August 2009

August 30, 2009

Software Update

Add this to the growing list of things that are “finely tuned” in Snow Leopard. Previously, after Software Update had finished installing your updates and checking to see if there were any more, the header of the window still said, “There is new software for your computer!” Even if the follow-up check didn’t find any.

Fixed. :)

August 28, 2009

Dooce vs. Maytag

Dooce fought The Man and a shelter won…

I say, we should ALL use Twitter or whatever means is available to us this way. Not just me, but you and you and you. Until they stop treating us this way. It is not okay. If this is what it takes to get my BRAND NEW $1,300 WASHING MACHINE FIXED? Holy God! Seriously! This is capitalism, y’all. This is how it works. … And to think, our health care system is left to the same devices. Thank god it’s just my washing machine AND NOT MY FUCKING KIDNEY.


I’ve been reading Dooce for a while. A long while. I’d be willing to make the claim that I’ve been reading Dooce longer than you’ve been reading Dooce. Longer than 99% of the people who read Dooce. Since before she became internet-famous for being the blogger who was fired for blogging.

And this story about her washing machine is one of her best.

August 26, 2009

Conversation Snippets

Since people were asking about how I markup and style my “chat” posts, I put together this sample HTML and CSS. Just use the HTML in your posts and add the CSS to your TypePad design’s Custom CSS. And leave a comment if you get it working.

Sample HTML:

<div class="conversation">
        <li class="odd">
            <span class="label user_1">Walter:</span>
            Am I wrong?
        <li class="even">
            <span class="label user_2">Dude:</span>
            No, you're not wrong.
        <li class="odd">
            <span class="label user_1">Walter:</span>
            Am I wrong?
        <li class="even">
            <span class="label user_2">Dude:</span>
            You're not wrong Walter, you're just an asshole!
        <li class="odd">
            <span class="label user_1">Walter:</span>
            Okay then.
    <p>— <cite>The Big Lebowski</cite></p>


.entry-content .conversation {
    margin-bottom: 10px;
    padding: 15px 15px 4px;
    color: #ccc;
    background-color: #232323;
    -webkit-border-radius: 3px;
    text-shadow: #000 0 1px 1px;

.entry-content .conversation ul {
    padding-left: 0;
    list-style-type: none;

.entry-content .conversation li {
    padding: 5px 10px;

.entry-content .conversation .odd {
    background-color: #3e3e3e;
    -webkit-border-radius: 3px;

.entry-content .conversation .label {
    font-weight: bold;

.entry-content .conversation .user_1 {
    color: #efe;

.entry-content .conversation .user_2 {
    color: #eef;

.entry-content .conversation p {
    border-top: 1px dotted #3e3e3e;
    padding-top: 10px;

.entry-content .conversation a {
    color: #ccc;
    text-decoration: underline;

August 26, 2009

Okay Then

  • Walter: Am I wrong?
  • Dude: No, you’re not wrong.
  • Walter: Am I wrong?
  • Dude: You’re not wrong Walter, you’re just an asshole!
  • Walter: Okay then.

The Big Lebowski

I love this exchange and I wanted to post something that uses my little “chat” style. :)

August 25, 2009

Ramp Champ

Ramp Champ

Delight your senses in this new twist on a classic boardwalk game. Experience the wonders of the ocean depths. Gaze in awe as strange alien creatures descend from the skies. Join us on a journey through lush, sun-filled fields and dazzling carnival nights. Test your skills as you amass vast quantities of tickets which can be redeemed for virtual baubles and trinkets.

via Ramp Champ

Fantastic-looking new game from the Iconfactory and DS Media Labs. Gorgeous artwork and fun games. $2 from the App Store.

August 24, 2009



Think of it as for type, but anyone can contribute. You can list typefaces (as well as foundries and designers), and other members can add to or complete your entries. We’ve also started a section of the site to learn about different terms related to type and the different ways they are classified.

via Typepdia

This looks like a great system for defining and cataloging fonts. Interested to see whether they integrate with Typekit in the future. I created an account. Fun!

August 24, 2009

Snow Leopard

I just pre-ordered Mac OS X 10.6 from the Apple Store. Looking forward to Friday!


Not only does Snow Leopard not require the entry of any serial numbers, but the standard version of Snow Leopard is a bootable “full install” disc that doesn’t actually check for the presence of Leopard in order to install. This also means that if, at a later time, you want to wipe your hard drive and reinstall Snow Leopard, you won’t have to first install Leopard and then run a separate Snow Leopard upgrade on top of it.

via Macworld

That’s a relief.

August 19, 2009


Every so often during my commute, I pass this car which is full (full, I tell you) of garbage. And not really traditional “car garbage” like a fast food bag or a bunch of maps. This is stuff that looks like it ads a tremendous amount of mass to the car. Newspapers and books. Floor to ceiling. All of the back and most of the front passenger seat. You could barely see over it.

And you’d think that this would be some old wreck of a car that has become a dumpster. It’s not. It’s in decent shape. It isn’t always in the same place. Someone is driving it on a regular basis. And today I finally got to see it in motion.

It’s about as you’d expect. Extremely low, slightly terrifying creaking sounds when it goes around turns, the constant threat of the doors bursting open and sending a million copies of Newsweek flooding onto the street. The shock absorbers are probably more for decoration at this point.

Anyway, I feel a little more a part of my neighborhood now that I’ve seen this thing in action. Any particularly nutty cars near your place?

August 18, 2009

TidBITS: A Post-Literate Technological Age?

When the best someone can come up with is a vague recollection of a program’s icon, it says to me that we’ve entered a “post-literate” technological society, one in which people have lost not just the ability to read and write about a topic, but also the ability to speak about it, all while retaining the ability to use it.

As someone who earns a living crafting text to help people learn how to use technology, I found myself profoundly troubled by Google’s video.

via TidBITS

Interesting thoughts about Google’s recent “What is a browser?” video.

August 17, 2009

Auto-Tune the News

I know I’m months and months behind the curve on this one but I just got around to seeing this and it’s fantastic. It’s not quite Ze’s “The Show” (Best. Year of the Internet. Ever.) but it’s extremely creative and damn funny.

Here are links to all seven episodes on YouTube:

  1. March Madness. Economic woes. Pentagon budget cuts.
  2. Pirates. Drugs. Gay marriage.
  3. Cuba. Afghan friendship. Two-party woes.
  4. Spa regulation. Serbians. Sotomayor.
  5. Lettuce regulation. American blessings.
  6. Michael Jackson. Drugs. Palin.
  7. Texting. Rhyming. Pat Buchanan fail.

I can’t wait to see the next one. :)

August 16, 2009

gist: 168563, by sekimura

Google Reader custom “Send to:” link for TypePad quickerpost.

via GitHub

Installed. :)

August 13, 2009

Bentos for Penelope

As far as I was concerned, making bento lunches for Penelope was more about arts & crafts than cooking; it was something that I could get excited about. More importantly, it was something that really forced me to think about the contents of her lunch. Sure, I could still give her a slice of pizza, but if I dressed it up with broccoli florets, it suddenly had nutritional value.

via Nested

Nice. :)

August 12, 2009

The Daily Show: August 10, 2009

Ah, The Daily Show… eases the pain.

August 11, 2009

USAA Mobile Deposit

My bank released a new version of their iPhone app yesterday which includes a “mobile deposit” feature. Essentially, instead of mailing in your check, you sign in, choose an account, take a couple of photos of the check, and hit send.

I tried it last night and it seemed to work perfectly. The deposited funds were available instantaneously.

This kind of feature, something that saves you time and (potentially) increases security (beats dropping the check in the mail) is the kind of thing that delivers on the promise of these little hand-held computers.

Next, I’d like to be able to pay for my groceries and unlock my car with my phone. :)

Update: Here’s the feature description on USAA’s site. Also, John Gruber linked to a New York Times article which mentions the feature.

August 8, 2009


I’m trying something a little different this weekend. WaltPad (my TypePad blog) is now the official blog of (one of the oldest and most prestigious institutions in the history of the Internet). :)

We’ll see how it goes but so far, so good.

August 8, 2009

The Sausage King of Chicago

  • Maitre’d: I appreciate your… understanding.
  • Ferris: Don’t think twice. It’s understanding that makes it possible for people like us to tollerate a person like yourself.
  • Maitre’d: Thank you.
  • Ferris: Don’t mention it.

Ferris Buller’s Day Off

My folks and I were just reminiscing about this scene the other day. :)

Rest in peace, John Hughes.

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