Category Archives: Ivan

Meet my favorite YouTube Girl

Her name is Tania Derveaux.
She ran for a seat in the Belgian Senate under the NEE party.
She’s also very hot.

~Ivan

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Music Piracy and Nine Inch Nails

I LOVE NINE INCH NAILS SO MUCH IT MAKES ME CRY

From YouTube: Reznor Tells Fans To Steal His CD
Also, an accompanying article and a quote:

Reznor launched a stinging tirade against Universal Music Australia on Sunday at the group’s concert at Sydney’s Hordern Pavilion, dismayed at the high price the label charged for CDs.

He called the record label “greedy f—ing assholes”. It followed similar diatribes earlier in the year.

“Steal it. Steal away. Steal, steal and steal some more and give it to all your friends and keep on stealing,” Reznor, who has been dubbed the Ralph Nader of the music industry, said.

“Because one way or another these mother f—ers will get it through their head that they’re ripping people off and that’s not right.”

SO. AWESOME.
The reason I bring up this year old news is because today, as I was queing up about 40 gigs of torrents because I’m sucking bandwidth from a hick ass unsecured wireless network, I came across this little gem.

Now that we\\\'re no longer constrained by a record label, we\\\'ve decided to personally upload Ghosts I, the first of the four volumes, to various torrent sites, because we believe BitTorrent is a revolutionary digital distribution method, and we believe in finding ways to utilize new technologies instead of fighting them.
We encourage you to share the music of Ghosts I with your friends, post it on your website, play it on your podcast, use it for video projects, etc.  It\\\'s licensed for all non-commercial use under Creative Commons.

There is no way I can express the full extent of my love for Trent Reznor.

~Ivan

In the event of a water landing, you may be used as a flotation device.

I have returned to East Tennessee.
I’ve been very busy rearranging my apartment and looking for somewhere to work. I have submitted nine (9) applications for employment thus far, all of which are within biking distance. The price of operating my behemoth of a car has reached critical mass and I have, therefore, made the planning necessary to minimize my reliance on internal combustion engine driven transportation.
I’m sure that’s a whole lot of boring information you could live without.

On the fun side of things, I’ve been playing Rock Band 2 with my almost exclusively rhythm game oriented circle of friends. I am absolutely in love with the drum trainer. It’s an incredibly handy tool for anyone who’s trying to obtain a sense of rhythm.
Among the harder songs for guitar in the latest iteration of Rock Band are Master Exploder by Tenacious D and Chop Suey by System of a Down.
I havn’t had a whole lot of time to spend playing video games but I played RB2 enough to know these songs are very very hard.

You might not care a whole lot but North Korea turned 60 years old the other day! I have a particular fascination with North Korea as, in my senior year, I entertained ideas of defecting to the last great socialist regime and providing them with sub-par IT support. Actually, that isn’t true. It might be true. Not feasible, though. Or is it?

Speaking of socialism, has anybody seen Wall Street lately? Holy sweet mother mercy! Last week was comprised of an absolutely bewildering series of economic cataclysms, resulting in some very serious changes to the very fabric of the American Economic System, as it were. I’m sure the vast majority of our readership has no idea whatsoever of how it all went down and what it means for the future, so after consulting a OMG REAL LIFE FREDDIE MAC EMPLOYEE WHO SHALL REMAIN NAMELESS and still failing to understand, I asked the New York Times to put it in words my feeble mind can understand.
They totally delivered.

This bailout plan is going to cost 700 billion USD. That’s about $3,000 for every single citizen of the United States. This is a very serious situation. The implications for the future of American Consumerism are grave. The significance of last week will echo for years, perhaps decades, to come. Expect savings accounts to get owned, jobs to be lost, and the value of your home to bottom out. That is a very real possibility at this point, a very unhappy future that is no where near the worst case scenario.

It looks like our hour is up! I promised Belle a graphical overhaul at a self-set and very unrealistic deadline, but worry not, it is on the way. Take a moment sometime this week and be grateful that you live in a time of such drastic change. It may not be an optimistic time to be alive, but it’s definitely very exciting.

~Ivan

Volatile Shifts

I, unlike some of the other posters here, do not live in what you would call a highly populated area. Having grown up in the shadow of the the Nation’s Capital, I can understand and relate to what my friends here experience on a (mostly) daily basis. However, I live in a relatively small town, in Tennessee, where the spectacle of rush hour beltway traffic and the possibility of a horrific terrorist attack are both equally unimaginable.

I have, therefore, what one might call a unique perspective here.

This is a time of volatility in the United States. It is visible in every aspect of our society. Anyone who owns a car or a home knows that the economy is undergoing vast shifts, at the very least.

Says Greenspan, yesterday, the 14th of September:

“Oh, by far,” Greenspan said, when asked if the situation was the worst he had seen in his career. “There’s no question that this is in the process of outstripping anything I’ve seen and it still is not resolved and still has a way to go and, indeed, it will continue to be a corrosive force until the price of homes in the United States stabilizes. That will induce a series of events around the globe which will stabilize the system.”

The volatility is not limited to the United States and the economy. The most complex and sophisticated machine ever devised by man was infiltrated by a group of hackers known as the Greek Security Team a few days ago. While there is no feasible way to remotely (or directly, for that matter) unleash devastating gravitational forces at the LHC, the fact that a group of individuals effectively hacked the ultimate Gibson is a little disconcerting.

This from the Greek Security Team, addressing (I’m assuming) the LHC IT Department:

“We’re pulling your pants down because we don’t want to see you running around naked looking to hide yourselves when the panic comes,” wrote the intruders in a note left on the Collider’s website.

The emergence of coordinated or even solitary offensive action utilizing computer networks as a medium is a phenomenon that is best characterized by the virtually limitless speed that a network of hackers can increase in strength and capability.

This fact made itself grossly apparent during the recent conflict between Russia and Georgia:

“Cyber attacks on Georgia began a day before the actual invasion. On Aug. 9 Georgia’s largest bank was attacked and all electronic banking was stopped. The attack was sophisticated — hackers broke into the information site of the bank and started to change currency rates, devaluing the Georgian currency… Also targeted were the Web sites of the Georgian president and other governmental bodies. The aim of the attackers was to shut down all Georgian news sites, and for the first two days of the war, Russia was the world’s sole source of information on the situation in Georgia.”

Total pwnij.

The best way to determine a system’s potential volatility is to quantify the level of complexity inherant within that system. If you consider the entire world as a complex system, it behooves one to pay attention to the myriad of metaphorical Canaries dropping dead.

It’s time for me to drive south. Wish me luck!

~ Ivan