Tuesday, May 31, 2005

Psychic Mind Reader (Fun)

This is a Flash-based Mind Reader Game that will amaze your friends. It is pretty accurate as far as guessing correctly, I think we are all too predictable (or maybe its just me).

If you most know the answer on this mind reader works, Adrian Ziemkowski published an article entitled 'Psychic Mind Reader Demystified' that explain how the game works.

Get a GMail Account, Without an Invite

Google has updated their 'Google Accounts' page some time ago, this time with an interesting feature. When you subscribe for a Google Account, which entitles you to the use of Google Alerts, Froogle Shopping List, Google Groups, My Search History, and most of all GMail.

Now you don't have to wait to get an invite for a GMail account.

Monday, May 30, 2005

IMPS The Relentless: Chapter 1, Now Available (Video)

Several years ago a Star Wars parody video hit the Internet by storm called 'TROOPS'. It portrayed the life of Storm Troopers in a 'Cops' like parody on the desert planet where Luke Skywalker grew up.

If you have not already seen the video TROOPS (download it here), then you should watch it. This video is incredibly funny and very well done, its worth the download.

Now there is 'IMPS - The Relentless: Chapter 1', this project was formerly known as 'TROOPS 2', is now available for download. IMPS is a Star Wars fan project that has been in the making for 6 years by the people who created the original TROOPS video.

IMPS is no longer a specific parody like the TROOPS video, but is more akin to a Discovery Channel documentary of a US Navy Aircraft Carrier. The story is the life and missions of the crew aboard the Imperial Heavy Carrier the 'Relentless.'

Note: In case your wondering what IMPS stands for, its 'Imperial Military Personnel Stories'.

Friday, May 27, 2005

Attack of the Drones (Article)

We can send machines kill people or destroy just about any target we want anywhere in world without risking harm to our own people. Then we can send more machines to verify that the target was properly destroyed.

A new modern age of warfare that almost sounds like science fiction is now reality. Check out this article for more information.

Flight Training Video with Floating Dog

This is one of the funniest videos that I have seen in a little while (this video is real). Don't pay attention to the two guy in the front you have watch for the floating dog in the background.

Thursday, May 26, 2005

HD Xbox Game Trailers (Video)

View Xbox 360 game trailers in high definition. Warning these files are very large.

Kiss your old SSN goodbye (Article)

Tech News on ZDNet reports: "Politicians are starting to realize that permitting data brokers like Acxiom and ChoicePoint to buy and sell your Social Security number like a raffle ticket may not be that wise after all."

Identity theft is a growing problem, and it's exacerbated in the U.S. by the evolution of the social security number - originally intended only for keeping records of government retirement accounts and not for identification - into a defacto national I.D. number. Now there are legislative movements afoot to return the SSN to its original use and prevent it from being used by other government agencies, schools and private companies to identify individuals.

Anti-Chain Letter Message (Flash)

If someone you know sends you one of those annoying chain letter messages, send them a copy of this link. It points to a flash file that will open up in their browser, that will deliver a great message to them. Hopefully, they will get the point or a clue.

Its also fun to watch if you have never seen it before. I saw this a few years ago and its still fun to watch.

Wednesday, May 25, 2005

Ghost in the Maze (Computer Prank)

This flash-based game looks like just about every other flash-based game out there, but it has a surprise inside.

Warning: Do not let young children play this game, unless you want to be paying their therapy bills for years to come.

Web Ransom Notes

Here is a web application that can generate 'Web ransom note' (aka Web of Letters). Its built with the Yahoo API. All you have to do is enter the text of your message, and the application builds your ransom note with images of letters found in Yahoo's search.

Visible Human Browser

View the insides of a dissected human female body (it sounds sick, but its science), but its is really interesting move through the different slices. (Note: if you have a weak stomach, you may want to avoid this site.)

Swearsaurus (Mature Content)

It seems the first thing that we all want to learn when we are learning a new language are the cuss words. For this reason, I am providing a link to the 'Swearsaurus'. Here is an excerpt from the site: "Learn how to insult, swear, cuss, and curse in 165 languages! "

All in the name of cultural diversity!

Warning: This site does contain mature content that is not appropriate for children.

Tuesday, May 24, 2005

FAA: Space billboards don't fly (Article)

CNET News.com reports "The United States government does not want billboards in space."

This is litteraly a law that exists before the problem is created. Can you say 'putting the cart before the horse'

Miscellaneous Internet Links

Here are some miscellaneous links that I found on the Internet today that I thought I would post.

  • Music Video: 'I am Nerd' Its a nerd singing in a Stormtrooper suit. I call this video the 'The Nerd National Anthem', were 'Geeks and were Proud'.
  • Commercial: 'Spicy Paris', this commercial is another one of those viral marketing videos that I think is too sexy for TV (NC-14).

Monday, May 23, 2005

'BOTS Roomba Repurposed (Article)

Newsweek reports: "The sequel to the successful Roomba—1.2 million sold, the most ever for a home robot—will stick a little closer to familiar territory: it's an automated mop called Scooba, which looks and sounds like the Roomba but wets, washes and dries floors."

One of these days I will buy myself a Roomba, but now I also want the new Roomba Mop (Scooba). I think it would be awesome to have my little robot minions running around the house performing my menial tasks while I sit on the coach, watch TV, and surf the Net.

To be honest, I bet they're more trouble then they're worth, but the coolness factor is hard to ignore.

Sunday, May 22, 2005

Hot chips chilled with liquid metal (Article)

New Scientist reports: "Piping hot processors could be cooled more efficiently and quietly using liquid metal instead of using fans to blow away the heat, says a Texan company which has developed such a system."

This is a real 'cool' technology, it replaces the older less efficient heat sinks, fans, and other forms of liquid cooling. If you want more information on this subject, here is a more detailed article.

Best Tips For Finding a Job on the Internet

Are you currently out of work and looking for a job or just looking for a new job? Well, I don't recommend using Monster.com. All you will get is the occasional call from a contracting company wanting to hire you for a short-term job that pays you next to nothing or some company trying to get you to sell insurance and other financial products.

If you find a job at Monster.com that you want and submit your resume, you will never hear back from the hiring company. If you do hear back from them, then you're really lucky.

Here is some advice for finding a new job:
  • This is the most obvious, create an up-to-date professional looking resume and cover letter. Have several people review it, and use their suggestions to improve it. Make sure that your resume is loaded with relevant keywords that are related to the job you're looking for. This will help you later as companies look through their resume database looking for possible candidate.
  • Tell all your family, friends, associates, and strangers that you're currently looking for a job. Also be prepared to tell them the type of job you're looking for in clear and understandable terms. You should prepare an 'elevator speech', that describes what you do and what you're looking for in under 30 seconds.
  • Submit your resume directly to companies web sites if they allow you to, you will have a much better chance at getting a job that way.
  • If you have to use a job search engine, use the small niche based web sites, such as Dice.com. Employers generally don't get overwhelmed by resumes from these sites.
I recently found a great job search engine called 'Indeed', it is like the Google of job search engines. It allows to search for jobs from over 500 job sites, newspapers, associations and company career pages.

As a bonus, here are some interview tips. Note, some of these are going to be obvious but I have meet several people who need this clue:
  • Dress as professionally as you possiable can, as the old saying goes 'you only get one first impression'. The first impression will make you or break you.
  • Know how to get to where you're going to be interviewing before the interview date, don't assume you know where it is you will probably be wrong. I generally drive to the interview location a few days ahead of so I know how to get there before the interview date.
  • Leave in enough time to get to the interview early, also be prepared with extra copies of your resume. Don't forget to bring a pen with you, you will be filling out a lot of paper work.
  • Turn off your cellphone during the interview process. I don't feel I need to explain why.
  • Make sure that you know something about the the job you're interviewing for, and the company you're interviewing at. You can generally find this information on the company web site.
  • Keep your opinions to yourself, and only speak when spoken to. This will help you from sticking your foot in your mouth at a critical time.
  • Be confident in what you know, and who you are. You're selling yourself during this process. Above all do not be cocky or lie, this will only ruin your chances of getting the job later during the selection process.
  • Don't be afraid to ask the interviewer questions about the job, but keep the questions relevant to the topic at hand if possible.
  • Be prepared to answer personal questions about yourself, and what you have done in your last job. I always hate questions like, "Give examples of ideas that you had or that you implemented."
  • Finally, there is always the questions about salary, try to save these questions for the end of the interview if possible. I realize that how much money you're going to be paid for the services you provide is going to be important, but do not make it your first priority. Also know how much you have to make in order to survive, you might get into some type of salary negotiation and you don't want to under cut yourself. Be careful not to price yourself out of the job, if you request too much money the company will sometimes go with the candidate that will take less money.
  • Bonus: Try to send a thank you letter to all the people who interviewed you; this can only work to your favor. To the interviewer's contact information. ask for their business card.
Other Job Interviewing Resources:
I know I trashed Monster.com at the beginning of this post, but you should check out their Interview Center. This site has some good information and tools, a great tool is called 'Random Question Generator'. This question generator asks you real life questions that you might actually get during an interview. There is another great tool on the site to get salary information (the basic information is free).

Here are some more resource sites that you should check out:
(Note: As I get more information, questions, and feedback about this post, I plan to update it over the next few days so you might want to check back again for more information).

BBC Motion Gallery

This is an incredible web site, where you can find and access thousands of different types of video clips from the BBC and CBS News. The library spans over 70 years of BBC content, and encompasses more than 300,000 hours of footage.

The only other source of this type of video footage that is publicly available, is Archive.org. They also have an amazing collection of different types of videos.

Saturday, May 21, 2005

The Sith Sense

Darth Vader challenges you to a game of twenty questions (more or less), he will use the darkside to guess what you're thinking of. It is a fun viral marketing site produced promotion for Burger King.

Personalize Google's Home Page

Google now allows you to personalize their home page. You can now add news feeds from several different services (such as BBC News, SlashDot, etc.), you can also add other information like weather, stock quotes and more. It is not as comprehensive as my.yahoo.com, but its Google so it has to be cool (I say this jokingly).

I hope Google will expand its content; if it is going to compete with Yahoo it will have to. The personalization feature will also be important for Google to begin to tying all of its services together more cohesively.

Thursday, May 19, 2005

Google Inc. Factory Tour

If you're a fan of Google, then you should view the Google Factory Tour web cast. It will introduce you to new technologies and services that Google has released, and is going to be release in the near future. On this web page, you will find some pictures of their new personalization services like Google Personalized Homepage (it kinds of looks like a ripoff of the 'My Yahoo', forgive me Google).

Wednesday, May 18, 2005

Online Information Sellers: How to Opt Out

Protect your privacy, learn how you might be able to remove your personal information from public online databases that people can use to find out information about you. There are many websites that sell or provide for free, personal information about individuals. This information is gathered from many sources including white pages listings (directory assistance), publicly-available sources and public records.

For example checkout ZabaSearch.com, you can quickly find your (and other people's) current address and phone number within a few seconds. Scary...

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

PlayStation 3 vs. Xbox 360: Tech Head-to-Head (Article)

This is a great article if you want to see a head-to-head specification comparison of the two consoles. When you look at the specifications at the bottom of the page, they both look like their going to be powerful consoles. But what is going to really make one console better then the next is the available games. The console with the best games will win.

Monday, May 16, 2005

X-Rays of Stuff Kids Swallow (Weird Stuff)

Hospital X-rays showing open safety pins, forks, batteries and in one instance, a magnetic toy that reconnected in a child's stomach, often amaze doctors over what children are able to swallow, according to a Local 6 News report. This X-ray shows a car key swallowed by a child.

Note: It is a little unnerving if you're a parent.

Xbox 360 Specs

There is some awesome hardware in the new Xbox 360. It is expected to be shipping about December 2006, and sell for $300-$400 (I can hear the parents yelling 'ouch' out there). It is expect that Microsoft is going to take a lose on the hardware again like it did with the original XBox to increase sales of the hardware and make the real money on the games.

Here are some of the hardware specifications:
  • 20GB hard drive, that is detachable and upgradeable. (Original Xbox only had an 8GB non-removable hard drive.)
  • (3) dual-core CPUs running at 3.2GHz each (these CPUs are water cooled). (Original Xbox only had one 733 MHz CPU).
  • 512MB of RAM (Original Xbox only had 64MB of RAM).
  • (3) USB ports and (2) memory cards slots (each memory card can hold 64MB). (Original Xbox only had none of these ports) The memory cards can be used to used to save your games to play them on other people's consoles.
  • Built-in extender for Windows XP Media Center. It can also play CDs and DVDs and supports HD.
  • Support up to four wireless controllers.
  • Removable front faceplate.
See the following web site for more XBox 360 specs.

Sunday, May 15, 2005

Flying Snakes, What the ...! (Video)

I live in an area where we have some of the most dangerous snakes in the US, when you're out in the woods you learn watch where you're going and stepping, because you wouldn't want to step on a Copperhead or Cottonmouth. I just learned about a new snake today, it is called 'Chrysopelea', also known as the 'Flying Tree Snake'.

This snake doesn't really fly, but glides from tree to tree. I am thankful, that these snakes are not in my area, they're indigenous to South and Southeast Asia. I could not find an accurate reference to find out if they're venomous.

This web page has some great videos, that show how it jumps. It is really amazing to watch these snakes in action.

Saturday, May 14, 2005

Xbox 360 Video

This video has the best information that I have seen on the new Xbox 360. The video talks about the potential, and the technological features of the gaming console.

Centrifugal weapon could deliver stealth firepower (Article)

There is a promotional video on the web page that talks about the features, capabilities of the weapon. It is a pretty amazing device if it works that way it says. This isn't your dad's BB gun.

Weather balloon or UFO you decide

Google Maps has an interesting anomaly in one of their photographs maps. To be honest it look like the top of a rounded bolt, or maybe a dense cloud, but it can also look like a flying disk (aka UFO). I am not sure what to make of it, you can draw your own conclusions.

I would have never have posted this if I found it on another site, but its Google and there it is there. Personally I don't believe in aliens, but I do believe that there are flying objects that we can't explain (be it weather balloons, new aircraft, or whatever else). I know this sounds like a contradiction, but before I can belief in 'intelligent life' outside our own planet I would like to see proof. So far the only proof that science has produced of life on other planets is microbial.

Now this is a monitor...

9X Media is offering their 'X-Top Modular mult-screen display' in 5x5 configuration. Imagine playing racing game or flight simulator on this. The price for these monster displays start at $16,400.

Note: I hope this is not a joke, I have seen promotion like this in the past only to find out it was fake.

Thursday, May 12, 2005

Checkout the Latest Firefox Videos

Here are the latest Firefox videos, they're interesting to say the least.

End of the Game Industry?

I am not a big fan of John C. Dvorak's column, but I believe his basic prediction that the game industry could collapse may be true. Like any industry that gets too big, it eventually out grows it market. I saw video came industry collapse in the late 80's, I also saw the same thing happen to the Internet industry in 2001.

Wednesday, May 11, 2005

How To Build A Stormtrooper Costume

You, the fan, know you've wanted a Stormtrooper armor since the first time you saw them on the big screen at your local Movie Theater. You've swooned over them ever since and untill now had no idea how to get your hands on one. Well my freinds, it's time you learned how to use those hands and brains, and built something.

IE 7.0 Alpha Revealed?

Flexbeta.net reports: "According to a screenshot making its rounds on some forums, Microsoft's answer to Mozilla's Firefox, Internet Explorer 7, might be in its alpha stage."

BSOD upgrades to RSOD in Longhorn

Get ready to add a new term to your computer vocabulary. Joi Ito's blog reports: "Microsoft Longhorn has upgraded from the 'Blue Screen of Death' to the 'Red Screen of Death'."

Tuesday, May 10, 2005

Buzz Grows for Microsoft's Mobile 'Magneto' (Article)

Microsoft is getting ready to announce 'Windows Mobile 2005', it specifications sounds really cool (read the article for more information). The GUI is suppose to be totally resigned. The press is calling it a 'BlackBerry Killer'.

Sunday, May 08, 2005

Design your own keyboard...

This device allows you literally allows you to move or change the keys on the keyboard to any configuration you want.

The Pepsi-G Stove

This is a neat project for making a mini stove from a Pepsi can.

Friday, May 06, 2005

Court Nixes 'Broadcast Flag' (Article)

Wired News reports: "In a blow to the entertainment industry, a federal appeals court on Friday found that federal regulators overstepped their authority by requiring consumer-electronics manufacturers to help restrict digital home recording."

The digital 'broadcast-flag', is a technology mandated by the FCC designed to prevent digital equipment from recording certian shows and movies when the flag is enabled. The content providers had to choice to enable or disable the flag to allow the recording of the show.

Thursday, May 05, 2005

How Lightsabers Work

Have you always wanted to know how lightsabers work? Howstuffworks has the most to update article on the technology, and includes many practical uses for the technology :-).

Star Wars Episode III Spoiler with Pictures

A nearly complete Star Wars Episode III spoiler with pictures.

Is Email Worst For You Then Marijuana?

From the May 5, 2005 edition the Wired newsletter: "Remember Reefer Madness, the 1936 anti-pot propaganda flick that warned of marijuana's ability to wreck lives? It might be time for The Evils of E-Mail: A new study claims that addiction to electronic messages is twice as harmful to the intellect as smoking dope. "This is a very real and widespread phenomenon," said Glenn Wilson, a psychiatrist at a British university who measured a 10-point drop in the IQs of people who juggled e-mail throughout the workday. "We have found that this obsession with looking at messages, if unchecked, will damage a worker's performance by reducing their mental sharpness." Getting high shaves a mere four points off a dope fiend's IQ (although nobody's recommending doing bong hits in the company kitchenette)."

Scott Pakin's automatic complaint-letter generator

Automatically generate a complaint-letter about a: person, company, organization. This is a great fun for the first time you use it, after that it starts to get real boring.

South Park Character Generator

This is an awesome flash application, it allows you build existing and new South Park characters.

What is Grafedia?

Grafedia seems to be a new Internet trend, I wonder what is going to happen to it. If you don't know what Grafedia, here is an except from the site: "Grafedia is hyperlinked text, written by hand onto physical surfaces and linking to rich media content - images, video, sound files, and so forth. It can be written anywhere - on walls, in the streets, or on sidewalks. Grafedia can also be written in letters or postcards, on the body as tattoos, or anywhere you feel like putting it. Viewers 'click' on these grafedia hyperlinks with their cell phones by sending a message addressed to the word '@grafedia.net' to get the content behind the link."

Microsoft Adds a New Wrinkle to 'Genuine Advantage' Initiative (Article)

Microsoft Watch reports: "Microsoft is offering Windows Professional users a new incentive to turn in those selling allegedly counterfeit product: A free replacement copy (with a few strings attached)."

The catch is that you have to identify where you got the disks and provide the receipt. Read the article for more information.

Wednesday, May 04, 2005

Ethanol Grows as Gas Alternative

Wired News: "Workers are clearing Iowa fields, hoping that if they build it, cars will come. The "it" is a processing plant that turns corn into ethanol, a fuel that is increasingly replacing gasoline today and may help to power the fuel-cell vehicles of tomorrow."

Could ethanol replace our dependence on petroleum? Only time will tell...

Revelation! 666 is not the number of the beast (it's a devilish 616)

The Independent reports: "A newly discovered fragment of the oldest surviving copy of the New Testament indicates that, as far as the Antichrist goes, theologians, scholars, heavy metal groups, and television evangelists have got the wrong number. Instead of 666, it's actually the far less ominous 616."

This is a funny article, the last paragraph is the most hysterical. It also has humorous implications for people who have tattooed this number onto their skin.

Seeking the real Antonia Bayle

CNet reports: "Sony Online Entertainment has announced a real-life quest for a woman who looks like eye-catching 'Everquest II' heroine Antonia Bayle, Queen of Qeynos."

This is kind of strange virtual meets reality situation. They develop a computer character, then try to find a woman that matches what she looks like.

Windows x64 Lacks Major Anti-Virus Coverage

eWeek reports: "Customers testing the newly released Windows XP Professional x64 Edition have been getting startling error messages that anti-virus protection from at least two vendors—Symantec and McAfee—is not yet available."

You might want to follow the general I.T. rule of thumb with any new Windows OS. You generally have to wait a few months before load it, so Microsoft can address the most dangerous bugs.

Monday, May 02, 2005

CineCopia - Online DVD's Trading Service

CineCopia is an interesting idea, its an online DVD trading service. It works by allowing you and others to contribute and make DVDs part of a national searchable database. Members can search the database and request movies that they want to view by clicking on the title on the CineCopia web site. Cinecopia then will generate an e-mail requesting the owner to send the DVD to the requester. Then they will provide a pre-paid envelope to the owner to ship the DVD to the requester.

This is not a free service it costs about .99 cents per request, but it could prove to be cheaper (or more expensive) then the alternatives. The nice thing is that there are no monthly service fees.

Although, I see some possible problems with the whole online DVD trading concept:
- The condition of the DVDs that you receive. DVDs are not the most durable medium, so as they're shipped around they're going to get scratched. Eventually they will become un-playable.
- The quality and quantity of the movie titles made available. If people are going to be making these movies available, then they're probably not going to be the best selections. They're probably going to be duds of their collection. Although, I could be wrong, this is just what I assume about human nature.

For more information about the service check the FAQ page. To see the title in their database, check out this page.

Sunday, May 01, 2005

amaztype (seeing is understanding)

It is an interesting web site, that uses images from amazon products to create letters. It is more interesting then my description.

Star Wars Episode III Website (w/Trailers)

This is a cool Star Wars site, it has a music video called 'A Hero Falls', it also has some great picture and movie trailers for Episode III.