Critical Section


week of August 3, redux

Sunday,  08/16/09  11:20 AM

Man, what a week!  Feels like I didn't have a spare moment... bounced directly from one thing to the next to the next to the next... 

blazing dawn: the way my week started
blazing dawn: the way my week started
Started with a demo for Congressman Darrell Issa, who represents the California's 49th district in which Aperio is located.  He's an interesting and intelligent guy, quite impressive.  After the demo he took a couple of questions, and in five minutes did a great summary of the current state of health care reform and the economy in general...

From there I had many meetings, a quick bike ride, dinner with Nicole and Chris...

And many more meetings, dawn to dusk, including a productive "coolseeking" session with our sales team, and a pleasant dinner over drinks with a friend...

And a midnight bike ride from Carlsbad to Torrey Pines under a full moon...

And many more meetings, dawn to dusk,at which critical decisions were made and strategy was set, and I took on more to do (sigh), followed by a quick ride and dinner with a colleague...

And then a day of work work work in which I caught up from days of meetings.  And a nice dinner with my [extended] family...

And then we were off!  On a wonderful long weekend, with friends in Montecito...

And meanwhile it was all happening:

Bill Clinton with North Korean leader Kim Jong-IlWeird photo of the day / week / year: Bill Clinton with North Korean Leader Kim Jong-Il.  I'm a little confused, which Clinton is the Secretary of State, again?

Jennifer Rubin asks How does a leftist govern America?  I think we're starting to see, the answer is: "not well".  He managed to convince a lot of us he was more centerist than he really is, but we're talking about the man with the most liberal voting record in the Senate, and leopards do not change their spots.

How you know the economy is in trouble: The Hot Waitress Index.  Living in L.A. and working in S.D., I encounter so many hot waitresses that this indicator isn't particularly useful :)  Still the principle is valid.  [ via Kottke ]

Important work: Why most journalists are Democrats.  "Unsurprisingly, self-selection plays an important role in choosing a job...  Journalists self-select based on a desire to help others.  Socialism, with its 'spread the wealth' mentality intended to help society’s underdogs, sounds ideal."  And Democrats are Socialist.  Apparently.

Wow, Scoble posted to his blog!  You are SO unfollowed!  On Twitter, he unfollowed 106,000 people.  That is amazing.  Consider that first he had to follow all of those people, and then he had to wade through all their meaningless blather.  What an incredible waste of time and energy.

aspartame - sweet danger or myth?Cracked: Five things they say give you cancer, and why they're wrong.  #4: Artificial Sweetners: "As for the laboratory rats used in the study, those animals were introduced to amounts of Aspartame so massive they are worthy of song and legend.  To put it in perspective, the rat with the smallest trace of cancer (we're talking like ONE cancer cell) was introduced to the human equivalent of 8 cans of diet soda a day.  The most cancer-tastic rat had about 2,083 cans a day."  I hope they're right; I drink 8 cans of diet soda a day, easy.

Going Google - the gloves are off!Wow, check this out: Going Google.  The gloves are off.  You don't think this hasn't been seen in Redmond?  Wow, a free online alternative to Microsoft Office.  Yeah, maybe the functionality isn't as rich, but it is definitely a Christenenian "attack from below"...

I wonder if I'll ever buy another copy of Office?  I'm happy with 2003, have no desire to switch to 2007, and by the time I need to switch, Google Apps will be ready for me.  Yeah, if I'm Microsoft, I'm worried.

Not a surprise: Dog Bites Man: Schmidt Resigns From Apple Board.  In the wake of Apple's rejection of the Google Voice App, you could see this coming a mile away.

Wired: Adaptive Cruise Control goes Mainstream.  "Engelman is driving, but just barely. The Taurus has a radar-based adaptive cruise-control system that lets him set a top speed and then simply steer while the car adjusts its velocity according to traffic. He's been weaving and changing lanes, doing between 45 and 70 mph—and hasn't touched a pedal in an hour."  Yay!  I've been waiting for this, and now I finally have it.  Well, I could have it, although I don't - yet - in any of my cars...  This isn't a bad article, but as usual the angle is safety, not efficiency.  I grant you, adaptive cruise control is a nice safety feature, but that's not the reason to have it.  A whole bunch of cars in a line using adaptive cruise control use a lot less gas.

Palm Pre ad: creepy or cool?Have you seen the new Pre ads?  TechCrunch wonders What is Palm thinking?  Still, there is buzz; I do believe they are effective...

Ars Technica on why they aren't creepy :)

Related: MyTether turns Pres into hotspots.  A useful app for the Pre!  Albeit an unofficial one...

Just wondering: Why isn't there a Kindle reader for Windows?  It would sometimes be nice to read a book on my laptop instead of carrying my Kindle around...

So I've noticed that Zillow now uses Bing instead of Live.  I guess that means Live is dead?

It's kind of funny, but to Microsoft I bet it is no joke; they spent a fortune on the Live launch.  I remember making fun of it, back in November 2005...

fight cancer and win an Orbea Orca!This is massively cool: Fight Cancer, Win an Orbea Orca.  Go ahead, you know you want to fight cancer, and you know you want to win an Orbea Orca.  So you know what to do...

stainless steel printing!This is pretty amazing: stainless-steel printing.  I want, no I need one of these in my house.  They you buy the plans on Amazon, and you download them into your printer, and poof, solid objects!  Wow, what will they think of next?

Okay, how about this: a camera which contains a built-in projector?  That is pretty cool, and the technology is even cooler; imagine cellphones with built-in projectors...  you just know this is going to happen, right?  It just makes too much sense...

amazing folding bike... and then there's this: a bike which can be folded completely into the space of the wheels' 26" circumference.  Wow, now that's cool.  (Please click through and check out the video!)  Not to mention useful, but I just wonder how well the bike rides.  Probably not quite as nicely as an Orbea Orca :)

Xerox Star UI pictures - from 1981!And reminding us that the more things change, the more they stay the same, here are some pictures of the Xerox Star user interface, from 1981!  I actually used a Xerox 850, which was a slight forerunner of the Star; the thing I remember most, aside from the awesome black and white graphics, was the round touchpad built into the keyboard which was used for "mouse" navigation.  It was a dedicated word processor that stored files on 8" floppys (!) and printed using a daisy wheel printer (!), and it worked great...

ZooBorn: a baby TenrecAnd finally, here we have the ZooBorn of the week: a baby Tenrec.  What's a Tenrec, you ask?  It's a kind of hedgehog, apparently, and a pretty cute one at that!

So be it - that was the week that was...

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