Oh, I love baking, I really do. So, I’ve decided to give the topic its own corner of the web. The style is a little different than this blog, but, if nothing else, I hope you’re hungry for chocolate after you visit.
The disasterous effects of Hurricane Katrina have, of course, been on my mind constantly for the past week. With each new story of loss, I am stricken once more with the absolute unfathomableness of the disaster. There are many individual situations, stories, and anecdotes throughout the news related to the losses the area has sustained, but today, Matt Mullenweg reminded me of yet another instance of loss due to Katrina — that of data, servers, and hardware at Tulane University. This may seem small in comparison to the grand scheme of things, but as someone who has worked in web development for universities/colleges for the past 5 or so years, this is indeed a devastating loss. Tulane has lost its servers and its website, a web developer’s worst nightmare. It’s just insane. They currently have a basic site up to address institutional issues in addition to a WordPress blog aimed at gathering information and keeping Tulanians up-to-date.
Here’s to hoping there were backups of all data (including the years and years of administrative data) stored offsite in a fire- and water-proof location. Best wishes to Tulane and all of those in the affected areas.
I was just in an earthquake for the third time in my life, and I think this might have been the most intense. The whole building moved slightly and my shelves swayed back and forth. And that’s not the most interesting part. The interesting part is how much data is already available on the internet. Within about ten minutes the quake information was already available on the USGS Earthquake website. The quake with a 5.6 magnitude occurred 10 miles NNE of Dillon, MT, which is southwest of Helena. The USGS site also has an area where people can fill out a form about their earthquake experience for the purpose of gatherings statistics about earthquakes. Just over a half hour after the quake, 1371 Montanans, Idahoans, and Washingtonians had filled out the survey. That’s amazing to me. This Interweb thing is really cool.
An email to Good Morning America (GMA) from yours truly on the eve of July 23rd:
On yesterday’s show (07/21/04), GMA showed a news clip about the Sandy Berger controversy. The segment featured clips of many legislative representatives commenting on the controversy. Included among those senators and house representatives, was Senator Tom Daschle. However, the caption noted “Sen. Tom Daschle, (D) North Dakota.” A 3-second search (on Google, for example), would have yielded the information that he, in fact, represents SOUTH Dakota. This mistake is made all the more egregious since he is the Senate Minority Leader and for a time was the Senate Majority Leader.
As less-populated states are already under-represented in the media, future attention to details such as this would be greatly appreciated.
Yes, South Dakota is a state — it’s not just a region of the Dakota Territory.
Note: I originally started this post in late July.
Because I’m not. It seems surreal that Saddam has been captured. Perhaps my senses have been dulled, but I don’t feel that excited. Instead I am struck with worries.
My immediate thoughts: How will the Bush machine spin this? Will he be given a fair trial? It still doesn’t mean that we can leave Iraq. If only Osama bin Laden was this easy to capture. What will be the reaction internationally? Can this help Iraqis heal?
What I really hope is that now it is possible for a sustainable democracy in Iraq. One that they have control of, less the prior economic restraints, and one we leave alone to flourish. One that through its flourishing, allows generation after generation of people to live without oppression — and with freedom.
I received my signed diploma in the mail today. I am officially a graduate of the University of South Dakota. I just thought I’d share that with everyone.