April 2005 Archives

GlaxoSmithKline just acquired Corixa, which makes immune system adjuvants.

Peribit has now been acquired by Sunnyvale-based Juniper Networks, which I guess I shouldn't be too surprised about. Those Juniper guys are cool: at one point they have 14% of the high-end WAN router market, which is a huge share considering how big Cisco's chunk was/is.

Allot Communications, Expand Networks, Packeteer, and Network Physics are still left as individual companies. I wonder how long before any/all of them are also acquired...

"The Office" was horrible from day-one; I knew it would fail:

The Office
9:30 PM - NBC
"The Office" also ends its season tonight (NBC only ordered six episodes). An attractive woman arrives at Dunder Mifflin to sell purses around the office, prompting a testosterone battle among the male staff members. Dwight (Rainn Wilson) attempts to ask her out, but his advances are deflected -- leaving room for Michael (Steve Carell), who assumes he's about to "score." Yeah right.

Now that both Tru Calling and Point Pleasant are gone, Fox wants to replace them with The Inside, which looks actually promising...

Desperate Hours
The New York Times
Published: April 10, 2005

ABC's "Lost" and "Desperate Housewives," which were both praised for their
fresh takes on the hourlong format, have been the two biggest first-year
successes of the television season. So it's no surprise that for next
season, among the pilots that might make the networks' schedules are a host
of new shows set in suspiciously similar alternate universes: some among
aliens and monsters, some among soapy suburbanites.


"Fathom" (NBC): Four characters around the world (including one played by
Lake Bell, pictured) encounter a species of beautiful sea creature no one
has ever seen. The characters' stories intersect over the course of the
series, and viewers find out whether the creatures are nice or mean.

"Threshold" (CBS): Alien life forms land on a naval freighter at sea, but
there's no sign of them. So where did they go? And will their friends be
joining them? A team of scientists and agents (Carla Gugino, Charles S.
Dutton, Brent Spiner) prepare for a possible invasion as they investigate
the evil influence the absent E.T.'s appear to exert.

"Invasion" (ABC): Something strange happens in a Florida town during a
hurricane. The kind of strange that involves aliens.

"Triangle" (UPN): On their honeymoon in the Caribbean, a young doctor (Ivan
Sergei) wakes up to find his wife has disappeared from their yacht. He
searches the islands for her, uncovering secrets as he goes.

"Supernatural" (WB): Two brothers whose mother was killed in mysterious
circumstances drive around the creepy countryside hunting evil creatures.


"Soccer Moms" (ABC): A neighborhood snoop (Kristin Davis) and a fellow
housewife (Gina Torres) become private investigators and find that nothing
in the subdivision is what it seems.

"Sold" (ABC): Brightly colored and winking, this soap opera set in the world
of high-end Los Angeles real estate features broadly drawn, back-stabbing

"The Commuters" (CBS): First developed three years ago, this ensemble drama
about smutty suburban secrets was resuscitated when "Desperate Housewives"
hit it big. It puts the men (David Arquette, Johnathon Schaech, Jason Wiles)
on equal footing with the women (Jeri Ryan, Christine Taylor, Rosemarie
DeWitt) and it aims to be more "relatable" than the cartoonish "Desperate
Housewives." A daily train ride into New York replaces the coffee klatches
of Wisteria Lane.

These last two weeks -- including all final exams -- are going to be intensely stress-filled and with much annoyance. I'm finishing up Toni Morrison's Song of Solomon for my L222 Literary Criticism class, where my final 5 page paper will be on race within the novel (broadly, for I haven't yet narrowed a scope). I'm finding Morrison to be a great writer, though from time to time her style seems to be repeating themes over and over. Perhaps this stems from a need she might have to convince her audience, or, even simpler, perhaps it's just a wake-up call.

However, sitting right on my floor, tempting me with its inviting cover, is a hard-bound edition of The Rule of Four.

This can't be good:

Error: uncaught exception: [Exception... "Component returned failure code: 0x80004005 (NS_ERROR_FAILURE) [nsIObserverService.removeObserver]" nsresult: "0x80004005 (NS_ERROR_FAILURE)" location: "JS frame :: chrome://global/content/bindings/browser.xml :: destroy :: line 569" data: no]

It happens occasionally with Firefox 1.0 on Mac OS X 10.3.7, when attempting to type in a textfield.


Adobe bought Macromedia...

Adobe I like, but I couldn't care less about Macromedia's Flash.

I hope Flash dies, but I know it won't, because too many lazy webmasters use it to create great-looking but highly non-functional sites which suffer from lack of bookmarking and horrible user-interfaces.

To be totally fair, it's not Macromedia's fault, it's just that lazy webmasters have abused the power of Flash tremendously. I think Flash makes sense as presentation, but not as a layout or navigation system, because, as I've stated earlier, it's not bookmarkable and often it's hard to know where to click (not to mention, like the days of old MIDI files launched onLoad(), Flash sites often startle or annoy you with sound).

Now, Dreamweaver I have fond memories of -- at least way back in 1999, when it produced pretty good standards-compliant HTML. Then again, compared to the then-abysmal Microsoft Frontpage, that's not a difficult accomplishment.

It seems that currently the top level .fm domain servers aren't answering:

C:\Documents and Settings\Stephen Donner>tracert www.di.fm
Unable to resolve target system name www.di.fm.

C:\Documents and Settings\Stephen Donner>tracert www.etn.fm
Unable to resolve target system name www.etn.fm.

C:\Documents and Settings\Stephen Donner>nslookup www.di.fm
*** Can't find server name for address Non-existent domain
*** Default servers are not available
Server: UnKnown

*** UnKnown can't find www.di.fm: Non-existent domain

C:\Documents and Settings\Stephen Donner>nslookup www.di.fm
*** Can't find server name for address Non-existent domain
*** Default servers are not available
Server: UnKnown

*** UnKnown can't find www.di.fm: Non-existent domain

Update: they're back up, as of sometime around 9:00 CST.

Want to read my English paper on the Marxist use-values and exchange-values the gem holds in The Moonstone?

Sure you do!

Well, what could I have expected from a movie with the title Boogeyman?

Not much, of course, but certainly not the absolutely incoherent non-sensical dribble that I encountered this afternoon.

Brutal, but good.

That aptly describes the film Leo.

Saw was a lot better than I expected, plot-wise.

It's a smart thriller indeed, and its only major detraction is some pretty wooden acting. Most of the scenes were filmed in 6 days, though.


For all you Lost fans out there, here's a parallel to Locke, which comes from GREEN LANTERN Vol. 3 #66, "Fast Friends, Part I":

Paul Christian lost his legs in a subway accident, but little did he know his troubles were just beginning.

He had the misfortune of being outside the New York Public Library during a fight between Green Lantern Kyle Rayner and an attacker in high tech battle armor. Thrown by his opponent's energy blast, Rayner was slammed into Christian, toppling the man over in his wheelchair.

After the battle, Rayner apologized and tried to make amends. He gave part of his ring power to Christian, the handicapped man used his own willpower to create new legs from the emerald energy. [Green Lantern Vol. 3 #66]

Christian's restored mobility gave him a new lease on life. Willpower was all that was needed. He was climbing the stairs of the Statue of Liberty when his hand was slashed open by a patch of torn metal railing.

[Locke echoes this character nearly perfectly, from his brave actions to his emphatic speeches]

The shock of pain caused Christian to break his concentration. The momentary distraction cost him his legs, and they faded to nothingness. Christian vowed he would find a way to make sure he would not lose them again. [Green Lantern Vol. 3 #67]

[Note the parallel here to the last original episode, in which Locke uses the faculty of his legs suddenly after being frustrated by the seemingly sealed hatch]

The demon Neron offered to augment Christian's power, giving him greater control. He was hesitant at first, but he eventually agreed to Neron's deal.

As part of Neron's deal, Purgatory was to destroy Green Lantern. Rayner and Darkstar Donna Troy were fighting a Neron-enhanced Mr. Freeze when Purgatory attacked. Purgatory used the green energy as fire, capable of burning anything thrown at him. Unfortunately for Christian, he didn't count on being thrown at Freeze. The heat and cold cancelled each other out. Freeze was brought to the Slab, a metahuman prison. Purgatory had escaped. [Green Lantern Vol. 3 #68]

Neron caught up with Purgatory in a New York City alleyway. Despite Christian's objections, the devil expected the bargain to be upheld.

Purgatory found Green Lantern in his apartment. Though Rayner couldn't take back the energy he gave Christian, he guessed he could overload his attacker. Purgatory was changed back to normal, but his fate was already sealed. His soul was claimed by Neron. Purgatory vanished in a blast of green flame. [Green Lantern Vol. 3 #69]

Purgatory became one of an army of Neron's minions fighting the heroes of Earth on their quest to his master's lair in Hell. He has not been seen since. [Underworld Unleashed #3]

[Not sure above the previous stuff, but certainly they're weaving Lost after these 2 comic books...]

The New Netscape.net email is sort-of out, though Address Book isn't working at all.


Just to prove how utterly incorrect horoscopes are, here's the reading of my sign, Leo:

It's no coincidence that this astrological sign is associated with the lion, because these people have the courage, dominant personality and charisma of the ''king of the jungle.'' First of all, Leos crave attention. When Leos know what they're after, they'll pounce on and capture their prey. But all the characteristics that make lions so attractive can really work against them, if they're not careful. Take note, everybody-there are Leos in town, and they can be extremely arrogant, overbearing and boorish. Lions also have a huge lust for power. They like bigwig positions in government or large companies, as long as they get top dog-er, cat--billing. This feline sign also has a gargantuan appetite in the bedroom, and Leos are able to attract many attractive partners. In health matters, beware of heart disease, Leo. Famous Leos include Napoleon, George Bernard Shaw and (no surprise here!) Mae West.

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