7/9/12 Now, Back to Our Regularly Scheduled Programming
There's been a lack of new activity here at terrycolon.com. That's because all the activity has been happening behind the scenes. Which is to say the site has been re-engineered, html-wise. Mostly a lot of slipshod coding is being cleaned up and we're now employing cascading style sheets. Not exactly cutting edge stuff, but new for me. Actually my brother, Craig, is doing it, I don't really know this sort of thing.
The site should look and work better than before. The image map links should work for everyone now, where before they only worked on some browsers. A regrettable oversight due to... because I didn't really know what I was doing. From now on the html part of it should be good. No amount of coding can improve the illustrations. But then, I hope those looked good already. As for the writing... same story.
Anyway, the site will be pretty much the same as before only better. Which sounds like a contradiction, but I know what I mean even if the reader doesn't. Though I hope in the near future to have a fancy-schmancy new home page with some nifty interactive bits. That will have to wait for now. There's only so much we can do at a time. "We" meaning my brother. In the meantime, enjoy.
One last thing. Don't take the headline literally. There's nothing actually scheduled, regularly or otherwise about terrycolon.com. It gets done by inclination rather than by system.
5/14/12 Not-so-Hot Water
"Add three seconds of water and stir." That's a strange recipe direction. "Fill a large pot with 20 seconds of water and bring to a boil." That's pretty odd, too. Would you ever calculate the amount of water to cook with by how long it takes to come out of the tap rather than volume?
It seems somebody thinks we do. Why else would the gas company send folks door-to-door offering to install a device that restricts water flow from the faucets promising it will save 20% on your hot water bill? Happened to me just the other day. I declined the offer.
I fill my pots with cold water. It's more efficient to heat the water on the burner than to heat it partly in the hot water tank first then the rest of the way on the burner. So the device wouldn't make a difference there. Just make filling pots take longer.
When washing dishes I fill the sink with enough hot water to do the job. I wouldn't fill it less if it took longer to fill. No savings there. I rinse the dishes in tepid water with that sprayer thingamabob. I don't run the water full blast anyway because it splashes too much. No savings there.
Maybe I'm crazy, but the idea that a flow-restricting device at the tap is going to save me 20% on hot water seems unlikely. Especially considering most of my hot water useage is laundry and showers. Anyway, my faucets already have a device which I use to reduce water flow. It's called a valve, and I know how to use it.
Unlike most houses mine has a device that saves water, though not hot water. I have a urinal. Easy to use and a lot less messy than a toilet. Of course I have a toilet, too, for number two.
4/28/12 Interesting to Me and No One Else, Probably
Folks like to make statements with their clothing. Sometimes it's a fashion statement; sometimes a literal statement, as in a T-shirt sporting a slogan or gag. Sometimes it's sort-of both, as in a baseball cap festooned with a logo. The psychology behind this... who cares. Logos look cool. Well, many logos, not all.
Just about everything you buy now-a-days comes emblazoned with a logo. Not just apparel. Even fruit. I guess we're supposed to think it's a designer banana or something. At any rate logos are everywhere.
What makes a good logo? It should be simple, clear, not finicky. This falls under the oxymoron of less is more. A really good logo works as a teeny-tiny icon. A bold black and white symbol is more useful than one relying on colors. A pure shape works well. Like a star. But it also needs to be unique, not confused with another symbol or logo. So, unlike a star. It shouldn't just be the name of the outfit, which is more like a trademark than a logo.
A good logo doesn't even have to tell you a thing about the brand. It's not an ad, it's a mark, a symbol, but not always symbolic. Below is my idea of great company logos. Bet you know them instantly. Well, if you're old enough to remember the fourth one.
Of the five, the Chevy "bowtie" is my favorite. It's absolutely meaningless in any kind of automotive way or in referencing the name. It's just a shape. But totally unique, distinctive. No other car company has anything like it. The odd thing, nobody is really sure where it came from. One thing you can be pretty sure of, it's not German. Car companies in Germany are obsessed with circle logos. Check out Mercedes, BMW, Volkswagen, Opel, and Audi. The last getting carried away to the tune of four circles.
Here is where I'm supposed to sum up and make a final point or something. Or maybe offer a deal on coffee mugs, t-shirts, or trucker hats decorated with my logo. But there isn't any more to it. That's why it's under Odds and Ends. It's odd, but it must end even if the end is odd.
I haven't added anything to terrycolon.com lately. Been otherwise occupied. Some of it gainful work. Most not. All the same I thought I'd toss in a little bit here just to keep my hand in. It's a question of history. Perhaps others have asked it, perhaps you've wondered yourself. Anyway, I have no answer and haven't come across an explanation elsewhere.
WWII in Europe began in 1939 when Britain and France guaranteed if Poland were invaded they would go to war. Poland was invaded by Germany and the Soviet Union. Britain and France declared war on Germany. Why didn't they also declare war on the Soviet Union?
Just something to ponder.
3/15/12 It Ain’t Over ‘til it’s Over
As in the heading above, English speakers use contractions quite a bit. Except for Data on Star Trek, TNG, but who cares. Anyway, contractions are common and proper usage listed in your standard dictionary. Sometimes you have a choice. For instance, for it is not you can use it's not or it isn't. But you can't double it up and go with it'sn't.
However there are cases where you can have a double contraction. Take this one I ran across reading Agatha Christie, could not have was contracted to couldn't've. Perhaps you wouldn't've thought it was right, but there it was in black and white.
Which has me thinking, could you take that one step further and have a triple contraction? I mean, can I would not have be contracted to I'dn't've? Well, I've never seen that. I would not have thought it proper usage. Or is that I'dn't've thought it proper usage?
That's it. It is what it is. Which can be, it's what it is, but not it's what it's. Contractions don't always work.
3/7/12 Orange You Glad it's not a Knock-knock Joke?
How many bureaucrats does it take to change a light bulb?
First you need an inspector to determine the light bulb needs changing, then a supervisor to review the inspector's report. Next comes a commitee to plan the light bulb replacement method, followed by a committee to assess the plan, in addition to a committee to oversee the implementation of the plan, and as many union electricians as required under the contract. At this point it can only be roughly estimated how many bureaucrats that will take.
A committee will be formed to determine the final answer.
2/29/12 Happy Leap Day!
Though why a year with a 366th day is called leap year is beyond me. Seems to me every other year leaps over February 29th right to March 1st. Maybe the longer year should be called un-leap year. Anyway, we get an extra day this month and this year. But no extra day this week. Eerie.
2/21/12 Just Wondering
Closed captioning on TV transcribes a voiceover something like, "Female announcer: Blah... blah..." Why do they bother giving the announcer's sex?
If there's no letter L sound in Japanese, why did they name the car brand Lexus? What do they call it in Japan?
Why is it for women the road to fulfillment is a career, while for men the road to fulfillment is dumping the career and leaving the rat race?
If there's no J or U in Latin, how does the most famous old Roman, Julius Caesar, have both?
Why is it people want to become rich and so attract the opposite sex, yet the rich want to be loved for themselves and not their money?
Why do so many like democracy but hate politics when democracy means everyone is part of politics?
When did the word 'gifted' become a noun? It still means talented, but when did it start replacing gave or given? Moreover, why?
And last and probably least, what's the purpose of that little triangle just under the collar on the front of a sweatshirt?
2/3/12 The Worst Bargain Ever
I got a puzzle-a-day calendar for Christmas. Here's the puzzle for February 2nd, Groundhog Day, though it has nothing to do with groundhogs:
"Andy flushes the toilet 36 times a day. Each flush uses 2 gallons of water at a cost of 10 cents per gallon. How much do Andy's flushes cost per week?"
The answer is pretty simple math. Andy spends $50.40 a week flushing his toilet.
When I read the setup I had other questions. Why is Andy flushing his toilet so much? Why is Andy's toilet water so expensive?
Maybe it's just me, but using the toilet 36 times a day seems a bit excessive. If Andy sleeps eight hours a day it means he's relieving himself 36 times in 16 hours. That's once every 25 minutes or so. I think Andy should see a doctor.
At $50.40 a week Andy is spending over $200 a month flushing his toilet. Where does Andy live where water is so expensive? By comparison my monthly water bill is about ten dollars. I don't pay close to ten cents a gallon for water, closer to one cent per gallon.
Which makes me wonder, does Andy drink bottled water? Is there anything more overpriced? I mean, a 16 oz. bottle for a dollar means paying eight dollars a gallon. That's twice the price of gas. For water. Which I can get from the tap for a penny a gallon. Bottled water is 800 times more expensive. Though for Andy that's only 80 times more expensive. What a bargain.
1/30/12 Another One Bites the Dust
I see in the news where Kodak declared bankruptcy. Not surprising given the rise of digital photography. Still, had you told me in 1970 both Kodak and General Motors would go bust, I'd have thought you crazy. Not to mention the Soviet Union. How the mighty have fallen.
In its long heyday Kodak was invincible. Sure, there was FujiFilm and Agfa, but Kodak was the undisputed king. Photographers called it "The Yellow God". But no more. The Kodak moment is over. The Yellow God is dead. Or perhaps being reorganized as a demi-god. A very mortal demi-god it seems.
So, what big name is next? Sears? Xerox? JP Morgan? Italy? Stay tuned. Death and taxes ain't just for people.
12/21/11 Happy Holidays
That's a greeting for any holidays you like. Christmas, New Year's, Festivus, whatever. Break out the tree, the candles, the pole, the falling ball, or whatever you got. Don your gay apparel, your party hat, your dancing shoes, your Sunday's best, or whathaveyou. Grab yourself some eggnog, some fruitcake, some champagne, or something-or-other else.
Or don't. Live and let live it up, that's my motto. If I knew the Latin for that I'd use it on my crest. Not that I have a crest. Just a logo/signature thingy.
I seem to have gone off the rails. Anyway, have a good one, whatever that one is. Cheers!
12/1/11 Now Better Than Sliced Bread!
Welcome to the New and Improved terrycolon.com. Of course, new and improved are mutually exclusive. If it's improved it existed before in another form so it can't be new. If it's new it didn't exist before in another form so it can't be improved. All the same everyone accepts new and improved adspeak as if it were logical.
So, terrycolon.com is not really new. Just different than before. Whether it's improved is not for me to say. The biggest difference is unseen. I reorganized the hierarchy. Or pathways or whatever it's called. Still, it looks and functions pretty much as before. While everything is still there, it might be in a new spot. So if you linked to anything on the sight, the old url might not work.
Which might make terrycolon.com old and worse. All the same, it's easier for me to work with. Selfish as it may be, that makes it improved. For me.
11/2/11 Wrong Because it’s Right
The above illustration is my variation of something I saw recently at Coyote Blog. I thought it fun, and funny just on the face of it. Though when examined it's a brain teaser with a twist. Or maybe a brain twister with a tease.
With random selection, there's an equal chance of selecting any one of five answers. One out of five is 20%. This would mean the correct answer is A. Also D is correct.
But if there are two correct answers then you have a 40% chance of getting the right answer. So the answer is B. Yet if there's a 40% chance of getting the right answer then A and D are both wrong. Which means there aren't two correct answers so it can't be B either. All three are wrong.
Answer C is self-defeating. If there is no correct answer the odds are 0%. But since that would make answer C right, then it is wrong because there's a 20% it is right, even though it can't be.
So, answers A through D are wrong. Which would make E the correct answer, none of the above. Only if E is right there is one correct answer which would mean there's a 20% chance of getting it right. This would mean E is wrong since one of the above, A, would be right. Also D is correct.
But if there are two correct answers then you have a 40% chance of getting the right answer. So the answer is B. Yet...
You are now trapped in an infinite loop of self-contradictory logic where correct answers become wrong because they are right.
10/4/11 The Big Little Move
Ah-h-h-h, fall, AKA autumn. The days are getting shorter, the nights are getting longer, and both are getting colder. The time nears to make the big switch. I'm not talking about resetting the clocks off daylight savings time, though that will have to be done. I'm not talking about packing away the summer clothes and restocking the closet with sweaters, though that'll be done as well. Nor am I talking about swapping out the window screens for storm windows, though I'll be doing that, too.
I'm talking about my own personal switch where I rearrange the rooms of my house. Well, not the actual structure, some of the contents inside. I have a different set-up in the summer and winter. My house has two spare bedrooms, one of which I use as my office/studio. One is a large room on the north side of the house. The other is a small room facing south.
In the warm months I use the north room as my studio. It's on the cool side of the house and doesn't get the high summer sun streaming through the windows. I can keep a window open with a window fan exhausting all the cigarette smoke to the great outdoors. The north room facing away from the street diminishes the street noise that seeps in the open window. If you can characterize noise as seeping.
When the chilly season arrives I switch my studio to the south side. I get some direct warming sunlight, which is a plus in the winter and a minus in the summer. Being the smaller room it takes less energy to heat compared to the larger north room which can be shut off. I don't know how much this saves, but every little bit helps. The smoke... in the winter I get to enjoy both the first-hand and second-hand smoke for the duration. What can I say? Not everything I do is perfectly sensible.