More TED


I’d like to share more TED with you all.

The first is quite interesting.

Barry Schwartz It’s about wisdom and the need for more of it, of breaking out of the lazy system we have going

Apart from the Obama love, it’s quite a good talk.

The other is from Juan Enriquez. Enriquez is an amazing speaker.  In this talk he is funny, fascinating and insightful. He starts off talking about the economy then moves onto talk about some very interesting developments in genomic research, in terms of cell growth and tissue growth, followed by some robotics.

Take a look. Both talks are interesting and there are a few other recent talks posted that are also worth a go.

I hope you have fun learning something today.

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Movie Review: Doubt

Last week I went to see Doubt. I needed to see something Oscar worthy, and although it wasn’t nominated for best picture, it does have 4 amazing and well deserved actors which were nominated.

Doubt is a film driven completely by conversation.  No action, almost no events per say, but every bit of the plot is one conversation to the next.

The story takes place in a catholic school, the kind run by the church, in 1964. The plot revolves around the suspicion by 2 nuns that the priest may be abusing a young boy.  It goes on as the principal (played by Meryl Streep) probes the Father (Philip Seymour Hoffman), as she tries to piece together his guilt. It all begins when a teacher (Amy Adams) notices strange things about the boy in question, then brings up her suspicions to the principal character.

The writing is spectacular; this movie gives power to words, which I haven’t seen in a very long time.  It is thought provoking, asking questions about judgment and suspicion, about traditions, about power and influence.  The performances are strong, even subtle gestures and expressions able to convey some feelings and thoughts better than words that were spoken. The best example is in the scene with the mother of the child concerned, played by Viola Davis. In this scene you can see on her face that he mind is in anguish as 2 conflicting concerns float through her mind.

I do not want to give away everything about the movie, other than to say it is very good ,and when you get the chance it’s a must see. Great performances, visually pleasing and provocative storytelling.

Back from Vacation.. What is on my mind?

Lets see, what has happened that I need to talk about?

Well when I got home there was a story about some nutjob that shoved some kids onto the subway tracks.  Supposedly he shoved 3, one guy managed to keep his balance, the other 2 fell onto the tracks as a train was coming. One of them was aware enough to drag his buddy under the lip, which until this week i didn’t know existed, saving their lives. the less aware kid may have lost his leg I’m not sure , I heard the train clipped his foot and dragged him a little, but at least he is alive. So what happened to the nutjob well, people were running crazy out of the station(somewhere on the Bloor line i forget) and the man in the booth called police and paramedics then chased the nutjob down the street, knocking him down. I’ll tell ya one thing, that not something I expect from a public worker. You can be damn sure if it was Ottawa(if Ottawa had a subway) that the clerk manning the booth would be too busy bitching for higher wages. This man deserves a medal or something, otherwise this fuck would be out on the street, shoving old ladies into oncoming traffic.  So this brings me to the nutjob, supposedly he is not mentally sane.

It always seems that with these cases of public violence, the guy turns out to be mentally unstable, or some bullshit excuse to get off scot free. Its the same with the sickening greyhound bus killing in Manitoba last year. some fuck stabs 40 or so times then beheads a 20 year old or so kid on his way home.  The big question, how the Fudge does a busload of people manage to not do anything to save the guy after like 1 or 2 stabs. But i digress, turns out oh oh oh, the guy is mentally unstable he didn’t mean to do it, he just snapped. BULLSHIT. i must call bullshit, sure he is insane, but making it sound like a disease doesn’t help anybody. We know sane people don’t start stabbing at random. I’m sure the insane have every intention of doing exactly what they do, in their head they are doing something for a reason, if if they aren’t logical reasons.

My point is this, these “people” should be identified in grade school and castrated, then locked up in a care facility, hoped up on enough drugs to numb a horse.  I know that sounds cruel but keeping them somewhere safe where they can spend their days watching TV and playing scrabble is better then having them killing people. Someone figure out a way to profile them to 99% accuracy. That good enough for me.

Ok next topic.

Obamania. Well I missed it, I was out of town.  The One was here in Ottawa, and it seems the show went well.  He tried to not step on toes.  He proved he could play nice. Lets see if his actions back up his words. Will he support free trade, will he help improve relations between the 2 countries?  His idea for a modern power grid are good ones, we sure as hell need one going into the 21st century and maybe one better integrated between the 2 countries would have benefits. Now all this only works of course if we have a realistic energy policy, expand the use of nuclear and hydro power, improve and modernise refinement and processing for crude oil and gas, and so on and so on. It wouldn’t hurt to have a little more privatization/deregulation in this market. But knowing the crazy lefties they wont let anything good like that happen.  I was interested with Obama’s handling of the Afghan situation. He didn’t ask for anything he just sorta said, please keep us in mind, and be open to what i have to say.  Canadians have heard the message loud and clear. Afghanis  don’t want us over there, even if we are there to help civilians so, we asked to not be a part of it, and the government (for once) listened. Canada should have troops out of there by 2011.  Unless Obama says jump, and Canadians ask “ How many?” I have a feeling alot of Canadians would follow him to the planet Xenu, with Tom Cruise as the tour guide, if he asked with that pretty smile of his.  Parliament hill looked like that south park episode just after the election. “YEAH OBAMMMMMAAAAAAAAA!!!” with drunken lefties getting hammered in the streets.

Anyway, there is more to discuss but perhaps tomorrow.

Take care and remember…

Don’t pee on the E-Lec-Tric Fence!

Bill at TED

I’ll write more about this later but please enjoy.

Technology Entertainment and Design conference or TED has wrapped this weekend. Throughout the year they will release the videos of most of the speakers.  They posted a good one first, Its Bill Gates, and he always has good things to talk about.

Sorry I can’t embed the video but links here:

Bill’s 18 minute lecture

Q&A with TED bigshot  Chris Anderson

Id like to add that is through people like Gates and other enterprising people that the worlds problems will be solved. Not by large government spending and mismanagement.

Update: I promised I would write a little more.

Well if you were not interested enough to click through i can jsut tell you what
Gates was talking about. he tackles 2 subjects:

1.  The spread of malaria and the efforts and requirments that need to be underway to whipe it off the face of the planet.

2. The need to better education by devising a system to reward the best teachers, and pass those succesful methods on to others.

The second link is a post talk interview with Chris Anderson who I guess runs TED and usualy hogs the best presenters to himself for an extra 10 minutes of their time in order to discuss questions he or others have toward them. Of course as high profile as Bill is its obvious Anderson would get his hooks into him.

I highly recomend this talk , as it shows how free enterprise and free minds will take care of the worlds less fortunate, in contrast to what socialist-eco-commies would tell you.

Over all I love TED and have been a fan for over a year now. Most talks , with exeption to Gore’s, arnt bandwagon jumping, and they open your eyes to science, invention, philosophies and interesting or entertaining stories. As they say Ideas Worth Spreading.

Economic crisis, or Opportunity?


I would like to point out an article written by Lawrence Martin (o f the Globe and Mail) written for the metro-news.

This metro paper has been good to me the past week or so.

He wrote it in part in response to a report by Roger Martin and Richard Florida (summary).

We all know (or should be taught in grade 1) that the free market capitalistic system is cyclic; we experience intervals of growth and prosperity, as well as an eventual collapse. The causes of such collapse are still debated fiercely in the worlds of economics and political and sociological sciences, usually a flaw in the laws or the system goes unforeseen, or some continued stress causes eventual downturn of the economy.

What is also known however is that recessions are times of rebuilding and restructuring, weak firms and poorly run firms or enterprises fail and from the failures lessons are learned. Industries are restructured minds are changed and the pioneers among us endure, they take repeated failure and build upon successes of the past. And after the failures we always end up better off then where we fell from, the history of economic growth trends upwards always.

Want proof? The dot com bubble of the late 90’s. They built an industry financed by venture capital with lots and lots of cash on the basis that eventually a profitable product or service would be produced. Small companies stopped being small companies when they were bought by large ones for inflated prices based on the same promises and ceased to exist. All this cash flying around and nothing real being produced. Eventually the capital dried up, and the hint of a recession caused all the funding to disappear. Almost overnight an entire industry pretty much disappeared. What happens next is case in point. The internet came back in a big way. This time built on an advertising model previously thought impossible at such scale. Large companies sell their products that don’t seem like products at all yet there are billions of dollars and fierce competition surrounding it. What product is that? Search. Google, Yahoo, Microsoft own huge stakes in search and that’s where the money is and it all comes from advertising dollars. On top of that we have content services as well as a cloud of web based applications. All semi–tangible products. The sector was reborn and is undergoing an evolution. Devices are being built and manufactured to take advantage of all these services. Companies such as Apple, Nokia, RIM, Microsoft, and now Palm (seems like it might be back in business with the Pre) are all taking advantage with mobile devices alone. In their wake companies like Google leave an industry that although certainly not immune to this economic downturn are built and structured now to weather the storm.

So back to Martin, Martin and Florida, all of them are basically saying this: That we in Ontario should be focusing our efforts to rebuild
Ontario into a creative services economy.  Almost all government programs, spending and tax and trade policy are geared toward helping the manufacturing and resource sector. L. Martin writes:
Stimulus schemes and handouts, they say, may be necessary to prop up the old economy. “As in all times of economic crisis, there is considerable pressure on governments to protect the past and undertake bail­outs.” That said, “There is a better way.”

He reports that we need to capitalize on the current recession and move off the old industrial economy. Further saying.

Start making the big moves to an idea-driven, creative economy based not on goods, but on services. Put the stress on the development of knowledge workers, on research and development, on innovation.

With the amount of education in this province and across Canada, I don’t see how we can allow this opportunity to pass us by.

The “brain drain” you hear from years past (circa late 90’s) is almost never uttered this day in age, with more people reluctant to move to the USA due to a booming and stable Canadian economy, and with fears of either a totalitarian Bush state or now a Huge Government Obama Nanny state, Canadians probably are feeling more comfortable at home now. Canada’s service sector is already large, and the structuring toward manufacturing is only likely due to a very vocal minority.

Service sector is much more flexible to change then is the manufacturing sector. It’s less susceptible to fluctuations in the dollar or economy. When people might not want to buy cars there is always room for research and innovation, consulting, creative projects, financial services ect ect.

If you take one thing from this, let it be this: Please educate yourselves, please start your own companies be creative, hire creative minds if you aren’t creative. Don’t think that you need to “make” something. Small business is the backbone and the meat and potatoes of an economy. Urge your government to support small creative business, and if you can’t rely on government (which we all know we can’t) rely on each other. Be adventurous, take risks, and support creative enterprises yourselves with your hard earned cash. Build a better Canada

Ok so that was more than one thing. So on that I’m going to Hope for Change , not from some new leftist dream world supported by huge government debt but; but from an economy of the people for the people.

Could such a thing be done? Can we see a better Ontario, a better Canada? One more solid and competitive then most nations on earth? (I’m gunning for France personally)  To quote Mr  Rebadt DeLama

Yes We Can.

The Keene Act

Great promotional video for “Watchmen”. I just wanted to pass this along, i’m sure there might be some inconsistencies that nerds will find, but I loved it.

Enjoy, and do yourself a favor, go out and buy Watchmen, you can find it anywhere now, don’t be cheep.  Its fantastic and a Hugo award winner.

PS: don’t forget my other post of the day.

Bale is a Stand-up Guy.

Christian Bale has proven once again why he is my favourite actor.

After his F-bomb filled rant at director of photograph Shane Hurlbut, on the set of “Terminator Salvation” went public went public last week, Bale was the target of much critisism and parody.   Was it justified? Probably not, but it’s understandable to get mad.  So what did Bale do next, did he hide away or try to justify himself? No, he was a man about it and explained everything he felt and apologized for his actions on KROQ “Kevin and Bean Show” out of Los Angeles.

On being mocked Bale said:

“I deserve it completely,”

Then,

“It’s been a miserable week for me.”

“There is nobody that has heard that tape that is hit harder by it than me,”  “I make no excuses for it. It is inexcusable.”

He then goes on to give some context explaining:

“[I] was trying to show a little of that ‘in the blood’ craziness”

“And you know what? It went very wrong,”  “I got annoyed and then what happened, I made it ugly and that was awful of me,”   “I took it way too far and I completely mixed up fact and fiction. I’m half John Connor and half Christian there.”

So Bale, as he is known to do was merely method acting. That makes more sense now. Don’t believe me? Bale lost over 60 pounds to play his insomniac character in “The Machinist” He wanted to lose another 20 but the producers of the film were worried about his health and wouldn’t let him.  Then after shooting, this same 6 foot tall, 120 pound man showed up to audition for Batman Begins, and got the part.  On set his trailer was labelled “Bruce Wayne”. Also its said that while promoting Batman he used his adopted American accent in interviews, as to not deter (stupid) audience members from the film wondering why batman ,an American institution was being played by a Welshman. What does that say? It says the man is a workaholic who believes in his work.

In the interview Bale goes on to apologize, and then saying that he and Hurlbut made up on the same day and now everything is resolved.

So that’s my little take on it.  Even I had a laugh at his expense, but I still respect him, and he does deserve every ounce of it. Not everyone has the balls to apologize to the world and even sound a little foolish doing it.  I’m super excited now to see for the first time ever a human and real John Connor in “Salvation”, as opposed to the childish yet sorta well played version in T2(Furlong), and the forgettable and retarded version in T3RotM(which may or may not be canon for salvation) played by I-don’t-even-know Dickwad.

Next time Bale gets mad, he should turn to the roots of his franchise and tell the next jerk to “Chill-out, Dickwad”

Anyway I’m out. Hasta la vista.