War weary, whip out cash, and dead people

Even I, who thought he’d never grow war weary, at least from opposing them, have become numb to the occupations in Iraq and Afghanistan. Now, people have woken up to the fact that big wars cost big money, not just lots of lives–lives that count far less to some than the paltry tax dollars they may have to pay to support the wars.

The thing that perplexes me most is that these so called wars of nation building were in Iraq and Afghanistan. They were supposed to be the paragons of USA capitalism and democracy? (I won’t stoop so low as to answer that question with an analysis. If you can’t do it for yourself, you are hopeless.)

If you want to know where your money went, follow the dead bodies.

Published in: on July 28, 2010 at 4:08 pm  Leave a Comment  

Another enchanted wood

Sunday, summer drifting by; dreaming too and drinking summer’s sweet wine: never wake me.

Published in: on July 18, 2010 at 1:19 pm  Leave a Comment  

Math library

I now have an extensive mathematics library downloaded to my iPad–probably enough to keep me entertained forever.


Published in: on July 18, 2010 at 10:49 am  Leave a Comment  

Annals of narrative: painting another self portrait

I’m already thinking about the future when I will have to convert my eReader apps and eLibraries to a new iPad.  Will they convert seamlessly without me having to download them again?  It would be a damned shame if I had to get into a large time consuming project.

We paint our own unique pictures of the future.  The painting creates another portrait of us.

Published in: on July 17, 2010 at 9:12 am  Leave a Comment  

Houston we have liftoff

The sun shining, the NY Times Sunday book reviews already read, Pandora “Six Days on the Road” radio blasting, intermittently playing hard chess and reading Shakespeare’s Philosophy : Houston, we have liftoff.

Published in: on July 17, 2010 at 9:02 am  Leave a Comment  

Short iPad review and experience

I won’t put too fine a point on it. For my routine daily content consumption and activities such as playing chess, social networking, etc., the iPad fulfills all my requirements with a few minor drawbacks.

I rate it highly. It definitely replaces my laptop when I am not at home or even when I’m home.

Published in: on July 16, 2010 at 9:25 am  Comments (2)  

Shakespeare’s Philosophy

I’m reading Colin McGinn’s Shakespeare’s Philosophy along with the major plays he discusses in the book.  I’m about halfway through it.  McGinn tackles the philosophical aspects of Shakespeare’s work and shuns literary study of his work.  I’ve already gained a whole new appreciation of the philosophical content.

McGinn views Shakespeare as a skeptical philosopher who had read Montaigne and was very much in sympathy with his philosophy.  He sees Shakespeare concerned with many core philosophical problems and issues: appearance vs. reality and the limits of knowledge, the nature of personal identity and the self, other minds, the imagination as one of the four faculties, the nature of love, good, and evil and how they are influenced by our imaginations and created selves and abilities to interpret and know other minds, and the issue of creation, being, and nothingness as it relates to who we are and how we live out our life.

I’ve found his discussion of Shakespeare’s thoughts on personal identity and the self fascinating.  Like Montaigne and Hume, Shakespeare did not believe there was a stable core self that one could identify.  We create different characters for specific social needs.  We are like actors who are continually changing roles depending on circumstances.  We use our imaginations to create narratives that fit how we would have others see us.  In this process we easily dupe ourselves and others.  (You are who you think you ain’t.)  Character does not create actions, but actions create character.

I’ve always enjoyed McGinn as a prose stylist who makes difficult thought easier.  I can see Shakespeare’s Philosophy and the plays standing in as a good text for an introduction to philosophy course.

(This post written on the laptop. 🙂 )

Published in: on July 16, 2010 at 7:28 am  Comments (1)  


I’ve experienced first hand a battery charging issue that has been known since the iPad first shipped.  The battery does not always charge when plugged into my Mac laptop.  Sometimes, it will charge and sometimes it won’t.  It does seem to charge when it is shut off and plugged into the laptop overnight.  When I use the power adapter, it charges quickly with no problems.

Oh, well.

Published in: on July 15, 2010 at 6:49 am  Comments (2)  

Day 1

Used the iPad only yesterday instead of the computer. The iPad has a complete lack of multitasking as stated in the reviews except iPod will play in the background while using another app. It does not support Flash either, but that has been well discussed in the reviews also. I’m
getting used to two finger typing.

Today’s chore: synch selected music, photos, and documents.

Everybody who plays with my iPad falls in love with it. Their comments: I want one or I am getting one.

Published in: on July 14, 2010 at 6:49 am  Leave a Comment  

Pandora Radio iPad app

Pandora Radio does not play in the background when you are in another app like it does on the tiPhone. What is that all about?

Published in: on July 13, 2010 at 7:01 am  Comments (3)  

IPad Test

As a test, I have decided to use my iPad for the next week instead of my laptop, except for my current writing project, to see just how useful the iPad is to me. So far I have not missed the laptop except as a device to sync and charge the iPad.

This morning I caught up on my chess games, checked on my fantasy baseball teams, read the NYTimes, caught up on some of my blog reading, which I am woefully behind, and wrote a blog post. The only problem so far is that some of the MLB.com fantasy baseball screens do not work. I suspect it is a flash issue.

And I am getting used to the two finger method of typing. Hell, I learned to type with my thumbs on the iPhone. Two index fingers on a much larger keyboard ought to be easy.

So far, so good.

Published in: on July 13, 2010 at 6:13 am  Leave a Comment  

New iPad

My new iPad arrived yesterday. I’m using the clunky WordPress app to write this.

I bought the 16 gig Wi-Fi only model. I already have buyer’s remorse over not buying the 64 gig model.

It’s heavier than I expected. However, I read A Midsummer Night’s Dream on it yesterday and I quickly realized that I always read with the book or my arms propped up on something, so it’s not a problem.

I touch type poorly. The keyboard is to small to allow me to do that. I’m using the two finger method for this post. You have to flip between at least two keypads to write because most of the special characters are not on the alpha keyboard, so touch typing is slow anyway. For $129 you can buy a regular keyboard with stand. For heavy duty writing I’ll still use the laptop.

I didn’t buy my iPad to store all my music, photos, or lots of movies. I’m a text person. Whatever music or photos I want to carry around will be on my iPhone. I’ll make selected and limited use for those on the iPad. Besides, syncing between three devices does not appeal to me.

Ok, so why did I buy the damned thing? I bought it for high quality text reading in all it’s various forms, Internet access outside home, and activities such as chess. I’m sure my usage will expand. After minimal time, I am really glad I got it.

By the way, don’t expect many long blog post from my iPad unless my typing skills improve dramatically.

Published in: on July 13, 2010 at 4:17 am  Leave a Comment  

Gone Electronic

In advance of receipt of my iPad, I bought my first eBook from Barnes&Noble yesterday, Colin McGuinn’s Shakespeare’s Philosophy.  (I have downloaded a lot of free eBooks over the years.)  I sat in bed last night reading it on my iPhone with the Cubs radio broadcast of the baseball game in LA playing in the background on the phone.  (Gotta love the iPhone.)

I’ve always found McGinn an agreeable prose stylist.  I also find his take on Shakespeare’s skeptical(?) philosophy congenial.  McGinn doesn’t do literary criticism of Shakespeare’s work.  He sticks to Shakespeare the philosopher.

I’m already seeing the advantage of collecting an electronic library.  In the case of the McGinn book, I’ll have it plus the plays with annotations to the texts all collected in and accessible from one device no matter where I go.

Published in: on July 10, 2010 at 5:42 am  Comments (5)  

2010 World Cup Final

Clockwork Orange Mark II are 2 1/2 to 1 dogs in tomorrow’s game, so I bet on them.  The price seemed right.

I don’t really have a dog in the fight.  I just hope the Dutch force Spain out of their plan to win 1-0 at the end of regulation.

At the end of each World Cup, I always wonder how a sporting event that lasts a whole month seems to go by so quickly.

Published in: on July 10, 2010 at 4:37 am  Comments (2)  

The iPad circles the globe

I ordered an IPad about two weeks ago.  It shipped from Connecticut a couple of days ago, then went to Hong Kong, then to Alaska.  Now that it has left Alaska I wonder where it will land next.

I bought it because…  Well, it’s cool.  However, there was at least one practical reason.  I have no more room for hard copy books.  I have to go electronic.  When I looked at the prices of the high end book readers versus the price of an iPad, the price was definitely right given all the other things you can do with an iPad.

Anyway, on Monday or Tuesday, I’ll be the owner of an iPad.

Published in: on July 9, 2010 at 9:56 pm  Leave a Comment  

Chance and logic

Some people say there is no luck in chess.  It’s all a matter of skill and logic.  I disagree.  I had two opponents blunder away won games this morning.  Logic went on holiday.

When humans play chess, emotion and confusion always play a role in determining the result.  “Chance happeneth to them all.”

Published in: on July 7, 2010 at 10:15 am  Leave a Comment  

Clockwork Orange Mark II vs. Blitzkrieg Mark II

Today, pre-tournament favorite Spain plays Germany, let’s call them Blitzkrieg Mark II as we have called Netherlands Clockwork Orange Mark II.  My preferred match-up on Sunday?  Clockwork Orange vs. the Blitzkrieg, and let the goals begin in the opening minutes.

Published in: on July 7, 2010 at 5:47 am  Leave a Comment  

Breakfast at dawn

Two Rooks on the seventh rank followed by a yummy checkmate for breakfast.  A new day dawns.

Published in: on July 5, 2010 at 4:49 am  Leave a Comment  

Postcard from the ghosts

Lingering light on an overcast night.  Eerily silent, even for downtown Chicago on a Sunday night, and this is 4 Jul 10.

Ghosts appear and fade away.

Published in: on July 4, 2010 at 8:51 pm  Leave a Comment  


Germany vs. Argentina at 9 Central time. I’m thinking a draw at the end of regulation time and who knows after that… Let’s face it. The future is often murky and inhabited by shadows whose substance and essence we cannot reckon.

That’s one reason why gambling is so difficult.

Published in: on July 3, 2010 at 8:40 am  Comments (2)