Quick Updates

Sorry for the lack of updates recently. I've been exceedingly busy lately, with no end in sight. And since my chain-smoking monkey research staff, emboldened by the Simpsons voice talent, have gone on strike, I don't have a whole lot of stuff to even point to. However, I'd like to make a few quick updates to some recent posts:
  • Thinking about Security: At one point in this post, I mentioned this:
    ...in order to make your computer invulnerable to external attacks from the internet, all you need to do is disconnect it from the internet. However, that means you can no longer access the internet! That is the price you pay for a perfectly secure solution to internet attacks. And it doesn't protect against attacks from those who have physical access to your computer. Also, you presumably want to use the internet, seeing as though you had a connection you wanted to protect. The old saying still holds: A perfectly secure system is a perfectly useless system.
    Not too long after I wrote that, I recieved a notice at work saying that they were shutting down internet access due to a security vulnerability in some of the software we use. A week later, patches had been installed and we were back up and running. It was an interesting week, however, as we realized just how much we relied on internet access to do our jobs (us being a website and all!). So in cases like this, the pefectly secure but useless system can be acceptable for short periods of time. As a permanent solution, it simply wouldn't work though...
  • Inherently Funny Words, Humor, and Howard Stern: I got to thinking after writing this about politically correct terminology, and I realized that one of Stern's true strongpoints is his willingness to be politically incorrect, because the very act of railing against what is politically correct is funny in itself. A lot of humor is based on this sort of concept: it's not funny because of what it depicts, it's funny because it flies in the face of censorship. One of Stern's funniest bits from his movie, for instance, was one in which he played a "complete the sentence" game with things like "blank a doodle doo", which technically allowed him to say "cock" on the air. That's funny, not because "cock" is funny, but because he wasn't allowed to say it. In a world where we are forbidden to have blackboards in schools (because they're racist!), it's no wonder that people find political incorrectness funny. Personally, I try not to hurt anyone's feelings when referring to them, but this stuff does get out of hand, and when people intentially break from the norm, it can be funny. Again, it may not be your thing, but it was just a thought...
That's all for now. Hopefully, in a month or so, things will be slowing down and I'll have more time to write. I still seem to be sticking to my schedule of posting every Sunday, but the weekday posts may be a bit scarce until things calm down.