December 31, 2002
RSS Mix-Tapes

Novalis proposes an RSS mix-tape system:

What I think the world needs is an RSS mix-tape system. So, you pick your favorite 100 blogs, and they all show up on one massive page, each entry with a checkbox next to it. You check the checkbox, and it comes out on an output RSS page, which is essentially your "mix tape" of the input feeds.
The input RSS feeds are the albums you're picking songs off of, and the output RSS is your mix tape. A traditional RSS aggregator is like simply playing each song off each CD. What I propose that lazyweb create for me is more selective -- "this is what I found interesting among these twenty blogs."

He also mentions the idea of 'remixing' two or more 'mixes'. I think AmphetaDesk could be hacked to do something like this.

Posted by adam at 03:28 PM
Jonathan Lethem plays Mafia

Jonathan Lethem plays Mafia [Dave "Novalis" Turner]

Posted by adam at 03:01 PM
December 29, 2002
The Dangers of Dihydrogen Monoxide

We'll resume our regularly scheduled weblog after a short public service announcement:


Some dangers associated with DHMO:

  • Death due to accidental inhalation of DHMO, even in small quantities.
  • Gaseous DHMO can cause severe burns
  • Thermal variations in DHMO are a suspected contributor to the El Nino effect.
  • Prolonged exposure to solid DHMO causes severe tissue damage

Some uses of Dihydrogen Monoxide:

  • in nuclear power plants
  • in abortion clinics
  • by both the KKK and the NAACP during rallies and marches
  • historically, in Hitler's death camps in Nazi Germany, and in prisons in Turkey, Serbia, Croatia, Libya, Iraq and Iran
  • in World War II prison camps in Japan, and in prisons in China for various forms of torture

Please take a moment out of your busy day to spread the word about the dangers of Dihydrogen Monoxide in the hope that someday convince the governments of the world to outlaw this killer substance. Thank you

Posted by adam at 09:25 PM
Enrique Iglesias' Real Voice

Listen to this mp3 of Enrique Iglesias singing at one of his concerts. The audio was recorded directly from his microphone as opposed to what goes out the speakers to the audience. Bottom line is he's just another fake musician with absolutely no vocal talent at all. But it sure is funny to listen to his real voice.

[update] If you tried to download the mp3 and got a 403 error try again it'll work this time.

Posted by adam at 09:11 PM
No One Listens To Techno

Take a listen to this really cool bootleg that uses samples from Eminem - Without Me.

Posted by adam at 04:42 PM
December 26, 2002
Google of the Future / Do We Really Need the Whole Web?

Paolo wrote a piece titled: Who Needs the Web Anymore?

Now, we all use google only as a way to jump to a specific site and we seldom use the google cache (I use it when a site I'm looking for is unreachable), but still, the cache is there. This means that google can provide us not only the index but also the very content we're searching.


Google could also open their own notification system. How many seconds do you think that would pass between such a service announcement and having it implemented in all major weblogging and content management tools?

If such a system would exisit, making google's cache relly up-to-date, we would not need to connect to the web anymore, accessing google would be enough.

A while back I started a novel which had a throw away line with a similar look on Google in the future.

"Yea, no prob Em. So what's going on out on the wild wild web today?"

"Oh, not much, Google says only 12.945 million pages have been updated today, quite slow, but fridays always are." With the size of the web surpassing 50 billion pages last year it became much more effective for webservers to just ping Google when a page updated than having Google have to crawl the whole thing every couple of months.

What do you seen in the future of Google and the Web?

Posted by adam at 09:41 PM
Christmas is Here

The new American Invisible Inc. short story Christmas is out.

Posted by adam at 09:28 PM
December 24, 2002
Setting Up OS X From Scratch

Take a look here for some nice OS X setup tips including:

  • Install XFree86
  • Install Fink package manager
  • Move the swapfile to a different partition
  • And more...

Whats the first thing you do when you install OS X?

Posted by adam at 01:23 PM
December 23, 2002
I Admit It, I'm An Idiot

So, I just changed the title of my weblog, I've been meaning to for a while. I was just embarrassed that I spelled smorgasbord incorrectly and didn't notice it for quite a long time. No, it wasn't a Star Trek reference or something, just my terrible spelling.

Have you ever failed to correct a mistake (for a long time) because you were embarrassed about making it?

Posted by adam at 03:10 PM
Very Interesting Article About The Cat In The Hat

Over at The New Yorker is a long article titled Cat People: What Dr. Seuss really taught us.

What's your favorite Dr. Seuss book?

Posted by adam at 02:52 PM
For That Special Woman In Your Life

Not sure what to get her? How about Caroline a Beretta M92 pistol, or maybe a Hello Kitty High Capacity .45 w/ Scope. [More choices]

What are you getting your girlfriend/wife for christmas?

Posted by adam at 02:47 PM
Freshmeat Launches Mac OS X Section

Freshmeat has launched a whole section devoted to Mac OS X software. [Slashdot Discussion]

Posted by adam at 02:29 PM
December 22, 2002
Finally I'm A Card Carrying Member of Something!

I'm now member #166 of the Free Software Foundation.

Sign Up Today!

Among other things, you receive:

20% Discount on GNU Press Purchases
You will receive a 20% discount on all purchases of FSF's GNU Press merchandise.This discount includes all products sold by FSF — from books toCDs to clothing.
Bootable Membership Card
You will receive a personalized, bootable, business-card-sizedGNU/Linux distribution as your membership card.
This GNU/Linux distribution is based on LNX-BBC. New cards will besent to renewing members every year if and only if there is a newmajor release of LNX-BBC.

Cool eh?. So, tell me, whats stopping you from signing up?

Posted by adam at 09:48 PM
NetNewsWire Pro Feature Requests

So here's my list of feature requests for NetNewsWire Pro after playing with its Weblog Editor and Notepad.

  • When I drag an item from the Notepad to the Weblog Editor that has an attached URL it really should be created as a link to that url.
  • Dragging a heirarchy of items to the Weblog Editor should automagically create nested <ul>'s.
  • A keystroke combination for preview in the Weblog Editor and also the ability to hit return to get out of the preview. (Mice suck) Ok I have one more feature request for the preview option, automagically resize the window that pops up so the whole post fits.
  • The ability to post to categories (I talked about this in my last entry).
  • A shift-return in the Notepad would create the new item above the current oen

What do you want to see in NetNewsWire Pro?

Posted by adam at 09:18 PM
NetNewsWire Pro Feature Requests

So here's my list of feature requests for NetNewsWire Pro after playing with its Weblog Editor and Notepad.

  • When I drag an item from the Notepad to the Weblog Editor that has an attached URL it really should be created as a link to that url.
  • Dragging a heirarchy of items to the Weblog Editor should automagically create nested <ul>'s.
  • A keystroke combination for preview in the Weblog Editor and also the ability to hit <return> to get out of the preview. (Mice suck) Ok I have one more feature request for the preview option, automagically resize the window that pops up so the whole post fits.
  • The ability to post to categories (I talked about this in my last entry).
Posted by adam at 09:14 PM
NetNewsWire Pro's Weblog Editor

The weblog editor in the NetNewsWire Pro Beta is really cool. But as Mena points out here, a Movable Type user who depends on categories can't use them in it yet. I'm sure thats high up on Brent's to-do list. When thats done I'll switch from Kung-Log.

Posted by adam at 06:26 PM
NetNewsWire Pro public beta
This 1.0b1 release of NetNewsWire pro includes a weblog editor, notepad, Find command, AppleScript support, and more. [Ranchero]

(This is also my first post using the weblog editor.)

Posted by adam at 06:16 PM
December 18, 2002
Deborah Marquit's online shop sells couture lingerie with a funky, techno twist:
[Her] vintage-inspired lingerie (demi-cup bras, boy briefs, bikinis, and G-strings) are delicate, handmade, and hand-dyed in a variety of fluorescent shades (they glow under black light!). Fans include Madonna, Britney, Sarah Jessica, blah blah blah. We can't guarantee the underthings will make you high-wattage, but hey, it's a start. And just think: No need for the night light; just take off your clothes.
[Boing Boing]

Who's going to buy me some fluorescent boy briefs for christmas?

Posted by adam at 04:07 PM
The Spirograph Nebula

This is really cool.

What is creating the strange texture of IC 418? Dubbed the Spirograph Nebula for its resemblance to drawings from a cyclical drawing tool, planetary nebula IC 418 shows patterns that are not well understood. Perhaps they are related to chaotic winds from the variable central star, which changes brightness unpredictably in just a few hours. By contrast, evidence indicates that only a few million years ago, IC 418 was probably a well-understood star similar to our Sun. Only a few thousand years ago, IC 418 was probably a common red giant star. Since running out of nuclear fuel, though, the outer envelope has begun expanding outward leaving a hot remnant core destined to become a white-dwarf star, visible in the image center. The light from the central core excites surrounding atoms in the nebula causing them to glow. IC 418 lies about 2000 light-years away and spans 0.3 light-years across. This false-color image taken from the Hubble Space Telescope reveals the unusual details.

Check out more cool images at Astronomy Picture of the Day.

And while I'm on the subject of APOD, anyone got an RSS feed of it?

Posted by adam at 03:42 PM
If You're Happy And You Know It Bomb Iraq
If you cannot find Osama, bomb Iraq.
If the markets are a drama, bomb Iraq.
If the terrorists are Saudi,
And your alibi is shoddy,
And your tastes remain quite gaudy,
Bomb Iraq.

Read the rest here.

Posted by adam at 03:31 PM
December 16, 2002
The Power of Voice

This article by Jon Udell is a really scary look at the future of audio processing.

Cheap storage makes it feasible to save voice recordings of many of our meetings, teleconferences, interviews, and other conversations. In some environments -- call centers and certain sectors of finance and government -- that already happens. But audio surveillance isn't yet routine, and the thorny legal, social, and cultural issues it raises haven't yet been widely debated. That's because, until now, there was no practical way to mine voice data.

As with other forms of practical obscurity, this artificial barrier was bound to topple, and now it has. Fast-Talk Communications' revolutionary phonetic indexing and search technology brings the magic of full-text search to the formerly opaque realms of audio recordings and video soundtracks. If you consider the way in which Google has already become everyone's indispensable "outboard brain," and extrapolate that to all the voice data that exists -- and to the vast quantities that soon will exist -- it's hard to avoid the conclusion that Fast-Talk is one of the most disruptive technologies in the pipeline.

Posted by adam at 11:26 PM
Ooooold Music

The Roots Music Listening Room has converted a bunch of 78 rpm records from the 20's, 30's (mostly, but some from up to the 70s) into mp3s for your listening pleasure.

Posted by adam at 11:14 PM
Google vs. Evil

If you haven't read it yet, go read the Wired article: Google vs. Evil.

Posted by adam at 09:39 PM
Weird Flash Stuff

Take a look at some weird/interesting flash stuff here. And then some more artistic flash here.

Posted by adam at 09:30 PM
Cool Clock

Take a look at this cool web clock.

[update] Found another cool one here.

Posted by adam at 05:17 PM
License Fun

The Creative Commons has launched their first project: The Licensing Project. Here's my license:

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License.
Posted by adam at 05:00 PM
December 15, 2002

I just added RSD support to this weblog. It shouldn't effect you the reader, but it will make it easier for me to configure software to edit this site. Here's what rsd does:

Really Simple Discovery is a way to help client software find the services needed to read, edit, or "work with" weblogging software...The goal is simple. To reduce the information required to UserName, Password, and homepage URL.

If you have a Movable Type weblog and want to add RSD support, head on over here.

Posted by adam at 04:46 PM
December 12, 2002
Another Advent Calendar

Lookie lookie.

Posted by adam at 07:13 PM
December 11, 2002
Tons of Stuff to Read

The staff of Boxes and Arrows published a big list of book recommendations on information architecture, interaction design, user centered design, design, usability, and more!.

Posted by adam at 09:56 PM
Broken Record, Broken Record, Broken Record...

Here's a cool Foxtrot strip.

Posted by adam at 05:29 PM
Technical Difficulties

We've been having some technical difficulties in the US, please forgive us.

Posted by adam at 05:26 PM
December 10, 2002
Is the Computer Desktop an Antique?

Steven Johnson wrote an article on the death of the desktop metaphor.

Posted by adam at 04:50 PM
I Sure Hope Not

In The Future We'll All Be Harry Potter

Posted by adam at 03:27 PM
December 09, 2002
Cool Web Comic: Nodwick

Take a look at Nodwick or start at the beginning. There is also some more strips here and here.

Posted by adam at 03:56 PM
December 03, 2002
JMS, It's All Your Fault!

It's nice to know your President watches good Sci-Fi. But it's not good when he gets his ideas for running the country from the bad guys.

Posted by adam at 06:40 PM
The FBI is Watching You

Read the full story.

Posted by adam at 06:29 PM
Perl Advent Calendar

Here is a cool Advent Calendar for Perl.

So far we've opened three days and have received:

  1. URI::Find
  2. IO::AtomicFile
  3. DBD::SQLite
Posted by adam at 06:25 PM
December 02, 2002
Mini-Review of New Michael Crichton

Steven Johnson posted a mini review of Prey the new Michael Crichton novel.

Posted by adam at 03:52 PM
December 01, 2002
The Free Land of Hypocratia

The Free Land of Hypocratia is a tiny, environmentally stunning nation, renowned for its absence of drug laws. Its compassionate, intelligent population of 5 million are free to do what they want with their own bodies, and vote for whoever they like in elections; if they go into business, however, they are regulated to within an inch of their lives.

It is difficult to tell where the omnipresent, corrupt, liberal, socially-minded government stops and the rest of society begins, but it devotes most of its attentions to Social Welfare, with areas such as Defence and Law & Order receiving almost no funds by comparison. The average income tax rate is 51%, and even higher for the wealthy. The private sector is almost wholly made up of enterprising fourteen-year-old boys selling lemonade on the sidewalk, although the government is looking at stamping this out.

Crime is relatively low. Hypocratia's national animal is the penguin, which frolics freely in the nation's many lush forests, and its currency is the wang.

Find out more at Nation States.
Posted by adam at 12:06 PM
Anonymous? Yea Right

Dave posted: "A promising new anonymous weblog. Check out the tagline. Interesting hexadecimal name."

Anonymous? Pffft, took me about 5 minutes of googling to find that the author is one <name removed at the request of the guilty> who also runs <other website removed>. Come on Dave, just cause you don't know who he is doesn't mean he's anonymous.

Posted by adam at 11:44 AM