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Tuesday, March 04, 2008

Greatest thing ever

I had to put up a little shout out for one of the greatest OS X features of all time. In just about any of Apple's software if you come a cross a word you don't know, simply hold down the keys ctrl-command-d and hover over a word. That's all I'm going to say.

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Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Sample GMAT Question Turned Post

I've been studying full time for the GMAT. I've also been putting off the Analytical Writing Assessment section. That is, until today. I decided to pick a sample question at random and just go for it. The test will allow me 30 minutes to develop a well-structured analysis of a given issue. So I closed my eyes and pointed to the follwing:

"Nations should cooperate to develop regulations that limit children's access to adult material on the Internet."

Discuss the extent to which you agree or disagree with the opinion stated above. Support your views with reasons and/or examples from your own experience, observations, or reading.

Given this was my first try, it took longer than I will have on the test, but I liked the outcome so here you get to see what I came up with:

As the Internet sees more and more birthdays, the debate regarding restrictions on adult sites and adult material continues unresolved. Although several committees and organizations are involved in the structure and maintenance of the Internet, it is still a very “open” form of communication. In all reality, anyone with a connection and a couple dollars a month can set up a site with any content he or she desires—surely a regulator’s worst nightmare!

A major obstacle has been in the ability to guarantee foolproof restriction—programmers and novices alike are sure to find ways around any rules. Additionally, Malicious "hackers" are consistently highlighted, and even praised, for their ability to break into systems and weasel themselves around restrictions.

There have been attempts to control how adult material is hosted. However, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) recently voted against efforts to establish a top-level domain for adult related sites (.xxx), accurately citing that, among other reasons, this method does not address the problem at its root. Many realize the dangers and problems associated with open access to adult material online, but developing regulations has, for the most part, proved unfruitful.

Unlike movies or television shows, there are no major corporations or organizations that can ultimately be held responsible for broadcast of inappropriate content. TV and movie rating systems help inform parents of potentially objectionable content and provide a means of measurement in decision-making. While this may be considered as a solution for the Internet, implementation and enforcement would be nearly impossible given the sheer size and existing open structure of the World Wide Web.

While international regulation is a good goal to work toward, it seems unfeasible given the current nature of the Internet. In addition regulatory efforts, nations should consider alternative solutions in the fight to protect children from unwelcome adult material.

Addiction is a major problem for many, whether it be to alcohol, tobacco, caffeine, or pornography. Its effects are felt not only by the individual, but also his or her family members, friends, and associates. Recently many organizations have increased their efforts in educating youth and adults against the dangers of tobacco. The tagline “Tobacco Lies” can be seen on TV, billboards, posters, and bumper stickers. Educating people, especially youth, against the dangers of pornography addiction could potentially reap the same benefits.

Filtering software is readily available and attempts to “block” any objectionable content. However, as millions of bytes a day are added to the Internet, current filters quickly find themselves obsolete and require constant updating to remain even somewhat accurate and effective. An alternative to blocking sites is that of “allowing” sites. For example, Apple’s Safari browser allows for parental control of a user account by initially blocking all Internet sites for that user. If a child wants to visit a website, it gives an administrator (the parent) the option of adding it to a list of allowed sites. This reverse approach provides a greater amount of protection.

As the Internet continues to increase and evolve, worldwide regulation of adult material continues to be a daunting task—although, it should not be written off as an impossible dream. Protecting our children should remain a top priority. As we work to develop effective regulation, we can also search out and implement other helpful methods that can be used immediately to guard children’s access to adult material.

So yes, I did some additional editing and added some links because no post would be complete without them. Hope you enjoy!

--And on a grading scale of 1-6 (6 being the best), how would you rank my "ability to formulate an appropriate and constructive critique of a specific conclusion based upon a specific line of thinking?"

Friday, November 03, 2006

East Side

Congratulations to myself on this first post from New York. I moved out here at the end of the summer to pursue something. What that is, I'm not sure, but it's the right place for me to be. I am in upstate and wonder why anyone would want to live anywhere else. Of course, I have not yet experienced one of the legendary winters. Regardless, I'm looking forward to what is in store. Onward!

I recently saw a billboard that was really annoying. It was some amazing depiction of cool superimposed by the words, "Always Worth It." For those not familiar, this seems to be current tagline for Bud Light beer. After about two minutes of research I found a few thousand instances when maybe it wasn't worth it. And who knows how many thousands more have stories of alcohol ruining homes, opportunities, and lives.

Anyway, I'll step off the soapbox. Just wanted to get that out...

Saturday, February 11, 2006

Taco Bell is tasty and redundant and delicious

This addition to ogicu812 has its origins tracing back to the office lunch room. Recently my brother and I (we happen to work for the same company) made a trip across the street to get some Taco Bell for lunch. I'm a fan, and one of the greatest things to come out of PepsiCo Inc's think tank is the Crunchwrap Supreme™. Nevertheless, contrary to popular belief, this is not a new product. It made it's brief debut months ago only to then vanish from the menus. (A little known fact is that they were still available all along. All you had to do was ask. Many a time during this hiatus I enjoyed the crispy goodness made to go.)

Wanting to know the reasons behind the disappearance, I visited tacobell.com and watched a very mildly amusing flash presentation entitled, "It's Back! Crunchwrap Supreme™: Our Classic Tastes, Good To Go!" No serious answers were given as to my inquiry, but I did find the Nutritional Facts very interesting. Especially the fact that 58.3% of the daily value percentages were coverd up by navigation buttons. And most striking was the 1350mg of sodium. (Roughly equivalent to the amount found in almost sixteen servings of Cream of Wheat.)

Getting back the reason for this post, however, while eating in the lunch room I was dwelling the "Our Classic Tastes" part of the marketing campaign and realized something:

Taco Bell's menu can be referred to as "Variations on a Theme." Each item has the same ingredients albeit in differing forms and proportions. My dearest meat, beans, cheese, lettuce, tomatoes, sour cream, and tortillas, "How do I love thee? Let me count the ways."

But does this mean I will stop eating there? No, as I said, I'm a fan.

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

all your base are belong to us

So anyway, I started a new jorb two weeks ago. It's at the same homebuilder I did an internship for during the summer of aught-three. (A really great company if anyone is looking for work. Tell them I sent you.) It's been really fun and challenging and exciting and stressful. I get to create super hi-tech databases that will make everyone's life easier. Maybe I'll create something that does my job too. hmmmm...

I also had the high honor and privilege of procuring the first Intel iMac sold in the state of Arizona. (Although it is for work.) It's a thing of beauty and a force to be reckoned with. It's noticeably faster and very, very quite. And it never has any problems. For all you Apple unbelievers: I beg of you, taste them again for the first time. Get a Mac (some are surprisingly affordable now, and yes, that's the whole computer), get Microsoft Office for Mac (don't worry, all your files are compatible with no conversion necessary), and start enjoying your computer again.

I finally made the switch myself a little over a year ago, and I won't go back. No viruses, no spyware, no crashes, no frozen programs. All of them come with great, easy-to-use applications. Organize all your digital pictures (much, much better than Kodak's Not-So-Easyshare beast of a program), record and edit your own music (make your own sweet CDs), edit digital video and create professional-looking DVDs (my ten-year-old brother has already mastered it), and much more. Just give it a try. Yes, there's a little learning curve, but after a few days you'll wonder why you didn't switch before.

Wow, where did that come from? That wasn't the reason I wanted to write, but there you have it. There's my story and I'm sticking to it, but I promise ogicu812 will not turn into an Apple promotion site. :)

Now, I'm tired.

Sunday, December 18, 2005

let them eat cake bread

One great thing about living here in the desert is you get to wear t-shirts all year long, but the main topic for my second official post is inspired by none other than a stroll through the bread isle at Super Target. I usually find myself grocery shopping at Super Wal-Mart, simply because of its location and reasonably priced milk. However, on this pursuit of foodstuffs my brother and I decided to fix our aim on the prior.

After walking for some time we stopped to pick up a loaf of bread. As I pulled a package of Oroweat Seven Grain from the shelf, I glanced at the neighboring varieties. Healthy Multi-Grain, 100% Whole Wheat, Natural 100% Whole Wheat, Country Potato--the selection was quite extensive. My brother decided on the 12 Grain, and at that moment I felt a subtle seed of concern take root deep within. Which five grains was I about to forgo? And were they necessary nutrients only the other loaf could provide? Could the 71% increase in grain assortment be the sure choice and truly warrant a repick? Then I stopped and remembered, "It's a loaf of bread." I am happy to say I purchased the Seven Grain, and it was great.

That got me thinking about growing up and how my family was raised on white bread. Wheat was nothing but a last resort when the barrel of bleached meal would waste. For school lunches, I would rather have endured my grape-jelly-saturated slices of white baked goodness than be forced to consume any of that awful brown bread. As time went on, though, my tastes and I began to change. Pretty soon I was worrying about more important things like having a B.U.M. Equipment sweatshirt or jeans that were baggy enough to prove my coolness. Then came high school and girls and sports. College brought exams and work and broken hearts.

Now I find myself in the desert, but it's close to family and surrounded by good friends. I have lots of opportunity and lots of choices. Some are harder to make than others--especially when it's deciding between two good things. But I'm grateful to have options. Sometimes those five extra grains are good, and sometimes you already have all you need.

Now could someone please pass the boysenberry jam?

Saturday, June 18, 2005

hello world

here goes nothing.