The Daily Parker

Politics, Weather, Photography, and the Dog

The de facto equinox

If you live in the Northern Hemisphere, today is the first day since March 17th with less day than night. Yes, Friday was the autumnal equinox, when the earth's axis was perpendicular to its orbital plane. But because the atmosphere refracts the sun's light about 0.85°, days are always just a little longer than nights on equinoxes.

You can get sunrise and sunset information for your location at Weather Now.

F-14 retires

The F-14 Tomcat has officially retired:

The F-14, a big fighter with variable sweep wings, was deployed in 1972 to defend aircraft carrier groups against Russian bombers carrying cruise missiles. When that threat collapsed, it was converted to a ground support aircraft covering troops in Bosnia and Kosovo in the late 1990s and, as late as last year, in Iraq. It's been replaced by the F/A-18 Super Hornet.

The F-14 was featured prominently in the 1986 movie Top Gun.

Today's Daily Parker

Anne and I had company last night: my colleague Cameron Beatley, his wife Sarah, and their two-year-old son Jamie. Parker had never gotten the opportunity to play with a small person before. Cameron apparently got in the way:

Fall cleaning

Both of my blogs are now up: the Inner Drive Software blog, in which I will write about matters of professional interest (i.e., software, computers, security, and business); and The Daily Parker, in which I talk about nearly everything else.

All of this required upgrading dasBlog on my servers, figuring out which theme to use, customizing the themes, and configuring the blogs. Despite my initial experience with dasBlog when I first started using it, I think the current version (1.9) is really quite slick and usable. Good work, Newtelligence AG.

I shall now do something completely different, like play with the dog.

Something has changed

Anne and David I'm David Braverman, and this is my blog.

This blog has actually been around for nearly a year, giving me time to figure out what I wanted to do with it. Initially, I called it "The WASP Blog," the acronym meaning "Weather, Anne, Software, and Politics." It turns out that I have more than four interests, and I post to the blog a lot, so those four categories got kind of large.

I also got kind of tired of the old colors.

And, today, I finally had the time to upgrade to das Blog 1.9, which came out just a few days ago.

I may add categories as time goes on, and I'm going to start using sub-cagetories. But at this point, here are the main topics on the Daily Parker:

  • Anne. For reasons that passeth understanding, she married me, and now she's the most important part of my life. And now that I've dropped the clever acronym, she can be Topic #1.
  • Biking. I ride my bikes a lot. This year I prepared for two Century rides but, alas, my gallbladder decided to explode earlier this month. I might not have a lot to say for the next few months, but next year, I have big plans.
  • Jokes. All right, I admit: when I'm strapped for ideas, sometimes I just post a dumb joke.
  • Parker, our dog, whom we adopted on September 1st.
  • Politics. I'm a moderate-leftie by International standards, which makes me a radical left-winger in today's United States. More than 848 days and 22 hours remain in the worst presidential administration in history, so I have plenty to write about.
  • Software. I own a small software company in Evanston, Illinois, and I have some experience writing software. I see a lot of code, and since I often get called in to projects in crisis, I see a lot of bad code. Posts in this blog about software will likely be cross-posted from the blog I'm about to start, Inner Drive Software.
  • The weather. I've operated a weather website for more than seven years. That site deals with raw data and objective observations. Many weather posts also touch politics, given the political implications of addressing climate change under a President who's beholden to the oil industry.

This is public writing, too, so I hope to continue a standard of literacy (i.e., spelling, grammar, and diction) and fluidity of prose that makes you want to keep reading.

So thanks for reading, and I hope you continue to enjoy the blog.

Is bin Laden dead?

The Saudis and French seem to think so:

Osama bin Laden is dead. At least according to Saudi intelligence sources cited by a French newspaper, which in turn claims to have obtained a document leaked to them by French counter-intelligence services.
The news of the death of al-Qaida's chief was reported in the Saturday edition of l'Est Republicain, a respected regional daily. The French paper cites a memo they claim was obtained from the French counter-espionage agency, the Direction Générale des Services Extérieurs, or the DGSE.

Wow.

(The story was first broken this morning by Talking Points Memo.)