August 10, 2006

Happy Birthday, Michelle!

Happy Deathday, Blog!

Yeah, I'm a day late. I was kind of busy yesterday... Fisherman's Wharf, Alcatraz, Ghirardelli, cable cars, etc.

Anyway, for the few family members that still stop by... thanks. You might say the past two years have been pretty eventful for me. (And you might win Understatement of the Year.) Sometimes it seems like just yesterday I started this incarnation, other times it seems like forever ago. For example, I can't believe I hadn't even met Michelle yet when I started. That's just a little weird.

Welp, we're off to Golden Gate Park for the day. Just as last time, if you wish to know if/when I'll return to some form of online something-or-other, drop me an e-mail: mattenlow, gmail.

Thanks! Buh-bye!

01:49 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

August 03, 2006

The Big One-Oh-Oh-Oh-Oh-Oh

So yesterday I turned 32. Which is quite the landmark... in binary. [glasses poke]

Michelle took the day off of work, and we hopped the 9AM Island Queen to Martha's Vineyard for the day. It was a lot of fun. And it was very hot. SO hot, in fact... that I went in the ocean. Twice. All the way under both times. And those who know me know how big a deal that is. (Those who don't: It's a really big deal.)

This is in Oak Bluffs, near Trinity Park, which is famous for its distinctive, colorful, Victorian "gingerbread" cottages.


I want to live in one. I know I have a million bucks lying around here somewhere...

On a completely different subject, tomorrow is the 2nd birthday of the one and only mash-up I have ever created. I still like it a lot. You may download it here.

01:36 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

July 28, 2006

Funny how I have all the time in the world now (well, relatively speaking), and my motivation to post has dwindled to nothing.

I think I may wind up doing what I did with my old website... that being, retire it on an anniversary. My first post here was August 9th, 2004, and I think I will make my last post on August 9th, 2006.

Continue reading ""

10:51 AM | Permalink | Comments (3)

June 30, 2006

Mendacious Media, Part CXXI

Oh, the media might reveal a little bit of bias here and there, but they would never report something that is entirely, verifiably false, something that would take five minutes of investigation to corroborate, purely to smear Bush!... Would they?

Honestly, this is scary. The internet allows "newspeople" to just pick up tidbits they read or hear from this or that website, blog, or newspaper, and report them as news, without... oh, being a journalist and checking the veracity. It's pretty depressing to think about how many "false facts" there are floating around out there, and that way too many people believe everything they read.

08:45 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)

June 16, 2006

Unexplained Time Loss

My former co-worker Jon Matte e-mailed me yesterday to inform me of some sort of online Puzzle Hunt type of thing. There will be twelve individual puzzles total, a new one revealed each day, then the answers will come together in one final "meta-puzzle". Jon thought of me in particular because the first puzzle... well, just take a look.

I was pretty confident not only that I could solve this puzzle, but that I could do it relatively quickly, being the linguaphile that I am. And, there's a one-point bonus if you are the first one to solve the puzzle. So I set to work.

So Jon had sent his e-mail at 9:55 AM... and by 5:21 PM I had everything but the solution. Jon put the final piece into place, and we were the first team to get the correct answer.

But... OVER SEVEN HOURS on that puzzle?!? I find that hard to believe. But I guess when you're having as much fun as I was... time doesn't just fly, it breaks the sound barrier.

It is a darn good thing I didn't set eyes on that puzzle while school was in session. As it was, I had some chores to do that day that got totally ignored, and let's just say... bad move on my part.

03:44 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

June 13, 2006

All Summers Should Start So Sweetly

Yesterday was a good day.

1) I performed my last official act as a Bancroft employee: turning in my final set of grades and comments.

2) Mathematica for the Classroom, which is really just full-fledged Mathematica at a gi-normous discount for teachers, arrived in the mail, and was promptly installed on my two-day-old laptop.

3) Michelle and I saw Over The Rhine at the Paradise.

4) We got to go home together afterwards, rather than one of us dropping the other off and having to drive another half hour. We're still enjoying that.

08:17 AM | Permalink | Comments (1)

June 08, 2006

But... But... America Bad!

I like James Lileks a lot, and his column dated yesterday is priceless.

You're an enlightened world citizen. Your T-shirt says "9/11 was an inside job." You're pretty sure we're living in a fascist state, that President Bush taps the Dixie Chicks' phones, Christian abortion clinic bombers outnumber jihadis, and the war on "terror" is a distraction from the real threats: carbon emissions and Pat Robertson. Then you learn that 17 people were arrested in a terrorist bomb plot. How do you process the information? Let's take it step by step...
My favorite line is easily
The evildoer-in-chief said "they hate our freedoms"—as if we have freedoms, really, just try and get a bike-messenger job that has full health benefits.
Do read the whole thing.

08:07 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)

June 07, 2006

Latest Geometry Preoccupation

Here's a little conjucture I came up with while putting off grading my exams playing on Sketchpad.

In triangle ABC, the altitude, angle bisector, and median are drawn from A to BC, hitting BC at points X, Y, and Z respectively (such that the points on BC are in this order: B-X-Y-Z-C). Prove that if AY bisects angle XAZ, then angle BAC is a right angle.

You start with a LOT of information, and there are a LOT of ways to prove that BAC is a right angle, but... the path from beginning to end is not clear. If you're interested, I've put all that information in the extended entry.

Continue reading "Latest Geometry Preoccupation"

09:46 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)

She Who Will Not Shut Up

Oh goodie, Ann Coulter is apparently a Christian. A Christian with a new book out about... well, it's called Godless. I think we can figure it out from there.

How do you think Godless will be received by conservatives? How about liberals?

Hmmmm, well, I think conservatives will say, “Oh I see. They’re Godless. Now I understand liberals.” Liberals will say, “Who-less”?

BAAAAHAHAHAHA!!! Get it? Get it?!? Because no liberals believe in God! Ah, it's funny 'cause it's... um... oh wait, it's... actually not funny at all. And I don't mean capital-NF-Not-Funny... I mean just plain absolutely awful. I know third-graders with more sophisticated senses of humor. (Okay not really, but I could find them if you gave me five minutes or so.)

Any tiny sliver of a good point she ever has is buried in name-calling, generalizations more sweeping than STOMP and Chim Chim Cheree put together, and painful attempts at humor. She adds zero to political discourse—subtracts, in fact—and deserves to be completely ignored.

08:55 AM | Permalink | Comments (2)

May 25, 2006

I'm All Out Of Outrage

The Language Police are out in full force in Michigan.

In perhaps a well-intentioned, but pernicious example of political correctness, the Michigan Department of Education is attempting to ban the "America" and "American" from our public schools. Even though the word "America" appears in the department's own civics and government benchmarks, the department's style protocol for the Michigan Education Assessment Program requires that "America" and "Americans" be expunged from our testing and grade level expectations. Last week, the department ordered that our hard-working teachers not utter the words.

The Department of Education asserts that "Americans" includes Mexicans, Canadians and others in the Western Hemisphere, so referring to U.S. residents as Americans is inappropriate. In the department's view, "America" happens to include South, Central and North America. Accordingly, when referring to the colonial period, the state bureaucracy requires teachers to refer to "the colonies of North America" or "North Americans." After the American Revolution, the nation is called the United States (not of America).

Are you. Freaking. Kidding me.

The editorial nails the problem right away:

The state's edict would be laughable if it were not so disgraceful. Instead of focusing on better teaching methods and educational resources to help our hard-working teachers and parents, the Department of Education spends its energy on confusing, misleading, historically inaccurate and counterproductive wordplay.
And we wonder why our kids feel good about themselves, but can't read, write, or add.

07:50 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)