Tuesday, March 30, 2004

Blubber Bar
Their hands were dirty but they were wearing new gloves (Marigolds actually) so Captain Grub & Blubber were squeeky clean on the outside but filthy on the inside.

The same applied to their Y-fronts.

Despite the sobriquet "Naked Chef", you never see Jamie Oliver in his undies ... and in fact, I can't remember ever seeing him wash his handies. Could this be the cause of Charles Kennedy's recent mysterious food-related illness that kept him from sitting through the budget speech?

Saturday, March 27, 2004

Teen escapes fine by 'sitting quietly'
A teenage driver guilty of motoring and drug offences was let off more than £400 fines - because he sat still in court for half an hour.
The Bogotá Experiment
During his two terms as mayor of Bogotá (1995-97 and 2000-04) his initiatives focused living standards and on the sanctity of life, using creativity and humor. To encourage Colombians skeptical of his ability to tackle the chaos and disorder of the city, he publicly donned a superman costume and renamed himself "Supercitizen". During a drought, Mockus appeared in a commercial taking a shower and asking citizens to turn off the water as they soaped --within two months, household water use was down 14% and is now 40% less than before the shortage. In a now famous move, Mockus hired 420 "traffic mimes" to gently mock people who break traffic laws." Traffic fatalities dropped by more than half, from an average of 1,300/year to about 600.

Saturday, March 20, 2004

Encyclopedias Gather Dust in Internet Age
These are lonely days for encyclopedias. At libraries, the volumes sit ignored for days on end as information-seeking patrons tap busily away at nearby computers.
...with children now often knowing their way around a computer before they know how to read, it's almost like forcing students to use slide rules when they know calculators can do the job faster.
The rasterbator
The rasterbator is a web service which creates huge rasterized pictures out of relatively small image files.
finally! - a very small linux machine
Without a battery it weighs 12g (less than a tablespoon of water) and can fit in a collar undetected.
television security and msn security
A news channel in North Carolina made a classic security mistake.
This is similar to a mistake that MSN made a while back. There was a web page that verified your username/password before
allowing you to make account changes, but the subsequent pages did not check the authentication-- the account name to use was
simply passed along in the url. So you could login with your account, then change the account name to someone elses once you had
been authenticated. The moral of this story: whenever something changes, you must insure you still have a valid context or
require re-authentication!
There are screen shots of the results of the news channel's failure to approve changes to already approved announcements. Some
may be offensive, but nothing too bad.
To see the message, just add noise

Paradoxical as it seems, a team of University of Southern California researchers has built a signal detector that only works when noise is added.
Zare explains the mystery of descending beer bubbles
Scientists have finally proven what beer lovers have long suspected: When beer is poured into a glass, the bubbles sometimes go down instead of up.In this video,chemists Richard N. Zare of Stanford University and Andrew J. Alexander of the University of Edinburgh explain the frothy details.

Thursday, March 18, 2004

Distraction and Deviance
Civil Procedure: United States ex rel. Mayo v. Satan & His Staff, 54 F.R.D. 282 (W.D. Penn 1971), in which plaintiff "alleges that Satan has on numerous occasions caused plaintiff misery and unwarranted threats, against the will of plaintiff, that Satan has placed deliberate obstacles in his path and has caused plaintiff's downfall."

Federal Judge Sways to Rhythm of Talking Heads

another bizarre legal case to post about: the so-called "Talking Heads decision," U.S. v. Abner, 825 F.2d 835 (5th Cir. 1987). The decision, which is posted in its entirety in the continuation, contains numerous allusions to Talking Heads songs and albums.
New release of Ericsson's NRG SDK for Parlay/OSA
Want to integrate, for example, MMS, SMS, call control, user location, or user status with your applications? Parlay/OSA provides interfaces for these capabilities, making them easy to use. Ericsson's NRG SDK for Parlay/OSA application development lets you create applications for Ericsson's Network Resource Gateway.

Wednesday, March 17, 2004

Enjoy the new NaDa™ 0.5 !
NaDa™ is a new concept. A thought, really. It is very light : 1 byte. It doesn't take long to fetch. It doesn't take long to understand. It doesn't disturb your habits nor does it makes you feel insecure. It is a reassuring piece of software that does nothing, and does it very well. That's a lot !
Port Knocking
An introduction to how trusted users can manipulate firewall rules to transmit information across closed ports.
"Unknown Soldier" Speaks Out To Bring Troops Home
A soldier back from Iraq discusses the war and the U.S. soldiers fighting that war, the suicides, and much more.

What about Iraqi deaths and injuries?

We don’t care about Iraqi deaths. It’s something that does not even count. The hospital was told not to keep count. The Iraqi infrastructure does not keep an account of the deaths anymore.
Fake cows mark town's anniversary
A south Wales town has spent a weekend celebrating its 750th anniversary.The highlight of the entertainment was Saturday's parade featuring two live-size fibre glass cows. Town leaders had considered a Pamplona-style bull run but decided the fake bovines would be more appropriate.
Sun's massive explosion upgraded
The massive solar flare that erupted from the Sun last November was far bigger than scientists first thought.
At the time, satellite detectors were unable to record its true size because they were blinded by its radiation.
Spain threatens Iraq troop pull-out
Spain's Socialist Party prime minister-elect says he will pull troops out of Iraq - unless the UN takes charge.
Beyond the Nine Planets
What's bigger than an asteroid, smaller than a planet, red all over and far, far away?

The Big Bounce

"Here I was: 26 years old, I had never worked on a flight project before, and all eyes were on me. Every time I walked by the Pathfinder project office, Tony Spear, the project manager, would throw his arm around me and announce, "Hey everybody, the whole mission is riding on this guy right here."

[Listening to: Inspector Gadget]
BOFH: Protecting bodily waste in the public domain

Saturday, March 13, 2004

Customized styles
W3C Core style sheets for use as User style sheets with examples
Neutron Star Explosion Movie
...swirling flow of gas hovering just a few miles from the surface of a neutron star...
Water observed in Leonid meteors
Researchers have used a finely tuned imaging system to record the first direct observations of water in meteors entering Earth's atmosphere. Pellinen-Wannberg et al. adjusted two filters in the ALIS auroral imaging network during the 2002 Leonid meteor shower and present optical identification of water in the meteor tails as they entered the Earth's atmosphere. The authors tracked one of the meteors from the time it entered the upper atmosphere at high speed until it evaporated from frictional heating. The findings were unexpected, since it had been thought that meteoroids tended to lose their vapor content before entering Earth's atmosphere. The researchers set the auroral imaging system for specific elements, however, specifically sodium and combined iron/calcium atoms, the latter of which is indicative of meltwater that originated on the comet that initiated the Leonid meteors. They also confirmed that the Leonid meteors were relatively young, having passed by the Sun only a few times.
Johnny Cash: "San Quentin"
Originally planned as a follow-up to the wildly popular At Folsom Prison, Cash was set to create an eponymous album at the San Quentin prison. Cash ended up giving one of his rawest and wildest performances that seemed to feed off the literally captive audience and reflected the dramatic shift in the band following the death of guitarist Luther Perkins. The performance was short, only an hour, but is widely regarded as one of his best.
Personalized News
It adapts to your reading habits and emphasizes news articles from around the world that are most likely to be interesting to you.
Findory uses a patent-pending method to order news articles gathered from a wide variety of sources. The algorithm combines statistical analysis of the article text and of users who viewed the articles with information about articles you previously viewed.
"Analyzating" Bush's Grey Matter
Ever wonder why President Bush says "nuculer" when he means "nuclear" or "subliminate" when he means "subliminal?" Or why he mixes up perseverance and preservation? Why does he mangle the English language often enough for Slate Editor Jacob Weisberg to produce three books of Bushisms such as "I know how hard it is for you to put food on your family."
Nun Faces Jail for Drunk Tractor Driving
A Polish Benedictine nun is facing jail for driving a tractor into a car while drunk outside her convent in southwestern Poland, police said on Friday.
What is Ogg Vorbis?
Ogg Vorbis is a new audio compression format. It is roughly comparable to other formats used to store and play digital music, such as MP3, VQF, AAC, and other digital audio formats. It is different from these other formats because it is completely free, open, and unpatented.

Friday, March 12, 2004

Scientists May Have Discovered "God Particle"
Scientists at the University of Oxford have revealed that they have reason to believe that the Higgs Boson, sometimes called the "God Particle", may have been created in an atom smasher in Switzerland.
GM scientists create brand-new butterfly
The jellyfish gene, a common marker gene, was chosen for its ability to fluoresce, providing an easy method of tracking where it was being used in the insect. Under the glow of blue light, the eyes of the insect fluoresce green.
In all, seven GM butterflies were produced from the experiments. All of them made use of the jellyfish marker gene - enhanced green fluorescent protein - in their eyes.
Woman arrested for baring breasts at protest in Daytona Beach
Daytona Beach officials have warned the protest violates city ordinances against public nudity, disorderly conduct and obstructing sidewalks. The nudity ordinance requires a "full and opaque covering" of the nipple and aureola of a woman's breast, in addition to half of the surface of the breast below the aureola.
Robot builder could 'print' houses
A robot for "printing" houses is to be trialled by the construction industry. It takes instructions directly from an architect's computerised drawings and then squirts successive layers of concrete on top of one other to build up vertical walls and domed roofs.
Robot desert race faces spluttering start
Qualification tests for the longest, fastest and most treacherous robot vehicle race ever have reached the halfway point with just one of 20 autonomous vehicles managing to complete the course.
Mountainbiking in the Dublin Mountains
I used to hate the onset of winter. Year after year, around late October, the dark evenings would get to me. Then I started mountainbiking at night. I no longer think of the dark as debilitating, but simply as a time of day with less light. Being up a mountain at night, in the cold and the wind... I feel more alive.
Romanies gather for 'Queen'
Hundreds of Roma gypsies have gathered in Blaenau Ffestiniog to pay their last respects to a popular matriarch affectionately known as the "Queen of Blaenau."
Mrs Evans became known as the "Queen of Blaenau" after an unusual brush with real royalty which made national headlines in the 1970s.
Oblique Strategies
The Oblique Strategies are a deck of cards. Up until 1996, they were quite easy to describe. They measured about 2-3/4" x 3-3/4". They came in a small black box which said "OBLIQUE STRATEGIES" on one of the top's long sides and "BRIAN ENO/PETER SCHMIDT" on the other side. The cards were solid black on one side, and had the aphorisms printed in a 10-point sans serif face on the other.

That was then, and this is now. There is now another set of the Oblique Strategies in existence, and it looks nothing like this; perhaps the best way to think of the differences between the earlier versions and the fourth edition deck is by analogy. Where the earlier versions were a quiet, well-dressed neighbor who, once you got used to her/him, turned out to be a funny, intriguing, and frighteningly prescient friend, the 1996 version is the equivalent of going to the other apartment on your floor to ask directions to someplace and discovering a large, noisy party full of tipsy graduate students attempting some kind of fashionable dance en masse who pause only to give you advice in a half-dozen languages.
Blather
blather is words. bunches of words, strewn about in a twisty tangly web of pontification, insight and nonsensical delight.
but really it's an experiment to see what shape this will take when left at your mercy

Sort of a cross between Wiki, Oblique Strategies and Babble

Thursday, March 11, 2004

Firefighter sacked over hoax calls
A part-time firefighter who admitted making hoax 999 calls so he could spend time with his colleagues has been dismissed from his job.
'Faulty' hip replacements recall
A Swansea hospital has told up to 40 patients their artificial hip may have to be replaced.
Bypassing China's net firewall
Numerous efforts are under way in the West to help Chinese web users get around China's censorship of the internet
Scientist denies being 'muzzled'
The government's chief scientific adviser says he will not be "muzzled" despite being told by Downing Street to limit his media interviews.
The No 10 memo came after Sir David King said climate change was a bigger problem than the threat of terrorism.
Quantum codes debut in real world
Quantum cryptography has emerged from the laboratory and into the real world.
US approves 'Cheeseburger bill'
The US House of Representatives has voted 276-139 for a bill that would prevent lawsuits against the food industry for making people fat.

Wednesday, March 10, 2004

Exploration of Venus
The Soviet exploration of Venus, from 1961 to 1984, is the largest effort ever undertaken to study another planet. The fundamentals of interplanetary spacecraft design and remote sensing were first realized in these attempts. Successful missions included 3 atmospheric probes, 10 landings, 4 orbiters, 11 flybys or impacts, and 2 balloon probes of the clouds.