Nineteenninetytwo

Yesterday I was watching MTV's Chillout Zone, still the only show worth watching on the 'coolest' brainwasher in the planet. There was this early 90s computer-graphics video from an X-Mix or an X-Mix-like tape, starting with that famous Polygon Window. Early 90s graphics, that means crap 3D scenes of some shell flying through a tunnel, badly-rendered insects, an amazing walking human and such. Remember, that was cutting edge computer graphics when most of us were stuck on a 16 bit computer. However, it's heart-warming to watch such a video. Back in the early 90s everything seemed so positive, and there was this sense of discovery and that things were only about to get better. I want it to be 1992 again.

Illegal computer parts

Don't ever forget, the virtue of democracy is that there's not a single ideological value, while bad political systems emphasize only one. Anarchy will only recognize freedom, communism wil only recognize equality. And fascism is a system obsessed with security.

The thing is, the 20 thousand deaths are just the tip of the iceberg. More will die in whatever unlucky country are the responsibles from, and millions will be deprived of their freedom on the grounds of security. Whenever Bush, Ashcroft and pals say the word 'freedom' I feel sicker than when they pronounce 'God', because they are the kind of people with the kind of ideology which has been always attacking the people's 'freedom'.

Being completely a-religious, I can't stop feeling a bit irritated when people talk about God in the aftermath of such catastrophic events. Can't people ever understand that God equals Nature and that God/Nature won't give a fuck about us useless and insignificant humans? God won't protect us now more than before, but Nature will always make sure that revenge is just like adding gasoline to fire.

Dr. Manhattan

YET ANOTHER UPDATE: Even though the Afghan responsability is yet undetermined, the American quick need for a scapegoat has sentenced that cruise missiles are now hitting Kabul. Ah, the joys of brute force.

UPDATE: The WTC has completely collapsed, as did part of the Pentagon. Another airplane has crashed on Pennsylvania, and apparentely four other hijacked planes are still on the air. There are celebrations on Islamic nations, which is another factor turning them into scapegoats. Expect missiles to start flying into Afeghanistan, Iraq etecetra this time tomorrow. I think that the men behind the attacks are not the obvious Muslims (can you say 'Timothy McVeigh'?), but America will probably learn to be careful about the people they give money and weapons to.

UPDATE: The World Trade Center tower hit by the second plane has just fell. And the Pentagon has been hit by an airplane. And there was an explosion on Capitol Hill. All airports in the USA has been closed. September 11th 2001 might be the new Pearl Harbor.

The kind of thing you thought only happens on comicbooks: It is yet undetermined if was an accident or a delibarate attack, but as I write both the World Trade Center towers in New York are burning as two (!) airplanes have colided against the twin towers, one of those a Boeing 737! The images on CNN are absolutely terrifying, it's incredible how the towers held up after the impacts. Two accidental crashes into the same landmark within 18 minutes are quite improbable not to say impossible, so maybe someone decided that a van full of explosives wasn't enough.

M1cr05oft

It is said that in 1976 Bill Gates wrote some sort of anti-piracy manifesto, because back then 'information wants to be free' was still a serious motto. However, nobody else in the world has perhaps as profited from piracy as Bill Gates himself. 'Warez distros' of Windows or Office are everywhere, but distributions of Solaris or WordPerfect are not. I'm not saying Microsoft actively pushes forward piracy to help them win a market-share, but piracy was perhaps their biggest help in building a Monopoly. It's fairly simple: If everyone has a pirate copy of Windows at home, then their employers (which have stricter laws over them) will have to buy Windows since there won't be so many experts on Unix or other operating systems. At least in Europe and Asia, most computers sold are store-assembled bulk models. Since PCs exist, shops would install DOS and later Windows free of charge. This is plain piracy and a damn good help if you are building a monopoly on your products. It's much better to have an army of people who can only use Windows than to sell every single copy. Now, under the pressure of the local authorities, many computer sellers are installing Linux instead. Of course people who buy such coputers will eventually get a friend to install Windows, because its monopoly consists of people's heads, rather their hard-drives. Does anyone really believe Microsoft sold Windows copies to 97% of the world's computers?

Jabber the hut

Bullfighting in Russia: And then, when one of the few good things about Russia was the total absence of bullfighting, someone decides to organize a 'Portuguese-style bullfight' in Moscow. In a glimpse of wisdom, Russian officials forced the organization to cancel the show, but however they have gone to court and it's not over yet. Well, at least it's not 'Barrancos-style'.

Bullfighting in Portugal: So those zany people on the tiny village of Barrancos are at it again. For those who don't know, killing bulls on an arena is forbidden in Portugal since 1928. You can stab then with long irons, but the bulls must be killed on a slaughterhouse after the show is over. However, for the 73th straight year, a small village next to the Spanish border wants to do it the Spanish way, that is, the bull must die in the arena while a few psicopats and old ladies scream in joy. That always means police, media, stupid people shouting and in the end, everything is done according to that stupid, STUPID, S T U P I D tradition. "Because traditions must be followed", they say. I say we sell Barrancos to Spain in exchange for a good tortilla recipe.

I downloaded Jabber, a good shot at an universal instant messaging program that is actually quite nice. One problem though: You must open an account in Yahoo IM, MSN IM and ICQ (that means downloading those spyware-ridden, merch-bound apps) before Jaber works. Nothing that a few loads of fake data about me (John Murdoch of Trinidad and Tobago) won't solve...

So nice of you, Howard. Very nice. Nice indeed: The Australian government is refusing to allow a Norwegian ship with 400 Afghan refugees to dock, because apparentely 9000 illegal immigrants a year is a life-threatning problem. A tiny European country like Portugal receives 30000 illegal immigrants a year, and they are not sending this country to hell. The politicians are, but that's another story. Personally, I think that America's big pet on the Indian and Pacific oceans has lost their reason in demanding that the Taleban be polite to their Western prisioners. Wise men say that if you want others to treat you well, you treat well the others. 'Wise'... phff... such a useless word nowdays.

Patents stifle innovation

On the news today: Finally the Brazilian government decided not to care about any pharmaceutical patents and keep produciong their own AIDS medicine at a fraction of the cost. The UN has praised the initiative, the USA and industry giant Roche obviously not and threaten to retaliate. A beautiful example of who's good and righteous in the world today. Brazil today has one of the most efficient AIDS prevention plans thanks to 'generic' medicines, and hopefully will set a precedent for other countries to bring the giant pharmaceutical cartel down to its knees, and the Europe vs Bayer case will probably give another push in the right direction.

Second Bad Libel?

Debate Tuesday: Do religions only have good principles and their organizations (that is, churches) subvert them? Or are there religions with bad principles?

Oh, shite. 'Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones'. I'm not joking, it is for real. Oh dear... I only hope it doesn't mean Jar-Jar Binks' clones.

Samurai voitures

Ronin: the best action flick of recent years, since Léon. It is quite surprising an American director, John Frankheimer, was able to create the ultimate European racin'n'shootin' fest. Robert de Niro, one of my favourite American actors is there, along with 'Léon' himself, Jean Reno. Their mission, to retrieve a suitcase (don't worry about what's inside). And to so, they'll be engaged in some of the most spectacular shooting scenes and pursuits ever. People acustomed to American car pursuits will be wondering what cars are those (they're Audi, Citroën, BMW, Peugeot, classic Mercedes) and why do those cars get damaged when they go up the pavement at 120km/h, or why do they always slide on sharp corners and why do they run over people on narrow and crowded streets, unlike American 'voitures' that seem to have perfect traction control, unless a bit of slide helps to the clichéd crossroad pile-up. And also, unlike the American's rather daft police, a small city in Ronin is likely to have a huge crowd of policemen and police cars in the streets the day after a bloodbath. Actually, Ronin came out three years ago, and I watched it yet again yesterday. I should now go rent it too.

Sadistic software

Yesterday I accidentally deleted 80 megs worth of Unreal Tournament addons. After screaming "Noooooooo!" for a while, I decided to search for an 'undelete' program on the Internet. And what did I find? A 'freeware' that "can scan your hard drive partitions and list all deleted files that may still be recoverable. As an emergency recovery solution, it is intended as a first step and requires that you purchase Undelete 2.0 in order to recover any files you may want back." Freeware, huh? What about, 'sadisticware'? Other 'freeware' undeleters weren't much better, and needless to say, I'm downloading everything again.

Faster site, less hits per day: I removed the Weblogs.com reciprocal banner from this webpage, as this page would stop loading until their Javascript code would load too, which meant this website had to rely on the Weblogs.com server. Which wasn't nice.