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Month: December 2004 (Page 1 of 2)

The Graphing Calculator Story.

Ron Avitzur got laid off from his job as a software consultant at Apple in 1993. But he refused to give up on his project, so he just kept coming in and working on it. Eventually he got the software–Apple’s Graphing Calculator–QA’d, translated into 20 languages, and bundled into shipping Macs, all without actually being on the Apple payroll.… Read the rest

Snowflake museum.

Wm. A. Bentley snowflakeWilliam Alwyn Bentley spent four decades around the turn of the century — the last century — photographing snowflakes. He worked in snowstorms, collecting flakes on a blackboard and then carefully transferring them to microscope slides with a splinter of wood, holding his breath while photographing so as not to melt the flake.… Read the rest


U. Pittsburgh Linguist Scott Kiesling has researched how young Americans use the word “dude:”

… the four-letter word has many uses: in greetings (“What’s up, dude?”); as an exclamation (“Whoa, Dude!”); commiseration (“Dude, I’m so sorry.”); to one-up someone (“That’s so lame, dude.”);

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Baggertransport 2001.

Scot’s blog turned me on to the Baggertransport 2001, an enormous, countryside-devouring, strip-mining behemoth. The photo gallery is awesome–picture after picture of the metal monster roaming the German countryside, terrorizing highways and houses and attracting throngs of awed peasants Germans. [updated 10/2/2009 with new photo gallery link]… Read the rest

Mr. Leatherman.

Yesterday I interviewed Tim Leatherman, the guy who invented Leatherman tools. Yes, there really is a Mr. Leatherman! He is still running his company, based in Portland, OR. He’s a very down to earth guy, and a really determined inventor–it took him 3 years to build the first prototype and another 5 years to get the first customer.… Read the rest

Olympus Ferrari Digital Model 2004

Olympus Ferrari cameraSome brand names transcend price: Rolex. Bulgari. Trojan. And some, like Ferrari, have a value that can easily be computed. In the case of the Olympus-built Ferrari Digital Model 2004, that value is about $400 — the premium you’d pay over a comparable 3.2-megapixel camera with more prosaic styling and branding.… Read the rest

Hitachi DZ-MV550A

You know you’re going to burn your video to disc sooner or later. Why not do it the moment you record it? With DVD camcorders, you can browse, edit, and rearrange the order of scenes right on the camera. And once you’re done shooting, transferring videos to your computer or DVD player is as simple as popping in a disc.… Read the rest

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