Monday, February 28, 2005


First we had Podcasting. Now we have Shufflecasting.

Formal Portrait

Who will throw rocks at Steve Jobs' house?

Inside joke. I know you should slander the dead, but it's all in the restraining order. They patched things up later when both their kids attending the same school.

Jef Raskin did as much to make the GUI, including the one on the PC, what we use today. I didn't know he was sick.

GUI Pioneer Jef Raskin Has Passed Away

Saturday, February 26, 2005

I haven't slept all day, but I did get a second song done. It's called Grace, and as soon as convert them to Mp3's I'll upload them them someplace for download.

PBS Chief worries about FCC fines

PBS used to be last place you had to worry about censorship. Thanks to the FCC, that has all changed.
WASHINGTON (AP) -- Worried about big fines from the government, the Public Broadcasting Service is carefully monitoring the content of its shows for profanity, nudity or anything that may be deemed indecent, the nonprofit network's chief says.

Social Security Trust Fund Sits in Drawer in Parkersburg

The fund is a piece of paper obligating the United States of America to the amount owed.

PARKERSBURG, W.Va. (AP) -- The Social Security trust fund really does exist - nestled in the bottom drawer of an unremarkable government file cabinet.

It's in a pair of white loose-leaf notebooks holding plastic page covers. Each caresses a piece of paper representing a bond worth a staggering amount of money. Say, $8,577,396,000.00 ($8.577 billion), due on June 30, 2013, with 6.5 percent interest.

NYT on Odeo and Podcasting

Noah Glass, right, and Evan Williams, who founded Odeo in a San Francisco apartment, hope to capitalize on a flood of amateur and professional audio files online.

For a Start-Up, Visions of Profit in Podcasting

SAN FRANCISCO, Feb. 24 - The primarily amateur Internet audio medium known as podcasting will take a small, hopeful step on Friday toward becoming the commercial Web's next big thing.

That step is planned by Odeo, a five-person start-up that is based in a walk-up apartment in this city's Mission District and was co-founded by a Google alumnus. The company plans to introduce a Web-based system that is aimed at making a business of podcasting - the process of creating, finding, organizing and listening to digital audio files that range from living-room ramblings to BBC newscasts.

Friday, February 25, 2005


My first track, Stomp, is finished. I'll try to figure out a place where I can make it available for download.

Inventor of intermittent windshield wiper dies

The Associated Press is reporting Robert Kearns, the inventor of intermittent windshield wipers, has died. He was 77.
Kearns died of cancer Feb. 9 at his home in suburban Baltimore, his family said.

Kearns, a onetime Wayne State University professor, received numerous patents in 1967 for his design for wipers that paused between swipes, making them useful in very light rain or mist. The invention allows the driver to set the interval at which the wiper sweeps the window.

He shopped his invention around to various automakers but did not reach a licensing deal with any of them. But carmakers eventually began offering intermittent wipers as standard or optional equipment.

Hotmail problems for both free and paid users

Hotmail has been a mess for a week. It won't work for hours at a time and will make me sign in over and over again. Now it appear those poor people who paid Hotamil for premium Hotmail e-mail accounts have been having problems of their own.
The problems began Tuesday and were being resolved Friday, said Brooke Richardson, lead product manager for Microsoft's MSN online division. Richardson said the glitch was caused by a server problem, and that the system was not attacked.

Earlier this week, some customers who pay for services such as Hotmail Plus and MSN Premium complained that they couldn't see some e-mails, had trouble logging in and were experiencing slowness. Richardson said no data was lost, but some people were temporarily unable to access all their e-mails.

By Friday, Richardson said the situation had "stabilized" but some customers were still experiencing slowness. She said it wasn't yet clear when the situation would be completely resolved.

Neil McCormick is going to be so jealous

The Associated Press is reporting U2 frontman Bono is belived to be among the list of nominees for this year's Nobel Peace Price.

I'm half way finished with Killing Bono. I love rock biographies. (The book doesn't have anything to do with actually killing Bono by the way).

They didn't just lose data...

They lost the tapes holding the data.

Bank of America Consumer Data Tapes Lost

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) -- Bank of America Corp. has lost computer data tapes containing personal information on 1.2 million federal employees, including some members of the U.S. Senate.

The lost data includes Social Security numbers and account information that could make customers of a federal government charge card program vulnerable to identity theft.

Sen. Pat Leahy, D-Vt., is among those senators whose personal information is on the missing tapes, spokeswoman Tracy Schmaler said.

The good news is unless not anyone off the street would be able to do anything with this data, unless they have access to certian kinds of tape drives and a million dollar mainframe computer.

Complete album coming soon

My first complete song, written and producted in GarageBand is about finished. I'll convert it to an Mp3 and find some place to upload it for download. The track, called Stomp, is somewhere between rave and trace, with a little rave and hard house mixed in. (I've never been that clear on the correct seperation of electronic music). I'm pretty proud of it myself.

Watch out Moby

One of the best things about getting a new iBook, other than the faster processor and more RAM, is all the new software. I now up-to-date with OS X  10.3 and all the iLife applications.

I've been using iTunes and iPhoto for years. I don't shoot movies and I don't have a DVD burner so iMovie and iDVD hold no appeal for me.

The gem is GarageBand. I've been laying down techno and house tracks all afternoon. I can now "play" my Mac, and I don't have to spend thousand of dollars to do it.

New iPods with new price points released

iPod shuffle. 512MB $99, 1GB $129.iPod mini. 4GB $199, 6GB $249.iPod. 20GB $299.
iPod photo. 30GB $349, 60GB $449.

Marilyn Manson did not star in 'The Wonder Years'

Looks like the 10 greatest rock'n'roll myths are well....myths.

Some of these I have never heard. The one about 'Mama' Cass choking on a sandwich was widely reported in the press at the time of her death. (Yes, I was 11 years old in 1974. I recall the news reports of her death.) I have to admit I've never heard the Marilyn Manson starring in 'The Wonder Years' one.

Become a micropatron

Jason Kottke has quit his job to blog full-time. (Lucky bastard). He is asking everyone for their support. The page for financial contributions is here. He is looking for contributions in the $30.00 range.

Wonkette's RSS feed in Bloglines

I can't get Wonkette's RSS feed to work in Bloglines. Does anyone have any ideas?

Found Tsunami Photos

The picture below is from a camera, containing the last photos taken by a couple who lost their lives in the Dec. 26 tsunam, that washed up on a deserted beach in Thailand. The camera was found by Christian Pliet, a misionary who located the couple's realtives.

The story is ran in yesterday's Seattle Times.

Associated Press RSS News Feeds

I'm so glad to add these feeds to Bloglines: AP RSS News Feeds

The Wall Street Journal should jettison its subscriber model and open its archive

Wired: The Wall Street Journal is in danger of becoming irrelevant, because it hides all its content behind a cost-wall.

Gonzo in life, and death

The Rocky Mountain News is running a bizarre story today about how Hunter S. Thompson’s wife, family, and friends sat around drinking with his corps, only hours after he had put a bullet through his head.
ASPEN — Hunter S. Thompson heard the ice clinking.

The literary champ was sitting in his command post kitchen chair, a piece of blank paper in his favorite typewriter, dead of a self-inflicted gunshot through the mouth hours earlier.

But a small circle of family and friends gathered around with stories, as he wished, with glasses full of his favored elixir — Chivas Regal on ice.

"It was very loving. It was not a panic, or ugly, or freaky," Thompson's wife, Anita Thompson, said Thursday night in her first spoken comments since the icon's death Sunday. "It was just like Hunter wanted. He was in control here."

Anita Thompson also echoes the comments that have been made by Hunter Thompson's son and daughter-in-law: That her husband's suicide did not come from the bottom of the well, but was a gesture of strength and ultimate control made as his life was at a high-water mark.

Sunday, February 06, 2005

Meme: If you were going to invite 10 bloggers for dinner, whom would you invite?

The goal of this exercise is to identify nine other bloggers that you would like to meet for dinner/drinks. The only caveat is that these bloggers must be strangers, you haven't met them before. State the blogger's name, a link to the blog, and why you would like him/her to be in attendance.

Taken from the J-Walk Blog.

In no particular order:
Lawrence Lessig - Lessig is at the front of copyright reform. The author of many books on the subject, he has also appear before the United States Supreme Court to argue against our current opt out system. Lessig clerked for Justice Antonin Scalia. Lessig is an interesting guy and I'm sure he would be a great dinner guest.

Doc Searls - Doc is an old-time PR guy who told us all to get on the Cluetrain. Doc is a deep thinker. He blogs about blogging, which I'm sure gets old sometimes. Doc watched the Dean campaign unfolder on the internet and has some interesting insights. Doc also wites from of my favorite monthly publications, Linux Journal, althought Doc seems to be more of a Mac head now-a-days, he hasn't given up on Linux just yet.

danah boyd - danah studies social technologies like Friendster, blogs, instant messaging, and cell phones. I've read most of her papers and I find her work fascinating. She has an LiveJournal account, but I don't recall her username. She also a Mac user and seems like she would be a fun person to hang out with.

Xeni Jardin - Xeni writes for one of my favorite blogs, Boing Boing, as well as reporting for Wired and NPR. She is also the online producer of, among other things. We would need Xeni to bring her insights into  popular culture and technology to the dinner table.

Wil Wheaton - No dinner would be complete without all around good guy and alpha geek Wil Wheaton. I hear he has a funny story about William Shatner. I like to hear his take on working on GTA: San Andreas, behind the scenes dirt about Tech TV and his stint on G4, and of course all things Trek.

Leo Laporte - He seem like a really nice guy. He has doing tech related radio and TV shows for years. Leo left TechTV when it was purchased by G4. He can still be seen on Call For Help on TechTV Canada, and he still has a radio show out on the left coast. I'd would like much more to hear Leo on Sat. mornings than Kim Komando. Digital Goddess my arse.

Ana Marie Cox, AKA Wonkette - She hot. She funny. That about says it all.

Dan Gillmor - Former big J journalist, now working on defining and promoting grassroots journalism. The whole bloggers as journalist thing interests me, becuase I was educated trained to be a journalist, and I want to think that I haven't wasted all my education.

Cory Doctorow - Another Boing Boing contributer, Cory  is a science fiction author and European Affairs Coordinator for the Electronic Frontier Foundation. His newest novel, Someone Comes to Town, Someone Leaves Town, due out in May is about novel about urban wireless mesh network guerrillas.

Saturday, February 05, 2005

Dealing with Social Network Sprawl

How do I maintain meaningful relationships with over 300 people?

I stopped using Friendster months ago. I do keep in email contact with one person on Blogshares. The question becomes how many social networks does one need. I find most of mine overlap. But my Blogger friends are different from my LiveJournal friends for the most part.

Here's another great entry from the same blog: Tracing the Evolution of Social Software

Macs, Macs everywhere

The number of iPods on the street and iBooks in the Taylor Books cafe is eye-popping. It appears every high school and college-aged person in this town got an iPod for Christmas. I was engaged in a nice conversation with a young lady in Taylor Books this afternoon about the virtues of iPod and iBook ownership. She said she has a Mac Mini on order as well.

A couple of weeks ago I was there with my attorney friend Brian when some young dude turned on his PowerBook. The chime make me whirl in surprise. He looked at me like I was crazy. I had to expain I wasn't used to hearing Macs start in public and was wondering if I was hearing things.

Looks like I'm going to get a new iBook with my tax refund. Blair gets the one I have now.

I need to visit...

The Official Marx Toy Museum of Glen Dale, West Virginia

The Official Marx Toy Museum of Glen Dale, West Virginia is dedicated to preserving the beauty and the history of Marx toys, the passion and the genius of the man who made them possible, and the talents and creativity behind the Men and Women who dedicated their lives to toy production.

The Official Marx Toy Museum provides an opportunity for former Marx employees to reunite and admire their endless hours of labor, for families to renew and share their childhood memories, and for Marx enthusiasts to gather and admire the creativity and the quality of Marx toys.

I guess the Online Museum Tour will do for now.

I used to have the the Giant Battle of the Blue & Gray playset. I played with it for years.

I had a Johnny West also...


I even had the horse, Thunderbolt.

I hate that I can't do a proper Blogroll on Blogger. Here's a list of what I read everyday.

My Blogroll

Time To Turn Off Your Phone

From Techdirt:
It appears that some people still need a bit of a lesson in when it's appropriate to turn your mobile phone off. At least in Germany, it appears people have learned that at a public performance (cinema, concert hall), it's a good idea to shut the phone off -- nearly 90% of them claim to do so. However, when asked the same question about leaving their phone on during sex, it turns out that about 54% of Germans are available on their mobile phones while getting it on. Of course, what they should have asked is how many actually will answer the phone? It kind of brings a new meaning to the Shag Phone concept, I guess. Perhaps people leave the phone on because they don't get those little announcements beforehand, like when they're at public performances. The study also found that 59% leave the phones on in restaurants, 37% while at work and 34% while driving.

You've seen him on late night TV... read his blog.

 My Photo

Death is no obstacle to the long arm of the RIAA

A story about the RIAA suing a 83-year-old dead woman is making its way across the blogsphere  tonight. The story ran in this morning's Charleston Gazette. Looks like the Gazette server held up to slashdotting.

Friday, February 04, 2005

Government Payoffs of Journalists

Photo Meme: Made with Google Image Search

first car:

place you grew up:

place you live now:

what shows up when you type your name into google:

your grandmothers name:

your favorite food:

your favorite drink:

your favorite song:

favorite smell:

favorite pair of shoes ever:
Men's Water Resistant Hikers
Oddly I find myself sitting around wondering who won the election in Iraqi. Will they divide the country into blue states and red states? What about exit polling?

Blair tells me the news is reporting ONLY 25 people were killed in election day violence.
My friend Brian the attorney says:
You've been in this job too long when you see a headline* that says "al-Zarqawi associates arrested in iraq" and you start wondering: what sort of law would they practice? Would the receptionist answer "al-Zarqawi and may I help you?" Would their helpline be something like " Press 1 if you have called to request a bombing. Press 2 if you wish to discuss the finer points of Sharia law. Press 3 if you would like to express your contempt for the Great Satan America and the lesser Satan Israel. Press 4 if you wish to discuss a current case or Press 5 if you are a new client. Stay on the line for further assistance"?


* I had originally typed HEADLIE. I wonder if that reflects some suppressed distrust of the media...

Free Markets

B Dalton is being kicked out of the Charleston Town Center and all the employees are being laid off. This news was confirmed to me last night by an B Dalton employee. It appears Books-A-Million will be moving into the former Montgomery Ward space, according to an story in yesterdays Charleston Daily Mail.

This pattern of running stores out of the mall to make way for other stores seems to be getting a little out of hand. Recently mall management has closed a McDonald's and Long John Slivers for a Starbucks. You would think they would be more interested in keeping stores open and collecting the rent, while free market forces decide which is the better bookstore or fast food join. But it appears they are opening new stores with de facto no-compete agreement building into the new agreements.

Rich Man, Poor Man

The Washington Post ran a long piece on Jack Whittaker on Sunday.

The day would come when many West Virginians recalled the story of Jack's Powerball Christmas with a shudder at the magnitude of ruination: families asunder, precious lambs six feet under, folks undone by the lure of all that easy money.


The new Graffiti is out and it's not the paper it used to be. The redesign looks like crap, and it has lost its alterative, counter-culture bite. They lost the most entertaining Personals section.

The Charleston Gazette has picked up H. John Rogers, the closest thing this state has to Hunter S. Thompson, and has started a competing publication called The Gazz.

Funny Stuff

Clueless MCSE DeVry Grad Reviews Mac mini

When I consider that a good deal of my time is spent running applications like Disk Defragmenter, Scandisk, Norton AV, Windows Update and Ad-Aware--none of which are available for the Mac platform--it doesn't make sense for me to "switch" to a Mac at this time.


I need to figure out how to do a blogroll on Blogger.

I discovered Bloglines a few nights ago. Now I'm addicted. it's better than a newsreader will all the features of a newsreader. It appears to hold feeds in some sort of cache which saves sites a lot of bandwith.

You can see my Bloglines subscriptions here.

This thing looks like Mothman

A different kind of Watergate papers

I watched All the Presidents Men the other night after the State of the Union. Many people my age say this moive was what got them interested in journalism. I just noticed on Metafilter that the  Woodward and Bernstein's Watergate Papers are now available online at the University of Texas web site (press release/about the collection). They also note Deep Throat is still not uncovered.

I think Deep Throat is Al Haig. John Dean said a few years ago  that he was going to name Deep Throat, but then he chickened out. I think he said he was going to do it in his column that runs on FindLaw. Maybe it was just a way of driving more traffic to FindLaw.

Of course University of Illinois students say they have already figured out who Deep Throat is.