News

The Grey Cup and Other Things

Exhibition Stadium in 1959 [CNE Archives, Public Domain]

In the wake of yesterday’s Grey Cup, a few things came to my mind:

  • gridiron football in the snow is amazing
  • all future Grey Cups should be played in the snow
  • the last two times the Grey Cup has been played in the snow were both won by the Toronto Argonauts
  • the Maritimes deserve a CFL team or two
  • the CFL is the last North American major league that has resisted merging with its US counterpart
  • Canadian interest in NFL has steadily increased over the years while American interest in the NFL has declined
  • CTE remains is a huge issue that must be resolved
  • the CFL should see a viewership increase after this game, but
  • the CFL has seen its audience shrunk tremendously over the past few decades
  • the Argos used to have bigger digs than BMO Field

(more…)

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Coup d’état underway in Zimbabwe

In the same improbable year that Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe—long considered in the West as a dictator who has led his country to economic ruin—was elected the World Health Organization’s goodwill ambassador, he has been overthrown by his own military.

The Zimbabwe people are now at a crossroads. Don’t waste this…

a Canadian city getting Amazon’s HQ2?

I would like it if Amazon choose a Canadian city for their second North American headquarters, and I actually wouldn’t mind if a city other than Toronto gets it. For instance, my most recent trip to Montreal showed me that that city is in dire need of an economic booster shot. Meanwhile, Toronto and the GTA seems bursting at the seams and our infrastructure doesn’t seem like it handle +50,000 more people. However, Quebec has just passed their Bill 62, another unpleasant and divisive law that undoubtedly will drive more people away from la belle province… probably the same people Amazon would want to recruit.

re: “Do We Hate On Taylor Swift Because We Actually Hate Ourselves?”

Bustle writer De Elizabeth made a critical point about psychological projection in her article, “Do We Hate On Taylor Swift Because We Actually Hate Ourselves?” De Elizabeth argued that, despite some valid and but overall negligible criticism of Taylor Swift’s activities and her career trajectory, if many of those critics were just honest with him or herself they would see that their criticism of Mrs. Swift was just borne out of personal resentment and self-doubt.

Could Taylor do better? Sure. But, more importantly, we all could do better, and if we put as much effort into our own activism as we do into insulting Taylor for what we perceive to be self-serving behavior, we’d probably see more progress than one celebrity can do with a single tweet.

–De Elizabeth

Taylor Swift, the artist, may never evolve beyond her trope, De Elizabeth wrote, and she may never be the cultural or gender “savior” that some critics have claimed she would be. Regardless, Mrs. Swift had the talent, ambition, and willpower to become hugely successful, and that’s much more than many people would even dare aspire to be. That Mrs. Swift also demonstrated her personal virtues when she defended herself in court against a man who violated her further set her apart from the keyboard warrior crowd that derides her as a fake or even worse.

In short: haters gonna hate.

Conflict between MS Access 2000 and security update kb4034775

While I was going to post something about the best random finds I’ve acquired from thrift stores and clearance warehouses, I’ve just discovered something after a security update to my XP desktop. Microsoft Security Update kb4034775, that was part of the August 8, 2017 deployment, broke MS Access 2000: I could open the program but I couldn’t load my old databases or make new ones. The patch does something to the Jet Database Engine to prevent a buffer overflow exploit. That sounds all fine and dandy but it’s useless to me if I can’t get a program that I use daily running.

Diagnosis: After spending some time with the copy of Access on my XP desktop, I copied a few of my databases over to my new Thinkpad X and tried again under Windows 7. Voila! Everything worked except for the lack of my favourite small font, Tw Cen MT. Back to my desktop. After briefly disabling my anti-virus program to see if that was blocking Access, and it wasn’t, I began a thirty minute dive into XP to interrogate each of the recent security updates that I had installed. Fortunately, because I had bought books about deploying Windows NT 4.0, Windows 2000, Server 2000, Commerce Server, when I was a teenager, I knew that the Jet Database Engine was a big part of Access 2000 and that inhibiting it would undoubtedly be bad too for Access.

Anyways, I uninstalled the update via Control Panel -> Add or Remove Programs -> Show Updates -> Windows XP – Software Updates -> Security Update for Windows XP (KB4034775)

However, this isn’t a fix, the buffer overflow exploit still exists and I only removed the security update because I use Access 2000—the most perfect version there is—daily for my lists. Unless you have the daily urge to load Access 2000 everyday on your old XP machine or have some other problem related to the Jet Engine, I wouldn’t recommend uninstalling the update.

Now, Microsoft, give me a million bucks.