September 06, 2012
Hermès Festival des Métiers — "A rendezvous with Hermès craftsmen"
I would love to be in Gotham through Sunday to have a chance to visit this this exhibition and watch in action the world-class artisans who create Hermès' exquisite goods.
Free admission, the way we like it.
Even if you can't afford their wares, a chance to see how they're made is, to me, irresistible.
Click "Watch the video" toward the bottom of this page and see the masters in action even if you can't make it in person.
JawSaw — Chainsaw reinvented
From The Green Head:
When some pesky tree branches or limbs need to come down fast, skip the traditionally terrifying chainsaw and unleash the new JawSaw instead.
Rather than lopping off your own limbs, this innovative electric chainsaw has safety in mind first and total tree limb decimation second.
It's designed to cut tree limbs and branches up to 4" in diameter using a unique scissor cut action that limits kickback and has a chain guard for enhanced safety.
It features steel gripping teeth in the "jaws" to steadily hold things in place, a blade housing that allows for safe cutting on the ground, an automatic chain oiler with oil level indicator, and it even sets the proper tension for you automatically.
"On Obsolescence" — by Will Martin
The essay below was sent at 8:57 a.m. today as an open email to members of my local Mac users group.
It is excellent.
Not one word of the original has been omitted.
Geek alert: The following post is not for technophobes. These are not the droids you are looking for. Move along. (Delete post.)
Since 1987, I've noticed that the vast majority of computers get replaced for good reasons every 3-5 years. In the early days, I was only referencing machines running DOS or Windows. I didn't really work with Macs until 2001.
Windows machines still are best replaced or seriously upgraded every 3-5 years, except for intentionally crippled hardware, like cheap netbooks that are already so close to obsolete that they are good for 1-3 years. Macs are more like 4-6 years.
There are Windows machines that go longer than 5 and Macs that go longer than 6, but those are either machines that were extremely high-end when purchased, and they don't really have high-end requirements for functionality now, or regular machines where people have low enough expectations that they don't need the newer versions of software that won't run on the old system, and don't need to access external systems that rely on newer software than will run on the machine.
The 32-bit/64-bit issue will make a lot of Windows machines obsolete earlier than usual because of the limit on installed RAM within 32-bit versions of Windows (and upgrading to 64-bit Windows on one that now has the 32-bit version is not that much less of a hassle than moving to a new computer).
I'm personally watching the gentle edge of Mac obsolescence. I have a 32-bit Intel iMac (2006) that runs Snow Leopard without capacity for further upgrade. It started with Tiger. I have a MacBook (late 2007) that runs Lion without capacity for upgrade. It started with Leopard. I have a Mini (2012) running Mountain Lion. It started with Lion Server, though the Server app doesn't run in Mountain Lion. The Mini is also the only one that can run X-Plane, the flight simulator.
The iMac running Snow Leopard is still quite useful. It can't do anything with iCloud. It still runs the last decent version of Quicken, but if Quicken actually came up with a new Mac version that didn't stink, it probably wouldn't work on that computer. It still works for email, Web surfing, etc. and one person can still enjoy watching movies on its 17" screen. It would work for iChat, if I could convince any of the people I like being in touch with to use it. My wife would not forgive me for getting rid of this computer. It's likely going to be repurposed when she gives her MacBook to her daughter. She'll either use it or the Mini as her primary computer.
The MacBook works with iCloud for Safari bookmarks, iCal, Address Book, and PhotoStream, so these are synchronized with the Mini and my work computer. I also use Pages and Numbers, though I don't use them a lot. The Mini, my iPod Touch, and my iPad all synch documents in Pages and Numbers via iCloud. The MacBook doesn't. I can use the icloud.com Web site to drag and drop documents between the MacBook and the iCloud stuff, but this isn't really "synchronizing", and I have reasons to want it synchronized.
So, the iMac is still quite useful, though there's stuff I can't do on it. I can do more on the MacBook, and I can do more than that on the Mini. I weigh the cost against the benefit.
This is also why I own so many computers. I want the functionality of the newer stuff, but the old stuff still works too well for too many functions to justify sending it onward to be recycled.
I had no problems when my last Dell got old. I cloned it to a virtual machine on my MacBook and sent it on to be recycled. Also, I bought computers for each of my three step-children. The two who picked Macs are still using them. The one who picked a Dell tossed it years ago and has no computer now. It was hit by a virus and was useless to her for months until I cleaned it up for her, and I think it got hit by another one not too long after that and she was too embarrassed to bring it up until they had physically disposed of the machine. And yes, it had antivirus software on it.
USB Connector works both ways
What took so long?
Half the time when you try to insert a USB connector it doesn't fit because it's upside down, so you have to try again.
This clever invention puts paid to the fundamental stupidity of USB connector design.
"Rather than connectors on one side and a block of plastic on the other, the inside of this plug contains connectors on both sides and a thin piece of plastic in the middle. The unique configuration makes it possible to plug your device in without having to fiddle with it to figure out which end is up."
1-meter-long USB to 30-pin Apple connector: $14.99.
I DRINK YOU'RE CUTE — Urban Outfitters
This new T-shirt from Urban Outfitters makes a statement.
From takepart.com: "Urban Outfitters released a line of graphic t-shirts that glorify alcohol, drugs, and sex. One quarter of Urban Outfitters customers are under 18, and many more are not old enough to legally drink."
Politically incorrect, sure — but wrong?
You tell me.
Kristina Bjoran shows you where it's at
I won't argue.
Wool Hand Duster
From the website:
Genuine wool draws dust like a magnet and releases it with a shake.
Flexible head gets into corners, along tops, and into cracks.
Made by a fourth-generation family business in Vermont.
Recycled poplar handle.
The generalized Ulam spiral (La spirale d'Ulam généralisée)
From AVirtualSpaceTimeTravelMachine: "Starting from the center of the picture, the points are numbered (1, 2, 3,...) when following a square spiral. The radius of the N-th sphere is proportional to the number of divisors of N."
Until Dawn Curtain — Tord Boontje
Wrote Julie Lasky in an article headlined "The Classics, Circa 2050," in last Thursday's New York Times Home & Garden section,
"Tord Boontje's Until Dawn curtain, incised with unabashedly lyrical woodland imagery,
is made of Tyvek, the material used in Express Mail envelopes.'
"To date, 50,000 units have been sold."