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TWTW

The week that was

New York City announced that the last few pay phones will be removed by the end of the month.

The crowdsourced science experiment SETI@home will pull the plug and stop scanning the skies for intelligent life. Maybe they found something?

Coronavirus panic hit Australia this week and the police had to be called in after a fight broke out over toilet paper. Rushing in to meet the need, a local paper started to include several extra blank pages for its subscribers.

The Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society canceled its annual conference due to the COVID-19 outbreak.

Research in England concluded that slow public transportation leads to poor school results.

The NHL will use a new type of hockey puck embedded with electronics that should help fans keep track of the tiny thing while watching a game on TV.

Hackers have figured out how to break into a phone sitting on a table with inaudible micro-vibrations that communicate via the phone’s voice control.

Fed up with having to change their clocks twice a year, the Yukon Territory in Canada will spring forward one last time and then call it quits.

A San Jose woman was crushed when she realized the plant she had been caring for tenderly for the past two years was a fake.


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Current Events

Goodbye Super Tuesday

Big day yesterday with Bloomberg dropping out this morning, all eyes looking to see what Warren will do and everyone wondering why Tulsi Gabbard is still hanging in there.

More details at The Race.

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Home

Same as it, everwas

David Byrne was on SNL last night, performing this blog’s namesake.

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TWTW

The week that was

A unsuspecting weather reporter in North Carolina gave us another case of a TV reporter getting unknowingly embellished by his Facebook livestream filters. Remember that Pakistani minister?

Homeland Security’s algorithm designed to keep out terrorists identified and denied a visa to a war crimes investigator.

What do you do when your country is overrun with a locust swarm? Release the ducks!

Scientists looking down have discovered a the first known animal that can live without breathing.

Scientists looking up discovered the biggest explosion ever. How big? 15 Milky Ways big. Oh, and apparently this is old news but the earth has a second moon orbiting the earth?

Despite his company owning over 5% of Apple, the famously frugal Warren Buffet finally traded in his old flip-phone for an iPhone.

It’s now a thing to snatch defenseless pigeons and glue tiny hats to their heads. Trump supporters in Las Vegas are forcing pigeons to spread the MAGA news probably inspired by someone who did this with sombreros last month in Reno.

A start-up in Denver has made a pill that you swallow that doctors can control over wifi to, as needed, remotely release medicine inside you. What could possibly go wrong?

Categories
Current Events

Gif Peanut Butter

The limited run is already sold out on Amazon. From the listing:

  • Limited edition jar with double-sided JIF/GIF label.
  • Perfect for sandwiches, baking, and shutting down internet debates.
  • Contains about 34 servings of peanut butter, and 0 looping images.
Categories
Current Events

Coronavirus and our Dystopian Future

Due to mandatory quarantines across China, people have resorted to using new and old technology in new ways to serve their needs that has hints of a dark, post-apocalytic, sci fi world. A few examples;

So people do not have to touch potentially infected elevator buttons, many have set out containers of disposable toothpicks which can be used to press the buttons and then discarded.

Sending out a remote-controlled car to get food.

Drones are used to spray neighborhoods of disinfectant, remotely take temperature reading of apartment block residents, and disperse pubic gatherings.

Empty movie theaters are forced to sell their snack inventory online.

Many museums are livestreaming events and tours and nightclubs are streaming home party mixes.

With schools in extended shutdown, teachers have resorted to streaming their classes.

Online maps show outbreak clusters in real time so the healthy can avoid going nearby. Apparently several location-based apps (such as your mobile wallet) stop working once you leave the quarantine zone, limiting movement.

Farmers, unable to sell their crops in the market, are selling via live-streaming and shipping direct to customers.

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TWTW

The week that was

Supreme published its latest collection of branded goods including Ziploc bags, an Oreo cookie and even a Mac Tools rolling toolbox. The Oreos are already re-selling on eBay for $4000.

Do you miss the sweet smell of McDonald’s ketchup? What about the pickles or hamburgers? Not to worry, the golden arches will sell you a set of scented candles. Eater, points out the idea is to light all six candles to re-create the smell of a quarter-pounder. Ugh.

People in Mexico have figured out that they can get over Trump’s multi-billion dollar border wall with about $5 of re-bar.

An Indiana man with a Crime Pays tattoo on his forehead was arrested, again.

The emotional support animal bar was raised yet again (remember peacocks and alligators?) when Ronica Froese flew first-class with her mini service horse.

The coronavirus scare has driven up the price of essential goods in Hong Kong, including toilet paper. So much so, opportunistic gang members held up a supermarket and stole 600 rolls.

Climate change has hit the European ski resorts hard. So hard some resorts in the Alps and Pyrenees are bringing snow to their slopes with helicopters.

Tesla cars are smart. They come with cameras that can read speed limit signs and set their speed accordingly. Telsas are dumb. Hackers used some black tape to fool the car to rapidly accelerate from 35 to 85.

Glen Davis drove a school bus in Minnesota since his graduation from high school in 1949. He enjoyed driving the bus so much, he asked to be buried in a lovingly custom-built, school bus casket.

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TWTW

The week that was

Aided by 200 MPH tailwinds, a British Airways flight set the record for the fastest commercial flight from New York to London. Flight 112 made the trip just under 5 hours, 80 minutes ahead of schedule.

In San Francisco, similarly strong winds blew the glass out of the 41st floor of the hapless and slightly-leaning Millennium Tower.

In a touching application of VR technology, a South Korean mother was able to play with her deceased young daughter.

A small museum in Pennsylvania sent out one of their older paintings for a routine cleaning and was informed that said painting was a 400-year old Rembrandt.

The Girl Scouts are out with cookies again so everyone’s got a story of the entrepreneurial ones setting up shop outside their local marijuana dispensary.

Prescription medication is so expensive in Utah one insurance company is sending its workers to Mexico or Canada to pick up medicine for its members.

Engineers in Hong Kong have figured out how to harness electricity from raindrops.

Modern Farmer reports that someone has invented an autonomous robot that can weed your garden.

Someone fell for one of those phishing emails. Unfortunately that someone was a worker for the government of Puerto Rico and they ended up transferring 2.6 million taxpayer dollars to a fraudulent account.

She thought something was funny about her date. He insisted she come pick her up in her car. He then asked her to stop by a bank for a quick moment. Her fears were confirmed when “he came running back, sweating with sunglasses, a hat, a gun and $1,000 cash in hand.”

Categories
TWTW

The week that was

Kansas City beat San Francisco in the Super Bowl. It’s been a long time coming for KC (50 years for those counting) so residents were excited to see their team win, disrupting weather radar with their fireworks and setting couches on fire.

Kansas’ defensive tackle Derrick Nnadi melted everyone’s heart when he lay down in the celebratory confetti (made up of fan’s hopeful tweets), made a snow angel, then went out and paid off the adoption fees for all dogs in the area.

A performance artist made headlines when he caused a virtual traffic jam on Google Maps towing a wagon full of burner phones running Google Maps across various bridges in Berlin.

The Philadelphia Flyers mascot, Gritty, was cleared of physical assault after a tussle with a fan. Tough town, Philly is.

Costa Rica announced that it gets its energy from nearly 100% renewable sources.

A draft executive order titled “Making Federal Buildings Beautiful Again,” proposes strict guidelines for acceptable design. Following the tradition of “Mussolini, Franco and a particular failed German art student (who) all pushed for a singular, classically inspired state architecture intended to project tradition, order and the superiority of the state.”

It was determined that the Apple Watch outsold the entire Swiss watch industry last year, by a large margin.

Keith Richards announced he hasn’t smoked a cigarette since October.

A parking space in San Francisco went on the market for $100,000. A bargain compared to the one, “closer to the lobby” that went for $140k.

A Oakland man rammed a police car and sped off hoping for a quick getaway but things didn’t quite work out that way when all four tires on his car fell off.

They thought they were so clever, hiding all their drugs in two bags with the words Bag Full of Drugs blazoned on the side. “They’ll never look in here,” they must have thought to themselves. They were wrong.

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Home

High Tech Alameda

Ever since they shut down the Air Naval Station on the western end of Alameda, there has been a number of cool businesses that have moved in to call the leftover gigantic air hangers their home.

St. George’s Spirits – a required stop when visiting the island – they offer tours of their distillery floor and will tell tales of their innovations and experiments that have resulted in the first modern (legal) absinthe and their award-winning single malt. Be sure to ask them about their wasabi vodka experiment.

The Bladium – when you’ve got an entire hanger, you can do a lot with the space. There’s a boxing ring and an indoor rock wall.

Rock Wall Winery – speaking of rock wall, Rock Wall was founded by the daughter of Kent Rosenblum who ran a very successful winery down the street.

The Rake – a pub attached to Admiral Maltings. They serve up beers that are brewed using their malts. Their beers are, of course, wonderful but the whole WPA, union shop design ethic is really cool too.

The Rake at Admiral Maltings

The Ocean Cleanup – boy genius Boyan Slat threw out an idea at a Ted talk and proposed a clean-up of all the plastic in the ocean. When it came time build a huge boom that they sent out into the Pacific Ocean to clean up the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, he chose Alameda. They are also working on a thing I call Roomba for Rivers.

Makani – a Google X graduate, this “moonshot” make huge kites which they fly in the jet stream and use to harness power.

Astra – just out of stealth, this rocket start-up that looks like a garage project that went pro. Astra has hired on some big guns and aims to launch their micro-rockets on a regular (daily) basis to serve the soon-to-be-booming commercial space industry. They will not launch out of Alameda but they found a jet engine testing facility from the Naval Air Station perfect for their undercover tests.

There are more on the way I’m sure – the old Mythbusters used to use the runway to blow stuff up. That same runway has been used to test drive an autonomous motorcycle startup of an unknown name and the movie studio behind The Matrix movies is back for more filming of their dystopian universe.

Who knows what will be next.