Wednesday, January 13, 2010

All your interwebs...

Step #1: Visit
Step #2: Search for Google or Note that both work.
Step #3: Now search for
Step #4: Enjoy your Baidu lockout. You should be able to search again in 5-10 minutes, I haven't timed the duration exactly.
Via Slashdot via Reddit

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Thursday, August 13, 2009

Have you seen this cat?

Link (via Reddit)

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Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Legion of Rock Stars - Mother [Video]

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Slap Chop "Rap Chop" [Video]

Monday, April 13, 2009

I Turn My Camera On [Video]

Friday, March 13, 2009

Elmo ad-lib with Ricky Gervais [Video]

Friday, February 20, 2009

Lawfirm Jones Day will sue you if you link to them

How lame is that? Who do these people think they are?

Link (via Ars Technica)

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Sunday, February 15, 2009

Dynamite Walls [Flickr]

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

What do newscasters do during commercial breaks? [Video]

I'll be damned. Who knew?

Link (thanks, Burt!)

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Monday, January 19, 2009

Papa John's: Desperate or brilliant?

Here's the text of an email I got from my brother. Papa John's either knows their customers extremely well, or has completely run out of promotional ideas:
This is funny. I got this in a pizza order confirmation. Give that special someone pizza for Valentine's day! What an awesome gift idea!

-----Original Message-----
From: []
Sent: Sunday, January 18, 2009 6:56 PM
To: xxx@yyy.zzz
Subject: Your Online Order has been Processed 55555555 / Delivery

Dear xxxxxxxx,

Thank you for placing your Papa John's pizza order via our Online Ordering service. Please find below, details of your order:

Give the Gift of Pizza this Valentine's Day!
Remember someone special with a Papa John's Gift Card. Available at participating restaurants. To order gift cards online, click the following URL or paste it into the address field in your browser.

Online Order Number: [55555555]
Order Type: [Delivery]
Delivery Time: [Approximately 30-40 minutes]

Papa John's Store #zzz

Total including tax = [$23.37]
Method of Payment = [Visa]

Thank you for choosing to order online with Papa John's pizza.

If you have any questions regarding your order, please call your local restaurant at (636)922-7272 and reference order number 55555555.

In the event that the restaurant has a question about your order, or requires confirmation before your order is prepared, we will attempt to contact you by telephone. If we are unable to reach you by telephone, you will receive an e-mail notification from a Papa John's Online Support Representative.

If you would like to speak with an Online Support Representative please contact us at 1-877-547-7272 and refer to Order #55555555.

Papa John's Online

2007 Papa John's International, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

**This email was sent to: xxx@yyy.zzz

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Tuesday, January 06, 2009

Announced at Macworld: The MacBook Wheel [Video]

Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Christmas break [Flickr]

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Hungry dog eats bean burrito in 1 second [Video]

Link (via Boing Boing)

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Thursday, December 18, 2008

UV filters can summon ghosts

I recently got my hands on Canon's new 5D Mark II, and it's a beauty. However, when testing low light video recording with a Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II lens, I noticed something interesting:

Note the "ghosted" image of the Christmas tree's lights as the camera pans right. This is caused by using a UV filter on the lens that isn't coated to reduce reflectivity.

Light is reflecting, presumably from the mirror/sensor, back at the inside of the UV filter. That light then bounces back at the sensor, creating the ghosted image.

Here's the same shot, but without the UV filter.

The ghosts are gone!

I suppose that this could happen with any lens, but that it's aggravated in this case by the fact that the outer lens surface on the 50mm is recessed, making it further away from the filter.

So what to do? The 1.8 is pretty fragile, and I don't like the idea of using it without some protection, be it from fingerprints, scratches or worse yet, a good crack.

B. Weiner on agrees, and recommends a good multi-coated UV filter. According to Mr. Weiner, "[m]ulticoating cuts down the reflection by a factor of greater than 10 relative to an uncoated filter."

So there you go. If you want to avoid ghosting when using a lens with a recessed outer lens element, you should spring an extra few dollars for a multi-coated UV filter.

As a side note, one point that I find interesting is that this normally would have taken me a very long time to notice, let alone correct. The reason that the ghosts are so apparent is because the camera shutter stays open while recording video. It is far less noticeable when taking still pictures, as the shutter doesn't need to stay open nearly as long, minimizing the effect of the reflections on the shot.

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Friday, December 05, 2008

Bush's economic recovery plan

What if Django Reinhardt wrote the Super Mario Bros. 2 soundtrack?

What if Django Reinhardt wrote the Super Mario Bros. 2 soundtrack, you ask? Well, sir, I'm glad you asked. I submit that it would sound a little like this:

Link (via Kotaku)

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Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Funk for your Tuesday [Video]

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

How to upgrade your Zune software from version 3.0 to 3.1 on your Windows Home Server

I have the Zune software installed on my Windows Home Server (WHS). Thanks to Derek's handy install guide, I was able to set up the wireless sync as well. It's nice because that machine is always available to sync with my Zune whenever I plug it in. The machine that I previously had set up with the device was on an aggressive sleep schedule, so it wasn't always there and up to date when the Zune wanted to connect.

Yesterday, Microsoft released version 3.1 of the Zune software. According to Zune Insider, the update contains numerous incremental improvements and a visual refresh to the Zune Social. Not all that mind blowing, to be sure, but I'm one of those obsessive-compulsive types that needs the latest version of the software. In this case, my eccentricity is your gain. I'll describe the process I followed to upgrade the software and my Zune while keeping my media library and settings intact.

One of the first problems you'll run into is the fact that the update will not install because the previous version is already installed. You'll need to uninstall the software to proceed. Unfortunately, you're also stuck in that department, as uninstalling the software via Add/Remove programs won't work because the uninstaller fails the Windows OS version check (the uninstaller won't work on Windows Server 2003).

What now? First, download the latest Zune setup package. Extract the contents of the package using the zip utility that Derek suggests called Universal Extractor. Extract the contents to a new sub-folder called zunesetuppkg-x86.

You will also want to extract the contents of the file Zune-x86.msi found in the zunesetuppkg-x86\packages folder. Extract it to a new subfolder called Zune-x86.

A quick note: If you are unable to uninstall the software using the latest version of the Zune package, you may need to download and extract the version of the software that you have. You can download version 3.0 from Microsoft. Update: It appears that this version may not work for the uninstall. If you're using version 3.0.532.0, try this.

Another quick note: You'll be doing all of this on your Windows Home Server. Use Remote Desktop to connect to the machine. Please keep in mind that you can do a lot of damage to your server here, so tread lightly. In fact, you might want to read through the process first. If any of it makes you feel uncomfortable, you should probably sit out on this one.

Still here?

OK, now you're ready to uninstall your Zune software.
  1. Navigate to zunesetuppkg-x86\packages.
  2. Right-click Zune-x86.msi and choose Uninstall. You won't get any feedback when the uninstall is done, but the shortcuts should disappear, along with any files in C:\Program Files\Zune.
  3. Optional: Stop the Zune Bus Enumerator service.
  4. Optional: Uninstall the Zune Bus Enumerator (you'll reinstall it soon). Open the Device Manager, find the Zune Bus Enumerator (it's a system device), right-click on it and choose Uninstall.
  5. Optional: Uninstall the Zune Bus Root Bus Enumerator. Open the Device Manager, find the Zune Bus Root Bus Enumerator (it's also system device), right-click on it and choose Uninstall.
Steps 3 through 5 are only necessary if you are using the wireless sync. If you're not, skip those steps. I'll also explain how to install it below.

Now, install the latest version of the Zune software.
  1. Navigate to zunesetuppkg-x86\packages.
  2. Right-click Zune-x86.msi and choose Install. Like the uninstall, you won't get any feedback, but you will see a shortcut for the Zune software appear on your desktop.
After installing the software, you'll also need to reinstall/update the Zune driver. Optionally, you'll also need to reinstall the Zune Bus Root Bus Enumerator and Zune Bus Enumerator for wireless sync support. Derek did a good job describing this bit, but I found that my experience strayed from his slightly. This is likely due to the configuration of Windows Home Server. I'll repeat the process here.

Install the Zune Bus Root Bus Enumerator (Optional)
  1. Open the Control Panel. Run the Add Hardware Wizard. Click Next to start the automatic scan.
  2. After the scan is complete, choose "Yes, I have already connected the hardware" and click Next.
  3. Scroll down to the bottom and choose "Add a new hardware device" and click Next.
  4. Choose "Install the hardware that I manually select from a list (Advanced)" and click Next.
  5. Choose "Show All Devices" and click Next.
  6. Finally, click Have Disk.
  7. Navigate to zunesetuppkg-x86\packages\Zune-x86\Zune\Drivers\ZuneBusEnum and select Zumbus.inf. Click Open, then OK.
  8. Select Zune Bus Root Bus Enumerator and then click Next to install. You'll probably see a security warning. Agree to it to install the driver.
Create/Update the Zune Bus Enumerator Service (Optional)
  1. If the Zune Bus Enumerator Service is already installed on your system, make sure that it is stopped.
  2. Copy ZuneBusEnum.exe from zunesetuppkg-x86\packages\Zune-x86 to C:\Windows\system32. If the file exists, overwrite it.
  3. If the Zune Bus Enumerator Service is already installed, skip to step 4. If not, you need to create it. To do that run the following command from the command line:

    sc create "Zune Bus Enumerator Service" "C:\Windows\system32\ZuneBusEnum.exe"

  4. Open the services console and edit the service properties of the Zune Bus Enumerator Service. One the General tab, make sure that the "Startup type" is Automatic. On the Logon tab, make sure that the service is set to log on as the Local System account. You shouldn't have to change any other settings.
  5. Start the Zune Bus Enumerator Service. You may need to refresh the services console to see the new service in the list.
Install the Zune Bus Enumerator driver (Optional)
  1. After starting the Zune Bus Enumerator Service, you may be prompted to install the driver. If not, open the Device Manager. You should see a device listed under "System devices" called something like "Unknown device." Right click on it and choose Install or Update Driver (I can't remember which).
  2. In the Hardware Update Wizard, choose "Install from a list or specific location (Advanced)" and click Next.
  3. Choose "Don't search. I will choose the driver to install" and click Next.
  4. Click Have Disk, then browse to the zunesetuppkg-x86\packages\Zune-x86\Zune\Drivers\ZuneBusEnum folder and select Zumbus.inf.
  5. Choose Zune Bus Enumerator and click Next.
  6. You be prompted with a security alert. Click Yes.
Install the Zune driver
  1. Connect your Zune. If Windows doesn't prompt you to install the device (mine didn't), open the Device Manager again. You should see the Zune listed with a yellow exclamation mark next to it. Right click on it and choose Update Driver.
  2. In the Hardware Update Wizard, choose "Install from a list or specific location (Advanced)" and click Next.
  3. Choose "Search for the best driver in these locations." Uncheck the box next to "Search removable media (floppy, CD-ROM...)" and check the box next to "Include this location in the search." Browse to the Zune driver in zunesetuppkg-x86\packages\Zune-x86\Zune\Drivers\Zune. Click Next.
  4. You be prompted with a security alert. Click Yes.
  5. Your Zune should then immediately connect with your computer and Zune software. Your Zune software should prompt you to upgrade your device to the latest firmware. Agree and you'll upgrade your Zune.
Upon connecting your Zune wirelessly for the first time, you will likely need to install the Zune Wireless driver. The process to do this is exactly the same as installing the Zune driver via USB. Simply repeat the steps outlined immediately above to connect.

Assuming everything went to plan, your Zune software and Zune should be updated to the latest version, leaving your library and settings intact. To check the software version, go to Settings > Software > General > Information and click the About Zune button. The software version should be 3.1.620.0 or greater.

Hopefully this has been helpful to you. It's kind of a pain to do this, so hopefully Microsoft won't be releasing updates too often. As much as I'd like to see new features, I probably won't enjoy doing this after the third or fourth time.

Good luck!

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Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Enjoy your pancakes! [Video]

Is it possible that we didn't give Lenny enough credit?


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Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger [Video]

Now more than ever.

Oh, and give it a minute or two to warm up.


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