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June 9, 2005

Mirror Project


"People are less likely to put on airs when they are photographing themselves." — Jennifer 8. Lee in yesterday's New York Times story on the Mirror Project.


The Mirror Project started in 1999 and now features


over 29,000 photos submitted from all over the world.


There's only one criterion for inclusion: the pictures must be self–portraits reflected from some other surface.

June 9, 2005 at 05:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Burping Robotic Fly Catcher


OK, OK, so maybe you don't feel like dropping fifteen hundred dollars on a robot that turns cartwheels — I can understand that.

Heck, I'm passing on it — at least for now — myself.

But that's no reason to deny yourself the fruits of all the great AI work that's been done over the past few decades.

Take a moment and look with me at the Burping Robotic Fly Catcher pictured above.

From the website:

    Just set bait in mouth.

    Sensors detect "prey," causing the jaws to snap shut.

    15 seconds later, a burp is emitted (can be muted).

Requires 3 AA batteries (not included).

"Comes with non–toxic bait, sponge & cleaning brush."

$24.95 here.

June 9, 2005 at 03:31 PM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

What's it's like to experience a direct hit from an F4 tornado


Yesterday I received a heads-up from a reader about a wonderful multimedia presentation created by National Geographic magazine in conjunction with its new (June) issue's cover story, "Inside Tornadoes."

A team of storm chasers placed a probe with 7 video cameras — 6 with a 60° field–of–view and one pointing upward — in the path of an F4 tornado ( winds of 207–260 mph on the Fujita Scale, classified as "devastating"), then recorded audio and video as it bore down on the camera.

Here's my advice:

1) Close all your doors and windows

2) Wait until it gets dark

3) Turn off all the lights

4) Turn off all noise and music sources as well

5) Click on the National Geographic multimedia page here and prepare to feel fear, even in the comfort of your own cozy chair via a small image on a screen.

Unbelievably intense.

What it must be like to be underground in a storm shelter when one of these monsters rumbles through Tornado Alley, feeling and sounding "like a freight train coming right through your front door," I cannot imagine.


[via DH]

June 9, 2005 at 02:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Kondo KHR–1 Fighting Robot


Can your robot turn backflips?

Do cartwheels?

Execute a few push–ups?

Does it have expertise in Kung–Fu?


I'm surprised, actually; usually my readers have the coolest stuff around.

Well, at least I can help you remedy your deficiency in the arena of fighting robots.

A dedicated joehead tipped me to the Kondo Fighting Robot (above) early today, while I was sleeping — yes, believe it or not your host and moderator does catch forty winks on a regular basis — and it's now here for all to enjoy.

Do not — under any circumstances — miss watching at least one of the way cool videos listed toward the bottom of the website.

The KHR–1 measures 13" tall, is 7" wide and weighs 2.4 pounds.

Let the games begin.

$1,499 here.

[via RW]

June 9, 2005 at 01:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Cool–Mist Stick


Interesting device.

It's a nearly 3–foot–long self–supporting and balancing coil that connects to your hose's standard connector.

When you turn on the water the device emits a fine mist out its end to cool down the surrounding area, sort of like those fans that blow mist down along the benches in pro football.

Lightweight; portable; 32.5" long.

$19.95 here.

June 9, 2005 at 12:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Mary–Louise Parker's excellent plastic surgery


I've always loved her looks.


Now she's gone and had work done on her face such that she looks a bit like the love child of Julia Roberts and Lara Flynn Boyle.


Yes, she's prettier (above), in a classic sense, than she used to be (below) but I still prefer her in her original incarnation. Call me old–fashioned


but I really do like natural best.

June 9, 2005 at 12:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Seattle most 'unwired' city in the U.S.


Blame it on the rain.

Intel's third annual survey of the most wirelessly interconnected cities in the country shows Seattle has surpassed San Francisco to become king of the [physically] unconnected.

The study showed that Seattle had more places for its residents to connect to the Internet via wireless, or Wi-Fi, hot spots than any other U.S. city.

The survey for 2005's "Most Unwired Cities" was based on the number of access points at commercial, public, airport, and other locations among the top 100 metropolitan areas in the United States.

The top 10:

1. Seattle

2. San Francisco-San Jose-Oakland, Calif.

3. Austin, Texas

4. Portland, Ore.-Vancouver, Wash.

5. Toledo, Ohio

6. Atlanta

7. Denver

8. Raleigh-Durham, N.C.

9. Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minn.

10. Orange County, Calif.

My question is what's up with Toledo, Ohio?

What's it doing in the number five position?

Milli Vanilli, if you're reading this please call in for your messages.

June 9, 2005 at 10:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Flexible iPod shuffle Dock


"Allows the iPod shuffle to fit into tightly spaced USB ports and displays the shuffle for easy access."

It's a 7–inch–long adjustable USB dock that allows an iPod shuffle to connect to any computer with a USB port.

Lets you position a USB port to easily change and sync your shuffle instead of having to reach around the back of the computer.

Frees up adjacent connectors that would otherwise be blocked by the shuffle.


$19.95 here.

[via i4u.com and ohgizmo.com.

June 9, 2005 at 09:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

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