Everyone now has a camera in their pocket at all times. That camera is connected to the internet at all times. That camera is capable of being utilized by hundreds of thousands of apps. Those apps all have social graphs that allow you to connect with other internet-connected camera-carrying friends. It’s almost inexplicable that there isn’t a killer social photo album service yet.
And yet, despite many (many, many, many, many) failed attempts, there isn’t. So perhaps I’ll sound foolish thinking that Albumatic is going to be the one. But I’ll be damned if it doesn’t feel like it is.
Successive close-ups of the scales of a Peacock butterfly wing.
Shown from left to right, top to bottom: (second row) a closeup of the scales of the specimen at top, high magnification view of coloured scales (different species); (third row) electron micrograph of a patch of wing (~×50 magnification), the scales close up (~×200); (last row) a single scale (×1000), microstructure of a scale (×5000).
(photos: MichaD (top and second row left), Shaddack (second row right), SecretDisc (micrographs))
[This little internet rant has been around for awhile, but it still makes me smile…. ]
First, we survived being born to mothers who smoked and/or drank while they carried us. They took aspirin, ate blue cheese dressing and didn’t get tested for diabetes. Then after that trauma, our baby cribs were covered with bright colored lead-based paints. We had no childproof lids on medicine bottles, doors or cabinets and when we rode our bikes, we had no helmets, not to mention, the risks we took hitchhiking. As children, we would ride in cars with no seat belts or air bags. Riding in the back of a pickup on a warm day was always a special treat. We drank water from the garden hose and NOT from a bottle. We shared one soft drink with four friends, from one bottle and NO ONE actually died from this. We ate cupcakes, bread and butter and drank soda pop with sugar in it, but we weren’t overweight because WE WERE ALWAYS OUTSIDE PLAYING! We would leave home in the morning and play all day, as long as we were back when the streetlights came on. No one was able to reach us all day. And we were O.K. We would spend hours building our go-carts out of scraps and then ride down the hill, only to find out we forgot the brakes. After running into the bushes a few times, we learned to solve the problem. We did not have Playstation’s, Nintendo’s, X-Box’s, no video games at all, no 99 channels on cable, no video tape movies, no surround sound, no cell phones, no personal computers, no internet or internet chat rooms…..WE HAD FRIENDS and we went outside and found them! We fell out of trees, got cut, broke bones and teeth and there were no lawsuits from these accidents. We made up games with sticks and tennis balls and ate worms and although we were told it would happen, we did not out vary many eyes, nor did the worms live in us forever. We rode bikes or walked to a friend’s house and knocked on the door or rang the bell, or just walked in and talked to them!Little league had tryouts and not everyone made the team. Those who didn’t had to learn to deal with disappointment. Imagine that! The Idea of a parent bailing us out if we broke the law was unheard of. They actually sided with the law! This generation has produced some of the best risk takers, problem solvers and innovators ever! The past 50 years have been an explosion of innovation and new ideas. We had freedom, failure, success and responsibility, and we learned HOW TO DEAL WITH IT ALL! And YOU are one of them!
CONGRATULATIONS! Send this on to others who have had the luck to grow up as kids, before the lawyers and the government regulated our lives for our own good.
Photographs of Japan by Toshio Shibata
This is a post I wrote back in 2006 and I am reposting here for mental calibration. Have I changed? You tell me. [P.S. Those with humor-deficient brains PLEASE do not read this, for you shall surely perish in hell’s flames and (worst) un-friend me immediately ;-)]
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I was reading John Dean’s book on how the Religious right in America has hi-jacked the Republican party. It made me think. Religion is sure taking it in the shorts, isn’t it?. From their taking over a vast segment of the electorate, to the Muslim faith being a major influence in the world and its association to terrorism, … the Catholic church in the news either by electing a new Pontiff, or molesting little boys,… it is just taking a black eye, this religious thing is….
How did it get to be this way? What happened to the innocence of “…one nation under God”? What happened to going to Sunday School and thinking it was an All American thing to do? What happened to praying before a high school football game? When did that become an abomination to the American way of life? I’ve read a ton of articles, a few books, … talked to my Dad who is an ordained Minister,.. and I am still pondering as to what happened (Did the Devil finally win?). How in the Hell (no pun intended) did religion become a 4-letter word, a bastion of fear for unbelievers, something to march against?…
So, in my usual way of fixing all the world’s problems with the stroke,… er a few clicks of the keyboard, I will entail to rid the Earth of all semblance of Religious symbols so the we can live happily every after. Ready?… Here goes:
As King of the World, I’ve decided (by fiat) that all things religious should be offensive to our sense of beauty and political correctness. I mean seriously, with all the removing of the Ten Commandment Tablets from government buildings, the dropping of prayer from Schools, .. the sudden secularism of our every day lives,…. I’ve finally bought into the idea. I am convert! (pardon the pun, again). But why stop at these little tokens of anti-religious action? Oh hell no! Lets go for broke! First amendment be damned (oh that’s right, … damnation is a religious term,… sorry!) Effective immediately:
1) No more public displays of Crosses, Star of David (or Peter for that matter), Muslim crescent moons. Zippo. All churches, Mosques, Synagogues and Devil Worship halls have to be in non-offensive building with blacked-out windows, and sound-proof so that none of this offensive message hurts my earlobes.
2) No more starting the Congressional day with a prayer. And while you’re at it, fire the damn Congressional Chaplain! (have we no respect for the separation of Church and State?)
3) The dollar bill?.. no more of the “In God we trust” crap. Nope. It changes to “In Wall Street we trust” of maybe “In Desperate Housewives we trust” or…..
4) No more Christmas. Sorry. Christmas is the celebration of Christ, and that is a no-no,.. so kill the Federal holiday, kill the festivities, no more going broke for the winter buying stupid presents, no after-Christmas white sale,….. why should this be a National Holiday? (Church and State, remember?)
5) Speaking of Federal stuff, is the National Cathedral in Washington operated by anything remotely close to a government agency?…. cause of it is…. then it’s toast. Lets turn that relic into low income lofts, and a shelter for the homeless and battered woman. That is certainly the Lord’s way, is it not?
6) No more using the airwaves for broadcasting of religious services. The airwaves are owned and operated by the FCC (as our representatives, of course), hence a no-no. Give the airtime to QVC, ESPN3, Bravo, Oxygen, HotSex.com, and of course NPR and PBS, ….those gatekeepers of real American values.
7) All Navy, Air Force, Marine and Army Chaplains are to be summarily dismissed. We cannot afford to have men of the cloth (or no-cloth as in the case of Pervert Priests) sucking on the taxes of the American citizens. Screw ‘em. We don’t need no stinkin’ chaplains to go to battle. Give em a pack of Lucky’s, a Humvee (hold the body armor of course) and send them on their way. Besides, has God stopped any IED’s from maiming 12,000 GI’s?…. I didn’t think so.
8) Lastly, Los Angeles, San Antonio, San Francisco, San Diego, San Juan (I know, its Puerto Rico but we subsidize their asses too),…. what do these cities have in common? Why, of course! they were all named after Catholic Saints. Oooops! How can we have let this happen?… sorry. Let the networks come up with a reality show that exposes how legislators come up with new names,… think of the ratings!! Los Angeles can be Los Lobos, San Antonio can be…. South Antonio? San Francisco?… oh I don’t know,… call it the real “Sin City” (what did Vegas do to deserve that anyway?).. oh damn!, “Sin” denotes religion,…….. shit! I’ll think of something else,
9) No more cussing and using profanity using words like Goddammit or Holy Shit,… lets get that religious reference out of our vernacular and replace them with more secular barbs like,… “Oprahdamit” or “mother-feces”….. much more cultural.
10) A few Holidays I missed, Thanksgiving (and kill the prayer before mowing down the turkey), St. Patrick’s Day (Like the Irish need another reason to drink),…. Easter (again, no celebrating resurrections of any kind)…. get rid of all of them. More days of production for the American worker. Besides, no self-respecting beer lover would be caught dead drinking green beer, right?
See how easy that was?…. Now we can all live in secular heaven (oooops!) forever, and ever,….. Amen~~ (dangit, habits are hard to break…)
Identify trees with your iPhone
A new iPhone app from the Arbor Day Foundation lets you identify trees on the go — and even geo-tag them to start a national tree inventory system.