I'm a big fan of the Tube here in London, but I took a bus last night for the first time and I recommend the experience. You get a much better sense of the city than you do burrowing underground from place to place. If you can, get on one of the double decker ones (they also have the long accordian buses here, which I think are newish) and sit on the upper deck in the front. With the huge windshield in front of you (and not much else), you feel a little like you're floating around the city. Quite fun.
Quicken is "retiring" the 2002 version of their software, meaning things like online bill pay won't work. It's ridiculous that a piece of 3 year old software stops functioning. If software companies are going to effectively "rent" software to people, it should cost a lot less.
I'm leaving for London in a couple of hours. I'll probably be posting a bit while I'm there as time and connectivity permit...hopefully some photos as well.
Packing this morning, I came up with a list of the extra stuff that I need to do before going to the airport now that everyone's a terrorist until proven innocent** and the major airlines are all about to go out of business:
- Clip my fingernails. With nail clippers verboten on planes, you need to do it before you leave.
- Silence my electric toothbrush. Last time I traveled, my toothbrush turned on in my luggage and the battery was long dead when I got home. Luckily I can plug the power cord into the brush to prevent it from turning on, lest some anxious baggage screener thinks it's a buzzing bomb and/or illegal sexual device.
- Leave ridiculously early. I am a single male traveling alone on an American Airlines flight to Heathrow on a ticket purchased not so long ago...I'm pretty sure that I'm going to get pulled aside for a "random" screening. My only hope: my summer tan has faded and I'm white as can be (Non-Terrorist White is the hottest color for pants at J. Crew this season)...come on, wave whitey through!
- Wardrobe change. Gotta wear pants that don't require a belt and shoes that can be slipped on and off with ease.
- Eat. You may get food on the plane, you may not. With random screenings come random feedings and I don't like my odds in either case.
** The Jan/Feb 2005 Atlantic Monthly has a couple of great articles on terrorism...here's a relevant snippet from Success Without Victory (subscribers only) by James Fallows:
Screening lines at airports are perhaps the most familiar reminder of post-9/11 security. They also exemplify what's wrong with the current approach.
Many of the routines and demands are silly, eroding rather than building confidence in the security regime of which they are part. "You can't go through an airport line without thinking 'This is dumb,'" says Graham Allison, the author of the recent Nuclear Terrorism: The Ultimate Preventable Catastrophe, and the director of the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, at Harvard, which conducts many projects on anti-terrorism and security. "You have two people whose job it is to see if the name on your driver's license is the same as the name on your ticket -- as if any self-respecting terrorist would fail to think of that. You have a guy whose job is to shout out a reminder for you to take off your jacket and get your computer out of your bag. You've got one-year-olds taking off their shoes. It is hard to think of a way you could caricature it to make it look sillier." At the same time, the ritual manages to be intimidating, as a standing reminder of how much Americans have to fear.
More on this later, but for now: Saft rocks!. I wish it hadn't taken me so long to get around to checking this out for Safari. The saving tabs feature alone is a godsend.
Amazon and A9 have created a visual Yellow Pages. Many listings have a photo of the location associated with them. Very neat.
This may be the worst movie I've ever watched all the way through. Highly stylized garbage. Not even Willem Dafoe as an openly gay FBI agent in drag could save it (I'm not one of those people that thinks that bad movies are good because they're so bad). The only reason I gave it any points at all is because I watched it with friends and we heckled and it was a bit fun to do so (but only a bit).
Spiraling Fibonacci Flickr circle madness. This one is worth looking at full-sized. Wow.
Color Fields. Find Flickr photos by color and brightness.
John Naughton writes in the Guardian about the loss of public social interaction. He places a lot of the blame on technology:
It's not clear when all of this changed, but my guess is that technology - in the shape of the Sony Walkman - had a lot to do with it. As the Walkman de nos jours, the iPod is simply continuing what Sony started. But not even Sony could have single-handedly destroyed the notion of social space. The coup de grce [sic] was administered by another piece of technology: the mobile phone.
Living in NYC, I'm well-positioned to observe the effect that mobile phones and iPods have on public interaction, but I would guess that the main factor in people not talking to each other on the street as much as they used to (in America at least) is cultural rather than technological. People move more often these days so they get to know less people in their neighborhoods. The decreasing costs of travel have filled urban streets with non-locals. "Don't talk to strangers" is the prevailing attitude; we teach our children that strangers are to be feared. Living in the suburbs and heavy automobile usage have made Americans unaccustomed to casual conversation with strangers...we're out of practice. Life moves a lot faster than it used to as well. We don't have time for casual conversations with strangers anymore; our time is reserved for working, sleeping, interacting with people we already know (family, coworkers, friends, the gang at the bar), and getting to and from places where we do those things as quickly as possible.
The mobile phone, Sony Walkman, and iPod fit comfortably into that type of culture, but I don't think they're driving it. If any technology is to blame, I'd choose the automobile, the suburb, and the television over the three Naughton mentions.
Several months ago, I spent an afternoon tinkering with rsync so that I could back up my Powerbook to my web server over SSH and vice versa. Got it working perfectly...or so I thought. The other day, I actually took the time to look at what was actually being backed up. The web server --> Powerbook backup was fine, but the Powerbook --> web server was trying to backup everything from August 2004 to the present. When I looked on the web server, sure enough, nothing had been backed up for months. After a few moments of panic, I found out I'd been using the "-n" option while doing the Powerbook backup:
-n, show what would have been transferred
So it looked like it had been working, but actually hadn't been doing anything. Anyway, all the files on my Powerbook are now whizzing their way to the web server and I shall once more be properly backed up. (You do back your files up, yes? You're not waiting until you lose everything to find religion, are you? If so, I say unto you: back thy stuff up now!)
Study shows that writers who get MacArthur genius grants don't produce much in return. "Crain's determined that 88% of the MacArthur recipients wrote their greatest works before being recognized by the Chicago-based foundation".
When the heat death of the universe occurs, here's a few ideas on how we might escape. If you're up on dark matter and M-theory, skip to the "Steps to leave the universe" section; my favorite escape possibility is "send a nanobot to recreate civilisation".
A Flickr coincidence. "A guy from Scotland goes 5490 miles to Tokyo and takes a picture of a girl taking a picture. She turns out to be from England, 413 miles away from him" and then "he posts the picture he took on a Website (in Canada, irrelevantly) and within 6 weeks the girl in the photo finds it".
An ethnic dining guide; Wash. DC centric but with good general info. "Ordering the plain steak in Latin America may be a great idea, but it is usually a mistake in Northern Virginia. Opt for dishes with sauces and complex mixes of ingredients."
New Yorkers, there's still lots of time to take advantage of Restaurant Week:
Enjoy special three-course, prix fixe menus at the city's best restaurants. The restaurants listed below offer $20.12 lunches and/or $35.00 dinners during Restaurant Week. Duration: Jan. 24 - 28 and Jan. 31 - Feb. 4, 2005; Excludes Saturday, Jan. 29 and Sunday, Jan. 30
I can personally vouch for lunch at 11 Madison Park (three full courses with five possible choices for each course and they gave me so much dessert) and have also dined favorably in the past at Artisanal, Blue Smoke, Craft, and Gramercy Tavern. The "lunch only" places are probably the best deals...$20.12 for so much good food, it feels like you're stealing from them.
How to get a reservation at The French Laundry using Opentable. "Watch your time.gov webpage. When 11:59:55 strikes, click 'reload' in your browser until you see either available tables show up or you see a 'No tables are available' message. If you see 'No tables are available,' sorry, but you lose."
Oscar nominees are out, Aviator leads with 11 nominations. It was the most accessible, big, good Hollywood movie out in theatres...makes sense that it got so many nominations.
Comparative Morphologies. "What looks like vintage natural history studies turns out to be, on closer inspection, images of computer and technological cords and peripherals, each slightly manipulated to take on organic characteristics--a fused or sprouting growth from a stem, a viral infection, or a radial symmetry."
Student photographer's expulsion from his dorm for taking photos raises questions about the rights and responsibilities of photojournalists. "Vega's pictures of partying, binge drinking, oral sex and, in particular, an alleged car burglary, thrust him into the center of a debate among photojournalists over their rights and responsibilities."
Discarded Titles for George Orwell's 1984. "O, Brother, Where Art Thou? Oh Right, Everywhere"
The A/C trains are massively hosed up due to a fire over the weekend. The C may be out of commission for *five years* (wtf?). What a nightmare.
The Apple Macintosh turns 21 years old today and as a birthday present, the long-lost video of its introduction by Steve Jobs has been posted to the web by TextLab on their weblog:
Fear not, faithful Mac believers. We have found it. We have found what seems to be the only copy of a public TV broadcast on that very day. It was recorded and preserved by Scott Knaster, the "legendary Mac hacker", as Amazon puts it. Scott kept the tape (a NTSC Betamax III longplay) for 21 years since he keeps everything. Andy Hertzfeld saw it when he wrote the story "The Times They Are A-Changin'" on folklore.org. From there we followed the hints, and that's how we found it.
We worked with Scott to convert it from NTSC to PAL, we've polished it, cleaned it, huged it and digitzed it. Here it is. It goes back to the people who've made the Macintosh, and to the world. The complete material of about 2 hours is returned to Scott, Andy and the folklore.org people, and this weblog will report the story of the "missing 1984 video" in detail. We'll release other clips in the coming days, so bookmark and check back.
That page is super slow right now, so I've compiled a few links to the video (QuickTime, 20.9 MB). Enjoy:
Torrent file (use this if at all possible)
Torrent file (use this if at all possible)
Thanks to Peter for the pointer.
My Audioscrobbler page. Cripes, I listen to a lot of indie rock. This should be more interesting after a longer time period, when everything evens out.
The joys and challenges of using the web for linguistic research. "The web is filled with words intended to attract internet searches to gambling and pornography sites, and these can muck up linguists' results."
Justin notes that he's got 43 Starbucks within a 5-mile radius of his apartment and now he's looking for the highest concentration:
I've got 43 Starbucks locations within a five-mile radius of my apartment. First of all, what the fuck? Second of all, and I can't help but to get competitive here, can anyone beat that?
Update: 162 is the new high (from the top of Regent's street in London).
My old work address in Manhattan (45th and Madison) has 169 stores within 5 miles. Put your address into the Starbucks locator and see what your Starbucks density is. (Note: to find the number of stores, scroll to the bottom of the search listings and find the "(Showing 1-20 of xxx Stores)" text.)
Exploring the law of unintended consequences. "The law of unintended consequences shows us how many innocent innovations like email, anti-virus and DRM can become something far worse than the inventors had ever imagined."
In NYC, when you don't have a car and you need to move stuff that won't fit in a taxi and isn't enough that you need an entire huge moving van, you call a "man with a van".** I recently used the services of a guy named Paul, recommended by a friend of a friend. After packing the back of his truck with my things, we set off for our destination, chatting along the way. He asked me how I'd found him and we eventually got to talking about craigslist.
Paul told me that these days, he got most of his jobs from CL and only one or two a week from personal referrals. I found that surprising and when I pressed him further, he told me that because of CL, he's been able to do pursue moving (which he really likes doing) as a full-time career. I can't remember the exact quote, but Paul said something to the effect that he can't believe he's getting away with starting a full-time business on CL without it costing him a single dime.
I'd never really thought about it before, but in some ways, CL helps lots of people build businesses cheaper and more effectively than more "robust", complex, and expensive enterprise software solutions. Movers are just one example. CL can help you find employees for your business. If you've got a van, you can pick up free furniture and electronics around the city, fix or refurbish, and sell it. You can start a business doing computer troubleshooting, piano lessons, buying and fixing up old motorcycles, or escort and sensual massage services. And if you need something done for your business but don't have the money to pay for it, you can always barter goods or services in exchange. These are just the obvious examples. Does anyone know of anyone using craigslist in more creative ways to make a living or other examples of people succeeding in business using CL?
** Don't know how this evolved, but folks in the "man with a van" profession like to rhyme the names of their businesses. My guy was "Call Paul to Haul", but you will also probably find "Chuck/Buck with a Truck", "Cory with a Lorry", "Schmuck with a Truck", "Call Jack to Pack", and so on. (Oh, I'd recommend using Paul if you need a man with a van...check here for his info.)
Fixing the poor animation in The Polar Express. Also a bit about Gollum, The Incredibles, and the uncanny valley.
What it's really like to be a homicide detective. "Never trust a detective who dresses like one of those TV characters".
The One to One Future. "In the future, companies will do their best to get their hands on as much of your original writing as they can."
"Larry Summers, the president of Harvard, suggested the other day that innate differences between the sexes might help explain why relatively few women become professional scientists or engineers.". "But the best signal to send to talented girls and boys is that science isn't about respecting sensitivities. It's about respecting facts. The only people who don't belong in science, male or female, are those who would rather close their eyes-and yours-than see what's there."
Awards voting and the catch-22 the movie studios find themselves in. DVD screeners need to be sent out in order for the voters to see the studios' movies, but the process and end product are often so painful that some films find themselves out of the running.
The Morning News is holding a tournament of books. It's like March Madness, except with books and in February.
Sorry for the lack of updates around here. I've been busy and preoccupied with other things, mostly just trying to put one foot in front of the other. I've got all sorts of things I want to talk about but just don't have the energy to do so. Justin sums up what it's like sometimes for those of us who have been putting their lives online for awhile now...the ways in which we can paint ourselves into corners using this still-new social platform without realizing it until it's too late. Justin pours much more of his life onto his site than I do mine, but enough of me is here that his video made me cry about my own experiences a bit.
Anyway, I hope things will be returning to normal around here soon...the remaindered links should continue as usual (more or less) since they're pretty easy to do. In the meantime, I'm going to be in London at the end of the month for a few days, an attempt to change my perspective a bit and get reamed by the exchange rate in the process. I'm considering a trip to SXSW in March. I haven't been for a couple years and it would be nice to see everyone again (and hopefully not get food poisoning this time). I'm also thinking about going to Thailand in March (which may kill the SXSW trip). My dad is there & familiar with the area and I've only heard good things the country. But we'll see.
What If.... "[This chart represents] the ways my life could have deviated from its actual path".
The College Humor guys get the Rebecca Mead treatment in the New Yorker. "The friends finally arrived in New York last summer, and took up residence in a newly renovated, forty-two-hundred-square-foot, five-bedroom loft in Tribeca, which rents for ten thousand dollars a month -- a move that bears about as much relation to the typical postcollegiate experience as 'Sex and the City' does to the demographic it purports to represent".
Great win yesterday by the Patriots. Nearly flawless execution of their game plan; they held the ball for 2/3 of the game, not allowing the Colts celebrated offense much time on the field.
Michael Jordan: "Has anyone so completely dominated his sport and left so small a mark upon it?". "Jordan's heading toward a point at which he'll be only a chain of newspapers and an opera singer shy of being Charles Foster Kane".
The answer to "I'm coming to NYC...where should I stay/go/eat/etc.?". I get this question a lot...it'll be nice to have somewhere to direct people.
John Battelle's looking for a subtitle for his book, "The Search". How about "Solving the world's biggest problems and getting rich doing it"?
The earth is getting less sunlight than it was 50 years ago. Global dimming may be caused by air pollution and could affect the earth's climate.
Tufte has posted a new chapter from his upcoming book, Beautiful Evidence. Chapter is called "Corrupt Techniques in Evidence Presentations", some of the ugly evidence in the book.
Spam is like a broken watch. It's right about twice a day. A sampling from the past two weeks:
- Need a change?
- No more.
- I cannot forget you!
- Looking for cheap high-quality software?
- IMPORTANT: this email address is circulating...
- Now you can watch ON_Demand Movie channels
- I cant live without...
- Is it time for a change?
- How Badly Do You Want To Exit The Rat Race?
- Today is the first day of the rest of your life
- relief from pain
- Freee your mind and b0dy -- relax when you should
- home alone
- Feeling Depressed?
- Relieve the pressure and anxiety
- You pay TOO MUCH for meds!
- one more time
- silent. On a sofa
- I hope this is what you want.
- How are you? You could be better....
- i need some company
- suffered for so long,
- It's for sure
- you are lost
The Sound of Data. Piping data files to an audio player to see what they sound like. Fun!
Look at Me. A found photo project.
The Indonesian earthquake decreased the length of each day by 2.68 microseconds. More amazing is that man made features like the Three-Gorge reservoir can change the length of days and shift polar position.
The EFF is doing important work in defending bloggers against Apple's subpoenas:
On December 13, Apple filed suit against "Does 1-20" in a Santa Clara court. The company obtained a court order that allows it to issue subpoenas to AppleInsider and PowerPage for the names of the "Does" who allegedly leaked the information in question. EFF is defending the publishers against these subpoenas, arguing that the anonymity of bloggers' sources is protected by the same laws that protect sources providing information to journalists.
"Bloggers break the news, just like journalists do. They must be able to promise confidentiality in order to maintain the free flow of information," said EFF Staff Attorney Kurt Opsahl. "Without legal protection, informants will refuse to talk to reporters, diminishing the power of the open press that is the cornerstone of a free society."
The right of bloggers to protect their sources is an issue near and dear to me, and it's great to see the EFF pursuing it.
MacMerc is blogging MacWorld live. So far, iWork (Keynote + word processor), new iLife apps, Mac mini ($500-600), iPod Shuffle (small, simple mp3 player, 1 oz., 512 Mb for $99).
100 things we didn't know this time last year. "Brussels sprouts have three times as much vitamin C as oranges".
Brenda Ueland on listening:
I just tell myself to listen with affection to anyone who talks to me, to be in their shoes when they talk, to try to know them without my mind pressing against theirs, or arguing, or changing the subject. No. My attitude is: 'Tell me more. This person is showing me his soul. It is a little dry and meager and full of grinding talk just now, but presently he will begin to think, not just automatically to talk. He will show his true self. Then he will be wonderfully alive.'
I need to listen more and be listened to better. This is probably as good a New Year's resolution as any.
All ISBNs will move from 10 digits to 13 digits in 2007. I wonder how Amazon will handle old URLs with the 10 digit ISBNs.
Cory Arcangel has a solo show at the Team gallery, Jan 13 - Feb 12. "The show at Team, for example, marks the launch of dooogle.com, a search engine which only yields results about Doogie Howser, M.D."
Redemption of a pizza stone scrooge. "You guys are trying to make a pizza fool of me. That pizza she's making is a big fat round manipulation."
Early eBay announcement on Usenet from Pierre Omidyar. "All items are offered by the individual sellers, and anyone is free to bid on any item, or to add items, free of charge."
Good Daniel Okrent editorial on photography's place in journalism. "But the untruth - or, at least, imperfect truth - of any single photograph is inescapable."
Andre Torrez releases TKPal, a set of PHP scripts for DIY micropayments. Lets you charge small amounts for "unlocking" content like individual blog posts, a shareware download link, or to get rid of advertising.
iHome appears to be a fake. Font is wrong, box looks weird, ports look like those on the 12" Powerbook, etc.
Photos of the retro future. It's in Italian, but just keep clicking through to the next "pagina" at the bottom of each page.
The Institute of physics commissioned a BMX bike trick to commemorate the 100th anniversary of Einstein's miracle year. The "Einstein Flip", worked out by pro rider Ben Wallace and physicist Helen Czerski, is what the kids would call a backwards 360 tabletop (I think).
To start off each year, a question is asked of the Edge membership. This year's question is: "What do you believe is true even though you cannot prove it?" Here are some favorite responses of mine followed by a couple of my own beliefs.
Rupert Sheldrake is Darwin's man and believes that all natural processes, even physical laws, have evolved through natural selection:
I believe, but cannot prove, that memory is inherent in nature. Most of the so-called laws of nature are more like habits.
The idea that something like the value of Avogadro's number is just a habit that the universe adopted after much practice is quite appealing.
Kevin Kelly thinks the DNA within in our body is slightly different in each cell:
I believe, but cannot prove, that the DNA in your body (and all bodies) varies from part to part. I make this prediction based on what we know about biology, which is that natures abhors uniformity. No where else in nature do we see identity maintained to such exactness. No where else is there such fixity.
Ray Kurzweil is trying to live forever and probably hopes to see the whole of the universe at greater than light speed:
We will find ways to circumvent the speed of light as a limit on the communication of information.
Kurzweil would probably disagree with Todd Feinberg's belief:
I believe the human race will never decide that an advanced computer possesses consciousness. Only in science fiction will a person be charged with murder if they unplug a PC. I believe this because I hold, but cannot yet prove, that in order for an entity to be consciousness and possess a mind, it has to be a living being.
Jonathan Haidt on religion:
I believe, but cannot prove, that religious experience and practice is generated and structured largely by a few emotions that evolved for other reasons, particularly awe, moral elevation, disgust, and attachment-related emotions.
Seth Lloyd on science:
I believe in science. Unlike mathematical theorems, scientific results can't be proved. They can only be tested again and again, until only a fool would not believe them.
I cannot prove that electrons exist, but I believe fervently in their existence. And if you don't believe in them, I have a high voltage cattle prod I'm willing to apply as an argument on their behalf. Electrons speak for themselves.
And George Dyson thinks their may be a connection between the language a raven speaks and the language spoken by the indigenous human population:
Interspecies coevolution of languages on the Northwest Coast.
During the years I spent kayaking along the coast of British Columbia and Southeast Alaska, I observed that the local raven populations spoke in distinct dialects, corresponding surprisingly closely to the geographic divisions between the indigenous human language groups. Ravens from Kwakiutl, Tsimshian, Haida, or Tlingit territory sounded different, especially in their characteristic "tok" and "tlik."
Here's what I believe:
- Human beings are not the only instance of intelligent life in the universe. When I think of how big the universe is, it seems impossible to me that humans are the only ones here to observe it. Also, it's damn arrogant.
- The things we call "the soul" and "consciousness" can be explained scientifically and then could probably be duplicated given the proper technology (i.e. a machine could have a soul). I guess you could say I come down firmly on the Kurzweil side of the Kurzweil/Feinberg continuum.
- Technology will outstrip humanity's ability to control it. I have no idea what form this will actually take. Bill Joy believes technology might endanger humanity to the point of extinction (many prominent thinkers -- Kurzweil, Hans Moravec, Freeman Dyson, John Seely Brown among them -- disagree to various degrees). I don't know if I'd go as far as Joy, but what makes me believe in this is 1) advances in technology consolidate more and more power in the hands of fewer and fewer individuals and, 2) culture moves slower than technology. That is, the potential for danger is rising faster than our ability to respond to it, and that could cause problems.
What do you believe?
In a recent NY Times article, A.O. Scott calls Sideways the most overrated film of the year. He allows it's "well written and flawlessly acted, funny and observant" but feels it doesn't quite live up to all the critical hype (i.e. having been named film of the year by critics' groups in LA, NY, SF, Chicago, Toronto, etc.). Even worse, says Scott, is that critics love the film (and other films like it) because the main character is a critic himself:
Still, the reaction to "Sideways" is worth noting, less because it isn't quite as good as everyone seems to be saying it is than because the near-unanimous praise of it reveals something about the psychology of critics, as distinct from our taste. Miles, the movie's hero, has been variously described as a drunk, a wine snob, a sad sack and a loser, but it has seldom been mentioned that he is also, by temperament if not by profession, a critic.
And furthermore that the film defends Miles' critical approach to life:
This makes him, among other things, an embodiment of the critical disposition, and one of the unusual things about "Sideways" is that, in the end, it defends this attitude rather than dismissing it. Yes, the film pokes fun at Miles's flights of oenophile rhetoric - all that business about asparagus and "nutty Edam cheese" - but it defies the usual Hollywood anti-intellectualism in acknowledging that, rather than diminishing the fun of drinking, approaching wine with a measure of knowledge and sophistication can enhance its pleasures. There is more to true appreciation than just knowing what you like.
I don't think Sideways defends the critical attitude at all...not any more than than it does Jack's hedonistic lifestyle. Neither character's life seemed any more fullfilling than the other's. You could argue that Miles seemed to grow as a person over the course of the film, indicating the triumph of the critic, but Jack didn't seem to want to grow that much. Jack knows he's got some issues, but being as self-aware as Miles, he's not only content to live within his boundries, but almost revels in it. And in the end, both characters find what they're looking for in a relationship. If the critical character wins in this movie, I didn't see it.
The top 100 artists in the world. Picasso is #1 followed by Warhol.
Christo and Jeanne Claude's The Gates are starting to be installed in Central Park. The Gates project will be viewable in the park Feb 12-27 and will be the most photoblogged event ever.
Tonight on Nova: Welcome to Mars. "Two rovers roaming the surface of Mars find proof that it was once awash in water."
This is a developing scandal folks...it threatens to bring down not just a bit player like Dan Rather, but all of network television. On the Jan 2, 2005 episode of 60 Minutes, internet search pundit John Battelle commented on Google employees not taking advantage of their newfound wealth because it's against Google's ethic:
If anybody got a Porsche or a Ferrari right now at Google, they’d probably be drummed out of the company
My sources deep inside Google (who shall, given recent legal jeopardy, remain anonymous) tell me that at least one employee has purchased a Porsche with the IPO monies and has not, repeat, has *not* been drummed, tubaed, celloed, or otherwise musically extricated from the company. If true, who knows what this could mean for the future of journalism as we know it!! The implications on podcasting alone are unfathomable at this time. More as it develops...
Update: Is this really Ben Affleck's Bentley in a Google parking space or is it some IPO bling? Who knows how deep what the press has dubbed "Googlegate" will go before we get to the truth?
Update #2: The car pictured in the photograph above may be a Rolls Royce instead of a Bentley. It's hard to sort through all the misinformation here...it's staggering.
Update #3: Confirmed: the car is a Rolls Royce, not a Bentley. But forget the car, I've heard rumors that both RR and Bentley are owned/manufactured by German car companies (VW and BMW). I'm working to track these rumors down, but if true, Germany's heavy investment in Google would be a bombshell.
Update #4: Matt, prominent media pirate, has video of the 60 Minutes episode in question. You can see their lies for yourself. No official denial as of yet from the German government on their outfitting of all Google employees with luxury motor coaches.
The NY Times recently asked a few New Yorkers which era they would nominate as New York's golden age. Like Greg, I thought Bill T. Jones' answer was the most penetrating:
Right after 9/11.
New York had a true reappraisal of itself at a tragic and introspective moment. New York had the attention of the whole world; it was a frightening moment. But the world was ready to follow, to assist.
It lasted a few months. We were vulnerable and open to the rest of the world, and we were ready for a change. There was a chance to ask questions, and it was a time when we were forced to do so.
But it didn't happen. There wasn't a true conversation about what America means to the rest of the world or about why New York was chosen. It was an opportunity. And then the politicians took it.
That last sentence is a doozy, isn't it? It saddens me to think that in times when we need to have open and honest communication to heal wounds and investigate opportunities, we instead let ourselves get caught up with the marketing of powerful men.
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