Saturday, May 19, 2007

Do You Remember...

playing on the playground swing set when you were like 10? Ok, maybe you were one of the kids who tried to be cool and stopped playing on a playground when you were 8. As for me, I think I enjoyed playground jaunts through high school. The point is, I think a part of all of us misses that. If you don't, then there's something wrong with you. My childhood was fraught with issues, but there was still something comforting about being on the swing. It's like nothing else mattered, and there was no stress to speak of. Your stress as a child usually involved monsters in closets and eating spinach. In any case though, things were calmer, especially at that playground. I had to get my parents' pool keys today for their neighborhood pool, so I decided to try out their swings while I was there. It was surprisingly fun. In actuality, it's kind of a metaphor for this month, maybe even this semester. It's fun and exciting on that swing, and it even gives you a bit of adrenaline at first because it seems frighteningly easy to fall off of it, especially when you get going pretty fast. Also, you really do forget your troubles, because you're more or less just absorbed in the moment. However, the world still continues on outside of the swing set, and I eventually had to get off and face it. I felt pretty happy this week, with how things were going. I don't know that things will stay that way, but I know that I'd like them to and I hope for the best and that's all I can do. The only thing I really do know for sure is that I'll only be in this state for another week, and then I go to work at one of the sole survivors of the .com boom. I didn't think I'd be so excited and so depressed about it though. As great as it will be is as sad I am about the people I'm leaving behind (one person, in particular, who knows who they are). I feel like it hasn't quite hit me yet though, and I'll be in Austin a few more days next week. So I'll get to ride my swing set again, and I have another week before I have to get off of it. Let's hope that I survive the transition!

Since I've missed so many days, I'll share some pictures from you guys. I had picked up some flowers the other week, and they actually looked kinda neat in the midst of dying and blooming:

We went to Mt. Bonnell last week...

...and saw sunset:

Went to Blanton for the first time in several months. They had copied an outdoor installation that MFAH had a while ago:

Finally went to the Ikea out in Round Rock:

Followed by a trip to the Round Rock Outlet Mall, which was nice (got a couple of new BR shirts, woot). Then, we went canoing on Town Lake...

and some ducks ended up following us for a bit:

Alright, now that you guys are all caught up, let's get down to business. It looks like EMI meant business about non-exclusivity on DRM-free music, because now Amazon has announced that they'll be selling DRM-free mp3s later this year. The way it appears, the only music they'll serve up will be DRM-free. I think that this is the best possible way Amazon can jump in the digital music market since they already have a CD store people trust and they just need to be sharp enough to bring that audience into mp3s. If they strapped DRM to them, it'd be tricky, but without the restrictions they may stand a chance against iTunes if they market it well and have a nice, fast, clean UI, something they've become pretty good at.

If you're one of these people that scour the Google blogs to find out about new products, then you may need a life. Seriously though, if you're interested in their new products, they've opened up a site to showcase experimental products for you to check out. I like the idea of the left-hand side search navigation, but I think that it may take up too much room and may work better as a rollover thing.

Apple has announced that the iPhone will be available at roughly 2000 stores next month when it's released. It'll only be sold at Apple stores and AT&T retailers, which is the bulk of that number. Oh, and despite what you may have heard over the past couple of days, the reports that the release will be delayed were bogus. It came from a supposed internal memo that ended up being a fake (likely purposely generated to smoke out leaks or to confuse the guerrilla bloggers).

Having been through a lot of interviews and drill myself with riddles, I had to plug WTF when they made a post about how ridiculous these bloody riddles are. There are a couple that I think are pretty damn cool, but I've had totally non-technical people get these riddles right, and obviously they'd be horrible programmers since they don't really know how. If you're interviewing someone in CS: ask them about their background, give them scenarios, and give them coding questions, but don't ask them why a manhole cover is round. That would just demean you as an interviewer.

The P2P client LimeWire is facing major litigation from the RIAA, but they're fighting back with a countersuit under antitrust laws. This Mark Gorton guy has balls, but I just don't know if he really has a case. Given the legal environment outlined by the Grokster case and the DMCA, I think he's facing a steep, uphill battle.

Just a quick one-liner: if you're tired of giving your computer the reach-around to plug in your favorite USB devices, you may soon have a wireless option. It's already selling in Japan, so let's hope that the price drops from the ~$328 a 4 port wireless USB hub currently costs over there.

One more one-liner: Starcraft 2 was announced! Woot!

Apparently, the Transformers trailer came out, and it's ridiculously awesome. So I'm more optimistic about it now than I was before, but I definitely hope that being a movie created for geeks that it will deliver in substance as much as in crazy special effects.

There's also a trailer out there finally for Bee Movie, but I'm still not interested. Putting Jerry Seinfeld's name on a movie doesn't make it funny, so I still have plenty of reservations on this flick.

If you're salivating for more on Ocean's 13, check this out. It's a little featurette that explores the plot.

Lastly, Bat fans will get a kick out of this ad campaign for Harvey Dent from The Dark Knight. We won't see Two Face in this one, but at least we'll see the District Attorney we'll all surely love to hate. He's actually a fairly complex character, and I really hope that Christopher Nolan explores the grey area between where he's a good guy and where he's a bad guy in a later movie.

I'm going to try the Saturday Special Meme:

1. Favorite TV Chef:
Giada De Laurentiis
2. Favorite TV Cooking Personality:
Alton Brown
3. Favorite TV Dinner:
I don't buy TV Dinners, I prefer to cook =P
4. Favorite Watching TV Movie Snack:

I just wanted to give big ups real quick to the Blogger team for that auto-save feature they put in. I've wanted this for a long time, I just didn't think about it, because I've lost several posts in the past.

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