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12 November, 2004

Big Jesus Christ

The YOU59 HOMEPAGE features a very big Jesus Christ -- font-wise, that is. Here's the HTML used:

That code results in some very big text. Unless you have a monitor the size of a house, you'll need to do some scrolling in order to read it. But once you get past the huge text, it's pretty much all downhill from there.

If you'd like to read more words of wisdom, there's an open directory of the files at the site.

(via Bifurcated Rivets)

Posted on 12 November, 2004


Bryan Berg is the Cardstacker.

Bryan Berg broke the Guinness World Record for card structures in 1992 at the age of seventeen with a tower fourteen feet, six inches tall. His latest record-holding structure is more than twenty-five feet tall. Touring regularly, Berg has stacked cards in virtually every major U.S. city and in Japan, Denmark, and Germany.

(via Ursi's Blog)

Posted on 12 November, 2004

Ursi's Blog

I got an email from a Swiss fellow named Ursi. He was concerned that his new blog (Ursi's Blog) borrowed too heavily from my design, and he wanted to make sure that it was OK with me.

The simple answer: Of course! I think it's great that someone likes this design so much that they want to imitate it. So blog on, Ursi.

He also had a link to Radio42 -- Lounge Radio from Hamburg, Germany. I'm listening to it right now. Pretty nice for a change of pace.

Posted on 12 November, 2004

Wavy Gravy

I haven't thought about this guy in ages: Wavy Gravy. He's still alive, and he's 68 years old.

Despite (or thanks to) a long history of spinal fusion operations, he is more active -- and more effective -- in the world than he was 27 years ago when, still known as Hugh Romney, he stood on the Woodstock stage and announced, "What we have in mind is breakfast in bed for 400,000!

(via Look At This...)

Posted on 12 November, 2004

The Election And IQ

Several people have sent me a link that purports to show the relationship between the presidential election results and average IQ of the states (Bush-voting states tend to have a lower IQ).

I didn't post the link because I figured it was bogus, and I was waiting for the official word from Snopes. Here it is: Fool Me Twice.

Claim: Chart shows relationship between 2004 electoral vote result and voter IQ.

Status: False.

Posted on 12 November, 2004

Noisy Neighbors

Somebody went through a lot of work to complain about their noisy neighbors: Feel My Pain.

Just imagine, you move into your new house and then your new neighbors, Eddie and Debbie Haskell, put a HUGE God-awful eyesore trampoline and swing set only 8' from your house. The slide platform towers over the 6' privacy fence, facing directly into your new back yard.

Many days and evenings, their children scream and shriek only 8' from your bedroom wall. The sound reflects off their 2 story home directly into your home. When they are in full screaming mode, the sound permeates your home, even on the opposite side of your house!

You can easily spend a few hours clicking though this extensive site.

(via Cruel Site of the Day)

Posted on 12 November, 2004

Your Questions, My Answers

I'm killing some more time by perusing the Ask J-Walk bin...

James: John, I want to be just like you. Any advice?

Sure... Spend 12 years in Catholic school, go to college for nine years straight. Get married and divorced twice. Eventually, figure out how to be self-employed. Start a blog. Meet a wonderful woman like Pamn. It's easy!

Shallow: Have you already made some new acquaintances there in Tucson? Neighbours, the grocery store guy, etc etc... And somewhat related, where does most of your family lives?

No, we don't know anyone. We've gotten together with our real estate agent a few times, and there was a neighborhood get-together a few weeks ago. But, prior to the Toad visit, we were pretty much social outcasts.

All of my family lives in St. Louis, MO.

Prasad Joshi: Dear Sir, When I put Excel worksheet on Userform in Excel or Word as a object like textbox, then it shows columns more than 256. (>700). But Regular sheet has a limit of 256. Is there any specific reason?

Yes, the insertable object to which you refer is the Office Spreadsheet Component. It has nothing to do with Excel -- but it does prove that Microsoft is capable of creating a spreadsheet with more than 256 columns.

Phillip: If you spilled a glass of pulpy orange juice all over your keyboard, how would you go about cleaning up?

I'd just throw it away and get a new one from the garage. I think we have about a half-dozen spare keyboards. But it wasn't always like that. I remember a time when I spilled a beer on my keyboard, and I had a deadline of some sort next day. I had to run out and buy a new keyboard.

Poncho: What do you think about lucid dreaming? The type of dream wherein you are conscious you are in your dream?

I've read about it, but I've never experienced it. I also read a lot about the hypnagogic state. For a while, I was so tuned into it that it really delayed falling asleep.

Curtis: Have you listened to the guitarist, Kaki King? If so, what's your opinion of her music?

No, but I hope her music is better than her Web site.

the weave: John, just curious....Did you ever play in a band? Professionally or otherwise? You bear a striking resemblance to a bass player I met once... he played in a band with another guy, mmmm Mick... something? Had a cute girl up front. I think they called her Stevie? Ring any bells?

No, that wasn't me. I did play in a band at one time. It was called Macwood Fleet, and I went by the name of John McDoubleyou. But I didn't play bass, and our cute girl up front was named Ralph.

Danny: I recently put some hyperlinks to images in my Excel worksheet. If I link to a .jpg image, stored in a local folder, Excel opens the image with the Microsoft Photo Editor. How can I have Excel open jpegs with Irfan viewer?

Good question. Someone probably will have an answer, but I don't. By the way, when I click on a JPG hyperlink in Excel, it opens in Internet Explorer -- despite the fact that Firefox is my default browser and Irfan view is the default JPG viewer.

Kevin Kelly: John, you post a ton of images on your blog so I figure you must have optimized this process. How many steps does it take you to snatch an image off the web and put it onto your published web pages? In an ideal world it would be two: drag and drop. However it takes me far more than that, more than I feel it should, and I'd like either a tip or utility that would decrease the steps.

I've customized by blog software (pMachine) so I can use a FrontPage document (with a few VBA macros) to make my posts. If I see a photo that needs no cropping or resizing, I can literally drag it from Firefox and drop it into my FrontPage document. Click Save, and it's uploaded to my server and the IMG tag is created.

Typically, I'll save the image to my desktop, then use Irfanview to resize and/or crop it. Then I can drag the edited image into my FrontPage document. It's all very easy, and solves one of the big problems in blogging.

The key is getting it set up in FrontPage. I described my process here. I don't know if it would work with other blogging tools.

Steve: where is that video of the women Scrabble Champ. I need to find that link again.

I was going to make a snide comment about using the search feature. Then I discovered that the entry you're referring to doesn't even use the word Scrabble. So here's the link.

Posted on 12 November, 2004


I've linked to Crazy Aaron's Puttyworld site before, but it has lots of new material for putty fans.

Here's the winning entry in the 2003 Thinking Putty Sculpture Competition -- The Persistence of Putty.

Posted on 12 November, 2004

Search Engines Compared

From BBC News: Search wars - which is the best?

As Microsoft enters the internet search engine market, users find themselves overwhelmed with options. We compare the big players on five key areas.

They are: Google, MSN, A9, Yahoo, and Ask Jeeves (does anyone actually use Ask Jeeves any more?)

Although there's a "verdict" section, they don't come right out and say which one is the best.

Posted on 12 November, 2004

Goal: Own All Music

From MacNET v2: The Music Man - King Of The Pirates Has A Goal - Own It All!

What do you say to someone who has a digital music collection that exceeds 900,000 songs? This was the question I was pondering during my long drive to interview the man who claims he is on a quest to own a copy of ever song ever recorded.

Posted on 12 November, 2004


New from ElectroKraft Instruments: Axe*Synth.

The Axe*Synth is a new innovative synthesizer/theremin-guitar. A combination of digital and analog circuitry encased in all aluminum alloy construction.

Watch the video.

Posted on 12 November, 2004

Best Earphones?

If you want the very best sound from your portable device (and you don't mind spending $330), these earphones are probably for you: ER-4 MicroPro.

The ER-4 MicroPro earphones are the next best thing to live music, with noise isolation far surpassing that of active noise-canceling earphones. The ER-4s require NO batteries, and can be plugged into any audio source. Their external noise exclusion -- 33 dB with 3-flange eartips, 41 dB with foam eartips -- allows you to hear the full dynamic range of recordings without having to play them at unnaturally high and unsafe levels.

Posted on 12 November, 2004

Disaster Masters

A cure for disposophobia: Disaster Masters.

DISASTER MASTERS is America's most experienced and oldest personal service organization who provides cost efficient solutions for people who suffer from Disposophobia. (the fear of getting rid of stuff).

They can even clean up something like this (a bedroom in a luxury apartment in New York):

(via Cynical-C Blog)

Posted on 12 November, 2004

Microsoft's New Search Site

At least the guys behind Microsoft's new search site have a sense of humor. Here's the first result when searching for more evil than satan.

(via The Presurfer)

Posted on 12 November, 2004

Aurora Gallery

Eight pages of cool photos: November 2004 Aurora Gallery

Solar activity intensified in early November with the appearance of big sunspot 696. The active region unleashed a series of strong M-class solar flares. On Nov. 7th, coronal mass ejections from some of those explosions hit Earth's magnetic field and triggered an extreme geomagnetic storm.

The photo shown here was taken in Ohio.

Posted on 12 November, 2004

Toadographs And Memories

I was very impressed with the level of analysis that went into yesterday's Real Toad contest. But only 13% of the respondents identified the real Toad (photo B).

To prove that I'm not making this up, here are some additional toadographs taken inside of La Casa del J-Walk.

The attractive lady in blue is, of course, Mrs. Toad. And the attractive blonde is Pamn. The ugly bald guy is me.

Their visit to Tucson was fun. We were a bit apprehensive at first. After all, we had never invited a couple that we'd never met to spend six nights at our house. But we all hit it off immediately, and it took about 15 minutes before everyone was comfortable. After another 10 minutes, it was like we were all old friends.

We drank a lot, ate a lot, laughed a lot, and had some excellent times. Toad and his wife are fun people and great houseguests. Now, we need to figure out a time to visit them in Toadburgh, PA.

Posted on 12 November, 2004

Would You Hire This Guy?

When a normal resume won't do: Flash CV.

He may get a job as a programmer, but I don't think he has a career as a singer.

Posted on 12 November, 2004

Virtual Bartender

Your wish is her command: Virtual Bartender.

Posted on 12 November, 2004

Unimaginative City Names

Here's The Site of Unimaginative City Names.

Upon a visit to Oregon City, Oregon it struck me how Unimaginative it is to name a city after a state. Off the top of my head I could think of at least half a dozen other such Unimaginatively Named Cities. Unimaginably idle curiosity prompted a search for the rest, resulting in yet another Unimaginably pointless repository of something-or-other.

(via Look At This...)

Posted on 12 November, 2004

Watch A Monkey Rot

Here's an incredible time-lapse video by Elizabeth L. Brainerd: Beneath the Surface.

After being frozen for thirty years, the life of this specimen is about to accelerate.

Posted on 12 November, 2004

Censoring Private Ryan

Apparently, there was quite a bit of TV-related controversy yesterday. From the Guardian: Fearful TV fails Private Ryan.

More than 20 American TV stations last night boycotted a Veterans Day screening of war picture Saving Private Ryan because of fears that they would be censured by a newly aggressive television regulator over the movie's violence and graphic language.

Network executives said the rebellion by affiliates of the ABC television network in Dallas, Atlanta, Phoenix and other leading markets was sparked by fears of reprisals from the Federal Communications Commission.

The worst part is that the FCC would not say, in advance, if they would take action.

Posted on 12 November, 2004

Rent A Peasant

There's really no need to purchase a peasant when you can Rent A Peasant.

Rent A Peasant is primarily an association of two people. Our remit is to provide an insight into everyday aspects of rural life in the past. Farming is fundamental to our presentations, hence our sub title Living History with Livestock.

Posted on 12 November, 2004

Ditch Microsoft Office?

David Coursey writes: Give the Users What They Want.

As Microsoft begins to provide its most trusted partners with the skinny on Office 12, I'd like to suggest a theme that probably isn't in the plan, but should be. It's a simple suggestion that has to happen sooner or later: Get rid of Office as we know it.

Specifically, I want Microsoft to put Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Visio and Access out of our misery and create something more closely aligned with what users actually do each day, rather than all the things they might possibly do. I want this new application to feature a single user interface that morphs based on what the user is doing at the moment.

Posted on 12 November, 2004

Firefox Not A Threat

From CNET: Microsoft says Firefox not a threat to IE.

Steve Vamos, Microsoft Australia's managing director, agreed, saying he does not believe IE's market share is under attack following the recent high-profile debut of the Mozilla Foundation's Firefox browser.

Vamos said that although he has heard other people mention the competitive threat posed by Firefox, he doesn't see it as a problem.

"I'm not sure that that is the reality. I have seen comments around that, but there is nothing I can refer to that really supports that," he said. Instead, Vamos said, consumers need to be educated about all the features already offered by Microsoft's browser.

And then...

Vamos admitted he has never used Firefox.

Posted on 12 November, 2004

How To Suceed

Ask Google how to suceed without even spelling.

(Thanks Jimbob Jim)

Posted on 12 November, 2004