Here we have one of those embarrassing 'Dumbest Criminal' type news stories. As it turns out, it was not only embarrassing for the criminal but (maybe more so) also for his girlfriend. This particular weird news story is from Leicester in the UK and was reported by many newspapers about a week ago, but for any of you that may have missed it, here it is: The story is of a 27 year old man named Nicki Jex who decided to rob his local Ladbrokes bookies. Of course for this daring caper he needed to be armed and dangerous! So he threw caution to the wind and tooled himself up with... ...his girlfriend's Rampant Rabbit vibrator! Of course now would be a good time to insert (oops, you can't even avoid puns and innuendo in this one) smutty jokes about "stick 'em up!" and "spread 'em!"
But why the vibrator? If you're not going to use a gun shaped object in a bag like a toy gun or something, then he could have used any long pointy object in a plastic bag; a cucumber or the classic banana. But nooooo, as if being a rubbish criminal isn't embarrassing enough, he had to choose something that would make him respected and feared amongst the hardened bank robbers and murderers he is now sharing cells with.
I hope his girlfriend got her property returned to her because if she's planning to stay faithful to her man then 5 years is a long wait. Newspaper reports: The Sun - The Guardian
Following on from the previous post, I thought I would drop a couple of peace related quotes I came across from the weird and wonderful Jack Handey:
"Maybe in order to understand mankind, we have to look at the word itself. Mankind. Basically, it's made up of two separate words — "mank" and "ind". What do these words mean? It's a mystery, and that's why, so is mankind."
"How come the dove gets to be the peace symbol? How about the pillow? It has more feathers than the dove, and it doesn't have that dangerous beak."
For more great stuff from Handey go to his official "Deep Thoughts" site. (Not to be mistaken for the unofficial one that has an almost identical URL but with Handey missing an 'E'.)
Okay. Here we have the Nobel Peace Prize medal (front and back). Did you know there is a whole range of Nobel Prizes? There are Nobel Prize medals for Physics, Chemistry, Medicine, Literature, Economics and of course Peace. The face of the Nobel Peace Prize medal shows (as you would expect) Alfred Nobel himself. But if you take a look at the back of the medal (or maybe referring to it as the rear view would be more fitting?, hehe) you will find a picture representing "a group of three men forming a fraternal bond". Ummm ... kay. The inscription reads: "Pro pace et fraternitate gentium" Which translates as: "For the peace and brotherhood of men". Now, take a look at the picture yourself (top right). Is it just me or does that "fraternal bond" those naked guys are forming seem more Village People than Brotherhood Of Man? Hehe. This last part may not be true, but I heard, if you wear this medal as a medallion with the Rear View showing, you can gain free entry to The Blue Oyster Bar (see vid below). ;)
Musicovery (music discovery?) has been described by some as "interactive web radio". If you click along to Musicovery.com you will be presented with a very simple page that simply comprises of the Musicovery flash based player/interface.
Now comes the fun part where you can tweak the 'radio' to the sort of music you want to hear. You can choose a genre (Rock, Pop, Metal, Funk etc.) or keep 'All Genres' ticked. You can specify which decade you wish to stay within or click 'All'. There are also three tick boxes labelled: Hit, Non-Hit or Discovery. You can have either or all ticked. The main feature/selling point for Musicovery though, I think, is it's graphical interface method of choosing/finding music. As mentioned you can choose by genre but you can also choose by mood.
The player has a graphical mood 'matrix' display. Which is somewhat like a mood compass. With Energetic being North, opposite Calm being the South. While Dark is in the West opposite Positive in the East. These axes are progressive. So the further you go in any one direction the more the music will cater for that mood. So clicking somewhere in an extreme North-westerly direction will play you very Dark and Energetic music while South-westerly you should hear some Dark but Calm tunes. You can also use this matrix within one specific genre. For instance, I prefer to have Discovery ticked with Hit and Non-Hit left unticked. I click 70's on the decade bar. Then I untick the 'All Genres' box and click on Funk and then somewhere in the middle of the Dark section. Theoretically this should get me some grimy 70's funk but so far the results seem a little hit and miss. But close enough.
Once you've made your selection, watch the rest of the space on the page come alive with a sprawling map of tunes branching out in different directions, no too dissimilar from a train map. With different tunes as stops and junctions onto different genres displayed as different colours like the different train lines. And, if you really like a particular tune that is playing, Amazon, Itunes and Ebay each have direct linking icons displayed on each track making it easy for you to purchase. Making Musicovery a try-before-you-buy tool if you like.
The only criticisms I have heard about Musicovery are to do with how some artists have been categorised. But if you're not too strict towards what criteria have to be met to allow certain tracks or artists into your genre then it shouldn't bother you too much. And you can't really complain as it is totally free (in Lo-Fi mode). Although, alternatively, there is a paid for version (Hi-Fi mode) for better sound quality.
I feel the best way to use Musicovery is how it's name suggests: Use it to discover tunes you've heard before. Leave Hit and Non-Hit unticked and have only Discovery ticked. Pick four or five genres. Let it rip and leave it playing in the background while reading some interesting site like - well...I dunno...erm; Weird Wonderful Web.
Those of you living in the UK will of course know Loot or 'The Loot' as I seem to remember it being called. Did they change that? Anyway, for those that don't know, Loot is a free ads paper which very sensibly expanded it's readership years ago by going online as well as in print. I used to buy it and advertise in it quite regularly at one time, while on the hunt for a Sound Burger. I never did find one in there. And when I advertised my number as looking for one, the only calls I got were from other Sound Burger hunters asking if I had one yet and if I did, could I pass their details on to any further sellers that might call me. At the risk of being hounded and having to change my number I agreed and dutifully made a note of their details with my magic invisible pen. I feel no guilt in not writing their details because, as it turned out, I was NEVER offered a Sound Burger from anyone.
Of course these were the days before I had the Weird and Wonderful Web. Once I finally got into the online world and heard about Ebay I thought - Yes! This is it! I'm finally going to get me one. And then, I got the horrible wake up call of how much other Sound Burger hunters were willing to pay to purchase one of these (much sought after) tacky plastic portable turntables. Suffice it to say, it was out of my league. But I digress. The reason for this post about Loot has nothing to do with my Sound Burger dreams.
Recently I have had the need to call upon Loot once again while looking into house exchanges. Loot has a property section that has sub sections for Renting, Buying and Sharing. It was while browsing this (quite frankly, dull (not the newspaper but the subject matter)) section that I came across these two oddities:
Firstly there was THIS ONE placed amongst the 'House Exchanges' where they have amusingly placed a 'Horse Exchange'. Offering a Shetland Pony in exchange for a 2 bed property.
And secondly THIS ONE: Not only taking the risk of inviting a stranger to share a room in their home, but incredulously inviting a stranger to babysit their child every Friday in exchange for the lower rent! Did someone say "Social Services"?
Some of you will probably think I (or someone else) have photoshopped these pics (well only to drop my URL and a bit of highlighting). But I can asure you that they are genuine advertisments published in the current Loot. I have provided the screenshots as well as the links to the actual ads, because the ads in Loot only last a week or so and the links may be dead by the time you read this.
I know what you're saying: "More talk of sex toys! The man's obsessed!". Well, you can be forgiven for jumping to that conclusion because that's exactly where my mind went when I saw this picture on it's own. I tried to guess what the gimmick was for these dildos. Because let's face it, there can't be much left in that area that hasn't been done already. So, they come in cool modern colours. Is that ridges? They look like they might bend like bendy straws. Or, is that just ribbing ("for her pleasure")? But hang on, they look see-through! Do you fill them with warm water or gel or something? Well, you're getting warmer. You do fill them with something. And although undeniably phallic, they have nothing to do with sex (well, let's just say they are not intended for anything sexual...ehem).
The people at Cultured Containers have created this invention they call the Banana Bunker. It's protection for the fruit on the move. It's to protect your banana from bruising while in your backpack or briefcase. But not only that! It also protects the other contents of your backpack or briefcase from the banana. Genius! So remember kids: When you're planning to go travelling, remember to always carry protection!
Are you one of those people that loves to download and install lots of crap, err, I mean useful little programs and utilities? Yes? Well do you know what the EULA is? Of course you do. It's that annoying little (LEGAL AGREEMENT) thing that gets in the way of you installing your latest essential PC tool such as your speaking clock, your text-to-geek-speak translator or your cool novelty screensaver that makes random farting sounds that will amuse everyone at the office when you're away from your PC. It's just this big load of text mentioning boring stuff like: Terms, conditions and 'oh by the way we're also just going to install this other crapware that you don't need to worry about that will run your CPU usage red hot at 100% and eventually turn your PC into stone'. But then of course you know all this already, because you ALWAYS agree to these terms don't you? Hehe, we all do it. Next, next, next, yes I agree, do what you like just gimme the damn 'Text Colour Randomizer', next, install. But not to worry. Help is at hand for us download addicts and downright lazy so-and-sos. The cool guys at JAVACOOL SOFTWARE have come up with this great little tool to (err...ehem...) download and install that reads/analyzes the EULA (End User License Agreement). You can just drag and drop any EULA from a new program you are installing into EULAlyzer™ and it will look for risky terms and phrases. It will display a risk assessment and then it's up to you if you want to proceed with your latest install.
Javacool Software are the same guys behind SpywareBlaster (currently at version 3.5.1). Which if you haven't got already, I would highly recommend getting. And you might as well 'kill two birds' while at their site. SpywareBlaster (unlike AdAware and Spybot Search & Destroy) is not a 'scan and remove' type program. It "prevents the installation of ActiveX-based spyware, adware, browser hijackers, diallers and other potentially unwanted software". You may feel it's a bit 'belt and braces' to have a few spy/mal/ad/crapware programs on the same machine but as they work in slightly different ways I would recommend having at least these free security utilities:
THINGSYOUNEVERKNEW.COM is a great little shopping site if you are on the lookout for something weird and wonderful for a gift or for treating yourself to that must-have novelty item that will become the talking point of any guests to your freakish dwelling you call home.
I can't really decide on a favourite item on this site but here is a selection to whet your appetite.
First up, the "Amazing Faucet Light" (or tap light if you are in the UK). This is a little heat-sensitive gadget. Running water activates the LED that lights up the water. Red for hot. Blue for cold. But before you think 'wow that will be a great safety feature for my children around hot water', the site clearly states that the 'Amazing Faucet Light' is "For amusement purposes only. Not a safety device". Well if this isn't a safety device, is there a version out there that is. Because I think this is a great idea. Not only would kids (and big kids) love the cool light show it would also be a good visual aid for younger children to distinguish at a glance between water very hot and water very cold.
Next up, a Backwards Clock. When you're bored or waiting for something , do you ever feel like time is slowing down, stopped or even going backwards? Well get yourself this cool clock and time really WILL be going backwards! Okay, so time won't actually be going backwards, but your clock most definitely will, while at the same time still be showing the correct time. Great for baffling your guests (and yourself until you get used to it, hehe).
And now, what has to be THE most essential gadget around...The USB Pole Dancer!!! Woohoo! This lil lady (12" tall) is described as a "bikini-clad hottie" that "spins and wiggles around the pole atop a stage complete with colourful lights". You just plug her into a USB port on your PC or alternatively you can plug her into your MP3 player of choice and she will 'do her thang' to what ever music you are playing. All for the measly sum of $46.98 (roughly £23). Not much to shell out for this ESSENTIAL (yes essential) piece of kit. Hehe.
I'm a little confused. I'm pretty sure I saw on AOL news the other day that The Internet is celebrating it's 16th birthday. I couldn't find the story again to place the link here, but while searching for it I came across all sorts of ages for the Internet. I wanted to clarify this birthday thing so I went to the people that know: WORLD WIDE WEB CONSORTIUM (or W3C). On their site I found a history section that shows a timeline starting from 1945 up to 1995. So after reading that everything became as clear as mud. You ever heard the saying "the more you read the less you know"? From what I can gather, is that the 16 year age seems to relate to the term 'WorldWideWeb', the name Tim Berners-Lee gave to the first web client and server he wrote in 1990. Although that would make it 17 surely? Hhhhhhanywayyy! Whatever its 'official' age, it has evolved into something very different from its beginnings. Here is a great video of the early days. Not quite as bad as the picture above on the right, but kids today viewing this video might think so. Hehe.
Do you know what an 'Urban Forager' or a 'Freegan' is? If you live in America you may know it as "Dumpster Diving". Most people in the UK would probably refer to it as 'Dustbin Raiding'. As a kid growing up, one of the big things to avoid was being branded a Dustbin Raider. You could NOT for ANY reason whatsoever risk anyone catch you retrieving something from a bin. Woahhhh no! Regardless as to whether you dropped the item in the bin accidentally, the item was of great value or the item was something you needed for your medical condition. Better to hope you can get home and find that spare inhaler or polish up your largest marble to replace that expensive glass eye. If you really, really, REALLY needed the thing back then you would need to come up with some elaborate (Hannibal from THEA TEAM worthy) plan to retrieve the item while not being seen. The risk of being branded a Dustbin Raider and cast out by your peers was a serious concern when I was a kid. So imagine my surprise when I came across THIS NEWS STORY on the BBC site concerning 'Freeganism' (a combination of 'free' and 'vegan'...don't ask). These guys are even boasting about their rat-like raiding. They consider supermarket rubbish bins as the ultimate recycling bin. It's all a part of their "Freegan philosophy of ethical eating".
Following on from the previous posts about sites listing weird and wonderful sights around Google Earth, here is a nice little compilation of some of those odd sites, conveniently put together in a little video for you lazy people that can't be bothered clicking on a load of individual links.
Well this is sweeeeet. Literally! You know those days when you think to yourself: "Ooh damn! What I really need is a large chain made entirely of sugar. But wait! Where the hell am I gonna get me one?". Well, check this site out called Candyfab.org which is all about the CandyFab Project where they use/misuse Rapid Prototype Technologies. You know the sort of thing. Where a physical 3D object is created from a 3D computer program. Used to make 'Rapid Prototypes' of future products in the design stages. Not sure what they normally make the 3D objects from but these guys use sugar. Not only are they willing to share their mouthwatering magical making skills with you, they encourage volunteers to help or even make your own CandyFab machine. Woohoo! The very thought of having a machine that will make 3D sculptures of anything I want and made entirely of sugar really brings out the Homer Simpson in me.