2004-09-16t02:23:32Z | TAGS: 2D, Images, Photos. 2D-t, Activities, Animation, Video. Audio, Music. Computers, Networking, Programming. Cyber Life. Engineering, Technology, Function. Faith, Philosophy. Food. Games, Play. Fauna, Flora, Green. Humanity. Local. Martial Arts. Movies. Science, Science Fiction. Sex. Terror. US Elections. Words, Writing.
2004-09-16t02:23:32Z

2D, Images, Photos

2D-t, Activities, Animation, Video

• Hefner, Stan Lee team for 'Superbunnies'. 'MTV has ordered an animated pilot for "Hef's Superbunnies," a collaboration between cartooon veteran Lee's newly launched Pow! Entertainment and Playboy's Alta Loma Entertainment division. Hefner's name and likeness will be featured in the pilot, and he also might provide the voice of his cartoon alter ego.'
• ColorCalm.com. Now you can buy a DVD to use your TV to provide visual and audio background, sort of like a screen saver and Muzak.

Audio, Music

Computers, Networking, Programming

• CSS Media Types Create Print-Friendly Pages. Nothing terribly new here but a good little summary on making CSS for print as opposed to screen viewing.
• General rules for print CSS:
• ' Change colors to black on white.
• Change the font to serif.
• Watch the font size.
• Underline all links.
• Remove non-essential images.
• Remove some or most of the advertising.
• Remove all JavaScript, Flash, and animated images. '
• Make sure these items show up on print. You may hide this for screen.css but show them for print.css.
• A byline (to indicate who wrote the article)
• The original URL.
• Sample print.css:
body{
color:#000;
background:#fff;
font-family:"Times New Roman", Times, serif;
font-size:12pt;
}
a{
text-decoration:underline;
color:#00f;
}
display:none;
}
• Link to print.css in the <head> element. EG: <link rel="stylesheet" type="text/css" href="print.css" media="print" />.
• I don't make a print.css for my personal site because my screen version is essentially a print version.
• A Guide To Firefox Extensions [/.]. Not just for the IE-to-Firefox converts but also the Mozilla-to-Firefox switchers. I just wish they could commit themselves to producing Firefox v1.0 instead of the current 0.9 version.
• Oops! I almost spoke too soon! (Look a few bullets down.)
• Building A Lo-Fat Linux Desktop
• Merlin.blogs.com/43Folders/. By Merlin Mann. A blog about tricks and hacks.
• Tutorialized.com. Tutorials, How-To's, etc. on various computer tech stuff.
• The Best of Eyetrack III: What We Saw When We Looked Through Their Eyes
• 'While testing our participants' eye movements across several news homepage designs, Eyetrack III researchers noticed a common pattern: The eyes most often fixated first in the upper left of the page, then hovered in that area before going left to right. Only after perusing the top portion of the page for some time did their eyes explore further down the page.'
• Lots of other good info on the page too.
• Wikipedia.org/wiki/OS-tan. 'A small internet phenomenon on Futaba Channel, the OS-tan (OS for Operating System, and -tan as an overly cute Japanese honorific for a person, specifically a child slurring "-chan") or simply OS Girls are the personification of several OSes, most famously Windows, by various amateur Japanese artists. A pure fan creation, the appearance of each character is generally consistent among artists. OSes are almost always portrayed as women, the Windows girls usually as sisters, despite sometimes seeming the same age.'
• Firefox 1.0 Preview Release (0.10PR) Released! [/.]
• 'The Firefox 1.0 Preview Release has been released. The 1.0 final release won't be out for another month or so, and as such, the version number for this release is 0.10PR. For those who still count in decimal, 0.10 is larger than 0.9, despite what you were taught in school.'
• Well, I'm still waiting waiting for 1.0 then.
• Bah! They should have called it "0.9.9" instead of "0.10PR".

Cyber Life

Engineering, Technology, Function

• $14 Steadycam: The Poor Man's Steadicam. Look Ma: No duck tape! • The Flapper • 'As far as I know, this is the only paper airplane that flaps its wings when it flies. No motor, no rubberbands. Just a piece of typing paper, a penny and an inch of tape.' • BRB: I'm going to build the plane myself. • ... • Back: It took around 10 minutes and there might be some flapping but it's hard to tell. I do like how the weight of the penny allows it to fly fairly decisively though. • AquaDom. 'Positioned in the center of the hotel complex, the base of the AquaDom rises 26 feet above the ground floor. Visitors have the unique experience of ascending through the water's depths as they ride a split-level glass elevator from the ground floor up seven floors, through the center of the AquaDom. As they rise they experience an array of colorful corals, rock formations and a myriad of over 2,000 fish. The AquaDom breaks all records as the largest cylinder aquarium in the world, at over 52 feet in depth by 36 feet in diameter. This engineering marvel took 150 tons of acrylic to complete.' • 21 Century Hobbit Hole. It can also double as a bomb shelter. • Your brand new U-Lock is not safe. Please read this RIGHT NOW. [MeFi] • Apparently you can open U-locks like the Kryptonite locks with a Bic pen. They have videos like this proving it. • The MeFi thread has other good tips such as 'use different kinds of lock'. • I've had a friend open my lock with a drill and he said it was pretty easy. Faith, Philosophy Food • CookingForEngineers.com. More than just "a can of Coke" --this site presents recipes and cooking information in a fresh, efficient way. Engineers are super! • Restaurant Customer Arrested For Tipping Under 18%. I've never questioned the legality of restaurants billing large parties a fixed tip automatically. I consider that stuff to be part of the expense of eating at such an establishment. Games, Play • NoGravity.com [Boing Boing]. Boing Boing says: 'For about$3,000 US, passengers will be able to experience about 20 doses of parabolic weightlessness during a 90-minute trip. Nothing like this has ever been offered to American consumers before. ZERO-G is the only company with FAA approval to conduct weightless flights for the public within the US. '
• Ye Olde Disciplinary Punch-and-Judy Show
• ' So the "ludology" vs. "narratology" debate has flared up again, along with accompanying feuding over whether "game studies" really is or should be a discipline. '
• 'So I thought I'd take a crack at this old chestnut myself. On one hand, I think the ludologists are if anything being too generous to some of what has been said about games by scholars who come more from the narratology end of things--the problem with some narratological accounts isn't that narrative is somehow intrinsically different in games, it's that some people coming out of literary or cultural studies have a tendency to write about genres and texts that they know little or nothing about. On the other hand, I don't have much sympathy for the desire to make "game studies" a discipline, partly because that's not where my bread is buttered, but also because I think academic writing about games provides a good opportunity to practice a new middlebrow form of academic cultural criticism that consciously avoids the insular norms of scholarly writing.'
• 'Fighting Fantasy Gamebooks tried to do Choose Your Own Adventure books one better with D&D-style rules. These massively single-player games, released in Britain, absorbed '80s nerds into the kind of murky, dead-serious fantasy recently parodied by Trogdor, in a decade when interactive fiction was on the rise. A bunch of the Gamebooks are now available to play online. Hang on to those healing potions. ' [MeFi]

Fauna, Flora, Green

• Capsulamundi.com.
• This company make biodegradable coffins and plants a tree right over it. I've preferred cremation but this option sounds pretty good too.
• Related:
• FisheryCrisis.com [MeFi]. There are many sites that go over the problems with the sea and this is one of them. People think that disappearing fish won't affect them but it does. Fish is the greatest source of protein for people on the planet. The fact that they can't catch fish as big as they used to harms my soul as well. Sometimes you need a scientists, public outcry, and courageous governments to step in because if the "free markets" are allowed to run wild, people will eat themselves to harm.
• Wind Power - Up and coming blow [/.]
• 'The cost for wind power is more expensive than other options, but the cost has recently decreased. The price used to be 2.5 cents per kilowatt-hour, but as of June it dropped to 1 cent per kwh.'
• I keep pounding and pounding that the next economy is a Green Economy.
• There are people who are willing to pay more for things that are greener: more renewable, more ethical.

Humanity

• DimensionsMagazine.com. This site concerns itself with heavy people. Some of it borders on fetish but I think the site is serious. Self-esteem, sexuality, etc. should be a separate issue from weight but it is hard to do sometimes. Some people who have a high BMI are actually quite healthy but it can get quite dangerous.
• "This I Believe! - Tom's 60 TIBs" by Tom Peters [leads to a PDF]. I understand that these are very abbreviated notes. But sometimes I find PowerPoint presentations too airy; sometimes I find corporate-speak/catchy-phrases offensive; sometimes I don't have the patience to hear something restated in a different way. I had to continuously get over these internal mental hurdles to actually listen to what he was saying because much of it is actually quite good.
• Key words. I put key words at the top of my home page but it changes frequently so I want to take a snap shot of it now and then.
• Athens > Sparta. Real Earth > Real Estate. Science > Superstition. Honest Questions > Blind Faith. Philoxenia > Xenophobia. Meter > Yard. Problems = Opportunities.
• Explore. Fun. Self-Integrity. Urgency. Respond. Beauty. Non-Fixation. Grace. Joy. Challenge.  Kindness.
• Everything is easy. Be present. Mistakes happen. Do you have X or does X have you? Out your inner world. Respect and Dignity. Invest and give more than just money. Study then use your instincts. The emotional and spiritual world are as real as physical one.
• Hypnosis really changes your mind
• 'But under hypnosis, Gruzelier found that the highly susceptible subjects showed significantly more brain activity in the anterior cingulate gyrus than the weakly susceptible subjects. This area of the brain has been shown to respond to errors and evaluate emotional outcomes. The highly susceptible group also showed much greater brain activity on the left side of the prefrontal cortex than the weakly susceptible group. This is an area involved with higher level cognitive processing and behaviour.'
• ' Peter Naish, at the UK's Open University, says this moves the understanding of hypnosis away from the popular misconceptions created by showy stage hypnotists. "We have a technique that has now moved towards evidence-based treatments," he says. "Gruzelier's work is showing for sure that the brain is doing quite different things under hypnosis than in normal everyday existence." '
• NeuroDiversity.com.
• 'Honoring the variety of  human wiring'
• Site on autism and the like.
• "The Future of Free Speech" by Cass Sunstein
• A long piece but very relevant given how polarized the country is and how we can pick and choose what we want to hear. Which came first?
• 'My purpose here is to cast some light on the relationship between democracy and new communications technologies. I do so by emphasising the most striking power provided by emerging technologies: the growing power of consumers to "filter" what it is that they see. In the extreme case, people will be fully able to design their own communications universe. They will find it easy to exclude, in advance, topics and points of view that they wish to avoid. I will also provide some notes on the constitutional guarantee of freedom of speech.

An understanding of the dangers of filtering permits us to obtain a better sense of what makes for a well-functioning system of free expression. Above all, I urge that in a heterogeneous society, such a system requires something other than free, or publicly unrestricted, individual choices. On the contrary, it imposes two distinctive requirements. First, people should be exposed to materials that they would not have chosen in advance. Unanticipated encounters, involving topics and points of view that people have not sought out and perhaps find quire irritating, are central to democracy and even to freedom itself. Second, many or most citizens should have a range of common experiences. Without shared experiences, a heterogeneous society will have a much more difficult time addressing social problems; people may even find it hard to understand one another. '

• elated: Listening to both sides

Local

• Chicago's Biograph Theater Sold. I usually drive by the Biograph Theater (2433 N. Lincoln Avenue, Chicago, IL 60657) almost everyday but today I noticed that there was a huge dumpster in front of it and their marquee stated "THAT'S ALL FOLKS" instead of listing what movies they were showing. I was worried for minute there but it turns out that the Biograph was sold. I hope the new folks do this Chicago institution justice.
• Oprah gives away 276 cars. Apparently these were all people who had written about how they really needed a car.

Martial Arts

Movies

• 'Star Wars' emerges from darkness. The link is not so much about the upcoming Star Ward DVDs but about the restoration process.
• 'You know you've had one hell of a year when you get promoted from Jesus to Superman.' [MeFi]. James Caviezel as Superman? The only thing that counts is if it'll be a good movie.
• Blade Runner Brilliance. An essay on one of the best science fiction movies ever.

Science, Science Fiction

• Global to Local: The Social Future as seen by six SF Writers [/.]. The /. thread starts off with Right v Left SF writers.
• Is science fiction finished?
• 'Poetry, it seems, is forever writing its own elegy. The novel, yet again, seems to be flipping pages to its last chapter. Now science fiction appears on the verge of getting beamed up to the great Enterprise in the sky, with sci-fi writers concerned that they are facing the unique irony of looking at a future where their writing could be a thing of the past.'
• ' "I would not be encouraging a young person today to be entering science fiction as a profession. I do have a fear that the science-fiction novel is as much an artifact of the 20th century as Victorian literature was of the 19th," said Sawyer. "No matter how hard you yell 'clear' and go for the defibrillator paddle, you still can't get that spark of life going again." '
• Setting aside concepts of 'The Singularity' aside, the problem has to do with lack of good old storytelling. There is too much focus on gimmicks and special effects but not enough on stories with twists, captivating emotive characters, and ideas and problems relevant to our current lives. The trick is of good science fiction and fantasy is that real problems are abstracted in a fantastic = safe way.

Sex [assume NSFW]

• Zentai Woman [Fleshbot] There's a fetish for almost anything. Zentai is a fetish for women that are completely encased in skin tight clothing.
• VintagePBks.com
• 'Vintage Paperbacks & Digests'
• There restraint of the 1950s makes the stuff even naughtier.

Terror

• Bloody Sunday: 110 Dead in Iraq, 200 Wounded
• "Chapter Operation Ignore" from Al Franken's book: Lies and the Lying Liars Who Tell Them [Amazon].
• Well, Thank GOD We Liberated Them
• 'Who would have thought that "bringing democracy to the Middle East" didn't include due process or an adherence to military regulations or international law?'
• 'We're stuck in this bad movie and we will be for another four years if John Kerry loses this election. America has a chance to oust this corrupt administration on November 2, but I fear that we won't.'
• N.Korea blast probably not nuclear. But a mushroom cloud  4 Km wide gets you edgy.
• Why al-Qaeda is winning
• 'Three years after September 11, President George W Bush's crusade is a failure. "War on terror" is a meaningless myth: you can't combat a supple attack machine like al-Qaeda with shock and awe. What should have been a long, meticulous police operation was turned by Bush - instigated by his foreign policy adviser, God - into an illegal, preemptive attack on a nation that had nothing to do with terror. '
• 'It should be very easy for the slumbering John Kerry campaign to smash that armory. Before Iraq turned into a quagmire - before the 1,000th dead American soldier, the 7,000th wounded American soldier, the 14,000th or maybe even 22,000th dead Iraqi civilian - Bush kept insisting that Iraq was "the new front in the war on terror". Now Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney are doing everything in their power not to make the connection - because a majority of Americans seem to view Bush as relatively strong on terror, but a failure in Iraq. '
• 'Two related facts are undisputable: more Americans are facing death and destruction in Iraq after Saddam Hussein was captured than before; and now there are increasingly more global terrorist attacks than when Bush proclaimed his "crusade", or "war on terror". The Bush administration always sold the war on Iraq as part of the "war on terror". Reminding Americans about it is to fully certify Bush's overall failure. '
• 'The bottom line: since Bush proclaimed his "crusade" or mission from God against terror, the United States, the Middle East and the world are immensely less safe.'
• 'As nihilistic as it may be, al-Qaeda, from a business point of view, is a major success: three years after September 11, it is a global brand and a global movement. The Middle East, in this scenario, is just a regional base station. This global brand does not have much to do with Islam. But it has everything to do with the globalization of anti-imperialism. And the empire, whatever its definition, has its center in Washington. Bin Laden is laughing: Bush's crusade has legitimized an obscure sect as a worldwide symbol of political revolt. How could bin Laden not vote for Bush? '
• ' Sept. 7: Righteous indignation. Sept. 13: The million dollar question. Sept: 14: The beginning of the answer? '. [MeFi]
• So earlier Russia is following Bush's example again. Just a few days ago they were copying Bush's pre-emptive, pro-force polices by saying they'd fight terrorist anywhere anytime. Now they are copying Bush's reduce  freedom and democracy for the sake of security.
• Any country can become more fascist to preempt terrorism. What a nice world Bush has brought upon us.
• Russian-Chechen War Turns into Bounty Race. Russian President Putin offered a multi-million dollar bounty for Chechen rebels, and the Chechen rebels answered by offering a multi-million dollar bounty for Putin because of his war crimes.
• Colin Powell in Four-letter Neo-con 'crazies' Row
• 'A furious row has broken out over claims in a new book by BBC broadcaster James Naughtie that US Secretary of State Colin Powell described neo-conservatives in the Bush administration as 'fucking crazies' during the build-up to war in Iraq. Powell's extraordinary outburst is alleged to have taken place during a telephone conversation with Foreign Secretary Jack Straw. The two became close friends during the intense negotiations in the summer of 2002 to build an international coalition for intervention via the United Nations. The 'crazies' are said to be Vice-President Dick Cheney, Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and his deputy, Paul Wolfowitz.'
• True or not, it's fun to visualize Powell banging his head and saying "Those fucking crazies!".

US Elections

• The other president
• 'For the past four years the two men have been inseparable. Most vice-presidents have to fight for time with their boss; Mr Cheney sees his several times a day. Most vice-presidents spend their days at state funerals; Mr Cheney, more than anyone else, picked the members of the current administration. Thereafter he helped to shape the administration's policies on everything from energy policy to the invasion of Iraq.'
• 'Mr Cheney also brought to his job a sharp sense of how dangerous the world is. Thomas Hobbes used to remark that "fear and I were born twins". The same can be said of Mr Cheney. As a congressman, he boasted that he never met a weapons system he didn't vote for; as defence secretary, he fiercely resisted pressure for a post-cold-war peace dividend. He tried instead to focus America's armed forces on "new sources of instability" such as terrorism and renegade regimes. This combination of a mastery of Washington bureaucracy and a Hobbesian view of the world should have been perfect for the post-September 11th world.'
• 'But few people would now argue that Mr Cheney has lived up to his promise as a wise man. The biggest mistakes of this administration, from the blithe acceptance of soaring deficits to the insistence that Saddam Hussein possessed weapons of mass destruction, have Mr Cheney's fingerprints all over them. He resisted attempts to get both congressional and UN approval for the invasion of Iraq. He has repeatedly favoured secrecy and "executive privilege" over consultation and compromise.'
• 'The cumulative effect of all these mistakes not only suggests a worrying preference for ideology over common sense, but an arrogant indifference to the checks and balances that are the glory of the American constitution. During the Ford administration, the Secret Service gave Mr Cheney the codename "Backseat". One of the big questions facing America is whether this particular backseat driver is taking his boss in the right direction.'
• Did Kerry Oppose Tanks & Planes? Not Lately. 'Kerry voted often against nuclear missiles and bombers in the '90s, but GOP claims that he opposed a long list of conventional weapons are overblown.'
• Yes, but people will still fall the GOP bullshit claims of flip flopping.
• Tentacles of Rage: The Republican propaganda mill, a brief history
• The Curse of Dick Cheney: The veep's career has been marred by one disaster after another [Rolling Stone].
• This article goes over Cheney's history.
• 'This pattern of misplaced confidence in Cheney, followed by disastrous results, runs throughout his life -- from his days as a dropout at Yale to the geopolitical chaos he has helped create in Baghdad. Once you get to know his history, the cycle becomes clear: First, Cheney impresses someone rich or powerful, who causes unearned wealth and power to be conferred on him. Then, when things go wrong, he blames others and moves on to a new situation even more advantageous to himself.'
• ' Those who have known him over the years remain astounded by what they describe as his almost autistic indifference to the thoughts and feelings of others. "He has the least interest in human beings of anyone I have ever met," says John Perry Barlow, his former supporter. Cheney's freshman-year roommate, Steve Billings, agrees: "If I could ask Dick one question, I'd ask him how he could be so unempathetic." '
• I've been posting links for months that show what a freak Dick Cheney is. Bush and Cheney are unimpressive in both ability and character. Powell and Rice, on the other hand are impressive but they are so marred by Bush and Cheney. The only thing impressive about Bush and Cheney is their audacity.  Audacity is fine --when it is preceded or followed by results. I wonder if the masses will ever open their eyes about this stuff.
• Visual timeline of Bush's Air National Guard service
• The timeline is a nice way of condensing the information.
• Boing Boing on the above link:
• ' President Bush had a lot of fun as a pilot in the Air National Guard. He got to fly really cool jets, while maintaining the lifestyle of a rich playboy with plenty of upstairs connections that allowed him to ignore direct orders from his commander and come and go as he pleased. And now, the President has a team of folks dedicated to smearing Kerry for volunteering for hazardous duty in Vietnam. And it's working! Most people now believe Bush is a military hero while Kerry is a shirking, wobbly liar. The president is a lot smarter than I thought.'
• ' Simon sez: "I put together this visual explanation of Dubya's Air National Guard service (or lack thereof) based entirely on the released documents to date. My goal was to put the confusing mixture of events and records into some kind of order." '
• Just One Question... "How many times have you been arrested, Mr. President?".
• The site is collecting a bounty 'to the first person to ask George W. Bush this question in a public forum.'.
• At the moment the bounty is up to \$1,852.62.
• 'If it is unclaimed by 11/2/04, the total donations will be given to the DNC.'.
• Bush vs. Jesus. The link has a scan from Mad Magazine. I'm including it here so it doesn't disappear. It's reminiscent of Al Franken's "The Gospel of Supply Side Jesus" mini-comicbook.
• These arguments about how dangerous it is to switch Presidents during these times is absurd. If an avocado were President, then wouldn't it be a good time to replace the President?

Words, Writing

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