A Biblical web site well worth the visitIt's hard to imagine something this detailed and extensive (this chap has a ton of time on his hands, clearly!) but The Brick Testament is a complete retelling of the Bible, both old and new testament, in Lego bricks. Quite astonishing. Check it out!
An author horror story: book signings from heckI haven't done many book signing events personally, but those I have seem to have been a combination of embarassing, boring and, well, much ado about nothing, as it were. However, I'm glad to say that I have never experienced anything like this tale as related by an anonymous fiction author via email...
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Writing update: done with one book!Somehow, I've ended up in the position of working on four different book projects at the same time, including two that I'm writing. It makes my brain hurt sometimes, but it's proceeding reasonably smoothly. The exciting update is that Shell Script Hacks, a book full of quite cool Unix command shell scripts (programs), is now in clean-up mode as I turned in the final chapter this week. A big relief. Left on my plate now is
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Is copyright really allowing companies to "monopolize entertainment"?Kazaa, the latest in the p2p file sharing solutions on the computer, was sued a few weeks ago by a consortium of entertainment companies, accused of providing free access to copyrighted music and films. Without denying it, maker Sharman Networks has fought back, today filing a countersuit claiming that "the industries don't understand the digital age and are monopolizing entertainment."
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3 out of 10 Japanese women...Alright, this is a blatently titillating weblog entry, but having bumped into this article, I can't but share it with others. According to contributing writer Cheryl Chow of the Mainichi Daily News (Japan), women eschewing panties are quite the trend in Tokyo. As she says in the introduction to the article: "Take a look around you. Do you see (or not see) how the young women have taken to prancing around the streets of Tokyo braless and pantiless?"
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Some of my favorite moviesI'm a member of Netflix and they have a nice feature where you can not only rate movies to get decent suggestions, but go back and review your ratings down the road. With that in mind, and given that I'm quite a film fan, here's a list of some of my favorites:
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Your next car: a mobile DJ studio?A few weeks ago Honda announced its Studio E car, which is described most interestingly:
" Studio E is built around the needs and lifestyle of a club DJ and transforms the Element's cavernous interior into a rolling audio and video studio complete with an onboard personal audio computer for mixing tracks and a 42-inch high-definition plasma screen display. The upright and modular exterior styling remain true to the Element, while the panel sides conceal equipment and provide security for speakers and amplifiers inside."
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In the "where-ever they want" category...According to the BBC, a herd of overly-amorous elephants have been sent from England to France because they "are too frisky." In fact, the tales must be true; the herd is comprised of one bull male and four females. Elephant or not, if you can keep four women happy simultaneously, you deserve the right to travel to a more romantic country, don't you think?
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Does your garage door opener violate the DMCA?A very interesting legal case continues between Chamberlain Corporation (manufacturers of garage door systems) and Skylink (a third party company that sells 'compatible' openers), wherein Chamberlain sued Skylink for violation of the Digital Millenium Copyright Act, claiming that its "rolling code" security system was patented, and therefore Skylink reverse-engineering it for the Skylink remote was a patent violation....
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Classic Dumb SpamI've thought about this for a while: mingled in with the stupid and lame spam I receive are the occasional ironic messages, messages with misspelled entreaties to get a graduate degree, etc. In general, receiving over 100 spam messages a day, I can either view it as highly annoying or a potential source of amusement. I opt for the latter. So, without further ado, my ever-growing list of entertaining spam...
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Is this really a law in Denver?I was perusing dumblaws.com this evening and came across this odd one: "The dog catcher must notify dogs of impounding by posting, for three consecutive days, a notice on a tree in the city park and along a public road running through said park." Whaddya think? Is it legitimate?
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What's with The Company Store?We purchased some bedding from The Company Store a few days ago and this evening received some junk mail from them advertising an upcoming sale. No biggie, except for the small print on the bottom of the messsage:
To unsubscribe, send an e-mail to Optout@thecompanystore.com with "UNSUBSCRIBE The Company Store" in the subject field. All requests to this address will be manually reviewed. Please allow additional time for response. We apologize for any inconvenience.This is ridiculous and perhaps the worst snippet of Internet marketing I've seen in years of dotcom activity!
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A long lost pleasure: sleepAs every parent surely knows, one of the first things that fly out the window when your little bundle of joy arrives is sleep. The first year is probably the worst, but between bad dreams, nighttime fears, yechy-feeling bodies and similar, sleep continues to be but a distant memory for us. And this week has been super hard, so far. It's funny, from a distance, but up close, well, can I nap and still stay on schedule?
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Agitprop and modern timesI'm not entirely sure why, I must have heard it used in the last few days, but I've spent a lot of time thinking about agitprop, propaganda used to agitate and generate dissent. It's from Russian: otdel agitatsii i propagandy. The more I watch the situation in Iraq and North Korea, though, the more I feel like our government here in the U.S. is learning how to use agitprop too. The latest: Bush 'sick and tired' of Iraq's failure to cooperate with U.S.
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Maybe this is why there are so many divorces?Apparently there's a new TV show called Bachelorette on ABC TV (the Disney channel, remember) that "pairs the bachelorette with 25 men to find her one true love." Not only is it unabashedly ripped off from The Bachelor, but what I find even more interesting is that the woman who is the ostensible star of Bachelorette, Trista Rehn, was the #2 choice of the man in the Bachelor show. Is this incestuous or what? As if the concept itself wasn't pathetic, the fact that the Bachelorette is one of the "contestants" (?) on the Bachelor is just mind boggling.
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Surprising Wireless Public AccessThis afternoon, after a somewhat disorienting morning, I went to the local Starbucks on Pearl Street for a cup of coffee and a chance to do some homework for my Economics Class, and noticed that my TiBook had found a computer-to-computer network. I connected, knowing it was from another laptop in the café. I was right, and it was weird to be seeing the "My Pictures" folder from another system...
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Cell Phones in HellMy son and I took the bus today to the library (a favorite jaunt) and, as I've observed before, the bus is a curiously popular place to have cellphone conversations. In about a two mile distance, we listened to one guy talking to his buddy about a football game, and watched with amazement as a teenager stood at the bus stop, waiting for the bus, on her phone, then stayed on the phone, flashing her pass and otherwise not acknowledging anyone, even the driver. What's with people and cell phones anyway?
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Imagine never turning off your TVSony introduced a new "television strategy" yesterday at the Consumer Electronics Show, one that frankly fills me with horror. Well, maybe a more accurate emotion would be depressed resignment. Anyway, Sony COO Kunitake Ando outlined his vision of the future of television, as reported by BBC News World Edition...
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Hilarious rant about net writingI can't take credit for this one, but Matt Olsen has written a quite entertaining screed about modern online writing, called How to Write Like A Wanker. There's lots of strong language, but it's worth reading anyway. He's rather spot on the mark, in my opinion.
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If Only Things ConnectedA News.com story reports that Microsoft has a new initiative based on its .NET system allowing different devices in your house to sync up and work together. The example used in Bill Gate's keynote at the Consumer Electronics Show was an alarm clock that got its alarm data from your PC...
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Baby BluesI may fancy myself reasonably literate, but I still greatly enjoy the daily comics page in the local newspaper. The problem is, of course, the local paper only has the comics in print, not online, and I'm not willing to throw away thirty pounds of wasted newsprint each year to get my comic fix. So, I hacked together my own...
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The New Safari Web BrowserYesterday Apple Computer released a bunch of new software and hardware at the annual MacWorld Expo in San Francisco. Of these, the most interesting to me is Safari, a quite remarkably good new Web browser built specifically for Mac OS X. While its appearance is markedly better than other browsers I've used, and its bookmark feature is elegant, there are a few features I'm missing already, 24 hours after adopting it as my main browser...
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Sporadic Weird News... from me!I know, I know, Randy Cassingham has the delightful This Is True,Cecil Adams has the always-entertaining The Straight Dope, and even Chuck Shepherd has News of the Weird, but, darn it, I have a humble but interesting list worth mentioning too: Pearls of the Net.
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