Some pretty serious downpours came through right at commute time. Here is an example of what this did to my drive home.
I laughed out loud for a good 30 seconds at the amazing toss at the 5:00 mark.
PS: I cannot confirm that they, in fact, set any kind of records for any of these tosses.
If I had more money than I knew what do do with, I’d have $400 less now because I would have just bought a Lytro Light Field Digital Camera.
If you haven’t heard of this optical awesomeness, it is a camera that captures not just the amount of light and its frequency, but also it’s direction. Yes it is a vector imager. This technology was announced a few years back, but I hadn’t realized that it was commercialized already.
Why is this made of bacon flavored awesome? it turns out that if you know where the light is coming from, you can, in fact apply depth of field and focus _AFTER_ you’ve taken the picture. So having the wrong focus, or aperture is a thing of the past.
- I assume that there is a dynamic range limit to this adjustment, since the camera itself does not have an infinite aperture. [↩]
Just got my Motorola Surfboard 6121 cable modem last night. Called Time Warner and actually had quite a pleasant phone support call once I got to the right person.
The gent I spoke with was friendly and fast, and was actually ready to turn the modem on before I even managed to attach the cables. Kudos to the broadband overlords. Once I gave him the MAC he set it up on that end, changed the account to remove the monthly rental. It connected right up and showed a bonded down-link right off the start.
We’re paying for the standard service which is rated at 15Mbps, and should be a single channel, but we seem to be getting 2-channel service at 30Mbps. I’m not complaining though.
So I’m in the grocery store in the orange juice section. Specifically, the Tropicana orange juice section, (and section is the right name because there are 14 distinct varieties of Tropicana orange juice) when what to my wondering eyes should appear but a new variety labeled “Trop50″.
The label says prominently “50% less sugar and calories than orange juice”.
“Huh”, I wonder, “how do they do that? Is it some chemical process like de-caffeination where they somehow extract part of the sugar?”
So I pick up the bottle and look at the back and check out the ingredients. Whubbah-wha? The first ingredient is “FILTERED WATER” followed by “NOT FROM CONCENTRATE PASTEURIZED ORANGE JUICE”. Wait, there’s more WATER than ORANGE JUICE? Yes, this is, in fact, completely true. Elsewhere on the label it states “42% juice”. So ok, they took some OJ, and cut it 50/50 with water. Fine, this stuff must be cheaper, right?
Same _exact_ price for the full 100% pure orange juice and the watered down 50% orange juice beverage. So wait, does it taste (and feel) like watered down orange juice? I’m guessing not, since Tropicana has conveniently added “MODIFIED FOOD STARCH”, “NATURAL FLAVORS” and “REB A” to make the beverage presumably thicker, more flavorful and sweeter than watered down orange juice would otherwise be.
In the interest of full disclosure, I often drink “orange-ade” consisting of 1 part OJ to anywhere from 1 to 5 parts water depending on thirst. But when I drink this… I DON’T PAY FOR THE WATER.
My open letter to Tropicana:
With respect to your Trop50 Some Pulp Orange ‘Beverage’ which I recently discovered on the shelf of my local grocery:
You should be ashamed selling watered down OJ for the same price, and in the same section as your trademark “Pure Premium” orange juice. It exploits consumers who expect the product directly between varieties of actual Tropicana orange juice to actually be <gasp> orange juice. Kudos to your production team, however, for significantly increasing throughput without adding significant cost. Unfortunately, this product damages your reputation for a premium, great tasting, high quality pure orange juice. It certainly has damaged your credibility with this consumer.
- Sincerely, Chris Schierer
(Note: After multiple attempts at receiving a 500 server error at the Tropicana website, I was unable to send this comment through. I’ll try again later.)
Two very blog-worthy things today:
First, SpaceX continues to wow with their latest flight and intentional return to earth of their Grasshopper test vehicle. The flight profile reminds me of the early rocket videos that suffered from pogo oscillation. I do NOT recommend the following experiment if you wish to experience this yourself:
- Sit in a running car in an area free from obstacles.
- Ease off of the brake/clutch so the car is rolling along at idle.
- Pull the lever for your seat forward-back release. (Electric adjust need not apply.)
- Gently press the gas pedal.
Anyhow, check out their fun video, which will explain the title reference above. Make sure to look closely at 1:14 and it will all make sense.
Update: And now, with an actual link to the video!
Many of you know that I’ve been playing with the Cazenovia Community Band. This has been great fun and a wonderful excuse to play my trombone again.
Most of the time I find myself drawing on the experience from the various bands I played with in high school… and trying to remember if I ever knew how to read music well. Tonight it finally happened.
I was able to to draw from that penultimate point in my musical career, the RPI Pep Band.
Yes, that’s right. Not only did this venerable organization of eardrum splitting proportions leave me with dozens of lifetime friends, not the least of which is my spouse, but through its wide range of classic tunes from the 60s, 70s and 80s… I was able to draw on our musical stylings when tonight… the Caz Band played music from Chicago.
If that pulsing tune is not already worming its way into your Medulla oblongata, I give you:
For the Tux wearing spy? Or just the geek that has everything?
Stainless Steel 4GB USB Cufflinks
PS. Don’t buy these for me. I don’t think I own a single shirt I could use them with.
I’m a regular reader of John Scalzi’s blog. He recently bought a snazzy new computer that, of course, came with Windows 8. He’s been posting his reactions, and today he added the following opinion about the Windows 8 workflow, and the Start Page in particular:
You have to stop what you’re doing, fire up a separate screen that obscures everything you’re working on, and locate a program in a tile (you can also type in the program name and then click on the result, but you still have to first leave your work environment). It’s a hassle, but more than a hassle it’s an arbitrary imposition of the UI on actual workflow. Or to put it more bluntly: Windows 8 is wasting my time, and for no good reason.
It’s not the sparkly computer’s fault, it was Win8. So now I’ve fixed that part of Win8 that was annoying me.
He’s using Stardock’s “Start 8″ program to serve this purpose. I will probably be checking this out (or some similar alternate) myself.
Technically we’re up to 12 days now, and no, this isn’t some sort-of voyeuristic post for graphics designers. It is, as before, a few comments on my initial take on Windows 8.
Any readers who’ve had a cell phone longer than they could drive, probably won’t understand this analogy, but for those who do, consider for a moment Windows 3.1 (aka “Windows for Workgroups“). Remember when you tried to find your programs (before they were called applications, let a lone “apps”), and you sort-of visually searched around for a little rectangle that represented the thing you wanted? Sometimes though, it wouldn’t work quite right until you exited to DOS and ran the program from the real operating system hiding in the background? Sure there were a few snazzy programs (mostly written by Microsoft) that would actually work within the Windows environment, but most of the really powerful stuff (or really good games) left Windows behind and lived elsewhere. This, my friends, is pretty much how Windows 8 feels to me.
If you want some examples of why Win8 feels more like a colorful paint-job than an operating system, keep on below the fold. Otherwise, there is some good news which I’ll save for the next post.
- For what it’s worth, I have Windows 3.1.1 floppy disks in my lower left desk drawer. They are, in fact, the beginning of the long chain of Windows OS upgrades that leads my upgrade licenses all the way to this post. [↩]