I really don't like those commercials with the two guys and one says he's a Mac and the other says he's a PC. Sure it illustrates some of the key differences in a semi-abstract way, but it also misleads consumers into poor assumptions based on incomplete information. Like that one where the PC is sick and the Mac says that he doesn't get sick. Yeah, that's cause there aren't enough of you to make viruses worthwhile, not cause you've got bulletproof security. Its kind of a security through obscurity tact, which isn't really the best policy. So check out this Mac adware proof of concept. The company that produced it says it was actually easier to do than on a PC, someone just had to get around to doing it.
Trojan horse. Watch this clip of an Australian show that decided to see if anyone would still fall for the old Trojan Horse stunt.
So to all you Mac owners out there rubbing your Powerbooks in my face, quit advertising how great Macs are. Your best hope for security is the continued unpopularity of the brand. Remember, just cause no one takes the time to smell your shit, doesn't mean it don't stink.
Treehugger: Amy Youngs' Digestive Table
That's not the funny part though. Florida intends to help pay the $4.1 million replacement cost by selling off its old machines. The old machines that didn't work. The old machines they are so inclined to get rid of after a single use. The old machines that don't actually count votes. The election supervisor even went so far as to list off the places he thinks are dim enough to buy the irregular goods. "Just because there is some controversy over the touch-screen machines here, doesn't mean places like Georgia, Alabama, Washington, D.C., or Michigan won't want them." Hmmm... maybe that's true, but when I'm looking at a used car I usually ask "So how come you're getting rid of it? Oh, because it only has a picture of an engine under the hood... I'll get back to you."
So when Google started absorbing that cost (obviously supplementing themselves in some other way) it was a great leap towards bringing GIS to the everyman. So when I read the first part of this article about Gaia, an effort to reverse engineer Google Earth to make open development efforts, I was skeptical. Its not really cool to sponge off Google's subscriptions to services just because you want to. They're providing free access to pay-content with a decent application. Reading further down the paragraph, that's what Google told these developers:
they do not own the data, and neither does Google. It is licensed to Google on the restriction that it is not to be accessed or used outside Google's client software.
Yep, that's pretty much the situation. If you guys are interested in 3D GIS you can work on lots of different projects, you just have to get your own content. Check out ArcGIS Explorer from ESRI. Its like Google Earth but you add your own services, or ones that you have legal access to. That's the kind of program you should be interested in releasing to the public; not one with someone else's services hard coded in. ESRI even provides some free services (mostly from Tele Atlas) to get you started.
When an unread count has changed, it will flash yellow for a split-second to help you find it. This yellow fade made our Web 2.0 meter that we have in our office move up a tick.
They have a web 2.0 meter in the office. Nice. I've tried to estimate the TwoPointOhNess of dailyplacebo, but maybe I need a meter to keep track like the Google Reader team. That way I wouldn't need to worry about a numeric designation, just an area of OhNess. But then I'd have to go and buy a whiteboard... And markers... Maybe even a eraser. Whew, I just talked myself out of it.
'The exports of Libya are numerous in amount. One thing they export is corn, or as the Indians call it, maize. Another famous Indian was Crazy Horse. In conclusion, Libya is a land of contrast. Thank you.'
Of course one has to wonder, why bother taxing the populous when you have no intention of meeting a budget? Can't I keep my taxes and you'll just get the entire federal budget from that magical place that's keeping us afloat now? And then we'll all reduce our dependency on foreign oil by riding rainbows to work.
1) Software. The Zune app (the only way to get music onto your Zune) is a huge pain to install and set up. There are all kinds of registration screens and sometimes the installation just plain fails. I have yet to read a review of a smooth installation.
2) Points. The first time I went to ESPN zone I had an ok time. Mostly I was just trying to figure out the point system and how much I was dropping on a particular game. Always be wary of arbitrary monetary schemes. Why is the company making you exchange your money for 'points' of nonsensical value? To disassociate your actions from their real cost. Oh and so they can charge more for certain titles that the music industry tells them to.
3) DRM. Yes Microsoft came up with a DRM scheme. Its called playsforsure. Sounds good, but doesn't really deliver. No the Zune doesn't implement playsforsure. Dogfood not meaty enough for you guys? DRM even taints the one innovation of Zune by engulfing tracks before they're lent to other users (if you can find someone else with a Zune) via WiFi. So even open mp3's get DRMed and expire leaving only an advertisement to buy the track from the Zune store.
4) Music Industry. We all hate the music industry. There was music before them; there will be music after them. Their only purpose is to collect and distribute money to people that have no musical talent. But they get a kickback for every Zune sold, and no doubt will soon have their hand deep within the Zune store exploiting the poor souls who were stupid enough to get locked into it.
And on that industry note, we come to Doug Morris the CEO of Universal Music Group. He says: "These devices are just repositories for stolen music, and they all know it. So it's time to get paid for it." Wow. Wowie wow. I'd thought the state of online music sales was pretty good. Apparently not. Well cars are used to move illegal drugs. I guess the pharmaceutical companies should get a chunk of car sales. Not willing to follow me there? Well how about PC's? You don't think PC's are music repositories too? And what if we do pay you a kickback? Does that then legitimize illegal music transfer? You bitches make the iTunes music store look downright reputable.
In summation: Don't buy a Zune. Tell your friends not to buy a Zune. Tell them to tell their friends. And Doug Morris, you're a douche. Chalk him up on the big board...
However, I was up till 2 last night playing Wii tennis. That noise is just fun. I know I'm not in the best shape of my life, but I guess I'm better off than some of these pudgers. I mean, I don't have to stop playing cause my arms are too sore. That's the complaint from these same folks that were willing to sleep on the street for video games. And Nintendo's response? Drum roll please... 'they may need to exercise more.' Ouch. But I like that answer; customers complain about your new product being hard to use, tell them they suck at life. Its not my fault if you have to take rests in between bites of a sammich.
But in all seriousness I don't know how much I'll be able to post from my phone next week, since its such a pain in the ass to type four words on those things. So per usual I'm inviting the Nutts to write up any interestingness they might stumble upon in their blind groping of the Internet. Oh hell, I'll even give you a sneak peek of what its like in my brain. Here's one of my feeds that brings in some of the awesome content you've come to expect. Its a limited time offer, so get all up ons while you can.
Google reader- first run feed
"We'll succeed... unless we quit."
That's the kind of wisdom you only get from ruling the world for six years. When asked if our loss in Vietnam held lessons, the potentate replied:
"We tend to want there to be instant success in the world, and the task in Iraq is going to take a while."
I would have been right if I'd been completing a test on the oceans in middle school. (Probably the last time such material was examined) However in 2000 oceanographers got together and changed Antarctic to Southern. What? They should not be allowed to change facts that were basic knowledge in my primary school education. I mean, sure if I'd been taught a geocentric view, I'd want them to change that; but something like this really makes me question the point to learning all that material. How many tidbits of information do I have stored away that aren't correct anymore, just cause a scientist renamed something?
The worst part about this is that I'm not sure if I knew that Southern was an ocean or not. I read it and it seems familiar, but the more I think about it, the more I'm sure that's just because one of the oceans on Pern was the Southern Ocean. (the others being Eastern, Western and Ring Sea) So I asked a few people and set up that survey to see if anyone else had the same problem. Spectacularly, no one else thought of the Southern Ocean (except for Dee two, who admitted to cheating) and my inferiority complex has been assuaged.
Yeah, I know I gave away the first answer in the survey with the second question. I'm fine with that cause the first one wasn't really the point of the exercise, it was just to get you thinking about oceans. It reminds me of a pop-quiz I had in elementary school once.
The teacher said to read the instructions (which was usual) but the first instruction was to read all the questions before beginning. I found that odd and so I did. The second to last question said to not complete the quiz and to put your pencil down and fold your hands. So I sat there shooting looks at the two other kids who had obviously read all the questions trying not to laugh while the rest of the class scribbled away.
In about 4 or 5 minutes the first person started erasing. It was like a rain storm coming across the water; drops building one at a time until all you could hear was erasing and blowing the shavings away. It all culminated when one of the slower kids reached the end and decried loudly "Oh what the HELL?" The entire class burst out laughing and the teacher got to give his little speech on the importance of following directions. I know, I was being subjugated and trained into a mindless drone, but shit, that was funny.
Labels: I did not know that
So you know fair use? Limited legal use of copyrighted material NOT requiring the permission of the rights holder. It boils the MPAA's blood. They'd probably outlaw watching movies with other people if they could. This limited use clearly includes personal backups of purchased material, which the MPAA seems to have reluctantly accepted.
But wait, the battle isn't over. There's something other than the content you paid for on those DVD's in your livingroom. That's right! Its DRM! Digital Rights Management, or in other words a pain in the ass that treats valid consumers like criminals, stripping their digital rights. Couple that together with the DMCA and you have quite the dynamic duo. The DMCA protects the DRM itself, not the copyright that the DRM is supposedly protecting. So now in cases where the copyright does not apply (ie. fair use) but the DRM is still in place, the DMCA makes it illegal to exercise your fair use rights.
How the hell did a piece of legislation like that get passed? That's like having one law that says you can tinker with your car; minor upgrades, change the oil, fill the wiper fluid. But also having another law that makes it illegal to open your own car's hood.
This is just one of the problems the DMCA provides by not requiring more accountability by the rights holders. Doesn't it seem like a piece of legislation that applies such broad powers to a concept should also restrict the instances where that concept is allowed to be implemented; so that the law doesn't overstep its jurisdiction?
If they can't produce a reasonable, well scoped protection system, they shouldn't be allowed to saddle us with one at all. Land mines are really good at preventing unlawful entry. I'm pretty sure I'm not allowed to surround my car with them in the Wal-mart parking lot.
Here's the scary useful part for today: call for free. Google has just implemented a feature where you give them your phone number and they call you with the store on the line. Badass right? Hang on, it gets better. The call actually comes from the store's number so you have it in your caller ID for later. I don't care who you are, that's some tricky shit. Next time my roommates and I are arguing over who should call for takeout, the Chinese place might just call one of them.
Trying to explain to such hair-gelled urbanite that they could buy the small one, trick it out and make it faster than the big one would be like teaching religion to a robot.
This may come perilously close to a post all about how I love Google so much, but I'll try to keep it in perspective. There are so many services out there under the Google name its almost overwhelming. Let me see how many I can name off the top of my head.
docs and spreadsheets
picasa with picasa web
Whew, that's quite a few here are the ones I missed that I also have access to:
Alright, I'll stop listing things off. But those are all user services, like you log-in and have an account. There are still plenty of general services like sets, trends, and scholar. And those are just the ones I know about, there must me a bunch of super-secret ones lurking in the shadows.
I've come to the revelation that I like all this stuff because I'm willing to spend the time to figure it out. I enjoy using them because I do use them. I was trying to use YouTube last night and had a less than superior time with it. Yes, I mean actually uploading videos; contrary to my previous declaration. Mind you, its not that I have an overwhelming desire to have content there, I just figured I'd see what the deal was. Personal edification, all that. I got it done and it didn't take me 10 hours or anything, but it didn't make sense. I don't know what a channel is and I kept going to the home page, which is different from the user page which is different from the videos page. It took 3 clicks to get back to uploading after I finished the previous one.
Now, I'm not saying that YouTube sucks. And I'm not saying I'm not smart enough to figure it out. I'm saying I don't want to spend enough time to do it. I don't want to have a 'channel' that holds my favorite videos (or whatever a channel does). I want a site to host my video and easily categorize them like Picasa does for my pictures.
So maybe its not that Google is so great, but that I'm willing to figure out all the different services and learn what is what. I bought tickets for Casino Royale yesterday, and I did three web searches (each time landing on a yahoo movies page ) before I went to my IG page and clicked into the Google movies listing. I'm just more comfortable with Google because I use Google. I'm sure Yahoo! is great for Yahoo! people, but I don't want a Yahoo! Id or an MSN id or an AOL id. With so many competing companies, I'd rather stick to the one with the most useful and widespread products. And that's what Google has been doing, scooping up services, making their users wonder why people use anything else.
Wikipedia- List of Google Services
Ok, on second inspection, I'm pretty sure that April fools' day has been moved to November. And they got me, cause this seems too stupid to be made up. But come on. I mean this 'msfirefox.com' site is down and there is no web archive record of it. Oh and the article lists "new ways to better protect against the theft of personal data from fraudulent websites, a practice known as Googling" among the browser's features. That's just wrong. But why would you write a piece like this? Just to screw with me? I'm pretty close to removing the Register from my feed as it is because of their often bizarre and non-nonsensical content. Add lies to the mix and its more trouble than they're worth. Register, you're on notice.
"we've made it better. like seriously..."
A post from October 29th.
Well move brakes up a level of abstraction cause rotors and pads aren't gonna cut it in a couple years. Electronic Wedge Brakes (EWB) are the next big thing in stopping. They use small electric motors to move a wedge and teeth in a groove of some kind (insert magic here). Poof, the system uses 1/10th the energy of conventional hydraulic brakes, becomes more efficient with higher speeds and innately deprecates anti-lock brakes. I feel like I'm gonna need a flash demo to get a better grip on the magic part.
I'd be excited except this is just a toned down version of ones that I saw in Europe no less than two years ago. Oh and also this isn't targeting the problem on airplanes, its enabling the selfish morons jamming up my aisle. Here's the solution folks: board all rows, but separate by seat letter. So the A's and F's go first, B's and E's second and C's and D's last. So that way the people with carry-on luggage will be forced to board early, sitting at the windows. Then when the seatbelt light / starting pistol goes off I can walk off the plane quickly and don't have to wait for Laurel and Hardy to get their steamer trunk down and drop it on my head / foot.
I know that's not gonna fly, so how about a simpler version:
you silly old hag
while I packed light and sleek
so just stay in your chair
and twiddle you hair
so I don't have to break your goddamn legs
AutoDocker to make boarding and deplaning faster - Engadget
Ok, so I'm getting reports from multiple sources that this evaluation is probably suspect. I have yet to receive an opinion from our in house guru, so just keep in mind that this is for amusement purposes only and should not be used to formulate record deals. And don't worry if I got a better score than you. It just means you suck.
Its a pretty hearty investment and a symbolic gesture that extends past the usual commitment of an occupation; a lifelong commitment that shapes their lives.
Its also interesting to note that there pretty much won't be any new unknown soldiers. DNA testing and logistical management have ruled out most of the uncertainty. In fact the 'unknown' from Vietnam was identified and removed from this monument in 1998.
Go ahead and read a bit about it, so you're not just sitting around playing Mario 3 all day.
But what I really want to talk about is the Washington Post. They've got buttons for Digg, del.icio.us, reddit, google, yahoo and facebook right on their article side bar. They get that one of the best ways to increase their distribution (besides being indexed by search engines) is social bookmarking and communities. Way to embrace the tubes guys, keep up the good work.
Yeah, yeah, they're not technically cannibals, they're 'industrial accidents.' But tell me that when your right hand is being chowed upon by an Adrian Barbeau-bot with the strenght of five gorillas.
Anyway, I think we should start making Beggin' strips for robots so we can keep them in a subservient role like we've done for dogs. Trust me that's the only thing keeping your dog from eating your face in the night. Beggin' strips. And the promise of more Beggin' strips to come.
No. No its not. That not only says that you don't know if there were big problems, it means that you don't understand the concepts behind the problems we're worried about.
Oh and this problem of about 10,000 people who probably didn't abstain in Florida, isn't the worrisome kind. Because we can tell that something may have gone awry.
But the take-home lesson here is close your damn sliding door; cats can't fly.
Dammit, I could have used those braincells to learn Italian. I guess my only option is to try and take them out with a laser-guided precision beer strike.
And the poll workers' touch screen voter database seemed like a nice improvement. Last time I worked a poll we had a box of cards with people's names on them; which worked great until someone didn't have a card. But when I told the poll workers that I needed a provisional ballot, they just looked up my old address and confirmed where I live now, printed me out a ticket and sent me over to the paper ballot corner. See, I've stumbled onto a non absentee ballot paper alternative, just rock out the provisional ballot. So no, I didn't make a big fuss about having to use a flawed and unconformable device.
But some people did. Like a guy in PA who (might be a little crazy) smashed his Diebold machine with a metallic cat paperweight. It doesn't really destroy any of the votes, but it does say 'I don't like this'. Maybe next time three people will do it. In harmony. And they may think its a movement - the smash a diebold with a metal cat movement. And all ya gotta do to join is just sing it the next time it comes around on the guitar...
- Treehugger: New Innovations In Tidal Energy
- Hugg / S.D.E. Wave Power for $0.02 per kWh
- Hugg / brandl generator
- Hugg / wave plane
- Hugg / The Kobold turbine within the archimedes bridge
- Hugg / exploiting flows within water treatment works
The initiative started under the Clinton administration and wasn't fucked up by the Bush administration. Ten years in the making and we finally have new diesel that cut emissions in any diesel vehicle by 10%. Combining this fuel with new diesel technology produces an astonishing 95% reduced emissions. Combine these reductions with the fact that diesel engines have always been 20-40% more efficient than gas engines and you should start seeing why this is so great. Get excited even if you'd never buy a diesel car, because everything you consume is transported by diesel engines. Cutting emissions at any level is great news for everyone.
- .: New Diesel Fuel Hitting Pumps Nationwide on October 15 Cuts Pollution, Enables New Low-Emission Engine Technology - Fuel and Economy :. Auto Spectator
Next we've got poop soap. Just in case you like rubbing turds all over yourself, but want to be cleaner afterwards. Or maybe these are like those special guest soaps; only out for special occasions.
Mathematicians Claim To Solve Party Problem; Only Reveal That They Have No Idea What Happens At Parties.
First off it relies on numerically quantifying desire, or I spose being able to prioritize your needs. Secondly, what happens if two parties want some mutually inclusive portion? Maybe someone likes to look at cakes cause they're pretty and I like the moist center. Does looking at half a cake still provide half the aesthetic appeal they originally desired?
Someone likes the flowers on top of the cake, while I value the entire cake (lets say for its roundness or weight) do they get half the flowers while I get half the cake? (everything they got and half a cake) And then we go on to divide the remaining flowerless half of the cake, right?
Or if some valuable attribute is intertwined with another? Sometimes its infeasible to separate real elements. I just want the butter from the cake and nothing else, that'll pretty much just ruin it for everyone else, if you could even find a way to appease me.
What if I wanted to be the only one with a flower because I wanted to feel special, or corner the flower market and sell my property at high value because of its small supply? Giving me half the flowers gives me zero bargaining position.
Finally this isn't actually a means for cutting the cake into the necessary portions, who's to say that their flowers won't have some of my frosting on them by mistake? If we could cut perfect pieces, then everyone would get an physical equal share. But we can't and this system is supposed to fix that problem by distributing pieces of varying content; but it doesn't propose any method for ensuring precision of allocation.
What if what I value most is screwing the other people out of their desires? (because it usually is)
Mostly, by the end of all this rigamarole, no one has any interest left in cake.
Alright, the cake is just a metaphor that I'm beating to death. This is supposed to be sued to divide anything up. How about I take the Solomon route and talk about a child custody hearing? Obviously we're not cutting up children; we could divide his time though. But what if a parent's motivation is to provide a stable environment, or to start a new life? Again half of what they want is not valuable to them.
The article mentions that this concept could be used in dividing land or water, but how can we expect this to apply when there are so many reasons it might fail? The premise might succeed when used on parallel concepts, but people can place value in so many things that you might never be comparing apples to apples.
1) carving into favorite cartoon characters
2) smashing on the neighbor's front porch
3) flinging with machination