Thursday, January 25, 2007

Word of Mouth

Why'd you choose that particular car when you bought a new one recently? Why the MacBook Pro over a Windows machine? And that restaurant you chose for a date with your wife, why that one?

Looks like it isn't advertising that's convincing you as much as word of mouth, according to a new study.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Road Trippin' Cross Country

One of my biggest memories from childhood is taking a cross-country trip with my family in a motorhome. Something about traveling by auto around the country gives you a great understanding of America.

Here is a cool story about a Univ. of Oregon student who did just that, but did it by bumming rides and places to stay via the Internet.

And this is a cool video, time lapse, of a car trip across the country in a convertible.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Best Blog for Search Results

Great blog from writer Ken Levine. I've posted it below so I can just rip it off and see what it does for my results. But give him the credit for creativity! As you'll see, his goal was to increase his search engine results and thus site traffic. Here's his post:

"Okay, this is an experiment. I had lunch last week with fellow blogger, Lee Goldberg and we were talking about people finding our sites via search engines. He said he once just listed the most searched for items and got a ton more hits that day. So for fun, I thought I’d do the same thing. But to put a spin on it, I’ve decided to weave them all into a little narrative. Let’s see what happens. And if you’re reading this because you searched for “Bonnie Bernstein nude” or “Lindsay Lohan nipples”, don’t you feel stupid?

Nikki Cox stared at her breasts, preparing to join Jessica Simpson and Darrent Williams at the Saddam Hanging. Jessica, a staunch “Windows” defender, turned on her Dell computer with the Intel chip and went right to her MySpace page where she added new friends Orlando Bloom, Martina Hingis, Beyonce, Barry Bonds, Barack Obama, and Jessica Alba (who posed in Playboy naked and drives a Ferrari).

Angelina Jolie stopped by with Brad Pitt (who she has nicknamed “bebo”), both horny, having come from a sex orgy, which was really a charity benefit for autism and cancer. Of course Paris Hilton was there (raving about Metacafe which she discovered on Wikipedia and Radioblog.) as was Shakira who appeared just last night on American Idol where she caught Paula Abdul giving a blowjob to Chris Daugherty. It was quite a scandal but nothing like the Duke Lacrosse Rape Scandal, or the pictures of Britney Spears’ vagina.

Then Penelope Cruz put her "box in a box" then called on her RAZR V3. She had been watching 24, Project Runway, America’s Top Model, the Sopranos, Battlestar Galactica, and Dancing with the Stars and fell asleep in front of her HD plasma screen for under $2000. She couldn’t make the execution but was sending Tawny Little and Anne Hathaway instead. Apple Computer, Inc. CEO, Steve Jobs checked in from his spa. He, Justin Timberlake, and Family Guy writers were going to the UFC (ultimate fighting championship) where they would meet up with Sports Illustrated Swimsuit models, Ana Beatriz Barros, Yamila Diaz-Rahi, Molly Sims, Anne V,Bridget Hall,Daniela Pestova,Elsa Benitez, Fernanda Motta,Petra Nemcova, and Carolyn Murphy. He was also hoping some of them were lesbians so he could catch a little hot girl-on-girl action.

Before they all left they checked the Dreamgirls showtimes, Golden Globe results (where they learned the winners included Hellen Mirren, Eddie Murphy, Jennifer Hudson, Martin Scorsese, Ugly Betty, Clint Eastwood, Meryl Streep, and Hugh Laurie from House),traded podcasts, shopped on line for a Seahawks jersey to wear at the Superbowl (if they could get tickets and the cheapest airfare), downloaded tomcat wedding photos, lamented over the Paul McCartney divorce, discussed the latest Borat-Pamela Anderson rumors, and late arrival Madonna wondered where is Palestine? And, for that matter, where is Darfur?

They drove in separate cars. The Lamborghini, Hummer, Mercedes, and Porsche pulled out of the driveway. Wicked Ashlee Simpson was waiting in Jessica’s car sporting her New England Patriots shirt that featured Tom Brady, talking to Hilary Clinton about how to refinance. Meanwhile, Daniel Craig, already there but barefoot (he had a foot fetish), took Viagra just in case Eva Longoria or porn stars Jenna Jamison, Sophie Moon, Alaura Eden, Dragon Lily, Lauren Phoenix, Lexington Steele, Extreme Holly, and Stephanie Swift showed up for the hanging. Wentworth Miller sent his regrets, saying he’ll see it on CNN, the Colbert Report, YouTube, MSNBC with Keith Olbermann, CBS with Katie Couric (and her bare legs), the View with Rosie O’Donnell, the Food Network, or in Screw magazine.

Rain was beating down. Lil Wayne suspected Global Warning. “It’s almost as bad as Hurricane Katrina”, said Hannah Montana, who had her own bankruptcy problems. The guards were dressed like Spiderman. Fergie and Christina Aguilera swooned but Nicole Richie was preoccupied, wondering if the Deal or no Deal models were prettier than her. It was bad enough she was sitting with Heidi Klum, who kept pestering her, asking, “What is Hezbollah?”, “is Chris Brown performing?”, and “define web 2.0”. Donald Trump was giving sex tips to the Grey’s Anatomy cast and making erectile dysfunction jokes that Quentin Tarentino, Sean Hannity, Homer Simpson, Eli Manning, and Simon Cowell didn’t find funny. Ryan Seacrest and Rachel Ray were trading sex toys and Starbucks gift certificates, and Jennifer Aniston asked Tiger Woods if she should enroll in Boise State. He said yes but only if she can apply for FAFSA.

After Katharine McPhee sang some country’s national anthem where she was joined by the Dixie Chicks, Mariah Carey,the cast of "Chicago", and P. Diddy, the hanging took place, duly recorded on everyone’s latest cellphone camera under $30, and then they all checked flight schedules, the Weather Channel, found the best hotel deals, and flew to Hollywood for the latest Oscar buzz, the best pizza, celebrity graves, the top ten nightclubs, tech help, Universal tours, Grammy night, the Golden Globes, tattoos, Kobe Bryant, liposuction, Disneyland, and UCLA cheerleaders.

What did I miss? Google searches include comments, so join in. I'll let you know tomorrow how it went. What good is having a blog if you can't do stupid stuff like this? Thanks for indulging. "

Monday, January 22, 2007

Connecting the Dots

Warning: Probably for real Star Wars geeks only.

Hat tip to Chief Running Miles for this link. One of my early memories of Chief is from 8th grade, getting excited for the release of Return of the Jedi. Things don't change much in 23 years.

This piece connects the dots between the three prequels and the three original Star Wars movies, seeking to explain how what we learned in the prequels changes how we must view the original three. Good stuff.

Friday, January 19, 2007

Something for the Ladies

Bill Simmons, the Sports Guy over at ESPN.com, is one of my favorite columnists. This NFL season as a gimmick he asked his wife, yes the Sports Gal, to pick winners each week and compete against him to see who would do the best. The premise being that knowing nothing is often the best thing when picking games. She said she'd do it if she could write a sidebar about ANYTHING she wanted, sports related or not. Turns out, the Gal can write some funny stuff.

ESPN.com has since created the Sports Gal Archive of all her postings. Since she makes fun of Bill's sports obsession a lot of the time, the ladies out there might find her musings funny.

Thursday, January 18, 2007

I'm Hot

At least according to MyHeritage.com, which has a cool feature where you can upload a headshot of yourself, it's analyzed for face features, and it tells you which celebs you look like. At #1 on my list was the deliciously attractive actress Peta Wilson and #3 was Tea Leoni.

Yeah, I know, strange that a dude with a goatee and receding hairline looks like two hot blondes, but who am I to argue with the expert?

Further down my list, around #10, was Samuel L. Jackson. Kind of balances things out.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Weather Monkey

Time: 11AM
Temp: 39.9F
Precipitation: Zero

You know that gimmick where some magazine or TV show pits a monkey against a stock broker and has them each "pick" a portfolio and see who does better? We need to do that with weather people. Or maybe I'll use my dog, I bet he could kick Dave Salesky's ass at weather prediction.

And they have the gall to try and take credit. Here is KGW's online report right now:

"Light snow fell in the Portland and Vancouver Metro areas Wednesday morning but drivers seemed prepared following meteorolgists' warnings the day before, and conditions were not as bad as expected, either."

Uh, oh by the way, conditions were not as bad as expected! And Salesky just won't back off the doom and gloom either:

"
Roads will be skating rinks from around 11 p.m. [Wednesday] until mid-morning Thursday," Salesky explained. "Any snow and rain falling now will re-freeze tonight. The Thursday morning commute will be ugly."

Want to put money on that Dave? Maybe bet against my dog? Here's what I'll do tonight: Put two predictions, one each on a piece of paper. Your prediction and mine. Then, I'll put a dog bone on each page and let my dog go pick one and we'll see how he does.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Weather Cynic

I am the biggest weather cynic. Whenever they say it's going to snow or freeze, I say no way. The reason is simple: they are usually wrong.

Now, yes, sometimes they are correct. But I believe it is more often they are wrong. (OK, I don't have statistics on this, but it's a gut feeling). And I don't mean when they say it's going to snow that we get a couple flakes. They always make it sound like the Blizzard of '07, or The Big Freeze. But it doesn't materialize.

I think it bugs me for three reasons:

1. They are always emphatic about it. "It will snow/freeze." It's never, "There is a good chance" or "It might". But instead, "It's snowing tomorrow."

2. When they are wrong they never admit it or apologize! Seriously, I want to hear just once, "Well, we got that one wrong."

3. What other job can you be wrong that often and still stay employed?

I promise to apologize tomorrow if my prediction that it won't snow or freeze to the point that you can't get to work is incorrect.

Monday, January 08, 2007

My Day

You'll notice a big fat link to "My Day" on the right side. This is a new joint blog-venture set up by Literary Girl that is a "photoblog". She's asked several people, including me, to post regularly to the site. It's just as it sounds: a blog composed entirely of photos. Check it out, see what you think. My first post is up and is much more utilitarian than many of the others.

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

MySpace

I haven't quite figured out the whole MySpace phenomenon. I keep chalking it up to a generational thing, that it's just those crazy kids. Of course, the 40 year old head of the accounting department at my work has a MySpace page (apparently), but he also dates women much younger than he is so maybe there is a connection between the two. And my wife's cousin, who is my age, also has a MySpace page.

I realize it has something to do with the whole idea of online communities and social networking. And some people might say there is little difference between why people blog and why people create a MySpace page. Maybe it's just me.

So, I got a kick out of this blog entry from Oregonian sports columnist John Canzano. He writes about what he was able to learn about the Boise State running back who asked his cheerleader girlfriend to marry him after the Broncos big win Monday night in the Fiesta Bowl from their respective MySpace pages. My favorite part is the photo of him and her from Halloween, where she was dressed as a slutty Snow White. (You're checking out the blog link now, huh?)