There are some really neat ideas here. Why do I get so worked up about interface?a
Things you should be looking at.
Wednesday, June 28, 2006
Tuesday, June 27, 2006
It is easier to demonstrate than describe. Click this link:
Go ahead, do it now.
See? You're now in a chat window with anyone else who has loaded the page through Gabbly. Not very useful on a site with as low traffic as this one, but:
- Gabbly can generate an embeddable chat device that can be implanted on any page- like a blog sidebar or even a blog post. And it can generate RSS.
- Imagine people having real live flame wars of commentary while reading a story on CNN! Or on VoteJake!
Monday, June 26, 2006
"Welcome to the Listr. This post will be updated every time I come across another new name that has an ‘r’ at the end. It seems that it’s really important to have a good and original name first, before you can launch a service in this era of the 2.0 interweb. Also don’t forget to be in beta for a rather long time. It really gives the users the impression that you’re actually trying to make it work.
Sunday, June 25, 2006
Blummy is an organizer for your bookmarklets, customized easily, quickly, and precisely for your needs. The result is that you get a ton of convenient, time-saving features that only take up one button's worth of real estate in your browser's toolbar.
Ever post a comment on a blog, then forget to go back and check the post to see how the conversation continued? Co.mments makes this easy. You can even set up an RSS feed to be updated when new comments are posted.
Not content to stop there, he also recorded his own original Sesame Street song (contray to what others have posted, this doesn't sound like an arrangement of the Sesame Street theme song to me).
Friday, June 23, 2006
Thursday, June 22, 2006
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Hurray! I though Futurama was better than the episodes of the Simpsons that were broadcast at the same time. Next to Futurama, Family Guy is crapola.
"The quirky animated show from "Simpsons" creator Matt Groening was canceled by Fox about two years ago, but will return with at least 13 new episodes on Comedy Central by 2008.
This is only the second time in television history that a show sent to TV's trash heap has been resurrected. Curiously, the first was "Family Guy," also an animated Fox show."
Wednesday, June 21, 2006
One Good Move provides us with two great pieces of Stephen video:
'60 Minutes' Profile on Colbert
Colbert on Letterman
(Both are embedded Quicktime)
WikiMapia is a project to describe the whole planet Earth.
How to use
Just move the map to find interesting places, click on rectangles. To add an interesting place or object use Add New link. Note: Please only add places interesting to everyone.
Who We Are
Wikimapia was created by Alexandre Koriakine and Evgeniy Saveliev, inspired by Google maps and Wikipedia. Release date: 24 may 2006.
My brother has been getting interested in mapping mashups lately. If you see something I've missed, please be sure to let me know. Also let me know if you add any places to WikiMapia.
I actually like a lot of Abrams' work, and I definitely admire Matt Damon's work...but I'm frankly sick to death of $hitty Star Trek cultural products, no matter how much I've liked Shatner's work on Boston Legal (playing an egotistical, macho lawyer who is losing his mind) and his last album, 'Has Been'. Produced by Ben Folds, I actually really like this album.
Second, my brother, Andrew, has been emailing me to check out the new fan-produced Star Trek series, Starship Exeter (What, Starfleet Academy is is New Hampshire now? WTF?) . I don't care for it, and especially dislike the continued use of godawful 70s design elements, but you may think differently. Here's a direct link to act one of The Tessaurian Intersection. Andrew thinks the production values are surprisingly good (Update, 6/23/2006 - Andrew has clarified tht he didn't think they were good, but that they perfectly replicated the original program's godawful production design). I think that given what some folks can now do at home, the Starship Exeter folks could do a hell of a lot better.
On the other side of the atlantic, BBC Wales DOES know how to revive good Sci-Fi from previous decades. The new Doctor Who series that started up in 2005 is now running on the Sci-Fi Network. They've managed to capture everything that made the old series great, while adding modern production values and, believe it or not, good writers.
I may have mentioned that my wife is a professor of art and design history. I understand her passion to be for the history of visual culture, and she has a special love for architecture. These interests have so penetrated my thinking that I'm actually very excited to see the upcomming film, Sketches of Frank Gehry. I first became aware of Gehry while noticing the Frederick R. Weisman Art Museum at the University of Minnesota.
Wikipedia entry on Gehry
Trailer for the film (Quicktime)
Reviews of the film at Metacritic
An article on Biederman's theory is here, and here's Discovery Channel's coverage.
My wife is a scholar of art and design history. Does this lend new meaning to the They Might Be Giants song "The Statue Got Me High"? [lyrics]
If we fancy ourselves people who enjoy learning, are we really just a sort of benign addict? Does this explain the sometime resulting depression when smart (and/or intellectually curious) people are not intellectually challenged? Are they really intellectually curious, or just addicts?
(Someone, please be impressed that I managed to cram neuroscience, TMBG, Art History, and Feynman into one post.)
Tuesday, June 20, 2006
Developed by The Center for History and New Media at George Mason University, SmartFox will...
...enable users, with a single click, to grab a citation to a book, journal article, archival document, or museum object and store it in their browser. Researchers will then be able to take notes on the reference, link that reference to others, and organize both the metadata and annotations in ways that will greatly enhance the usefulness of, and the great investment of time and money in, the electronic collections of museums and libraries. All of the information SmartFox gathers and the researcher creates will be stored on the client's computer, not the institution's server (unlike commercial products like Amazon's toolbar), and will be fully searchable. The Web browser, the premier platform for research now and in the future, will achieve the kind of functionality that the users of libraries and museums would expect in an age of exponentially increasing digitization of their holdings.C'mon, that doesn't sound like something you want?
Tags: smartfox, firefox scholar, firefox, george mason university, center for history and new media
I think my wife, Liz, became certain I needed to be in library school when I tried to explain to her that tagging is folksonomy but that folksonomy is not tagging.
Today I learned about TagFetch, a tool that searches the tags of many "web 2.0" sites that employ tagging, including flickr, YouTube, Newsvine, reddit, tailrank, del.icio.us, technorati, and feedster.
Discussion on favorite Firefox keyboard shortcuts at Digg.
Not using Firefox yet? Get started.
Got questions about Firefox?
Email 'em to me at pointingandgiggling_AT_gmail_DOT_com
Monday, June 19, 2006
Sunday, June 18, 2006
OPACs (Online Public Access Catalogues) are never as easy or effective to use.
A great and funny illustration of this is What if Amazon sucked like our OPAC by David Walker.
To be fair, the interface he uses here to access the amazon.com API is agreed to be obsolete, but it makes the point beautifully. Libraries are going to have to compete with amazon.com and netflix if they want to avoid going the way of the dinosaurs
Fair warning, the NY Times article requires registration or BugMeNot (If you don't have the BugMeNot Firefox extension yet, get it here).
are mass produced Bio-engineered pets implemented today. Each pet comes pre-packaged as a fully self-contained unit. Genpets™ learn and adapt. They are fully living pets, but better, modified to be as reliable, dependable and efficient as any other 'technology' we use in our busy lives."
Interesting commentary from this creative site for a product that does not exist.
Al's album was suppposed to be released in late June but has been delayed by the label for some reason. Meanwhile, Al decided to release a track online in mp3 format for free.
How would you like to download a brand new Weird Al song... for free? Yeah, we thought you might. Right-click (ctrl-click for Mac) on one of the links below, and select "save target as" (or "download linked file" for Mac). Don't say we never gave you anything!
You can download it here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, or here.
Oh, did we mention here?
Saturday, June 17, 2006
Friday, June 16, 2006
Thursday, June 15, 2006
"Peanut Gallery allows you and your friends to have a movie theater experience live, in real-time, over a local Bonjour network or the internet.
You and up to 7 guests can enjoy video or audio from local files, your .Mac iDisk, or the World Wide web, complete with pre-rolls, intermission and Core Video-Powered theater-like visual effects.
Interact with each other via Maya-rendered 30fps* animated characters, inline real-time text chat, and voice.
Peanut Gallery isn't just a video player – it's a Shared Media Experience!
Wednesday, June 14, 2006
Yeah it is true. I read the comic.
No, he's not gay. He's publically revealing his secret identity as Peter Parker.
For us comics geeks, this is pretty amazing. The rest of you can just ignore this post.
Good summary of Wikipedia on what the Civil War series is about for those who haven't heard.
Superhero comics are really growing up.
I love that Captain America is leading those who refuse government registration.
Tuesday, June 13, 2006
Monday, June 12, 2006
Here's the thing: It's not that great a film.
Yeah, yeah- put aside the social significance (admittedly substantial and serious) of a mainstream, oscar-winning film about a gay love affair.
That aside, not a great film.
Beautiful scenery, good cinematography, decent performances, but...not a great film.
Really. Wholly over-rated. Don't kick yourself if you miss it.
I just uninstalled Google Earth...
...You mentioned that there are other faster programs available. Would you point me to them? I specifically am looking for the ability to measure distances as well as look at satellite and hybrid images at the same time...what I mean by "distance" is being able to click your way along a route and add the mileage.
Absolutely! (And thanks, Steve, for being the driving force behind each and every "Ask David" post thus far.)
For those not interested in my preferences, check out this excellent comparison of services at TechCrunch.
My favorites for hybrid views (both street names and satellite imaging) are Google Maps and Windows Live Local (though I find Windows Live Local a bit slow and clumsy with an awkward interface, the "Bird's Eye View" imaging is really nice).
For getting the distance on a route, try Gmaps Pedometer. This is another Google Maps mashup that exemplifies the coolness of open APIs and Web2.0.
Got more questions? Send 'em! pointingandgiggling_AT_gmail_DOT_com.
Sunday, June 11, 2006
Some fans made it into a short film (Quicktime .mov, not bad, not great) that you can see here.
You can also download the story as a pdf here.
Saturday, June 10, 2006
It is hilarious to me, but I'm a geeky librarian-in-training
In seriousness, though- Outgoing president of the American Library Association, Michael Gorman, has been criticized by many as being anti-technology and has even been accussed of pushing the profession towards a culture clash or generational struggle.
Information Technology has radically changed the world, and it isn't done transforming us yet. I.T. has taken apart the traditional structure of a library, and no-one has really figured out yet what NEW structure will work.
In the age of NetFlix and Amazon.com, libraries need to catch up (and catch up damn quick) if they wish to avoid going the way of the dinosaurs. It is an exciting time to be entering the world of librarianship, but it is likely to be a bumpy ride.
Michael Casey's comments are fairly representational of response to Gorman's remarks in the biblioblogosphere.
The article Casey writes about can be found here.
Techno-savvy Librarians weigh in on Gorman's luddite tendencies.
Relax, it is a medical discussion- his doctor asked him for a lab specimen to test the results of his recent vasectomy.
But Jake is a hilarious person. His posts include remarks like:
Whole post is here.
Jake never fails to entertain.
Friday, June 09, 2006
Hi again - You mention invitations to Google. It looks like you can just sign up. What's the deal with the invitations?
Well, it might look that way at first, but you can't really get a Google account without either an invitation or a cell phone.
The first Google accounts (in April 2004) were just for Gmail. Google's method of marketing this new service was completely viral. Folks working at google sent invitations to their friends. As time passed, those first few users were allowed to send out a few invitations of their own. The growth was then exponential, but had an air of exclusivity. It was brilliant marketing. Now, people like me who got a gmail account in about June of 2004 have more invitations than we know what to do with, and there are many more services Google offers that require an account. (Good list of Google Services is here)
There are now TWO ways to get a Google account. You can sign up to have a confirmation code sent to your cell phone, or you can receive an invitation from someone who already has an account.
Many people don't want to give Google their cell number. That's understandable.
Here is Google's official explanation of why these are the only two ways to sign up for an account.Have a question? Ask David! Email your question to pointingandgiggling_AT_gmail_DOT_com.
Thursday, June 08, 2006
Still in Google Labs, so they aren't finished perfecting it- but this is a great idea. Somethings can't be easily shared via del.icio.us or similar online favorites/tagging.
You can get Google Browser Sync here.
Many IVR (interactive voice response) systems are programmed to recognize key words. Among those keywords are frequently a list of swear words, like the FCC's dirty 7. When asked to respond, use on of those epithets and you will likely be transferred directly to a live human being.
Article from Lifehacker here.
Wednesday, June 07, 2006
Sort of related: Viagra was originally created as a antihypertensive and antianginal drug. The whole erection thing was a side-effect that Pfizer decided to market. But in order to market a medication, it had to address a medical condition.
So Pfizer created "Erectile Disfunction".
Really. The term "Erectile Disfunction" didn't EXIST previously.
This crap makes me feel like a grumpy of cynic.
Tuesday, June 06, 2006
This is unusual and very interesting.
Fans of new media, film, photography, and design should check it out.
Made of manipulated still photographs, not video.
Links are to larger, embedded Quicktime video for those unhappy with Youtube version
Monday, June 05, 2006
Also no surprise that Ryan Hoover's metaspore links to me:
But these others are a little surprising:
Sunday, June 04, 2006
"This is pure politics. If has nothing to do with whether or not you believe in gay marriage. It's blatant posturing by Republicans, who are increasingly desperate as the midterm elections approach. There's not a lot else to get people interested in voting on them, based on their record of the last five years."
Saturday, June 03, 2006
Direct link to Quicktime video
Site and explanation with embedded video
More ridiculous Diet Coke and Mentos videos at YouTube
Related NPR story
New meaning to the phrase "Bottle Rocket" at hedonistica.com
Check out Chali 2na's appearance in "Connect the Dots" from Roots Manuva
I'm way behind because this came out years ago, but I first heard this a few weeks ago. Great track.
- Posted hours of operation for stores and restaurants mean NOTHING. Businesses will open and close when they feel like it. Get over it.
- You wil hear an enormous amount of awful, '80s music. For reasons unknown to us, '80s pop is enormously popular and heard everywhere. (Note: We noticed this in Italy and Amsterdam, too- but not in Paris)
- There are fewer anglophones per capita in Spain than in most of the rest of Europe. Learn survival phrases. Take a phrasebook.
- Rick Steve's books for Italy, Netherlands, and Paris were great for us. Accurate prices, good reccommendations. His Spain book sucked. Not a single price was correct, and there was an alarming amount of innaccurate information. Just awful.
- French tourists will often smell bad. German tourists will usually be in large, loud groups. Japanese tourists will be wearing audio devices to allow them to hear their tour guide better. English tourists will wear large, floppy sun hats. Take note of what you find distasteful in the behavior of other tourists and avoid those behaviors. A Spaniard who doesn't speak English will not understand you better if you speak louder.
- Yes, bullfighting is disgusting, but there's no reason to point this out to Spaniards. Yes, it would more appropriately be called "Ceremonial Bull Slaughter as Performance Art", but it is extremely bad manners to point this out. Bullfighting is reported on in the ARTS sections of Spanish newspapers, not in the Sports section.
- Getting off the plane in Barcelona and asking where to see Flamenco is like getting off the plane at Heathrow and asking where to see Scottish highland dancing...or like landing in Los Angeles and asking where to hear the best bluegrass music. Flamenco is from Andalusia. Go to Sevilla.
- Be aware of regional differences. "Catalunya is not Spain" is much like "Quebec is not Canada." Read up in advance and avoid insulting your hosts.