Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Also starring: A Flying Police Box

Take Doctor Who (the 10th) and make it into a CSI show - CSI: Gallifrey. The Doctor is pretty smart, so the shows will be extremely short...

Well, he is a lot less annoying than 'H'.

Sassy Siri

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Monday, November 28, 2011


I have never been close to a murmuration.

I'm guessing, based on this video, that it would be an awesome experience.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Where is it? (Edition 67)

It's back! Here is episode 67 of the hysterically popular geography game 'Where Is It?', where you - the humble reader, have to try and guess where this picture was taken. I will accept the closest town or city as an answer. You place your answers in the comments. If you've read this far, it's likely you've already lost to team Ecland, but good luck anyway.....

Note: I'm making the game a little harder this time. No more access to bigger pictures - what you see is what you get. But now, rather than satellite photos, I offer you Google Street view images instead.

New players: If you put an answer in the comments, indicate who you are so you get credit if you're correct.

I don't smell........ so.....

Evolution of the hipster, by Glove & Boots.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Llama art


The Muppets are back in the spotlight, but they haven't been slacking off all this time. Oh no. They've been auditioning for various films. Unsuccessfully.... but I digress.

My favourite one was The King's Speech. I've already played that trailer in my head.....

Page 23

This video clip looks like an IKEA commercial.

Not so fast.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Blog post #8000

8000 blog posts. That's epic.

Who wants to celebrate with me?

Happy Thanksgiving USA

In honour of the holiday south of the border.

How not to do improv

Unless you're really going for tongue-in-cheek. Liam Neeson tries to convince Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant that he's the perfect candidate to do improv on stage. Then demonstrates exactly what not to do.

(For the 10 people who've not yet seen this)

Democracy is not for sale

I want to live in a democracy where the government cannot be bought. It's time to make our government serve its citizens again, not corporations. Governments go on about letting the free market decide, but they allow obsolete business plans to flourish. Am I the only one who has had enough?

Oh look.... it seems I am not alone.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

City of growth

I am home to 23 million residents, almost 3 times as much as New York City.

I am growing by 500,000 people per year.

I have 11 subway lines, by 2025 I will have 22 of them.

I have a high speed magnetic levitation train line.

I have over 200 skyscrapers.

Where am I?

[see comments for the answer]

Duck duck moose

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Nano! Nano! Nano!

The world has been used to manufacturing stuff on a large scale. Electronics has been the exception, but now even materials manufacturing has entered the nano arena, to astounding effect. As a result, we are now able to build stuff like this:

"... researchers from UC Irvine, HRL Laboratories and the California Institute of Technology have developed the world’s lightest material – with a density... about one hundred times lighter than Styrofoam.

The researchers were able to make a material that consists of 99.99 percent air by designing the 0.01 percent solid at the nanometre, micron and millimetre scales. “The trick is to fabricate a lattice of interconnected hollow tubes with a wall thickness 1,000 times thinner than a human hair,” said lead author Dr. Tobias Schaedler of HRL.

The material’s architecture allows unprecedented mechanical behaviour for a metal, including complete recovery from compression exceeding 50 percent strain and extraordinarily high energy absorption.

“Materials actually get stronger as the dimensions are reduced to the nano-scale,” explained UCI mechanical and aerospace engineer Lorenzo Valdevit, UCI’s principal investigator on the project. “Combine this with the possibility of tailoring the architecture of the micro-lattice and you have a unique cellular material.”"


I can't explain how much I love this picture.

I love this picture. A lot. Like... a lot lot (as the kids would say).

Saturday, November 19, 2011


Allow me to introduce some new punctuation marks to you, because we all love to broaden our horizons. Right? OK, here we go.


« »  Guillemets means "Little Williams," which is interesting but unhelpful. They're named after a 16th Century French printer. Their primary role exists in non-English languages that use them as quotation marks. So when you're feeling a little non-English, feel free to use them as such.

Because Sign

This one's so cool. It's like the "Therefore" sign, but upside-down. Furthermore, it means because.


   It's a combination Exclamation and Question mark, and it's awesome. It is the punctuational equivalent of saying like OMGWTF?!


¶   This one's for paragraph breaks. Most people will be familiar with it, because it's a button in MS Word. But they won't know that it's called a Pilcrow. It's also referred to as "The Blind P". Pilcrow is the Middle English word for Paragraph. Try to use that fun fact in real life. Why? ?

Coffee snobs

I almost snorted coffee watching this FunnyorDie clip. "Am I wearing a green apron? Do you hear Ray Lamontagne playing right now?"

Also digging the bat guano reference.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Filling up

Here is a fantastic video explaining how we went from 1 billion people in 1804 to 7 billion today.

He boiled for you

If you know the deal on The Flying Spaghetti Monster, you'll love this poster.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Things not to say while you're still on probation at your new job

“Sorry I’m late. I finally made it to level 10 in Halo.”
“When should I expect my offer?”
“Hey! My grandma has that same sweater! Cool!”
"I am so getting it on with the bosses' daughter."
"Sick days are just bonus vacation days, right?"
“Get your own coffee.”
“My mom’s on the phone. She wants to go over all my dietary restrictions with you.”
“What do you mean, the cafeteria doesn’t serve Stella Artois?”
“Oh, honey. Let’s talk about this outfit.”
“Fridays are optional, right?”
“I’m not really ‘into’ that whole 8 hour workday thing.”
“You started here in 1990? That’s, like, before I was born!”
“Wow, I never thought I’d get another job after what happened at the last one!”
“I get your job when this probation ends, right?”
“Can I expense my Playboy subscription? It’s research.”
“I found the best place to nap yesterday!”
“Heading out early. Glee is on tonight and I need to prepare.”
“It’s not sexual harassment if you say ‘surprise!’”
“You’re doing it wrong.”
“You’re cute. Do you have a son who’s closer to my age?”

FB perception versus FB reality

Monday, November 14, 2011

At home with Elvis

I love this little video clip with Elvis.

Who knew that Elvis was still alive and living in the UK. Not I....

3.5 year old back seat driver

Olivia now remarks at the speed limit signs on the side of the road while we go driving (clarification - I'm driving - she's in her seat). Because I drive a Civic with a digital speedometer, she also knows how fast I am going. So here's how the conversation goes:

Olivia: "Pa, that sign says one hundred."
Me (Pa): "That's right."
Olivia: "What does that mean?"
Me: "It means that's how fast we can go on this road."
Olivia: "But you're not doing one hundred..."

(I'm not - I'm doing 103)
Me: [rolling eyes]
Olivia: "You're going too fast Pa!"

She's 3 and a half....

Sunday, November 13, 2011

One one one one one one one one one one

Numerologists could have a field day with recent events. First, we lived through 11/11/11 and now the weather forecast for Calgary has nothing but ones in it.


Holographic bitch-slaps!

Have you seen the new bank notes coming soon to Canada? Talk about ultra-modern.

One of the new security features is that if you look very carefully at the portrait, a hand reaches out, slaps you in the face and says "You think I'm counterfeit?"

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Save battery power on your iPhone

Great article for iPhone 4 users on how to conserve battery power.


"I wish I could hook my iPhone up to a mini tripod."

"It would be cool if I could prop my iPhone up at an angle."

"If my iPhone was propped up, this would make hands-free use at a desk more practical."

As an iPhone 4/4S owner, have you ever had any of those thoughts? If you can identify with any of these sentiments, have I got the perfect accessory for you.

It's called The Glif. It's not much to look at, but this little rubberized plastic makes it possible to prop up your phone or attach it to a standard tripod. When my friend Ernest showed this to me I said "Order me one please!" Be sure to watch the video on the site. It will all make sense.

The only caveat is that The Glif will only be useful if your iPhone is naked (no case).

Friday, November 11, 2011

Well, if it isn't Charlie Plesz

My sister happened to Google my dad's name just for the heck of it and came across this newspaper clipping from 1955. Did you know Google News has scanned newspapers from all over going back (in some cases) hundreds of years?

So this is from the Montreal Gazette and it is a picture of my father's first marriage to my birth mother, whom I did not ever meet because she died days after I was born from complications. That picture is 56 years old, taken about 6 years before I was born.

I currently have no idea where my dad is.


Art Benjamin is a mathemagician. Get out your calculator and watch this TED video as Art shows how the brain can perform calculations quite fast.

How new technology blindsides those who could best benefit

Here is a great keynote speech from John Naughton, who explains very well why governments are currently incapable of keeping up with (and therefore successfully legislating) technology.

Thursday, November 10, 2011


I just had to steal this from my friend Bernie's FB feed.

Is that funny, or what?

Confused grasshopper

Confused grasshopper is confused.

So confused.

The assumption song

It's easy to think you know what's coming next. By The Arrogant Worms.

You may find it difficult to master the words to this song.

Wednesday, November 09, 2011

Google Maps 3D

If you use Google Maps and happen to have the Google Earth plug-in installed on your browser, you may be missing a cool little feature - 3D view.

Here's how it works. Use the get directions feature and plug in a start point and destination. Then click 'get directions'. You'll notice that right beside the 'Driving directions to...' bolded line just before the individual instructions is a 3D button. Click it and you will experience a bird-in-the-sky view of the trip.

There's a little pause / play button at the lower left, so if the map images aren't downloading and resolving fast enough, you can always pause to allow the images to load before you proceed. What I like about this feature is that you can get a fairly good idea of what you'll be seeing along the route before you even leave your start point. That's cool.

Meew 2

This could possibly be one of the funniest Simon's Cat videos yet. Quite possibly.

Double Trouble indeed.

Tuesday, November 08, 2011


If you're going to be a complete tool and shine a laser pointer at an aircraft, you might not want to pick a police helicopter with FLIR technology.


Table 7

I had this figured out as soon as the typewriter started. What a cute, touching, clever little video short.

Me like.

Cabbage Patch Kid IRL

Cabbage Patch Kid in real life.


Monday, November 07, 2011

Minute physics

My introduction to this series of clever videos about physics was this one about Schrödinger's Cat. But if you explore the series further, you'll hear the sound of hydrogen, learn what's so special about the number -1 and so much more that will blow your mind - assuming that you like having your mind blown.

Just click on the YouTube play list at the right of the video for more of these wonderful clips.

Shaped traffic lights for the colour blind

Many people don't know this, but in Quebec and a few other eastern provinces in Canada, the traffic signal lights don't just have different colours, they also have different shapes - for people who are colour blind. The green is round, the yellow is a diamond shape and the red is a large square.

In Quebec, there are often two reds as well, one at each end of the light grouping. It is also common to find green arrows instead of just a green circle.

Sunday, November 06, 2011

Feed the Occupy movement

I'm rolling out a street food truck (which the Occupy Calgary protesters seem to dislike for some reason) on Monday that should settle the Occupy movement down a little.

It will be selling Occupies.

I'm joking of course, but wouldn't that peg the awesomeness scale?

We don't need no education.....

What's better than the original version of Pink Floyd's The Wall?

Being covered by Mariachi Cabos, of course.

I am capable of giving credit where it is due

There are some people in the entertainment industry who actually get it.

It's not piracy stupid. It's distribution.

Put your seat belt on first though.....

Type 'do a barrel roll' into Google.

[For those of you who didn't know about this yet]

Saturday, November 05, 2011

I remember

25 cent movies at the theatre (New releases!)
Having to stand in the corner (Yeah... me!)
The turbo button on a computer
KerPlunk and Lite-Brite
Milk in plastic bags
Leaving the front door unlocked and feeling safe
AMC Pacers [shudder]
When you needed a can opener (church key) to open a pop can
K-Tel records
Cigarettes with no filters
Community corn roasts
Cars with a vinyl roof
When Star wars came out..... at the drive-in
TV sets with no remotes
5 cent bags of chips
Black & white TV
A time before computers
Cars without seat belts
Watching Ed Sullivan..... live
When the Maple Leafs won a Stanley Cup..... just kidding... that was even before my time
Being afraid of being different

Also, Arizona is whacked

A thorough description of Daylight Savings Time and why it may or may not be practical.

This engine design is almost 200 years old

If you've never seen a Stirling engine before, this Stirling engine model company might be an eye-opener. Bohm Stirling-Technik craft some beautiful examples of engines that make use of external combustion.

You can build these yourself and get some 94% ethyl alcohol and you're ready to rumble. Get ready to see almost 200 year old technology in action.

Thursday, November 03, 2011