Sony's PS3 is a energy-sucking hog

06/06/08 | by Adam | Categories: Technology


Well, I guess it doesn't qualify as a EnergyStar compliant device. The article being referenced all over the place (Gizmodo, Gizmodo UK, Wired) is that a Sony PS3 running 24/7 software (like Folding@Home) will chew up as much energy as five fridges over the course of a year. Gizmodo comments that this means you're effectively donating about $250USD to outfits like Folding@Home a year. The energy consumption for when in use isn't too surprising; what is that even when idle, it's almost as much. At least when it's off in standby mode, it's not that bad.

Take a look at the chart; it makes for some interesting reading.

(Earlier related post here.)


Privacy and Facebook

06/05/08 | by Adam | Categories: Technology


Out in Ontario, some students are suing Facebook for privacy infringement. The (non-legal) synopsis of the argument is that Facebook is granting full access to private and protected information to third parties without permission.

Full story »


Skewed views of relationships

06/04/08 | by Adam | Categories: Whining


The link is to a tongue-in-cheek Gizmodo post about one of their writers throwing away DVD packaging on the request of his wife. Nothing too special there; what is interesting is in the pages upon pages of responses in the comments section.

Those are indeed some seriously worrying individuals...


Article writing 101

06/03/08 | by Adam | Categories: Technology


Bad BBC. If you're going to have a headline reading:

Web users 'getting more selfish'

and a lede that reads:

Web users are getting more ruthless and selfish when they go online, reveals research

it would probably make sense to actually include the quoted phrase in the article. Go look at the link and see if you can find it; I couldn't. The headline and lede are pretty negative choices of words, especially given how the article itself is quite non-controversial. It's about the fairly obvious conclusion that most web-surfers object to having their time wasted with unnecessary bumpf:

Instead of dawdling on websites many users want simply to reach a site quickly, complete a task and leave.
Web users were also getting very frustrated with all the extras, such as widgets and applications, being added to sites to make them more friendly.


Well, darn it... Again.

06/02/08 | by Adam | Categories: Music


Another day, another duplicated Amazon purchase.

So, who knew that there'd be two CDs with entirely different names and cover art but with exactly the same track listing? This time it's The Damned taking the non-obvious duplication prize with "It's Alright Jack And The Beanstalk" and "Not Of This Earth." Wikipedia, font of all true knowledge (so long as it's not controversial) has the low-down.



The Vacuous "Good Person" Test

06/02/08 | by Nimble | Categories: Distractions, Religion

On a website registered to Lehigh Valley Baptist Church, the "Good Person Test" is a textbook example of that particular kind of monochromatic religious reasoning that just falls down under light dissection. It aims to gently but firmly pinch you by the nose and lead you down a path to a conclusion by following steps a little past the reasonable so that, by swallowing the story in smaller chunks, you might think that the conclusion, in retrospect, was inescapable.

Perhaps people taking the test might mistake their uneasiness at each question for guilt. It's not guilt. It's that same feeling you get when your bus driver has gone off-route, and you are wondering whether they know what they're doing. That's the human cheat-detection apparatus registering a mild alert.

Let's see what's in store for us, shall we?

Full story »


Plugless ZEV

06/01/08 | by Adam | Categories: Technology


Unless the designer is using significantly different battery technology, this design for a plugless zero emissions vehicle isn't terribly clever (pace Engadget's headline); anything the size of the batteries in the picture is going to be horrifically heavy and unmanageable for most people.

Back to the drawingboard, guys.


The death of the gaming desktop PC

05/31/08 | by Adam | Categories: Technology, Games


A discussion similar to the one linked to over a Gizmodo came up the other day while at a gaming session with some friends. After spending thousands of dollars on killer hardware and hundreds of hours on installation, configuration, patching and troubleshooting, we came to the conclusion that, basically, the gaming desktop had no future. It's not going to be replaced by an uber-laptop, but by the games console.

Full story »


Bluetooth speakers

05/30/08 | by Adam | Categories: Technology


Well, it appears that Logitech gets it. I do wonder when other vendors will start to implement A2DP on their Bluetooth-capable devices.

05/28/08 | by Adam | Categories: Potpourri


Etsy is sort of like an Amazon marketplace for the arts and crafts crowd. Specializing in homemade goods Etsy acts as the store front for the individuals who create all sorts of interesting items, most of which are unique. The clean front end makes for a nifty browsing experience. Etsy very sensibly allows users to create a favourites list so that friends and loved ones looking for interesting gifts can find something wanted come birthday, Christmas, Valentine's or some Hallmark-holiday time. As usual, payment is pretty much limited to PayPal but as that service works well it's not really an issue.

Full story »


On Airline Surcharges

05/27/08 | by Adam | Categories: Whining


The link is to a Wall Street Journal piece about American Airlines imposing charges on checked luggage (via Political Animal.) It's a companion piece -- at least in spirit -- to one referenced earlier here which approached the fuel cost issue from the other side: efficiency.

Full story »



05/27/08 | by Nimble | Categories: Distractions, Gardening, Gardening

Our new place has a much bigger garden than our previous townhouse.

It did not sink in how much more so until we brought some of our precious plants from the townhouse to the new garden. The chunk of garden at the top of the yard held what was already there, what we brought (minus what we put in the front garden, which was a definite minority), plus other things we bought.

We are in a neighbourhood with a complement of wandering rabbits, so the first thing we were worried about is... what can we put out there without the rabbits eating it? We decided to use this list as a guide, but of course, nothing is totally rabbit-proof. We figure that we will put plants out there as per the guide, as per what's already out there, and whatever we have a lot of that we are willing to risk putting in the front garden.

As it stood, when a rabbit came hopping up to our freshly-planted front garden, it nibbled a dandelion (!), a weedy sedum-looking thing, and then proceeded to just stretch and chill out on the lawn.

Full story »


Next 419 Scam: Death Threats?

05/26/08 | by Nimble | Categories: Announcements [A], Internet, Spamming

Not content with letting me in on my European lottery winnings, or being a company representative, or helping ousted generals smuggle their money out of foreign countries, they have now outdone themselves with THE DEATH THREAT.

Full text and very slightly blanked out headers below the fold. Looks like there are a few reports like this with drop boxes pointing at gmail, and the source servers also seem to be in Google. That would seem to be gmail, but gmail itself wouldn't be allowing them to change the return-path: and from:, would it?

Ballsy asses, these folks, aren't they?

Full story »


Google Earth Sightseeing

05/26/08 | by Adam | Categories: Technology


For whatever reason, I love maps. Google Earth takes that and raises it few more notches. While browsing around I came across "Google Sightseeing" which is a site dedicated to interesting entries visible via the Google world.

Definitely worth blowing a few hours on this one.


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