Lottery Post Journal

The Night Before Thanksgiving

Government Uses Color Laser Printer Technology to Track Documents

The first time I read this I thought it was a hoax, but I guess it's real.  This is truly amazing - a MUST-READ.

Performance Increases

I worked on some pernormance increases for Lottery Post today.  There is a lot of code that has been in the web site since the beginning, and I'm now going through the process of examining every line of code and making everything more efficient.

It is a very intense, detailed process, and takes a long time to do.  There are tens of thousands of lines of code in this site. 

The result of all this is small but noticeable increases in speed.  While a half-second improvement in the load time for a page seems pretty small, it is actually quite a bit of time saved as you go from page-to-page.

The Home Computer

This picture is from a 1954 Popular Mechanics Magazine.  Check out the caption.

PETA starts fish-have-feelings-too campaign

The hits, they keep on coming!  PETA does it again with a new wacky campaign...

PETA Campaign Pitches Fish As Smart

Touting tofu chowder and vegetarian sushi as alternatives, animal-rights activists have launched a novel campaign arguing that fish - contrary to stereotype - are intelligent, sensitive animals no more deserving of being eaten than a pet dog or cat.

Called the Fish Empathy Project, the campaign reflects a strategy shift by People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals as it challenges a diet component widely viewed as nutritious and uncontroversial.

"No one would ever put a hook through a dog's or cat's mouth," said Bruce Friedrich, PETA's director of vegan outreach. "Once people start to understand that fish, although they come in different packaging, are just as intelligent, they'll stop eating them."

The campaign is in its infancy and will face broad skepticism. Major groups such as the American Heart Association recommend fish as part of a healthy diet; some academics say it is wrong to portray the intelligence and pain sensitivity of fish as comparable to mammals.

"Fish are very complex organisms that do all sorts of fascinating things," said University of Wyoming neuroscientist James Rose. "But to suggest they know they what's happening to them and worry about it, that's just not the case."

PETA, headquartered in Norfolk, Va., has campaigned for years against sport fishing, challenging claims by Rose and others that fish caught by anglers do not feel pain. PETA also has joined other critics in decrying the high levels of mercury or other toxins in many fish and the pollution discharged by many fish farms.

The Empathy Project is a departure in two respects - attempting to depict the standard practices of commercial fishing as cruel and seeking to convince consumers that there are ethical reasons for not eating fish.

"Fish are so misunderstood because they're so far removed from our daily lives," said Karin Robertson, 24, the Empathy Project manager and daughter of an Indiana fisheries biologist. "They're such interesting, fascinating individuals, yet they're so incredibly abused."

The project was inspired by several recent scientific studies - widely reported in Britain but little-noticed in the United States - detailing facets of fish intelligence.

Oxford University researcher Theresa Burt de Perera, for example, reported that the blind Mexican cave fish is able to interpret water pressure changes to construct a detailed mental map of its surroundings.

"Most people dismiss fish as dimwitted pea-brains. ... Yet this is a great fallacy," wrote University of Edinburgh biologist Culum Brown in the June edition of New Scientist. "In many areas, such as memory, their cognitive powers match or exceed those of 'higher' vertebrates, including non-human primates."

Chris Glass of the Manomet Center for Conservation Sciences in Massachusetts led another recent study, showing how North Sea haddock developed abilities to avoid trawlers' nets.

"There's no doubt that fish of all shapes and norms are capable of learning fairly complex tasks," Glass said. "They can learn from their environment and experience."

Yet Glass declined to endorse the don't-eat-fish appeals.

"We don't want to be caught between warring factions," he said. "We're interested in helping the fisheries industry do a responsible job."

To press their argument, PETA activists plan demonstrations starting next month at selected seafood restaurants nationwide. PETA also will urge changes in commercial fishing practices, for example proposing that trawler crews stun fish before cutting them up.

Friedrich questioned why there is popular support for sparing marine mammals - dolphins and porpoises - yet minimal concern for species like tuna, "whose suffering would warrant felony animal cruelty charges if they were mammals."

Fish-welfare rules would be a new realm for U.S. commercial fishermen. The National Fisheries Institute, which represents them, has pledged to help sustain fish stocks but its members have never faced cruelty regulations regarding their catch.

"It's irresponsible to discourage people from eating fish at a time when doctors and dietitians advise eating it twice a week," said institute president John Connelly. "If anything, we should be eating more fish."

Friedrich acknowledges the difficulty of changing long-held customs, but thinks his project is worthwhile. "We'd rather go too far than not far enough," he said.

And, don't forget to check out their wacky web site:

Psychologists blast Rush Limbaugh for mocking traumatized Kerry voters

What makes this article so funny is that it was written as a serious news story.  It is from today's Boca Raton News.  It comes off sounding like a Saturday Night Live sketch.  I mean, they even came up with a funny acronym for "Post Election Selection Trauma" - PEST.  How great is that?

Mental health officials in South Florida blasted Rush Limbaugh on Monday, saying the conservative talk show host's offer of "free therapy" for traumatized John Kerry voters has made a mockery of a valid psychological problem.

"Rush Limbaugh has a way of back-handedly slamming people," said Sheila Cooperman, a licensed clinician with the American Health Association (AHA) who listened Friday as Limbaugh offered to personally treat her patients. "He's trying to ridicule the emotional state this presidential election produced in many of us here in Palm Beach County. Who is he to offer therapy?"

The Boca Raton News reported last week that more than 30 distraught Kerry supporters in South Florida contacted the non-profit AHA following their candidate's Nov. 3 concession to President Bush. AHA officials have diagnosed the disorder as Post Election Selection Trauma (PEST) and have scheduled the first of several free group therapy sessions for just after Thanksgiving.

Cooperman, whose professional practice is based in Delray Beach, said the election-related symptoms she sees in the Kerry supporters more than quality PEST as "a legitimate syndrome or disorder within the trauma spectrum," according to the American Psychiatric Association's Diagnostic Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders.

"Rush Limbaugh has no clinical qualifications to counsel anyone," Cooperman said. "He's not only minimizing PEST, but he's bastardizing the entire psychological field and our clinical expertise."

Rob Gordon, AHA executive director, said Limbaugh's radio musings caused the charity to receive hundreds of calls and letters from gloating Republicans. But he said he also received a small batch of letters and e-mails from people who said they understood why some Kerry voters would need therapy.

A man named Paul wrote to AHA, "I too was very depressed, and I knew a lot people who felt the same way. You have to understand that to many of us, this was the key election about the future of our country, and with a Bush win that future is pretty much destroyed. Naturally, there's going to be some significant grief."

"The people here in Palm Beach County now in therapy or support groups are the canaries in the mine shaft," Gordon said. "There could be thousands of others, even Republicans, who need to be in therapy over this election."

Gordon said the AHA on Monday also received its first out-of-state call - from a fixed-income woman in Texas who is "absolutely terrified of what Bush will do" - and scheduled a free telephone therapy session with her for today.

Douglas Schooler, the Boca Raton trauma specialist who treated 20 people with hypnotherapy following Kerry's loss, said he believes many people suffering from election-related symptoms are still afraid to step forward."The Republicans want Kerry voters to shut up and pretend they're not feeling anything," Schooler said. "But many people have serious emotional pain over this election and it's unhealthy to stuff it down inside of you. Therapy is the best way."

Although Schooler said he never listens to Limbaugh, he said he has been deluged by similar phone calls and attacked on South Florida's radio talk shows.

"Most of the calls I'm getting are from Republicans making fun of the whole thing," Schooler said. "One guy wrote me a letter saying I should tell people to vote Republican and save themselves the stress. Republicans want to minimize the whole story of election fraud and voter anger."
Schooler said he did not expect the Republican gloating to stop anytime soon.

Limbaugh, a Palm Beach County resident who owns $26 million worth of property in the area, read the two Boca News exclusives on his nationally syndicated radio program last week.

"So if anybody on the left wants some serious therapy here and counseling, I'm more than willing to offer my assistance as well," Limbaugh said on Nov. 9.

On Nov. 12, accused by Gordon of picking up the story to rub it in the faces of Democrats, Limbaugh said, "Now, my friends, I didn't do that. I reached out. I offered a hand of friendship. I offered my own counseling services."

AHA officials, listening to the taped broadcasts, described Limbaugh's tone of voice as sarcastic.

Test for Dementia

Test for Dementia

Below are four (4) questions and a bonus question. You have to answer them instantly. You can't take your time, answer all of them immediately. OK? 
Let's find out just how clever you really are.

Ready? GO!!! (scroll down)

      First Question:

You are participating in a race. You overtake the second person. What position are you in?

Answer: If you answered that you are first, then you are 

absolutely wrong! If you overtake the second person and you take his place, you are second! 

Try not to screw up in the next question.
To answer the second question, don't take as much time as you took for the first question.

Second Question:
f you overtake the last person, then you are...?


Answer: If you answered that you are second to last, then you are wrong again. Tell me, how can you overtake the LAST Person?


     You're not very good at this! Are you?

Third Question:
ery tricky math! Note: This must be done in your head only.

Do NOT use paper and pencil or a calculator. Try it.

Take 1000 and add 40 to it. Now add another 1000. Now add 30. Add another 1000. Now add 20. Now add another 1000 
Now add 10. What is the total?


Scroll down for answer.

Did you get 5000

The correct answer is actually 4100.

Don't believe it? Check with your calculator! Today is definitely not your day. Maybe you will get the last question right?

Fourth Question:

Mary's father has five daughters: 1. Nana, 2. Nene, 3. Nini, 
4. Nono. 
What is the name of the fifth daughter?

Answer: Nunu?

NO! Of course not. 
Her name is 
Mary. Read the question again


Okay, now the bonus round:
here is a mute person who wants to buy a toothbrush. By 

imitating the action of brushing one's teeth he successfully
expresses himself to the shopkeeper and the purchase is 

Now if there is a blind man who wishes to buy a pair of 
sunglasses, how should he express himself?

He just has to open his mouth and ask, so simple.


Bush exceeds 60 million votes

Now that the states are completing all their actual vote totals, including absentee ballots, it has become apparent that Bush actually got more than 60 million votes!  Wow.

I guess the UK tabloids have to update their headlines that 60 million people are that dumb.  Sore losers!


Election wrap-up:

Bush Just Won Ohio!!!!!!

Fox News just projected that Bush wins Ohio - which means he will certainly go on to win the whole thing!




Vote Cast

It was good to finally get a chance (actually second chance, counting the 2000 election) to push the button for GWB today.

With a miracle of tremendous voter turnout, perhaps my liberal state of New Jersey will surprise me and go for Bush.  I can only hope and pray (and vote).

I'm going to stay out on a limb and predict that Bush will win by a wider margin than most people think.