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senatorhung's pad
ramblings of an information troubleshooter

information co-ordination efforts (good and bad)

permalink Sunday, 29JAN2006:

happy chinese new year to everyone !

was up until 7 playing poker online and hacking away at the pile of email in my yahoo inbox. i subscribe to newsletters from cbc, the economist, searchenginewatch, the edge, alertbox, BNA internet law, counterpane, first monday, computerworld, new comics releases, and quite a few more. plus i track a pile of blogs as well (with welcome assistance by the fabulous sage blogreader) so it's a wonder that with all my online surfing, that i still manage to get anything done in the real world.

the problem with being so curious about how the world works is that i get deluged with all sorts of data, and sometimes am not able to step back to assimilate it all. but the idea of cutting off some of these info sources that have helped me to make sense of the world in the past would be like cutting off a limb.

anyway, i slept later than i had planned, but still managed to rouse myself to make it to a community environmental summit at the aqsarniit middle school. a variety of groups made presentations - waste matters, greenhouse society, bill mackenzie humanitarian society, thrift store, etc. - but the most inspiring was a group of kids from grades 6 and 7 who represented the environment club at the middle school. they have done hundreds of environmental projects over the last couple of years and were the sparkplug for the successful composting initiative that is still ongoing. it would be great to have those kids make a presentation to city council.

i had meant to see 'memoirs of a geisha' tonight, but it will have to wait until tomorrow evening as i was too tired (and it was too cold outside !). instead, i ripped some cd's for marjorey so that she could bring her favourite music with her on vacation without lugging an entire box of cd's. of course, i snagged a few songs for myself along the way :)

  • for anyone who thinks that the concerns about the bush administration's expansive info requests under the umbrella of the war on terrorism (NSA wiretaps, library records under PATRIOT ACT) or cyberporn (google) are overblown, applefritter outlines how one can use an amazon wishlist database to pinpoint individuals with 'suspicious' profiles.
    This is what's possible with publicly 
    available information, but imagine if 
    one had access to Amazon's entire 
    database - which still contains every 
    sale dating back to 1999 by the way. 
    Under Section 251 of the Patriot Act, 
    the FBI can require Amazon to turn over 
    its records, without probable cause, 
    for an "authorized investigation ... to 
    protect against international terrorism 
    or clandestine intelligence activities." 
    Amazon is forbidden to disclose that 
    they have turned over any records, so 
    that you would never know that the 
    government is keeping records of your 
    book purchases.  And obviously it is 
    quite simple to crossreference this 
    info with data available in other 

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diving into the deep end

permalink Monday, 30JAN2006:

i mentioned over the weekend that 'snow crash' by neal stephenson is my all-time favourite book. it primed my fascination with the internet, introduced the linkage with library science and even impacted my decision to return to the north. of course, once i got home, i couldn't help myself from once again diving into the world of the black sun and didn't put the book down until 4 in the morning.

what a start to a hectic day. first up was an intro course on the access to information and protection of privacy legislation. i hurried myself to work to get there on time, only to find that we had been misinformed of the location, which was way across town. i was ready to park myself at my desk, but the instructors wisely brought the session back in-house and we burned up the rest of the morning with dicey info access scenarios.

just after lunch, i participated in a teleconference call for a national lawyers organization. right after work, it was off to a meeting of the banff mountain film festival group at the red fed building. that was followed by yet another meeting, this one of the nunavut library association, held at the arctic college boardroom.

after all of that running around, i still managed to make it to the astro for the late show of 'memoirs of a geisha' and chatted with bryan to confirm our booking of his theatre for the BMFF in march. the movie was as hollywood as could be expected from the director of 'chicago', but the film did have its moments. the snowfall-dance scene was exquisite, as was gong li's fiery petulance. michelle yeoh continually astounds with her ability to be just a girl next door one minute and then an ethereal knockout the next.

ken watanabe was excellent as the captain, and was just as charming here as he was in 'the last samurai'. the story of zhang ziyi's character did not really sustain the gravitas it was meant to hold up, but zhang's acting did manage to avoid some of the histrionics which have marred some of her previous performances. in her best scenes here, she is as luminous as the character that she played in 'the road home', which is not shabby at all.

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a vapid way to spend a day

permalink Tuesday, 31JAN2006:

when i opened my eyes this morning, it felt like i had just closed them only minutes earlier. i nearly fell out of bed trying to stand up, so i decided to call in sick and slunk back into bed to sleep the entire day away. a combination of a possible chill over the weekend, a lack of sustenance the day before and a shortage of sleep overnight all likely contributed to my stupor.

by the evening, i was feeling more myself, so i went over to olivia's scrabble tourney. 10 of us split up into 3 tables, 1 'kids', 1 'intermediate' and 1 'intense'. i started off at the intense table and initiated the board with 'vapid'. from there, it was all downhill as christa dominated, while jillian and anna duked it out for second. i snuck in the word 'eq' and managed to convince the other players that this was slang for 'equaliser'. since we didn't have a dictionary handy, no one could prove me wrong. it was all for naught, tho, as i finished in last place. looks like i'll be bumped down to the minors for the next tourney ...

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travels far and near

permalink Wednesday, 01FEB2006:

wren joins fellow iqalungmiut bloggers repo and sara on my blogroll. she will be taking a trip to south america in a couple of months, so there should be some good pix from that part of the world.

iqaluit broomball chronicle:

team white: mark, christian, JF0, karin, me
team black: kevin, marco, martha, kerry, JF1

we started off playing 4 on 4 with a sub for team white but kevin soon joined in to get everyone out onto the ice. it was a free-flowing game with some pretty passing and some ridiculous goofs by yours truly. marco circled wide past me at the centre line and charged his way towards the empty net. i was beat by a couple of bad bounces after making an initial save. but the worst was a shot from JF1 from the centre line, which i let drift by - figuring it was wide of the net - instead, it hit almost dead centre.

however, team white played very good offense in turn, to stay in the game. for once, kevin was not the wall in net and found himself beat by multiple shots from mark. kevin later redeemed himself with some wild acrobatics to prevent the ball from getting past him. when the buzzer sounded, the final tally was 7-7, with just about everyone having a hand in a goal, including JF0 who was playing in his first game back from a year away in north korea. (roughly: mark 3, marco 3, JF1 3, JF0 2, kerry 1, christian 1, gary 1, plus plenty of assists)

after a quick shower, i cabbed over to neil's place for a meeting to discuss technical details related to our planned filming of 'mahaha the tickler' in april. neil and anna showed off their new bulldog puppy 'atlas' and neil also showed off his super-deluxe editing rig that he had just finished setting up. we made plans to do some location scouting at tarr inlet and peterhead inlet this coming sunday.

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sunshine on my shoulders

permalink Thursday, 02FEB2006:

woke up to a bright sunshiney day.

bright iqaluit sunrise overlooking bay
wow! too bad i had to go to work.

got a call from sylvain today to let me know that he had a timeslot open for me to do a radio show on monday night. i will follow paul's show which will feature the playing of significant blues and jazz albums in full. it looks like i'm going to be slotted in as a 'country' show, tho i suspect that anyone tuning in to hear that 'new country' pap isn't going to be pleased with my typical selections - old 97's, dwight yoakam, blue rodeo, oh susanna, etc. oh, i'll throw in a bit of garth and a bit of patsy, but i think the rest may be a bit scattershot.

  • ip idiocy link of the day: photographs are not like other works
    I found his picture on the sidewalk 
    while getting off the bus the other 
    day.  Itís obviously a commercial 
    school portrait, and of recent 
    vintage, and I have done all kinds 
    of nasty things to disrespect 
    copyright by scanning and posting it 
    to the internet.
    But photographs, you see, are not 
    like other works. They are 
    exceptionally bad at telling us, in 
    their physical form, when, where, and 
    by whom they were created.  And 
    without that information, it is nearly 
    impossible, once that photograph is 
    divorced from a context in which that 
    information can be ascertained, to make 
    the necessary legal calculations as to 
    what your rights are, as a third party, 
    or even as the subject of the work, to 
    make use of found photos.

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first friday in february

permalink Friday, 03FEB2006:

malcolm drove me over to the afn where i picked up a key to the building, so i can get in to do my radio show on monday. i stayed for their friday lunch buffet that JF (of broomball fame) had prepared. french pea soup and a beef strip stew - very yummy.

after work, i went up to the frob for the monthly meeting of the nunavut press club. before the guest speaker began, kenn told of his just-completed adventures in california, where he had tracked down the daughter of a woman who at one time was the most famous inuk in the world. joyce aylward of the qulliq status of women council then spoke. they had recently held a forum in iqaluit on violence against women. the forum brought reps from every nunavut community to participate in the discussion, including a review of a draft bill on domestic violence. participants even continued to meet and share despite the blizzard that raged outside during one of the days of the forum.

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broomball highs and lows

permalink Saturday, 04FEB2006:

iqaluit broomball chronicle:

team white: marco, JF0, JF1, kerry, me
team black: mark, gavin, alistair, dan, christian, yoan

another rollicking matchup, this time seemingly lopsided with some heavy-duty scoring power stacked up for team white. however, with the extra man, team black made a valiant effort, helped along by having yours truly in net for team white. with marco and the JF's making some nifty crisp passes, team white built up an early 4-1 lead and appeared to be coasting to an easy win. however, team black still had a few tricks up their sleeves.

after team black's first goal squeezed out from under my outstretched leg, i managed to make up for it with a few decent saves on gavin and mark. seconds after kerry spelled me off, tho, a shot going nowhere near the net deflected off of my thigh and made a weird bounce into the goal - kerry didn't have a chance. when i went back into the goal, the next shot from yoan came in high and i felt it hit my shoulder. however, when i turned to make sure it wasn't in the net, it fell down from my shoulder and bounced in as i watched in astonishment.

with the game now tied, marco and the JF's pumped it up a notch, with kerry sweeping up at the centre line. alistair played solid centre line defence for the other side and dan was showing off some fancy footwork thanks to his new shoes. team white was only able to score one more goal before the fatigue factor kicked in and team black took command. a miscue behind the net allowed gavin to putt the ball in at a *very* wide angle as i was crossing from the other side of the net.

the coup de grace was applied as i made the mistake of screening kerry when i crossed in front of him to try to play the ball at the side of the net. christian quickly passed it off to yoan waiting in front, and he just as quickly popped it past kerry. the final tally was 7-5 for team black.

in the evening, i recorded malcolm's radio show and played a bit of online poker. afterwards, i worked on the setlist for my own 'alt-country +' show that i will re-initiate on monday nite.

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