Switch. Now, damn you!

27 February, 2006

Some folks are really really serious about getting people to switch to Firefox. Good on ’em.Mind you, anyone who still uses Internet Explorer is an either ignorant newbie (we’ll forgive you), or wilfully crap-blind…


Software We Love to Hate

26 February, 2006

Microsoft Access suggests that I search for “disk space, freeing” or “memory, troubleshooting” to find out more information on this dialogue box. What happens when I do?

Memory-Troubleshooting Thumbnail Copy 1

Read the rest of this entry »

Go and Fetch Me a Long Weight.

24 February, 2006

As the serial commenter and proprietor of the Who Goes There? blog, Iddet wryly noted in the comments of my elegy to my iPod photo, I am actually “doing alright out if it”. What he was referring to was that in a miracle of biblical proportions, an insurance company paid up for an item it had insured. Unheard of, I know, but hooray for Zurich.
So I received a lovely cheque with which to buy myself an new iPod. And thus I did the other day – getting my brother to bring me in a new black 60GB iPod in duty-free from Australia. And now it’s in my hands. Tonight I’ll be plugging into the iMac, formatting the iPod back to HFS+ (the Mac disk format), instead of the now default stinky Windows FAT32 format (which, although Macs can read it, creates all sorts of issues when copying files to it in disk use), and gleefully uploading my 40 gigabytes worth of music and my weeks of missed Ricky Gervais and various random podcasts.. Oh yeah.
However, since Firewire has been sadly banished from iPods and replaced with USB2, which my flat screen (and not really that obsolete) iMac does not have, the iPod will finish uploading approximately SIXTY HOURS after I plug it in.

Genital-Brained Drivers. Number 1 in a Probably Unending Series.

20 February, 2006

Yes, I know: as a New Zealander I’m meant to accept the wisdom handed down to us by American-accented goobers or any traffic cop who’s seen one too many fatal crashes, and believe that we’re all terrible drivers.
To that I say bollocks.
If you believe that, you’ve never been to London, or, well, just about any Asian country. We are no worse or no better than any other country. You also can’t blame the roads (it’s fashionable to say the NZ roads are terrible, too), or the cars we drive (the “get old cars off the road by pretending they’re full of rust” routine has seen to that), or the speed limit, or the drink-drivers, or anything else. As usual, it’s a mixture of all those things, plus the culture of new immigrants, plus our own NZ culture, that all go into the nice big stew that is our driving style. And it’s generally fine.
Teenagers will Darwin-ify themselves, truck-drivers and old-people will fall asleep at the wheel, and if someone being chased by the police happens to turn himself and his car into a twisted mound of broken metal and flesh, well, so much the better – one less crim on the roads.

That said, there are definitely still plenty of morons on the road. Imbeciles who cause entirely justified road rage in otherwise placid drivers. And let me be clear here: road rage is not the problem of the person experiencing it. Despite what pop psychologists and researchers say, it’s not a lack of self-restraint, of self-discipline, of the inability to turn the other cheek in a gesture of Christian goodwill. It’s entirely the fault of pricks who lack the courtesy to indicate, to wait, to merge properly.
One of the guaranteed road rage causers is spot-stealing, or cutting you off. Think about it – you’re in rush hour traffic, crawling along at 5 killo-meeters (Yes, it’s misspelled, but it stopped you saying the lazy “killom-itters”, didn’t it? :-)) per hour when some nob from the adjacent lane decides that your lane is moving much faster than his, and pulls directly across in front of you, doing the “indicate as you move” trick (thus negating the entire point of indicators), stealing your between-cars safety gap, and making you brake so that you don’t plough into his rear end. Utterly pointless, but he’ll do exactly the same move out again when he thinks his original lane is moving faster. Actions like this cause your traditional fist-shaking, middle-finger and V-sign gestures, blood pressure increases, and that nasty squirt of acid in the pit of your stomach that can best be relieved by plunging your hands into the fool’s head and mushing your fingers through his brain tissue.

Even worse, however, is this rectum:
I was driving into work last week, it was past rush hour, since I had done a ridiculously late night at work the previous evening, and needed a tad of a sleep-in. So, it was 9:30am, traffic was light and flowing fast. We’re cruising at 90 killo-meeters per hour, and this cock-brained driver sees that my (mostly empty) lane is moving slightly faster than his (mostly empty) lane. He pulls in behind me, stealing the bloke who was there’s safety zone. Then he decides that he doesn’t want to be behind a little red car like the one I’m driving, so he pulls out, stealing another bloke’s safety zone, passes me, and pulls in front of me, stealing my safety zone, while his load of wooden beams sways around dangerously. Anus-faced dick.
Anyone fancy using his number plate to find out his name, address and other details for $2.25 from a local Post office, and giving him a visit to teach him a lesson in courtesy and/or driving?
Cockdriversplate Thumbnail
Of course, driving a truck like that, he’s obviously a tradesman, so cutting corners is what he does best.

Men Without Arms

14 February, 2006

He looks like every other vaguely abstract little man on public toilet doors everywhere. But the one at our work is different: he has no arms. That big square thing perched upon his legs is only his (obviously over-gymed) body.
Sure, the vaguely abstract little ladies on toilet doors everywhere don’t tend to have arms, but all they need is a triangle dress to show punters whether they’re welcome or not within. Men need their arms, dammit! Or is this the start of some feminist conspiracy? 😉
Armless Thumbnail

Sub-optimal iPod Care

10 February, 2006

A sequence of steps not to take for optimal iPod usage:

  1. Go to China
  2. Put iPod in protective case
  3. Place iPod in thigh pocket of ¾ length cargo pants
  4. Take a train to Guangzhou, listen to iPod on journey
  5. Visit the apartment of an elderly relative of one of your party
  6. Sit and nod and smile politely while much Chinese is spoken
  7. Form a line to say goodbye to elderly relative.
  8. Join line at back
  9. Realise the prolonged goodbyes are making elderly relative upset, but also realise that you can’t skip out of the line now
  10. Say good bye to weeping elderly relative
  11. Get shoved aside by concerned son of weeping elderly relative keen to console weeping elderly relative
  12. Stumble towards a glass dinner table with conveniently placed corner at thigh level
  13. Feel a crunch and tinkle of something breaking
  14. Fish iPod out of pocket.
  15. Damn.


A Productive Productivity Destroyer

8 February, 2006

Feeling overly productive at work? Or annoyed by TVNZ “news” items that try to equate spending a few minutes each day browsing the Net at work with bringing down the economy? Yes, that’s right, if you happen to be one of:

“several staff members [who] go onto a website at the same time, the information coming from it can overload the company’s computer system”.

I didn’t think that even virus-riddled, arse-backward Windows-based networks would fall over because a few people visit TradeMe at the same time, but there you go, TVNZ has the technical knowledge of these sorts of things, obviously. Morons.

Anyway, to lose the aforementioned productivity, or to bring your entire company’s network teetering to the edge of catastrophic meltdown, go and have a look at this sand game (mentioned at kottke.org). It looks like it’s been around for a while (like 2001?), but like all these internet memes, it gets fresh popularity everytime somebody such as kottke reveals it to a new audience.Oh, and it’s only a game in the same way the Sims is a game: there’s no goal, no point, and no winning. Just mix your sand, oil, or water, grow plants, create intricate waterways, or set fire to everything and watch it burn, baby, burn. Curiously addictive. If I was some fluffy-headed HR office-worker I’d say that this game would be interesting as a measure of people’s personalities. Oh, wait…