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2007 » November MikeFitz with overflow bit set…

Archive for November, 2007

Tolerance is not enough

Tuesday, November 27th, 2007

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Mike Fitzsimon's Facebook profile. Don't go here. You might never get out!Those of us with Facebook profiles will know that there is a space where you can, if you wish, display your religion.  You can leave it blank, select one of the major religions or write anything in there - anything at all.

Up until yesterday, my religion box announced
  “Tolerant of all; except the intolerant.”

I thought that pretty much encapsulated my belief that, as a species, we should not allow religion to divide us.  Further, those who would use religion as a weapon to divide us are the most evil people on this planet.

However, yesterday, I learned from retiring High Court judge, Justice Michael Kirby, that mere “Tolerance” is not enough.

I’m a little bit suspicious of the word tolerance. It’s a rather condescending notion, isn’t it, that you tolerate somebody else. Acceptance is the notion that you just accept that people are different and have different views and we’ve all got to live together.
  - Justice Michael Kirby in a Sunday Profile interview with Monica Attard on ABC Radio.

I share Michael Kirby’s belief that Australia is uniquely well placed as a multicultural society and a multi-religious society to find bridges between faiths and if we can do that we can make another contribution to the world, as a tolerant, accepting society.

As of yesterday, my Facebook profile announces that I am
  “Accepting of all; except the intolerant.”

Could I have said that better?

It’s Time

Thursday, November 22nd, 2007

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It’s time we stopped thinking as separate races, separate religions even as separate nations. It’s time we started thinking as one species; and an endangered one at that!

This Saturday, I’ll be handing out Green how-to-votes at my local State School.

Australian Greens leader Senator Bob Brown with Queensland Greens lead Senate Candidate, Larissa Waters
Australian Greens leader, Senator Bob Brown with Queensland Greens lead Senate Candidate, Larissa Waters

———————
Update: Wed 28 Nov 2007
Having manned the booth on my own all day, I was keen to see whether I made a difference.  It looks like I did.  Compared to surrounding polling places in the Division of Rankin, the Kimberley Park booth returned twice the swing to the Greens in the House of Representatives and about a 2% higher vote in the Senate.  My sunburn doesn’t feel nearly so bad now.

Polling Place The Greens
House of Reps
%
The Greens
House of Reps
Swing %
The Greens
Senate
%
Springwood Central 5.35 1.77 5.99
Chatswood Hills 5.40 1.72 7.44
Slacks Creek 4.49 0.95 6.03
Kimberley Park 6.10 3.25 8.16
Shailer Park 5.05 1.33 5.60
Cornubia 3.99 0.25 6.13

Reference: AEC Polling Place Kimberley Park, House of Reps, Senate.

MicroISVs and Pen Computing

Sunday, November 18th, 2007

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Qld MSDN User GroupA packed agenda for .Net developers this month with two speakers.

First up, Leon Bambrick (aka secretGeek) and then International award winning PDA and TabletPC developer, Robert Crago.

Coming out of the garage: Build your own MicroISV

Leon, developer of TimeSnapper, will walk us through what’s involved in turning latent ideas into a source of passive income and establishing your personal software empire, without resorting to cyber crime.

Also don’t miss Leon’s blog, secretGeek; entertaining as well as educational.

A Pen is NOT a Mouse

Robert’s passion is the TabletPC (”The coolest thing Microsoft has done.“)  He is currently contracting to Education Queensland assisting in the introduction of SmartPhones to senior staff.

Robert will demonstrate:

  • why today’s applications on pen-powered devices leave a lot to be desired
  • how to harness the full power of the pen and dramatically improve ease of use
  • several innovative pen-centric controls for both TabletPC and Windows Mobile devices
  • Windows Mobile 6.0 WispLite ink and handwriting recognition, and
  • saving precious screen real estate.
Date: Tuesday 20 November
Time: 17:30 for 18:00 - 19:30
Location: Microsoft Brisbane office,
Level 9, Waterfront Place, 1 Eagle St, Brisbane

These details are also available on our QMSDNUG website at www.qmsdnug.org.

Please RSVP Early
All invited; attendance is free.  Catering this month sponsored by Candle ICT.  Because of this, please rsvp by email to mike@fitzsimon.com.au before 8:00 Tuesday.  Thanks.

Fitzies in France

Thursday, November 8th, 2007

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Yep, Mrs Fitz and I are just back from three weeks in France.  You don’t want to read a day-by-day travelogue (hey, I don’t want to write one), so here’s a simple list of things we saw and did.  (Geek readers: scroll straight down to the sections on Technology, Battlefields and Driving.)

Art & Culture

Mrs Fitz and Mona Lisa.  Who has the most enigmatic smile?
Who has the most enigmatic smile?

Le Louvre: Mona Lisa by Leonardo, plus works by the other Ninja Turtles.

Musée d’Orsay: loved all the Monets, Manets, Cézannes; was surprised to see that the sculpture I knew as Rodin’s “The Thinker” is actually a disappointingly small part of a much larger work, Porte de l’Enfer.

Le Cafe La Nuit, Arles (as the Fitzies saw it)
& what we saw.
Terrasse de Cafe la Nuit (as Vincent saw it)
what he saw…
Mike and his mate Vince.
Vincent…

Vincent van Gogh: got right into Vincent - saw Starry Night Over the Rhone at the Musée d’Orsay - even bought the Starry Night souvenir tie.  Two weeks later we had a delightful lunch at the Yellow cafe in Arles which was the subject of Vincent’s Terrasse de Cafe la Nuit

Eiffel TowerEiffel Tower: Great view on a sunny day but most entertainment came from the hordes of beggars, pickpockets and tricksters.  When they asked if I spoke English (their way of filtering out prospects), I responded with “Lah Shukran” - “No Thank-you” in Arabic.  That put them off their game a little.  We saw most of the tricks coming; “Did you drop this ring? Here let me see if it fits your finger.” - a thinly-veiled attempt to deftly remove other rings, bracelets and watches.  Still, Mrs Fitz came away without a glasses case containing her prescription sunglasses.  It *might* have fallen out of her coat pocket.  After a visit to an optician and an eye-test, she now has a bi-focal souvenir of Paris with lovely French frames.

Cathedrals and Chateaux

Notre Dame: Spectacular, yes, but if I’m remembering correctly, the interior is not as extravagantly decorated as the Notre Dame cathedral we saw in Montreal last April.

Notre Dame Notre Dame Candles Notre Dame as seen from the Seine cruise
Notre Dame
Sacré Coeur at Montmartre as seen from Musée d'Orsay
Sacré Coeur

La Basilique du Sacré Coeur de Montmartre (Remember the scene in Amelie?)  More tricksters approached Mrs Fitz; this time with a loop of string; “Put your finger in here for good luck.”   My shout of “Ne touchez pas!” stopped them immediately. 

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