Monday, February 27, 2006

National Archives on Google Video

Just click here to see a 14-min clip made by the National Archives celebrating the first landing on the moon:

The Eagle Has Landed 1969 - Google Video

and tons more. The videos are generally high quality and don't require you to download anything special to view them.

Although the videos are all in the public domain, it's too bad they're not saved as .AVI or some other format that would make them easy to bring in to add to my own videos.

The Future of the Blog

I agree with the Business Week article The Future of the Blog: quote from Mena Trott, founder of Six Apart:

"To most people, the important things they want to learn about have to do with people they know. So I think personal blogs are really the future, and with that comes a challenge for blogs to be more friendly and welcoming. "

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Web 2.0 Innovation Map

Web 2.0 Innovation Map is a graphical representation of all the hot new "Web 2.0" companies and where they're located.

Of course Silicon Valley is chock full of companies, but so is Seattle. (Nothing on Mercer Island yet, though).

[via Kintya]

Macintoshes never crash

I spent many long, happy years working for Apple Computer, so I thought this movie was hillarious.

(a 1-minute rebuttal to those Switchers commercials that Apple uses to convince people that Macs are so much better than PCs).

Monday, February 20, 2006

It takes a village

Leah, inspired by a project she saw at the Pacific Science Center, builds a tiny house from paper.

Sunday, February 19, 2006

Which is the fake smile?

Which of these smiles is sincere?

Answers in How Do I Love Thee? in the March 2006 Atlantic Monthly.

If you got this correct, then your left index finger is probably longer than your ring finger and I know which of the following four titles you think applies to this book cover:

A Spy in Rimini
Anatomy of Friendship: A Smart Guide for Smart People
A Scoundrel’s Story
Things Left Unsaid

Friday, February 17, 2006

Seattle Biotech 2010

Seattle Biotech 2010
The IndUS Entrepreneurs sponsored Seattle Biotech 2010: Opportunities and Challenges on Thursday night at the Bellevue Courtyard Marriott.

  • Susannah Malarkey (moderator), Exec Director, Technology Alliance

  • Sanjaya Joshi, Userspace: made an opening presentation

  • Greg Bear, science fiction author

  • Robert DuBose, Director of Bioinformatics, Amgen

  • Christopher Elias, CEO, PATH

  • Bruce Montgomery, Corus Pharma

  • David Shubert, Accelerator Corp

  • Chad Waite, OVP

  • Paul Yager, Univ of Wash

The Seattle biotech community is surprisingly strong, with a rich history traced from the 1973 opening of the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, and a trove of alumni companies. Many companies owe their roots to Robert Nowinski and several other serial entrepreneurs, all the way to the Allen Brain Atlas, funded by Paul Allen. Seattle has also been a powerhouse for medical equipment makers, including ultrasound.

Bioterror is getting all the attention and huge amounts of money, so that was a subject of many discussions. I was surprised to hear the panelists speculate about the 2001 anthrax killer. One guy thinks it’s a 12-25 year-old self-taught loner. I had thought Steve Hatfill was still the prime suspect, even if he hasn’t been accused.

  • “Aspirin would never pass a Phase II trial”.

  • “The Gates Foundation spends 2x WHO” on medical treatment for the developing countries.

  • Nanotech is the first innovation since globalization, says John Martin of the Washington Tech Alliance, so it’s less likely that a “hub” will form in a single region. You’ll see nanotech happening worldwide, in surprising places.

  • Research on treatments that only benefit the third world may not seem profitable, but focus on process improvements required to get to low prices is very effective.

Monday, February 13, 2006

Say "You" not "One"

My High School English teacher dinged me when I wrote sentences like

"You should buy this product"

Instead, she says I should write:
"One should buy this product"

That always irked me as unnatural, and I always ignored her. Now I see I have an ally:
Creating Passionate Users: Conversational writing kicks formal writing's ass

Sunday, February 12, 2006

Sleeping in Seattle

My daughter came with me to Espresso Vivace. Looks like she needs the coffee more...

Saturday, February 11, 2006

Rainy Day for MIPA

Mercer Island Preschool Association sponsored its annual Rainy Day event today, which ironically was one of the sunniest weekends we've had so far this Winter. I brought my video camera and took this short segment:

You can also see a much higher-quality, though higher-bandwidth Windows Media Player version if you click here.

Sunday school

my mobile blog

This is my first message, and it's a test.

LibraryLookup: Check Mercer Island library for books on Amazon

You're looking for books on Amazon, but before you buy it you wonder if the same book is available at the Mercer Island library. Well, now it's super-easy to check since Jon Udell wrote a very cool mashup called LibraryLookup bookmarklet for Mercer Island Public Library.

On Internet Explorer, do this:

  1. Click the Favorites menu; then "Add to Favorites"
  2. In the Add Favorites dialog box that appears, click on "Links", then "Create in".
  3. Type a name for the bookmark in the 'Name' field: e.g. "LibraryLookup"
  4. Click Okay.
  5. Copy this text: (just drag it with the mouse, then right-click and select copy)


  6. If the links toolbar on your browser is turned on, you should see a "LibraryLookup" icon at the top of the browser. Right-click it and select "Properties".
  7. Click into the URL field of the "Web Document" tab of the properties dialog box and paste the text you just selected.

    From now on, when you're browsing at Amazon for a book, you just click the LibraryLookup link in your browser and it will take you straight to the page for that exact title at the library.

    Note: the lookup uses the ISBN number, so this generally only works for the exact version of the title that the library would stock. Usually, this means you should be looking at the hardcover version on Amazon.

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Douglas Hofstadter

I'm so envious of Sean, who went to the lecture by Douglas Hofstadter at Stanford on Monday. I read that book in high school and remember attending the author's signing ceremony on one of my very first days at Stanford.

His father, a Nobel Prize-winner, taught my freshman physics class. I wonder what that family talks about at Thanksgiving dinners.

School Levy Passed

The Mercer Island School District levy passed by a comfortable margin: more than 70%.

Homeowners like me are very supportive because we know that good schools translates into higher property values and ever-rising living standards.

About 5,000 people voted, out of a total voting population of 15,000. That's half as many who voted in last November's election. About 1,300 people on the Island can be officially classified as nay-sayers.

Monday, February 06, 2006

Screaming Wolves at the Community Center

Our Y-Guides kindergarten group met tonight at the new Mercer Island Community Center. What a nice place for a get-together, especially for a group of boys who have been cooped up in Seattle's rainy weather for the past few months.

Share your Wi-Fi bandwidth

It's amazing it took so long for somebody to do this. FON is a Spanish company that is organizing a world-wide list of Wi-Fi access points. Anyone (including me!) who has a wireless router can join. If you agree to host the FON software on your access point, you get rights to every other FON user's access point.

So simply by making my home wireless free to my neighborhood in Mercer Island, I can access any other FON site in the world for free too.

Seattle Weblog meetups

I wish I had time to attend the monthly Weblogger Meetup organized by Anita Rowland . She sends a wonderful writeup after each meeting that summarizes the attendees, all of whom seem very interesting people.

My problem with blogs (like many aspects of new technology) is that I don't know what I don't know. This blog and others I keep are my attempt to understand the technology by playing with it informally. I've been at it long enough (since late 2002) that I sortta know a lot of things, but it's nice to talk with others and find more tricks and tools.

Sunday, February 05, 2006

TCS Daily - Stuck on 1968

TCS Daily - Stuck on 1968:

"The Conventional Wisdom among well-educated liberals in 1968 included the

  • Anti-Communism was a greater menace than Communism.
  • The planet could not possibly support the population increases that would take
    place by the end of the twentieth century.
  • Conservatives stood in the way of progress for minorities.
  • Government programs were the best way to lift people out of poverty.
  • What underdeveloped countries needed were large capital investments, financed by foreign aid from the rich countries.
  • Inflation was a cost-push phenomenon, requiring government intervention in
    wage and price setting.

The degree of confidence in these beliefs was so strong that liberals in 1968 came to the overriding conclusion that: Anyone who is not a liberal must be incorrigibly stupid."

Thursday, February 02, 2006

Rollyo personalized search

Walt Mossberg writes about the interesting Rollyo search engine. It's kind of like, only you search across a space of web sites.

For example, search a "Microsoft"-themed search roll on "Speech Recognition" and I get only 197 hits--far fewer than the 6M hits that a similar search on Google Microsoft gives. (The whole Google gives more than 60M). And all of the hits appear directly relevant. They should be: they're only from sites that have been hand-selected for this Rollyo roll.

The extra-cool factor is how anybody can publish their own roll of sites. So if you're an expert in a particular subject and you have your list of bookmarks that you'd ordinarily consult, you can now share that list with the world.