Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Seti@Home Needs You

I was one of the first folks that jumped on the Seti@home bandwagon many years ago.  Since then, I've moved, changed computers (and operating systems) several times.  I even lost my original account and had to create a new one.  But I've always found time on my computer to throw them a few cycles.

Today, I cruised over to IUseThis to check my list of used apps.  I was horrified to see that 11,639 users are listed for Adium, a Macintosh-only chat program, and only 116 for BOINC, the Berkeley Open Infrastructure for Network Computing, the core component of Seti@home.  With it, you can run more than Seti, you can contribute cycles to FightAIDS@home, Einstein@home, and other projects.  

Now, call me crazy ("OK, you're crazy!"), but it's ridiculous that we can all find the time to chat, but we can't volunteer a few processor cycles to a good cause.  And right now Seti needs all the support it can get, as Congress tries to cut the funding for the Arecibo telescope, the main source of raw data for the Seti project.

If that makes you feel a bit bad, then good.  Here's how you get rid of that feeling:  Hop on over to Berkeley's site and get started doing something that might change the world.  Like Steve Jobs once said to John Scully, "Do you want to sell sugared water for the rest of your life or do you want to change the world?"  Your choice.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

A Real Loss

Those that have read my post in my other blog, Messages from Krypton, know that last month I lost my partner of 12 years, Pete.  I've not posted here since before he passed away, but thought I should try to put something up here.  

Pete was my best friend, lover, critic, sounding board, and beyond that, the reason I got out of bed every day.  Literally.  I've never been "bright eyed and bushy tailed" in the morning.  Pete used to bring my first cup of coffee every day to help me peel my eyes open.

Now, this blog is mostly about technology and politics, not my personal feelings; that's why I have the other blog.  But Pete was such a huge part of my life that I can't NOT acknowledge his passing here.

I'm still in the "numb with shock" phase of grief.  I keep hoping I'll wake up and this will all be a bad dream.  But every day that goes by I become more sure that he isn't coming back.

I've often said, since my first partner died, that, "the last words you say to someone could really be the last words you say to someone."  Never has this been more true than my last interaction with Pete.

After making him some soup to drink/slurp (he'd just had oral surgery), he said to me, "You take good care of me.  I love you."  I hugged him and said, "I love you, too."  The next day he was gone.

Folks, be kind to one another.  We're all here for too short a time and we only get our family and friends for what amounts to the blink of an eye.  And then they're gone.