Ryerson University Gets a Boring New Name

And so it came to pass that Ryerson University, formerly Ryerson Polytechnic, was renamed “Toronto Metropolitan University”. You’d think with so many smart and creative people who are, no doubt, in reach of the university naming committee, that they would have picked something displaying a tad more imagination. Ye gods and demons! Doesn’t Toronto already have a “University of Toronto” which, as I recall, is in Metropolitan Toronto? Were they all short for time? On their way to a gender reveal party (involving lots of explosives) being filmed for an epic and soon to be viral TikTok video, or something …

Why I Don’t Use Ad Blockers

Even as I admit my deep hatred of certain kinds of ads, I might hate ad blockers even more, whether it’s AdBlock or another company. More often than I can accept, ad block extensions block content that I actually want to see. Not everything that they think is an ad is, in fact, an ad. Let me make my own mind up about what is an ad and what isn’t. I’m probably even more annoyed by browsers that ship with ad blockers turned on by default. If this is all about choice, then let me made up my own damn …

To Sleep, Perchance to Die.

It was a long time ago. That part, at least, is something I am sure of. Somebody used the expression, “You can sleep when you’re dead,” and I kind of loved it. So, I started saying it myself, except that I would say, “I’ll sleep when I’m dead,” To this day, I still say it. I’ll sleep when I’m dead. I was young. Strong. I had things to do. Sleeping seemed like a complete and utter waste of time. So much to do and so little time to do it. I had dreams to chase and sleep just got in …

Money Has Officially Jumped The Shark

One of the hard truths of our world is that money is really just a collective fantasy that only works because we’re all in on the game. There’s an expression, “suspension of disbelief,” that is usually reserved for written works of fiction, movies, or television shows, where the person enjoying the fiction is willing to temporarily accept the fictional premise as real for the same of entertainment. If you pause in the middle of a show (let’s use Game of Thrones” for fun) and you decide to note every place where this or that can’t possibly be real or make …

What’s Your Contribution?

As this pandemic drags on, it raises questions about the value of what each of us does for a living, when compared to the amount of money that we make for those jobs. There isn’t a day that goes by right now, or somebody doesn’t talk about the heroes who are working in the medical field, or the heroes who are working on the front lines, or the heroes working in the grocery stores and providing us with essential goods and services, but the question that needs to be asked whenever we discuss all these people, is how we assign …

The American Ethos of “No Man Left Behind” During COVID19

The American ethos of “no man gets left behind” is an enduring one. There are countless stories and movies built around that very theme: in America, no one gets left behind. No challenge is too great, and no price is too high, when it comes to making sure that our brothers and sisters come home safe. It’s amazing then, to consider how quickly many Americans are willing to sacrifice “a few hundred thousand people” for the sake of the economy. How do you get from “no one” to “a few hundred thousand people” as Scott Adams, creator of Dilbert opined …

This is Just a Dress Rehearsal

As we struggle with #COVID19, emotionally, financially, socially, & with our lives, we should consider that this pandemic is a dress rehearsal for something bigger, and we’re failing. Old, bad, ideas need to be retired. Spoiler alert: we have a lot of those old bad ideas to retire. America has shown that its desire to make a buck on everything by refusing to adopt Universal Healthcare, is killing its own citizens and making a dreadful disease worse for the entire world. For profit hospitals, health care, education, justice, etc, is hurting us all. Ayn Rand and her idiotic ideas be damned, …

Linux, Open Source, and Civil Disobedience

When I was still arguably a kid, there was an old TV show that my friends and I all watched called, “Baretta.” In the show’s theme song, “Keep Your Eye on the Sparrow,” voiced by the great Sammy Davis Jr., we hear the words, “Don’t do the crime if you can’t do the time.” The show starred one Robert Blake, an actor who, as it turns out, would later be charged with murder. He was acquitted but later charged with “wrongful death” in a civil suit which he lost, despite the criminal murder acquittal. But I digress . . . …

The Death of Capitalism

I’ve been listening to a fascinating discussion regarding the death of capitalism on CBC’s “Ideas” program. I’m only about half way through it, but the subject matter is important and somewhat unsettling. Here’s a quote from where I’ve paused in my podcast app. “Democracy was always a problem in a capitalist society. There’s an enormous inherent tension between the two. Democracy is inherently egalitarian because every citizen has one vote. And the rich also have one vote but the rich are only five percent. Whereas in the market, every dollar has a vote. And the capitalist economy in particular functions …

Schrödinger’s Elon Musk

Are we living in a simulation? In various interviews, Elon Musk has famously stated that there is a one-in-a-billion chance that we are not living in a simulation. Turning that around, he is saying that we are almost certainly living in a made up universe. A hyper-realistic fantasy. He cites, among other things, the rapid increases in video game development, to show that given enough time, it should be possible to create a perfect simulation. And, if such a perfect simulation has been created, then it must be created time and time again. Some people make light of this argument, …

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