Glenn's Junk Chest

An assortment of Glenn's writings, photography, gaming resources, flash movies, and other creative output.

Sunday, May 14, 2006

Family: Ivy's Photoblog

Ivy wanted to do a photo of the week, so I've created a blog and flickr photoset to support her ambition.

Update: Ivy has now posted her second photo of the week.

Update 2: And Ivy has now posted her third photo of the week.

Friday, May 12, 2006

Politics: The Wisdom of Slashdot

So the NSA is indeed spying on us all by watching our phone traffic. Practically all that they can use this information for is abuse of our civil liberties, it has no other function. Yet, according to a recent phone poll by the Washington Post, 63% of Americans don't care. I'm aghast.

Reading the feedback to the poll news on Slashdot, there are several cogent observations. One reader (GigsVT) mentioned that he didn't think it likely that phone polls were a good way to get valid statistics about what people thought about phone privacy. Are the ones that value their privacy actually answering these polls?

Amusingly, Myrrh writes that this could be the solution to our nation's energy problems:
As more and more civil liberties are trampled upon, faster and faster will the Founding Fathers spin in their respective graves. If we attach magnets to each Founding Father, then wrap copper wire around each of them, we should have a potentially unlimited energy source.
More seriously, boldtbanan writes "The masses almost always value security over freedom until they have so little of either a revolution is born."

And again and again, as our civil liberties erode, I see the following two quotes in discussions of what's happening. Quotes that seem to me should enlighten anyone as to how deeply we're wounding the principles our country should be built on.

"They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety."
            --Benjamin Franklin.

"The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants."
            --Thomas Jefferson

Let's hope we can act on the truth of the former before we're forced into the harsh realities of the later. But still, that 63% of people, however they were surveyed, could say this is OK? I'm horrified, and if the citizenry at large doesn't know to fight this, I think we're in real trouble.

Thursday, May 11, 2006

Gaming: Rules Presentation on Google Video

I did a presentation at work in order to test out our MediaLandscape Presenter software. It's a package that allows for a presentation to be captured, along wtih associated materials, and then combined together and published in a variety of ways. One of those ways is to make the presentation into a single video that's suitable for portable devices. I published my presentation this way, edited it slightly to show a little bit of how the presentation was recorded, and then uploaded it to Google Video. (You can see it, along with downloadable versions, here.)

The presentation itself is about movement/combat rules for my Role-Playing game. It has a a bunch of slides of explanation, followed by some examples that I photographed miniatures for.