Sunday, August 29, 2004

Santa Cruz

Megan and I visited the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk yesterday. With temperatures hitting 99˚ in Stockton and Sacramento, we figured the coast would be a bit cooler. The weather forecast said Santa Cruz would have a high of 85˚ and be mostly sunny. As you can see by the picture, there was no sun, only fog. Oh, and the temperature was off by about, oh, 20˚!! So much suntan lotion wasted...

I rarely read Parade magazine, but felt compelled today to see what ridiculous celebrity questions were posed to Walter Scott in his PersonalityParade® column and what his often-judgmental answers were. But I never expected to see the following Q&A, which was sandwiched between questions about one of the stars of Fox's summer series North Shore ("Is that his real hair?") and "Whatever became of actor John Kerr?"

Q: The Saudi army recently dealt al-Qaeda a major setback by killing its military commander. Does that mean the Saudis are finally getting a handle on their home-grown terrorists? – Samuel Z., Miami, Fla.

A: Yes–but only for the time being. Al-Qaeda has lost several of its senior operatives in Saudi Arabia in recent months, but it's already regrouping. We expect its new military commander, a 38-year-old militant named Saleh Mohammed al-Oufi, to try to unleash a wave of terrorist violence in the near future.

Ignoring the fact that Walter Scott consistently refers to himself as 'we,' why would anyone write to Parade's PersonalityParade column to ask questions about Saudi Arabia, Al-Qaeda, terrorists, etc.?

Well, if someone tells me that Al-Qaeda's new military commander isn't planning to unleash a wave of terrorist violence in the near future, I can pull out my copy of Parade and show them how wrong they are.

Monday, August 23, 2004

e-Column #100

Politics having a big year online: "Because this is an election year, politics is a big topic online. But the Web has had a decidedly stronger impact this year in politics than it did during the last presidential election." Students crazy about iPod follow the music to Apple laptops: "Now that Microsoft Office is available for Macs, (University of Arizona's on-campus store salesman Jeff) Guba says, students can work with many Windows programs, such as Outlook for e-mail and Word for documents. 'That made a big difference,' he says."

Apparently both the store salesman and USA Today are unaware that Microsoft Office has been available for Macs since at least as far back as 1998, three years prior to the introduction of the iPod.

Monday, August 09, 2004

e-Column #99

Subscriptions for online gaming far short of expectations: "In 2002, a new business model for computer gaming set video game publishers' expectations high. Two years later, those expectations have been dashed."

Ignore the posted first sentence of my latest column. It's actually the headline I suggested.