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Puggo - Jar Jar's Yoda

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Trusted Members
Join date
20-Sep-2006
Last activity
19-Feb-2018
Posts
3387
Web Site
http://www.hardbat.com/puggo

Post History

Post
#1171247
Topic
2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympic Games
Time

My last serious game of chess was in 1994… I was playing a tournament and looked out the window and it was a beautiful day, I asked myself what I was doing sitting there moving pieces around on such a nice sunny day (literally true). My last rating was 2074, my highest was 2137 (if I remember right). I’d be lucky to break 1700 today - I can’t even remember the openings I used to play. It’s a whole new world now with the databases and the computers - I’ve never used any of them.

That said, I’d be willing to try a game with whomever. It would have to wait until the weekend as my workdays are killer right now.

Post
#1171133
Topic
2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympic Games
Time

As for table tennis - don’t get me started. It is most certainly a sport. The level of fitness required to play at top level is pretty much like soccer. If you don’t believe that, simply go online and watch some world class matches. A lot of people think that the way they play at home is indicative of what it is like at a competitive level, when the two bear little resemblance.

This is doubly true for badminton. Many serious players won’t even play singles because it is too exhausting. Here too, watch a world class match and see the level of fitness and exertion on display. Badminton is one of the most aerobically-demanding sports one could choose.

As for chess, I was an expert-level tournament player for many years, and never considered it a sport. However, my view changed a bit during the first Karpov-Kasparov match, when the match had to be cancelled over fears of Karpov’s health. The length of the match, and the games, and the stress, Karpov had lost over 20 pounds (I think he was only 135 BEFORE the match) and had clinical exhaustion. Physical fitness is actually a factor because of the nature of the prolonged concentration and stress endured during an extended match. Top players train physically as well as mentally. I’m still not sure I’d call it a sport, though.

I can’t speak for curling, darts, videogaming, etc. because I am not knowledgeable in those areas. Therefore, based on my experience with people’s comments about table tennis, I am loathe to proclaim something in an area I know nothing about.

Post
#1170823
Topic
2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympic Games
Time

I wonder if there are some sports where women are actually objectively better than men. For instance, certain judged aspects of figure skating and gymnastics?

There are two olympic sports that are gender neutral - equestrian and curling. The latter doesn’t surprise me, but the former does - it requires a lot of strength and athleticism.

In my favorite sport of table tennis, it is no contest - the top woman in the world couldn’t break the top 100 in the men’s ranking, and that has been true since the beginning.

Post
#1169493
Topic
2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympic Games
Time

In 1991 North and South Korea fielded united teams in the world table tennis championships. It was quite hopeful seeing the athletes working together. Too bad it didn’t help. This is a bigger stage, so I hope that it makes a dent.

I’m curious how it will be reported/spun in North Korea press to its own people.

Post
#1161927
Topic
Politics 2: Electric Boogaloo
Time

CatBus said:

Mrebo said:

The Democrats would be a more liberal party if the electorate were more liberal.

IMO the positions of both parties have drifted right to attract donors, which are unfortunately worth quite a bit more than voters.

This. Since “Citizens United”, it’s getting harder to distinguish when a politician is trying to attract voters, and when they are trying to attract funding. You’re right it’s more usually the latter, since that generally leads to the former (sadly).

Post
#1159532
Topic
No sh*zn*t, Sherlock!
Time

Mike O said:

dahmage said:

I agree with your reviews of the three series.

As a child, my family often watched this https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sherlock_Holmes_(1984_TV_series) and i consider that my benchmark for what Sherlock should be.

It unfortunately switched to different creative personnel in the later seasons and really suffered for it by making way too many changes to source material in the adaptations, but God, those early years really are wonderful. For a lot of people, that’s very understandably the definite take on Holmes. Brett is magnificent, and Hardwicke and Burke were both a great Watson.

I think the biggest negative factor in the later episodes was Brett’s health, which was seriously failing. The early years were astonishingly good, though. It’s hard to imagine a better interpretation of Holmes.

Post
#1157201
Topic
The Last Jedi: Official Review and Opinions Thread ** SPOILERS **
Time

Sorry if I’m REALLY late to the party. I just now (finally) saw TLJ. (I’ve been sick since it came out, and only now felt spry enough to go to the theater).

Hmmm.
For some perspective, I REALLY liked both TFA and RO, a lot, and I thought they were both much better than the prequels.

But TLJ. Hmmm. I thought the first half of the movie was really terrible. It was rambling, depressing, gratuitous… basically a mess. I nearly lost it during the casino scene, and even moreso during the Yoda scene. Seriously even CPY was better. And that locksmith guy they picked? C’mon!! I found myself, while watching the film, trying to decide if it was as bad as the prequels, and pretty much thinking it might be. And I thought Kelly Marie Tran’s role was weak, really weak.

But it started getting decent during the Ren/Rey/Snoke showdown. (Although that did seem an awful lot like the RTJ showdown with the Emperor.) The “dark side” struggle that Rey was going through was way WAY better done than Anakin’s was in the prequels… I could have believed her turning to the dark side had it happened.

And then, I have to admit that the last half hour of the film was pretty amazing. Mark Hamill’s role in the climactic scene was really wonderful, much better than I had imagined it would be. It was truly some inspirational film-making, in my opinion.

So how could a movie have such extremes? From almost-walk-out-of-the-theater bad, to that-was-amazing good? This is one film that could benefit from a judicious fan edit. I saw TFA and RO each three times in the theater, but I doubt I’ll see this in the theater a second time. The thought of sitting through that first half is just not appealing.

Post
#1156936
Topic
Politics 2: Electric Boogaloo
Time

I consider myself quite liberal. However, I would be perfectly fine with a conservative president who wasn’t also an anti-environmental Bible thumper. It perplexes me why “conservative” has come to be associated largely with these two things. I’m fine with the concept of less government and more freedoms, but I’m not religious and don’t see the logic in governing our country with a 2000-year-old unchanging cryptic Aramaic hodge-podge that nobody even has an original copy of. I also consider our planet a beautiful and precious place and want leaders who care that it be preserved for the future… why isn’t that considered “conservative”?

Post
#1156297
Topic
Politics 2: Electric Boogaloo
Time

Warbler said:

Oprah appeals to the more liberal minded people. But if you want Trump gone, we need someone that will appeal to the moderate and conservative-light people. Obviously the liberals are going to vote for the Democrat whoever it is. But the moderates and conservative-light people need to be won over.

Actually, I thought that was what was being attempted with Hillary. As democrats go, she was pretty centrist.

Post
#1156174
Topic
Politics 2: Electric Boogaloo
Time

I don’t think that Trump’s negatives are of any importance to those who voted for him. The perception among his supporters is that he is doing exactly what he said he would do. He’s making government smaller (closing or downsizing a bunch of agencies), removing regulations, kicking out furiners, undoing things Obama did (esp. Obamacare), backing out of international agreements, lowering taxes (at least for some people), is very pro-Israel / anti-Palestine, and reducing environmental programs. His supporters have every reason to vote for him again, and I wouldn’t be at all surprised if he won even more comfortably next time. The democrats will need to run a very appealing candidate.

Post
#1155419
Topic
the beatles
Time

I really like the album “With the Beatles”.
Their versions of “Till There was You” and “Besame Mucho” remain my favorite of all versions of those standards.
Love the tune “Saw Her Standing There”. Great bass line.
I like some of their obscure originals, like “Ask Me Why”. They explored some very interesting musical forms in their early years. In some ways, as a musician I find their earlier material more technically interesting. Although there were many stronger musicians, somehow they managed to forge new ground.

This post has been edited.

Post
#1155367
Topic
the beatles
Time

The Beatles’ later material is ostensibly the more culturally significant.
However I prefer listening to their early material. Great tunes and great harmonies.

Post
#1153020
Topic
Politics 2: Electric Boogaloo
Time

Is Trump trying to provoke Kim into doing something, so that he can bomb them in retaliation? Or is that a stupid question?

Post
#1152906
Topic
Politics 2: Electric Boogaloo
Time

darth_ender said:
… I don’t believe Republicans maliciously pass these bills in order to harm everyone but the richest in America.

I don’t think (and I don’t know of anyone else who thinks) that Republicans are maliciously trying to hurt anyone. Rather, I think that quite a number of them (and I am convinced this is the case for Trump) are simply using this window of opportunity to become as rich as they can, as quickly as they can.

Post
#1151101
Topic
Politics 2: Electric Boogaloo
Time

moviefreakedmind said:

https://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/police-arrest-man-suspected-swatting-preceded-deadly-police-shooting-n833576

Police murder an innocent man based on a fraudulent phone call. The police brutality angle is what people are ignoring here.

Looks like at least half of the feedback on Yahoo News to this article is about the inappropriate police response. Even some police responding saying that the lack of verification before sending in a SWAT team, let alone drawing weapons, was very strange. Nobody seems to be ignoring it.

This post has been edited.

Post
#1150807
Topic
Politics 2: Electric Boogaloo
Time

Mrebo said:
it’s funny that California would negate the popular choice of the 49 other states. Consider further that even if we also exclude Texas’s votes, Trump still wins the popular vote in the remaining 48 states. That is how big a difference the people of California can make in a popular vote system.

(a) might that be true in reverse for large red states?
(b) does it therefore follow that California shouldn’t factor in at all (as is the case now)?

Post
#1149828
Topic
Politics 2: Electric Boogaloo
Time

The popular vote would mean that smaller states don’t have a voice? Well, the electoral college means that several larger states don’t have a voice. The EC, combined with jerrymandering, has skewed election results more and more with each passing year.

John Koza, a leading researcher in one of my research fields (genetic programming), is no longer doing computer science, but instead focusing his efforts on leading the national popular vote movement. His talks are very persuasive.

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