Thursday, August 24, 2006

Apple recalls 1.8 million laptop batteries

Thursday, August 24, 2006
08:29 PM
hot potato

Apple recalls 1.8 million laptop batteries: "

toasted apple laptop battery

Dell isn't the only laptop manufacturer in town worried about their laptops lighting your genitals on fire, as Apple has just issued a recall for 1.8 million of their laptop batteries. Hot on the heels of Dell's recall of 4.1 million batteries, Apple is recalling batteries from their iBook G4 and PowerBook G4 lappies, with the new MacBooks and MacBook Pros apparently safe. The batteries from both recalls were made by everyone's favorite consumer electronics behemoth, Sony. The two recalls are the two largest in consumer electronics history, and the dramatic images of fiery laptops have a public relations nightmare of Dell's that Apple would love to avoid. While the upcoming Sony Playstation 3 won't come with any of the cursed overheating batteries, it's expected that there will be a high risk of that crashing and burning as well. Hiyo!


(Via SCI FI Tech Blog.)

SCI FI Channel To Become SurgeTV

Thursday, August 24, 2006
08:46 PM
ahh rumors

SCI FI Channel To Become SurgeTV: "An anonymous reader writes 'After getting great ratings with ECW wrestling, Bonnie Hammer is taking the next logical step, moving the SCI FI Channel toward science fiction and wrestling synergy. I think everybody saw this coming, after the way they treated Farscape and Stargate SG-1. I'm just not sure how well Colin Ferguson of Eureka is going to do in the ECW ring, though.' Update: 08/24 21:37 GMT by Z : Gaah, not my day. As many people have pointed out below, this is fake. Lost my net connection because of a storm and couldn't fix the article in time. Sorry.


(Via Slashdot.)

“Up close: Apple’s Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard”

Thursday, August 24, 2006
08:32 PM

“Up close: Apple’s Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard”: "Taking a sneak peek at Mac OS X v10.5 Leopard, Yuval Kossovsky writes for Computerworld, ‘What I saw proved again that Apple has the most sophisticated user interface (UI) for an OS out there — and at the same time is always looking for ways to make computing even more practical, simple and fun.’"

(Via Apple Hot News.)

Pluto dissed and pissed, UPDATE: the icy dirtclod responds

Thursday, August 24, 2006
08:24 PM
pluto bites

Pluto dissed and pissed, UPDATE: the icy dirtclod responds: "Xeni Jardin:
The recently demoted member of our solar system responds: 'Planets have feelings, too.' Link. (Thanks, Troy)

And this billboard is a likely Photoshop job, but who can argue with a phrase like 'Friends of Pluto'? Link (Thanks, Adam Selvidge) UPDATE: Free-vo says, 'The billboard you showed about Pluto is from the worth 1000 pluto contest.'


(Via Boing Boing.)


Thursday, August 24, 2006
08:22 PM
sad, the passing of a planet

Bumper stickers: HONK IF PLUTO IS STILL A PLANET: "Xeni Jardin:
Link (thanks, Chris Spurgeon) And here's a similarly-themed t-shirt. (thanks, Brady Koch)


(Via Boing Boing.)

HOWTO make a fly-powered match-plane?

Thursday, August 24, 2006
08:18 PM
don't help me, help them!

HOWTO make a fly-powered match-plane?: "Cory Doctorow:

This HOWTO purports to explain the creation of a fly-powered matchstick airplane. Despite the lavish and handsome illustrations (and the precedent in the form of young Nikola Tesla's june-bug-powered motor) I don't really imagine that this would work, and if it did, it would be pretty squick.


(Thanks, Kevin!)

Update: Jon sez, 'the graphic with the flies & matchsticks is from an Esquire of a few years back.'


(Via Boing Boing.)

Evolution of speech balloons

Thursday, August 24, 2006
08:17 PM
you know, I always wondered

Evolution of speech balloons: "David Pescovitz:

This fascinating 'History of Picture Stories' has a page showing the evolution of speech balloons, the ubiquitous graphic convention used to convey that comic characters are saying something. The image seen here is detail of Bernhard Strigel's 'Saint Anne and Angel' (1506/1607). From the Evolution of Speechballoons page:

 Andy Strigel 1506-Detail
During the 18th century, British caricaturists changed the shape of speechballoons from gothic speech-bands or flags into fluffy balloons, our modern speechballoons.

I'm using the word speechballoon as the general, inclusive term. (The gothic form of speechballoons are speechbands, flags, scrolls or sheets of paper, the modern form of speechballoons are balloons, but also little rectangles, often rounded at the edges, or simply little blocks of text above the heads of the speaker etc, etc).

The 18th century term for speechballoons was 'labels'.

Link (via Drawn!)

And there's more on the subject in the brand new issue of the always-magnificent Comic Art magazine, now in book format. I can't wait to get my copy! Link


(Via Boing Boing.)

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

What .Mac Needs To Become

Wednesday, August 23, 2006
10:53 PM

What .Mac Needs To Become: "

We’ve established that we think .Mac is in trouble, at least from the point of view of users; and over at TUAW, Dave Caolo has listed his reasons for ditching .Mac after using it since the iDisk days.

Plenty of bloggers and pundits were hoping that the WWDC keynote might include some updates for .Mac and were disappointed that it didn’t.

So let’s offer Apple our collective advice. Let’s cobble together some ideas for things we’d be happy to pay $99 per year for; let’s work out what .Mac needs to become, if it’s going to survive.

Here’s a few thoughts to start off:

  • I want .Mac to be my iApps on the web, perhaps even my Mac on the web. In other words, if I have .Mac, it needs to offer me a browser-based calendar that automatically and invisibly syncs with my iCal data. A superb webmail client that matches, maybe surpasses Gmail for features, and lets me see my email exactly as it would appear to me in Mail. And so on.

  • I want .Mac to be my hosting supplier. If I’m getting a web site and an email account - that’s what most people pay hosts for, right? So I want the kind of deal most hosting companies are falling over themselves to offer - several gigabytes of alloted storage space, a generous bandwidth allowance, and hosting for at least one domain, which can be mapped to my iWeb webspace with a few clicks. If Dreamhost can offer all this and more for not much more than $99/year, why can’t Apple?

  • I want freedom and flexibility. The hosting package should compete with other hosting packages; it should offer the usual collection of server-side software and the freedom to install stuff. It shouldn’t force me to only use Apple’s services.

  • I want seamless sync. When I’m online, things should Just Sync. When I’m offline, my storage should still be available to me as a ‘virtual’ volume, to which I can drag files if I need to. Once I’m online again, everything should sync itself up appropriately, without me needed to tell it to.

  • I want speed and reliability, worldwide. Whatever service I’m using, or if I’m simply backing up data or synchronizing stuff, things should happen fast. Nobody’s going to complain about occasional glitches, of course, but the day-to-day experience should be one that doesn’t fail to impress. Too many people are left horrified by glacier-like connections to .Mac right now; this needs to be addressed quickly.

That’s just a few off-the-top-of-my-head ideas. What features would you like to see in exchange for your $99?


(Via MacDevCenter.)

Trap-Jaw Ants Break Speed Records With Jaws

Wednesday, August 23, 2006
10:59 PM
and the meek...

Trap-Jaw Ants Break Speed Records With Jaws: "Ant writes to tell us UC Berkeley News is reporting that a species of Ant native to Central and South America is setting speed records with their jaws. The trap-jaw ant has been clocked closing its mandibles at between 78 and 145 miles per hour, said to be the 'fastest self-powered predatory strike in the animal kingdom'. In addition to blinding speed the ants have also been taped using their jaws to fling themselves into the air.


(Via Slashdot.)

Quadcycle: a bicycle built for four

Wednesday, August 23, 2006
10:46 PM
oh yeah dats for me

Quadcycle: a bicycle built for four: "

humancar quadcycle

Biking is all well and good, but unless you only eat baguettes it's tough to ride one to the grocery store, not to mention toting the kids to soccer practice on one. However, nothing really beats moving at a quick clip with the wind blowing through your hair, pedaling your heart out. Enter the HumanCar Quadcycle. Kind of a modern update to Fred Flintstone's car, the Quadcycle is a bike bred with a compact car. It seats four, and the two people up front pedal and steer. If you're worried about getting up hills, it comes with an electric motor to give you a boost when your legs feel like spaghetti. It's currently in the prototype phase and has been tested tooling around Seattle with great results. While no one is going to go out and replace their Civic with one of these, it looks like a blast and would be a great way to spend an afternoon with three friends. And while a price hasn't been announced for the Quadcycle, you can put a deposit down on it knowing it's guaranteed to be cheaper than the Tesla Roadster, albeit a touch slower.

Human Car, via Treehugger


(Via SCI FI Tech Blog.)

Vintage Mechanix Illustrated: "Could You Be a Hero?"

Wednesday, August 23, 2006
10:42 PM

Vintage Mechanix Illustrated: "Could You Be a Hero?": "Xeni Jardin:
BoingBoing reader Charlie says,

Very odd article from a 1957 Mechanix Illustrated which tackles the big question of 'What makes a man a hero?'.

The best part is that there is a test you can take to judge your 'Courage Quotient' which is full of some truly absurd questions.

A few statements from the quiz that a man with courage would agree with:

* Desk work is more for a woman than a man

* Any man should love camping and hunting

* I’d rather read a detective story than a humorous story

Here are few statements that reflect poorly on your courageousness:

* A totalitarian system of government is more efficient

* After most wars, the U.S. came out the loser in the peace treaties

* A cowboy movie is more interesting than a good love story (brokeback)



(Via Boing Boing.)

Zen Sluggo tattoo

Wednesday, August 23, 2006
10:37 PM
and how is your commitment to comix

Zen Sluggo tattoo: "Mark Frauenfelder:

Zensluggo (Click on thumbnail for enlargement)

William Dennes says: 'I saw a posting on your site several weeks ago to a sublime, one-panel comic of Sluggo from Nancy floating along saying only 'NO' to the world. I fell in love with it instantly and got a tattoo of it on my arm. I wanted to send it to you guys to let you know how deeply happy this makes me and I’d never ever ever had seen it had it not been posted on your site.'


(Via Boing Boing.)

Tortoise hassock

Wednesday, August 23, 2006
10:35 PM
Now if they'd make it mobile with a remote...

Tortoise hassock: "David Pescovitz:

This tortoise foot stool that Horchow is selling for $729 would fit wonderfully in my library with the rolling ladder, oak-paneled walls, and overstuffed chairs. If only I had such a room in my home.
Link to Horchow catalog, Link to crappier-looking $299 turtle ottoman from Rooms To Go (via Neatorama)


(Via Boing Boing.)

Your brain on rock

Wednesday, August 23, 2006
10:32 PM
hmm might have to read this

Your brain on rock: "David Pescovitz:
Rock producer-turned-psychology professor Daniel Levitin researches how the human brain responds to music. At McGill University in Canada, he runs the Laboratory for Music Perception, Cognition, and Expertise. Levitin's new book, This Is Your Brain on Music: The Science of a Human Obsession, sounds fascinating. From an interview in Wired News:

Wired News: Are there any myths about music that neuroscientists have exposed?

Daniel Levitin: I think we've debunked the myth of talent. It doesn't appear that there's anything like a music gene or center in the brain that Stevie Wonder has that nobody else has.

There's no evidence that (talented people) have a different brain structure or different wiring than the rest of us initially, although we do know that becoming an expert in anything -- like chess or race-car driving or journalism -- does change the brain and creates circuitry that's more efficient at doing what you're an expert at.

What there might be is a genetic or neural predisposition toward things like patience and eye-hand coordination. (On the other hand), you can be born with a physiology that gives you a pleasant-sounding voice, but that doesn't guarantee you'll have a career as a singer.

Link (via Mind Hacks)


(Via Boing Boing.)

HOWTO convert six USB cards to an electric barbeque

Wednesday, August 23, 2006
10:30 PM
wow BBQ and computers too
just never unplug

HOWTO convert six USB cards to an electric barbeque: "Cory Doctorow:

This Japanese HOWTO documents the conversion of the electrical output of six five-port USB cards into a meat-grilling indoor barbeque.

Translated Link

(via Make Blog)


(Via Boing Boing.)

Saturday, August 19, 2006

Interarchy 8.1 - Review

Saturday, August 19, 2006
09:10 PM
There are times when I need real ftp beyond what Dreamweaver does - and this does it

Interarchy 8.1 - Review: "Looking for a powerful new FTP client, yet one that is still simple to use? Check out Tim's mini review of Interarchy 8.1"


Finally, Stargate in iTunes!

Saturday, August 19, 2006
09:08 PM
10 years of stargate - how underwhelming

Finally, Stargate in iTunes!: "Stargate and Stargate Atlantis finally make their way to the iTunes music store."


Zombies invade San Francisco

Saturday, August 19, 2006
09:01 PM
Reminds me of my days of commuting into the city from Walnut Creek
Scarily not that different than this

Zombies invade San Francisco: "David Pescovitz:

Zombies Sf 6

A massive mob of brain-eating zombies invaded San Francisco this afternoon. BB pal Scott Beale was on the scene and documented the mayhem. More at Laughing Squid. Link


(Via Boing Boing.)

Mel Gibson "Schmuck" tee

Saturday, August 19, 2006
08:58 PM
In the great cause of vilifying celebrity we have the less-than-brilliant entry

Mel Gibson "Schmuck" tee: "Cory Doctorow:

A drunken Mel Gibson mugshot with the word 'Schmuck' beneath it in Hebraic script: what more needs to be said?


(Thanks, Alice!)


(Via Boing Boing.)

Albanian Proverb

Saturday, August 19, 2006
11:27 AM

Albanian Proverb: "'When you have given nothing, ask for nothing.'


(Via Motivational Quotes of the Day.)

Friday, August 18, 2006

Apple does the right thing on iPod City factories

Friday, August 18, 2006
10:07 PM

Apple does the right thing on iPod City factories: "Cory Doctorow:
In June, a British newspaper reported on working conditions in 'iPod City,' the gigantic factory complex in Longhua, China where iPods (and other vendors' products) are manufactured. To Apple's credit, they assembled an independent inspection team that visited the factories and did in-depth, random audits of working conditions. They found that the conditions were generally good by local standards, but sometimes lacking:

We found no instances of forced overtime and employees confirmed in interviews that they could decline overtime requests without penalty. We did, however, find that employees worked longer hours than permitted by our Code of Conduct, which limits normal workweeks to 60 hours and requires at least one day off each week. We reviewed seven months of records from multiple shifts of different productions lines and found that the weekly limit was exceeded 35% of the time and employees worked more than six consecutive days 25% of the time. Although our Code of Conduct allows overtime limit exceptions in unusual circumstances, we believe in the importance of a healthy work-life balance and found these percentages to be excessive.

The supplier has enacted a policy change to enforce the weekly overtime limits set by our Code of Conduct. The policy change has been communicated to supervisors and employees and a management system has been implemented to track compliance with the Code of Conduct. Supervisors must receive approval from upper level management for any deviation...

Recognizing that some aspects of workplace auditing (such as health and safety) lie beyond our current expertise, we’ve engaged the services of Verité, an internationally recognized leader in workplace standards dedicated to ensuring that people around the world work under safe, fair and legal conditions. We are committed to ensuring compliance with our Code of Conduct and will complete audits of all final assembly suppliers of Mac and iPod products in 2006.


(Thanks, Trip!)


(Via Boing Boing.)

mfkn Snakes on a mfkn Plane opens this mfkn weekend.

Friday, August 18, 2006
10:18 PM

mfkn Snakes on a mfkn Plane opens this mfkn weekend.: "Xeni Jardin:

I'll be a guest on CNN's Paula Zahn Now tonight for a breaking! hard-hitting! investigative report on the internet phenomenon surrounding this little unknown indie film called Snakes on a Plane. What's that? Yes, I'd never heard of it, either, but plenty of other people have. The segment will air towards the end of the show, 5-6PM PT/8-9PM ET and be totally earthshattering news.

As I left the CNN buro earlier today, I overheard plans to obtain actual live snakes to use in the live shots with CNN anchorhottie Brooke Anderson. Dunno if they were serious, but if so, should be quite an interesting edition of the show.

BoingBoing reader Micah says,

Hey, starting with last night's midnight screening, a theater in Austin Texas is showing Snakes on a Plane for 24 consecutive hours. We're covering it on our site, with updates after each screening... so far we've seen it 6 times and are getting a bit punchdrunk. Or snakedrunk. This link right here will be updated every two hours until the final screening... at midnight.

Owen Williams says,

It’s not Citizen Kane, it’s Snakes on a Plane. This is my review of Snakes on a Plane, which I saw at midnight with a great crowd. Thanks to the wonderful internet we had a copy of the callout lines ready to go, making this the first time I've been in a theater where the audience was yelling back at a movie no one had seen yet.

Wherever and whenever you see the film, don't leave home without your SOAP participation script.


(Via Boing Boing.)

Comics and Convergence Part One

Comics and Convergence Part One: "

This is the first of a series of outtakes -- passages written for Convergence Culture, but ultimately cut for reasons of length. Each represents a snap shot of convergence culture at work. Most of these sections were intended as side bars. Those of you who have read the book will know that it is structured around a series of core case studies that are developed in depth and sidebars which suggest other dimensionhs of the topic. Sidebars seemed like the most effective way of juxtaposing these other examples to the core discussion and seemed appropriate given the book's focus on the way we pull together information from multiple sources. What I like about the sidebars is that readers will engage with them at different points in the reading process as their own whims dictate and thus each reader's experience of the argument will be slightly different. Some will read them as they go; some will wait to the end of the chapter and then go back to read them, and so forth.

This section introduces comic books as a particularly rich site for understanding media change. As regular readers will note, I find comics a particularly interesting and relatively underexplored medium. Experiments in new approaches to popular storytelling often take place in comics -- the risks are relatively low both because of lowered cost of production and because of the fringe nature of their readership. At the same time, comics content is being drawn into the commercial mainstream. More and more recent films have been based on comics -- not simply predictible superhero fare such as X-Men, Batman Begins, or Spider-Man, but also off-beat independent films, such as American Splender, Ghost World, Road to Perdition, A History of Violence, and V for Vendetta, among others. I am a hardcore comics fan so you will be seeing lots of examples of trends from comics coming under my analytic gaze as this blog continues.

For those of you who own Convergence Culture, you can always print out these sections and tap them inside your book to assemble your own director's cut edition. :-) For the rest of you, these will give you a taste of the style and structure of the book.

Once mainstream, comics are increasingly a fringe (even an avant garde) form of entertainment, one that appeals predominantly to college students or college-educated professionals. While few read comics, their content flows fluidly across media platforms, finding wide audiences in film, television, and computer games. Something like twenty times the number of people went to see the Spider-Man movie its opening day than had read a Spider-Man comic the previous year. As Avi Arad, the head of Marvel's film division, explains, 'You can't do $155 million with just Marvel geeks.' Comics creators are torn between the desire to create content which will attract mainstream interest ( to sell it off to other media companies and to broaden their own readership) and producing content which appeals to and retains their hardcore readers.

Comics have entered a period of experimentation, testing new themes, adopting diverse styles, and expanding their genre vocabulary. Because the cost of production and thus the price of experimentation is much lower in comics than in any other medium, film and television monitor comics, searching for material which can be brought from the fringes into the mainstream. The turnaround between conception and distribution is much shorter in comics with the result that they will be among the first media to respond to new cultural developments. Comics now function, as longtime DC Comics editor Dennis O'Neil has commented, as 'The R&D Division' for the rest of the entertainment industry. And for that reason, many dimensions of convergence are felt first in comics.

Comics are media hybrids, combining words and images (including both representations and symbols). Not all comics have words and some artists pride themselves on telling stories purely through images. The relative prominence of words and images shifts across the history of the medium with early comics being much more text-centered - though some argue that this reversed itself when the size of newspaper comics shrunk, making it harder for readers to process more detailed images. At different moments in the medium's history (and at different companies), scripts emerged first from writers and were subsequently illustrated or scripts emerged by artists drawing panels which were subsequently retrofitted with dialogue. And in some cases, the same artist writes and draws the comic, often creating a greater integration of words and images.

Pictorial storytelling has been ignored within common periodizations of media history which discuss a general evolution from orality to literacy, from literacy to print, and from print to mass media. Less gets said about the way that pictorial media supported oral storytelling (as is currently believed to be the case with cave paintings or in the sand paintings done by some Arab storytellers to illustrate their tales) or helped to mediate between oral and text-based cultures (as in the case of stainglass windows and tapestries during the middle ages). Most of us have a fairly narrow definition of what we mean by comics - the short strips focused on cute children and funny animals found in the daily newspaper and the longer stories focused on superheroes found at a comic book store. Scott McCloud, the comics theorist and practitioner, has argued for a more expansive definition: 'juxtaposed pictorial and other images in deliberate sequence.'

McCloud argues that there is nothing preordained about the current selection of genres which dominate comics. Indeed, comics took on different kinds of content, built on different aesthetic traditions, reached different audiences, and achieved different cultural status in Japan or in France than in the United States. Moreover, comics are not inherently bound to print culture and McCloud identifies a range of different delivery mechanisms for sequential arts: 'A close reading of various ancient works yielded far more than a passing resemblance to comics. Whether decorating the walls of a painted tomb, spiraling in bas-relief up a stone column, parading across a 230-foot tapestry, or zigzagging across an accordion-folded painted deerskin, such works were, despite their exotic styles, comics to the core, telling stories in deliberate sequences of pictures....Ink on paper is just one of the physical forms comics can take, but it's the one form many feel most comfortable calling 'comics'.'

Comics, then might be characterized less as a medium than as a mode of expression, cutting across not only different delivery mechanisms (the newspaper supplement, the printed comic book, the carved column, the tapestry) but also across multiple media (print, digital). In that sense, comics share something in common with poetry, which has moved across oral culture, print culture, and digital culture while preserving its own distinctive traditions.

Many familiar aspects of comics - such as panel borders or the left to right and up to down reading protocols or the use of word balloons or the continuation of protagonists across multiple stories - emerged from the specific properties of print culture. These protocols have a certain inertia, in so far as we think about emerging media through the filters of older media practices but they are also subject to change, in so far as each medium creates different working conditions and different markets. On one level, comics have enjoyed enormous continuity with some recurring characters - Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman, Captain America, for example - appearing more or less continuously for sixty years or more. On another level, little else remains the same in comics across that period. Changes in how comics are published, where they are distributed, who reads them, and how they are regulated, have an enormous impact on how the stories of these characters are told.

In his book, Reinventing Comics, Scott McCloud argues that digital media may be the best - and perhaps the last - hope for comics to find a larger reading public, having cut themselves off from mainstream visibility through their dependence upon specialty shops as their primary distribution venues. McCloud imagines a world where independent comic artists sell their products directly to the consumer without confronting any middle men or gatekeepers, where more diverse comics content can find audiences well beyond the hardcore comics readers, and where the formal vocabulary of comics can expand, freed from the limits of the printed page. McCloud's book embraces elements of supercession and liberation. As McCloud argues, 'Not every creator can expect to strike it rich in the new market, but every individual vision of comics will at least get its day in the sun. Comics designed to reach out to non-fans will no longer have to hide where only fans will see them but instead will connect with their true market and in time, comics can begin to earn the diverse audiences it so desperately needs.'

The web has emerged as an important publicity and distribution channel for comics - though ironically, so far, the companies making the most money have been local specialty shops, such as Denver's Mile High Comics, which have seen cyberspace as a means of expanding their market. 75 percent of its sales come from online visitors to a site that receives 12 million hits per month. Such sites put comics in the reach of many who do not live in close proximity to comic shops, though they are also forcing some local shops out of business. As they reach a national market, these online retailers are particularly good sources for back issues, buying them from one consumer and marketing them to another. The major comics companies - Marvel and (the now defunct) CrossGen in particular - have experimented with making some of their comics content available on the web. Marvel boasted 1.3 million downloaded 'dot-comics' per month at the peak of the site's success. Most established comics creators use their home pages to communicate more directly with their fans and to get immediate reactions to their work. The discussion forums on such sites are so popular that many comic books have discontinued their longstanding practice of publishing readers' letters, feeling that these missives will go out of date by the time they are printed.

By some estimates, as many as 3000 independent comics artists have chosen to begin their careers in digital comics. In some cases, they target readers who would not typically enter a comic shop. Tak Toyoshima's Secret Asian Man, for example, is one of a number of comics which targets the Asian-American community. In some cases, these comics have proven their market value and been picked up by a comic book publisher. A notable recent success was Scott Kurtz's PvP,/ a web comic on role-playing and computer games, which is now being printed. Others become successful in web-based syndication. Astounding Space Thrills (currently off-line), for example, appears on more than 3000 web sites, each of which pays to support the production of new content. Most such comics are labors of love or designed to pave the way for commercial success, yet, so far, comics artists have had difficulty getting paid for the work they distribute online.


(Via Confessions of an Aca/Fan: The Official Weblog of Henry Jenkins.)

Thursday, August 17, 2006

Henry David Thoreau

Thursday, August 17, 2006
08:13 PM
quote this
and your book?

Henry David Thoreau: "'How many a man has dated a new era in his life from the reading of a book.'


(Via Motivational Quotes of the Day.)

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Upgraded Segway models offer new ways to embarrass yourself

Upgraded Segway models offer new ways to embarrass yourself: "



Segway, via Oh Gizmo!


(Via SCI FI Tech Blog.)

As with liquids, TSA bans motherfucking snakes from planes

Tuesday, August 15, 2006
09:06 AM
and we got that going for us too...

As with liquids, TSA bans motherfucking snakes from planes: "Xeni Jardin:
'NO SNAKES OF ANY KIND WILL BE PERMITTED ON A PLANE. SNAKES ARE NO LONGER ALLOWED IN CHECKED BAGGAGE. This includes all pythons, boas, rattlesnakes, vipers, mambas, adders, and other known species of snakes.

Exception: some limited amounts of snakes may be allowed if Samuel L. Jackson is traveling; licensed snake charmers are allowed to have snakes in their check in baggage only if the name on the snake charming license matches the one passenger’s ticket; people who'se name is Snake will be allowed on board but only after full body cavity search

* Snakes purchased in the sterile area must be consumed before boarding because they will not be permitted onboard the aircraft.

* Passengers traveling from the U.K. to the U.S. will be subject to a more extensive screening process.

Some measures will not be visible to the public. In light of the elevated threat level, the Federal Snake Marshals Service (FSMS) will provide expanded mission coverage for flights from the United Kingdom to the United States.'

Link to 'Snake Threat Level Change for the Aviation Sector.' (Thanks, Luke)

Previously: Liquids on a Plane


(Via Boing Boing.)

Report: X-Rays won't spot explosives. But let's still scan shoes!

Tuesday, August 15, 2006
09:05 AM
shoe fetish?

Report: X-Rays won't spot explosives. But let's still scan shoes!: "Xeni Jardin:
Airport X-ray scans of airline passengers' shoes cannot detect explosives, according to a 2005
Homeland Security Department report on aviation screening. So why are authorities still scanning our shoes with outdated technology incapable of spotting what it's supposed to spot? Snip from AP item:

Findings from the report, obtained by The Associated Press, did not stop the Transportation Security Administration from announcing Sunday that all airline passengers must remove their shoes and run them through X-ray machines before boarding commercial aircraft. (...)

In its April 2005 report, 'Systems Engineering Study of Civil Aviation Security — Phase I,' the Homeland Security Department concluded that images on X-ray machines don't provide the information necessary to detect explosives.

Machines used at most airports to scan hand-held luggage, purses, briefcases and shoes have not been upgraded to detect explosives since the report was issued.

Link (thanks, rich mogull)


(Via Boing Boing.)

Web Zen: Zine Zen

Tuesday, August 15, 2006
08:59 AM
I'm back

Web Zen: Zine Zen: "Xeni Jardin:
time cover art


beer frame

bad mags

famous for 15mb

born magazine




more zines

Web Zen Home, Store (Thanks Frank!)


(Via Boing Boing.)