Quarter Life Crisis

The world according to Sven-S. Porst

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358 words

Sun Sun Sun I just used the one hour of the day that the sun shines right into my room to sit just there in the sun on this perfectly sunny day – listening to an Ella Fitzgerald record I recently got. Very relaxing.

Reading: While sitting in the sun I complemented my tea with the slightly educational reading of Le Monde diplomatique's Atlas of globalisation. It covers almost a hundred topics of international importance, ranging from natural resources to communications to trade to war. For each topic you get an introductory text along with some numbers and a handful of sources – including web addresses – for further research. I definitely recommend getting a copy.

Reading a couple of topics in the atlas, I once more had to wonder about the U.S.A. It's not only a huge country but they also have about any natural resource you may want to have. Still they're over-eager to draw resources from other countries. Then, of course, there's the large trade deficit they have and – something I wasn't aware of – the fact that while the U.S.A. dominate trade when it comes to stock markets (the trade volume being more than that of all of Europe together), they're not as much into 'real' trade (about 40% of Europe's).

Other curious facts: Apparently Wal-Mart is the biggest employer in the world. Followed by McDonalds. Europe and the Gulf regions don't kill with American weapons, while Japan and Israel do. Accounting for inflation (something that is rarely done in the media these days, most likely because 'fuel cheaper than 30 years ago' would make attractive news), the U.S. defense budget isn't higher than it was in the 1980s – so it's only the way back to insanity.

Creation: Dave Walker uses the word Scheißstürm, which isn't German but apparently looks like it. Being less keen on umlauts and replacing the ü by an ordinary u should count as a word though. Not a very savoury one, though. More importantly, he mentions the importance of Trackbacks for more than just the obvious use for convenience I had in mind.

April 21, 2003, 15:19


Comment by d.w.: User icon

I put that one there for you, man. I figured if anyone could set me straight, you’d be the guy. :)

April 21, 2003, 17:21

Comment by ssp: User icon

So much for being predictable :)

Strangely, my blog doesn’t seem to have pinged you. Any idea why?

I tried both the x and the + link by now. Strange.

April 21, 2003, 17:28

Comment by d.w.: User icon

I’ll have to look into that. The trackback autodiscovery mechanism is purest voodoo — I really don’t understand how it works, to be honest. I know that if I manually send a ping with the MT standalone tb.cgi implementation, they work, but I need to do a little research to figure out if the autodiscovery stuff is working or not, and how to fix it if it isn’t. Here’s a question for you — when you send the ping, do you know what URL it’s being sent to? Blosxom’s writeback implementation expects it at: http://www.freeke.org/ffg/tech/computers/web/rants/metameta.trackback

April 21, 2003, 17:45

Comment by ssp: User icon

Hm, don’t know much about this trackback thing. Movable Type seems to generate the correct tags automagically (all there is in the templates is a placeholder for them), so I don’t really know how it works.

Also I didn’t ‘send the ping’, I usually hope MT figures how to do The Right Thing™

I just looked at your pages’ html source. There doesn’t seem to be any autodiscovery information. That may be the problem.

April 21, 2003, 19:26

Comment by ssp: User icon

Now I pinged you manually.

April 21, 2003, 19:27

Comment by d.w.: User icon

Thanks, that was the clue I needed. I think I figured out what was going on. I only had the autodiscovery gibberish (that RDF block) in my “Writebacks” template (or, in Blosxom-ese, flavour.) I dropped it into my story template as well, so the next time I write something worh talking about (hah!) we’ll see if it works.

April 21, 2003, 20:28

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