Monday, September 16, 2013

Bits and Pieces - September 16, 2013

There was almost no news on Friday. Not surprisingly, there isn't much news for today, either. The best I could come up with are pretty mundane. (So, no Syria, no Apple™, and no Dennis Rodman in North Korea - isn't that wonderful! And what ever happened to Paris Hilton, anyway?)
Isn't she pretty?
The winner of the Miss America pageant is a young lady of Indian heritage. The cool thing is that this is what America is all about; we all came from somewhere (yes, even the Native Americans). There are a couple of sad things, most importantly that this is considered news. Now, it might be news if a man won the Miss America pageant, but why is ethnicity newsworthy? The saddest thing is the coverage of the racist tweets after she was crowned. People - really? Get over yourself and be happy that you get to look at pretty girls in color on television in your nice, safe homes. Oh, and news services? It's a fun event - publish the cool tweets and ignore the rest.

Foreign banks are telling citizens of the USA to take their money and go home. The banks don't want to deal with the US government regulations on bank accounts. Yes, this includes those Swiss bank accounts. When will the government figure it out? If people want to hide their income or want to evade taxes, they will find a way. The USA has some of the worst tax laws in the world and they aren't getting better.

There is an interesting butterfly at the Houston Museum - it's half male and half female. I'm not really sure how they know that…

I have some friends who graduated from Texas A&M (that's Aggies to Texan folks). These folks are loyal to their school. One buddy of mine went to the football game last weekend and planned a tailgate party. That used to be a station wagon or pickup truck with the back end down and somebody grilling hotdogs on a hibachi and everyone in lawn chairs. This year he brought his fourteen foot trailer to carry the gear and they put two television screens up to watch the pre-game show. People started showing up on Wednesday to get in line to stake out their parking lot territory. (At noon on Saturday they all make a run for the spot they want and claim it - kind of like a gold rush or something.) I knew Aggies had a lot of school spirit - but then I read about a guy just bought the ten-year rights to a vanity Aggie license plate for $115,000. I don't even tell people what schools I went to (the schools prefer it that way).

You know the news is running low when I have to find cartoon creatures to post. This is a list of history's most terrifying sea monsters ("here there be monsters").

In the world of gaming, there are two articles that caught my eye. Zynga, the top gaming company five years ago, has been on a steady decline, losing $600M in the last few years. Ouch. That's probably not the business model to emulate, unless you cash in early.

Finally, League of Legend players with good attitudes play better. I'm not sure how that's news, but since The Lad is a gold-level LoL player (world-wide ranking in the top ten percent) so LoL articles catch my eye.

Okay, one more thing. Here's an article on Dale Vince, a guy who is sort of the Elon Musk of Great Britain. I should give the guy a call.

Okay, one more one more thing - a fascinating story of a seventeen year old from Mongolia who is now attending MIT. Genius will find a way, it seems.


We had some friends over on Saturday evening for dinner and we all played Boulderdash™. I didn't do that well. Hey, anybody carrying a ryepeck is certain to be juffling along, aren't they?
I should totally make an app with all those words…


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