Alton Brown in New Orleans

Alton Brown is coming to Octavia Books on October 19, 2011, to sign copies of the newest volume in the Good Eats series, Good Eats 3: The Later Years.

The cost of a ticket is the price of a copy of the book at Octavia. You trade the ticket for the book at the signing. Unfortunately, the store’s website indicates that Alton will only be signing books purchased from the store. I bought my ticket yesterday, and it came to just over $40 with in-store pickup. Also, for those who want pictures with AB, keep in mind his no-camera-phone policy (third paragraph from the bottom) and bring a real camera.

See you there!

Can You Run Me Off a Gun?

This post is not legal advice; it’s only my opinion. And unless you’ve retained me by a signed contract after an in-person consultation, I’m not your lawyer. If you’re considering printing this project, hire a lawyer who knows the area of law — both federal law and your particular state/county/city/whatever’s law) and consult him. Or better yet: buy a lower. It’s cheaper than hiring a lawyer and probably more fun!


Now onto the interesting stuff.

Recently, a Thingiverse user posted a file that can be printed on a 3d printer to create a (theoretically) functional AR-15 lower receiver. This upset some members of the Thingiverse community, as you can see from the lively discussion on the project page. Tech  Crunch covered the controversy and asked a few important questions. Is printing a gun the same as buying a gun? Is the printed lower receiver a weapon? Is it a part? Is it Illegal?

In short, no, printing a gun isn’t the same as buying one because the user is a manufacturer instead of a consumer. The lower receiver is still a firearm under federal law (and probably state law) as opposed to being just a part. And, finally, printing a lower is not prohibited under federal law for those allowed to own firearms, but your state’s law may vary. Continue reading

Killer Wants to go to Law School

One of Tulane Law School’s brand new 1Ls is a convicted murderer. According to the newspaper reports quoted in the Above the Law comments, Bruce S. Reilly murdered a Rhode Island Community College professor in 1992. He pleaded no contest to second degree murder, admitting to stabbing the professor twenty-four times, beating him with a fireplace poker, and smashing his head in with a statue. Then he ran off with the late professor’s stereo, credit cards, and 1988 Ford Tempo.

Police got a break in the murder investigation when an informant reported that Reilly had been bragging about the murder. After pleading, Reilly was sentenced to twenty years in prison and was released on parole after twelve.

Now he’s out, and he’s attending Tulane Law School on scholarship. How do the people who applied to Tulane and were rejected feel now that they know who they lost out to? And why would Tulane bother admitting him? J.D.s are refused admission to the bar for misdemeanor DUIs and minor drug convictions all the time; Reilly has no hope of practicing law anywhere. Is it a publicity stunt?

Whatever the school’s reasoning, it’s offensive that Tulane wasted the seat and a scholarship on someone who’ll never practice law. Reilly is a prisoner’s rights advocate. The school should have passed on him and admitted a student with similar interests but less stabby hobbies. That student could have made a difference with his J.D.

The silver lining here, of course, is that Tulane is adopting a progressive, more lenient stance on crime. This is what one of the Deans said after a student stole Mr. Rogers’s shoe a while back:

I’m afraid I cannot overemphasize the gravity of this incident. It appears that one of the students of this Law School committed theft, a serious crime. It is also a violation of the Tulane University Code of Student Conduct. Moreover, what was stolen was of very high value. . . . I hope it is obvious that being under suspicion or arrested in connection with this incident would have the most serious negative implications for your future career as a lawyer.

Thank god Reilly only killed someone to steal his Ford Tempo and not something of very high value. Otherwise, it might have had negative implications for his future legal career.

At least he’s not a gunner.

Book Review: Ready Player One


I’m on vacation and hadn’t planned on blogging again until I got home, but I need to share Ready Player One. I first read about it on boing boing around the time it was released. After a short wait on my reading list, I downloaded it.

I started reading it yesterday evening after we got back from vacation activities and kept going until 3 A.M. It broke my heart to put it down, but I needed some sleep. So when we got back to the hotel this evening, I picked it up and didn’t put it down again until I finished it.

Continue reading