Wednesday, July 31, 2002

"I feel to entertain any of their half ass fearful frightened bullshit would be to compromise something that is a big part of my soul."
-- Jeff Tweedy, Wilco. on Warner's insistance that the band change their music or leave.
See the trailer from their forthcoming movie "I Am Trying to Break Your Heart" on
Although her album isn't out until late August, Aimee Mann's entire songlist from "Lost in Space" is available on her website.
Even further confusing the legal issues of exploratory hacking, a senior Bush advisor tells Black Hats that hacking is beneficial.
"Some of us, here in this room, have an obligation to find the vulnerabilities," What about the others? Prison?
These guys strap rockets to toys, light them, and send them on their way to blow up.
The furnace sticker museum.
HP uses computer crime laws to stifle security research. This is the type of boundless corporate misuse that we can expect of any and every DMCA, DRM, and computer security act. Let the floodgates open.
[Relieved of the burden of free speech] The government has posted a handy list of things you're not supposed to talk about while going through airport security, including news items such as threats and security.
Don't discuss terrorism, weapons, explosives, or other threats while going through the security checkpoint.

Tuesday, July 30, 2002

Rock and Roll Confidential: Making fun of band promo pics so you don't have to.
Some great illusions, science tricks (dig: leaf photo), and logic puzzles (including the Monte Hall probability puzzle that always confused me) at Grand Illusions. Courtesy of Mike's (New) Weblog.
The anti-consumer, pro-Media-Giant group RIAA got hacked.
[Gestapo Watch] Florida cops pulled drivers off of an interstate freeway ... to get marketing poll data for a proposed train route.
``They freaked me out,'' said Alan Kent, pulled over Monday on his way home to Clearwater after a concert. ``I thought they had pulled me over to search me.'' A woman traveling with Kent, who declined to give her name, was even more blunt: ``It's illegal,'' she said.

Monday, July 29, 2002

We were robbed of the shiny silver-suited, flying car, leisure-bound future we were promised. Retrofuture rubs it in.
Ghostsites is where the sites aren't about ghosts- they are the ghosts.
Our collection now is at 1,112 screens from approximately 825 defunct Web projects that gave up the ghost between 1998 and 2002
[Lifestyles of the rich and narcissistic] Isn't living in a neighborhood called Jumbolair kind of like bragging about playing the Enormodome? Is it jumbo to fit their planes or their heads?
Parallels between life under the unelected Bush's regime and Orwell's 1984.
Attaboy, Clinton... features an audio article on the vigilante hacking that Hollywood/Congress's proposed legislation.

Friday, July 26, 2002

Robots that create art.
I'm not too keen on these professional appreciation days, but today is System Administrator Appreciation Day.
This is war. Further proof that Congress represents only big business, and they're willing to shred your rights for their constituency.
The broad new legal powers proposed by a congressman - and endorsed quickly by several others - would let record and movie studios hack into Americans' personal computers to find illegally shared music and movies. They could also try to disable or interfere with file-swapping programs. It also would let industry use denial-of-service attacks - commonly launched by hackers to flood commercial Web sites - to knock personal computers offline so they can't trade copyrighted songs and films.

Does anyone else feel that Hollywood is entering into a very dangerous game here? They're messing with the personal property of a group of people who will no doubt make it their mission in life to out-hack, out-crash, and out-destroy anything that the studios can cobble together in their IT departments. It just doesn't seem like they know their enemy. It's also going to bring a cynical duality to any of the lame hacker movies they try to foist on us in the future.
The Bill of Rights-hating, Right-wing extremist/ultraprude/anti-dancer/defeated-in-popular-elections-by-a-corpse Ashcroft calls his Orwellian nightmare "no Orwellian nightmare".
He might have a point... I'd say TIPS is more of a Hitler Youth without the 'youth' requirement.
Gates gives his company a "C" on delivering on the promise of .NET.

Thursday, July 25, 2002

[Yo, Banana Boy] It's the palindromist!!!
"Doc, note. I dissent. A fast never prevents a fatness. I diet on cod." is much better than my banana boy one, but the author is from England, and helped crack Enigma in the 40's, so his should be better.
The guys at 8-track heaven aren't bothered with all of this DRM nonsense.
Also from Interesting Ideas, prison art.
Hokey small business names!
I'm pretty sure the management at Mohammed's Imports and Respect for Life Fish House would never mask corporate balance sheet losses in offshore ghost corporations R+D accounts. I'm not too sure about the folks at Murder Burger, though.
Anonymous outdoor art.
Kurt Cobain's diaries will be coming out this fall.

Wednesday, July 24, 2002

Hollywood wants to disable your PC. Even more absurd Hollywood/DRM scuttle this morning, as the major Studios make the case that their 'bottom line' is going to be a factor in determining the extents of your constitutional rights. These same honest folks are only trying to look out for their artists, after all.
WASHINGTON--Congress is about to consider an entertainment industry proposal that would authorize copyright holders to disable PCs used for illicit file trading. A draft bill seen by CNET marks the boldest political effort to date by record labels and movie studios to disrupt peer-to-peer networks that they view as an increasingly dire threat to their bottom line.

Tuesday, July 23, 2002

[Smells like art] You can make an art car!
The 'art cars' I've seen have little to do with art, and a lot to do with glueing pieces of crap all over your car, but God bless those freaks one and all, I say. Maybe yours will be better. Its a wide open genre.
"Consider using props, sound, light, and maybe even smell as your design your car's personality."
Smell?! Bring it on, baby!
[The Basket-weaving sections must have all filled up] Berkely is teaching a grad student course in blogging. Who'd take this??? Who'd give a damn?
Nude Jogging Businessman.
Police don't think he had been drinking or taking drugs. They also say he didn't seem to be suffering from any mental health problems. McDade said: "He was completely sober. He was talking like a rational person - talking about computers."
Carnival Booth: An Algorithm for Defeating the Computer-Assisted Passenger Screening System
The hunt for Bin Laden goes to the web.
Al Qaeda is said to be computer savvy, and some investigators believe they have found markers or code words that indicate bin Laden is trying to signal supporters that he is alive.
I bet its just some guy trolling for arab chicks on IM pretending to be Bin Laden.

Monday, July 22, 2002

Richard went and collected himself 10,000 soft drink cans.
Being a clown is a fucking hassle.
Lawyers bidding against lawyers for evidence on ebay. Courtesy of Metafilter (the same guys who hipped me to this killer complete scan of Action Comics #1!).
Here's a great pulp cover archive. Beautiful enlarged scans, like this one. Popups galore, though (I even got two from
The largest lava lamp. How to make the stuff that floats around inside of a lava lamp.

Thursday, July 18, 2002

Who knew there was a raver, pro-ecstasy lobby in D.C.? I think they're in trouble: Congress just booted the only guy on the hill who knows how to party.
The petitions declare: "This bill is a serious threat to civil liberties, freedom of speech and the right to dance."
A good interview with Mike ("American Movie") Borchardt from the Onion AVClub.
Despicable behavior from big media and the government at a so-called "public" session to discuss DRM. Take out the "R". They have no interest in protecting the rights of anyone but the big money players.
Advocates trying to speak for regular Internet users were basically told to sit down and shut up during a "public" workshop on digital rights

Wednesday, July 17, 2002

...or damn the torpedos and build your own real glider.
Build a Wright glider using a styrofoam meat tray and some toothpicks.
An Army of ones (and fivers and tens for lapdances). Check out the Kincade-like painting on the home page. I was hoping to find more practical information like which rail yards have the meanest bulls, and freightcar boarding-while-in-motion technique, but this site is more heavy on the hobo poetry/art/gatherings stuff. They can hook you up with an email address, which would look pretty cool on your card (any name starting with "boxcar", "oatmeal", or "tincan" is probably already taken).
[Idiot Force Delta] I once worked at a company where the office policy police would come around in the evening and take an inventory of the number of personal items the programmers and analysts had on their desks/cubicles (we were allowed 3, tops). This, of course, did absolutely nothing other than enrage the staff and get everyone wondering whether management had anything better to do with themselves other than keep spreadsheets of personal items. Someone once heard the policy guys arguing over whether an illustrated calendar should be considered grounds for formally notifying a particular offender of his transgression (it was a pretty horrible calendar). A worker at the Australia Post just got FINED £1,000 for a photo of friends on her desk. These are the types of useless, nosy bastards who are going to be lining up in droves for TIPS.
Why eat like a king when you can eat like The King?
The U.S. Should not be a nation of spies.
TIPS wants citizens to report suspicious behavior. But it won't - for reasons of political correctness - tell them whom they should be suspicious of. Without such specificity, the program becomes a government mandate for letter carriers, school teachers, meter readers, trash collectors and countless others to spy on, and turn in, their neighbors.

Tuesday, July 16, 2002

MOMA's online exhibit: Russian Avant Garde 1910-1934 (Courtesy of Coudal Partners).
George Bush tells you how to scare up a cool 500 Grand... Texas style.
“We don’t call in lawyers till we wrap up a deal. They’ll just screw it up. You don’t call a lawyer until you have to.”
Hot damn this web thing is getting microfocused! is dedicated to exactly what you think it'd be dedicated to. (From my pals at Spitting Image)
[Yeah, but genius is never appreciated in its time] Jerry Springer: TVGuide named his probing and insightful news/opinion hour The worst TV show of all time. (Yawn!) If they wanted to do a really fascinating article, they would have boiled down the worst Jerry Springer episodes ever (ala "My man is a D-O-G dog, and I hope that stank freak catches what he done got!") but alas, this is TVguide, the Busch Light of journalism, and their dumb, PC asses also popped the brilliant Hogan's Heros (and not F-Troop???) as number 5, so you get what you get. They know noth-ink!!, Herr Klink!
Inaction figure. Pricey, but figure that the immobility of the character's limbs probably added cost at the manufacturing plant.
I usually believe pretty much everything I read, but I ain't buying this one. Considering the size/shape/face-wrecking capabilities of a pit bull's mouth, and the fact that all Bostonians are widely known to be unrepentant liars nudged me toward my present skepticism. Connecticut is pretty close to Fibtown, so I'm pretty sure this is a load too.
[More 'Lost Arts']: Cemetary Monuments, beatboxing, Letterwriting, Lei Making, Swish Basketball shooting, seduction (with unambiguously descriptive subtitle), sermonizin', Stairmaking, Out-making, Political Insult-making (this means you, you mewling clay-brained maggot-pie), Housepet body modification, Old-school BBS Taglining, and billboard painting. Oh hell, google knows a million more than I do.
Vintage Luggage Labels - The lost art of travel. What's better than travel and free stickers? Why'd they stop making these things?
[Gee, I don't know... What does it pay?] Attention brown-shirt wannabes: US planning to recruit one in 24 Americans as citizen spies. Is this going to be an effective measure against terrorism, or just drive our prying asshole quotient through the roof? Are we allowed to slap the hell out of them if they bother us, or do cop rules apply? Too many questions unanswered... I know a lot of people, and I can't think of a single one that should be allowed to do this. It sounds like a total clusterfuck in the making.

Monday, July 15, 2002

Finally, some geniuses have answered the age-old question of how much shaving cream they manage to pack into that little can. Simply logic-defying. Before shaving cream cans, they must have used shaving cream bags that were at least this big, right?
Online Auction Oddities.
I can't believe that 6 people bid on the beer can hat.
One almost empty pot of Hair Gel as owned by the son of a friend of David Prowse (aka Darth Vader). Strictly limited edition. No reserve. Buyer pays postage.
(Note: Not to be confused with Disturbing Auctions)
... and their loser cars.
"Owning a Volare was total ego death--the theme song, the vinyl Landau roof, the inability to pass another car on the highway."
The biggest losers on the web.
["That's f*cking good, Pink Boy!" (I was gonna do something with "web-rog", but better sense prevailed... or did it?)] Engrish! (courtesy of Memepool)
I was in Bangkok, Thailand one day when I saw a beautiful young woman wearing a T-shirt that read "I trusted the government, now my dick glows in the dark" I asked her if she read or spoke English, she said no. I didn't have the heart to tell her what she was wearing.
Oasis claims that the ghost of John Entwhistle was onstage with them during a tribute. Uncharacteristically, they didn't fight with , insult, or fire the ghost
Sesame Street South Africa features an HIV-positive muppet.

Sunday, July 14, 2002

Top 10 Network security risks.
Science Fiction gets real. A 'tooth phone' dental implant, Radio waves transmitted by laser, and paintable computers. NY Times tells us how fiction is converging with reality. (Log on required to nytimes)

Thursday, July 11, 2002

Dig the Air Sickness Bag Museum. They accept (unused) donations.
How to make an autopsiable alien. Yours can be much better than the "official" '47 Roswell model.
The Mirror Project is a growing community of like-minded individuals who have photographed their likenesses in a variety of reflective surfaces.
New Jersey drivers frequently complain because they pay among the highest for auto insurance in the U.S. With guys like this, the cost is probably justified.
A Southampton man led police on an hour-long, high-speed chase through two counties Sunday, saying he could not stop because he believed a bomb would go off if he drove slower than 55 mph.
Soon Lego freaks will have more than the mini-movies and the White Stripes video. They've just announced a full-length movie.
[Free stuff alert] Free Slurpees today only.

Wednesday, July 10, 2002

[Pearls] Found this game on metafilter, and I'm currently getting skunked by the laughing host. There's a part II of the game as well.
A Reubens painting broke the record for the most expensive painting ever sold at auction. It went for £49m ($76.5 Million)
It was expected to reach between £4- to £6 million but was bought for the record-breaking price by a private collector in the auction room.

Tuesday, July 09, 2002

The most descriptive domain name ever issued.
I know the top of the page says art, technology, culture, etc., but I've been neglecting attending to happenings in 'pure' science. Looky: The same scientists who brought you the Stinkymeat Project present the The FAT Project - Two people try to gain 30 pounds in 30 days. Each. For science. This site is exhaustively documented with pretty much everything you'd need to know if you wanted to try to follow in their footsteps. This may be the most scientific thing on the internet.
A Texas preacher beat a kid unconcious with a stick because he didn't take his bible study "seriously enough". Hmm. That kind of thing would never go down at "The Church of Heavenly Wood" which preaches that the cross-dressing C-movie director Ed Wood is the savior of mankind.
Someone found a rare Michelangelo drawing in a box at the Design Museum in New York.
The museum bought it for $60 in 1942 in a collection from an English estate. It was labeled "Italian, circa 1530-1540." Its current value is between $10 million and $12 million, art dealers said.
This thing looks flat-out cool. Google has released an intranet search appliance that you can slam into your rack to index all of your internal web's content. According to their FAQ, It's Intel running Linux with a web-based admin console.

Monday, July 08, 2002

Mercedes produced a fake movie trailer which is really an ad for their car.
This Japanese guy beat his own record and ate 50.5 hot dogs (with buns!) in 12 minutes.
Kobayashi, who weighed in Wednesday at 113 pounds with the coveted mustard yellow belt, credits his success to months of training.
French mayor passes new laws against smelly tourists. Mr Dunoyer claims Britons are among the worst offenders, despite the fact the French use less soap than anyone in Europe. He said: "I sit on the terrace of one of my favourite restaurants trying to enjoy good food and wine, and then a smelly tourist comes in and ruins everything. I have had enough and plan to make sure it stops now."
In just 2 years he's gone from being roundly trounced by a corpse in Senate elections to getting line-item veto over the Bill of Rights. This City Paper article shows all sides of Ashcroft, from fundamentalist bumpkin/doofus to dangerous, angry tyrant.
Ahh... there's nothing like watching a bunch of rich white male criminals clam up in front of Congress for summer fun.

Sunday, July 07, 2002

Fox prepares henhouse protection plan... Oh, I'm sorry- Honest mistake. Bush prepares corporate scandal plan
Enjoyable page of recreational mathematics.

Thursday, July 04, 2002

Streamer- Pirate radio for the digital age.
"It works by relaying the mp3 data stream from one listener to the next, forming a branching tree with the broadcasting pc at the base. This is different to the normal method where all the listeners connect to a central server, and it means you don't need lots of server bandwidth. There is also no limit to the number of listeners..."
Some cities across the country are finally standing up to civil rights villian John Ashcroft, by declaring the absurdly-named 'Patriot Act' a threat to the civil rights of the residents of their communities. This of course, surprises no one.
The resolutions are largely symbolic, because the local governments have no authority to compel federal law enforcement to comply.
The Lord of the Rings: Two Towers teaser trailer is out now at Apple.
Ooof! A guy went spearfishing, shot himself completely through the head with a spear (what else?) and lived to tell about it.

Wednesday, July 03, 2002

Star Trek started sucking when they got light on the Kirk-era lasers-n'-logic, and went in for the Next Generation/Deep Space/Voyager political nonsense (don't even get me started on the 50 or so times they had Jordi saving the ship in the last 2 minutes by reversing the polarity on the dilithium crystals). Who wants to see aliens sitting around talking about treaties and trade agreements?
Apparently, some people like the hokey intergalactic politics stuff so much, that they make up more of it, and put their own news bulletins out.
T'Pril, a senior adviser to Ambassador Saikhan announced a few moments ago that he would decline the nomination citing only personal reasons. She apologized to the President and the joint committee, but refused to elaborate on the issue and told this reporter not to expect further announcements in the forseeable future.
[Pennies from Heaven] In New Orleans, an armored car's doors opened and littered the streets with money. Several people stopped their cars and scooped up the cash, while the armored car driver continued driving unaware of what was happening. Now... get this... the lucky money scooping people are wanted for theft.
[When Ice Cream Men Attack: Volume II] An ice cream man attacked a neighborhood activist who complained about his music. Apparently, uppity neighbors vs. Ice Cream men is a common matchup. Last year, a group of neighbors in Pennsylvania filed suit against an ice cream man, claiming that his repetitive playing of 'Turkey in the Straw' was a form of torture.
"This guy follows our trucks everywhere, taking pictures and intimidating our drivers," Rios said. "I'm not saying what our driver did was right or wrong because I wasn't there. But I know this driver, and I know he wouldn't lose his temper without a good reason."
McDonalds once made an animated cartoon series to help shill burgers to the 4-8 demo.
[Music labels go after song-swappers] The music industry is planning a new strategy to file lawsuits against individuals who use file-swapping services.

Tuesday, July 02, 2002

Some startling facts about tactics that corporations use to market products to kids in schools.
Big Oil is sueing Greenpeace for tampering with its logos. Greenpeace's logo ad campaign seeks to raise awareness of Esso's "sabotaging international action to address climate change"
[I want to read their NEA grant applications] Metafilter beat me to the punch and ran a piece on shitty artist Piero Manzoni. I saw a stack of his 'output' in the Guggenheim a few years back. Raising the stakes in the fecal-art game, conceptual artist Wim Delvoye has taken the human factor out of the production process and devised an eating, digesting, excrementing machine (the end product of which he signs and sells).
Telemarketers: When they're not making your life hell, they're saving it.
More and more articles are popping up questioning Microsoft's intentions with Palladium. Microsoft isn't interested in a trusted computing platform- they're interested in policing copyrights. Theyre also busy cooking up other top secret codenames: Their Xbox division has TIVO in its sights with a new project called 'Freon' ("cool", get it?), that will mix pause/record TV and next-generation xbox gaming.

Monday, July 01, 2002

Schematics for a simple lie detector
A fantastic global warming ad (Quicktime), courtesy of Metafilter.
[More H1-B Flack] In the wake of Bush's bizarre re-allotment plan of H1-B fees which currently pay for American workers' technical training, the CWA wants to shut the whole thing down.
Microsoft is at it already. The security patch they released for their Media Player contains more than just the bug fix. You'd have to read the fine print to know what else they'd be signing you up for...