End–of–January Notes

As they keep saying, verba volant, scripta manent and —you know— later on I might wanna have a link to point to when I do the “told you so” taunt… so, what better way than to just write ’em down and slap an URL on top? >:D

[eye candy]

Web Design Stuff

First things first, yeah, the redesign for this blog is done; it’s been done for quite a while now but I forgot to tell about it. The header graphic is still a place holder —couldn’t come up with anything shiny and cute— but it’s just eye candy, so it can wait until I find something better. I think I managed to clean up all the posts too, no more XHTML stuff to fuck up the validation —if that matters anymore. Bottom line, the redesign is done, everything’s black and sexy, all tags are closed and the CSS purrs softly ;)

And since I was at fiddling with them anyway, in the process I managed to redesign the portal, the photo archives and some of the other projects too. Just because I was feeling bad for neglecting them for such a long time :)

Fooled around with this old–new thing called HTML 5 too —out of curiosity mostly— but decided against it for now; it’s not ready for proper use. I mean, it might be ready, but the browsers aren’t ready yet, so that’s something I’ll postpone until the internet grows up.

Speaking of browsers, the two main dissidents have just released pre-release previews [sic!] of their next versions, namely Firefox 3.1 β2 and Opera 10.00 α. To which —for a change— I actually have something nice to say :)

Both, a massive improvement to the current stable versions, both a definite step forward… at least as far as CSS support goes (which is pretty much all I care about when I talk about web browsers).

Firefox 3.1 β2

Among others, finally support for web fonts, through the @font-face thing and proper display of text-shadow, which I applaud :)

Then, the implementation of shadows for block elements, which is another thing only Safari has been doing so far. A little half-assed though, since it’s being done via the proprietary -moz-box-shadow (exactly in the same half-assed way Safari uses App£€’s proprietary -webkit-box-shadow) but at least they got it right. Opera is not there yet, but hopefully one day they’ll catch up too… Anyway, proprietary, standard, it doesn’t really matter right now; the feature is there —which shows it can be done— and I’m pretty sure these details will be polished later on, once 3.1 exits “beta”.

To my surprise —well, not really, but I didn’t expect Firefox to beat Safari at this— there is now support for the “nth” family of selectors (:nth-child, :nth-last-child, :nth-of-type, :nth-last-of-type, :first-of-type, :last-of-type, :only-of-type and the likes). Pretty neat; this —in theory— will be a great deal of help in getting rid of a ton of markup bloat; Opera does it too —incompletely, but accurately for the most part— so, as soon as the WebKit team catches up, I guess this is really gonna mean something.

One blooper though… Not CSS-related, but immediately noticeable: certain PNGs are displayed in a cyan-tinted monochrome. Something to do with the graphics engine —I don’t know for sure— but it’s definitely a fuck-up and I hope they fix quickly.

Opera 10.00 α

One major thing and, as far as I’m concerned, the most important on the list, is the ability to display alpha transparency through RGBA and HSLA color values, via the […]color:rgba([…] and, respectively […]color:hsla([…] rules. This is awesome and it’s one of those “what the fuck took you so long?!” things, since Safari and Firefox have been doing it for quite some time now and translating RGBA values to RGB just for the sake of Opera was time consuming and pretty frustrating :)

They’ve got support for web fonts too now (same @font-face as above) and this is cool, but I wonder, how long before copyright lawsuits will make these browser makers “fall back” to not supporting this feature?

Anyway, the new Presto 2.2 has got other tricks up its sleeve, but most of them don’t interest me yet and —for what I care— I’ll soon be able to design my websites to look pretty in Opera too.

So it’s all good.

Except, of course, for that piece of shit Int€rn€t €xp£or€r, which brings me to:

M$I€ 6.x

Or <!--[if lte IE 6]>, which is exactly how I’m gonna stop supporting M$I€ 6. Most of my websites are already plain vanilla when viewed in versions older than 7, except for the main sites for the studio but those are going to follow pretty soon, as soon as I have enough time to go through those style sheets again and come up with a naughty nag for the M$I€ 6 users >:)

I€ 6 is dead, everybody agrees… I don’t know why I should waste anymore time butchering my CSS just for the sake of that piece of shit…

Goggle’s Chrome is still a half-assed, incomplete job so there’s nothing worthy mentioning about it and, since I already seem to have exhausted everything nice I had to say, time to move on to the “told you so” forecast…

Politics

More exactly, the idiotic frenzy I keep seeing on TV and the internet, about this “historical” event that just happened: the enthroning of Obama.

I can’t say “I’d hate to rain on their parade” because, if I did hate it, I simply wouldn’t write this. Truth is, their parade asks to be pissed on, for two simple reasons:

  1. The incessant broadcasting of American politics turned my TV into the most boring and annoying piece of hardware in the house. I switch to the news channel so I can watch some “news” and there it is, on all channels, the big herd waving flags and screaming “yes, we can” like there’s no tomorrow. A fucking circus…
  2. The credulity of these people is so unbelievable, so un-fucking-believable, that it makes me lose the last tiny bit of hope I had left… Which, in turn, ruins my day, so I guess this makes for a good enough reason, right?

So I’m standing here, pissing on their parade and asking: Do these people really believe anything is going to change?!? They’ve just gotten a new president, nothing more.

A new name and a new face, a new “Bush”. Nothing more.

The head of the government, not their friend, not their ally, not their representative; just the spokesman for a corporation whose sole purpose is to keep the masses obedient and suck them dry.

“Yes, we can” my ass.

Big words, brain-washing, miracle pills. As long as the war goes on and Bush is not being judged and convicted for the massacre, as long as there are military bases in Okinawa and everywhere else, as long as they spend more money for missiles than cancer research, as long as their economic fuck-ups make people all over the world lose their jobs, as long as you can’t hear half of Eminem’s lyrics because of a self-righteous piece of shit censoring away behind his desk at MTV’s, as long as people have to give up their money to fund the government through this yakuza-like mulct system called “tax”, as long as they continue to make so much fuzz about the new president being black while casually mentioning that their society has overcome its color and race problems, while the governments keep tightening their grip on our necks in the name of whatever greater cause, the president is nothing but just another spokesman for the tyrants. The enemy, the one who brings the bad news on TV, the one who smiles at you while you bend over to take another one in the ass.

Why have people forgotten all these? How can they forget so easily?

Has all this flag-waving sight such a strong, overwhelming hypnotic effect that people not only forget what the government really means, but they even applaud and cheer it?

Has Bush brought them so much desperation that the mere perspective of not having him around anymore is enough to blind them and intoxicate them to the point of actually celebrating the enthronement of a new one?

Color me stupid, but I don’t get it.

I know one thing though, and I’ll definitely taunt people, as soon as the present tense becomes accurate, with this: absolutely nothing is going to change.

Taxes will continue to be taken from people and, most likely, will grow too. The number of jobless and homeless people will continue to grow, while the mercenaries will keep dying in the name of lies and money. Censorship will become more and more aggressive, to the point that they’ll probably have to reinvent the language and the so-called anti-terrorist measures will keep eating away at our rights and freedoms, while the internet will lose more and more of its independence and neutrality. Religion —oh, this fucking plague— will continue to cause death and hatred while, unfortunately, the number of bible-huggers will keep growing. Costly computer generated graphics will continue to maintain the “man on the Moon” lie, while enormous pressure will be put on the Chinese to not expose the fact that there’s never been a stars and stripes flag on the lunar surface.

Nothing is going to change, on the contrary.

And I hate myself for being the asshole who pisses on their parade, but the idiocy and credulity of so many people has become unbearable.

Religion

[eye poison]

More like a “notes to myself” aside —carefully trimmed down to something that won’t make absolutely everyone hate me— but I have to let it out so here it is:

Someone who thanks some god for their achievements and does so before —or without— thanking their parents is an ingrate. An ungrateful drone.

Someone who attributes their own achievements to some god’s will and not to their own efforts and virtuosity is a fucking idiot. The same someone who attributes their fuck-ups to Satan or their own weak nature and forgets to blame god is a fucking hypocrite.

Someone who misspells “god” on purpose (where by “on purpose” I mean “out of fear of celestial punishment”) while bashing your head in for misspelling “your” and “you’re” is another kind of hypocrite, a special kind of hypocrite who deserves having their head bashed in… at least figuratively >:D

Is a friend really a friend when he won’t believe what you’re saying unless you swear to his god, while knowing that to you that doesn’t really mean shit?


Ugh, trim, trim, trim, the world ain’t ready yet and the sound of fingernails on a blackboard annoys me too, so it’s time to hit “Post” and get some sleep. I’ll be back with the “told you so” elbow-to-face move sooner than you think, I promise :)

But before I sign off, I can’t help but wondering: how the fuck do I always manage to produce “hate” lists longer than “love” ones‥?

6 thoughts on “End–of–January Notes”

  1. Wow, dude! You’ve been busy! This is way original too! Lots of dark ominous colours – but what a job!

    About television etc: it’s all about what’s in the Kool-Aid™ innit? Me I’m optimistic. I’ve seen Obama do a number of things in the first few days that augur well. Now if this ‘change’ represents a long term change for the better is something we’ll just have to see.

    John Steinbeck was once asked if he thought good would ultimately triumph over evil. Yes it will, he said, because the good people simply will not give up. Today we received several bulletins from Amnesty asking us to sign a petition for Obama to close Gitmo, close down the CIA prisons in Europe, etc. Most of this he’s already done. So you wonder why they sent it out unless it was already on the boards.

    I think the point is we the people must never give up. If we give up – then they have us. And we’re not going to let that happen.

    Hey – nice icon! Where did you get that? ;)

    Cheers.

  2. RxMeister, how’s it going?

    Glad you like ’em!
    “Ominous” is the word, definitely >:D Welcome to the DarkBlackGreyRedSexy Side :p
    I’ve been trying to find a way to use this colour scheme on all my sites, to make them look more alike… Hopefully I’ll have more time to tweak them later on, but that’s it for now! I’m sick of HTML, I’ve got CSS oozing out of my ears :)

    »» Me I’m optimistic. I’ve seen Obama do a number of things in the first few days that augur well. Now if this ‘change’ represents a long term change for the better is something we’ll just have to see.
    Hey, I kinda envy you a little, I wish I could find some optimism left in here… And I wish so badly everything I said was wrong and there won’t be any chance for me to come later and annoy people with my “told you so”s… but I really doubt it :(

    You’re right, time will tell. Hopefully, our lifetime.

    »» I think the point is we the people must never give up. If we give up – then they have us. And we’re not going to let that happen.
    You bet we won’t! A fire here, a fire there, just enough heat to remove the fucking leeches from our calves.


    »» Hey – nice icon! Where did you get that?
    Hehe, I know this guy… ;)

    Thanks for the comment, Meister! Always a pleasure!

  3. Whoever that guy is you stole the icon from: cultivate him. He’s awesome! We can all use him!

    As for change: things do change. Think of the shit that’s gone down and what’s actually changed. Things have changed. Just sit some day and make a list.

    This new govt in the US is something like four days old. Already we’ve seen:

    – Gitmo will be closed down completely.
    – CIA prisons in other countries – they’re gone.
    – Family planning in Africa no longer bound by ‘gag’ rule.
    – Patients (Michael J Fox) to get benefits of stem cell research by summer.

    When Hillary addressed the people in the ‘State’ building local journalists described the event and the feeling to their British counterparts as ‘about time’ and the malaise infecting the entire city as ‘disgusting’. There’s a simple ‘reversal’ of things going on and it’s happening swiftly and that in itself is a positive thing.

    Also already: a new set of ethics rules limiting lobbying (which is a disgusting thing to be honest). These rules affect the O-man as well. Also pay freezes for everyone at 1600 Pennsylvania. This cannot be but good.

    Only 8 years minus four days to go. And then the GOP over there can take over again. And you know they’ll fight tooth and claw all along like they did against the Clintons. No trick too dirty to use. But I think it’s like Steinbeck said. And Obama said something similar. The good will win because they simply won’t give up.

    And after eight years of that horseshit and ‘is our children learning’ it’s no surprise so many people were so down they couldn’t see which way was up. There are good times and there are bad times. We were through bad times; I think these are good times.

    Try to find the guy who made the icon. He’s awesome!

    Cheers.

  4. Yes, I know it’s too early to tell. I’m not judging yet, I’m only expressing my total lack of trust in the government.

    I have a double-purpose bottle of good Italian wine put to ice just for this.
    I’ll open it and celebrate the day every forecast I made proves to be wrong and Obama calls back all the troops and cuts down the mulct…
    Or…
    I’ll open it and celebrate the day people can’t stand all these fuck-ups anymore and rise against the Reich, break free from this plague and forever ban this thing called “government”.

    Either way, I’ll be drinking and celebrating.

    »» There are good times and there are bad times. We were through bad times; I think these are good times.
    Somehow, you have your way with words that makes me feel a little optimistic again.

  5. Well the world is made up of optimists and cynicists… I wish I was an optimist!! but I think I’m with Dali on this one. I wish that we weren’t being fed a feel good story by a sterile toothless media/propaganda machine, but to an extent Dali is right… the same old corporations and profiteers making money from wars overseas… old money pulling the strings of Government… Even if Obama goes in with the best of intentions, he is only one guy against an age-old, well established machine. But I do admire him, mostly for beating them at their own game. He is a very very astute politician, and good on him.
    This is why I live on a little island away from this b.s, I am however, still addicted to those storytellers we call the media though, reminds me all the time that I’m better off where I am.
    With respect to American politics – we shall see won’t we?
    Peace.

  6. Hi there, big guy!

    »» […] the same old corporations and profiteers making money from wars overseas… old money pulling the strings of Government… Even if Obama goes in with the best of intentions, he is only one guy against an age-old, well established machine […]
    Well said! It’s a scientifically provable fact: the system is so tightly built and reinforced, the conservative inertia is so strong, that no matter who joins the government, no matter what they intend to do, their good intentions will hit a wall and will be annihilated in no time.

    A Japanese dudette told me once about a young politician going around on a bicycle, through literal rain and storm, to meet people and talk to them, feel the pulse and shit like that. At my predictable “fuck ’em all” remark, she countered with “yeah, but he’s young, he wants change, he knows what people need; if he’ll make it, he’ll definitely do something good”. I could understand the hope she was having in a young person joining the government, but I had to pee-pee on her parade too, because, as soon as that young, lively politician becomes a member of the government, his opinions will be ignored and his vigor and enthusiasm will be swept away and drowned by the mass of (too) old politicians with bigger agendas, all his good intentions will meet a wall… eventually, he’ll become one of them, just another leech wasting our money and spending their time to think up new restrictions and ways to skin us alive.

    They either toe the line and go with the program, or get pushed aside; there’s no other way. The government’s purpose is not to indulge every young man’s ideas of change; the government’s sole purpose is to keep the masses under control, no matter what it takes. That’s what the government has always been and will keep being forever.

    Or as long as we allow it…

    »» […] we shall see won’t we?
    I guess we will. As I said, I hope I’m just being paranoid and all this pessimism is unjustified…
    It’s good to see there’s some optimism out there… although I’d be a lot happier if distrust and pessimism built up enough of a momentum to finally start those riots I’ve been dreaming about :)

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