December 2003 Archives



December 2, 2003

Take Your Digital IQ

I scored a 208. And I already know I'm a nerd, as the results page points out people mIght call me. But then I prefer geek. Jake was right, I beat his score, HA HA :-P. Try it for yourself.

December 3, 2003

Master and Commander

I was not impressed. I don't even want to write much about it. The movie was very dark, I thought fights were poorly lit. The fight at the end in the bottom of the enemy ship was very poorly lit. You could not tell who was swinging at who. The story went on for two full hours with absolutely nothing, and then finally we had a battle, and the movie was over, but not an ending, because they were off to catch the enemy ship once again. I did not feel any kind of emotional strings to the people who were killed or died in the movie. You need to have some kind of emotional bond to care when a character gets killed. I do not see what people were saying about this movie.

Future PlayStations to read hand gestures

Sony is planning to enable future versions of its PlayStation gaming console to recognize user gestures and even emotions, according to a company executive. The PlayStation 3 may also incorporate a motion sensor and camera add-on similar to Sony's EyeToy.
Source: C|NET I have had a chance to use the EyeToy. Its fun, but more of a novelty. Concentrated fun for a short period of time tho, so it serves its purpose, I guess. This technology does bring up some other applications, as this article illustrates. This all sounds pretty cool.

Slow uptake seen for Office 2003

Only about 35 percent of large businesses plan to move up to the latest version of Microsoft's Office software next year, according to a new survey of chief information officers. The Merrill Lynch survey polled CIOs at 75 U.S. companies and 25 European ones on a number of issues, including whether they were "likely to upgrade to Office 2003 in the next year." A total of 65 percent said "no," a result Merrill Lynch attributed to complex new server-based functions--including capabilities based on Extensible Markup Language (XML)--included in the new version of the productivity software. "Without a new killer app in Office, the upgrade cycle looks to be gradual until new XML-based technologies take hold in the broader market," according to the report.
Source: C|NET Cost? Mmmmm. I was able to take an in-depth look at Office 2003 Professional over the long Thanksgiving weekend. I took down a ton of notes and plan to publish my opinions of the new suite. When that will get done, remains to be seen. I like the new Outlook, although the new UI is very different and takes some getting used to. Thankfully you can buy Outlook 2003 separate. Is it worth $75? That is up to you. I don't think people are gobbling this up because it does not include enough killer new features. What more are you going to do to make Word, Excel or PowerPoint better? The new Student Edition is a nice price point, but a lot of colleges have deals with M$ for their software. For example I can get a lot of M$ software, including Windows XP and Office 2003 for $10 at BGSU. It is even Bursarable! Did they make Access easier to use? I took a critical look at Access 2003 because I like to have my facts strait about using FileMaker Pro vs. Access. I prefer FileMaker Pro, btw.

My PC is on its way home

I just today got shipment confirmation that I will get my PC on the 4th. They tell me the motherboard was defective. Interesting, 10 months and the mobo goes dead? Dad thinks that virus, oh whats its name, might have killed the mobo. I did all the M$ updates though. Who knows. All Alienware tells me is "defective." I cannot wait to get my PC back up and running. I have Max Payne 2 to play, after all!

iSkin eXo 2

I cannot say this enough: They changed everything that was wrong with the first iSkin eXo.
This time around you get a nice color user guide that shows how to install the belt clip. The new screen protector has a large lip that sticks under the rubber around the screen. It now says "iSkin" in the upper left of the screen protector, but what are you going to do, it is an iSkin. The screen protector is much nicer with the wide lip around it that slips under the case. The hole around the hold button is twice as big this time. This, more then the beveled holes, makes using the hold function much more usable. The beveled buttons for rewind, menu, play, and forward buttons are much more usable as well. It is not like using the iPod with no protection, but its a ton better then the old iSkin. The 4 touch buttons are much more sensitive. I can flip through tracks, and pause so much easier now. The belt clip that is included is much stronger. It is now metal, and not plastic. It is also is not "installed" by default. It is something that you have to add if you want. In my case, I do not want it, so I do not have to take the clip off. The old iSkin had a nice threaded mount that the clip screws into. This is great if you want to use a mount in your car, the type that fits into your car lighter. This also unfortunately means the iPod does not sit flat. With the new iSkin 2, your iPod will now sit flat on the desk. There is a cover over the Dock Connector port. This is a nice touch. It does not just cover the port, it also actually fits into the port. This keeps it in place until you want to use the Dock Connector port. I use the PocketDock, not the Dock that comes with the iPod. I tried, and cannot get the iPod into the Dock unless I take the iSkin 2 off. This, for me, is not a problem. It might be for you. These changes are, what I believe, a direct result of user feedback. I emailed them about the hold button being hard to use, I am sure others did as well. The opening around the hold button is now double the original size. I emailed about it being hard to push the 4 buttons, as I am sure others have as well. These buttons are now beveled, and make it much easier to "push" the buttons. Great job on getting a better product out!

Free Windows Software

I was Utterly Bored when I found this :-D. NeoWin.net list of freeware Windows software!

404 Research Lab

Nothing says boredom like laughing at 404 pages. Check it out!

TypePad 30 Day Free Trial

BEWARE! Be sure to CANCEL your account before your 30 days are up! TypePad does not send an email telling you that your trial is up, it just charges your credit card! For shame Six Apart! For shame! I do like the TypePad service. It was very nice. I do not, however, like the fact that they automatically will charge if you forget to cancel. What a crock!

Proverb of the Day 12/03/03

If you lend someone $20 and never see that person again, it was probably worth it. :-D

MP3 Dot Gone

More than 1 million songs - not all of them good, mind you - uploaded to the Web site MP3.com over the years by various musicians went away Tuesday as the new owners of the Web site took it offline, with a promise to launch a similar service next year. Garage bands and solo musicians from dozens of musical genres were notified last week to make back-up copies of their song files or risk losing them to the fleeting business world of the Internet.
Source: The Mercury News Six years of music to be exact, gone. Here we have another Napster. What? You don't follow? Roxio bought the Napster brand, and relaunched it as a for pay service, something very different from the original. C|NET is doing the same darn thing! They will relaunch MP3.COM next year, but as something completely different.

December 4, 2003

HoverSnap screen capture tool

Free is great, isn't it? I really like free software. HyperSnap DX might be the best screen capture tool I have found on Windows, but this one is free.
HoverSnap is a small but powerful screen capture utility that can capture the entire desktop, the active window or custom areas on the screen and save the image to JPEG, GIF, BMP or PNG format. It can even automatically rename and resize the screenshot and save it to a folder of your choice. Additional features include integrated FTP upload and support for layered windows. The program runs in the system tray and screen captures can be triggered via keyboard shortcuts.
The author has some other freeware too, so check that out as well.

PhraseExpress great to past text

Phrase Express pastes all your frequently used text phrases in a snap
Saves time by not having to rekey commonly used phrases Reduce typing errors Ideal for letter templates, signatures, addresses, chats Runs powerful macro functions to automate everday’s tasks Great for Tablet PC without keyboards
Ideal if you are just plain lazy! The SE version is free, and has all I would want in this type of app.

AOL offers PCs for $299

America Online is offering a PC, monitor and color printer for $299 to subscribers who sign up for its Internet service for one year, the latest effort by the Internet service provider to prop up its subscriber base.
Source: C|NET Desperation is one ugly beast.

Suitcase/WindowShadeX incompatibility

Reader Frans van der Geest reports an incompatibility between Suitcase 11.0.2 and WindowShade X (the haxie that brings OS 9's Windowshade functionality to OS X): "I noticed that Suitcase does not start up correctly on boottime when Windowshade (the latest version from the Unsanity utility) is installed: Suitcase hangs at startup or the window does not 'auto-hide' at autostart at login. removing Windowshade solved all this"
Source: MacFixIt Bah! I am about to buy this software for myself, as well as for Student Publications. Not that it will matter for Student Publications. But I really like using WindowShadeX on my PowerBook

Legend of Zelda: Collectors Edition

Zelda is really one of those enigma's of the video game world. Pretty much everyone has played some version of the Nintendo-favorite franchise. The series has been going strong since it's inception on the NES and this collection is a nice piece of memorabilia that's a great look back at some of the best the series has to offer. The disc includes 4 full games (not including the 20-minute Wind Waker demo): The Legend of Zelda, The Adventure of Link, Ocriana of Time, and Majora's Mask. There's no need to get deep inside each of these games. Everyone has played them in one form or another and this collection does a pretty good job of presenting them to a new generation of gamers. Control problems are present in just about every game in this set. The first 2 NES games suffer from either unresponsive or over responsive controls. It just never feels right. Youíll take more than just a few unfair hits. Whether it's just the Gamecube controller or the emulation isn't known, but it's probably not enough to turn players off from playing these classic titles. The 2 N64 games are only problem thanks to the shift in control scheme. After putting in countless hours in the 64 versions, the Gamecube simply cannot replicate the button layout. If youíve never played either of these games, then it shouldnít be much of an issue. Also packed onto the disc is a 2-minute "History of Zelda" video. This incredibly inept piece features footage from each Zelda game released to date. Any Zelda fanatic would've loved to see interviews with the designers, some of the original TV commercials, or any other number of extras. The inclusion of this all-too-brief clip is a waste of space and Iím sure could've been put to better use. Maybe the inclusion of one of the Game Boy renditions? Also, each game requires quite a large chunk of memory card space so you may need to set one aside if you plan on getting anywhere. The entire disc runs in progressive scan so HDTV owners will get their moneys worth. Otherwise, the games have remained relatively untouched, save for some cleaner textures on the 64 versions. Majora's Mask suffers from some audio clipping (which is stated on the packaging and when selecting the game) while it loads, but that's really the only glitch these games have suffered from during their translation. Otherwise, there's an outstanding rendition of the Zelda theme during the menus that could very well be worth the price of admission alone and you simply have to love looking at the first NES game in HD. The disc is nice touch from Nintendo. You can get it in various ways. You can buy a new Cube, subscribe to Nintendo Power through their official website, or buy and registering 2 specific Gamecube games from the list provided on Nintendo.com. In other words, the cheapest way to nab this one is by subscribing to Nintendo Power for $20. It will most likely never really be a collectors item. There will be a ton of these out there, especially after this holiday season. Regardless of it's value, this is a great disc if you don't have any of the originals.

December 5, 2003

BGSU loss, Bowl game 1st in 11 yrs.

December 26th is the Motor City Bowl, and the BGSU Falcons will be in it. That is the good news. The bad news is a 49-27 loss to Miami (of Ohio) in the MAC Championship game. Roethlisberger's 427 yrds. and his long completions all night buried the Falcons. The fumbles and INT's also buried the Falcons, just like 5 weeks ago when Miami won 33-10. Great season, tough loss. I am really glad the MAC is getting so much attention the season. I mean this is the season that has brought use Randy Moss, Chad Pennington, and Byron Leftwich, among others.

Spike TV Video Game Awards

There are times in my life when I really begin to question the minds of some people. One of those times is right now. The first annual Spike TV Video Game Awards (from the MGM Grand in Las Vegas) is currently premiering while I'm writing this. An hour in, I'm beginning to question my sanity. I cannot fathom what the network execs over at Spike think video game players are like, but I'm quite sure at this point that their market research team should be fired, burned at the stake and then be shot simply because. What type of awards show opens with the biggest award being given away in the first 2 minutes? Yes, Madden 2004 walked away with the award for "Game of the Year," as highly undeserving as it was (Note: it wins Game of the Year, yet not Sports Game of the Year). Granted, it plays a great game of football, but I can think of at least 15 other games more worthy. There are no nominees you see, they simply toss out an award with no apparent buildup (even though they just went through the nominees for "Most Anticipated Game"). The awards are announced by host David Spade and then shown on a massive circular screen surrounded by the LA Raiders cheerleaders. The crowd must be filled with thousands of pre-pubescent teens screaming at the top of their lungs whenever Grand Theft Auto is mentioned. You can't hear anything. The designers get 3 seconds of screen time (with no names mentioned) and can be seen shaking their heads, obviously embarrassed to be part of the proceedings. God forbid the guys who created these games should get any type of credit. It gets worse. The voting was done online by the public (for those not aware). The general public is the last group of people who should be allowed to vote for video games. Musical performances are constant, annoying, and have absolutely nothing to do with video games. Advertisements claim that this isn't an ordinary awards show, but that's hardly the case. It's a really bad one filled with the cheapest stars they could find, one terribly unfunny host, and bands who can't be heard over the crowd. David Spade opened the show with the same joke that had been part of the advertising campaign for the past 3 weeks. Think it gets worse? Commercial breaks are brought about with segments entitled "The secret life of video games." The jokes/dubbing are lude, crude, and downright offensive. The humor level of this show is obviously set for the 5-year old crowd since they are the only ones who will find any of this amusing. Video game footage hardly ever features anything less than a player trying to find the most sexually explicit position to put the polygonal characters in. The Tomb Raider "strategy guide" was enough to change the station. But yet, it gets worse. The categories are senseless. How about a "best gameplay" category? Nope. The horror if we honor someone because their game actually plays well. Maybe a nice "best control" award? Nope. Instead, we get a "most anticipated game" category. How can anyone give a game an award before it's even out, let alone even played it? Most of the games nominated (and winning) have hardly been out for a month, barely enough time for any gamer to really delve deep into it. Yes, yes, it does get worse. Funkmaster Flex is the DJ for this glorious excuse for an awards show. He honestly gets more screen time than Spade. His microphone is seemingly inside his mouth as he spouts off unintelligible words, announcing various bands and stars. Even the theme music for this show is grating, not even fitting into a single music category. Also, may I ask: What is the Tony Hawk Boom Bam Chuck Huck Jam thing and what the hell does it have to do with video games? There really are no kind words for this sad attempt at an awards show. It was hardly even about video games. It was a horrific attempt to get a few bands onto a stage, help David Spade make some money post-Chris Farley, and take advantage of a peak market. No, I'm not one to sit and watch the Grammy's, Oscar's, or Acadamey Awards. They bore me to tears. However, at least they have some class and decency. This was disgusting, sickening, and downright disturbing at times. If this is going to be an annual thing, then Spike TV can't become bankrupt soon enough.

Funny Egg Animations

Thanks to Jim for this link. iloveegg.co.kr has some slick looking Flash animation with eggs. Odd? Yes. But then so is a lot of Korean web sites I have seen.

Steve Balmer's iPod

I love spoofs of Apple commercials. Especially all the "Switcher" ad spoofs. Here is a spoof of the newest iPod+iTunes commercial. Its a great Flash animation, using the now famous audio from a developer conference in which Balmer ran around the stage like a raving monkey. Hearing the audio again is all that is needed to remember that video! And used as the audio for this iPod spoof ad is a great idea. MacBoy.com has some other great Flash animations including American iPod, Switch Gates, Dad vs. AOL, Big Brother and Real Dude.

IGN and GameSpy Announce Merger Agreement

No, it's not April Fool's Day. To quote the Simpsons: "I had a big company, and he had a big company, and now we have a very big company." Former rivals IGN Entertainment and GameSpy Industries have kissed and made up and have signed a definitive merger agreement creating the Web's largest network of destination sites for gamers. Both brands will remain separate entities.
Source: IGN Wow! Big merger! I have been a member of IGN for a couple years now. It should be interesting to see what, if any, members of either service will get from the other service.

December 6, 2003

Woman gets 10 years in mayo spat

A Texas woman was sentenced to 10 years in jail Thursday for running over the manager of a McDonald’s with her car because she wanted mayonnaise on her cheeseburger. THE WOMAN, Waynetta Nolan, 37, showed no emotion as the sentence was read in court after a trial in which the McDonald’s manager, Sherry Jenkins, said that even though she gave Nolan the mayonnaise she requested, the woman flew into a rage anyway.
Source MSNBC

December 7, 2003

Creature Features 2003 Rundown

Straight-to-video monster flicks have always been a staple in the video industry, but the past few years have seen an explosion. From killer bee's, giant octopi, wasps, dragons, and sharks, and leeches, there seems to be no end in sight. It's a guilty pleasure of mine to force myself through the best and the worst, but my collection will never get smaller no matter how bad a specific film may be. For your reading pleasure, I have dissected some of this years feature's below. Some of the films were shot in 2K2, but all made it to DVD in 2003. There were more than this, but I have only seen these film below.

Continue reading "Creature Features 2003 Rundown" »

Got My PC Back

I got my PC back this week, but of course, it still does not work. After a 2 full hour phone call to Alienware Tech. Support, they are sending me a new Promise RAID Controller. The hard drive is not being recognized. The motherboard works though. They fixed that problem. It boots up but stalls on the boot sequence screen. No amount of changing the boot order in the BIOS helps either. Moving the Promise PCI card had no effect, changing the ribbon to the other port on the Promise card had no effect. After 2 hrs. I suggested we plug the HD into the motherboard. I just love dealing with technical support. Especially the ones in India. Don't get me started on that. There is a reason Dell pulled their India Call Center, ya know (But did they really do it?). My CD-RW is plugged into the top port, and DVD-RW is plugged into the second port on the motherboard. They did not use ribbon cables that have two ports on them. So I would have to unplug the DVD-RW to plug in the HD. But this is after 2 hrs. of messing with this damn PC and I was fed up, I did not feel with pulling this PC apart any more, and about to the point of telling this Tech. that this system was being shipped back and they would fix it. And in the nicest way I could, I told him how blooming frustrated I was at this point. He said he understood, especially after just getting it back from the depot. Working with a PC box is nothing like working on a Mac box. The engineers at Apple really think about the design of the entire box. It is a pain in the ass working on this Alienware compared to all the Apple boxes I have torn apart. Oh, and on the left side of the case, there are 3 scratches! I know they were not there when I sent it in! And with the metallic paint on these cases, it is really easy to see scratches. I was so pissed off about the RAID controller/hard drive/whatever problem that I totally forgot about the scratches.
alien_scratcjes.jpg
How in the world could this machine leave the Alienware depot. and the HD NOT work? It has a check sheet that states when it was put through a diagnostic test, which gasp! includes starting the computer. If I ever do buy a PC again, I will never buy from Alienware. That I will buy from Alienware because I know they support their computers. I am just really upset about this PC at the moment. I have heard so much good about them. There are a lot of prominent reviewers that like them, but my experience has been anything but good. The thing just dies after 10 months of use? When I get the thing back from that problem, it still does not work? Sometimes I cannot understand the Tech. Support, or for that matter why he is, or is not, asking me to try to get my system working again. Ya know, I now see why so many people switch to using a Mac, and I could never think of using my PC as a production machine. I am so glad I have a PowerBook to use. I just hope that this RAID Controller is the problem, and it works with the new one! As a disclaimer, I want to say that I find that the Indian techs. I have dealt with from companies such as Adobe, Macromedia, Quark, and Alienware are very smart and very willing to help fix the problem(s) at hand. I just wish I could talk to someone that is of Caucasian White, American descent and preferably from within this country. A lot of times thick accents are not the best thing to have when calling for help, especially when one might be a bit agitated at the reason he or she would have to call for help.

Chucky Collection DVD Review

Chucky. He's a doll. Not just any doll mind you. No, this is a Good Guy doll. Not just any Good Guy doll mind you. No, this is a criminaly possesed serial killer doll. Not just any criminally possesed serial killer doll....oh....ok, he is just an ordinary criminally possesed serial killer doll. Anyway, fans of this little terror will be pleased to see that 3 of the 4 films in this series have gotten a nice DVD treatment, sans extras for the most part.

Continue reading "Chucky Collection DVD Review" »

December 8, 2003

Double Meanings

Someone out there either has too much spare time or is deadly at Scrabble. GEORGE BUSH: When you rearrange the letters: HE BUGS GORE DORMITORY: When you rearrange the letters: DIRTY ROOM PRESBYTERIAN: When you rearrange the letters: BEST IN PRAYER DESPERATION: When you rearrange the letters: A ROPE ENDS IT THE MORSE CODE: When you rearrange the letters: HERE COME DOTS SLOT MACHINES: When you rearrange the letters: CASH LOST IN ME ANIMOSITY: When you rearrange the letters: IS NO AMITY MOTHER-IN-LAW: When you rearrange the letters: WOMAN HITLER SNOOZE ALARMS: When you rearrange the letters: ALAS! NO MORE Z'S A DECIMAL POINT: When you rearrange the letters: I'M A DOT IN PLACE THE EARTHQUAKES: When you rearrange the letters: THAT QUEER SHAKE ELEVEN PLUS TWO: When you rearrange the letters: TWELVE PLUS ONE And for the grand finale: PRESIDENT CLINTON OF THE USA: When you rearrange the letters (With no letters left over and using each letter only once) TO COPULATE HE FINDS INTERNS Yep! Someone with waaaaaaaaaaay too much time on their hands! But isn't that interesting!

Free Subscription to EGM

Free, Free, Free. It says it expires 01/15/2004. I got a subscription to GamePro this way :-D.

NSA: Security Recommendation Guides

With all of the viruses and hacking going on, it's no wonder that more and more people are interested in securing their computers. Fortunately, the National Security Agency recently released detailed PDF documents full of great information to help you secure your PC.
Source: Tech TV Its always nice to read about what to turn OFF in Windows. These PDF's are huge!

Ace Utilities

Ace Utilities is an award winning collection of tools to optimize and speedup your system performance. Registry cleaner, Clean disk and internet history, erase your application and internet browser history, cache, cookies and more. You can control startup programs that load automatically with windows, find duplicate files, fix broken shortcuts and uninstall software. Other features include secure file deletion, shred recycle bin, disk space analysis, tweaking of hidden settings, an empty folder finder and more.
This sounds like other tools out there like Tweak UI, but they showed this on TSS and it has some nice options not seen in Tweak UI.

Steve Jobs: The Rolling Stone Interview

When Steve Jobs cruises into the airy reception area on the Apple Computer campus in Cupertino, California, on a recent morning, nobody pays much attention to him, even though he's the company's CEO. He's wearing shorts, a black T-shirt and running shoes. Tall and a little gawky, Jobs has a fast, loping walk, like a wolf in a hurry.
Nice interview, with some Q & A.

Torrid Romance

Interested in something a bit different for your sweetie? Or are you in the dog hourse atm? Check out Torrid Romance, and have them write a book, and transplant you and your significant other in the mix.

Sony Pares Back Specs for All-In-One PSX Console

Sony Corp said on Friday it had pared back specifications for its all-in-one PSX console, an entertainment system that includes a hard disk drive (HDD) and DVD recorder plus a PlayStation 2 game machine. Sony reduced the PSX's dubbing speed from its hard disk drive onto a DVD to 12 times normal speed from 24 times. The machine also will not record or play DVDs in the DVD+RW format, as in the original plan, but it will play and record in DVD-R or DVD-RW formats. The PSX will not play CDs in the CD-R format, as planned, and there also will be no video format support for certain Sony digital cameras and support for MP3 music playback.
Source: Reuters I have only heard of crippleware in the software arena. This is very disappointing. Now its really not worth the price!

OldVersion.com

Because newer is not always better. You got that right!

December 9, 2003

Bookendz PowerBook Dock

I have owned this Dock for my 2002 PowerBook G4 since September. I now take my PowerBook with me more often. The BookEndz Dock is very much worth the price. For those who do not know, the BookEndz Dock allows you to plug everything into it, and then very easily dock and un-dock the PowerBook to take it with you. Some people have asked "Is it too much to unplug and go?" It is a pain in the rear to unplug power, ethernet, FireWire, one or two USB, and external monitor every single time. Like I said, now that I have the BookEndz Dock I take my PowerBook with me much more since it is a simple squeeze of the two latches to dismount the PowerBook from the Dock. So yes, it is worth it. It took a few days, 3 or 4 if I remember, to get the Dock to "fit" my PowerBook. When you are docking 9 ports at once, it takes some time. The user manual pointed this out, and it did take a few days indeed. At first I could not get it to dock at all. But after a week, it has been smooth sailing. BookEndz is even making docks for the new 2003 15" PowerBooks. They have docks available for the 12", 15" and 17" PowerBooks, as well as for iBooks. I am really glad I bought mine, it is a well made product. You can even take out some ports if you are not going to use them. For example I took the S-Video Dock Connector out of the Dock because I do not use S-Video on my PowerBook, so there is no need to have that extra friction ever time I dock my TiBook.

Supreme Court allows Rosa Parks to sue OutKast

The Supreme Court refused Monday to intervene in a lawsuit over the hit song "Rosa Parks" by the Grammy-winning musical group OutKast. The action, taken without comment from the justices, means the 90-year-old civil rights figure can go ahead with her lawsuit against the band. The 1998 song is about the entertainment industry and its lyrics do not refer to Parks by name. The chorus of the song goes, "Ah-ha, hush that fuss. Everybody move to the back of the bus."
Source: CNN Freedom of Speech? This is insane! "...publicity and trademark rights and defamed her." Please!

Group warns parents about 'killographic' games

A public interest group had a holiday warning and a new word Monday for parents of video game users: Beware of "killographic," defined as the "graphic depiction of brutal violence." .... Lowenstein noted that the average age of those who play video games is 28, and said as adults they should be allowed to pick their entertainment. He also pointed out that the industry rates its games on age appropriateness, and that Walsh's institute found most parents are not aware of a game's content. "The message is that parents in many cases aren't doing their job," Lowenstein said.
Source: CNN No! Really? Parents don't know what is in video games? Shocking! You know there is a ratings system in place, maybe parents should take notice of that. Just a thought. And stop blaming this crap on the video game companies. I, frankly, am getting sick and tired of hearing this same old story being rehashed from a zillion different angles.

December 10, 2003

Web Browser Archive

Check out evolt.com for an archive of web browsers, all the way back to the one that started it all, Mozaic. Some of this is nostalgia, but this is also great for checking your web sites in many web browsers.

Embedded Color Profile in Photoshop CS

This is one of those small but very welcome additions to the new Photoshop CS. For me, I do not care one bit about the embedded color profile of an image. I mainly use Photoshop for web development. You can now check the box that says "Don't show again" (also available in the Preferences. I cannot tell you how many times I have clicked the "Ignore" button in Photoshop 7, and wished there was an option to turn this off. Well I guess I was not the only person annoyed by this. Thank you Adobe, for adding this feature (its about time).

Pay-per-view Lingerie Bowl will be legit

The creator of the Lingerie Bowl assures sponsor Dodge that the pay-per-view program will be more than a paltry panty party. The idea of a bra-and-panty fest ``concerned Dodge executives, as it should, because that's not what they were sold,'' said Mitch Mortaza, creator and executive producer of Lingerie Bowl 2004, which will take place during the Super Bowl on Feb. 1. The contest will feature 14 models playing a real game of tackle football dressed in low-riding, lace-lined "boy shorts" and sports bras and some protective equipment. Former professional players Eric Dickerson and Lawrence Taylor will coach the teams.
Source: Startribune.com Apparently, the decision for Dodge to sponsor this was done "without the upper brass" as they said on the Bob & Tom show this morning. But, PLEASE, This is PPV, who wants to pay to see women in low-riding, lace-lined "boy shorts" and sports bras. I don't care how hot they are, it is Angie Everhart after all, but in a sports bra? Yea, thats gonna sell. I have some swamp land to sell you too. My guess is, they don't want the Dodge endorsement to go south. But those models on the Lingerie Bowl site do not look like they are wearing sports bras to me.

Rockstar to drop 'kill Haitians' line

A New York-based video game company announced Wednesday that it would make changes to "Grand Theft Auto: Vice City," a game that had provoked angry protests from Haitian immigrants and city officials.
Source: C|NET Well, I hope they change the "kill all the Cubans" mission too then. Of course the article does not say anything about that, so, maybe it is OK to kill Cubans in video games, but now Haitians? This is asinine people!

December 11, 2003

Mail Scripts 2.0 beta

mail_scripts.jpgI had emailed the developer of Mail Scripts (currently 1.3.7) about helping me with an AppleScript to automate the deletion of email in Mail. After a couple emails I am now helping him beta test his new versions of Mail Scripts, 2.0. Beta testing software is great, especially if it helps you do work faster. I have beta tested Path Finder for some time now, and have contributed much to its design and functionality. Path Finder is another product that helps me save time. Mail Scripts 1.3.7 are a set of AppleScript's for use with Mail and Address Book. They work pretty well. With the upcoming 2.0 scripts, they will now have a UI because the developer, Andreas Amann, has rewritten them using Panther's Xcode Tools, Interface Builder, and AppleScript. This makes these scripts into small applications, and makes them much easier to use. Click on the name to see a screen shot.
Add Addresses - You can add multile addresses to Address Book. This, like all the scripts, reads the messages that you have selected and gathers the names and email addresses from the To, From, CC, and BCC (I think) fields. Archive Messages - You can archive and export messages. Export options are to text or mbox format. You have the choice to narrow your archive/export by date, read status, and flagged status. The archived emails go into a newly created mailbox folder Archived Messages (Date Archived). This is very handy to me as I am archiving by month a lot of my mailboxes, such as my Sent box. Change SMTP Server - This is a much quicker way to change your SMTP Server then going into Preferences, although it does the same exact thing. Why would you use this? When I go down to my dad's house, I have to use the SMTP of his host to be able to send email. Remove Duplicate Messages - At first just comparing Message ID's, it now compairs the raw text of the message body as well. I found that it found a number of false positives with only the comparison of the Message ID's. You would think that every email has a unique Message ID, but in some cases, there are duplicate Message ID's that are not truly duplicate messages. Since this script compares the message body, it can take a while depending on how many messages you have. Send all Drafts - This does exactly what is says, it sends all drafts.
Mail and Address Book have large AppleScript dictionaries which allow almost every aspect of these programs to be scripted, and these small applications show the potential of exploiting these AppleScript dictionaries. Be sure to check the site for the final 2.0 version soon, and give them a try. They just might save you some time.

Temporarily Out of Order

Well, after a year of court battles with my employer, I'm finally getting a desperately needed back surgery. A herniated disc at L5-S1 will be removed next week. I'll be out of action for at least 2 weeks, but this of course depends on how well the surgery goes. Could be longer, could be sooner. More info below. Decompressive laminectomy for cervical or lumbar spinal stenosis - WebMD.com

Forward Message Thread in Panther Mail

threaded.jpgOne of the great new features of Panther Mail is the new threaded feature, which will show all related messages in a threaded format. Threaded emails is by far the best new features in Panther Mail. One thing I did not know you could do is forward an entire thread. Just select the Thread Summary page (the one with the expand carrot on the left) and then click the forward button. It puts all the forwards into one email, one right after another, separated by Begin forwarded message!

December 12, 2003

My PC Works, Finally!

It works! It works! I installed the new Promise RAID card, and that didn't change anything. I re-seated the power and ribbon cable on the HD, and it finally worked! So I don't think it was the RAID card after all. As soon as it booted, Windows crashed, imagine that! So I booted into Safe Mode, and looking into msconfig's Startup and Services tab, the system had both EZ Coaster Creator and Nero installed. This is apparently Alienware's (new) OEM package. I don't understand why they would install both, as they like to play havoc with each other. I uninstalled Roxio and turned off the Startup items and Services that were not needed. That fixed it. Now I just have no audio. Well I take that back, I had noise, not audio. This happened in January when I got this thing. I had to move PCI slots then. This time the tech had me uninstall, and reinstall the Audigy software. I have heard from many people that the Audigy 2 does not like to play nice with XP. Now the audio works. All set, after another 2 hr. tech support call. This time I talked to someone with a sense of humor though, so that helped. I'll tell you after I put the RAID card in and it didn't work I was about to send the damn thing back. NEW SOFTWARE I have an updated OEM software package, which I gotta say, is really nice, with only one covet. For watching DVDs I now have PowerDVD 5, before I had PowerDVD 4. This time I have ArcSoft ShowBiz, aparently a movie creation piece of software. Sonic MyDVD also is installed, version 4, The one covet is Nero 6. As Jim said early, its not that great. Its pretty ugly, and bad, actually. I have an OEM Nero 5 CD I think I will be installing. There is a "Expert Mode" in Nero 6, its just the SAME INTERFACE with a couple more buttons! It looks like an Apple product that went a little far on the entire Aqua thing. Please people! Oh well, what are you gonna do? I never thought I would say, but I am happy to see that Windows logo when I hit the power button on my PC. I can now play Max Payne 2, finally. I also bought Office 2003, it cost me $10 after all (the university has a deal with the devil) so I will have to install that, after all Office XP is so passe. The first thing to do is Windows Update though, and install the 15+ Critical Updates, plus the rest of the not-so-critical updates. Next will be installing all the software I need. First on this list is burnatonce, which is such a great burning app that isn't all goooooi'd up like Nero 6 is. I am really disappointed in Nero 6. Nero 5 had such a great UI, and they ruined it.

December 13, 2003

Insomnia (2002)

It is so hard to see Robin Williams in a "bad guy" role. He, maybe more so than any other comedian, is type cast to NOT play "bad guy" roles. I can only imagine what fun it was to shoot this movie, as I am sure Robin Williams made it hard to keep a strait face. This was a good movie, well written, worth a rent. I saw it on HBO, saw bits and pieces (as you know they run these movies a zillion times a month) and finally sat down to watch the movie beginning to end.

Refresh Finder Window

I have many wishes for Mac OS X. Lots of them have been filled in the 10.1, 10.2, and 10.3 releases of OS X, but one has not. As much as we would like them to, Mac OS X (and for that matter Mac OS 9) Finder windows do not refresh as fast as we would like them to. You have to close out of, or collapse if in List view, the window, and reopen it to force a redraw. In Windows hitting F5 will refresh the current window. Now why can't OS X do this? I am sure it can! This is the number one feature I would like to see in the next release of OS X, be it a dot dot release, or in 10.4, thought it would be nice to see it sooner then that. On a related note, you should submit your feedback to Apple on OS X. Who knows, something positive just might come of it.

Safari Wish List 12/13/03

Here are the features I would like to see in an update to Safari. (Disregarding any changes I would like to see in WebCore.) This is also part two in an n part series. Please see part one and part two for my previous wishes. Show Image Size in Window Title: Both Internet Exploder and Mozilla do this. It is just nice to see the dimensions of an image if you load an image directly in a browser window. You do not have to open it in a separate application, when all you want to know is the height and width. Tab to Form Lists and Buttons: Both Internet Exploder and Mozilla do this. I am one of those people who like to tab to all my form elements, including Select Lists and Buttons. Even in Panther's UI you can now tab through buttons (and hit space bar when the button halo is around the one you want). But in the Panther UI you cannot tab into a Select List. It is nice to be able to tab into a select list, then use the arrow keys, or type, say "O" for "Ohio" for example. Please Apple add this to Safari! If for only those of use who try to use the mouse as little as possible! Sidebar for Bookmarks: Both Internet Exploder and Mozilla do this. I like having bookmarks (and bookmark groups) on top of my browser window. But I also like having bookmarks displayed in a sidebar window. The widescreen of my PowerBook is well suited for this. Oh, OmniWeb does this too, and OmniWeb is now based on WebCore and JavaScriptCore (meaning when these technologies get updated, not only does Safari get an update, but so does OmniWeb). As much as some of these things (including the previous installments) might irritate me, Safari stays my primary browser, I hardly use anything else.

POPFile Update in OS X

At the end of October I installed POPFile. Today I just upgraded it to v0.20.1. Just like the install of POPFile, to upgrade it is not an 'easy' thing to do. Here is how you upgrade POPFile on OS X:
Shutdown POPFile, go to http://localhost:8080/ (or the port number you changed POPFile to) and click "Shutdown POPFile" Backup your current POPFile install. This is at /Library/POPFile Keep the folder /Library/POPFile/corpus handy, you will need to move this to the new version of POPFile. Also keep "popfile.cfg" which holds your settings. Download the new version of POPFile Replace the contents of the /Library/POPFile folder with the contents of the newly downloaded version of POPFile (I trashed the contents and replaced it with the new version of POPFile). Be sure to move the corpus folder over to /Library/POPFile and the popfile.cfg file, or you will have no buckets, magnets, or anything for that matter! Open the Terminal and type/paste these two commands:
cd /Library/StartupItems/popfile sudo sudo ./popfile start
(You will have to authenticate sudo with your password)
Now go to http://localhost:8080/ and you should see the default style'd POPFile History page. I do not know how to copy over the preferences for the style, or for that matter, the configuration page. I tried copying over the "popfile.cfg" file from the old install with no luck. I am going to email the developer about this, and will post it here when I find out. UPDATE My problem was the fact that I did not restart the server after I copied over the popfile.cfg file. All is well now, I double checked it. I had to go to the Configuration page and turn OFF Subject line modification, because I do not use this, and it is ON by default. Figuring out how to copy over the configuration from the old install will fix this problem. accurate.jpgI opened up Mail, and all was well, it works, and is still classifying SPAM as good as before. This entire process did not take very long at all. It has taken me exponentially longer to write about it. POPFile does a much better job at classifying mail then Mail's Junk Mail Filter. I very rarely have to reclassify mail, and when I do I am saying it is SPAM, I am not getting false positives. I have gotten a few, that is going to happen, but it is few and very far between. I would say more then half the mail I have to "reclassify" has not been classified at all by POPFile (it does not put it into any bucket).

December 14, 2003

Faking a Slow Connection for Web Development

It is becoming harder and harder to test web sites at a dial-up speed these days. And as much as we would like it, the majority of people do not have broadband. Instead of asking your misfortunate friend who only has a 56k modem to check your work, check it yourself with mod_bandwidth! Over at Quiet Confusion there is an article about the mod_bandwidth module for Apache. If you develop Web or Flash sites (regardless of Operating System) you should check this article out. This article is, however, specific to OS X. You can get the mod_bandwidth module for Windows and Linux though. Following these instructions (and the tip in the comments about adding symbolic links) took me little time and I am now up and running testing sites as though I were on a 28k or 56k modem. This is such a great tool to have at my disposal. Another interesting idea is to use this module to throttle your site traffic, or your own broadband traffic. But who wants to do that? Still, it is another practical use. I have had this running for a few weeks now and I cannot tell you how often I now use it to test my work. There is some related information on this on the Mac OS X Hints site as well, which has some great comments as well.

Frosty Welcome.com

Thanks to Jim for this link. Have fun with this virtual fridge door, then send your message to a friend.
matrixhasu.jpg

Alien Quadrilogy Overview

I have never viewed an Alien movie before. Well, at least up until the release of this massive 9-disc behemoth. I've seen clips, heard the praises, been told to watch them but I never did. Nearly 25 years after the initial release of the first film in the series, I've finally done it thanks to Fox. This incredible heavy and massive box set is irresitable to any DVD fanatic. The films themselves, well, their irresistable to any sci-fi fan. First and foremost, I'm not going to go through the features on these discs. There is at minimum 30 hours of bonus stuff included here and that's not even including the commentary tracks or deleted scenes. It would be a boring read and my hands would cramp trying to get through it all. Needless to say, it's nuts. There are only 2 documentaries that I know of that have not been included, one from AMC and the "Aien Legacy" which is avialable on a seperate disc, now out of print. It's hardly a loss since any information included in these features is pretty much completely crammed onto one of the 9 discs and expanded upon. They've even went the extra mile and included items from the laserdisc release of the films. It's and absolute overkill of special features and anyone interested in the process of filmmaking must own this set, period.

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If Operating Systems Ran The Airlines

UNIX Airways Everyone brings one piece of the plane along when they come to the airport. They all go out on the runway and put the plane together piece by piece, arguing non-stop about what kind of plane they are supposed to be building. Air DOS Everybody pushes the airplane until it glides, then they jump on and let the plane coast until it hits the ground again. Then they push again, jump on again, and so on... Mac Airlines All the stewards, captains, baggage handlers, and ticket agents look and act exactly the same. Every time you ask questions about details, you are gently but firmly told that you don't need to know, don't want to know, and everything will be done for you without your ever having to know, so just shut up. Windows Air The terminal is pretty and colorful, with friendly stewards, easy baggage check and boarding, and a smooth take-off. After about 10 minutes in the air, the plane explodes with no warning whatsoever. Windows NT Air Just like Windows Air, but costs more, uses much bigger planes and takes out all the other aircraft within a 40-mile radius when it explodes. Linux Air Disgruntled employees of all the other OS airlines decide to start their own airline. They build the planes, ticket counters, and pave the runways themselves. They charge a small fee to cover the cost of printing the ticket, but you can also download and print the ticket yourself. When you board the plane, you are given a seat, four bolts, a wrench and a copy of the seat-HOWTO.html. Once settled, the fully adjustable seat is very comfortable, the plane leaves and arrives on time without a single problem, the in-flight meal is wonderful. You try to tell customers of the other airlines about the great trip, but all they can say is, "You had to do what with the seat?"

Lab Mice.net Windows Resource Site

Thanks to Jim for this great resource site, LabMice.net. And as I am always trying to figure out Windows, this site is a nice addition to my Windows related bookmarks.

Testing the Three-Click Rule

The Three-Click Rule isn't completely bad. People talk about it with users in mind, even executives who have never designed a web site. The rule may help designers focus on the information that users need and may help them create better web sites. These are admirable qualities. We can't be overly critical of a rule that has the effect of helping designers keep their focus on users and their needs. However, the Three-Click Rule does not focus on the real problem. The number of clicks isn't what is important to users, but whether or not they're successful at finding what they're seeking
Source: User Interface Engineering Long, but good discussion about the "three click rule."

Christmas Five

1. Do you enjoy the cold weather and snow for the holidays? I don't mind it at all. Here in Bowling Green we get a ton of wind as well, which makes it even better this time of year! 2. What is your ideal holiday celebration? How, where, with whom would you celebrate to make things perfect? It would be ideal to have the entire family home, and be able to have a week or so off of work. Unfortunately, as a network administrator, these are the times that I will be hard at work. One thing I need to do when no one is at Student Publications is update to Panther Server, and restructure our HD Raid, and share point structure. It is something I have wanted to do for a while, but its something that takes more then a Saturday to do. 3. Do you do have any holiday traditions? Open presents on Christmas morning :-P. Eat a lot of food. Make New Year resolutions. In other words, not really. 4. Do you do anything to help the needy? I just took a bunch more old cloths to the Salvation Army this month. And I always try to buy canned goods every Thanksgiving and Christmas. I contribute to the canned food drive on campus. 5. What one gift would you like for yourself? A dual 2 Ghz G5 with an ATI Radion 9800 :-D.

Canada slaps levy on iPods, other music players

The Copyright Board of Canada said on Friday that it will place a levy of CDN$2 on digital music players with a capacity of up to 1GB, $15 for players with a capacity of 1GB to 10GB, and $25 for those over 10GB. As expected, Apple'siPod will be affected by this decision. However, it could have been worse. "Under the music industry's original proposal, an MP3 player with a 20GB hard drive would have been subject to a levy that would have boosted the price by about $125," reports The Globe and Mail. "Manufacturers filed objections to the Copyright Board over that plan, arguing that the levies would price their products out of the market."
Source: The Globe and Mail

iPod in short supply for Christmas

Apple's popular iPod digital music player is in short supply in many markets in the US and UK, according to the Financial Times. "Most stores in New York have sold out of the larger capacity models and do not expect to get more before the holidays... shortages are forcing many Christmas shoppers to hunt around or settle for one of iPod's many imitators. While most rival machines cost less, aficionados consider them to lack the vital quality of 'coolness.'"
Source: Financial Times "Coolness"? Come on! How about "functionality" That is why people buy the iPod. It just so happens that Apple does design some of the coolest hardware out there.

December 15, 2003

Setting up my PC, Part #1

Now that I have my PC back, I get to install everything to get back to normal use. Round one looks like this: Mozilla 1.5, Sophos, Sophos IDE files, WinRAR, Spybot Search & Destroy, Ad Aware, Folder Icon XP, Virtual Desktop Manager, Tweak UI, Logitech iTouch, Logitech MouseWare, Trillian, FileZilla, HoverSnap, burnatonce, w.bloggar, BrowserSizer and iTunes. I am going to have to purchase TradeKeys, because I am so used to swapping the Control key. Then there are those annoying things to disable in Windows: Disable the Trash's delete confirmation dialog, disabled the Personalized Start Menu, how annoying! I find most of the annoying fixes for Windows in the wonderful book Windows XP Annoyances or the site Annoyances.org.

December 16, 2003

iTunes: 25 million sold

Apple Computer Inc. said Monday that consumers had bought and downloaded more than 25 million songs from the iconic computer maker's iTunes online music store. Apple, based in Cupertino, Calif., also said that more than $1 million worth of iTunes online gift certificates -- sold in denominations of $20 to $200 -- and allowances have been bought since those features were added in October. "The fact that we've done over $1 million in allowances and gift certificates shows a lot of interest on both Mac and Windows," said Chris Bell, director of iTunes product marketing, in a telephone interview.
Source: CNN Money

Return of the King tonight! (Updated)

OK. Return of the King is tonight, midnight showing. Yea. So I am conditioning myself. No food or drink for 5 hours prior to movie time. Go to bathroom at least twice before the movie starts. OK. I think I am good to go. I already have my ticket. I spent the last few nights watching the extended versions of The Fellowship of the Ring and The Two Towers, I am ready. One more hour!

Do you think Peter Jackson will direct the prequel? I am not sure The Hobbit would fit into a 3 hour movie. And considering how liberal he has been with Tolkien with this trilogy, I am not sure a movie would do The Hobbit justice. Unlike LoTR, I did read The Hobbit when I was a kid, and I can just see myself sitting there in the theater cringing. Now that I have seen the LoTR movies I have read (well, OK, listened to) the books. and I now cringe when I watch the movies again.

And do you think Jackson will think of some odd reason why Arwen needs a role in the movie version of The Hobbit? (Yes, I am referring to the LoTR trilogy, Arwen, if you read the books, does NOT have such a large role, but thats show biz.)

So, do you think we will see The Hobbit in the next few years?


Well I must say that I made it through the entire movie without having to take a potty break. I am quite impressed with myself. My "conditioning" played off.

I am sitting here at our local Waffle House at 4 AM, but that is ok, I am a nocturnal animal. This being the case, this might need some revising later, but I wanted to jot down my thoughts while still fresh in my mind.

My buddy Mike had to take photos for the Sentinel-Tribune, so he could not watch this masterpiece. He had to input photos and get ready for a full day of assignments tomorrow. So later this week he is going to want to go see this movie, and I will gladly see Return of the King again, even if it is a solid three and a half hours sitting in the theater.

This movie is more then worth seeing again, for so many reasons. Coming from 3D modeling schooling I was most impressed with the enormous amount of animation mixed with live action (I always notice the CG work first, that’s just me). They blending of the live action and CG were handled very well, and most all the animation was very smooth and with a great amount of detail and blur where appropriate. But I am just a nut when it comes 3D animation. The huge elephants were my favorite, but I do not want to spoil the experience for anyone so I will not go any further on about the animation. Just to say that I was mighty impressed with the progression it has made since The Fellowship of The Ring. They were not kidding when they said The Battle of Helm’s Deep was nothing in comparison to what is in Return of the King. Seeing Massive (the fuzzy logic software built to handle the colossal hordes of men and orc in all the breathtaking battles in this trilogy) handle all the battles in Return of the King was a magnificent experience.

I have not read, or listened to, Return of the King. Since I had not done the same for The Fellowship of the Ring or The Two Towers, I did not want to jade my experience of this third installment. I am glad I have not read Return of the King, as I may have been disappointed in what I did, or did not see.

Humor aided in a larger part of the story this time around, and as Return of the King is by far the darkest of the three movies, it was welcome. There were many moments when the entire theater busted out in laughter. There are some funny moments, more memorable then the rather conservative humor in the last two films.

I do not see how people like my father fall asleep in the middle of watching these movies, the acting, the writing, the visual effects, the landscapes, it is all too much for the senses.. I cannot remember the last time I wanted to see the final chapter to such a good story in a long time.

The Fellowship of the Ring was a very straightforward story, with very little sub plotting. The Fellowship broke apart, and in The Two Towers we had three distinct stories plodding through the lands of Middle Earth. This was all an exercise in out collective attention span as Return of the King jumps from one splinter of the story to the other. But, it never leaves you guessing what happened to who, the pacing is very well shot, or edited, as the case may be.

Musically I think that the various themes, such as the Shire theme, for example, were mixed into the mood and plot points a little more smoothly then in Two Towers. We got the soundtrack to Return of the King a few weeks back, and I have been listening to it. I enjoy it much more then The Two Towers soundtrack.

I could go on to so many points I found astonishing to the senses, but I want you to experience this last journey through Middle earth yourself, not read about it here: go see this movie! You will laugh, you will cry, and three and a half hours later you will, for some strange reason, not want it to end.

The Hobbit anyone?

December 22, 2003

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December 23, 2003

About Jordan Fouts

Jordan Fouts is beginning to wonder if enrolling in gradschool at McGill was such a hot idea after all. At least it has opened up a few neat new possibilities and gotten him out of Ohio most of the year. In fact getting out of America entire is something he's finding very refreshing. Plus Montreal is just the best town anyone could ever wish for.

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About Matt Paprocki

While attending BGSU for a degree in journalism in 1998, Matt decided to start up a fanzine called "Gaming Source." It covered all areas of the video game market from news, reviews, and a look back to the classics. Matt also wrote game reviews for the BG News (after being "discovered" by Ken Edwards) in conjunction with his 'zine. After a year of producing Gaming Source, the costs became too much of a burden and the 'zine ceased to be.* pdf_icon.jpg Matt Paprocki's Resume (67kb) word_icon.jpg Matt Paprocki's Resume (36kb)

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December 25, 2003

Happy Holidays 2003!

If you have not noticed, I have not been here. I like not touching the computer once in a while. I had a great Christmas, and I hope you have too! Just to show Jake how much of a Spoiled Little Bitch I am, I will be sure to post about all the cool toys and such I scored on Christmas. But not right now, right now it is time to relax.

December 27, 2003

A Clevelander in Hell

A guy from Cleveland dies and is sent to Hell. He had been a horrible man his entire life. The devil puts him to work breaking up rocks with a sledgehammer. To make it worse he cranks up the temperature and the humidity. After a couple of days, the devil checks in on his victim to see if he is suffering adequately. The devil is aghast as the Clevelander is happily swinging his hammer and whistling a happy tune. The devil walks up to him and says, "I don't understand this. I've turned the heat way up, it's humid, you're crushing rocks; why are you so happy?" The Clevelander, with a big smile, looks at the devil and replies, "This is great! It reminds me of August in Cleveland. Hot, humid, a good place to work. It reminds me of home. This is fantastic!" The devil, extremely perplexed, walks away to ponder the Clevelander's remarks. Then he decides to drop the temperature, send down a driving rain and torrential wind. Soon, Hell is a wet, muddy mess. Walking in mud up to his knees with dust blowing into his eyes, the Clevelander is happily slogging through the mud pushing a wheelbarrow full of crushed rocks. Again, the devil asks how he can be happy in such conditions. The Clevelander replies, "This is great! Just like April in Cleveland. It reminds me of working out in the yard with spring planting!" The devil is now completely baffled but more determined to make the Clevelander suffer. He makes the temperature plummet. Suddenly Hell is blanketed in snow and ice. Confident that this will surely make the Clevelander unhappy, the devil checks in on him. He is again aghast at what he sees. The Clevelander is dancing, singing, and twirling his sledgehammer as he cavorts in glee. "How can you be so happy? Don't you know its 40 below zero!?" screams the devil. Jumping up and down the Clevelander throws a snowball at the devil and yells, "Hell's frozen over!! This means the Browns won the SuperBowl !! "

December 28, 2003

ADC: Web Dev Best Practices

The Safari development team at Apple has made a dedicated effort to implement Web standards. This means that the easiest way to ensure optimal rendering of your pages in Safari is by following the standards. Doing so will also guarantee optimal rendering in Mozilla, Opera and Internet Explorer for Macintosh. Of course, each of these browsers has its own minor quirks or legitimate differences of interpretation, so testing your site in all of them is still mandatory. Source: Apple Developer Connection

What a crappy present

whatacrappypresent.com is pretty funny. You just have to check it out. So are the problems of buying a CD for someone: "I got that on the computer like two months ago" "My friend already made me a CD of that" "The company that makes this sued my friend"

First and Last Letter

Aoccdrnig to rscheearch at an Elingsh uinervtisy, it deosn´t mttaer in waht oredr the ltteers in a wrod are, the olny iprmoetnt tihng is taht the frist and lsat ltteer are in the rghit pclae. The rset can be a toatl mses and you can sitll raed it wouthit a porbelm. Tihs is bcuseae we do not raed ervey lteter by it slef but the wrod as a wlohe and the biran fguiers it out aynawy!   Jizzaight!!! I saw this on Cat Schwartz's blog, and it is coolness.

Three Texas surgeons

Three Texas surgeons were playing golf together and discussing surgeries they had performed. One of them said, "I'm the best surgeon in Texas. A concert pianist lost 7 fingers in an accident, I reattached them, and 8 months later he performed a private concert for the Queen of England."      One of the others said. "That's nothing. A young man lost both arms and legs in an accident, I reattached them, and 2 years later he won a gold medal in field events in the Olympics." The third surgeon said, "You guys are amateurs. Several years ago a cowboy who was high on cocaine and alcohol rode a horse head-on into a train traveling 80 miles an hour.  All I had left to work with was the horse's ass and a cowboy hat. Now he's president of the United States."

December 29, 2003

Falcons Rally Past Northwestern In Motor City Bowl, 28-24

Josh Harris and Cole Magner set Motor City Bowl records for completions and receptions, respectively. Northwestern took away Bowling Green's running game. So Josh Harris beat the Wildcats through the air. Harris passed for 386 yards and three touchdowns to lead Bowling Green to a 28-24 victory over Northwestern in the Motor City Bowl on Friday night.
Source: BGSUFalcons.com

Congress says it hates spam (except its own)

Even as Congress was unanimously approving a law aimed at reducing the flow of junk e-mail, members were sending out hundreds of thousands of unsolicited messages to constituents. The spasm of activity is aimed at attracting voluntary subscribers to the lawmakers' e-mail lists, which would not be subject to House rules that normally impose a 90-day blackout before an election for taxpayer-supported Congressional mass communications. Source: New York Times



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