Steve Jobs address at Stanford

I’m not sure why it was so stunning that Jobs was resigning as Apple’s CEO– he’s almost  done it before, and the man really has been at the top for long enough, let him get some rest!
Somewhere on NPR they were suggesting this, and it’s really great; he doesn’t go on too long, and shares three great stories:

[yframe url=’http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ik15OqWR3k4&feature=player_embedded’%5D

When did the Camaro go on sale as a convertible?

Saw this yesterday in Fahaheel, and didn’t know they existed yet! Checked Chevrolet’s site and it seems they are indeed ready for buying!

camaro convertible

Funnier though, is that thanks to Jalopnik, I found out that apparently this car made it’s debut on a Glee version of Britney Spears’ classic “Baby One More Time.” It’s a classic, you know it. Awesome.

[yframe url=’http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rxtpRR_tJRM&feature=related’%5D

President Barak Obama action figure!

People around the world like Barak Obama– this happened just about when he was working on becoming President– a welcome change to the worldwide dislike for our previous President!
But now you can take your excitement for Obama to a new level:

Obama action figure

That’s right, our Bin Laden-beating President is available as an action figure– but not just any static action figure! This comes with all variations of hands and multiple neckties. Because you never know when he’ll have to fight Darth Vader.  Or when he might need to sit on a stool and sing, or hold a samurai sword or… go ahead and check out the full range of awesomeness at Gamu Toys!

Tha man has taken out Bin Laden, I dunno WHAT Vader is thinking!

-r-

Chav

So, I learned a new word today! From a combination of the definitions in Wikipedia and World Wide Words:

A chav (pronounced /ˈtʃæv/ chav) is a stereotype of certain people in the United Kingdom. [Characterized often by their social standing (low) and their dress which shows] a love of flashy gold jewellery (hooped earrings, thick neck chains, sovereign rings and heavy bangles, which all may be lumped together under the term bling-bling); the wearing of white trainers (in what is called “prison white”, so clean that they look new); clothes in fashionable brands with very prominent logos; and baseball caps, frequently in Burberry check, a favourite style. The women, the Daily Mail wrote recently in a characteristic burst of maidenly distaste, “pull their shoddily dyed hair back in that ultra-tight bun known as a ‘council-house facelift’, wear skirts too short for their mottled blue thighs, and expose too much of their distressingly flabby midriffs”.

Wow. So at least it’s not derogatory or anything! Apparently this was Word of the Year in 2004, but has more recently come to the forefront as a word that is so oft-used deprecatingly that it’s started talk of the return of classist Britain. In the US, there’s an equally endearing term–“wigger”– for these same folk who appropriate parts of hip-hop culture and parts from their own backgrounds to create some amalgam thereof. Or is it just “white trash?” Either way, I think the following photo (sourced from Wikipedia article) is really excellent at a visual description

One of the cars at the GLC Spectacular event to publicise Goldie Looking Chain's single release.

 

Got to find some of my British friends for some more perspective…
Update: I know, I know you were thinking that a link to a good article defending Chavs is of the order. Sure enough, I’ve found it in the Times Online, and I think it’s great.

Corruption 2010

As the year draws to a close, many lists will be made regarding bests and worst and how we have/not improved.
Here’s something I was thinking about while I was reading an article that mentioned how corrupt Iraq is– I wonder which way corruption is trending in more of the world? Unfortunately, I imagine more countries on the graphic below will be going from green towards red! Also, not surprisingly, our two major warzones Iraq and Afghanistan are two out of the top four most corrupt. This graphic is taken from Transparency International’s CPI (Corruption Perception Index) for 2010. The document contains the full listing and breakdown by continent and a map showing the distribution of corrupt countries.

[December 19, 2010]: I was looking through Foreign Policy magazine today and they had some revelations about corruption that came out of the Wikileaks leaked documents. Check out some of the astounding offenders.

Photoshop on front page: no one really notices, do they?

He’s walking in front; he’s walking behind; does it matter?
Well, Al-Ahram newspaper in Egypt certainly thinks so! For their recent front page spread, they didn’t want their country’s president to be lagging behind anyone else, so they made him lead the pack!

obviously not good enough!
original Reuters photo

Instead, an alternate reality:

click to enlarge
front page of Al Ahram

Quoted in an article on Al-Masry Alyoum, “Samy Abdel Aziz, dean of the faculty of mass communication at Cairo University, said the president’s perceived importance should not be affected by his position in a photo,  [since]  ‘Formal aspects do not add to realities.'”
Uhh–if it didn’t affect realities, why would anyone bother to change it? I need to have a word with Cairo University about what kind of people they have running their shops!

Hope you get to walk in front of someone today,
-r-

Where is the aeroplane?

Sometimes, it’s not enough to know when the plane has landed or taken off. You just want to SEE the thing–even if it’s in icon form.
So, until we have real-time satellite visual tracking available to us, we have this:
http://ar.flightaware.com
You simply put in your flight number and voilà, you have something that looks like this:

is it a plane?

While I wait for my beautiful wife to get here, the little icon on this map isn’t moving nearly fast enough! But I am SO glad that I can see it moving!

Hope your day goes well,
-r-

Google and "Blogocide" — Don't be evil?

A commentator on the Wikipedia article says “”Don’t be evil” is said to recognize that large corporations often maximize short-term profits with actions that destroy long-term brand image and competitive position.” I agree on that being at least the idea that Google has always put forth.  Somewhere between knowing the cute slogan, and having my own blog where I’ve put in many hours just to get it to look/ feel a certain way (hey now! I’m still working on it!), I’m really perturbed by this news from NPR:

Apparently Google has killed off a slew of music blogs-

Google’s Blogger Team sent out emails to sites including I Rock Cleveland, Marsala, Pop Tarts Suck Toasted, To Die By Your Side, It’s a Rap and Living Ears:

We’d like to inform you that we’ve received another complaint regarding your blog (http://irockcleveland.blogspot.com/).

Upon review of your account, we’ve noted that your blog has repeatedly violated Blogger’s Terms of Service (http://www.blogger.com/terms.g).

Given that we’ve provided you with several warnings of these violations and advised you of our policy towards repeat infringers, we’ve been forced to remove your blog.

Thank you for your understanding.
Sincerely,
The Blogger Team

The owner of I Rock Cleveland wrote back: “I assure you that everything I’ve posted for, let’s say, the past two years, has either been provided by a promotional company, came directly from the record label, or came directly from the artist.”
NPR’s Marketplace (click for full article)

So it seems the artists–and by that I mean the owners of the blogs– never really had a chance to figured out either 1. exactly what the problem was or 2. if it could be corrected!  Very silly, and really much worse than that–I think it’s very disrespectful of other people’s intellectual property.  Ironic, given the grounds.

They do many things really well, Google.  But it’s things like this that make sure that I’m not going to switch from Facebook to Buzz quite just yet! Regardless of how neatly Google would like to “consolidate [my] online identity.”

Cheers,
-r-