Just some thoughts

Friday, September 17, 2004

Another random blog

This post is quite funny!

The rest of the post... not quite so interesting...

UPDATE: They seem to have taken this blog down, and I cannot find a google cache. So don't bother following the link. Sorry.

My current project: Rendering the Visible Human

I have thinking about and working on an application to render the data from the Visible Human Project for a long time. When I started working on the project I was naive to the huge difficulty this represents. The main difficulty is: How do we get the computer to isolate the various organs for display on the screen. It turns out that this is a problem in computer vision, an area of active research akin to artificial intelligence. There are multiple methods for doing this. I chose the method called, Watershed Segmentation, to accomplish this. I'm using ITK's implementation. I will try to post more on this in time.

Scientists in Europe have created EcoBots...

These robots digest living flies to provide them with power... if this becomes widespread, what will the implications be?

Tuesday, September 07, 2004

This is interesting:

Vote or Not by Marc Hedlund -- What a great idea -- a contest to get people to register to vote.

I especially like the quote near the bottom:
Yay economics versus apathy!

Thursday, September 02, 2004

I find this hilarious... (don't ask why)

Humean philosopher John Mackie argued that, for moral facts to be real facts about the world and, at the same time, intrinsically motivating, they would have to be very weird facts. So we have every reason to disbelieve in them.

This quote comes from the wikipedia.

Wednesday, September 01, 2004

On the forged Nigera documents

This article shows that it truely is a complicated issue, and perhaps no one knows the entire story. I still feel that this is incredibly fishy. Note that this article does point out that the CIA said the forged documents were not the basis for claiming that Iraq was seeking Uranium. Yet, once the documents were revealed as false, the CIA reversed its position entirely...

This raises serious doubts, yet perhaps my statements in the letter were hasty.

I'm sure that it will probably not be politically possible to re-open the investigation, but I think something should be done beyond simply voting this administration out of office. Although the ramifications of punnishing a President for "making a mistake" are complex, I still think a precedent should be set.

Open Letter to my senators (Hilary Clinton, Charles E. Schumer)

I served in the Marine Corps for 4 years untill 2002. I was sent to the Middle East in early September 2001, and I remained there until Feb 02.

I feel that President Bush's administration has deliberately shaded information to suit their private desires. Please read this article (http://newyorker.com/fact/content/?030331fa_fact1) if you have not already. It is shocking.

They have misrepresented facts to the American public, and sent my "brothers" to die. And more! Our military was barely able to meet the needs of such a war. Now our reserves have been exhausted. Now if a real threat appeared we would not have the capability to meet it.

Also, in abandoning the UN, Bush has alienated the bulk of our allies. This does untold damage to the real effort of stopping international terror cells.

I recently read this quote in the New York Times:

"They need regional friendship, we need regional friendship," he said of the Chinese. "They need time to develop their economy, so do we. They need protection from the United States and so do we.''

That was, Muhammad Noordin Sopiee, chairman of Malaysia's Institute of Strategic and International Studies, speaking of an alliance with China.

I feel very disturbed that we've let it go this far. Please! Raise the issue of those falsified documents. There lies a smoking gun. I think it is clear that the President and his men kept the documents secret until they had irrefutable political backing for the war, when they were clearly false.

Sending men to die based on lies is grossly immoral. If it is not illegal, it should be. I am asking you to raise this issue to congress. A precedent needs to be set, lest it happen time and again.

That is the body I have sent to Hilary Clinton and Chuck Schumer. I have written an idividualized post scriptum to each.

An interesting picture

Ok, I just went to a random blog, and there was a cool picture...

I just thought my 0 readers would be interested (actually I'm my only reader, and I was interested! lol) :-)

RNC -- What is the impact of 4 years of the Bush Administration

I'm listening to last night's "On Point." One of the people who got the mic for a bit called Bush's war "The War Against Radical Islam" rather than "The War Against Terror."

"wild idealism especially when it comes to the war on terror" <--- dosen't "radical" equal "wild idealism", and when this is linked to war, is there a difference between terrorists and those perpetrating "wild idealism"?

"this is a president that has set forth a policy which is largely belief based" <--- scary... it seems to me that beliefs tend to prevent knowing and can make the quest for knowledge immoral or somehow "emotionally wrong"

"unfortunately what we may need is one party to become dominant"
"if he wins again that may be what we get" <--- paraphrased

"the reality of iraq is not what is being reported by the politicians at RNC" <--- paraphrased

"i am really fearful that no matter who wins, the other side will not live with it and try to tear the winner down" <-- paraphrased

most politicians still have "inadequate seriousness" as if they were still living on Sept. 10th <--- loose paraphrase

I am full of misgivings about this president and the state of the country at the moment. The state of the world bothers me too, but I think where the world goes from here will be greatly effected by the actions of our country.