Wednesday, March 30, 2005

Bloglines Adds Package Tracking

RSS feed aggregators are useful tools when it comes to tracking information online that updates frequently, but not predictably. For example, you may enjoy the content on Slashdot, Salon, and a number of blogs, but it's no fun to go visiting a site searching for updates that haven't yet arrived. I use Bloglines to read about 15 sites that I enjoy reading but don't want to check time and again, waiting for new information.

Since UPS/FedEx/USPS package tracking information fits the same waiting-for-an-update profile as reading a blog, it's cool that you can now track your packages with Bloglines.

Tuesday, March 29, 2005

Your Tax Dollars at WWWWWooooorrrrrkkkkk

I hate to sound like a curmudgeon, but I find it a little silly that the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has a JavaScript browser shake button on the West Coast & Alaska Tsunami Warning Center that says Experience a Virtual Earthquake.

Source: NOAA


Those desiring more tabloid-alicious detail are just gonna have to click on the image below.

Source: Daily Mail

Monday, March 28, 2005

In Case You're Crossing the Desert All Afternoon

Burger King has determined that today's diner needs a 730 calorie breakfast sandwich.

Source: Burger King

Sunday, March 27, 2005

Half-assed Mnemonic Acronyms for All Those -stan Countries: TTUPAKK or KKAPUTT

The suffix -stan means "country" for the seven Central Asian nations which have names ending in this syllable:

Since I find it all but impossible to remember all these names, I've determined that a mnemonic acronym is in order. Since no ordering of AKKPTTU creates a standard English word, these acronyms are incredibly crappy:

KKAPUTT - A slurred variation of kaputt or kaput, incapicated or destroyed.

TTUPAKK - A misspelled shout-out to the patron saint of 1990's rap, Tupac Shakur.


Source: CIA Factbook

Friday, March 25, 2005

The Obvious Response to a Mountaineer Basketball Victory

Ain't no party like a West Virginia party,
'cause a West Virginia party involves
lighting 50 fires in the street.**

** To be sung to the tune of Coolio's Sumpin' New.

Source: The Dominion Post

The Modern Prometheus Rex

Yes, this is dinosaur soft tissue, replete with veins and whatnot. Yes, that's super cool.

Source: Science via Associated Press

We can rebuild them. We have the technology.
...and the hubris.
...and the cat-killing curiosity.

Thanks, Matt!

Monday, March 21, 2005

Welcome to the Hotel California, Such a Lovely Place

Last night, a funnel cloud touched down in South San Francisco.

Source: Henry Jasinksky

Since I know you're curious, I bothered to take some California tornado statistics from 1951 to 2001 and put them into Microsoft Excel. Here's what the resulting chart looks like:

Saturday, March 19, 2005

Manhole Covers that Smell like KFC

It's easy to be environmentally conscious when people illegally dump 3,000 gallons of restaurant grease into your city's sewer.


Thursday, March 17, 2005

When in Baghdad

As noted in the New York Times and elsewhere, the Marine Corps Intelligence Activity (MCIA) has distributed thousands of Iraq Culture Smart Cards to US Service personnel in Iraq.

Take a look.

Source: MCIA

The 6 MB .pdf version is available here.

Oh No You Di'n't Name Your Dance Team The Golddiggers

Today is the opening round of the NCAA Men's basketball tournament. Suddenly, office workers everywhere are made momentarily aware of schools like Winthrop, Oakland (in Michigan), & UTEP.

Since you're thinking about UTEP today, I feel obligated to tell you that their dance team is named the Golddiggers.


gold digger
n. Informal
A woman who seeks money and expensive gifts from men.

Happy St. Patrick's Day

8 years ago, Irish Americans everywhere were up in arms about the Stanford Band's halftime show at the Notre Dame game, entitled These Irish, Why Must They Fight?

Alas, I was the announcer who offended so many at that show. As misery loves company, I'm pleased to see The Onion enter the same fray.

Source: The Onion

Monday, March 14, 2005

Announcing the Sauntering Slimy Stock Index (SSS)

Move over, Warren Buffett. Today, we begin a journey into the ill-advised.

Unfortunately, I'm the frequent recipient of faxes from wee tiny companies touting how they are the next Google/General Electric/Microsoft... though they make motorized surfboards, have a market cap of $4 million, and are faxing chumps like me about their penny-valued stock.

Today is the day when I turn the tide. From this day forward, I shall pretend to buy $1,000 of each of these stocks as they are faxed to me, tracking this faux portfolio in my Morningstar account. I'll provide a quarterly update concerning the performance of these gems.

Today, the portfolio is initiated with a fake purchase of Cyberads Inc. (CAYD.OB), whose motorized surfboard is sure to soon replace all other modes of transportation.

I Am the Son of Late American President Fred Roosevelt

Granted, the 419 scam is a pox on the internet. Still, you've got to admit that this is a great opening line.

Thursday, March 10, 2005


People who are in on the joke are going to laugh a lot. People who aren't... well, they run the risk of being horribly offended.

But that's just the way that everything works.

Click the image below for the iTunes link.

Source: Apple iTunes

Tuesday, March 08, 2005

So Adam Sez to Eve, "Better Stand Back, I Don't Know How Big This Thing is Gonna Get."

I've been a huge fan of Google Desktop Search since it arrived on the scene. I downloaded the beta on the first day that it was available. I rant about it almost as much as I rant about the greatness of The Holy Tivo. I love this thing. It's my homepage.

All that said, I can't believe what the non-beta version of the Google Desktop Search is doing to me.

I use a laptop with a 18 GB hard drive. Space isn't exactly at a premium on the machine, but it's not infinite, either. I knew that the beta version of Google Desktop Search used a reference file (it's a .CF1 file) to enable its particular brand of document retrieval. I knew this file was a biggie -- last I checked it was more than 150 MB.

Two days after installing the new version, this file is almost 800 MB! I'm having to move files off the machine! How big is this thing going to get? I feel like I'm in a 1950's horror flick, chased by the slowly creeping blob!

Maybe it was in the fine print, but... Google, baby, I would have appreciated a warning before you starting eating the hard drive that you're supposed to chronicle.

Monday, March 07, 2005

My Arse from a Hole in the Ground

Maybe it's the late hour, but I'm again compelled to comment on the utter inanity of web advertising.

When this is the state of advertising on the web, the state of advertising on the web is not good.

Saturday, March 05, 2005

Big Al (Zarqawi) Knows That Black is Slimming

I'm just glad that being a busy terrorist and guerrilla leader isn't causing Abu Musab al-Zarqawi to miss too many meals.

Then: Svelte SociopathNow: Succulent Sadist

Thursday, March 03, 2005

All the News That's Fit To Ignore

It's easy to love a website's News section, because (almost without fail) these sections will only have a certain kind of news: good news.

If you visited Sally Anthony's singing career website, you'd think it's been a quiet couple of news months for this Nashville-based performer. Google News seems to think otherwise.

In January, Ms. Anthony (part-owner of the ABA's Nashville Rhythm) attempted to fire the Rhythm's Ashley McElhiney, the first female coach of any men's professional team. Rather than wait until the Rhythm's in-progress game was over, Ms. Anthony decided to fire McElhiney during the game, and ended up being restrained by security.

Yeah. That sounds like news to me, too.

Source: & Google News

I think that Ms. Anthony should set an example for all of us and rename this section Good News.

Is an Asteroid Going to Hit the Earth? Win a Digital Camera!

Internet advertising is a marketing marvel, and three cheers for Google and Yahoo! in figuring out how to do it right.

That said, sometimes I just look at these ads and think What the Hell?

Source: World & Google AdSense

Wednesday, March 02, 2005


Jada Pinkett Smith made some comments at Harvard University that some students found offensive. In their complaint regarding her remarks, the offended parties labeled Smith's speech heteronormative -- a choice of vocabulary that (IMHO) really sends their point home.

Ah, college, the place where you assail plain speech with a word that does not appear either in Merriam-Webster or at

Appease Your Inner Child While You Still Can

Remember the good old days, when it was unclear whether or not unlicensed music downloads were illegal, so you used Napster to your heart's content?

Well, the case law on this topic has become considerably less abiguous, but that hasn't stopped the people at from making hundreds of your favorite circa-1980's video games freely available in your browser. (Java required)

I recommend you play to your heart's content before the door comes crashing down on this site.


Thanks, Joe!

Tuesday, March 01, 2005

A Postal War on the Gullible

I'm starting to worry about the sanity of the people who send me junk mail.

This graphic designer simply had to be questioning his or her career choice as he or she assembled this much bogus information onto a single unsoliticited business loan offer.

It's not really signed.
It's not really stamped.
All the information in the upper left is meaningless.
The red highlighter is not really a red highlighter.
Heck, it's not even a manilla envelope. It's a fake manilla envelope.

It's Just a Theory

Hunter S. Thompson famously said that Richard Nixon "speaks for the werewolf in us."

Tangentally, I believe that Janet Jackson's bare breasts shoot invisible hypnosis beams that make social conservatives go completely batty.

Don't Need to be Freud to Analyze This One

Our society is fascinated by how bloggers infuse their reporting with emotion.

I'm amused when that emotion is pure, unfiltered jealousy.

Commercials Worth TiVoing

We've had a TiVo for almost 2 years now, and my commercial intake during that time is probably ~10% of what it could have been. I don't miss commercials for a second, but it's nice to see good ones. Framestore CFC seems to only make awesome spots, as examplified by Johnnie Walker's Tree and Fish bits.

Source: Framestore CFC

Around the World in a Single Engine Jet

Once again, Steve Fossett is trying to do something adventurous without killing himself. Cheer him on at the Global Flyer's main site.

Currently (8:30 am Pacific), it looks like he may have drifted a bit south of the original flight plan. After leaving Kansas last night, he's currently over Somalia.