Jewish date: 11 Siwan 5770 (Parashath BeHa‘alothekha).
Today’s quasi-holidays: Brother’s Day, Victoria Day.
Worthy causes of the day: “ColorOfChange.org: Tell Fox: "Fire John Stossel"”, “Blackwater is just the tip of the iceberg”, “Stop the Comcast-NBC Merger | Free Press”, “Stop The Drill | Oceana North America”, “American Insurance Companies: Stop Canceling Women's Policies - Take Action Today @ The Breast Cancer Site”, “Save Gulf Sea Turtles - Take Action Today @ The Rainforest Site”, “action.firedoglake.com | Sign the petition to President Obama: End plans for offshore drilling”, “Take Action: TrueMajority.org: NO BAILOUT FOR BP”, and “MoveOn.org Political Action: No Bailouts for Big Oil”.
Today’s news and commentary:
- “From bad to worse: Hard-luck planet gradually being devoured by its host star”
- “How Many Cancers Are Caused by the Environment?”
- “It's Not Just You: Hearing Half a Phone Call Is Annoying”
- “Crystal iPhone dock will help rid you of your excess cash”: I just post stuff like this. I do not explain them.
- “Alcohol and Pregnancy”
- “Securing your Facebook privacy settings”
Image of the flag of Esperanto, which is a zillion times better than iConji via WikipediaToday’s weird thing is “New iConji language for the symbol-minded” and the actual site of this new language, iConji. Connecting the world. The idea behind iConji is something in the way of a universal icon-based language for text messages. The problem with it is—and I say this with all the emphasis it deserves—WE DO NOT NEED YET ANOTHER UNIVERSAL LANGUAGE. There have been a host of would-be international, artificial languages, and so far the only one with a decent number of speakers is Esperanto—and Esperanto speakers are rare. iConji has two huge problems: small vocabulary (1,100 word-symbols) and no grammar. The creators intend for people to contribute to the vocabulary, but the site does not seem to give even the barest outline of an iConji grammar. For all its faults, Esperanto is starting to look great by comparison. Furthermore, the very fact that iConji has so many symbols is going to make typing a big pain. I think I will stick to English for international communications for the moment; in many respects it is a terrible language, but at least you can type it and find a lot of people who speak it. Enjoy and share the weirdness.