Archive for April, 2006


Bruce Schneier rocks

Posted in Shorts at 11:46 am by jw

Just reading through Bruce Schneier’s essays and op-eds and I have to say that as usual he’s an incredibly smart guy who really knows the deal with security, even when it’s applied to non-geek stuff.

From Airline Security a Waste of Cash

Exactly two things have made airline travel safer since 9/11: reinforcement of cockpit doors, and passengers who now know that they may have to fight back. Everything else — Secure Flight and Trusted Traveler included — is security theater.

From Unchecked Presidential Power

Laws are what give us security against the actions of the majority and the powerful. If we discard our constitutional protections against tyranny in an attempt to protect us from terrorism, we’re all less safe as a result.

From Airplane Security and Metal Knives

Maybe people who have watched MacGyver should never be allowed to fly.

Honestly, every one of Bruce’s essays is a must read for anyone who remotely thinks that we are either more or less secure since 9/11, or who is actually interested in their own security.


Lara is 34/20/34

Posted in Shorts at 1:18 pm by jw

I was playing Tomb Raider:Legend and my wife was commenting about the unrealistic measurements of Lara.  Well, this required scientific analysis so I got the screenshots, a ruler and measured the major and minor axis of her bust, waist and hips.  Plugging these into an ellipse circumference calculator (which is apparently way more complex than a circle’s circumference) I found that assuming she’s 5’6” then her measurements are 34/20/34.  Yeah – probably a little wasp waisted…


Packing for San Jose

Posted in Shorts at 10:53 pm by jw

I’m moving to San Jose for 6 months for work and we’re giving up the lease on our apartment here in Pittsburgh for that time with the intention of buying a house when we get back. All I have to say right now is it’s amazing how many books my wife and I have collected in the 5 years we’ve been in the states, and it’s even more amazing how damn heavy they are when you put them in boxes to put in storage.


Oblivion beaten

Posted in General at 4:35 pm by jw

I’ve pretty much finished Oblivion now, with about 110 gaming hours on my latest save game (though I know that I reloaded enough to add at least 20 hours to that).  It really was an impressive game and I enjoyed finding all the quests I could to finish.  I could have closed a lot more Oblivion gates before I finished up with the main quest which shut them all down, but by the time I got to that point I really was tired of running through Oblivion to the towers to shut it down – guess I could have just trained my way and ignored the mobs though now I look back on it.

So, now my character (Maxine) is leader of the Fighters Guild, Mages Guild, Thieves Guild and Black Brotherhood.  I’m also champion of the Arena and apparently some sort of hero for hanging around the Emperor when the main quest line ended.  I finished most of the Daedra quests, at least the ones that would talk to me, and was really at the point where I’d have to run around the landscape looking for mines and so on to clear just because I could.  By the end I was level 29, with 100 Strength and Personality and master of Blade, Heavy Armor, Alchemy and Armorer.

I think it would be interesting to play through again as both a thief and caster type character.  I have the melee thing down pretty well now but in getting the leadership for the Thieves Guild and Black Brotherhood, I was having a good amount of fun sneaking around and avoiding contact.  Sometime in the future though – I have X3, Tomb Raider Legend, GalCiv2 and B5:IFH to play, as well as my ever-present flight sims.


Top 10 OSS Games You’ve Never Played

Posted in Shorts at 1:27 pm by jw

For people looking for a small distraction: Top 10 OSS Games You’ve Never Played