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Scary The Dave
16 March 2007 @ 02:07 pm
Dearest Government of the United States of America,

I am a student at the University of Georgia studying linguistics and various aspects of computer science. I am an honors student at this institution and thoroughly involved. (This bears little relevance to my suggestion, but at least gives you some idea of who I am.)

My inspiration--this (http://www.wired.com/wired/archive/15.03/start.html?pg=10) article from Wired. The article makes jest that internet users can take advantage of Google Earth to investigate critical areas of the world, particularly the border region of Pakistan to search for bin Laden.

My proposal--the government should commission regular efforts to satellite image regions where bin Laden or other threats may be in hiding. Increased scrutiny will make it difficult for enemies to remain in hiding, and unpredictable timing of photography would keep them guessing. More importantly, the government can take advantage of patriotic sentiments and the same online culture that inspires intense productivity on Wikipedia by encouraging citizens and volunteers in general to scour images based on particular search criteria. The government would provide basic lessons/information regarding photo interpretation on a website and, on the same site, provide the latest images for perusal. Registration restrictions would be possible--perhaps require that only US citizens can apply and require that they apply through some physical office such as the DMV so that visual confirmation of identity/citizenship could be used as well. Hence, confirmed US citizens, unlikely to use the images against our nation, could help directly in the fight against terrorism.

Collaborative efforts like this are the quintessential source of power online: the US government should take advantage of modern technologies.

Thank you for your time.

David M Howcroft
Ramsey Scholar & Concerned Citizen

Postscript: Such an exercise could also be billed as an effort to speed up troop reductions--if citizens at home can help the government with war efforts in Iraq or elsewhere, war objectors will want to contribute as well as supporters of the war out of their devotion to the cause. Obviously we would not want to provide images that reveal too much detail of our own troop locations, but citizens could help in searches of lower priority areas of crucial importance where a lack of manpower limits current efforts. This would be a fantastic political move, as well as a potentially effective military contribution.
Scary The Dave
03 February 2007 @ 07:09 pm
I'm sure most of you already know about this, but check the games of economics and politics.

Scary The Dave
13 January 2007 @ 04:02 pm
I don't like the fact that our troops and Iraqi citizens are dying daily in Iraq. I don't even like that terrorists are dying, though that is their choice (it's a waste of life: there's so much out there for them to enjoy if they tried; their energies would be better invested elsewhere).

Even so, I disagree more with those demanding immediate withdrawal of our troops than with the President's plan to send in more troops to help bring stability (a plan supported, apparently, by leaders on the ground in Iraq). I don't want people to lose life unnecessarily, but I feel that is why our troops must stay until we can at least stabilize the area. If we pull out, the Iraqi government, military, police may do some good, but I am concerned that centuries of cultural conflict may result in a civil war that only rebottle the discontent with its eventual resolution.

My ideal solution would be to stabilize the area, encouraging an atmosphere of tolerance, and granting distinct cultural regions their own autonomy (nation-states), while some more diverse areas may remain inter-national and -cultural with some form of neutral governance (probably by committee and consensus of the member nation-states).

That's all for now.

(The article that prompted this: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/6255151.stm)
Scary The Dave
13 December 2006 @ 12:48 am
So let's find each other:

It's got a bit of a six degrees vibe, like 100 million spiders or whatever that site is, but doesn't require personal information to play. It's pretty cool, really, so you should go ahead and register ^^
Scary The Dave
07 October 2006 @ 01:52 am
Who am I?

(Feel free to respond anonymously and give me the truth.)
Scary The Dave
26 June 2006 @ 04:06 am
Just got a response from Mrs Klein regarding the following image.

MLA Furniture

The message read:

"That was a great picture! What, is the MLA branching out?
Probably spend so much time sitting on their #@$&*es making
up rules to madden the educated that they wore out their
old furniture! Thanks for the giggle."

I hope she doesn't take offense that I shared this with all of you, but I hoped that the giggles could be shared.
Scary The Dave
21 June 2006 @ 11:03 pm
Get yourselves some standards-compliant browsers--download Opera 9 (from opera.com).

Features include:
-Built-in email (with RSS)
-Built-in BitTorrent support
-All the standard Opera perks, including tabbed browsing (which is also available in Firefox)

Seriously guys, you should all at least be using Firefox instead of Internet Explorer, and, if there's anyone out there using the AOL (or any other ISP-based browser), then you might be bumped from my friends list XP

At least go to the site and investigate the browser. The cool thing to me is that Opera is the first serious browser to have full (and correct) support for CSS2, as shown by it's passing the Acid2 test. (Google Acid2 and take the test provided at the WaSP website yourself; you'll see what the problems are with your browser.)

That's just my little rant. I just finished downloading O9 and am busy installing it; while I may still use Firefox for a while, I'm expecting to enjoy Opera and switch over completely. Obviously I'll report back.

Scary The Dave
20 June 2006 @ 11:21 am
Nobody told me that Yakitate!! Japan ended at episode 69!
Current Mood: sadsad
Scary The Dave
19 June 2006 @ 08:32 am
Post a fairly plain picture of yourself as your default userpic and challenge your friends to create amusing icons using the image. I've posted my icon and already received two random, fun icons. Have at it, yo.

I look forward to your responses.