It takes a village to get a top horse and rider prepared for competition. We're going LIVE at 3:30 pm EST on the Heels Down Magazine Facebook page to give you some braiding tips from our super groom, Courtney Carson, as she gets Doug Jessica and Debi Crowley's Vandiver ready for the Advanced dressage at United States Eventing Association, Inc. (USEA) AECs tomorrow. Join us with your questions on how to get your horse looking his best!
AEC Live Streaming Schedule #Repost United States Eventing Association, Inc. (USEA)
Check out the #AEC17 live streaming schedule at tv.coth.com and follow along with all the scores this weekend at livescore.useventing.com! Tryon International Equestrian Center
I’m going to break the grim mood by sharing an answer I just wrote on Quora to the question “What is the most evil code you have ever seen or written?”
OK, it’s been kind of a long time, but I’ll see if I can recall this correctly. About 1986–87, I took a job with a company doing a hospital information system written in MUMPS. I was the other half of a 2 person team writing the MUMPS interpreter. If you aren’t familiar with the language, I’ll describe it in a second, but first I want to describe the development environment.
Our version of MUMPS was written for a Data General MV-20000, a very powerful and very expensive supermini of the time. DG and DEC (Digital Equipment Corp) were competitors. The MUMPS interpreter was written in a combination of PL/1, Macro Assembler, and microcode. The MV only had four 32-bit special purpose registers, but if you used microcode, you could access all 16 registers (I was a bit of an assembly language hotshot and not too bad on microcode). So, when I finished writing a module, I had a batch file that would compile, link, and then load the microcode debugger, the absolute debugger (no symbols visible and breakpoints only on physical addresses), the symbolic debugger (no addresses visible and breakpoints only on a line of high level code), and the high level debugger. It took about 30 minutes between hitting enter on the batch script and being able to start executing the code.
So, that’s the development environment. Things have improved since then, eh?
Now, if you’ve never had the pleasure of encountering MUMPS, let me introduce you to some of the joys of this very remarkable language. To quote from the Wikipedia article on MUMPS:
“MUMPS was developed by Neil Pappalardo, Robert Greenes, and Curt Marble in Dr. Octo Barnett's animal lab at the Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) in Boston during 1966 and 1967. MUMPS was first thought up as a practical joke between the three men, but after 1 week of prototyping they decided to take it as far as they could before anyone would notice and shut them down. To their dismay the idea stuck and MUMPS is still widely used to this day.”
So, besides being a 50-year old “No SQL” style database, what are some of it’s main features? Forgive me if I get something wrong, it’s been over 30 years, but much of this is burnt into my memory, like some sort of programming PTSD.
* MUMPS has only one data type: the string. Everything else is converted to and from strings.
* There are commands and functions which can be (and usually are) abbreviated to as little as one or two characters.
* Commands and functions have default functions which are indicated by following the token (usually an abbreviation) with two spaces instead of one.
* There can be an (effectively) unlimited number of commands and functions on a single line.
* Control structures must be contained on a single line; the only exception is the GOTO which can jump to a label anywhere in the program.
So, that’s a somewhat cursory overview of the syntax. Now for my description of the most evil code I have ever seen:
I had been there for a little over a year, working primarily in PL/1 and assembler, with my MUMPS programming pretty much limited to writing unit tests (for which I was criticized - and I am not kidding - for making my code too “structured”), when into my (literal) broom closet office walks two systems analysts who ask if I could help them find a bug in their code. They had managed to narrow it down to occurring on a single line in their program.
Sure, I said. Which one of you is the author?
Well, neither of them, actually. It seems these two young men had written an automatic program generator that had generated this line of code, so neither of them actually knew what the intent of that line of code was.
Hmm, I said. Well, let’s see the code.
Thud. A 3/4″ thick stack of 14″ green bar fanfold paper, filled with a SINGLE line of MUMPS. With one or two character commands followed by a single space and an argument or two spaces and another command, nested deeply within a series of loops, and multiple exits via GOTOs.
It was at that point, that I decided that it was Deeply Immoral and a Mortal Sin for me to be developing and maintaining a computer language that would allow this sort of syntax to exist.
I immediately started looking for another job, where I met my wonderful wife 30 years ago. So much good came out of that after all.
Normally, I am *STRONGLY* opposed to doxing (“Name And Shame”), since doxing is intended to suppress free speech. But in the case of the Alt-Right / Neo-Nazi / Neo-Snowflake crowd, I am making an exception. Because what this is about has nothing to do with Free Speech and everything to do with suppressing Free Speech, trying to make those who object to racism and antisemiticism afraid to state their objections. The only way they will crawl back under their rocks is if they are convinced that nobody will tolerate their bigotry.
Susan Bro, the grieving mother of Heather Heyer, is speaking out today, just 24 hours after her daughter died tragically when an alt-right White supremacist thug drove his car through a crowd of protestors in Charlottesville, Virginia.
“Heather always had a very strong sense of right and wrong. She always, even as a child, was very caught up in what she believed to be fair,” Susan told the Huffington Post today. “Somehow I almost feel that this is what she was born to be, is a focal point for change. I’m proud that what she was doing was peaceful, she wasn’t there fighting with people.”
“I don’t want her death to be a focus for more hatred,” she continued. “I want her death to be a rallying cry for justice and equality and fairness and compassion. I’m very sorry that [Fields] chose that path because he has now ruined his life as well as robbed a great many of us of someone we love very much.”
Nearly as tragic as her death is the harsh reminder that it represents. 152 years have passed since the end of the Civil War, 72 since the end of World War II, and half a century since the end of segregation. After all of that, Americans are still dying to defend the basic notion that all men are created equal.
With Trump in the White House inspiring and enabling this hatred, there appears to be no end in sight.
We're no experts.... but people have been asking us how we travel with Evy! She just wrapped up her second international trip before she turned 6 months old and we've learned a few lessons along the way!!!
There's a workshop recap on the blog!! Ps. If you've ever wondered the WORK it takes to host a two-day workshop in your home, I'm sharing a little about how much goes into it and how thankful we are for our VILLAGE!!! :)
Sometimes everything seems so alive and interconnected among the trees, that you almost have mixed emotions about stepping on that blanket of moss, and entering the forest.
Retezat Mountains | www.zoltan-nagy.com
'Hide and seek'. My my picture today on Nature Photo Blog of a Roe deer in a winter forest, during the short periods of snow we had this winter around Targu Mures.
My Letter to the editor published on 8/17/17 -
Hate speech isn't free speech
There were over 600,000 military fatalities in the insurrection we call the Civil War. In the end, the Confederate States of America surrendered to the United States of America.
Eight decades later, the lives of well over 400,000 brave men and women in the armed forces of the United States were lost during WWII, many to Nazi/fascist armies. Just as with the Confederacy, Nazi Germany also surrendered to the United States of America.
For any American to now wave or otherwise display the rebel or Nazi flags or propagate confederate or Nazi swill is indefensible (and in my mind traitorous).
Seventy-five years ago the U.S. Supreme Court unanimously decided that:
“There are certain well-defined and narrowly limited classes of speech, the prevention and punishment of which have never been thought to raise any constitutional problem. These include the lewd and obscene, the profane, the libelous and the insulting or 'fighting' words those which by their very utterance inflict injury or tend to incite an immediate breach of the peace. It has been well observed that such utterances are no essential part of any exposition of ideas, and are of such slight social value as a step to truth that any benefit that may be derived from them is clearly outweighed by the social interest in order and morality.”
Let us not ever confuse promulgating hatred and racism with First Amendment free speech. The Nazi/Confederate rampage in Charlottesville, Virginia, was hatred. Do not dignify it by suggesting it had anything to do with “free speech.”
The Seattle General Strike of 1919.
Just think if labor engaged in rolling general strikes from one coast to another and back again, and then again, and again...
Think about it....two or three days each time. No marching, no picketing, just no work. In each city, when it was their turn, workers would stay home for a few days. Oh sure, the media would be against us. So what else is new?
Our objective? Social and economic justice for all. That message would be shared with people in poor neighborhoods, and with churches preaching liberation theology.
I’m in. How about you?
I am one of the 10%. One out of ten.
We are left-handers. That makes me a lefty. To that moniker I proudly declare.
Today, August 13, is National Left Handers Day.
In an earlier time public schools attempted to dissuade students from writing left-handed. I would have none of it. While in the second grade in Fairfax, CA I was “instructed” to write right-handed.
“But”, I replied, “My Daddy is left-handed”.
“They” did not want to hear any of that. So I got up, left the classroom, and walked home. When I arrived early my Mom asked why I was home so soon. So I told her the story.
The next day, and everyday thereafter I’ve been writing left-handed.
Upholding “freedom of speech” is the popular story line. Heard that line before. No thanks. Back in the 70’s when the ACLU defended the National Socialist Party (Nazis) by claiming its members were being deprived of “freedom of speech” in Skokie, IL, many longtime, activist, salts of the earth terminated their ACLU affiliation.
We lost well over 400,000 brave men and women in WWII, many to Nazi/fascist armies. For any American to take up the Nazi flag or propagate Nazi swill is indefensible (and in my mind traitorous).
All the 1st Amendment pap means what? 75 years ago the Supreme Court wrote, “It is well understood that the right of free speech is not absolute at all times and under all circumstances. There are certain well-defined and narrowly limited classes of speech, the prevention and punishment of which has never been thought to raise any Constitutional problem. These include the lewd and obscene, the profane, the libelous, and the insulting or “fighting” words — those which by their very utterance inflict injury or tend to incite an immediate breach of the peace.”
Below is a link to more on the topic. Oh, and I’m with Hunter S. Thompson. “Fuck them.”
“We have become a Nazi monster in the eyes of the whole world—a nation of bullies and bastards who would rather kill than live peacefully. We are not just Whores for power and oil, but killer whores with hate and fear in our hearts. We are human scum, and that is how history will judge us. . . . No redeeming social value. Just whores. Get out of our way, or we’ll kill you.
Well, shit on that dumbness. George W. Bush does not speak for me or my son or my mother or my friends or the people I respect in this world. We didn’t vote for these cheap, greedy little killers who speak for America today—and we will not vote for them again in 2002. Or 2004. Or ever.
Who does vote for these dishonest shitheads? Who among us can be happy and proud of having all this innocent blood on our hands? Who are these swine? These flag-sucking half-wits who get fleeced and fooled by stupid little rich kids like George Bush?
They are the same ones who wanted to have Muhammad Ali locked up for refusing to kill “gooks”. They speak for all that is cruel and stupid and vicious in the American character. They are the racists and hate mongers among us—they are the Ku Klux Klan. I piss down the throats of these Nazis.
And I am too old to worry about whether they like it or not. Fuck them.”
Hunter S. Thompson
Only one House Member from Washington's Congressional delegation signed the letter. Thank you Rep. Pramila Jayapal. (Now it is up to us to get the other Democrats from Washington to sign-on to the letter!)
Endangering a Landmark Nuclear Treaty
Official Washington’s political game of heightening tensions with nuclear-armed Russia to get better control of President Trump could destroy a landmark nuclear arms control treaty, as Jonathan Marshall explains. - August 6, 2017
President Trump, There is a Deal to Be Made With North Korea
North Korea might agree to a nuclear deal in return for economic concessions from South Korea and security assurances from the U.S.
by William J. Perry, U.S. Secretary of Defense (1994-1997); author “My Journey at the Nuclear Brink”
Blink and it's Eid al-Adha... Make the most of the coming 10 days before Eid.
Blink again and it's almost 2 years since the Brother Steve Dabliz helped me take the biggest step of my life Alhamdulilah.
Time is flying, what have we done so far for our Akhira?
8 THINGS MORE LIKELY TO KILL YOU THAN TERRORISM
4 People have been killed in Australia from terrorism in the last 20 years
That's 0.2 people per year
1-BEDS (47 people die a year from falling out of beds)
2-LIGHTNING (2 people die per year from lightning,that means you're 10 times more likely to die from lightning than terrorism)
3-SHARKS (3 people die a year from shark attacks)
4-BATHTUBS (11 people per year die in bathtubs)
5-SUICIDE (2493 people died last year from committing suicide,that's 1 person every 3 hours-suicide is the leading cause of death for people aged 15-44
6-DOMESTIC VIOLENCE (73 women were killed from domestic violence last year,on average 1 woman is killed a week- a woman in Australia is more likely to be killed in her own home by her own partner than anywhere else or by anyone else
7-ALCOHOL (5500 die from alcohol related causes,that's 15 dead a day
But this deadly substance is heavily regarded as Australian culture and identity
8-DRUGS (1000 people a year die from drug overdoses and that number is steadily climbing,Australia is suffering an ICE EPIDEMIC- Deaths have doubled in the last 7 years because of it
Terrorism is a very irrelevant threat to Australians yet the media and government continue to exaggerate it pretending to care about innocent lives
Go and see this powerful new play written by Tamsin Omond and starring my old Grange Hill pal Aidan J.David.
It's already been nominated for an Amnesty International Award!
Runs until this Saturday at 2.10pm.
Her name was Heather Heyer. She was 32 years old. On August 12th, in Charlottesville, she was murdered by a white supremacist who drove his car into a rally of people confronting white supremacists. She died and dozens of others, many of them socialists, were injured and traumatized. She was reportedly a member of the Industrial Workers of the World and the Democratic Socialists of America. And she died, resisting Nazis in 2017.
Her last Facebook-post read: "If you're not outraged, you're not paying attention."