2010 October❮❮prevnext❯❯

next stop... blub blub blub


via gizmodo's New York's Subway May Not Survive Nicole -- they talk about times they actually had to send in scuba divers, though I'm assuming this must be a 'shopped fake, unless they still had the lights on in cars down there...
"Okay, how about this theory. What if none of the stuff in 'Murder, She Wrote' actually happened..."
"It didn't!"

Wish I had a weather app that touched on a bit of "why", not just "what"-eg today's crazy wind is the scrap end of Tropical Storm Nicole...

the robot that never was


--The robot for the 24 Hour Comics Day entry I'm not writing.
I'm writing something much crappier and more self-indulgent instead!

I'm glad [Dunkin Donuts] doesn't call munchkins 'donut balls'.

About to start 24 Hour Comics Day! @cobiegoesboom will be over soon. Precious little idea what I'm going to make my comic about.
http://www.noupe.com/how-tos/creative-examples-of-infographics.html - nice examples of infographics

of the moments #1

My 24 Hour Comics Day project this year -- my attempts to come up with an actual story sort of fizzled, so I made this nostalgic and kind of self-indulgent work about moments and memory.... this is part 1 of 4.

this morning i was driving my car.

there was a green leaf stuck on the windshield

i used the wipers. the leaf left an arc of water droplets behind

by the time i picked up my friend, only faint spots remained

the arc of droplets on a windshield late on an autumn morning; these made a moment

when i was a kid i had an idea about the afterlife:

what if it wasn't heaven and clouds, and my mom (and women in general) getting to be angels (my earlier theory)

what if it was just one moment, a freeze frame, extended forever?

that moment would be all you'd have. all your surroundings, everything you were feeling... ...right now, at this moment, i want to tell you some of the moments i remember

as a young child, inspired by something i saw on tv, asking my mom to give me a kitchen knife so i might chivalrously protect her

my grandfather papa sam helping me zip up my pjs, my weewee accidentally getting caught in the zipper...

some moments are family anecdotes, that are mine only through the hearing: my mom yelling up through the laundry chute to toss down kirk's clothes, his response from the tub: 'i don't talk to no walls'

my parents having friends over for dinner - being afraid to spit out the whole ice cube i had put in my mouth

breaking a sapling's branch at mrs davis' house to impress some other kids, and earning her justified wrath

christmas day at friends, my dad saying "MY BABY" and pretending not to give the daughter's dolly back

scared out my wits at sunday school, when the teacher (my aunt) showed a picture of firing squads christians might face during the apocalypse

a tough guy laughing as his compatriot got bothered by a cop, pulling the tree off a leaf as he passed

at the local fairground, they had one hotdog left, and my dad let me have it, he explained that was something dads just did

horsing around with my cousin in grandpa's chair, tipping back and impaling my forehead on a plant stand

one time in the car, dad telling me he loved me, and me feeling squirmy at that kind of direct pronouncement

getting told i was student of the week for my class at my new school, running down the hall and skidding on the floor - the friction blister was about as bad as the teacher chewing me out

an argument with my mom, where she told me my donkey kong jr custom minus the (scary-ish!) mask would be merely cutesy

a field trip to NYC, the waiter at mamma leone's saying he was 'da hudson rivah' as he refilled our water glasses

overnight stays at best friend todd's, the summerhot bedroom with him and me and his little brother talking and avoiding sleep

my dad angry at my "apple ii history quiz" getting a terrible score at the school history fair

shocked when realizing thinking "i hate..." triggered "...everything about this place" one miserable week at music camp

of the moments #2

My 24 Hour Comics Day project this year -- my attempts to come up with an actual story sort of fizzled, so I made this nostalgic and kind of self-indulgent work about moments and memory.... this is part 2 of 4.

jeff at an after-church get-together, chugging a 2-liter of soda, saying he just 'had to burp', and throwing up all over

my dad, stricken with spinal meningitis, his muscular control system shot, explaining how he just wanted to enact how a son asks for money, and the father takes it out of his wallet, and gives it to him

making dad fried bologna sandwiches in the mornings after he was debilitated, but then stopping, uncomfortable with it all

being teased by my boss mr.j about how i'd furtively slink off to eat my allotted daily candy bar during my pharmacy shift

mr.j convincing me he had a voice controlled radio by sneakily changing stations with the steering wheel control buttons

and mr.j giving his tie to a UPS store clerk who admired it, then grumbling to me on the drive back about how he had to do that

my dad fighting to regain coordination, shakily taking walks around the block

mall fieldtrips with pregnant teens from my the program my mom oversaw, looking a bit like i had my own harem

staying up all night for the first time with beau, playing 'ninja' on the atari 800xl, throwing a joystick at him in frustration

the first kiss - the atomic fireball passed from her mouth to mine

mike d.b. snapping a girls bra - admiring the chutzpah, if not the manners

the chunky black and smelling of machine oil stands in the high school bandroom

marching band, screaming myself hoarse leading boom chikka boom

not stopping to say good morning on what was my dad's last morning

the changing of the honor guard at my dad's salvation army funeral

the state trooper saluting my dad's funeral procession

on a band trip to mexico, one member miming milking a cow in order to request milk, and cornell then just saying "milk please"

music camp, standing on the dew covered field for flag raising, the smell of mess hall

getting pantsed at music camp

sneaking away with d at the end of camp, the grass, her breasts - a first for me... making up for enthusiasm what i lacked in skill.

later during a more traditional courtship of j, calling her up at her house to have her look at the moon with me

ellen showing us a raunchy passage from "tropic of cancer" in the bandroom, and mike and i teasing her with "squish squish" ever after

after a day or two of being sick from school, looking at my horrible acne in the bathroom mirror, and later realizing it was actually chicken pox

flirting with v on the bus to boston, lying on the bus floor and studying her face upsidedown

outside the gubitosi's with v, kissing and kissing and kissing

opening my eyes once then, and seeing her eyes weren't shut either

Somehow the way "Super Pac-Man" transcends the maze a bit with the title character bigger than the tunnels still blows my mind.

CSS-gurus; any explanation for why absolute positioning is in document coordinates UNLESS there's a position:relative'd wrapper?
http://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2010/10/hand-the-taxpayer-a-receipt/63909/ - a receipt for taxpayers...
I was a little surprised to find Tammy Faye died a while back. I thought her eye shadow granted her immortality.

of the moments #3

My 24 Hour Comics Day project this year -- my attempts to come up with an actual story sort of fizzled, so I made this nostalgic and kind of self-indulgent work about moments and memory.... this is part 3 of 4.

feeling so sophisticated and european carrying a spare tampon for v at the school's day at the amusment park

endlessly jamming on the blues scale on the bandroom piano with mike

wrestling v's terribly overstuffed suitcase before she went back to germany

mesmerized by the weight on a spring on a string pendulum in physics class

romancing ms., watching for shooting stars on the shore of the lake until her dad came with a flashlight

the camaraderie of the dressing room for my high school's guys and dolls production, singalongs of "you've lost that loving feeling" and "pretty woman"

my big jule getting hit in the big jules by a clumsy sky masterson during dress rehearsal, the gratitude for being able to just lie there for a while

kissing and snuggling in the back of mike's car, the soundtrack to blues brothers and good morning vietnam

watching mike getting his nose broken by a bully

in portugal, running to catch a crazily crowded train after visiting its even more crowded dining car to get beers

that same trip, realizing i was drunk for the first time, regarding myself in the cafe's bathroom's mirror

tipsy at the deserted train station, telling baptista about v and the dear john letter; him telling me about his hopless crush on his french tutor

once college started, finding out baptista had died; "let it be" coming on, and making me weep in my dorm room

buying my mom a clown music box; one of the first gifts i remember feeling generous about

those summers working as a counselor at a daycamp for mentally handicapped kids had a lot of moments of their own

ms's cramps halfway up the statue of liberty, helpless as she rolled on the floor in agony

noticing how piglike my reflection was in my tuba

pepper flashing her breasts us in mike's frat's basement

visiting mom at her - our - new york apartment, and its view of sunset over the hudson

in that same apartment, clambering over the 19th story roof with an australian visitor -- 'photography isn't about photos. photos never come out right. it's about the *adventure*"

l. standing in thought and her underwear in my dorm room, an inadvertant venus de waldorf

improvising fanfares with the band director john on trumpet as a stalling tactic during commencement

reconnecting with v. in new york city, the ball drop at times square

buying my aunt a great big vase from martha's vineyard to apoogize for making out with a girl in her living room

mom erasing 3,000 i owed her from college as a graduation gift, and the card she made to tell me

a roadtrip to cleveland with r after graduation, going to those gardens with her and mike, lazing in the sun

A Jonamac apple followed by an atomic fireball tastes like oatmeal and cinnamon. Diggin' it.

of the moments #4

My 24 Hour Comics Day project this year -- my attempts to come up with an actual story sort of fizzled, so I made this nostalgic and kind of self-indulgent work about moments and memory.... this is part 4 of 4.

on the porch of my first apartment with jt, eating pasta and listening to the soundtrack to "the birdcage". this hit me as 'a moment' when i was in that moment

dylan's odd gag of pulling out his work-id-on-a-retracting-spool like he was a pullstring doll that could only say "i love bank boston. i love bank boston"

driving to new york on rainy night, my civic spins out, luckily the truck was a good distance away

buying m. expensive sunglasses, an early token in our relationship

an asian gentleman disarming my clogged traffic road rage on memorial drive by waggling moose antlers

stockpiling jugs of water ahead of y2k, just in case

making a german 7 year old giggle with a terrible "auto-baum" draw and cartoon

design group hanging out upstairs after layoffs

looking down the dark, snow covered road before finishing the walk home; it also registered as one of these moments i wanted to fix in my mind

endless games of "pokemon puzzle league" with eb

working with m. to saw the legs off a table too big to move and restore them; her insecurity, the skepticism of eb

during knowledge transfer when leaving a job, in joking anger i tossed a remote at noor, but hit and hurt him for real.

getting so sunburned this one time with k that my chest was pretty much the same shade as my nipples...

a weird moment of hubris when jz pulled up a game site at work as we were waiting for a compile

the moment of dawning horror realizing the oreo handed to me had actually been pre-licked - my mouthfull response 'wheahs da cweamy fillin'? is a moment providing many laughs for eb in the years since...

the craziness of my first 24 hour comics day; forgoing sleep to tell a story i had wanted to tell for a long while

the first kiss with amber, the electricity and sudden spark of this being the one...

later, a trip to niagara falls, and her nervousness on the oversized ferris wheel there...

that same trip, weeping on my dad's grave

and on the way backcoming to the where the church where i lived in an apartment with my folks was with amber, and seeing the grassy lot

so, those are my moments. some of my moments.

moments, and memories. some researchers think memories aren't so much made but remade; the act of remembering cements and reshapes the neuronic pathways

i guess that's one thing photographs do; become the canonical record, the mold for future remembering. and these comic panels will guide my future memory, I'm sure

is it telling what showed up here? more from my younger days than recently, and my dad shows up more than my mom; i'm not sure what to make of that

i think somehow i want my moments to outlast me; that's why i'm writing this now

it's tough to let go.

http://www.slate.com/id/2270046/ - the pitchforks of the right vs. the snickering of the left, which hurts the other more?
http://gizmodo.com/5656971/url-shorteners-in-peril-as-libyan-government-seizes-ly-domain - bit.ly in trouble? Dislike shorteners overuse.
Triangle man hates particle man - They have a fight, Triangle wins. Is this Plato's "World of Forms" triumphing over the mundane world?

this party- she must be started


--Shirley Bassey does P!nk... man, the James Bond-Theme styling of this is just astounding.
Digging the casual game Peggle on iPhone: it blends opposites: physics- AND turn-based; luck w/ skill, plus powerups to discover.
http://www.gizmag.com/the-kids-walker-16-metre-bi-pedal-exoskeleton-for-children/16521/ -- could you imagine being the kid on the block with THIS??
Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss, you'll land among the stars. Or the unimaginable hideous gaping void of space. One of the two.
Verydemotivational.com, "Ambition"

a man is stabbed by three spears, and he strikes each of the three men down before dying himself.

A man holds a large knife on a man, he kicks him into a deep well, and other men stab and slash several other men, who are also thrown into the well; we see blood spurt, and the point of a knife pokes through a man's back. A wolf with large fangs and claws and glowing red eyes snarls and circles around a boy, the boy walks into a cave, the wolf follows and lunges for the boy, but it is trapped in a narrow passageway and the boy stabs it through the mouth (we see the silhouette of the spear entering the wolf and we hear it whimper). A large army charges a smaller army, they clash, many men are run through by spears (blood spurts and we hear squishing), and the larger army is pushed back and slaughtered (one man is stabbed by three spears and the points push through his back, and one man's leg is hacked off at the knee and we see it separate). Another large army attacks a smaller army, many men on horseback are slashed and run through, horses are slashed and run through also, and blood sprays and spurts and we hear squishing and screaming. An enormous man is released from his chains and begins attacking many men (we hear crunching), and we see near strikes and slashes; the man throws an ax that nearly strikes a man in the head, and one man stabs him through the arm, the leg, then the eye, and finally cuts his head off (we see the head separate, fall to the ground and blood spurts from the neck). As punishment for losing, soldiers are placed on a stone and a man with crab claws for arms cuts their heads off (we hear a slash, blood splatters and we see a severed head floating in the air, with blood at the neck). A man on horseback cuts the head off another man (we see the head separate and see blood spurt from the neck). A man is stabbed by three spears, and he strikes each of the three men down before dying himself. Many wounded men writhing on the ground are stabbed with spears and killed. A man is struck through the chest by a spear and falls from his horse. Many arrows strike many men (we see bloody holes where they have been struck) and they fall to the ground). A woman stabs a man in the stomach, he lurches forward, and she pushes the knife deeper, twice (we hear crunching), and then withdraws it and the man falls to the floor. A man throws a spear that slashes another man's face (blood pours from the wound. A man with a large knife jumps toward a man who raises a whip, and cuts his arm off (we see the arm separate and blood splatters). A rhinoceros pierces several men and tosses them into the air, and a man throws a spear striking the rhino in the head and it falls dead on the ground. Many elephants rear and stomp near men, the elephants are frightened, they back up and fall off a high cliff. There are several dead men who have been speared up through their bodies and out the mouth. An enormous wall of bodies is built and pushed over and onto an approaching army. There are many dead bodies that have been used as "mortar" in a stone wall (we see blood on them). Many men come upon a city that has been attacked and has been left burning (we see a dead horse on the ground with large gaping wounds and flies buzzing around it) and a child approaches the men and tells them what happened; we see a large tree with the nude bodies of residents of the city attached to it with arrows. Flaming jars are thrown, they explode and send shrapnel everywhere (we see one man struck in the leg by a piece). Many men are pushed back to a cliff's edge and over it, falling onto rocks and the sea below. Many arrows are launched toward men who cover themselves with their shields. A man loses the use of his eye during a battle. A man grabs a woman by the throat and shoves her against a wall, he then turns her around, pushes her against a wall and prepares to have sex with her. A boy straddling another boy punches him repeatedly in the face (blood spurts, and the boy's face is bloody and bruised, as are the aggressor's hands). A boy is tied to a pole and lashed across the back repeatedly (he winces). A man whips men who carry him on a heavy platform. A man whips soldiers that are marching into battle. A man and a boy (they're father and son) fight with knives, the boy's knife is knocked out of his hands and the man strikes him in the face (we see his bloody lip); they then continue to fight. We see a boy being taken from his mother at the age of 7 (the mother struggles against two guards holding her, as does the boy). A woman slaps a man in the face. Thunder crashes and lightning flashes on a mound of skulls at the bottom of a cliff while a man examines a newborn for imperfections (we hear that imperfect infants are discarded). Men on horseback charge into a city, one horse rears and the rider holds a string of skulls (we are told they are the skulls of fallen kings). We see five men with badly scarred faces, and discolored and malformed teeth. A badly malformed man with a hunchback and scarring on his back and face is shown in several scenes. The mask of a man is knocked off and we see a grey-tinged face. Several people are shown with piercings on their heads and faces. Many ships are crushed during a heavy storm (we see the bodies of men sinking into the water and a few large wounds are visible). A man climbs up a shear rock wall. A man grieves over the death of his son. A man talks about a group of warriors who cannot be killer or defeated. We hear about boys being trained to be warriors by being placed in extreme circumstances and left to fight for survival. There are several allusions to the fact that once occupied the women of a country would be raped and enslaved and the children would be enslaved. A man is dismissive of a woman and questions her right to speak to men. A man threatens a man with death. A spear brushes past the cheek of a man. His piercings are seen flying away with a wound at the point of contact. Blood is scene on his face as well as on his hand [as he touches the wound]. As a man prepares to whip another person. His hand is cut off by a sword. We see the disembodied arm fly away with the lash still in its grip.

I saw this first on an iPhone app, and it lacked the paragraph breaks that are their on the website.

I just love the drama-free, factual tone of these -- no character names, just "a man" or "a woman", all in present tense, and after a while it starts to read like Apocalyptic prophecy. I was tempted to try and make my 24 Hour Comics Day out of this, but I thought I couldn't get it abstract enough having just watched the video.
I have to admit: in the chilly seasons, the zippered pockets of my hoodie become my man-purse. Big gob of keys, wallet, phone, sunglasses. That's a purse. Better than my pants pockets though, or at least less lumpy.
wow, the new Gap logo kinda sucks.
http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/ElvesVersusDwarves - "Elves vs Dwarves" is a better metaphor than Scrum's "pigs vs chickens" for representing engineers (technological, down to earth dwarves; pigs 'with their bacon on the line') vs management (dreaming, elegant elves; chickens that are merely providing eggs.) Of course Pigs vs Chickens has always been a horrifying, inaccurate, and self-aggrandizing metaphor for software developers.

It's fun trying to find pretty, non-distracting iPhone wallpaper, but after a while of that going to flat black feels so soothing...
Holy cats, my todo is down to zero due/overdue. First time in a LONG while Appigo Todo ain't wearing its little number badge.

the sandwich fair

Today Amber, Kjersten and I went to the 100th Anniversary Sandwich Fair in New Hampshire. We had a lot of great fair food, but, ironically enough, there were absolutely no sandwiches to be had.

The men who really believe in themselves are all in lunatic asylums.
G. K. Chesterton

So is Gap inviting people to do their logo for free because their Helvetica one is so bad, or was that the result of asking for free work?

air force one at the sandwich fair

This should probably have just been one long video...

I kind of dig people talking about it being 101010 = 42 in binary = Meaning of Life Day...

loveblender october 2010

lyte funky ones: an analysis of "summer girls"

So I admit, I hadn't thought of LFO (err.. yeesh, "Lyte Funky Ones") for a long time, but then news of their lead singer Rich Cronin (who, yikes, was about half a year younger than me) dying from leukemia was around the memepool, and I remembered how catchy I thought their song "Summer Girls" (or "Abercrombie + Fitch" as I remembered it) was, a I tracked it down. Here's the video for it, nubile gals and all:

This song is infuriating, because it is maddeningly catchy, with lyrical references aimed right at the heart of Gen-Xers like so many nostalgia harpoons -- but lyrically, it is the biggest crock imaginable. You just want to smack the lyricist for having such good source material to work with (the late80s/early 90s memorabilia, this insanely catchy high gloss music) and then just fumbling it up. I've been jonesing to dissect it for a few weeks now, so here goes:

Yeah...I like it when the girls stop by.. In the summer
Do you remember, Do you remember?
...when we met..That summer??
So, especially given the video, kind of a nice framing device here, setting up an excuse to drop a blend of romantic nostalgia..

New Kids On The block had a bunch of hits
Chinese food makes me sick.
And I think it's fly when girls stop by for the summer,for the summer
I like girls that wear Abercrombie and Fitch,
I'd take her if I had one wish,
But she's been gone since that summer..
Since that summer
Ok, wait, what? A shout out to New Kids on the Block I guess is only fair, given that this is a pop boyband singing. But what is up with the Chinese food? Like, is he saying the Chinese food back then was worse than it is now, or does he have like a present-day MSG sensitivity or something? This confusion about "back in the day" and "these days" seems to predominate -- Abercrombie and Fitch has been around for a long while, but I don't think it was prominent on the pop-culture radar 'til the late 90s, especially for the models it became famous for later.

Also, the inane nature of the Chinese Food line points out the laziness of the rhymes... hits/sick, fitch/wish? It's a testament to the instrumental section that this isn't even more grating.
Hip Hop Marmalade spic And span,
Met you one summer and it all began
You're the best girl that I ever did see,
The great Larry Bird Jersey 33
When you take a sip you buzz like a hornet
Billy Shakespeare wrote a whole bunch of sonnets

So, reading it now, I wonder if the implication is she's the Larry Bird of Summer Girls? Which I guess is something. "Billy Shakespeare" is a bit of faux-familiarity with the playwright, though maybe I should for the first time give benefit of the doubt, and give half-credit for a reference to the sonnets being about the Summer Girl.
Call me Willy Whistle cause I can't speak baby
Something in your eyes went and drove me crazy
Now I can't forget you and it makes me mad,
Left one day and never came back
Stayed all summer then went back home,
Macauly Culkin wasn't Home Alone
Fell deep in love,but now we ain't speaking
Michael J Fox was Alex P Keaton
When I met you I said my name was Rich
You look like a girl from Abercrombie and Fitch
I'm not sure if "Willy Whistle" is a reference back to the Shakespeare bit, or just looking for a bit of internal rhyme. By the time we get to the repetition of the chorus, though, it has partially devolved into random nostalgic shotouts, devoid of context. (Which makes me think, if they're that lazy with the tie-ins, they could at least have more of them...)
Cherry Pez,cold crush,rock star boogie
Used to hate school so I had to play hookie,
Always been hip to the B-boY Style
Known to act wild and make girls smile,
Love New Edition and the Candy Girl
Remind me of you because you rock my world
Credit for the Beastie Boys reference here, though the "New Edition / Candy Girl" reference seems a bit early? The Beastie Boys License to Ill came out in 1986, but that "Candy Girl" song is 1983, when the main singer would be in third grade -- a bit early, I'd say, but I might be biased because I hadn't heard the song much since.
You come from Georgia where the peaches grow
They drink lemonade and speak real slow
I'd give about 20 extra points of credit if he said "sweet tea" rather than lemonade.
You love hip hop and rock n roll
Dad took off when you were 4 years old
There was a good man named Paul Revere
I feel much better baby when you're near
Paul Revere? The man? Or is it supposed to be the horse from the Beastie Boys song?
You love fun dip and cherry Coke,
I like the way you laugh when I tell a joke
When I met you I said my name was Rich
You look like a girl from Abercrombie and Fitch


In the summertime girls got it going on,
Shake and wiggle to a hip hop song
Summertime girls are the kind I like,
I'll steal your honey like I stole your bike
Fun Dip and Cherry Coke are good references... at this point though a third possible Beastie Boys line reference (the honey/bike stealing) seems to be overdoing it.
Bugaloo Shrimp and pogo sticks
My mind takes me back there oh so quick
Let you off the hook like my man Mr. Limpet
Think about that summer and I bug, cause I miss it
Like the color purple,macaroni and cheese,
I had to look up Bugaloo Shrimp but I kind of dig it. Kind of iffy about the "Mr. Limpet" reference, but I appreciate the hook joke, and have some empathy for the missing of this kind of time.
Ruby red slippers and a bunch of trees
Call you up but whats the use
I like Kevin Bacon,but I hate Footloose
Again, I think I'd believe this guy more if he liked Footloose but hated Kevin Bacon. Maybe it's just me.
Came in the door I said it before,I think I'm over you
but I'm really not sure
When I met you I said my name was Rich
You look like a girl from Abercrombie and Fitch
Man, they need to mix up the endings to these verses a bit more. Maybe it's more properly a bridge to the Chorus.
In the summer girls come and summer girls go
Some are worth while and some are so so,
Summer girls come and summer girls go
Some are worth while and some are so so,
Summertime girls got it going on
Shake and wiggle to a hip hop song
Summertime girls are the kind I like
I'll steal your honey like I stole your bike
Alright, besides the kind of dimissive "some are so-so" bit, here the song is clearly just winding down.

Sigh. Ok. Having gotten my criticism down onscreen, I can now enjoy this song for what it is, and what it isn't, as it keeps coming back up my seasonal play list. (I would point out that video, while nice for all the torso and skin etc, also gets a deduction for how weird his baggy pants look when he squats down, like in the freezeframe still from youtube there.)

cookie monster nightmare


--by james cupboard on b3ta.com
The Office "Dinner Party" episode (one of the best, actually) had a great idea for a custom candle smell: Bonfire-scented, like a campfire.

October 13, 2010


--Love this Chris Ware cover for the New Yorker

smell like a monster


You don't realize how weirdly effective a bicycle kickstand is 'til it breaks- odd how one little rod can then form 1/3 a stable tripod.
Sigh-With a scratched iPhone 4 lens, I wonder why the iPad camera connector doesn't work with it: darkly suspect Apple's avoiding camera competition.
Does anyone know chess notation? "1.e4 e5 2.Bc4 Nc6 3.Qxf7 mate" forced a rule change to specify "legal moves only" but I can't visualize...

http://www.cultofmac.com/john-sculley-on-steve-jobs-the-full-interview-transcript/63295 - the full Sculley interview is worth it.
@Cracked ( http://is.gd/g2elW ) vs Douglas Coupland @NYtimes ( http://is.gd/g2en7 ) on neologisms - I think Cracked wins.
http://adangerousbusiness.com/2010/01/05/the-museum-of-soviet-video-games/ - soviet era arcade museum

cheating at chess

So I was reading TV Tropes page on Loophole Abuse when I found this gem:
Apparently, the official rules of chess once had a loophole that rendered the game 1.e4 e5 2.Bc4 Nc6 3.Qxf7 mate a victory for White. Although the White Queen cannot move this way legally, checkmate ended the game. The other side could only claim an illegal move while the game was in play. After a checkmate, legal move or not, it was too late. This is just the most famous example of how this major flaw in the rules could be exploited.
So I like the deviousness of it, but didn't know Chess notation enough to understand the moves. Joseph Larson (of Cymon's Games, a site I haven't paid nearly enough attention to, check out his well-thought-out and history-aware video homage to the original Star Control) was kind enough to get some diagrams worked up for me...






So thanks Joe! The engineer in me kind of doesn't dig chess notation. It has so many assumptions about which piece made the move built into it... I guess it's optimized for people who really know the game. (It reminds me how grandmaster chess players aren't nearly so grand if you put them on a board with pieces arranged randomly, in a way that would never show up during a real game.)

I just love how the "game is over, so you can protest the blatant cheating" offends my sensibilities (but without really mattering, especially now that they've changed the rules.)

http://blogof.francescomugnai.com/2010/10/35-of-the-most-incredible-and-creative-bookshelves-ever/ - need something for my desk at work...
How inappropriate to call this planet Earth when it is clearly Ocean.
Arthur C. Clarke

i got nuthin' but


RIP Benoit Mandelbrot. Thank God he wasn't murdered. It would have taken the cops forever to draw the chalk outline.

birthday in rockport


what the fart


--via Cracked.com's The 5 Most Ridiculous Lies You Were Taught In History Class. I don't know why but the befuddled Einstein going "what the fart?" amuses me greatly.
"Sometimes masturbation takes so much focus I end up just daydreaming on my stomach."
Man, what a weird mix of titillation and wistfulness.

phoenix in concert

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So Amber really likes the group Phoenix -- a few weeks ago cmg noticed they were playing at BU so I surprised Amber by getting tickets.

I'm not quite the huge fan Amber is but they put on a rockin' show.

One of the least enforced rules there is against cameras, so I had some fun making concert shots, concluding with one of the audience.
Capitalism conquered communism, and now it's got democracy on the ropes.
David Swift
(via http://twitter.com/JPBarlow)

http://gizmodo.com/5667682/twitter-can-predict-the-stock-market-six-days-in-advance - holy cow, could someone get rich from this?
Trying to grind my way to "inbox zero". 13 starred items, 7 non- in my gmail priority inbox. Here's hoping.
<![CDATA[ and ]]> -- I cringe every time I need that, in part cause the tag is so damn ugly.



--via Miller, found here
All you need is a dodgy priest
Una (on marriage)

hold, please; or, 'whata-fermata!'


--Another musical joke, I think from justgrits
Almost considered a Mac for garageband and coding; deprecating Java? Never mind, then. How long 'til people need to jailbreak Macs? Though I do wonder what the best iPad or Windows equivalent of Garageband is...

soccer and lingerie

OK, arguably a teensy bit exploitive, but visually captivating... those are some serious footie skills.

It's meaningless unless your tablet includes sandpaper so that the user can sand down their fingers to around one quarter of their present size.
Jobs on 7" tablets.
Too bad the iPhone and iPod Touch can't exist then!
Skywalker. Skywalker. And why do you come to walk my sky, with the sword of a Jedi knight?... I remember another Skywalker.

http://www.asofterworld.com/ -- interesting tech thing here, you can see the "alt text" bonus by clicking, so it works on iDevices...
Yeesh. My tin ear for language means not only am I grindingly monolingual but sometimes I can't even place the language being spoken.

an airbag for your head


via ecouterre - more neat photos there
Reason 3,271 to hate the Yankees : NY sportswriters' misuse of "Yankees-like", as in "The Yankees were looking very un-Yankee-like" or "The Rangers were looking more like the Yankees than the Yankees!" The most expensive team in baseball often chokes, get over it. And congratulations Rangers.

the harvest


--A small harvest of N64 controllers, for the N64 is the only way of playing Dr. Mario 4 players in English,which is the best way to play and my family digs it.

audi ar ar


--from Jalopnil's study of automaker logo evolution... I think mostly I dig the "Wanderer" logo. Some of the other ones are cool too, like Volswagen's...

http://www.slate.com/id/2271825/ - wow... so all Republicans have to do is screw things up bad enough that Democrats don't have time to fix it, and they can keep getting elected. Nice.
""Hey, have you ever noticed poop? And what's up with pee! Am I right?"...
Being a stand up for four year olds? Pretty easy."

the mac: simply superlative!


Mac OS X Lion Notes: iOS Scroll Bars, Any Corner Resizing, Dock Changes - OSX Dock losing "running app" markers weirds me out; odd not to differentiate "clean start" from "context I want to get back to".
RIP walkman, the device that introduced us to personal, customized musical spaces--
Why iPhone 4 and Android Brightness Controls Are Effectively Useless - lost me at "brightnessgate"


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--viznut did a demo on the old VIC-20 (precusor to the Commodore 64) for something called the PWP altparty which I haven't heard too much about... still I like the economical use of iconography and concepts here.

I feel rather jaunty biking home, a bunch of flowers from Alewife for Amber tucked under the flap of my courier bag...
"The Social Network"', soundtrack by Trent Reznor? "...I want to friend you from the inside..."

putting on airs

(1 comment)

--A playful dis on the new Macbook Airs. The 11" one seems like a really awkward form factor to me-- this whole trend towards "widescreen" but short screens is a bit irritating. Via fakesteve.net who says it was "Found in a Gizmodo comment string"
Today I'm celebrating global warming by wearing cargo shorts to work!
http://www.kongregate.com/games/Rogerup/momiga -- interestingly minimal game: a dot, a playfield, a beep, a button.

You don't have to do no soloing, brother, just keep what you got - don't turn it loose!
James Brown,"Funky Drummer"-best drum solo advice ever

imma bee?


--This has been sitting on my backlog forever... yesterday the song was in my head so I finally downloaded it. It's a bummer that it's not actually about bees, but I like the mix of hightech CGI bots and old school Japanese-action-show people-in-suits.

...new Canon camera. Bigger, but still pocket-sized, because A. these cameras are taking amazing photos and B. the shot you take is always better than the one you don't because you don't have your camera or couldn't navigate your phone's camera in time...

new camera fun

So, fun with the new camera... I still feel, I dunno, defensive about not getting something that was more manual-settings-centric -- I thought that maybe I should go for a larger camera to carry in my bag, since the iPhone has gotten so decent, but you know, for really quick shots, the iPhone camera app is a little fiddly to launch, and then it's too easy to obscure the lens with an errant finger and too difficult to hit the shutter button.

But the Canon SD4500 has a much bigger lens assembly, which allows for 10x optical zoom (great options for framing a shot just so) and I hope might be even cooler for poor light conditions.

I really think the automatic settings are getting pretty brilliant on these things... the shot you take is always better than the shot you miss because you were fiddling with manual settings, or just didn't have the camera with you...
Look at the ground this evening to see the eclipse of the sun by the Earth.

http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=rapid-thinking-makes-people-happy -- maybe my scatterbrain is self-medication!
http://www.funnyordie.com/videos/c8863726da/judd-apatow-psa - surprisingly funny plug for the American Jewish World Service...
The WHOLE BUILDING smells like soup!"
Amber at the deCordova


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monsterball - source - built with processing

A small Halloween entry for Zombies' Corpse-iliary Klik of the Monster's Ball #12 -- click to add in random monster heads, or hit the appropriate key for a (v)ampire, (g)host, (f)rankenstein monster, or (w)itch... spacebar clears.

More of a silly toy and exercise in icon design than a game, but Happy Halloween anyway!

Damn it feels good to be a gangsta.

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