Monthly Archives: September 2007

Travel Update

A few weeks ago, I mentioned that it was very likely that I’d have to go to Bangalore in October (I think I said August at one point, but it was an obvious typo, since it was already September when I posted).

About a week and a half ago, the trip became official. I leave on October 10, and return on October 27.

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Interesting Aerial Photography

Somewhere recently I came across a link,, to a collection of aerial photographs of Illinois taken between 1938 and 1941. Unfortunately, this data is in a format that requires a special reader that only works with Internet Exploiter.

I’ve looked over the pictures for several key areas, and found them very interesting.

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Thinking about gaming again

Recently, I’ve been thinking of starting up a new D&D game — provided I can find the time and the players. To that end, I’ve made some near-decisions about what I’d like to do:

  • Use D&D 3.5 rules.
  • Hold the game on Saturday afternoons about once a month
  • Hope that I can get some friends to join me in this
  • Start seriously next spring/summer after I complete my Masters Degree

some explanations and details

Visited Places update

Since a few people have posted there visited places maps, here are mine:

Maps and discussion follow

Career Crusing results

After a bunch of people…

1. Go to
2. Put in Username: nycareers – Password: landmark
3. Take the ‘Career Matchmaker’ questions at the upper left corner
4. Post the top 10 results.

My results (after setting level of education):

1. Computer Engineer
2. Computer Support Person
3. Industrial Designer
4. Exhibit Designer
5. Potter
6. Biomedical Engineer
7. Electrical Engineer
8. Agricultural Engineer
9. Astronomer
10. Materials / Metallurgical Engineer

Other key results:

25. Database Developer
26. Web Developer
27. Computer Programmer

I’m beginning to have severe doubts about their assessment since my career, which I would very much like to continue ranks as 27! I’m also baffled at how “potter” ranks number 5 on lists of careers requiring a university education. I’ll admit that several of the top ten are careers that I might have chosen (and career 2 keeps trying to choose me :=).

Probable Travel

Since our department’s usual trainer is having passport issues — he hasn’t gotten his renewed Canadian passport yet, and it is taking 3 to 6 weeks to get an Indian visa in Chicago right now — I’m almost certainly going to have to travel to Bangalore India the middle of next week to conduct two weeks of training.

While this trip will be a disruption, I would have rather done without, I am looking forward to the trip. This will probably be my longest trip to India yet — I was there for less than a week in January 2006 and for about a week and a half last October.

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Something that would have made my brother happy

When I was in high school and college, my brother (who is five years older than me) would often play a song for me and ask if I recognized the vocalists. I wasn’t always that good at that game. However, at least today, I was successful — but without him asking.

My iPod just played “Since I Fell for You” from the Bob James/David Sanborn album Double Vision. I picked up this album a few months ago via iTunes, and just added it to my shuffle (which picks up between 800 and 1000 songs that I haven’t listened to much or too recently), so I don’t know if I’ve listened to the whole thing — at least not since I’m sure my brother played it when I was in college. Unlike most of the tracks I’ve heard, this one had a vocalist. As I listened, I suddenly realized that I recognized the voice, and listened more carefully and then I found a name, Al Jarreau. A quick search through google and I located a site selling this on CD and listing the people involved, which confirmed that Al Jarreau was a vocalist on the album. I was right.

Of course, Al Jarreau has a fairly distinctive singing style, so he isn’t the hardest vocalist to recognize.

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And, no, I wasn’t trying to skew the results. Honest!

Every so often things make me go “Duh!”

I was just reading some press speculation on today’s Apple press conference, and the rumors about it.

One of the rumors was that Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr would appear. Another is the posting of a picture supposedly showing the cover of Sargent Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band on the suspected touch-screen iPod. These led to the speculation that in addition to the new products, Apple might be offering Beatles’ music through iTunes.

The article then went on to point out that over the years Apple Corps (a.k.a. Apple Records) has sued Apple Computer over the use of the name “Apple” two or three times, implying that it was this dispute over the similar corporate names that has led to Beatles’ music being unavailable through iTuens.

For a year or so I’ve been somewhat frustrated by the inability to purchase Beatles’ albums through iTunes (which is easier than buying and ripping CDs sometimes), and have wondered why they weren’t available even though many other Capitol Records releases were. It never occurred to me that it would be because Apple Corps was miffed at Apple Computer for a perceived (and not necessarily nonexistent) infringement of the company name.

Thoughts on Worldcon — without being there

Back in 2004, when Yokohama beat out Columbus for Worldcon, we decided that there was no way we could afford to go. (Actually, had we not goofed and forgot to send our ballots, we would have voted for Columbus because we could have gone.) However, in some ways — but not when I look at our finances — I regret not going. Mostly because I would have enjoyed being at Worldcon. This won’t stop me from pontificating about some of what has gone on, or at least what I’ve heard about, mostly from the SMOFs list and my lj friends.

read my pontification