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Entries for January 2004 (February 2004 »    March 2004 »    April 2004 »    Archives)

 

Titanic

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 31, 2004

When I saw this in the theatre for the first time, the theatre was crowded with teen girls. Leo was all dressed up in that borrowed tuxedo and turned toward the camera for the first time, this girl behind me sucked in her breath suddenly, literally breathless at his appearance.

We Work Remotely

Memento

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 31, 2004

.gnimit dna tolp eht tuoba desufnoc era uoy esac ni redro lacigolonorhc ni mlif eht hctaw ot noitpo na sniatnoc DVD otnemeM ehT

Much of the criticism aimed toward Orkut

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 31, 2004

Much of the criticism aimed toward Orkut can be summed up thusly: *this is why you don’t let software engineers do user experience and interaction design*. Unless they have experience, expertise, or talent in that area.

Tanya Jessen lost 95 pounds playing Dance Dance Revolution

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 30, 2004

Tanya Jessen lost 95 pounds playing Dance Dance Revolution.

Snackster is a P2P recipe sharing app

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 30, 2004

Snackster is a P2P recipe sharing app.

Kevin Kelly points us toward a free

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 30, 2004

Kevin Kelly points us toward a free document on surviving a WMD attack.

How the process of letterpress printing works

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 30, 2004

How the process of letterpress printing works.

Eat This New York is a documentary

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 30, 2004

Eat This New York is a documentary about opening a restaurant in NYC. Starring Daniel Boulud, Jean-Georges Vongerichten, Danny Meyer, Ruth Reichl, etc.

Minority Report

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 30, 2004

A year and a half ago, we had a big discussion as to some possible holes in Minority Report’s plot. I’m still disappointed in the “accuracy” of the future, especially since Spielberg went to the trouble of assembling a group of futurists to advise him on how to get it right. Each piece of technology made sense by itself but often did not make sense in combination with the environment or other technologies, lending an air of inauthenticity to the whole affair.

Play Scrabble in your web browser, implemented

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 30, 2004

Play Scrabble in your web browser, implemented in CSS and Javascript. Impressive, but start the countdown to a cease and desist letter from Hasbro

US State Department bans Courier from all

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 30, 2004

US State Department bans Courier from all official correspondence, replacing it with “more modern” Times New Roman. Personally, I would like to see them using Comic Sans.

Disney and Pixar part ways

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 30, 2004

Disney and Pixar part ways.

Depressing article on terrorism, personal liberties, and

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 30, 2004

Depressing article on terrorism, personal liberties, and privacy in America by Bruce Schneier. “Few people remind us how minor the terrorist threat really is.”

ROTK extended DVD will be out in

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 30, 2004

ROTK extended DVD will be out in November and will run 4 hours and 10 minutes.

Whale Rider

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 29, 2004

Keisha Castle-Hughes gives the best performance I’ve ever seen from a child actor. Her tearful speech near the end of the film was amazing for an actor of any age.

A map of all the states I’ve visited

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 29, 2004

A map of all the states I’ve visited. 48 down, 2 to go

Caffeine content of foods and drugs

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 29, 2004

Caffeine content of foods and drugs.

An alternate schedule for O’Reilly’s upcoming Etech conference

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 29, 2004

An alternate schedule for O’Reilly’s upcoming Etech conference. Panels include “Tim Tim Tim Tim. Look at me, I’m Tim.” and “Unpaid Interns: Tech Secrets of Overprolific Alpha Geeks”

Dean centralizing his campaign or are the

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 29, 2004

Dean centralizing his campaign or are the wheels coming off the wagon?. Interesting to see what effect this will have on his Internet efforts.

Buy an imaginary girlfriend on eBay

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 28, 2004

Buy an imaginary girlfriend on eBay.

2 Nintendo GameCubes, 8 controllers, 2 TVs, and 2 copies of

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 28, 2004

2 Nintendo GameCubes, 8 controllers, 2 TVs, and 2 copies of Mario Kart: Double Dash!! = too much fun. This is perhaps the nerdiest thing I’ve ever participated in.

The MacJams site looks to be a

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 27, 2004

The MacJams site looks to be a good resource for GarageBand-related news and such. And they’re having a GarageBand song contest.

See the relationships between search engines with this handy chart

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 27, 2004

See the relationships between search engines with this handy chart.

Do you have Ikeaphobia or Starbucksitis?

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 27, 2004

Do you have Ikeaphobia or Starbucksitis?. Maybe you’re not “being oppressed by flat-packable pine furniture with goofy pseudo-Scandinavian names”.

Richard Dawkins is a Mac guy

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 27, 2004

Richard Dawkins is a Mac guy. Calls PCs “virus-compatible”. Heh.

Being your friend is hard work

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 27, 2004

Overwhelmed by the amount of work necessary to keep up with all my friendships on Friendster, Orkut, and all the other social networking sites, I’ve posted a job opening over on craigslist for a personal social coordinator:

Permanent full-time position for a personal social coordinator for a New York-based web designer.

Your primary responsibility will be managing my accounts with various online social networking sites including, but not limited to, Friendster, LinkedIn, Tribe, Orkut, Ryze, Spoke, ZeroDegrees, Ecademy, RealContacts, Ringo, MySpace, Yafro, EveryonesConnected, Friendzy, FriendSurfer, Tickle, Evite, Plaxo, Squiby, and WhizSpark.

There’s even room to grow in the position:

Future duties may include discouraging companies and individuals from starting new social networking sites so that additional staff won’t be necessary in the future. Past employment as a bouncer, “heavy”, or hired goon may be helpful in this regard.

Or maybe I’m thinking about this all wrong. Perhaps we just need a web service for managing relationships on the social networking sites. A meta Friendster; Micrsoft Passport for social networking. We could call it, oh, I don’t know, Metaster…or Sterster. Sign in to all the sites with one username and password. Invite metafriends to all the sites with a single click. Manage a single profile across all the sites.

Of course, the marketplace won’t be content with just one metaster site. Multiple sites will spring up and we’ll then require a metametaster site to manage the information in all the metaster sites. Of course, the marketplace won’t be content with just one metametaster site. Multiple sites will spring up and we’ll then require a metametametaster site to manage the information in all the metametaster sites. Of course, the marketplace won’t be content with just one metametametaster site. Multiple sites will spring up and we’ll then require a metametametametaster site to manage the information in all the metametametaster sites. Of course, the marketplace won’t be content with just one metametametametaster site…

(And yes, it’s turtles all the way down.)

Salon is serializing Dave Eggers’ new novel

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 26, 2004

Salon is serializing Dave Eggers’ new novel.

The Timberwolves are tied for the lead

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 26, 2004

The Timberwolves are tied for the lead in the Western Conference. They finally have a team that contend; Spree, Garnett, and Cassell work so well together.

Susan Kare on how the original Mac

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 26, 2004

Susan Kare on how the original Mac fonts (Chicago, Geneva, etc.) got their names.

Hyperdictionary is a free online dictionary that

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 26, 2004

Hyperdictionary is a free online dictionary that looks interesting and useful. Includes a computer dictionary, thesaurus, medical dictionary, and dream dictionary.

The Corporation

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 26, 2004

The Corporation, which just won an audience award at the Sundance Film Festival, is a film that explores the following question:

In law, the corporation is a “person”. But what kind of person is it?

Unsurprisingly, a corporation doesn’t make for a very well-adjusted individual (emphasis mine):

Considering the odd legal fiction that deems a corporation a “person” in the eyes of the law, the feature documentary employees a checklist, based on actual diagnostic criteria of the World Health Organization and DSM IV, the standard tool of psychiatrists and psychologists. What emerges is a disturbing diagnosis.

Self-interested, amoral, callous and deceitful, a corporation’s operational principles make it anti-social. It breaches social and legal standards to get its way even while it mimics the human qualities of empathy, caring and altruism. It suffers no guilt. Diagnosis: the institutional embodiment of laissez-faire capitalism fully meets the diagnostic criteria of a psychopath.

I don’t think all companies are like this, but it certainly is an interesting idea to explore. In The Selfish Gene, Richard Dawkins asserts that the larger organism exists in order to propagate the genes and not the other way around as we, the organism, had always assumed. In the same way, corporations have traditionally thought of themselves as the most important entities in the economic ecosystem, but it might be more healthy for society in general to think of them as the organisms that ultimately benefit the humans that comprise them (humans = the genes in the corporation organism).

This thought fits in nicely with one of my favorite quotes on the subject of business from Ludicorp’s about page quoting Charles Spinosa, Fernando Flores & Hubert Dreyfus in Disclosing New Worlds: Entrepreneurship, Democratic Action and the Cultivation of Solidarity:

A business develops an identity by providing a product or a service to people. To do that it needs capital, and it needs to make a profit, but no more than it needs to have competent employees or customers or any other thing that enables production to take place. None of this is the goal of the activity.

Thanks to Devin for the pointer towards The Corporation, which will also be out in book form as The Corporation: The Pathological Pursuit of Profit and Power.

Trailer for second Kill Bill movie

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 25, 2004

Trailer for second Kill Bill movie.

100 things to do instead of sex

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 25, 2004

100 things to do with your boyfriend or girlfriend instead of sex.

First images from Opportunity rover of Meridiani Planum on Mars

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 25, 2004

First images from Opportunity rover of Meridiani Planum on Mars. Includes a color photo and a panoramic shot

Opportunity, the second Mars rover, lands safely

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 25, 2004

Opportunity, the second Mars rover, lands safely. Scroll a bit for pictures

AFA gay marriage poll results won’t go

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 24, 2004

AFA gay marriage poll results won’t go to Congress after all. The result of the poll was “something other than what [the AFA] wanted”.

Friscosity is a group weblog about San Francisco

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 23, 2004

Friscosity is a group weblog about San Francisco. And they’re looking for contributors

Rest in peace, Captain Kangaroo

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 23, 2004

Rest in peace, Captain Kangaroo.

Delta Tango Bravo is collecting links to great posters

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 23, 2004

Delta Tango Bravo is collecting links to great posters.

“SoundBlox is an MP3 audio playing Internet

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 23, 2004

“SoundBlox is an MP3 audio playing Internet application that can be embedded into a personal blog template”.

Subject of Super Size Me documentary eats

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 23, 2004

Subject of Super Size Me documentary eats at McDonald’s for a month and almost dies. “His liver became toxic, his cholesterol shot up from a low 165 to 230, his libido flagged” and he “was vomiting out the window of his car, and doctors … were shocked at how rapidly Spurlock’s entire body deteriorated.”

Pinging woes

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 23, 2004

Whenever I post an entry to this site, a ping is (supposedly) sent to four different places (weblogs.com, Technorati, blo.gs, and Blog Chatter) that says, “hey, I’ve updated my site”. That way, people can use these services to stop by only when there’s something new to read.

The problem is that these services have not been working correctly lately. According to my MT activity log, weblogs.com times out more often than not (or doesn’t accept two pings within a half hour of each other, which is a problem for me because I update my remaindered links more often than that at times), blo.gs either times out or doesn’t accept pings because my “weblog hasn’t changed” (presumably because adding a remaindered link doesn’t change the page enough for it to count), and Technorati has been getting worse as well, timing out more often than it used to. It would be nice to have an adaptive, decentralized ping service that would be reliable and flexible enough to stop ping spam while letting legitimate pings through.

Update: I got email from the folks responsible for Technorati and blo.gs. Technorati’s infrastructure is currently undergoing an upgrade and should be more responsive soon. blo.gs had the settings for one of my weblogs misconfigured, but that has been corrected and it’s now pinging fine. I took a closer look at the MT activity log and found that I had been confused about how often blo.gs was timing out…turns out it hardly ever does and I have corrected the text above accordingly.

Trackback spam

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 23, 2004

This is odd…just before I fell asleep last night, I thought, “I wonder why no one has spammed Trackback yet. It’s just so wide open, hanging out there like a breaking ball that didn’t break.” And then, magically, I’m surfing around this morning and ran across this report of Trackback spamming as well as a TB throttling patch for MT to help minimize the damage. If I believed in Star Wars, I might say that I felt a great disturbance in the Force last night, as if millions of web servers suddenly cried out in terror and were suddenly silenced.

New blog in the Denton stable: Wonkette

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 23, 2004

New blog in the Denton stable: Wonkette. Writing and politics by former Suckster Ana Marie Cox

The Fog of War

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 22, 2004

Highly recommended documentary by Errol Morris about Robert McNamara, Secretary of Defense under Kennedy and Lyndon Johnson. Now in his 80s, McNamara shares frankly what is hinted at as the tip of his personal iceberg, a refreshing occurance rarely seen among the rich, powerful, or famous. Many hold him responsible for the mess in Vietnam, but I ended up liking him more than not in this film; he seemed genuinely interested in personal discovery and re-evaluation and fully aware of the complications of being human. If you go see this movie (which is highly relevant to the current US political situation), I recommend keeping an open mind…you might be surprised at how you react (whether you’re pro- or anti-war…or somewhere in the middle).

- The Fog of War as a design achievement
- A late review from the New Yorker
- The Village Voice on Being Robert McNamara

The Difference Between HaidaBucks and Starbucks

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 22, 2004

The Difference Between HaidaBucks and Starbucks.

Just how far can that Yeti smack a penguin?

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 22, 2004

Just how far can that Yeti smack a penguin?. My high score is 320.5.

Rolling Stone story about Justin Frankel, inventor

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 22, 2004

Rolling Stone story about Justin Frankel, inventor of WinAmp and Gnutella and a continual thorn in AOL’s side.

Fotolog featuring pictures of the homeless

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 22, 2004

Fotolog featuring pictures of the homeless.

Evidence of Evidence

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 21, 2004

Evidence (ahem) that Tufte is indeed working on his new book, Beautiful Evidence.

How to collaborate with others, lessons from string quartets

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 21, 2004

How to collaborate with others, lessons from string quartets.

The NY Times explores the wonders of Aerogel

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 21, 2004

The NY Times explores the wonders of Aerogel.

Winston Churchill’s 104 year-old parrot is still alive

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 20, 2004

Winston Churchill’s 104 year-old parrot is still alive but no longer swearing about Hitler. Sending someone to Mars sounds more plausible

Tired of fabric, Christo covers Maine building

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 20, 2004

Tired of fabric, Christo covers Maine building with ice in latest artistic triumph.

GarageBand!!

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 19, 2004

When Apple announced iLife ‘04 a couple of weeks ago, a common reaction was moaning over the price, which went from free to $49. Which is ridiculous…$49 is a steal for that bundle of software. After playing around with GarageBand this morning, I can report that GB alone is worth the price. I’ve never had this much fun with a piece of software before…I got my money’s worth after 30 minutes.

(And I’d like to post the song I made — the finest techno banjo tune (w/80s synth) ever!! — but the vast extent of my musical talent is just too much for the world to experience in such a direct fashion. Alas.)

Serps!

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 19, 2004

Serps!.

Great “from here to there” digital animation

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 18, 2004

Great “from here to there” digital animation of the Mars rover.

Is NASA tinkering with the color settings

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 18, 2004

Is NASA tinkering with the color settings on the photos from Mars?.

Online weight loss diary

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 18, 2004

Online weight loss diary. Be sure to check the photos and movies

Groundhog Day

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 17, 2004

The legend of Groundhog Day is based on an old Scottish couplet: “If Candlemas Day is bright and clear, there’ll be two winters in the year.” (source)

Kottke and Megnut forever; what, therefore, Software

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 16, 2004

Kottke and Megnut forever; what, therefore, Software has joined together, let not man tear asunder.

Paul Davies advocating a one-way manned mission to Mars

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 16, 2004

Paul Davies advocating a one-way manned mission to Mars.

Analysis of the iPod’s sound quality

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 16, 2004

Analysis of the iPod’s sound quality.

Interpretive spam art

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 16, 2004

Interpretive spam art. “Even the purest kitten perished on the day the massive unrelenting cock came to town!”

Trailer for Tarant…er, Mel Gibson’s Kill Christ

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 16, 2004

Trailer for Tarant…er, Mel Gibson’s Kill Christ.

Trailer for Mel Gibson’s The Passion of The Christ

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 16, 2004

Trailer for Mel Gibson’s The Passion of The Christ.

Subway tops the Franchise 500 list for 2004

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 15, 2004

Subway tops the Franchise 500 list for 2004. I didn’t know UPS Stores were franchised.

Steven Johnson’s new book, Mind Wide Open, is out

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 15, 2004

Steven Johnson’s new book, Mind Wide Open, is out.

Battle search engine

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 15, 2004

Intrigued by a stat that John Battelle pulled out of a Wired News story on search, that “the number of unique visitors to Yahoo Search trailed Google by a mere 10 percent”, I checked my search referers to kottke.org for December 2003 and found a somewhat different story:

Google 60%
Yahoo 22%
AOL 14%
MSN 3%
Earthlink 0.5%

Now, inferring the market share of a search engine from the referers is tricky because you can’t account for algorithm and display differences** (that is, Google may just love my site 3X more than Yahoo! does), so, you know, grain of salt and all that.

** Yahoo!, AOL, and Earthlink search are all currently powered by Google (making their effective search market share 97%), although they may determine and display the results in different ways.

Starbucks opens its first store in Paris

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 15, 2004

Starbucks opens its first store in Paris. In Paris, France, not in Paris Hilton.

Finalists in the DWR 2003 Holiday Champagne Chair Contest

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 15, 2004

Finalists in the DWR 2003 Holiday Champagne Chair Contest.

A Sense of Scale, a visual comparison of various distances

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 15, 2004

A Sense of Scale, a visual comparison of various distances.

Dennis Miller went from liberal to conservative after 9/11

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 15, 2004

Dennis Miller went from liberal to conservative after 9/11.

The buzz about Two Buck Chuck, the

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 15, 2004

The buzz about Two Buck Chuck, the little wine that could.

Rake it like a John Deere 704 Pull-Type Wheel Rake

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 14, 2004

Since I don’t often remember my dreams, you poor folks must suffer through me telling you about it when I do recall one. Last night’s dream was a riff on Junkyard Wars, except without the junkyard and the war. It was just my team and me trying to build a hay-harvesting machine out of a full-sized pickup truck. Our workshop was a garage in the basement of a large farmhouse. At the end of the dream, we spent a great deal of time painting the name of our machine on the hood of the truck. We called it “Hay Ya!”

David LaChapelle’s photo of Lil’ Kim as

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 14, 2004

David LaChapelle’s photo of Lil’ Kim as a Louis Vuitton product is fantastic.

Warp Records is selling MP3s of

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 14, 2004

Warp Records is selling MP3s of their catalog direct to consumers.

There’s a movie in your pants, uh, jeans, er…nevermind

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 14, 2004

The first mention of the sequence GATTACA in the human genome is 14109 characters in. It will be several decades before science is able to explain why I spent 20 minutes tracking that down.

A summary of the movie critics’ 2003 top ten lists

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 14, 2004

A summary of the movie critics’ 2003 top ten lists. Nicely done infographic

TunesAtWork lets you listen to your iTunes

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 14, 2004

TunesAtWork lets you listen to your iTunes music library over the Web.

WiFi router for only $35 after rebate at Amazon

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 13, 2004

WiFi router for only $35 after rebate at Amazon.

Wired magazine did a pretty good job in saving Apple

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 13, 2004

Wired magazine did a pretty good job in saving Apple.

Cumulonimbus mammatus is my favorite kind of cloud

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 13, 2004

Cumulonimbus mammatus is my favorite kind of cloud.

Full-color panorama of Mars from Spirit rover

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 13, 2004

Full-color panorama of Mars from Spirit rover.

What’s your law?

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 11, 2004

John Brockman has asked his Edgy band of scientists, futurists, writers, and philosophers about “some bit of wisdom, some rule of nature, some law-like pattern, either grand or small, that you’ve noticed in the universe that might as well be named after you”, like those of Newton, Moore, or Murphy. Here are the results.

The more general of such laws are the most interesting because they can enrich our understanding of diverse subject areas and can be very instructive in how they fail. I think maybe this is what Alan Alda was getting at with his First and Second Laws of Laws:

1. All laws are local.
2. A law does not know how local it is.

Here’s a few of my other favorite laws from the list, general and not:

Pimm’s First Law: No language spoken by fewer than 100,000 people survives contact with the outside world, while no language spoken by more than one million people can be eliminated by such contact.

Gopnik’s Gender Curves: The male curve is an abrupt rise followed by an equally abrupt fall. The female curve is a slow rise to an extended asymptote. The areas under the curves are roughly equal. These curves apply to all activities at all time scales (e.g. attention to TV programs, romantic love, career scientific productivity). (see the graphs)

Morgan’s Second Law: To a first approximation all appointments are canceled.

Pöppel’s Universal: We take life 3 seconds at a time. Human experience and behaviour is characterized by temporal segmentation. Successive segments or “time windows” have a duration of approx. 3 seconds.

Brand’s Pace Law: In haste, mistakes cascade. With deliberation, mistakes instruct.

Kai’s Example Dilemma: A good analogy is like a diagonal frog.

Rushkoff’s Law: A religion will increase in social value until a majority of its members actually believe in it—at which point the social damage it causes will increase exponentially as long as it is in existence.

Humphrey’s Law of the Efficacy of Prayer: In a dangerous world there will always be more people around whose prayers for their own safety have been answered than those whose prayers have not.

Minksy’s Second Law: Don’t just do something. Stand there.

Sterling’s Corollary to Clarke’s Law: Any sufficiently advanced garbage is indistinguishable from magic.

Mark Frauenfelder’s six-year-old daughter is on the

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 11, 2004

Mark Frauenfelder’s six-year-old daughter is on the CAPPS list as a security risk. What’s next for this pint-sized criminal? The FBI’s Most Wanted list at eight?

RipDigital is a bulk CD-ripping operation: send

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 10, 2004

RipDigital is a bulk CD-ripping operation: send them your CD library and they’ll ship your library back in MP3 format.

Weblog following the progress of the Mars rover missions

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 10, 2004

Weblog following the progress of the Mars rover missions.

The Player

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 09, 2004

This is the only film during which I’d walked out of the theatre. But that was a long time ago, and I guess I was more in the mood this time around.

The Decline of Fashion Photography, an argument in pictures

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 09, 2004

The Decline of Fashion Photography, an argument in pictures.

Series of drawings from man on LSD

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 08, 2004

Series of drawings from man on LSD. done in the 50s as part of a US gov’t study on the effects of drugs

SocialGrid is a dating service using Google,

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 08, 2004

SocialGrid is a dating service using Google, blogs, P2P, etc.. Best part: “The patent application claims coverage of basically all complex objects, including people, in almost every country.”

Japan’s lost and found culture

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 08, 2004

Japan’s lost and found culture.

Adolf Wolfli, artist or designer?

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 08, 2004

Adolf Wolfli, artist or designer?.

What’s the US doing about home-grown, right-wing terrorists? Not much.

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 07, 2004

What’s the US doing about home-grown, right-wing terrorists? Not much..

Xgrid turns a group of Macs into a supercomputer

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 07, 2004

Xgrid turns a group of Macs into a supercomputer.

In the subway

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 07, 2004

Listening to NPR this morning as I struggled to regain enough of my consciousness to stumble into the shower, I heard Colson Whitehead read a selection from his new book, The Colossus of New York. In it, he described weary evening commuters vying for seats on the subway like pigeons scrapping for seed. That characterization strikes me as inaccurate. Commuters dash down stairs to catch an arm in the door before it closes and pack into already crowded cars rather than be left on the platform, but even in the busiest stations at the peak of rush hour, people don’t squabble for seats like pigeons for food.

If you want to see pigeon-like behavior, watch instead the tide of evening commuters racing to spin through the turnstiles at Times Square/42nd Street, swerving around confused tourists, colliding, dancing from turnstile to turnstile, searching for the fastest way past the fumbling metrotards and exiting passengers shooting out of the station into the chaos.

Apple revised their famous 1984 commercial; the woman

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 07, 2004

Apple revised their famous 1984 commercial; the woman with the sledgehammer is listening to an iPod.

Interface Culture

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 07, 2004

How well does the 6 year-old analysis of how we use and will use information technology contained in the pages of Interface Culture hold up? Not too bad, actually. Consider the following paragraph from the “Windows” chapter on what metaforms the Web might be capable of supporting (paragraph breaks and links mine):

Over the next decade, this stitching together of different news and opinion sources will slowly become a type of journalism in its own right, a new form of reporting that synthesizes and digests the great mass of information disseminated online everyday. (Clipping services have occupied a comparable niche for years, though their use is largely limited to corporate executives and other journalists.)

Total News gives us a glimpse of what these new information filters will look like, but the site neglects the defining element of a successful metaform, which is an actual editorial or evaluative sensibility. Total News simply repackages the major online news services indiscriminately; it may be a more convenient format, but it adds nothing to the actual content of the information. More advanced news “browsers” will include a genuine critical temperament, a perspective on the world, an editorial sensibility that governs the decisions about which stories to repackage. The possibilities are endless: a filter for left-leaning economic and political stories; a filter for sports coverage that emphasizes the psychological dimension of professional athletics; a filter that focuses exclusively on independent film news and commentary.

The beautiful thing about this new meta-journalism is that it doesn’t require a massive distribution channel or extravagant licensing fees. A single user with a Web connection and only the most rudimentary HTML skills can upload his or her overview of the day’s news. If the editorial sensibility is sharp enough, this kind of metajournalism could easily find enough of an audience to be commercially sustainable, given the limited overhead required to run such a service.

When the whole blog thing blew up huge and then people like Rafat Ali, Andrew Sullivan, and Nick Denton started making money off of them, Johnson must have danced around the apartment in his underpants (perhaps like Tom Cruise in Risky Business) shouting, “I told you so, I told you so, I called the hell out of that one! In your face!”

Needed: 1 sys admin (Linux, Apache, MySQL), interest

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 06, 2004

Needed: 1 sys admin (Linux, Apache, MySQL), interest in weblogs preferred, NYC, to work on neat weblog tool thingie.

Retro advertising, design, fashion, architecture, music, and more

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 06, 2004

Retro advertising, design, fashion, architecture, music, and more.

20 Facts About the Human Genome

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 06, 2004

20 Facts About the Human Genome.

Live updates from Steve Jobs’ keynote at Macworld

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 06, 2004

Live updates from Steve Jobs’ keynote at Macworld. Keynote begins at 9am PT today

Worldwide database of kosher restaurants

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 06, 2004

Worldwide database of kosher restaurants.

Predictions for 2004

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 05, 2004

Everyone else is making their predictions, and I love a good bandwagon, so let’s go. Here’s what I see happening in 2004:

1. Britney Spears will marry.

2. The Spirit rover will land safely on Mars.

3. More tapes from Osama bin Laden will be found.

4. The Bowl Championship Series (BCS) will result in some controversy.

5. Michael Jackson will do/say something odd.

6. Spam will continue to be a pain in the ass.

7. Pete Rose will admit to betting on baseball.

I know I’m going out on a limb with the Britney thing, but overall I feel good about this list.

Red Sox and Curt Schilling have been

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 05, 2004

Red Sox and Curt Schilling have been circumventing traditional media channels, and the media is a bit upset. Schilling “told the reporters that it was their job to track down the news, not his job to hand it to them”

The art and science of top ten lists

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 05, 2004

The art and science of top ten lists.

What You Can’t Say

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 05, 2004

What You Can’t Say. An essay about “how to think forbidden thoughts, and what to do with them”

Downloading 52 albums in 52 weeks or an RIAA

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 05, 2004

Downloading 52 albums in 52 weeks or an RIAA lawsuit, whichever comes first.

David is reading 52 books in 52 weeks

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 05, 2004

David is reading 52 books in 52 weeks.

Dennis had a bad holiday shopping experience with Customized Classics

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 05, 2004

Dennis had a bad holiday shopping experience with Customized Classics.

NASA’s Mars photojournal

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 04, 2004

NASA’s Mars photojournal. Currently featuring Spirit rover pictures

FYI, XML-RPC in PHP

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 04, 2004

FYI, XML-RPC in PHP.

Britney Spears’ marriage license

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 04, 2004

Britney Spears’ marriage license. The way Britney’s living these days, this is the first of her many marriage licenses

The Triplets of Belleville

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 04, 2004

This is a wonderfully stylish, inventive film. If you’re unaccustomed to movies lacking a strong narrative that drags the viewer through the film, you may want to skip it (the theatre was packed, but several people walked out before the end).

Part of the film deal with the Tour de France, which writer/director Sylvain Chomet talks about in this BBC interview:

I’ve always liked the movement of cycling. It’s the circular motion of the bicycle, and the shape of the cyclists themselves - especially back in the days when they’d be incredibly spindly with amazingly overdeveloped leg muscles. They’re fascinating characters: very nice, timid and shy people. But they often don’t look like they’re enjoying the race. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a cyclist looking happy, even when they’ve won. I’ve also always thought it was strange that the Tour De France starts and ends at the same point. It’s like they’re suffering all this hardship, but not actually getting anywhere as a result.

For more info on the film, you can watch the trailer, read an interview with Chomet in Animation World Magazine, or read AnimWatch’s interview with the film’s art director, Evgeni Tomov.

American Beauty

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 04, 2004

Still good, but it doesn’t hold up quite as well as some of the other films released that year.

A Whirlwind Tour of the Protestant Reformation

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 03, 2004

A Whirlwind Tour of the Protestant Reformation.

Vegard is listening to one new album a week in 2004

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 03, 2004

Vegard is listening to one new album a week in 2004.

My New Year’s resolution is 1024x768

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 02, 2004

My New Year’s resolution is 1024x768.

Is this Howard Dean’s Dukakis-in-a-tank moment?

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 02, 2004

Is this Howard Dean’s Dukakis-in-a-tank moment?.

Goalllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllll!!!!!!!!!

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 02, 2004

Goalllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllll!!!!!!!!!. “a green plastic inset for a urinal, with a football goal installed on top”

Online Boggle solver

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 02, 2004

Online Boggle solver.

Mobile interface to RIAA Radar

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 02, 2004

Mobile interface to RIAA Radar. Identify RIAA-free albums on the go

List of hip shops in NYC

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 02, 2004

List of hip shops in NYC.

The NBA is blogging, but they need

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 02, 2004

The NBA is blogging, but they need people better suited for the job.

Charles W. Cushman Photograph Collection

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 01, 2004

Charles W. Cushman Photograph Collection.

Send your clothing labels to Caterina for

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 01, 2004

Send your clothing labels to Caterina for a dress she’s making.

Panorama of Times Square New Year’s 2004

posted by Jason Kottke   Jan 01, 2004

Panorama of Times Square New Year’s 2004.

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