Robert Fisk Lecture in LA

by Miguel de Icaza

Robert Fisk lecture in LA is available in MP3 format here.

Robert is an incredible story teller.

In this talk he describes some of his experiences as a journalist on the Middle East in the past twenty years and why he started to write his new book "The Great War of Civilization".

Packed with anecdotes. The parallels between the British occupation of Iraq and the new occupation are incredible.

Posted on 20 Nov 2005


by Miguel de Icaza

Been loving the US version of "The Office", the awkward moments are all there.

I also find "American Dad" hilarious. My love is divided between the fish and the alien.

Posted on 16 Nov 2005

F-Spot Monitor

by Miguel de Icaza

A few weeks ago I purchased a 24" flat screen from Dell. The sole purpose of this monitor is to run F-Spot to manage my home photo collection. Today I completed the F-Spot setup at home.

Posted on 16 Nov 2005


by Miguel de Icaza

Noam Chomsky on the debate about intelligent design:

To proponents, intelligent design is the notion that the universe is too complex to have developed without a nudge from a higher power than evolution or natural selection.

To detractors, intelligent design is creationism --- the literal interpretation of the Book of Genesis --- in a thin guise, or simply vacuous, about as interesting as "I don't understand" as has always been true in the sciences before understanding is reached.

Accordingly, there cannot be a "debate."

Robert Fisk on the rebranding of torture:

What Americans do to their prisoners is "abuse" and there was a wonderful moment last week when Amy Goodman, who is every leftist's dream, showed a clip from Pontecorvo's wonderful 1965 movie "The Battle of Algiers" on her Democracy Now program. "Col. Mathieu" -- the film is semi-fictional -- was shown explaining why torture was necessary to safeguard French lives.

Then up popped Bush's real spokesman, Scott McClellan, to say that while he would not discuss interrogation methods, the primary aim of the administration was to safeguard U.S. lives.

U.S. journalists now refer to "abuse laws" rather than torture laws.

Molly Ivins has her own take:

I have known George W. Bush since we were both in high school -- we have dozens of mutual friends. I have written two books about him and so have interviewed many dozens more who know him well in one way or another. Spare me the tough talk. He didn't play football -- he was a cheerleader. ''He is really competitive,'' said one friend. ``You wouldn't believe how tough he is on a tennis court!''

I tried to track down Robert Fisk as he tours the US but the only confirmed dates that I have are for California this weekend and I do not feel like crossing the country. If you happen to know of any dates somewhere closer to the East Coast, please drop me an email.

Norman Finkelstein is talking on Thursday in Boston. Details are available here. Norman is the author of the "Beyond Chutzpah" and "Israel-Palestine Conflict" books. Am pretty psyched.

Posted on 15 Nov 2005

Fast DCE Implementation Posted

by Miguel de Icaza

Massi posted his fast implementation of Dead Code Elimiation for the Mono runtime.

This is an optimization that we can hopefully enable by default, as opposed to the more expensive SSA-based optimizations.

This is the first on a series of optimizations patches that Massi is completing.

Posted on 15 Nov 2005

Dan Pena Ajena

by Miguel de Icaza

El presidente Fox y su cabinete, nada más dan pena ajena. Que verguenza, y es que es una tras otra. Deberían de tener un examen de admisión.

Ese es el problema de elegir a alguien que bajaron del cerro a tamborazos.

Posted on 15 Nov 2005

Microsoft Memos

by Miguel de Icaza

I was reading the leaked memos from Microsoft and as I was reading the first few paragraphs, I could not stop thinking that nobody on their right mind writes internal company memos like this. Nobody puts this kind of history background.

Consider the recipients: "Executive Staff and Direct Reports; Distinguished Engineers".

I could not stop thinking that these memos were written to be leaked. They read like ads.

Update: Alex points out that Cringely made the same observation. The difference is his article is actually interesting. Here is a tidbit:

But I have to say that Gates or Ozzie or whoever actually wrote these documents has done a very effective job of differentiating the company roles in a way that makes Google appear to be the bad guy, and Microsoft appear to be the good guy. Google is going to develop and deploy Internet services while Microsoft is going to ENABLE the deployment of such services BY ITS DEVELOPER PARTNERS. This makes Google the would-be monopolist.

Looking deeper, though, we see that the only way Microsoft can achieve its vision is by continuing to own the platform. They want us to be GRATEFUL, in fact, that such an enlightened outfit is running the store. And this will work to an extent, but only to an extent. Then what happens? All hell breaks loose as Microsoft again changes the game. Here's how: read the rest

Posted on 11 Nov 2005

Italian Fallujah Documentary

by Miguel de Icaza

The Italian documentary about the use of chemical weapons in Fallujah can be downloaded here.

A guy which sounds pretty upset about it is here.

Robert Fisk described the use of Phosphorus bombs on the civilian population of Beirut, you can read a couple of pages with Google Print: here.

Update: A reader points that the official page for the RAI documentary contains more download options and formats. The page is here.

Posted on 11 Nov 2005

F-Spot Tagging screencast

by Miguel de Icaza

Jakub has done a screencast of the new tagging feature in F-Spot.

Posted on 11 Nov 2005

Nat's Photo Tagging

by Miguel de Icaza

Nat recently implemented tag-typing for F-Spot, our new photo management software. For those of us with large picture collections this is probably one of the best interfaces for tagging.

See Nat's post here and his latest patch here.

Send copious amounts of email to Nat until he does a screencast of this new feature. You have to see it to appreciate it.

On the hacking side of things, the beauty of this patch is that it was coded in two afternoons after long busy work days for Nat.

Posted on 10 Nov 2005

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