Thursday, September 23, 2010


So, I've been examining all the options on the Blogger Dashboard, and found this cool "Monetize" tab. It simplifies adding ads to my blog, so that you all can click, and I can make money.

Yay ..... not.

I hate ads. I hate viewing them. I hate having them even on the page. Ads are annoying. So, I am going to do you all a favor and Not monetize my blog. No annoying ads.

What about the other blogs, which do have ads? I can't control them. What I can do though, is tell you how to get rid of the ads, from your own end. Let me introduce you to a beautiful little thing I like to call AdBlock Plus. It's a Firefox addon, that blocks ads. It blocks picture ads, it blocks Java ads. Even blocks Flash ads. It's quite nice. It even blocks the ads on the side of Facebook. Here's a preview of how it handles the PCMag website.

I'd recommend this, it's a nifty little addon that makes the web nicer. Granted, in a way, this whole post is an advertisement. Yay for irony.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

R2D2 Video Game Droid

This is a bit out of date, but I just found it, and it's pretty fruiting awesome. Imagine if you will, R2D2 in all his glory from the movies. Now, imagine all your favorite classic video game consoles and put them together in your mind. Now, take R2D2, and the video game consoles, and combine it all, and you have:

Brian De Vitis is a mechanical engineer who as a side project, decided to turn a promotional R2D2-shaped Pepsi container into what you see before you. It houses an Atari 7800, NES, SNES, N64, Gamecube, PSP, Dreamcast, PlayStation 2, Xbox, and Sega Genesis.

You don't even need a TV! R2D2 comes with a build in projector as well.

Sadly, this amazing robot isn't for sale. However, you can go to De Vitis's homepage and drool over more pictures.


Monday, September 20, 2010

Masturbation = Adultery ... Ohs Nos!

Christine O'Donnell is running fora 4 year term in the US Senate, in a special election to replace Biden, who left to become Vice President. She's tea party backed to the core, and recently won the republican primary over Mike Castle, (the RNC endorsed candidate). Her views:

Abortion: Against. This is expected, she's a Republican.

Economic Policy: Spend less money. That doesn't sound to bad, okay.

Environment: Block cap & trade. Debatable, but okay.

Gun Rights: Second Amendment protects individual rights.

Health Care: Repeal

Masturbation: It's a sin and a form of adultery .... wait, what?

When asked about her belief on masturbation, she replied:

Yes, I have my personal beliefs," she said when asked about her views. "These are questions from statements I made over 15 years ago. I was in my 20s and very excited and passionate about my new found faith. But I can assure you, my faith has matured. And when I go to Washington D.C., it will be the Constitution on which I base all of my decisions, not my personal beliefs.

Sounds good, right? She's matured, and will base her decisions on the Constitution. Ehh, not really good. StudentLiberal over at Classically Liberal wrote a very good analysis. He says:

Let us go through this statement to see what she is actually saying and what she isn't saying. She says the statements were made when she was young. At that time she had a "new found faith," which means a belief system she adopted wholesale from dead books without any intellectual scrutiny. But "I can assure you, my faith has matured."

What does that mean? Previously she held beliefs without reasons, on the basis of faith. Now she has a mature faith, which means what? How does the mature faith differ from the youthful faith? Faith is faith, it is still not reason. Was she previously a young fool but is now just an old fool? All she said is her faith is mature. People say that they have "faith" when they merely adopt a view without rational reasoning behind it. They hold the belief on the basis of "faith." All this does is tell us how she comes to her beliefs, not what those beliefs are. And both are rather critical here.

She does not indicate at all that her views on masturbation, sex and abstinence have changed at all. In fact, she rather strongly hints that she has NOT abandoned her beliefs whatsoever. She begins her statement saying: "Yes, I have my personal beliefs." This is present tense, not past tense. At best she is hinting that she now understands that there are other ways for her to express the same viewpoints without creating a firestorm. She has not repudiated her "personal beliefs" nor has she said that they have changed, only that her "faith" is now more mature....

The first half of her statement is meant to address the issue of her past beliefs in contrast with present day beliefs. But nowhere does it actually indicate that these beliefs are now different, only that she has a more mature faith—and what that means is never explained by O'Donnell.

The second half of her statement is meant to address how she would vote on issues. It too avoids indicating anything of substance. She says that she will base all her decisions on the Constitution. Whoopee! What a meaningless statement!

If there is one thing that most politicians agree upon it is that they all think they vote according to the Constitution. Believing the Constitution is like believing the Bible. It means nothing. Why is that?

We can all debate what the Constitution means and we each come to our own conclusions. O'Donnell can happily vote for moralistic legislation, if offered the chance, and still proclaim she is within the Constitution as she sees it. The problem is that we have no idea how she sees the Constitution.
The problem with electing someone like this is that there is no way to know they won't put their own morality in front of the Constitution, or in front of your personal rights. She says elsewhere that "as someone who prays about every decision I make, I felt like God was leading me" [1].

If God is real, AND God really talks to people in a physical sense, then a Theocracy could be viable. If either of those two aren't true though, then a Theocracy is a very dangerous form of Autocracy, and nothing more. That is the danger we face when allowing people like O'Donnell into office. She says that she bases all decisions on what she feels God wants her to do, and we have an example of what she believes God's morality is. Is making Masturbation wrong and illegal what we really want? Be careful, Delaware, what you elect.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Epic Parody

Someone shared this with me over Facebook the other day, and I just wanted to pass it along. Great lyrics.


Thursday, September 16, 2010

Free Will & Morality

Humanity is enslaved to the ideas of our forefathers. Every child is classically conditioned while growing up. They are taught what is right and wrong according to the concept of right and wrong possessed by their parents. What we think of as free will is in essence pre-programmed response to the world, to stimuli. But can we break free?

Humans can only exercise true free will by stepping out of their conditioning. By examining every part of ourselves, every belief, from a 3rd person perspective, and then rejecting or reaffirming. We must look at all competing beliefs and decide which are more rational, which is correct, which holds merit.

The basis then, of true morality is rejecting our parent's concept of right and wrong, realizing that right and wrong are not inherent concepts, and then from that blank slate, reaffirming morality piece by piece. Examine each concept, probe it, break it down and ask Why. Once you have built up your concept of morality from the ground, you can accept it, defend it, and live it; Not because it was conditioned into you as a child, but because you, the free person that you are, have examined and found it worth.

Know yourself entirely. Don't let the morality of the majority rule you. Where would the slaves of the Confederacy be if no one questioned morality? Where would gay rights be? Question what they tell you is right. Question what they say is wrong. And mostly, don't be afraid to disagree, to argue, to debate, to push forth your beliefs. Yet at the same time, don't be afraid to look at the beliefs of others. Don't be afraid to listen. If someone proves you wrong, be willing to open your mind, to be flexible. Never bury your head in the sand and refuse to listen or look at evidence. "I knows what I know, don't confuse me with the facts". <-- Don't be that person.

Know yourself, question, examine, and probe everything. Don't be afraid to argue, but more important, don't be afraid to listen. Know yourself, and be free.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Positive Experience

People hear stories all the time about Police running rampant, going into homes illegally, shooting dogs, etc. We never hear about all the good things they door, the day to day activities. I had a very positive encounter with the Purdue Police Department(PUPD) today, and I'd just like to give them a shout-out:

I ride a bicycle to and from campus, because it makes the 10 minute walks into a 2 minute ride, and gives me more time before I have to leave. Purdue provides bike racks quite plentifully, and on Saturday around 1pm, I returned to my dorm from work, and locked my bike to one. Later than night, I noticed that someone (presumably tired of looking for an empty spot), had instead locked their bike directly to mine. I didn't do anything, and left it until today, figuring the person would leave sometime. This evening though, I had to leave for work again, and it was still there. I called the PUPD and explained, and the dispatched an officer to my dorm. Within 15 minutes, he was there. After I showed him the bikes, he got out the metal cutters and removed the lock which the unknown person had used, thereby freeing my bicycle. He spent 30 seconds afterwards taking down my name and phone number, and then I was free to leave with my bike.

No problems, no issues, just the bike lock resolved quickly and politely. Thank you PUPD!