Left coaster

On When a Housing Inspector Says It's Illegal to Keep a Bicycle in Your Garage

I dunno about all of LA, but I can say with authority that 85% of homes in West Los Angeles could not cram a car into their overstuffed garages even if they could push it with a gargantuan battering ram.

The modus operendi is to use your garage for all your *stuff* while the privileged car sits in the driveway and the downmarket car(s) park(s) at the kerb out front.

Hell, 10-15% of homes have illegally converted their garages into apartments or "home offices."

These statement may or may not apply to my house.

Posted on August 13, 2014 at 7:49 pm 0

On They're Watching You On Email, On Reddit, On The Phone, At The Mall. What Are You Going To Do?

@Tim W. Sorry for the waaaaay late response. What you say is true. There is no safety in the cloud (without end-users practicing good encryption techniques). What's more, the providers almost always lack a strong incentive for protecting your data. There are exceptions, but not many.

Posted on February 28, 2014 at 1:33 pm 0

On They're Watching You On Email, On Reddit, On The Phone, At The Mall. What Are You Going To Do?

When Angwin says there's no private equivalent to Gmail, I'd have to disagree. There are services that sell POP, SPOP, and/or IMAP email that is designed for privacy. Search for "HIPPA compliant email" and you'll find some. I personally use LuxSci (just a user, I have no other commercial relationship with them) and they have neat stuff like crypto forms for keeping email submissions secure. Obviously, none have the exact Gmail interface, but if you're really concerned about privacy you won't want to be using a web interface to cloud-stored email anyway (old protocols like POP download your email and keep your past mail local to your computer, where you can encrypt it or do whatever. Just be sure to back it up in a safe way.) You do have to worry about spam filtering, and how that gets handled. Most email companies outsource spam filtering to companies like McAfee, which may or may not be compromised from a privacy perspective.

Posted on February 25, 2014 at 1:35 pm 0

On "A novel in rhyming couplets narrated in iambic tetrameter? Why not?"

@KarenUhOh Well done! (unfortunately, I'm a nearly illiterate code-monkey, else I'd congratulate you in Trochaic tetrameter)

Posted on July 16, 2013 at 6:45 pm 0

On Maurice Sendak And His Editor Ursula Nordstrom: A Cautionary Tale

Thanks for this article! I'd never before heard of Ursula Nordstrom.
Then again, I was one of those people who thought Edward Gorey was dead until the New Yorker article.

Posted on October 10, 2012 at 4:14 pm 0

On A Treasury of the World's Worst Online Dating Stories

@jfruh To be fair, she might have been an artist. She refused to identify her medium. She did, however, tell me about rupturing an uppity prisoner's spleen with her billy-club, so perhaps her art was sadism. I didn't stick around to find out.

Posted on March 7, 2012 at 6:57 pm 4

On Please Can We Have Janet McTeer Be a Famous Person in America?

I really, really wanted to like Albert Nobbs, but alas! it was a pretty disappointing film. McTeer was good, but the idea that she was passing for a guy stretched credulity.

Posted on February 2, 2012 at 2:45 pm 0

On The Architect, The "It” Girl And The Toy Pistol That Wasn't

This definitely had me wondering if I was reading a parallel word narrative, or if I was going mad (RE Shaw v. Thaw).

Posted on January 17, 2012 at 1:16 pm 0

On The Novels of Peter Carey

I'd put Tristan Smith, Bliss, and Jack Maggs higher up, but it's a fine list.

Posted on April 6, 2011 at 4:43 pm 0

On When You May Wear a Button-Down Shirt

Don't get me started on "Black Tie" becoming a synonym for "ultra-formal" -- I mean, what happened to "White Tie" formality?

Posted on April 5, 2011 at 3:01 pm 0