Migration to Velocity EOGenerator Complete

With the release of Leopard, I was saddened to learn that we’d lost the use of EOGenerator in the resulting tools deprecations. Thankfully, a couple of major competitors filling that role quickly arose.

I’d mentioned JavaEOGenerator before but after working with it for a bit I decided to go with the Velocity based EOGenerator (veogen) built into WOLips.

I’m happy to report that as of WOLips build 3.3.4778 all of the pieces are in place in the veogen engine to duplicate my existing EOGenerator templates (the last missing bit was the named and typed bindings for fetch specs).

Veogen works very well. It is a lot faster than the old EOGenerator and I didn’t find the template language difficult to figure out.

For those moving to veogen, the built in templates are pretty comprehensive but if you feel the need to customize, there are a number of templates on the wiki to help get you started. The wiki also contains a fairly comprehensive list of the available bindings here.

Go forth and generate.

The Mystery Box

J.J. Abrams (Lost, MI 3, Cloverfield) rifs on his creative origins and motivations in this highly entertaining TED talk. It’s a lot of fun, he’s a great speaker.

He also makes some interesting comments about what makes movies compelling. In doing so he says something to the effect that: “When people make sequels … they rip of the wrong thing.”

I couldn’t agree more. Pretty much every time I’ve been disappointed by a sequel (Pirates of the Caribbean 2 and 3 anyone?) is because they made a sequel to the wrong parts of a movie I loved.

Winning the Oil End Game

I am not a climate scientist or engineer, I also don’t believe we can consume our way out of the climate crisis, but Amory Lovins makes a compelling case in this TED talk* that modern engineering can go a long way to ease our dependency on fossil fuels for transportation (one of the key contributors of CO2 emissions).

If you are interested in his full reasoning I suggest you read his book “Winning the Oil Endgame” which is available as a PDF download here.

*Is it obvious where I’ve been spending a lot of my free time?

The Manpollo Project

How might you go about convincing sceptics that global climate change is something to be worried about?

  • Step 1: Create a short (say 10 minute) video outlining the basic science behind the subject and then use risk management techniques to identify the relative risks of doing something vs doing nothing.
  • Step 2: Release it to the world and wait for the deluge…
  • Step 3: Create a comprehensive set of add-on videos that expand on the subjects and counter every conceivable argument to the science, math, and logic in the original (ie: No, it’s not Pascal’s wager and here’s why…)

This is exactly what wonderingmind42 (a US high school science teacher) has done. The result is a multi-hour youtube tour de force that extensively (yet accessibly) covers the basic science of global climate change along with the fundaments of risk management, the scientific method, information source assessment, and more. All the while keeping it civil and funnily hatted.

Once I started, I couldn’t stop. I watched (and enjoyed) the entire thing.

If you’re not sure about this whole “global warming thing”, this is a good place to start. If you’re already convinced, but are looking for ways of explaining the risks to the more skeptical around you without degenerating into pitching horror scenarios, these videos are a great source of information and technique.

The Manpollo Project page has links to all of the videos here.