Wednesday, October 24, 2012


I got so busy watching Star Trek that I forgot to write this blog. I want to keep this entry brief because I have fallen behind, but will offer up a quick lesson from my computer science class on memory. Basically all a computer needs is a place to write down bits of information in the form of ones and zeros, and then it needs to be able to read that information later. The brain, I gather, is more like making neural connections and forming stronger links the more information is used. Computer processors have cache memory and random access memory which are places the computer stores the more frequently used  information, like running applications, or recent calls lists.

What does a memory circuit look like? We'll here is what is diagram for a circuit, called an R-S Flip Flop, looks like. The tan shield thingies are Nor logic gates. I forgot what that means, but you should do what my TA in college told me to do, just Google it. OK, nor is short hand for not or, which is grammatically incorrect but logically sound. It means that if there is a positive charge or a live current, represented by a 1, sent through the gate, or latch, then a 0 or null charge will pass through the other side, then it will send that 0 signal up to the Reset side which will pass a 1 on through, and this is how a state, or a 1 or 0 is stored in your computer.

S stands for set, R stands for reset. The Q with a line over it is not Q, or the opposite of Q. In conclusion, Pete and re-Pete are in a boat, Pete jumped out and who was left?" Not Pete. Good night.

Friday, October 12, 2012


A friend once told me, "If you lower your expectations, you will become disappointing a lot less." He is no longer my friend.

It hurts when you let somebody down. Especially when they are close to you. I remember being brought home by a cop with my sister in the middle of the night, after being caught toilet papering. My parents told us they didn't know when they could trust us again. That was pretty harsh, it made me sick to my stomach. I guess they didn't expected us to sneak out at night, and they were disappointed. I think they lowered their expectations after that because the next time I was caught past curfew, they almost shrugged it off like I was doing exactly what they expected me to do. I was confused by this power play, and made sure never got caught past curfew again, I was much more careful.

I remember when I first started out in comedy, the self help books taught me to play with people's expectations. Great fits of laughter can come from pulling the rug out from under someone. Later on in comedy I learned to look out for those who have caught on to certain formulas. Some fans of comedy are like master bobsledders, they can see where the sharp turns are coming. So playing around with their expectations takes more work and adaptability. Sometimes you have to take risks that don't pay off. Even the best quarterbacks get sacked on an audible from time to time. When risks works out though, it can pay off huge, like when the Saints made that successful onside kick to start the second half of the Superbowl a few years back, they went on to win the championship, and look where they are today!

I guess what I'm trying to say is, you don't want people to know what to expect from you. One way to do this is to always be improving and developing in new ways at a pace that surprises them. I suggest taking up a secret hobby, and when your significant other corners you about sneaking out in the middle of the night, set the bar low by telling them your running with a wild crew. Wait a few months until they're crying home to their mother about how big of a looser you are shock them with a neat quilt or something, "Ta-da!"

Now here is a picture explaining how a CPU works.

Next week I'll write about memory!

Thursday, October 4, 2012


I've never been very good with money. At age 10 I started my own candy store, but ate all my profits util I became hypoglycemic, and then the business evolved into a bulk candy machine business. I hoped to strike it rich 25 cents at a time, but the economy tanked in '08 and the market for stale candy dried up. I sold off a few machines and ended up giving the rest away when I moved to the big city. I think over the 10 years I had that business I netted 50 cents. I learned a very important lesson though, in that 10 years. I learned you can return half eaten bags of candy to Sam's Club for a full refund! (with a receipt)

My other big life investment was college, 150 plus credit hours worth. That was also a 10 year investment. I changed my major 3 or 4 times, but I took the classes that seemed interesting at the time. I never really approached school as a means to a degree. Instead, I treated college as a buffet of knowledge, and since I was getting grant money to pay for tuition, I never felt cheated when a professor ended class early. Ten years was a big chunk of my life though, especially considering I don't have a degree to show for it. If my school had a general studies degree, I'd actually be pretty close to being a real life doctor, or at least a master. I think a masters degree takes 180 credit hours? Maybe I should be thorough and research that. I do plan to get a degree eventually, I'm just holding out for an honorary degree from an ivy league university.

One big issue in the political races this year is the economy. I never took a class on economics, but I did find this clip on redistribution of wealth, and I watched most of it! Let me sum it up. Basically if all you have is a kiddie pool, no matter how much you slosh around in that pool, it will not increase the volume of liquid in the pool, but if you drank a lot of Kool-Aid you bought from a Kool-Aid stand that day... you see where I'm going with this? You can contribute more liquid assets to the pool by supporting small businesses.

I think we live in a world with enough resources to go around. Unfortunately, we haven't perfected a system to manufacture and distribute them all yet. The Star Trek universe has, but I'm holding onto that clip for another time. Until our world is more like Star Trek's, add what you can to the pool, be charitable with your wealth, be it a wealth of time, knowledge, or money.