Thursday, January 31, 2008

Bequeathed

This evening, I was promised to be the recipient of my grandparent's very nice keyboard once they no longer need it. It's amazing how thrilled I was. It was such a nice feeling, to be designated for that. Thankfully, I love them both very much and they let me play the piano now, so I'm not being riddled with desires for events to cause that... which would be really horrifying. Phew! Anyway, I really enjoy the piano they have, so I'm feeling rather honoured.

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

AutoFox

One day, I will make a program that will automatically install Firefox on the host computer, set it to look like internet explorer, and set it as the default browser! Then.... I will rule the world!

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Don't Know Why

I don't know why, exactly, but yesterday, during jazz band, we went to play Don't Know Why (as recorded by Norah Jones). Normally, there is a girl who does the singing, but she wasn't there, so I offered to sing it. If you've heard me sing before, you know I'm nominally a bass, and, well, Norah Jones wasn't. This lead to a rather humorous morning where I sang the song 2 or 3 octaves lower than it would normally be sung. People said I was pretty good though...

Monday, January 28, 2008

Balance?

Would it be possible to have a planet spinning at such a speed that gravity would be completely countered by centrifugal force? What would happen?

Sunday, January 27, 2008

A Notebook and Me

Lately (when I remember) I've been carrying a notebook around with me everywhere so that if I think of something witty or interesting or inspiring I can write it down and perhaps post it here. I also will usually announce whatever it is that I've thought about, which leads people to consistently tell me that I have such a random/crazy/awesome mind.

The first person to say this was probably Alastair, who realized it last year sometime before I had actually become completely insane. He has a blog of his own over at http://vandaylen.spaces.live.com/: some crazy rants of his (likely not updated recently) and there are some "adult words", which is fine because he talks about things that wouldn't make sense to kidlets anyway. So, last year, I had told him something really intriguing, which we think was something like (in a gymnasium): Have you noticed how the different lines lay on top of each other, and the less important ones have to break apart and "go underneath". I went on to say which ones were on top, and be interested in whose job it was to decide (and choose the colours). He was just rather astonished and told me, "Malcolm, you have a really interesting mind."

Since then, I have always been on the prowl for new and exciting things. I take pride in noticing things that pass other people by, and considering who is responsible. Often I wonder what it would be like to be that person - for example, the person who designs the layout for sports games on TV, showing who is being substituted on and off, counting down the time, and things like the big swirly things for the Olympics and such. I always thought that would be a really neat profession.

Anyway, that's me, the author of Obfuscatism, and that's where most of the crazy thoughts I post on here come from.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Windows (not the OS)

I think there should be a way of measuring real estate by taking the area of all of the windows in a house and dividing it by all of the outside walls or something. That would be neat.

Friday, January 25, 2008

Discorporation

So we were coming back on the bus and Patrick said "So, there's this close female friend of mine... (I'm paraphrasing, he had a much more awkward way of saying it) and next week she has exams and her last one is on Thursday, so we're going to hang out Friday".

Then, I said, "and discorporate?" raising my eyebrow like it was something one would do when one went to hang out with a girl. "Basically, yeah", he said, so I immediately cracked up and he asked what discorporate meant. Needless to say, it was quite funny, as discorporate means "to transcend a physical body".

Sight Chain

Last night while going to sleep, I had an idea that was so intriguing I had to write it down. The idea is something that could be used as a fundraiser or awareness campaign. Essentially, you would send a wave across a country or region, purely by sight. People would stand in a massive line, and wave to the next person, who would wave to the next person, and so on.

This would be really hard for Canada, because we have more than 4000km coast-to-coast. However, if you assume that each person could see 100m, you would only need 40 000 people. Canada has 33 million people, so only slightly more than 1 person in every 100 000 would need to participate to make this a reality.

Contextually, it would be an excellent campaign for sight itself, or blindness awareness, but there are more important issues to promote.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

I Am So Stealth

I'm sitting here listening to music on my ipod (during prep) and I was suddenly self-aware, and was like "hmm, my houseparent doesn't really like us having headphones on during prep". I did a quick mental check and realized I could brush them out of my ears if necessary, because the little earbuds barely stay in when I want them to.
[enter Mr. Fitzgerald]
I brushed them out and he didn't notice. Stealth! I just thought it was odd that I had just figured it out then.

Note the new label: Oddservations
Come to think of it, that would make a decent blog title. Hmm...

in the past....

"you're living in the past"
"no i'm not"
"yes you are - you're wearing christmas socks and its august"

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Ascent this morning

This is Ascent:
If you have ever spent any time trying to find a background in Windows XP, and you've looked at the default ones, then the above image is probably familiar. This morning, when I was walking from my residence to the main building, I looked over on the horizon to the west and saw something that looked almost exactly like what's above. Well... not exactly, but the sky was blue, the mountains were a darker blue and the moon was just hovering there like that (albeit not quite as large). I went and showed a few friends and they immediately recognized it.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Stupid Ideas

Just to bother people, I may soon start having and saying really stupid ideas for no reason. For example:

  • let's go ask her what she had for lunch today
  • we should totally switch those two chairs
  • d'you wanna go mix oatmeal with crackers?

Monday, January 21, 2008

Site for Papers

I think it would be absolutely genius (in fact, I am quite seriously considering doing this myself) to have a website where students (of any level) could post any papers online. The papers could then be rated or reviewed for multiple elements like style and accuracy. Papers found to be accurate could be used as grounds for research, although certainly not exclusively. They would at least help people with main points of a topic.

This website would provide an outlet for all those word documents which would otherwise have absolutely no value the day the assignment is printed and handed in. Drafts could be posted before the due date and peer-reviewed. While people would freak out about plagiarism, I still think this would be a good idea, and there is nobody to stop it as long as there is a disclaimer that states that all rights remain with the author. It would likely be necessary to login to access any papers at all, which would mean it would be trackable who had looked at what. Some weird viewer could potentially prevent people from copying the text to use for their own papers.

Fame Formula

Fame =

# of people who know you but you don't know them
# of people you know but they don't know you

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Proper Nouns

What if every time anyone used proper noun (one that should be capitalized) is used, we had include some sort of tagline? For example:

Joe: How did you find the essay?
Moe: Well, there wasn't enough information in our notes, so I went to Wikipedia, the free encylopedia that anyone can edit

or, Fred stubs his toe and exclaims "Jesus, son of God and Mary and born in Bethlehem!"

...but wait, there were more proper nouns there, so it should be "Jesus, son of God (the common name for a deity of monotheists) and Mary (the virgin mother and wife of Joseph the carpenter) and born in Bethlehem, a city derived from the phrase 'house of bread'"

To make it easier, this could be done by having the necessary phrase just be the first sentence of that proper noun's Wikipedia (the free encyclopedia that anyone can edit) page.

Friday, January 18, 2008

Huzzahs for Abstract Art

On the bus on the way to see a drama group from Acadia perform Fallen Angels, I sat with a fellow named Greg. I did a little sketch in his drawing book, then he told me he was going to make something out of it. He began darkening some of the lines and adding others, then said, "Tell me when you see what it is." He paused for a second then said "There is no real answer".

We ended up working together on a rather neat piece of art, which will hopefully be scanned and posted here at some point.

Would he want you to.....

Attempting to reason for those who no longer have the power to won't do you any good. But....why is it so hard not to?

Maturity and Lack Thereof

There are many different parts of everyday life, and there are many different areas in which people can be mature or immature. If you are immature all of the time, nobody will ever take you seriously, and you will usually be a big pain to have around. On the other hand, being mature all of the time would mean having next to no fun. What people need to learn to do, in order to have enjoyable interactions with each other, is learn what to be mature about, and what not to be mature about.

Often, when somebody bothers you, this is why. They are being immature and silly or annoying when you're in a serious mood, or having a serious conversation. Or, they might not know how to relax and stop caring about things. There are people at both ends of the spectrum, and neither are particularly enjoyable after awhile.

Naturally, there are certain social circumstances in which it is vital to be mature (such as a funeral) and we look down upon those who are not. However, once the situation passes, we expect everybody to be relaxed again. Some people seem to not know how. The same goes for immaturity, and we as humans expect everybody to know what comes when and to strike a healthy balance between the two. When people carry a level of maturity into a place we don't expect or want it to be, we treat them with the same indignation as we would an actor who stays in character even when not performing. That is, with some frustration.

Oatmeal

This morning, when I went to turn the light off in my room, I realized that simple tasks can be made slightly more satisfying by doing them with a packet of instant oatmeal.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Zeitgeist Movie

The truth? perhaps. Perhaps not. Certainly has at least as much chance as what we're currently believing... http://www.zeitgeistmovie.com (approximately 2 hours long but well worth it)

Amazing Video - absolutely captivating and reveals things that we'd never suspect because we aren't supposed to.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Nifty Snack Tray

I had made this in the summer, and I took a picture of it because it was so cool (I thought so, at least). Anyway, I had neglected to upload it to my blog until now, so here it is:

  • Cheese
  • Peanut Butter
  • Crackers (Breton©)
  • Apple Slices
It was really tasty! (Actually... some of the peanut butter was really hard, but other than that it was great.)

New Layout Done! ...kinda

The layout is mostly complete, and is online for everybody to see! There are a few things I still need to work on, but the site should (cross your fingers) be functional. Let me know what you think of the design. It was about 4 hours of work, adapted from another layout.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Blog Renaming!

This blog (is going to be)/(has been) renamed to Obfuscatism. The new address is http://obfuscatism.blogspot.com . The new feed address will be http://feeds.feedburner.com/obfuscatism. A new layout is also likely coming soon!

Strength in Numbers (as it applies to getting in trouble)

If enouogh people get involved in something that there will be punishment for, it almost always makes sense to join in. Naturally, if it's something you aren't in favour of the first place, you shouldn't. If, however, it was something like (for example) a food fight, where half the cafeteria is throwing food at each other, then of course you should join in. This is because after perpetrators become numerous enough everybody in their group is punished, and you are already in that group. Your group is going to be punished regardless, you included, so you might as well have some fun with it.

Monday, January 14, 2008

Belly Drumming

On Saturday night, while at Sean's place, I learned of something very fun to do, and somewhat relaxing. It started when we were in bed / on floor, when Christian began drumming on his stomach because he was bored. Sean and I joined in almost immediately, creating rhythms by tapping and striking our bellys. We did various things, including a drum off between Sean and I that included head-knocks and a raindrop sound made with my cheek. It sounds completely silly, and, well, it was. It was also really enjoyable.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Gods

So Shaylah said "oh my gods" and I said "dude, you're polytheistic?".

Modesty and Admiration

Modesty is an admirable quality. Say you have a person that admires you, and really thinks you are great. If that person then offers you something or rewards you with some privilege, and you don't actually think you are worthy of it, you have a dilemma:

  • If you accept the gift, you feel like you've got something you didn't deserve, which can make you feel sleazy. You also might feel like you're encouraging their honoring of you, which you don't really like.
  • On the other hand, if you try to turn down their offer, you risk displaying a kind of modesty that may lead to the person liking you even more.
So, what do you do? I have no idea. I just had to post my observation of this catch-22 of sorts.

Friday, January 11, 2008

Fur...

What if... we were all fuzzy?

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Fooler Pants

I have realized the perfect lower -body counterpart to fooler tees like this:
Fooler pants! When you undo the fly they stay up and look like you have shorts on underneath, but they're actually attached, and dont go all the way down. You could then walk around like this:
It would be perfect for rebellious teenagers

Fat

Guys would understand girls much, much better if they said "I feel fat" when they feel fat, instead of "I am fat".

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Today

I made Laura really mad at me by knocking on the wall and then (secretly, behind my back) knocking again quieter. She hasn't slept in a few weeks so she didn't clue in for awhile and thought there were people behind the wall. =)

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

I AM dissatisfied with that LEGENDary movie

I went with the people from my residence to see I Am Legend last night, and while the acting was amazing and the scenes beautifully played out, a couple things just seemed utterly illogical to me:

  • The mutated beings are completely sensitive and vunerable to UV light, and yet all that Robert Neville has outside for defense is normal lights and some pretty sweet explosives. He could have carried around a portable UV light with him, and it would have been more effective than any gun. He could have had a tiny UV light with him behind the glass when he is trapped near the end, and he would have been able to melt the guys smashing into the glass. The power of ultraviolet was utterly not utilized, and it annoyed me.
  • The other thing I found frustrating was how many human traits the infected starting exhibiting shortly after Neville reports that all human traits have ceased. For example:
    • The mutants clearly communicate like crazy with each other, then all attack at the same time. This is not exactly typical animal behavior...
    • One of the mutants climbs the lamppost and leans over to smash into Neville's car. An non-human probably would not think of something like that.
    • The crazy leader guy who yells too much and is much too invincible (can animals instinctively dodge bullets?) holds some dogs and then releases them. Beasts certainly don't do that.
  • Thirdly, how does having an increased metabolism and maybe some extra adrenaline enable the super-fast climbing of walls? This is an ability displayed by the mutants during the attack on Neville's house, but it is hardly explained. If humans were able to climb insanely well just by taking in adrenaline, we'd have all sorts of daredevils doing it and making the news all the time.
Despite my complaints, this was still a decent movie, but there were some clearly obvious flaws in the reasoning of the directors and the characters that irked me the entire time. Despite these, it was still a touching movie.

Itch is NOT a transitive verb

seriously - get it right.

Saturday, January 5, 2008

Kids Help Phone

Call the Kids Help Phone
1 800 668 6868
www.kidshelpphone.ca

Oedipus Rex, in brief

basically
the king+queen of thebes get a prophecy saying if they have a child, it will grow up, kill its father and marry its mother.... but they have one anyway, then they're like "oops that was stupid" so they tell some shepherd dude (i'm paraphrasing, if you hadnt noticed) to take him away and leave him to die, but instead, he gives him to a different shepherd dude who takes him to corinth, the next town over, and gives him to the king+queen there who are impotent or sommat, so he grows up, and at one point he goes to an oracle and gets the prophecy "you will kill your father and marry your mother" so promptly, he flees what he believes to be his hometown to prevent this from happening. naturally, he ends up back in thebes, kills his father unknowingly and gets intimate with his mom, thus fulfilling the prophecies.
....
the horrible part is that his original intent when he left corinth was to NOT have the prophecy happening

I absolutely hate it when people try really hard for something not to happen, and it does. For instance, becoming like their parents - sometimes this works out for people, but other times they just end up back where they started. It's sad.

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Fist

I should be on my way to getting my hair cut, but instead I'm posting this:
...Its a drawing that I made quite a few months ago now, but that I just noticed and thought should be posted. Also, if I haven't already mentioned, my blog is going to be renamed soon.

Anyway, Happy 2008 to everybody!