Want some music?
By the time I got a computer and the bandwidth to handle it, Napster was dead. My son mentioned this and so did Doc Searls.
LimeWire is a software package which enables individuals to search for and share computer files with anyone on the internet. A product of Lime Wire, LLC, LimeWire is compatible with the Gnutella file-sharing protocol and can connect with anyone else running Gnutella-compatible software. The LimeWire program will connect at startup, via the internet, to the LimeWire Gateway, a specialized intelligent Gnutella router, to maximize the user's viewable network space. Limewire is written in Java, and will run on Windows, Macintosh, Linux, Sun, and other computing platforms.
Doc thinks it's better than Napster. Load it, open it and search. Found some music I had wanted for a long long time. Oh Well, Part 1 & 2 by Fleetwood Mac before they became that pop thing with that Nicks person. There was another piece that I have wanted but I had forgotten the artist. A search on Boogie Woogie turned up Long John Baldry and Don't try to lay no Boogie Woogie on the King of Rock and Roll. Procul Harum's Whiter Shade of Pale and Louis Armstrong's West End Blues. Now for some Booji Wooji music!
The last couple of days saw the completion (ihopeihopeihope) of the web project I've been working on. Finally!
Beaver Report - Day 14
There haven't been any beaver reports because the slacker was nowhere to be found. But this morning showed some progress.
He took quite a bit of this side of the tree. The other side was untouched.
In a letter to a consultant in Britain who runs a personal website that has not been especially nice to KPMG, the company said it had discovered a link on his site to www.kpmg.com, and that the website owner, Chris Raettig, should "please be aware such links require that a formal Agreement exist between our two parties, as mandated by our organization's Web Link Policy."
The letter added that Raettig should feel free to arrange this "Web Link Agreement" with KPMG, but that until he has done so, he should remove his link to the company's homepage. (The KPMG in question here is a tax and audit firm that is no longer affiliated with KPMG Consulting, the independent consulting firm at kpmgconsulting.com -- that firm has no "linking policy."
Raettig is one of those digital-age 22-year-olds who know the Web inside out, and he's aware when he's being flimflammed. So he penned a nice no-thanks letter back to the company, saying that "my own organization's Web link policy requires no such formal agreement."
thanks to wood s lot
Here is the link to KPMG.
analysis and thoughts regarding kpmg from Raettig himself.
I started designing web sites as a living while I was at the Boeing Co. in 1995. It was a frustrating experience since there was no existing job classification for Web Designer. The computing organization thought they should be in charge since it had something to do with computing. They thought it was programming. I finally ended up asigned to the public relations group.
My boss was a classic information control type of PR person. She felt that Boeing needed to control all references to the Boeing Co. She felt that people should need Boeing's permission to link to the Boeing web site. She moved on to become the PR person for the CEO of Boeing. Scarey. I finally bailed out of Boeing in early 1998.
Here is the link to KPMG again.
America, Land of Big Money
Above the Law
Did Jeb Bush fix the Florida election long before any votes were cast? Did President Bush shut down the FBI, CIA and other intelligence agencies’ investigations into terror networks prior to 9-11, leaving America wide open to the attacks?
In a conversation with GNN Executive Editor Anthony Lappé, journalist Greg Palast breaks down two of the biggest scoops you’ve never heard and explains how they, and other groundbreaking stories, are ignored by most mainstream news outlets. [read more]
Clash of Cultures
Samuel Huntington is a mild-mannered man whose sharp opinions—about the collision of Islam and the West, about the role of the military in a liberal society, about what separates countries that work from countries that don't—have proved to be as prescient as they have been controversial. Huntington has been ridiculed and vilified, but in the decades ahead his view of the world will be the way it really looks
The War Against Some Terrorists
Debate over the causes of the terrorist attacks on America has been inhibited by the fear that to inquire into them is somehow to extenuate evil. So let's substitute "sources" for the morally fraught "causes." Do that, and this becomes clear: All but three of the terrorists, like Bin Laden himself, were from Saudi Arabia; Mohamed Atta, their ringleader, was from Egypt, as is the number two man in al Qaeda, Dr. Ayman al-Zawahiri. Something about these countries helped to produce the terrorists. The terrorists are dead; bin Laden will soon join them. But that something endures. The domestic political arrangements of Egypt and Saudi Arabia should be regarded as among our real enemies in the war on terror.
thanks to Unknown News
Crusades are messy, bloody affairs, and it's often hard to tell the good guys from the bad guys. Exhibit A: Afghanistan, where the United States just suffered a humiliating defeat at the hands of the wily Russians. Happily for the White House, neither the US media or the public understand what just happened. They continue to cheer on the president, who is mighty thankful he is leading a jolly little war against evil Muslims instead of having to explain to voters why the economy is nose-diving and hundreds of thousands are losing their jobs.
thanks to Red Rock Eater Digest
It is part of an overall process that is going on in Israel. That is the subject of another book which I published after "One Palestine, Complete": "The New Zionists." It describes recent developments in Israel, all of which seem to be leading us to something people call a "post-Zionist" situation. The new Zionists are part of that process. They are not the ones who instigate the changes; they are part of the changes.
We have a generation of Israelis today, especially people living in Tel Aviv and in places that look up to Tel Aviv, where people don't live for any ideology anymore. They don't live for the past or the future. They live for life itself and they live very much in the spirit of the American culture. They are much more open to realize, for example, that we share at least part of the responsibility for the creation of the Palestinian refugee situation and for the tragedy of 1948 [when 750,000 Palestinians fled or were expelled during Israel's war for independence.] They are much more open to hearing that because the whole country is more open and pluralistic and less ideological. This is something that has happened particularly since Oslo [the 1993 peace accords between Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat and Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin, which gave rise to great hope that peace might finally be at hand].
But since the present intifada began 14 months ago, we are being pushed back in time to tribal togetherness and closeness, which is really the major damage that we suffer as a result of terrorism. Of course, [we suffer] lost lives and tragedies. But in addition to that, what terrorism does to the fabric of the society, to the mentality and to the collective mood is perhaps even more damaging because it really stops that process [of becoming more open and pluralistic].
On August 26 of last year, Hamas’ Hanoud was wounded by Israeli forces in a shootout near the West Bank town of Nablus. Hanoud then surrendered to the Palestinian Authority, and four days later he was sentenced to 12 years in prison by a Palestinian military tribunal for training and arming military groups (Associated Press, 9/2/00).
On May 18, Israel launched an F-16 attack on the Nablus jail where Hanoud was being held, in an attempt to kill him. The action proved disastrous: Eleven Palestinian police officers are believed to have died, and Hanoud escaped (New York Times, 5/20/01). Castro Salameh, the Palestinian commander of the Nablus post, told the Times, "Abu Hanoud has been my charge for nine months, and I have kept him under lock and key... But now Israel has liberated him. I have absolutely no idea where he has gone to."
These facts have been reported in the New York Times, most recently in a November 25 story about Hanoud's assassination. But the stories written after the latest round of violence have omitted these facts. Targeting civilians is never acceptable, but context is critical as people seek a way out of the cycle of Mideast violence: If the Times reminded readers that the Hamas leader whose killing sparked the recent round of violence was in a Palestinian jail until the Israeli military tried to assassinate him, it would put the contention that the Palestinian Authority bears most of the responsibility for the current strife in a different light.
thanks to Unknown News
I must be missing something. Israel accuses the PA of not doing the job of arresting the terrorists and then the bomb the shit out of them. They don't bomb the organizations that take credit for the terrorism. They bomb the people that they want to arrest the terrorists. Apparently, Israel sees the PA as the Palestinian organization that is supposed to arrest whoever Israel wants arrested so Israel can kill them when they are in prison. What's wrong with this picture?
I mentioned the Reichstag fire not long after the events of September, 11. More recent events are following the Reichstag script. A country who's leader uses a fire to scare the bejeesus out of it's people and takes their civil liberties away to make them safer. It didn't work then. It work work now. Learn what became of this leader...
thanks to The Liberal Arts Mafia
The web project from hell goes from bad to worse when the web administrator, at our hosting ISP, comes up with a groovy workaround to the use the digital certificate they ordered with the wrong name. He lets me know that the web site is working and only needs to have some simple relinking. What he doesn't realize is that it would take two weeks on my time to do it. I finally convince them, after increasingly angry phone calls, to reorder the certificate. AAAAAAAArrrrrgh!
Maybe tomorrow. Tomorrow! Tomorrow! (Sung with an annoying squeaky little girl's voice.)
The War Against Some Terrorists
Just as the War Against Drugs would make some kind of sense if they honestly called it a War Against Some Drugs, I regard Dubya's current Kampf as a War Against Some Terrorists. I may remain wed to that horrid heresy until he bombs CIA headquarters in Langtry.
thanks to MetaFilter
Shrub cuts off funds to Hamas. That's fine. What about the Saudi's? They fund bin Laden and most of the terrorists at the WTC were Saudi. Any thought by Shrub that the Saudi's may have been just a teensy bit responsible for what is going on? And, of course, there is that fine terrorist school in Georgia where all the finest South American governments send their people. I think The War Against Some Terrorists fits just fine.
I've been focusing on this the past couple of days. Things are not looking to good for everyone involved.
It's very likely that the young Palestinians who decided to kill as many people as possible by blowing themselves up in the middle of a large group of young Israelis and bus passengers, really believed that heaven was waiting for them. But they, like the other suicide bombers, didn't only see heaven waiting. They saw the hundreds of dead - including children, women, and the elderly - and the thousands of wounded Palestinians from the past year.
Despite the prevailing view in Israel, most of those casualties were not the result of exchanges of fire between two equally armed forces but rather a direct result of a massive, armed Israeli military presence in the midst of Palestinian civilian society.
When they strapped on the bombs, they may have also considered the broad popular support for their actions and its results. Most Palestinians want revenge. They regard the suicide operations as a just response to the suffering the Israeli occupation imposes, and not as the reason for that suffering and occupation. Many think that striking fear into the hearts of the Israeli public is an appropriate patriotic response to the fear with which the entire Palestinian public has lived for the past year: from helicopters, planes, tanks and jeeps positioned at the entrance to villages and towns and from which soldiers also open fire on people trying to get to schools or to their olive groves.
Another suicide bombing – the fourth in four days, but one that this time failed – allowed Israel's tireless publicists to complete their transformation of Yasser Arafat into Osama bin Laden Mark Two.
As they paraded in front of the cameras to protest against what could easily have been another atrocity against civilians in Jerusalem, there was a shift in the story-line devised by Ariel Sharon's spokesmen. Mr Arafat, bottled up in his West Bank headquarters in Ramallah, was not only responsible for failing to stop suicide bombers infiltrating Israel. He was sending them.
"The doomsday prophets were right," wrote Tallie Lipkin-Shahak, a prominent Israeli commentator with extensive contacts within the military, "Ariel Sharon is taking Israel to the place with which he is most familiar and enamoured – war."
She stated that Mr Sharon was implementing a long-held combat plan, codenamed Large Pines. "For those who looked closely, it was clear that the Prime Minister, acting under the auspices of a broad national consensus and a yearning for unity, would thwart every chance of reaching an agreement and would capitalise on every opportunity provided by the acts of violence perpetrated by evil-doers in the Palestinian Authority and rejectionist organisations, to achieve his goal."
The evidence cannot easily be dismissed. Although Mr Sharon claimed to have embraced the US-led Mitchell peace plan, he determinedly blocked it, insisting on seven days of total calm – a demand that was never likely to be fulfilled in any circumstances, and certainly not while Palestinian towns and villages were blockaded by Israeli troops. Shortly before the arrival last week of the US mediator Anthony Zinni, he personally ordered the assassination of Hamas's West Bank military leader. Hamas replied with a weekend of carnage.
After 14 months of conflict here, the radical group Hamas has gathered such strength that it has as much claim as Yasir Arafat's Fatah faction to represent the Palestinian mainstream. Maybe more.
Hamas's promotion of Islam and its schools and health clinics have all contributed to its rising strength. But the greatest source of its popularity is this: Its suicide bombers kill Israelis.
Palestinians argue that the Israeli military kills civilians. Israelis counter that, unlike suicide bombers, they do not kill civilians on purpose. Most Palestinians do not value that distinction.
It is hard for those who have not experienced it to understand the rage felt even by elite Palestinians over their treatment by Israeli soldiers — who are acting, the Israelis say, out of fear for their own citizens' security.
"It's not the primitive colonial model, where you use large-scale killing of the population," said Saleh Abdel Jawad, a professor of political science at Bir Zeit. "It's not this at all. It's a system that suffocates you slowly, slowly. It paralyzes your life, daily. And the people arrive to the point of explosion, and they cannot explode. And then one of the suicide bombers explodes instead of them."
He offered himself as an example, describing the humiliation and anger he felt after being held at a checkpoint in the baking sun for an hour and a half for no reason that he could see: "I remember myself, despite the fact that for 20 years already I don't believe in violence — hate violence. In my daydream there was this feeling that I want to get down from the car and grab the soldier and kill him — the feeling of impotency in front of this pressure."
Once again the world has had to confront the horror of innocent men, women and children killed by suicide bombers in the heart of Jerusalem and in Haifa. No decent person can refrain from condemning such attacks in the strongest terms. Such deeds harm not only their innocent victims, which in this case probably included Palestinian citizens of Israel, but also the just cause of Palestine.
As a Palestinian I am often challenged by the press on my views about such horrific bombings. I emphatically repeat my condemnation and state that I oppose the targeting and killing of innocent civilians regardless of whether they are Israelis or Palestinians.
Yet I wonder why no one asked how I felt when five Palestinian schoolboys were killed by a bomb planted by the Israeli occupation forces in a refugee camp in Gaza less than two weeks ago — or why Israelis and pro-Israel spokesmen, who are called for comment by the same radio and television stations that call me, are rarely asked to condemn the violence that is committed in their name.
I watched in sadness the latest American envoy to the Middle East, Gen. Anthony C. Zinni, laying a wreath in Jerusalem at the site of the bombings. But where was the American wreath for the five boys killed in Gaza? Why are the targeting and killing of hundreds of Palestinian civilians, including more than 150 children, and the suffocation by siege of three million Palestinians so often considered mere background noise to Israel's drama?
A strange day. Trying to finish off an e-commerce site and the ISP screws up the digital certificate. The web project that never quite ends.
I've been playing last night's TestingTesting with Stephanie Patrick over and over. I produce this little living room webcast. It has a tendency to be singer/songwriter and folk oriented. Stephanie is a singer/songwriter but with an electric guitar and an amp. A bit edgier than what we usually have. It was great. And Zoe's pictures are wonderful. A really good one of the sound coming out of the amp.
Beaver Report - Day 11
I'm going to have to cut down the damn tree myself if the beaver doesn't get a move on. One day of mediocre chewing and he takes the next day off.
It will take time, and many legal proceedings, before the full story of Enron's collapse becomes known. But one thing is already clear: The case shows how adept corporate executives have become at shifting risk away from themselves and onto others, in particular onto their employees. Enron's leaders have walked away from the debacle chastened but very, very rich. Many of Enron's employees — no doubt including the loyalists who sent irate letters every time I criticized the company — have lost their life savings.
Behind this disaster for ordinary workers lies a little-remarked sea change in America's retirement system. Twenty years ago most workers were in "defined benefit" plans — that is, their employers promised them a fixed pension. Today most workers have "defined contribution" plans: they invest money for their retirement, and accept the risk that those investments might go bad. Retirement contributions are normally subsidized by the employer, and receive special tax treatment; but all this is to no avail if, as happened at Enron, the assets workers have bought lose most of their value.
The Bush administration's commission on Social Security reform issued its latest report last week, just as Enron entered its death throes. Most of the criticism of that commission's work, my own included, has focused on its, yes, Enron-like accounting: items seem to migrate onto or off the balance sheet to suit the commission's convenience. Thus when the Social Security system takes in more money than it pays out, as it does at present, this has no significance — the federal budget is unified, you see, so it doesn't mean anything when one particular piece of it is in surplus. But in 2016, when the Social Security system starts to pay out more than it takes in, there will be a crisis — Social Security, you see, must stand on its own.
But the commission resorts to bogus accounting only to make the case for its ultimate objective: to convert Social Security from a defined-benefit system, which guarantees retired Americans a certain basic income, to a defined-contribution system, in which the unwise or unlucky can find themselves destitute in their old age.
thanks to BuzzFlash
HIDING PAST AND PRESENT PRESIDENCIES
On November 1, President George W. Bush signed Executive Order 13233, a policy enabling his administration to govern in secrecy. For good reason, this has upset many historians, journalists, and Congresspersons (both Republican and Democratic). The Order ends 27 years of Congressional and judicial efforts to make presidential papers and records publicly available. In issuing it, the president not only has pushed his lawmaking powers beyond their limits, but he may be making the same mistakes as Richard Nixon.
No president can govern in a fishbowl. But not since Richard Nixon went to work in the Oval Office has there been as concentrated an effort to keep the real work of a president hidden, showing the public only a scripted president, as now. While this effort was evident before the September 11th terrorist attacks, the events of that day have become the justification for even greater secrecy.
These documents passed the twelve-year deadline for public release on January 12, 2001, but their release has been stalled by the Bush White House until now. The documents are believed to contain records that Papa Bush, as Reagan's vice president, is not happy to have made public. They also contain papers of others now working for Bush, who might be embarrassed by their release.
thanks to BuzzFlash
Arie Arnon: Where are the brave leaders to get us out of this mess?
After 30 years in the peace movement in Israel, I've seen movements in morale go up and down, but never have I seen such a fall as we have experienced over the past 14 months, when the latest intifada began. If we think back to the attempts made at the end of the Clinton administration – both at Camp David in July of last year and at Taba in January of this year – it is remarkable to realise how close the two sides were to reaching an agreement. Neither side would have got all it wanted, but polls at the time showed the majority of ordinary people were willing to accept the painful compromises that would have been necessary.
Unfortunately, those who were unwilling to give up their long cherished desires were able to scupper the agreements. The Palestinians found it difficult to accept that only a small minority of the 1948 refugees would be able to return to their homes in Israel, and the right-wing parties in Israel were not willing to abandon their colonising projects in the West Bank and Gaza. The result was the rise of a popular view on both sides: that there was no partner for peace on the other. That realisation was followed by the intifada, the election of Arial Sharon and the ever-escalating violence.
But it won't serve what should be the aim of government policy: to control the terrorists. In fact, these actions will make it harder for the Palestinian Authority to implement a ceasefire in its area. It may be true that Arafat did little to stop the inifada over most of the last year, but since 11 September, important parts of the Palestinian Authority and the movements that support it really wanted to stop the cycle of violence and move to political negotiations. But it almost seems as if the Israeli government does not wish the Palestinian Authority to take control of the elements who seek to kill Israeli citizens.
Yet the hawks are not fazed. People feared the worst from the war in Afghanistan, they say, and those nightmares did not come true either. They are confident that it will not be mullahs and ayatollahs who take Arafat's place but "local commanders", regional warlords free of the old ideology of liberation who will soon realise it's in their best interests to reach an understanding with Israel. Sharon's hard-right infrastructure minister, Avigdor Lieberman, has it all mapped out: he wants to divide the territories into four cantons, each one separate from the other. There will be no passage between Gaza and the West Bank, none between Hebron and Ramallah. The bases of terror will be rooted out.
For Sharon, the idea must have special appeal: after all, he's tried it before. His last grand scheme, Israel's 1982 invasion of Lebanon, was also aimed at smashing Arafat and driving him into exile. Earlier his Likud party had sought to create "village leagues" in the West Bank, as an alternative to PLO-supporting local mayors. Then, as now, Sharon had the same desire - to create a different Palestinian people so that he would not have to deal with the real one.
It cannot work, of course. It is a total fantasy, an attempt to escape reality. Sharon, in particular, cannot contemplate what really has to be done - to sit down, talk and reach an accord with the enemy - because that will mean paying an unbearable price. Any peace deal will entail dismantling some, if not all, of Israel's settlements in the occupied territories. And yet these red-roofed villages have been the driving obsession of Sharon's career over nearly three decades. He cannot face tearing them down. As that well-placed official puts it: "No grandfather wants to destroy his grandchildren."
So Sharon will seek comfort in his dream of a quiescent Palestinian population, rather than a proud people, led by pliable warlords, rather than a national figurehead. His dream will fail, but who knows how much blood will be lost before it does?
I just finished uploading the archives for tonight's TestingTesting with Stephanie Patrick. A really good show and Zoe's pictures are better than ever. Check it out.
From the Israeli paper Ha'aretz...
The bloody terror attacks in Israel in recent days could be defined as a statement of revolt by the Islamic organizations against Palestinian Authority Chairman Yasser Arafat. This weekend, as Arafat and his people were explaining to Anthony Zinni how they were thinking of bringing about a cease-fire, along came the actions of the fanatics of Islamic Jihad, Hamas and Hezbollah, as if to declare that they were thumbing their noses at everything.
To a large extent, the situation today in Palestinian politics resembles the loose coalition among the various organizations that existed during the years the Palestine Liberation Organization was active in Beirut. The "Fakahani days" (named after the neighborhood in Beirut in which Fatah headquarters were located) is the term used by Palestinians to describe those chaotic days in Lebanon during which every organization did pretty much what it felt like doing.
Even before the intifada, when the Palestinian regime was relatively stable, Arafat based his regime on the existence of dozens of paramilitary organizations and militia-like groups that competed among themselves. Now that Israel has butchered the territories into closed-off enclaves, the chaos in the Palestinian political and social spheres is many times greater.
From the Independent...
Israel stunned by terror blitz
The Palestinian Authority rounded up dozens of Islamic militants today as Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon flew back from the US for an emergency cabinet meeting.
This political upheaval came after a weekend of terrorist attacks inside Israel that left 31 dead and 200 wounded and renewed fears that the war in the Middle East was set to worsen dramatically.
The US President, George Bush, led the condemnation of the attacks, which were claimed by the militant Islamist organisation Hamas in retaliation for Israel's assassination of Mahmoud Abu Hanoud, the group's military leader in the West Bank, in a missile strike 10 days ago.
Mr Bush said: "This is a moment where the advocates for peace in the Middle East must rise up and fight terror. Chairman Arafat must do everything in his power to find those who murdered innocent Israelis and bring them to justice."
Calls rang angrily around the world yesterday for Yasser Arafat, the Palestinian leader, to crack down on militants after four grotesque bombing attacks in Israel within 12 hours. As 25 Israelis were buried, one question was being asked everywhere: why has he not acted already?
The Israeli government has always blamed the violence on Mr Arafat, and it did so again yesterday. Government spokesmen fell over one another in the rush to accuse him of doing nothing to stop terror attacks.
But this fails to take into account the depth of militancy within Palestinian society, which has been hardened by months of economic blockade and daily killings at the hands of the Israeli army.
It ignores the increasingly blurred lines between Mr Arafat's security forces and the Islamic radicals whom they are supposed to be jailing. It overlooks the fractured nature of the territory under the control of the Palestinian Authority, and the level of anger, not only over Israel's conduct, but also over Mr Arafat's administration.
A Palestinian analyst, Ghassan Khatib, said: "Arafat's ability to control the militants is dependent to some extent on the other side. Two weeks ago came the Israeli escalation.The extremists on both sides now have the upper hand."
Yasser Arafat pushed ahead with a sweeping crack-down against Palestinian militants as he tried to fend off the most serious challenge to his rule since the signing of the Oslo accords eight years ago.
Many of Mr Arafat's security forces are as loyal to the militants as they are to his authority, and they have been reluctant to take tough measures against radical activists. Israel's policy of responding to Palestinian attacks by bombing their security headquarters – on show again last night as F-16s jets dropped 2,000lb bombs on Jenin and helicopter gunships fired into the Gaza Strip – has helped harden their views. Some have even helped in guerrilla attacks. And Palestinian grassroots support for Islamic militants, especially Hamas, has rocketed during the intifada, not least because they provided welfare support at a time of increasingly poverty, and the Palestinian Authority has proved inadequate and venal.
There is a widespread belief in the Arab world, shared by some western analysts, that elements in Israel's security establishment have tried to foment civil strife inside the occupied territories to pressure Mr Arafat, or even topple him.
Israel's armed forces are blamed by many for provoking Hamas into renewing murderous attacks against civilians by assassinating one of their senior military leaders, Mahmoud Abu Hanoud, last month when the group had suspended suicide bombings in Israel.
Yesterday, its spokesmen were eager to point out that Mr Arafat now faces a choice between tackling the "terrorists" – breaking up Hamas and Islamic Jihad – or facing political annihilation. This fails to take into account the depth of anti-Israeli sentiment in the occupied territories, or Mr Arafat's status as the figurehead of Palestinian nationalism. He succeeded in bottling up Hamas with a similar wave of arrests in 1996; but that was before the intifada, which has cost 800 Palestinian lives, and a new generation of radicalised activists. There is no guarantee that jailing militants en masse would stop the attacks on Israelis.
Israel launches missile attack on Arafat base
Israeli helicopter gunships have fired at least nine missiles at targets in Gaza City today, in retaliation for weekend suicide bombings, which killed 26 people.
The missiles landed near Yasser Arafat's headquarters in the city. A helicopter belonging to the PLO leader was destroyed.
The attacks preceded an uncompromising statement by Ariel Sharon, the Israeli Prime Minister, who bluntly stated tonight that yesterday's terrorrist attacks in Jerusalem were the responsibility of Mr Arafat.
In what amounted to a declaration of war, he insisted that Israel would use "full force, full determination, all the means used to this day and new means available to us."
"Arafat is responsible for everything that is going on here...anybody who stands up to kill us is in danger himself," Mr Sharon said in a televised address to the nation.
Beaver Report - Day 10
I finished the preparing the TestingTesting site for tonight's webcast (click on in at 7pm (pacific)) and went out to check on the tree.
Our beaver buddy chewed on both sides leaving the front and back untouched. Look at that divot on the left picture! We're making progress here but I still don't think that this beaver is doing much to demonstrate the addage "busy as a beaver." He gets a C+ at best. If he continues his pattern we will see some more tomorrow and then its 3 days off. It will be Spring, at this rate, before he is done.
Well, I should probably do some work that someone is going to pay me for. Hopefully. Until then check out the links on the left for what is happening in the world.
I bought this amazing book back in the late 70s. It's Islamic Patterns : An Analytical and Comsmological Approach by Kenneth Critchlow. It's back in print for those who didn't get it the first time around.
This isn't a book of cute patterns. The Introduction opens...
"Know, oh brother..., that the study of sensible geometry leads to skill in all the practical arts, while the study of intelligible geometry leads to skill in the intellectual arts because this science is one of the gates through which we move to the knowledge of the essence of the soul, and that is the root of all knowledge..."
In Chapter 1 we show illustrations of these first moves into the dimensions, starting with a luminous point; the first line is the extension from this point. The limits of this extension having been reached, rotation takes place to encompass the next domain--an area. With this enclosure formed, a cycle is completed, a 'world' in the form of a circle. The circle becomes the archetypal governing basis for all the geometric shapes that unfold within it, this two-dimensional world being one dimension nearer to the origin that is our solid 'world.' The circle's primary inherent quality is one of 'sixness'; as will be demonstrated in terms of the radius and its relationship to the circumference.
From the basic circle and the hexagonal arrangement of a group of tangential circles of the same radius surrounding it emerge the three primary shapes: the triangle, the hexagon and the square. These three shapes are explored in detail to reveal their inherent structure, subdivision, proportional ratios and interrelatedness. From this last, which can be called the 'sociability' of the polygons, arises the set of eight semi-regular divisions of a surface, that is combinations of 3's, 6's and 4's in repeating patterns. These eight tesselations form the basis and the mathematical foundations of the laws of repetition upon which Islamic geometrical art is founded.
The book shows how these patterns are constructed. When I first read the book I realized that I would have to construct these patterns to really understand them. I spent 20 years as a drafter which is one of the reasons for my fascination with this. I was also an architecture student for a couple of years and that opened my eyes to Isamic art and architecture. I tried drawing them on the board but that was too limiting. I knew I wanted to draw them in a CAD (Computer Aided Design) program. I had been using CAD programs since 1979.
I use Photoshop and Illustrator a lot. Photoshop is a raster graphics program. Everything is pixels. Illustrator is a vector graphics program. Everything is defined mathematically. There are no pixels. However, Illustrator doesn't know where it is. You can't draw things to scale. A CAD progam can. Everything is drawn in a coordinate system. A line is defined by its end points in a cartesian coordinate system. That means it is easy for the CAD program to locate the mid point and end points of a line for constructing geometry. Like the the geometry in Islamic patterns.
I discovered TurboCad this summer. They are giving it away. Of course it doesn't have all the features of the full version which has expanded 2D capabilities as well as 3D. But what it has is light years beyond what I was using in 1979 which cost $250,000 for a four terminal turnkey system that had to be in an air conditioned room with the big reel to reel tape drives for archiving. Their full version is $100 and their full solid modeling package is $400. Amazing. So I started drawing some of these patterns.
Once I had drawn them I wanted to play with them but the CAD program is limited to some primitive coloring. This morning I was playing with Illustrator and found out that it will read .DWG and .DXF files which are common AutoCAD formats that TurboCad supports. Eureka! So I put one of my patterns into Illustrator. Layers and colors all came accross as well as all the geometry and groups. Hot damn!
So, here is what I am talking about. This shows the basic geometry underlying this particular pattern.
It starts with a point. Then a radius and a circle. The circle is squared and quartered. The square is repeated horizontally and vertically to create a 3x3 grid. The gray lines are the basic structure. The red lines are the secondary structure that the pattern is built on. The blue polygons are the basic repeating shape constructed from elements of the primary and secondary structure.
The finished pattern looks like...
That is as far as I got with TurboCad. I can do a lot more in Illustrator. This is a study playing around with the above pattern. I wanted to devolve the pattern and play with some of the elements like this...
This is really meant to be printed. It's hard to see some of the detail. So here is a detail...
This is fun stuff!
Beaver Report - Day 10
As I predicted, there was no beaver activity today. There should be a lot tomorrow.
Monday night is TestingTesting, the webcast I do from my living room. So there won't be much activity here until Tuesday. But click on in Monday night and listen to some great music.