: views from the Hill

Friday, February 22, 2008

For want of an accent mark ...

A headzup to everyone writing in the blogosphere, in newspapers and in magazines: what César and Dolores and the UFW were all about was "¡Sí, se puede!" not "Si se puede."

Sure, the two phrases sound the same, but the first means, "Yes, we can!" (or more accurately, 'Yes, it's possible' or 'Yes, it can be done.') and the second, "If we can ..."

Big difference.

(I kept, and never used, a freebie notepad the UFW sent me -- along with a solicitation for a donation, natch -- because they used "Si" instead of "Sí" in the tagline on the notepad. And don't try to tell me that the accent mark has become superfluous in the twenty-first century. I ain't buying it. ...)

Thus ends the Spanish I lesson for the afternoon.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Just words ...


The Agitator by Ryan Lizza: Barack Obama's unlikely political education.
Post Date Monday, March 19, 2007.

sez Obama: Sometimes the tendency in community organizing of the sort done by Alinsky was to downplay the power of words and of ideas when in fact ideas and words are pretty powerful. 'We hold these truths to be self-evident, all men are created equal.' Those are just words. 'I have a dream.' Just words. But they help move things.

Obama to Patrick to Obama and a hissy fit from those folks who don't think words and oratory count for anything without Substance [PDF]

(that's Substance with a capital S)

The March 2007 TNR article is interesting above and beyond the fact that Obama's "just words" echoes Patrick and predates Obama's alleged "plagiarism" of Patrick's speech.

Read the TNR article in full. It gives a =very= interesting insight into Obama's background.

You know what's really weird? I don't know Alinsky from Adam, but I first saw his name this morning in re Hillary's senior thesis at Wellesley which was allzabout Alinsky. Turns out Obama was allzabout Alinsky in his work on the southside of Chicago.

Oh, where is Kevin Bacon when you need him?

Lunar eclipse tonight


The show has started ...
Posted by Picasa

What customer service should be like ...

Returning from BOS after a mind-stretching AAAS annual meeting, I sorted through a week's worth of mail.

My March 2008 copy of REAL SIMPLE had arrived in the most ghodaufful shape of any destroyed magazine I'd ever received. Nice bright red note on the cover "RECEIVED IN DAMAGED CONDITION"

Aye, but who damaged it?

The cover had a third ripped off down to page ~ 30 (I can't tell because that corner of the page is missing. The next 50% of the magazine has the same corner ripped off (in an almost topographical way) but only about 16% of the page missing.

The rips continue. The magazine's unreadable. The first page that is not badly torn is page 274 and even that page and the pages up to page 292 are scrunched a bit and slightly torn.

I hied off to realsimple.com.

Log in, they said. So, I put the name on the subscription and my address and the e-addr I use for their notices. "Hi!" they said. "You last paid us $$$ on xxx-xx-xxxx. Do you want to renew now?"

Um. No. My subscription runs through July 2010. Heck, the scamp will be back from his Peace Corps gig before my subscription runs out.

I clicked the "report missing or damaged issues" box. RealSimple asked "missing or damaged"? Do you want us to replace the issue or extend your subscription? Is the issue in question the February 2008 or the March 2008 issue. I clicked and clicked and said I wanted a replacement for the March 2008 issue.

Next page ... "We are sorry that you did not receive your March, 2008 issue. We have requested that a replacement issue be mailed to you at ..."

Easy peasy, eh?

THIS is what customer service should be like. ...

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Monday, February 11, 2008

YouTube - IT'S OVER Roy Orbison

Amazing what's available on YouTube.

I'm a huge fan of Orbison. I will probably bounce from YouTube to YouTube to YouTube to ... until (not long from now) I decide I'm about ready to crash.

Claudette. Pretty Woman. Running Scared.

Blue Bayou

from Orbison to Patsy Cline

to Hank Williams

to ... well ... oddly enough there's nothing much on YouTube from Cisco Houston.

Joan Baez, however. ...

I bought a photograph of Mimi and Debbie Green, taken while Mimi lived on Alta. The two are goofing off at the corner of Union and Montgomery, with the piers and Bay as backdrop.

Thank you, John Cooke.

Cooke sold me a piece of his life. Man, I love the Web and the John Cookes of the world.

"Can Mrs. Clinton Lose?" -- Peggy Noonan

If Hillary Clinton loses, does she know how to lose? What will that be, if she loses? Will she just say, "I concede" and go on vacation at a friend's house on an island, and then go back to the Senate and wait?

Is it possible she could be so normal? Politicians lose battles, it's part of what they do, win and lose. But she does not know how to lose. Can she lose with grace? But she does grace the way George W. Bush does nuance.

[continue ..."Can Mrs. Clinton Lose?" -- Peggy Noonan]

Sunday, February 10, 2008

The FAIL Blog

The FAIL Blog

Must be seen to be believed. (Lots of ouchies here!)

via his nibs.

Thursday, February 07, 2008

Michelle Obama - Be Not Afraid

[Note: Previous link went 404. New link added.]

Need a little cheering up?

Need a little cheering up?
Watch this:

Human Proteinpedia

Human Proteinpedia -- the wonders of the Web.

A researcher at the Johns Hopkins Institute of Genetic Medicine has led the effort to compile to date the largest free resource of experimental information about human proteins. Reporting in the February issue of Nature Biotechnology, the research team describes how all researchers around the world can access this data and speed their own research.

Zounds, eh?

No anonymous postings. Only experimental results. (i.e. no predictions) You must be registered and logged-in to add data, but anyone can query.

Human Proteinpedia is a community portal for sharing and integration of human protein data. It allows research laboratories to contribute and maintain protein annotations. Human Protein Reference Database (HPRD) integrates data, that is deposited in Human Proteinpedia along with the existing literature curated information in the context of an individual protein. All the public data contributed to Human Proteinpedia can be queried, viewed and downloaded.

Data pertaining to post-translational modifications, protein-protein interactions, tissue expression, expression in cell lines, subcellular localization and enzyme substrate relationships can be submitted to Human Proteinpedia.

Protein annotations present in Human Proteinpedia are derived from a number of platforms such as

  • Co-immunoprecipitation and mass spectrometry-based protein-protein interaction
  • Co-immunoprecipitation and Western blotting based protein-protein interaction
  • Fluorescence based experiments
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Mass Spectrometric Analysis
  • Protein and peptide microarray
  • Western blotting
  • Yeast two-hybrid based protein-protein interaction

And if you understood all that, this site's for you.

So far 71 labs have contributed information on 2,695 experiments covering 15,231 protein entries.



The Web wasn't created just to distribute pron and LOLcats (although it's very good at that too).

Monday, February 04, 2008

Sunday, February 03, 2008

Obama - Yes, we can.

Liked this. 4:30m video. "Obama. Yes, we can" from Dipdive.com

Forwarded on to me by the younger younger Guy. Thanks.

Saturday, February 02, 2008

101 Best Web Freebies

101 Best Web Freebies - BusinessWeek's take on the best free apps and such you can find on the Web.

Friday, February 01, 2008

Yaze! for Baze!

Golden Gate Fields Sees Russell Baze's 10,000th Racing Win [KCBS]

Years and years and years ago, I read horse race results at the back of the sports section in the San Jose Mercury News. Didn't take me long to discover that a bet on whatever horse Russell Baze was riding was a good bet to place.

Congrats to Baze, who won his first race in 1974 in Yakima, WA, on a horse trained by his father, Joe.

Noonan's take on Ted Kennedy, the Clintons, and Barack Obama (oh, and those pesky Republicans too ...)

A Rebellion and an Awkward Embrace
February 1, 2008 / Wall Street Journal

In the most exciting and confounding election cycle of my lifetime, Rudy Giuliani, the Prince of the City, is out because he was about to lose New York, John Edwards is out, the Clintons are fighting for their historical reputations, and the stalwart conservative New York Post has come out strong and stinging for Barack Obama. If you had asked me in December if I would write that sentence in February, I would have said: Um, no.

Noonan's column continues ...