And as always, this twisting, turning, stream of consciousness post was brought to you by the letters G and O. And L and E. Original thought
And as always, this twisting, turning, stream of consciousness post was brought to you by the letters G and O. And L and E. Original thought
Its coming! Only one more week to go! Everyone's favorite secret project government agency off-road race. Yeah, you though I was silly back in June when I put the DARPA Grand Challenge on my outlook calendar. Well, who's silly now? Yeah, its still me. I haven't heard of any planned TV coverage yet, so if anyone runs across something make sure to let me know. Seems like ESPN2 should be all over this. I mean come on, a 150 mile robot race with a [puts pinky to mouth] 2 million dollar purse? Who doesn't want to watch that? And then they went and named it the 'Grand Challenge' which just puts it over the top. All I've got to say is that any parties I might be attending on Saturday the 8th of October had better be prepared for this spectacle.
Oh, the first qualifying round was yesterday and our boy Stanley brought it.
After laboring with determination and resolve for month after month, the Internal Revenue Service has managed to cut me a check. Honestly, the check is dated 9-16, so some of the delay I'll lay on another federal agency (technically a corporation). there is $17.33 worth of interest added in, so I guess I'm glad of that. Where's my interest from the USPS? I'm a little afraid i'm going to dump this check into my account and I'll end up spending it on cheetos and fudgesicles. Come on people, this is found money! I need to parlay it into a big score, what should I get?
FUCKING PISSED OFF. How do such short sited and moronic people rise to such high ranking positions? No, I'm not going off on Bush again, although that statement still applies to Dubyah. Can anyone tell me? I'm really talking about Jon Rubinstein, a Senior VP at apple. He doesn't "believe in convergence theories" and is pretty sure that the iPod will stay as money as it is for the next ten years.
"On the iTunes phone I can load 100 tunes," said Rubinstein ."However, with the iPod my whole music collection becomes mobile."
But the iTunes phone sucks hairy balls! Everyone knows; blind rodents in China know that. So you'll take a marginally conceived product, release a TERRIBLE implementation of it and interpret failing market reaction as a public outcry against unified devices? That's like Henry Ford rolling out a motorized razor scooter and deciding that people didn't want cars. From the comments:
It'd take a company which doesn't already have a vested interest in keeping things this way to do it,
Hey you! In the phonebooth! Get out, google needs to dash in and save the world again. I dunno if they're even thinking of producing hardware products, but if they sold a VOIP phone with decent features for use with their new WiFi system I'd have one. Sorry, back to what a douche this guy is. I kinda hope for his sake he's just messing with us and doesn't actually think this stuff is true. Fact of the matter is, the ROKR sucks because its good for iPods if it sucks. A policy of "if it ain't broke, don't improve on it" is not one I can get behind. Apple is walking the line here, they've still got a bit of good karma left over from when they weren't raging tool bags. I'll spare the entire company for now, but this dude is going on my enemies list. Read the article and check out the comments, I bet you won't find too many assenting opinions.
So you use iTunes and like videos? You got some bandwidth and a cavernous harddrive? Check this out: apple is giving away music videos. Well, they're leaking them, I'm not sure if they mean to be giving them away. I hear the small versions are like 48 MB so you could fill up that new 120 GB drive with only a few sleepless nights of clicking. Ok, fine, 120 GB would be like 2560 videos, and at say... 5 mins a video it'd take you almost 9 days of furious clicking to fill it up. You get the point anyway smartass? Keep this on the DL though, we don't want them getting wise and plastering up the hole.
mmmmmm... What's that? The smell of someone cookin up a reasonable and usable utility? Oh baby. The whole reason I was so skeptical of these "GPS enabled phones" was the complete lack of consumer software to exploit the hardware. In other words, why would they put the added cost of GPS into the phone and then not offer the user a service based on that feature? Well now I can sleep easier at night. Sprint is rolling out an app for GPS directions on the phone. Excuse me? I don't have to carry around both a phone and a GPS unit? Brilliant! Someone should come up with a term for this kind of thing, and then companies should just do it.
Oh, nevermind. Apparently you have to have activated your Motorola V710 cellular handset for Verizon Wireless on or before January 31st of this year. Oh, well that makes sense. Cause Verizon stopped selling junxed up phones then, and no one else out there has one and is pissed off about it.
* Customer: "When my computer boots up, all I get is a black screen that says, 'boot2/'."
* Tech Support: "What operating system are you using?"
* Customer: "I'm using Windows 98 and NT 4.0."
* Tech Support: "Ok, I'm the Mac tech. The Windows tech is gone, but I can try to help you."
* Customer: "Ok, what should I do? I've reformatted the hard drive and have fresh installs of both operating systems."
* Tech Support: "Sir, have you put any cheese or mustard in your a drive?"
* Customer: "What? Did you just ask me if I put cheese or mustard in my floppy drive?"
* Tech Support: "Yeah, we've had that happen a lot lately."
* Customer: (staring blankly at roommate, who was laughing uncontrollably on the floor) "I think I'll wait for the PC tech to get back. Thanks for the help." (click)
So these sites are usually about stupid calls to tech support, but this page reverses the quandry. I highly appreciate the commentary as my experience with tech support has sometimes yielded similar results. I'll have to say that these guys are more justified in their outrage than the techs who post stupid questions. Its not my job to deal with stupid people.
So after my couch sitting outting this weekend, we had another brainstorm. (it may have been during the couch sitting outting, its hard to tell where true genius starts) Guinness tastes like a tall frostly mikshake right? So what happens if you were to put ice cream INTO the Guinness? Well, one quick stop at the store later and we were prepared to find out. What do you buy when you go to the store on a Saturday night? I'm not sure if this effected the testing in any way, but we decided at some point to drink the other six beers before performing the experiment on the last two. Here's my conclusion: it wasn't bad. Just kinda made the drink very creamy. Overall it mostly just made me want a milkshake. Which is odd because drinking Guinness generally makes me want more Guinness. Maybe the icecream is more powerful than the beer; or more likely I just didn't really want to get tore up again that night. I wasn't going to post this, but then another friend told me about York Castle Tropical Ice Cream on Georgia. They apparently have a Guinness flavored icecream, which makes me feel a little less foolish for expecting the best. Honestly though, what are the chances that I'd stumble onto the correct proportions and serving style on the first try? I think this is something I should aspire to perfect.
Ok, if you did get one read this for a shield review. If you didn't get one, read it anyway. I think I like those guys; the quality of picture and site design just speak to me.
So i'm in ikea, sitting on couches. Its better than sitting at home cause i'm out doing something.
(the names have been changed to protect the innocent)
Censored: did you buy anything at ikea?
Censored: were you looking for something in particular?
EsotericMe3: we were sitting on couches
Censored: this i think i am familiar with. what i'm getting at is... why were you in ikea in the first place? besides you seem to have an affinity for it.
EsotericMe3: we went to ikea to sit on the couches instead of sitting on my couch
Censored: who is "we"?
EsotericMe3: [BLANK] and i
Censored: last question and then i'll be thoroughly amused...
Censored: was [BLANK] shopping for anything?
EsotericMe3: why can you not believe me?
Yeah, I'm pretty sure I could still get into college. I mean, these questions aren't even hard.
Go look through this gallery of pictures from Katrina.(click the next button for more pics) There are very powerful images and descriptive captions. Something of this magnitude is hard to represent, this is a good set of shots that describe the damage and desperation of the storm.
Microsoft, you just need to keep your head down and rake in the cash. You obviously have most (if not most, then a lot of) people's nuts in a vice in the software, OS, and development package areas. But you suck at searching. Just face it. Why you gotta be hatin' on my boy Google? What did he ever do to you besides expose the inability, selfishness, imprudence, and basic corporate hate that dwells deep in your soul? Folks, this is just another reason why AOL needs to die. I'd like to propose a metaphor here, and don't read too much into it, I don't go dressing up as Han Solo on the weekends or anything.
Remember Starwars episode 1? Ok, well AOL is that little Anakin kid. The light side is Google, the dark is Microsoft. We, as consumers are Liam Neeson (or you could be Ewan McGregor if you'd prefer). It is our reponsibility as knowledgeable and prudent individuals keep an eye on him. Wait until the first time he looks at the princess a little wired, then abandon him on some distant moon with no hope of rescue. And no air. And set a pack of angry ewoks on him. Hehe, that's funny.
Ok, so if you stopped following me I don't blame you. I don't think I was fully invested in the facade from the start. Here's the take-home lesson, if you didn't glean it: STOP USING AOL.
What the hell am I talking about? If you're reading this you're not on AOL. Good job.
How Microsoft can 'kill' Google
So you know how iPods are nice? Nice like, they've got ok storage and a familiar interface. But how about making them great? Maybe a little FM transmitter? Maybe a little bluetooth? Well Steve says "NO!" Oh, yeah, you're right Steve, I've got no freaking idea what I want. Here's his real reasoning behind the statement:
The problem with Bluetooth headphones is that it’s not just recharging your iPod, you have to recharge your headphones too. People hate it. There are quality issues - the bandwidth isn’t high enough, and even if it does get there some day, people don’t want to recharge their headphones.
Soooooo, bandwidth? That excuse is terrible. That's like telling your parents you tripped and fell on a cigarette when they caught you smoking behind the garage. Bluetooth 2.0 is perfectly acceptable for streaming audio. And people don't want to recharge another device? Who are you, Nostradamus?
Last I checked bluetooth headphones existed; and people buy them. I'd think that alone would be proof enough to make you look like a moron. Ok, fine. How about some other uses for bluetooth? Car radios. Why would I need an FM transmitter if my car radio used bluetooth? I'd have a secure transmission with no interferance from radio stations or other disenfranchised iPod users. Even better, my iPod could start and stop when proximity to the car changes. Wireless phones. I know this would be cutting into your SUXR mobile phone (which sucks) but if there was bluetooth, I could use my phone and my iPod with the same headset. Phenominal! How about this: iPod remote? Sounds a little far fetched right now, but hear me out. You have a media center. Maybe its a Windows Media Center, maybe its a mac mini, heck lets say you're running myth TV on linux. Wouldn't it be nice to be able to control it with a device you already carry around with you? All I'm saying is that you could be thinking about how to make an iPod so much more than a harddrive (or now flashdrive, which is actually less inventive) on wheels. Make people need one, not want one. Hell, put Wifi in it. Give it a roll out 4 inch screen. Put gyroscopic sensors in it and make it a 3d mouse.
Steve, you know what people hate? They hate smug companies that tell them what consumers want. Instead of bitching about how great products already are, how about a little innovation? I'm gonna look around and see if I can find a link to that coffee table that charges devices when you lie them on top.(here we go.)
Bottom line, I'd much rather leave my wires at home than strap them to my body and walk around with them all day. I know you spent millions to make those wires an icon; but they're stupid.
Tonight. 10:00 PM. PBS.
Heck you could even do a little pre-reading beforehand.
See? This is exactly why I can't watch TV. I don't have the aptitude for it. I have no interest in actually finding out when things are on, I just assume I'll be able to figure it out. And I did. When I tuned in at 10 to see the end credits for the show I wanted to watch. Good thing I've got that Tivo backup plan. Actually at 10 o'clock was a national geographic series with Edward Norton about invasive species. I watched for a little while, but couldn't take the irony any more when they started talking about the plight of New Orleans. Apparently the city
Whew, good thing I can't stand watching TV news as it is. Otherwise I might be the target of the 'most powerful weapon in the world'. Read this article and then think about how you like the prospect of being lied to. Then think about who decides what to lie about and when to stop lying. If it was government sponsored then we wouldn't need to have these nasty oversight committees or 'presidential investigations' because the government would already know. Hey, maybe they won't even tell us when they've lied, wouldn't that be great? Of course that'd make a whole lot of new jobs in 'revising' the truth. But I'm sure the department of homeland security could swing a ministry of truth with no problem. I mean, we've already got the ministry of peace hammering away in Iraq; the ministry of plenty is handling the natural disaster in the south; and they tried their best to get that ministry of love going with the patriot act and Guantanamo. I'm almost upset that there's no identifiable agency designed to lie to us yet.
So I know it may seem, to the untrained eye, that I'm spazzing out nearly weekly about the newest thing that Google has come up with. Actually its only as often as they come out with something so awesome that, if I were wearing a cap or hat, it would be blown right off. Here we go again.
For the past few weeks people have been noticing that Google was buying up extra fiber and bandwidth infrastructure. There was speculation that perhaps the company would actually jump into providing internet access. Now apparently there is a page where you can download free VPN Wifi software from Google. The actual hotspots are still restricted to the west coast, but damn this is exciting. In fact, I'm too excited to write anything else. I'm gonna go see if I can find out any more. Read Engadget.
Oh and the last part of Engadget with the error message "It's of your concern when the nearest wall is burning." is exactly what I love about Google. They know people are gonna mess around with this stuff and leave little treats for the people who do. Like that wall in Grand theft Auto III that reads "You know you weren't supposed to be able to get here."
So yesterday was universal 'talk like a pirate day'. Or something like that. I didn't get a chance to write about it cause I was too busy being swarthy. Anyway, if you missed it (I don't know how you could have, every media source I looked at was talking about it (What? Do your media sources suck so bad that they don't even know about 'talk like a pirate day'? (Yes, I'm thinking about making today parenthetical phrase day))) ye be gettin a whole nuther year to be practicin' up yer 'avasts' an 'ahoys'. talk like a pirate
Does this sound like a bad idea to anyone else? Some guy just broke the high speed record for blind driver. Yeah, blind. I'd say a pretty good litmus test for whether something is a bad idea is "will anyone insure me to do this?" And who the heck lent him a Maserati? This is the kinda thing where the best case scenario is mediocre. Like riding a shopping cart down an escalator. Maybe you won't break your neck. Woo. Link
This game is pretty fun. I turned my sound off, so I'm not sure if there are audio cues to help. I have a suspicion that my auditory response is faster than my visual response. I'll also have to admit that I anticipated the last sheep here. But hey, if you jump the gun and don't get caught you'll crush the competition. I know from experience. Link
Censored: i love tivo
Censored: i have 3 of them
EsotericMe3: YOU'RE ONLY ONE MAN!!!
Censored: but i have many rooms
I feel like my argument was very germane.
Now, I think I can figure out how they make those candy dots that come stuck to a piece of paper. I can't, however, figure out how to eat more candy than paper when I have them. I don't think I ever considered how they make Atomic Fireballs though. Maybe I did, but I'm pretty sure I didn't come up with 'roll them around in a huge-ass pot for two weeks.' Here's a virtual tour of the process along with what appears to be a fireball chef. You think the batches can be distinguished based on sweetness or diameter? Maybe a fireball connoisseur could...
"First one blade, then two, then three. Where will it stop? Four." Uh or five. Gillete has opted not to stop the crazy wagon and is going to introduce a five bladed razor. Come on! This is only going to spur the other guys into making a six bladed razor. What they hell are they going to charge for these things? I'm already paying 3 bucks a piece for these little face scrapers. I'm pretty sure SNL did a bit a few years ago about a 100 blade razor. How right they were.
I don't even want to get started talking about this admnistration and the 'agencies' its running. I don't want to talk about what its doing to the American people. I don't want to talk about it because then I'll have to think about it and I'll just feel angry and frustrated. Just go read this. Click all the links. Read all the articles. Stew in your juices if you feel so inclined.
Dammit. Dammit. Dammit. Why do I keep reading things?
Ah, here we go.
So I dunno if you're going to get as pumped about this as I am. In fact, I don't care. But chances are you've dealt with pdf's before, and been frustrated or pissed off. I wasn't even to the pissed off stage when I found this download. Ok, its really three downloads (just follow the directions) but its so worth it. Basically it tricks your computer into printing to a pdf creator. So now you can save pretty much anything as a pdf. (send me an email and I'll give ya a copy of Daily Placebo in PDF) That's the basic functionality, but the 'omniformat' part of it is a wicked conversion utility that lets you save pdf's as other files. (which is what I really needed) If you're into buying stuff, the prices seem very reasonable. If you're not, which I understand, you can use it in sponsor mode where they pop open an ad when you open the program. Its not very intrusive and well worth the service in my opinion.
No, I'm not talking about cameras again. I'm talking about cars again. VW has unveiled the new 'EOS'. Now despite the fact that the name sounds like it should be a saturn, and that it looks like they hired a few drunk Ford and Chevy engineers to do the front end; I think I could like this car. Its a hardtop convertible with a glass roof. Sounds kinda cool. They're going to offer it with a diesel option. Sounds better. I just can't figure out how the top works. I think I'm going to need to see a video, cause pictures like this just make me more curious what the hell is going on. I mean, if the middle and engine of the car are nice, I can always rice-out the rest to get away from that Cavilier meets Focus look.
Oh, check out these photos I stole from Flickr. They look way better than the other ones I've seen.
One Two Three
Oh, nevermind, I guess everyone is making a hardtop convertible.
Or this (thanks kel)
So I broke back into my school email account yesterday. At least that's what it felt like. After two and a half months of being shut down and locked out I was finally given the option to change my password to a more suitable one. Mostly that means that they came up with a new scheme for password restrictions. Goodbye 'hcfoa' my school distributed key from 5 years ago. I'm not sure what brought about this security crack down, but I'm at least a little irked about it. Come on, why do I need a new 8 character key with at least one from three of five groups? (yeah, its confusing) No one broke my old password, mostly because no one cares. What you guys really need to do is take care of all the spam. I had about six emails I wanted to read and 307 emails on various other topics. At least block the ones that were sent on December 31, 1969 at 7:00 PM. I'm pretty sure no one was writing me messages about discount drugs twelve years before I was born.
There was a time when spelling 'i cup' making fart noises and eating paste entertained everyone around me. Now I'm lucky if I get a chuckle. Those were also the days when I learned the answer was always 'no' when asked if I liked 'see food' or 'abc gum' (this standard defense tactic of course led to the development of predatory questions like 'are you a Homo sapien?' or 'do you have an epidermis?') But now I have no idea what I'll be getting if I decide to sample some ABC gum, thanks to Big Time Candy & Gum. Like being a kid isn't hard enough, these guys have to throw in the humiliation of never knowing if you're eating something that's been eaten before.
Here we've got five guys. Not terribly complicated. I do know Viet, but friendster doesn't know that yet. Ok, next step, I'm going to expand everyone's networks. So that's everyone five people know (that friendster knows of)
A little bit worse to comprehend. Its easier when you can drag nodes around and expand and collapse, trust me. So we can see a pretty clear division of people I know. I dunno what Keith is doin hanging out there bridging the gap. Ok, lets get a little wild. I'm not going to expand everyone again (that's just insanity), but I'll pick a few people I'd expect to have some good contacts.
There you go. Its not stunning(since I selected the groups to do this), but there are quite a few people that bridge the two groups. Anyway, this is why I thought Friendster was cool to begin with. Now I don't have to do it in my head. Sweet.
Labels: social networking
There's just so much that goes on in this world. How can I possibly be acute enough to pick up on it all, especially while its still timely. Luckily I feel that the time for making fun of bush shall never pass. Movie.
Yeah, you've seen that video of Will Farrell making fun of Bush, but you still want to see it again.
Ok, so lets continue in the direction of last Friday's 'Hufu' post. Come on, admit it you'd never thought of human tasting tofu before. Ok, well have you ever thought about what you'd do if a large animal died somewhere and you couldn't remove it? Well, obviously someone has, and they actually have enough experience with it to make an informational pamphlet. Wow, that'd prolly be cool. Gross but cool. Hey. While we're on gross, you know that part of 'Rob Roy' when he jumps off the bridge and flows down river? Then he hides inside a dead cow when the soldiers come looking for him? That'd be gross, huh?
I saw an ad on tv yesterday for a show called 'Wide Angle'. It looks to be a well made documentary style show on global interest subjects. The commercial showed interviews with suicide bombers explaining their beliefs, and North Korean children who believe they should hate Americans because they are Americans. You can find a list of past shows and content here. Also of interest I think is the film quality, all the shots looked beautifully done and the perspective portrayed should be fantastic. I hope I'm not hyping this up too much, but from the look I've seen this is just what Americans need to be watching when they plunk themselves down in front of the box. (that was for you bob.) You should check it out. I think its on PBS Tuesdays at 10. I'm gonna try to watch it, and have a tivo backup plan just in case.
Ok, so this is an artist's rendering (don't laugh its good) of the general map of road from my home to my work. I've included all roads that are applicable as well as stop signs/ lights. Take a look and let me know how you'd get to work and home again.
Red circles are traffic lights, they are longer in one direction if the cycle is longer on one road than another.
Red lines are stop signs, they only effect the road that is approaching an intersection, not as an intersection is left.
The red road is a highway, the rate of travel is generally higher there. The volume of traffic is also higher.
The green segments are newly constructed on/off ramps. There is no turn on red near these items as with other traffic lights.
The yellow areas are my home and work places.
So I missed two stop signs, but I think they're mostly inconsequential. I'm also thinking there must be a less subjective way to measure the traffic lights and traffic volume. Keep in mind that I'm not going to lay out for any traffic monitoring equipment. Oh and I'm also not going to just sit by the side of the road and count cars. That shit sounds boring.
Man breaks into house. Steals stuff. Puts stuff into wheelbarrow. Walks down road in rain with wheelbarrow full of stolen stuff. Asks for ride from the man he robbed who has been following behind with his kids in the car. Victim calls cops who tell him to keep following robber. After 5 miles and two hours of following wheelbarrow robber police show up.
Right. Tremendous effort on the thief's part here. Unfortunately crime is one of those industries that, no matter how hard you try and how much effort you put in, you really need brains to get ahead in.
I knew there was a damn good reason why tofu creeps me out so bad. Sidle yourself on over and read a little about hufu. Yeah, that's not something you've ever even considered, huh? I know its kinda funny and everything, but seriously, imagine a nice chunk of this stuff in your mouth. Do you seriously not have a swank case of the jibblies? I know I do.
I'm not ususally very good a spotting wigs. I dunno why, maybe its part of my general obliviousness. Anyway, I was at the Superfresh to get some lunch and there was a lady there... OH MAN. I would not have been more aware that she was wearing a wig if it jumped off her head, wheeled over to me in a shopping cart and hit me with a big sign that said "I'm a wig".
Ok, on to the real anecdote. I like to do things with the least amount of effort and confusion possible. Some people might interpret this as impatience, but rest assured its just efficiency. There are four self-checkouts at this particular store. (I've learned the hard way not to even mess around with cashiers when I've only got three things to buy.) The first lane had a woman buying like $275 worth of groceries. That's way too many for self checkout, and not just cause a professional will scan things faster. Self checkouts aren't very trusting so you have to scan each item and send it down the conveyor before scanning the next. This slows the scanning process, plus when you've run out of space at the end you have to go bag up all the items which adds further delay. Anyway lane 1 is out. Lane 2 had a near empty cart and a pile of coupons next to the scanner. At the end of the belt was a woman talking to an employee and pointing at a pennysaver ad. Do I need to explain the trouble here? Lane 4 had a sign written in crayon "Cash only", and I had used up the last of my cash on... dammit where does that stuff go? In any case I doubt I'd have gone over there, something just seems off about using cash at the grocery. So Lane 3 was my horse. Seemed like a good bet. There was a woman (35-40ish) with two items (already scanned and down the belt) and a salad. So she's looking for the 'salad bar' button. Looking. Looking. Looking. "Bottom row" I medium-whisper. Her pointer finger drops down to the bottom row and pans back and forth a few times. "Third one"(I'm being cheerful) She hits it. Alright, this is going pretty well. I say "I've done it a few times" since I'm obviously not close enough to see which button is which. (I like to give people a little space, like they're at the ATM even if they're not using a PIN) She scans her bonus card. "Please wait until after you press the 'finish and pay button' to swipe your safeway fresh club bonus card!" (damn that was a long message) She gets it and presses the big orange button. Opens her purse again to get out the card. (I'm starting to feel the little black cloud and tiny lightning bolts coalesce over my head) Scans it. Navigates through the coupon screen (thank god) and hits a payment key. She gets out a little envelope that says SECU and I recognize it as a check card holder. (I've got the same card, but ditched the little paper case a long time ago.) She swipes and waits. This always takes a while, so I'm not too worried. Untill the voice comes on and says "We were unable to process your request. Please select back and then select a payment type." What? Seriously? This part is usually smooth sailing. I think my head is shaking a little as the cloud grows. I look around at the other lanes. My diagnosis of lane 2 was excellent, she'll be lucky to get out of there in the next 45 mins. The woman in front of me tries again. Same thing. AHHHHHH! wait. Think about Google. I do. It works. Lane 1 lady with ten thousand items is down to the last 3-4 things. Maybe I picked the wrong lane. Come on lane three! After my gAnger-Management this is all just funny. She swipes one more time (I think she picked a different payment type this time) and signs the pad. Sweet mother of Perl! I'm up! Needless to say, I beat lanes 1 and 2 and was in my car and back to work before they found the big orange button.
Ok, lets examine the process, shall we?
scan scan scan.I'm going to go mime it out in my office and see how long it takes. Don't worry I'll be realistic, if anything I'll err on the too long side.
'finish and pay'
swipe credit card.
pick credit on card reader.
skip bonus card
wait for machine
squiggle with pen on screen
pick up items
Ok, I'm back it took me 37 seconds. That may have been a little short on the "wait for machine step" cause that seems to be randomly long. So I'll add another 30 seconds to the time. A minute and seven seconds. Maybe I'm really good at remembering interfaces, but come ON! Monkeys could do this faster than most of the people I see. I think they should have one lane designated with a big "No Morons" sign. Kinda like 15 items or less, just with morons. Ok, maybe that's a little harsh. Would you prefer "No self-checkout virgins, coupon users, orders over 10 items, checks, cash, foodstamps, children, scan troubled individuals, people who don't get how touch screens work, or people who liked Grease."
The fall season is upon us, and everyone knows what that means. That's right, time for the fall ultimate season! I found out my cliq team's name yesterday, "Absinthe Minded". Which bodes well, cause as everyone knows, its mostly about having a cool name. I've heard a few things about Absinthe, none of which is very concrete, so I decided to do a little research. As any good team member should.
A simple maceration of wormwood without distillation produces an extremely bitter drink, due to the presence of the water-soluble absinthine, one of the most bitter substances known.
The alcohol content is extremely high. (45 percent — 85 percent)
This can be left clear, or the well-known green color of the beverage can be imparted either artificially or by steeping roman wormwood, hyssop, and melissa in the liquid.
Undistilled wormwood essential oil contains a substance called thujone, which is an epileptic (and can cause renal failure) in extremely high doses.
Very little of the thujone present in absinthe actually makes it into a properly distilled absinthe.
A recent French distiller has had to add pure essential oil of wormwood to make a "high-thujone" variant of his product.
A study in the "Journal of studies on Alcohol" concluded that a high dose of thujone in alcohol has negative effects on attention performance.
Medium doses did not produce a noticeable effect from plain alcohol. The high dose of thujone was larger than what one can get from current "high thujone" absinthe before becoming too drunk to notice and most people describe the effects of absinthe as a more lucid and aware drunk.
"The importation of Absinthe and any other liquors or liqueurs that contain Artemisia absinthium is prohibited." -United States Customs office
It is probably illegal to sell items meant for human consumption which contain thujone derived from Artemisia species. This derives from an FDA regulation (as opposed to a DEA regulation).
What I really got thinking about is the difference between a substance that's banned by the FDA, rather than the DEA.
Here's a nice thought from Gadgetopia about Google collecting all the pokemon er... brainiacs in the world. It is very interesting to ponder what they're doing with all those browser developers. GT integrated into my firefox? Something so good that I'll want to smack my forehead for having lived without it? Ah, yeah that's nice. I think I should sell relaxation tapes that say "Its ok, Google is awesome. Don't worry Google will save us all. Google will punish the morons."
Sorry, sorry, sorry. Lets be fair, there's got to be some pros about this. I do have to give them props for allowing USB transfer, but it sounds like they just couldn't figure out the OTA download scheme in time. Cingular probably won't request a special crappy version of the phone be produced just for them. And the phone will doubtlessly profit from a zippy new silhouette-on-bright-background ad campaign.
Ok, on to the general iPod stuff. You crackheads! You're releasing another iPod? The Nano is to be the new mini. The thing apple had going for itself was the iconical status of the mp3 player. They used to be able to say "This is the best player. Period." Now they're just undermining themselves by pumping out device after device. "Maybe this one is good. How about this? Please be my friend, Please?" Its getting hard to keep track of all the different generations and models, and moreover harder to care when another iPod shortie rolls off the line. So when they do get something exciting to sell, I won't know how to distinguish it for the normal bullshit. Ahh! Sorry, back to the Nano. Basically this thing should have been the shuffle. Its small (maybe too small), has the capacity of an old mini, and looks to have a color screen. All for the usual pricetag of 250 bones. Great. Now tell me why you couldn't just strap this on the back of a Motorola phone and call it the Rokr. Oh, and how about some bluetooth integration? Built-in FM transmitter? Ah, never mind. Just keep pumping out smaller mp3 players with less storage and charging the same price. I'm sure no one will mind.
I just found this snippet from the Apple announcement presentation. Its Steve Jobs Ichatting with Madonna.
1:09pm - Madonna to Steve: “I got tired of not being able to download my own music.” Steve: “Do you have an iPod?” Madonna: “Of course I do! That’s so dumb! Every time I get one a new one comes out the next week.”
Nice, isn't she sposed to be promoting your product?
From my young perspective it seems like the world is getting rougher every day. Terrorism, Natural Disasters, Cost of Living. Everyone is suspicious and everyone is suspected. These are not the conditions I remember growing up in. I have two theories about why I'm noticing this. First, my parents did an excellent job sheltering me from the ravages of the world. I didn't worry about snipers, school shootings, Corporate fraud and mismanagement, or deadly weather. I'm sure this is true, but the extent of sheltering influences second component's validity. The second being: the US was in a 'golden age' as compared with the rest of the world, which we are now barely falling out of. Sure we had bad things happened to us, but nothing where 170,000 people are wiped out by a storm. No real wars, no civil unrest. We had been sheltered by our government and desensitized by our TV movies. Our scandals include election fraud and office BJ's. Our poverty is not destitution, our discrimination not genocide. We became the whiners, suing over hot coffee and arguing about celebrity trials.
This is somewhat akin to my tenet of ‘relative decency’ (perhaps an inverse socio-perceptional tenet) we imagined the worst thing we saw was the worst that could happen. Because of our national separatism, we enjoyed this buffer for many years. Take a step back and view this society from an outsiders’ point of view. The devastation of the world being capitalized upon by a country of stupid lazy complaining cattle. I can certainly understand groups wanting to bring a little realism to the leaders of the world; just as I'd like our leaders to imagine my point of view. And now that we are experiencing a taste of how truly bad things can be, we should realize that we are no different. Just lucky.
Like I said, I'm not sure if we as Americans have been experiencing more hardship or if I, as a developing global constituent, am becoming more aware of the stain that has always surrounded me. (I say hardship meaning an American perspective of hardship, not implying that we as a nation have any idea of the true hardship that exists in the world. For example, we are currently at war, and have one of the largest national disasters conceivable on our hands, and my only life change is paying more for gas and maybe donating some money to national relief instead of international relief.) I have a suspicion that the national exposure theory may be stronger than I first imagined. Take for example: examinations of New Orleans "man I hope that doesn't happen" defense strategy, as compared with the civil plans in effect in other nations.
The US was golden, and that was our plan for dealing with this. “I’m sure it won’t be that bad.” Look around, it happens more than you think.
Of course then there’s the possibility that the world is actually becoming a harder place to live. We keep toying with the environment and it is destabilizing. We invent new and better ways of killing one another and pass on the wonders to those who want to kill us. We're using up our power sources without concern for what will sustain us next. Let’s not talk about the Earth becoming an uninhabitable wasteland though; it’ll just make me think about the Moon shedding its orbit and rending the planet into 23 pieces as it hurdles into the Sun.
A: Did you actually pass the bar exam?
I saw this Galapagos tortoise in a Zoo north of Brisbane, it was collected by Darwin. Yeah, Darwin.
'Australia Zoo' is the crocodile Hunter's Zoo, as such they had a buncha crocs, and signs which I found quite amusing.
There were also kangaroos, of course. They're pretty cool. I know these were zoo kangaroos, so they were used to people. Pretty exciting still, even after we realized they're like deer in Australia. They hang out in your front yard and eat your vegtables. Those pouches are wierd though.