Small ray of light

I got home too late to watch the State of the Union address, but I’m reading the transcript now. Along with my expected knee-jerk reaction to the administration playing the partial-birth abortion card, continuing to insist on Saddam’s WoMD and vaguely linking him to 9/11, there was one thing that pleasantly surprised me: Bush’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief:

…tonight I propose the Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief a work of mercy beyond all current international efforts to help the people of Africa. … I ask the Congress to commit 15 billion dollars over the next five years, including nearly ten billion dollars in new money, to turn the tide against AIDS in the most afflicted nations of Africa and the Caribbean.

What will be interesting to see is how the Administration reconciles “turning the tide against AIDS” with their war on the condom. And their appointment of Jerry Thacker, the Bob Jones University employee and “AIDS is a gay plague/homosexuality is a deathstyle” blowhard, to the Presidential Advisory Commission on HIV and AIDS.

Odd random linkage from Australia

The Age, the newspaper of Melbourne, Australia, published a link to my blog in a listing of “home improvement weblogs” back in December. The fact that I never saw the referral suggests some things about their readership’s web literacy; still, it was funny to see my name in print on an .au site. God only knows what the readers made of the description:

Just reading about Tim Jarrett’s Christmas decorations is enough to make one go politically correct and not “do” Christmas….Jarrett’s blog is not all about settling into his new house but he has window contractors to deal with, boxes to unpack and plenty of plans to look forward to. The rest of the time he’s singing nonsense carols and wondering where his funk went.

The quotation was in reference to a post from December 1 about getting the Christmas tree in place. Apparently the article showed up in a few other sites, all Australian as far as I can tell, including the Sydney Morning Herald. The author, Jenny Sinclair, apparently writes a column called Blogon that reviews a handful of weblogs each week.

Get well soon, Dad

A quick shout out to my father. As Esta reported, he went in for carpal tunnel surgery today. The preliminary news is that he came through the surgery well and is okay to travel. This is actually the second time he’s had surgery for the same condition, which gives me lots of confidence in the procedure… Carpal tunnel syndrome appears to be another one of those conditions that runs in the family. I have at various times felt stirrings of the distinctive pain, and Lisa has had fairly severe bouts with it at various times. Here’s best wishes that Dad’s surgery is a complete success and that he’ll be back to painless wrenching on the MG’s twin carburetors soon.

Busy day; lots of list markup

Things have been pretty crazy at our office owing to the SQL Slammer worm. We’re just starting to settle back to normal, but I expect to continue to have an impacted blog for another day or so.

In the meantime, go take a look at the much faster loading Dave updated the page design this morning, based on some seriously heavy CSS lifting by Douglas Bowman at StopDesign. There are some really good lessons to be learned about list coding in this redesign. The big table was turned into an ordered list; each entry in the list has a blog name and an update time. “But wait!” you cry. “How did he get the time to float to the right?” Very simple. He surrounded each time with emphasis markup (em>) and defined a rule for emphasis inside an ordered list that floated the emphasis all the way to the right hand side of the bounding box.

Semantic? No. Tricky lightweight code? Absolutely.