Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Obama's Inaugural Speech

While there are a great many things to love about Barack Obama's inaugural speech, there are two sections that stand out for me.

First, this paragraph:
For everywhere we look, there is work to be done. The state of the economy calls for action, bold and swift, and we will act -- not only to create new jobs, but to lay a new foundation for growth. We will build the roads and bridges, the electric grids and digital lines that feed our commerce and bind us together. We will restore science to its rightful place, and wield technology's wonders to raise health care's quality and lower its cost. We will harness the sun and the winds and the soil to fuel our cars and run our factories. And we will transform our schools and colleges and universities to meet the demands of a new age. All this we can do. And all this we will do.
Second, this one:
For we know that our patchwork heritage is a strength, not a weakness. We are a nation of Christians and Muslims, Jews and Hindus -- and nonbelievers. We are shaped by every language and culture, drawn from every end of this Earth; and because we have tasted the bitter swill of civil war and segregation, and emerged from that dark chapter stronger and more united, we cannot help but believe that the old hatreds shall someday pass; that the lines of tribe shall soon dissolve; that as the world grows smaller, our common humanity shall reveal itself; and that America must play its role in ushering in a new era of peace.
There are few things that please me more than a new President who is willing to both put Science and Education in the place they belong and to acknowledge that not only do some people not believe in god, but that it's perfectly all right that they do not. The contempt that the previous administration held science and atheism in was reprehensible, and I'm glad to see that falling by the wayside as we move forward.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Welcome to Blogger

Over the weekend I finally found the time to do something I've intended to do for a while. I moved my blog over to my own domain and in so doing switched from TypePad to Blogger.

Let me be perfectly clear, I have nothing against TypePad, I've been using it quite happily for a number of years now, and it's never been anything but awesome. When it comes right down to it though I'm just not blogging nearly as much as I used to, so seeing that charge on my credit card every month really started to make less and less sense. Blogger is free, so that simplified the decision making process.

Amusingly enough, I actually tried to do this for the first time a few months back, but I found there to be a surprising lack of software for migrating a blog from a MovableType style blog (TypePad lets you export your data in MT format) to Blogger. I spent a fair amount of time trying to throw something together to do it, but I ended up never being quite happy with the result, and I eventually timed out on it.

Fortunately, if you procrastinate long enough on a software project it's uncanny how often someone else will solve your problem for you. On Friday I happened to see a blog post announcing the Google Blog Converters project, which lets you convert between the import/export formats of a variety of different blogging systems. Its MT to Blogger functionality worked just fine, and after a little fixing up of some formatting issues (some of which were actually sitting around from back when I converted from blosxom to TypePad) all my data made it over to Blogger quite nicely.

Anyway, I'll leave the TypePad blog up for the next few weeks, since I've paid through the beginning of February, but the cannonical home for my blog is now at http://blog.electricjellyfish.net/, and I'm now a happy Blogger user.