Friday, February 28, 2003

Mexican Dia de los Muertos Dioramas (just a few)
A really detailed site dedicated to the early 60's Starbird Predicta custom car. Check out the Model kit page too.
U.S. Diplomat's letter of resignation. Printed in full (NYTimes)
Our fervent pursuit of war with Iraq is driving us to squander the international legitimacy that has been America’s most potent weapon of both offense and defense since the days of Woodrow Wilson. We have begun to dismantle the largest and most effective web of international relationships the world has ever known. Our current course will bring instability and danger, not security.

Thursday, February 27, 2003

The riddle of Baghdad's "batteries"
The Kingdom (online art exhibit)
Fred Rogers died today after a brief battle with stomach cancer.
The slow-paced show offered an alternate universe to most of today's quick-edit cartoon children's programming. But on the eve of his final show, Rogers told CNN's Jeff Greenfield he looks at it as more than entertainment; it's a chance to reach young people and give them a foundation for a good life.

Wednesday, February 26, 2003

The Postcard Project. Create an original postcard and mail it for inclusion.
Cells inspire spacecraft.
"Of course the people don't want war. But after all, it's the leaders of
the country who determine the policy, and it's always a simple matter to
drag the people along whether it's a democracy, a fascist dictatorship,
or a parliament, or a communist dictatorship. Voice or no voice, the
people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is
easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked, and
denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism, and exposing the country
to greater danger."
-- Herman Goering at the Nuremberg trials
Take part in today's virtual demonstration against unnecessary war with Iraq.

Tuesday, February 25, 2003

R.F.I.D. on every product, everywhere. (NYTimes)
Alien Technology, for one, says that it can now sell radio frequency identification tags profitably at 5 cents each for orders of a billion tags or more. Just last month, Gillette said it would buy up to 500 million tags over the next few years from Alien.
Saddam wants a debate with Bush. I can almost hear Bush responding with a typical 'We will not dialog with terrorists', or some other such bullshit. So go ahead, Bush- tell everyone why you want to massacre Iraq's civilians in their homes. Compare Bush's infantile rants about 'evil-doers' and the too-hypocritical 'weapons of mass destruction' with what is coming out of the other side. Which one sounds like the insane, warmongering, tyrannical dictator?
"This is something proposed in earnest," Saddam said, "out of my respect for the people of the United States and my respect for the people of Iraq and the people of the world. I call for this because war is not a joke."

Monday, February 24, 2003

Tugboat mishap.
The problem with corporate radio: The day the protest music died.
Corporate ownership has changed what gets played — and who plays it. With a few exceptions, the disc jockeys who once existed to discover provocative new music have long since been put out to pasture. The new generation operates from play lists dictated by Corporate Central — lists that some D.J.'s describe as "wallpaper music."
Happy-go-lucky, madcap jokester Tom Ridge must have a crony in the air filter business. This week, it appears that duct tape and plastic are out, and expensive air filters are in.
Apparently the actual effectiveness of Ridge's countermeasures aren't considered before he vomits this retarded advice upon the populace. Somebody please save us from these buffoons.
``I'm certain there's been no good research to indicate'' that HEPA filters could be effective against biochemical agents, said Greg Evans, an epidemiologist and director of the Center for the Study of Bioterrorism and Emerging Infections at the St. Louis University School of Public Health. ``That just makes no sense.''
Snapshots of Baghdad. Take a look at the faces of people that Bush and Cheney want to murder in the name of greed and wrongheaded right-wing power gluttony. Each photo has a b/w pdf so you can print them out and wheatpaste to help spread the message that your unelected president has vowed to ignore. Once you've reached the conclusion that these are actually human beings, it may be worth reading about what's on their minds (courtesy of Propositum) as the threat to massacre them builds.
The knee-slapping humor of terrorizing your own citizens. Somebody had better be archiving Ready.gov for future generations to howl at. This entire site reminds me of the filmstrip scene in "Iron Giant" (best animated feature since Snow White, dammit) where the kids are taught to duck-and-cover in the event of a direct nuclear strike on their school. The simple, airplane emergency diagram-like graphics are so dimwitted you can almost hear the government's web designers screaming with delight as they foist this pure hokum to the (by now) suspecting masses.
Barbie is going to get grandparents, as well as an OB/GYN named "Baby Doc" (presumably not the 70's Haitian terror-dictator) who oversees the pregnancy of B's pal Midge (with removable swollen belly).
Children's books of the early Soviet era. Courtesy of Sharpeworld.
Great. The networks are planning TWO DOZEN reality tv shows (nytimes) for the summer.
Swiss hack SSL email encryption.

Saturday, February 22, 2003

Huge Belgium Diamond Heist
The operation sounded like a film script, but police said it was conducted with no melodrama, no shoot-out, no screeching tyres and no blood. A gang had simply walked into one of the most heavily guarded buildings in Antwerp's diamond district and walked out again - without meeting a soul.

Friday, February 21, 2003

Perl Poetry
The IOCCC (International Obfuscated C Code Contest) is an organization dedicated to those who try to write the most unreadable, awkward C code on earth.
main(v,c)char**c;{for(v[c++]="Hello, world!\n)";(!!c)[*c]&&(v--||--c&&execlp(*c,*c,c[!!c]+!!c,!c));**c=!c)write(!!*c,*c,!!**c);}
Weapons inspectors are calling U.S. Tips "Garbage"

Thursday, February 20, 2003

With popular support for a war in Iraq rapidly evaporating, Bush is in trouble. While everyone agrees that Saddam is a ruthless tyrant, and is more dangerous to his own people than to foreign governments, the Administration has yet to make a compelling case for how a U.S. invasion and subsequent occupation would benefits the citizens of Iraq. While tactical military plans are easy enough to guess at based on leaks and past history, it appears that the administration is keeping any post-war reconstruction plans hidden. If anyone has seen any documents outlining this strategy, please forward.
Is it really a ceiling if you only need a canned memo to break through it? The U.S. Treasury hit its borrowing limit today. There must be a footnote for this sort of thing in Bush's economic "plan".
A University of South Florida computer engineering professor and 7 others have been arrested for supporting terrorist activity (NYTimes) as part of a pro-Palestinian group today. The specific charges (50 counts) are not yet listed.
There are a growing number of phantoms out there on the streets, and they're making ATM withdrawals in your name. Actually, they're not spooks - its another type of hack, and Citi wants to gag the release of information about it, instead of doing the right thing and going public about its security and cryptographic weaknesses.

Wednesday, February 19, 2003

Dolly the cloned sheep was put down on Friday

Tuesday, February 18, 2003

The mark of a petulant dictator. Bush won't let protestors foil his plans to massacre innocents in their homes.
Standing firmly against skeptical allies as well as the demonstrators, Bush said: I owe it to the American people to secure this country. I will do so."
Trust us, GW. You don't owe us anything. Please. Most voters didn't even want you here in the first place. Bombing the shit out of innocent citizens using Rumsfeld's lunatic "Shock and Awe" plan won't settle up any debts with the American people.

Monday, February 17, 2003

Most see Bush and Blair as a bigger threat to democracy than Saddam.
If war breaks out, UK students are preparing for 60's-style protest
Eastern Europe missed a good opportunity to keep quiet, according to Chirac.
You know its a Monday when you're snowed in under 2 feet and you've just been threatened with total nuclear annihilation! All bow to our new North Korean masters!
"Victory in a nuclear conflict will be ours and the red flag of army-first politics will flutter ever more vigorously," a North Korean state radio broadcast said, as reported by South Korea's Yonhap news agency. "Our victory is certain and the future ever more radiant."
We hear ya loud 'n clear, comrade! As a matter of fact, we're already used to "army-first politics" over here in what they're still calling the good ole' U.S. of A. so our tolerance level to that sort of thing is sky-high. Have you read Patriot I and II? Try to outdo those nuggets in terms of brazen dictatorial gall. On the plus side, I suppose that the power shift from one megolomaniacal imbecile to another would run pretty smoothly. They could even take ShrubCo's existing speeches and search-and-replace "freedom and democracy" with "united people's glorious horizon of prosperous tomorrow" and we'd still get the gist. Is it too much to ask that someone who shouldn't be straightjacketed take us over? Anybody? No? Please??

Sunday, February 16, 2003

Thoughts on the Anti-War/Anti-Bush Demonstrations in NYC on Saturday. I went this morning with 2 friends. I wanted to go to lend a voice in what I think is an important issue, as well as to see what the tenor of the event would be. The police had the entire east side of midtown Manhattan locked down tight. It was really similar to a New Years Eve situation, where they keep most of the crowd moving in a circle around the periphery. At every blockaded intersection, people would ask the police how much further they had to walk to get further east. Police would recite back that they 'didn't know' and told everyone to keep moving. People were walking north on Lexington in the 60's in hopes of cutting east on 70th when the demonstration was on 49th an 1st. Police were posted in the lobbies of every condo/hotel so people wouldnt cut through in attempts to get east toward the demonstration. We eventually got through barricades (3) by cutting through the hair salon side-door of Bloomingdales, and two hotel courtyards to eventually get over to 1st ave. At 1st, the police had everyone corralled into blocks. They'd let a fixed number through the gates at long intervals to continue down toward the speaker systems that were broadcasting the speakers. Their goal was clearly to prevent anything resembling a large-scale demonstration. They'd only let a set number of people through every block (we were south toward the U.N.) Very few people seemed to be getting mad at the cops, even while begging to get to their cars/homes.

We finally got to a stage area on 1st ave that had somewhat of an international feel, with speakers from different countries decrying war, repeating the same message. They were shooting for the Unity/One World/Peace message, and most of the crowd seemed to be receptive. There were very few 'piggy-backers', and the message was mostly on-point. I spotted a handfull of Pro-Palestinian demonstrators, and I'm not sure who they expected to identify with. Some populist/pro-labor people, and many "faith-based" protestors, but mostly the crowd was politely anti-war. I was expecting more of a 'Fight the Power' message, but both the police and the already peaceful motives of the crowd seemed to prevail. It made me wonder how bad it really had to get before people would take some kind of direct action instead of being hearded around and playing drums for peace. There were a few outbursts, but the sheer number of police that swarmed on any incident made quick work of whoever was doing whatever they were doing. It was too crowded to see what the particulars were. Police Vans were stuffed full of people who had apparently done something wrong, but this was the exception rather than the rule.

The bottom line was that a vast, vast majority of the people who came to protest Bush's antics were kept miles from the planned demonstration site. I'm sure this left many frustrated (as well as really cold and tired due to the hours of walking). Even so, the crowd was overwhelmingly peaceful, cooperative, and positive despite having such strict and unyielding parameters placed on their mission to unify in protest. I'm glad I went. It helped restore some hope that the collective will of citizens might have some voice in how we're represented, despite the dramatic, institutionalized clash of interests that takes place in Washington. But even if we get past this point peacefully, we've still got Bush and ultraconservative foreign policy staff to deal with. We've already alienated Europe with his lack of finesse and total disregard for diplomacy. We've already marginalized the voice of the U.N. because they're applying pressure for the U.S. not to rush in and slaughter children where they live. How much better can things get? How can we repair the political and economic disaster that this guy has saddled us with? Once the oil companies get the quick payoff that BushCo has obviously teed up for them, there are damages that future generations are going to continue to pay for because of our poor, shortsighted leadership today.

Friday, February 14, 2003

Convert your WiFi laptop into a theremin! (not permanently... it'll still be a laptop and all...)
Artists of the Brucke: Themes in German Expressionist Prints

Thursday, February 13, 2003

Cartography of Excess
The Paris-based conceptual group, Bureau d'├ętudes, works intensively in two dimensions. For a recent exhibition called 'Planet of the Apes' they have created integrated wall charts of the ownership ties between transnational organizations, a synoptic view of the world monetary game.
US Senator Robert Byrd Senate Floor Speech - Wednesday, February 12, 2003 Reckless Administration May Reap Disastrous Consequences
"May"?? At least Byrd is speaking up. The Democrats have largely shown themselves to be cowardly sheep, and appear to be easily intimidated by Bush's pushy antics. Hey Congress, this is a senseless WAR we're talking about. There is no evidence linking Iraq to terrorists. There is no evidence that they're not cooperating with inspectors. Isn't it time to step up your activity and use stronger, more forceful language to open up the debate on this issue?
The latest threats turn out to be a hoax. The Bush administration is still leaving the threat level at "orange", because a reduction to "lemon" doesn't pack the persuasive punch that a heightened false alarm does.
The officials said that a claim made by a captured al Qaeda member that Washington, New York or Florida would be hit by a "dirty bomb" sometime this week had proven to be a product of his imagination.
airlinemeals.net
McDonalds gets sued over a tough bagel.
The suit alleges the wife "lost the care, comfort, consortium and society of her husband."

Can someone please sue McDonalds over something real? How about the fact that they hire the only the meanest, most sociopathic miscreants? The typical McDonalds "Can I take your order" person would rather shoot you than smile or be polite. The thing is, they hate you. They're oozing a palpable hate in every McDonalds no matter where in the U.S. you go. Its a universal McDonalds truth. Then there's the shilling for Disney, the sheer offensiveness of the "Big N' Tasty", and the unexplained disappearance of Captain Crook.
A really disturbing internal memo outlining how Clear Channel is going to use a possible war as a ratings-grab.
"Branding liners have been produced and are in the system. Michael please issue a memo making it clear where board ops will find this important imaging. Mike also make certain that our cross promos on the FMs all address Live in-depth team coverage of the War with Iraq on Newstalk 1530 KFBK
Editors, producers get to work on a 'war list' immediately. Make sure it includes local experts, sources, military types, other CC newsrooms around the country, network contacts etc. Cristi please coordinate this and make certain it is posted everywhere.
"
Privacy International has launched a contest to find the world's most stupid security measures.
"The situation has become ridiculous," said Mr Davies. "Security has become the smokescreen for incompetent and robotic managers the world over".
"I have stood for ages in a security line at an inconsequential office building and grilled relentlessly only to be given a security pass that a high school student could have faked. And I resent being forced to take off my shoes at an airport that can't even screen its luggage", he said.

Wednesday, February 12, 2003

John Lennon Interview (.mov)
Greenspan's Kiss of Death
Representative John P. Murtha (D, PA) on the Pentagon: "They've got some crazy people over there".
Conferees in Congress Bar Using a Pentagon Project on Americans
The absolutely huge Leonard Cohen Files website.

Tuesday, February 11, 2003

Making A Quill Pen
Now here's a piece of current event news that's a bit easier to swallow: The curse of the missing Dracula statue
Chief investigator with the Bran police, Danut Sindrilau, said: "Lightning struck the castle and plunged it into darkness, and when the lights came back on the statue had vanished. I wonder if "Danut" said "and pluuunnnggged it into daahhhhkNESSS!!!!" or if he said it in a standard cop way. Either way, his name's Danut, so how crazy could he be? Note to Translyvanian police: Check Danut's sock drawer carefully.
Bin Laden coughs up some more vague, threatening rhetoric, and the Republican war machine wastes no time in spinning a flimsly bridge between rogue terrorists and Iraq. Predictable. They should worry more about the obvious link between an illegitimate, dictatorial presidency and a collapsed economy.

Monday, February 10, 2003

NYC Cops harsh Dell Dude's whole scene. Without the endo, he's just another Eddie Haskell.
Kudos to a few brave nations in Europe for standing up to the warlords for a sensible solution. Email the these governments to thank them for their valuable leadership and their courageous efforts to ensure peace. [France] [Russia] [Germany]
It pays to be a corporate criminal in the U.S. Especially if you're the Recording Industry. The same bunch of loveable characters that call their customers thieves, and pays legislators to subvert the intentions of copyright laws is showing a 235% ROI for illegal price-fixing, all while earning several years interest as an added bonus.
The Vatican is stepping up diplomatic efforts to avoid war. (NYTimes).
"The difficulties on the world horizon at the start of this new millennium lead us to believe that only an act from on high can make us hope in a future that is less bleak," he added.
Madonna to criticize Bush & the Warmongers in new American Life video.
"...the clip will contain scenes of dismembered Iraqi men and women and wounded Iraqi babies and children."
Life imitates GTA3: Nut Cases take it to the street.
New 'Get Your War On' posted today.
Acacia laughably claims IP ownership of Internet Streaming Media. They appear to be using their position to attempt to strongarm broadcasters into a licensing agreement. (via Chilling Effects)
A record executive and his son make a formal case for freely downloading music. The gist: 50 million Americans can't be wrong.

This is a clear case of a multinational conglomerate using its political muscle to the disadvantage of everyone but itself. So, instead of creating new content and allowing long-standing laws to work, the entertainment business frantically seeks to manipulate the process to its own ends. And it does this with the obsequiousness of penurious politicians and a supinely acquiescent Supreme Court. That is the best the establishment has to offer, and it has nothing to do with progress or the good of the society.

Sunday, February 09, 2003

Disney Illustrator and Designer Marc Davis's Haunted Mansion family portraits. I'm looking for some hi-res scans/repros of these... Anybody? The story behind the mainsion. Also, for any amateur cryptographers/linguistic puzzle solvers out there, there's a code painted into one of the Mansion's portraits (the cropped right one in this merged wallpaper) that has yet to be cracked. Let me know if you get it.

Saturday, February 08, 2003

[Gees up; Hoes Down] "These ten musical gems came to me by way of Greg Warner in Phoenix. A few years back Greg's friend Nigel Morgan found an unmarked cassette-tape on the street in Ypsilanti, Michigan which contained a string of minute-long booty-rap anthems. Apparently some thugged-out white kids with a drum machine had put together a demo tape." From Found Magazine (article) (official site)

Friday, February 07, 2003

Anybody know the answer to this week's Car Talk puzzler (RealAudio)?
[... and dear Lord, deliver us from crazies] A gate-crashing fundamentalist showed up at a National Prayer Breakfast (cuckoo!) yesterday, effortlessly breeched Bush's security (give 'em a break - we we're only on "Code Yellow" then), and handed Dubya an 8-page typed "letter from God" (cuckoo!). The non-denominational Christian minister (who else?) explains that he just goes whereever God wants him to go. You've gotta admire the spunky insanity of these cats. Rest assured, if he didn't look like such a corporate, white, gladhanding Republican , he'd have been pounded into jelly for looking in the Warlord's Fuhrer's direction, let alone pamphleteering. In other shithouse-crazy old-tyme religion news, it seems our rapture ready index is up to within 5 index points of the alltime high, which is bad news only if you're Jewish or if you don't want the world to end. Mankind's collective "bad-points" have recently increased due to such galling developments as the "liberal media's persecution of Trent Lott" (Bad Liberal Media! Bad! Picking on a defenseless racist like that!), and "Civil Rights". Hey, if things like those earn points, then gimme more, and quick! Oh, those wacky End-Times'ers! They even gladly tell us that we're deep into the "Fasten your seatbelt!" range so the folks who don't don't like those complicated index numbers can play along too. Yeeeee Hawwww!!!
[Stealing from the rich, giving to the rich] Hell hath no fury like a millionaire bilked by a Big Four tax advisor (nytimes). Interesting because this is one of those rare lawsuits where you get to hate both sides equally: On the scamee side, Mimsy and Chad are missing tee-time at the club over the ruckus caused when their 'sure-thing' tax-shelter fell apart. The "we-shouldn't-have-to-pay-taxes-we're-fucking-rich" argument will likely get trotted out by team A. In the other corner, defense will present a corporate client who charged potential customers $1,000,000 - just to hear a sales pitch. If you're anything like me, you're hoping for maximum destruction among all parties involved... kind of like watching a death match between rats and roaches. They should sell popcorn at this squab. The Prada's gonna fly. My prediction is that the lawyers are going to win this one. Big.
[Left foot... Orange!] The at-least-mildly-retarded Bush Administration spun their Twister thingy today seeking a new color and raised the terror alert level from yellow to orange, whatever the hell that means. John Ashcroft, a fundamentalist Christian right-wing civil-liberties hating fascist lunatic who was trounced by a corpse in popular elections, who believes that dancing is satanic, and is scared shitless of a female breast, is apparently trying to tell us that we should be wary of some unnamed, undefined terroristic force (ostensibly other than himself) at some unspecified geographic location, probably somewhere on Earth. Its a good thing that Ashcroft doesn't think that colors are satanic, or this would be reallly confusing. Soooo, does orange mean I'm not supposed to leave the basement? Or does it mean no talking with people with accents today unless I have a loaded gun pointed at them? I keep getting this shit mixed up! How did these buffoons claim power again? God help us.

This sounds like some sort of desperate Republican political spin to convince impressionable sheep that we should really bomb Iraq soon, because there's some tenuous possibility of a relationship between them and terrorists, and if we don't do it pronto, they might be pushed to seek another, even scarier color.
The Mysteries of Harris Burdick

Thursday, February 06, 2003

Lost memorandum to Walt Disney, from the board of the Walt Disney Corporation (from McSweeneys)
The other Monty Python Terry: I'm losing patience with my neighbours, Mr Bush
Snapshots of the real America in 2003: Young, Jobless, Hopeless.
Where did Guernica go? In a gallingly evil move that would have made Darth Vader blush, henchmen at the U.N. have censored Picasso's famous mural decrying the evils of war. Maybe they've already cashed Bush's check?
When some journalists asked why the tapestry, which depicts women, children and animals cowering in horror as bombs rain down on their homes, had been obscured, A U.N. spokesman said that it had been covered only to provide "an appropriate background for the cameras."
Of the 40 spam emails I got this morning, one caught my eye because the toy ad made the outlandish claim that the product actually adhered to the tenets of Newtonian physics. Certainly, I'm not to believe that this product comes within acceptible parameters of not violating a single one of Newton's laws! Most other toys I buy online fall directly up to the ceiling and stay there, flaunting their unwillingness to be constrained by such arbitrary whimsy. It goes on to say it satisfies 'more' standards but I'm not sure what they are (hygiene?, punctuality?).

This Seibun Tech Toy is so technologically realistic, it satisfies new Science Standards for Motion, Air Pressure, Electricity, Circuits, Newton's Laws and more.

Wednesday, February 05, 2003

Interview with Terry Gilliam
If you look at the midterm elections, where the Republicans are claiming they got a mandate to lead the nation into better times for the rich, it's nonsense, when you realize that only 39 percent of the electorate voted, and the Republicans just barely won, so you could say they have a mandate from 20 percent of the voting public. Now, that's quite frightening, especially when in places like Serbia, the elections are having to be fought again because they only got like 47 percent of the electorate voting, and that was deemed not to be democratic. Nobody seems to be making much noise about the undemocratic voting in America.
In a timely announcement, Sir Paul is planning on re-releasing a stripped-down Let It Be, with Phil Spector's arrangements removed.
As Rolling Stone reports in their upcoming February issue, an alternate version of the record is forthcoming from Apple Records this year. Different from most re-releases, the new version of Let It Be will be distinguished by what it doesn't have: The bloated orchestrations that producer Phil Spector added to the final album. Ever the consummate wordsmith, Ringo Starr was quoted in the magazine as saying, "It's the de-Spectorized version."
[Can U Taste the Waste?] Pizza Hut's ad firm hired Ween to write a jingle/song for a disgusting load of crap that apparently passes for pizza in some parts of the midwest called 'The insider'. The ad campaign, entitled 'Where'd the cheese go?' (not joking) touted the fact that the vile chain's cheese-like substance is cleverly stashed inside the faux-pizza. Get it?! Ween's songs, among them "Where the motherfuckin cheese be at?" were roundly rejected, the ad firm fired, and the debris of the debacle is on Ween's phenomenal website for us to listen to. Maybe if they launched a pizza called the 'Baby Bitch', or just licensed 'Spinal Meningitis (Got Me Down)' things might have gone better between Team Brown and the corporation.

Does anybody really eat that shit? Really... Has anybody ever bought a Pizza Hut pizza, or is it some kind of Enron-like circular chain accounting hustle that a future generation is going to have to bail out? One thing's for sure, every time I pass one of those crapholes on the highway, 'Where the motherfuckin' cheese be at?' is going to be playing in my head.

Unfortunately, they didn't like a single piece of the 6 tunes we submitted and they had us rewriting the song every day for a couple of weeks before they hired someone else. In my opinion, it is one of the best tunes we wrote all last year. Click on the links below to hear our 2 masterpieces.
Cisco sees HUGE UPTURN ... of noses! Ha! Gotcha!
I swear, these financial rags should hire me to write this crap for them.
Ahh, the irrepressible charms of a devil-may-care billionairess!
Mrs. Helmsley showed yesterday that she could switch moods in an instant. She left the courtroom smiling on the arm of a columnist for The New York Post and pretended to shoot a reporter who asked a question she did not like. "I'm just teasing," she cooed with a big grin. But when one of her bodyguards urged her to keep moving, she snapped angrily: "Don't tell me to come on! I'll tell you when to come on."

Yeah, but don't we all snap at our impudent waitstaff? If I had a nickel for every time Fernando forgot to de-pimento my martini olives... Wait... I fired him after the first time...soooo that's only one nickel, but you see where I'm coming from right, people?.
I used to work in the Helmsley building on Park Ave., and I heard worse than this from her employees about her.
A flash of purple lightning striking the shuttle was captured by an amateur photographer as it flew over California. The photo will not be released until NASA is finished investigating it.
Kevin Mitnick talks.
As a young teenager in high school, my family could not afford to purchase any computer-related equipment to learn on. I'd hang out at Radio Shack and local universities, spending hours and hours learning on their computer systems. Perhaps I would have gone down a different path if I had legitimate access to technology as young people have today.

RatShack?! Pffft! C'mon Kevin, How'd you pull that? I always got chased off of the Trash-80 by the ever-watching Sparky McBreadboard sales guy within 2 minutes of firing up Munch Man on the Datasette! Besides, if you took a different path, our culture would have been robbed of a hundred different "Free Kevin" 2600 Magazine covers.
"Oh, shit. I'm forced to side with France on something."
Is computer programming getting too easy? Check out the Esoteric Programming Languages index, and find dozens of ways to make even the most simple tasks extremely challenging. A language with no conditional structure? Why not?! Try Oroogu or Bullfrog. Beating your head against the wall with that quine? This page has it all for the coding masochist. Besides the bonus of a guarantee that Microsoft would never touch any of these babies with a bargepole, you'll have the ultimate techno-elitist cache of having learned how to write Turing-complete code with particle automatons.
Befunge-93 and Orthogonal all use as their basis Cartesian grids, structured as a finite torus, unlimited Lahey-space, and an unlimited plane, respectively. Wierd and worb and Boo-yah also fall into this category, generally speaking, although they each have subtly different ways of handling instructions. Blank is the original one-dimensional bidirectional fungeoid, where program flow can go either way around a ring of instructions.
Smallpox researchers are seeking help from a few million people to find a cure via SETI-like grid computing.

Tuesday, February 04, 2003

40% of Gulf War vets are on disability. Yo, Memory Hole.
Objects of Desire: A photographic series by Jackie Alpers
You know the commercial for Gundam (pointy Japanese robots) models? ("Level 5: 26 Hours.") The master index has 'em all, with builder submitted pics too. Who knew there were almost 800 of these things? Want to make a billion dollars? If you can figure out how to automate these guys through small servo motors and minaturized gyros for balance, they'd be the trainset of the the decade.
Nick Simon's Silver-Age Marvel Comics Cover Index: over 1500 covers from the 50s/60s/early 70s.
Fantastic Golden-Age EC Comic cover scans: Weird Fantasy, Weird Science Fantasy, Weird Science, Incredible Science Fiction.
Great Illustration at Inksurge
Something might just come along and whack you upside the head, and that something may be Planet X - a "monster planet". At least that's what this distinguised panel thinks.
Since 1995, Nancy Leider has led the campaign to inform the public about a possible world-wide cataclysm that may strike the Earth as early as the year 2003. The cause of this natural event will be a monster planet, known to the ancients but as yet undiscovered by modern man, which will pass very near the earth as part of its normal 3,600 year orbit around the sun
Also dig xfacts , whose author doesn't mind putting in some overtime on a kick-ass HTML main menu before Niburu (as it was known to the "ancients") pounds us all into sweet oblivion.
[Bowling] In the mideastern coastal states of the U.S. there's a sport called duckpin bowling that gained popularity during the first half of the 20th century. Bowlers use a small 5" ball, and pins that have been cut down to match the size of the ball. There are now only a small handfull of alleys that remain open. There's also the very difficult game of candlepin bowling (2, 3) that is played (only?) in New England and eastern Canada that was invented because scoring a perfect 300 in tenpin was thought to be "too easy".

Monday, February 03, 2003

You must hear the Mary Kay Cosmetic inspirational songs, sung by Mary Kay consultants, naturally. Hot damn this is good stuff. Clap along as they butcher hackneyed showtunes accompanied by roller rink organ before your very ears. I knew there was a reason for this internet thing and this comes pretty close to being it. A thousand thanks, April Winchell.
Astroturf = Fake Grassroots. Get it?!
Four times since mid-October the Globe has unwittingly published letters that were written not by the local folks who signed them, but by the Republican National Committee. The same letters, all praising President Bush, also appeared verbatim (or nearly so) in papers across the country, each signed by a person in that paper's area.
Leave it to the RNC to come up with something as despicable as falsifying local citizen support.
Is this further evidence of the myth of the existance of a liberal media? When we lie about something as basic as citizen's support, shouldn't we just replace the "letters to the editor" newspaper sections with space for paid PR notices? Isn't somebody watching these animals at a publication as reputable as the Boston Globe??
[Republican Power Grab, Take 74] Comcast is doing its corrupt, irresponsible corporate part to stomp out free speech. They denied ads from an anti-war group during our bloodthirsty president's State of the Union soundbite collection, which ironically had nothing to do with the state of our union, and everything to do with the administration's illogical bloodlust in trying to start a second war when they havn't yet finished the first. I suppose the ultimate Republican ideal would be to achieve a never-ending state of "war" where no limits would hamper executive supremacy and every problem could be blamed on impoverished, desperate foreigners. In Europe, they called this fascism, but this is America, so it can't be the same thing, right? Freedom and flag-waving would be reduced to a jingoistic theat and used to enlist or bully support toward every policy reeking of special interest benefit and closet agendas no matter how economically irresponsible, morally bankrupt, or contraindicitive it was to the nation's founding principles - at least until people realized that the flag didnt mean anything anymore because it represented the selfish goals of members and corporate sponsors of a corrupt political machine rather than ordinary citizens.
[Guitarded] Ah-HA! Finally some photographic proof of the Fender "Hamburglar" legend. I always thought it was on a Foto-Flame Stratocaster guitar, though. This one's on a natural finish J-Bass. The site also has plenty of other fine examples of creativity gone terribly awry. Check the Skeletar, the 9-string monstrosity that only Jam-Band wonk would touch, the aptly titled "Grrr" (don't confuse it with the not-aptly-titled "Grrrrr!!" ), and ... um... the... uh "Wangcaster". And Rock-Paper-Scissors!!! Hell, just read the whole Bunnybass site.
Bob Gruen pictures of the Sex Pistols, The Clash.
Economists worry that this one might turn out to be a bona-fide Depression.
Insight into "Disturbing" Michael Jackson.
[Bush vs. Workers] The party of the rich wants you to work more hours with no overtime pay, and its not just fascist, right-wing, pro big-business rhetoric. They're passing laws to guarantee it.
This should certainly help the ridiculous "pro-family" stance that apparently only applies to entitled, non-clock-punching, multimillionaire families who count estimating tax-exempt dividend returns as "work". It's a good thing we don't all have trust funds and politically connected Daddies or no one would take up the low end of the U.S. labor pool.

Low-wage workers are being hurt under the current overtime pay regulations, said Tammy McCutchen, administrator of the Labor Department's wage and hour division. She said a minimum-wage worker logging 40 hours a week earns more than $10,700 a year.
At the same time, however, the department is clarifying and simplifying job descriptions and duties tests. That could move many higher paid workers into the exempt category, though McCutchen said she could not quantify the impact.
Mother Jones Interview with John Perry Barlow about the Electronic Frontier Foundation, citizen rights, and fighting the Ashcroft civil liberties stomp online.
The terrifying new reality that we're dealing with here is the fact that all data are is now open to government scrutiny. All these things that have previously been sacrosanct and private are now available. And what's more frightening is that if you are managing one of those databases and the government says that it wants access to it for a completely open-ended search you are criminally liable if you if you tell the people in your database that the government is doing so. The whole dive shop thing [in June of last year], the government requested the records of everyone in the U.S. taking diving lessons] was exposed because one solitary dive shop owner in Los Angeles had the guts to come forward and say "Hey, we're not going to give you our database. And furthermore we're going to go to the press."
NASA has set up a public FTP server to collect and store data relating to the shuttle disaster.

Saturday, February 01, 2003

Radar images of the shuttle debris trail. Not surprisingly, shuttle debris auctoins abound on ebay. Ah, capitalism.