News and notes from all over

Time for me to close some browser windows, by posting some items with no particular theme.

  • The Year in Newsbreaks: the New Yorker's tidbits from newspapers and magazines.
  • Presidential candidates name their favorite gadgets.
  • The Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers have a website where they post anti-WGA stuff. A couple of writers put together a parody of the AMPTP site; unfortunately, the original parody site has gone down, so I'm linking to what appears to be a mirror of it at No word on whether the original writers for that parody are getting residuals for the mirroring.
  • Article from the Wall Street Journal about "Sock Wars": the old game of Assassin played by mail, with the killing method being to send your target a hand-knitted pair of socks. Unfortunately, the full article's no longer available at the WSJ site, but I vaguely recall hearing that they're thinking of opening up free access, so I'm linking to it anyway (and you can at least read the first few paragraphs).
  • Onion article: "Baseball Imposes Tough New 'Three-Strikes-You're-Out' Rule." One of those jokes that may be obvious in retrospect, but I haven't seen anyone do it before, and it made me laugh repeatedly. "Among the factors umpires had previously taken into account: difficulty of pitch thrown, degree of pressure from fans and teammates to get a hit, socio-economic condition of the batter, and whether or not he showed any remorse for previous failed at-bats."
  • Lego Digital Designer lets you build with virtual Legos right there on your computer screen. Free download for both Windows and Mac.
  • Peter Jackson will be directing producing (thanks, Tim!) two movies connected to The Hobbit, in case anyone hadn't heard yet.
  • Professor Jose Senovilla, at a university in Spain, has a theory that the phenomena associated with dark energy can be explained instead by the fact that "time itself is slowing down."
  • Johnny Depp "didn't know if [he] could really sing or not" until after he'd signed up to play the lead in the new movie of Sweeney Todd. Relatedly, I like what's on Sondheim's desk: "a slab of stone; carved into it are the words 'Nothing is written in stone.'"
  • Twig posted a nice bit of T.S. Eliot for the Solstice the other day.

3 Responses to “News and notes from all over”

  1. Tim Pratt

    Well, Jackson is producing two hobbit movies — not yet clear who’s going to direct.

    Happy holidays, Jed!

  2. Seeker

    Dear Jed,

    I have been reading your blog regularly but this is the next time I’m commenting on it. Reading your blog has been a ritual for me and I want to thank you for all the happiness you’ve given to me.

    At this time, I want to take the opportunity to give you my heartfelt wishes for Christmas and wish you a great New Year ahead.

    May all your dreams come true 🙂

    My Positivity Blog

  3. Jed

    Tim: Thanks! I knew that, but somehow got muddled as I was sleepily typing that item up. Corrected now.

    Seeker: Thanks! I confess that I wasn’t sure whether your note was comment spam or not; usually when I get comments from people who don’t give their names and who don’t say anything specific about the entry at hand, and who link to their own pages, it’s spam. But the fact that you used my name suggests that you’re a human rather than a spambot, and your blog isn’t heavily covered with advertising, so I’m going to guess that you were being sincere, so I appreciate the note.


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