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Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Hip Replacement

Do it yourself


Well, not exactly.

The Northwest has a great PBS radio station in KUOW.

Here is a story about how surgeons work, including a blow by blow description of a hip replacement operation.
. . . "this hour: the surgeon's hands. How do surgeons keep their hands healthy? What kind of training do they go through to keep their fingers tactile and sensitive? How important is touch to successful surgery? Are the hands of surgeons gifted? Over the past month, we've been talking with people who use their head and their hands in their work. Our 'How To' series continues today with surgeons.

Guests

Richard Ellenbogen, M.D. chairman of neurological surgery at the University of Washington School of Medicine, the Theodore S. Roberts Endowed Chair in Neurological Surgery, the Chief of Neurological Surgery at Harborview Medical Center

Eric Froines, M.D., F.A.C.S. chief of general surgery, Capitol Hill Specialty Center Group Health Permanente"

How to Operate


For more information, here is a link to the University of Washington:

What is Hip Replacement?
A Review of Total Hip Arthroplasty, Hip Resurfacing, and Minimally-Invasive Hip Surgery.





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Wednesday, December 23, 2015

GIF Editor

Free tool


Here is an online GIF image editor. You can create animated GIF files and save them to your site or your machine.

There is nothing to download. All the work is done on line.





"Create your own special effects with any GIF -- even animated ones! Resize it, colorize it, optimize it, and jazzercise it -- then save it and take it with you. You name it and you can do it!

It's simple! Using the easy-to-use pull down menus. Simply follow the instructions to load any GIF and then manipulate the image using the GIFMagic menus. It's that easy."


GIFMagic


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Saturday, December 19, 2015

Make a List

How to check it


January is the month that bird watchers try to find as many birds as they can.

This is only one kind of list. This link helps you create a list of 453 Washington state birds and more.

There's also a list for a motorcycle first aid kit.

Checklists for Motorcyclists


Also see:
Pack Light

And read this book to get yourself ready. (Maybe next year.)

The Big Year : A Tale of Man, Nature, and Fowl Obsession


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Friday, December 18, 2015

Big Year, The

A Tale of Man, Nature, and Fowl Obsession


By Mark Obmascik
ISBN 0743245458
Free Press; (February 4, 2004)



About the Author
Mark Obmascik was the winner of the 2003 National Press Club Award for environmental journalism. He has a story tellers ability to, not only describe the setting, but to draw the reader into the adventure.

Book Description
2.4 million people keep what is called a "life list" of birds they have seen. In the USA, some 50 million people lay claim to being bird-watchers or 'birders,' spending billions of dollars on birding-related travel and membership fees every year. A few compete in one of the world's quirkiest contests — the race to spot the most species in North America in a single year. And 1998 wasn't just a big year. It was to become the greatest birding year of all time.

Quote

"Every year on January 1, a quirky crowd of adventurers storms out across North America for a spectacularly competitive event called a Big Year — a grand, grueling, expensive, and occasionally vicious, "extreme" 365-day marathon of birdwatching.

For three men in particular, 1998 would be a whirlwind, a winner-takes-nothing battle for a new North American birding record. In frenetic pilgrimages for once-in-a-lifetime rarities that can make or break their lead, the birders race each other from Del Rio, Texas, in search of the rufous-capped warbler, to Gibsons, British Columbia, on a quest for Xantus's hummingbird, to Cape May, New Jersey, seeking the offshore great skua. Bouncing from coast to coast on their potholed road to glory, they brave broiling deserts, roiling oceans, bug-infested swamps, a charge by a disgruntled mountain lion, and some of the lumpiest motel mattresses known to man. "

Conversation: 'The Big Year'
(with streaming video interview)


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Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Hot Spot in Your Pocket

Or at least nearby


It'll cost about $1,000, but think about the bragging rights!

"I love the fact that more and more devices are sporting built-in Wi-Fi. The lone hitch: Wi-Fi is useless without a hotspot.

What if you could marry the short-range power of Wi-Fi with the huge coverage areas of high-speed cellular services such as EV-DO to create a portable hotspot?
Since EV-DO works at freeway speeds, you could even give Internet access to an entire road-trip caravan.

Now I can surf for as long as three hours without being tethered to anything but a cell signal. The project isn't cheap, but prices for the components and service are sure to come down in the next year or so. In the meantime, you can find me in the hills around Southern California. I'll be the one surrounded by PSP-packing hikers."





Popular Science:
Be Your Own Hotspot
By Mike Outmesguine


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Monday, December 07, 2015

Where in the World is

Your spy dollars at work


The World Factbook

The World Factbook provides a 'snapshot' of the world.

The online Factbook is updated regularly - generally weekly - throughout the year.

A 46 Meg zipped version is also available.


The World Factbook is in the public domain and may be used freely by anyone at anytime without seeking permission. However, US Code prohibits use of the CIA seal in a manner which implies that the CIA approved, endorsed, or authorized such use."


When you find yourself worrying about the local car wash spilling drainage into the storm sewer, look at some of these environmental concerns:

Azerbaijan
Local scientists consider the Abseron Yasaqligi (Apsheron Peninsula) (including Baku and Sumqayit) and the Caspian Sea to be the ecologically most devastated area in the world because of severe air, soil, and water pollution; soil pollution results from oil spills, from the use of DDT as a pesticide, and from toxic defoliants used in the production of cotton


www.CIA.gov


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Monday, November 30, 2015

Dictionary means - never having to say huh?

Google dictionary


"To see a definition for a word or phrase, simply type the word "define," then a space, and then the word(s) you want defined. If Google has seen a definition for the word or phrase on the Web, it will retrieve that information and display it at the top of your search results.

You can also get a list of definitions by including the special operator "define:" with no space between it and the term you want defined. For example, the search [define:World Wide Web] will show you a list of definitions for "World Wide Web" gathered from various online sources."

Also check out http://wordweb.info/



"WordWeb Pro is a quick and powerful international English thesaurus and dictionary for Windows. It can be used to lookup words from almost any Windows program, showing definitions, synonyms and related words. There are also many proper nouns and usage examples. You can search for words matching a pattern, find and solve anagrams, and optionally search a large number of extra word lists."



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Sunday, November 22, 2015

Rewind DVDs

Speed the process


Sometimes one finds a solution to a problem that is not seeking an answer.

"Guaranteed Lowest Price on the Internet for DVD Rewinding
No More Embarrassing Fines or Hassles at your Video Rental Store !!!
No Fuss — No Waiting — Do It Online — Do It Now!
Rewind your DVDs


Digital Velocity



DVD Rewinder


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Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Graphics from the '50s

Remember it the way you want to


Original fifties clipart? Just in time for the holidays, some Ozzie and Harriet style pics.



"Most communities in the fifties had small town print shops that doubled as printers of local news and advertising papers. These printers could not afford graphic artists so they used stock clipart supplied by large companies who distributed common graphics for use in advertising sections of the papers. They were provided for the printer in lots of categories to meet any advertiser's needs."

Retrographix.com


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Saturday, November 07, 2015

Sudoku

CrossNumber puzzles


I have to admit that I have not caught the fever that these puzzles seem to have generated.

Most every newspaper in the world has started publishing these brain teasers.


"Sudoku , sometimes spelled Su Doku, is a logic based placement puzzle, also known as Number Place in the United States. The aim of the canonical puzzle is to enter a numerical digit from 1 through 9 in each cell of a 9x9 grid made up of 3x3 subgrids (called "regions"), starting with various digits given in some cells (the "givens"). Each row, column, and region must contain only one instance of each numeral.
Completing the puzzle requires patience and logical ability. Its grid layout is reminiscent of other newspaper puzzles like crosswords and chess problems.
Although first published in 1979, Sudoku initially became popular in Japan in 1986 and attained international popularity in 2005."


Wikipedia — Sudoku

Here is a download that will construct as many of these puzzles as you might be Jonesing for.

Andy Pope Su Doku


Also:

Web Su Doku


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Friday, November 06, 2015

Dvorak Anyone?

Alternative Keyboard Layouts

"Free keyboard layouts - called Dvorak layouts - are available for people who type with one hand or finger. These layouts make the most frequently typed characters on a keyboard more accessible to people who have difficulty using the standard keyboard layout (called the "QWERTY" layout).

Dvorak keyboard layouts reduce the amount of motion required to type common English text. Use of these layouts may also help avoid some types of repetitive strain injuries associated with typing.

Studies have also shown an increase in typing speed and accuracy when using the Dvorak layout for two hands. The left-hand or right-hand keyboard layouts can also be useful for people who type with a wand."


You do not need to modify your hardware keyboard to use these layouts, but you will need to change your keyboard settings to use the Dvorak layouts.

(A keyboard layout is a map or a definition of how keys are laid out on your keyboard. The keyboard layout you use is determined by software in your computer. The letters on your keys indicate the standard layout for your keyboard.)

Tutorials and downloads


Dvorak layouts

Introducing the Dvorak Keyboard
By Marcus Brooks

A Brief Primer
by Randy Cassingham


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Monday, November 02, 2015

Light Up Where You Live

A nation's porch light


"Ben Fry is a doctoral candidate at the MIT Media Laboratory. His research focuses on methods of visualizing large amounts of data from dynamic information sources. This work is currently directed towards "Genomic Cartography" which is a study into new methods to represent the data found in the human genome."

He has a fascinating demonstration of data display technique:



Zip Code Demonstrator.

Type in a zip code one number at a time to see how zip codes are distributed in the US.


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Wednesday, October 28, 2015

John Titor - 2036

The future came back


Why speculate about the future, when we've already been visited by a representative?
"A tale that disturbed me, concerned me, made me wonder if our world as we know it has less than 15 years left.

It is the tale of John Titor, a self-proclaimed time traveler from the year 2036.

Okay, it sounds crazy. It's not crazy, though . . .it's simply a hoax. It's a compelling hoax, so I decided to write my take on it. After some initial 'what if' excitement about it, the reality set in that this wasn't what it appeared to be. In this piece, I hope to prove relatively clearly that his claims are false both in theory and in fact. He seemed to know enough about physics to pass amongst laymen, but unfortunately he skipped philosophy and economics while he was reading all those physics books.

Since this story just won't seem to die and there is evidence that the same perpetrator is now claiming to be an alien on various boards across the web, I felt it was worth sitting down and analyzing."


Tackling John Titor, Time Traveler



Wikipedia:
John Titor

"John Titor was the name of a purported time traveler from the year 2036. He posted on several time travel-related Internet bulletin boards during 2000/2001, making many vague and seemingly falsifiable predictions about events in the near future and giving an explicit, detailed account of his supposed native time period. Whether or not John Titor was a hoax is a topic of controversy on web-based paranormal discussion boards."

John Ttior's Story

"Someone using the assumed name of John Titor and claiming to be a soldier on a mission from 2036 presented a considerable amount of information on the Web beginning around November 2000 about his mission and time travel machine, his perspective on our society, how our society is going wrong, and how society as we know it will end in a very short but massive global nuclear war in 2015. He's gone now, back to 2036 he said he was going in his last posting on March 24, 2001, and the threads he left across the Web in his five months with us have been slowly evaporating since then."



AboveTopSecret.com:
The John Titor Project

"Although many find it easy to dismiss all this as either science fiction or an elaborate extended hoax, there are those who still read his information and agree that there is something very troubling about John Titor and what he had to say."


Answers.com:
John Titor

" He claimed his time machine — a "C204 time displacement" machine-was created by General Electric. Supposedly, he transported it in a standard motor vehicle (a black, model-year 1966 Chevrolet Corvette Convertible shown in the photographs he provided), and the car also served as his vessel whilst traveling through time (it remained stationary throughout with the engine off). He claimed that the public is fully aware of time travel in his time period, although the extreme skeptics of his day do not believe it exists."



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Sunday, October 25, 2015

An Obsession with Butterflies

Quote



"Architecture is a plant's first defense. Once a caterpillar begins to eat, compounds in its saliva can be recognized by the leaf as a form of attack. Whang, whang, whang. The entire plant goes on alert. A hormonal burst starts a second defense system, a counter attack that may include rushing newly produced toxins to the damaged leaf, as well as compounds that slow a caterpillar's ability to digest the plant as food."


About the Author

Sharman Apt Russell teaches writing at Western New Mexico University. She is also the author of Anatomy of a Rose, Kill the Cowboy and Songs of the Fluteplayer.
She has a unique voice. Inherently complex topics are made enjoyable.

Book Description

From the beastly horned caterpillar, whose blood helps it count time, to the peacock butterfly, with wings that hiss like a snake, Russell traces the butterflies through their life cycles, exploring the creatures' own obsessions with eating, mating, and migrating. In this way, she reveals the logic behind our endless fascination with butterflies as well as the driving passion of such legendary collectors as the tragic Eleanor Glanville, whose children declared her mad because of her compulsive butterfly collecting, and the brilliant Henry Walter Bates, whose collections from the Amazon in 1858 helped develop his theory of mimicry in nature. Russell also takes us inside some of the world's most prestigious natural history museums, where scientists painstakingly catalogue and categorize new species of Lepidoptera, hoping to shed light on insect genetics and evolution.

>



By Sharman Apt Russell
ISBN 0-7382-0699-7
Perseus Publishing 2003


Also see:
The North American Butterfly Association (NABA)

and,
AmazingButterflies.com:
A Talk with Sharman Apt Russell


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Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Test Your Typing

Practice, Practice


"With the TypingMaster Online Test you can assess your personal typing skills in minutes for free - within your web browser.

Based on the short text typing sample, this Java™ applet will estimate your typing skills including typing speed, accuracy and net speed. You can also receive test results directly to your email address."

TypingTest.com

MrKent.com
Typing and Ten-key Tests


Also:
CalculatorCat.com
Typing test


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Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Best of Clementine, The

Not lost and gone

Why write new words and lyrics? They're interchangeable.

" You've heard it sung around the campfires! You've lifted your voice to its haunting melody countless times! Now K-Smel records introduces an all-new collection... The Best Of Clementine! "

  1. The words to Clementine can be sung easily to the tune of certain songs
  2. By extension, the words to these songs can be sung to the tune of Clementine
  3. By further extension, the words and tunes of any of these songs are interchangeable

There is an MP3 file on the site that can be downloaded to illustrate the principal. The Best Of Clementine By Carl Franklin


Original lyrics from: National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences
How I missed her, how I missed her, How I missed my Clementine, Til I kissed her little sister, And forgot my Clementine.
1885 version: Ingeb.org


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Wednesday, October 07, 2015

Il Circo Dei Rocchetti Rotolanti

The Rolling Reels Circus



Giuseppe (Pino) Civitarese was an oceanographer from Trieste.

He has a small but fascinating collection of paper automata.


"Automata, from the Greek automatos, "acting of one's own will, self-moving" is more often used to describe non-electronic moving machines, however, especially those that have been made to resemble human or animal actions, such as the jacks on old public striking clocks, or the cuckoo and any other animated figures on a cuckoo clock. See more from Wikipedia.

Thanks to the web, paper automata represent a fascinating evolution of the mechanized toys developed during the XVIII and XIX century. The possibility to export the complete design throughout the world with a simple click of the mouse gives paper automata (and in general paper modeling) a great impact.

Despite the relative simplicity of the material, paper automata intrinsically are objects with a high degree of technology, where the principles of mechanics meet the artistic creativity. "


Most of the templates used to create the models are free.



PaperPino.net:
Rolling Reels Circus


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Sunday, October 04, 2015

Crossword Puzzles

May I have a word with you?


Even if you're used to doing crosswords with a pen or a typewriter, you're sure to find something new at this site.
Your Dictionary.com

It has, of course, a selection of word sources.

Language dictionaries from Abenaki to Zulu with Mapudungun in between.

"So you like word games, do you? Well, you have come to the right place. We have the richest assortment of crossword puzzles on the planet: anagram puzzles, cryptic puzzles, Roman and Arabic numeral puzzles, study puzzles for geography, physics, astronomy, Spanish and the Bible, puzzles with holiday messages, with graphics and web links. Now we have crossword puzzles for kids. We also have encrypted word puzzles and a new invention: fill-in crossword puzzles!"

  • 20 Different Kinds of Crosswords
  • Word of the Day Crossword Puzzles
  • Word of the Day Semantic Scramble
  • Word Jungles
  • Encrypted Enigma Machine Puzzles
  • Fill-in Puzzles
  • Crossword Puzzles in Other Languages

The Game Room




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Thursday, October 01, 2015

Where on the World

Stats on a map



Various statistical findings superimposed on a world globe.
"This project started some eight years ago.

An attempt to do justice to the term 'political' and 'geo-political' globe.
Trying to tell the lie (of abstraction and visualization) that tells the truth.

By now there are more than 200 different globes."




3 Hour US Air Force Range

WorldProcessor.com


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Saturday, September 26, 2015

Bathroom Appliances

One man's toilet is . . .



Bill Gates mansion bathroom tour
(a story to be read and enjoyed but not believed)

Terry Love:
Consumer toilet reports


Gizmodo.com:
Toilets
"We've all been there. Nature calls and the only answer is a toilet with more levers, switches, and buttons than Wily E. Coyote's latest invention. What to do? If you're Bob Cromwell, the answer is obvious: You take a picture. Dedicated to the man and the latrines he's dared to use, Toilets of the World features photos and captions from Bob's many encounters with the cryptic, the seatless, and the downright weird. During his travels through Russia, East Asia, and South America, Bob never met a commode he didn't want to remember. From an Ottoman-era throne of a more modest variety to a hole-in-the-ground kind enough to offer tips on feet placement, you're bound to gain a quick appreciation for Bob, the Indiana Jones (and Ansel Adams) of latrines."


Toilets of the world


Ben Franklin's toilet


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Thursday, September 24, 2015

Fitness to Practice

Paracetamoxyfrusebendroneomycin


Adam Kay & Suman Biswas
Media Hut 2004

"Adam Kay & Suman Biswas practice medicine with varying degrees of success, and have made time from their busy schedules of completing Critical Incident Forms to record this CD.

They first had a goat singing back in 1998, when they started writing songs to entertain doctors, medical students and physiothe rapists, and regularly perform their songs for puerile medical and non-medical audiences. This is the first time that they have done anal bum together and they hope you enjoy the songs."

(Their word spacing is intentional, or Bob's my uncle.)

Really really not ready for the workplace parodies
  1. Paracetamoxyfrusebendroneomycin
  2. Nothing at All
  3. Finals Countdown
  4. Your Baby
  5. Disney Time
  6. Eternal Clerking
  7. The Menstrual Rag
  8. London Underground
    "Today I've got to take my bike
    Cos once again the tube's on strike
    The greedy bastards want extra pay
    For sitting on their arse all day
    Even though they earn 30k
    So I'm standing here in the pouring rain
    Where the f***'s my f***ing train?"
  9. Mr Burton
  10. Snippets
  11. Careless Surgeon
  12. Dorsal Horn Concerto
  13. The Drugs Song
  14. Always Look on the Bright Side
  15. A Letter to the Patient's GP Please, Angela

Amateur Transplants.com

Click on the Video and/or listen to the pieces online.

The cost is £6.30 (£10.30 outside the UK). Raising money for Macmillan Cancer Relief


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Saturday, September 19, 2015

All Wood, All the Time

More than everything you wanted to know about wood and wood things

"Efficient use of our nation's timber resource is a vital concern. Because a major use of wood in the United States is in construction, particularly housing construction, good practice in this endeavor can have a profound impact on the resource.

This handbook is intended as an aid to more efficient use of wood as a construction material. It provides engineers, architects, and others with a source of information on the physical and mechanical properties of wood and how these properties are affected by variations in the wood itself.

Continuing research and evaluation techniques hold promise for wider and more efficient utilization of wood and for more advanced industrial, structural, and decorative uses."





Chapter 1 -- Characteristics and Availability of Commercially Important Wood
Chapter 2 -- Structure of Wood
Chapter 3 -- Physical Properties and Moisture Relations of Wood
Chapter 4 -- Mechanical Properties of Wood
Chapter 5 -- Commercial Lumber
Chapter 6 -- Lumber Stress Grades and Design Properties
Chapter 7 -- Fastenings


"Nails in use resist withdrawal loads, lateral loads, or a combination of the two. Both withdrawal and lateral resistance are affected by the wood, the nail, and the condition of use. In general, however, any variation in these factors has a more pronounced effect on withdrawal resistance than on lateral resistance. The serviceability of joints with nails laterally loaded does not depend greatly on withdrawal resistance unless large joint distortion is tolerable."


Chapter 8 -- Structural Analysis Equations
Chapter 9 -- Adhesive Bonding of Wood Materials
Chapter 10 -- Wood-Based Composites and Panel Products
Chapter 11 -- Glued Structural Members
Chapter 12 -- Drying and Control of Moisture Content and Dimensional Changes
Chapter 13 -- Biodeterioration of Wood
Chapter 14 -- Wood Preservation
Chapter 15 -- Finishing of Wood
Chapter 16 -- Use of Wood In Building and Bridges
Chapter 17 -- Fire Safety
Chapter 18 -- Round Timbers and Ties
Chapter 19 -- Specialty Treatments


Wood Handbook
U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Forest Products Laboratory


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Saturday, September 05, 2015

Bad Persons

Is this your neighbor?



"Three things you can count on in life: death, taxes, and screwing up. Don't feel badly, though. Everyone does it, including your favorites from the worlds of business, television, music, and film. And most likely, no one is looking up your photograph on the web to see how badly you messed up this time! You won't believe whom you'll find with one of those attractive letter boards with the name of the local lockup underneath his or her illustrious chin."


JAMES J. BULGER
Date of Birth: September 3, 1929
Hair: White/Silver
Place of Birth: Boston, Massachusetts
Eyes: Blue
Height: 5'7" to 5'9"
Complexion: Light
Weight: 150 to 160 pounds

Bulger is an avid reader with an interest in history. He is known to frequent libraries and historic sites. Bulger is currently on the heart medication Atenolol (50 mg) and maintains his physical fitness by walking on beaches and in parks with his female companion, Catherine Elizabeth Greig.

Bulger and Greig love animals and may frequent animal shelters. Bulger has been known to alter his appearance through the use of disguises. He has traveled extensively throughout the United States, Europe, Canada, and Mexico.
Caution James J. Bulger is being sought for his role in numerous murders committed from the early 1970s through the mid-1980s in connection with his leadership of an organized crime group that allegedly controlled extortion, drug deals, and other illegal activities in the Boston, Massachusetts, area.

He has a violent temper and is known to carry a knife at all times. Considered armed and extremely dangerous if you have any information concerning this person, please contact your local FBI office or the nearest U.S. Embassy or consulate.

Reward The FBI is offering a $1,000,000 reward for information leading directly to the arrest of James J. Bulger.

Mugshots.com

Also ( in a different category):

Your worst day:



And then there's:


Charles Paul
" 14 days in an adult gaol and five years in a reformatory for allegedly stealing six pairs of his father's drawers."


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Thursday, September 03, 2015

Mother's Day +

Great clips


Paul Blanchard has produced a series of video clips, mostly based on his kid's elementary school.
Kevin Freitas has pointed out this addition to the Tacoma area.




You can also subscribe to his YouTube collection.


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Saturday, August 29, 2015

Lookup-Lookout

Information on everything



While the Google search engine can find almost anything (Google Search Tips), there are some other sites that have accumulated data lists on a number of subjects.

Including:
Melissa Data

ZIP-City-Phone

Lookup ZIP Codes, city names, the location of phone numbers or the cities covered by an area code.


Phone Numbers

Enter a phone number or area code and get city, state, county, time zone and more.

Street Name

Enter any street name in the U.S. and get a listing of which states and cities have the street name. Even displays local street address detail.

U.S. Place Names

Get location information on over 1,000,000 geographic places including lakes, streams, populated areas, schools, churches & more.

City, State & County Demographics

The latest data available from the 2000 census on 46,455 counties, states, cities and places in the U.S.

Nearest Mailing House

Find the nearest recommended mailing house in your area.

Business List Counts

Use free list counts to discover new markets. Find more customers like your best customers.

U.S. Addresses

Lookup any U.S. address and get the ZIP+4 code, area code, time zone, county, address type, street detail and more.

Canadian Addresses

Lookup any Canadian address and get the Postal Code, time zone and area code.

Home Sales by ZIP Code

Number of home sales and average sell price by ZIP Code.

SIC Code

Get business counts by Standard Industrial Classification (SIC) Code and descriptions of SIC codes.

Campaign Contributors

Individuals who have contributed $200 or more to federal campaigns by ZIP Code.

Climate Averages

Monthly low, average and high temperatures by ZIP Code.

People Finder

Locate anyone nationwide. Search billions of public records.

Occupants by ZIP

Generate a count of occupant delivery addresses by ZIP Code. Order your Occupant list online.

ZIP Codes by County

Obtain a list of the ZIP Codes in any county in the United States.

ZIP Distance

Displays the distance between any two 5-digit ZIP Codes in the United States.

ZIPs in a Radius

Displays a listing of the ZIP Codes that fall within a radius.

Area Codes in a Radius

Displays a listing of the Area Code + Prefixes that fall within a radius.

ZIP Code Demographics

Demographics by ZIP Code. Including population, family, housing, race, age and more.

Nearest Post Office

Locate the 10 closest post offices to a ZIP Code that accept bulk mail.

Income Tax Statistics

Income tax information by ZIP Code. Includes average AGI, number of returns, average refund, filing status, age and more.

Worldwide Place Names

Location information on over 5,000,000 geographic names worldwide.

Nonprofit Organizations

Information on a nonprofit organizations by ZIP Code. Includes address, revenue, assets, type of foundation and more.

Also:
Other information sites


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Tuesday, August 25, 2015

The Golden Striker

By Ron Carter


ASIN 7243 5 90832 2 3
Blue Note 2003





About the Artist
Ron Carter on bass, Russell Malone on guitar, Mulgrew Miller on piano

"Ron Carter is among the most original, prolific, and influential bassists in jazz. With more than 2,500 albums to his credit, he has recorded with many of music's greats: Tommy Flanagan, Gil Evans, Lena Horne, Bill Evans, B.B. King, the Kronos Quartet, Dexter Gordon, Wes Montgomery, and Bobby Timmons. He later toured Europe with Cannonball Adderley.

From 1963 to 1968, he was a member of the classic and acclaimed Miles Davis Quintet. He was named Outstanding Bassist of the Decade by the Detroit News, Jazz Bassist of the Year by Downbeat magazine, and Most Valuable Player by the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences.

In 1993 Ron Carter earned a Grammy award for Best Jazz Instrumental Group, the Miles Davis Tribute Band and another Grammy in 1998 for Call 'Sheet Blues', an instrumental composition from the film 'Round Midnight."


Recording Description
"Tasteful" jazz

Contents
1. The Golden Striker
2. On And On
3. N.Y. Slick
4. Concierto De Aranjuez (Adagio Theme)
5. Cedar Tree
6. A Quick Sketch
7. Parade
8. A Theme In 3/4
9. Autumn Leaves



See (and hear):
RonCarter.net
(If you want some jazz to fill in the spaces while you work, you can have continuous sounds from this site)


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Monday, August 24, 2015

Process Mapping by Tube

London Underground

"This is a method for documenting business processes, based on the design elements of the London Underground diagram. We have used this technique in place of standard flowcharts, for all kinds of process-related documents including quality systems, to give a fresh and user-friendly look to what can be rather boring material. If you want to give your company processes a new lease of life and get staff using them regularly, this really will help."

Kay Initiatives Ltd.

Instructions include a guide book and PowerPoint Template. This used to be free, but now there is a charge for the materials. (About $27 for the PowerPoint Template).

Underground Map as Wallpaper.
Click on this link and then Right-click on the image and choose "Set as Background."


Also see:

Sometimes it's quicker to walk:
London Tube Map with Walklines

Edward Tufte:
London Underground Map.


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Thursday, August 13, 2015

Pigeon/Slug Power

One if by air. Two if by slime



"Never underestimate a pigeon carrying a memory card, hovering above your head, ready to download"-yossi vardi

Pigeons' Data Transfer Rate:

"Calculating the bandwidth by dividing the amount of data by the flying time of the last pigeon, show that the bandwidth achieved by the pigeons was significantly larger that that available through commercially available ADSL broadband Internet connections: about 2.27 Mbps (Mega bit per second) as compared to 0.75 - 1.5 Mbps. [Please note that all measured times are of an observer on the ground. If measured by the moving pigeon it self, times are a bit shorter, according to Einstein's relativity theory].

Yet the Wi-Fly TCP (Transmission by Pigeons) protocol of wireless internet has had its limitations. First, pigeons cannot fly through Windows. Second, since they don't fly in darkness either, this method's bandwidth drops to zero 50 percent of the time. Finally, there's the problem of droppings download."


Google Pigeon ranking

And:


"The use of snails as data communications agents was not considered before now. As we show in this paper, the negative attitude towards using snails in communications networks is an example of bounded rationality2 impeding bold and creative engineering.

Snails are widely assumed to be slow animals. Yet the literature on sluggish speed is surprisingly limited, and few have actually bothered to measure and record it formally. Further, reported gastropod speeds vary widely with species and circumstance, ranging from 0.0000233 to 0.00284 meters per second.

. . . a certain segment of the network's backbone was implemented by shuffling magnetic tapes in a station wagon in the Australian outback. This has prompted Andrew Tanenbaum to note that one should "never underestimate the bandwidth of a station wagon full of tapes."

Sluggish Data.PDF


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Saturday, August 08, 2015

Google FedEx Numbers

Location digits


Parcel tracking IDs, patents and other specialized numbers can be entered into Google's search box for quick access to information about them. For example, typing "fedex" followed by a space and a FedEx tracking number will return the latest information on your package.
FedEx tracking numbers
example search: "fedex 999999999999" Remember to put the word "fedex" before your tracking number

Other special search by number types include:
UPS tracking numbers
example search: "1Z9999W999999999"
USPS tracking numbers

Vehicle ID (VIN) numbers
Patent numbers
example search: "patent 5123123" Remember to put the word "patent" before your patent number
FAA airplane registration numbers
example search: "n199ua" An airplane's FAA registration number is typically printed on its tail
FCC equipment IDs
example search: "fcc B4Z-34009-PIR" Remember to put the word "fcc" before the equipment ID
Telephone area codes

UPC codes
Enter "upc" and then the numbers under the bar code

Google Numbers

(Archie McPhee.com)


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Tuesday, August 04, 2015

Animal High Tech

Even rodents can use some help


"James Auger and Jimmy Loizeau have been collaborating on projects since the concept of the audio tooth implant was first conceived in October 2000."

Auger-Loizeau.com



Night-vision survival goggles


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Sunday, August 02, 2015

Freddy the Pig

Pre-Orwell Porcine


By Walter R. Brooks





As a kid I used to devour (read a lot of) Freddy the Pig books.

One of the remembered disappointments was when I found that I had read all 26 of the books and that there would not be any more.

Freddy came before "Animal Farm" and had much more satisfying adventures.




The New York Times:
..." loyalists have claimed Freddy as the ancestor of more famous literary pigs such as those in George Orwell's "Animal Farm" (1945). In fact, in "Freddy the Politician" (first published in 1939 as "Wiggins for President" ), the animals foil a crafty gang of woodpeckers who try to seize control of the Bean Farm by making extravagant promises - a revolving door for the henhouses, cat-proof apartments for the rats and so on. In his book "Fairy Tales and After," the critic Roger Sale pointed out that :Freddy the Politician: "not only preceded Orwell's work but is a good deal more careful with its materials and, for that matter, shrewder about its politics... The actions emerge much less mechanically than do Orwell's."

Freddy's readers have called him a porcine prince, a pig of many parts, a paragon of porkers, a Renaissance pig. As the problems he faces require, he is by turns a cowboy, a balloonist, a magician, a campaign manager, a pilot, and a detective. But he is the most unheroic of heroes: he oversleeps, daydreams, eats too much and, when not suffering from writer's block, writes flowery poetry for all occasions. His tail uncurls when he gets scared. Although lazy, he accomplishes a lot, because "when a lazy person once really gets started doing things, it's easier to keep on than it is to stop."

See:
FreddythePig.org

Bibliography:
Freddy's books

Also:
Teacher's guide to Freddy the Pig

Freddy's Bookstore


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Sunday, July 26, 2015

Coin Pictures

Will not fit in vending machines


Would you like to use a very good coin graphic with your project or report?



Here's a collection of images of most all the well known coins in multiple resolutions.

The Coin Page

"Welcome to the Coin Page. This site is intended to provide high quality coin and coin related images for public use. So if you offer an image of a coin you must agree to allow public use of the image. You may reserve the right to forbid the sale of your image in any form."




Also:
MoneyInstructor.com:
Printable Play Money


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Friday, July 17, 2015

Mouse Practice

Click quizzers


Unlike the kids today, not all of us were born with a mouse in our pablum glazed paw.

If you have a new user who needs practice using a Mouse, take a look at some of these links. There are some very well done games and some step by step instructions.

Ferry Halim:
Games

Seniornet.org:
Mouse Exercises
  • Placing the mouse
  • Clicking the mouse
  • Drag and drop
  • Drawing with the mouse
USA Quiz
Paper doll game
Queens Borough Public Library, New York:
How to use the mouseClick tester

Shambles.net: (This website is designed to support the international school communities in 17 countries in South East Asia.)
 Mouse skills collection


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Thursday, July 16, 2015

Excel Charts For Dummies

Graph-ology


You don't have to be spreadsheet challenged to read this book. Many people become quite adept at using Worksheet functions and even VBA, but have little experience with charting.

This book has some great cartoons, and, by page 361, the reader will be exposed to step by step instructions covering both simple charts and some quite sophisticated graphing.
"Excel Charts For Dummies will show readers how to professionally display data in presentation-quality charts. How to create attractive charts and why to use specific charts in particular circumstances. Lots of real-world examples with step-by-step tutorials. How to embed graphics and pictures into charts; then use them in impressive PowerPoint presentations or Microsoft Word documents. The book features a 16-page full-color insert of the best Excel charts 'works of art.'"

Ken Bluttman is also the author of Excel Formulas and Functions for Dummies, Access Hacks, and Developing Microsoft Office Solutions.




By Ken Bluttman
ISBN 0-7645-8473-1
Wiley Publishing, Inc. 2005


Technical editor Doug Klippert













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Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Free Photos

and other graphics


Robin Good has compiled a list of places that provide royalty free images.
" Finding quality images and photos for complementing an important article, essay or news report is already quite a challenge for many. Imagine when the goal is not just too find good images, but find some that you could openly and freely use without needing to pay royalties or one-time publishing rights to someone."

Free Photographs and Other Visuals

A dozen sources are listed including:
PD Photo.org
"PDPhoto.org is a repository for free public domain photos. Unless something is clearly marked as being copyrighted, you can assume it is free to use. But if you intend to use an image you find here for commercial use, please be aware that standards for such use are higher. Specifically, you should assume no model release was obtained. And pictures featuring products or property should be used with care. The photos are here to be used, but I don't want you to get either of us in trouble over it."



Copyright Information


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Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Wild Fires

Pictures and history


WildFire.com is maintained by Abercrombie:
" Abercrombie is the dirt digg'in, hose pull'in, shovel flipp'in, dozer boss'in, rotor lov'in, firefighter in all of us. Abercrombie has always had more questions than answers. Abercrombie is unable to stop asking why. He feels people are capable of and willing to do a much better job if they understand the "why" in addition to knowing "how". Abercrombie likes to push people's buttons sometimes to provoke an honest response. Abercrombie has a few of his own buttons get pushed occasionally, although he seems to be getting better at slowing his emotional responses."
WildlandFire.com
Fire Photos



Basic Firefighting Training

Other fire stuff:

How Fire Engines work
Fire Engines

Tacoma Fire Department
Seattle Fire Department
Queensland Fire and Rescue
(Including sirens, like the Phaser).

Wheels of Fire: Famous Fire Engines (Wales)
Fire Museums on the Web

SPAAMFAA, privately owned Fire Trucks
Fire Truck Graveyard


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Thursday, July 09, 2015

Secret SS Information

What's on your card?


There's data encoded in your Social Security number! (not a lot, but some).
You can tell in what state the card was issued:

"The first three (3) digits of a person's social security number are determined by the ZIP Code of the mailing address shown on the application for a social security number. Prior to 1973, social security numbers were assigned by field offices. The number merely established that his/her card was issued by one of the offices in that State."

Social Security Number Allocations


If you're an employer, you can verify if the number is valid:
Social Security Number Verification
(There are three types of cards)

Here are some stories about Social Security :

" The most misused SSN of all time was (078-05-1120). In 1938, wallet manufacturer the E. H. Ferree company in Lockport, New York decided to promote its product by showing how a Social Security card would fit into its wallets. A sample card, used for display purposes, was inserted in each wallet. Company Vice President and Treasurer Douglas Patterson thought it would be a clever idea to use the actual SSN of his secretary, Mrs. Hilda Schrader Whitcher.



The wallet was sold by Woolworth stores and other department stores all over the country. Even though the card was only half the size of a real card, was printed all in red, and had the word "specimen" written across the face, many purchasers of the wallet adopted the SSN as their own. In the peak year of 1943, 5,755 people were using Hilda's number. SSA acted to eliminate the problem by voiding the number and publicizing that it was incorrect to use it. (Mrs. Whitcher was given a new number.) However, the number continued to be used for many years. In all, over 40,000 people reported this as their SSN. As late as 1977, 12 people were found to still be using the SSN "issued by Woolworth."

History


Other things on the site include:

Slider puzzles
(Including such luminaries as: Otto von Bismarck, Frances Perkins, and Arthur Altmeyer )

Both Nixon and LBJ recorded conversations in their offices. The SSA has some of them you can listen to about SS matters:
LBJ and Nixon tapes

Social Security Number


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Sunday, July 05, 2015

Word Form or Content

Shape or substance



"The legibility of a typeface should not be evaluated on its ability to generate a good word shape.

Word shape is no longer a viable model of word recognition. The bulk of scientific evidence says that we recognize a word's component letters, then use that visual information to recognize a word. In addition to perceptual information, we also use contextual information to help recognize words during ordinary reading, but that has no bearing on the word shape versus parallel letter recognition debate. "

The science of word recognition
by Kevin Larson
From EyeMagazine
Suggested by:
Microsoft Typography

Also see:
Cmabrigde


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Friday, July 03, 2015

Arts and Letters Daily

VERITAS ODIT MORAS


News and reviews of the latest books/magazines/newspapers.

The site also has an RSS feed.
  • Arts
  • Letters
  • Daily News
  • Literature
  • Philosophy
  • Art
  • Ideas
Arts and Letters Daily
 Recent reference:
"Otto Preminger, hearing a group of fellow émigrés speaking Hungarian, said, "Don't you people know you're in Hollywood? Speak German."
(Entertainment Times
QUID VERBA QUAERIS? VERITAS ODIT MORAS
'Why do you look for words? Truth hates delay'
)


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Thursday, June 25, 2015

MS Groups

Web based Newsreader


We can't forget that, even with blogs and google, there are still news groups out there helping to solve common problems.

Microsoft has a site that organizes a number of groups and makes access easy on the web.
"The Web-based Newsreader allows you to participate in discussion groups directly in your Web browser; you don't need to install or configure anything. You can use the Web-based Newsreader to read, post, search for, and reply to messages in discussion groups from the part of Usenet that concerns Microsoft products and technologies."


Microsoft Discussion Groups

Help for the Web-based Newsreader


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Friday, June 19, 2015

Taxes, Audits, and Rock and Roll

Government You Can Dance To


"Louisville, Ky. recently launched a tax amnesty program, much like those elsewhere. Under the program, if your business pays its overdue taxes by May 31, the city will waive penalties and interest. If you don't, it promises to come after you using some new computer systems that, the government says, will finger the tax-dodgers.

But Louisville has added a couple of twists to its initiative: It has billboards around town warning people to pay up, a digital countdown clock that tells them the days and hours left until amnesty expires - and, of course, it has its own rock song. Huh? That's right. Louisville's amnesty program comes with its own rock anthem by a local group called, appropriately enough, the Accountants. Their song, is a hard-driving number that warns people owing occupational license fees and business profit taxes,

"You laid low and you've not paid,
But don't be afraid,
Your only chance to improve your finance,
If you come clean you'll save some green."



Also see:
The Accountants (www.CPArock.com)

Email Junkie
"When I get up at six I gotta get my fix
start the day with a couple of clicks
Forget the shower, forget the shave
forget the news in the USA Today
When I hear the hard drive hummin'
I know the buzz is comin'
I get a rush when I see
twenty one messages waiting for me"


Middle Man
"I used to be one of the front line guys
Till the bosses upstairs seduced me with lies
They said 'we'll promote you, and you’ll call the shots'
But I didn't know it was such a tight spot

In charge of these people who once were my friends
Now I'm their boss and that’s where it ends
Its not worth the small change that I make
Taking this job was my biggest mistake

Caught in the middle, want to quit every day
But I’ve got a family and mortgage to pay"


Suggested by:

Gwen Kopetzky
City of Tacoma
Assistant to the City Manager



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Wednesday, June 03, 2015

Odd Links Site

The Internet is part smart, part just weird


Here is a site that collects interesting locations:
LinkyDinky.com

"Linky considers himself something of an intellectual, and tends to choose culturally enriching, "brainier" sites to share with us. Dinky, on the other hand, cannot seem to keep a serious thought in his head, and quite often veers off into the bizarre, grotesque and far-fetched. Sometimes they bicker, but as long as you get a cool link or two out of the deal, who cares?"

Here are some of the recent finds:

Mind reading card trick

MyCatHatesYou.com

Coin manipulation


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Sunday, May 31, 2015

Google Tutor

User advice


Mark Fleming has started a new omnibus site/blog dealing with the vagarities and varieties that make up Google.
"In my discussions with other Google users, I am always amazed at how few of Google's tools they have heard of. For the most part, people are only familiar with the main search areas such as the web, news and images. And even in these areas, their knowledge of all the options that would allow them to better harness the power of Google is limited.

When I've told others of the vast features and formidable power of Google tools, they are quite frankly astonished. Compounding the problem of this unfamiliarity is the fact the Google does not make much of an effort to even tell us what's new and what's in public beta. You've usually got to hear about it somewhere else or just stumble upon it."

GoogleTutor.com
Google Tutor and Advisor

One entry, for instance, points to the Google Cheat Sheet

Also see:
Google Guide


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Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Free Statistical Display Software

World wide Economic Data


"Gapminder is a non-profit venture for development and provision of free software that visualize human development. This is done in collaboration with universities, UN organizations, public agencies and non-governmental organizations.
It all started in 1998 from an idea to enhance the understanding of world health. We developed prototype software showing time series of health statistics as moving graphics and varying life conditions as 360° photo panoramas from homes, schools and health facilities. From the prototype emerged the Dollar Street project with Save the Children Fund in Sweden and the World Health Chart project with WHO. Within the later project, Gapminder developed the free software Trendalyzer that turns boring time series of development statistics into attractive moving graphics."


GapMinder.org




"Gapminder offers some interesting interactive uses of technology to humanise economic data. These include "Dollar Street", in which you tour homes that are representative of various incomes, as well as several colourful interactive graphs of health, income and education."
The Economics Subject Centre of the UK's Higher Education Academy, 2004



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Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Aulochrome

A new sound
"For the last year, Fabrizio Cassol (best-known as leader of AKA Moon) has been practicing intensively on the aulochrome. As there is only one model in existence, he is the instrument's only practitioner. Early this year, he premiered a composition by Philippe Boesman written specifically for aulochrome and the night before this presentation played the aulochrome in an improvised music context for the first time.

So, what does it sound like? Well, the aulochrome is essentially two soprano saxophones brought together by a double mouthpiece (with two reeds) and a common key mechanism. Each key is split in two, so the tubes can be played in unison or separately at will. The double mouthpiece means that the saxophone player's mouth muscles get much more of a workout than on a regular mouthpiece. Fabrizio said that he was observing trumpet and trombone players and asking them how they dealt with the demands of their instruments on their embouchure."







Be.Jazz Blog:
Aulochrome - Antwerpen

Introduction to the Aulochrome
Jazz Review.com:
The Aulochrome
The Instrument of the Third Millennium
Also:
Francois Louis.com


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Saturday, May 09, 2015

Stuff to Buy

After Rent and Groceries


Tosterbag
(not available)
..."a 'thick, A5, black plastic bag'.. With little handles, of course - can't forget those.
But hidden behind this mini-bin liner facade is a thermological, nutrition preparation device of truly impressive proportions. For, as its name suggests, the Toastabag allows you to cook things in a toaster. Not in every toaster, just the thick-and-thin kind that most people have nowadays. All you do is bung the ingredients in the bag, pop it down in the toaster and wait."


Here's a video of a sandwich that might have been made with spam.





PawSense
Catproof your PC. No more having your cat hanging out in chat rooms while you're at work.
Stop the beasts before they take over.
"When cats walk or climb on your keyboard, they can enter random commands and data, damage your files, and even crash your computer. This can happen whether you are near the computer or have suddenly been called away from it.

PawSense is a software utility that helps protect your computer from cats. It quickly detects and blocks cat typing, and also helps train your cat to stay off the computer keyboard."



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Saturday, April 25, 2015

Hipster PDA

PDA for $3.00


From 43 Folders.com:

Introducing the Hipster PDA

" The Hipster PDA (Parietal Disgorgement Aid) is a fully extensible system for coordinating incoming and outgoing data for any aspect of your life and work. It scales brilliantly, degrades gracefully, supports optional categories and “beaming,” and is configurable to an unlimited number of options. Best of all, the Hipster PDA fits into your hip pocket and costs practically nothing to purchase and maintain."
  1. get a bunch of 3"x5" file cards
  2. clip them together with a binder clip
  3. there is no step 3
More expensive, but part of the new-old cool: Moleskine Pocket Notebooks Jeremy Wagstaff: The Moleskine Report
"There is an immense amount of satisfaction in writing on paper - we tend to forget that in this digital-toy-crazed world we live in. The Moleskine has lovely paper - crisp, creamy, and smooth - that is a pleasure to write on. I use a four-nib Rotring pen that has a mechanical pencil (great for sketching), a roller ball pen, a bright orange dry-lighter, and a PDA stylus tip - all contained in a very precision-machined metal barrel. I also enjoy flipping through my journal pages, reviewing sketches, diagrams, and ad hoc notes. With the Tablet PC, I get a near-paper experience but the best thing about paper is that it requires no batteries!"



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Sunday, April 19, 2015

Ground Shaking?

Doorway or PC?


If you feel a quake, where do you go?

U.S. Geological Survey Earthquake Hazards Program Website

"Earthquakes pose significant risk to 75 million Americans in 39 States. The USGS is the only Federal agency with responsibility for recording and reporting earthquake activity nationwide. Citizens, emergency responders, and engineers rely on the USGS for accurate and timely information on where an earthquake occurred, how much the ground shook in different locations, and what the likelihood is of future significant ground shaking.

The USGS estimates that several million earthquakes occur in the world each year, but many go undetected because they occur in remote areas or have very small magnitudes. The USGS now locates about 50 earthquakes each day; 20,000 a year."


  • Current Earthquakes
    • USA
    • World
  • NEIC Current Earthquake Information
  • ShakeMaps
  • Seismogram Displays
  • Past & HistoricalEarthquakes
  • Earthquake Notification E-mail
Also: Ask USGS Earth Science Information Center
Tsunamis research at USGS


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Friday, April 17, 2015

Freeware

More than affordable software


Here is a collection of free software including a desktop utility called:

RUNit:
"RUNit is a simple but yet powerful launchpad. RUNit gives you quick access to applications, documents, folders and shortcuts. Unlike many other launchpads RUNit doesn't occupy any space on your screen - you only see it when you actually use it.

RUNit defines a "hot area" on your screen where a click of the right mouse button makes the RUNit launch-menu appear .The "hot area" can be any border of the screen or even the whole screen."


PricelessWare.org
"The Pricelessware list is a compilation of software collected through a yearly vote by the participants of the "alt.comp.freeware" newsgroup. It is a list of what people have voted as "the best of the best in Freeware".

  • Business-Home
  • Desktop
  • File Utilities
  • Graphics
  • Organizers
  • Multimedia
  • Security
  • Web Design
  • Internet
  • Programming
  • Text
  • System Utilities



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Saturday, April 11, 2015

Census Maps and Graphs

Statistical treasure trove




The charts and maps can be set for specific areas. The underlying database figures are also provided.

Tacoma, Washington:


CHARTS & TRENDS
"Census 2000 and Trend Data going back to 1990, 1980, and sometimes even further, on a growing list of topics, including population growth, population by race, age structure, family structure, and income."

MAPS
"Many of the most important social trends affecting America have a strongly regional flavor. Figure out where you fit in with demographic maps showing where the elderly predominate (think: the Great Plains), where the nuclear family is (and isn't) the norm, and how "diversity" breaks down regionally."

RANKINGS
"State and county-level rankings by population growth, race, educational attainment, language, gender, and more."

SEGREGATION
"Segregation Exposure and Dissimilarity Measures for 1246 individual US cities with population exceeding 25,000 and for all metropolitan areas, based on single and multiple race populations as identified in Census 2000."

CensusScope

University of Michigan:
Social Science Data Analysis Network

The site was suggested by the eclectic J-WalkBlog of John Walkenbach.


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Thursday, April 09, 2015

Build a Trebuchet in your backyard

Pumpkin chunkin


The Trebuchet at NF/ Observatory

"The NF/ Ranch is a small cattle ranch in the Mimbres Valley (New Mexico). The earliest signs of human occupation are from 1000AD, when the Mimbres Indians occupied sites along the Gallinas River, just down the hill. A Spanish fort was built over some of these ruins arround 1600, for protection against the local Warm Springs Apaches. Now the residents include Bill, Ty, Nick, Cindy, Amber, and Kaelin along with the animals at the ranch. Ty and Nick are currently perfecting a Trebuchet, a high tech siege weapon from the 10th century."

Also:
Trebuchet MS Font


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Sunday, April 05, 2015

Jean Shepherd

"You filthy pragmatists, I'm going to get you!"



A Salute to Jean Shepherd:

FlickLives.com
"Those who have seen the 1983 movie "A Christmas Story" know Jean Shepherd as the voice of Ralph Parker as an adult. Others who grew up in the New York Metropolitan area during the 50's, 60's and 70's may recall the nightly radio show he did on WOR 710AM five nights a week for forty-five minutes and the two-hour Saturday night "Live at the Limelight" shows.

... a stunt he liked to pull, was the hurling of invectives. He would instruct his listeners to place their radios in the open window of their house and turn the volume way up. He would then yell over the radio things like, "You filthy pragmatists, I'm going to get you!"

Shep often said that there was 5 to 10 hours of preparation for each of his nightly shows, and yet fellow WOR personality Barry Farber, and one of his engineers, Herb Squire say that it all came from the top of his head. Herb claims that Shep would come into the studio with only a scrap of paper with a few notes, or perhaps an article someone had sent him. He would sit down behind the mike, and as the theme song would play Shep would ease into 45 minutes of non-stop chatter. He would start out talking about a particular subject, and through the course of the show, would side track to other related topics. But as his theme music at the end of the show came to a close he managed to tie it all together and bring the show to an end."


Jean Shepherd: Radio's Noble Savage
by Edward Grossman
"10:15 P.M. The WOR news and weather are out of the way. A bugle sounds, and a sprightly theme song comes trotting on the air. The theme has a double meaning: it is the one that calls the horses to the gate at Aqueduct, and it is the Bahnfrei Overture, composed for an operetta by Eduard Strauss, the only member of the Strauss family who did not make good. Presently, Shepherd's clear, rowdy voice intrudes. 'Okay, gang are you ready to play radio? Are you ready to shuffle off the mortal coil of mediocrity? I am if you are.' There is a noise like a mechanized Bronx cheer (BRRAPP!)- it is Shepherd blowing his kazoo. At other times he twangs his Jew's-harp (BRROING!). 'Yes, you fatheads out there in the darkness, you losers in the Sargasso Sea of existence, take heart, because WOR, in its never ending crusade of public service, is once again proud to bring you--(EROICA SYMPHONY UP)-- The Jean Shepherd Program!'"


Bob Kaye:
Shep In Concert! Video Clip

JeanShepardPodcast


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Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Population:485

By Michael Perry


ISBN 0-06-095807-3
Perennial 2002



About the Author
Michael Perry was raised on a small dairy farm near New Auburn, Wisconsin, and put himself through nursing school working as a cowboy in Wyoming. As of this writing, he is the only member of the New Auburn (nee Cartwright Mills) Area Fire Department to have missed the monthly meeting because of a poetry reading.
See:
SneezingCow.com



Book Description
A collection of stories about life in a small Wisconsin town. What it's like to be in the volunteer fire department with your brothers and your mother.
Unable to polka or repair his own pickup, his farm-boy hands gone soft after years of writing, Mike figures the best way to regain his credibility is to join the volunteer fire department. Against a backdrop of fires and tangled wrecks, bar fights and smelt feeds, he tells a frequently comic tale leavened with moments of heartbreaking delicacy and searing tragedy.

Quote
"... The village board sent someone around to recite nuisance ordinances chapter and verse, but beyond rearranging the bikes and aligning the camper with the speedboat - feng shui primitif - nothing has changed. You take what you can get in this life. Someone calls you white trash, you go with it, and fight like hell to keep your trash. You understand it is a matter of distinctions: yuppies with their shiny trash, church ladies with their hand-stitched trash, solid citizens with their secret trash. In a yard just outside town, a spray-painted piece of frayed plywood leans against a tree. It reads Trans Ams: 2 for $2000. It has been there for two years."




New Auburn, Wisconsin, 54757


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Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Time Counts

Thoughts and Tick Tocks


Brad McCormick has the kind of web site that is built to be thumbed through. There are some serious linkage pages:

What Time Does Your Computer Think It Is?



And also a collection of his thoughts and others. I found it worthwhile to just surf from spot to spot.

There is good stuff at almost every click.


"Happy the person who can find genuine interest and satisfaction in something nobody else wants -- for then (s)he has a better chance of being allowed to have it. "

"Big problem: How to avoid wasting one's life to earn one's living. "

"When will we advance to a level where not just owning persons (slavery) but also renting them (wage labor) is outlawed and abolished? "

"Some persons can judge [many] books by their covers. Other persons can't judge a book even by its contents. "

"Why not speak, conciliatorily, of the complementary sex (gender), rather than, oppositionally: 'the opposite sex'?"



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Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Flying Pigs

and other cool stuff


I was lucky enough to find an outlet for Flying Pig material in my home town. If you are interested in very clever paper machines, make Flying-Pig.co.uk a must click location.




Also:
Cabaret Mechanical Theatre

Timber Kits



And:
the Paper Airplane Museum


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Sunday, March 08, 2015

Hot Knots

Tied Up?


The KnotPlot Site
By Rob Scharein


"Knot theory is a branch of algebraic topology where one studies what is known as the placement problem, or the embedding of one topological space into another."

The site includes a collection of knots.



You can, also, download a program called KnotPlot to develop your own knots


Click to see more moiré knots.

Animated Knots

Other nots:

Ripley's Believe it or not!


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Tuesday, March 03, 2015

PC Tick Tock

How a computer tells time

"Computers running Windows 95 or later can take advantage of a third circuit to measure time even more accurately. The frequency of this high- speed oscillator varies from one computer to another. But it usually produces a few million pulses each second.

Because this timer ticks so furiously, Windows allocates more space to store its current value. This counter can continue to increase until it's recorded a total of 18,446,744,073,709,551,615 ticks! This should take at least 21,350,398 seconds (assuming a fast 10 MHz oscillator), or a little over 58,454 years, before the counter reaches its limit. They tell me at that point the count is reset to zero and begins again."
The late Karen Kenworthy

BTW:
If you're a real geek, you may want this:
Excel Function Wall Clock

Some of the functions used to indicate the time are:
=INT(PI)

=FACT(3)

=GCD(77,49)

and

=ROMAN(2)


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Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Useable Ultimate Utensils

Great Gear


Kevin Kelly:
Cool Tools
"Cool tools really work. A cool tool can be any book, gadget, software, video, map, hardware, material, or website that is tried and true. I am chiefly interested in stuff that is extraordinary, better than similar products, little-known, and reliably useful for an individual or small group. There are plenty of places to read about stuff that should be cool, or that looks new and cool, and that might be useful. The recommendations here, on the other hand, are based on people who have used this item and have come to see its superiority. I post things I like and I ignore the rest."


Here are a few of the tools mentioned:
Disposable Suture Set
Micro tools
"The next time you or a friend are in the ER getting stitched up, ask your provider if you can have the suture set when he or she is done. Most places will hand them over if they are the disposable type. Hospitals use disposable suture sets since they are fairly inexpensive and decontamination of the reusable ones can be costly. The curved hemostat, the toothless needle driver, small surgical scissors and the pickups (tweezers) come in handy around the house." -- Fritz Araya
Ikea Tote Bag
Cheap huge tote bag
"Ikea sells these near the cash register. They are large -- about 4 feet by 2 by 2, with two clever lengthened (short & long) handles, made of some nearly indestructible nylon-plasticy mesh fabric in Ikea blue. For a buck, they're amazing. We put a mess at home, in the car, garden, garage. Great for dragging stuff from Sam's Club, or dirt in the garden, hauling firewood or just whenever you've a lot of loose stuff to move." -- Vince Crisci
NoTubes
Puncture-proof bike tires
"Stan's NoTubes system. In the NoTubes system you remove your inner tube from your tire. No tubes! You add a rim strip that seals your spoke holes. Since there is no tube you need a filling stem to put air into the tire.....this is built into the NoTubes rim strip. Then you add some white liquid inside the tire that seals it airtight. It's one of those things that seems like it would never work, but it works amazingly well. I will never go back to tubes." -- Alexander Rose



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