Note, Follies, & Crooked Fingers

It’s been a long day of working on footnotes for my “note” for the Boston University Journal of Science and Technology. Writing a 35-page note is a requirement of all of the journals (as far as I know) so that they have a pool of content from which to pick publishable works. What if my topic doesn’t really have 35 pages to be written? I guess I have to add filler, which is what I’ve done. This thing has been in the works for far too long. Almost done.
In other news, I’ve signed up to be the guitarist for “Legal Follies”, which is (and I know this may sound incredibly strange and silly) a broadway-style production about law school, written and performed exclusively by law students. Most of the songs are parodies, so they should be easy to learn and play. It should be a lot of fun.
I’m listening to Crooked Fingers right now, which is just brilliant music. I was going to see if I could pick up a couple albums on, looks like someone is trying to sell this album for $1300! It’s good. It’s really good, but it ain’t that good.

Great Bowls

I had a bowl of cereal this morning. It was super!
I don’t know what’s more disturbing about the “Super Bowl” sporting event, the waste of resources in producing and watching the event (so much money, time, traffic, salsa consumption, etc.) or the waste of money used to create and pay for advertisements that support our culture of over-consumption. Hmm. At least the advertisements are interesting.
In fairness, I’m probably going to watch the second half, or at least talk to some friends over a beer while the game screams quitely in the background.

Abandoning Jesus

David Galbraith points out the irony of the “Creative Commons” trademark application. I’ve been heavily immersed in the study of trademark law lately. I’m taking Intellectual Property and Trademarks this semester. The fact that the former includes the latter resulted in my spending four consecutive hours listening to professors describing the Abercrombie & Fitch categorization of fanciful, arbitrary, suggestive, descriptive, and generic marks (“generic marks” is a misnomer of course). My favorite ironic mark is “Freedom of Expression”, registered by Kembrew McLeod, though there was a rumour going around that Coca-Cola was claiming ownership of the “Jesus” mark. (Indeed, it used to be listed on their “brands” page.)
I looked up Jesus registrations to check. It turns out that ten people have actually registered “Jesus” but all of these are logo registrations. I can just see the board meeting now: “Johnson, how did it go with the lawyers?” “Good sir, we have obtained the exclusive rights to Jesus.”
Of course, six of the ten Jesus marks have been abandoned. “(ten years later…) Johnson, do we still have the rights to Jesus?” “No sir, we have abandoned Jesus.”

“Don’t Try to Change My Plan”

I’ve been extremely impressed with the progression of the Drum & Bass Arena website. Whether you like drum & bass or not, you have to appreciate the quality of this site. The Drum & Bass scene is a small scene. There aren’t many news articles, award shows, huge tours (though there are some), or any of the other things you’d associate with a successful music scene. Drum & Bass arena, however, brings the music to the masses. I’m most impressed with the new DnB TV feature that actually broadcasts interviews and live sets over the internet for free. Even a couple years ago it wouldn’t have been possible to organize a global music scene around a small group of relatively unpopular artists, but Drum & Bass arena has done just that.
I don’t mean to sound like I’m writing ad copy for Drum & Bass Arena, but I really think it’s one of the best uses of the internet to date. They’re really done something amazing with presumably very little in the way of resources. Creating independent video programming documenting a music scene that is still very much underground is no small feat. Bringing it to a world wide audience is an impressive task. Well done.

Good Morning!

Why do so many websites require a login? Sometimes a login is actually necessary, but all too often its just there because someone thought it would establish customer loyalty or something silly like that. It’s now common practice to require users to think up a passwords every time they use a new website. Most people use the same password everywhere, which of course reduces the security of password (and usually the point of a password is security). Worse still, many sites force you to choose a pre-selected “hint” question. I don’t need a hint. I know my password. All this does is reduce the security of my password to the security of, say, my mothers maiden name. What’s the point?
Sometimes a password gives me access to things like my credit card information. This is good. (I bought a textbook from last week while I was in the class – would have been hard to whip out the ‘ole credit card) Other times, the login and password serve only to help the site track my usage (which they could do with a cookie anyway) and maybe offer me something personalized., thankfully, didn’t require me to have a password. They let me personalize the site with my zip code, name, and birthday. I was hoping this meant that when I went to it would default to showing my the current conditions in Boston (12F today). Nope. All it does is say good morning and give me another link to get the current conditions. (see below) It would be just as easy to come to this site: and click this link. Surprisingly, they weren’t too picky about acceptable names…


I got a new desk from Ikea this week. I actually bought it in Seattle and shipped it to Boston (since the nearest Ikea to Boston is four hours away in New Jersey). Despite the distance, the price of the desk plus shipping was still cheaper than anything I’ve seen in Boston, and nothing here matched the décor of my room.
Now I’m the happy owner of a tiny new desk for my tiny room. Below are twelve pictures stitched into one (because my room is too small to fit anymore than 1/12 of what you see below into the frame). I used The Panorama Factory to stitch two sets of 6 pictures together. Then I stitched the two long pictures together sideways. The whole thing was a big project, but I’m pretty happy with the result. Note the skewed computer screen, window, and “RAOHEAD” poster (it’s the French version of the poster, but that’s still no way to spell Radiohead).

The Other Side of Spam

At my old job, we used to get really random emails from people using the feedback form on our website. I’m happy to announce that Law School Discussion has grown to the level where I too get “feedback” that makes no sense. After getting several fair questions about law school, I put a little disclaimer above the form. This hadn’t helped much.

Below is the result of your feedback form. It was submitted by [someone’s name] ([her email address] on Friday, January 03, 2003 at 18:20:35
message: Dear harvard
I am only in middle school I’m trying to get my career on the go. They’re alot of high schools that will accept me such as domonican high school. That is one of the best school’s in Detroit MI. If you would like to set an appointment for me to see how things go. You can call my mom [mom’s name] at [phone number]. I would really appreciate kindly.
God bless,
Submit: Submit