Opinions

Blame school shootings on media glorification and other outside forces. Please, don’t blame them on firearms.

If a musician produces horrible music, do you blame the instrument?

If an idiot looses their hand due to an improperly used firework, do you blame the firework?

If someone downloads porn from shady sites and infects their computer with a virus, do you blame the computer?

No.

Any misused tool is the fault of the human user. Misusing tools is a problem. An inability to realize or admit to this, is also a problem. We are an imperfect species, and I think we’d be better off if this realization spread.

Those who kill innocent people do so for a reason. Whether they wish to become famous,  feel powerful for once in their lives or some other goal, I fail to see how “gun control” of any sort is the solution. The media cover these events tirelessly; they interview people who should be left alone and show what it takes to be famous. Having skill, or winning a contest is hard.. but targeting a defenseless group of people is really easy. All you have to do is sacrifice your life for it, which these assailants seem to have no problem with. The message is out, and you can see how many have heard it. Want to be on every news channel for a week? Kill a group of innocent people.

I believe that some school shootings could be avoided if more people carried sidearms and were properly trained. Were more people carrying a pistol in that NIU lecture hall, the threat could have been neutralized with a few well-placed bullets. I’m not saying that were a well-trained individual carrying a sidearm, the entire situation would have been avoided,  I’m thinking any assailant would take that into account. The possibility of someone in the crowd with the ability to foil the entire plot would be a deterrent.

“Lone gunman shot dead, avoiding potential massacre” probably doesn’t achieve the outcome they desire. He was the only one hurt, and the media would most certainly cover either person equally. These sorts of things seem to be premeditated, and a school MANDATED TO BE A GUN FREE ZONE is a pretty juicy target. I don’t think people are going to realize this, and I don’t believe the media will reach this conclusion either.

The news networks’ glorification is a problem. Defenseless people are a problem. So you can see, the contributing factors are compounded. People are told they want to be famous. The urge to never be forgotten is innate. People are shown an alternative way to become famous. See a group of defenseless people who, by law, can’t have firearms to fight back. Last step, reach what’s probably an easy conclusion…

You don’t have to agree with me, but I hope there are more people out there who think like me. The media need to stop publicizing these shootings as much as they are.

This is the one where I complain

Windows is evil

I used to like OS X. I don’t know if I still do because the last version I used, is now superseded by several releases. My next computer may very well be whatever the Mac Pro becomes, because I want to move away from Windows very much. I would move over to Linux, but I can’t play a few of the games I enjoy. If I quit using games, the barriers to me moving are mostly gone. I didn’t pay for Windows 7, I got it free through the student developer program. I don’t write programs for the platform, but it has been helpful =D see, there are other perks to being a computer science student. That paragraph was poorly worded, but no one comments on my blog so I’m not sure I have any readers anyway.

“The Cloud”

Ugh, this term annoys me. “Let’s put it in the cloud”  or “What’s our cloud solution?” are not helpful ways of speaking. This term removes the service from the hardware and people who support it. I assume that because the concept of a data center with a web facing client access method is too complex or abstract for normal people to understand, the term was invented. “The Cloud” only serves to perpetuate that technology is magic and it need not be understood to be used.

The dumbing down of society is everywhere. Cars are shiny metal boxes which go because I stick a tube in it when the gauge says to and make the gauge go back up to F. The mainstream media tells you what you want to hear, as opposed to what needs to be said. Technology progresses ever further, and only serves to distract the population from how much life sucks. Furthermore, websites are magic and everything I post somehow shows up on other people’s Facebook feeds. I could go on, but I think I’ve made my point.

Nexus 10 Resolution

Okay, so there’s a 10 inch tablet with a higher resolution screen than a television. At 2560 x 1600 the resolution is higher than the iPad and the same as the 13″ MacBook (which shouldn’t be called the pro but Apple is stupid so I’m going to not call it that). The only computing device I know of with a higher resolution is the 15″ MacBook at 2880 x 1800. In my mind, there should be no arguing that the Nexus 10 is the ultimate computing device. Pair it with a keyboard and mouse, you have a fully functioning computing platform. I’m sure someone could even get it to run Linux.

Because the resolution of TVs suck so much, (1920 x 1080, the same as my 23 inch IPS display probably manufactured by LG) I refuse to buy one until 4k is standard. This term meaning the resolution is roughly 4,000 pixels wide (it’s very possible the standard ends up being double the dimensions of a current television 3840 x 2160)

Sprint’s Mobile Bandwidth

Another complaint! I like to stream music at work, and since I’m not supposed to do it on my laptop I use my phone. At times there’s enough bandwidth to stream music and everything is hunky dory. Other times, I wonder what Sprint is doing with their towers. At what I assume are peak usage times, I get less than a tenth of a megabit either way. This is barely enough bandwidth to browse the web, let alone stream music. For comparison, .1megabit is roughly twice the theoretical maximum of dial up.

For this reason, I want my Nexus 4 which Goolge has yet to ship, and use a different carrier.

Mobile Carriers  (/ Cell phone service providers)

I like T-Mobile more as a company than ATT, but I think ATT’s network is probably superior. The Nexus 4 I hope to receive some time before my birthday will work on both. I have the option of either through work, and neither will cost me a cent. As far as I know, I’m free to switch from one network to the other (as the Nexus 4 is unlocked and not tied to a contract with a company). This poses an interesting dilemma. Do I go with the company which probably has the better service, or do I support the company I want to survive longer by telling TI to pay them on my behalf?

I try not to think of myself as a selfish person, but as long as T-Mobile has enough bandwidth for me to stream music for the majority of a day, I may have to go with them. As such, I’ve decided I’ll have my phone with them at first, and if I hate it, I’ll move to ATT and complain about how evil they are occasionally and wish T-Mobile was a teensy bit bigger.

AMD vs Intel

I locked myself into using AMD processors with my motherboard choice, but the upgrade path they’ve provided me is lackluster. I want to try building myself a desktop which will also run OS X, but that requires purchasing a new motherboard(intel), cpu(intel) and gpu(nVidia). As the savvy consumer I am, I bought products which were the best price/performance ratio at the time. CPU sockets change so often that I’d probably be at an upgrade dead end either way, but I can’t help but feel that I’m on a slowly shrinking island with an AMD based machine.

Upgrading those three components to see a sizable increase in performance over my current machine (two years old at this point) cost around $750. That’s no chump change. The CPU / GPU / motherboard I have in there now probably cost around 600 something and aren’t much worse than the current stuff I need. 750 is a steep price for simply being able to run OS X on it, in addition to windows.

I wonder if I’d have purchased a Mac Pro if it was more current two years ago.

That’s probably enough complaining and postulation for now. Until next time internets!