February 5th, 2007

Hating humanity

Down the rabbit hole we go...

Does this seem fucked up to anyone else?
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She has been charged with sexual abuse of children, possession of child pornography and dissemination of child pornography. A 15-year old girl took sexual photos of herself and sent them to people online, so she's charged with these crimes? She abused... herself? (Yes, yes, 'self abuse' jokes aside.) She has pictures of herself on her own computer, performing (apparently solo?) sexual acts, so she possesses child porn. While *technically* correct, it is *her*. She can look in a fucking mirror! The only charge that seems at all legitimate is dissemination, but I hardly think trying this girl and convicting her as a sex offender is in anyone's best interest, least of all her's. It sounds more like she needs some counseling and therapy, and perhaps her parents need to pay a bit more attention, since she apparently thought sending out photos of herself to people she met online was a good idea. The people who solicited the photos, if they knew she was a minor, I could see being charged. But charging this girl with exploiting herself is just through-the-looking-glass bizarre.

We need to protect the children... from themselves... by charging them as sex offenders... WHAT?!

EDIT: syringavulgaris points out the article is from 2004, so this isn't a new event. I wonder how this case came out...
Anime MZ

Any good place to buy luggage near Worcester?

I last purchased new luggage in 1995. That was in a mad rush because Xylogics decided to send me to the UK office for a week, and the only bags I had were ancient hand-me-downs and beat to hell. So I bought the first set of bags I could find, on the company dime. The bag I use most often I received from GTE Internetworking as part of winning the "President's Award" in 1998 for my job performance. In other words, my bags are starting to wear out. I rather like the free bag - it is a long fabric roller bag, just big enough for about a week's worth of stuff. But it is frayed around the edges, and the extending handle is only held together with electrical tape. The bags I purchased (at Sears IIRC) are fairing a bit better, since I don't use them as much, but the largest one tossed a wheel so it doesn't really roll anymore so much as skid along and fall over. I use that for longer trips - like the two week trip I have coming up.

Anyway, I want to get some new bags. I'm not looking for anything fancy, just well made and not stupidly expensive. I don't travel a lot, I usually fly just 3-4 times a year and maybe a few shorter trips by car, so I don't need uber-luggage that that will survive constant road-warrior use.

I would also like to get a rolling bag for my laptop. Since I don't travel a lot, and my laptop is my main machine, I have a 'desk note' - big and heavy. The laptop is generally my only carry-on (well, and my CPAP now), so I also stuff my iPod, Treo, and anything else into the bag, along with any books, etc, for the plane. I've found that carrying that on my shoulder around airports gets real old, real fast. And with the CPAP to carry, it is very unwieldy. The CPAP case has one of those straps on the back, designed to slip over the extended handle of a rolling bag. So I figure I can kill two birds with one stone - get a rolling laptop case and use it to transport the CPAP as well.

But, since I haven't purchased luggage in 12 years, I don't even know if there is a good luggage store around here. So, people who shop, where should I look? I'd consider buying online, but for something like this I'd like to get a look at the bag to make sure it is what I'd really like. And I leave on my next trip on the 17th, so I'd like to get the bags before then.

Thanks.
Profile at work.

Gather 'round kiddies

Let old uncle Zoner tell you about the Old Days of geekdom. :-)

OK, so, my first hard drive held 40MB. Yes, *M*B kiddies. Up to 80MB with Stacker! Yes, I ran Stacker on my old 286-12 DOS/WfWG 3.11 box back in college. You don't know what Stacker was? Go look it up. ;-) I forget how much that drive cost, but it was a few dollars a MB at least. I remember when it was big news that drives had hit the $1 per MB mark. Wow, an 80MB drive was only $80!

A couple of years ago it was common that drives were about $1 a GB. That's a 1,000 fold increase in capacity per dollar. (No, not 1024 - HD vendors use Giga not Gibi, deal with it.) That's over a span of about 10 years, maybe a little longer. My (now a few years old) iPod holds 60GB. That was just inconceivable even 10 years ago.

Well, today I saw this. A 500GB USB 2.0 external drive, for $149.95 after a $20 rebate. That's 30-cents a GB - and it is an external drive - enclosure, etc - which always cost more than internal drives. That's an incredible deal, really. I wonder how long it will be before we hit the next major mark of $1/TB. It probably seems insane to talk about that - but in 1990 talking about $1/GB was crazy talk. Hell, talking about PC-based drives that could hold just *one* GB was crazy talk. Remember it was only 2000 when CPUs first broke the "Gigahertz barrier", when AMD released a 1GHz Athlon. x86 CPUs peaked out at about 3.8GHz (in a P4 - not considering over-clocked rigs), but now we have multi-core CPUs humming in the 3GHz range. We take a lot of technology for granted, it is just part of the fabric of our lives in the modern world. But it really is amazing when you look at the pace of progress and all of the breakthroughs that have to keep happening at a rapid pace to keep the process running. In 2000 the big news in chips was the move to a 250 nanometer process, current chips are 65 nanometer, and the move to 45 nanometer will begin this year for Intel, and next year for AMD. In less than ten years several generations of chip-making technology have come and gone - the next breakthrough becoming obsolete in only a few years.

Sometimes something makes you stop and say "God damn..." - at least if you're a geek like me. Even something simple like a good deal on a hard drive.