Advanced 3G Mobile Phone Format

A Japanese newspaper reported today that DoCoMo and 25 other leading wireless carriers and telecoms equipment makers have agreed to develop an advanced mobile phone standard, called "Super 3G," capable of sending high-resolution video in an instant.

"[The] transmission speeds will be more than 10 times as fast as the current third-generation (3G) service, [and it] could be launched as early as 2009."

Wouldn't we be using 4G phones by then? An if it starts in 2009, it will take well after 2010++ for people like us, outside Japan, to get our hands on such technology. Well, at least we know that something new is being developed.

via: Engadget

also: today's extra link: Japan plans to start pilot program, giving away free PDA at Narita Airport in February and March next year. More reason to visit Japan, lol :P

Weblogs Aid Disaster Recovery

BBC: "Some of the most vivid descriptions of the devastation in southern Asia are on the internet - in the form of web logs or blogs." (link to actual blog in the news)

Btw, "Tsunami death toll tops 116,000" already... and I gave it a thought about who holds the official number count. I believe each country's government has its own number and the journalists get the overall number by adding those indiviual country's numbers together.

The best video I've seen so far (about what happened in Thailand, Phi Phi island) was aired on iTV Thailand. (archive of it can be found here (click on the first item, dated "2[ 2004-12-30 ]", 256k or 56k depending on your connection) the actual amatour full vid is around an hour into the clip. The thing I like about the clip is that it shows what happen beforehand throughout till the actual cameraman went underwater (FYI, he actaually survived.) It was really bad on Phi Phi because it is an island and the waves actually went into it more than one direction. And now, just like that; one of the most, if not the most, beautiful islands in Thailand is gone. >.< (update: the vid is down right now, or is it just me on slow connection?)

The New Year is coming and I don't think I want to end this year with the sad news... well, at least there's podcast article update :P

BBC: Podcasts bring DIY radio to the web

via: live.curry.com and Scripting News

p.s. speaking about "live.curry.com", I believe Adam Curry is moving his website for good to just "curry.com," and he asks people to update his RSS/podcast feed also.

update: I found a number of great pics via Flickr blog (also I just want to spread out the word for the "Missing Persons" group.)

update2: Google links to places you can donate.


More Trojan for Symbian OS

Be (more) careful of what you install to your Series60 cellphone... MGDropper, also being called "METAL Gear.a," is a new trojan disguised as Metal Gear Solid game.

"The way the trojan works is that when the "METAL Gear.sis" file is installed on the mobile, the virus disables specified anti-virus software on the phone, as well as all file explorers and various other applications. It then installs Cabir.G, a variant of the Skulls Trojan. Once Cabir.G has infected the phone, it uses Bluetooth to look for other phones to infect. When a suitable phone is found, the virus sends it a file called SEXXXY.sis. If the target user accepts the file, the virus will diable the "select" button on that mobile."

More news via Engadget:

- Networx introduces "BeamDock" for iPod - $160 100-foot range digital wireless audio transmission device.

- $5 Flirting Dictionary for Cellphones: 600 of the best come-on phrases in several languages.

- Having a hard time choosing friuts in a supermarket? RipeSense sensor can help you; well, at least in NZ for now.

iPodLinux Project

What happens when you put the best mp3 player and the (arguably) best OS together? how about "iPodLinux" Project? ;)

(well, imho, it's not the killer app to have on your iPod yet but everything looks great so far... You sure want to give it a try if you have an old-unusd iPod lying around. Btw, "Fourth generation iPods including the click wheel, mini, U2, and Photo are NOT currently supported.")

update: Hack a Day picked this up and made a (short) how-to on it to record stuffs on iPod for free.

more news update:
- Reuters: Tsunami Dead as Toll Hits 68,000. (Adam Curry asks, "Who holds the 'official' count?")

- A very interesting site, Newseum.org: 356 newspaper front pages from 42 countries presented alphabetically.

- Podcast Article update: The Boston Phoenix: Feed your head

via: live.curry.com and Scripting News

ps. I visited apple.com today and they are doing public service work, having their full front page linking to different organizations for the tsunamis donation.


Security News

More news via Leoville:

- More “highly critical” Windows flaws found by XFocus Team. The flaws allow untrusted sites/emails to execute malicious code on your PC and reboot your system with a malformed .ANI file. There is no patch yet so the only fix for now, which should already be common sense especially for Windows users, is to stay away from untrusted sites and email.

- Yahoo plans to add real time traffic reports to its Yahoo Maps. Yay! The only thing we need now is easy access, somehow, on the road.

- For those that don't know, for a while now cars have electronic devices that monitor acceleration and braking to save fuel and improve safety (similar to airplanes' "blackbox".) Questionably, the information recorded can also be used in court to convict reckless drivers.

- An update for my last post on a parent putting his children's Christmas present(Nintendo DS) on eBay auction. Golden Palace Casino has bought it for $5,300 (the same place which bought the "Virgin Mary grilled cheese sandwich." Sure there's no such thing as bad/stupid publicity.

- Microsoft will comply immediately with the European Commission’s decision forcing the company to unbundle Windows Media Player from Windows.

- Security experts said that the Symbian cell phones' Skulls trojan is just the beginning. Smart phones are more vulnerable to worms because they’re always online and generally have weak security features.

- "Firefox Ad Boosts Downloads: This weekend we broke 200,000 downloads on both Saturday and Sunday... and we've seen over half a million downloads for Monday and Tuesday."

People testing new cell phone with 911

It seems that a lot of people were getting cell phones as Christmas presents; and a lot of them in the US were stupid enough to dial "911" just to test out their new phone, just because it's the first number that came to their mind.

" 'Our phones start exploding with hang-ups (on Christmas),' said CHP Sgt... 'The operator says, 'You've reached the CHP, and what is your emergency?' Then 'click.' Or they'll say, 'I'm just testing out my cell phone.' "

via: Engadget

also: today extra links:
- Fortune has an interesting article on business blogging.
- Looking at iTunes Music Store backend through their patent


After X'mas Catch Up

Sorry I haven't been updating my blog lately, I'm all behind on a lot of my daily readings lol... anyways, sorry that the news are going to be in big chunks. I think it'll have to be like this till I'm off my vacation...

- Good news first; it's after X'mas and I hope everyone had a good time. I hear that many of you were lucky enough to wake up to a while Chirstmas. It's only a dream if you live no where near snow, like me.

- Now to the bad news; "Most Powerful Quake in 40 Years Triggers Death and Destruction" (More links)

- iPod is arguably the best mp3 player in the market, but surely there are room for improvements. Dave Winer starts his "first [post] of a series of posts about things that are wrong with iPods"

- There's a way to speed up FireFox(?); well at least for broadband connection.

- "New battery lasts nearly twice as long...[and it] will cost [only] about 10 percent more than regular, alkaline batteries"

via: live.curry.com and Scripting News

update: CNN reports on increase death toll over the quake/tsunamis, and still counting...

Here and There News from Engadget

- Want a romantic [new and interesting] way to propose your special lady? "...some dude in Norway...asked his girlfriend to marry him by way of an engraving on the back of a 20GB iPod (she said yes)..."

- Napsters is planing to offer all-you-can download monthly subscription plan because they believe that people wouldn't want to spend $10,000 for 10,000 songs in their mp3(/wma) player. (how about filling it with some podcasts also? :P )

- Engadget got some stupid hoax email... they should at least change the country name :rolleyes:

- Bad children get their presents put on eBay auctions

- Korean Information Security Agency: Mobile spam (unsolicted commercial text messages) outpaced complaints about regular email spam by margin of 3 to 1 in Korea. (Problem with mobile spam is growing pretty big in Asia, hopefully it won't come to the US anytime soon)


Adam Curry's Podcast Setup

Just a short article update:
The World: Adam Curry podcasting report

plus diagram of Adam Curry's podcast setup, made by Tim Joransen. (direct link to pic)

via: live.curry.com


How-to: Get Videos/DVDs to PSP

A good how-to to keep in mind from Engadget, till we all get a hold of the PSP... which is... yea, still awhile unless you are in Japan or thinking about spending a large chunk of change to import.

update: interestingly "Sorny PSP" is sold on eBay...
"Note: This Sorny PSP is hand made out of a black cardboard box and the photo has been modified. Bid with confidence!"
lmao... (I wonder what's the highest bidder is going to really do)

Times UK Article

Times Online - Britain: For listeners with no time, the radio show that records itself

"Simon Nelson, the executive behind the new service, said: 'We want people to listen to radio programmes when they want, where they want. So far, we’ve been very surprised by the interest that listeners have shown in what is a highly intelligent radio programme'... Despite the infancy of the technology, the BBC is keen to press ahead. More programmes will be podcast early next year..."

via: live.curry.com

link back: previous post on BBC podcast success.

Bye Bye Suprnova

I wasn't surprised when I tried to show someone Suprnova.org yesterday but I couldn't get to it. Appearantly the site is "closing down for good." The most popular BitTorrent tracker site has shut down less than a week after The MPAA (Motion Picture Association of America) announced lawsuits against operators of such internet servers.

"'We are very sorry for this, but there was no other way, we have tried everything,' the statement said... Another site that carried BitTorrent links, N4p.com, said it had shut down due to a civil complaint that cited the Digital Millennium Copyright Act. Torrentbits.org and Phoenix-torrents.com also shut down."

This is big. Sure, we saw this coming but this is too quick. After only a week something as big as Suprnova is gone. It's not that I support the idea of illegal file-sharing (I never download those movies on there anyway, since the files were so big that's it's a lot easier to just go to the theater, or rent the DVD, and watch it myself in a lot better quality) but Suprnova and other BitTorrent sites are a lot more than illegal file-sharing servers. There were a lot of great contents that you can't find it anywhere else... and now we are taking a (big) step backward just because everything has to be shut down altogether.

via: Scripting News
pic from: J!NX

update: great rant on Boing Boing


Sign Away Your Soul

To prove that people will sign anything without actually reading, a video store has added a prank message on halloween day. By looking at the whole receipt, I would actually sign it too..lol... When was the last time you read the whole slip before signing? It's too common these day and there's pressure of people in long line behind you making you to sign it quickly without reading.

I even know people who don't even look at the costs of things before signing to pay for something. >.<

via: Boing Boing

Drinking Mug/Cup Design

Isn't this mug/cup design interesting? Too bad, from people's comments, it doesn't work that well: "...not enough tea capacity and the biscuit compartment is too limiting."

Well, at least it makes me think about the hot coffee and warm chocolate chip cookies that it could have created... Dang, I really hate it when interesting ideas fail.

via: Boing Boing

Coke Machine Hacks

Do you know that there's a code that you can enter to get into coke machines' secret menu(s)? (well, not all machines but some, especially the new ones according to sources.)

Coke Machine Hacks

And no you can't really get free drink from it, unless this other hack is true (but this one isn't really about the secret menu.)

via: Boing Boing

Great PSP Hands-On Review

Engadget has posted a great detailed PSP hands-on review, commenting on everything including its box, battery life, memory, and the unit vs. other media devices; with lots of nice pics. You should check it out if you are planing to buy one when it comes out (elsewhere than Japan) sometime next year.

Self-heating Beverage Can

What's better than Starbucks? How about Starbucks that's always stays hot? ...Well, at least for now it's only at Wolfgang Puck (in the US).

"Beginning Jan. 2, consumers can buy a 10-ounce container of Wolfgang Puck gourmet latte at the store and heat it by pressing a button. No electricity. No batteries. No appliances... How does the can do it? A single step mixes calcium oxide (quicklime) and water. It heats the coffee to 145 degrees in six minutes — and stays hot for 30 minutes."

via: Engadget

update: the pic you see is from Nescafé, by Nestlé in Europe; the similar technology have also been tested it in Asia; and with the news, the idea just came to the US--actually rather late.

Google Desktop Search Security Hole

"Researchers at Rice University have discovered... a flaw in the beta version of Google's Desktop Search product that could allow third parties to access users' search result summaries, providing a sneak peek at part of the content of personal files... The researchers labelled the glitch as "serious"...

Google was notified of the flaw and has fixed it in an update that is currently being rolled out through an auto-update feature, the company said Monday."

Make sure that your desktop search tool is up-to-date. This is the reason why I never like the idea of having everything indexed, especially personal info. It's likely that there's always holes in program and it's just a matter of time for people to find those holes.

via: Scripting News

Podcasting Article in Boston Globe

More article added to the list, this one has quite a number of mistakes.

The Boston Globe: Computer, microphone, iPod make broadcasting personal

Corrections by Steve Garfield and Dave Winer

via: Scripting News


BBC Podcast is a Success

Digital-Lifestyles.info: Podcasting Primed, BBC Radio MP3 download success

"Not only is [the BBC Radio 4 show] downloadable, but it's also available as a Podcast... [T]he BBC had over 100,000 hits on their Podcast file for "In Our Time."

via: Scripting News

update: more link for podcast:
An update from "the Prince of the Pod"[Adam Curry] himself that Fortune magazine is doing a piece on Podcasting.

update2: Grampa's Podcast illustration from The Joy of Tech

TIME Person of the Year 2004

George W. Bush is named TIME Person of the Year. >.<

Steve Jobs (CEO of Apple Computer & Pixar) is also named one of the People Who Mattered 2004. :)

via: Scripting News



"Love is the big booming beat which covers up the noise of hate."
-Margaret Cho

via: live.curry.com

I'm going to be on vacation till the New Year. I'm not sure how much I will be able to update the page but I would guess I will have access to it once in a while, only I won't have time to read all the news on different sites.

Happy Holidays, Everybody! :P

update: more great quotes on love


How-To: Get podcasts and videos on (Win)Smartphones

Another great how-to by Phil Torrone. It's pretty much the same as "broadsnatching" but this time everything is sync-ed to Windows Mobile Smartphones so that you can view/listen to it on-the-go and not having to view it on computer or having to buy a portable media player.

You can find a video sample of the result here.

Robot with Gene Chromosomes

"A Korean scientist has created a robot that he claims can bequeath its “genes” to other robots... [It] has 14 artificial chromosomes that can be passed on to offspring, creating new robots with unique personalities."

What's the point in this?? We are really getting closer and closer to the time when robots can survive by themselves, having their own genes that can be passed on instead of relying on human's design. Am I alone here? cuz I really don't see why robots need to have genes. Robot, as far as I know, is what we(as human) want it to be; so shouldn't the "personalities" be something that we can control instead of relying on luck in "mating"?

via: Engadget

Apple & Motorola partnership on cellphone

More true rumor of Apple (after the iPod Photo and the U2 iPod), looks like there will be some kind of cellphone that's going to be developed by both Apple and Moto after all. I can't wait for more information being announce at MacWorld Expo this coming January.

via: Engadget

The Most Hated Advertising Techniques on Internet

Interesting study, especially for those who run websites. Lately I saw a lot of flashy sites and, really, people prefer to have things in a simple way (why do you think people are abandaning the "powerful" IE and use something simple like Firefox instead). Unless there's a specific need for you to have stuffs flashing, flying everywhere; concentrate on your content which is the reason why people visit your site at the first place.

via: Boing Boing

Bush Wants to Shutdown GPS to Fight Terrorists

President Bush has plan to shutdown GPS system to fight terrorists in case of "an emergency" so that terrorists won't be able to navigate.

What about us? GPS today is used by a lot of people and I don't think shutting things down is the right way to fix things (and how do you know it's not gonna cause more problems instead of fixing it?) Anyway, prepare to be lost (in car, boat, wherever) especially when there's an emergency :rolleyes:

via: Slashdot

update: more link
via: Engadget

1TB Webmail

Gmail 1GB storage isn't enough for you? how about 1TB? (TB as in "TeraByte;" that's 1,024GB)

Hellacious Riders (too bad I'm not a motorcycle enthusiast)

via: Geek News Central

NASA Joins Podcast Trend

Science@NASA now has podcast feed for their stories. The website is here, or you can directly subscribe here: RSS

via: live.curry.com

update: Tony Blair (UK Prime Minister) also has his podcast, if you like politics
via: Scripting News


Two-page Firefox ad on NY Times

Finally the Firefox ad is going to be out on tomorrow (12/16) edition of the New York Times. For those that missed the news, a few months ago Mozilla Foundation has asked people for donations, and in return they will put people's names (10,000 names) on a full newspaper page ad. It was so successful that the ad is now going to be on 2 full pages.

more info here (with pic and hi-res pdf file, which I believe it's going to be emailed to all donors)

(looking back, I should have donated some money... lol :D At that time, I was just started using Firefox so I didn't become one of its big fans until a little bit after the campaign closes >.<)

Yahoo! Video Search Beta

Yahoo! has launched a Beta Video Search engine. John Battelle said that he's "under embargo on this information... [but he will] write about this on Thursday" so I guess we will have to wait a little more for more info about it. Meanwhile Yahoo! asks the users to submit opinions for what people think about the engine and how to improve it. I tried out a few keywords and the library seems to be rather small. (or maybe it's me who uses all the wrong keywords)

2004 Weblog Awards Results

The voting for 2004 Weblog Awards has closed and the official results are out. Check out the winning sites if you want to see great examples of blogs in wide variety of topics. Congrats to Engadget which wins the Best Tech Blog catagory.

I've been looking around and I got to say I love the sites in the Best Photo Blog catagory, especially the winner.

NDS follows PSP with music & video functionality

Nintendo announced its plan to add music and video playback to Nintendo DS. They will sell an adapter that will accept some type of memory card which will allow NDS to play MP3 and MPEG-4 video files, similar to PSP and its UMD(Universal Media Disc.) The adaptor will sell for around $50.

via: Engadget

Some nice pics

Some nice pics of SpaceShipOne... (yub, I know it's old news... but I just stumbled across them and think a few of those are great for wallpapers)

Also a funny pic via Scripting News.

FCC to Allow Wireless Access on Planes

"The FCC has unanimously voted to allow wireless internet connections on airplanes... Airplanes might be offering passengers internet service by as soon as 2006."

Great news! But why not this holday? >.<; A lot of people will be flying this holiday and it would be great if you can surf the net to kill time in airplanes... but again, I would guess even in '06 not all planes are going to be equipped with such service. Don't you just hate how slow things can change on airplanes? I do... and I know each plane costs a lot but... yea...

via: Slashdot

Blockbuster Plans to End Late Fees in 2005

Believe it or not, Blockbuster is planing to end its "late fees" policy soon to compete with online rental stores(such as NetFlix.) Obviously they have realized that a lot of people have moved to online stores because they can keep the DVD for as long as they want.

I thought companies like Blockbuster get most of their revenues from late fees. But I guess the shady(imho) details in the new policy make up for it:

"Renters who keep the movies or games beyond the grace period [2 days or 1 week] will be charged for purchasing the DVD or tape at Blockbuster's full retail price, minus the rental fee... If they return the movie or game in the next 30 days, they will get a refund for the purchase but will be charged a restocking fee of $1.25, the company said."

I would guess there will be a lot of money flow for people paying retail price and then later get back by refund... Is it the same (or better) than online stores? Not to me...

via: Boing Boing


Golden Globe Nominations 2005

Golden Globe 2005 nominations are announced. Surprisingly (to me) "Sideways" leads the top with seven nominations. The movie was ok to me, and it isn't that big in the US. I went to see it a few weeks ago just because the time fit me ^^; The story was good but everything starts quite slow at the beginning... it's not until around 3/5 into the story that things start to pick up and get more interesting. So if you are going to see it, don't get bored at the beginning (like me) because the character development at the beginning is rather slow (but things get good later [like wine? :P ])

And yay to three acting nominations of Jamie Foxx for his performance as Ray Charles in "Ray." I heard he did great but I have yet to see the movie myself.

"The Aviator" had six nominations and I can't wait for it to hit theaters. "Closer" got five nominations; but I've already talked about that (well... kinda :P )

photo by: Fox Searchlight Pictures


$90 Japanese foam "lap pillow"

As wierd as it looks, the company has sold 3,000 of it so far >.<

"[It's a pillow] shaped like the bottom half of a kneeling woman"

There's also woman's version of it, which was released last year:
"The Hizamakura is similar to a product, shaped like a man's torso with one sturdy arm, which has been on sale since last December."

link: BBC News

update: more pics and video from MSNBC. Also this news was mentioned on Leno's Tonight Show too, lol



It's "12.12"! (how PSP was always advertised for its release date--Japanese way of dating "Dec. 12th") and the PSP--PlayStation Portable--is now out in Japan. Just about every gamer around the world wants to be in Japan right now (me included.) From a number of comments I read in many webboards, the battery life of PSP varies quite a lot, depending on what you play (games/movies/mp3) and the brightness/sound settings. People are reporting as low as "less than an hour" to "8 hours." I doubt they are accurate. Probably it's just too early and, for most people, the batteries are not properly charged up yet (Li-ion needs a few cycles to reach its peak)... but yea... can't wait to get my hands on it. It's planned to come to the States around Q1 2005. Let's hope it won't be delayed.

more pics of people waiting in line last night(12/11)

pics via: Engadget

update: more links if you are interested in PSP
Lik-Sang.com (scroll down for pics)

update 12/13/04: Slashdot has picked up IGN's PSP battery journal
more links: Joystiq PSP reviews round-up

Articles update

More new podcast articles added

Newsweek: The Alpha Bloggers
"The lesson is that there's a new force—spearheaded by people who work for no bosses and whose prose never sees an editor's pencil... No one hired them. No one appointed them. All you need to start your own Weblog is some cheap software tools and something to say."

The Christian Science Monitor: 'Podcast' your world
"The idea behind a podcast is simple, yet brilliant... There's a term that sums up the future of podcasting: niche radio."

via: Scripting News



This is hilarious... keep refreshing/reloading, it changes! ^^

(got it off a site where people were talking about a young famous actress who has recently lost her CC and it's now spread across the net [obviously the CC is now unusable.] I don't think it's appropriate to post details here but email me if you really want to know--it's really no secret since you can find the detail yourself, especially with the links I have on my site ;) )

Until Then...

Until Then...

To Our Military Families...
...And Their Heroes

(shockwave flash)

$1800 Nokia Spy Phone

Now this is an interesting mod to resell old model phones... Wireless Imports has modded Nokia 3390 (US GSM1900 model) so that you can use it to pick up conversation. It is programed to answer your phone call without ringing (when you call in to listen), and can even appear to be turned off.

Now if you see a cell phone lying around, appeared to be turned off, don't assume that no one is listening :P (though I doubt anyone cares that much to spend nearly $2000 on old phone... how about mod it into some new ones?)

btw, looks like the phone is for GSM 1900 network only, but I wouldn't be surprised to find similar mod on other phone in the future.

via: Engadget

Google Suggest

Google just came out with a beta version of Google Suggest. Basically it's the same search engine but it now suggests different words to you as you type based on popularity.

Davenetics did an interesting thing to see what came on top of every letters. ("paris hilton" and "tara reid"? o_O Sure, there is no such thing as bad publicity :P )
Phil Torrone also did the same but in video format :)

and of course, you can also find out yourself, just type any letter/word ;)

via: Engadget

Overheard in NY

For those that like NY... How about hearing some random stuffs over the net? :P

Overheard in New York

Gameboy better than tranquilizers

According to research from University Hospital in Newark, "Letting children play video games on a Game Boy in the operating room before undergoing surgery can help relax them better than tranquilizers or holding Mommy's hand... The hospital is considering making Game Boy use standard before pediatric surgery."

Now, we all know how to quiet down the kids... :P

via: Leo Laporte's blog

New Vulnerability Affects All Browsers

Follow link from untrusted sites (or untrusted email) can lead you to a hi-jacked pop up window even though it looks legit.

The fix for now is not to click links in emails and webpages that you don't trust. And always type the URL yourself for sites that you want to make sure that they are secured (like your bank website and/or PayPal.)

via: Slashdot (with link to demo of the vulnerability)

update: pic of the result that came up when I did the demo test from Secunia

A Painting a Day

Duane Keiser is creating an interesting blog here at Blogger. He is painting a picture a day on his blog (started last week on Dec. 3rd.)

...but $100 for a postcard painting? a little too steep for me... well, at least it's free to look at online ^^

link to his main site

via: Boing Boing


Desktop Search Tool

Financial Times: Yahoo set to launch desktop search tool.

via: Scripting News

For some reasons everyone is jumping on this desktop-search-tool idea after google has first thought of it (with Google Desktop.) There are already reports on (and leaked pictures of) Microsoft going to have something similar in its next OS (Longhorn). I'm really not a big fan of having everything indexed on my computer (and therefore everything is easier to steal if hacked), and if it's really that good I think one is enough and there's really no point in having too many choices to choose from (just like search toolbar these day; where most people prefer to have only one.)

update: Yahoo! Desktop search tool is going to be based on the desktop search tool X1, and they say that it will go deeper into data than Google's... And the release date is set somewhere around the New Year.

update 12/13/04: Microsoft has joined the competition with MSN Toolbar Suite, the free software comes with the new MSN Desktop Search, MSN Toolbar in Microsoft Outlook and MSN Deskbar. It works with WinXP and 2000 only:
link: MSN Toolbar Suite Beta
via: Seattle Post

update 12/16/04: Ask Jeeves joins the pact.
via: Geek News Central


Art Mobs

Marymount Manhattan College has started something different; a new way in experiencing art. "Art Mobs" is the combination of art appreciation together with text messaging, mobile phones, and podcast.

More info here.
There is also a demo video here. (mp4 video file)

Interesting idea but I doubt it's that practical for average people. Too bad it's hard to type on mobile phones and the older you are, the less likely you'll use it. But I guess the whole thing is much about combining new technology, so they might be aiming directly to young audience anyway(?) (but for arts? :P )

via: Scripting News


Interesting studies

Lose weight by sleeping more?: "We found that people who slept for shorter durations have reduced leptin and elevated ghrelin. These differences are likely to increase appetite and... this may contribute to obesity."

Imaginary friend: "Two-thirds of school-age children have an imaginary companion by age 7"

Did you ever have an imaginary friend? I can't remember if I had any >.<... I heard from somewhere that you are more clever if you had one, lol :D (cuz you are more imaginative, and use your brain more... I think?)

btw, the imaginary friend article gives me a little chill and reminds me of the new Robert DeNiro/Dakota Fanning movie: "Hide and Seek"

via: Boing Boing

Adult-theme ads

I have mix feelings about this... they are "creative" but...yea... questionable... (whether it's necessary or not)

One post from Boing Boing leads to another:

Vodfone Live! -UK
Ai Otsuka (Jpop) -Japan (more pics)

(photo from: patrick.com)

More sidebar articles update

Looks like podcast is going mainstream pretty soon...

More articles on podcast from:
The Independent

via: live.curry.com

also: you can find my full list of articles on podcast here

Rejection in the Digital Age

Wow this is interesting... plastic bugs has just posted 3 options for how to reject someone if he/she asks for your email/phone no./IM name... great handy stuffs I never knew before ^^


Consensus on Global Warming

Have you seen "The Day After Tomorrow"? Science Magazine has done an analysis of last 10 years' published scientific articles(928 papers) and they've found no articles arguing against the idea of "global warming" (or "global climate change" as how governments love to call it to make it sound better and less urgent on their part.)

via: Slashdot

Creepy vs. Cool Robots

Do you know that people have different emotional response to robot depending on how realistic it is? The gap of creepiness is somewhere around 70-80%(apx?) of the realistic; which is called in Japanese phrase as "the uncanny valley."

"BroadSnatching" how-to: videos for your media player

Own a portable media player but you don't know what to put on it? Try Phillip Torrone's guide on how to get free and random videos from internet. The idea is pretty simple, very much like broadcatching, but this time "broadsnatching"(Phil's new term of the day) uses RSS with direct downloader like ipodder.

And sure you can play the downloaded files on your computer also, so you don't really need to have portable media player to try out this fun how-to.

You can find a demo/sample video of it here. (looks like an interesting idea for those who like channel surfing :P ) And btw, the video is not safe for work around the end ^^;

via: Engadget

also: today's bonus OT(off-topic) extra link from Engadget: "Japanese hand-free umbrella." I just find it interesting but couldn't bother make another post about it :P

MSN Spaces' fine print

Audio from NPR's Day to Day about the fine print of MSN Spaces service.

(the guest, Xeni Jardin, is from Boing Boing so content-wise it's pretty much the same as what I have posted here)

via: of course, Boing Boing

TIME: "Will Podcasting Kill the Radio Star"

"[T]he [podcast] idea has snowballed, and there are now more than a thousand podcasters."
-TIME: Will Podcasting Kill the Radio Star

via: live.curry.com

also: new podcast directory(Podcast Alley) I just found, though it's not that big yet so ipodder.org is still better, hands down


Jeopardy king becomes Microsoft Spokesman

The Jeopardy king, Ken Jennings, is set to become the spokesman for Microsoft's Encarta Reference Library Premium 2005.

For those that's outside US and don't know about Ken Jennings: he's a software engineer from Salt Lake City who won 74 consecutive episodes of a game show called "Jeopardy!" He now holds the rocord for most money won (US$2,522,700) on any game shows. I believe the episode which he lost was taped a few months ago but it was just aired last week. There were a few conspiracy theory :rolleyes: for him being marked to lose (google around if you want more info, I can't remember when and where I heard about it) and also there's a site of a fellow blogger is being in "legal difficulties" for posting a leaked audio of the last episode 2 days before it airs (while, if I might add, The Washington Post and a Georgia tv did similar thing but are off the hook)

more links for 12 better pics from Yahoo! News

via: Scripting News (for spokesman news)
photo from: Reuters

NDS Online

Good news for Nintendo DS users, there are people who say that they have a way to tunnel the multi-player capability through the internet. (PictoChat and smooth-rate Metroid Prime) The bad news is, those people are not telling (yet) for how they are doing it and what is/are required. They claim that they are "testing it out" for its reliability as well as compatibility with different PC systems... I wonder why Nintendo didn't launch the unit with this function at the first place, if it is capable of doing it. Obviously NDS uses 802.11 range (you can see yourself by using program like NetStumbler to scan the signal) and it would be great to be able to connect to internet with some wifi access point.

also, an extra fun link for a demo of an interesting Japanese game called "Band of Brothers." A wierd demo but can't say that's it's unexpected, lol :P

both via: plastic bugs

update: ok, now that I know more about Band of Brothers, I can't wait for it to be released in the US! I'm a music game fan and always love things like BeatMania... Band of Brothers looks pretty great when you are actually playing it.


The shorter story; No love, no glory; No hero in her sky

And so it is
Just like you said it would be
Life goes easy on me
Most of the time
And so it is
The shorter story
No love, no glory
No hero in her sky
And so it is
Just like you said it should be
We'll both forget the breeze
Most of the time

---------------Damien Rice's The Blower's Daughter

Slow news week this week, or at least everybody is just too busy with their lives before holiday... workers try to finish all the work before the break, college students "trying" to finish their last (group) assignment and/or study for final exams...

Anyway, I've been hessitating whether or not I should post comment on Closer. In the past few years I've learned that sometimes the best way to see a movie is to know as little as possible about it before walking into the theater. So I don't exactly like to give people movie review cuz once you know about something (even not the content, but just the overall feeling of it) there's an expectation that the work needs to go over before one thinks that it is good, or the "wow" factor (you won't go "wow" unless it's over your expectation)

But I think I should give it a post because once I read Sarah Lane's review and a number of other people's comments, I believe what I think about the movie is true.

Have you ever been so in love, while at the same time you are bored with it? If you have no idea what I'm talking about then you might wanna skip this post and read Sarah's review instead... u see? sometimes we determine how good a story is by how much we can relate to it, personally. Sarah's review and a number of people's comments show that a number of people don't really get the inside feeling of the story (and I don't blame them since there are a number of movies that I can only see/experience the outside shell of it too.)

Love is a funny thing. It has so many faces that most of us know only a few of its face, and we miss out when the story about the unknown face to us is told.

Closer is a feelings roller-coaster to me. We are taken up and down a number of times throughout the story (just like love?) and yea, I think it's pretty cryptic since, like I said, it's unlikely that you get it if you can't relate to it... (very much like my other very fav movie: Lost in Translation)

Surely you can say that the characters are "flawed" but I think that's exactly what makes them real. No one is perfect and, believe it or not, there are people that are so lost with love that it makes them even more flawed. If you look carefully, all of them want to do "the right thing" but they are influenced by love, and they react to love differently. Of course there were times that I disagree with their decisions but again I think I know people in real-life who would make the same exact stupid decision, expecially for love.

Love is a funny thing.

I was gonna say more about how people today enjoy things that are flawed and real, but I think I'll save it for later... I don't want to make the post too long and it covers a lot more than just this movie.

btw, an extra link for
MV of Damien Rice's The Blower's Daughter--Closer OST

360° Panoramas

Wanna see a good view outside but the weather is bad?
(exactly how it is in LA right now)... try this:

Aerial Photography
by Scott Haefner

sure I want to be up there where the pics was taken...


Here and There News

Just small bits and pieces of news from here and there:

-There's a new variant of the Series60 Phone's Skulls trojan that can now spread by bluetooth... so keep the port close if don't really use it.

-A great review of Nintendo DS on Joystiq.
"I've struggled with the basic question, "Do I like the Nintendo DS?" Short answer, I hate the device... Long answer, I'm enjoying the games for the very same reason I loathe the hardware..." -Ben Zackheim

-update on my yesterday post: more MSN Spaces review - MSN Spaces vs. TypePad

-komo 1000 News: "A medical study shows sugar water works just as well as many common cough syrups when it comes to suppressing nighttime coughing." =o interesting

-another small sidebar update on a great RSS how-to

via: Engadget, Joystiq, and Scripting News


Virtual Bubble Wrap

Holiday Season = Presents = Bubble Wrap = Stress Reliever? :P

And for those that don't have enough Bubble Wrap:
Virtual Bubble Wrap

via: Boing Boing

Newsweek: Tivo for your iPod

2 new articles on podcast added to sidebar today:

Newsweek: Tivo for your iPod

Australian IT: Podcasting takes off

MSN Spaces: seven dirty blogs

Microsoft has joined the blogging craze with "MSN Spaces"... so Boing Boing has tested it for censorship, just to see how far Microsoft let you go with "questionable" blog title...

MSN Spaces: seven dirty blogs

via: plastic bugs

update: MSN Spaces got extremely bad reviews btw... and I never like Microsoft... so if you plan to blog, stick with Blogger or TypePad/Userland(if you want the paid version) ;)

update 12/3/04: more MSN Spaces review


500,000 Nintendo DS's sold in a week

Nintendo announced that 500,000 NDS units have been sold in just one week after it is released. And if you plan to get one soon, it might be a good idea to actually reserve one at your local store (if, and it is likely that, your local store has ran out of it) because "supply could be depleted within days." Nintendo also told analysts they expected to sell 1 million units before 2004 ends.

via: Engadget


Drunken diallers

New interesting service from Australian Virgin Mobile. To prevent yourself from drunk dialing to your ex- or boss or whoever; you can call up a number, enter the number(s) you don't want to call and the service provider will block you from making the call(s) until 6am...
...well, what if you drink till the morning comes(6am)? :P

Help available for 'drunken diallers'

via: Engadget

The Infinite Cat Project

This is for any cats lover out there... I think it's more cats than you ever want to see :P
The Infinite Cat Project

via: plastic bugs


Wanna learn English? I mean English English...
The (very) Best of British

update: also new great article added to sidebar on Podcast:
Podcasting takes off

via: live.curry.com

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