1. New Music Tuesdays

    brian on 2004.06.16
    at 12:14 am

    No this isn't an advertisement for the iTunes Music Store. Although, it was introduced to Europe today, rolling out in the UK, France and Germany. Enjoy all.

    No, I'm talking new Beastie Boys, and new Phish. (However, since you asked, both are available. Have iTunes? Follow these links to launch and listen: To the 5 Boroughs, Undermind)

    First, The Beastie Boys' newest To the Five Boroughs, is their first release in five years. A lot has happened in the last five years. The least of which is that their own record label, Grand Royal, went out of business. I don't think they had any trouble being signed for their latest album, though. In other terms, much hasn't happened in five years. For example, their sound hasn't changed a bit. So if you're a BB's fan, you'll enjoy this album. On the other hand, if you were looking for their sound and art to grow, and expand, perhaps experiment… you will be sorely disappointed. No growth, but well made hip-hop. Without expecting too much, I give it three out of five stars.

    Undermind from Phish is also a new release. Unfortunely, it will also be their final release. It's a real shame, too. This is a great album, and shows the strength of their song writing to have grown. American music will be than much lessened for their loss. Known mostly for their live shows, and advanced improvisational "jams," many people discount that their write complex, thought-provoking compositions and each member is a skilled technical performer.

    Additionally, if you order the CD from Phish directly, (or get one of the first x of those produced and sold at retail) you get an excellent DVD-Video documentary on the making of the album at "The Barn" in their home state of Vermont. (You also get a free sticker.) You will see a 23" Cinema Display several times, right in the middle of the studio. Rating: 4.45. out of 5.

    Interestingly enough, days before I received my copy in the mail from my direct pre-order, and days before it was available via retail outlets, I saw it on an iPod I was troubleshooting. Sad.

    Posted in: Music

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  2. ProRally - Where's the support?

    brian on 2004.06.15
    at 10:39 pm

    Most motorsports fans in America like to watch cars drive in circles like a dog chasing its tail. However, for most of the world, the most popular motorsports aren't circular, and the second most popular sport, Rallye doesn't even have a closed circuit, it's a point-to-point. Automakers (including the US's Ford) drop millions into the WRC, on par with what the "big three" drop on America's fiercely popular NASCAR.

    It may surprise you to know that same world's favorite motorsport is actually raced in the US, as well. It's highest level "ProRally" is run by the SCCA. It's only known to the most hardcore of US motor sport fans. There are no WRC-sanctioned rallye events in the US. No auto manufacturer has a factory team racing in ProRally. (Subaru comes closest by supporting Vermont SportsCar)

    However, Rally video games are quiet popular in the United States. What does this hold for the future of the sport?

    If you think small 300 horsepower, all-wheel drive cars going 60-100 miles an hour inches from trees, cliffs, with jumps and kicking-out-the read hairpin turns sounds exciting, you might be right. You should check out rally racing... the ProRally or the WRC variety.

    Motor Trend has a good article on this whole US versus Rally racing. Check it out. By the way, noticed I've spelled the sport's name two different ways: in most of the world, the sport has an "e" at the end of the word (its the British spelling). In the US, the SCCA has dropped the "e."

    The word comes from the French "rallier", from Old French "ralier" : re-, re- + alier, to unite, ally.


    A competition in which automobiles are driven over public roads and under normal traffic regulations but with specified rules as to speed, time, and route.

    Posted in: Auto · Sports

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  3. Yahoo! releases and 100MB email and screws me by deleting my account from 1996

    jake on 2004.06.15
    at 01:44 pm

    So after having a really old email address (savior@rocketmail, don't ask) forever Yahoo! has decided to delete it from my paying service because of inactivity. Huh, I coulda sworn my inactivity was because I couldn't log in for the past 4 months. Now since it's from an acquired (rocketmail) entity the only recourse I have is opening a whole new acount. So thanks Yahoo!, now I have been paying you for the past two years to screw me over and destroy my first ever email address. It probably wouldn't bother me as much, but I am a bit nostalgic about it. Maybe I can get my money back or something.

    Update: I have just been issued a refund (after being on the phone for 50 minutes) and been told my only course of action is to sign up again from scratch. I'm debating this since I don't really want as an email address. But I am curious about the updated look , etc. and since I would need to be invited to Gmail I'll just ponder this some more...

    Update: Well I gave in and got a new address, thought it's not what I would call "good." But I do like the the interface a little better. Now the question is, do I upgrade and add pop-access back into the equation? And what the heck do I possibly use this address for since I have control over my own domain? Who knows.

    Posted in: Rant · Web

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