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March 15, 2006

Comic Strip Generator — 'Make your own comic strip'


Better try again 'cause no one's laughing, joe.

Back to the drawing board.

March 15, 2006 at 04:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Ceramic Grater


Out with the steel — this is the age of ceramics and silicone in the kitchen space.

From the website:

    The secret is in the ceramic cone-shaped grating ridges, which don't pulverize food fibers and drain nutritious fluids.

    Excellent for hard or fibrous foods, from chocolate and cheese to coconuts and carrots.

    1.75" dia. grating area; 3.5" across.

    Non-skid feet.

    Made in Japan by Kyocera.

$14.99 here.

Also available in a larger version (3.5" grating area; 6.5" across) for $24.99.

March 15, 2006 at 03:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

'Any two unrelated Web pages are separated by only 19 links'


The quote above is from Patrick Radden Keefe's article about network theory, which appeared in this past Sunday's New York Times magazine.

Keefe was describing one of the findings of Albert László Barabási, a physics professor at the University of Notre Dame one of whose special fields of expertise is the science of networks.

Barabási's 2002 book, "Linked: The New Science of Networks," made him one of the world's most well–known network theorists.

Barabási has made available online a most interesting Visual Companion for his book.

But what really caught my attention was his virtual–world analogy to Stanley Milgram's "six degrees of separation" work.

Can it be so?


March 15, 2006 at 02:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Giant Inflatable — 8 feet wide and nearly 5 feet high


From the website:

    Climb it! Rock it! Tip it! The Saturn Inflatable guarantees hours of topsy–turvy action in lake or ocean.

    Rocking and spinning with climbers' body movements, the Saturn offers challenging, serious fun to would–be climbing enthusiasts who don’t mind getting wet.

    Built–in foot– and handholds allow climbers to make their way up the side and to the top — with a few dunkings as part of the fun.

    Made with a rugged nylon cover and 30–gauge PVC bladder, it's designed to provide many seasons of enjoyment.

    For use in deep water only (not pools), it can be anchored with marine-grade rope and heavy cinder blocks for safe climbing; USCG flotation devices are recommended for users.

    For ages 6 and up.

    8'Dia. x 4'8"H.


I see this device as having many applications outside the deep water space.

• In the snow in winter, either as a downhill party for as many as can hold on or aboard the thing as it's dragged through snow and ice behind a 4WD vehicle

• In your office, for when you and your co–workers are feeling restless and frisky

• In the waiting room, especially pediatricians' offices

• In the home, as a quick–cheap–and–dirty backstretcher/inversion device (that's what I'm considering buying one for)

Originally $399.95, now reduced and sure to move fast at $99.95.

March 15, 2006 at 01:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Tinfinger.com — 'The human search engine'


"Note: the site is currently pre–beta."

Out of Australia, "... it produces ordered profiles of people and related articles rather than pages of search results," according to Chris Nuttall's article in the March 8 Financial Times.

"Please be patient while we finish the code! The beta starts soon."

At least they didn't say "real soon."

I was a bit limited in my choice of search fields since I don't know anything about Cricket, AFL or Australian Federal Politics.

I clicked on NFL and up came a list of pro football–related stories mostly from the day's New York Times.

That was on March 8; when I checked just now there's nothing there.

Like the man said: "pre–beta."

That's why sometimes it's not the best thing for a website to get early press or internet notice, before it's really ready to rock 'n roll: it's easy to dismiss the scant content as indicative of what the future might portend.

I do like their name, though, even if I have no idea why they chose it.

March 15, 2006 at 12:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Custom Printed Roller Shade Art


By New York artist Rebecca Olds.

"Sizes to 96" x 96".


That's one serious window.


They also work as dividers.

One–off costs: $500 and up.


Inquiries: rockmade@rockmade.com

[via brianhayes.com]

March 15, 2006 at 11:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

'I vote for Shawn' — big time


The following is the complete, unexpurgated text of David Bogner's post today in his blog treppenwitz.

Not one word has been omitted.

    Wednesday, March 15, 2006

    There are minions... and then there are minions!

    An alleged insult that has been leveled at treppenwitz on more than one occasion is the presence here of a large number of 'adoring fans'. Each time this accusation has been tossed at me I scratch my head and wonder exactly how this is supposed to qualify as an insult.

    Apparently the people who throw out such an 'accusation' feel that the amiableness and general bonhomie that holds sway here on treppenwitz's comment board demonstrate a general lack of both critical thinking and diversity of opinion.

    One pundit even went so far as to call the loose confederation of treppenwitz commenters my 'minions'! Yes, you read that correctly. No, not 'minyans'... that's a quorum of Jews required for communal prayer.

    They really called you people my 'minions'!

    The Oxford English Dictionary (second edition) has pages of definitions for the noun 'minion', but I think that:

    "...a person who is dependent on a patron's favour... a hanger-on... a follower or underling, esp. one who is servile or unimportant... a henchman...'

    ... pretty much sums up the sense my accusers likely had in mind.

    Just curious... is that the role in which you all view yourselves?

    I mean, granted, how cool would it be to actually have henchmen to blindly do one's bidding? But in reality I think you'd be pretty hard pressed to find a group of people with a wider range of backgrounds and opinions than the readers of this journal.

    Now if you want to see a web site with real live minions at work... go check out one of my new favorite reads; Book of Joe, the home of the "World's most popular blogging anesthesiologist." It is a blog that is chock full of the most interesting and useful information, Products and well, neat stuff you could ever ask for... and it's updated more frequently than Jack's Shack!

    But what about the 'minions' you ask?

    The neat thing about Book of Joe is that if you are interested in a topic... any topic... and Joe hasn't touched on it (yet), you can submit a comment asking for help with your quest and within minutes his minions will hit the ground running.

    OK, Joe doesn't actually use the term minions anywhere on his site... preferring the phrase 'crack research team', but who are we kidding? These henchmen (and henchwomen) are his minions, and they're there to do Joe's (and your) bidding!

    I first discovered Book of Joe via one of my minions, er commenters named Elizabeth a couple of weeks ago while I was asking my readers for help with the whole shabbat/coffee dilemma. Elizabeth left me a thoughtful comment suggesting I submit my question to Joe's 'crack research team'... so I did.

    In less than an hour I got an email from a woman named Shawn (with a picture, even! [top]), who politely identified herself as "the bookofjoe staff member who has been assigned to your coffee question."

    She then went on to clearly state the criteria she had used to research my question (to make sure we were both on the same page), and then laid out a veritable treasure trove of links to thermal solutions that would meet my needs.

    Apparently Joe's minions compete for his favor (or some other kind of reward) because at the end of her helpful message she closed with:

    "If you feel this e-mail has helped you in some small way, please help me win the coveted bookofjoe Crackpot Researcher of the Month title. Just forward this e-mail to Joe at jas1@uclalumni.net with "I Vote for Shawn" as the title."

    I'm not trying to put anyone down here... but someone would have to be crazy to call treppenwitz readers 'my minions'. I mean holy crow... If you want to see 'minions' at work, just go check out Joe's crack research team. Now, those are 'minions'.

    You guys are just a bunch of poseurs! :-)


Oh, before I forget — I vote for Shawn too.

With a shout–out to the gimlet–eyed, redoubtable Ginger James.

[via David Bogner and Treppenwitz and of course, the nonpareil Shawn Lea and everythingandnothing]

March 15, 2006 at 10:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (6) | TrackBack

Beautiful nonsense


March 15, 2006 at 09:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack

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