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    Archived pages: 948 . Archive date: 2013-10.

  • Title: Ben Babcock
    Descriptive info: .. Contents.. Footer.. Top.. Ben Babcock.. About Me.. Blog.. Reading.. Math.. Photos.. Tweets by @tachyondecay.. Blog Posts.. It was my birthday and I didn't blog even if I wanted to.. Sep 23.. I’m 24 now.. It’s not much different from being 23.. I think I’ve changed a lot in a year.. Last year I felt far too young to be a teacher.. Now I’m jaded and cynical about the world of work! It’s weird to think I’m a quarter of the way through my likely life-span.. I’ve still got so much left to learn.. My birthday was actually on Friday.. Another math teacher shares the same birthday with me (same year as well), so we were looking forward to celebrating our birthdays jointly.. Cutting the iTunes cord.. Aug 30.. I’ve been using Ubuntu Linux as my primary operating system for several years now.. Ever since I first tried Linux, I’ve dual-booted it alongside a Windows installation—this means that when I turn on the computer, I can choose whether to start Windows or Linux.. Once upon a time, Windows was the default.. No longer! Ubuntu has steadily improved over the years, as has my familiarity and proficiency with Linux.. Indeed, much of what I do on the computer is faciliated by using Linux.. NSA doesn’t need to tap the wires to see your passwords.. Aug 11.. I feel like I haven’t been doing much in the way of online consuming lately.. I’ve been creating a lot, mostly writing; and most of my consumption has been in the form of good, old-fashioned literature.. Still, here’s a few things that caught my eye! It’s ridiculously easy to expose saved passwords in Chrome.. Other browsers aren’t much better, mind you.. Use a password manager—I use LastPass and am very happy with it.. The NSA scandals just keep getting weirder and more depressing.. Assassin’s Creed III and the delicate equilibrium.. Aug 04.. I originally wrote this in March and have only now gotten around to publishing it.. Go me.. I’ve already discussed my mad love for the Mass Effect series, so now let’s talk about another series that captured my fairweather gaming heart: Assassin’s Creed.. I can’t remember whether I got the original before or after I tried Mass Effect, but those were the first two games I played all the way through when I bought my Xbox 360.. Five years of uninterrupted book reviews.. Aug 01.. Next March will be my website’s tenth anniversary and also marks the anniversary of when I feel I became a citizen of the Web.. I was jealous of my brother’s “MSN account” and demanded one of my own; from there, I taught myself HTML and built a laughable Geocities website.. Indeed, you can still read some blog posts from that time.. It’s hard to believe I’ve built up such a lengthy catalogue of my thoughts and feelings through essentially my entire adolescence.. Universal fat jokes, Doctor Who will be everywhere, and apparently the Internet is no longer for porn.. Jul 28.. I’m comfortably ensconced  ...   the same person!.. Oh, yeah, oops … spoilers.. Anyway, this is a lovely….. This story was very depressing.. Like, bleak pits of despair depressing.. Chuck Wendig takes all the good things in the world and beats them up for their lunch money, which he then spends on drugs and alcohol for underage victims of abuse.. Sympathy is almost required for Atlanta Burns, but at the same time, it’s difficult to like reading about her life.. is a perfect exercise for readers who like their.. noire.. extra black.. I’m not particularly fond of the clipped style of sentence structure….. Newton's Cannon (Age of Unreason, #1).. Greg Keyes.. October 1, 2013.. I have fond memories of this trilogy from my youth.. Or, more likely, of parts of this trilogy, both because in my rebellious heyday I read things out of sequence like it was nobody's business (because it wasn't) and because my library is very fond of buying books 2 and 3 but not book 1.. So I can't recall if I ever read.. Newton”s Cannon.. , but it seemed like a good place to restart my journey through the.. Age of Unreason.. Finding it for 30 p at a library sale was just icing on the cake—it even has that….. City of Pearl (Wess'har Wars, #1).. Karen Traviss.. September 26, 2013.. Some science fiction revels in its immersion in the futurescape, that unknowable presentation of technology and society that seems so distantly related to our own.. Utopian fiction likes to posit that we will somehow overcome our vices (though, for the sake of story conflict, discover wonderful new ones).. Dystopian fiction does the opposite, amplifying our vices with scary new methods of oppression, while also offering the hope of an easy dismantling of the totalitarian bureaucracy, very often by….. Greenwitch (The Dark is Rising, #3).. Susan Cooper.. September 23, 2013.. Greenwitch.. is the third in Susan Cooper’s.. The Dark is Rising.. series.. It unites the protagonists of the previous two books.. Will Stanton meets Barney, Simon, and Jane.. Together, they foil the latest plot of the Dark, which involves stealing a secret artifact from the Greenwitch.. This entity is a construct of twigs and leaves built by the women of Trewissick in an elaborate, night-long ceremony.. They assemble the Greenwitch, then the men of the village cast it over the cliff and into the sea below….. I’m a 23-year-old Canadian teaching math and English in England.. In my free time, I read books! When I’m not reading, I’m writing, coding, or knitting.. More about me….. About this site.. I started coding websites, in bad.. HTML.. on Geocities, in 2004 in a fit of whimsy.. Since then I’ve learned PHP/MySQL, coded my own blog software, and rebuilt this site several times.. With the exception of the blog, it’s currently running on the exquisite.. Symphony CMS.. This website is hosted by.. A Small Orange.. , who provide amazing customer service.. More about this site….. Copyright © 2013 by.. Except where otherwise noted, all work available under a.. Creative Commons Licence..

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  • Title: About Me – Ben Babcock
    Descriptive info: Where to Begin?.. I am a.. time-travelling Renaissance man.. and occasional galactic saviour—but only in my head, through the books I read, and of course when playing Mass Effect.. In real life, I am 23 years old, and as such.. I live in constant danger of becoming an adult.. even as I anticipate the day I can yell at kids to get off my lawn and look the part.. My first real foray online began in 2004, when I signed up for Hotmail because I was jealous that my younger brother was using something called ".. MSN.. Messenger".. I subsequently taught myself.. and made my first website on the now-defunct.. Geocities.. platform.. Since then, I have never looked back, and I spend a significant amount of my time working on web development projects (most of them my own).. I also.. devour books like they’re a drug.. and even write fiction of my own—one day, hopefully, of high enough quality to  ...   thesis.. online.. ) Now I'm realizing my dream of being a high school teacher—albeit somewhere I hadn’t quite expected: England!.. I might be based in Britain now, but my hometown is.. Thunder Bay, Ontario.. Online, you’re very likely to find me on.. Twitter.. Goodreads.. provide support.. for the message board services InvisionFree and ZetaBoards.. One of the first communities I joined back in 2004 was the.. Star Trek™ Simulation Forum.. , where I still roleplay.. Do You Want to Know More?.. Look Under the Hood.. Learn more about what powers this site, the amazing web host I use, and software that I like.. I divulge in detail the technical history of this site, from its days on Geocities to its present form.. My Small Concession to Nationalism.. Canada, like every country, has plenty of faults.. But there are still many things I love about it—for example, we can buy milk in a bag.. Section Contents.. About this Website.. I am Canadian..

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  • Title: Recent Articles - Ben Babcock's Blog
    Descriptive info: Home.. Jump to section navigation.. Blog: Recent Articles.. It was my birthday and I didn t blog even if I wanted to.. Date.. Monday, September 23, 2013 at 2:09 PM.. |.. 0 comments.. Now I’m jaded and cynical about the world of work!.. It’s weird to think I’m a quarter of the way through my likely life-span.. I arrived at school to find a present waiting for me outside my classroom.. It was a brand new bow-tie, covered in pi symbols.. Naturally, I put it on.. Another math teacher had brought in some store-bought cake, so we had cake at lunchtime in classroom.. Oh, the joys of working on one’s birthday.. That evening I went to Norwich.. I’m rather thankful that my birthday is near (but not at) the beginning of the school year: it’s a nice reminder to relax, unwind, and pick oneself up after the first few, heavy weeks of the new school year.. This was the first time a number of we Canadian teachers have been out together this year, so it was good.. We went bowling, then we walked (and walked, and walked) to a pub where a teacher who had worked at our school last year was DJing.. I danced for a little, and then I spent the night in Norwich before going home the next day.. It was, all in all, my definition of a good “night out”: not too long, not too loud, not too crowded.. It’s difficult to convey my feelings about this school year so far.. I can say with certainty that being on a single site is far better, and I love my brand-new classroom.. I’m so happy to have a SMART board again.. However, there are a lot of challenges and other issues.. I don’t think I fully appreciated the scope of.. non-teaching.. -related tasks that suck so much time out of my day.. Bureaucracy is a tricky, self-perpetuating machine.. Back to Top.. Friday, August 30, 2013 at 10:30 PM.. I’ve been using.. Ubuntu Linux.. as my primary operating system for several years now.. No longer!.. Ubuntu has steadily improved over the years, as has my familiarity and proficiency with Linux.. For example, in university I started using.. LaTeX.. to typeset math proofs, and Linux has several great LaTeX editors (I like.. Kile.. ).. I also spend a fair amount of time coding, and Linux makes installing development stacks for.. LAMP.. or Python a breeze.. Plus, I’ve started using git, which on Windows is an experience … well, it’s an experience.. Still, Windows still has the edge for certain tasks.. This includes SMART Notebook, the software I use for preparing lessons—to its credit, SMART has a Linux version, but it doesn’t receive updates as frequently, and it doesn’t perform as well as the Windows version.. Steam used to be a major reason for me to boot into Windows, but now it works natively in Linux, and there are plenty of games to keep me entertained.. My last major reason for resorting to Windows was iTunes.. Some people swear by iTunes, and others would like nothing more than to see it burn in a metaphorical hellfire.. I’m somewhere in the middle; for me, iTunes is a necessary evil.. There are better ways to organize my library, but for the longest time, it has remained the most convenient way for me to purchase music.. I’ve been getting frustrated by this dependence on iTunes.. For a while now, I’ve been putting off buying music because it means stopping whatever I’m doing, booting into Windows, applying updates, updating iTunes, and downloading the music.. That all sounds so time-consuming that I procrastinate, and because I’m lazy, I don’t note the songs I want to buy, so I forget them, and then I don’t buy music at all.. This benefits no one—not Apple, not the artists, and certainly not me!.. There has to be a better way.. I knew iTunes was but one of many music stores.. The only one I could name off the top of my head was Amazon’s, and I wanted to see if there were any more palatable alternatives before surrendering yet more money to this online giant.. So, I hit the tubes and did some more thorough research.. I discounted eMusic.. It has a plugin for Banshee, my Linux music player of choice.. However, I just want to buy songs or albums apiece, not subscribe to a monthly service.. Next I explored the Ubuntu One music store, which is now available online.. It seemed like the perfect iTunes replacement for Linux … but its selection is incredibly limited, at least from my experience using whatever store is available in Canada.. Digging deeper, I discovered that Ubuntu partnered with.. 7digital.. for its music offerings.. Its limited selection is a result of a tradeoff to avoid maintaining so many region-dependent stores—which I totally understand, but it just didn’t work for me.. But 7digital seemed like a viable option: great selection, available in Canada and the UK, and reasonable prices.. I bought.. 21.. by Adele;.. It’s Not Me, It’s You.. , by Lily Allen;.. Life in Cartoon Motion.. , by Mika; and.. Sounds from Nowheresville.. We Started Nothing.. , by the Ting Tings.. (Most of these come by way of discovery on.. doubleTwist’s Magic Radio.. ) After purchase, 7digital let me download everything as one gigantic zip archive.. Even cooler, 7digital has an Android app.. I listen to my music primarily on my phone and tablet, and until now I’ve synced it using doubleTwist’s egregious Windows program.. (It’s like pulling teeth with the door-slamming method.. ) Through 7digital’s app, I can download or stream any music that I’ve purchased; once downloaded to my phone, doubleTwist automatically picks up on it without any problem.. So, in conclusion, I have cut the iTunes cord and simplified syncing my music to my mobile devices.. Oh, and I have some good tunes for my flight back to England.. Not too shabby for a day’s work, eh?.. Sunday, August 11, 2013 at 9:31 PM.. Still, here’s a few things that caught my eye!.. It’s.. ridiculously easy to expose saved passwords in Chrome.. Use a password manager—I use.. LastPass.. and am very happy with it.. The.. NSA.. scandals just keep getting weirder and more depressing.. Now, apparently, evidence has come to light that other federal agencies are.. getting evidence from the NSA and lying about where it comes from.. That’s not just a subversion of the justice system; it’s outright perversion.. Even Daniel Ellsberg.. agrees Snowden should have fled the country.. If you read anything about the NSA/Snowden debacle this week, read.. Bruce Sterling’s essay.. about how Snowden and Assange are redefining our ideas of activism.. Here’s an.. excellent essay on why the pernicious belief in creationism matters.. by Laura Helmuth, on Slate.. Still not sick of poiltics? OK, one more article: Sady Doyle on.. why Hilary Clinton terrifies the Republican Party.. I’m quite stoked about.. About Time.. , a new time-travel movie from Richard Curtis (.. Love Actually.. ,.. Pirate Radio.. Check out.. the trailer here.. Blooper reels from TV shows can be a lot of fun.. Here’s a short compilation from.. Star Trek: The Next Generation.. This is a really neat, touching story about how.. a grandson stays connected to his grandfather’s writing.. through Dropbox:.. Even though we’ve talked about it, my grandpa still doesn’t really know what Dropbox is, but there’s no better feeling than a quick chuckle he gives when I call him now and tell him that I noticed he saved an update, or ask him why he didn’t save one.. Sometimes you don’t have to understand a technology for it to make your life better.. Sunday, August 4, 2013 at 11:11 AM.. I’ve already discussed.. my mad love for the.. Mass Effect.. , so now let’s talk about another series that captured my fairweather gaming heart:.. Assassin’s Creed.. I can’t remember whether I got the original before or after I tried.. , but those were the first two games I played all the way through when I bought my Xbox 360.. And, like the other series, I’ve followed.. through its various sequels.. Back in January, I finished playing.. Assassin’s Creed III.. after wrestling with whether to continue it at all.. It occurred to me that I have never really set down my thoughts about these games.. So, before I pan that one, let me celebrate its predecessors.. How These Games Earned My Loyalty.. I appreciated the stealth mechanic of.. , as well  ...   beginning to enjoy myself and looking forward to my sessions each day.. Then it was over! And we counted our dead, the game and I, and took a tally.. I didn’t like the setting, and in particular the effect of the setting on the decisions made by the developers.. Where is my free-climbing, rooftop-jumping Old World Europe? Why are the buildings so spaced apart? (No, I do not think that being able to jump along some tree limbs is adequate recompense.. ) Why couldn’t you set a game in Victorian London, and have me fight Jack the Ripper? But no, we’re stuck in eighteenth-century Boston and New York, and I spent most of my time running around or on horseback.. I didn’t like the main characters (any of them).. Connor is self-righteous and.. dull.. , and his priorities shift whenever the game needs a new reason to get him into hot water.. Desmond, as usual, has all the personality of a flattened nail.. And Haytham is a smug, self-satisfied villain who talks too much.. There is nothing.. endearing.. about these characters and precious little that is sympathetic.. The Race Thing.. I am intentionally avoiding discussing Connor’s racial background or the game’s treatment of history and the involvement of Aboriginal peoples in the Revolutionary War.. I don’t know enough about those subjects to really do them justice.. It’s commendable for Ubisoft to.. try.. to make games more diverse by featuring a Native American protagonist.. There should be more.. But that doesn’t mean they really did a very good job, as.. this reviewer of.. Assassin’s Creed III: Liberation.. observes when it comes to the half-French, half-African protagonist of that game.. So, props to Ubisoft for the attempt, but shame on Ubisoft for defending the historicity and originality of such approaches instead of engaging in a more meaningful dialogue about race in video games.. And there is the ending.. Oh, what an ending—or endings, I should say, since there is the conclusion of Connor’s story as well as Desmond’s.. I have already complained about the frequency and usage of cutscenes in this game.. Connor’s final mission and pursuit of Charles Lee is full of padding, including cutscenes, and it is ultimately one last, pathetic attempt by the game to get me to care for this character.. There’s supposed to be something ironic about Connor pursuing Lee into a tavern, sitting down at the same table, and sharing one last drink with him before stabbing him.. But it left me cold—mostly because I wasn’t the one doing the stabbing.. Once again, the game had decided that I, the player, was not important enough to undertake such a task.. As for Desmond, I enjoyed his ending even less, but for much the same reasons.. Minerva and Juno present Desmond with a choice, and it is literally the fate of the world.. And what do I, the player, get to do? I get to.. watch.. No one asks my opinion.. There is no choice system here like at the end of.. Mass Effect 3.. And, to be fair, these games have never been about letting the player make choices.. But I still expect more than being forced to sit through a five minute movie called “Desmond Saves the World by Being Bland and Self-Righteous.. I Never Thought I Would Say It: I Miss Ezio.. ultimately did not impress me.. I wish I could say was I looking forward to.. Assassin’s Creed IV.. and its inevitable new storylines, but the idea of pirates doesn’t enthuse me like it once did.. (This might have something to do with the naval missions in this game, which soon became my worst nightmare.. ) I’m worried that this game has ruined my opinion of the series forever, not by being outright awful but simply by being bland.. All good things end, and all good things.. should.. end.. But whereas Ubisoft had the chance to go out with a bang, in every instance their choices earned them a whimper.. I still like this series overall.. And I might end up playing the next game, depending on whether I have an Xbox at the time and what my schedule is like.. Somehow, though, I suspect my heart will forever remain under the Tuscan sun, accompanied by an aged, well-travelled Italian assassin who has earned my sympathy and respect.. Together, we will scale basilicas and towers; battle corrupt officials, knights, and popes; and revive an ancient and hallowed order sworn to safeguard freedom.. So long for now,.. Have fun getting that shark out of the pool.. Thursday, August 1, 2013 at 9:41 PM.. I was jealous of my brother’s “.. account” and demanded one of my own; from there, I taught myself.. and built a laughable Geocities website.. (It’s also somewhat scary!).. Of course, that’s next year’s anniversary.. Tonight, though, as I posted yet another book review to.. , I realized I missed another arbitrary base-ten milestone anniversary.. For the past five years, I have written (and shared) a review of every book I’ve read.. I joined Goodreads in May of 2008 on the recommendation of a friend, who was a casual user of the site.. I quickly became passionate about using Goodreads to organize, interrogate, and express how I read.. My to-read shelf has since exploded to encompass nearly 900 titles, and it is going to continue growing.. At this rate, if I were to read the books in the order they have been added, it will take me until 2016 (at least) to read the most recent book I’ve added to the list.. I’m just now getting to books I added in 2009.. I know many (indeed, most) people do not use Goodreads the way I do.. It’s not essential that you write a review of every book, or indeed of.. any.. book, in order to enjoy the site.. That’s just how I use it.. I made it my mission not just to write thoughtful reviews or to review every book I read but to write thoughtful reviews of every book I read.. Indeed, I’ve even written reviews for.. some (though not all) of the books I didn’t finish reading.. ! (In fact, whether I think I can write a review up to my personal standards influences whether I finish a book—if I don’t finish it, I don’t require myself to write a review.. ).. Goodreads fits a niche for me.. It acts as an extended memory, a diary for my thoughts on reading.. Since reading is an activity I cherish, it’s important to me that it is not just an ephemeral experience.. By recording what I think of each book, I preserve the experience of reading it.. Sharing it is a bonus—it goes a small way towards returning the solitary act of reading to its social origins.. If my reviews provoke discussion, or contribute to a larger discourse, so much the better.. We all have achievements that make us proud, and we all have artifacts that remind us of these achievements.. Some people have medals and trophies; others have photos (or it didn’t happen).. Some people look to the art they’ve created or the craft they have produced.. These things make us special, not necessarily because we are the.. only.. people to accomplish them, but because not everyone has accomplished them.. They are things we have chosen to do and put effort into achieving (and, hopefully, enjoyed in the process).. I don’t run marathons, and my crafting is only an incipient, if not vestigial, reflex.. But over the course of five years, I’ve produced about 700 reviews.. That’s pretty cool.. And, of course, I’m just getting started.. Archives.. 2013.. September.. (1).. August.. (4).. July.. June.. May.. (2).. April.. March.. (3).. February.. January.. 2012.. December.. November.. October.. (7).. 2011.. (5).. 2010.. (8).. 2009.. 2008.. (9).. (17).. 2007.. (6).. (10).. 2006.. (11).. (14).. (13).. (15).. 2005.. 2004.. Search.. Random Articles.. Class of 2007.. Iday Diary for Friday, June 22.. VSNS Lemon 3.. 2.. 1 released.. Do you know the Muffin Man?.. Happy Birthday, Dad!.. About me.. I m a 23-year-old university student who spends too much time on the computer.. Most of that time I m writing or coding.. When I m not on the computer, I may be reading, working, or my Internet connection may be down.. More about me.. If you re looking for hosting, use the promo code.. TACHYONDECAY.. to get $5 off or.. TBAY15.. to get 15% off when ordering.. More about this site.. Copyright 2013 by.. under a..

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  • Title: Reading – Ben Babcock
    Descriptive info: Random Review.. The Third Chimpanzee: The Evolution Future of the Human Animal.. Jared Diamond.. October 22, 2009.. My reaction to this book is probably the….. Featured Lists.. Thomas Hardy.. Thomas Hardy is my second-favourite Victorian novelist (after.. George Eliot.. I love his focus on the rural aspects of Victorian life, as opposed to Dickens’ urban life in England.. Hardy’s keen sense of class injustice can make for some painful reading (especially in.. Jude the Obscure.. Hugo Award for Best Novel.. These are all the winners of the Hugo Award for Best Novel that I have read to date.. Why I Read.. Mostly for entertainment and edification.. Reading is fun, and reading is a great way to learn.. Although I indulge in television, movies, and video games, reading is my favourite way to relax.. With a book, I can experience the story at my own pace, moving faster or slower as my interest demands.. Books offer  ...   have some favourite areas of fiction and non-fiction, and there are areas I avoid.. When I first began reading on my own, I devoured mysteries: Hardy Boys, Nancy Drew, Agathie Christie, Arthur Conan Doyle.. Then I discovered science fiction and fantasy, and those remain my favourite genres today.. I still delve into mysteries, historical fiction, and a variety in between, but science fiction and fantasy are my mainstays.. For non-fiction, I mostly read books about science and technology.. In particular, I love books about the history and philosophy of science, technology, or mathematics.. You can follow my reading above, or at.. Best 10 Books of….. Worst 10 Books of….. Series I’ve Read.. A Song of Ice and Fire.. Culture Novels.. Dresden Files.. Gentleman Bastard.. Hunger Games.. Kushiel's Legacy.. Promethean Age.. Raine Benares.. Recluce Saga.. Robert Langdon Novels.. Saga of Seven Suns.. Sleepless Trilogy.. Sword of Truth.. Uglies.. Uplift.. Virga.. Book Lists.. Yearly Reading Statistics.. Book Review..

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  • Title: Mathematics Topics of Interest – Ben Babcock
    Descriptive info: Mathematics Topics of Interest.. I am a mathematics major at.. Currently my career aspiration is to teach mathematics at the high school level, but I love learning and discussing math for math's sake.. My areas of interest are commutative algebra, logic, and set theory.. I have not had the chance to take many abstract algebra courses, but I have been lucky enough to do summer research in that area.. For my fourth-year honours thesis, I am studying modern axiomatic set theory and the Banach-Tarski Paradox..  ...   completed as a requirement of my undergraduate degree.. The Spreading and Covering Numbers.. In the summer of 2010, I received an.. NSERC.. USRA.. I studied the spreading and covering numbers with.. Dr.. Adam Van Tuyl.. These numbers are related to the Ideal Generation Conjecture.. My job was to look into methods of computing more values for these numbers using.. Macaulay2.. SHARCNET.. I continued my research in the summer of 2011, and this culminated in a paper published in 2013 in the.. Australasian Journal of Combinatorics..

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  • Title: It was my birthday and I didn't blog even if I wanted to - Ben Babcock's Blog
    Descriptive info: It was my birthday and I didn't blog even if I wanted to.. Cutting the iTunes cord.. Categories:.. birthday.. me.. Open wide.. Crunchy tickets.. We have slogan!.. Game review time.. The census controversy: a travesty of Galilean proportion..

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  • Title: Cutting the iTunes cord - Ben Babcock's Blog
    Descriptive info: NSA doesn’t need to tap the wires to see your passwords.. It was my birthday and I didn t blog even if I wanted to.. music.. Ubuntu.. Windows.. Small break in the madness.. Student teaching, come and gone.. My father was a nondeterministic polynomial-time algorithm.. Some villainy to brighten your day.. VSNS Lemon 4.. 0 RC 1 released..

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  • Title: NSA doesn’t need to tap the wires to see your passwords - Ben Babcock's Blog
    Descriptive info: Assassin’s Creed III and the delicate equilibrium.. link dump.. movies.. politics.. technology.. Spatial sense (get some).. American Gods.. Spark.. One Red Paperclip.. Start the revolution..

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  • Title: Assassin’s Creed III and the delicate equilibrium - Ben Babcock's Blog
    Descriptive info: Five years of uninterrupted book reviews.. reviews.. video games.. Xbox.. Happy Canada Day!.. 0.. 1 is released!.. Our pointy-haired economy.. Happy birthday, mom!.. My love-hate relationship with Disney..

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  • Title: Five years of uninterrupted book reviews - Ben Babcock's Blog
    Descriptive info: Universal fat jokes, Doctor Who will be everywhere, and apparently the Internet is no longer for porn.. milestones.. reading.. Wallpaper is karmically irresponsible.. Stranger Than Fiction.. Man and Nature, Side by Side.. On romance and genre in literary criticism.. OMG, one more Hugo post..

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  • Title: Universal fat jokes, Doctor Who will be everywhere, and apparently the Internet is no longer for porn - Ben Babcock's Blog
    Descriptive info: Home for the summer.. Sunday, July 28, 2013 at 10:08 AM.. Doctor Who.. Game of Thrones.. Internet.. science.. television.. Until then, though, things happen on the Internet.. We.. be getting a.. 50th anniversary special trailer any time soon, because.. they screened it at Comic-Con.. But apparently, according to the comments section, that isn’t going to happen.. However, I am somewhat assuaged because.. the special will be simulcast around the world.. , which means I don’t have to worry about spoiling it for my dad (or Twitter spoiling it for anyone else).. Watch this “in memoriam” video.. for the myriad characters who have died during the first three seasons of.. Spoilers, obviously.. In an interesting spot of science news,.. evolution might be more predictable than we thought.. It’s hard to get testable hypotheses out of macro-evolutionary theory, thanks to the time scales involved, but scientists are always finding ways around that.. Also, on the cosmological side of evolution, it’s possible that what we have taken for expansion of the universe is actually just.. mass gain.. I love new theories of cosmology!.. We’ve also discovered that some of the heavier elements in the universe are not so much the product of supernovae as they are.. neutron  ...   government also wants to block online pornography by default.. This is being done in the name of “protecting the children”, which always sounds good in a sound bite—except that the same blocking tools will also.. block other content.. (including “web forums”, oooh, so scary), in a censorship move strangely reminiscent of China.. I thought we were supposed to condemn other countries’ disrespect of free speech, not emulate them? And even if you can stomach the moral issues around such censorship (not to mention the absurdly hypocritical nature of the basic proposal itself), there are so many.. practical problems.. with this idea.. And finally, if you read nothing else, you should check out.. Jon Negroni’s syncretic theory of Pixar.. , in which he attempts to place all of Pixar’s movies into a single, coherent universe.. The scary thing is: it works.. That’s all I’ve got for you today.. I must finish re-packing the explosion that is my suitcase and marshal some arguments for a future blog post about how awesome.. Continuum.. has become, with probable counterpoint from my less-impressed dad.. Life s an adventure.. And the geek shall inherit the Earth.. Down to Earth.. Free stuff.. Swype: The compromise between QWERTY familiarity and touchscreen elegance..

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