nicknich3: SmartBro in Malaybalay has tiny bandwidth today … on a Sunday! I think they’re just soaking us … because they can. (via Twitter / nicknich3)
What a month. A former president convicted on plunder charges; another president, in the vortex of the ZTE controversy, staring into the abyss.
I hope you will agree with me that the sheer amount of information available to us at this particular moment in our history has educational value: that is, they teach us (if we are willing to learn) valuable (if sometimes discouraging) lessons in citizenship and governance.
Because we are forced to process so much information, we find ourselves sharing in the work of reporters and analysts and opinion-makers. (This may well be the first lesson in citizenship; in the age of the blog, we are all, potentially, members of the fourth estate.)
But forgive me, I did not set out to talk theory. All I really wanted to do was to offer a reflection of something that has bothered me in the last four weeks or so. At the risk of leaving context behind, let me get straight to the point: I worry sometimes that we can easily mistake remembering for reporting.
In the first 24 or even 36 hours after the Estrada plunder conviction came down, speculation that the decision was “1,000-plus pages” long hardened. Indeed, in this blog, some of our commenters advised or teased or taunted their partners in the conversation to read the 1,000-page decision first, before jumping to conclusions. And yet—-and here is the worrying thing—-they themselves were jumping to conclusions, because in fact the decision was “only” 262 pages long (nowhere near the 1,000-page milestone).
I hasten to add that I saw this tendency, to accept something reported in the media and remember it as stock knowledge, at work in many other forums, too, especially in text messages sent to and read by radio news commentators.
At the first Senate hearing on the NBN-ZTE arrangement, when Joey de Venecia dramatically reenacted Mike Arroyo’s alleged intervention in the deal (”Back off!”), some included a superfluous, indeed non-existent, detail in their recounting. I read in one piece (which I cannot link to) and heard in a number of conversations that the young De Venecia had 1) stood up, 2) turned to his seatmate Vice Governor Rolex Suplico, and 3) pointed a finger at him, “two inches” from his face. Fine, except that there was no standing up involved. The two witnesses were seated the whole time.
And yet—-the worrying thing—-many of my friends (reasonably intelligent, I would think, at least most of them!) had remembered it differently.
If, weeks from now, one of us “remembers” Mad (este, Maid) Miriam as walking out “in a huff” from last Wednesday’s Senate hearing, let’s all do our bit of reminding. It did not happen that way. Yes, and contrary to Miriam’s later rationalization, she did walk out. But there was no drama in the actual, the physical, act. After her outburst (against the “commissioners,” and against the Chinese who “invented,” she said, both civilization and a culture of corruption), she stopped, drank from her bottle of water, puttered about for a few seconds, and then, while another senator was talking, left her seat. No huff, all puff.
Details, I know, and even minor ones. But facts, dates, the words actually said: It is these details that make the testimony. Granted, we do not need to be journalists to be reporters (and why should we want to be?). But we all need to be faithful “reporters” to be witnesses of history.
It has been a long while since I’ve been so WOW’d by a business model as I’ve been this morning. Simply put, this is the BEST template I’ve seen for building a home-based practice from, of all people, a physician. Dr. Jay Parkinson, MD is building a web-based medical practice. From his website:
- I AM A NEW KIND OF PHYSICIAN.
- I strictly make house calls either at your home or work.
- Once you become my patient and I’ve personally met you, we can also e-visit by video chat, IM and email for certain problems and follow-ups.
- I’m based in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. My fees are very reasonable.
- I’m extremely accessible. Contact me by phone, email, IM, text, or video chat. Mon-Fri 8AM-5PM. 24/7 for emergencies.
- I specialize in young adults age 18 to 40 without traditional health insurance.
- When you need more than I provide, I make sure you wisely spend your money and pay the lowest price for the highest quality.
- I’ve gathered costs for NYC specialists, medications, x-rays, MRIs, ER visits, blood tests, etc…just like a Google price search.
- I mix the service of an old-time, small town doctor with the latest technology to keep you and your bank account healthyl
How much for this service? According to the “How it Works” on his site, his fee is “far less than your yearly coffee budget but a little more than your Netflix.” His web site also provides “Real Life Examples” that describe, in plain English, how you’d use his service. Oh, and he’s blogging, too.
Lawyers, if you are looking for a real dose of inspiration (or a glimpse to the future of mobile practice) you HAVE to check this Parkinson’s site and business model. Simply brilliant. Great idea, great web site, amazing copy. If I were still practicing, I’d steal it in a heartbeat. Look at it now.
Via: Zoli’s Blog.
nicknich3: Been reading a detailed account of the Battle of Hastings. (via Twitter / nicknich3)
nicknich3: Power just returned in Malaybalay City. Been out since about 7am this morning. (via Twitter / nicknich3)
Human Rights Watch today released a report saying that it had obtained a copy of a Philippine government blacklist of 504 people who are banned from entering the country. “The Philippine government has the right and duty to protect its citizens from genuine security threats,” said Sophie Richardson, Asia advocacy director at Human Rights Watch. “But labeling peaceful critics as Al-Qaeda or Taliban only serves to sap public confidence in counter-terror measures and exposes them as a cover for suppressing dissent.” Banned. Writer Ninotchka Rosca was among those banned by the Bureau of Immigration, citing her alleged ties to the Taliban — a charge Rosca found laughable.
(via nicknich3’s shared items in Google Reader)
nicknich3: Mindanao internets are whacked this morn. Sotelco down. SmartBro up and down. (via Twitter / nicknich3)
While I have seen a few mentions of Amazon S3 supporting BitTorrent tracking and file-sharing, I don’t think it has been a well publicized feature. PSTAM reader Carlton Bale wrote a great guide for getting Amazon S3 to create a torrent for a file of yours on S3 and seed the file. He goes through everything from setting up S3 for the first time to distributing the .torrent file.
For those of you already adept with S3, setting up a torrent is amazingly easy. Make sure your file is publicly viewable within your bucket and proceed to access the file in a web browser as you usually would, but add ?torrent to the end of the URL. For example, if I wanted to distribute the image sprites file for this site (not sure why I would), I would visit the following URL:http://stammy.s3.amazonaws.com/sprites.png?torrent
Amazon creates a torrent file and it automatically comes up as a download in your browser. Now you can publish the .torrent file online or hand out to your friends to distribute. Amazon takes care of the tracking and boosts the initially seeding. However, after the swarm speed is moderately speedy, you will want to delete or take away world readable permissions of the original file if you are worried about bandwidth charges from too much S3 seeding. This tactic might come in handy if your torrent file somehow ends up on digg and you don’t want to be handed a large S3 bill. That and some people will be smart enough to remove the “?torrent” from the URL and download it directly from S3, increasing your bandwidth bill severely.
(via nicknich3’s shared items in Google Reader)
nicknich3: Merinda - my cooks version of arroz caldo … with a choloclate pancake on the side. Glass of cold water. Hey. It works. (via Twitter / nicknich3)
“Truth is a demure lady, much too ladylike to knock you on your head and drag you to her cave. She is there, but people must want her, and seek her out.” - William F. Buckley Jr.
Though there be seers, they aren’t gods above or below you - simply your peers. As the Hopi Elders say, “We are the ones we’ve been waiting for.”
There is a great benefit and beneficence in uniting with peers and soul-kin. (And the Hopis also remind, “The time of the lone wolf is over. Gather yourselves!”) Below is one of the most enlightening explanations of why the time ahead needs no experts, no celebrities, no sanctioned leader, no guru (btw, guru = gee, you are you):
“The great benefit to gathering with other people in this way is that the teacher emerges as the meeting itself. Anyone with a question, or needing support, can offer that to the circle and let the circle become the teacher. There is no guru in the room, spread evenly like hot butter. Rather, the body of the teacher is made up of everyone present and can only speak or move when all come together. The musician Peter Makena sings:
Whenever two or more of you are gathered
In the name of that which loves
That which is compassionate,
That which liberates
Great blessings shower on you,
Great blessings radiate from you.
Before the historical Buddha died, he reportedly predicted that a teacher named Maitreya would be the next to turn the wheel of dharma twenty-five hundred years after Buddha’s death, which is about now. Maitreya is often pictured sitting in a chair, rather than cross-legged like the previous Buddha. Some have interpreted this to mean that a man named Maitreya would be born in our time, offering teachings and enlightening humanity while seated in a La-Z-Boy. But the word Maitreya means “the friend.” Today people like Vietnamese monk and author Thich Nhat Hanh feel that the Maitreya has come and is actively teaching all over the world, as I write and you read these words. Today it is the spirit of friendship that turns the wheel of dharma, the spirit of honest and open investigation into and testimony to the truth. It is the gathering itself that is the guru, friends meeting friends.” - Arjuna Ardagh, The Translucent Revolution
“When water joins with water, it is not a meeting but a unification.” - Swami Prajnanpad
p.s. Short post to get back in the swing of things.
Apologize it’s taken so long to blog here again. Six Apart’s Typepad service which I use to publish Crossroads Dispatches stopped accepting accumulated Tipjar donations as payment (nor do they accept Paypal) and would only accept bank or credit cards. So it took a while to get a bank account again and a new debit card…all so I could blog again.
Note to Six Apart: Please accept Paypal as so many other Internet companies do.nicknich3’s shared items in Google Reader)