Blog, by category: boring
from the desk of travis johnson.
Goodbye, Walter Cronkite (from 2009/07/24)
I am in no way qualified to write a proper goodbye to the late Mr. Cronkite–him having retired a half-decade before I was born–but I have the greatest respect for the man, and wish in a lot of ways that I could have been around for it. On the other hand, reviewing videos of his newscasts, what strikes me is the massive impact and bleakness of many of these newscasts and how that contrasts with the emptiness of many more recent newscasts that I can recall. So most of my wistfulness revolves around our shared interest in spaceflight, his reporting obsession and a large source of my own scientific curiosity. I couldn't say it better than Couric's memorial commentary, which posited 'It's a measure of the man that he preferred the triumph of the space program to the despair in so much of the news,’ and that is certainly the way it was.
In lieu of saying goodbye to one of America's great legends I never met, I'd like to introduce him to some of those people who haven't had any exposure to him aside from his few lines dug up from the archives for Apollo 13. Please enjoy these three clips, and some sage editorial words we broadcast about the Vietnam conflict.
<blockquote>To say that we are closer to victory today is to believe, in the face of the evidence, the optimists who have been wrong in the past. To suggest we are on the edge of defeat is to yield to unreasonable pessimism. To say that we are mired in stalemate seems the only realistic, yet unsatisfactory, conclusion. On the off chance that military and political analysts are right, in the next few months we must test the enemy's intentions, in case this is indeed his last big gasp before negotiations. But it is increasingly clear to this reporter that the only rational way out then will be to negotiate, not as victors, but as an honorable people who lived up to their pledge to defend democracy, and did the best they could.</blockquote>
Blog Segregation (from 2009/07/21)
I'm slowly feeling more and more that I want some more compartments in my blogging. I've been thinking about stuff I want to blog, and stuff I don't want to blog, and invariably they tend to get filed in both places. For example, I'd like to move toward a more professional blog that I could talk about my research, papers I've been reading, web sites I've found interesting, course projects, professional meetings, etc.
At the same time, I am not immune to the desire to share my own breed of whimsy on blogging in a more light-hearted format for a more select group, mainly family and friends. I suppose I could include bored strangers, but presumably my life is boring enough that these will self-deselect after long enough.
Of course, there is significant resistance to this as well, because destroying the links and soforth to this blog is something I'd rather avoid. Perhaps I will just strive to move in the former direction and keep better track of my friends by other means. I believe this is how normal humans operate, come to think of it.
A Quick MySQL Reference (from 2009/05/27)
I got frustrated with not being able to write MySQL because I don't do it often enough to be seeing it in my nightmares like MATLAB. But recently my datasets got annoyingly huge and it seemed like SQL might be a boon to me. So I set out to write a quick little program, and ended up writing this little reference along the way.
Also, Sharvil Shah contributed some comments to it, so thanks to him for that!
Backposts Galore! (from 2008/10/14)
Like I said in ’ traviscj/ lives!’, I was stupid and forgot the hard drives with my websites on them at home. But….. Google Cache came through and I just pulled all my posts from that. The big downside is that there's now definitely going to be some weirdness with overlapping posts and soforth, which is a pain, but I'm not really sure how to get around it, other than just waiting until I can get the data off the disks again. So, if you came across my page from an old link, you probably won't see what you're expecting, at least until Google Cache re-pulls everything. I don't think too many people have linked to me, which is actually a good thing this once, I guess. In any case, I have the dates, titles, and posts. Sorry I lost your comments, feel free to re-comment at will!
traviscj lives! (from 2008/10/13)
I finally got my blog running again. I don't have the old data… oops. Forgot it at home. But in the mean time, at least I'm hosted again!