When a Josh needs an Open Thread.

Ok Josh, I’m caving. Only 13 minutes early, but early is early, man!

C’est yours….

Standard FYI clause: I generally wait for 2 hours after Ta-Nehisi would usually open a thread (roughly noon, EST), and if none is forthcoming, I put one up here.

138 Comments

  1. koolaide

     /  June 27, 2012

    Spain or Portugal?

    • Spain is the brick wall teams have been running into and breaking their heads open trying to destroy. If England had faced them instead of Italy, there would never have been a shoot out at all. England would have just gone down.

      • koolaide

         /  June 27, 2012

        Spain’s been a brick wall for pretty much everyone for a while. My question wasn’t a real question, more just something to get the conversation started. I know how much Emily <3s the soccer talk here😀

        I do think the scheduling w/ the quarters/semis is crap–giving a team TWO more days rest than their opponent is ridiculous. One more day isn't unusual but TWO? bah.

        • aaron singer

           /  June 27, 2012

          Yeah, that’s nuts. I see no reason why they couldn’t schedule two quarterfinals on the same day, or even on consecutive days.

          • koolaide

             /  June 27, 2012

            agreed. it just makes so little sense and creates such (potential for, at the least) unhappiness & unfairness.

        • 75th minute and still 0-0. Looking good for extra time.

          • aaron singer

             /  June 27, 2012

            91st minute and you look to be right.

            I thought for sure Ronaldo would score on that counter in the 90th, but he shot it well over.

            • First half of extra time over, and if this keeps up we’re going to a shoot out.

    • Lol Portugal. No one can root for a team that is led by Ronaldo, no matter how big an underdog.

      At the risk of rooting for the godforsaken Germans, I’m rooting for the godforsaken Germans. They’re the only team that could win this tournament where everyone would say, yeah, that was a really good and fun team and we’re glad they won. Spain is weirdly lethargic, Portugal is fucking Ronaldo and the less said about the Italians the better.

      • koolaide

         /  June 27, 2012

        Pirlo! Gigi!

        But yeah, I think it’s the Germans for me, too.

        • koolaide

           /  June 27, 2012

          I do have to say that if the announcers keep fawning over Spain and generally speaking about them in hushed tones, I might be forced to cheer for Portugal. At least until I remember that I’ve never liked Portugal.

          • It’s annoying. It’s everyone being in love with the last Spanish team (the 2010 WC team, which was just an all-time international side) and not acknowledging how creaky this version has become. They’re good enough to win this tournament because everyone’s flawed on some level, but this is the ass end of their dominant run and they look old.

            • aaron singer

               /  June 27, 2012

              They looked pretty beatable against Croatia, the only team I’ve really rooted for in this tournament, and look beatable in the 1st half here.

              • koolaide

                 /  June 27, 2012

                Maybe if Portugal score first, Spain will actually focus.

                As it is, the announcers are still fawning Spain and making me gag.

      • koolaide

         /  June 27, 2012

        I’m effing tired of the Madrid-Barca we must battle at all times b/c someone might be nice to the other one bullcrap. Too bad La Liga is set up so those to control the top.

        • aaron singer

           /  June 27, 2012

          I don’t pay much attention to La Liga for that reason.

          • koolaide

             /  June 27, 2012

            this game has been one big reminder why I don’t pay attention to la liga. from time to time I think “why don’t I watch it more?” but then I remember.

  2. baiskeli

     /  June 27, 2012

    So Google created the closest thing to Artificial Intelligence yet, and the first thing it did was …. Look at videos of cats on Youtube.

    http://www.geekologie.com/2012/06/google-creates-artificial-intelligence-s.php

    Possible reasons

    a) Artificial Intelligence is stupid (well, just as stupid as humans). It should be called AS (Artificial Stupidity)

    b) The AI awoke, looked at humanity and decided there was no way these clowns created it, and went on Youtube to find it’s real creator, and settled on cats as the best logical choice. Would also explain why Ancient Egyptians revered cats.

    c) We (all of reality) are just part of the fevered imagination of a cosmic cat, and the AI realizing this, is trying to find said cat on Youtube and wake it up (or alternatively, make sure it never wakes up).

    d)Cats are just cuter, and of all the images/videos it could look at, it decided to look at cats (it was either that or Porn)

    • Proof that Cats are our masters.
      **Stifles urge to run home and cuddle purrbot.**

    • Intelligent beings instinctively look for cats.

    • David L

       /  June 27, 2012

      Dull, actually correct answer:
      e) YouTube is so full of cats that even an AI that hadn’t been told about the existence of cats couldn’t help but notice that they were there.

      I know I’m a nerd, but the way the mass media has turned the story into “Google created this AI and all it did was look at cats on YouTube” misses the point. The fact that the technology they used is now good enough that it can start with a tabula rasa and end up recognizing things that we humans can identify (there were also patterns for human faces in portrait and full-body humans) is pretty cool and pretty groundbreaking. The fact that Google is more than likely, at some point after the AI has gotten a lot better at what it does, going to start data mine the heck out every YouTube video in order to better target advertising is somewhat less cool, IMO.

      • baiskeli

         /  June 27, 2012

        Pedant🙂

        But yeah, that’s why. I took an AI class (one of the profs was Peter Norvig) and it was really interesting. Image recognition (especially when there is motion involved) is a really thorny problem.

    • MightBeLying

       /  June 27, 2012

      This … does not surprise me in the least. I would be more surprised if it had NOT happened.

    • caoil

       /  June 27, 2012

      Ceiling Cat is controlling the whole thing.
      Or Basement Cat, I suppose, depending on your mood.

  3. Oh Thank god. This morning was terrible. I really need an open thread to get me through the rest of the day.

    • koolaide

       /  June 27, 2012

      sorry your morning sucked😦

    • Here – have a cozy seat by the window that the breeze comes through. I’ll go get you a cool beverage. And a large baked good.

    • mythopoeia

       /  June 27, 2012

      I’m in a great mood. They stopped jackhammering outside!

      (I mean, for all I know they only broke for lunch, but: relief!)

      • That was us yesterday. Absolutely beautiful day, and we had to keep the doors shut.

  4. Dear everyone – read this today. Chances are, you will feel amazed, and smarter.

    http://www.bostonreview.net/BR37.4/junot_diaz_paula_moya_drown_race.php

    • Also, too: Just post it again in the next official OTAN. That’s what everybody else does. Then you’ll get to talk about it twice!

    • efgoldman

       /  June 27, 2012

      You might also feel amazed by this, but definitely NOT smarter:

      The Scottish legend of the Loch Ness Monster is suggested as truth in a biology book that a private Christian school in Louisiana is using in its curriculum.

      But that’s only part of the outrage from critics: Students who are eligible for taxpayer-funded vouchers will be allowed to attend Eternity Christian Academy in Westlake for the 2012-13 school year, according to reports.

      http://www.nydailynews.com/news/world/loch-ness-monster-real-dinosaur-biology-books-taught-louisiana-school-article-1.1102340

      • Well anyone who watched Doctor Who can tell you the Loch Ness Monster wasn’t created by God but by Zylons.

      • dave in texas

         /  June 27, 2012

        woohoo!! A ridiculous textbook story that doesn’t involve Texas.

    • socioprof

       /  June 27, 2012

      Oooh, I am saving this for later. I have the biggest crush on Junot Diaz and I want our moment together to be special.

      • snailspace

         /  June 27, 2012

        … My brain linked this to the Loch Ness Monster comment. And now I desperately don’t want there to be slash fiction about the two of them on the Internet, but naming calls.

    • That’s good. Definitely worth starting an open thread 13 minutes early for. (is this the OTAT? Open Thread at Two?)

      Related reading for those who may be interested: Home Girls, This Bridge Called My Back, and Backtalk, which is a really cool collection of interviews with women writers, including many writers of color. (Maxine Hong Kingston is one of the interviewees, and IIRC she talks about that little dustup between her and Mr. Asian Man.)

      • doginajacket

         /  June 27, 2012

        I think of this as the OTAE, Open Thread at Emily’s.

  5. Amazon sent me cat condos as a suggestion to things I might want to fritter away my money on.

    I hate amazon.

  6. So, Horde. This thing I’m writing for Open Zion. What’s it about exactly? Because I can’t tell.

    :: headdesk ::

  7. David L

     /  June 27, 2012

    Today in “Holy crap, I have a lot to learn PDQ”: There are eight people in my group at work, if you include my boss. Three of us have skill sets that make their owners uniquely suited to different types of work from the rest of us. One of the remaining five is leaving tomorrow after having been here, left, and returning only a couple months ago for reasons unknown to me. He was in the process of learning the job of being the backup for the programmer on the mission-critical system who is leaving the week after next (but we’re closed on Friday and all next week, so she really only has three days left.) So now I’m ending up the one-and-a-halfth-string programmer on the project (the boss, who wrote the system initially, will be doing some parts, and I’ll be doing the rest and backing him up on his parts.)

    This system is critical for so many things, not least of which is finance and compliance with state and federal law. (In some ways, the fact that it’s used to make decisions about students’ education is secondary.) It also is partly written in a language I’m pretty rusty on and has 10 years of cruft built up–all the little bits of code that don’t do anything anymore, the little work-arounds that fix a symptom of a bug but don’t fix the bug itself, and so on. This is going to be interesting.

    • What’s it written in?

      • efgoldman

         /  June 27, 2012

        Klingon. Or maybe Romulan.

        • If it were Klingon, the bugs would already have been hunted down and killed.

        • Captain_Button

           /  June 27, 2012

          Check if the version has a release date. Since we know that Klingon software is not released, it escapes.

      • David L

         /  June 27, 2012

        Part perl, part Java. It’s been a few years since I’ve done much of anything in the former language, and the only time I’ve done CGI with it was a single homework assignment as part of a web programming course in college.

  8. I cannot believe the amount of energy and, let’s face it, hatred, being expounded over an imaginary cookie. Good grief people.

    And I’ll take a package of Berry Blast Oreos, please.

  9. Reporting in.

    Flooded out of home. Actually, where I am in the neighborhood was pretty dry, but the access roads in and out of the neighborhood were flooded and the nearby Anclote River was well above the flood line.

    Am crashing at my parents’ home down the road. They were already sitting for my youngest nephew, so I’m kinda babysitting him while they take care of their things.

    Tehya is under a bed. She is a bit wary of my nephews.

    Hopefully they will have power back on soon in my neighborhood once the waters recede below the flood line, should happen by tomorrow.

    • koolaide

       /  June 27, 2012

      Glad you’re safe and that it sounds like your home may not actually be flooded.

    • Here’s hoping it’s just the roads and not your home!

    • efgoldman

       /  June 27, 2012

      I’m assuming that, being in FL, your house is on a slab or has a crawlspace, not an effete Northeastern style real basement.

      • Slab. Dig 16 feet down and you hit groundwater. the only places for basements in Florida is around the Georgia/Alabama border on the panhandle.

        • wearyvoter

           /  June 27, 2012

          Sounds like my little corner of prairie-ish Illinois. Lots of slab construction here, for the same reason. (Only we’re in drought this summer.)

    • MightBeLying

       /  June 27, 2012

      Glad you and the kitteh have somewhere to be and hoping you’re back in your (unscathed!) house soon!

    • Glad you’re safe.

    • Makovnik

       /  June 27, 2012

      Oh, dear. I hope things get back to a nice dry normal soon.

    • caoil

       /  June 27, 2012

      Glad you’re both safe, Paul. Poor kitteh! I offer her an internet cat treat and a little virtual scritch under the chin.

    • snailspace

       /  June 27, 2012

      Glad you’re safe, hope there’s not too much damage to your home and neighborhood.

  10. BTW, the headline at the WaPo is ‘A Firestorm of Epic Proportions.’ This is notable because it may be the first time such a headline has ever been used to describe an actual firestorm.

    • chingona

       /  June 27, 2012

      I came back to the office after covering our fire for a couple hours and watched live as it started to consume Colorado Springs. Even yesterday morning, it had seemed like a fire that was just going to hang out in the mountains.

  11. MightBeLying

     /  June 27, 2012

    I am going to be brave and go meet strangers from the internet at 6 today. Then at 8 I am going to an unofficial meet-up of the incoming interns for my new position this year. That is a lot of new-people-meeting for one evening. The upside will hopefully be lots of new friends, because I have been B-O-R-E-D.

    • efgoldman

       /  June 27, 2012

      Then you’ll rest up for a week and a half and meet even more new people.
      Off to errands and home. Back later.

      • MightBeLying

         /  June 27, 2012

        Yes! And that will ALSO be exciting! And also require some bravery.

    • koolaide

       /  June 27, 2012

      Yay! for being brave and for meeting new people🙂 Moving somewhere gives the good opportunities and infrastructure for meeting new people.

      I’ve lived where I am for a long time. But I’ve realized it very much is time for me to meet new people but I’m kinda not sure how to do that here and that makes me feel a bit like a weirdo.

      • MightBeLying

         /  June 27, 2012

        Luckily my internship has a good number of people, which provides a really good built-in way to get to know people. We also rotate with the psychiatry residents, so there is another group of potential friends. The event tonight is hosted by Yelp so I can go make food friends (Providence is an excellent town for eating).

        I am not very good at unstructured friend-making, but give me a “thing” and I am quite social!

  12. So, today I turned 27. It’s unusual to celebrate my birthday with folks I’ve only known a couple weeks (I’m in Williamstown, Massachusetts for a summer internship), but it’s good. The people in my office brought me a red velvet cake with candles a little while ago.This whole adulthood thing still feels kind of weird, but I’m coping.

    • koolaide

       /  June 27, 2012

      Happy birthday🙂

    • helensprogeny

       /  June 27, 2012

      Happy Birthday!

      (The whole adulthood thing has never actually gotten anything other than weird for me, but that’s just me.)

    • socioprof

       /  June 27, 2012

      Happy birthday!!!

    • JHarper2

       /  June 27, 2012

      Happy Birthday.
      Note: Cake is good. Unlike a nameless cooked breakfast food there is no intraHordean debate on this point.

      • helensprogeny

         /  June 27, 2012

        I believe we are in general agreement that cake is good. But there may also exist a pie faction which insists pie is superior.

        Just to be clear: I eat anything with sugar, so we’re good.

    • Lizzou

       /  June 27, 2012

      Happy Birthday! Red velvet is so many kinds of awesome.

    • Attack that birthday cake with great justice!

    • snailspace

       /  June 27, 2012

      Happy birfday! Go hike up to Pine Cobble and eat some cake on top!

    • wearyvoter

       /  June 27, 2012

      Happy Birthday. (You are officially half my age.)

  13. mythopoeia

     /  June 27, 2012

    Yesterday in Being A Good Daughter: Calling my mom as soon as I saw on Twitter that Nora Ephron was gravely ill, so that she would find out from me rather than from the Internet. We have absolutely no connection with her beyond being fans of her work, and yet it seemed important that I do this.

    It got me thinking: What are the really little, yet ultimately meaningful, things you do for your family?

  14. koolaide

     /  June 27, 2012

    An article title on the yahoo! homepage: Paula Deen’s Svelte New Body

    :shudder:

    • Both Deen boys have their own shows now that she’s off the air.
      They’re a little…off.

      • koolaide

         /  June 27, 2012

        I’ve never watched either of them. Nor have I managed to watch more than about 1 min of Paula w/o having to change the channel. I’ve done that more than once, of course, but never managed to make it past 1 minute any given viewing.

  15. PLEASE GO READ MY JUST-POSTED POST OF POSTED RANTINESS about Family Circle’s Michelle Obama-Ann Romney “bake-off” https://emilylhauserinmyhead.wordpress.com/2012/06/27/dear-america-are-you-fucking-kidding-me-with-this/

    GAH.

    • IN NINE MINUTES THERE WILL BE EMILY L HAUSER BAIT ON MY BLOG.

      This is your one and only warning.

    • Now Cosmo needs to uncover the potential First Ladies’ secrets for pleasing their men in bed and we will be set forever.

      Men – A billion points
      Women – a couple points, probably. Billy C had to post his lazy-assed cookie recipe in 2008. We’ll give you that one (pats on ass). Now go make yourselves scarce, the menfolk are talking.

      • Now Cosmo needs to uncover the potential First Ladies’ secrets for pleasing their men in bed and we will be set forever.

        Tweet-ed.

        (Also, I followed your instruction and followed your wife).

    • I want my Presidents to bake cookies, not the First Ladies.

      My President has got to navigate a kitchen, dammit!

      Real men cook.

  16. dmf

     /  June 27, 2012

    how many record days of heat can we have in Omaha before someone on the local news mentions global warming? apparently Texas will freeze over 1st.

    • dmf

       /  June 27, 2012

      yikes maybe Colorado is hell these days, good thing TNC didn’t move there:

  17. It’s the Hey Internet Girl! Aaron Sorkin Tumblr I wanted:
    http://heyinternetgirl.tumblr.com/

    • helensprogeny

       /  June 27, 2012

      I say yay for Ryan Gosling memes.

  18. David L

     /  June 27, 2012

    The world of technology has once again demonstrated its inability to see past a woman’s breasts.

    http://www.theatlanticwire.com/technology/2012/06/attendees-googles-tablet-demo-blown-away-hardware-existence-women/53981/#

  19. snailspace

     /  June 27, 2012

    Holy crap, you guys.

    Greyston Garcia, one of the recent “stand your ground” killers in the news recently (stabbed a guy who he saw stealing a stereo, then sold some of the stolen stereos he took off the body) was killed in gang crossfire.

    http://www.sfgate.com/news/article/Police-Stand-ground-man-shot-dead-in-Miami-3666224.php

    I really don’t want to invoke karma or poetic justice or the mills of God or anything, but if the petard fits…