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weekend links: Austin's drive-in theater, Hobby Lobby, 2 vs 55 in soccer [Jul. 12th, 2014|03:24 pm]
[Current Mood |happyhappy]

- Did you know that Austin has a drive-in theater? It's pretty cool, and they're trying to raise money to make some improvements.

- Top 10 Silly but Awesome Products That Make Life Easier - there's some neat stuff in there!

- Republicans Finally Admit Why They Really Hate Obamacare - I did think it was interesting how a lot of arguments against Obamacare were essentially "it won't work". Now that it seems to be working, the arguments are more of the form "I don't think the government should be doing this" - which, to be clear, is a perfectly valid argument! But now we're getting to the crux of the matter...

- Hobby Lobby Is Only the Beginning - good editorial from the New York Times. For those who thought this would only apply to contraception, see: Post-Hobby Lobby, Religious Orgs Want Exemption From LGBT Hiring Order. From a comment I posted on Facebook:
It is a tricky case. I think that some of the unhappiness with the decision from the liberal side (myself included :-) ) comes from two places:
1) It seems to me that the argument that a business shouldn't be forced to "support" things that are against their religion could apply to lots of other things. What about hiring LGBT people - isn't that supporting a sinful lifestyle? Or serving interracial couples?
2) to me, "being forced to spend money on something" doesn't rise to the level of "supporting" it. My tax dollars go to support lots of things that I don't like, but I don't get to pick and choose what programs my money funds. I understand this isn't directly equivalent to the Hobby Lobby case, but it rubs me the wrong way.

Anyway, like I said, it's tricky and I realize there are good arguments on the other side too...

- Two players from the Japanese national soccer team try to score against 55 kids - pretty interesting to watch! I also enjoyed the comments from the linked article about how good professional sportsters are, even if they look terrible by comparison to other professionals.

- This is a good sign how long I've been holding on to links, but: Tim Howard saving things!

- What Jobs Do People Find Most Meaningful? - links to this cool interactive chart...sadly I didn't see Software Engineer on there.

- Masters of Love - I've read one of John Gottman's books, but a refresher on what seems to make relationships work is always nice!
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Pictures from Matt and Jaci's wedding [Jun. 30th, 2014|11:22 pm]
[Current Mood |happyhappy]

(click for the full picture!)

<- Table 10 was an NI table!

<- The other NI table had nicer flowers :-)

<- Matt's groom cake was an inside-out TARDIS!

<- Matt and Jaci!
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New Windows Phone app: Bridge Scorer! [Jun. 26th, 2014|09:51 am]
[Tags|, ]

Bridge Scorer is a great way to keep score in your monthly bridge game! It's only available on Windows Phone 8.1, and is a free ap with ads that you can remove for a low low price.

Check out more details or download it now!

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a few random pictures from Austin and Houston [Jun. 20th, 2014|08:52 pm]
[Current Mood |relaxedrelaxed]

<- David pointing at a cactus in a tree! This was taken in the Austin airport's cell phone lot, which is surprisingly nice.

<- Another impressive cake from the folks at Rustika in Houston. We were there for cake tasting, which was of course tasty.

<- We ate at 100% Taquito while Mexico played Cameroon in the World Cup. It was tied at 0-0 when we got there, but soon after Mexico scored and the place went nuts! One guy ran out from the kitchen and waved the Mexican flag around for a bit :-)

<- More nice looking cakes at The Pie Factory.

<- We went to an Astros game during Carrie's wedding shower. We had great seats close behind home plate! In fact, we sat two rows behind Arian Foster, who was a good sport about signing a lot of autographs throughout the game.

<- Chris and my dad at the Astros game.
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links: Mayday PAC, airport signs, voter fraud and bioterrorism [Jun. 20th, 2014|12:34 pm]
[Current Mood |happyhappy]

- That Mayday PAC I mentioned last month is struggling to meet their ambitious $5 million goal in June. It really is a good cause - if you'd like to contribute I have a pledge page you can give through.

- How You Know Where You're Going When You're in an Airport - an article about signs in an airport? I'm sold!

- Where Dishonesty Is Best Policy, U.S. Soccer Falls Short - this seems like mostly a good thing, right?

- 17 reasons not to trust Dick Cheney on Iraq - hah!

- A Strange but True Tale of Voter Fraud and Bioterrorism - wow, I had heard about the bioterrorism but I didn't realize the whole point was to rig a local election!

- Shaka, When the Walls Fell - a long piece about a great (don't listen to the haters!) Star Trek: The Next Generation episode.

- Diplomacy: The Board Game of the Alpha Nerds - Ahh Diplomacy. I played a few times in high school, but it's pretty long and I was never hardcore/ruthless enough to do well...

- Here's How All 50 State Flags Would Look As App Icons - not a huge fan of Texas, but there are some nice ones in there...
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amazing goal from the Netherlands [Jun. 15th, 2014|08:56 pm]
[Current Mood |cheerfulcheerful]

In case you haven't seen it - Deadspin's calling it the "Rainbow Header", and I heard it somewhere else described as the "Flying Dutchman", but he looks more like a porpoise jumping out of the water to me :-)
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link thursday: World Cup, Bill Watterson returns!, checklists, World Cup [Jun. 12th, 2014|01:05 pm]
[Current Mood |excitedexcited]

The World Cup starts today! Woo!

- Ever Wished That Calvin and Hobbes Creator Bill Watterson Would Return to the Comics Page? Well, He Just Did. - awesome! Watterson sounds like a nice guy, albeit extremely reclusive.

- How mistakes can save lives: one man’s mission to revolutionise the NHS - sad story, but it sounds like medicine could use a more air safety approach to accidents.

- Nation’s Cable Companies Announce They’re Just Going To Take $100 From Everyone - ah, the Onion!

World Cup stuff:

Firstly, let me reiterate: woo!

Now, let's not forget that FIFA is "cartoonishly corrupt", and lest you worry that the US is falling behind, we have our own kinda corrupt soccer guy (known as Mr. Ten Percent). While you're watching, here's how to watch the World Cup like a true soccer nerd, and the Onion advises which World Cup teams to watch. If you're not into soccer, here's the World Cup of everything else. (thanks Ben!)
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FlightPredictor: a postmortem [Jun. 6th, 2014|11:32 pm]
[Tags|, , , ]
[Current Mood |nostalgicnostalgic]

reminiscence, thoughts, numbers, and plansCollapse )
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link friday: World Cup draws, behind the scenes of The Price Is Right [Jun. 6th, 2014|02:20 pm]

- A Fairer World Cup Draw - it's weird that they admit that the FIFA draw is unfair by design (for geographical reasons) but then sound impressed when pointing out a fairer algorithm. Anyway, the graphs at the bottom are neat because you can see which teams got the luckiest/most unlucky - US is near the unluckiest (although not as bad as Australia), and Mexico is so so so lucky.

- I did this last summer after the World Cup draw, but a reminder: you only need 5 points to be almost assured of making it to the knockout round, and 4 points gives you about a 50% chance.

- Here’s what it looks like behind the scenes of The Price Is Right - I found this compelling, as I love seeing "behind the scenes" type stuff. There's a lot of work that happens back there! Warning: the video's a bit long. (it's the whole one hour show) A few things that surprised me:
- Somehow I didn't realize that the producers actually choose the contestants, instead of being chosen at random.
- There's an insane amount of energy in the room!
- Everything's on a pretty strict timetable, and it's cool to see them adapt to things taking longer than the should.

- Selection bias and bombers - go logic!

- 22 Books You Should Read Now, Based On Your Childhood Favorites - thanks Kay!

- Girlfriend 'Complains A Lot ... Interrupts,' Developer Tells Conference - I understand the joke, but given all the sexism in the industry...yikes. At least we're to the point where people will get called out for this, but there's still a long way to go...
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link monday: world cup, global warming, universal translator! [Jun. 2nd, 2014|10:11 pm]
[Current Mood |busybusy]

- Qatar World Cup 2022: Fifa vice-president 'would support' re-vote - oh man, if the 2022 World Cup ends up coming to the USA I will be over the moon! Elsewhere in FIFA corruption: Fixed Soccer Matches Cast Shadow Over World Cup - yikes!

- What is Obama's plan to tackle global warming? - a good explainer-type thingy. This could be a big deal, I think?

- Skype shown automatically translating multilingual voice calls - aww yeah, the Universal Translator is here! (you know, soonish)

- Your Princess Is in Another Castle: Misogyny, Entitlement, and Nerds - I hesitate to give too much credence to a shooter who clearly has anger issues (including but not limited to women), but the article is right regardless.

- Edgar Wright - How to Do Visual Comedy - longish video, but explains why Edgar Wright (Hot Fuzz, Shaun of the Dead, Scott Pilgrim vs. the World) is awesome! (PS: he is awesome)

- Watch H. Jon Benjamin play HAL 9000 in '2001: A Space Odyssey' - H. Jon Benjamin = Archer and Bob from "Bob's Burgers"

- How to Tell Someone’s Age When All You Know Is Her Name - oh man, this is cool. Totally going to do this for my next(*) app! (* - currently working on at least two apps, so this may never happen)

- OK, so maybe we can be a *little* frightened - cosmology is scary sometimes!
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