Tuesday, December 23, 2003

As the year comes to an end, many magazines, newspapers and websites compile their "Best of the Year" lists. Fimoculous has gathered an extensive list of links to the year's best books, movies, music and more. He includes everything from Mojo's Albums of 2003 to Space.com's Top 10 Space Mysteries of 2003.

Sunday, December 21, 2003

Here are three political items I found on the Internet this weekend. First, in this article from CommonWealth magazine, Robert David Sullivan analyzes presidential politics by dividing the United States into 10 regions. He explains that a candidate must carry at least 5, and preferably 6, of these regions to win the presidency.

Second, whatever you do, don't criticize Wesley Clark's patriotism.

Third, guess what happens when you type "unelectable" into Google, and hit the "I'm Feeling Lucky" button?

Thursday, December 18, 2003

Have you ever wondered how big a music nerd you are? Luckily, scientists have developed a tool to help you answer that question. To find out, take the Music Nerd Test. I scored 36.95652%, which makes me a Major Music Nerd.

Wednesday, December 17, 2003

Clive Thompson explains why old video games like Space Invaders, Pac-Man, and even Joust are better than many current video games in this Slate article.

Tuesday, December 16, 2003

Everett Ehrlich examines the future of American presidential politics in this Washington Post article. He thinks that "in the next six or eight presidential elections, a third-party candidate will win the presidency," because new technology will allow candidates to win elections without the traditional parties. In the current campaign, he sees Howard Dean as "essentially a third-party candidate using modern technology to achieve a takeover of the Democratic Party. Other candidates -- John Kerry, John Edwards, Wesley Clark -- are competing to take control of the party's fundraising, organizational and media operations. But Dean is not interested in taking control of those depreciating assets. He is creating his own party, his own lists, his own money, his own organization. What he wants are the Democratic brand name and legacy, the party's last remaining assets of value, as part of his marketing strategy."

Monday, December 15, 2003

In this Slate article, William Saletan explains why the capture of Saddam Hussein does not necessarily mean that George W. Bush will win re-election.

Sunday, December 14, 2003

There are more than 36,000 films available on DVD. But many classics, including all the Marx Brothers movies, have not been released on DVD. This New York Times article explains why.

Thursday, December 11, 2003

What is George W. Bush's ideology? According to this New Republic article by Jonathan Chait, it is to reward and enrich rich people, business interests, and religious conservatives.

Tuesday, December 09, 2003

This introduction to weblogs was written for the Spanish tech conference Artfutura by Boing Boing contributor Xeni Jardin.

Monday, December 08, 2003

Al Franken discusses his book, Fox's lawsuit, and whether he will have his own radio show, or run for office in this Minneapolis Star Tribune interview.

Sunday, December 07, 2003

As I posted last Wednesday, a Google search for "miserable failure" leads to George W. Bush's official White House biography. This Newsday article explains how a technique called Google bombing makes this prank work.

Thursday, December 04, 2003

Jonathan Yardley looks back at the life and work of author John D. MacDonald in this Washington Post article.

Wednesday, December 03, 2003

Here's some more Internet fun. Go to Google. Type in "Miserable Failure", and click the "I'm feeling lucky" button. Or, if you're in a hurry, just click here.

Tuesday, December 02, 2003

Howard Dean has begun attacking George W. Bush for having "no understanding of defense," and for having "made us weaker." In this Slate article, William Saletan explains why it makes sense that "A guy who has no foreign policy experience, opposed the war in Iraq, and went skiing after he escaped the Vietnam draft because of a bad back is calling a wartime president soft on defense."

Monday, December 01, 2003

Triumph, the Insult Comic Dog is a funny, foul-mouthed dog puppet created by Robert Smigel. Triumph is best known for his appearances on Late Night with Conan O'Brien. Click here to see video clips of Triumph on Late Night, including "Triumph Visits the 'Star Wars' Nerds." Click here to visit Triumph's official website. Finally, click here to listen to an interview with Triumph on NPR's Fresh Air.

Tuesday, November 25, 2003

E. J. Dionne considers whether Howard Dean's presidential campaign resembles Barry Goldwater's 1964 campaign in this Washington Post column.

Monday, November 24, 2003

Here are two Boston Globe articles about presidential political history. First, Christopher Shea discusses Professor Stephen Skowronek's theory that U.S. political history is "a sequence of political creation, decline, and reconstruction." Second, Mark Stricherz explains the importance of the McGovern-Fraser commission in the creation of America's current presidential nominating process.

Thursday, November 20, 2003

In this Slate article, David Greenberg discusses theories that link the Kennedy assassination and the Watergate scandal.

Wednesday, November 19, 2003

This Wired article discusses how Phillip K. Dick's stories have become source material for movies in the 20 years since his death. Paycheck, the 6th film based on Dick's work, will be released this Christmas.

Tuesday, November 18, 2003

This Fast Company article explains the costs of doing business with Wal-Mart.

Monday, November 17, 2003

Let Them Sing It For You is the most Internet fun I've had in a while. This Swedish website lets you hear any words you want sung, "by some of the world's greatest pop stars." Type in a word or phrase and then listen to them sung from their database of sampled lyrics. After you follow the link, give the site time to process and then listen to the sample phrase "to the beat of the rhythm of the night." Then close the box in the center of the screen, type in any words you want, click "Let Them Sing It", let it process, and click "start". So far my favorite phrase is "Hello, I Love You." Can you recognize the four singers?

Sunday, November 16, 2003

According to this BBC article, scientists have discovered that frogs croak in regional accents.

Thursday, November 13, 2003

The New York Times recently gave a bad review to Neal Pollack's new book Never Mind the Pollacks. Pollack responded with this rant, which may have been partly inspired by this story from the New Yorker.

Wednesday, November 12, 2003

William Saletan explains how Howard Dean's campaign is like the war in Iraq in this Slate article.

Tuesday, November 11, 2003

This New York Times article discusses "When Bad DVDs Happen to Great Films."

Monday, November 10, 2003

This CNN/Money article lists ways to escape automated customer service and talk to a live operator at several banks, airlines, credit card companies, and computer support centers.

Thursday, November 06, 2003

In this New Yorker article, Seymour Hersch tells the story of alleged war crimes committed in Viet Nam by an American unit called Tiger Force. This story was recently uncovered by the Toledo Blade, but has been ignored by the mainstream media.

Wednesday, November 05, 2003

Bruce Sterling has started a new weblog called Beyond the Beyond. A permanent link to Sterling's blog has been added to the Blog Links on the right of this page.

Tuesday, November 04, 2003

This New York Times article profiles The Paul Green School of Rock Music, a real life School of Rock.

Monday, November 03, 2003

The results are in. Karl Heinz Hille has been crowned World Beard and Moustache Champion.

Wednesday, October 29, 2003

Michael Dirda discusses the humor of Gary Larson in this review of "The Complete Far Side."

Tuesday, October 28, 2003

Michael Kinsley explains "One Reason Not to Like Bush" in this Washington Post column.

Monday, October 27, 2003

The Internet offers access to incredible amounts of information, but a lot of information is missing because most books are not available on the Internet. Amazon.com is trying to solve this problem with a new feature called "Search Inside the Book," which allows you to search the text of more than 120,000 books. Gary Wolf explains how Search Inside the Book works and discusses other projects designed to bring books to the Internet in this article from Wired magazine. Steven Johnson also discusses Search Inside the Book in this Slate article.

Thursday, October 23, 2003

Yesterday's amusing bass guitar website reminded me of another funny music website. Follow this link to Rock and Roll Confidential's Hall of Douchebags. It's a gallery of over 500 photos of rock bands with snide commentary added. Click on the pictures in the index to begin your tour. You will see the three great cliches of rock band photos: brick walls, chain link fences, and railroad tracks.

Wednesday, October 22, 2003

BunnyBass maintains the Archive of Amusing Bass/Guitars. According to the site, "some may just be weird-looking, some are somewhat odd-but-pleasant, and still others may make you almost physically ill." You can browse through all 62 pages from this index. Some of the more unusual basses are the Watermelon Bass, the Big Wood U.S.A., the Stoneman Nude, and what can only be called the Wangcaster.

Tuesday, October 21, 2003

This Boston Globe article examines General Wesley Clark's record during the war in Kosovo.

Monday, October 20, 2003

This New Yorker article by Seymour Hersch explains how and why the Bush administration's prewar assessment of Iraq’s weapons of mass destruction was wrong.

Sunday, October 19, 2003

Here's a review of Al Franken's new book from The Oregonian newspaper. The reviewer, a conservative columnist, writes that the book left her "utterly shocked" because it made her realize that,

" The leaders we conservatives have trusted have taken advantage of our trust to line the pockets of the wealthy and powerful, and it's time we rose up and drove out these greedy liars. They've hijacked and distorted our belief system for their own gain, and in doing so are destroying our credibility. "

Thursday, October 16, 2003

Here are two Slate articles on rock music. First, Alex Abramovich wonders "What might School of Rock tell us about the state of rock 'n' roll?" Second, Chris Suellentrop takes a look at the career of R.E.M.

Wednesday, October 15, 2003

This article from Reform Judaism magazine explains "How the Jews Created the Comic Book Industry."

Tuesday, October 14, 2003

"Mitsi Kato's fifth-grade class at Roosevelt Elementary in San Leandro consented to a simple experiment: We will play a career-spanning selection of Radiohead songs; the kids, equipped with Sharpies and blank sheets of paper, will simply draw whatever the music suggests to them. We don't even give them the name of the band. They don't know anything about Radiohead, the mountain of criticism, the mythology. Their thoughts and interpretations are pure, unsullied, literally unique.

They are also extremely bizarre."

The experiment's results are reported in this article from the East Bay Express.

Monday, October 13, 2003

Frank Rich sees the California recall election as Disneyland with an Audio-Animatronic Candidate in this New York Times column.

Sunday, October 12, 2003

The second season of the British TV show "The Office" premiered tonight on the BBC America cable network. The first episode show was as funny and excruciating as last season. Here are reviews of the show from the Boston Globe, New York Times and USA Today. The New York Times also has this interview with Ricky Gervais, the show's co-creator and star.

Thursday, October 09, 2003

Thomas Pynchon will be a guest voice on The Simpsons next season according to this interview with Al Jean, the show's executive producer.

Wednesday, October 08, 2003

Angle-Grinder Man calls himself "the world's first wheel-clamp and speed camera vigilante cum subversive superhero philanthropist entertainer type personage." He wears a homemade blue and gold superhero costume and offers free wheel-clamp removal to stranded motorists in London. Read more about him in this Reuters article, this New York Times article, or at the Angle-Grinder Man website.

Tuesday, October 07, 2003

General Wesley Clark explains what went wrong in Iraq in this article from the New York Review of Books.

Monday, October 06, 2003

Here's a game called The Office Space: Surviving ‘til Vacation. Click launch to load the game.

The rules are simple:

1. Finish your work by collecting folders.
2. Avoid the supervisors.

Sunday, October 05, 2003

Jonathan Chait discusses his hatred of President George W. Bush in this article from the New Republic. Chait writes that he hates Bush because he thinks "his policies rank him among the worst presidents in U.S. history." Chait also admits that he hates Bush for more personal reasons: "He reminds me of a certain type I knew in high school--the kid who was given a fancy sports car for his sixteenth birthday and believed that he had somehow earned it." Chait doesn't think that he's the only American who hates Bush. He quotes Pollster Geoff Garin who says hatred of Bush is "as strong as anything I've experienced in 25 years now of polling."

Several conservatives, such as David Brooks in this New York Times column, have responded that the hatred Chait discusses is a "threat to democracy." Brooks ignores Chait's policy differences with Bush, and conveniently downplays conservative hatred of President Clinton.

Chait responds to Brooks in this article.

Thursday, October 02, 2003

The Original Illustrated Catalog Of ACME Products includes "information and pictures of all ACME products, specialty divisions, and services featured in Warner Bros. cartoons from 1935 to 1964." The catalog includes everything from ACME Anvils, to the ACME straight-jacket ejecting bazooka, to the ACME do-it-yourself tornado kit.

Wednesday, October 01, 2003

Bruce Sterling discusses Ten Technologies That Deserve to Die in this article from Technology Review.

Tuesday, September 30, 2003

In this article from The Atlantic Monthly, Paul Davies considers whether religions could survive the discovery of life elsewhere in the universe.

Monday, September 29, 2003

This New York Times article takes you along on a night out with Tommy Stinson.

Sunday, September 28, 2003

The World Beard and Moustache Championships will be held on November 1st in Carson City, Nevada. It's the first time this event has been held in the United States. Over 100 contestants from several countries will compete including Willi Chevalier the current world champion from Singmaringen, Germany and the Swabian Beard Club.

Thursday, September 25, 2003

The Wayback Machine lets you access archived versions of over 30 billion stored web pages archived from 1996 to a few months ago. For example, here's what Yahoo looked like in 1997 and here's Amazon.com from 1996.

Wednesday, September 24, 2003

Timothy Noah noticed that conservative Republicans seem to want Hillary Clinton to run for president in 2004. He examines this phenomena in two Slate articles. In the first article Noah demonstrates that the "Draft Hillary" movement consists almost entirely of conservative Republicans. In his second article Noah explains why all these conservatives want Hillary Clinton to run for president.

Tuesday, September 23, 2003

In this article from The Atlantic Monthly, Jack Beatty explains that the only way George W. Bush can be re-elected is if voters ignore his long list of failures.

Thursday, September 18, 2003

Bacteriophages are naturally occurring organisms that kill bacteria. With more and more bacteria becoming immune to antibiotics, scientists are looking at bacteriophages as an alternative way of treating infections. According to this Wired article, "this approach to fighting infection lets nature do the lab work usually carried out at tremendous expense, and with high failure rates, by the pharmaceutical industry. In contrast to engineered drugs, phages are as numerous and varied as the bacteria they attack. What's more, they evolve along with their prey, matching bacterial adaptation step by step."

Wednesday, September 17, 2003

Tuesday, September 16, 2003

Retired General Wesley Clark is expected to announce that he's running for president today. I don't know how interested voters are in Clark, but he seems to be doing pretty well with journalists and pundits. Salon's Eric Boehlert examines Clark's candidacy in this article, while Joe Conason discusses how Clark will change the race in this column. The Washington Post provides this profile of General Clark. Joshua Marshall looks at Clark's chances in this post from his weblog Talking Points Memo. Finally Slate's David Greenberg looks at the history of how generals are elected president in this article.

Monday, September 15, 2003

Since 1998 Rob Cockerham has used this website to record the results from his experiments to determine "How Much is Inside?" Some of his experiments have included finding out how much is inside a keg, a Chevy Trailblazer, a tube of toothpaste, and a Sharpie.

Sunday, September 14, 2003

Is America in decline? The authors of several recent books think that it is. Laura Secor examines whether America is in decline in this Boston Globe article.

Thursday, September 11, 2003

Here are two Slate articles on the second anniversary of the September 11 attacks. First, this article by David Plotz discusses six misconceptions about September 11. Second, Fred Kaplan discusses President Bush's foreign policy miscalculations since September 11.

Wednesday, September 10, 2003

According to this MTV.com article, the Pixies are reuniting for a world tour.

Tuesday, September 09, 2003

Mysterious ceramic tiles have been found embedded in the streets of several American cities. The tiles all say:

IN KubricK's `2001

This Kansas City Star article discusses the strange tiles and wonders what they mean. The website What Is It? is devoted to the Toynbee tiles and includes a list of tile locations.

Monday, September 08, 2003

On September 21st, the Galileo Orbiter will crash into the planet Jupiter. Galileo made several scientific discoveries on its mission, some of which suggest there may be life on Jupiter's moon Europa. NASA is ending the mission to avoid the possibility of contaminating Jupiter's moons. This New Yorker article by Michael Benson discusses Galileo's discoveries and explains the engineering problems NASA overcame to make the Galileo mission successful.

Sunday, September 07, 2003

Blogenheimer now includes a list of links to my favorite weblogs. The Blog Links are on the right side of the page, just above the archives. Talking Points Memo is the blog of political writer Joshua Marshall. Altercation, written by Eric Alterman, covers politics and popular culture. Boing Boing is a collective weblog on popular culture and technology. Comic book writer Warren Ellis writes the weblog Die Puny Humans.

Thursday, September 04, 2003

The City Pages compiled this oral history of the Minneapolis nightclub First Avenue.

Wednesday, September 03, 2003

Although he died in 1982, Lester Bangs is still considered America's best rock music critic. The release of the collection "Mainlines, Blood Feasts, and Bad Taste," provides an opportunity to take another look at Bangs' work. Andrew Leonard argues in this Salon article that Bangs was a great critic because he cared about music. According to Leonard, "Lester on Black Sabbath is a revelation, Lester on punk is magisterial, Lester on Jamaica is a tour de force of brutal honesty. " In this Slate article, Sasha Frere-Jones says Bangs was a great critic because he was both passionate and skeptical about music.

Was he really that good? Decide for yourself. You can read Lester Bangs' article about Black Sabbath here.

Tuesday, September 02, 2003

Joshua Marshall discusses Presidential lying in this Washington Monthly article. According to Marshall, "Every president deceives. But each has his own style of deceit." George W. Bush and his administration "specialize in a particular form of deception: The confidently expressed, but currently undisprovable assertion."

Monday, September 01, 2003

I saw and enjoyed the movie American Splendor this weekend. The film is based on the autobiographical comic book writen by Harvey Pekar. Here are reviews of American Splendor from The Onion, the Village Voice, and the New York Times.

Thursday, August 28, 2003

National Lampoon's Animal House was released in 1978. In honor of the film’s 25th anniversary, the new “Double Secret Probation Edition" of the Animal House DVD was released this week, causing stories by many news organizations. The New York Times examines the movie's influence in this article. MSNBC interviews several of the Animal House actors here. This National Public Radio story includes video clips, music and recorded interviews. Finally, the ACME Animal House site has just about all the information you could ever want on the film.

Wednesday, August 27, 2003

On the eve of what would have been Jack Kirby's 86th birthday, Elvis Mitchell and Michael Chabon discuss the influence of the "King of Comics" in this New York Times article.

Tuesday, August 26, 2003

Neal Stephenson's new novel Quicksilver will be released in September. The book is set during the 1600s and includes both fictional characters and historical figures such as Isaac Newton. It is the first of three books in Stephenson's Baroque Cycle. The other two novels are scheduled to follow Quicksilver at 6-month intervals. Stephenson discusses his new book and other things in this Wired interview.

This article by Timothy Ferris discusses the life of Isaac Newton.

Monday, August 25, 2003

As reported in this Salon article, the request by Fox News for an injunction against Al Franken's new book, “Lies: And the Lying Liars Who Tell Them-A Fair and Balanced Look at the Right,” was refused by U.S. District Judge Denny Chin on Friday. "There are hard cases and there are easy cases," said Chin. "This is an easy case. The case is wholly without merit both factually and legally…It is ironic that a media company that should seek to protect the First Amendment is instead seeking to undermine it."

Ben McGrath discusses the question "So what was Fox thinking?" in this New Yorker article.

This MSNBC article includes an excerpt from Franken's book and a video interview with Franken.

Sunday, August 24, 2003

Peter Berkowitz argues that George W. Bush is really a moderate in this Boston Globe article. The American Prospect's weblog TAPPED responds here.

Wednesday, August 20, 2003

Jim Holt discusses whether parallel universes exist in this Slate article.

Tuesday, August 19, 2003

Thanks to his appearance on The Simpsons, Dr. Stephen Hawking now has his own action figure.

Monday, August 18, 2003

Paul Krugman explains how deregulation helped cause last week's blackout in his New York Times column, and Tom Oliphant explains the political obstacles to fixing the problem in his Boston Globe column. If you are worried about power grids around the country, check the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory's Current Energy site for the status of five regional power grids. The site plans to have power grid information for the whole country soon. This National Post article discusses the cultural history of urban darkness.

Sunday, August 17, 2003

I don't quote the Chairman of the Republican Party of Alabama very often, but I'm quoting him below because according to this Washington Post article, Alabama politics have taken an unusual turn this year.

"We've got a conservative, evangelical Christian, Republican governor," Alabama Republican Party Chairman Marty Connors said, enunciating each word as if to get his head around the details, "trying to get a massive turnout of black voters to pass a tax increase so he can raise taxes on Republican constituents."

Thursday, August 14, 2003

You may remember Troy McClure from such films as "Hitler Doesn't Live Here Anymore" and "It's a Wonderful Belt." How about "Gladys The Groovy Mule" or "The Revenge of Abe Lincoln"? Those films are just a small part of McClure's career. The Simpsons Archive has compiled a complete list of McClure’s work in this surprisingly extensive filmography.

Wednesday, August 13, 2003

Here's something you don't see everyday. It's a wooden mirror.

Tuesday, August 12, 2003

Fox News has sued Al Franken over the title of Franken's new book, "Lies and the Lying Liars Who Tell Them: A Fair and Balanced Look at the Right." Fox claims to have registered the phrase "Fair & Balanced" as a trademark in 1995. Fox's complaint is surprisingly nasty. It refers to Franken as "shrill and unstable", "either intoxicated or deranged", and a "parasite." I don't know why Fox would sue Franken at all. Prior restraint suits almost always lose. All they've done is give Franken free publicity for his book. Here are articles about the case from the New York Times and the Washington Post. Franken responds in this Associated Press article.

Monday, August 11, 2003

Two new books, The Clinton Wars by Sidney Blumenthal and Living History by Hillary Rodham Clinton, have attempted to put the Clinton presidency in perspective. Unfortunately, most reviews of these books ignore the broader issues these books raise and instead concentrate on refighting the impeachment or personal attacks on Bill and Hillary Clinton. However, a few thoughtful reviews have appeared. The two most intersting reviews I've read are Gary Wills' review in the New York Review of Books, and Todd Gitlin's review on the openDemocracy website.

Sunday, August 10, 2003

This Washington Post article presents new information on how the Bush administration manipulated intelligence on Iraqi weapons programs to justify war with Iraq. It finds that:

"The new information indicates a pattern in which President Bush, Vice President Cheney and their subordinates -- in public and behind the scenes -- made allegations depicting Iraq's nuclear weapons program as more active, more certain and more imminent in its threat than the data they had would support. On occasion administration advocates withheld evidence that did not conform to their views. The White House seldom corrected misstatements or acknowledged loss of confidence in information upon which it had previously relied."

Thursday, August 07, 2003

Karen Kwiatkowski is an Air Force Lieutenant Colonel who recently retired. During her last three years in the service she worked for the Office of the Secretary of Defense’s Under Secretariat for Policy. Kwiatkowski explains what has gone wrong with U.S. Middle East policy in this article from the Akron Beacon Journal.

Wednesday, August 06, 2003

This Boston Globe magazine article by Charles Pierce examines the history of polygraphs, and discusses whether lie detectors really work.

Tuesday, August 05, 2003

Some members of the Bush administration are surprised by the problems the U.S. is having in post-war Iraq. They wouldn't be surprised if they had asked James Dobbins, the former special envoy to post-Taliban Afghanistan, who has written a book that argues that "nearly everything this administration has said and done about postwar Iraq is wrong." They also could have asked the "Army's Most Decorated Soldier", Colonel David Hackworth.

Monday, August 04, 2003

During the Great Depression, the Federal government funded the Federal Writers' Project to provide work for unemployed writers, editors, and researchers. Saul Bellow, John Cheever, and Studs Terkel were among the more than 6,600 people who participated in the project. In this New York Times article, historian Douglas Brinkley discusses the Federal Writers' Project. Some of the Federal Writers' Project's oral history interviews are now available online at Library of Congress's American Life Histories web site.

Thursday, July 31, 2003

Director Sandy Collora wanted to make a short film that would help him get noticed by the film industry. So he made an 8-minute film called Batman: Dead End, in which Batman fights the Joker and two other movie villains. You can read a review of the film here, and download Batman: Dead End here.

Some filmmakers in the Philippines have also made their own Batman movie. Their version is "an outlandish so-bad-it's-good production" that includes several musical numbers. Here's a review of Alyas Batman and Robin from Film Threat.com.

Wednesday, July 30, 2003

In this Slate article, Sam Tanenhaus explains why conservatives are afraid of Ann Coulter.

Tuesday, July 29, 2003

Dateline: Hollywood is a new satirical website that focuses on the entertainment industry. It's described as "a satire of Hollywood and entertainment journalism -- think The Onion meets Daily Variety, Entertainment Weekly, and Entertainment Tonight." This week's edition includes a story about movie marketing that begins:

"It was an impressive weekend for the marketing department at Dimension Films, a division of Miramax, as the people who promoted “Spy Kids 3D: Game Over" reached out and swindled the American public out of $32.5 million."

Monday, July 28, 2003

Yesterday Milwaukee Brewers radio announcer Bob Uecker was awarded the Ford C. Frick Award for broadcast excellence and inducted into the broadcaster's wing of the Baseball Hall of Fame. Pretty good for a lifetime .200 hitter. Here are articles on Uecker from the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel and ESPN.

Thursday, July 24, 2003

In this Slate article, Ian Austen explains why this year's Tour de France is "promising to be one of the great Tours of the postwar era."

Wednesday, July 23, 2003

Here's an "interview" with science fiction author Phillip K. Dick, who died in 1982. The interview includes Dick's views on the topics "What is reality?" and "What constitutes the authentic human being?" Everything Dick says is taken from his fiction, letters, or essays.

Tuesday, July 22, 2003

Monday, July 21, 2003

Hey, "Dudeness, or uh, Duder, or El Duderino if you’re not into the whole brevity thing,” the 2nd Annual Lebowski Fest was held last weekend. Lebowski Fest is an opportunity for fans of the movie "The Big Lebowski" to gather in Louisville, Kentucky for "an annual celebration of all things Lebowski." Click here to read an MSNBC article about Lebowski Fest.

Thursday, July 17, 2003

Here's some internet fun. Go to Google. Type in "Weapons of Mass Destruction", and click the "I'm feeling lucky" button. Or, if you're in a hurry, just click here.

Wednesday, July 16, 2003

Steven Johnson writes that Google transformed "searching for information . . . from a sluggish, unreliable process to something you could do with genuine confidence." But Google is not perfect. In this Slate article Johnson discusses problems with Google.

Tuesday, July 15, 2003

I've seen several reunited punk bands over the last year. Last November I saw Mission of Burma. Last month I saw The Fall, and tonight I saw X. Both Mission of Burma and X put on great shows, and would be well worth seeing again. Who's next? Well, the Pixies may reunite.

Monday, July 14, 2003

BananaSlug is a search engine that helps you find new and unexpected information on the internet. According to the BananaSlug site:

"BananaSlug was designed to promote serendipitous surfing: finding the unexpected in the 3,083,324,652 web pages indexed by Google. Directed Google searches return pages most relevant to your search term, based on the pages' popularity on the Web. You may never see some of the pages way down the list that are relevant or interesting, but off the beaten path.

So we give you a little boost. We "seed" your search with another word, chosen at random, and this accidental encounter results in pages you may have overlooked."

Monday, July 07, 2003

I won't be posting this week because I will be on vacation. I'll leave you with a panorama of this year's 4th of July Fireworks from the Empire State Building.

Thursday, July 03, 2003

Here are two very different articles about popular music. First, Robert Christgau of the Village Voice reviews the new Radiohead album and considers the state of rock music today. He finds that Radiohead is "the only youngish band standing that combines critical consensus with the ability to fill a venue larger than the Hammerstein Ballroom." and carries "the dubious, dangerous mantle of Only Band That Matters."

On the other hand, David Lee Roth is a little less serious in this interview from the Wave. When asked "Is it safe to say you were the first to marry rock ‘n’ roll and spandex?," Dave replies, " No. But I was the first to make sense out of it. "

Wednesday, July 02, 2003

Ruy Teixeira, co-author of the book The Emerging Democratic Majority and this companion New Republic article, has his own website called The Emerging Democratic Majority. It includes his weblog called Donkey Rising.

Tuesday, July 01, 2003

Jan Swafford tries to understand Beethoven's Ninth Symphony in this Slate article.

Monday, June 30, 2003

In this New Republic article, John Judis and Spencer Ackerman examine how the Bush administration misused intelligence information to make their case for war in Iraq. Here's an excerpt:

"From late August 2002 to mid-March of this year, the Bush administration made its case for war by focusing on the threat posed to the United States by Saddam Hussein's nuclear, chemical, and biological weapons and by his purported links to the Al Qaeda terrorist network. . . Yet there was no consensus within the American intelligence community that Saddam represented such a grave and imminent threat. Rather, interviews with current and former intelligence officials and other experts reveal that the Bush administration culled from U.S. intelligence those assessments that supported its position and omitted those that did not."

Tuesday, June 24, 2003

Daniel Gross explains how the rich are staying rich through the help of the federal government (Bush tax cut) in this Slate article.

Monday, June 23, 2003

My friend Paul has been drinking Pabst Blue Ribbon for years. According to this article from the New York Times Magazine, Paul was a man ahead of his time. After years of decline, Pabst is making a comeback.

Sunday, June 22, 2003

Doug Grow examines the similarities and differences between Howard Dean and Paul Wellstone in this Minneapolis Star Tribune column.

Thursday, June 19, 2003

In this Slate article, William Saletan tells the surprising story of John Kerry, comedian.

Wednesday, June 18, 2003

Danny Goldberg is a music industry executive and a left-wing activist. In his new book "Dispatches From the Culture Wars: How the Left Lost Teen Spirit," he argues that one reason Democrats are losing elections is that they have lost touch with American popular culture. He discusses his argument in this Salon interview. (Thanks, Mike!)

Tuesday, June 17, 2003

Rand Beers was the Bush administration's top anti-terrorism operative until he resigned a few months ago. In this Washington Post article, Beers says he quit because, "The administration wasn't matching its deeds to its words in the war on terrorism. They're making us less secure, not more secure." Beers is now national security adviser to Senator John Kerry's presidential campaign.

Monday, June 16, 2003

In this Boston Globe article, Thomas Powers discusses two questions raised by the failure to find Iraqi weapons of mass destruction: "How could America's $30 billion-a-year intelligence industry get things so wrong? And why did the White House persuade itself to go to war on the basis of evidence so flimsy?"

Thursday, June 12, 2003

Last week New York Times columnist Tom Friedman argued that the failure to find Weapons of Mass Destruction in Iraq wasn't really important because it wasn't the real reason for the war in Iraq. Now CNN columnist Mark Shields points out some things that Friedman seems to have forgotten: democracy, informed consent, and the President's credibility.

Wednesday, June 11, 2003

Dan Chiasson reports on the Northeast regional semifinals of the U.S. Air Guitar Championships in this Slate article.

Tuesday, June 10, 2003

ESPN.com senior writer Rob Neyer has selected his Dream Team for each major league baseball team. The Milwaukee Brewers Dream Team is here. Yount and Molitor were so good that they both get to play two positions.

Monday, June 09, 2003

QTVR panoramas let you see a 360 degree view of a location. Here's a panorama of the Golden Gate from Lands End, San Francisco and here's the view from the summit of Mount Everest. Links to other QTVR panoramas are at the top of each page.

Sunday, June 08, 2003

According to this Opinion Journal article by John McDonough, Bob Hope's films, "contain some of the boldest, most inconspicuously avant-garde strokes of postmodern sleight of hand ever seen on the screen."

Thursday, June 05, 2003

The Geekmaster defines a geek as, "a person who is talented in an area outside the boundaries of social normality." To find out if you are a geek, take his geektest.

Wednesday, June 04, 2003

Hendrik Hertzberg compares the Bush Administration's Iraq policy with its domestic policy in this New Yorker article.

Tuesday, June 03, 2003

Fred Kaplan asks, "Did Iraq really have weapons of mass destruction?" in this Slate article.

Monday, June 02, 2003

Norman Ornstein, a resident scholar at the American Enterprise Institute, asks the question, "What would happen if a bomb wiped out the federal government?" in this article from The Atlantic.

Thursday, May 29, 2003

According to the Washington Post, "much of his style and energy came from fury over anti-Semitism and an urge to crush Jewish stereotypes." Ladies and Gentlemen, Mr. David Lee Roth.

Tuesday, May 27, 2003

Dr. David Livingstone and Sir Henry Morton Stanley were two of the best-known explorers of the 19th century. This New Yorker article explains how their reputations have fallen and, in Livingstone's case, risen again.

Monday, May 26, 2003

I saw The Matrix Reloaded this weekend and thought it was OK. I enjoyed some parts, like the freeway chase scene (a combination of The Road Warrior and To Live and Die in L.A.), and didn't enjoy other parts, like most of Morpheus' speeches. Overall, I thought it was somewhere between the rave Andrew O'Hehir gave it in Salon, and the pan David Edelstein gave it in Slate.

Thursday, May 22, 2003

This week The Onion interviews a '90s punk who believes today's punk rock is "just a pale, watered-down imitation" of classic 1990s punk rock.

Wednesday, May 21, 2003

Here's an article from The American Prospect on the danger of new epidemics. According to the article, "The world will likely face numerous global epidemics like SARS -- and far worse ones -- in the near future."

Tuesday, May 20, 2003

In this Slate article Fred Kaplan examines the story that "before Gulf War II began, U.S. special forces had gone in and bribed Iraqi generals not to fight."

Monday, May 19, 2003

I use Blogenheimer to link to interesting things that I've found on the internet. Unlike me, some bloggers use their blogs as diaries to comment on their personal experiences. This New York Times article discusses the problems faced by these bloggers: "hurt feelings, newly wary friends and relatives, and the occasional inflamed employer."

Sunday, May 18, 2003

Here's a whole page of games from a website called Orisinal.

Thursday, May 15, 2003

Since we are three years into the 21st Century, Brendan Koerner wonders, "Where are the flying cars?"

Wednesday, May 14, 2003

Neal Stephenson's new novel, Quicksilver, will be released on September 23. HarperCollins has posted a preview here.

Tuesday, May 13, 2003

Did opposition to the war in Iraq have any effect on U.S. policy? In this New Yorker article William Finnegan argues that "the protesters had a greater effect on events than today's conventional wisdom recalls," and that the Bush administration is now trying to gain the support of those who opposed the war.

Monday, May 12, 2003

Michael Massing reviews the media coverage of the war in Iraq in this article from the New York Review of Books. He finds that "the BBC maintained a consistent standard of skepticism toward all sides," but, "for the most part, US news organizations gave Americans the war they thought Americans wanted to see."

Sunday, May 11, 2003

You've probably heard the idea that an infinite number of monkeys typing on an infinite number of typewriters for an infinite amount of time will eventually produce the complete works of William Shakespeare. Some lecturers and students from the University of Plymouth tried this experiment with 6 monkeys and one computer for one month. This BBC article reports their results.

Wednesday, May 07, 2003

This Slate article compares the sales of classic novels like Pride and Prejudice and War and Peace with the sales of recent best sellers. It finds that, "Measured against a best seller in its first flush, sales of any classic book are piddling, of course. But the overall sales picture resembles the proverbial tortoise-and-hare scenario: As the race goes on, the classics win out."

Tuesday, May 06, 2003

The life and work of author William Gibson are discussed in this Guardian Unlimited profile.

Monday, May 05, 2003

Here's an article by Thomas Pynchon on George Orwell's 1984.

Sunday, May 04, 2003

I saw the movie A Mighty Wind last weekend. Although I didn't like it as much as I liked the "mockumentaries" Waiting for Guffman and This is Spinal Tap, I thought it was funny and worth seeing. Here's the Filthy Critic's review of A Mighty Wind.

Thursday, May 01, 2003

Chris Suellentrop discusses the success of The Matrix in this article from Slate.

Wednesday, April 30, 2003

This review of the book The Earth's Biosphere discusses how little we know about the biosphere. It also examines the consequences of carbon dioxide in the earth's atmosphere and whether the earth will experience another ice age. The review also discusses the life and ideas of the Russian scientist Vladimir Vernadsky, who was the first scientist to make the biosphere "a central concept unifying the study of the earth with the study of life."

Monday, April 28, 2003

Dragons are part of the mythology of various cultures all over the world. This New York Times article discusses how "cultures that had no contact with one another constructed mythical creatures so remarkably similar."

Sunday, April 27, 2003

A few months ago I posted a link to a web site that compared locations in San Francisco used in the 1968 movie Bullitt with how those places look today. Now I have found a web site that shows before and after pictures of several San Francisco locations used in Alfred Hitchcock's 1958 film Vertigo.

Thursday, April 24, 2003

I like the new White Stripes album Elephant. I think it lives up to the hype and good reviews. Here's a Slate article on the White Stripes and their new album.

Wednesday, April 23, 2003

Here's a web page that combines Star Trek geekiness with computer geekiness. It's called "How to make a Starship Enterprise out of an old floppy disk".

Tuesday, April 22, 2003

This New York Times article examines the revival of the Seattle music scene. The Times finds new life in the city it says was once "the rumbling epicenter of a coffee-fueled grunge nation."

Monday, April 21, 2003

Here are two articles from the New York Times. In the first article, Frank Rich discusses the "brilliance" of The Daily Show. According to Rich, The Daily Show is funny "without being particularly ideological," and "a place to find a smart take on the war that does not abide by the strict guidelines that come with either blind support or apoplectic rejection of "Operation Iraqi Freedom."

The second Times article is on the battle against spam. It discusses strategies used to stop spam, as well as the countermeasures used by the spammers.

Sunday, April 20, 2003

Here's an article from the Nation about John Stewart and The Daily Show. Like the Salon article on The Daily Show a few weeks ago, this article discusses the show's humor and politics. Stewart says, "The show is neither Democratic nor Republican but simply seeks to represent the 'politically disappointed'." The Daily Show's ratings are good, for basic cable. According to the article, "More people (4 million) tune in to The Daily Show in a given week than watched Fox news at the height of the war (3.3 million)."

Thursday, April 17, 2003

Slate's Fred Kaplan explains what we still don't know about the war in Iraq in Eight Questions About the War.

Wednesday, April 16, 2003

Here's an article about a man with "Wisconsinaphobia". The phobia and associated severe back pain were triggered by "anything related to Wisconsin - sports scores on television, license plates and business names, for instance - and anything that had to do with public utilities."

Tuesday, April 15, 2003

Here are two articles on the war in Iraq from the Washington Post. The first article discusses how "what ended as a military victory that toppled the Iraqi government in 21 days was filled with moments of uncertainty, miscues and unexpected successes for U.S. forces." The second article tells the story of one member of Saddam's Fedayeen.

Monday, April 14, 2003

How did the United States win the war in Iraq? In this article from Slate, Fred Kaplan explains how the U.S. military has changed and improved since the last Gulf War in 1991. These changes include "a new war-fighting doctrine, advanced digital technology, and a less parochial culture."

Sunday, April 13, 2003

How many of you remember Norm Coleman? Norm won the Senate election last November in Minnesota after his opponent, Paul Wellstone, died in an airplane crash. Last week Norm told the Washington newspaper Roll Call "To be very blunt and God watch over Paul's soul, I am a 99 percent improvement over Paul Wellstone. Just about on every issue." (The link is to an AP story. I would link to the original story, but it costs $200 a year to access the Roll Call site.)

Norm was surprised that anyone was offended by that statement, and "tried to put his remarks in context, saying he was making the point that he was close to President Bush, while Wellstone 'was never with the president.'"

When that didn't work, Coleman said "I apologize without equivocation. . . . It was wrong."

All this controversy has made Al Franken ponder the other 1%.

Wednesday, April 09, 2003

John Stewart has always been funny, but lately his Daily Show has been particularly good. Here's an article from Salon about John Stewart and the Daily Show.

Tuesday, April 08, 2003

Sight and Sound magazine’s once-a decade list of the best films ever made was released late last year. It was based on lists of films submitted by movie critics and directors. The top 10, including movies like Citizen Kane and Battleship Potemkin, did not include any movies made in the last 30 years. But according to this article from the Boston Globe, film students have their own ideas about what should be considered classic films.

Monday, April 07, 2003

In this New York Post column, former Army officer Ralph Peters examines the war in Iraq and concludes that "The troops are winning impressively - despite Secretary Rumsfeld's micromanagement."

Friday, April 04, 2003

In this article from Haaretz, Israeli military officers and historian Martin van Creveld discuss the media coverage of the war in Iraq. They agree that because of the high level of disinformation, "nobody knows what is really happening in Iraq." As Van Creveld says, "Everyone is lying about everything all the time, and it is difficult to say what is happening. I've stopped listening. All the pictures shown on TV are color pieces which have no significance."

Thursday, April 03, 2003

Gregg Easterbrook is writing a series of daily dispatches about the war in Iraq. This dispatch is about the dispute between Rumsfeld and the Army generals over planning the war. In this dispatch Easterbrook discusses the deaths of Iraqi combatants and Iraq's incredibly weak tactical position.

Wednesday, April 02, 2003

Here is a New York Times article about the Marquette University basketball team. Marquette has reached the NCAA Final Four for the first time since Al McGuire led the team to the championship in 1977. The article is ok, but I posted this link because to the right of the article is what may be the World's Greatest Sports Team Photo. (Be sure to click on "Enlarge this Image".)

Tuesday, April 01, 2003

This New Yorker article by Seymour Hersch discusses how Donald Rumsfeld overruled senior Pentagon planners and reduced the number of American ground troops for the war in Iraq. According to several of Hersch's sources, "Rumsfeld simply failed to anticipate the consequences of protracted warfare."

Sunday, March 30, 2003

Here are some weblogs that provide news on the war in Iraq. As I've mentioned before, The Agonist is a good source for news on the war. Intel Dump and The Command Post follow the military campaign, while Talking Points Memo focuses on the diplomatic and political aspects of the war.

Thursday, March 27, 2003

Why did we go to war with Iraq? According to Joshua Marshall of Talking Points Memo:

"This war isn't really about Iraq or deposing Saddam or even eliminating his WMD, though each of those are important benefits along the way. Nor is it something so mundane as a 'war for oil.' The leading architects of this war in and out of the administration see this war, and have pursued it, as an opening blow in a far broader war against political Islam. They see it as the first in a series of wars and near-wars which will lead eventually to the overthrow of most of the current governments in the Middle East, the establishment of western-oriented democracies throughout the Arab world, and the destruction of nothing less than the political world of Islamic fundamentalism."

You can read a short discussion of these ideas on this Talking Points Memo post, or a longer discussion in this article from the Washington Monthly.

Wednesday, March 26, 2003

Mark Bowden discusses the upcoming battle for Baghdad in this New York Times Op-Ed column. Michael Tomasky explains why the war with Iraq is not a quagmire in this article from the American Prospect.

Tuesday, March 25, 2003

In this New York Times column, Paul Krugman explains what connects pro-war rallies, Clear Channel Communications, and the Bush administration.

Monday, March 24, 2003

Several months ago I linked to an article about people who explore the tunnels under Moscow. Now, here's an article about a Japanese journalist who thinks he's found evidence of secret tunnels under Tokyo.

Sunday, March 23, 2003

The best coverage I've seen of the war in Iraq is on the weblog The Agonist. For example, here is the Agonist's list of questions the media is not asking.

Thursday, March 20, 2003

Each year the Village Voice asks a few hundred American music critics to submit their lists of top albums and singles of the year. These lists are then combined into the Village Voice's Pazz and Jop poll. According to the poll, 2002's best album was Wilco's Yankee Hotel Foxtrot. The top 40 albums are listed here.

The Village Voice's Robert Christgau, the "Dean of American Music Critics", writes an introductory essay here, and the Washington Post's music critic, David Segal, makes fun of Christgau's essay here.

Wednesday, March 19, 2003

Slate has a page of links to many of the best internet sites that provide news about the war in Iraq.

Tuesday, March 18, 2003

A few years ago my father discovered steel drum music. He loved the music so much that he began building his own steel drums and started 7 steel drum bands in Mayville, Wisconsin. (Surprisingly, Mayville had not had a steel drum band before 1992.) They have recorded 2 tapes and a CD and have performed all over Wisconsin, in Florida, and on a cruise ship in the Caribbean. For more information, go to the Mayville Steel Drums website.

Monday, March 17, 2003

Here's a weblog written by Kevin Sites, who is reporting from Iraq for CNN. His blog is a "first-person account of a solo journalist's life on the front lines of war."

Sunday, March 16, 2003

Here's something you don't see every day. It's a story from the New York Times about a talking fish.

The story begins:

"And so it came to pass that a talking carp, shouting in Hebrew, shattered the calm of the New Square Fish Market and created what many here are calling a miracle."

Thursday, March 13, 2003

Are you thinking about trying a new look for spring? Why not try a hat of meat?

Wednesday, March 12, 2003

Here's a fun online game. You are a spider trying to catch and eat flying bugs. Watch out for the fireflies.

Tuesday, March 11, 2003

I pretty much gave up on the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame the year they inducted Billy Joel but rejected the Velvet Underground. However, this year the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inducted an impressive group of musicians including the Clash, the Police, Elvis Costello and the Attractions, and AC/DC. Read an article about the induction ceremony here.

Monday, March 10, 2003

In this New Yorker article Hendrik Hertzberg discusses the diplomatic catastrophe being caused by the upcoming war with Iraq.

Sunday, March 09, 2003

I recently discovered the British comedy The Office on the cable channel BBC America. The show is a funny mock documentary about office workers at a paper supply company. Here's The Office's official home page and reviews from the Washington Post, Slate, and USA Today. The show is on Thursdays at 9:20 Central time on BBC America.

Wednesday, March 05, 2003

Global warming is causing the world's mountain glaciers to melt at a rate of about 90 cubic kilometers per year. This melting is making new archaeological and scientific discoveries possible as this article from the Boston Globe explains.

Tuesday, March 04, 2003

Should the American intelligence community be held accountable for failing to predict the events of September 11, 2001? If so, what changes should be made to American intelligence? In this New Yorker article Malcolm Gladwell discusses these questions by examining previous intelligence failures and subsequent reforms.

Monday, March 03, 2003

Here's a story from last week's Onion that I found particularly funny. It's called "Man has Derogatory Nickname for Every Neighboring Town".

Thursday, February 27, 2003

According to the International Chamber of Commerce, 271 ships were attacked by pirates and another 20 ships were hijacked during the first 9 months of 2002. The following ICC maps show where the attacks occurred near Africa, Asia, and South America.

Wednesday, February 26, 2003

In October or November the Chinese plan to launch a Shenzhou 5 rocket carrying up to three people into space. This Boston Globe article discusses the ramifications of China becoming the third spacefaring nation.

Tuesday, February 25, 2003

Here's a website about an Englishman named Mil and his German girlfriend Margaret. The site is called Things My Girlfriend and I Have Argued About. Some examples:

The way one should cut a Kiwi Fruit in half (along its length or across the middle).

First Born's name (Jonathan). Then, when that was settled...

How to pronounce First Born's name.

Margret walked through the living room on Friday as I was watching 'Band Of Brothers'. Absently, she asked, 'Is this "Killing Private Ryan"?'

Monday, February 24, 2003

Neal Pollack thinks the problem with the threat of terrorism and the upcoming war with Iraq is that they are causing a lot of bad writing. Pollack writes in this article from the Stranger that, "Nobody gives a shit what anti-war or pro-war writers think. Really. So shut up. That goes double for poets. Shut the hell up, poets. Everybody just shut up."

Later in the article Pollack calms down a bit and writes, "On both sides of the Iraq war "debate," writers are straining. They want to be seers, prophets, and tellers of eternal truths. They think they're dropping wisdom for the ages. But they're not. They just sound foolish. From any important historical circumstance, only a few pieces of genuine literary art emerge. In this current situation, I would argue for two: the Onion's special issue immediately following September 11, and William Langewiesche's book about reclaiming Ground Zero."

Thursday, February 20, 2003

In this year's State of the Union address, President Bush proposed spending $1.2 billion over the next five years to research the production of hydrogen as a replacement for gasoline in automobiles. In this New York Times column, Nicholas Kristoff test drives a prototype hydrogen-powered car and considers what fuel cell technology could mean for the U.S. However, in this New Republic article, Gregg Easterbrook explains the difficulties in producing hydrogen fuel.

Tuesday, February 11, 2003

You can now have your DNA scanned for 130 common genetic mutations, including those associated with colon cancer, melanoma, and Alzheimer's disease. After having his genome scanned, Nicholas Kristof of the New York Times wrote this column about DNA testing and its implications for the future.

Wednesday, February 05, 2003

Previously I have linked to reviews of foreign versions of American science fiction films such as the Turkish Star Trek and the Italian Star Wars. The Brazilians have also been "inspired" by American films. Here's a review of Os Trapalhões na Guerra Dos Planetas, the Brazilian Star Wars.

Tuesday, February 04, 2003

The most common sleep disorders, or parasomnias, are sleepwalking and night terrors. Other less common parasomnias cause sleeping people to eat or impersonate animals. As this New York Times Magazine article explains, scientists who study these disorders have developed new theories of what the brain does while sleeping.

Monday, February 03, 2003

The search engine Google makes it easy to do research on anyone. But is this easy access to information always a good thing? This Boston Globe Magazine article discusses the implications of Google's information access revolution.

Sunday, February 02, 2003

Here are links to information on the Shuttle disaster. The new weblog called Shuttle Lost was created to follow this story. The blog Scripting News also has many links to Shuttle news.

Here's a long Gregg Easterbrook article from the April 1980 Washington Monthly on the space shuttle's safety problems. It was written one year before Columbia's first launch in 1981. Easterbrook argues that the Shuttle should be replaced in this new Time.com article.

Monday, January 27, 2003

Bill Belichick, head coach of the New England Patriots, was the winning coach of last year's Super Bowl. He has some advice for the winning coach of this year's Super Bowl in O.K., Champ, Now Comes the Hard Part.

Thursday, January 23, 2003

The Kabul-ki Dance is an article from the Atlantic Monthly, by Mark Bowden, author of "Black Hawk Down." It describes the air war over Afghanistan, focusing on the men and women of the 391st Fighter Squadron.

Tuesday, January 21, 2003

Manhattan Timeformations is a 3-D computer map of the development of Manhattan through time. It was created by Brian McGrath, a professor of urban design at Columbia University. You can watch the city develop in Transparent New York, or fly up 5th Avenue in the Perspectival Fly-Through.

Monday, January 20, 2003

ESPN surveyed more than 34,000 sports fans to find out how their favorite team ranks in eight categories. Then they compared these findings to rank the professional sports franchises from the NFL, NBA, NHL, and Major League Baseball. They found that the Green Bay Packers are the Best Franchise in Sports. For the full rankings of all the teams and the categories used to rank the teams, click here.
Here are two articles on politics and science fiction television shows from the internet magazine Bad Subjects. In an article called The Sci-Fi Anti-Dupe, Walter R. Jacobs III discusses how he used episodes of the X-Files to teach college students about "the operation of hegemony in America". In the second article, Megan Shaw Prelinger explains How I was Politically Educated by 'The Prisoner' .

Thursday, January 16, 2003

Here's a fun, interactive flash animation program called flyguy.

Wednesday, January 15, 2003

Jason Gross of the online music magazine Perfect Sound Forever lists his 25 Favorite Music Articles from 2002. His favorite article of the year is Life and Death on the Late Show, a review of Warren Zevon's farewell performance on the Late Show with David Letterman.

Sunday, January 12, 2003

Why are there no nationally syndicated liberal talk radio hosts? The New York Times ponders that question here. Randi Rhodes is a liberal talk radio host whose show is only heard in Palm Beach County, Florida. In this interview, she explains why she can't get syndicated nationally.

Thursday, January 09, 2003

At the end of each year, Google releases its "Year-End Google Zeitgeist," a ranking of the previous year's top search queries based on gaining or declining popularity. 2002's top gaining query was Spiderman, while the top falling query was Nostradamus. Google also includes lists of the most queried men, women, athletes, movies, and several other categories. View all the lists here.

Here's a Boston Globe article comparing the 2002 google lists with 2001.

Wednesday, January 08, 2003

A few weeks ago I mentioned the Turkish version of Star Trek . It turns out the Italians have also "borrowed" ideas from American science fiction movies. Here's a review of Star Crash, the Italian Star Wars.

Tuesday, January 07, 2003

Several fiction writers have their own weblogs. William Gibson discusses themes in his books and his new novel Pattern Recognition on his blog. Neil Gaiman writes about his life and work on his Journal. Bruce Sterling posts links to interesting web sites and articles on his blog called Schism Matrix.

Sunday, January 05, 2003

The Straight Dope is a column written by Cecil Adams that appears in the Chicago Reader and other newspapers across the country. Adams answers questions on any subject, from "Who was the first person to say 'Elvis has left the building'?", to "What are the nine eskimo words for snow?" For a list of all the questions Adams has answered, click here.

Thursday, January 02, 2003

Has Bigfoot left the building?

As I noted a few weeks ago, the first Bigfoot footprints were a prank created by Ray Wallace in 1958. However, this announcement by Wallace's family has not deterred "Bigfoot experts" who still believe in the Sasquatch, as explained in this New York Times article.