Thursday, May 12, 2005

Internet News

A bunch of stuff happened yesterday, and I want to give you the updates in case you missed them.

First, Yahoo! Music has finally announced what I've been long awaiting. After purchasing and rebranding Launch, they now offer the chance to download about 1,000,000 (one million) songs. Rather than spend 99 cents apiece in iTunes, you can pay a montly fee and get everything for just that monthly amount. I guess it's like renting songs, and as long as you pay your rent, you get to listen to the songs on your various music devices. What's really cool is that the price is only $4.99 a month! This is a great price, currently causing Napster and Real to loose 20% of their stock value. [Co-workers have asked why I didn't short these stocks for a quick buck!]

Next, Mozilla's Firefox just released an update to their browser. Download version 1.0.4 for the newest security update. And if you use Firefox, you really do need to check out the Extensions for adding a great deal of flexibility to the program.

Lastly, Google bought dodgeball, officially entering the mobile social networking fray. This cool service allows you to hook up with friends by relaying a message from your phone to others you call friends, allowing easy coordination of who is going to be where. It also let's you know when a friend-of-a-friend (FOAF) is within 10 blocks of your location, let's you designate who you have a 'crush' on, so you can be notified when they are nearby, and more.

Microsoft had a couple announcements too, but they weren't about anything that I would consider internet related. But if didn't really seem as big deal unless you're looking for info on the next gen Xbox. According to Steve Ballmer, "You'll have to wait until later today for the name. Tune in to MTV at 9:30 eastern, tonight."

Sunday, May 08, 2005

New phone

Like most others on the planet, I am constantly on the lookout for a decent cell phone. No matter what we all have, there seems to be something missing. Some people are worried about missing a new game or feature, some miss a camera, some miss the ability to hear and be heard by the person on the other end. And lot's of geeks and business people just miss the bragging rights of having the latest and greatest.

Me? My phone misses the ability to stay ON. It turns itself OFF when I am hanging up the phone after a call. Not everytime, just often enough to play with my head.

Anyway, I found one of the coolest accessories ever made for a phone from POKIA. Seriously, I think I want this.

Thursday, May 05, 2005

Free Superheroes

It's been a long time since I collected comic books. I used to collect a huge amount of them, upwards of 75 titles at a time. I still have few thousand or more of them in mylar bags up in the attic. I don't pull them out very much, and not just because the boxes are heavy and buried under the Christmas decorations. I hadn't thought about it until I started to write this post, but I cannot even say I enjoy superhero-based movies anymore.

Hmph. It is a pleasant thought to think I have grown up enough over the last decade or two that I no longer feel the need to live vicariously through the cartoon characters of my past. I have enough confidence and control over my life and my destiny that I don't need the escape mechanisms of my childhood.

But, since Free Comic Book Day 2005 is coming this Saturday, maybe I'll step into a nearby comic book store and visit my old friends. They are literally giving away comics from a bunch of different publishers. The titles include special editions of Batman, Betty & Veronica, Ronin Hood of 47 Samari, Star Wars, Uncle $crooge, and others.

Heck, since they're free, it migh be worth your time to go by a comic book store and pick one up for your favorite neice or nephew.

Step up with Music!

Kristi is a board member for Jacob's Ladder, a community organization that "strengthens families in the Dallas community by offering adults educational and interpersonal skills to climb the ladder to self-sufficiency." If you are available, please come to the 2005 Fundraiser, featuring the world-renowned Turtle Creek Chorale.
Mark your calendar for a special concert by the renowned Turtle Creek Chorale, lifting its voices to help Jacob's Ladder lift the lives of families in our community. In the quarter century since its founding, Turtle Creek Chorale has performed around the world for literally hundreds of thousands of enthusiastic patrons at venues like Carnegie Hall and the finest theatres across Europe. They have collaborated with luminaries like Dr. Maya Angelou, Liza Minelli, Marlo Thomas, Betty Buckley, Margaret Cho, Nell Carter, Michael Feinstein, Tom Wopat and Harvey Firestein.

Harmony has a double meaning when it comes to the organization, one of the largest and most successful gay men's choruses in the world. They use music to promote a world filled with harmony where people focus on their similarities rather than their differences.

The Jacob's Ladder concert May 15 will start with its mixed chorus, One Accord, followed by the famous Turtle Creek Chorale men's chorus.
For Tickets or Information, please call 214-827-7740.

Wednesday, May 04, 2005

My hometown rocks

You can find anything on the web, including a ranking of the top 100 cities by the visual impact of their skylines. The top four cities are Hong Kong, New York, Seoul, and Chicago.

Speaking of the Windy City, I miss Fluky's, the great restaurants, the neighborhoods, family and old friends.

Other great cities on Jeffrey's scale (must have good food, neighborhoods, a bit of culture, and fun) include: Boston and San Francisco. I think New York, Atlanta, and possibly Denver might make the list too, but I don't know enough about them from personal experience.

Heap of Trouble

**Not work safe**

I've never seen the program, probably because we have better TV shows here than they have in Canada, so it's not worth the time or trouble to import them from the North, but this one's a bit interesting. Embracing the oddity of British humour, the Zed skit, Heap of Trouble "shows the seismic effect when nine naked men come marching through" a typical neighborhood.

File under: Comedy, Experimental

Tuesday, May 03, 2005

Three masts and 29,687 square feet of sail

I think I've talked about it before, but if I haven't, I'll say it again. Crusing is fine, but I'd rather go to Vegas. I love the first class accomodations, fabulous shows, and great restaurants, along with the freedom to sleep, gamble, and order room service whenever I want.

Most cruises are the vacation version of modern airlines. That is, if you've traveled by air lately you've noticed planes aren't much more than a mile-high Greyhound. Cruises are nice, but they're also a week-long trip on in a small travelling hotel room.

That being said, I like the idea of cruising, if I could find the right ship and service level. I think Sea Cloud II might be the ticket. Read The Wind in the Billows for why this is a not your ordinary vacation.

Monday, May 02, 2005

The Darth Side

I'm not, despite allegations to the contrary, a big geek. That is, I don't salivate over whatever Star Trek show is on and I will not see the next Star Wars movie when it comes out this summer. I'm intrigued by Hitchhiker's Guide, if only because I remember the book was laugh-out-loud funny.

If you are a geek, and you haven't seen Galaxy Quest, you're missing the best version of Star Trek to never feature Spock.

And if you ever wanted to get a glimpse behind the mask, I truly recommend The Darth Side: Memoirs of a Monster. Start reading from the bottom entry up.