Every now and then, I check the news feeds and see several sites out there that desperately need a dose of me. This is one of those mornings. Hail and hear well, oh denizens of the Internet, as I mete out a king’s measure of wisdom to your sorry selves….
New Rule: Accept that stupidity is a part of life. – This site introduces a project to build the world’s first “stupidity filter”. That’s a nice thought, but, like perpetual motion, if it were that simple, we would have done it a long time ago. You couldn’t bring a stupidity detector anywhere near the Internet without having it light up and beep insanely. And half the time, it would be tripping off of the user, even with the Internet turned off.
New Rule: Quit pretending your common software tool is top secret technology. – Graphics geeks have been following the story about Interpol, who unscrambled a distorted picture of a child predator suspect in order to get his clear picture. As they announced this – doubtless with the song “Secret Agent Man” playing in the background – they said they “would not discuss the techniques used to recover the images”.
Well, Mr. Bond, it’s called “Photoshop’s twirl filter“. It’s so old, even the Gimp has had it as “whirl and pinch”. To apply it, set it for the highest possible positive number. To reverse it, set it for the lowest possible negative number. Here’s an example using a test picture:
As you can see, the algorithm used is completely reversible for a perfect recovery of the original image.
New Rule: Steve Ballmer must make the next “Godfather” sequel. – Specifically, the second Godfather movie has that flashback with Don Fanucci, “The Black Hand”, who extorts protection payments from local businesses. Meanwhile, Don Steve Ballmer makes yet another threat against Linux with his fistful of Microsoft patents. He makes extortion threat after extortion threat, even while openly expressing envy for open source and wishing that all that development was going into Microsoft instead of Linux.
Take a lesson from the movie, Steve. It’s time for a new Don to step up. You’ve scared Novell, Xandross, and Linspire into paying up, but not everybody is a scared immigrant pilgrim paying the big bully in the suit to avoid getting horse heads in their bed. Keep picking on Linux, and you’ll eventually see Linux fight back. You don’t set out to free the world’s technology without having some kind of spine in the first place.
New Rule: You can’t use Halo3 to promote your religion. – Like this church is doing. Granted, more people would come to church if you offered hookers and beer, but you’re kind of defeating the purpose of a church. Even if you used Diablo instead, and taught the kids to be paladins using Holy Bolt to kill zombies.
Well, OK, maybe then… But more importantly, you can’t use Halo3 because it is its own religion already.
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