Switching to the Cloud

Drive faster, dammit! We have deadlines to catch!

I was really looking forward to getting some more progress on my novel done, which meant defragmenting it again after writing some stuff on another program. I happen to love the thing known as WriteMonkey, which is a full screen, distraction free writing program. Unfortunately, I tend to just starting writing things, leave them on it, and forget to put them into my full novel file. So when after I recently moved and put my desktop into a box, I once again had the aggravation of knowing that part of my novel was stuck on another computer, which I had to drag out of said box to get to. Thus, for some time, there was a gap in my novel, a block.

A most annoying one indeed.

Well, I think I have finally decided to go fully over to the cloud. This will undoubtedly be a genuine pain the arse when I go visit my parents or head into the outback where the Internet is a rare as a competent replacement NFL ref, or when Internet connectivity is down, but this is 2012 and I live in a big metro area. Documents should be on the cloud, not on hard drives (at least not just hard drives.)

Plus, Google Docs/Drive has come a long way. I remember when I first started using it way back around 2005 or 2006, and it was essentially an online Wordpad. It was not a replacement for Office. There were problems everywhere with formatting and saving files, and I couldn’t do a lot with the text. Fast forward six years, and I argue it’s better than Microsoft Word–better than OpenOffice LibreOffice even–and can be accessed anywhere that has Internet. Even without Internet, you can install Google Drive on your computer and have a folder that automatically syncs with it. (And it’s way better than SyncDocs too, which was always annoying with it’s pop-up notifications.)

I’m going to keep a lightweight Abiword behind on my computer (far smaller footprint than LibreOffice) just in case, but I feel I have made a big jump into the 21st century. Now I won’t have to worry where my documents are, as they will all be there, in the cloud, waiting.

Which sounds really freaking creepy.

When Corrections Go Wrong (Or Awesome)

Beyond Castro churchs drag-queen fuss, Aug. 16, Bay Area, C1 C.W. Nevius column about Most Holy Redeemer banning drag queen performers incorrectly stated that entertainer Peaches Christ appeared at an event at the churchs hall with a dildo shaped like a crucifix.

via Corrections, Aug. 16 – SFGate.

WOW.

Man, pulling that assignment out of a hat must have been the best game in the bullpen ever.

A Platform I Could Stand On

I’m doing way too many political posts here for a blog that’s purportedly about my fiction writing, but I can’t help but point to this third party platform I stumbled upon recently. First off, it’s written by a guy whose actual name is “R.U. Sirius,” and it was apparently for the 2000 presidential campaign (at least, I think that’s what the great Wiki in the Sky told me.) It’s a hybrid of US liberalism and libertarianism, and of its 20 points, there are only a few I disagree with:

  1. Convert to clean energy now! (I’m okay with this, as long as they don’t penalize those who still like to drive V12s.)
  2. Drug peace! (Amen, brother.)
  3. We will repeal twice as many laws as we pass. (You have my vote, hands down.)
  4. End corporate rule! (I’m a little mixed on this one; I don’t agree with forcing corporate documents to be visible to the public, there is a privacy issue there; however, I am totally on board with sending a goodly number of bank presidents and financial bosses to jail for fraud, corporate welfare should have never existed, and I do think they have too much power in our daily lives.)
  5. Radical simplification and reform of the tax system: (A good plan here, although I think $100,000 may be too much. Still, they would definitely generate business as people start buying a heck of a lot more goods.)
  6. You can’t own the human genome. (I feel this is unwarranted, and I don’t know how you “share” information “democratically,” but I can sympathize on some level.)
  7. Close down the prison/industrial complex. (Absolutely. It’s become a boondoggle we can no longer afford, and a disgrace on our national image.)
  8. Defend civil liberties. (That this actually has to be argued now in American political discourse is disheartening.)
  9. End the war on youth. (Again, amen, brother. We need to let the children be free.)
  10. It’s time for a new globalism. (This one I do disagree with; a global minimum wage would just put millions out of work and let them starve. For why that would happen, take a look at this video.)
  11. Stop policing the world. (Thank goodness.)
  12. Tibet can’t wait. (However, this point seems to be almost in direct contradiction to the one above. Maybe he means that we simply won’t deal with nations that don’t take human rights seriously; in that case, I support it. But I still have to ask, “R. U. Sirius?”)
  13. Close Down The National Security State. (At the very least, roll it back; get rid of DHS and the TSA, and scrap all the extraneous law enforcement agencies we don’t need. I mean, come on, how many can we use effectively? DEA, ATF, FBI, CBP, ICE, Park Rangers–this is a bit ridiculous.)
  14. Put environmental concerns before profit and jobs. (I disagree with the title, but the text is actually spot on: science must go ahead of the environmental movement, which is unfortunately not happening today.)
  15. Open federally funded birth control clinics across the country. (This one will get a howl from pro-life advocates, and frankly, I cannot support them being funded with taxpayer dollars.)
  16. Allow “autonomous zones.” (This is the big one, right here, the one that deserves an AAAAAAMMMMMEEEEEEEENNNNNNN. It effectively nullifies any of the points on here you disagree with, and allows you to create the sort of “system” you want to have. Granted, it would probably never work in real life, but it’s still something to shoot for.)
  17. Re-establish social services at pre-Reagan levels, for starters. (Finally, someone who is somewhat leftist and recognizes that welfare does not solve the problem whatsoever, and in fact, only makes it worse.)
  18. Study the possibility of restructuring the economic/monetary system towards making money consistent with actual value. (This is straight out of Austrian Economics 101. The real problem we have today is that the Federal Reserve has been blowing stock market bubbles with its free money and Quantitative Easing programs, which causes inflation and price increases while sapping the buying power of our money. We need to end currency manipulation and make money be money.)
  19. Fund a “Manhattan Project Towards Utopia.” (I’m skeptical of this, as the government has shown it is sluggish, inefficient, wasteful, and generally not good at innovating. Our modern day conveniences and technology were all developed by free market types on their own. Yes, yes, people say the government invented the internet, but really, I think we can all agree that the internet of today was never designed by the government and it only developed the bedrock via basic research. So, I will grant there is some truth in having government fund basic research, but it takes entrepreneurs and the free market to develop applications for that research.)
  20. Victory over Horseshit! (I think this one is sort of a no-brainer.)

I think if we adopted even just half of these ideas back in 2000, while we might be in a utopia, we would have probably avoided the massive financial crisis we’ve been stuck in since late 2007, our dollar would likely buy the same amount of goods (or even more) than it did back then, and we’d be a far more peaceful, far nicer country than we are today. Unfortunately, right now, that is just science fiction.

But we can dream.

Good Taste

I’m not really into fashion all that much, I’m the kind of guy who just picks up what’s on top of all the other clothes and puts that on because its easier.

But sometimes…sometimes, I really do find something in the world of fashion that I enjoy. Something that makes me smile, and makes me feel better about myself. Behold…

Something you wish you had.
Yeah.

…my pleather tie. Bet you wished you had one.