Wednesday, September 29, 2004

Chain letter made webby

  1. What is your full name: Kyle Hasselbacher
  2. What Color pants are you wearing now: It's not the color of the pants, it's what's in them that matters.
  3. What are you listening to right now: My keyboard
  4. What's your birthday? November 2, 1973
  5. What was the last thing you ate: Pringles
  6. If you were a crayon what color would you be: Blue
  7. How is the weather right now: erratic
  8. Last person you talked to: my wife
  9. The first thing you notice about the opposite sex: They are, invariably, the opposite sex
  10. Do you like the person who sent this to you: Yes
  11. How are you today: Carpet
  12. Favorite Drink: indeterminate
  13. Favorite alcoholic drink: Everclear. I don't drink alcohol, but I like the name.
  14. Favorite sport to watch: Celebrity death match
  15. Hair color: Brown
  16. Siblings: a younger sister
  17. Favorite month: Months ending in "vember"
  18. Last movie you watched: Deliverance
  19. Are you too shy to ask someone out? Yes, but I've done it.
  20. Summer or winter? Winter
  21. Hugs or Kisses: Hugs if affection, kisses if candy
  22. Chocolate or Vanilla: Chocolate
  23. Do you want your friends to write back: Is this a trick question?
  24. Who is most likely to respond: You
  25. Who is least likely to respond: Him
  26. Living arrangements: Renting a house with family
  27. What books are you reading: Whatever I can listen to in the car
  28. What's on your mouse pad: At work, a logo. At home, I don't have a mouse pad. Until last night, I didn't have a mouse.
  29. What did you do last night: Fun with the new mouse!
  30. What inspires you: Reading, writing, and arithmetic
  31. Popcorn: I approve
  32. Favorite cookie: chocolate chip
  33. Who is your favorite person of the day? my daughter
  34. Who is you favorite person of the week? my wife
  35. What is your nickname? my buddies call me kh55250
  36. Favorite moment of the week? falling asleep with my hand in my honey's hand
  37. What do you hope to dream about tonight? peace on Earth

Rabbit ears.

Rabbits have independently focusable ears. When Vanilla is relaxing, she puts her ears down against her back. If I walk up to her, she will raise one ear and point it at me, as if to say, "don't try anything funny; I got my ear on you."

I think that's pretty cool. If you watch her ears, you can see what she's paying attention to with them. Of course, this is true of cats and other critters too, but rabbits have such huge ears that I find it so much more comical, like Bozo the Clown's oversize shoes.

ALS clone research.

I hesitate to link to this because
  • It did some horrible popup tango in Internet Explorer (but of course Mozilla had no problem with it)
  • It's light on details.
  • It's thick with sensation.
  • This quote alone:
"Fifty percent of those diagnosed with [ALS] die within 14 months. The most dramatic symptoms are a weakness in the face and throat muscles, slurred speech and difficulty chewing and swallowing." I guess inability to breath isn't such a dramatic symptom. From the description in this article, you might never know that eventually the patient is completely paralyzed.

Anyway, I'm glad to see the folks who made Dolly the cloned sheep taking an interest in ALS.

Monday, September 27, 2004

One Simple Question

I think I'd heard of The One Question question before, but I just saw today that the bounty is a possible $8300+ for asking Bush how many times he's been arrested. I'm not sure if it's worth the money (or fame or pride) to have the Secret Service surveilling me (or worse) for the next ten years, but it's worth thinking about.

I note that not too far from me, there will be a town-hall format debate, but the audience will be full of "likely voters" (selected by Gallup), and the questions will be pre-screened. If some likely voter were after the cash, one tactic might be to submit a question that begins "how many times have you been," and the pull a switcheroo at the last moment. The moderators probably wouldn't have time to cut off the microphone before "arrested" got out.

I doubt he would answer. Perhaps the question wouldn't even make it to the airwaves. Still, the idea is a nice diversion, kind of like planning how you'd rob the bank.

Saturday, September 25, 2004

Joho the Blog: My Tuesday with the World Economy Forum

I'm linking to this mainly because I took part in the comments. I figure my loyal fans might be interested, and I might want to find it later.

The main entry is about David Weinberger speaking in front of some entertainment and media folks about why their concept of the Internet and copyright is not quite how their customers think of it. I quote David:
To them, the Internet is a transport for distributing bits they own. Its lack of DRM is a hole that they will plug.
And, at the risk of appearing narcissistic, I quote myself:
Does DRM help sales? The best argument I've heard is that it helps because without it, the content producers wouldn't have provided the content at all. This is like saying the gigantic dent in my car helped sell it because I wouldn't have put it on the market otherwise.

Friday, September 24, 2004

Wink and a smile.

The other night, we were at a restaurant, and my darling daughter was standing on the booth bench, looking around. Then she said to me, "she close one eye," talking about the woman behind us.

I grinned, and I explained that when someone closes one eye, it's called a wink. Then we had a brief discussion of what that means, and we had attempts at winking.

What knocks me out about all this is that she was able to explain this idea to me in a way I could understand. It was something she'd never seen before, but I knew what she meant when she told me about it. Then I was able to fill her in on the details. That sort of interaction is what I've looked forward to since before she was born, and it's getting more and more common.

In days following, I've winked at her and asked her what it's called. She remembers, and I smile.

Palm update: not dead yet!

I found this today, which explains in some more detail the USB palm problem I've experienced. However, it sounds from that explanation as if, (1) this kill-the-palm game I'm playing won't really solve the problem, and (2) if it does, the problem will come back later anyway.

Ultimately the solution is to have PalmOne give me a new one, but it's certainly out of warranty.

Meanwhile, I've discovered that draining the battery isn't so easy. After it first appears to give up and stop turning on, it still has a charge, which is in evidence if you hit the reset with a paperclip. I finally got to the next level of near-death by putting a clip on the power button and hitting reset. With the power button down, it would hold the boot logo on the screen until it couldn't anymore. Upon implementing this little plan, I congratulated myself on my cleverness, and walked away thinking I'd have a lifeless palm in no time.

On my return, I was dismayed. Now, the power button's light is on, but only faintly. That must mean it has some power, but reset doesn't work, so there's no way to get it to tax itself further. I'm now waiting for that little light to go off, a light so faint that I need to carry it to a very dark room to see it.

When it does go off, it still may not do what I want.

Monday, September 20, 2004

I do not come to you from the future.

As I write this, there are 13 "drafts" in my list of posts. One of them is ready to post whenever I run out of something else to say. The rest need some work.

Drafts and published posts are all mixed together, sorted by date. To keep drafts that I created days or weeks ago from falling off the bottom of the list, I set their date to next year. Drafts that are finished and ready to post (but not posted) are set to two years in the future.

So if you see a post on here that says it's not to be posted for a year or two, it's because I forgot to change the date back before publishing. Usually I catch it and change it in less than a minute, but I'm sure there will come a day that I leave one laying around for longer.

Saturday, September 18, 2004

On a personal note.

My mother's sister married my father's cousin. Without thinking about it, that sounds fishy, but it's not. Nobody's married to a blood relation. Still, this has some odd effects.

While waiting on my mom's surgery, my aunt and uncle waited with me. She remarked to him, "Kyle's your nephew, but he's also your cousin."

He replied, "don't say that too loud." People might get the wrong impression.

The most noticeable effect for me has been that their children are my cousins through both of my parents. As a result, I see them at family gatherings for both sides of my family almost as if they're my siblings.

I never thought much of it. As kids, we called each other "double cousins." The other slightly odd connections didn't come up much. That day at the hospital was the first time I've been reminded of this little oddity in years.

Friday, September 17, 2004

My car is a little more legal.

This morning I finally got a new license plate sticker to replace the one that was 2.5 months out of date.

When our workplace moved here, we were told that the local cops patrol the parking lots, ticketing out-of-date stickers. I'm here to report that it's not true, at least for me. I've been living in fear for ten weeks, and nothing has happened.

What does it mean when the police are out looking for sticker violations?
  • Crime is low.
  • Police chief's dog run over by car with outdated sticker: vengeance.
  • State is strapped for cash.
  • Cops don't want to face impatient speeders.
  • Donut delivery trucks have been found to be flagrant violators in the past.
Anyway, this unfortunately does not mean that my car is all legal now. It just means that the cop parked behind me on the tollway won't notice anything suspicious.

Thursday, September 16, 2004

Killing my Palm m505.

The real reason for this post is to document how to do a hard reset on a Palm m505. I always have trouble with this, even finding documentation on it, so now that I know--for the third time--I'm putting it here to make it easier for me to find.

Before doing all this, I swiped the memory card from our camera and stuck it in the Palm to make a backup.
  1. Put a pointy object into the reset hole in back and release.
  2. Hold down the power button as the palm is rebooting.
  3. When the "Palm powered" logo comes up, release the power button.
  4. It then gives you the option to erase its memory.
I used this thing for ages without ever using the USB cradle that came with it for anything other than charging. I got a serial connector just to do backups because I didn't have a USB port. I didn't sync with any desktop software either; I'd just copy everything out of the device once a week.

Then, when I got this new Mac, I thought I'd try actually syncing it with desktop applications. I noticed quickly that I couldn't get any computer to recognize it. Windows, Linux, and Mac OS X all acted like it didn't exist. Since the serial connection worked, I concluded that it was a problem with the cradle.

I got a used cradle from Amazon. Same problem. I finally did some research. I found this from 2002 saying that it's a common problem, and customers are getting screwed.

I found this which suggested draining the battery and a hard reset took care of the problem. So that's what I'm doing now. I set the auto-off timeout to its highest value (three minutes). Every so often I turn it on with the night light, and I poke it when I remember so it won't fall asleep.

I tried putting a clip on one of the face buttons, and it sat and spun on that for a few minutes. Then it figured it out and went back to sleep.

Poking it over and over on my long drive to work got me most of the way there. After it appeared to give up, I gave it another poke in the reset button, and it came back. Apparently, when it gets low enough, it has power but refuses to turn on. Pushing reset is the only way to get it to make it use up its reserves. I'm not sure that's necessary for my "fix," but I'm continuing to torture this little device all the same.

Hacking car audio

I have a lot of digital music, and I wanted to listen to it in the car. The first thing I tried was burning CDs. This car player, however, had trouble reading those CDs. I have one CD in there made up of the best of three other CDs I own, and it works after a tense pause. All other CDs would follow that tense pause with the CD player spitting the disc out.

So, I got a portable digital music player, and I sought a way to play it in the car. I have a cassette adapter, but not a cassette player. The FM transmitter I got didn't work. So, I started thinking about cruder ways. I consulted with my brother-in-law who's a manager at Radio Shack.

I can't plug into the radio directly because it doesn't have any kind of auxiliary input. Radios these days are sometimes set up for a trunk CD changer, but mine isn't.

Can I wire my headphone output straight into the speakers, bypassing the radio? No, I was reminded, the power from the headphones isn't enough to drive the speakers. I'd need an amplifier.

Maybe I could get a long headphone extension cord for the FM transmitter so I could put it in the back window, closer to the antenna. Frankly, the FM transmitter would have been too weak even then, I'm sure. Even if that were not the case, I wouldn't want to get in the back seat to change the batteries every ten hours of use or to diddle with the channel setting when I wander into some territory electromagnetically hostile to the channel I'm using. The good news is the thing turns itself on and off automatically according to whether it has input.

Then I got a really wild idea. I'll extend the antenna into the car! I'll have the car's antenna in the front seat, wrapped around the FM transmitter. The signal will have to jump only millimeters of air. That might actually have worked except, as previously noted, the FM transmitter seems to simply stink even at very close range.

I talked to a car audio shop, and they nearly sold me a better FM transmitter. This one wires right into the antenna so that nothing goes through the air (as such, it's actually an FM modulator, not transmitter). They said sound degradation is 7% with this thing, and it's strong enough to overpower interference from all but the very closest radio station (i.e., within a mile). I would have been sold except that it can only transmit on one of two stations, selected with a switch at install time.

Finally, I spent another $200 to get a new radio, one with an aux input. The guys at the car audio shop even ran RCA connectors between the seats so I can have my player handy as I drive. It sounds great. I can actually hear the difference between tracks encoded at different qualities.

And that, folks, is what I like to hear.

Tuesday, September 14, 2004

Gmail invites made easy.

I sent two invites to the Gmail invite spooler linked from Boing Boing. Judging by the counter, they were gone as soon as I sent them. As I was writing this, I got one "X has accepted your invitation" response.

I think it's a good idea since I've already sent invites to just about everyone I could think of and I had still more available. I looked around Gmail swap, but it wasn't easy enough for my lazy bones.

Monday, September 13, 2004

Big girl report.

Tonight my daughter got all her clothes off all by herself (in preparation for a bath). The sticking point has been the shirt; she's had trouble working out how to use her arms on her arms, I guess.

Anyway, it's a minor milestone celebrated enthusiastically in our hallway.

No transparent JPEGs.

I thought you could make a JPEG with transparency. Shows what I know. The FAQ entry I found about this has an interesting explanation about why it's the case.

On my white board right now.


Sunday, September 12, 2004

My lousy commute.

I commute a little over two hous per day. Call it ten hours a week. I saw on the news last night that Chicago is the 8th worst commute in the nation, and the first is in L. A. where commuters travel an average of 93 hours per year. I commute that much in less than three months.

Until last night I thought my commute was bad, and probably worse than average, but not too far from the norm, at least in my area. I figured I hated it disproportionately because before this I was used to about 20 minutes per day.

Now I wonder if I should Do Something about this. Something beyond listening to a book in the car, I mean.

The full study has a lot more information than just the "your city ranks here" that was all over the news. I haven't read it, but I think it would be interesting.

Saturday, September 11, 2004

I never work on September 11.

On September 11, 2000, I started working at a new job. My darling, pregnant, slipped on the stairs, and I rushed home to ensure her safety.

On September 11, 2001, I got up to let the dogs out. As I waited for them to relieve themselves, I had a look at the net. Slashdot had this story on the front page. A friend called us and insisted we turn on the TV, but she wouldn't say why.

On September 11, 2002, the company took a day off, in rememberance.

On September 11, 2003, I actually was at work, as far as I can tell. When I started writing this, though, I thought I wasn't. Insert own Texas National Guard joke here.

In 2004, September 11 is a Saturday. In 2005, it's a Sunday.

Shocking Revelations about President Bush

This list contains revelations such as "Iraq didn't have any WMD, or any significant ties to al Qaeda!" I thought the most shocking revelation on this list was this one:
George W. Bush is not a West Texas rancher whose simple heartland values and quiet inner strength have guided his climb to political and financial success! Actually, he was born into a wealthy Eastern establishment family, his grandfather was a US Congressman, and his father was a US Congressman, Director of the CIA, and Vice-President and President of the United States! George W. Bush went to Harvard and Yale, where he didn't work very hard; he was a spoiled rich wastrel until at least his 40th birthday; he summers in toney Kennebunkport, Maine; he has relied on his family's wealth and influence to get everything he got in life; and his Southern accent is totally phony!

Friday, September 10, 2004

Award-winning sf as CC-licensed audiobooks

I do all this yacking about finding books to listen to in the car and Boing Boing posts "Award-winning sf as CC-licensed audiobooks." On top of that, earlier they had this post all about various ways to interface mp3 players with a car, which is related to a post I haven't made yet. It's like they're reading my mind over there.

Listening to books in the car.

I fetched the volunteer-made audio version of Lawrence Lessig's Free Culture and listened to it in the car. The volunteers did a fantastic job. It's lower quality than an actor reading in a sound studio, but I enjoyed listening to it.

Then I tried using a synthesized voice to read a book to me. I got a free copy of Down and Out in the Magic Kingdom by Cory Doctorow, and I sliced it into chapters with a very small Perl script. The Mac converted the whole book to speech in two minutes, and I listened to about two minutes before giving up. The parts that I understood were hard to understand, and they didn't give enough context to help with the parts that I missed completely. It was like listening to another language that I only half understood.

I'd be happy to let Friend Computer chew on the book overnight if it would produce listenable results. The license for Doctorow's book doesn't seem to allow a recorded audio version (synth or otherwise), but I could be reading it wrong. Either way, I've added a couple of professionally-made audio books to my Amazon wish list, so maybe that will grant me something to listen to soon.

Pup shoots man, saves litter mates

  1. Guy decides to shoot seven puppies that he can't keep.
  2. Holding two of them, one wiggles and hits the trigger.
  3. Guy goes to hospital with gunshot wound.
  4. Authorities rescue remaining puppies.
The full story is at CNN.

Wednesday, September 08, 2004

Text to speech on the Mac.

I bought a hardcover book that I hardly have time to read. The net provided to me (illegally) the same book in HTML. I'd like to have a speech synthesizer read the book into a file which I can listen to in the car. My new Mac has software to do this, but it took me a little time to figure it all out.

This is what I've learned over the last hour.
  • Inside some applications, you can highlight some text and select Services, Speech, Start Speaking Text. In others, it's grayed out.
  • You can even rig up a hot key to have it speak anything that's selected in applications that don't otherwise support speech.
  • In the System Preferences you can choose from a selection of fairly good and fairly silly voices.
  • You can access the voice from scripts to, for instance, announce your incoming email with more than just an alert.
  • There's a 'say' command that lets you access speech from the command line.
That last is what got me what I wanted. You can give 'say' an input and output file, and it will produce an AIFF output. Since oggenc can accept AIFF, I'm home free.

Now, it may turn out that the voice, as good as it is, will not be good enough to listen to for an hour at a time, even if it's speaking a great book. I'll dynamite that bridge when I come to it.

Tuesday, September 07, 2004

Another reason I hate XP.

Windows XP sucks because it can't figure out which items on the menu I use. Windows 2000 would reduce the program menu only to things I'd used recently, and it worked fine. I liked it that way, though it hides how much of my computer I'm wasting on things I hardly use. In my current XP situation, there's a program group in which I use only one item. Once in a while, it reduces that group to that one item, but then it bounces back to showing me every item.

On the accessories menu, there's one group in which there's one item that I use. This morning when I opened the accessories menu, that group was the only one missing. When I got that group to appear, the one item I use in it was the only one hidden.

I could accept that Windows 2000 would sometimes reveal all the Microsoft Office applications to me. I thought it was an underhanded way for Microsoft to declare itself essential, but compared to some of the other stuff they've done, it's minor. That's how they've lowered my expectations. Apparently, they haven't lowered them enough because I'm still disappointed.

Monday, September 06, 2004

Got a new computer.

I got this last night, and this morning I was so excited to get up and play with it that I couldn't go back to sleep after my 6:00 AM trip to the bathroom.

I would write more, but I'm too "busy" at the moment...

Saturday, September 04, 2004

iRiver iHP-120 and Belkin TuneCast II

I got an iRiver iHP-120 from my local Best Buy, and I really love it. I picked it because it can play Ogg files (in addition to MP3). I was a little scared by an Amazon review that said it had no shuffle feature, but I found this not to be true within minutes of opening the manual.

The interface is not the best ever, but I really like the fact that it's really just a USB hard drive. I plug it in and manipulate its contents with standard tools.

I also got a Belkin FM transmitter so that I could listen to my gigabytes of music in my car. I like everything about this device except that it doesn't work. I tested it at home, inches from a receiver, and the sound quality still stunk. In the car, it's hard to find any channel in Chicago that's not taken by some other station, and when I tune to the weakest signals I can find, my car radio can still sometimes pick up static through the Belkin's weak signal.

Getting a greater variety of music in the car (for my ten hours of commuting per week) was the real purpose of these two purchases. If I can't get something to work acceptably, I'll be returning both.

The problem with MX.

MX is short for "mail exchanger." A domain's DNS records list mail exchangers with preferences for each. To deliver mail for the domain, you look up the list of mail exchangers and attempt delivery to each of them in order of preference.

I have my own domain, and I have my own mail exchangers. My friends also have their own domains and their own mail exchangers, and for years we've "traded" this service. I'll hold your mail when your network goes down, we'd say, if you'll hold mine. Over the years I've been the mail exchanger for maybe a couple dozen domains besides my own.

Doing this was fun. We were friends, sharing with each other. In the old days, spam was just starting to be a problem, and the rules for accepting email were simple. The most defensive thing anyone did was refuse email from domains that did not exist.

That small difference in policy would cause minor problems. My mail server accepted email from anywhere. It was the MX for a domain that refused email from bogus addresses. When I'd accept one of these emails, it would stay in my queue until it expired because it could never be delivered to its destination.

Over time, policies changed further. Some people use RBLs, tarpits, or their own personal tricks. When the policies don't match those of the other mail exchangers for the same domain, it causes odd delivery problems. Either a low priority exchanger gets a queue full of undeliverable email, or it becomes a back door to email that would otherwise be blocked.

Now, the only way to have multiple mail exchangers for a domain is to have them all use the same policies. They all have to behave consistently or they interfere with each other.

I think it's unfortunate. I liked the old days.

Friday, September 03, 2004

Victory is ours only when this title is false.

Talking Points Memo is the first place I saw a reference to President Bush saying we can't win the War on Terror. I'm not surprised we can't win; I'm surprised that he said it. They've since had to do some repair work, and I can see the point they're making. If there is to be any victory, it won't be a traditional victory. The President has said before that we can win the War on Terror, but I didn't believe it then either.

Terrorism is a tactic. You can't extinguish a tactic the same way you can carpet bomb a country. If we did succeed in neutralizing every terrorist on Earth, there's nothing to stop someone else from adopting terrorist tactics.

The War on Terror is like the War on Drugs. It's unending, and its purpose, in my opinion, is to grant the government powers it wouldn't have otherwise. The world is growing more comfortable with drugs, and so the War on Drugs is no longer important enough for people to accept giving up their civil liberties for it. The War on Terror is the new War designed to scare people into submission.

Or maybe I'm just cynical.

Thursday, September 02, 2004

For your child, would you...

For your child, would you...
  • Face a bear?
  • Fight a shark?
  • Throw yourself before a bus?
  • Get out of your chair and play Candy Land?
I've known since she was born that I'd block bullets to save my daughter, and I thought that meant something. Over time, I've come to realize that romantic and glorious self-sacrifice is easy compared to the daily tension between time spent on myself and time spent on my daughter.

She's more and more vocal and direct about what she wants. She says plainly, "Come here. Sit down. Stay with me." There's only so much time for that, unfortunately, and I mean that two ways. Short term, there are finite hours in the day. Long term, she will eventually see me as the Old Man, ruining her life, or at the very least embarassingly square. She won't want me around.

By the way, I borrowed the above questions from a TV commercial. Kids in it asked the camera, "would you fight a bear?" and so on. The last kid asks, "would you drive a minivan?" The commercial goes on to talk about the tremendous proven safety of the minivan it's selling.

Wednesday, September 01, 2004

The story behind the description.

Behold my most excellent description!
Toehold's description has four A's, two C's, four D's, twenty-four E's, eight F's, four G's, five H's, ten I's, two L's, two M's, seventeen N's, seventeen O's, two P's, eight R's, twenty-nine S's, twenty-one T's, six U's, five V's, ten W's, two X's, four Y's, two Z's, and zero meaning.
What I like about it is that it's all true. If you're wondering what the story is behind all that, read on.

My wife asked me what kind of art I'd like to hang on the wall as decoration. Lacking much interest in art, I grabbed my copy of Gödel, Escher, Bach: an Eternal Golden Braid and showed her some M. C. Escher art, which I've always found appealing in a cerebral way.

She asked me to send her a link.

I hit the net and got interested in the book more than the art, and I ran across the FAQ, which contains lots of self-referential things like this:
How long is the answer to this question?
Ten letters.
It also had a link to a pangram appendix, which has code for generating phrases like my description above. I thought that was so cool, and my enthusiasm was dimmed only slightly by the discovery that the "algorithm" to find a pangram is not detereministic. It generates random numbers until it finds a set that works!

I wanted to share this coolness with others, in the form of a .signature for my emails. For years now I've been using a two-line format like so:
Kyle Hasselbacher | Give a man a match, and he'll be warm for a minute, but set | him on fire, and he'll be warm for the rest of his life.
Unfortunately, the pangram the program found for me was much longer than two lines. It would never fit!
Kyle Hasselbacher | This .signature has six A's, two B's, three C's, three D's | thirty-one E's, six F's, two G's, fourteen H's, thirteen
I's, three K's, six L's, two M's, ten N's, eleven O's, fourteen R's,
thirty-three S's, twenty-three T's, five U's, four V's, five W's, six X's,
and six Y's,
I despaired. Then I wrote something that would come up with "partial pangrams" like this one:
Kyle Hasselbacher | This .signature has nine H's, nine I's, six L's, six O's, | six R's, eighteen S's, three Y's, and some other letters.
I can hear you saying already, "this is all very neat," you say, "but is it really necessary to blather on about this stuff, when it's obvious it's only tangentially related to your description?"

To which, I say, "this is a completely pointless waste of time anyway, and if you're not enjoying it, you can stop reading any time."

Now that that's settled, I would like to veer off even more to point out that I'd never heard of a pangram before, and I assumed that it was a self-referential sentence which describes a histogram of its own letters. As it turns out, a pangram is any sentence which contains every letter of the alphabet, and people usually try to make them as short as possible. Thusly, my "partial pangram" is not a pangram at all, and these long-winded histogram pangrams are substandard by the usual pangram norms.

Anyway, sometime after all that, I got a blog, and I knew not how to describe it. Still glowing with the prospect of sharing self-referential pangram joy with the world, I described it as you see above. Way cool, huh?

Yes. I think so.