Archives » October, 2002

October 31, 2002

Brown In

Back on the air now. Our service provider says that a backhoe cut a line somewhere between here and Reno, apparently cutting out T1 service without affecting voice channels. So, a few hours offline never hurt anybody.

Brown Out

The T1 connection is down here at work, and I’m posting this through AOL. It feels like the technological equivalent of writing a note with a quill pen by candlelight, with the winds howling outside: Snowed in. Food almost gone. Late at night I can hear the wolves.

But then I come to myself and look around. It’s bright daylight, the LAN is still chugging along, and everyone in the office is working just like normal. It’s not the end of the world after all; not having an Internet connection won’t kill you, right? Right?

October 30, 2002

One-Party System

Speaking of the election, I think it’s fan-freaking-tastic that the state Democratic party isn’t even endorsing the Democratic candidate for Governor. Two-party system? Sounds more like one-party to me. It’s hard to believe that just four years ago we had a Democratic Governor and two Democratic Senators. Now we’re down to one Dem, a Senator who won by only a few hundred votes in 1998. The Repub he ran against then went on to handily win the other seat in ’00, and our current Gov ran virtually unopposed in ’98 as well. Looks like a good time to move to Washington.

I Was Writing Paper…

I try to keep up with Web fads, those flash-in-the-pan sites that capture our youthful imaginaion for a few weeks or a month, then skitter away as quickly as they came. If there was a Daypop Bottom 40, they’d all be there, rotting in the Graveyard of Forgotten Memes. Previously we’ve had All Your Base and the Tourist Guy, and now we have Ellen Feiss.

Ellen Feiss, for those of you with better things to pay attention to, is the subject of one of Apple’s “Switch” ads. Her ad is basically the same as the other dozen or so, but it stands out from the rest since many people who watch it seem to think she was stoned during filming. Now she’s got fan sites, and has developed a pretty big following. And it seems like every time I try to forget about her, I end up running into her name somewhere else.

Today it was Adam Curry pointing to a Wired article about MacFreak and their Ellen Feiss lookalike contest. “Of course, no one was capable of catching that adorable look of the real Ellen,” the site admits. “She’s our adolescent Mona Lisa.” The article ends with this quote from someone called “Rev. Samuel”, who says:

Apple is very cognizant of what Ellen represents: the stoner computer market…Obviously they are courting my people: the stoners, the pot enthusiasts, munchie mavens, which is fine with me. When more advertisers do, we will be seen as respectable.

Indeed. Maybe they should move to Nevada, where we’ve got decriminalization on the ballot next week.

October 29, 2002

Boxes And Arrows

For people who are into that sort of thing, it’s time to mosey on over to Boxes and Arrows and check out the crop of good stuff they’ve got going this week.

There are two book reviews — a review of Jesse James Garrett’s “The Elements of User Experience”, and a review of Christina Wodtke’s “Information Architecture: Blueprints for the Web”. Yummy stuff. I want both of those books.

There’s also an interview with Jesse James Garrett about his new book and what he’s been working on lately. All good reading — if you’re into that kind of stuff.

Of course, if you’re really into that kind of stuff, you’ve probably already read those articles. So what do you need me for?


I’ve just come across some interesting stuff in CSS2. I found these properties a little while ago when I was deconstructing Blogger to start working on my own publishing system, but I didn’t know until today that they were actually valid and part of the spec.

Use system fonts in CSS
Use system colors in CSS

You can use these CSS properties to have your web page inherit colors and fonts from the operating system. This paragraph, for example, should be the same color as the buttons on your OS – in Windows, that’s your taskbar. Not sure how it works on Mac.

This opens up a few new ideas about designing pages that fit in with a user’s color scheme, and there’s a whole list of available colors to choose from. I’m going to have to see if I have the time to throw together a few tests to see how well browsers support it, and how well it degrades in those that don’t.

One day I’m going to have to read that CSS2 spec cover-to-cover. It’s a little daunting at 330+ pages, though.

October 28, 2002


Must have one of these.

October 25, 2002

They That Go Down To The Sea In Ships

I found this site today. It reminds me somewhat of finding the Navy photo of my grandfather a couple of months ago. It’s not just a collection of photographs, it’s forgotten memories and lost moments of time.

Holiday End

This is always the worst time of any day off work: the time I’d normally get home, when a holiday turns into just any other day. Ah, well.

Home Means Nevada

Everybody sing!

Home means Nevada
Home means the hills
Home means the sage and the pine

Today we celebrate that fateful day in 1864 when Honest Abe realized he needed more votes, and granted statehood to our little clump of sagebrush – just in time for the election!

Actually, Nevada Day has always been on October 31st, causing a young Scottie to have the unique experience of Trick or Treating on October 30th. That way all those kids wouldn’t interfere with the parade and carnival on the 31st. But a couple of years ago, the Legislature realized that everybody loves a three-day weekend. So they signed the “Everybody Loves A Three-Day Weekend” bill, which moved the holiday to the last Friday in October. So that’s why I’m sitting here at home while all you suckas are out working, and why so many kids are growing up confused about when Halloween really is.