Friday, December 07, 2007

*hit Runs Downill

Everyone’s Poop: Texas Monthly December 2007: "They say that shit runs downhill. This is commonly understood to mean that the world is an unfair place, except among those few people who actually work with the substance, for whom it is considered something of an article of faith." via [ The Informed Reader ]

And it is an article of faith, as I can personally testify to from my time working at a waste water treatment plant. Ask the people who work there what the most important invention and they'll say the toilet.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Old Working Phonograph

Sounds pretty good huh? No electronics.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Chumby: Information Appliance

Yeah, I have one of these things. It displays RSS feeds, handles multimedia, etc. As an alarm clock, it's overkill. This thing could be useful in lots of places, at least until they place touchscreen terminals in every room in the house.

Another opinion: A Night With Chumby

Saturday, October 06, 2007

Everyday Engineering

Starts out with a discussion of "windscreen". Funny story: a few years ago, a English colleague cracked his windshield, but couldn't figure out how to replace it. Why? His internet and yellowbook searches were based all based on "windscreen", not "windshield".

Always remember : "If there are two or more ways to do something, and one of those ways can result in a catastrophe, then someone will do it." - a version of Murphy's Law

Futher reading: Why Things Bite Back: Technology and the Revenge of Unintended Consequences

Monday, September 17, 2007

Soccer is Good for You

Soccer is good for you, fitness-wise. It's better then jogging.

"When a group of couch potatoes underwent three months of soccer training, they became leaner, fitter and healthier than a similar group that jogged[.]"

Go on, bend it like Beckham [via Sideline Views: Big surprise ]

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

"Tragic Event Forces Man To Spend Rest Of Life Confined To Office Chair"

Tragic Event Forces Man To Spend Rest Of Life Confined To Office Chair

The Onion

Tragic Event Forces Man To Spend Rest Of Life Confined To Office Chair

WILMETTE, IL—The impact of Fahey's employment was so crushing that it has since left the former high school track star paralyzed in front of his work computer.

Too true.

Sunday, September 02, 2007

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

What Does the Engineer Mean

Basically, how computer programmers and by extension engineers classify difficulty of solving problems.

Understanding Engineers: Feasibility
In a post titled “Understanding Engineers: Feasibility,” Charles Miller explains exactly what engineers mean when they describe problems as “impossible,” “trivial,” “unfeasible,” “non-trivial,” “hard,” and “very hard.”
[via Off Topic : Good Morning Silicon Valley]

As a bit of a side note, computer scientists even have a notation of problem size: O(f(x)) or Big O notation.

Monday, August 27, 2007

Art Deco Dystopia

I've been playing Bioshock.

Glorious Art Deco design: the clothes, interiors, music etc. The voice acting stands out; there's just something about the accents. And if you're familiar with Ayn Rand, it makes the game more intriguing.

It's a game, it's a work of art, and it's a political commentary.

Links galore:

Friday, July 27, 2007

When Whippersnappers and Geezers Collide - New York Times

When Whippersnappers and Geezers Collide - New York Times

They are their parent's children. Overachievers? Pampered? Seriously though, the "Baby Boomlets" have it rough. There is more competition for college spots, especially at the elite institutions. Furthermore, the Baby Boomers (i.e. their parents) are sticking around in the workplace.

And where do "Gen Xers" fit in here? Stuck in the middle?

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Summer Soccer Watching

As I'm posting, I'm watching Mexico vs. Argentina and wish I was watching USA vs. Uruguay. And I "no comprendo" Telemundo. Fortunately, soccer is a global langauge. Here's to some golazos!

Why soccer? Maybe because soccer fans have more fun: US soccer punks 1, McFans 0. Even Major League Soccer (MLS) expansion Toronto FC club is literally tearing down their stadium.

Seriously, I've watched as much soccer this summer as last summer. Aside from MLS (back to that later), the Americas including the good 'ol USA have been busy. First, the USA won their regional cup, the Gold Cup. Then, the US crashed out of Copa America. Meanwhile, the future of US Soccer looks bright in Canada. Finally, the most marketable David Beckham comes to MLS.

Looking toward 2010, U.S. enters a crucial summer with eyes on World Cup
Red Bulls Import a Little Excellence (see Summer Tournaments section)

Monday, June 25, 2007


adapted from Transmetropolitan by Warren Ellis

Benny Feilhaber GOAL


Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Go Back to College via iTunes

Several universities and colleges have classes available via iTunes. Two schools I've attended are involved: U.C. Berkeley and NJIT.

For example, there's a iPod video of six of Cal's Nobel Laureates in conversation.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Burger Time

Burger Time!
Originally uploaded by TwisterMc.
It's outdoor cooking season, and I'm thinking of taking my grilling and BBQ to the next level. The first food item: burgers. I haven't had a good burger in a while: well seasoned hand formed patties of ground meat from one animal or two. Also, I want lamb burgers.

Thankfully, the New York Times' Mark Bittman has a guide to burgers: For the Love of a Good Burger.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

How Gadgets Work

TechOnline | Under The Hood is a pretty neat feature from EE Times. There's a multiple part series on the Toyota Prius and a teardown of the iPod Nano.

Friday, April 27, 2007

Dismall Quote?

The Big Picture: "'The purpose of studying economics is not to acquire a set of ready-made answers to economic questions, but to learn how to avoid being deceived by economists.'

-Joan Robinson, Cambridge University"

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

The Mantra of Entrenched Industries

O'Reilly Radar > The Mantra of Entrenched Industries: "'The world is full of people whose notion of a satisfactory future is, in fact, a return to the idealised past.'"

Or the mantra of the conservative.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Calvin and Hobbes Snowmen Brought to Life

FanTent � Calvin and Hobbes Snowmen in Real Life

I haven't made a snow man in so long. Also, this winter hasn't had a decent snow suitable for snow sculpture, at least around my work or living area. Or I could learn to make sleet men.

Tuesday, February 27, 2007


“So what are you?”

“I told you. A meme.” She pronounced it like ‘theme’. “A memeplex, to be precise. A self-propagating collection of ideas and concepts. A unit of culture, my dear.”

365 tomorrows � Clarity

Friday, February 16, 2007

¡Ask a Mexican!

¡Ask a Mexican!

Funny and informative. And offensive. This column covers Mexican-Spanish swearing and chinos. Also, a glossary.

Wednesday, January 31, 2007

The Ultimate Chain Restaurant Nutrition Guide

Aqua teen hunger force!
Originally uploaded by hapinachu.

Next time I feel the call of the Milk Shake and Fries, I'll just check out the: The Ultimate Chain Restaurant Nutrition Guide: Who Is Hiding Information About The Food, And Who Isn't. - Consumerist

I think I'll have a kabab instead.

Thursday, January 25, 2007


Just watch the video clip on the main link: PAPRIKA | A FILM BY SATOSHI KON | A SONY PICTURES CLASSICS RELEASE.

[via ]

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Brown Ale

NY Times reviews brown ales. Mmmm, brown ale. Haven't had one in a while.

Quiet Cover for a Vital Brew - New York Times

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

David Beckham Crosses the Atlantic

Apparently, this is a big deal. Beckham is popular in East Asia including Taiwan. Since I was in Taiwan, an American and a soccer fan, I was asked for my opinion.

My responses:

  • Major League Soccer (MLS) isn't a bad league. The level of play is better than any league in Asia. For example, the US has three former MLS goalkeepers starting in English Premier League.

  • Beckham isn't one of the best players in the world. He wasn't even the best player on Manchester United, England National Team, or Real Madrid (see "Beckham Epitomizes Style over Substance"). However, he is the best at what he does, which is serving up free kicks, corner kicks and crosses

  • MLS is a new league, and the Cosmos never played in it.

  • The U.S. can play soccer, reaching the quarterfinals in the 2002 World Cup and earning a tie with Italy in the 2006 World Cup.

Will the signing be successful? Depends. More accomplished players have signed on with mixed on-the-field results (see Youri Djorkaeff, Lothar Matthäus). However, Beckham signed on as the most marketable player. He's in the U.S. to sell himself, and MLS signed him to sell tickets and TV rights. The money will flow, but for the money to keep flowing in, there has to be on-the-field results.

More reading:

Thursday, January 18, 2007


I've finally migrated to the new, improved Blogger.

I've experimented with some blog widgets. "Some Bling for Your Blog - New York Times" has some more to play with.

For now, I'll have to look at adding, Furl and Flickr stuff, all "Web 2.0" tools I use almost everyday. Though, except for Flickr, would anyone care?