Sunday, February 28, 2010

What? You don't *want* me to install Internet Explorer 8?! OK ...

Apparently I can't install IE8 – I have IE7 currently – until I upgrade Silverlight from version 2 to the latest version 3 build. But, apparently the Silverlight website is convinced my computer is a Mac. OK, fair enough. I'll just install the latest Firefox version. All so I can file my taxes on (their website doesn't like Chrome).

Monday, February 15, 2010

Clean Your Balls!

I was reading this post about an $800 lamp you break (to let out the light) and I spotted this Axe ad – touching!

South African painter Mustafa Maluka

Tyler Cowen again with the ill links – some images of the art of South African painter Mustafa Maluka.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Reassurance about the State of the World

I was reading this post about the bad economic outlook in Greece, and it occurred to me (in a similar fashion as is transcribed below):
How nice it is that this person, and his wider community, can coordinate the exchange of information about all this activity – it's important that someone is paying attention; someone is fact-checking the numbers; someone is watching all the moves of all the players – it's great that there is now more of a connected audience for this little piece of the universe.
A lot of smart people I know are pessimistic about the world. Their actions betray their true beliefs, but this is what they maintain rhetorically.
I don't buy it.
We will fail to forestall all of our problems, but we will quietly prevent almost all of them.
And I'm reassured by the breathtaking diversity of thought I encounter every day.
Thank you thinkers!

Why do Unions Over-bargain?

Tyler Cowen at Marginal Revolution links to this New York Times article about the acrimonious negotiations between the NBA team owners and the players union in the months leading up to the expiration of their current agreement.
First, why the hell does the NBA have a player's union? Why isn't there a union for investment bankers too? [Is there?]
Second, why do unions always seem to over-bargain? The auto-worker's union(s) also had the quixotic habit of negotiating deals that were not in the long-term interests of their members. What are the dynamics that produce this behavior? Is it a lack of business knowledge on the part of the unions? Are they forced to negotiate the best short-term deal because they're feigning ignorance of the actual business conditions? Is this ultimately a result of the ignorance of the workers / union members?
Why isn't the nature of unions, and the legal protections they enjoy, more frightening to people? They're essentially employment agencies with a legal monopoly granted (in perpetuity?) for any companies they successfully organize – an employment agency that you can't quit save by finding another career, or being lucky enough to live in a right-to-work state (such as my home state, Florida).

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Lala is not a backup service

I like Lala.
They have a program you can install called Music Mover that will download and upload music. Music you upload can be listened anywhere (from which you can browse the web [with sound!]). But you can't download music you upload.
And even more frighteningly, you can't re-download music you've already downloaded!
Oh wait – that's what iTunes does too.
Time to invest in a backup procedure for my files? That's probably long overdue.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

The web life of 'chilax'

Or rather google's history thereof. What happened 2001?