Efforts to understand, improve, or do less harm to the world around me.


Thursday, April 28, 2011

Beauty pageant concession speech

While it is possible to buy a pageant speech for only $20, I was concerned that there was no examples online of a concession speech, so I wrote one:

"Just moments ago, I spoke with my challenger Charline Charlemagne and congratulated her on becoming the 43rd Miss USA.

I offered to meet with her as soon as possible so that we can start to heal the divisions of the pageant and the contest through which we just passed.

Almost a century and a half ago, Senator Stephen Douglas told Abraham Lincoln, who had just defeated him for the presidency, "Partisan feeling must yield to patriotism. I'm with you, Mr. President, and God bless you."

Well, in that same spirit, I say to Miss USA winner Charline Charlemagne that what remains of pageant rancor must now be put aside, and may God bless her stewardship of her title.

Neither she nor I anticipated this long and difficult road. Certainly neither of us wanted it to happen. Yet it came, and now it has ended, resolved, as it must be resolved, through the honored institutions the Miss USA pageant judges. 

Thank you and good night, and God bless America."

(Adapted almost verbatim from another important concession speech.)

Background: I thought it would be great to say goodbye to short-term contract job I'm leaving where I barely know anyone to get everyone in a room and read from a real life beauty pageant concession speech.  I thought it would be delightfully awkward and weird.  That idea spawned this post.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Tech support doesn't mean to hate you, but it certainly does

A terrific example of how good customer service is hard to do. (thanks Silver)

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Android phone user tracking

An update to the recent iPhone notice -- although not as bad as iPhone, Android has some similar issues with user tracking. (thanks Silver)

My new favorite band is doing things other than being my favorite band

If AC/DC is "distilled rock" then Idiot Pilot takes every form of rock I've heard in the past 10 years and smashes it together beautifully.  Although I never could get into their first album, Strange We Should Meet Here, I thought Wolves was bordering on greatness and, assuming that the album stays in my regular playlist, I won't consider any border at all.

Unfortunately they broke up.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Followup: iPhone tracking

That only local cell towers are used to determine location, its still disturbingly clear how one's location can be tracked.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

iPhone is watching you

Recent statements by Richard Stallman that he would not carry a cell phone because he was concerned he would be tracked were not as paranoid as they sounded.  And its not just shadowy government controls, the Apple iPhone is actively tracking you.  And here I thought Android was less privacy-respecting than iOS.

Looks like I'll be keeping it in Airplane Mode.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Write it in mind-map format

I've increasingly been using a program called XMind for almost everything.  A PC World article notes it could go even further.