Cupie turned me on to the link to Mobile PC magazine's list of the the top 100 Gadgets of All Time.
And since anything worth linking to is worth stealing, here's a list of what I've either owned or used the from that list:
99. SWINGLINE 747 STAPLER, 2002
Stapling technology dates back to the 1700s, when an unknown inventor created a stapler for King Louis XV of France, but staplers came to the everyman with the Swingline magazine stapler, invented in 1938. Of these, the most iconic is Milton's fire-engine red Swingline from the movie Office Space, first manufactured in 2002 due to demand from the film.
98. PEZ DISPENSER, 1927
Pez isn't the mystery ingredient that makes this candy so tasty; it's an abbreviation for the German for Pfeffermintz (peppermint). Today, Pez comes in lots more flavors, but who cares? We just like the little poppin' head dispensers.
89. RUBIK'S CUBE, 1974
Invented in 1974 by Hungarian Erno Rubik, the Rubik's Cube hit America in 1980 like the avian flu, infecting millions and temporarily treating most ADHD symptoms before petering out in 1983.
87. RADIO SHACK TRS-80 MODEL 100, 1983
Not the first portable computer, nor the most advanced, the Model 100 distinguished itself through simplicity, ruggedness, and portability. For $800 you could outfit yourself with this 6-pound mobile typing machine (a real featherweight compared with the 20-pound Osborne and Kaypro portables). The specs weren't impressive: 8KB of RAM, an eight-line-by-40-character display, no hard drive, a 300-baud modem, and a 2.4MHz Intel CPU. But two AA batteries gave it enough juice to run for 16 hours, and it was tough enough to ward off falls, bumps, spills, and filthy language, making it a perfect choice for newspaper reporters and cops. Radio Shack sold 6 million between 1983 and 1991.
77. HASBRO LITE-BRITE, 1967
Who knew that all those happy hours spent punching multicolored pins into black paper were actually preparing us for a rewarding career designing web page bullets and desktop icons?
75. LASER POINTER, 1980s
By 1998, laser pointers were so popular that they were not only banned in schools, but laws were passed in many states to levy a $1,000 fine on anyone who pointed the red dot into someone's eye. Although professionals and teachers had used laser pointers for years, it wasn't until they dropped from $100 to less than $30 in the late '90s that kids were able to grab them and terrorize cats and moviegoers alike.
65. MATTEL FOOTBALL II, 1978
Mattel's first handheld football game was good; this sequel was a classic. Finally, you could throw passes to your little LED teammates, while enjoying the shrill electronic cry of "Charge!"
64. U.S. ARMY P-38 CAN OPENER, 1942
Who says the government can't make good products? This opener let millions of GIs crack their C rations, not to mention the dozens of other uses they found for it in the field, from cleaning their rifles to gutting fish.
63. MAGLITE FLASHLIGHT, 1979
It was originally marketed just to police officers and firefighters, but soon everyone had one of these nearly indestructible, adjustable-beam flashlights.
57. MATTEL MAGIC 8-BALL, 1946
Is this really one of the most important gadgets ever? Signs point to yes.
50. ETCH-A-SKETCH, 1960
Though devoid of circuitry, we think it's safe to say that this was the world's first handheld with a fully graphical user interface.
20. SWISS ARMY KNIFE, 1891
Karl Elsener's first knife, which was distributed to Swiss enlisted men, featured a blade, a screwdriver, a can opener, and a punch. Today, the company Elsener founded, Victorinox, and its competitor, Wenger, offer dozens of knives featuring up to 33 different tools. Meanwhile, the name has passed into cliche as an apt description of the knife's versatility.
3. SONY WALKMAN, 1979
We're not saying the iPod isn't one of the coolest devices ever made, but Apple's little music monster would never have been possible without Sony's groundbreaking Walkman. The brainchild of Sony cofounders Masaru Ibuka, Akio Morita, and Norio Ohga, this portable cassette tape player made the dream of a mobile music collection a generation-changing reality and put Sony in the technological catbird seat.
1. APPLE POWERBOOK 100, 1991
Never mind the Apple versus PC debate: Until Apple unveiled this 5.1-pound machine, most "portable" computers were curiosities for technophiles with superior upper-body strength. But the PowerBook 100's greatest and most lasting innovation was to move the keyboard toward the screen, leaving natural wrist rests up front, as well as providing an obvious place for a trackball. It seems like the natural layout now, but that's because the entire industry aped Apple within months. The first PowerBooks captured an astounding 40 percent of the market, but more important, they turned notebook computers into mainstream products and ushered in the era of mobile computing that we're still living in today.
PREVIOUS SEPARATED AT BIRTH
Bill Murray and The Gopher
He has now sought refuge from his fame in his family's small house on a gritty street in Saddle Brook. He has stopped taking phone calls from the news media, including The New York Times. He canceled an appearance on NBC's "Today." According to his relatives, he mopes around the house.
What's worse is that no one seems to understand.
"I said, 'Gary this is your one chance to be famous - embrace it,' " said Corey Dzielinski, who has known Mr. Brolsma since the fifth grade. Gary Brolsma is not the first guy to rocket out of anonymity on a starship of embarrassment. There was William Hung, the Hong Kong-born "American Idol" reject, who sang and danced so poorly he became a household name. There was Ghyslain Raza, the teenage Quιbιcois, who taped himself in a mock light-saber duel and is now known as the Star Wars Kid.
In July 2003, Mr. Raza's parents went so far as to sue four of his classmates, claiming they had placed the clip of him online without permission. "Ghyslain had to endure and still endures today, harassment and derision," according to the lawsuit, first reported in The Globe and Mail of Toronto.
Mr. Brolsma has no plans to sue, his family said - mainly because he would have to sue himself. In fact, they wish he would bask a little in his celebrity.
"I don't know what's wrong with him," his grandfather, Kalman Telkes, a Hungarian immigrant, said the other day while taking out the trash.
Why does the Internet exist?
So someone can compile a gallery of comic book covers featuring gorillas and apes.
A few faves:
If (when?) the New York Yankees lose to the Red Sox this year because of an inattention to pitching, you can blame Marvin "The Way We Were" Hamlisch.
Well, the bloated, pasty, irrelevant composer and Pittsburgh Pops conductor dropped by Sunday to the Yankees spring training home in Tampa, Legends Field, to distract manager Joe Torre from trying to capitalize on a gut-wrenching 2004 campaign.
Think of it as schlubs in an elevator.
HST: "I'm working on a profoundly goofy story here. It's wonderful. I've invented a new sport. It's called Shotgun Golf. We will rule the world with this thing."
HST: "I've called you for some consulting advice on how to launch it. We've actually already launched it. Last spring, the Sheriff and I played a game outside in the yard here. He had my Ping Beryllium 9-iron, and I had his shotgun, and about 100 yards away, we had a linoleum green and a flag set up. He was pitching toward the green. And I was standing about 10 feet away from him, with the alley-sweeper. And my objective was to blow his ball off course, like a clay pigeon."
HST: "It didn't work at first. The birdshot I was using was too small. But double-aught buck finally worked for sure. And it was fun."
HST: "OK, I didn't want to wake you up, but I knew you'd want to be in on the ground floor of this thing."
HST: "Do you want to discuss this tomorrow?"
BILL: "I think I might have a queer dream about it now, but ..." (Laughs.)
HST: "This sport has a HUGE future. Golf in America will soon come to this."
BILL: "It will bring a whole new meaning to the words 'Driving Range'."
HST: "Especially when you stack them on top of each other. I've seen it in Japan."
BILL: "They definitely have multi-level driving ranges. Yes."
HST: (Laughs.) "How does that work? Do they have extremely high ceilings?"
BILL: "No. The roof above your tee only projects out about 10 feet, and they have another range right above you. It's like they took the faηade off a building. People would be hanging out of their offices."
(Jumping ahead in the story...)
HST: "Well, I'm writing a column for ESPN.com and I want to know if you like my new golf idea. A two-man team."
BILL: "Well, with all safety in mind, yes. Two-man team? Yeah! That sounds great. I think it would create a whole new look. It would create a whole new clothing line."
HST: "Absolutely. You'll need a whole new wardrobe for this game."
BILL: "Shooting glasses and everything."
HST: "We'll obviously have to make a movie. This will mushroom or mutate -- either way -- into a real craze. And given the mood of this country, being that a lot of people in the mood to play golf are also in the mood to shoot something, I think it would take off like a gigantic fad."
BILL: "I think the two-man team idea would be wonderful competition and is something the Ryder Cup would pick up on."
HST: "I was talking with the Sheriff about it earlier. But in one-man competition, I'd have to compete against you, say, in both of the arts -- the shooting AND the golfing. But if you do the Ryder Cup, you'd have to have the clothing line first. I'm going to write about this for ESPN tonight. I'm naming you and the Sheriff as the founding consultants."
BILL: "Sounds good."
HST: "OK, I'll call you tomorrow. And by the way, I'll see if I can twist some arms and get you an Oscar. But I want a Nobel Prize in return."
BILL: "Well, we can work together on this. This is definitely a team challenge." (Laughing.)
HST: "OK. We'll talk tomorrow."
BILL: "Good night."
So there it is. Shotgun Golf will soon take America by storm. I see it as the first truly violent leisure sport. Millions will crave it.
Millions? Now there'll only be 999,999.
Apron. In racing, an apron is the paved area directly below the racing surface that separates the track from the infield.
Banking. The slope of a track from the wall to the apron, generally measured in the corners.
Bite. Bite is a car's ability to "stick," or adhere, to the track.
Caution. A period in racing in which track conditions are too hazardous for racing due to an accident or debris on the racing surface.
Dialed in. When a car's performing at its maximum. Also called "hooked up."
Drafting. The practice of following immediately behind another car to take advantage of the lead car's "punching a hole" in the wind.
Handling. A reference to a race car's performance with relation to the driver's ability to control it. Suspension, tires and air flow all contribute.
Loose. A handling condition in which the car's rear end wants to go straight or right (up the banking) when the car is turned to the left. Also called oversteer.
Marbles. Believe it or not, marbles in racing are loose debris, such as rubber and asphalt, that collect on the track and cause a car to lose traction. Where do they get this stuff, anyway?
Pace car. The official car that leads competitors at a safe speed during caution periods and restarts.
Pit road. The paved roadway that leads into the pit area.
Pit stop. It's when drivers maneuver their race cars into the pit area for fuel, tires and mechanical adjustments.
Restrictor plate. A plate attached to the carburetor that limits the amount of airflow entering the combustion chamber.
Road course. A closed course with turns to both the right and the left.
Running on rails. Used to describe a car that is handling perfectly, as if it was literally attached to a rail.
Short track. Any oval- or circle-shaped course less than one mile long.
Slingshot. A slingshot is a maneuver in which the driver of the trailing vehicle in a draft line breaks the draft by turning (usually to the left if on an oval track), propelling the car around the leader.
Stagger. The difference in the circumference of the tires on the right and left sides of the car. Since oval track racing is always done turning left, teams put larger tires on the right to help the car naturally turn left.
Superspeedway. Any oval or circle-shaped track more than one mile long.
Tight. On the track it's a handling condition in which the car's front end wants to go straight when the wheel is turned left. Also called understeer or push.
Had a little fun with the generator at MakeStickers.com:
"It was Ling Ling, or the other one, I can't tell them apart. In my own defense, it was dark, I was drunk, and it was delicious."
- Ted Hitler
Goya Jamaican Style Ginger Beer
Submitted by Dong
Remember when you were 5 and Bambi's mother gets shot offscreen? Right, well, for reasons best known only to themselves, Jamaicans have made a soda out of that, and Mexicans have taken it upon themselves to bottle it. The dominant ingredient in Goya's whimsically named "Jamaican Ginger Beer" is neither ginger nor beerit's capsicum. Sound familiar? It does if you read the bit between "keep away from children" and "keep away from face" on the side of a canister of pepper spray. No kidding, go check it out if you need to. How it can be legally called "ginger beer" rather than "keep-away-from-face beer" in a country that won't let toys shoot soft plastic missiles is beyond me, but you won't drink this stuff twice unless the agent interrogating you doesn't like your first answer.
For more reviews, click here.
Courtesy of Vitamin Q:
40 musicians who died before 40:
(p = probable)
1 Gram Parsons country singer/songwriter (26 p drug-related heat failure)
2 Sandy Denny folk singer (31 fell down stairs)
3 Jimi Hendrix guitarist (27 p overdose)
4 Tammi Terrell soul singer (23 brain tumour)
5 Tupac Shakur - soul / rap singer (25 p murder)
6 John Bonham Led Zeppelin drummer (32 p alcohol poisoning)
7 Patsy Cline country singer (30 plane crash)
8 Duane Allman guitarist (24 - road accident)
9 Karen Carpenter singer (32 eating disorder)
10 Kurt Cobain Nirvana singer/songwriter (27 p suicide)
11 Jim Reeves country singer (39 plane crash)
12 Bob Marley singer/songwriter (36 - cancer)
13 Buddy Holly songwriter (22 plane crash)
14 Minnie Riperton soul singer (31 - cancer)
15 Brian Jones Rolling Stones founder (27 - drowned, p murder)
16 Sam Cooke soul singer (29 shot dead)
17 Blind Lemon Jefferson blues guitarist (33 - heart attack)
18 Ian Curtis Joy Division singer/songwriter (23 - suicide)
19 Gene Vincent rock singer/guitarist (36 - haemhorrage)
20 Nick Drake - singer/songwriter (26 - overdose)
21 Clyde McPhatter - Drifters singer (38 heart problems)
22 Phil Lynott Thin Lizzy singer (34 heart problems)
23 Dennis Wilson Beach Boys member (39 - drowning)
24 Hank Williams country singer (29 heart attack)
25 Elliott Smith singer/songwriter (34 - p suicide)
26 Keith Moon The Who drummer (32 - overdose)
27 Eddie Cochran rock singer (21 road accident)
28 Lowell George Little Feat guitarist (34 heart attack)
29 Tim Buckley singer/songwriter (28 - overdose)
30 Janis Joplin - singer (27 heroin overdose)
31 Billy Mackenzie The Associates singer/songwriter (39 - suicide)
32 Bobby Fuller rock singer/guitarist (22 p. murder)
33 Bobby Darin - pop singer - (37 heart disease)
34 Chris Bell Big Star guitarist/songwriter (27 - road accident)
35 Mama Cass - singer (32 heart attack)
36 Bon Scott AC/DC rock singer (33 - intoxication)
37 Tim Hardin singer/songwriter (39 heroin overdose)
38 Otis Redding soul singer (26 - plane crash)
39 Mary Hansen Stereolab singer/guitarist (36 road accident)
40 Jim Morrison Doors singer (27 p overdose)
IT'S A FREAKING CARTOON SPONGE, OKAY?
PREVIOUS INSTALLMENTS OF
YOUR MOMENT OF BRITNEY
Britney takes a palimony suit.
Something old, something new.
Britney takes a groom. Again.
Britney defends her latest love.
Britney marries a childhood friend. For 50 hours.
Britney swaps spit with the Rosetta Stone of Skank.
Britney poses for photos that make her look even more plastic and lifeless than she already is.
Britney, as she would look if she hit the all-you-can-eat Seafood Lovers Special at Red Lobster every night for six months.
Britney runs a restaurant into the ground.
Britney has an evil twin available for parties.
Britney and George cut a rug.
Britney proves the axiom: Beer affects the way males respond to females.
Looks like the NHL Players Association finally gets the message. Only a salary cap will save their sport.
Too bad Gary Bettman is going to cancel the season anyway.
Nice timing, guys.
Hat tip to Katherine.
...this isn't funny. Not at all.
Okay, maybe it's a little bit funny. But just a little.
Personally, I would have bought her some Mary Kay.
Apparently, there are a few among us with some significant Valentine's Day issues.
Quote of the day:
"Bodily fluids are not usually a big part of our collection.''
-- Baseball Hall of Fame vice president Jeff Idelson, talking about pitcher Curt Schilling's bloody white sock, worn while winning Game 2 of the World Series. The sock is now featured at the museum's World Series display.
Police ordered naked cyclists to get their gear back on in central Auckland yesterday, after arresting their leader for alleged indecent exposure.
Even so, motorists were treated to a "21-bum" salute, equating to the number of scantily-clad cyclists who rode in convoy to protest against the world's dependency on oil-fuelled transport.
They all had to wear underpants or briefs after the police intervention, although several female cyclists were allowed to remain topless, with or without body paint.
The expose was part of the World Naked Bike Ride, a growing movement in which cyclists in 15 countries are daubing their flesh with anti-oil slogans to "reclaim the streets for people", Auckland organiser Simon Oosterman said.
Its official title - "The Gates, Central Park, New York, 1979-2005" - refers to the artists' conception of the idea 26 years ago. It was expected to take about two hours to drop the fabric from all the gates.Michael Kimmelman of the New York Times, however, is inexplicably entranced by the entire thing. To such an extent that one wonders how much Kleenex it will take to clean him up afterwards:
"It's a bit insane, but that's why everybody is here," said Ali Naqui, who was brought to the unveiling against his will by his fiancee.
Among the first folks there were 17 fourth-graders from an elementary school in Queens. The group boarded a bus before sunrise and made the trip into Manhattan, where they were suitably impressed by the spectacle.
"It's a waste of money, but it's fabulous," said student Shakana Jayson. "It brings happiness when you look at it."
Like all projects by this duo, "The Gates" is as much a public happening as it is a vast environmental sculpture and a feat of engineering. It has required more than 1 million square feet of vinyl and 5,300 tons of steel, arrayed along 23 miles of footpaths throughout the park at a cost (borne exclusively by the artists) of $20 million.
I hadn't been quite sure when I first saw the project going up last week. From outside the park, the gates looked like endless rows of inert orange dominoes overwhelming Frederick Law Olmsted's and Calvert Vaux's masterpiece.
But as the artists have insisted, the gates aren't made to be seen from above or from outside. I stopped in at a friend's office high above Central Park South yesterday and ogled the panorama, which was lovely. But it was beside the point. It's the difference between sitting in a skybox at Giants Stadium and playing the game on the field. The gates need to be - they are conceived to be - experienced on the ground, at eye level, where, as you move through the park, they crisscross and double up, rising over hills, blocking your view of everything except sky, then passing underfoot, through an underpass, or suddenly appearing through a copse of trees, their fabric fluttering in the corner of your eye.
There are no bad locales for seeing them.
I know what I'm getting my wife for Valentine's Day:
The Body Art AirBrush Tattoo System is the cordless, easy-to-use spray system that creates great looking, temporary tattoos in just a few minutes. The CO2 airbrush sprayer uses a fine, gentle spray of henna-colored body paint to create stylish body art. It's so easy, simply apply stencil, lightly spray, remove stencil, dries in seconds and lasts up to one week. Includes CO2 airbrush sprayer, henna-colored body art paint, 3 disposable CO2 cartridges and 28 stylish stencils.
* Paint dries in seconds
* Tattoos last up to one week
* Quick and easy application
Nothing says, "I love you" like a gift that makes her roll over for a tramp stamp.
But you're so sweet, baby, you're so fine You bring the barbecue and I'll bring the wine We'll dance all night 'til your belt buckle shinesWhat does that stream-of-consciousnss mean? Dunno.
Been a while since I last visted StatueMolesters.com, so I thought I'd go take a look and see if anything had changed.
It had. It's more vile and offensive than it was before.
And still crudely hilarious.
Feeling bad about your place in life? Feel that your lot is unfair?
Feel better, friend.
At least you're not this guy.
Those who know me will attest to this: I was born to drive this van.
Terrorists apparently have taken another hostage:
Know what time it is, kids?
Why, tonight it's time to play...