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23 December, 2003

Sweaters

This is pretty weird: The future is Gem Sweater. Seven pages of photos of an unhappy model wearing ugly sweaters.

(via The Presurfer)

Posted on 23 December, 2003

Drinking On A Diet

In time for the holidays: Liquor industry's new pitch: How to drink on a diet.

In a world where it's OK for dieters to load up on bacon and hamburgers, what's so bad about a cocktail?

Not much at all, according to the liquor industry. In an effort to cash in on the popularity of trendy low-carb diets like Atkins, makers of vodka, whiskey, and other hard liquors are starting to pitch their products as low-carb and diet-friendly, following the success of a low-carbohydrate campaign this year by Michelob Ultra beer.

For those who care about such things: Alcohol and Calorie Content of About 200 Popular Beers.

And finally, Susanna takes the Beer Belly Challenge. In five weeks, she went from 152 pounds, to an impressive 168 pounds.

Posted on 23 December, 2003

Letters From The Troops

From Michael Moore: Letters the Troops Have Sent Me.

As we approach the holidays, I've been thinking a lot about our kids who are in the armed forces serving in Iraq. I've received hundreds of letters from our troops in Iraq -- and they are telling me something very different from what we are seeing on the evening news.

What they are saying to me, often eloquently and in heart-wrenching words, is that they were lied to -- and this war has nothing to do with the security of the United States of America.

Posted on 23 December, 2003

Catland

Catland: A gallery of cats. More specifically...

The Catland gallery is a selection of works by Louis Wain and occasionally other cat artists from his time period. With this gallery, I hope to show the variety of Wain's styles and the changes in his art throughout his life. These pictures are not necessarily his most famous pictures, merely pictures of his that I like and that I felt were a cross-section of his work.

Posted on 23 December, 2003

Hogmanay Is Coming Up

Yes folks, soon it will be Hogmanay.

Hogmanay is the Scottish New Year, celebrated on 31st December every year, usually in a most exuberant fashion. In the cities of Glasgow and Edinburgh it has become a huge ticketed festival. Celebrations start in the early evening and reach a crescendo by midnight. The bells of Big Ben chime at the turn of midnight, there is an orgy of kissing and everyone sings Auld Lang Syne. And then there is more kissing.

Hmmmm... It sounds very much like a normal New Year's Eve celebration.

(Thanks pondboy)

Posted on 23 December, 2003

Sick, And Getting Sicker

From Wired: The Internet Is a Very Sick Place.

The year 2003 has been deemed the worst in computer-virus history by security experts, despite the fact that worm and virus writers displayed no significant technological progress in the code of their newest nasty little creations.

The most troubling development this year, according to many antivirus and security experts, is that spammers and virus writers have evidently decided to partner, resulting in a demon love child virus-worm that both infects computers and spews spam.

This unholy pairing is almost guaranteed to cause plenty of problems in 2004 and beyond.

Posted on 23 December, 2003

Found Playing Cards

A gallery of found playing cards: Deck O' Junk.

So I'm walking through Chinatown the other day. I noticed one of the streets sort of overlaps/overlooks a good section of it; while still reveling in this discovery, I spotted a playing card on the ground. I had recently read about a man who decided to "find" a whole deck of playing cards, and right then I knew I was going to do something similar.

Except, this time, it's your turn. I found a joker - you have to find the rest of the deck. At the end of it all, I'll be able to tell people that this website has at least 52 readers.

Here's a six of hearts that has seen better days. It was found in Hoboken, NJ.

(via Cloudal Parners)

Posted on 23 December, 2003

Wal-Mart Music

If you're even thinking of buying online music from Wal-Mart, take some time and read their Terms of Service. Actually, you'd better hire an attorney. Better yet, keep one on retainer so they can review the agreement periodically:

WALMART.COM reserves the right, at any time and from time to time, to update, revise, supplement, and otherwise modify this Agreement and to impose new or additional rules, policies, terms, or conditions on your use of the Service. Such updates, revisions, supplements, modifications, and additional rules, policies, terms, and conditions (collectively referred to in this Agreement as "Additional Terms") will be effective immediately and incorporated into this Agreement. Your continued use of the Service following the posting of changes will mean that you accept and agree to the Additional Terms. All Additional Terms are hereby incorporated into this Agreement by this reference.

Or, just be smart. Avoid Wal-Mart music and every other online music seller that uses DRM to cripple their products and take away your rights.

Posted on 23 December, 2003

Home Explodes, Bugs Dead

It happened in San Diego a few days ago: Bug Bombs Explode, Destroy Home.

A San Diego family living in a house infested with cockroaches set off 19 "bug bomb" foggers in their home, causing an explosion that virtually blew the home apart, according to police.

Local 6 News reported that the home's windows, doors and walls were blown off and Christmas decorations were sent into the street.

I guess there is some advantage in knowing how to read product labels:

Each bug bomb is designed to kill insects in a 700-square-foot area, and the home was reportedly only 470 square feet, according to the report.

Posted on 23 December, 2003

Veggie Orchestra

Ladies and gentlemen... The First Vienna Vegetable Orchestra.

The First Vienna Vegetable Orchestra plays music exclusively on vegetable instruments: carrots and cucumbers instead of guitars and drums. Or, with their new cd automate, a cuke-o-phon and radish-marimba instead of laptop and sampler.

The music presents a transfer of electronic music pieces and structures to the instruments of the vegetable garden.

Posted on 23 December, 2003

Innovation Or Imitation?

Take this brief quiz and determine if a product is real (an innovation) or fake (an imitation).

I got eight out of ten correct.

Posted on 23 December, 2003

Big-Time Bloggers

From The Guardian: Weblog heaven.

Jane Perrone hunts down the figures whose weblogs have caused the biggest stir both in and outside the blogosphere.

It's a list of 15 blogs. I've never heard of most of them. And, of those that I've have seen, only a few are semi-regular reads for me.

Personally, I prefer the "choice blogs" list from PC Magazine.

Posted on 23 December, 2003

Microsoft And Linux Users

From News Forge: Microsoft asks Linux users, "How can we get your business?"

Microsoft has started distributing two online surveys to Linux User Groups and Linux users in general, one asking primarily about home computer use, the other about business use.

They apparently don't plan to release the results of their surveys, so we and other people in the open source community are asking you to look at them and post your answers and comments here and on other appropriate sites where, in open source style, everyone can see them. Read on for more information and links, and please help spread the word about these surveys; as far as we know, this is the first time Microsoft has asked Linux users why we use Linux instead of their products, and the more results, the merrier.

Probably the most prevalent answer will be: "You can't."

Posted on 23 December, 2003

Zip Code Visualizer

Who says zip codes are boring? Type in a 5-digit US zip code, and see what happens. It's an amazing Java app by Ben Fry.

(via Metafilter)

Posted on 23 December, 2003

New Mug Shots

Ten new mug shots from The Smoking Gun. Shown here is Andre the Giant.

Andre the Giant (aka Andre Roussimoff) was arrested by the Linn County, Iowa sheriff in August 1989 and charged with assault after the 540-pound wrestler allegedly roughed up a local TV cameraman.

You can find many more mugs shots in the Arresting Images section of The Smoking Gun.

Posted on 23 December, 2003

A Big Jump

From New Scientist: Into thin air.

Early in 2005, champion skydiver Cheryl Stearns will make the highest free-fall jump in history from the edge of space.

Describe what will happen during the jump.

The balloon ascent will take about 2 1/2 hours to reach 130,000 feet under ideal conditions. The ride down from the stratosphere will take about 10 1/2 minutes - 5 1/2 minutes for the free fall and another 5 minutes after my parachute opens. If I bail out at 130,000 feet and nothing goes wrong, I will reach Mach 1 in 47 seconds. Once I hit an altitude of 100,000 feet the atmosphere will thicken, and atmospheric friction will start slowing me down.

(via City Lights)

Posted on 23 December, 2003