Writings of a techie wizard
Home - Page 4
Fri, 14 Sep 2012

As reported by the Volokh conspiracy, the Pacific Legal Foundation is now asking a Federal court to rule that Obamacare violates the Origination Clause of the Constitution.


Posted at 14:06   |   Category: opinions   |   Tags: politics   |   Permalink
Mon, 10 Sep 2012

Well, it's happened: I have yielded to the temptation to write my own blogging system, and I am now using it to write and publish this blog. It's called simpleblog, and you can find the release version on the Python Package Index here, or look at the bleeding-edge development git repository here.


Posted at 18:55   |   Category: general   |   Tags: computers, info   |   Permalink
Wed, 22 Aug 2012

I recently came across this from Jamie Zawinski, and one of his gripes with Firefox struck a huge chord with me:

The Firefox UI is a moving target. It is under constant "improvement", which means "change" which means every few months I'm forced to upgrade it and shit has moved around and I need to re-learn how to do a task that I was happily doing before.


Posted at 21:17   |   Category: rants   |   Tags: computers   |   Permalink
Fri, 27 Jul 2012

(Note: there is a good discussion of this post and the Knuth-McIlroy exchange on Hacker News.)

The other day I came across a blog post about an interesting exchange between two world-class programmers, Donald Knuth and Doug McIlroy. I talked about McIlroy in my last nerd interlude. To briefly summarize what happened (the article goes into more detail and is worth reading, at least if you're into this sort of thing), Knuth was asked by a computer magazine to write a program that illustrated "literate programming", a technique that Knuth had spent much time developing, and McIlroy was asked to critique what Knuth did.


Posted at 23:59   |   Category: opinions   |   Tags: computers   |   Permalink
Thu, 28 Jun 2012

Today's great news story is that the US Supreme Court has upheld the "individual mandate" portion of the Affordable Care Act. I won't bother linking to any particular stories since it's everywhere by now. I also won't comment here on whether or not the individual mandate (or indeed the act itself) is a good idea; that would be a much longer post than I want to write right now. Instead, I want to look at the Court's opinion from the viewpoint I have posted about before, that the Court has turned what Chief Justice Marshall called the power "to say what the law is" into something very different from what Marshall's opinion in Marbury v. Madison was arguing for.


Posted at 23:02   |   Category: opinions   |   Tags: politics   |   Permalink
Tue, 24 Apr 2012

In my last post I mentioned that global warming would get its own post sometime soon; it appears that now is the time.


Posted at 23:19   |   Category: opinions   |   Tags: politics, science   |   Permalink
Thu, 19 Apr 2012

Along with a lot of other people, I watched Discovery fly over Washington, DC on its way to Dulles Airport. A good sequence of pictures is here. I lamented a while back that today's NASA seems to have fallen far from the NASA of the Apollo missions, but obviously there's not much to be done about that except to move on (see below for more on that), and anyway, that's not Discovery's fault. The Shuttle deserves a good retirement, and will get one; I plan to go see it in its new home.


Posted at 23:07   |   Category: opinions   |   Tags: economics, politics, science   |   Permalink
Thu, 08 Mar 2012

A while back I explained why I use Python, not Lisp. However, after reading this review of Go, I realized that I left out something important, something that sets Python apart from pretty much every other language out there, and certainly from every "C-oid" language, which is all that the author of the review seems able to find himself wishing for.


Posted at 23:28   |   Category: rants   |   Tags: computers   |   Permalink
Sat, 03 Mar 2012

Cary Sherman, the CEO of the RIAA, is upset. He says those mean and nasty Internet companies shut down SOPA and PIPA by spreading misinformation and claiming it was fact. Well, after reading his recent op-ed in the New York Times, I will certainly concede that Mr. Sherman ought to know about that sort of thing, since he is evidently an expert at it. Just for fun, I thought I would post some examples.


Posted at 20:50   |   Category: rants   |   Tags: computers, politics   |   Permalink
Sat, 25 Feb 2012

Eric Raymond has published an Open Letter to Chris Dodd in response to Dodd's recent speech. Any comments from me would be superfluous (and if you've read my previous posts on this subject you'll know where I'm coming from anyway); just read Eric's post. It's worth it.

Posted at 00:56   |   Category: opinions   |   Tags: computers, politics   |   Permalink
Wizard Projects
Site Links
Open Source Projects
dev release
dev release
dev release
dev release
dev release
dev release
dev release
dev release
dev release
dev release
dev release
dev release
dev release
dev release
Old Open Source Projects
Python Recipes
Fun Stuff
Shameless Plugs
Copyright © 2011-2015
by Peter A. Donis
All Rights Reserved