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7 June, 2004

Vertical Bass

This looks pretty cool: Barker Vertical Bass.

But in the summer of 2002 my wrists began to hurt after only an hour or so of playing. Noting the bent aspect of both wrists as I played my horizontal bass, I began to imagine an upright fretted bass and how my hand positions would be different as I played it.

I couldn't find such an instrument to suit me, so I built one.

It has a Fender Jazz bass neck, and it comes fretted or fretless, 4 or 5 string.

From the FAQ:

Q. How hard is it to adjust to playing this way, upright? I've played a bass guitar for years.

A. It took me about 20 minutes. The left hand is doing the same fingering job it has always done. The right hand angles down a bit more and is clearly more relaxed. The position of your body in relation to the instrument will range from nearly behind it to facing the side of it. In that arc you'll find your "comfort spot."

Posted on 7 June, 2004

Remote Controls

From Jakob Nielsen, the usability guy: Remote Control Anarchy.

I'm frustrated by how difficult it is to watch a movie on my TV. It ought to be a relaxing experience, but I constantly get into trouble trying to operate the several remote controls required to accomplish this simple task.

Until I conducted a small usability review of my remote controls, I didn't realize why the task was so difficult. I knew only that I found it bothersome, which left me in basically the same situation as most victims of the crummy products that the consumer electronics industry inflicts on the public.

Posted on 7 June, 2004

No Photos On The Subway

Apparently, there's talk about banning all photography on New York subways and buses. From the Village Voice: Forbidden Photos, Anyone?

"How can they ban photographing unusual sights aboard trains and in stations?" wonders Epstein, who operates Satan's Laundromat, a website dedicated to "urban decay, strange signage, and general weirdness." "What about when someone boards the 1 train with bags full of fully inflated orange and red balloons that almost exactly match the colors of the seats: Do they really expect me to keep my camera in my pocket?"

Posted on 7 June, 2004

Printing On Pringles

Press Release: Pringles Announces First-of-Its Kind Technology That Prints Directly on Individual Crisps.

The Procter & Gamble Company, the maker of Pringles, the #1 selling stacked potato crisp, introduces Pringles Prints, an innovative snack that features a unique, fun design printed on every crisp. The revolutionary Prints technology allows P&G to customize the crisps by printing words and images in a variety of colors directly on the chip. Pringles Prints Fun Facts, Animal Facts and Jokes will be available in select U.S. retail locations in June

I wonder how long it will take before there's a tie-in with a Disney movie?

Posted on 7 June, 2004

Cool Song Moments

From retroCRUSH: The 50 Coolest Song Moments of All Time. Not songs. The list is about parts of songs.

For example, #36 is the funky bass part towards the end of Paul Simon's "You Can Call Me Al." I didn't know this:

If you listen closely, the lick is actually a musical palindrome - it was played forward in its entirety, then the tape was flipped over and played backwards, the backwards lick was recorded onto another tape, and then that second recording was edited into place.

(via Magnetbox)

Posted on 7 June, 2004

Spam From Stonyfield Farm

I just got an email from Stonyfield Farm. Apparently, they make yogurt. They also send spam. More specifically, it came from Carmelle Druchniak. Congratulations, Carmelle. You just got another entry in Google.

Carmelle wants everyone in the world to know that Stonyfield Farm has jumped on the bandwagon, and the company now has blogs! Actually, they are called "cow munities." Isn't that clever?

There's nothing wrong with companies promoting their products via a blog. But there is something wrong with sending spam to promote their stupid blogs. It's not only wrong, it's illegal according to the CAN-SPAM act. The spam did not provide a way for me to unsubscribe.

Maybe everyone should visit their blogs and leave some comments.

Posted on 7 June, 2004

Holy Secrets

Ye shall know the truth, and it shall blow your mind!

Yes folks, it's Holy Secrets and Forbidden Truth. Fourteen amazing books that will reveal all.

42 years in the making! 2,008 large pages (8 1/2 X 11) plus 1,251 of the rarest, unusual, strange, shocking and amazing illustrations and photos you have ever seen! (A picture is worth a thousand words. IMAGINE... 1,251 pictures!)

WARNING: These are not "ordinary" books in any way or form!

You can get all 14 books for only $259 -- rushed to you by First Class mail!

Here's just a few of the secrets that you'll find in Book #13:

  • Learn the real truth about - AIDS: You just think you're safe. It was not called "AIDS", in 1981 it was originally called "G.R.I.D. Which means Gay Related Immune Deficiency
  • The Jewish alphabet is not HEBREW! See how each character (letter) had a relationship with their satanic system of worship. EXPLOSIVE!
  • Learn what actually happened in the Garden of Eden, and what it means for us today (Illustrated)
  • How to live forever (Fully Illustrated)

�These books were written by someone named Claude.

Posted on 7 June, 2004

Image Generators

Here's a whole bunch of image generators. Enter some text, and it will appear in a photo. Like these:

(via The Presurfer)

Posted on 7 June, 2004

Firebox And BugMeNot

This sounds promising. An extension for the Firefox browser: BugMeNot.

Bypass compulsory web registration via Firefox's right-click context menu. Compatibile with Mozilla, current Firefox releases, and the upcoming 0.9 Firefox release that will use a new extension manager.

And, of course, you can always access the BugMeNot site directly to acquire a username and password for those obnoxious news sites.

(via Gammatron phase ii)

Posted on 7 June, 2004

Watching 24 - Season Two

About 18 months ago, I mentioned that we had watched all 24 episodes of the TV program called 24. Last night, we finished watching 24 - Season Two.

I don't remember much about the first season, but I think it was a bit better than the second season. Maybe not. Both of them are a good way to occupy 17-18 hours.

As I said before, watching it on DVD is the only way to go. There is no way I could sit through those commercials on FOX. Well, maybe Tivo would be good too.

Posted on 7 June, 2004


A site called Edible:

You have entered the unique world of Edible! Here you will find rare and exclusive delicacies never seen in the 1st world. Keep an open mind whilst browsing our unique products, just remember repulsion is all in the human mind! After all where did the Chicken come from....

One of the items for sale is Snake Vodka:

Edible's snake vodka contains a farm raised wolf snake, which has been specially bred for us in China. We infuse the vodka with the snake for three months, which then imparts a unusual flavour into the vodka, which is quite an acquired taste.

Alcohol infused with a snake is said to be an aphrodisiac, particularly for men and it is also supposed to contain many health properties.

Whilst the snake is perfectly fine to eat, we do not recommend it, due to the fact it contains many tiny bones

Posted on 7 June, 2004

"In A Word, It's Plastic"

From Wired: Drowning in an Ocean of Plastic.

Marine trash, mainly plastic, is killing more than a million seabirds and 100,000 mammals and sea turtles each year, said U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan in a statement.

Plastic bags, bottle tops and polystyrene foam coffee cups are often found in the stomachs of dead sea lions, dolphins, sea turtles and others. The implications have many at the conference concerned. Last April, Dutch scientists released a report on litter in the North Sea and found that fulmars, a type of seagull, had an average of 30 pieces of plastic in their stomachs.

Posted on 7 June, 2004

The Next Guitar God?

An article from the Christian Science Monitor: Still searching for the next guitar hero.

[Robert] Randolph, the phenomenon most likely to be anointed as the next "guitar god," is hardly a guitar player in the traditional sense. The wunderkind doesn't play a Stratocaster or Les Paul, he plays pedal steel guitar and began his musical education with a little-known church music style called "sacred steel."

Randolph, who claims the late ax-slingers Vaughan and Duane Allman as his biggest influences, says anyone who aspires to guitar hero status has to recognize his talent, but stay humble.

Here's his guitar, and here's his Web site.

Posted on 7 June, 2004

Andy Speaks

About three years ago, a 15-year old boy named Andy Williams starting shooting students at Santana High School, in San Diego. He killed two, and wounded 11 others. He's now in prison for at least 50.

Here's his Web site: Andy Speaks.

My name is Andy Williams and this website is my gift to my family, friends, and supporters. My dad and I have reviewed and fully endorse and approve of the content of this website. It is our goal to use this site to share our thoughts, ideas and desires to our supporters. We ask that you be patient as this website evolves and grows with time and with me.

Posted on 7 June, 2004

Tricks And Games

Professor Fiendish presents: Tricks and Games.

Do you want to be a mind reader? Or maybe have a brain that does lightning calculations? Or maybe you just want to make your friends feel silly! Here are a few of my sneakiest tricks, and don't worry - you don't need to be a maths genius to do them!

Some of these tricks are in the Murderous Maths books, but here I can let you play on my special calculators and other computer gadgets!

Posted on 7 June, 2004

Internet Fads

Here's a list of the 10 Best Internet Fads. One of my favorites is the Tourist Guy.

If there's one good thing to come out of 9/11 besides the fact that we've since bombed all the terror out of the world, it's Tourist Guy. Tourist Guy is a man named Peter who was photographed on top of the WTC on September 11, oblivious to the nearby jetliner about to crash into him. This photo spread across the internet at the speed of our country's terrible justice, but the real fad started after the pic was proven to be a hoax.

People from all over the world began Photoshop-ing him into other tragic events.

Posted on 7 June, 2004

Shrek Crap

From X-Entertainment: Shrek Crap, Volume IV.

I promise, no more Shrek articles. It's over, I'm finished. Shrek 2 just debuted and broke about 50,000 box office records, in part because it opened on eighty-five times the number of screens as every other movie in history combined, but also because the celebrity ogre's head has been stamped on every item in every grocery, toy, department and auto store in America.

The amount of advertising and the odd kinds of cross-promotions enjoyed by Shrek 2 are like nothing I've ever seen. Even the most hyped, "fun for everyone" flicks starring Marvel superheroes haven't come close to it.

Posted on 7 June, 2004

Kilauea Photos

Lots of recent USGS photos of the Kilauea volcano in Hawaii.

Posted on 7 June, 2004

About Those "Stupid Facts" Emails

You've probably received dozens of emails that contain a list of "stupid facts." For example:

  • A goldfish has a memory span of three seconds.
  • A shark is the only fish that can blink with both eyes.
  • A snail can sleep for three years.
  • Al Capone's business card said he was a used furniture dealer.

An item at Google Answers disproves most of these facts.

(via Waxy.org)

Posted on 7 June, 2004

Salad Greens

A salad is more than just lettuce. From The Cook's Thesaurus: Salad Greens.

(via List)

Posted on 7 June, 2004

Gas Prices In Iraq

New item: Iraqis Paying 5 Cents a Gallon for Gas.

While Americans are shelling out record prices for fuel, Iraqis pay only about 5 cents a gallon for gasoline - a benefit of hundreds of millions of dollars subsidies bankrolled by American taxpayers.

Although Iraq is a major petroleum producer, the country has little capacity to refine its own gasoline. So the U.S. government pays about $1.50 a gallon to buy fuel in neighboring countries and deliver it to Iraqi stations. A three-month supply costs American taxpayers more than $500 million, not including the cost of military escorts to fend off attacks by Iraqi insurgents.

Posted on 7 June, 2004