URLs du Jour -- 12/19/2005

Pet peeve du jour: (literally) stupid web forms with inflexible input formats. You must type your credit card number without spaces. You must type your phone number with (or sometimes, without) parentheses around the area code. Etc.

Dude, it's a frickin' computer. It takes at most a handful of microseconds to parse, check, and convert free-form input into your canonical internal format. Web programmers that don't do this are incompetent or lazy, probably both.

Hm, now let me check to see if I've done this anywhere …

  • We've had a weekend of Tedious Hysteria about the "revelation" that the NSA was authorized to do warrantless taps on foreign calls. On the left, the word "impeachment" appears frequently. There's confusion between the rules for criminal investigations, and those for wartime intelligence. Personally, I think Dubya should have been impeached if he hadn't done this; his current critics would be the first to cry "failed to connect the dots" if legalistic t-crossing and i-dotting caused a future terrorist attack to be missed. For a good commentary, see Matthew Hoy; he also has pointers to further reading.
  • Moving on to more important matters: you remember all those pedants years ago who pointed out that King Kong was impossible because mass goes up as the cube of linear size, while muscle and bone strength only goes up as the square? Well, Forbes says: this remains the case. (A number of other entertaining observations, too. Via GeekPress.)
  • Saturday Night Live was pretty good this weekend. One of the highlights, the Narnia rap:

    (via the Corner), at least for awhile. (On the other hand, Debbie Downer? I love Rachel, but I got the Downer joke, don't need to see Debbie again, could write those skits myself, if I wanted to, which I don't, thanks.)

Last Modified 2012-10-25 4:07 PM EDT