28 November 2008

Review: A bucket of blood

I finally got around to watching one of the public domain horror movies.

Pick for this week was A Bucket of Blood (1959).

Directed by Roger Corman and written by Charles B. Griffith, this is quite a macabre tale.

A busboy, Walter, wants to be like the arty types. Kinda like the snobby nut jobs who frequent the cafe he works in. And man, those are pretentious pompous idiots.

These snotty types make an excellent social comment about cliques and the in-crowd. It is strange that a movie made in 1959 can be applicable to modern social interactions as well.

Walter has the artistic talent of a used up sponge.

But he tries. Really hard. He is one sad lonely soul who tries too hard to conform.

So there he is looking for ideas and perhaps a bit of skill and whoop, he ends up with a sculpture of a cat. That he made one is a bit of a hooray moment if not for the fact that the landlady's cat is missing.

By the way, his 'work' is a hit and the arty snobs want more.

You can see where this is headed.

A refreshing movie; perhaps an old cliche were story is concerned but on the plus side it has normal looking actors, with less glitter glazed focus on looks. The delivery of the tale itself is fun since there is more focus on mannerisms and developing personality.

My personal favorite was the fidgety cafe owner. He may have been a heartless bastard but he was one twitchy bastard. On that note, notice how none of the male characters seem to have a need to prove masculinity by swearing or aping stereotypically mannish gestures.

Rational thinking takes a back seat

New Media is the way to go

Good read. An article about media consultant and professor, Jeff Jarvis, it details his views of New Media.

“We should embrace change,” he said. “Instead, too often we fight change. That’s the nature of organizations and institutions that hold power. Change might mean losing power. The great and magnificent irony of online—this would really send [Ron] Rosenbaum’s spine up—is that in my blog, in what I call Jarvis’ Law, is that I say if you give people control, we will use it. If you don’t, you lose us. The counterintuitive way of the Internet age is when you give up control, you win. The old way was to maintain control to win.”

Too many still don't get it though. I could name a few ...

Observer via Mediabistro

Power from doors

New ideas bouncing all around.

A revolving door in a quaint cafe in Netherlands can generate electricity.

One person entering the café generates enough power to make a cup of coffee.

Hmm, wonder if you can rig your attic door to light up the storage room?


An ancient city gate found in Israel

I love archaeological news; every new discovery be it a small artifact fragment or a century old pagoda, brings us that closer to solving ancient mysteries.

However, I do wonder about the themes when reporting certain stories.

Take this one.

David and Goliath city found. Or possibly found.

The fortified gate at the Elah Fortress—the second to be found at the site—proves the existence of Sha'arayim, which means "two gates" in Hebrew, said Hebrew University archaeologist Yosef Garfinkel.

All good and well.

My question is, would this bit of news be any less significant if there were no religious connotations to it?

Do you have to sell an educational concept by linking it to something, anything that pertains to people's daily lives?

National Geographic

Short film: Spring Heeled Jack

I remember reading about Spring Heeled Jack when I was a wee little lassie. Quite a scary story too. It might have been in myths and folklores or world's greatest mysteries or something.

By the way, if you would like to know more about the director of this short animation, Geof Wolfenden, check out his bio on the BBC site.

27 November 2008

Fragment of Skull of Buddha

A teeny tiny pagoda (4 feet x 1.5 feet) was found in Nanjing - it is thought by archaeologists to be one of the 84,000 pagodas commissioned by Ashoka the Great.

Wait there's more exciting news.

A description of the contents of the pagoda was also found: a gold coffin bearing part of Buddha's skull inside a silver box. Although scans have confirmed that there are two small metal boxes inside the pagoda, experts have not yet peered inside.


More about the creator of The Guild

Another interview of Felicia Day.

In a chit chat with Kwanzoo, Day talks about The Guild (so how did that come about), her childhood (music school + games = hooray) and Dr Horrible (the strike helped).

About online gaming and addiction:

Well, it varies, I love playing these games, and if you have a healthy life outside the game, you probalby won’t let it get out of control. I don’t want to condemn anyone’s hobbies, so I try to HAVE fun with the characters, rather than MAKE fun of them. Believe me, there’s nothing I’d rather do on a Saturday night than crank up Vent and my MMORPG and tool around killing things.


25 November 2008

Jason Momoa hit with beer bottle

Sad news.

Jason Momoa was attacked by a man at a cafe.

According to the article, there might have been a bit of a verbal tiff before the bottle smashing.

Ye, poor Momoa got smacked in the face with a beer bottle which broke on impact. He needed 140 stitches apparently. Ouch.


Season 2 of The Guild is out, up, online, etc.

This is the surprise announcement Felicia Day referred to recently. The Guild has found a sponsor and it is none other than Microsoft.

Excerpt from Ars Technica:
The best part of the deal for Day is that she retains her rights to the show, which means any future deals, including online, television, or even a movie, will be controlled by her. Sprint will also play a major part in the deal, with ads running before the content and characters using the Sprint Instinct in the show.

Sounds like a good deal - to be able to retain the rights to your work.

By the way Episode 1 of Season 2 of The Guild is now online! Woot!

Origin of words "Black Sheep"

Have you seen the telecom ad with the black sheep?

While the ad is a bit strange (why are black sheeps cheap), this did make me wonder about the origins of the phrase - black sheep and/or black sheep of the family.

Admittedly this task requires a trip to the library.

However, for now, I stuck to searching online. Miffed peevologists can embark on the trip themselves.

Online Etymology Dictionary explains that "real black sheep had wool that could not be dyed and was thus worthless".

So the meaning 'odd one out' comes down from this meaning?

While on the topic, I also looked up origins of the poem "Baa baa Black Sheep".

According to Doctor Bruno, the word baa might be used simply to associate sheep with sheep products. This in turn might have been due to importance of the wool industry.

Check out his blog for two possible historical significance evident in the poem.

21 November 2008

Copernicus and Spiders rule the weekend

Friday Links

Copernicus' remains found?

Well what do you know? They might have found Copernicus' grave.

Apparently researchers compared the DNA of bones found in grave to that of two strands of hair found in one of his books.

Okay, to those of you who wonder if this was the remains of his man-servant or a friend who occasionally borrowed his book, experts claim that facial recognition tech also provide proof.

Polish archaeologist Jerzy Gassowski told a news conference that forensic facial reconstruction of the skull, missing the lower jaw, his team found in 2005 buried in a Roman Catholic Cathedral in Frombork, Poland, bears striking resemblance to existing portraits of Copernicus.

Source - Yahoo News
Online Book Archive

I know Project Gutenberg is out there (and bless their bookish boots for their good deeds) but I also like to see what else is out there.

Thus I came across this list of books, called Forgotten Books, which details a whole lot of books from the good old days.

Most of this links back to Google Books.

And there was one?

I had to link to this story (Slashdot).

Apparently two spiders were beamed up, I mean sent to the International Space Station and now only one can be seen.

Bushweed shared this article through his feeds, pointing out that this must have been the premise for a lotta flicks.

Reason I found the incident funny: one movie on my list of public domain movies to watch is called A Corpse Hangs in the Web.

It's about a plane crash and a radioactive spider that goes on a rampage.


Vizzavi Commercial - Pierre Coffin

This commercial (known as one of the Vizzavi Commercials) by Pierre Coffin. Not sure if he is the director and creator or just the director.

Information about him is hard to find. Sadly, since he is not important to the world *cough* American scenario in the face of all that comes out, there doesn't seem to be a Wiki page about him.

He works or did some work for MacGuff, a visual effects company. I found references to him on their website.

The fuzzy creatures in this animation are called Pat and Stanley and there is an entire site dedicated to them, complete with games, clips, etc. Note to fans, brush up on your French.

19 November 2008

5 Horror Movies from the Public Domain

I like old movies, especially those old school thrillers. Thus, I find myself making a list of horror/science fiction movies that are in the public domain.

1. A corpse hangs in the web

Apparently a German-Yugoslav scifi movie dating back to the 1960s. Wiki makes it sound like there is a spider involved (by the way that was one questionable review). I'll watch it for first few minutes and see if it is as dodgy as the review sounds.

I mean come on! There is hardly any mention of spiders in that review.

I fear I am going to regret adding this as the first on the list.

Horrors of Spider Island on Google

2. House on the Haunted Hill

You guessed it, the 1999 movie is a remake of this one.

This 1959 horror fest stars Vincent Price (wasn't he in Last Man on Earth) and was directed by William Castle.

You already know the story - stay in haunted house and win some moolah.

Let's see how the old was developed the evil cackles to scare off people.

House on Haunted Hill (Google)

3. A bucket of blood

Update: Watched. Written down a short review of A Bucket of Blood here.

Hmm. I wonder about this one. Artist killing people for inspiration?

Apparently this was a 1959 horror-comedy. Bits of rather dark sense of humor is what I am guessing.

A bucket of blood (Google)

4. Plan 9 from outer space

This is supposed to be the worst movie ever made (well, probably before Crossroads and Glitter tortured those heading for the suprise premiere).

I am curious to see it; I want to how just how bad it is. And it has been mentioned so many times in pop culture that you have to wonder what the fuss is all about.

Another one I fear I will regret.

Plan 9 from Outer Space

5. The Brain the Wouldn't Die

You can guess what kinda slasher this is going to be.

It dates back to late 1960s and is similar to crazy scientist going all nutsy with body parts ... that are not his to begin with.

The Brain ... (on Google)

You gotta love a country that appreciates the arts

Celtic coins found in Netherlands!

Paul Curfs found gold and silver coins (as he was pottering around with his metal detector) in Maastricht.

According to experts, these coins date back to the first century, or at least halfway into it.


Nico Roymans, the archaeologist who led the academic investigation of the find, believes the gold coins in the cache were minted by a tribe called the Eburones that Caesar claimed to have wiped out in 53 B.C. after they conspired with other groups in an attack that killed 6,000 Roman soldiers.

18 November 2008

New Star Trek looks terrible - My eyes, my eyes!

Must you taint everything geeky out there?

I found a link to the new Star Trek trailer and followed through. The comments made me wonder just how jazzed up it was.

*Bling Bling*, typical non-stop glorified action, *bling bling*, usual annoying music that signifies something gargantuan being blasted into bits, *bling bling*, someone takes her top off *bling bling* ....

Needless to say I felt a need to throw up after watching that trailer.

I would not call myself a die-hard Star Trek fan. I'm more of a Asgard watcher meself.

But then what I saw of it, I liked. And appreciated.

This movie does not resemble anything that I have come to associate with Star Trek.

Don't get me wrong; the movie will probably be big and popular and jazzy.

It will break box office records.

Someone somewhere will give it an award.

But, on a personal level, I am not inspired to go watch that movie. It had more gratutitous action than social commentary; more perfect looking people than ordinary beings doing extraordinary feats ....

You can accuse me of writing stuff off before watching it - but then the trailer is supposed to grab my attention and reel me in, is it not? Why would I cough up extra cash to watch a flick in the cinema when it resembles all the dumbed down annoyances that is being belched out everyday anyway?

A lot of folks have been heralding in the new spate of sci-fi, previously geek movies / series. Some well meaning folk have even mentioned that it is okay to be a geek now - previously, in the 1980s, there were intelligent, tastefully done material that broke the mould and only a small segment of population stuck to them as die-hard fans. The rest watched Lawrenece of Arabia take off his pants ... or something to that effect. Now, the geek of the 80s say, what was on the fringes of society is becoming the hit for the masses.

That's not quite true, is it?

Star Wars was an uber cool trilogy. I mean 4, 5 and 6. What happened after that was fodder for the mindless. To this day I am trying to erase that image of Anakin and Amadela singing "the hills are alive with the sound of music". No wait, they didn't say that exactly. But they might as well have.

Indiana Jones, while dastardly mainstream and so politically incorrect your eyeballs would melt, was awesome as a smart, witty adventurer. Don't think I need to mention how that dream died.

How about I am Legend? Countless classic horror movie remakes? Pimp my ride mentality of the Batman movies?

I also heard that they are re-shooting a Stargate SG-1 two-parter, dolling it up for a movie.

All in all, what used to be intelligent geek phenomenon is not mellowed down to appeal to the lowest denominator in a population. It's a matter of, make sure as many people will watch it as possible.

Guess these golden oldies I mention used to be the new frontier for its generation. Maybe it is time to move on, leave cinema behind and find the new frontier.

*Checks for updates on The Guild and Galacticast*

MTV chats with Bliz CEO

MTV has an interview with Blizzard CEO Mike Morhaim.

An interesting interview, talking about business model for WOW, releasing more expansions and something about the iPhone.

What did interest me was this:

MTV Multiplayer: Is the subscription model in general still valid? Has the monthly rate ever changed for “WoW” since it launched in 2004 and do you feel like it should change?

Morhaime: The monthly rate for “WoW” in the United States has not changed, and we’re not planning any changes to it.

You know I would say, "Yay that is good to know" except that this phrase does not apply to those outside US.

Nah, they are decent folks so I don't see them hiking prices for the fans based in other countries.

On that note, what is the percent of subscribers per country? Just out of curiosity ....

17 November 2008

Where does the phrase in cahoots come from?

I found a new etymology site, World Wide Words, that promises to be hours of fun. Or as much fun as a strong believer with a descriptive language view can have reading about a prescriptivist's (would you rather I said peevologist) take on the observable aspects of language performance.

Well, the articles are fun to read and might interest many others.

For instance, read this writer's take on the new advertising gimmick that resulted in a bank being called Cahoots.

The article also has a little bit about the possible origins of that word/phrase (used to be in cahoots, remember?) and the connotations attached to that phrase.


World Wide Words

Interview with Apophis

It's the bad guy who just won't die - not that I am one to complain ... It's Apophis!!!

Gateworld has an interview
with Peter Williams where they discuss the early days of Stargate Sg-1 and all the gang had to worry about was the next nefarious plan of Apophis.

And WTF is all that about reshooting Children of the Gods?

Right. Yeah, I know Fox is very interested. They're also going to trim a lot, according to Brad. They said a lot of dialogue was awkward.

Leave all the good stuff as is - damn you Fox!!

That is one movie I will not buy for my collection. In fact, before any more damage is done (i.e. some schmuck goes and introduces a digitally remastered version of the whole series) I might have to finish up my collection of Stargate - Buffy must wait now.

And one more titbit:

There's this asteroid that's circling earth. You go and Google "asteroid Apophis." The guys who discovered this asteroid are Stargate fans.

14 November 2008

Bad Eggs

This was a short animation made by Zac D.

It's a funny video; I like the way the bigger bird gets this look when it wants to mess with the egg.

By the way, this was made in blender. Woot!

Felicia Day interview

Video chat rooms at Ustream

Was it just me or did that first guy who asked about "what deals are you looking for" sound a bit annoyed? What's his problem?

Makes me wonder if some people actually understand the premise for a webseries, why it does so well and most importantly the problem of copyrights and how it affects the creators.

I think Felicia Day made a great point about why she as a writer and creator wants to have a say in how the show is maintained, portrayed to the audience and most importantly, how the essence of the show must be retained.

If people keep asking her about the deals and why she has not said yes, it also makes me wonder if a lotta folk just didn't get what the writer's strike in US was all about. Which would be distressing to say the least.

A lot of people thought it was about earning so much moolah that you can roll around in it while laughing madly.

It's not.

Money from the project would be nice.

But the most important point was that the real creators did not have a say in how their creations were being used, reused, sliced, diced, guttered, promoted, franchised and what not.

Great interview. It's good to see an entrepreneur creating a new web model for the the internet.

13 November 2008

There will be a second sesaon of Sanctuary

Yay! Second season of Sanctuary is on the cards!!

I have only seen the web series version and I must admit it's a mind blowing series.

Sadly, I don't think a lot of folks appreciate it for what it is; you know the number of times I have heard trend-following friends gush about Heroes 3 (oh kill me now) and then pish posh good series like Sanctuary?

Sheeps, all of you! Baa!

George R R Martin's books = new series

Oooh George R. R. Martin's books might be coming to a small telly near you.

If you have HBO.

And you pay for cable in general.

Chances are, you will see it before anyone else if you are in US.

Unless, you access it in a round-about way. Not that I endorse it in anyway. Just saying.

So the series in question will be Songs of Ice and Fire and there is mention that each season may focus on a separate book.


Galley Cat

12 November 2008

Proliferation of Diabloasters

Bwahahha .... well said.

This is a blog written by a rather indignant fan of the Diablo series.


Let's start with Diablo III. If you based your knowledge of Diablo from what you hear on the internet then your perception would be as follows. Diablo is a game where the objective is to adjust your gamma setting until you can't see anything; then you dupe a bunch of items and get banned from Battle.Net.

And he makes a lot of valid points about those whiny fanboys who make everyone else look bad.

AND I agree with the whole Blizzard looms over the moutain of WOW gold comment. I have been griping about the inability to pay for my WOW account in Europe - yes, yes, I can't use paypal (damn you) , I don't have a fracking credit card and no, I don't want to buy a two-month game card (priced high enough to buy four smurfs, so there).

Which leads me to think all they care about is the bags of walking moneybags that are in US. *adds Blizzard next to HULU*.

Shire, Baggins!!

11 November 2008

Dollhouse delays?

Don't trust the devil in foxy clothing ... or something profound to that effect.

Some folks believe Dollhouse is in trouble. Whedon pish-poshed such claims, provided updates on his blog and continued to tweak the show.

Reason for initial delays? Apparently the mighty Fox was not mighty pleased. I know, I know, Whedon has been saying that he wanted to charges some stuff, he understood their worries and it has to fit network.

But from the fervent discussions on most forums, a lot of fans are pointing fingers at Fox.

And given the past treatment of his projects, you can see why. Like the Star also suggests, Firefly and Buffy were horribly (bad enough to join the Evil League of Evil in fact).


Whedon's new Fox series, Dollhouse, has already been subjected to several production shutdowns, from the initial scrapping of the pilot, right up to today, when shooting was scheduled to begin on the seventh episode and is now indefinitely postponed while Whedon cranks out yet another rewrite.

But then, what can you expect from a tabloid-style network that caters to Muggles with the most mundane brain cogs?


Sinéad Ní Bhraonáin

Photo Source: 1000 before you die

If you have a bit of time to kill ....

Check out this Random Irish Name Generator!

Something fun to do when you run out of activities, you know that stuff you were dabbling in so as to avoid any real work?

10 November 2008

Where do computer bugs come from?

We all know the words "bug in the system" or "computer bug". Where does this nifty little phrase come from?

There is apparently an urban legend of sorts which is continuously repeated by zealous people, possibly started by that person in your office who also has a knack for sending out numerous "save a child by sending this message" emails, whereby the origin of the word 'bug' is attributed to a bothersome little insect that was squashed amongst the cogs and wheels of the computer.

Hmm, I changed my previous account - the damn moth really did get caught in the cogs. So it seems. But the word itself in that context was not coined by roadkill moth but rather, had been used earlier, to refer to faults or problems in the machine due to unknown causes.

According to AskOxford, the origins of the word 'bug' (computer bug to you techno-junkies) can be traced to Thomas Edison.

Seems like he might have been referring to the problems in one particular device, stating that it was almost like "some imaginary insect has secreted itself inside and is causing all the trouble".

Now you know. Incidentally, the moth in question is stored in the National Museum of American History of the Smithsonian Institution.

Incidentally, maybe Edison would not have had so many 'bugs' if he had kept Nikola Tesla in his service.

Evil League Applicants

I've been meaning to upload this list for a while now. Well, today is the day it all happens.

Like every other Dr Horrible fan, I have been browsing the YT applications for acceptance into Evil League of Evil. And I must admit a lot of them have an excellent flair for comedy. Not to mention pretty creative too.

Here's my list of current favorites:


Count Cards and the 52 Pickup

The UNO card was a nice touch.

Earl Grey

Ohh man! Classic! Did he say the Maldives?

07 November 2008

Trailer for Lost season 5

Lost is coming back in Jan?

*Sets time aside in Jan*

Galacticast: A Geeky Webseries

There are quite a few webseries around these days; some are brilliant (check my previous post) and some are painful. I won't name the terrible ones, I'll stick to mentioning any new media venture that is fun, amuses and or just fracking hilarious.

Galacticast is a good webseries in that sense. Some of the episodes were o-kay, some I would only watch once. But there are some real gems in this geek fest.

My two current favorites are Ducky Horror and Heat Fozzy. Not many folk will refer to RHPS and thus, the Ducky Horror reference was daring. Not to mention well done. Ducky Ducky quack quack indeed.

As for Heat Fozzy, the intro is classic. "They took his dignity, they took his honor, and then they took his love... Kermit is seeking revenge!" Oh that was fracking hilarious. That's right, it ain't easy being green.

I am still in the midst of watching this webseries and will be posting more reviews as I tag more favorites.

Interview with Felicia Day

An interview with Felicia Day on The Onion, A.V. Club. To all you busy Muggles, Felicia Day is Penny from Dr. Horrible and of course, the genius behind The Guild (as well as one of the main cast). The Guild is the best Christmas present the web could ever hope for.

So here goes. In the interview, Felicia Day talks about working on The Guild, upcoming projects, how she landed the yummy role in Dr. Horrible and also a little bit about her personal life.

It's refreshing to see writer-actors like Day. It is nice to see content creators incorporating intelligent material into their work and appreciating niche audiences.

06 November 2008

Micheal Crichton has passed away

One last note and a moment of silence for Micheal Crichton.

The famous author and man behind the ground-breaking dinosaur-centric novel passed away recently (perhaps the very novels that misled a famous governor to claim man and dinosaurs walked together?).

Best-selling author Michael Crichton has died in Los Angeles aged 66 after a "courageous and private battle against cancer", his family has said. ~ BBC

Aah, he was a brilliant author; he will be dearly missed. RIP.

Trivia about Stargate SG-1

I found the Easter Egg site about Stargate SG-1. Think of it as little known facts about the what was to be one of the last intelligent shows on telly.

It's worth a read. Definitely worth the net surfing time during lunch hour.

For instance, Mitka was a director in one of the episodes which incidentally referred to O'Neill as a "pain in the mitka".

And check out the reference to Klingon weapons - From Stargate to Star Trek!

Oh and there is a reference to Latin for the Novice. Perhaps they could send a copy to UK.

People in Britain learning a lot from Bush style US

When I started to read this article, I laughed. I could not believe this was real. It must be a Nov 5 Guy Fawkes joke, I told myself.

On the other hand, BBC does seem quite serious about it.

When I got to the end of the article, I felt it was not too early in the day for a strong drink. Preferably without the ice.

According to BBC
, several local authorities are advising a ban on Latin words. (To what end? Compensate for their own stupidity)?

Oooh just read these quotes:

Latin is elitist and discriminatory
people might not understand it - particularly if English is not their first language
But the move has been welcomed by the Plain English Campaign which says some officials only use Latin to make themselves feel important.
Which rock did these people crawl out of?

What kind of fracking, condescending nonsense is this?

I am not a first language English speaker and I know bloody well what those words mean.

What's next on the list? Asterix comics? Toning down geography lessons? Burning all Latin books?

I would provide more examples but I am afraid I might mistake it for an egg! You know, given my English-is-not-my-mother-tongue status. (If you are wondering what I mean, read the last sentence of that article).

*makes list of beginner's guide to Latin books to send as Christmas presents*

US telly shows hate science

They were showing Friends on telly the other night (let me take moment's pause to appreciate SVU and how it should fill in for that hour again). Well, thinking of Friends led me thinking back to some episodes. And part of reason why it stopped appealing to me.

I used to be a huge fan (came about when I had just finished high school) and I used to collect the DVDs and read about it and all that jazz.

Years and a few house moves later, I look back at my collection and wonder am I really going to rewatch this? I try, see if it is still as enthralling. Nah, silly jokes, stupid sleeping around, promoting people being dumb.

Alright to be fair, it would not be right to label Friends as anti-intelligence. I mean every other show did that, not like this show stood out in their berating.

But the berating, ah they did that really well.

How often does the show make a joke of and/or normalize the lack of knowledge of all the main characters. Can you count the number of instances where the characters didn't have a clue about general knowledge (be it geography, world history, American history, science)?

Fine, Ross is supposed to be the scientist but that uber annoying episode between Phoebe and Ross about evolution didn't make him stand out as a stellar representative of his field.

My point is, why is there a need to dismiss being educated and smart in US telly shows? All the 'nerds' look like models and don't worry, they won't use big words and will take part in high paced action most of the time so s/he will be a 'cool' nerd who uses brain activity to a minimum.

Or worse case scenario, the 'nerdy' character will rattle off facts that are in no way factual.

Is this for the same reason that US can't have a paranormal/supernatural show completely relying on science (it has to have a spiritual/religious element in it)?

Well, the way Scifi channel is killing all the good dough, I am inclined to believe intelligence is Expelled.

05 November 2008

Where can I find royalty-free photographs

I was looking up a few royalty-free photo sites and thought I would post a list of interesting ones that I found.


All photographs in this site are beautiful. There is quite a wide variety of pictures as well.

As for the terms of use, I am somewhat confused by it. For instance, the folk say "Photocase is a Community built on inspiring photography. For users, by users, all our photos can be downloaded for commercial and private use, providing said use is in agreement with our Terms of Use."

So far so good. However, the terms of use is a bit puzzling. Seems like you need to earn download credits in certain ways. It doesn't sound terrible; just seems to require an active participation in that community.

Photoshop Support

This site provides an excellent list of royalty-free pictures. Some sites offer free pics only for personal use; do note that even in those cases, linking back and attribution might be required). Thus, be sure to read the terms and conditions before diving straight in.


SXC is another fantastic site. I keep coming back to this one. Great pics, friendly folk and some creative shots as well.

Offers royalty-free pics as well ones who gotta pay for.

Geek Philospher

Geek Philosopher is fab choice as well.

Their selection may not be as big as some of the other sites but they make up for this by presenting unique perspectives on various themes.

Public Domain Pictures

Once again, a smallish royalty-free site. Their 'people' pictures had a bit too many seaside pics (not a problem per say but I was hoping for more diversity) - I suppose there will be more added to this site. The light effects page was quite amazing though.

Interview with Charles Shaughnessy

Gateworld has an interview with Charles Shaughnessy
- to all SG fans, he was the truth should be known Alec Colson on SG-1.

Great interview; he talks about working on SG-1, the storyline, what he is upto now, mentions a funny series called "To Boldly Go" and also talks a little bit about Amanda Tapping.


But she's hysterically funny and she comes from a Canadian ... like a Groundling, a comedy improv group, she's hysterical. She couldn't have been sweeter and nicer to work with. A terrific actress.

And of course, they mention The Nanny! I am disappointed that the interviewer did not ask him about the Sheffield reference in the Colson episode (Covenant)! When I first saw the episode, that was one of the quirkiest moments on the ep; Colson coming onto the secret base and saying hello to a guy called Sheffield. This officially makes me an oldie.

Although, maybe they had mentioned it numerous times before and hence it was not brought up in this interview. Would have loved to know more about what went on behind-the-scenes though.

When you know you love WOW

I told Ferradine she is gonna be mentioned consistently until she uploads more artwork *evil laugh* and thus one more link to my good friend in crime.

Ferradine (or Treacherous S. Elliot as known to Muggle folk) sent me this funny link to a Wow story. You've probably read it by now (it seems to have been a big hit online) but I will link to the story nonetheless.

Called World of Warcraft vs. My Girlfriend (written by T. Curry), it is a hilarious ad hopefully fictitious) account of how one man lost his girlfriend due to his love for wow.

This is how it begins ...

I've had a lot of time to think about our last conversation, particularly since you ended it by ramming a keyboard through my monitor. I understand that we were both upset at the time and perhaps we said some things we didn't mean. Well, maybe you more than me, considering I mostly just listened to you shriek and cowered in the corner.

Read the rest here @ McSweeney's.

04 November 2008

That thing that blankets do

Another interesting article by Prof. Alistair B. Fraser called Bad Greenhouse.

Basically, he dismisses various myths and misconceptions surrounding the over-hyped greenhouse effect.

In nutshell, when you read his article you will find -
a) That the link between greenhouse effect and global warming is like spotting the Q-link between Iraq and any terror group with Q in their name.
b) that greenhouse effect is a misunderstood underdog who ain't all bad.
c) that the stupid diagram your 6th grade science teacher drew about the earth and bloody reflecting blanket effect was all hogwash.

Upon reading this article, I have been searching for various articles that confirm/contradict this theory.

With all due respect to the Prof., taking someone's word for it was what lead me to believe the blanket effect in the first place! To that effect here is another link that more or less agree with the good professor.

Eastern Illinois University page of Associate Prof. J.P. Stimac

Note: Will upload more links (for and against) as I come across them.

In the meantime, if you will excuse me, I need to have a word with my high school science teachers.

03 November 2008

Open temporarily

Okay, good news. Clarkesworld Books is open for the holidays. According to the site, this refers to orders of $35 or more.

Much as I would love to buy some books/magazine right now, am saving up for new PC. And that is for work purposes.

Not that anyone wants to hear my justification for not purchasing the goodies.

If you would love some good scifi reads, do check out the site, see if there is anything that grabs your interest.

Hello Linux

There are plenty of awesome Linux apps - the unsung heroes of OS world. These poor guys don't get enough good press so it's good to see more coverage about these fellas.

A nice intro to Killer apps in Linux by bushweed.


Kate: It's a text editor that wants to be an IDE. Being a simple text editor it's really fast. Quick start up time and low memory usage are not things you normally associate with syntax highlighting, session management, code folding, spellcheck and code completion.