February 28, 2011
I Can Haz Dignitee Fail?

I don't want to know how long it took them to set this up, but I'm glad they did. Kitteh loves the tiny, shiny, green mouse because its tastiness is legendary. Kitteh hates the big stack of cups because it scares us, and hates us, and hides the precious from us.

Sorry, metaphor collision...

Posted by scott at 08:01 PM | Comments (0)
Another Night Out!


Last night I headed out to Tribal Cafe in DC and had to do the classic pix with O before each of my performances!

Posted by Ellen at 06:21 PM | Comments (0)
Cranky Old Men Never Change

A new reconstruction of Oetzi, the world-famous "iceman" discovered twenty years ago this year, shows he looked like pretty much what you'd expect of a grizzled veteran of the late neolithic. Every time it seems like science is done with one poor old bastard unfortunate enough to drop dead on the ice, they go and find something new.

Posted by scott at 12:47 PM | Comments (1)
Oh Noes!!!

Looks like even Gadhafi's* hot blond has left him. Includes a picture of what a hot blond might look like if she were stuffed into a giant parka with no makeup on her face and sunglasses hiding her eyes. F'ing tards.

* Yes, I'm quite aware this is a different spelling. The spelling of Gadhafi's name in Latin characters has been a running gag in the media for at least twenty-five years now. I'm just going with whatever I find in the article I'm linking.

Posted by scott at 09:59 AM | Comments (0)
He Ain't Heavy...

My brother Jeff took a different route in the RC helicopter world, but he seems to be doing just fine as well.


Posted by scott at 09:05 AM | Comments (0)
A Byline Would Be Nice

Well, it's not exactly a link, but having an email I wrote get published on a big website is still a bit of a thrill. Yep, helicopter crazy is spreading and I'm one of the vectors.

Posted by scott at 07:13 AM | Comments (0)
Zanga Zanga!

Coming to a dance floor near you: an enterprising Israeli has created a mash-up combining a rapper named "Pitbull" and... Qaddafi. The old wack-a-mole never has looked more entertaining.

Posted by scott at 07:07 AM | Comments (0)
Scientist: I Haz One

Captain obvious in the lab: A new study concludes cats "adore, manipulate women." They also, "stain, stink up" houses.

Posted by scott at 06:57 AM | Comments (0)
60 Degrees of Separation

Scientists have announced the discovery of a planetary system containing two planets traveling in the same orbit. It's another one of those "supermassive planets whizzing about their sun a couple of times a month" systems, so no Earth-like planets have been detected. However, it does provide evidence that bolsters the theory that Earth once had one of these "co-orbiting" planets.

Posted by scott at 06:47 AM | Comments (0)
February 27, 2011
Your Thought for the Day

Ahahahahahaahaha.... Silly newbie. The first hit is free!

Once you're hooked, you can't stop.

5 years from now, you'll have 7 different helis in different sizes and levels of repair. You'll have sold your house for parts, your partner will have left (but you won't have noticed) and you'll be quite pleased at the news you've just been fired from your job, as it means more flying time at the club field.


So saith one of my RC helicopter peeps, when someone else claimed they only wanted ONE little helicopter.

Ok, ladies, I'll go on record here to say it's not cars, it's not trucks, it's not sports, and it's none of YOU that brings the boy out of the man. It's very small radio controlled helicopters. There's a new model due out next week AND GROWN MEN ARE ADMITTING THEY CAN'T SLEEP WAITING FOR IT.

But not me.

My story, and me sticking to it, let me show you...

Posted by scott at 07:59 PM | Comments (0)
A Departure, for the Rest of Us

I think it's strangely appropriate that one of the last Space Shuttle flights has resulted in one of the most remarkable videos of same. Let's hear it for ubiquitous video cameras!

Posted by scott at 05:59 PM | Comments (0)
The Kids are Still All Right

Long live the American dream! There are many reasons why India and China have nothing on us. I know, I know, it's much more fun to moan about how destroyed it all is. You know, sitting in a Starbucks typing on your iPhone. But I digress...

Posted by scott at 05:22 PM | Comments (0)

Like all good horror movies, the murder here happens off screen. I've always known RC aircraft break into many expensive pieces when they crash. Never expected quite so many to float.

Posted by scott at 03:53 PM | Comments (0)
Fixes the Problem of Floating

And now, a USS Enterprise model... submarine. Actually, it looks pretty good. If a water column big enough could be found, I wonder if scale space battles would be possible?

Update: it really is quite marvelous. Thanks, Ron!

Posted by scott at 11:14 AM | Comments (0)
February 26, 2011
Childhood Demands


This is how we tell when Olivia is actually ready for lunch.

Posted by scott at 05:59 PM | Comments (0)

Ron gets a follow-up no-prize for bringing us a new hot link to that We Dare Wii game. Yeah, definitely want to wash the controllers before you start this one. And, you know, after you're done.


Posted by scott at 05:52 PM | Comments (0)

The first production F-35 has completed its first flight and has joined the test program. These airplanes are, presumably, what will replace the F-16, which in a way is a pity, because I think this thing is oorgly.

Posted by scott at 10:45 AM | Comments (0)
A Fungus Among Us

Scientists have announced the development of a genetically engineered fungus which goes after malarial mosquitoes. As someone who grew up in southeast Arkansas, where the mosquitoes would either eat you there or take you home, anything that makes life difficult for the beasties is OK by me.

Posted by scott at 10:41 AM | Comments (0)
Scratch Scratch Cough Thud... Woof

Remember the old saying about getting up with fleas? Turns out there's more to it than just not lying down with your smelly old dog. I thought it couldn't get worse than incontinent cats. I was wrong.

Posted by scott at 09:42 AM | Comments (0)
February 25, 2011
Your Thought for the Day

"A good bookshop is just a genteel Black Hole that knows how to read."
— Terry Pratchett (Guards! Guards!)

Posted by scott at 04:17 PM | Comments (0)
Couldn't Happen to a Nicer Guy

Remember that punk who threatened the South Park guys and made the network back down over the show's depiction of Mohammed? He's going to have a long, long time to watch reruns. Yeah, I know, he'll get the sentence reduced on appeal, but he's still going to do time for being a douche. I didn't think that was possible nowadays.

Posted by scott at 06:56 AM | Comments (0)
Let's Play

Mike J. gets a no-prize that weirdly evokes Custer's Last Stand for bringing us news that "grown-up" games are coming (as it were) to the Wii. Unfortunately the video's gotten blocked, so the incomplete text is all we have. I'm actually a bit surprised it's taken this long.

Posted by scott at 06:39 AM | Comments (1)
February 24, 2011
Pay Check

Those who've noted how underpaid teachers can be will probably be interested to learn just what they make in Wisconsin. And, of course, 13 weeks of vacation.

Posted by scott at 02:29 PM | Comments (0)
But Remember, It's the Right That's Violent

Hey, at least they didn't have to use their AK: In Last 24 Hours Dem Protesters Have Assaulted a Young Woman, Tortured a Camel, Called Opponents “Bad Jews” & Attacked Gay Black Tea Partier. The mind boggles...

Posted by scott at 09:42 AM | Comments (0)
And The Parents Of The Year Award Goes To...

The 25-year-old Staten Island mother, and we use the term lightly, told reporters she said to the precinct officer in front of her daughter, "What happens if a parent doesn't want their child?"

She should have been charged with stupidity, because the 6-year-old will never forget that as long as she lives.

Picture? Wonder no more at the losers they are.

Posted by Ellen at 07:21 AM | Comments (0)
John Bobbit on Yenta TV

On The Insider, Mr Bobbitt recalled his terror at waking to find his manhood missing. Miss Gallo recounted her own decision to throw the member into a field. 'You drove me to that,' she told him.
I have seen the field where his man part got tossed!

17 years later and we still talk about this!

Posted by Ellen at 07:14 AM | Comments (0)
Old Man's Movie

John Scalzi's Old Man's War has been optioned for a movie. Planning for a movie is, of course, not the same thing as sitting down with a soda and a tub of popcorn, but they have to start somewhere.

Posted by scott at 06:54 AM | Comments (2)
Green Shoe

In the "why-the-heck-not" department, we have a new line of sneakers that are completely biodegradable, which even have seeds implanted in the tongues. They'll likely cost a premium over regular shoes, but that's plenty understandable, at least to me. To those who think environmentalism is free, maybe not so much.

Posted by scott at 06:40 AM | Comments (0)
February 23, 2011
Olivia 4.0

She has officially upgraded to blue belt!
Posted by scott at 07:56 PM | Comments (0)
Black Hat, Black Mail

Since I've already confessed my reflexive, sysadmin-rooted hatred of all things Anonymous does, I guess it is a little hypocritical of me to find what they dug up about a specific black-ops software vendor of interest. But hey, if I was consistent I wouldn't be near as much fun, eh?

Posted by scott at 03:31 PM | Comments (0)
Cell Boost

A new study has discovered prolonged cell phone use increases brain activity. If this really is true, Ellen and Amber must have the most active brains in human history.

Posted by scott at 07:10 AM | Comments (0)
Amazing What Hard Working Teachers Can Do

Survey results: Two-thirds of eighth graders in Wisconsin public schools cannot read proficiently, despite the fact that Wisconsin spends more per pupil in its public schools than any other state in the Midwest. Our public school system is one of, if not the, most expensive in the developed world. Its students regularly test at the bottom of that list. The changes in Wisconsin will not solve this problem overnight. But they're a start.

Posted by scott at 06:51 AM | Comments (1)
The Color of Steel

Robert H. gets a no-prize that occasionally goes, "ook" for bringing us news of yet another "made-from-scratch" sword. He may not be able to use a keyboard any more, but it seems Terry Pratchett is able to do a bit of mining when the need arises.

Posted by scott at 06:29 AM | Comments (0)
A Tourist Tip!

Fast fact: It is illegal to deliver the Gettysburg Address on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial without permission from the U.S. National Park Service.

Can we say that park officer was having a bad day.


Posted by Ellen at 06:25 AM | Comments (2)
Paging Ke$ha, White Courtesy Phone Please

Kitty likes the metronome!

Posted by scott at 06:19 AM | Comments (0)
February 22, 2011
Well, Ok Then

It's not often that the origin of a ubiquitous word can be traced with any certainty. It would seem that "ok" is actually one of those kinds of word. I thought its origin was much more recent, having to do with it being easily understood over a poor radio connection. As with most such things, it seems I was wrong.

Posted by scott at 03:59 PM | Comments (1)
I Like Him. He's Kooky.

Shades of WKRP intros: Congressman admits his behavior during the last election was, "inappropriate." Remember that ol' "picture worth a thousand words" line? Yeah, it's definitely SFW and definitely appropriate here. And why did I have to do a separate look up to find out he's a Democrat?

Posted by scott at 03:38 PM | Comments (0)
Another Useless Yellow Dog

So, it seems the next liberal narrative is, "police and firefighter unions were given a pass in Wisconsin because they endorsed him during the election." Looks like, per usual, that dog won't hunt either. Those tables must be getting pretty battered by now, what with all the banging.

Via Instapundit

Posted by scott at 11:01 AM | Comments (0)
Full-Size Fun

Three words: Australian helicopter cowboys. On the one hand, "oops" becomes more painful/expensive. On the other, no crocodiles. Sign me up!

Posted by scott at 08:22 AM | Comments (0)
Making It From Scratch

It's not often a recipe for a knife blade starts with, "first, go get some iron ore," but it does occasionally happen. Everyone needs a hobby!

Posted by scott at 08:02 AM | Comments (0)
My Sentiment, Exactly

John P. Avalon: "Hyperpartisan tantrums, whether by Republicans or Democrats, are ridiculous and irresponsible. Bills deserve up or down votes. Fear-mongering should be condemned in political debates no matter what side is implicated." Which means, of course, that the party affected is flipping out.

Posted by scott at 07:12 AM | Comments (0)
An Exhibit, for the Rest of Us

The Smithsonian American Art Museum will be featuring "The Art of Video Games" starting spring of next year. I actually had to dig around to figure out just exactly which museum that was. Turns out it's the one attached to the portrait museum. Small wonder, that one's been closed for quite some time for renovation.

Posted by scott at 06:47 AM | Comments (0)
February 21, 2011
Series Updates

The good news: most of the TV we watch is documentaries, so ratings don't matter all that much. The bad: what "regular" shows we watch seem to mostly be on the renewal "bubble." "No Ordinary Family" started out so promising, but won't be missed. V got boring when I realized I could actually predict lines of dialog, let alone entire episode plots. I would rather like to see Outsourced get picked up. And Human Target!

Posted by scott at 06:35 PM | Comments (0)
Sure... NOW You'll Pay Attention to Helicopters

There's just so much hysterical win here.

Posted by scott at 06:19 PM | Comments (0)
Angry Cake

Sometimes having nerds as parents is... really freaking cool! What? You thought I was going to say something else? You really do need to visit more often.

Posted by scott at 05:43 PM | Comments (0)

I wanted them to wait until the end of March, but nobody would listen. Now they've called off the Bahrain Grand Prix. Two more weeks until the start of the F-1 season. Crap.

Posted by scott at 01:40 PM | Comments (0)

Another day, another group of propeller-heads prattling on about how "bugs is good eatin'!" I'll believe we're in a genuine food crisis when the US no longer needs to prop up crop futures with subsidies. Tip to the nerds: we pay farmers not to produce around here. All the developed countries do.

Posted by scott at 01:37 PM | Comments (0)
Your Thought for the Day


And this is the liberal cartoonist's take on what's going on in Wisconsin. I like the one involving a Prius nearly as much. The last resort is to always bang the table. I think they're getting ready to find out what happens when the grownups get tired of the noise.

Posted by scott at 10:32 AM | Comments (0)
Every Man's Home

Robert H. gets a loopy no-prize with ambition from bringing us Bishop's Castle, another example of what happens when you give a certain kind of American some free time and the skills to use it. I like him. He's kooky.

Posted by scott at 10:12 AM | Comments (0)
February 20, 2011
Your Thought for the Day

see more Lolcats and funny pictures
Posted by scott at 06:50 PM | Comments (0)
Leper Fight!

Ok, on the one hand, I think the Westboro people are basically the scum of the Earth. On the other, as a former sysadmin, I hate hackers with a pure, argent fire of chaos. So, when the script kiddies called "anonymous" declared war on Westboro I was... conflicted. Mostly because I knew that, while the Westboro church is evil, the members are smarter than most people realize. So I wasn't at all surprised to see this less than eight hours later.

Pimply-faced basement-dwellers versus Luddite cave men. Yeah, that actually was popcorn you were smelling. I'll be sitting way up in the peanut gallery to watch this one.

Posted by scott at 05:56 PM | Comments (1)
Lost & Found

While the "convincing evidence" seems kinda slim to me, an answer to the mysterious disappearance of an ancient Roman legion may finally have been found. Looks like we've got a nifty fiction movie and another documentary about this coming out soon.

Posted by scott at 10:28 AM | Comments (0)
Hunk Wear. Well, What Not To Wear.

I got embarrassed just looking at this site.

Hello Banana hammocks!

Posted by Ellen at 08:27 AM | Comments (0)
February 19, 2011
Oh Noes!

The national Christmas tree, a Colorado blue spruce that has stood on the spot since 1978, has been blown down. The mulching of the snapped tree is scheduled for later today, apparently. The winds here really are ridiculous. Dulles is making airplanes fly an approach I've never seen before, well to the East of the normal approach vectors.

Posted by scott at 02:45 PM | Comments (0)
Zip Zappin' Away

US Navy researches have broken records with a new, more powerful version of a free electron laser. Currently the demo version pumps out 14kw, but the Navy has awarded a contract to develop a 100kw variant. Cruise missiles? What cruise missiles?

Posted by scott at 01:36 PM | Comments (0)
Playin' with Your Head

And now, a home-made version of an Escher illusion. I can't decide if it's a clever bit of forced perspective, or if it's mostly a CGI construct. There's definitely something weird going on there, because the shadows don't act quite right. Regardless, good bit of fun.

Posted by scott at 08:11 AM | Comments (0)
February 18, 2011
What's Not To Love?

To steal Glenn's line: Faster, please: "The greatest anger among [Wisconsin public-sector union] demonstrators is over the portion of the bill that would strip public workers of the right to bargain for higher wages, benefits and changes to job duties. Pay raises for public workers would be subject to voter approval. Under the law, the state would also stop withholding union dues from government paychecks and make due payments strictly voluntary."

And isn't it interesting, that this is the very first time I've read what has the Wisconsin unions up in arms? And isn't it interesting that this information was buried deep in the article? I'll also wager that the first point, the "right to bargain," is a distortion. Other places I've read state the bill is stripping the right to collective bargaining, in other words (as I understand it) banning union strong-arm tactics. An important distinction.

Posted by scott at 10:55 AM | Comments (0)
So That We Will Know Them By Their Limping

All those people who fretted and dispaired over right-wing political "violence" are pleased to be sitting down and shutting up now. So, let's see how this goes... when conservatives protest, we're dangerous brownshirts. When a loony turns out to be left-wing, we're called on to bring "civility". When the left throws a fit, we're told it's our fault. Yeah. I get it now.

Posted by scott at 07:24 AM | Comments (0)
Your Thought for the Day


This reminds me of at least... three... different people I know.

Posted by scott at 06:49 AM | Comments (0)
February 17, 2011
Just Don't Put It On a Sandwich

As if carbon didn't have enough to do already, scientists are predicting that under very specific conditions, carbon can be turned into a gel. This upends the conventional wisdom about gels, which previously were believed to require a solid and liquid component. Nobody's actually managed to make the stuff, yet, but that can't be far behind.

Posted by scott at 03:47 PM | Comments (0)
Dead On Your Feet, Dead in Your Seat

Making the rounds: a woman died at work sitting in her cubicle, but nobody noticed until the next day. A Saturday, no less. I've heard that the only way to get government workers out was feet first, but I didn't think anyone meant it literally.

Posted by scott at 03:43 PM | Comments (0)
Here Comes the Rain

I've long believed the acid test of this Congress will be when the DC media start realizing budget cuts mean their friends are going to get pink slips, and said DC media decides to do something about that. Well, here they come. We have to punch back, twice as hard. Roll spending back to 2008 levels. That's barely three years ago, and will do substantial good toward reducing the deficit.

And no, I'm not suddenly transformed into a deficit hawk. I've long believed economic growth makes deficits irrelevant. Unfortunately two years ago obnoxious teenagers got the keys to the car and rammed it into a tree. The car won't run until it gets fixed.

Living where I do, I actually have a bunch of friends who could be adversely affected by this. Heck I may end up being adversely affected by this. The unfortunate fact is these cuts must happen, if nothing else to prove the American people are still able to control their rulers. If we don't, if the media and the elite and the left get their way and ignore us, the international bond markets will impose the required discipline, and will do so with great vengeance and furious anger. That sort of spanking will affect a whole lot more than just me and my circle of friends.

Via Instapundit.

Posted by scott at 11:17 AM | Comments (0)
Printing Planes

Robert H. get's the coveted Gutenberg no-prize for bringing us a new look at where the 3D printing industry is at today. If it makes it easier to get parts for my funky old cars, I'm all for it!

Posted by scott at 07:23 AM | Comments (0)
I Think You're Gonna Need That

Meet Chase Britton, the boy born without a cerebellum. He seems happy enough, and certainly has known no other sort of life. Good for them!

Posted by scott at 06:55 AM | Comments (0)
Even Maniacs Have Their Limits

Making the rounds: recent rumors give Steve Jobs only weeks to live. Zsa Zsa Gabor has been trying to die for what seems like years now, so I guess anything can happen. Still, 55 is way too early.

Posted by scott at 06:40 AM | Comments (0)
February 16, 2011
Your Thought for the Day

Two words: Homemade Implants. *SIGH* Ok, ladies, smack the husband once, and make him read the clarification... Homemade boob implants. Men appreciate boobs. Women's fascination with winkies is every bit as mysterious to us. And you all definitely play with them just as much when given the opportunity.

Oh yes, I did just say that.

Posted by scott at 08:20 PM | Comments (0)
Milling Miracle

Ever wonder how these small speed shops manage to make whole engines? No, the correct answer is, "yes, Scott, we've always wondered that!" So I'm gonna show you. Now I know a) how it's done and b) why the finished product is expensive. That said, even twenty years ago none of this was possible. Ten years from now I may be able to mail order the machines that'll do it. Technology rocks!

Posted by scott at 05:56 PM | Comments (0)
We Know Who the Real Terrorists Are. Trust Us.

Shame is, of course, something to be heaped on others, not to be taken upon one's self. How else explain Human Rights Watch appointing an active terrorist to a Middle East Advisory Board. Oh, don't worry, I know what your excuse will be. I just want you to let everyone else know how your apologies work.

Via Instapundit.

Posted by scott at 10:54 AM | Comments (0)
My Kind of Pagan... i

Chris gets the craziest no-prize of them all for bringing us news that Pagani motors are bringing their newest model to the US. It has 700 horsepower in a sub-3000 pound body. Top Gear regularly praises their utterly ridiculous nature, their lurid looks and shriekingly impossible performance just disconnect all rational thought in the male mind, apparently.

Well of course I want one. Duh.

Posted by scott at 08:57 AM | Comments (0)
Fun with Cars

Mark gets a no-prize that'll play an iconic Frank Sinatra song for bringing us news of yet another flying car project. Cars and planes have the same basic purpose (transportation), but the requirements are different and conflicting. Still, it's always entertaining to watch people try to combine the two.

Posted by scott at 07:19 AM | Comments (0)
Comet Revisit

Deep Impact has been successfully re-tasked to return to the comet NASA bombed in 2005 to take pictures of the damage. I can't really see it in the pictures, but if the NASA guys say it's there, I'll take their word for it.

Posted by scott at 07:08 AM | Comments (0)
Wagons, Ho...

The long, slow decline of the station wagon in the US has claimed another victim. Cars must meet different, more restrictive, safety and emissions laws than do trucks. This makes them more expensive and less practical than SUVs, most of which are little more than very tall station wagons. This is math only progressives could fail.

Posted by scott at 06:37 AM | Comments (2)
February 15, 2011
Ya Think?

A 60 year old dudecicle is found in an unheated Chicagoland apartment. In February. "Officials" say death was likely cold-related. There's a reason why they stick interns and newbie reporters on the night beat. This is the reason.

Posted by scott at 09:03 PM | Comments (0)
Planets, +1

Exit Pluto, enter Tyche? Scientists have been positing an undiscovered, far-distant planet in our solar system for as long as I can remember. Such suppositions have been discounted or disproved just as often. Don't know what to make of this, other than to hope testable predictions result, so we can actually try to figure out the answer.

Posted by scott at 12:41 PM | Comments (0)
A Top 10 List, for The Rest of Us

So, how many of these commandments has the Obama administration broken so far? Quite a nice summary of my economic beliefs. “We usually don’t have the necessary knowledge to intervene effectively in the economy, and the political process is such that, even if we did, we still likely would get bad policy, coupled with an ever-growing government sector.”

Posted by scott at 12:24 PM | Comments (0)
Really? Just 9?

Being a sysadmin for 14 years, I guess I shouldn't be surprised to see myself in these "nine traits of veteran Unix admins" I'm definitely glad I don't have to do any of that anymore.

Posted by scott at 06:48 AM | Comments (0)
Peeper Season Is Coming!

Posted by Ellen at 06:43 AM | Comments (0)
On This Day

Nothing like a few minutes of color footage, with sound no less, to bring history back to life. It's all too easy to place the past between the pages of books, or on dusty black and white photographs. Stuff like this, of ordinary people living through an extraordinary time, is what makes it real.

Posted by scott at 06:29 AM | Comments (0)

A BRITISH local council is planning to use excess energy from a crematorium incinerator to heat one of its swimming pools, it emerged today, but critics slammed the proposals as "sick".


Posted by Ellen at 06:26 AM | Comments (0)
Elephant Tries to Steal TV, Fails

Her attempt was foiled, however, when her motorised cart got stuck in the exit door.

What has Oakland Co. come to. Tsk Tsk.

YOUR tax dollars at work right there. The scooter, her mental anguish causing her to overeat and have bad joints and not be able to work, but to sit there and watch T.V. and shoplift. Disability benefits at it's best! WIN!

Oh yeah, and Obama wants to help this.

Posted by Ellen at 06:17 AM | Comments (0)
February 14, 2011
I Think I Recognize Absolutely Everyone Here

The best part is picking out which particular Valentine's day cliche you are. I'll give you mine for free, it's the first one. The people who don't think this is funny are exactly the people it's aimed at.

Posted by scott at 07:54 PM | Comments (0)
When Spoons Attack

A Malaysian man was saved from a marauding tiger by his wife's (presumably enthusiastic) application of a soup spoon. Doncha hate when you're out hunting squirrel and a tiger tries to eat you? Man, I do...

Posted by scott at 10:52 AM | Comments (0)
Ticket Progress

By using a combination of public and private funds, the manufacturers of the two operating EELV boosters seem to be making good progress man-rating them. SpaceX still seems to be three or four years ahead of everyone else, but it's still cool to see at least three companies actively working on getting our folks back in orbit.

Posted by scott at 07:06 AM | Comments (0)
Paging the Bangles, White Courtesy Phone Please

By carefully re-creating artificial toes (no, really) found in Egyptian tombs, a scientist has found further proof these are not after-death decoration, but are instead actual, and ancient, prostheses. Unfortunately the artifacts weren't accompanied by an instruction manual, and no literary sources seem to reference them, so the jury still stays out.

Posted by scott at 06:59 AM | Comments (0)
Hooray for Equal Opportunity

Villagers in a small UK town are outraged because police have informed them they must remove the wire covering their sheds' windows to ensure burglars don't get hurt. Always remember equality is much more important than your stuff, and fairness only works in the direction our superiors wish. They have our best interests at heart, after all.

Posted by scott at 06:52 AM | Comments (0)
February 13, 2011

Ok, I get that huge swathes of the left hate Sarah Palin with a rage only those who obviously have our best interests at heart can muster. Many times I think this rage might torpedo any campaign, well, really anywhere, she may decide to run. Then one of the scions of the main stream media steps on its own crank, again, and suddenly I'm not so sure. With enemies like these, who needs paid publicity?

Posted by scott at 01:33 PM | Comments (0)
Get 'em While They're Hot

Robert H. gets a wildly addictive no-prize for letting us know Amazon's got a micro helicopter on sale for $30. For those keeping track, that's a whopping 78% off sticker. This is by far more controllable than an Airhogs, and costs the same. What's not to love? Even the puppy blender's getting one!

Highly recommended.

Posted by scott at 01:00 PM | Comments (0)
Tap Tap Tapping Away

They told me if I voted for John McCain the next administration would claim rights for law enforcement far beyond the Patriot Act, and they were right! I've always enjoyed how the left gets all foamy in their public protests against government oppression. In a public park.

Posted by scott at 08:06 AM | Comments (0)
Stupid is...

When asked the question, "which country with nuclear weapons has a population in which a significant percentage believes the sun revolves around the earth, humans lived with dinosaurs, and radiation is man-made" would, since you read our ever-so-neutral MSM, answer "The United States, Sir!" Heck it may even be true. But it's not the only answer.

Posted by scott at 07:52 AM | Comments (0)
February 12, 2011
So Easy Even an Actor Can Do It

Fine! So how about tiny helicopters on David Letterman's show then? That's the MCx right there. If you're even vaguely curious about the hobby pick one of those up off E-bay. Perfect starter heli.

Posted by scott at 04:35 PM | Comments (0)
Flying Lawnmower

I'll give them this, big RC helicopters make a nifty noise. Intimidating, too, which is why videos of them taken this close seem to be rare. I definitely wouldn't want one to come apart near me, that's for sure. But, after lots of practice, you can do things like this with them. I'll be happy with the 1.4 ounce version coming out this March.

Posted by scott at 10:46 AM | Comments (0)
How Do You Say "Watch This" in Polish?

Nice to know dumb rednecks can be found all over the planet.

Posted by scott at 09:25 AM | Comments (1)
Best. Answer. Evar!

Well, that is what you do with them. So I've been told, at any rate. By certain other people. Best part of game shows for me has always been the spontaneous goof-ups.

Posted by scott at 09:11 AM | Comments (0)
~ Cause Teens / Just Wanna Be Duh-umb ~

I guess the thinking was, "they toss me about that high on the field, why not climb to the top of the stairs and try the same thing?" Something tells me she has nothing to worry about being groped by the guy on the right.

Posted by scott at 09:06 AM | Comments (0)
February 11, 2011
Peak Oil Pops

So, the Canadians are becoming our most important source of foreign oil. New technologies have increased the potential of our own domestic oil fields a whopping 2,400%. Can we now put to rest the notions that "peak oil" will somehow doom us all? Secular people roll their eyes at creationists for their obstinate refusal to acknowledge basic facts. Funny, that...

Via Instapundit.

Posted by scott at 06:24 PM | Comments (0)
Foot Bone Find

A recently described hominid fossil is providing even more evidence that Lucy and her kindred walked upright almost exactly the same way we do. Yeah, you'd think by now everyone would be convinced, but anthropologists are a hard-headed bunch.

Posted by scott at 01:53 PM | Comments (0)
Tubs of Mars

By examining how oil flows through sand, scientists are becoming more convinced that a giant flood basin on Mars was formed by a process remarkably similar to water draining from a bathtub. Hey, I don't make up the analogies, I just report them. I wonder which way the whirlpool spun?

Posted by scott at 06:56 AM | Comments (0)
February 10, 2011
Nah. It's Supposed to do That

So, you've finally made it, and have the yacht in the exclusive marina to prove it. Then this guy shows up. Well, it's not like you can exactly sink it, you know? Wouldn't want to be caught out in a storm in that thing!

Posted by scott at 01:47 PM | Comments (0)
It's Like a Gargantuan Cracker Jack Box

Best. Auction. Evar! Buy a rusted '55 Dodge panel truck, get the rusted '76 Alfa Spider inside it for free! Quick! To the checkbook! Auction link, check it while it's hot.

Posted by scott at 07:21 AM | Comments (1)
Old Fly

I'll see your microcopter and raise you a forty year-old micro ornithopter. Like the miniature helicopter I fly today, outdoor duty for this bespoke dragonfly was precluded by even the slightest breeze, and so the project was canceled. There have been various rumors of bugs the size of, well, bugs for at least the past decade. Considering what unlimited cash could bring to the table forty years ago, I can't help but think modern versions are probably much smaller than even that.

Posted by scott at 07:03 AM | Comments (0)
~ Down at the Corpse Wash / The Corpse Wash, Yeah! ~

I'd long known Lenin's body has been on display as a kind of macabre secular incorruptible saint. However, I'd never seen any "behind the scenes" information until now. Bonus for Ellen: pictures of corpse, actual. Those look like screen shots from a full documentary. Too bad it's likely all in Russian.

Posted by scott at 06:56 AM | Comments (0)
Foil Hat Airways

I'm not sure just how seriously someone claiming the Denver International Airport is... ok, I'm not quite sure what they're claiming, but it involves Satan, Mayan calendars, and a lot of unnecessary concrete. Someone with a higher tolerance for lunacy should go read the text and summarize what the hell his problem is. I just scrolled down and looked at the pictures. Which, I must say, are plenty weird enough.

And, really, what airport isn't a kind of way station for the damned?

Posted by scott at 06:47 AM | Comments (1)
Your Thought for the Day

I post this not for the harsh (although, in my opinion, fair) comments about NASA, but rather as a distillation of why I am optimistic and enthusiastic about private enterprise in space. His argument about what NASA should become is also well made, and one that not only I, but at least some inside NASA itself, agree on.

Posted by scott at 06:40 AM | Comments (0)
February 09, 2011

Guilty as charged. That said, my "jet" only weighs one ounce and probably tops out at 20 mph. Downhill. In a hurricane. And when I break it, the parts usually cost less than $5. Yes, it does help me sleep at night. Thanks for pointing that out.

Posted by scott at 10:12 PM | Comments (0)
Pi In A Bag

Posted by Ellen at 08:43 PM | Comments (0)
Your Thought for the Day

"I'll be more enthusiastic about encouraging thinking outside the box when there's evidence of any thinking going on inside it." -- Terry Pratchett

Posted by scott at 08:55 AM | Comments (0)
New Tech, Old Issues

Jeff gets a no-prize with a fake ID for bringing us a detailed look at what it's like being a teenager in the 21st century. Reading between the lines, it seems 1) parents still need to pay attention to what their kids are up to online, 2) this generation of young girls are much more sophisticated about on-line dangers than they used to be, and 3) guys are still mostly just interested in sex.

Which is to say, same sh-t, different day. The Kids Are All Right, as much in spite as because of their parents.

Posted by scott at 07:09 AM | Comments (0)
Oh, Hey, Why Not Spend More?

He really meant what he said: the Obama administration's upcoming budget will include $53 billion dollars for high-speed rail. Fortunately the grownups are back in charge, so I'm expecting this to literally go nowhere. Unfortunately, it shows The One is still dangerously out of touch with mainstream America.

Well, unfortunate only if you're wanting The One to get re-elected. I have a feeling you may know which side of that fence we're sitting on.

Posted by scott at 06:56 AM | Comments (0)
Well, Duh

Surprising only to progressives: Catholic school students get higher test scores, while the schools spend a fraction of what the public system spends per student. The reasons? Parent choice and nonexistent unions create incentives for a sustainable, superior education. You might think implementing those incentives in the larger public school system would be impossible. That's probably because you don't know Sweden's been doing just that for nearly twenty years.

Cor, look at me, thinking the public school system is about teaching kids. When I remember the purposes are to empower union bosses and indoctrinate children in the cult of secular socialism, things make much more sense.

Posted by scott at 06:42 AM | Comments (1)
February 08, 2011
Leg Find

Scientists have published a new study on a recently discovered snake fossil which sheds light on just when, and how, they lost their legs. The tricky part was ensuring the exposed leg wasn't shaped by the fossilization process. A really powerful x-ray technology solved that little problem.

Posted by scott at 04:18 PM | Comments (0)
That Looks Mighty Damned Familiar

Meet the new booster, same as the old booster. Looks like they ganked the already-proven Ares first stage and are planning to mate it with a slightly modified Ariane V upper. The J2X program was turning into a classic NASA "let's take a good idea and ignore all the cost savings and do something cool with it" over-reach, so the substitution makes sense. That said, from what I've read that wasn't where the cost overruns were coming from. Also, there's no mention at all about what sort of capsule might be used. Wouldn't it be interesting if SpaceX capsules would fit?

Posted by scott at 04:13 PM | Comments (1)
Ok, Ok, iConfess!

You knew it was going to happen some day. Yes, folks, the Catholic church now has an app for the iPhone. The particulars at first sound like something out of an SNL sketch, but viewed from the inside I guess there is a sort of logic to it. So far all I've ever met are practicing Catholics. Maybe with this thing they'll finally be able to play for real?

Posted by scott at 10:58 AM | Comments (0)
The Cluck of DOOM

And in the "What a Way to Go" file we have a man in California who was stabbed to death by a fighting rooster. Remember, folks, guns don't kill people, cocks kill people.

What? You really thought I had the power to resist that? You don't come around here all that much then, do you?

Posted by scott at 09:23 AM | Comments (1)
For Sale, Cheap

United Space Alliance is making what even it considers a long-shot bid to take the Space Shuttle program private. Why go to all the trouble of developing a new manned space capability when you can use what the taxpayers paid for already? I bet the SpaceX people are... unhappy... about the idea.

Posted by scott at 06:37 AM | Comments (1)
You'll Shoot Your Nuts Off, Kid

Another day, another teen too stupid to follow the basic rules of handgun safety. The only time I remember my dad genuinely scaring me was when he explained, in graphic detail, what he would do to me if he ever caught me treating a gun like a toy. The rules he laid out have stuck with me to this day, one of which is: do not play with loaded guns.

Of course, then there was the time he blew a hole in the carpet with a shotgun he got careless with, but nobody's perfect.

Posted by scott at 06:28 AM | Comments (1)
February 07, 2011
It's Got That Great "Fresh From the Foil Hat" Scent

Ok, all those people who think I'm a paranoiac when it comes to environmental issues should take a look at what a real wacky guy writes about the environment. Go for the amusingly standard social conservative denial. Stay for the invocation of the Antichrist. No, really!

Posted by scott at 01:25 PM | Comments (2)
Ooh... Shiny...

By using mirrored tiles and an old compact satellite dish, a teen in Indiana has created a solar reflector so powerful it'll melt rock. This sort of idea writ large featured prominently in a (very entertaining) John Ringo book I recently finished, Live Free or Die. I wonder if the architect was inspired by the author?

Posted by scott at 11:55 AM | Comments (4)
Good Health and God Speed

F-1 driver Robert Kubica was involved in an extremely dangerous rally accident yesterday. He survived, but from the accounts only just. The injuries definitely sound like season-enders, but hopefully not career-enders. Kubica is a great talent who's survived more than his share of very severe crashes. Here's to hoping he makes a full recovery!

Posted by scott at 10:31 AM | Comments (0)
~ Bit By Bit, Putting it Together ~

Not sure how we missed this, since the documentary appears to have been made in 2009, but at any rate a Harrier jump jet has made it into civilian hands and is doing the airshow circuit in North America. Since they seem to be located nearby, I hope they're able to make it to the Andrews AFB open house this year.

Posted by scott at 09:29 AM | Comments (0)
N-1 Remembered

Robert H. gets an impressive no-prize he better not actually try to use for bringing us the latest research on the Soviet Union's failed effort to get to the moon and the mammoth booster meant to support it. The N-1 itself may never have launched anything into space, but the engines created for are the direct ancestors of engines still in use on rockets today.

Posted by scott at 06:55 AM | Comments (0)
Mangos of DOOM!

Ares is has published a detailed examination of the radar which equips the Navy's new P-8 submarine patrol aircraft. I'm actually a bit surprised subs need to use periscopes at all nowadays. I was thinking by now they'd come up with some sort of wireless, or at least mast-less, solution.

Posted by scott at 06:46 AM | Comments (0)
Watermelons and the Pipes They Clog

Big green to America: cheap Canuck oil: you can not haz. Now that grownups are in charge of the House and the rest of the brats are running scared, they might get ignored on something as important as this. Then again, these are Democrats we're talking about here. If we left them alone in the desert with an anvil for a few hours, when we got back it'd be broken.

Via Instapundit.

Posted by scott at 06:38 AM | Comments (0)
Snow Go Boom

We've long known that if Jim Cantore shows up in our neighborhood to run like mad, because he always brings hurricanes. Now it looks like God himself may be trying to call the Stormbringer home. The storm that dropped the substantial snow around here last month also had a bit of thunder in it.

Posted by scott at 06:24 AM | Comments (1)
February 06, 2011
I Conjure FIRE!!


Summoning the "Fire Gods" in between jumping in the jacuzzi and making s'mores!

Posted by Ellen at 09:01 PM | Comments (0)
OOOhh... Ahhh... Pretty...

I bet it has more memory in it than one of the Space Shuttle's main computers. Turns electricity into forward motion and potential collisions... I love this country!

Posted by scott at 02:23 PM | Comments (0)
Ok, That's Trippy

Sometimes the brain gets crossed up for reasons nobody really understands. I always like the simple illusions best. I had a tough time back in the late 80s when those "holographic" posters were so popular. They always looked like colored snow to me.

Posted by scott at 01:14 PM | Comments (0)

Script kiddies beware: if you piss enough rich people off, often enough, they will decide it is cheaper to go after you than put up with you. As a former sysadmin, I can't say I'll shed a tear when the cops knock on their parent's basement door.

Posted by scott at 01:00 PM | Comments (0)
February 04, 2011
Exactly One Year Ago

We were goofing on southerners in a snowstorm. This was the desperate one, where I went out every two hours to dig a path to our "real" car, frozen labor that never went away, never cared, never stopped.

Posted by scott at 10:57 PM | Comments (0)
Yeah, but "Google-ana Jones" Just Doesn't Have the Same Ring

By using Google Earth, armchair archeologists are discovering thousands of sites in places difficult, if not impossible, to survey on the ground. I once went on an archeological "walkabout" in the Nile valley and was stunned at the number of obvious sites that neither I or Wikipedia knew anything about. Maybe there's an ancient library down there somewhere.

Posted by scott at 07:00 AM | Comments (0)
Disappearing Dragons

Ares: China may be on a path to develop even more stealthy weapon designs. But they may have missed the target: "While the Chinese J-20 and Russian T-50 stealth strike fighter projects may offer a challenge for air dominance in the future, Western forces, led by the Pentagon, have chosen another path for its future force."

Posted by scott at 06:51 AM | Comments (0)
February 03, 2011

As the Northeast Regional 111 train chugged south about 8:30 a.m., an engineer spotted the majestic bird and blasted his horn. At first, the eagle didn't budge, Koppie said. Then it slowly took off - too late. The train arrived at Washington Union Station two hours later with the bird stuck to the locomotive, like an emblem.


Posted by Ellen at 09:57 PM | Comments (1)
*Sniff* I Need A Tissue

The two quickly grew inseparable. Military dogs are supposed to sleep in kennels when deployed, but Rusk broke the rules and let Eli curl up with him on his cot. Other times, the dog took up the entire sleeping bag. Rusk ate ready-to-eat meals, so that's what Eli ate instead of dog food, Darrell Rusk said.

"Whatever is mine is his," Colton Rusk wrote on his Facebook page.

"You're going home and relaxing," said Kathy Rusk, leaning in close to Eli and rubbing his snout. "You're going home."

Posted by Ellen at 09:44 PM | Comments (0)

A mental hospital in the US state of Oregon is trying to identify the cremated remains of 3,500 patients that were hidden in a storage room for decades.

Room of The Lost Souls

Posted by Ellen at 09:31 PM | Comments (0)
The Decline of Detroit

A very cool set of photos.

Posted by Ellen at 09:26 PM | Comments (0)
Oh, Dear


Posted by scott at 04:05 PM | Comments (0)
Well, He is The One

Ok, I'll concede that Reuters is at least being up-front about their bias. Yeah, I know, Bush had a few of these too. I just don't remember seeing any of them at the time.

Posted by scott at 06:57 AM | Comments (0)
Car Fun

Alfa Romeo plans to show off a "more affordable" sports car at the Geneva Auto Show. Yes, technically $55,000 is more affordable than the 8C's $210,000, but it's still out of my reach. Still, 250+ horsepower in a car that weighs a little less than 1,800 pounds is pretty respectable. Maybe I'll be able to pick one up used a few years after they're introduced.

Posted by scott at 06:51 AM | Comments (0)
February 02, 2011
Planet Scale

Ever wonder what any of the planets would look like if they orbited the Earth at the same distance the moon does? Well, ok, no, neither did I, but the resulting video is still fun to watch. I was a little disappointed there was no Saturn or Mercury, but I'll get over it.

Posted by scott at 06:20 AM | Comments (0)
Ceiling Car is Watching You Fap

Robert H. gets a classic cross-and-serpent no-prize for bringing us a self-propelled look at the future of advertising. Another example of "that works fine in a polite place, but it'd last exactly twenty seconds over here."

Posted by scott at 06:11 AM | Comments (0)
Umm... Ouch?

Two words I never expected to see together: corkscrew castration (SFW). Bonus: the accused admits to kicking the ever-lovin' crap out of the victim, but denies killing him. Look, I get the whole "men never ever hit women" meme, but if a chick comes after my personals with a corkscrew I'm sorry, it's on.

Posted by scott at 06:06 AM | Comments (2)
February 01, 2011
And You Just Thought Iceland Was Only To See Volcanos!

The Icelandic Phallological Museum contains a collection of two hundred and nine penises and penile parts belonging to almost all the land and sea mammals that can be found in Iceland. Visitors to the museum will encounter fifty five specimens belonging to sixteen different kinds of whale, one specimen taken from a rogue polar bear, thirty-six specimens belonging to seven different kinds of seal and walrus, and one hundred and fifteen specimens originating from twenty different kinds of land mammal: all in all, a total of two hundred and nine specimens belonging to forty six different kinds of mammal. It should be noted that the museum has also been fortunate enough to receive legally-certified gift tokens for four specimens belonging to Homo Sapiens. Besides there are some twenty-three folklore specimens and forty foreign ones. Altogether the collection contains 272 specimens from 92 different species of animals.

In addition to the biological section of the museum, visitors can view the collection of about three hundred artistic oddments and other practical utensils related to the museum´s chosen theme.

Well...err...someone has to collect them.

Let's Move There!

RIVERSIDE, Calif. – Animal services officers often get calls reporting "huge," monstrous reptiles, only to arrive and find an itty-bitty garden snake.

The 5-foot Monitor lizard wandering around a condo complex in the city of Riverside was way bigger than animal control officer Jenny Selter could have imagined.

That sounds like a fun neighborhood!

Posted by Ellen at 08:03 PM | Comments (0)
Stupid People Upset Over The Right Thing

"I couldn't believe someone took my cat and got him fixed. I don't know why they would do that," Curtis told Bay of Plenty Times newspaper in an article Thursday. "It really was quite bizarre. I mean, who just takes someone's cat and gets them neutered?"

Obviously you were not meant to breed this cat. Especially if it is a Siamese-Bengal Cross. NO SUCH BREED ASS WIPE! It's called a MOGGIE! A Mix! Not a pedigree.

Dumb ass.

Posted by Ellen at 07:59 PM | Comments (1)

When smelling breath samples the dog's success rate was about 95 per cent and that figure climbed to 98 per cent when smelling stool samples.

Once again, a dog's nose is amazing!

Posted by Ellen at 07:32 PM | Comments (2)
Reste Ye In Peace, Huzzah!

Rob Patterson, widely credited as the father of the modern Renaissance fair, has passed away. The Maryland Ren Fair has become an annual event for us, "greate funne" for all. Olivia learned to, and will on occasion, shout "huzzah!" because of the jousts we watch there. Apples aren't the only things that stay near to the tree from which they fall. Or "falle," as the case may be.

Posted by scott at 02:45 PM | Comments (0)
Canucks Own the Peaks

I guess I'm just misreading this, because (if true) we should be trumpeting it from the rooftops: it looks like Canada has become our most important source of imported oil. There's a pipeline in the works that'll make us even more dependent on the Great White North, but that's naturally being held up by Greens freaking out. Putting Hajji on a breadline because his shenanigans made it too dangerous to buy his oil may actually be within reach. Now that grownups are back in charge of the House, maybe this'll finally get expedited?

Via Instapundit.

Posted by scott at 11:19 AM | Comments (0)
Nice Save

No matter how well designed or engineered, sometimes you can't count on the highway to save you. I wonder if the car had traction control on it? Regardless, something tells me nobody would blame the car's driver if an underwear change was in order.

Posted by scott at 06:37 AM | Comments (0)
Paging Led Zepplin, White Courtesy Phone Please

A series of experiments seems to confirm Vikings actually did use special "sunstones" to navigate the ocean on foggy days. The polarization of light seems to be the key.

Posted by scott at 06:31 AM | Comments (0)
As We Say, Not As We Do, II

And the guy with the load of fireworks he wanted to use to blow up a mosque? You know, the one with ties to "anti government organizations"? Turns out he's actually another nutter, with leftist leanings.

Ellen thought it apropos to run this pic as a reminder. Can't say I disagree with her:

Posted by scott at 06:25 AM | Comments (0)