1. Some interesting articles from the May issue of Wired

    jake on 2005.05.17
    at 01:18 am

    I’ve been trying to keep my extraneous items out of my space. That means throwing away magazines I don’t really need anymore. If the subject matter is more technical, like how-to shoot a good portrait I’ll throw it into But sometimes it’s just an interesting article, and it makes more sense to share those here and archive them for posterity. This month’s issue of Wired falls into the later category.

    • Manhattan Map from 1609Destination: Manhattan, 1609 — A comparison of Manhattan in 1609 and today.
    • White People Can’t Text — I am not sure what they’re getting at here. It sounds like cell phone content providers, aka assholes, are going to target minorities. Personally I find all of that crap a rip off, remember everyone, they overcharge you for content, you don’t need to buy from them. Getting a ring tone or two for $2.99 is one thing. You don’t need to repurchase all the latest hits. It’s why the bastards don’t want the iTunes phone to be released.
    • Mega Player 522BT — If I don’t get a bare bones phone, it’ll have Bluetooth. Too bad more mp3 players don’t have features like this one. And too bad this one is not an iPod:.
    • Shopping Cart — If I was still in college I’m sure I could get some use out of the The Ring Thing.
    • Cracking the Real Estate Code — All the lingo surrounding real estate can be confusing, just like any other industry where you’re an outsider. This article tries to help level the playing field.

    So consider the terms in the box on the previous page: A “fantastic” house is surely fantastic enough to warrant a high price, right? What about a “charming” and “spacious” home in a “great neighborhood!”? No, no, no, no, and no.

    In fact, the terms that correlate with a higher sales price are physical descriptions of the home itself: granite, Corian, and maple. As information goes, such terms are specific and straightforward – and therefore pretty useful. If you like granite, you might like the house; but even if you don’t, “granite” certainly doesn’t connote a fixer-upper. Nor does “gourmet” or “state-of-the-art,” both of which seem to tell a buyer that a house is, on some level, fantastic.

    Posted in: Cool Info

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  2. Survived Sugery

    brian on 2005.05.16
    at 10:11 pm

    Just wanted to mention that I had surgery today at New England Baptist Hospital remove a stone from my prostate. Everything went exceedingly well. I was asleep the whole time. I’m still kinda groggy and smiley from the various drugs they put into me. Thanks to everyone there for making an uncomfortable experience relatively painless.

    Now I think I’ll try to sleep off my medicine-enduced fog. Then perhaps an on-topic post!

    Posted in: Service Announcement

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  3. Tag Clouds

    jake on 2005.05.16
    at 05:49 pm

    Everybody loves tag clouds. Well for the most part. I don’t write enough about design. Maybe it’s because we haven’t modified this site since it’s inception in 2001. Well at least not cosmetically.

    In any event Zeldman has a little writeup about the subject. Tag clouds are supplemental data that users submit for “categorizing” the content. Naturally in a community where numerous people can all pick words that are relevant to their content you get a lot of unpopular data.

    Tag clouds are starting to be very popular as ways to navigate where simple category listings would suffice. Which is the main conundrum. Tag clouds work well for grouping popular information but they are flawed in that they can not give you all the information unless you only have a handful of tags.

    Zeldman’s right some instances need more structure and hierarchy. Hopefully after they are overused for a while developers will come up with some acceptable uses and swing the pendulum back. Tag clouds could be the next Flash.

    Posted in: Design · Web

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