Strong opinions, weakly held

Links for July 31

I’m running a few days behind on these, but I’m not going to let that stop me.

The Los Angeles Times spiked a column because it frankly took on the newspaper’s money issues and suggested ways to fix them. Unsurprisingly, it turned up online. When are they ever going to learn?

Nelson Minar explains how Microsoft is inflating its search rankings by integrating hidden searches into its online games.

Jim Henley posted a novel theory on how the current Iraqi government sees Iraq as a “bust out.” Sadly I think he’s right on the money. Yesterday NBC reported that corruption in Iraq is untouchable. Peter W Galbraith has proffered yet another exit strategy for the US in Iraq in the New York Review of Books.

On a lighter note, here’s Pudge singing Perl in a Nutshell.

Here are a couple of links I found useful in a discussion of media bias. The CBC describes its policy on the use of “terrorist,” and here’s Reuters explaining its policy.

The Texas State Board of Education is now headed by an evolution denier.

Here are a bunch of Ruby on Rails links I ran across catching up on my feeds:

  • The Hobo Migration Generator enables you to shrink your migrations.
  • Here’s a tip on using blocks with helpers to enable you to remove more code from your views.
  • PeepCode offers an Rspec screen cast that I’ll probably take a look at before I start my next Rails project.
  • Sphinx is a full text search library for Ruby that can be used in lieu of Ferret.
  • Dave Thomas on Symbol#to_proc.
  • rails_creator is a script that generates a new Rails application more robustly than the built-in Rails generator.
  • Here’s an explanation of how to hook up your Rails automated tests to Growl. (If you don’t know Growl, you’re probably not a Mac user.)
  • Charlie Savage on profiling Rails applications (more here).


  1. the link for “novel theory” points to the MSN search results scam — fix please; I’m most curious about the former! 🙂

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