|A retreat for the well-being of my mind from the insanity of the life that is mine.|
Tuesday, March 22, 2005 0 comments
Mood: Meh, bleh, and all that.
Currently listening to: Get Your Hands Off My Woman (Motherfucker) - The Darkness
Typical day. Went to uni, solved a few niggling matters (including one in employee relations - the kicker being that i'm unemployed at the moment). Looks like i've got the whole of next week off because semester break is coming early to town this year! On the downside though, i've got two assignments to hand in the week after that... :(
Been hanging around with my group mate Binyo (he be indon) of late since we're supposed to do a Strategic Management presentation together in the next four weeks... the hard part is that our tutor is seriously into detail and she doesn't seem to mind spending 15 minutes after someone's presentation going over what they did wrong in excrutiating detail.
I will NOT let this happen to me.
The case study (yes, this will be boring - i can't think of anything else to write) is based around Non-Market Strategies, which basically concerns the range of legal, social, and political strategies that a company undertakes to support its main market strategies and gain any form of competitive advantage. My job is to pick a company, outline their entire range of non market strategies, bring up the political influence issue (how they do it, the ethics of it, etc.) and the extent to which these strategies have benefited them. This, of course, is a great subject for me since it allows me to showcase all sorts of dastardly dealings and political skullduggery (one of the three case study questions specifically focuses on political strategies).
Yes! Finally! Justification for my stacks of useless knowledge and countless lonely hours spent absorbing news and data in all its resplendent (and sometimes downright kinky) forms.
We've narrowed the choices down to three:
Currently in the media spotlight thanks to two major issues - claims that they monopolized supposedly public tendered contracts for Iraq reconstruction and US Army force support, and the fact that they are in Iran despite US sanctions. That, and the fact that they pay bucketloads of cash to pro-oil lobbies and VP Cheney still has ties with them.
These guys have a long history and Coke was arguably one of the first true MNCs in the world (courtesy of the US Army). As such, they have a whole load of skeletons in their closet(s)...
3. Big Tobacco
Geez, who hasn't heard of the pro-tobacco lobby? That and there's a wealth of information on these guys... how about the time they actually fudged the medical data from the Surgeon General's office? Or... shit, there's a lot here...
The only hard part of this, for me, is the fact that the vast majority of these cases lack quantifiable data on their political strategies. Aside from almost every company's laughable declaration of their respect for business ethics, there is not much provable data on this. Well, aside from Big Tobacco - but another group is doing them for a different topic (damn them to hell). For example, the inquest into Halliburton is ongoing and Coca-Cola's stuff is, for the most part, hearsay...
Oh sweet Jeebus. This post is once again pathetic. I have sunk to describing mein assignments. :(
If you can't tell - i am utterly bored out of my mind.
AND the goddamn RTF and WYSIWYG tabs still aren't working.
Quizzes. Yes. I think i will.
I blame Yo and Sel.
Me. Gandalf. *snort*
Zounds! I have been teh discovered! *scarpers*
Erm... 'Denile'? Please tell me thats a bad joke or the character in the pic... Pheh, not that great a quiz at any rate.
In other news it looks like those anime giant robot fetishists out there are about to have a good time with this one:
The private first class uses some hydraulics training he learned in the Army as a heavy equipment mechanic, but mostly loads of imagination and gumption, to build an 18-foot "mecha" in the snows of his Wasilla, Alaska, back yard.
For those unversed in the world of Japanese anime, a mecha is a hulking robot with a human pilot inside. Owens soon plans to fire up his machine for walk testing. The 27-year-old believes his machine could fight wars, fight fires, or -- at the very least -- take on old Volkswagens for cheering crowds.
"Pound for pound, it's the most powerful exoskeleton on the planet," Owens says.
OK, laugh it up. But even the Pentagon wants robotic soldiers.
The concept isn't entirely new: In the late '60s, General Electric designed a machine that would allow sailors on aircraft carriers to lift 1,500 pounds for loading bombs. Only one of machine's arms worked, though, and it never saw sea duty.
Still today, from Wasilla to Washington, D.C., the dream is alive.
"If you're piloting one of these things, it'll emulate your movements on an 18-foot scale," Owens says of his creation. "If you move your arm, it'll move its arm. If you raise your leg, it'll raise its leg. If you stomp a car, it'll stomp a car."
Owens runs a Web site, www.neogentronyx.com, and promises he'll post a video of his baby taking its first steps. Owens started with scraps in 2003 and now has a full exoskeleton. He plans to debut it at a speedway this spring. But beyond car crushing - already the bread-and- butter of a 40-footer called Robosaurus - Owens sees real work for his machine. The prototype will fire flames and spikes, but one designed for the military could fire nastier munitions for urban combat.
"No one's going to want to play Rambo with a machine like this that is three times taller than they are," Owens says.
He also sees mechas as super smokejumpers.
"If you send a squad of these guys, you could just romp right through a forest fire, and put that sucker out from the inside. You could put on a hydraulic chain saw attachment."
Don't get too excited though, there's a riposte from DARPA at the bottom of the article... they have a point too.
Name: Patrick Pincon
Studied at: Monash
Work: Business Development
Location: Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
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