Nov 6

Just had to verify (as if there were any doubt) that the puzzle in today’s FoxTrot was solvable. It is, of course.

Only needed help from Google for the last one. Calculus was a long time ago.

Jul 18

Among the Results of One Pot of Iced Coffee

Aaaand the renovation of the web site has begun. For some reason I can’t figure out yet, doesn’t want to render the side navigation bar right. Something strange is going on, because the style sheet works fine in a flat HTML file. Then again, the Blogger/Google folks don’t seem to have left any documentation lying around for doing this, so who knows?

Alas, the coffee has its limits, and I am beyond fixing it further this evening.

May 16

All Crappy Things…

I’ll have to come back later to offer my review of the final episode of Enterprise, as well a few thoughts I have on the end of the franchise. In the meantime, I’ll just note that having Phlox pass out barf bags in the penultimate episode was appropriately prophetic.

Apr 29

It’s That Time Again…

It’s the second best part of a new major Apple operating system release: the obligatory twenty-odd page John Siracusa delving into OS X over at Ars Technica. To call it a mere “review” is a disservice – this guy goes from interface issues to the very UNIXy core and back again.

I’m on page nine now. This will keep me up late reading.

Mar 25

Ah, Mad Science, Gotta Love It

First it was the TWINKIES Project, then it was Peep Research. Now for something much less soft and mushy, the SOLAR DEATH RAY. What do you want to melt?

Jan 3

Ah, math humor…

I’ve come out of my blogging hibernation just long enough to bring you: Jokes With Einstein

Oct 16

Regarding "Storm Front," or, Did I Call It, or What?


Just saw the second part of Enterprise’s fourth-season opener. Although the plot details are mostly different, I’d say there’s a striking similarity between this two-parter and the little script I offered up back in June.

  • Trip points to bullet holes in the shuttlecraft as evidence.
  • Weird time crap happens.
  • Daniels says goodbye, forever.
  • Enterprise ends up in orbit of Earth, ready to do something, anything else.

I mean, am I wrong here? The only thing I didn’t call was Silik kicking the bucket.

Manny, no need to send the twenty bucks I asked for. You’ve done a fine job positioning this series for interesting things to happen. You have a great challenge ahead. Make this good.

Sep 26

Speaking of Hitchhiker’s…

Well, I’ve had a few days to take in the first episode of the Tertiary Phase of The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, and I thought I’d log my first impressions. Consider this a review. I don’t know if I’ll review other episodes, we’ll see. Spoilers, of course, for the episode, as well as one or two from the book series.

I’m relieved that they’ve kept the style so close to the original two series. I wasn’t really expecting a Lucas-esque transformation or anything, but aside from a few details you really wouldn’t know so many years had passed since the previous episode.

A few details:

  • Trillian (Susan Sheridan) sounds a bit older now, and to a lesser extent so does Zaphod (Mark Wing-Davey). Still, they put on great performances. Everyone else might as well have stepped right out of a time machine from 25 years ago.

  • We have a new voice for The Book – because the original voice, Peter Jones, passed away years ago. His sucessor, William Franklyn, matches Jones’ delivery extremely well. The sound of the voice of The Book switching back and forth from Jones to Franklyn as the Guide gets updated was funny, produced skillfully, and served as a fitting tribute to the original voice who gave those shows so much of their character. (I wonder… in the Quintessential Phase – the adaptation of Mostly Harmless, when the Hitchhiker’s Guide turns sinister, will our narrator also turn sinister? Hmmmmm….)
  • This time the music isn’t either produced from dinky 80’s synths, or pulled off the stock music shelf at the BBC. Although I liked the quirky musical choices from the original series, the music here is good, and isn’t too intrusive. One bit that annoyed a little was the descending notes we hear as Ford and Arthur catch the Chesterfield sofa and leave prehistoric Earth. It sounded a little obvious, like Shickele Mix demonstrating musically how Jack and Jill fall down the hill. But I’m picking seriously small nits.

Plotwise, I suppose the topic on everyone’s mind is why Ford and Arthur had to esacpe prehistoric Earth again, when they already did it way back in episode 8! (Hey, I’m consulting a script, lay off the fanboy comments!) The explanation given is that Zaphod Beeblebrox has been hallucinating ever since he left the Total Perspective Vortex! But why would he be hallucinating about Arthur and Ford on prehistoric Earth? Something’s a little weird here, and maybe I need to examine the scripts carefully to see if I can figure out what’s real and what isn’t. I can’t imagine that they just invalidated most of the second series. Maybe more will be revealed in upcoming episodes.

It does make sense, however, that they had to do something drastic to get the plot back in line with the books. The last episode ended with Ford and Zaphod stranded on an asteroid with the Man in the Shack, and Arthur flying away in the Heart of Gold. No real easy way to get Ford, Arthur and Trillian back together again so they can save the Universe with Slartibartfast. Speaking of Trillian, the hallucination explanation also gets her back in the story – she was absent for the entire second series. Anyway, this is all getting confusing, and it’s getting late, so I’ll wrap it up here. Good show, and I’ll be back for more next week.

Best new line: “Insanity is a gradual process. Don’t rush it.” – Ford Prefect

Sep 22

Welcome Hitchhikers

An interesting tidbit, courtesy of the hit counter I recently installed: at the moment, this site is the only link to come up on Google when you search for “hitchhikers guide tertiary phase“. Assuming, of course, you include the quotation marks. So far, two people have wound up here because of it.

I assume that shortly after I add this post, Google will send back two links.

Sep 16

The High Council Will Hear Of This Dishonor

Take a look at the picture accompanying this article over at CNN. Was it really that hard to find a good picture of a Klingon?

It’s just begging for a caption contest. Let’s see…

  • “Gee, Billy, it sure was nice of Commander Tomalak to let us into his private museum!”
  • “Watch what happens when I put a Tribble in the box!”
  • “I got as far as the head, and then I decided that building my own robotic Orion slave girl would be a lot more rewarding.”
  • “You know how Klingons rise in rank by assassinating their superior officers? Well, I don’t mean to brag, but you’re talking to the new captain of the I.K.S. Negh’Var.”

OK, I’m all tapped out.