Sugar pills

Eat Your Heart Out has got Popping Candy Placebos for sale: clear pill gels filled with little candy beads -- real sugar pills.

EAT YOUR HEART OUT 2012 Read the rest

Excellent high-voltage warning glyph

I'm having a pretty great time in Vancouver this week on the Pirate Cinema tour. Granville Island has lots to recommend about it, but I'm especially taken with the electrocution hazard glyphs on the access-plates set into the sidewalk. They even beat the lightning bolts that leap out of electric risers on the streets of San Francisco. What is it about the Pacific Northwest and awesome high-voltage signs, anyway? It's like this is some kind of lost valley where the coelacanth ancestors of Reddy Kilowatt never went extinct.

Electrocution warning icon, market, Granville Island (Vancouver Writers Festival), Vancouver, British Colombia, Canada Read the rest

McIntosh compact AirPlay stereo system

The McIntosh McAire is a standalone stereo system designed for Apple AirPlay. It also is a fine hardware complement for the McIntosh AP1 Music Player app, digitizing those iconic blue meters (although these sadly don't actually respond to the music). The app is free but the McAire is $3,000 -- real blue meters are expensive! Read the rest

Stranded in Hawai'i on the no-fly list

Wade Hicks Jr. got a standby flight on an Air Force jet from Gulfport, Miss to visit his wife, a U.S. Navy lieutenant stationed in Japan. But when the jet set down in Hawai'i, he was not allowed to board it again. He had mysteriously been landed on the FBI's no-fly list, and was stranded in Hawai'i, unable to fly anywhere. Five days later, without comment, the FBI removed him from the list.

Those Feebs, huh?

From Audrey McAvoy in the AP:

"I said, `How am I supposed to get off this island and go see my wife or go home?' And her explanation was: `I don't know,'" Hicks said.

Hicks said he was shocked and thought they must have had the wrong person because he doesn't have a criminal record and recently passed an extensive background check in Mississippi to get a permit to carry a concealed weapon.

But the agent said his name, Social Security number and date of birth matched the person prohibited from flying, Hicks said. He wasn't told why and wondered whether his controversial views on the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks played a role. Hicks said he disagrees with the 9/11 Commission's conclusions about the attacks.

Don't worry, they're on it. Oh, wait:

A Homeland Security spokesman referred questions to the FBI Terrorist Screening Center, which maintains the report. A spokesman for the center declined to comment on Hicks' case. The government doesn't disclose who's on the list or why someone might have been placed on it.

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Wood that Works by David C. Roy

Years ago I became fascinated with David C. Roy's kinetic sculptures, Wood that Works. His new piece Frolic is beautiful.

Cory at Kidsbooks, Vancouver tonight

Yo, Vancouver! Thanks to all of you who turned up to both of the sold-out events yesterday at the Writers Festival. If you missed out, I've got another event tonight, at Kidsbooks at 7PM, and I'll be at the Great Northern Way Campus Centre for Digital Media on Monday at 11, before I head to Victoria for a 7PM event at Bolen Books. From there, I go to Seattle, Toronto and Boston (Here's the full schedule). Read the rest

Meet the record industry lobbyists who'll be throttling your Internet connection in America's six strikes world

The Center for Copyright Information is the organization behind America's "six strikes" plan, where the major ISPs and phone companies have signed up to voluntarily degrade your Internet connection, and even disconnect your family based on unsubstantiated, guilty-until-proven-innocent accusations of copyright infringement. So, who are the CCI? That Anonymous Coward writes,

CCI is headed by someone from a PR firm used by the RIAA. The review of their tech was done by Stroz Friedberg, a lobbyist given money by the... RIAA. Federal Judges have ruled that an IP address doesn't equal a person, but IP address alone (which can be spoofed) is enough for this system to send notices and even throttle paying customers' connections. And the only recourse is arbitration, because this isn't a real legal system. This is private corporate law. Maybe its time for some AG's to look into this cushy deal and wonder why the system costs the accused money to challenge claims with no real independent review.

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