The problem with bookstores

Posted by me on Thursday, the 8th day of November, anno domini 2007 at 9:58 PM, local time.

Another quote from iGoogle’s quote-a-day:

Where is human nature so weak as in the bookstore?
  - Henry Ward Beecher

I’m thinking that even these quotes must be given to people based on Google’s huge database of knowledge of everyone’s habits and behaviors? ‘Cause I sure do seem to get a lot of quotes about how I buy too many books. I mean, seriously, I feel bad enough already. Ah well.

Maybe I should go buy a book to make myself feel better?

(A few hours later…)

Now that I’ve done that, I do feel much better. Hopefully, I will get to read the books I have bought soon and can comment on them. They are both things I have not seen before, and I am quite excited that they might both be rather good. Only time will tell!

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quotes

Why is Google Mocking Me?

Posted by me on Tuesday, the 5th day of December, anno domini 2006 at 1:00 PM, local time.

Based on the last few quotes of the day on my google homepage, I have determined that they are deliberately mocking me and my habits. Here is today’s quote:

To be a book-collector is to combine the worst characteristics of a dope fiend with those of a miser. – Robertson Davies

I mean, seriously, that’s just not nice. I’ve never made disparaging remarks about google, and so shouldn’t have to expect them to make such remarks about me.

On another book related note, I have finally managed to pick up the book club book, Time Enough For Love by Heinlein, again and started reading it. Our first meeting for the book is this Friday, and I have about 200 pages short of where I need to be for it. But, progress was finally made. And, the little short sub-story was very entertaining. It was subtitled as “The Man Who Was Too Lazy To Fail.” It was fantastic. The motivations of this guy seem very familiar… I have heard laziness being called the Engineer’s Disease, and I am no longer ashamed that it is so!

Anyway, my opinion of the book is improving. It has points where it is a bit of tedious crazy Heinlein-ness, but by and large it appears to be shaping up as the kind of book where some old cantankerous fellow is interviewed by a much younger man for insights into life and living in general. One must deal with the old fellow’s occasional oddities and eccentricities, as well as his antiquated notions and not-quite politically correct ideas, but there are a lot of fun, interesting, and useful stories to hear from him.

But, I am not very far in the book, so who knows if it will stay that way for very long.

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the man who was too lazy to fail
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Lots of Books

Posted by me on Monday, the 4th day of December, anno domini 2006 at 10:17 PM, local time.

So I found this quote on my google homepage today. Its accuracy is remarkable, yet somehow depressing. Oh well.

Books to the ceiling, Books to the sky, My pile of books is a mile high. How I love them! How I need them! I’ll have a long beard by the time I read them. – Arnold Lobel

On another book related note, yesterday, when I foolishly went to the bookstore, I purchased a couple more books, which is unremarkable in and of itself. However, one of these books was a small collection of poems by Tim Burton (whom you might recall from such movies as The Nightmare Before Christmas and Corpse Bride). I thought, well, I like his movies, they are touchingly surreal; surely his poetry will be similar. And so I brought it home.

It was definitely surreal. But rather than being touching, most of it was just disturbing. The art was very familiar as Burton’s, the poems were all short doggerel at best, but the topics were downright grotesque. I am slightly disturbed. Note, Kyle, if you are reading this, this is definitely a book that you would enjoy. Everyone else reading this, I would recommend perusing a bit so you are fully aware of Mr. Burton’s psychotic tendencies, but only do so on an empty stomach and only if you are of healthy constitution in general.

On a completely unrelated note, yes, it has been months since I last updated this. Yes, I plan to continue to update it on the same loose schedule. And yes, if anyone still bothers to come here and read these things when updates do happen, I do appreciate each and every one of them.

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Google Spreadsheets

Posted by me on Thursday, the 20th day of July, anno domini 2006 at 10:46 PM, local time.

So I needed to create a spreadsheet today. For what, really isn’t all that important (doing some figuring with some loans and such). But, I use Linux here at home, so don’t have Excel sitting around. And I never liked OpenOffice much (I don’t want to get into it). Gnumeric just annoys me. And I haven’t used sc in quite some time so I would have had to re-learn it all again. But I wanted to get this figured out quick!

I had heard about Google’s Spreadsheet stuff but had not used it or seen much about it actually. So, I thought I would try it out. Turns out its pretty good. Hardest bit to get used to is not right clicking for copying and pasting and what not. Right clicking gets you the context menu for the browser. To copy and paste and insert and delete columns/rows/cells/etc., you click on some buttons on the top of the page. I’m sure I’ll get used to it, its just a little weird right now. Also, there aren’t as many formatting options for how to format each cell’s numbers as I’m used to. For most tasks, I’m sure it will be fine.

Another problem I’ve noticed is that there isn’t an easy way to get from the Google Desktop to the Spreadsheets area. Would be a bit nicer if you could get to Spreadsheets directly from the Google Homepage.

I haven’t tried it yet, but I think it will be quite nice to use the sharing stuff for the spreadsheets, too. A given spreadsheet can be made visible to select other Google users, either just for viewing or for editing as well.

So, after all that rambling: The Google Spreadsheets AJAX application appears to be quite nice for simple usage as well as portability and sharing. But there are definitely some things that could be improved upon.

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Testing initial filter

Posted by me on Monday, the 5th day of June, anno domini 2006 at 10:53 PM, local time.

This will test some initial filtering stuff I added. First bold, then lots of bold. Then italics and more italics. Then underline stuff.

Link type 1: Wikipedia
Link type 2: Google
Link type 3: http://maps.google.com

Can I bold
across lines?

End of blog.

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Good Enough, says I

Posted by me on Saturday, the 17th day of December, anno domini 2005 at 7:08 PM, local time.

Ok, this is likely to be the final form of the page. Depending on the levels of ridicule I receive, it could possibly change, but thats unlikely, due to my extreme lethargy. The single image in the header will change at whim, a la Google. I’m still working on the default image, which will likely be a simple 印章. Know of any good carvers of stone? My own attempt is a bit slow going.

At any rate, this will hopefully be the last meta-content post. I would like to start posting real articles so people don’t get quite as bored with this, but I wanted to get the site theme squared away first.

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