Monday, November 26, 2007


We like short shorts

The horrors of illegal immigrants!:

A 9-year-old boy dazed after his mother crashed their van in the southern Arizona desert was comforted by a man entering the United States illegally, an official said Friday. The man stayed with the boy until help arrived the next day.
For his troubles and concern, the 26-year-old Mr Cordova was, of course, arrested and sent back to Mexico. Maybe we can get him back; I can think of someone I’d like to trade for him.

Hm. Maybe this should be my retirement job:

Though older recruits are nothing new to the Peace Corps, it recently began an initiative to entice people age 50 or older into joining at a time when many of them are stepping away from a career and into the great unknown of retirement.

Paul Little makes an interesting point on his blog, Aurora Walking Vacation, which point deserves more attention. Paul presents a made-up scenario in which atheists object to the Narnia books because of their Christian content. But, of course, unlike the corresponding acts from Christian groups:

Maybe that’s because it never happened.

You see, atheists are not afraid of being exposed to ideas contrary to their own. Atheists do not try to shelter their children from media that might suggest points of view that differ from the one they hold. Atheists arrive at their opinions through the use of reason and logic, and are perfectly willing to allow their own children to arrive at their own conclusions the same way..even if those conclusions are different from their own. In fact, atheists actively encourage their children to explore many points of view in order to help them see the world as it is, not as we would have it be.

For another item in the “why you need to be careful about social networking sites” series, we have Facebook’s “Beacon” feature. The feature lets online vendors who sign up for it tell Facebook about the latter’s members’ purchases. Facebook then shows those purchases to your Facebook “friends”, thereby directing their business to the vendor also. What a deal, huh? Well, except... do you really want your friends to know what you bought?

A lot of us love Facebook—it’s helping to revolutionize the way we connect with each other. But they need to take privacy seriously. On the above group page, we ask people to sign this petition, which we’ll deliver to Facebook:
“Facebook must respect my privacy. They should not tell my friends what I buy on other sites—or let companies use my name to endorse their products—without my explicit permission.”
Facebook says its users can “opt out” of having their private purchases reported to the world. But the link is easy to miss. And even if you do “opt out” for purchases on one site, it doesn’t apply to purchases on another site—you have to keep opting out over and over again. The obvious solution is to switch to an “opt in” policy, like most other applications on Facebook.

Finally, we have an amusing story of a local coffee shop trying to compete with The Big Chain:

Still, Mrs. Mallek was a bit taken aback when she saw two of the regulars — the regulars! — near her shop, Starbucks cups in hand, not long after the new one opened last summer. And so came the idea of the billboard, about a half block from the Starbucks — as close as they could get — reading: “We may not be Big ... but we’re not Bitter!” And “We ARE your neighborhood coffee spot!” It was like Rocky throwing that first gutsy haymaker at Apollo Creed.
As Mrs Mallek says, “When you need coffee, you need coffee.”

1 comment:

Paul said...

I have a facebook account because I think it is an effective way to connect with old friends. I do not, however, download any of the 'applications' that every single thing is based on. As far as I'm concerned, facebook is nothing more than one big demographics collection site.