23 June 2009

Bi-weekly Reflections 2009 - Week 22 & 23 - Articles & Links

"Bi-Weekly Reflections" is my small journal of events that have gone on throughout the last 2 weeks that I've decided to keep. Articles and links were part of the main "Bi-weekly Reflections" segment of my blog for some time, but because of the large number of articles and links that I've been adding lately (along with my own commentary on them), I've decided to separate the links into their own posts. New updates to this will (hopefully) be posted as soon as possible.
  • After their E3 2009 announcement, some more information is coming down the pipe about Sony's newest offering of their PSP platform, the PSPgo. Apparently its reception is luke-warm, and problems plague it from how current owners will be able to access their entire PSP catalog to the accessories issue. It will be very interesting to see how it all pans out.
  • What if God text-messaged The Ten Commandments? Well, it'd probably look a little like this.
  • Are you a guy like me and hate shopping for clothes? Then check out Trunk Club, where people can help you shop for new clothes and have them shipped to your door!
  • Wow! This universal radio antenna could be a huge advancement for mobile devices - imagine a phon/PDA that does everything!
  • Its about darn time, California! I've always wondered why it took so long for online textbooks to catch on. I wonder if the state colleges adopt this too. If so, then I wish it was around when I was in college.
  • From the "Whoa! That really sucks for them!" files: "Webhost hack wipes out data for 100,000 sites" Even if these people had backups, because it was an attack on the databases that they used, information could be out-of-sync, which in turn causes all sorts of issues and hours-upon-hours of extra work for each website's personnel.
  • After what seemed like forever, Facebook finally caught up with everybody else and started offering "vanity URLs" so your Facebook page would be easier to remember (and type) when giving it to other people. However, like everything else on the Internet, this caused a massive site "land grab" for URLs, and I forsee it only leading to problems later for some (like celebrities).
  • After a long wait, Palm has finally released a new PDA phone not running on Palm OS, but now running on WebOS - the Palm Pre. Of course, the geeks like me spared no waiting in ripping it apart and exposing some of its nitty-gritty details, like the ability to access the phone's secret developer mode and an official root image of the phone. I have to say that I'm impressed with the phone, but I will have to wait and see how it goes (and, of course, wait until a version of the phone shows up with GSM/HSDPA for the US).
  • For many who are wary of banks holding onto your money, many put their money in bizarre places. But apparently, people have been accidentally forgetting where they've stored their life savings and have let their bundles of cash go into the public insecurely. For example, a couple weeks ago, Best Buy employees found $10000 stashed away in a customer's computer when the computer was sent to the store to be repaired (I think that putting the money into it may have actually caused the problem - how ironic!). However, the latest news comes from Israel where a woman attempted to surprise her mother with a new bed, only to find out her mother stored her life savings of $1 million in the old mattress, sparking a frantic search for the cash. Now, I understand if you feel the need to keep your money away from the greedy guys in the banks, but last time I checked, I knew my money was always available to me (unless we go into another Depression - then out my money comes).
  • At the end of my set of links from last time, I mentioned an article about a topless coffee shop that had caught fire and been damaged, and the horrible response from the community around it. Well, apparently the spirit and desire to never give up is definitely instilled in the owner and employees of the coffee shop as the shop has reopened in a tent while repairs are made to the location. Keep it up!
  • Well, the epic saga of Carrie Prejean, the latest Miss California, has finally come to an end. After being shot into the spotlight over her statements against gay marriage, her "unsanctioned appearances" against gay marriage and her lack of adherence to her contract have led Donald Trump, the owner of the parent organization of Miss California, to fire her and pass her crown to Tami Farrell, the runner-up.
  • And people criticized me for thinking green, saying that it won't do anything for the economy... Mr. Nelson, I'm looking at you...
  • Well, it seems that things are getting a little out-of-hand and some Newsweek reporters are calling this year the "year of the cougar." Why? Well, you'll have to read this article about the "obsession" over Adam Lambert among "cougars" and this article about cougar portrayal in recent times. Think Ashton Kutcher and Demi Moore, and you'll know know what I'm talking about.
  • Starbucks, the evil corporation that epitomized the image of consumerism, has of late been in the news quite a bit - but not for good reasons. In particular, Starbucks was recently caught for accidentally double-charging people for their credit card/ATM purchases when a back-end system went rouge on Memorial Day weekend, but luckily was corrected. However, now the company is in the news for a recall on a coffee grinder that apparently "can turn on unexpectedly." Hmm... Sounds to me that its haunted by the consumerism goblins...
  • In more video game-related news, the teen who shot his parents, killing his mother, when they took away his Halo 3 video game was sentenced to 23 years in prison. I'm sure violent video game fanatics are loving this one...
  • Who knows how valid this kid's account was, but he claims to have been hit by a meteorite in the hand, leaving a scar. Although astronomers and scientists can confirm that the object did come from space, there are questions over the validity of the claim. Whatever the reason, people might want to start wearing kevlar vests and helmets.
  • The Japanese space probe Kaguya finished its survey of the moon, and expelled itself from the heavens in a fireball after it purposely slammed itself into the moon. Why they would do this, I have no idea.

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