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Vista Ultimate Ed.
by n0manarmy at 31 January, 2007 - 8:37 AM
Wish me luck! I'm starting the upgrade to Vista Ultimate Ed.... *Cry*
Latest comment: 02 February 07, 5:45 AM

This is brilliant - Get a First Life
by ben at 31 January, 2007 - 8:16 AM
get a first life

thanks Rob for the linkage

i like the questions... "What's this body thing, and what do I do with the dangly bits?"
Latest comment: 31 January 07, 8:16 AM

Superbowl 2007 Benstravaganza
by ben at 30 January, 2007 - 1:10 PM
Come on down, same place, same time, same rules apply... Sunday starting around 1ish, say? I listened to radio kitchen this morning, they were talking about hot dogs, so there will be dogs & burgers with toppings (i have home made - by my mom, so it's awesome - chili even!) galore.
Latest comment: 31 January 07, 1:37 PM

The (very nearly promise this is the one please mother i love you) Flier!
by ben at 30 January, 2007 - 9:30 AM
February 16 2007 - it's done, it's there, there's a flier, and it's almost hit the presses.

My first flyer, i'm so proud!
Latest comment: 31 January 07, 4:36 PM

Random eerieness
by n0manarmy at 30 January, 2007 - 8:24 AM
I was just browsing around to find out more about Iris card scanners and I found this intriguing site. Apparently we live in a pretty shaky world.

Earth Quakes
Latest comment: 30 January 07, 10:33 AM

Windows Vista license agreement
by muhgcee at 29 January, 2007 - 12:46 PM
Since I will probably be laying down $380 within a month or two for Windows Vista Ultimate, I thought it would be a good idea to read through the license agreement (full text here).

I was actually amazed, at first, at how tame the agreement was. I expected it to be worse. Then I came upon this section (read on)...probably the worst part of the whole thing.

Still, I don't think it will be enough to prevent me from buying (or licensing, as the case may be) the software.
Latest comment: 30 January 07, 8:57 AM

Babies, mornings, suckage...
by ben at 29 January, 2007 - 12:21 PM
So my morning routine at work is pretty well laid out - turn the computer on, wait for it to boot, get some water for the kettle, log in, read a book until the computer finishes loading, check emails and morning news feeds.

On the main tab of my netvibes home page is the feed for boing boing, so i usally read that a few times a day... today they were talking about baby food, linked to babies as food, which got me to reading the main page of this guy's blog...
it's very interesting, and i am recommending it to you... start from the bottom (September 18, 2006) and read up - it's pretty cool. I like this bit especially:
"Why are we afraid to suck? There are two parts to this irrational fear. Part of it comes from the assumption that our work will be unfavorably compared to that of professionals, but professionals are just amateurs that got lucky. If everyone was given all the time and resources they needed we'd all be experts and professionals."

Any time people tell me that I must be extraordinarily smart to be a coder, and to understand this stuff that i do, and my reply is usually along the lines of the above - i just got lucky, and pretty much anyone could do it, if they weren't afraid to suck, and actually wanted to do it...

that is all...
Latest comment: 29 January 07, 12:21 PM

it's Shoo In
by ben at 29 January, 2007 - 10:58 AM
not shoe in... I only just found this out today. Hooray english!
Latest comment: 29 January 07, 12:49 PM

Interesting turnout
by ben at 29 January, 2007 - 9:10 AM
so, I know I didn't post about it here much to warn people, but I did spin last night at Joe Squared... and it has been on my calendar for a month or so... so I was a bit surprised to see only roommate 1 & roommate 2 show up last night (2 1/2 hours apart, mind you, but still), and regulars whom I don't know...

ouch
Latest comment: 29 January 07, 4:44 PM

eBay says: No More Virtual Goods on Our Virtual Auctions
by elfie at 26 January, 2007 - 3:55 PM
found via /.

This is pretty big news in my opinion. I have never personally bought or sold virtual goods, but I know that lots of people do and make a fair living at it. There are people who love this concept and people who hate it. I'm part of the "if you don't like it, don't participate" crowd... and I've never participated.

But it does make me wish I had gotten around to selling off all of my Kingdom of Loathing assets like I always said I was going to.
Latest comment: 26 January 07, 6:14 PM

A [sort of] new music source
by ben at 26 January, 2007 - 12:00 PM
I know a lot of you don't buy music online because you can't stand the DRM (and some of you because you just like the CD artwork, heh). Well, I found a new site that gets by that, in a rather "well, duh" manner... they sell indie music... Amie St. is a site that lets you download stuff from them on a sliding pay scale - they're trying to get you to hear new music by providing it free of charge, and to tell your friends about it, and get them to go to the site & download it.

one thing that i'm not sure about is, if you get a song for free, and it's DRM free, why would you send your friends to the site to get it (and possibly pay money for it) when you could send them your copy? then again, 5 cents for a song is something i could swing... hehe

anyways, check it out, let me know what you think.
Latest comment: 26 January 07, 12:02 PM

George Bush <> "miserable failure" anymore
by ben at 26 January, 2007 - 11:32 AM
Google changed its algorithm, and so no more googlebombs, at least for a while...
Latest comment: 26 January 07, 12:28 PM

Technologic
by ben at 26 January, 2007 - 10:55 AM
Surf it, scroll it, pose it, click it,
Cross it, crack it, twitch - update it,
Name it, rate it, tune it, print it,
Scan it, send it, fax - rename it,
Touch it, bring it, obey it, watch it,
Turn it, leave it, stop - format it.

this track gets better every time... the use of silence is fantastic
Latest comment: 26 January 07, 10:55 AM

I'm bored (at work)
by n0manarmy at 25 January, 2007 - 3:17 PM
I used to MUD back in the day, then played some random games that involved some form or another of windowed mode and generally tackled lighter tasks in the bigger MMO's. All of these things I did at work but they never took up too much of my time because I could step away when I needed too. Well, I've run in to a snag. I don't MUD anymore, I don't have any idea of good decent windowed games, and I'm not playing any MMO's either (and don't really plan on it.)

Any suggestions on good fantasy or mech based games that could possibly be online related or with a decent plot line that would be great at work?
Latest comment: 26 January 07, 11:19 AM

Speed dating
by buggEde at 25 January, 2007 - 8:44 AM
Jan 24
I'm going to the Melting Pot in Columbia in a few hours for speed dating. It seemed a whole lot more amusing when it was gonna be a big group of my guy friends laughing at the absurdity of the whole thing. Well, I was planning on laughing. Now it is just going to be one friend and myself and I think he is taking it pretty seriously.

That's cool... I will have fun, I am sure. I have been intrigued with this concept since I first heard about it. I think it was in Sex and the City... but I am not totally sure. I think that it is a neat concept, honestly. And I can totally see why people would be really into the idea. It really does seem like a low pressure way to meet people.

Well, I will update when I get home. Something tells me I will be pretty amused by the end of tonight.

Update* Jan 25

So last night was actually pretty fun. Matt and I got there exactly on time (cause I, especially, am an anal fuck about being on time) and I was all kinds of worried that we would be super lame and be the first ones there. Surprisingly (or not surprisingly) we were almost the last ones to get there. Everyone else had obviously been there for quite some time. It was so amazingly awkward that I was giggling the whole time. Everyone was stealing glances at each other and sizing each other up and NOT TALKING!

So then the thing starts and it was surprisingly easy. I pretty much just launched into my schtick of being a liar face and then backing up. Most of them women thought it was pretty amusing. Some were less amused than others. Here are some of the gems that I said:

"If a day goes by where I don't kick a puppy, I cry."
"I give a child three chances to be good. The first chance I hold up my finger. The second chance I punch them hard, once, between the eyes. There is never a third chance."
"I guess you could say that my biggest hobby is smoking weed. But I also enjoy macrame."

And here were some of my answers for what I do for a living:

"You mean, besides keep it real?"
"Contract killer."
"Job? Mostly I just drink."
"I'm unemployed and I live with my mom. In the basement? No way, attic, Greg-Brady style all the way!"
"Look for ways to scam welfare."

But anyway, I actually had a really good time. Out of 13 'dates', I wouldn't mind seeing about 6 or 7 again. Granted, a couple of them I just want to be friends with and I doubt I'd be serious about dating any of them. But, those are pretty good odds. And I had a ball just cracking jokes and talking to people. Some of them were pretty damned interesting: two were european and doing very interesting graduate work, one worked for NSA, another was a scientist, etc.

Surprisingly enough, I would recommend it to most people who have had trouble meeting people.
Latest comment: 26 January 07, 9:33 AM

Winamping
by elfie at 25 January, 2007 - 7:52 AM
So after years of trying, Ben has finally got me switched over to Winamp. Presently, I have two complaints, which lead to two questions:

1) Does anyone know of a tool or plugin that will import my star ratings from Windows Media Player into Winamp?

2) Does anyone know of a plugin or skin that will add immediate access to view/set star ratings to the minimal view of the main window? I know that I can simply right-click the song to view and set the rating, but I want them to be visibly part of the window so I can see them all the time and so I can set them with a single click. Partially resolved using Titles: $repeat(*,%rating%)

Also, Ben, this is your reminder to send me that utility you've got to mass-convert from WMA to MP3 :)
Latest comment: 26 January 07, 9:37 AM

State of the Union
by rich at 24 January, 2007 - 10:29 AM
Just in case you missed it. The Democratic response is on the end.

You Tube
Latest comment: 24 January 07, 10:19 PM

Dark Tower: The Gunslinger Born
by n0manarmy at 22 January, 2007 - 6:04 PM
Well, I've been waiting a very long time for this and it's finally done. Marvel Comics is releasing the Dark Tower series in comic form. I haven't bought comics in so long and finally i can get back in to it with a series that I've loved and enjoyed reading so much.

The site for the comic is http://www.marvel.com/darktower

I know I'll be camping out for this (or sending the girl friend if i can't get off of work.)
Latest comment: 23 January 07, 8:48 AM

SyncToy! Where have you been all my life?
by n0manarmy at 19 January, 2007 - 5:07 PM
I always thought Microsoft's backup philosophy sucked. The application they provide proves this. A quick Google search showed Microsoft's SyncToy. I have to admit, I love it! This'll eliminate 90% of the backup headaches I have at work with my users because they're too incompetent to understand the more robust applications but not smart enough to manually back up things themselves. Cheers to you Microsoft, you actually did well!

SyncToy
Latest comment: 21 January 07, 11:02 AM

An interesting evening
by ben at 19 January, 2007 - 12:48 PM
So this, I figured, was an EA sort of tale:
Making it into a trend, there was a girl at the Local last night (I apparently lost the vote to rename Dougherty’s as “The Winchester”) reading a book while sitting at the bar. A random, lonely man sitting next to us who kept joining in our conversation - in between bouts of dueling with “The Bell Jar” - scouted out and told us she was reading Ayn Rand (I later found out it was – the best of my sad, terrible memory – “Anthem”)…
Latest comment: 20 January 07, 1:03 PM

War On Terror Fear Campaign Montage
by muhgcee at 18 January, 2007 - 11:28 PM
Whether you draw and conclusions from this or not, this video is actually kind of funny:

War On Terror Fear Campaign (montage)
Latest comment: 19 January 07, 2:22 PM

Windows Vista
by muhgcee at 18 January, 2007 - 9:36 PM
So, who's upgrading to Windows Vista? I think I will. If I do, I'll go with the Ultimate edition. I hate being senselessly restricted with my software.

And to respond to Ben's comment in the Comic post, I seriously thought more people would comment on the Iran post. Y'all aren't much interested in foreign affairs?
Latest comment: 24 January 07, 9:32 AM

Comicvine
by Dark_Knight at 17 January, 2007 - 10:05 AM
For all of us Comic Book Fans. Check this out http://www.comicvine.com/. ComicVine is a Comic Book Encyclopedia. Pretty good info, It helps point out how inaccurate these Comic based movies are.
Latest comment: 17 January 07, 12:26 PM

My night has a name, and it is...
by ben at 12 January, 2007 - 4:02 PM
on the joe^2 website

click the events on the top nav, scroll to the bottom. I gave it a tentative name, but didn't name the genres i play, but i like it... funky
Latest comment: 12 January 07, 6:43 PM

US forces invade Iranian consulate
by rich at 12 January, 2007 - 12:06 PM
Wednesday night the president addressed the nation to say that 20,000 more troops are to enter Iraq. Honestly, this is not really big news. We are increasing troops levels for the 5th time since the conflict started. The timing, after an election where it was made pretty clear that the American people would prefer to see troop levels going down, and not up. That is the point of contention here.

Now let me fill you in on the BIG news. Thursday night we invaded the Iranian Consulate in a northern Kurdish area. We arrested five people carried away documents and computer equipment.. The locals (normally relatively friendly to us) were not very happy about this either. Apparently they sounded our troops for two hours.

NY Times Article

Second, as the president announced and was reported previous to his address we are sending a second carrier battle group to the region, specifically aimed at Iran.

NY Post article

Keep your ears peeled for more provocative acts towards Iran. The press sure will not trumpet them loudly. Bush wants to at the minimum have Israel or our own forces attack Iran from the air. He wants to do this in 2007. He is setting up the justifications now.
Latest comment: 26 March 07, 8:50 AM

Grab your collarbones and your thighs
by ben at 11 January, 2007 - 10:31 PM
I really don't know... I don't. I have met pretty much everyone. I've known drug addicts, holocaust survivors, nouveau riche, old money, wiccans, hindus, catholics, protestants, atheists, stoners, straight edgers, smart, dumb, beautiful, ugly, haters, lovers, hippies, yuppies, you name the group you identify with, i've known your type. But I don't know you. I can tell you what your response will be to 99% of the things people will say, but the 1% IS you. Why do people still continue to surprise me?
I really don't know... I've been told i'm attractive, i've been told i'm intelligent, i've been told that I contain the qualities that people look for and want in a person/mate/lover/secret agent... Why don't I feel like that person?
I really don't know... I never "pursued" anyone romantically before the exact day i turned 27. since then, there's a resounding phrase that has echoed throughout the last year? "romantic chemistry." I seriously am asking... What does that mean? I know my what, my how, my where, when and who... for all intents and purposes, Maslow wishes he could add my state to his hierarchy, but why. I don't know why, why is it that the more and more i look, "romantic chemistry" pops up.
Latest comment: 11 January 07, 10:31 PM

And now for something completely different
by ben at 10 January, 2007 - 9:39 AM
Just because I don't want my folks to be depressed all day, there's new news... I just got gigged again at Shorty's for THIS Friday... so come on down, I'm on from 9 to 10:30ish, maybe longer if Phill is enjoying his CCMFs (you'll know what that is when you come). See you there!
Latest comment: 10 January 07, 9:57 AM

Burning Yourself Alive
by ben at 10 January, 2007 - 7:27 AM
I'm sorry not to bring my usual cheery news today, but this is rather disturbing, and I felt it needed to be shared. Apparently the news has seen fit to report that Afghan women are burning themselves to death. Well, they're not just burning themselves to death, but they've found (supposedly from Iranian women) that this is a successful way to commit suicide, and that they really do want to commit suicide.
Also, apparently, Afghanistan rates considerably lower than India or China or Iran (in that order, according to NPR). My question is, what would cause you to think that this is a good idea? What is it, about us, that can make us so horrible to us that we think it's a good idea to set ourselves on fire? I mean, in what part of, of, of the "being a human being" manual is there the bit that says "hey, did you know that if you mistreat someone badly enough, she'll think it's a good idea to grab a can of turpentine and a bic and go to town?"
Sure, we're screwing up the environment, sure we're not, in general, excited about learning and making the world a better place, but i didn't know, until today, that we're getting to a place where it's culturally popular to light yourself...

that is all
Latest comment: 10 January 07, 7:27 AM

iPhone: it's [finally] here [for real this time!] almost
by ben at 09 January, 2007 - 1:27 PM
engadget reports that the iPhone was really for real announced today, and while it's going to be expensive, it looks like it will be worth it... wifi & bluetooth, iTunes and more... it looks super duper, and still won't supersede my 770, but definitely complement it... finally, a reason to get a new phone.

link from Pete, thanks
Latest comment: 11 January 07, 8:57 AM

Ben S. At Joe Squared
by ben at 04 January, 2007 - 9:30 AM
That's right folks, I'm back there after nearly a month off... wait, yes, it's been a month off. This is the first gig of the '007 this sunday... 1/7/07, woot!

for future reference, you can keep track of my gigs at google calendar

also, thanks to Meg for making the fliers you'll see someday soon... they're HAWT
Latest comment: 08 January 07, 3:09 PM

Torn
by elfie at 03 January, 2007 - 11:11 AM


I credit Lilou for posting this elsewhere. I've probably watched it a dozen times. Can't get enough.
Latest comment: 05 January 07, 8:13 AM

Silver Surfer
by elfie at 03 January, 2007 - 11:08 AM
http://www.apple.com/trailers/fox/fantasticfourriseofthesilversurfer/large.html

Damnit. Now I actually have to see Fantastic Four so I have a frame of reference for this one.
Latest comment: 05 January 07, 4:18 PM

Seriously... why?
by ben at 02 January, 2007 - 3:11 PM
Lou Rawls' son is suing Marvin Gaye's son

because 2 years ago, he says the dogs bit him...

but the article doesn't say if the dogs belonged to Gaye, or why he waited so long... seriously... why?
Latest comment: 04 January 07, 5:50 AM

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