Friday, November 02, 2007

This Would Make Two. In A Row.

So remember last night, when I said I was a Last-Minute Larry for signing up like a day before this madness started, and was happy to see a few hundred people sneaking through the gates after me?

Apparently there's been a mad rush all damn day, of people pushing and shoving, trying to get their NaBloPoMo spot, and there are currently 4598 participants...more than 1700 of those signed up after me. (I would admit here to spending much of my day and night hitting the refresh button, and watching the number of members steadily increase, but that would be an unfair and inaccurate portrayal of my idea of "fun," so I won't admit it.)

I realize that eventually that number is going to hit a ceiling, because it'll stop being Nov. 1 pretty much everywhere, and start being Nov. 2, ya know? And then what's the point of BloPo'ing, if you've already failed before you've begun?

— • — • —

In the interest of not rambling on and on about things that contain Blo or Po or Na in every single entry during this month, today I'd like to share a Web site that I read about recently and spent part of the evening exploring. is a site created by a professor of education at Lawrence University in Appleton, designed to give clear, concise views on several of the important issues being discussed by the presidential candidates vying for their party's nominations and to help people decide which candidate best matches their viewpoints.

Readers take a series of surveys, voting for their positions on these issues. They also read through several anonymous statements made by the four front-running candidates in each party, and are asked to vote whether or not they agree with these statements.

After all the votes are tallied, your ideal candidate is spit out of the machine and displayed on the screen before your very eyes. (at least...that's how I think it's supposed to work. it's somewhat of an involved process, and I haven't gotten all the way through it yet.)

The one unfortunate part about the site is that you're required to go through an annoying registration process before you can take the surveys. I usually don't bother with those, but I was curious enough to see how the site works that I'm a full-blown "member," if you will, of the site.

The article I read that led me to the site stated that after the primaries are over, the site will be retooled so that it's able to be used for the general election as well. Not that many people need a Web site to help them decipher which candidates suit them best, but I thought the idea was one worth exploring. And sharing.

Maybe the site will be smarter than I'm giving it credit for. Say, for instance, I reveal a penchant for Wrangler jeans, gunslingers and martial artists...I'm assuming that the site would delve deep into its computer memory banks and tell me that my ideal presidential candidate would be Walker, Texas Ranger. Or Brett Favre.

Perhaps I'll stick to Iraq, immigration, energy, and health care.

"We have a presidential election coming up.
And I think the big problem, of course,
is that someone will win."
—Barry Crimmins

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