Archive for November 18th, 2006
I’ve been going through a string of mediocre movies—most of which I don’t even finish—but finally I got a satisfying movie that kept me watching: Lucky Number Slevin. And quite a cast: Josh Hartnett, Bruce Willis, Lucy Liu, Morgan Freeman (miscast, IMHO—needed a more threatening figure, not so grandfatherly), Sir Ben Kingsley, and Stanley Tucci, among others. But better than the cast was the script. Good photography and editing, too. Worth checking out.
Take a look at this, from the Miami Herald:
Amnesty International today derided as a ”white elephant” Pentagon plans to build a massive legal compound at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba.
”Once again, the Defense Department seems to be operating in — even constructing — its own universe,” said Larry Cox, executive director of the human rights project’s U.S. division.
“The new rules for the proposed military commissions . . . have not been made public, and not a single charge has been filed under the new system. And yet the Pentagon wants to build a permanent homage to its failed experiment in second-class justice.”
The Defense Department has notified would-be contractors that it seeks a design and construction plan for a military commissions compound at the U.S. Navy base in southeast Cuba.
It would have two courtrooms; housing for up to 1,200 U.S. forces, lawyers, members of the news media and other visitors; a 100-car motor pool; an 800-person dining facility; conference and closed-circuit television facilities and a secure work space for classified material.
Total tab: Between $75 million and $125 million, with a July 2007 completion deadline, according to a presolicitation notice dated Nov. 3, which The Miami Herald learned of on Thursday. Read the rest of this entry »
Via Lifehacker, check this out: 13,000 free fonts. (You can get just some of them, of course.)
Here’s a detailed review of Stikkit, a generalized reminder package with some smarts. In the course of the review, he mentions Backpack, which also looks interesting. I’m a sucker for this sort of software, which promises the El Dorado of being totally organized as an automatic by-product of jotting down random notes.
Here’s some basic Taser info. It seems clear—from incidents like that at UCLA yesterday—that Tasers are often used in situations that don’t call for this sort of force. And, given that they can be lethal, more controls are needed.
Alert Reader points out this story of the origin of the oldie The Martian Hop. Good fun.
Someone on AskMeFi wanted the origin of the phrase “perverse incentive,” and though I don’t know that, it did remind me of Bill Oncken’s phrase “vicious compliance”: that occurs when a boss antagonizes the team so that the members do exactly what he says, even if it’s stupid or short-sighted or overlooks some obvious drawbacks. Oncken’s point is that, if you manage the team right, they’ll take what you say and look at the goal and make sure that they achieve it. If you fail in your management, you get vicious compliance.
Good book for managers and aspiring managers, and well worth reading: Managing Management Time, by William Oncken.