What I'm Doing

Friday, March 30, 2007

No More Worrying About Cold Days

No PS3 In Jail

From CNet's gaming blog:
ITV is reporting that the U.K.'s Home Secretary, John Reid, has made the shocking and momentous decision to ban Sony's PlayStation 3...in jails. Yes, that's right. The reasoning is that the high-end gaming console, which went on sale in the U.K. last week, could be used to send or receive radio signals with its built-in Wi-Fi and connectivity features.

But, um, isn't it jail?
My whole notion of jail has changed. You get a roof over your head, 3 square meals a day, apparently time to play video games, maybe even cable TV, all on the taxpayers' dime! Okay, so, there is this:

But, hey, besides that, jail sounds pretty nice...

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Ah, Spring Is Here

The writing on my car reads 5,937, which is the pollen count today. The news says this almost meets the record of 6,013, which occurred on April 12, 1999. By the way, my car is clean compared to some I have seen.

Abstinence and Sexual Disease Prevention

Lately, there have been two conversations related to sexually transmitted diseases that I have come across. One is on a vaccine for Human Papilloma Virus (HPV). The story there is that 1) HPV has been linked to cervical cancer, and 2) at least one state government is considering making the vaccine mandatory. The second story is about the WHO backing a plan to prevent HIV spread via circumcision.

In discussions on both stories, the topic of abstinence came up. The general idea is that, if you save yourself for marriage, then, assuming your spouse also saves (him|her)self, you will not be at risk for either HPV or HIV. In the case of the HPV vaccine, the concern was that having your daughter get the vaccine would imply that you don't trust your daughter's sexual morality. In the HIV story, someone made the statement, "if your son and his wife save themselves for marriage, circumcision won't change his HIV risk: 50~60% of 0 is still 0."

The issue that is not mentioned in either case is involuntary sexual encounters (i.e., rape). Sure, your daughter may have an impeccable sexual morality, but that's not going to save her if she is raped. In fact, I just read earlier this morning about a 15-year-old girl who came home from school the other day to find a strange man in her house who tied her up and raped her.

Also, there is the fact that men can be raped. Granted, man-on-man rape isn't going to be affected by circumcision, but I remember reading some time ago about an issue in Africa where HIV-infected women were going around raping men in order to infect them (apparently in revenge for their being infected).

As far as official policies go, abstinence is a great policy within a family, perhaps even a small community, but no government is going to be able to mandate abstinence (unless it's a totalitarian government, but who wants that?), and no group (like the WHO) can make people suddenly become monogamous. While, certainly, these groups should promote abstinence and monogamy, they need to augment this with other efforts to prevent disease among the population.

So, in conclusion, the argument that abstinence and monogamy will protect you against STD's is not 100% correct. Sure, it will greatly reduce your chances, which is something that should not be ignored. However, to say that it will reduce them to 0% is simply wrong; there is always the possibility of rape, and this possibility should never be ignored when looking at possible ways to prevent STD infection.

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Changes Coming Soon

If anyone is still reading this, you've probably noticed that I don't post very much. There have been a few reasons for that. First of all, I'm horrible at managing time, so I usually end up never having time to actually sit down and write anything. Secondly, I haven't really had much to write. Okay, actually, I've had plenty to write, but it never seems to make it from a jumbled mess in my head to anything resembling a logical process of thought. Sometimes I do get something written down, but I look back over it and think it might be wiser, for some reason or another, not to post it. Generally, this is because, upon rereading my glorious writing, I realize that it's really rather apparent that I'm just talking out of my arse.

In addition, I've had some issues going on in my personal life for a while, involving some tough decisions I'm still trying to sort out. Maybe I'll make a post out of that in the future, but, at the moment, I will just ask for your prayers.

So, to the point of this post. I was reading the other day about Twitter, a micro-blogging service. For those of you who use Facebook, Twitter is basically your Facebook status, only public across the Internet, and organized in more of a blog-ish format. As I was looking into this, I realized that, while I stink at maintaining a "real" blog, I could probably do something like Twitter, with typically short posts that I can send in from my phone as well as my PC. However, I also want to be able to post pictures (and perhaps even videos) from my cell phone. Just a sort of potpourri of random thought, photos, etc. from my daily life.

As I looked further, I discovered that what I was looking for was a "moblog." Blogger already has some support for this (in fact, I've used this feature for some posts on this blog), except that it lacks videos. I've decided that a temporary solution for videos (if I ever want to post one) could be to post them to YouTube, and then embed them in a blog post from my PC later.

I was going to create a new blog specifically for this purpose, but, after much time spent failing to think up a good name, I have decided to just use this existing blog. It is already more of a personal blog, anyway, and I've already done some mobile posting here. So, from this point on, this is going to become a sort of hybrid: the deformed offspring of a normal blog and a mobile blog. I hope that this will mean more updates, although the updates may be even less interesting than before. The posts will primarily be shorter posts, sometimes even just a photo with no caption, though I may also have some slightly longer posts about random musings or interesting things I've read online.

If I ever get around to actually writing anything more significant or serious, I'll start another blog for that purpose. But from now on, this blog is simply going to be a window to my world. It will probably be banal, perhaps even inane. However, just like a shotgun, firing a multitude of pellets rather than just a single bullet, perhaps a few of my posts will hit the target of interestingness.

Consider this the warning shot. ;-)