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Keepin' it fresh

I don't have a strong lead item today but that's no reason to go home with links on the clipboard while the blog goes stale.

Tech buzz watchword: ultracapacitors or ultracaps - The article doesn't have the typical mainstream dreaminess so let me point out that paragraph for you on page 2: "EEStor claims that, using an automated production line and existing power electronics, it will initially build a 15-kilowatt-hour energy-storage system for a small electric car weighing less than 100 pounds, and with a 200-mile driving range. The vehicle, the company says, will be able to recharge in less than 10 minutes."  I'd like to see one of these in a motorcycle.  My garage already gives me free (with my parking fee) electricity to keep my battery fresh, I could have no fuel costs with a battery powered bike.

Glenn Greenwald listens to Alberto Gonzales Congressional testimony so you don't have to (and makes it kind of entertaining).

Having read the entire Edgar Rice Burroughs Tarzan series I love the "half-animal" woman story.  And now that I've got a baby and have seen how he puts every single thing he touches into his mouth, the idea of a human child surviving in the wild seems a little more plausible.

"Cancer cured" headline of the week:  What if there was a cancer cure that wasn't profitable?

Parody site seeing its link passed around everywhere:  Get a First Life.  "What's this body thing, and what do I do with the dangly bits?"  Boing Boing has links to the source as well as a follow-up that includes the first time I've ever heard of a "Proceed and Permitted" letter (the opposite of a "cease and desist").  The page's creator has quite a bit to say about it actually.

The Invisible Enemy in Iraq - Not what I thought.  It's about bacteria and other problems of disease on the battlefield in Iraq.

Speaking of unseen in Iraq, "Ghost Soldiers" Compromise Operations, Endanger Iraqis and Americans - It's helpful to read a specific description of corruption in Iraq (by a blogger who's actually there) rather than have it be the subject of vague blame.  In this case, reporting extra (ghost) soldier and pocketing the pay provided for them.

The Ergopod lets you work at your computer from any position or posture.  And after all, what's the worst that could happen if you lie under a table with a monitor over your face?

If you're of a certain age, the first thing you thought of when you heard that the Bears were going to the Super Bowl is the rap song they did last time (which should have disqualified them from any further Super Bowl appearances).

I read this piece about Indie music labels getting together to force iTunes and Zune to cut deals with them the way deals were cut with the big labels.  This led me to read the new business model entry.  Both are good food for thought.  After going back and forth in my mind about whether I agree, I can at least say that the new business model described is more true to the nature of music scenes.  (It's the fact that I'm not much of a music scenester that makes me resist agree that it's a good idea.)

TechCruch provides an exciting description of a new photo site called SmugMug.  Until very recently I would have turned my nose up at sites like this (somewhat expensive for a lot of fancy sharing and community tools) but since I started using Flickr I have a completely different outlook.  Flickr users are much more active and engaged and enthusiastic than anything I encountered when I only published a stand alone photoblog.

Have you ever looked at some of those Google Maps sightings and wished you knew when the satellite was going to fly over so you could have something prepared?  These people knew.

Speaking of playing with online maps, Yahoo's TagMaps is getting cooler to play with as more people use it.  Be sure to take your time as you try it because the features take a little while to load.  The loose stacks of photos remind me of that big touch screen we saw the other day.

Speaking of things I had fun playing with.  I think Viddler is so cool I actually signed up for an account (free) to make sure it worked the way I thought it did.  It's a video sharing site, but it lets you add tags and comments to the time bar** under the video so not only can you comment on the video itself but you can add your two cents to the specific part you're speaking to.  (**What the heck is that called?  I'm talking about the little progress line that runs along the bottom of the video window.  Usually there's a little bead that shows where you are in the course of the clip.  You know what I'm talking about.  Does that even have a name? The time stamp bar?  The progress line?  The play strip?)

A new crop of kids: Generation We - If you've got young kids already this probably won't be news to you, but not having grown up with computers I'm really interested to see the role they play in the lives of kids -- particularly since I've been heard to say that the Internet is no place for kids.  This is also the first time I've seen a name given to the new generation (Generation We).

Speaking of kids learning.  How about an alphabet rap?

Stress testing the wing of a Boeing 777 - You can jump ahead to around 2:20 if you just want to see what it looks and sounds like when a wing snaps.

No Pork - Proving that pranking fast food restaurants is a global diversion and funny in any language.

The procrastinator's clock keeps you guessing about what time it really is so you can't lazily give yourself "just a few more minutes."  Because you know your trick of setting your watch a few minutes ahead only makes you procrastinate more as you round up how many minutes ahead your watch probably is.

Hear the iPhone ring tone.

Games I played:

  • Cosmic Crush was fun once I figured out how not to lose right away, but then it took too long to play.
  • Tower Blaster - It's an 8 level demo, but that's enough to make for a satisfying lunchtime puzzle.