Archive for February, 2006

Free stuff on iTunes: 2006-02-28

Tuesday, February 28th, 2006

here’s a list of free downloads on iTunes that aren’t listed in the “Free Downloads” section on the front page, for the week of 2006-02-28.

Music

Videos

  • Conviction – Conviction (Pilot) — this was up last week as well. it’s the new series from “D**k Wolf” (as he was referred to last week — now all the descriptions have been changed to not mention him by name). I think this airs on actual TV this week.
  • Gabe Dixon Band – All Will Be Well — also up last week. problem with this music video is that the characters from the show talk over it. the actual song isn’t available on iTunes. somebody needs to place a call to the Gabe Dixon Band’s recording company.
  • Conviction – Behind the Scenes — also up last week.
  • Top Chef – Top Chef Trailer — two-minute trailer for a reality show.

Adding chat styles to Skype

Monday, February 27th, 2006

The Mac version of Skype has a pop-up menu in its Preferences labeled “Style”.

Screenshot of Skype's Preferences, Chat tab, with the “Style” pop-up set to Stockholm.

But wait. Why does it say “Stockholm” in my screenshot?

Well, it turns out that the format of Skype’s “chat styles” is the same as Adium’s message view styles. This isn’t something they openly tell people; the only evidence of it is a folder named “ChatStyles” inside the Skype application bundle, with the built-in chat style in it. A cursory analysis suggested that the format might be the same, and this was proven when I dropped the chat style into Adium’s message styles folder (and changed its filename extension) and it worked.

But you can’t go the other way — if you change the contents of Skype’s application bundle in any way, by adding, changing, or removing files, Skype will log an error to Console and refuse to launch.

So here’s how I installed the third-party Adium message view style “Stockholm” as a Skype chat style.

  1. Create a folder named “ChatStyles” in Library/Application\ Support/Skype.

  2. Copy an Adium message view style of your choice to the new ChatStyles folder.

  3. Rename it from “Foo.AdiumMessageStyle” to “Foo.SkypeChatStyle”. The icon will change to a folder; this is normal. But Finder’s column-view preview will still show the Adium message style icon. ;)

    UPDATE 03:47 PM: Actually, you don’t have to rename it. An AdiumMessageStyle will work just fine. (Sorry, should have tried that first…)

When you launch Skype, it will have the new chat style(s) in its pop-up menu.

UPDATE 3:51 PM: A previous version of this post claimed that you have to rename the style to Foo.SkypeChatStyle. Well, you can, but you don’t have to — Foo.AdiumMessageStyle will work just as well.

Report-an-Apple-bug Friday! 4

Friday, February 24th, 2006

I couldn’t remember on Friday what it was that I wanted to report. I finally remembered the Saturday afternoon after. so once again, I’m posting it late and forging the date. No rhyme intended.

This bug is TIFF files not supported as bundle icons, an enhancement request. As usual, I did not modify it for the open web except to HTMLize.


Summary:

Mac OS X only accepts IconFamily (icns) files as bundle (e.g. application) icons. Mac OS X should also accept TIFF files, which are more flexible and arguably easier to create (depending on your Terminal-fu).

Steps to Reproduce:

  1. Create a bundle.
  2. Place a TIFF file named “Icon.tiff” in the Contents/Resources subdirectory of the bundle.
  3. In Contents/Info.plist, set CFBundleIconFile to either “Icon.tiff” or “Icon”.

Expected Results:

Mac OS X, upon noticing the bundle, recognizes the TIFF file as the bundle’s icon. Finder uses as the bundle’s icon the image from the TIFF whose dimensions most closely match the target icon size defined in View Options.

Actual Results:

The bundle has a generic bundle or application icon.

Regression:

None known.

Notes:

A TIFF file can hold one or more images of any size. TIFF files containing more than one image can be created with the third-party tiffcp utility, or Apple’s tiffutil -cat that is based on tiffcp.

An IconFamily file is limited to five resolutions: 16-pt, 32-pt, 48-pt, 128-pt, and 256-pt. Also, the 256-pt resolution cannot be created with any current software. It is theoretically supported by the operating system, but no current application can create an IconFamily containing a 256-pt image — not even Icon Composer. tiffutil/tiffcp can and will easily add a 256-pt image to a TIFF file, or any other size image.

Besides the obvious MIP-mapping advantages, TIFF also supports compression. Images in a TIFF file can be compressed with JPEG, LZW, or PackBits, among other codecs. IconFamily does not support any compression. So given a TIFF file and an IconFamily file with the same set of images, the TIFF file would likely be smaller with the advantage of compression. This would also help ameliorate the disk-space hit of adding 256-pt images to some bundle icons.

UPDATE 2006-08-27: This was written before I found out that the 256-px images are compressed when they are stored into an IconFamily structure/file, and decompressed upon retrieval.

Boring personal stuff

Friday, February 24th, 2006

I got my SSN last week. I got my provisional driving permit yesterday. I’ll go to driving school next week. soon I’ll have my driver license.

once I do that, I’ll:

  1. drop the curtain. I’ll announce my real name and post a photo.
  2. seek a substitute for the high-school diploma I never got. (I was home-schooled.)
  3. look into getting money for my code. first choices are Google and Apple, although I want to find some job that isn’t in California.

farther in the long term, I want to get a university education and settle down somewhere.

On the Safari shell script exploit

Wednesday, February 22nd, 2006

reading John Gruber’s account, I had a couple of ideas on what to do about it.

  1. in Finder, when a file has a custom “Open With” assocation on it, badge the file’s icon with the application icon. in this case, it would have the Terminal icon badged onto it.
  2. in Safari, add a new warning when a file contains an “Open With” that points to an application that wouldn’t normally handle that type of file. in this case, Terminal does not normally open JFIF files, and this should cause a warning.

discuss.

Photoshop sucks

Monday, February 20th, 2006

Blunt enough title for you?

I’m mainly referring to CS2. I’ve been playing with it intermittently for the past 30 days, and I have built a list of complaints, all of which together stop me from pushing $180 across the counter for the upgrade from 5.5. I mainly arrived at that decision while making the screenshots for BZ Soundboard.


Selections can’t be moved under stupid circumstances.

Namely, when the current layer is hidden, you can’t move the selection. Huh?

Can’t drag-and-drop image files into open images.

Photoshop won’t accept the drop. You’d think it would at least check the file’s name and HFS type. Even better would be to run some kind of file(1)-like scan of the file.

The app insists upon old Mac OS behavior.

Many people like the old behaviour where clicking on any window of an app would bring them all forward. And there are several hacks that bring this to Mac OS X. But this should NOT be forced in an application. Photoshop does this, and it shouldn’t.

Can’t unlink a single layer from a set of linked layers.

Instead of you have to unlink all of them at the same time. Why? Photoshop 5.5 let you do this. Why can’t CS2?

No Unicode support in text layers.

Paste this into a text layer: ☃

Oddly, it’ll show up fine in the layers list; it just won’t render into the image correctly. You get “?” instead.

Excessive use of combo boxes.

Why do I have the ability to enter text here?

Screenshot of Photoshop's ‘Character’ (text settings) palette. Highlighted is a combo-box for entering the font.

Photoshop does provide completion, which is nice, but it should still be a plain pop-up menu. I can enter font names into that with the same effect. Even better, in the Mac version of Photoshop, it should use the Font Panel.

Non-standard UI elements.

Here’s one example:

Screenshot of Photoshop's gradient editor. Highlighted is the color pop-up for a key-point in the gradient. The arrow of the pop-up is excessively large.

Notice the hugemongous arrow. And this is a pop-up menu, not a pull-down menu. You could argue that this is a combo box, but at least on OS X, combo boxes have a text field attached. This should have the double-arrows like you see in the pop-up higher in the dialog. It also needs some kind of indicator (like ‘F’/’B’) when the foreground or background color is selected, as opposed to a static color.

I don’t mind so much this being custom, but it doesn’t look or work like a native UI element.

Preferences key combo is wrong.

Since Mac OS X, it should be ⌘,. Photoshop’s default is ⌘K. I don’t know how they thought of this selection, but it’s been around forever, and should now be retired.

Stupid save bugs.

  1. You can’t Save A Copy of a file, in PNG format, with alpha. But you can Save it As, in PNG format, with alpha. Huh?
  2. If you Save a file As in PNG format, then the window changes to reference the PNG file and the file appears saved (no “dirty” indicator in the close widget). All of this is correct. But if you then try to close the window, it’s suddenly dirty, and Photoshop complains that it “has not been saved completely because the current file format does not support all the features of your document”. Why didn’t you tell me this would happen when I saved the file?

Corrupted TIFF files.

Make sure that the “Save Transparency” checkbox in the TIFF options dialog is turned off (at least if you have an alpha channel). If it’s turned on, Cocoa can’t read your TIFF files.

No alpha support.

It is 2006, Adobe! EVERY graphics application outside of the Creative Suite supports alpha channels!

And amazingly enough, alpha support has actually regressed. Photoshop CS2 would not export the alpha of the two largest screenshots on the BZ Soundboard page (the resize screenshots). I don’t know if there is some hard-coded limit on the number of pixels that Photoshop CS2 will blend with an alpha channel, or if there’s some deeper bug, but CS2 pretended that the alpha did not exist when exporting to PNG or TIFF. I opened the PSD files in 5.5, and it exported the alpha flawlessly.


One thing I noticed while compiling this list: A number of these bugs seem to be in the class of “we’ve always done it this way”. Time for a refactor? (And I mean a real refactor, not just moving stuff around like they’ve done in every major version.)


An update (2008-03-23)

Since I originally published this post more than two years ago, several new image editors have emerged. Most people, I think, can replace Photoshop with one of these, and never miss the lost functionality.

All of these require Mac OS X 10.4 (because they all use Core Image). Prices in $ are US dollars.

  • Acorn ($50) is one of the two most popular—everybody who I know uses either Acorn or Pixelmator uses Acorn). I consider this the 21st-century update of MacPaint, and I mean that as a compliment. Start with this one—you will probably be satisfied.
  • Core Image Fun House (free) is the most basic editor you can get. It provides nothing more than filtering and cropping, and it doesn’t give you much help with the cropping (nor with scaling). However, it’s free, and you already have it: it’s one of the Mac OS X Developer Tools, as well as one of the sample-code applications.
  • Pixelmator ($59) is the most Photoshop-like, and the other most popular editor (it has the most downloads on MacUpdate and VersionTracker). If Acorn is too different from Photoshop for you, or you’re missing some of the more-advanced features, Pixelmator may be more your speed.
  • DrawIt is available in two versions: DrawIt Lite is free, whereas the full DrawIt is €29 ($42 as of this writing). It’s the most different of all the apps: The UI is essentially vector-based. The reason is that, in DrawIt, every operation is non-destructive. It accomplishes by making everything a layer. This works well, so you should definitely give DrawIt a try.
  • Iris is the only one I haven’t personally used. It’s currently a public beta; you can pre-order it for $39, or wait until version 1.0, which will be $79. The screenshot suggests that the UI is a cross between Pixelmator and Acorn.

Enigmo 2′s real requirements

Saturday, February 18th, 2006

sayeth the Enigmo 2 info page:

These are the game’s minimum system requirements:

• 800mhz G4 or any Intel Mac. Will NOT run on older Macs with a G3 processor.

• 256MB RAM and 32MB VRAM

• Mac OS 10.3.9 or later.

• QuickTime 7

OpenAL (Included with Mac OS 10.4, but for MacOS 10.3.9 it must be downloaded & installed by clicking this link).

(note to Pangea: real unordered lists aren’t that hard. really. try them sometime. [look at the source for the page if you don't know what I'm talking about.])

but this list is inaccurate.

I ran the demo just fine on my 450 MHz G4 Cube with 1 GB RAM and a Rage 128 with 16 MB VRAM. of course, I had it at 640×480 in a window at “low” quality, but it ran well in this configuration. so, don’t always believe the requirements.

incidentally, iirc, the original Enigmo was the same way.

Wendy’s is trying to take over the fast-food industry

Friday, February 17th, 2006

I had my lunch at Wendy’s today, during the lunch rush. there was a line, which I fully expected. I noticed that one of the people in the line was wearing a Wendy’s uniform — I figured that she was in line to get her lunch. but then she moved back one person, and it was then that I noticed the pad in her hand.

turns out she was taking orders. then she handed the customer an order slip to give to the cashier. this makes good sense to me; one customer can give his order while another customer is paying. multitasking++.

another employee was floating around, checking on customers and seeing if they needed anything. this was the first time I’d ever seen anything like this at a fast-food restaurant.

when I gave my order to the employee with the pad, I neglected to mention that I wanted my baked potato plain (no chives nor sour cream). so when I got my baked potato, it had chives on it. I figured that I would just scrape them off. that didn’t work too well — chives are apparently quite adhesive, to both the potato and the plastic knife.

it was only a few minutes before the floating employee came over and asked if I was having trouble. yes, I explained, I didn’t want chives on it; I wanted mine plain. she offered to take the potato back and exchange it, and I accepted. “all you have to do is ask!” — perhaps a bit out of line, but I accept some of the responsibility as well, as there’d have been no harm in asking. and the offer to exchange it more than made up for it, IMO.

both employees (the floating one and the one with the pad) came around and checked on how the customers were doing, and the floating one came by later and asked if I needed a refill. I should have checked my level; I thought my cup was still nearly full, so I refused, but it was actually at half. oops.

I already liked Wendy’s because they let you swap out the fries from a combo in exchange for a baked potato — choice is good. and now they have this. so, props to Wendy’s for proving that price isn’t the only way to win in the fast-food business.

Microlight: New and Improved

Tuesday, February 14th, 2006

some of you know that I’m a fan of the Inova Microlight, a small LED flashlight. we bought some more today, and I noticed that they’ve changed.

A quarter, an old-style Microlight, and a new-style Microlight.

for those who’ve never seen a Microlight, a quarter (which is 24 mm in diameter) is provided for size reference.

as for the two Microlights, the one on the left is the old model, whereas the one on the right is the new one. the obvious differences:

  • the new one is black with a smoky-black shell; the old one is smoky-black with a clear shell.
  • the new one is slightly larger.
  • the new one’s clip has notches at each end. I don’t know what this accomplishes.
  • the new one’s clip is held in place differently. see photo below.

Side views of both Microlights, with the newer model in the foreground. The older model's clip is crimped on both sides; on the new clip, there is only one crimp, and it is larger.

but there are other differences. first, the new one is much brighter. second, the interface has changed. the old version had two ways to turn it on: you could press the ribbed face (the face you’re looking at in the first photo) to turn it on momentarily, or you could slide a slide-switch on the other side to keep it on as long as you needed.

the new version has four modes. ‘signal mode’ is the same momentary-on from the previous generation, and is the default setting. the slide-switch is gone; it is replaced by three other modes. if you hold down the light button for 15 seconds, the light exits signal mode and turns off. then, you can turn it on in any of three ways:

  1. one press: high-power mode. this is the direct equivalent of the slide-switch.
  2. two presses: low-power mode. same thing, but it approximates the brightness of the old version.
  3. three presses: strobe.

all in all, I like the new design. certainly the improved brightness is a win. Mag-Lite had better make their Mag-LED really cool if they want to top this.

and no, I’m not on the Inova payroll.

The worst possible Hello World

Tuesday, February 14th, 2006

a recurring theme in many corporate-programming horror stories is the myth that the more code (that is, lines of code) that you write, the more productive you are. in the interest of debunking this myth, and also attacking bad code in general, I present to you: the Worst Possible Hello World! like any Hello World, all it does is print ‘Hello World!’. but it does so in the most convoluted way I can imagine.

let me know if you can come up with a worse one. ☺

Separated at birth?

Monday, February 13th, 2006

The Apple Hard Disk 20, with a Macintosh (128K, 512K, or 512K Enhanced) sitting on top of it.
the Apple Hard Disk 20.

The NewerTech miniStack, with a Mac mini sitting on top of it.
the NewerTech miniStack.

dun dun dun…

photo credits: each photo was ganked from the page that it’s linked to.

Report-an-Apple-Bug Friday! 3 (repost)

Saturday, February 4th, 2006

fie on Blogger. this post isn’t visible from the front page or the Dashboard, even though it exists. so I’m reposting it.

UPDATE 2006-02-25: it has been closed as a duplicate.


C99 escapes in Obj-C string contain UTF-8 interpreted as an 8-bit encoding. as last time, edited only for HTMLification.

Summary:

since C99, C has a \u escape for Unicode characters. for example, a snowman is \u2603.

when used in an Obj-C string literal (@"foo"), however, these escapes are broken.

Steps to Reproduce:

  1. write a program that displays a string, created from an Obj-C string literal containing a Unicode escape.
  2. compile it.
  3. run it.
  4. observe the display of the string.

Expected Results:

the Unicode character is displayed as such.

Actual Results:

the Unicode character’s UTF-8 representation is displayed in some 8-bit encoding (possibly ISO 8859-1).

Regression:

none known.

Notes:

the bug only occurs in Obj-C string literals, not plain C string literals.

it appears that the compiler uses UTF-8 for internal storage, which works. NSConstantString, however, seems to expect ISO 8859-1, and interpret its input as such.

the enclosed tarball contains test programs (command-line) in plain C (using printf) and Obj-C (using NSLog). the plain C version works; the Obj-C does not.

I found the bug when displaying an Obj-C constant string (which had been passed through NSLocalizedString, but there is no matching localisation for it yet) as an NSMenuItem‘s title. so the problem is not specific to terminals or Terminal’s display, nor dependent on the value of any locale environment variables.


I also attached two test cases.

Fisking the State of the Union, 2006

Friday, February 3rd, 2006

I watched some of the 2006 State of the Union address on ABC News. I decided to fisk it, so I got the full transcript from C-SPAN, edited it, and interspersed my comments.

I’ll also keep a count of certain events in the speech. These things will be counted:

  • Applause
  • References to 2001-09-11
  • References to fear

Thank you all. Mr. Speaker, Vice President Cheney, members of Congress, members of the Supreme Court and diplomatic corps, distinguished guests, and fellow citizens:

Technically, wouldn’t “fellow citizens” cover all of those people?

Every time I’m invited to this rostrum, —

Fancy word. Makes him seem smart.

— I’m humbled by the privilege, and mindful of the history we’ve seen together. We have gathered under this Capitol dome in moments of national mourning and national achievement.

And to hear the state of the Union. That more than the other two, I think.

We have served America through one of the most consequential periods of our history — and it has been my honor to serve with you.

Buttering ‘em up, so he gets even more applause.

In a system of two parties,

BZZT!

  • Libertarian Party
  • Green Party
  • American Freedom Party
  • American Independent Party
  • Reform Party

And those other two.

— two chambers, and two elected branches, there will always be differences and debate. But even tough debates can be conducted in a civil tone, and our differences cannot be allowed to harden into anger.

It shall be prohibited.

To confront the great issues before us, we must act in a spirit of goodwill and respect for one another — and I will do my part.

Are you surprised by this statement? What’s the alternative?

“… and I refuse to take part in this. In fact, there are tanks bearing down on the Capitol right now. Good-bye. [dashes away and locks the door behind him]”

Tonight the state of our Union is strong — and together we will make it stronger.

<Catfish_Man> “At some point during the speech, the President usually says “The State of our Union is strong” or a very similar phrase (however, in 1975, President Gerald Ford said that the state of the Union was bad).” —Wikipedia

In this decisive year, you and I will make choices that determine both the future and the character of our country. We will choose to act confidently in pursuing the enemies of freedom — or retreat from our duties in the hope of an easier life. We will choose to build our prosperity by leading the world economy — or shut ourselves off from trade and opportunity.

And you know something? He can’t be wrong! One of those things will happen!

In a complex and challenging time, the road of isolationism and protectionism may seem broad and inviting — yet it ends in danger and decline.

Fear is the path of the dark side.

Fear leads to anger.
Anger leads to hate.
Hate leads to suffering.

The only way to protect our people, the only way to secure the peace, the only way to control our destiny is by our leadership — so the United States of America will continue to lead. (Applause.)

We need to lead so that we can continue to lead?

Abroad, our nation is committed to an historic, long-term goal — we seek the end of tyranny in our world. Some dismiss that goal as misguided idealism. In reality, the future security of America depends on it. On September the 11th, 2001,

*ding*

— we found that problems originating in a failed and oppressive state 7,000 miles away could bring murder and destruction to our country.

Was that Afghanistan or Iraq?

Dictatorships shelter terrorists, and feed resentment and radicalism, and seek weapons of mass destruction. Democracies replace resentment with hope, respect the rights of their citizens and their neighbors, and join the fight against terror.

Democracies… like Iran!

… In 1945, there were about two dozen lonely democracies in the world. Today, there are 122. …

We should form a lonely-democracies club.

… At the start of 2006, more than half the people of our world live in democratic nations. And we do not forget the other half — in places like Syria and Burma, Zimbabwe, North Korea, and Iran — because the demands of justice, and the peace of this world, require their freedom, as well. (Applause.)

So the Axis of Evil admitted a couple new members? I don’t remember Burma and Zimbabwe being on that list.

… Terrorists like bin Laden are serious about mass murder — and all of us must take their declared intentions seriously. They seek to impose a heartless system of totalitarian control throughout the Middle East, and arm themselves with weapons of mass murder.

Their aim is to seize power in Iraq, and use it as a safe haven to launch attacks against America and the world. Lacking the military strength to challenge us directly, the terrorists have chosen the weapon of fear.

Fear is the path of the dark side.

Fear leads to anger.
Anger leads to hate.
Hate leads to suffering.

When they murder children at a school in Beslan, —

Eh? What does the hostage situation in Beslan have to do with it?

— or blow up commuters in London, or behead a bound captive, the terrorists hope these horrors will break our will, allowing the violent to inherit the Earth. But they have miscalculated: We love our freedom, and we will fight to keep it. (Applause.)

In a time of testing, we cannot find security by abandoning our commitments and retreating within our borders. If we were to leave these vicious attackers alone, they would not leave us alone. They would simply move the battlefield to our own shores. There is no peace in retreat. And there is no honor in retreat.

“No honor in retreat”. Little did we know, George W. Bush is secretly a Klingon.

… America rejects the false comfort of isolationism. We are the nation that saved liberty in Europe, and liberated death camps, —

Or the prisoners therein. The camps themselves were emptied.

— and helped raise up democracies, and faced down an evil empire.

Which one was that?

… We’re on the offensive in Iraq, with a clear plan for victory.

What is it?

“Well, we can’t tell you that, or the terrorists would know how to work around it.”

… Fellow citizens, —

But not the Speaker, the Vice President, the members of Congress, the members of the Supreme Court and diplomatic corps, or the distinguished guests?

— we are in this fight to win, and we are winning. (Applause.)

The road of victory is the road that will take our troops home. As we make progress on the ground, and Iraqi forces increasingly take the lead, we should be able to further decrease our troop levels — but those decisions will be made by our military commanders, not by politicians in Washington, D.C. (Applause.)

Aren’t you the Commander-in-Chief?

… Our men and women in uniform are making sacrifices — and showing a sense of duty stronger than all fear.

Fear is the path of the dark side.

Fear leads to anger.
Anger leads to hate.
Hate leads to suffering.

Our nation is grateful to the fallen, who live in the memory of our country. We’re grateful to all who volunteer to wear our nation’s uniform —

Uniforms. There are more than one kind of uniform in the US military.

— and as we honor our brave troops, let us never forget the sacrifices of America’s military families. (Applause.)

Our offensive against terror involves more than military action. Ultimately, the only way to defeat the terrorists is to defeat their dark vision of hatred and fear —

Fear is the path of the dark side.

Fear leads to anger.
Anger leads to hate.
Hate leads to suffering.

— by offering the hopeful alternative of political freedom and peaceful change. So the United States of America supports democratic reform across the broader Middle East.

Huh? Broader than what?

I guess he means in addition to Iraq.

The great people of Egypt have voted in a multi-party presidential election — and now their government should open paths of peaceful opposition that will reduce the appeal of radicalism. The Palestinian people have voted in elections. And now the leaders of Hamas must recognize Israel, disarm, reject terrorism, and work for lasting peace. (Applause.)

Or else.

The same is true of Iran, a —

democratic

— nation now held hostage by a small clerical elite that is isolating and repressing its people. The regime in that country sponsors terrorists in the Palestinian territories and in Lebanon — and that must come to an end. (Applause.) The Iranian government is defying the world with its nuclear ambitions, and the nations of the world must not permit the Iranian regime to gain nuclear weapons. (Applause.)

Are they illegal or something?

America will continue to rally the world to confront these threats.

To overcome dangers in our world, we must also take the offensive by encouraging economic progress, and fighting disease, and spreading hope in hopeless lands.

“To do this, we must first build a giant spreading-knife.”

In recent years, you and I have taken unprecedented action to fight AIDS and malaria, expand the education of girls, —

SEXISM!

— and reward developing nations that are moving forward with economic and political reform. For people everywhere, the United States is a partner for a better life.

Sounds like a commercial.

“The United States. A partner, for a better life. Join the United States now! 1-800-JOIN-USA”

… We now know that two of the hijackers in the United States placed telephone calls to al Qaeda operatives overseas. But we did not know about their plans until it was too late. So to prevent another attack — based on authority given to me by the Constitution —

The Fourth Amendment?

— and by statute — I have authorized a terrorist surveillance program to aggressively pursue the international communications of suspected al Qaeda operatives and affiliates to and from America. Previous Presidents have used the same constitutional authority I have, —

Who?

— and federal courts have approved the use of that authority.

When?

… If there are people inside our country who are talking with al Qaeda, we want to know about it, because we will not sit back and wait to be hit again. (Applause.)

Then get a warrant.

In all these areas — from the disruption of terror networks, to victory in Iraq, to the spread of freedom and hope in troubled regions — we need the support of our friends and allies. To draw that support, we must always be clear in our principles and willing to act. The only alternative to American leadership is a dramatically more dangerous and anxious world. Yet we also choose to lead because it is a privilege to serve the values that gave us birth. American leaders — from Roosevelt —

Which one?

—to Truman to Kennedy to Reagan — rejected isolation and retreat, because they knew that America is always more secure when freedom is on the march.

Our own generation is in a long war against a determined enemy — a war that will be fought by Presidents of both parties, —

Forecasting the defeat of the Republican candidate, are we?

— who will need steady bipartisan support from the Congress. And tonight I ask for yours. …

… In the last two-and-a-half years, America has created 4.6 million new jobs — more than Japan and the European Union combined. (Applause.)

Where do they get this statistic? And what does the job growth of other countries have to do with it?

The American economy is preeminent, but we cannot afford to be complacent. In a dynamic world economy, we are seeing new competitors, like China and India, and this creates uncertainty, which makes it easier to feed people’s fears.

Fear is the path of the dark side.

Fear leads to anger.
Anger leads to hate.
Hate leads to suffering.

So we’re seeing some old temptations return. Protectionists want to escape competition, pretending that we can keep our high standard of living while walling off our economy. Others say that the government needs to take a larger role in directing the economy, centralizing more power in Washington and increasing taxes. We hear claims that immigrants are somehow bad for the economy — even though this economy could not function without them. (Applause.)

But this implicitly refers to illegal immigrants, who are here illegally. If our economy is dependent upon these people, then it is thoroughly messed up.

All these are forms of economic retreat, and they lead in the same direction —

To the dark side.

— toward a stagnant and second-rate economy.

Tonight I will set out a better path: an agenda for a nation that competes with confidence; —

We don’t want confidence to win out.

— an agenda that will raise standards of living and generate new jobs. Americans should not fear our economic future, —

Fear is the path of the dark side.

Fear leads to anger.
Anger leads to hate.
Hate leads to suffering.

— because we intend to shape it.

Because America needs more than a temporary expansion, we need more than temporary tax relief. I urge the Congress to act responsibly, and make the tax cuts permanent. (Applause.)

Didn’t he say this last year?

RERUN!

I am pleased that members of Congress are working on earmark reform, because the federal budget has too many special interest projects. (Applause.) And we can tackle this problem together, if you pass the line-item veto. (Applause.)

Uh… WHAT?

Didn’t Clinton get this? And didn’t it get struck down in the Supreme Court?

We must also confront the larger challenge of mandatory spending, or entitlements. This year, the first of about 78 million baby boomers turn 60, including two of my Dad’s favorite people — me and President Clinton. (Laughter.)

C-SPAN didn’t do this, but when Bush said this, ABC News cut to a shot of Senator Clinton in the audience. She had the dirtiest scowl on her face.

Frame-grab of Hillary Clinton's scowl.

(It doesn’t look as bad in the frame-grab — it was much worse on TV.)

Congress did not act last year on my proposal to save Social Security — (applause) —

WOOHOO! NO MORE SOCIAL SECURITY!

— yet the rising cost of entitlements is a problem that is not going away. (Applause.) And every year we fail to act, the situation gets worse.

So tonight, I ask you to join me in creating a commission …

Ah, create a commission. That’ll help.

… With open markets and a level playing field, no one can out-produce or out-compete the American worker. (Applause.)

Except maybe those people in the Third World who work for a dollar a day. They look pretty good to the American companies looking for cheap labour.

… And we must have a rational, humane guest worker program that rejects amnesty, —

Huh?

— allows temporary jobs for people who seek them legally, —

If they seek the jobs legally, why do they need to be temporary?

— and reduces smuggling and crime at the border. (Applause.)

Keeping America competitive requires affordable health care. (Applause.) Our government has a responsibility to provide health care for the poor and the elderly, and we are meeting that responsibility. (Applause.)

I didn’t see any such responsibility named in the Constitution. Life, liberty, pursuit of happiness — nothing about health care.

For all Americans — for all Americans, we must confront the rising cost of care, strengthen the doctor-patient relationship, and help people afford the insurance coverage they need. (Applause.)

Pay my insurance!

We will make wider use of electronic records and other health information technology, to help control costs and reduce dangerous medical errors.

As opposed to non-dangerous medical errors?

We will strengthen health savings accounts — making sure individuals and small business employees can buy insurance with the same advantages that people working for big businesses now get. (Applause.) We will do more to make this coverage portable, so workers can switch jobs without having to worry about losing their health insurance. (Applause.) And because lawsuits are driving many good doctors out of practice — leaving women in nearly 1,500 American counties without a single OB/GYN —

Too many OB/GYNs aren’t able to practice their love with women all across this country. —GWB (full transcript of that speech)

— I ask the Congress to pass medical liability reform this year. (Applause.)

Keeping America competitive requires affordable energy. And here we have a serious problem: America is addicted to oil, which is often imported from unstable parts of the world. The best way to break this addiction is through technology. Since 2001, we have spent nearly $10 billion to develop cleaner, cheaper, and more reliable alternative energy sources — and we are on the threshold of incredible advances.

So tonight, I announce the Advanced Energy Initiative —

An initiative! yay.

— a 22-percent increase in clean-energy research — at the Department of Energy, to push for breakthroughs in two vital areas. To change how we power our homes and offices, we will invest more in zero-emission coal-fired plants, revolutionary solar and wind technologies, and clean, safe nuclear energy. (Applause.)

… We’ll also fund additional research in cutting-edge methods of producing ethanol, not just from corn, but from wood chips and stalks, or switch grass. Our goal is to make this new kind of ethanol practical and competitive within six years. (Applause.)

Breakthroughs on this and other new technologies will help us reach another great goal: to replace more than 75 percent of our oil imports from the Middle East by 2025. (Applause.)

I.e., “after my term”.

By applying the talent and technology of America, this country can dramatically improve our environment, move beyond a petroleum-based economy, and make our dependence on Middle Eastern oil a thing of the past. (Applause.)

And to keep America competitive, one commitment is necessary above all: We must continue to lead the world in human talent and creativity. Our greatest advantage in the world has always been our educated, hardworking, ambitious people — and we’re going to keep that edge. Tonight I announce an American Competitiveness Initiative, —

Another initiative?

HE’S ON A ROLL!

— to encourage innovation throughout our economy, and to give our nation’s children a firm grounding in math and science. (Applause.)

… We’ve made a good start in the early grades with the No Child Left Behind Act, —

BWAHAHA!

*cough*

— which is raising standards and lifting test scores across our country.

Test scores mean nothing. They examine the test as much as the child tested.

In recent years, America has become a more hopeful nation.

War… terrorism… bird flu…

Yeah. Real hopeful.

Violent crime rates have fallen to their lowest levels since the 1970s. Welfare cases have dropped by more than half over the past decade. Drug use among youth —

Define ‘youth’.

— is down 19 percent since 2001. There are fewer abortions in America —

Over what time period?

— than at any point in the last three decades, and the number of children born to teenage mothers has been falling for a dozen years in a row. (Applause.)

Again, over what time period?

Yet many Americans, especially parents, still have deep concerns about the direction of our culture, and the health of our most basic institutions. They’re concerned about unethical conduct by public officials, —

Like snooping?

— and discouraged by activist courts that try to redefine marriage.

What? Huh? When did marriage enter into this?

They worry about children in our society who need direction and love, and about fellow citizens still displaced by natural disaster, and about suffering caused by treatable diseases.

Treatable diseases… lead to suffering.

A hopeful society has institutions of science and medicine that do not cut ethical corners, and that recognize the matchless value of every life. Tonight I ask you to pass legislation to prohibit the most egregious abuses of medical research: human cloning in all its forms, creating or implanting embryos for experiments, creating human-animal hybrids, and buying, selling, or patenting human embryos. …

Patenting?

(Presumably, this is some sort of reference to cloning, but taken literally, it doesn’t make much sense.)

A hopeful society gives special attention to children who lack direction and love. Through the Helping America’s Youth Initiative, —

Another initiative?

— we are encouraging caring adults to get involved in the life of a child — and this good work is being led by our First Lady, Laura Bush. (Applause.)

PLUG!

A hopeful society acts boldly to fight diseases like HIV/AIDS, which can be prevented, and treated, and defeated. More than a million Americans live with HIV, and half of all AIDS cases occur among African Americans.

Why is the African-Americans statistic important?

I ask Congress to reform and reauthorize the Ryan White Act, and provide new funding to states, so we end the waiting lists for AIDS medicines in America. (Applause.) We will also lead a nationwide effort, working closely with African American churches —

Why only African-American churches? You don’t think all the other churches will help with this?

— and faith-based groups, to deliver rapid HIV tests to millions, end the stigma of AIDS, and come closer to the day when there are no new infections in America. (Applause.)

Before history is written down in books, it is written in courage.

By books, you meant ink. Or more accurately now, magnetic storage followed by toner.

Like Americans before us, we will show that courage and we will finish well. We will lead freedom’s advance. We will compete and excel in the global economy. We will renew the defining moral commitments of this land. And so we move forward — optimistic about our country, faithful to its cause, and confident of the victories to come.


And the counts:

Applause: 62.
2001-09-11: 2. Yes, that’s right, only two.
Fear: 5.