As you can see, I am experimenting (out of curiosity) with placing ads on this blog. Please let me know what you think. I can always move, resize, recolor, fully remove, etc. the ads, so I would like to know what you think.


Strip Poker

Bet you didn't know there is a real strip poker tournament scheduled for next month in Ireland. Explanation: April Fool's Joke that took on a life of its own.

Source Article


Interesting class of software products.

Vehicle Laws #2

In this edition, Kiwis are registering their cars as "non-commercial hearses" in order to pay less in registration fees. Justification? They use them to transport dead chickens from the grocery store. No, I'm not kidding.

Vehicle Laws #1

In this edition, Belgians are buying used parking tickets, which, as far as I can tell from the article, would be more recognizable to the American mind as parking vouchers, in order to get out of fines imposed for illegal parking. Kicker: the site which facilitates this scam, Continental Computer Company, maintains that they are doing nothing wrong. After all, all they are doing is catering to that segment of the population that collects used parking tickets - just like all those people who collect stamps. :-)

Bog Snorkeling

Come on, you know you want to try it. :-)

Yellow Card, Red Card

Bars in New Zealand have borrowed the Yellow Card, Red Card system from soccer and bent it to their own purposes. Patrons who have had a bit too much are shown a Yellow Card which precludes them being served more alcohol without first sobering up a bit. A Red Card is shown to a patron who must leave the premises. Kicker: the Red Cards can be redeemed on a future visit for a free drink.

Source article

Morgellons Disease

Article about a somewhat freaky disease involving X-Files like symptoms.

Nebraska's Sand Hills

Short article on how they formed.

Darn Smurfs

Smurfs steal trampoline.

Elastic Loaves

While I generally appreciate attempts to preserve cultural heritage, reason does have its limits sometimes: Iran has decided that some 2,000 foreign words are no longer to be used. Among them, "pizza", which will now be referred to as "elastic loaf".

Source article

Wal-mart Retreats

About 2 months after selling its stores in South Korea, Wal-mart has pulled out of Germany, losing $1 billion in the process.

New Type of Volcano Discovered

Read all about it.

The Speed of Sight

There is an interesting article regarding how quickly visual information is transferred from the eyes to the brain. It includes a hypothesis that there is a two-tiered system of nerves - the brisk and sluggish nerve pathways that both transfer information, but at different speeds. The sluggish nerves transfer standard information, while the brisk nerves transfer information regarding danger much more quickly. The explanation for the sluggish pathway is that the brisk pathways consumes much more energy, while the sluggish consumes less and doesn't need to be any faster. The study appears to lack an explanation of how the retina would "know" what information to pass down each pathway. This would appear to require that the retina be "smart" and push some cognitive ability out to it, much the way some such "decision making" is said to reside in the spinal cord.

Source article

Fence Sign

For 31 years, a woman in Britain has had a sign hanging on her fence reading "Our dogs are fed on Jehovah's Witnesses." The police, citing a recent complaint, have asked her to remove it.

Source article

Cool New Spacesuits

ILC Dover LP, the company that manufactures spacesuits for NASA, is working on a spacesuit that would be able to heal punctures 2mm wide and smaller, alert the astronaut of holes larger than that, kill off bacteria automatically by slowly releasing silver ions, generate its own power by means of solar cells sewn directly onto the out layer of the suit, and block radiation using a polyethylene layer containing hydrogen. The company is still experimenting with exactly which of a number of options for materials they are going to use, but, in principle, they've already got all the things mentioned above working.

Source article

Merry-Go_Round of Terror

They thought it would be a good idea to spin the merry-go-round using a motorcycle engine. Even though you can probably guess what happens next, you will still get a kick out of the video.

(Guess who sent me this :-))


Washington DC is installing rubber sidewalks.

Source article

Hotel Rooms

There are more hotel rooms in Orlando than in India.


(Thanks to Alex for this one)

Waterproof Paper

In what sounds like another version of "This is How the 3M Post-It Note Got Invented", here is a video report on how one scientist discovered how to make waterproof paper. (By the way, 3M is a really cool company, in case you were wondering :-))

There is too much oil to go around?

Apparently, there is an overabundance of natural gas, heating oil, and kerosene worldwide. There is so much, in fact, that companies are having to get creative with where to store it all, sending much cargo to Western Africa until it is needed.

Source article

The World's Longest Joint

While attempting to roll their way into the record books by "crafting" a 1.12 meter long joint, a bunch of Frenchmen have found themselves under arrest. After a few minutes of research, which including Guiness World Records, Google, Wikipedia, and, of course, the Ganjapedia, I was unable to find official documentation on the current record for the world's longest joint. Maybe you'll have more luck ;-)

Source article is a website devoted to the music of old school video games. You can listen to music, post on a forum, and look up information such as the composer. C|net also has a handy video about it.

How animals slow the spread of disease

This article explains how gray squirrels apparently help limit the outbreaks of Lyme disease as well as why herders try to keep cattle herds in between mosquito breeding grounds and human settlements.


Ever wonder why elephants don't go up hill? (Admit it, you didn't even know that elephants don't go uphill). Well, here's the answer.

USB IM Buddy

For all of you who use IM, you have to see the Availabot. I think it betrays just how much of a geek I am that I like this. I hope it becomes available for GoogleTalk and/or Live Messenger soon.

Assassins in London

London seems to be the latest city to succumb to a massive game of Assassins. Needless to say, this doesn't make law enforcement very happy - suddenly half the city is trying to sneak around carrying things that look like real guns.

Source article

Google Maps Mobile Upgrade

Google Maps Mobile (for cell phones) now includes traffic information similar to that found on I don't know whether this functionality will eventually be ported over to the regular Google Maps tool.

New Visitor

Welcome to the first visitor from Germany!

Soda Tax

Here is a brief, interesting article originally from the Denver Post but reproduced by the Tax Foundation on the issue of Soda Tax.

An unusual gemstone in one of Tutankhamun's necklaces has apparently been determined to be glass that is older than the earliest Egyptian civilization. This discovery led to the discovery of glass chunks scattered across a remote region of the Sahara desert. The glass was formed at a temperature so hot that only a meteor impact could have caused it. There were no traces of an impact site, though. Thus, scientists have come to the conclusion that there was a Tunguska Event-esque above Ancient Egypt that formed the glass. Others have found evidence of a similar, yet more powerful, airburst above southeast Asia 800,000 years ago.

Source article.

Online Lemmings

Because we all don't have enough things to distract us while we are sitting at our computers at work, there is now an online DHTML version of Lemmings, written completely in Javascript. Check it out :-)

The End of Monopoly Cash

I can't even begin to list all of the cultural woes of which this is a symptom, much less the things that we, as a society, will lose as a result. . . . . ;-)

Almost anything can be reduced to numbers

An English mathematician has worked out an equation with which one can predict how long it will take children in a car to begin asking the question "Are we there yet?" The source article has a number of ambiguities in it that are somewhat perplexing. For more, see the comments below the article.

Dune and Star Wars

This is an interesting comparison and discussion of Star Wars and Dune (both in terms of storylines and movies).

Nicotine and Cancer

Scientists identify reason nicotine accelerates the spread of cancer. Apparently, the fact that nicotine accelerates the spread of cancer has been known for sometime . . . . just not to me ;-)

Source article

Battery Powered Airplane

It weighs 97 lbs., has a wingspan of 31 meters, flew 1283 ft. in 1 minute carrying a 99 lb. pilot, and is powered by 160 AA batteries.

Source article

New Visitors

Welcome to the first visitors from Canada and Unknown.

Another School Story

I don't really feel like summarizing this one - read it for yourself ;-)

And you think that your local school system is bad . . .

You really can't make this stuff up:

The headmaster of a school in China secretly (by which I mean "in a somewhat shady manner") sold a 1,000 tree arboretum surrounding the school. In an attempt to buy-off the teachers, who he feared would publicize his actions, he brought in two dogs and promised that the teachers would be treated to a dog-meat lunch. (Sidenote: notice how dog meat lunch is supposed to be a valuable bribe in China) After killing the dogs and, presumably, dressing them, the schoolmaster witnessed his brilliant plan go awry when the dog meat stopped happily baking in the oven, and presumably, stewing in its own juices, and instead burst into flames. The resulting fire destroyed 10 classrooms along with all computers, televisions, and other equipment contained therein.

Source article.


Pandora is an outgrowth of the Music Genome Project. Pandora allows you to supply information about the music you like and it then streams you a constant flow of music that is similar to your preferences based on their mapping of the "Music Genome".

Online News Shelf-life

News on the Internet apparently stays fresh for about 36 hours, longer than had been anticipated.

Source article.

This Vicious Cycle Brought to You by the UK

  • Humans don't want babies.
  • Human women take the pill. . . . a lot.
  • Chemicals from all those enter the sewage systems after being discharged.
  • Water treatment facilities are not designed to remove excess estrogen from waste water.
  • Excess estrogen finds its way into the water supply, including streams and rivers.
  • Excess estrogen rises to such levels in the water system that "fish are swimming in a soup of estrogen-like compounds.
  • Male fish begin developing female characteristics and organs.
  • Male fish begin producing eggs.
  • The proportion of male to female fish begins threatening the viability of the gene pool.
  • All that is an aside, however. Back to the cycle!
  • Humans consume water from the water system, thereby drinking a soup of estrogen-like compounds.
  • Human men begin having severely lower sperm counts.
  • 1 in 6 human couples have trouble conceiving, i.e., when they want to.
  • Probable solution: take more pills - just different ones this time.

Source Article

Illegal . . . .Numbers?

Did you know that certain numbers are actually illegal? :-) No, seriously, read this.

It's Weather is a mashup of the Google Maps API and local radar maps. It also allows you to overlay StormTrack dots that indicate the location and severity of independent storms. Note that the "Find Address" functionality only works if you enter a complete street address. Also, the tool has loading issues where it will not completely refresh the screen when you move from one location to another or shift from one view to another. Hopefully, they'll fix these issues soon.

More Space Junk

Piers Sellers, a British astronaut currently in space, dropped one of six spatulas contained in his toolkit into space while working on a space walk. As a joke, the mission controllers made him count his remaining spatulas before allowing him back on board the shuttle. The stray spatula is now orbiting the earth once every 90 minutes at a speed 25x that of sound, and is being monitored by 20 sites around the world.

New Visitors

Welcome to the first visitors from the United Kingdom and India!

Top 11 Reasons Americans Don't Watch the World Cup

Another installment of BBspot's Top Eleven Lists.

The Things Anthony Finds . . . . . .

Anthony found this FAQ on fire eating and fire breathing. "How?" you may ask. I don't know. I don't think I want to know.

The Growing Tower of Paris

Because steel expands when it gets hot, the Eiffel Tower is six inches taller in the summer than in the winter.

Real Estate Prices

It's bad enough when I hear prices for houses that are significantly cheaper than around here. This, though, just adds insult to injury. On the other hand, it is really cool that it worked :-).

N.M. Power Outage

A power outage that blacked out about 2,000 customers in Las Cruces is being blamed on the combination of a snake and a bird.

Full Story.

Video of 2 NWA Planes Colliding on the Runway

The video is that of a news story and is thus self-explanatory.

Mmmmmmmmm . . . . Root Beer

Anthony's Root Beer Barrel has reviews and ratings of 321 different root beers. In case you're interested.

Endangered Animals

Animal Info has a list of some of the most badly endangered animals in the world, complete with figures on the remaining number of individuals in the species, as well as photographs.

Yummy Time

Scottish National Anthem

It seems that the people of Scotland have chosen a national anthem: "The Flower of Scotland". Here is a fairly good article on the subject of how it was chosen. Go to the Royal Scottish National Orchestra for recordings of "The Flower of Scotland" as well as other contenders.