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4 March, 2003

Bum Wines

Looking for a cheap drunk?

Call them bum wines, street wines, fortified wines, wino wines, or twist-cap wines. Whatever you call these beverages for economical drunkards, this page explores the top five, in alphabetical order. So curl up on a heating duct and enjoy...

Five wines are rated in the following categories: Worst taste, Getting wasted, and Warmth. Thunderbird seems to be the clear winner.

(via muxway)

Posted on 4 March, 2003

Insulted by a Web Page

I went to newspeakdictionary.com, and got this:

You're browser does not support javascript!  If you are trying to browse the web on a cell phone, may I suggest that you GET A LIFE! Otherwise, You should really consider updating to a browser from this century.

And later:

Error loading Banner. Your cheap-ass browser does not support Java!

And this

If your crappy outdated browser doesn't even support frames, Click here for a site map.

Well Newspeak Dictionary folks, I'm using the same browser that you so kindly invite me to download so I can experience the "doubleplusgood" version of your site (yes, that's really how they refer to it). And, of course, my browser does support JavaScript, but I guess it hasn't occurred to you that some people prefer to keep scripting disabled for a more enjoyable browsing experience.

It turns out that they do have a version that doesn't require scripting, but I added the site to my "trusted sites" list so I could experience what I was missing:

  • A very distracting (obnoxious is a better word) animated banner. The animation causes all sorts of weird jiggling when I access the menu in any other program I'm running.
  • A sidebar that uses a Java applet to create a "hover button" effect and dynamic menus.

This might be a good candidate for Web Pages That Suck.

Posted on 4 March, 2003

New Look for AlltheWeb

The AlltheWeb web search site has a new look. It's now remarkably similar to Google. Other new stuff:

  • A new color palette for a crisp fresh look.
  • Increased readability and usability of result pages.
  • Distracting banner ads have been removed.
  • Pick your palette with the new color skins in the Skins Gallery.
  • The AlltheWeb URL Investigator.

AlltheWeb claims 2,147,483,647 web pages indexed (Google claims 3,083,324,652). The only significant feature missing is the ability to search the newsgroups.

Posted on 4 March, 2003

Magazine Cover Parodies

Lots of magazine cover parodies.

Warning: Some of them are not suitable for the entire family.

Posted on 4 March, 2003

Dave Winer on Office 11

Dave Winer got a demo of Office 11 from Jean Paoli:

Poor Jean Paoli, his hardware wouldn't cooperate, and every dozen keystrokes it would freeze up. Even so, I got the gist of what it does. I told him in advance not to expect much from me. Been burned by Microsoft too many times. Don't tell me it's open, because I expect, fully, that you will break anything I build in the next corner-turn.

Anyway, no matter what I said, however begrudgingly, I think people will like and use the XML capabilities of the new suite. However, as a professional, I gotta say, it's not smart to do so. Microsoft's track record is really bad. It would be like booking a seat on an airline known for never making its schedule. Interop is not a feature you can sell if you don't honor past agreements. And Microsoft doesn't. And it's not the usual Evil Empire reasons. It's just corporate arrogance, the kind that plagued Apple in the late 80s and early 90s. Yup, today SOAP means "works with Microsoft" and that makes it no more interesting than COM was.

The Office 2003 launch will be very interesting. Last time around, PC World asked me to write a review of Excel 2002. Frankly, I'm kind of hoping that they don't ask me again. Writing 1,000 words about the new features in Excel 2003 would be very challenging. Maybe they'd settle for 150 words?

The main focus in Excel 2003, of course, is the new XML features. As far as I can tell, maybe 5% of all Excel users will be able to find some use for this. But I may be wrong. Perhaps I'm way out of touch with the corporate world.

Posted on 4 March, 2003

Internet vs. Hollywood

John C. Dvorak discusses a recent UCLA study about the Internet. One of the conclusions is that the Internet is eating into TV watching more and more each year. John says:

Hollywood is not going to overlook this trend. The marketing forces behind TV will increase their efforts to get us off the Web and back to television. I expect to see more Internet horror stories about kidnappings, chat-room scandals, murder, porn rings, credit card fraud, computer security, and anything else that will drive people back to the tube. And I'm certain that we can expect legislation from Congress, instigated by Hollywood, to disrupt the Web juggernaut.

Posted on 4 March, 2003

Labels in Clothes

The complete guide to understanding those little labels sewn into clothing. I had no idea they were so complicated! The symbol shown here means "machine wash, hot, permanent press."

The site also has a stain removal guide, and lots of info about doing laundry.

Posted on 4 March, 2003

Scanning Squished Stuff

The concept is simple: Put a food item in a scanner, and do various scans as the item is squished. Then combine the images into an animation.

The site, by Steve Blinco (aka Kamikazee Killmouse), features fifteen food squished items. I think the egg is my favorite.

Posted on 4 March, 2003

The Web Fridge Project

A web log devoted to photos of the innards of people's refrigerators. You can, of course, submit a picture of your own fridge.

Posted on 4 March, 2003

Coins of the Realm

Comic book artist Scott McCloud talks about art, middlemen, micro-payments, the new economy, Napster, and lots of other topics. Presented in a unique (and very readable) format.

(via The Presurfer)

Posted on 4 March, 2003

Rules, Rules, and More Rules

The folks at everyrule.com claim to have "every rule in the universe." Not quite, but close. If you've ever wondered about the official rules for The Hollywood Squares game show, you're in luck. Besides the rules, this site has lots of interesting trivia.

Posted on 4 March, 2003

Death Studios Masks

It's way too early for Halloween, but these masks are worth checking out.

We stay in production all year round. We are filling post Halloween orders as they are completed. Some characters may take longer than others, as we are also sculpting new characters for the 2003 lineup, making new molds, etc.

Posted on 4 March, 2003


Advertising exists to manipulate people and influence their behavior. If Scott Mednick and Peter Guber have their way, the next big this is "branded entertainment" (don't call it product placement!).

Guber's point is that watching a great movie or TV show is like an encounter with a crazy man -- you remember all the details of the experience. And so if your favorite movie happened to include an important scene with a Ford Thunderbird, this information would lodge in your brain. "And then later on," Guber explains, "when you see traditional advertising saying, 'Come buy a Ford Thunderbird,' somehow you remember that Thunderbird in the movie."

Posted on 4 March, 2003

The Best Paper Airplane in the World

Learn how to transform an ordinary piece of paper into the "DC-3 of paper airplanes." Step-by-step instructions and diagrams are provided.

Posted on 4 March, 2003