summarizing the investigation but that he did not read it.

Sure, Mark. And we'll love you in the morning. HP needs to keep cleaning their house until it sparkles.