Zone38 Presents...
Letters to the World


The insanity of spell checkers

Filed under: General — codeman38 @ 9:31 pm

OK, this is bizarre. Here are the suggestions that offers for “Mixolydian” (yes, I was just working on an assignment for a music class, why do you ask?):

* Polynesian
* Polynesians
* Indianapolis
* Modigliani
* Modigliani’s

Yep, that’s right, Vaughan Williams was writing in the Polynesian mode…or perhaps the Indianapolis mode. Who’d have thought?

“Rallentando” produced some equally bizarre results:

* rentaller
* transcendental
* grandiloquent
* Talleyrand’s
* Talleyrand


Spammer name redux

Filed under: Spam — codeman38 @ 9:37 pm

Now the spamonyms are just getting unpronounceable; I just got spammed by one “g-ee ioeauodos” and shortly thereafter by a “geeno11 j6t1i”.


Another newspaper falls victim to registration insanity

Filed under: General — codeman38 @ 1:25 pm

Mrgh! Now the Atlanta Journal-Constitution wants me to provide my name, address and phone number just to read a news article on the site…

Why do newspapers think this is a good idea? I just have to wonder how much false information they get on these forms. I can handle the e-mail spam, but it’s not so easy to filter one’s phone calls and snail mail. And not everyone exactly feels comfortable giving out contact information to any random party. I’m seriously tempted to fill out the form using obviously false information like a phone number of 404-NOT-FOUN (wonder if they’d notice the area-code pun?) and an address of 40 Gigabyte Drive…

Really, if you’re just going for demographics, asking for year of birth and zip code would probably be enough. There’s no reason you need to actually have our contact information.

And I love this part of their privacy policy:

The more you tell us about yourself, the more value we can offer you. Supplying such information is entirely voluntary. But if you don’t supply the information we need, we may be unable to provide you with services we make available to other visitors to our site.

Uh, yeah. How “voluntary” is it if I can’t even read an article without having to go through the full registration process, especially when it balks at me if I don’t provide my address and phone number?

And now, a moment of surreality…

Filed under: General — codeman38 @ 12:37 am

HumanDescent Gallery

Through the magic of Photoshop, here are some of the most bizarre hybrid creatures imaginable. Marvel at such strange beings as the birdberry, squirreldog, zebrapillar, and several species of dogbird and catbird, including the very rare pengcat…


Fun with e-mail viruses

Filed under: General — codeman38 @ 12:36 pm

In my e-mail box this morning:

Hello user of e-mail server,

We warn you about some attacks on your e-mail account. Your computer may
contain viruses, in order to keep your computer and e-mail account safe,
please, follow the instructions.

Advanced details can be found in attached file.

For security purposes the attached file is password protected. Password --
[image that wouldn't load]

Have a good day,
    The team       

That’s funny, I don’t remember sending myself any information about issues with my mail server… and what’s this about a “team”? Do I have multiple personalities or something? 🙂

“Your e-mail may contain viruses” indeed! I know better than to open that attachment… but then again, anyone who gets this e-mail at his own domain name ought to know better.


Still more political weirdness in Georgia

Filed under: General — codeman38 @ 12:30 pm

More proof that I live in one of the most dysfunctional states in the country:

Governor presses for party-switchers

Republican Gov. Sonny Perdue spent part of Wednesday, the last and busiest day of the legislative session, calling some House Democrats into his office and urging them to switch to the GOP, according to several lawmakers who met with the governor.

He was polite, but legislators said Perdue was clear about the consequences of not accepting his offer. If they refused, Perdue told them he would campaign on behalf of a Republican opponent in the fall elections. Perdue gave them until Monday to make up their minds.

Once again, there’s just so much wrong with this that I don’t even know where to begin. Aside from the ridiculousness of candidates being asked to switch to a party that doesn’t represent their interests as well, I know I can’t be the only one who sees the governor’s action as somewhat of an abuse of power…


In which Cody makes an attempt at an audio posting

Filed under: General — codeman38 @ 2:02 pm

A number of people on my LiveJournal friends list have been making phone posts for everyone to hear what they sound like. I don’t have a paid account, nor does LiveJournal offer a local number for phone posts even if I did have one, so that’s pretty much out of the question… however, I do have a microphone and Audacity installed, so here’s the next best thing:

Audio Post

“Hey, this is Cody, and for a change today I decided I’d do some sort of audio posting… umm… despite the fact that I write so much more coherently than I talk… and I tend to kind of stammer whenever I’m speaking spontaneously, but… oh, well, now you know what I sound like, for those of you who don’t know me in real life.”

See what I mean about writing more coherently? 😉

(“Read More…” if you’re having any difficulties playing the file.)



Resident (Life) Evil

Filed under: General — codeman38 @ 11:38 pm

I know, I haven’t posted at all in a while… that’s mainly because for most of the past week, I’ve either been too busy or too tired to make a coherent post. Schoolwork tends to get rather overwhelming at this time of year, it always seems…

Anyway, though, this past Thursday was Mercer’s revamped housing selection process, which ended up being absolutely chaotic in a number of ways. First of all, one of the apartment buildings is being torn down entirely because it was condemned by the government; let’s just say that those of us who have been in the building in question can understand why that was the case. So that cuts down considerably on the amount of housing available to students.

So how did they do the housing process this year? Rising sophomores got first pick, as they had to live on campus; afterward came seniors (the class I’m heading into), and then last of all were the juniors. Many of us think the way this was arranged was unfair. There are quite a few juniors, including a number of my friends, who have absolutely no way to live off campus because (a) their on-campus housing is being paid for by scholarships and (b) they don’t have cars, and the campus’ surroundings are not exactly a pleasant place to walk. Two of my friends, Sarah and Stephanie, only managed to get a room because they knew an RA, as RAs get to choose whom they share their bathroom with.

Anyway, I was lucky enough to have a fairly low number in the housing lottery, so I got to go fairly early on. However, I had no clue whom I was going to room with. I had a group of four friends who were going to share an apartment, but that didn’t quite work out; for one, I knew that a couple of those friends tend to be fairly loud and extroverted, and I couldn’t put up with that for more than a few hours, and for another, the apartments can only hold four people anyway, so it was a moot point. However, one of the aforementioned friends had a roommate, originally from Taiwan, who had nobody to live with next year; he tends to be a rather quiet sort of person, so I ended up working out a deal with him, and the two of us will be sharing a 2-bedroom apartment next year. Worked out better than I expected, really.

So, that was the insanity that was this year’s housing selection in a nutshell. I should just be glad that I won’t have to put up with it again for another year; I was nearly about to go into an emotional breakdown when I couldn’t figure out whom I wanted to room with…

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