We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
When Bird Dog told me he needed a rest, and was heading out to "take the waters," I pictured him going to one of those fancy hotels with lots of ceramic tile on the walls, within sight of the Danube, where all the women speak with a heavy Bavarian accent and they smear you with the local mud. Silly me. Let's get these links out of the way so I can go post Bird Dog's bail. Apparently, to him, "taking the waters" means shoplifting a couple of bottles of Poland Spring and some beef jerky in a convenience store on Staten Island.
Every friend I have with a job that involves picking up something heavier than a laptop more than twice a week eventually finds a way to slip something like this into conversation: "Bro,1 you don't work hard. I just worked a 4700-hour week digging a tunnel under Mordor with a screwdriver."
They have a point. Mordor sucks, and it's certainly more physically taxing to dig a tunnel than poke at a keyboard unless you're an ant. But, for the sake of the argument, can we agree that stress and insanity are bad things? Awesome. Welcome to programming.
It's an enormous misappropriation of the word to call software designers "engineers." You're stressed because your stuff doesn't work, you're incompetent, and people notice it from time to time.
There you go. Read all that stuff. It won't make you any dumber, I promise. After I bail out Bird Dog, I'm going to ask him to chain me to an oar on the other side of Maggie's Farm's Trireme. My left bicep needs work.
As far as Star Wars goes, no none of them were very good. Mediocre acting, pretty standard good vs. evil storyline, boy meets girl, boy falls for girl, girl is his sister (very much a telenovela storyline) so sister falls for handsome hero.
However, at the time the special effects were pretty cool. Then again, I remember having my boys watch "The Ten Commandments" and they laughed at the parting of the Red Sea - rightfully so. At the time, though, that was some amazing special effects work!
Despite all this, Star Wars is a tremendous accomplishment, however mediocre it is. I like to tell my team that things are purchased based on price, quality and ease of use. There is no particular order, but if you make something easy to use (or enjoy), price it fairly, and the quality is 'good enough' - you've got a winning combination (think Windows and PCs).
Star Wars is one of those rare accomplishments, and it strikes a chord with many people.
The last three episodes were the worst of the lot, but made a ton of money. So naturally, I fully expect the next three to be even worse and make even more money.
When Star Wars came out in '77 it was a welcome breath of fresh air from the depressing movies of the 1970s. It was the old, and reliable, hero story that strikes a cord with people. One simply has to look at the classics to see this. Sadly, like most of the pop culture of the 1970s, the idea of the story got lost in the vanities of the Woodstockers and they created a depressing decade until a few mavericks did something different.
I can't disagree with you on the quality of Star Wars movies. Regardless of what you or I think about them, they will be classics, though.
I thought one of the most interesting aspects of them was the religious subtext. I thought it was refreshing. The same could be said of Lord of the Rings (I believe C. S. Lewis was very supportive of Tolkien's efforts).
It's an enormous misappropriation of the word to call software designers "engineers."
Is it? Several years ago this came up in a conversation between a couple of my engineer co workers. One claimed that computer engineering was actually the closest thing to engineering that we have these days.
Engineers were the guys who kept the engine running. Today they are designers or applied scientists.
Re Star Wars: I don't hold out much hope. Since most popular fiction, science fiction included, requires the audience to identify with the lead characters, it's a mistake for the author or director to talk down to the audience. With Abrams directing, I suspect the next Star Wars will turn out to be the same kind of condescending Mary Sue story the last two Star Trek pictures were.