I'm no NASCAR fan, to say the least, but I happened upon the last 20 laps of the Daytona 500 yesterday and decided to watch since it's the biggest race of the year. Wow, pretty cool. Neck-and-neck finish, big crash, one car finishes the race upside down. The second-place finisher was also quite graceful in his near defeat. I can't imagine I'll watch any NASCAR for the rest of the year, but my estimation of the "sport" went up a bit.
The Gilligan bike returneth:
Children in the developing world are to receive the first of millions of cheap wind-up computers in a U.N.-backed project to bring information technology to communities with no electricity. . . The machines will be funded out of the recipient countries’ budgets at $150 per machine in annual installments of $20-$30 . . . The computers, which have internet access built in, will use a wind-up crank, a pedal or a lawn-mower-style ripcord to generate power.
How long until some military dictator will conscript hundreds of children to power his house and office's 25 desktop computer network system 24/7?
Slashed: My editor at The Register had to cut about 200 words from my column to make room for other stuff. He appropriately slashed a little detour I made at the end, but I enjoyed the detour, so I'm reproducing it here:
It’s not a Frank Capra Hollywood world any more. The movie industry isn’t cranking out soothing and re-assuring (corny? maybe) films like It’s a Wonderful Life and Mr. Deeds Goes to Town.
But things aren’t as bad in the flick world today as they were in the 1970s, 1980s, and early 1990s. Have you ever rented a movie from those years to watch with your family, having no recollection of anything particularly troubling about them, only to be shocked at the amount of vulgar language and sex? I have (rentals of Tremors and Ruthless People both rattled my family room unexpectedly last year), and I’ve talked with other people my age who have experienced the same thing. Hollywood during that era was filthy.
Hollywood is still dirty, but most popular movies aren’t quite as bad as their counterparts 20 years ago. There are also numerous clean spots. The Lord of the Rings trilogy; The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe and anticipated sequels; Cinderella Man. I could list scores of more good yet family-friendly movies from the past five years. I defy anyone to compile such a list from, say, 1982 to 1987.
New TDE feature: Polls. It's experimental, but if I understand correctly, you merely answer it, then view the results. You should not receive any pop-up ads or any digital tricks that sweep you up and transport you to another cybersphere. If anything like that happens, please let me know (email link on left). Note: By posting the poll to my site, it gets posted to at least one other site. I don't know if the poll results you see are solely from this site or all the sites combined.
Later Addendum: The results reflect my site's votes and the Viznu (the poll provider service) site. The poll at the Viznu site, however, apparently hasn't had much traffic, so I'm guessing that at least 3/4ths of the votes reflected here are from TDE readers.
Pretty good joke a friend sent me:
A U.S. Marine squad was marching north of Fallujah when they came upon an Iraqi terrorist, badly injured and unconscious. On the opposite side of the road was an American Marine in a similar but less serious state. The squad leader asked the injured Marine what had happened.
The Marine reported, "I was heavily armed and moving north along the highway here, and coming south was a heavily armed insurgent. We saw each other and both took cover in the ditches. I yelled to him that Saddam Hussein is a miserable, lowlife scum bag, and he yelled back that Ted Kennedy is a good-for-nothing, fat, left wing liberal drunk. So I said that Osama Bin Ladin dresses and acts like a frigid, mean-spirited lesbian! He retaliated by yelling, Oh yeah? So does Hillary Clinton!
"And there we were, in the middle of the road, shaking hands, when a truck hit us."This definitely isn't funny, but the mental picture of this guy whacking himself on the head makes me chuckle:
Three women were found bludgeoned to death with a hammer in two apartments on the city's far North Side, and police had a suspect in custody Sunday.
Officers found the bodies after they were called to a domestic dispute Saturday morning.
They also found a man hitting himself on the head with a blunt object, apparently trying to kill himself, police spokeswoman Monique Bond said. The 56-year-old man was hospitalized in police custody and was in fair condition early Sunday, authorities said.
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