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Kurt Vonnegut

If you didn’t grow up in the late 60’s, then perhaps you weren’t aware of the earliest foresight of Kurt Vonnegut. The genius of the man was that he could take the most inane concepts and turn them into science fiction that often became fact. He was the man who decided the meaning of life was a can opener and that the world would come to an end because of ice-nine, a sliver of which would turn any liquid, including bodily fluids, into a frozen disaster.

The novelist’s heroes, such as Kilgore Trout, were sometimes a reflection of himself; his plots concerned the way our society often fails us. His villains were those who could find a way to ruin the planet, just the way many of us are doing in real life. Gear Live will remember you fondly, Mr. Vonnegut, and we know that Bokonon is pointing his thumbed nose up at you in tribute. Also know that while you lived, he admired you for always being busy, busy, busy and for teaching us the same.


Helios Power Babies

After seeing bp’s latest commercial for its company, we can’t help remembering that sometimes even the supposedly best technology can go wrong, very wrong. On March 23, 2005, one of their refineries exploded killing 15 workers and injuring more than 100.  Out of more than 1,000 injury claims from this incident and others that happened previously, bp settled out of court with most of them.

To counter the remaining bad publicity, the company, which provides 3% the U.S. petroleum, has launched Helios Power commercials featuring engaging animated toddlers singing “Say Hey”and hanging out at bp stations. To make them really worry about their image, what say we stop buying their gas until their refineries are a lot safer?


Read More | bp

As television news becomes less reliable and leans more towards the fluff of Katie Couric-style reporting, it won’t be long before we all will opt for sites such as RocketBoom. The New York daily vlog is the brainchild of Andrew Barron and Amanda Congdon, its original host. She was replaced in June of last year by MTV Europe VJ Joanne Colan. The site often registers as much as 250,000 downloads per day.

RocketBoom generally features stories on robotics, digital gadgets, and sometimes includes animation while making a gentle stab at traditional media. Our props to those who can successfully turn podcasts into a viable source of international news. We have included this program concerning their hilarious analysis of the upcoming Presidential race, in case you missed its original January airing.

Read More | RocketBoom

MistyNo clever gadget here, folks, but having recently lost our own dog to liver malfunction, it makes us question why such supposedly reliable and technologically up-to-date companies as Iams and Science Diet may be responsible for the lives of too many pets worldwide. These products are often recommended by vets, and if you can’t rely on them, what can you do?

Our suggestion is, first of all, to halt the consuming of either wet or dry recalled products in question, which now includes Del Monte (manufacturers of Gravy Train and jerky treats,) Purina’s Alpo, and Hill. Switch your pet’s diet to something organic and made locally or make your own kibble. Finally, if you even suspect your best friend is exhibiting symptoms of liver damage, call your local veterinary facility to see if she/he should be tested.

Read More | MSN Health

Yosemite Sam

I know i have complained a bit about Yahoo in the past and today I noticed their latest trick. This is what I found at the bottom of the inside of an e-mail:

“Don’t pick lemons.
See all the new 2007 cars at Yahoo! Autos.
It’s not enough that I have to put up with garish banners, gratuitous credit reports and complimentary Cingular Phones that aren’t really free, and constant reminders that I can upgrade to Email Plus for $19.99 a year or a personal address for $35.00 a year. Now they want me to select my next car through them. Hey Yahoo, please lighten up. At the rate you are spamming me, I will have to put up my SpamGuard Plus to block you or abandon my puny 1GB memory in search of a kinder e-mail.

Al Gore

Okay, so Al Gore didn’t personally win. But “AIT”’s (as the crew refers to it) director Davis Guggenheim brought the man who proclaims “he used to be the next president of the U.S.” up on the stage with him because he is truly the man behind the movie. Gore has always been interested in the subject of global warming and during his vice-presidential years used his term to draw attention to that and other environmental issues. This leads us to the political question: In the race against Queen Hillary and Prince Obama, can “The Goracle” become our next


President? We hope he will just continue to aid our planet.

Read More | Climate Crisis

Yahoo magWhat the heck is wrong with Yahoo? Seriously. A few weeks ago my handy TV guide became unusable. Do a Yahoo search and you get references to their pages or silly questions with even sillier answers. Today my Yahoo e-mail has not only metamorphasized into something I don’t recognize, it refuses to post pictures that have been sent to me. There is also a delay in bringing it up. I have long enjoyed the benefits of Yahoo’s e-mail, since it affords me a larger storage area and isolates most of the spam I get on it, but I really think that they have finally bitten off more than they can figuratively chew. With so much information and choices online, it may be time to find a kinder company that doesn’t want to rule the entire Internet world.

Every day the web becomes a more powerful social network. Iraqi assassinations were posted on the Internet in their entirety. Viral videos helped to cause the demise of former senator George Allen and comedian Michael Richards. It also was the source of coming out parties for both Hillary Clinton and Barak Obama. Just as TV was the turning point in the race for President during the debates between John Kennedy and Richard Nixon in 1960, we consider the possibilities that those of you interested in the politics of our U. of S. will be turning more to the likes of YouTube than the boob tube for next year’s big race. After viewing last night’s “The Agenda” on tvo.org with Steve Paikin, we see that we aren’t the only ones.


Read More | The Agenda

Time Cover

Time Magazine’s next Person of the Year Issue, due out December 25, refers to “the many wresting power from the few and helping one another for nothing and how that will not only change the world, but also change the way the world changes.”

The article states that all who submit data on YouTube or MySpace or just blog are indulging in techno-advances that alter our world as we know it. We agree. We no longer have to turn on the stereo or TV, fight the post office, pick up a newspaper, shop at crowded malls, or even go to the bank. We make stupid human videos and seek out others online internationally for companionship.

Congratulations to all of us who share the spotlight with the likes of Einstein, Bono and most of the world’s leaders. See that you do them proud.


Read More | Time

If you’ve been following along with our Holiday Gift Guide 2006, you’re probably looking to pick up something unique and fun for someone you love or merely tolerate. Fantastic. But if you’re not looking to spend quite $100+ on them, because, perhaps they haven’t earned that much friend equity and hey, you’ve got a Wii to buy yourself, well, that’s just fine. The interweb is plush with amazing niche shops, terrific web stores that have all sorts of amazing and fun gadgets, toys and fun things for your desk. And with just two weeks left, it’s best to get cracking right now.

Our five favorite places to shop for cool people for under $30? Let’s see:

1) Wishingfish.com: With great desk toppers like Swiss Aromatherapy Pens and animal-shaped rubber bands, this diverse site has all sorts of goodies ripe for the taking. Pick them up a Smores Maker and they’ll be roasting marshmallows inside at what’s sure to be a very awkward, but soon tasty staff meeting in no time!

Click to continue reading Five Great Online Stores For Finding Gifts For Geeks