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About McGroarty

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  • Birthday April 20

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  1. Unfortunately, the Ayn Rand Bookstore no longer has "Ideas and revolution - Locke and America, Rousseau and France" from John Ridpath. I'm looking to buy a CD copy, or I'd gladly lease yours.
  2. Reports on exploding CFL light bulbs

    I noticed that the cheap ones I bought off of didn't have any Underwriters Laboratories certification. That's pretty unusual for any equipment using 110V in the US. The cheap transformers built into the bases of two of them burned out. I haven't had any fires, but there was very visible heat damage and the kind of smell you get when turning on an old, dirty electric heater. I've long been amused by the downtown San Francisco environmentalists, who worry about energy waste from incandescents and rushed to replace the things before they even burned out. They have electric heat that they run 50 weeks out of the year. Where do they think the extra energy consumed by incandescents goes?
  3. Second LIfe

    The engineering staff is intimidatingly smart all around. Books like The Mystery of Capital and The Death and Life of Great American Cities change hands when talking about changes to the virtual currency and land systems. Anyone is able and encouraged to question the logic underlying decisions supporting work in which he is asked to participate. Ivory tower mandates are rare, and are met with vocal resistance if they go against the company's stated values. I've been there a few years, and can't imagine working anywhere else. Check out Netflix' slide deck about their corporate culture for something similarly great.
  4. Second LIfe

    Thread necromancy! If you do visit Second Life, check out The Objectivist Institute, and join the The Objectivists group, currently at about 140 members. The founder of both, Kain Scalia, is a classic Objectivist, not a Libertarian or Kelleyite. Via group notices, you can find when informal chats, lectures, and classes are held. They are infrequent, but I've met a few good people each time I've turned up. There is also a book club, currently reading through Atlas Shrugged and meeting for weekly discussions. That's held by members of the BrainCrave group. I haven't been to any, but a member of that group could probably help out. I know they were looking for Objectivists to participate in their discussions.
  5. 20+ lectures listed on ebay

    I just listed quite a few lectures - most in tape format, some CD - some no longer available via the Ayn Rand Bookstore. You can browse my ebay listings here: Four Giants of Philosophy; Andrew Bernstein Law in Ancient Greece and Rome; John Lewis Ideas and the Fall of Rome; John Lewis Ayn Rand's Fictional Characters I - Andrew Bernstein How to be an Impassioned Valuer - Andrew Bernstein Heroism in Modern American Literature- Andrew Bernstein Achilles, the Tortoise and the Objectivity of Math Objectivism for Beginners: Refresher - Andrew Bernstein The Philosophy of Romantic Fiction - Andrew Bernstein Understanding Objectivism - Leonard Peikoff Advanced Seminars on Objectivism - I - Leonard Peikoff Advanced Seminars on Objectivism - II - Leonard Peikoff Friedrich Nietzsche: His Thought, Influence on Ayn Rand Induction in Physics and Philosophy - Leonard Peikoff Primacy of Consciousness vs the Objectivist Ethics Principles of Grammar - Leonard Peikoff Creationism Camouflage: "Intelligent Design" Deception Mind vs Collectivism in Ayn Rand's Novels - Bernstein Villainy: The Nature of Evil - Andrew Bernstein Kantianism vs Objectivism in The Fountainhead Philosophic Basis of a Woman's Right to Abortion How to Spread Objectivism
  6. North Korea detonates test nuke

    Possibly. Getting it on the freighter would be a challenge, as North Korea has no exports going to America. They would need a mutual trading partner - Japan, China, or South Korea - that is willing to commit an act of war.
  7. North Korea detonates test nuke

    Looking over Google News: Reuters is quoting an Australian seismologist who estimates the yield at one kiloton. Other reports are all over on the number though, from one to fifty. The larger numbers are coming from south African and Iranian news sources. Most of the rest are below twenty.
  8. North Korea detonates test nuke

    The FOX story suggests that this was a nuclear weapon. To be a weapon it needs to be sufficiently compact and ruggedized to mount on a military plane or a missile. It's unlikely that they accomplished this before their very first test. Unless they're getting help from another nuclear power, this should still take years.
  9. No objection here, and I'm certain he'd like more Objectivists to find the comic. I'll note that there's some adult content elsewhere on his site in case that's a consideration, but he's stated that he's keeping the new comic safe enough for people reading from work. Additional details - the comic updates each Wednesday, and there's an Atom link available for people using blog reading software:
  10. You help introduce a friend to Objectivism and... Page 1: Page 2: These are early panels in his new web comic. His previous comic has a bit over 10,000 weekly readers, and the audience has been on a steady increase for years. He's set to touch on a few more Objectivist themes as the new comic progresses.
  11. Blizzard's main office is also located in Irvine, CA. That and the cheat may be no coincidence.
  12. Multi-Monitor Usage

    A consideration for those with multiple LCDs: Windows ATI and nVidia drivers and all current Mac drivers can rotate displays 90 degrees without substantial performance loss. A number of coworkers have dual LCDs, and they leave the main display in landscape (long) orientation while putting the extra screen in portrait (tall) orientation. The tall orientation requires less desk space and is great for things like word processors and browsers.
  13. Multi-Monitor Usage

    Cinema HD at home and at work. That's a 30" 2560x1600 LCD with an exceptional color profile. If you're spending more than a few hours in front of the computer each day, think long and hard about what your eyesight and five years of comfort are worth -- it's a marvelous product. Dell's got a similar model using the same LCD panel if anyone is price-shopping. It's really all about the desktop space, not the number of monitors, of course. And this is enough space that I can keep my project, our bug database or my email, and my debugger all visible at once. That's all that matters to me! I used to use multiple 1600x1200 displays, but I never quite got used to the seam between displays. I also found that I'd end up favoring one display and wasting the other the vast majority of the time. With the single large display, if I'm working on a single-windowed task for long periods I can size it to the entire workspace. This is especially useful when editing large Word documents, reading PDF files, or Reutering photos.
  14. Bumper Stickers

    I only learned this recently, but I'll pass it on because it's helped me so often:If you learn to replace offence with laughter, you keep a clearer head and get a lot more done. Take a case like this one. Rather than being offended by the neighbor's disgust, I felt amused and was able to react as though we were sharing a joke. It disarmed him and left him off balance. Meanwhile, rather than being put on the defensive, it left me in a mind set to turn the joke around and roll it back at him. This works doubly well with things like Che tee shirts. I used to be silently disgusted. Now I see the shirts and enjoy a deep belly laugh at the wearer's expense. This has lead to interesting discussions with the young would-be-communists, who are left trying to explain why I shouldn't find their choice of communist symbolism - produced, priced and purchased on the free-market and usually under private copyright - amusing. Normally, they'd be the ones telling me that *I'm* the one who doesn't "get it."
  15. Bumper Stickers

    Hell no! If he's not beholden to that particular "virtue," I sure won't be the one to introduce it.