Wednesday, December 24, 2008


We used to transform my buddy's basement and have epic nerf battles back in the day, but we only had access to the old-school models like the four ball popper and the bow and arrow I think we had an automated dart gun but it shot like six darts, not 500 per minute...

(via GL)

posting will be light until the new year, stay warm kids.

Monday, December 22, 2008

That's Doctor Horrible To You

So I finally saw Joss Whedon's Dr. Horrible with a grown up Doogie himself, Neil Patrick Harris is straight killing it these days (whatever it may be).

I now also have They Might Be Giants stuck in my head...

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Happy Holiday Burritos

I feel a little bad spreading something so obviously put together to go viral (as Bloggasm mentioned) but this is pretty great.

I wish I had a warehouse and the money for a load of microwaves, I've got the time right now...

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Yowza, That's Fast

Speed cubing is crazy. Like me, you've probably seen some video of folks working through a Rubik's Cube wicked fast. But, also like me, you probably thought hey that's cool and moved on, today Kottke got sucked down the rabbit hole and coughed up some goodies.

I'd never really thought about how you do a cube fast, other than shrug and figure it tooks lots of practice. Apparently you also need to memorize upwards of 50 algorithms (over 100 if you want to kick serious ass) I guess that's why the speedsters all look the cube over before they start, they're figure out which set of moves to apply based on teh placement of certain tiles.

The math behind speed cubing, and the woman behind the math, were profiled in this week's NYT Science section. It's a nice piece and you should go take a look. The short version is that Dr. Jessica Fridrich grew up in Chezchoslovokia and fell for the cube hard as a kid, taught herself the math to figure it out, met a professor from Binghamton University and went to grad school there, finalized the Fridrich Method, and now works on 'camera ballistics'.

Kottke's right it's a steep slope once you jump down that hole, and right now I'm really glad that I don't have a cube around (although I'm tempted to go get one), so here is just one video of World Record speed cuber Yu Nakajima getting it done with one hand in less than 15 seconds (if you let him use 2 hands he can do it twice as fast).

Monday, December 15, 2008

Are You Addicted To The Movies?

The site Film Addict will rate your movie addiction based on what percentage of the IMDB top 250 you've seen.

I suppose using the IMDB top 250 is as good a baseline as any, it does contain a pretty good mix of new and old films.

Via Kottke, who is 53.6% addicted. Whereas I came in at 56.8%.

Compare yourself to me, or chart your addiction solo, either way enjoy.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Hey F*ck Face - Billy Ripken Speaks

So 20 years later and Billy Ripken is finally telling the tale of how his 1989 Fleer card came to be know as the obscenity card, or just the fuck face card.

Here in MD we were all O's fans already and big Cal Ripken fans, so it probably magnified the story for us, I can remember looking for the card a few years later since I wasn't a big collector until a year or two later.

But I digress, according to the man himself the bat in question was his batting practice one and he needed a quick and recognizable label to distinguish it from everyone else's:
Now I had to write something on the bat. At Memorial Stadium, the bat room was not too close to the clubhouse, so I wanted to write something that I could find immediately if I looked up and it was 4:44 and I had to get out there on the field a minute later and not be late. There were five big grocery carts full of bats in there and if I wrote my number 3, it could be too confusing. So I wrote 'F--k' Face on it.
Extra cool fact, Fleer gave Ripken a bunch of the cards and he autographed them as groomsmen gifts for his wedding.

Definitely check out the rest of the interview, with CNBC's Darren Rovell, for more on the bat and the card, including Billy Ripken's thoughts on Fleer's role.

(image originally from snopes, story via kottke)

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Text From Gmail

If you still aven't hopped on the gmail bandwagon, and really you should have when it first launched and you could secure your name or first initial and last name etc as your email address, there's yet another cool new addition to the platform to lure you in.

While my cheapskate friends, and those who just happen to be online at the time, have long used the Verizon website to send texts to me (you can send texts from most cellphone providers' sites to their customers) you can now send texts to any US cellphone from the gmail chat window.

Preliminary tests worked great last night, it's a bit better for outgoing messages though as the return text from Becca took about 20 minutes to appear in my chat window.

Check out the labs section when you log in...

While we're on the subject Gadget Lab is reporting that you can send away for gmail stickers, so that you can remember those keyboard shortcuts (that I never use, it's why I have a mouse) or just slap M-velope's on everything. Yes apparently that is the official name of the gmail logo.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Vegas Baby! Vegas!

image from coast travel

I've never been, but wondering how Vegas is doing is a logical question given our current economic situation, and the jokes I keep hearing about a casino bailout being next in line after Detroit.

NPR sent John Ridley to check out the scene last week. He says the place was dead, and on a fight night too boot.

(audio is available through the link)

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Random Surfing

Turned up this shot of a bus stop in Dubai, where it gets very, very hot.

From Flickr user elvis_payne, via GGW

Thursday, December 4, 2008

I Saw You...

The rise of Craig's List missed connections has been a disappointment for me. The I saw you section in the City Paper was always on my reading list when I snagged a copy, and now it's fairly empty if it even exists at all. It's also true that the best apartments and group houses in town used to be in the City Paper and are now on Craig's List and that Hasn't upset me at all. But I digress...

Greater Greater Washington pointed out this very cool map of missed connections from Craig's List. Each state has the name of the most popular locale, also available broken down by gender preferences (m4w, m4m, w4m, w4w).

Originally produced, and for sale, by very small array.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Rock the Cello

Puts a whole new spin on an old, old classic (instrument that is)...

(via my cousin JC)

TIVO Attack!

So I don't have a Tivo or generic DVR (shocking I know) and about the only reason that I manage to survive this horrific scenario is that I currently watch very little television.

It's pretty much some sports, a little Daily Show, and maybe some scrubs re-runs. How do I manage with so little TV you ask, I spend time online and I work the Netflix account.

This is all really just to say that everyone that I know with a Tivo/DVR loves it and swears they don't know how they lived before. For some slightly more concrete proof, of albeit back of the napkin style calculation we can turn to Justin Wolfers at the Freakonomics site...

What about the gains to the average American?