Tuesday, August 30, 2005

September Apple Event

Apple Computer plans a major announcement next week in San Francisco, sparking speculation that the company that revolutionized digital music will unveil a video-playing iPod or an iTunes mobilephone.

The Cupertino company e-mailed an invitation to reporters Monday, alerting them to a ``special event'' Sept. 7 at Moscone Center. The invitation featured a close-up image of the watch pocket on a pair of jeans, and text that hinted at something big -- or more precisely,
something compact.

``1,000 songs in your pocket changed everything,'' the invitation reads, in a clear allusion to the 2001 introduction of the iPod.``Here we go again.''

Here is my guess to add to the mix:

Bigger/Cheaper Shuffle,

mini with a colour screen,

iPhone (ROKR),

(maybe) videos for sale on iTMS.

I will go out on a limb and say NO vPod yet - not until Apple gets the
video in/out & DVR on the new PowerBooks - rip your own media first,
then buy some, just like Rip/Mix/Burn gave rise to the iTMS.

But I have been wrong before....

Monday, August 29, 2005

Eldest Released

"Eragon and his dragon, Saphira, have just saved the rebel state from destruction by the mighty forces of King Galbatorix, cruel ruler of the Empire. Now Eragon must travel to Ellesmera, land of the elves, for further training in the skills of the Dragon Rider: magic and swordsmanship."

If this book is even half as good as the first it will be a fabulous read - if you haven't read the first don't let the thought of elves, dragons and magic scare you off, this is great storytelling.
Is It Bad to Hate Hate?

washingtonpost.com > Nation > Wires: Anti-Gay Church Protests at GI Funerals

"SMYRNA, Tenn. -- Members of a church say God is punishing American soldiers for defending a country that harbors gays, and they brought their anti-gay message to the funerals Saturday of two Tennessee soldiers killed in Iraq.

The church members were met with scorn from local residents. They chased the church members cars' down a highway, waving flags and screaming "God bless America."


The Rev. Fred Phelps, founder of Westboro Baptist in Kansas, contends that American soldiers are being killed in Iraq as vengeance from God for protecting a country that harbors gays. The church, which is not affiliated with a larger denomination, is made up mostly of Phelps' children, grandchildren and in-laws.

(emphasis mine)

Perhaps this family is a little too close? Perhaps they doth protest too much?
NY TIMES: Army Contract Official Critical of Halliburton Pact Is Demoted

"A top Army contracting official who criticized a large, noncompetitive contract with the Halliburton Company for work in Iraq was demoted Saturday for what the Army called poor job performance.

The official, Bunnatine H. Greenhouse, has worked in military procurement for 20 years and for the past several years had been the chief overseer of contracts at the Army Corps of Engineers, the agency that has managed much of the reconstruction work in Iraq.


Ms. Greenhouse's lawyer, Michael Kohn, called the action an "obvious reprisal" for the strong objections she raised in 2003 to a series of corps decisions involving the Halliburton subsidiary Kellogg Brown & Root, which has garnered more than $10 billion for work in Iraq.

Isn't it nice when Government and Industry are one in the same?

Thursday, August 25, 2005

Baby Boy Panda

Vote for a giant panda cub name, and you could win a trip to the Smithsonian's National Zoo with an exclusive opportunity to meet the pandas.

The National Zoo in DC proudly welcomed a male giant panda cub on July 9. Born to parents Mei Xiang and Tian Tian, the cub is spending the first months of its life with its mother in a den inside the Fujifilm Giant Panda Habitat.

The giant panda is a critically endangered species and only 1,600 pandas remain in the wild.
To celebrate the birth, we invite you to vote for the name you would like for the cub. The name given to the cub will be the one that receives the highest number of votes.

The official name will be announced when the cub is 100 days old. Details on the cub's debut will be posted on this website.

The naming vote takes place through September 30, 2005.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Google to Go IM?

"Tom Servo, taking a hint from member CarlNewton tried to connect to talk.google.com using his Trillian client.

What he received was a secure XMPP (Extensible Messaging and Presence Protocol, alternatively known as Jabber) server waiting for connections."

Update: Users are reporting that they can login to the jabber server using their Google Account username and password. Details soon...
Update 2: Several un-named Google Executives have confirmed that Google will be announcing "Google Talk" tomorrow.

via Neowin.net
Love Thy Neighbor (To Death)

Reuters (and Yahoo!) are reporting that conservative U.S. evangelist Pat Robertson called for the assassination of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, saying the leftist leader wanted to turn his country into "the launching pad for communist infiltration and Muslim extremism."

Communism and Muslin Extremism? Isn't this everything the GOP hates? Toss in some tax cuts maybe and you've got W's attention!

Monday, August 22, 2005

FSM Loves You

This meme just keeps getting funnier!

Friday, August 19, 2005

"Play Good"

Help Lego® celebrate 50 years (and help them continue on for another 50) with some Limited Edition sets with 'gold' bricks.

Also, enter their Brick to the Future: 2055 building challenge, sponsored by the LEGO Group and National Trust for Historic Preservation.


Yahoo Local

Yahoo! Local is still in Beta but already cool.

Check out this for a map of a certain Mermaid Themed coffee houses in Seattle.

(Now if Google doesn't buy them and crush them, this could become an interesting match-up.)

Pastafarians Unite!

The "Flying Spaghetti Monster," overlord of a new
parody religion created to protest a Kansas State
Board of Education decision allowing Intelligent
Design to be taught in science classes, now has a
Wikipedia entry, with details that indicate that
followers are growing in number.

From that entry:

# Prayers are ended with the word RAmen rather than

# Promise of a stripper factory and a beer volcano in


Do You Yahoo!?
Tired of spam? Yahoo! Mail has the best spam protection around

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

People Are Sick (Part 2)

From MoveOn.org:

Late last night, a pick-up truck dragging chains ran over the rows of white crosses on the side of the road near Cindy Sheehan's vigil. Each cross commemorated a dead soldier; this morning, many of them were broken or gone. But Cindy and the other moms in Crawford have vowed to stay, and now a neighboring rancher, who is a veteran, has offered themsome of his nearby land if they have to move from the roadside.

People Are Sick

From the Mercury News:

The chilling crime was captured on grainy security-camera tape: a man in a small car in the wee hours of the morning deliberately running over and killing 10 ducks who lived in a pond at a popular carwash in Campbell.

Employees, patrons and neighbors of the business- who treated the fowl almost like family- called the crime unspeakably cruel, and were mourning the loss this week. And while the tapes aren't sharp-police can't even read the car's license plate- investigators hope that images released Thursday will help them catch the man they want to charge withanimal cruelty.

Shortly after midnight last Friday, four security cameras at the Delta Queen Classic Car Wash, 981 E. Hamilton Ave., captured images of a driver running over ducks five or six times in a 16-minute rampage. The driver also got out of his car several times to chase the birds- some of them ducklings- and appeared to grab one or two by the neck and throw them against or into his car.

Git On With Life

CRAWFORD, Texas - President Bush, noting that lots of
people want to talk to the president and "it's also
important for me to go on with my life," on Saturday
defended his decision not to meet with the grieving
mom of a soldier killed in Iraq.

Bush said he is aware of the anti-war sentiments of
Cindy Sheehan and others who have joined her protest
near the Bush ranch.

"But whether it be here or in Washington or anywhere
else, there's somebody who has got something to say to
the president, that's part of the job," Bush said on
the ranch. "And I think it's important for me to be
thoughtful and sensitive to those who have got
something to say."

"But," he added, "I think it's also important for me
to go on with my life, to keep a balanced life."

The comments came prior to a bike ride on the ranch
with journalists and aides. It also came as the crowd
of protesters grew in support of Sheehan, the
California mother who came here Aug. 6 demanding to
talk to Bush about the death of her son Casey. Sheehan
arrived earlier in the week with about a half dozen
supporters. As of yesterday (Saturday) there were
about 300 anti-war protesters and approximately 100
people supporting the Bush Administration. In addition
to the two-hour bike ride, Bush's Saturday schedule
included an evening Little League Baseball playoff
game, a lunch meeting with Secretary of State
Condoleezza Rice, a nap, some fishing and some
reading. "I think the people want the president to be
in a position to make good, crisp decisions and to
stay healthy," he said when asked about bike riding
while a grieving mom wanted to speak with him. "And
part of my being is to be outside exercising."

On Friday, Bush's motorcade drove by the protest site
en route to a Republican fund-raising event at a
nearby ranch.

As Bush rolled by, Sheehan held a sign that said, "Why
do you make time for donors and not for me?"

Start your day with Yahoo! - make it your home page

Monday, August 15, 2005

Siberian Beachfront Resort Will Employ Millions

From Slashdot, in reply to an article about the
Siberian tundra melting down, a hilarious yet painful
Goofus and Gallant themed comparison of real
scientists and astroturf-browsing shills:

GOOFUS wears street clothes to work, maybe a lab suit
on occasion.
GALLANT wears three piece suits at all times.

GOOFUS is employed by a "university", a "hospital", or
a "laboratory".
GALLANT is employed by a "Coalition", an "Institute",
an "Association", a "Foundation", a "Council", or a
"White House".

GOOFUS earns $30000 per year unless they cut his
GALLANT earns $200000 per year but makes his real
money from speaking fees.

GOOFUS lives anywhere in the country.
GALLANT lives in a wealthy area near Washington DC,
but may have additional homes elsewhere.

GOOFUS may sometimes be filmed standing in front of
big melting icebergs.
GALLANT may be filmed sitting in front of a bookcase
or standing behind a podium at a $2000 per plate
fundraiser, although there may be ice melting in his

GOOFUS is a dues-paying member of several scientific
grassroots organizations.
GALLANT is on the payroll of several scientific
astroturf organizations.

GOOFUS gets summoned for jury duty but is never picked
as a juror.
GALLANT claims "the jury is still out" on evolution or
global warming, since he considers himself to be on
the jury.

Grace at Camp Casey

7 minute documentary shot outside the President's ranch with Cindy Sheehan and representatives from Code Pink, Gold Star Families for Peace, Veterans for Peace & the Crawford Peace House.

Friday, August 12, 2005

Smart Roads

Not only can hybrid drivers begin to use the HOV (Diamond) Lane in California, now we have 'smart' freeway signs.

California's Department of Transportation unveiled a new system on Monday that is expected to help motorists answer that question. It won't ease congestion, but officials are hoping it will ease congestion anxiety.

Caltrans is posting estimated travel times on 14 electronic freeway signs across the region, part of a pilot program that the agency eventually hopes to expand.

The information on the signs comes from 15,000 sensors Caltrans has placed on freeways to measure traffic speed. The fiber optic system has a sensor every half mile of urban freeway, transmitting information every 30 seconds. Officials pick key commute markers and calculate the commute time given the traffic flow. Each sign contains commute times for two destinations.

The new project won't cost additional money because the sensors and freeway signs are already in place. The test period will last for three to six months on the 14 initial signs. If all goes well, Caltrans plans to extend the program to all 120 freeway signs across the region, said spokeswoman Deborah Harris.

Last Night I Dreamt I Ran For Senate in My Maidenform® Bra!

Florida's Katherine Harris' appearance on a segment on FOX's Hannity & Colmes (8/9/05) was supposed to be about her just-announced candidacy for the US Senate but it seems her chest was what she really wanted the audience to check out. About half-way through she notices she has movedoff her 'mark' and quickly turns back to her quarter profile.

Even better if you watch the video [.WMV] on fast forward.

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

Pick a Card

Flickr photo of one of a set of Trek business cards. Back when being a Trek fan was hard work.

Monday, August 08, 2005

So Mote It Be

Inteligent Design, Apples and God's Will.

The last line is a great one if you can laugh through the tears.
Wherever I May Rove

After one week and 17,740 entries MoveOn has a winner in the Fire Karl Rove Slogan Contest. And the winner is...

Now that we have the slogan we need to get it out there. We've designed a downloadable poster from the winning slogan. You can print it easily on a desktop printer and it's perfect to place in your window, hang on your refrigerator, and tack on a bulletin board at home, work or in your community, in a gym locker or anywhere else that makes sense. Take a minute right now to click on the link below to download and print the poster.

They have a link for sending in pictures of these posters in action, too.

Thursday, August 04, 2005

Polyphonic Spree Membership Tops 50,000?

Actually one of the better beer ads I have seen in a long time - and
this is from someone who used to dub cool ads from one VHS tape to
another to save.


Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Do Not Fold, Spindle or Mutilate

Task: Figure out how many punch cards it'd take to read a 3-minute mp3.

We live in miraculous times, eh?
First intel, Now Multi-Button Mice

Apple today introduced Mighty Mouse, its next generation mouse with multiple buttons and a scroll ball.

"Mighty Mouse offers power users up to four independently programmable buttons, without compromising simplicity for users who prefer just a single-button mouse. Mighty Mouse also introduces an ingenious Scroll Ball that lets users scroll in any direction—vertically, horizontally and even diagonally. With the Scroll Ball, users can scroll with natural, fluid movements, making Mighty Mouse perfect for applications from viewing web pages and photographs, to video editing and music creation. Mighty Mouse is priced at just $49."

Monday, August 01, 2005

It Was a Dark and Stormy Night...

2005 winner of the Bulwer-Lytton Fiction Contest begins: "As he stared at her ample bosom, he daydreamed of the dual Stromberg carburetors in his vintage Triumph Spitfire, highly functional yet pleasingly formed, perched prominently on top of the intake manifold, aching for experienced hands, the small knurled caps of the oil dampeners begging to be inspected and adjusted as described in chapter seven of the shop manual."
Round Two, Sony?

Jumping over the rumours of a video iPod, Sony started aPSP Video Download Service in Japan, according to Gizmodo.

No word on how this will work in the rest of the world and what there'll be to watch but interesting news.
idogcow. Get yours at bighugelabs.com/flickr

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