Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Crackbook or Crackpot?

When I started this blog, I thought to myself 'no more ranty posts', mainly 'cos they're crap. So, since I feel like typing, I need topics. Topics.

I added a Facebook "application" called 'Premier Football'. You select a team from your "friends", and compete against friends' teams (and against randoms, I think, but I'm not interested in beating people I can't lord it over), even if they're on yours. Which makes for a quite lulz.

What I'm wondering, though, is who the hell wrote the algorithm determining results?! So far I've played 3 games, and lost 12-0, 10-0 (here I thought it would improve), and 18-0 (10-0 at half time)! Crazy.

On the subject of Facebook (or Crackbook, depending on how much of an addictive personality you are), I was slightly... startled... to find out a while after joining about some of the terms of signing up. I didn't read all of the terms when I did, only a quick scan. Hence: slight surprise to read that one interpretation of them could mean that they (Facebook) actually own these details. So, apart from being cautious about friending not-very-well-known others, people should also have second thoughts on what data you put on there, not that just visible to friends. With the credit card function, for example, if there's any holes in security (due to your habits or otherwise) someone's probably got all the details to reset every detail of your bank account.

Well, maybe. Hooray for paranoia.

In the meantime, Australia drew with China 0-0, despite losing 53 of our best players to injury, travelling 12,085km to an altitude of 4,021 metres. Well, almost. And contending with a referee that thought a studs up late sliding tackle is only a free kick. 's not bad, actually...

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Me too!

I think the Coalition should be ashamed of themselves. People've been saying for years that they've been underpaid, and suddenly, the Opposition is crying about it too! What's wrong with coming up with original complaints about your job?!

Apparently $150,000 a year isn't enough for floating around and listening to people, while occasionally turning up and having a spat in front of and with a lot of other blokes (with the occasional bird stooping to join in the dummies moving at high velocities), all of which make you look like an 8 year old.

Boo hoo.

In the meantime, my eyes went wonky reading Possum's housing affordability article, part 2. Long, but interesting (as always).

I was also entertained and slightly appalled by a certain rabid reaction to a typo/misspell (whichever, whatever), documented at GrodsCorp. I don't know why I am, though - been there, seen that...

Easter weekend vacillates between the best and worst weekend of the year. It's a 4 day weekend, so no complaints there. Batteries recharged, etc. However, I wished to purchase alcohol on Friday; apparently I have to conform to the religious beliefs of only 64% (and declining) of Australians...

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Moar Movies

I watched the end of The Pianist last night. Adrian Brody's acting was ok, I guess. The circumstances in which he lived (and, really, survived) were pretty amazing. Eating some of that shit... staying in an apartment with 3-4 rooms for as long as he did. I'm surprised he could even walk after that. And actually play the Chopin Nocturne(?) he did - it was a pretty vigorous. I mean, not only is there a reason concert pianists practice for up to 8 hours a day, but the amount of energy he had - sure the preceding 30 seconds - 1 minute he could've been stiff with fear of ze German (Snatch reference; sorry), but he wasn't exactly full of bounce before that.

Overall, a sobering movie for me, but it feels at the end they suddenly thought "Shit, it's gone for 6 hours! We better wrap it up!". Meh.

I finished watching Fullmetal Alchemist on the weekend, too. All 51 episodes. I enjoyed it, the way they increased the power and explored more abilities as the series went, starting the series with an episode some time in the future, then going back and exploring the past and the path the Elric brothers took to get there. Ok, so people survived explosions and gunshots/stab wounds at a higher rate than normal, but it is anime, after all. I was left feeling a little lost at the end though; the final episode didn't resolve things enough, and it left it open for more.

As I found out reading the Wiki page, there's a movie which takes place after the series, so I think I better get that.

And, interest rates falling or rising? Hmmm. More interesting, though is this post about housing affordability, and this paragraph in particular:
What is really interesting here in terms of housing affordability is that real house prices remained virtually frozen over the period from 1990 through to 2000. It wasn’t until Howard started stuffing around with halving the capital gains rate and things like the first home buyers grant that real house prices started to accelerate.

Fantastic work.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

You... what?!

Hostel facing lawsuit after telling Aboriginal people to leave

You... seriously what? Ok, the proprietors might be racist. They can be racist. They don't have the right to discriminate because of that, but with free speech often comes issues that people don't really want to hear about. On both sides. That's an interesting follow-up I might do. Anyway, I'll leave the racism to the backburner for a tick, because sadly they could probably still do business while being racist.

So, are they simply stupid? Do they really think that this won't get news coverage, that their name (Haven Backpacker Resort) won't be broadcast everywhere? Idiots.

And to the revenge by mob rule on the intarweb. I'm gonna copy the post at Hoyden About Town.

Avoid the Haven Backpacker Resort (owned by Adventure Tours Australia) on Larapinta Drive, Alice Springs. They have issues with understanding racism.

I'm embarrassed to be Australian. Again. :( How does a tourist of a co-guest see and complain to the manager in all of 30 minutes? How do you even approach a manager about something like this?

Where do these idiots come from? I mean, I've heard stories about Alice Springs, the problems with alcoholism (mainly in reference to Aborigines), can't let women walk about at night (it's the same north of Cooper Pedy in South Australia due to drunken miners, according to a mate of mine). But... simply thinking that this is (or was; they've probably been told by now) anywhere near ok, leaves me, despite thinking originally I'd write more than this, speechless...

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

The pain of listening to idiots...

Especially when you don't really have a choice.

When you watch cricket, there are two choices: listen to the Channel 9 Commentary Team of Messrs Benaud, Chappell, Greig, Lawry, Taylor, Healy, Slater and Nicholas, or mute the TV and turn on the radio to listen to ABC Grandstand, which has Jim Maxwell (decent), Kerry O'Keefe and Harsha Bogle (funny buggers).

Simple choice? Well, yeah, except the radio is always 2 seconds after the tv due to the commentators required to also describe every action in the game. I always get a jarring feeling listening to the radio with the tv on, especially when the TV commentators get stats up relevant to the current situation, like Tendulkar's average in the first innings of a ODI. However, O'Keefe's funny, half because he is funny, and partly because he thinks he's funny and laughs with this sort of snort that everyone finds entertaining.

Meanwhile, listening to the Channel 9 commentary makes my skin crawl. Mark Nicholas and Ian Healy spend the whole time saying how grateful Australia should be to have these wonderful men representing the country. Urgh.

Nicholas suddenly appeared on our screens about 3 years ago, and has since taken up the host chair at the beginning and end of a match, innings, review or day's play. Originally, I tried to pass off his comments as taking it that this is what the English thought of the Australian team (i.e. gods), and are amazed at the level that they play at. However, this view receeded quickly. This article details some of the things wrong with him doing this, the most pertinent is that he has little idea about the very highest echelon of the game, verbally crawls and sucks at any interview (in between using a finger to point at the interviewee to make a point, which I find quite rude), and believes that any action on the cricket field quite literally shines out of (a) god's arse.

Healy just needs to stop commentating now, please. He's crap. He's crawling. He's way too chummy with the team to have any credibility.

For me, just put Richie on for the whole game. He's old, but he always makes the best points. Chappelli's conceited, Grieg's a wanker (not just as an insult; it's a valid description of him) and Lawry an idiot (albeit an entertaining idiot, sort of like the class clown). Michael Slater and Mark Taylor could be good - in fact, they're getting better. Finally. It's taken them a few years.

Meanwhile, India have finally worked out that they only need to lift their game 10% to beat Australia in the ODI's this summer due to the lack of form of a couple of the Australian mainstays (Ponting, Gilly, Symonds, and Clarke and Hussey have been sporadic), and are currently cruising and 1/99 in the second final after winning the first.

I think I'll leave my comments on the way the two teams, boards, media and the ICC have acted for another time. Suffice to say, lol.