March 31st, 2004


Radical waves...

Some of you may have heard something in the works about how Al Franken, Janine Garofolo, and Lizz Winstead, the co-creator of "The Daily Show" are working on a nationally syndicated radio network...

Well, the good news is that AirAmerica Radio goes live today -- as does their website! The even better news is this... even though they only own a handful of radio stations across the country (they're still negotiating with numerous stations nationwide) one of their major partners is Rob Glaser of RealNetworks/RealPlayer fame. As a result, they'll be webcasting all of their broadcasts from day one, starting at around 9pm PST today when the site goes live!

Tune in after 9am PST today and listen up... it sounds like the broadcasts will be archived, too! If you like what you hear, be sure to let others know, as the more buzz the network gets, the better the chances are that they will succeed and maybe take some of the airwaves back from Rush Limbaugh and his ilk. Either way, it should be one of the most amusing things you've heard all week!

No more static.

Yes, the phone problem is fixed. SBC was going to make me wait a few days for a repairman, but I talked them into sending someone out first thing this morning, using my 133t skills of persuasion.

Turns out there were two problems on the line -- one on the poll and one at the junction box. Both are now fixed, so my phone service should be better than ever. Hoping that translates into faster downloads, myself.

A filtered view of all my filters...

I have a buttload of spam. As a result, I use a buttload of filters... over 350, infact.

I am looking at a better solution for my email and welcome any suggestions... I've been thinking of one of those challenge/response systems. Until that time, however, I have my homebrewed filters. I thought some of the filters I made might be kind of interesting to mention, however, if only from a sociological standpoint.

Things you can say in emails (usually the subject line) that might get you ignored:
Viagra, for adults, you can't afford, exciting business, mortgage, do me now, cash, credit, bikini, drugs, health, adults, moneymaker, life insurance, like no other, anal, fuck, interest rates, sex drive, financial freedom, efficiency, horny, sinful, hardcore, be your own boss, home loan, hot product, farm, porn, job security, domain names, invest in, for pennies, made easy, fault tolerance, 100% natural, inkjet cartridges, marketing revolution...

You see, real people just don't talk like that.

auugh... sucky streaming!

Listening to Al Franken on Air America Radio this morning, and it's really funny. That said, the streaming is really sucking for me, and is no doubt overloaded. I'm having to repeatedly connect because it keeps dropping me... you'd think it would at least stop for awhile and buffer instead.

I checked the URL to see who is hosting the audio feed, and the link goes to:
this site at, RealNetwork's site for managed content hosting. So... If Real can't reliably stream high-demand content over the Internet using their player, what chance do we have?

Hm... I wonder whether a streaming audio application can be built upon software like BitTorrent?

**UPDATE - chuckdarwin pointed me to the streaming audio of the broadcast on KPOJ AM 620 in Portland. I will have to check to see whether any of the other stations have their own streaming in place too, as it might spread the burden around a bit...**

Somalia redux in Iraq.

Four American contractors, three men and a woman, were killed in Fallujah today when their two SUV's were hit by RPGs. They were then dragged from their burning vehicles, beaten, dismembered, and strung up from a local bridge, while throngs of dancing Iraqis chanted "Fallujah is the graveyard of Americans." An Associated Press cameraman apparently took the video, but this is as much of the footage as I've been able to find so far.

Meanwhile, on a road near Fallujah, five US soldiers from the 1st Division were killed when a bomb exploded under their armored personnel carrier. This makes March the second most deadly month for Americans in Iraq since the war started. This an unexpected escalation of US casualties, considering that Iraqi police have taken over much of the responsibility for security.

It should be remembered that in a recent poll, 20% of Iraqis recently advocated violence against the coalition forces to resist the occupation. That translates into 5 million Iraqis. Obviously, what we've seen today is a good indicator of what that means in real terms.