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All the noise that's fit to print

— I was interested to read these two articles back to back. First, a BBC item about Facebook being too noisy
to be useful and losing participants in the older age groups. Then this
one which is largely a complaint about RSS being too noisy but mostly
an encouraging review of a not-yet-public service called Persai which sounds a lot like Pandora with news instead of music; using your pattern of use to determine what you want to read.

This
idea of the web having too much stuff and even the tools that are meant
to help (like Facebook and RSS feeds) end up with too much stuff helps
set the stage for the semantic web and "push" technology. A lot of
people think the internet of the future will be better able to tailor
itself to what you're interested in, saving you the time and trouble of
doing your own surfing.

Speaking of noise and news, more e-mailed than the McCain story on the New York Times site yesterday was "More Americans Are Giving Up Golf."
Given that the baby boomers are entering retirement age I'd expect the
golfing class to be on the brink of explosion but maybe that reveals my
bias in thinking of golf as a game for old people with a lot of time to
kill.  This part is concerning: "The disappearance of golfers over the
past several years is part of a broader decline in outdoor activities —
including tennis, swimming, hiking, biking and downhill skiing —
according to a number of academic and recreation industry studies." The
article makes no mention of video games.

Speaking of what occupies the time of older folks, Little Known 'Boring' Websites That Make Incredible Money With AdSense
- This article is a few months old but it makes it sound like
septuagenarians can simply design a web site and sit back and let tens
of thousands of dollars come pouring in via Google's AdSense. By all
accounts I've heard, this is not as easy as they make it sound.

I'm sure I'm offending some of my readers with all of these references to older people but here's one more. "Zhou Youguang is the inventor of Pinyin, a romanisation of the Chinese lexicon used by millions to learn the language." And those millions include Chinese as well. (And God bless this friggin' guy, 102 years old!)

A long list of things this guy will do for money. It's hard to describe this other than to say it's silly. There are a few really inexpensive items/activities that people have actually purchased.

When Wikipedia Won't Cut It: 25 Online Sources for Reliable, Researched Facts - Though what you'd want with reliable, researched facts I just can't imagine.

Commuter Click: Learning to Smoke - A really outstanding first four paragraphs. I'm taking this one to read on the train home tonight.

That video of women looting in Belgrade during the anti-U.S. riots/protests. I'm not sure what to make of this. It looks like just these same two women, not some kind of social phenomenon.

I think the G Shot is a hoax so I'm not going to get too worked up about it.

I also think Nubrella is a hoax because who in their right mind would wear this? (Hey, that's my office building in the background of the photo on their home page. If I had a window you'd see me in the background.)

Air-Powered Car Coming to U.S. in 2009 to 2010 at Sub-$18,000, Could Hit 1000-Mile Range - We've read about air-powered cars a few times lately but this article comes with cool concept drawings. I still can't read about them without smiling at the thought of them making a flatulent, untied-balloon sound or drivers out of air manually blowing into their cars to get a few more miles or gas stations with a long lines of cars at the air pump behind a little kid dropping in a quarter to pump up his bicycle. It's a cartoonists' dream.

17 Extreme Houseboats and Houseboat Designs: From Luxury Habitats to Humble Floating Homes

Red Bull has a game that lets you build a paper airplane and then fly your design. The game was more interesting than I expected but didn't make Red Bull taste any better.

Speaking of games, this calls itself one but isn't really. I don't want to spoil it but it makes you the guinea pig in a psychological experiment.

Social media in the 1990s - Reminds us what things were like before the Internet we now know and love.

Web meme of the day: "...is your new bicycle."

Three million bucks for the world's largest music collection.

What is the sound of color? Musicians are assigned a color and asked to interpret it in a song. (Don't they know they're all bold as love?) I've heard of people for whom the reverse is true; music makes them see colors. It's called Synesthesia.