Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Context Insensitive

I've finally got Amazon's context sensitive ads working so I've put them at the top of the page over the google text ads to see how they react to my writing.

As I type the banner is advertising "World of Warcraft" products, which seems a reasonable reaction to my stream of consciousness recently.

The turn of the month inspired me to put Amazon on my October 2005 archive as well. That is producing ads for New Orleans music, in response to my brooding over the fall out from hurricane Katrina I suppose.

In a crunching gear change, it also saddened me to reread a post about Darfur in the year old archive. Nothing has improved in the last 12 months, the self congratulation of Live8 notwithstanding.

Last year I read Robert B Kaplan's Surrender or Starve: Travels in Sudan, Ethiopia, Somalia, and Eritreato try and get some perspective on what is going on in Western Sudan. This year it looks like I am going to need to read his Soldiers of Godto try and develop a better informed view of the trials of Afghanistan. Kaplan is deeply pessimistic about the 21st century, but his work appears more and more prophetic as we unravel, reminding me of Yeats' formulation:
Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;
Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,
The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere
The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
The best lack all convictions, while the worst
Are full of passionate intensity.

Ring any bells? I wonder what October 2007's archive will look like?

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