Sunday, December 29, 2002

fish update: he has a red mark and some missing scales on his side now. I hope it doesn't get infected. I don't think I could cope with losing two fish inside six weeks.
mr B the canine vacuum: this is how good a housekeeper I am.
I'm trying to quickly knock off a freelance piece I have to get in today (and we're going down the Peninsula for lunch, so I mean quickly).
the windows are open to let in some fresh air after a horrid hot night (no open windows are allowed at night due to the Mosquito Menace.)
I heard a crash. the blind had flapped in the wind and knocked over a nearly empty oat container. so about a teaspoon of oats were all over the kitchen floor. I'm busy writing.
so did I stop and grab the vacuum or (nonexistent) brush and pan? hell no. I just called the dog in. he loves oats.

how hot and oppressive is it? well, you know the song "Summertime"?
Fish are jumpin/and the cotton is high....?
this morning fish #1 (not Sushi's replacement, the other, larger one) did a huge flipflop and landed on the bench. it was just lucky I was in the room at the time. last time that happened, I came home to a very dead fish on the floor. there's now a string bag over the top of the fishtank and netting is on my shopping list.

now, where was I? ah, working.

there should be two internets: one for work and one for fun. then I could just log on and do my work and not have this happen. bad internet.
it's a hot Sunday night.
I'm sitting here in the semidark, wandering around the Web instead of doing stuff I should do.
my trumpet playing neighbour appears to have got the New Years' Eve band over for a final practice. the strains of "Golden Brown" on the trumpet are coming through the walls.
it's a good thing

Saturday, December 28, 2002

petty satisfaction dept: the neighbour who objects to our existence, Val, is on holiday. she's instructed various other neighbours to water the lawns and her pot plants.
so I was out the back washing my car and the woman upstairs from me came out to water the pot plants. turns out she doesn't like doing it; the hose is hard to wind back in and hurts her back. so I am now in charge of that. I have a feeling it will really burn Val up to come back and find that us evil bad mere tenants are responsible for keeping the precious geraniums alive. especially as I plan to do a very good job of it.
darn. I thought I had New Year's Eve sorted; we'd go see The Blue Room, then eat, then wander vaguely around Southbank to watch fireworks. but it doesn't start until mid-January.
so it's back to either Plan A: Elwood RSL club, or just dinner and fireworks. still haven't seen The Two Towers (the Gold Class cinema at Southland is booked out until January 14), but that's a bit too long for nye. so we'll pick something else, I guess. and our chances of getting a booking at a restaurant within cooee of fireworks, let alone with a view? ha!
too hot to think. 8 am and it's 30 degrees outside, with that howling north wind that sucks the moisture out of your skin.
Christmas is over, with yesterday's all-in gathering of all my cousins/aunties/nieces/nephews/second cousins/blow-in boyfriends and girlfriends. some of my relatives are rather amusing. I have an uncle who'd like to clone himself, for instance; he's just full of intellectual curiousity about how an XY version of himself would compare to an XX version. we debated whether cloning was Wrong, and I feel I delivered the coup de grace with "but what about the giant bellybuttons??".
and so on.

driving home, I was delivering yet another don't-kill-yourself-in-a-car lecture to my nephew (not that he even has a car right now due to crashing the last one) and there, on the other side of the Western Highway, was a fire truck, an ambulance and some police cars, plus a helicopter overhead. We got a quick glimpse of a crushed, upturned blue sedan and a gurney with a person on it that no one seemed to be paying any attention to - a very bad sign indeed.
this morning I checked the paper and listened to the radio news to find out what had happened, but there was nothing but a short mention of five people dying in crashes on Friday (today's Sunday here).

road deaths don't rate individual mentions sometimes. what we do get is a kind of football team halftime talk from the police, where the object is to keep the score down. "now lads and lassies, the score is creeping up. this weekend, do your bit for Victoria and don't die on the roads, there's good chappies."

meanwhile, is Eight Simple Rules for Dating My Daughter the first (quasi) blog-inspired TV show? the original eight rules were written in a weekly email newsletter, and it's now become a TV show. wait for the movie of Things My Girlfriend and I Have Argued About.

Wednesday, December 25, 2002

a 20k bike ride hasn't done much to dispel my post-Christmas blobbiness.
really, five-course lunches, champage and red wine are silly things to do in the middle of the day. especially if you follow it up with handfuls of lollies.

good present haul this year: the whole first series of The Sopranos on DVD. I've never seen it, and having a whole series there ready to watch is great for those times there's nothing on TV (which is most times), but we can't be bothered going out to the video store. that's how I saw Twin Peaks, on Andrew's videos, ten years after it first came out.

also John Clark's new book, The Tournament, which is really quite funny and readable and displays a greater knowledge of 20th century culture and philosophy than I could ever hope for. but it's funny even when I don't know the Great Thinker in question, and when I do, it's hilarious.

Alex Buzo didn't seem to like it much. he also seems to think that they stopped teaching Heidegger, Godel and Barthes in universities in the 1970s, and has clearly failed to get some of the jokes, looking instead for plot and structure. so we won't worry too much about what he thinks.

Monday, December 23, 2002

feeling all New Year's-y already. don't know where we're going yet, but am determined to wear the incredibly hot dress I bought at C21, no matter what. it's the one that makes me look like I'm naked under a light piece of black lace. a few years ago I don't think I'd have been confident enough to wear such a thing. but somehow being 36 makes me feel old enough to do what I like, and somehow determined to make the most of being able to wear such things before I'm suddenly too old to.

it's been a good year, mostly. highlights: a couple of articles that got good runs and were fun to write. walking in Tasmania. BlogCon and my three weeks in NYC. dog walks. dinners and breakfasts with my husband where I yabbered at him and he seemed to like it. bike riding to work and back from several corners of Melbourne. swimming. my new niece and all my existing nephews and niece (from the car-crashing teenager down to the golden-haired toddler, all of them). my friend's baby and being there for her birth.
the times I managed to slow down and read. these last few weeks in Elwood, with the beach and the funny funky people who live here. watching our house actually start to come together and looking forward to living there.

lowlights: various bits of medical treatment, willingly though I'm having them. a day wasted in NYC trying to log onto to Compuserve, only to find that my tech people at work gave me the wrong password. stories that I thought I did well that were then chopped up and generally buried. stupid tenants and neighbours. moving too often. headaches. my husband's grandfather dying. a day in the labor ward with extreme jetlag (though I wouldn't have missed it.)

resolutions: will be minor and sensible, but possibly also in that category of slow secret decisions that create longterm change. for a start there is going to be a serious followup to my flirtation with giving up coffee.

goshdarn, I wish this PC didn't freeze on comments. then I could tell CC what a camgirl he his with his wishlist.
(yes, I'm jealous. I guess if I had one, I might get presents from my admirers too. snort.)

the offending large dog. innit he kewt?
Christmas shopping has reached the bits and pieces stage. failed in my efforts to secure a jet ski hire for Andrew - apparently new rules requiring a licence have closed the hire industry down. which is dumb, as licences are $20 and we were quite ready to sit the test. I've always liked the idea of a water motorbike, much as I dislike them when I'm trying to sit quietly on the beach.
so in the end I have bought him nice but unoriginal books and CDs. what do you get a boy who just likes playing with computers, eating out and moi?
he did suggest a noiseless PC fan, but I just couldn't do it. in the end I got so many books that he's now provided for for our anniversary and his next birthday.
now all I have to do is get knee-deep in wrapping. Christmas will be with the inlaws, but not at their place. we're breaking with tradition, as some things had changed anyway, and going out to The Point. so it should be fun.
then prolly back here for nibbles and a viewing. up to Ballarat on Saturday for my ever-expanding extended family. today I bought a new, large, address book. my new year's resolution will be to record people's kids' names, birthdays, etc, etc so I never have to do that "forgot your name" thing again.
(of course husband would like me to use the iPaq he's semi-given to me for that. learning to drive it is on my long list of stuff to do over Christmas. well down after taking my motorbike for a massive, long-overdue burn and other enjoyable stuff.)
hooray, another neighbour battle.
this time it's at our little flat in Elwood.
the neighbour across the landing, Jack, is a trumpet player. in theory this would make him a very bad neighbour. in fact he used to be with a great Australian band, has two nice kids and a dog, and is perfectly lovely and real.
upstairs, however, there be Val.
Val, like the other one whose name I've forgotten, believes in Rules. including the one that says we can only park one car in the offstreet area, regardless of whether anyone else wants the spot or not. we've been here a month. there's always been an empty spot, even when Val, Nameless Neighbour and both of us have cars there.
so, naturally, we don't see a problem. all the other residents have crap cars they park on the street for convenience. Val, however, who is on the Body Corporate Committee, has seen fit to get body corporate "management" (some agency or other) to write to the owners of the flat we're in complaining about us and our TWO cars on COMMON property. (it seems to be a trait of undereducated body corporate managers that they use capitals for emphasis. it happened in a past, unblogged battle at the flat I own. where the objecting neighbour conveniently died)
she has also got them to inform the owner that we have a large dog. as there is no suggestion that he is actually a "nuisance", I can only assume that this is one of those between-the-lines attempts to show us up as deceitful tenants. fortunately Mr B is totally on the lease. as for large, well he's under 20 kg.

if I cared at all, which I don't, I would consider this an attack on me in my own home and a threat to my residence here. what Val and Nameless don't know is that we're only here for four more months and it would surely take longer than that for them to dislodge us.
however, I have rung our agent and discussed this in very reasonable terms, and she's pretty cool.
I have also drafted a letter in hurt and outraged tone to the body corporate manager, pointing out that the assumption that our dog is large without checking and communication of same to the owners has "materially damaged our reputation". which is code for defamatory. chortle. have also expressed pain at the "petty and anonymous" complaint, pointing out that we take the rubbish out, are not noisy and even vacuum the landing/entrance hall.
and will cc: same to Val, in her capacity as body corporate chair. cow.

love a good fight, me.

Sunday, December 22, 2002

yeah, I've not been around this blog much.
a few things going on.
Meanwhile, Steve the Linkmeister tells me the Washington Post deigned to reference my probably very last BlogOn column. Now how about that job?

speaking of the filthy US dollar, I took the fairly negligible offer from my US editor. what the hell, the chapter was already written; she's done an OK job of cutting the chapter back, bar one or two small and defamatory mistakes introduced in the process. I've sent off a few permissions forms and have to do a small amount of updating. and seeing my friends have all started to get non-fiction pieces published in books in their field lately, I feel like I want my little book on the shelf.

meanwhile, am feeling most ambivalent about spending a large chunk of next year completing my masters' degree. it has turned out to be muchly more of the same as the postgrad b.litt, which was really undergrad stuff; lots of reading, synthesising theories and not much original thinking/surfing around. what did I expect from a coursework degree? or maybe I'm just not good at that sustained thought thing that high level academia demands. yes, I got 80. but I feel that a lot of it just washed over me; like I didn't get a whole lot more insight.

that decision, along with lots of sleep, exercise and doing whatever the hell I want, are going to be the focus of my holidays. oh, and eating.

Thursday, December 19, 2002

it's my web site and I'll write about my dog if I want to.
he's 3 today. I got him a big fat lambshank to eat - and I mean eat, every last scrap.
at the market the woman beside me was buying quail for her dogs for Christmas. she said they were nicer than her kids; they realised that she was a good person now, they wouldn't wait until they were 36 to appreciate her.
I told her it only took me until 25 to appreciate my parents. I think it made her feel better.

have cupboards stacked with food, nuts, fruit etc. will be fine if there's an early snowstorm (temperature tomorrow: 36 degrees Celcius).

also did ALL my xmas shopping except the hardest one - my husband - in 90 minutes flat. it's true. they're all getting either CDs, videos or books. and I remain blissfully stress-free.

holidays are good, huh?

Wednesday, December 18, 2002

and now, my favourite part of going on holidays: changing my voicemail to say "I'm away, don't bother me until (x)", where X=a date several weeks in the future.
it's a lovely day and I'm outta here.
doing the end of year cleanout. and again, I considered what to do with Ned-Kelly-the-port-bottle. I guess he can stay in my files for yet another year.

I can't even remember who sent him to me, back in the good old days of rich tech companies and laxer ethics rules. I make a point of forgetting the source of all largesse, to maintain my independence.

but apparently he's worth AU$ on...
spotted last night at 6:19 pm: a Muslim taxi driver praying in the park. kind of nice. he seemed to think Mecca was in the general direction of the South Pole, though.
blogon. possibly the last ever. I'm running out of topics and am changing some things at work next year. maybe I'll do something else, like Meme of the Week or something.

Ana by Choice
This online diary is deeply disturbing. Its owner is an anorexic woman hell-bent on reaching her "weight goals."
The main introduction to the page warns anyone who doesn't already have an eating disorder to go away and not try to get one. It's good advice but even more likely to put potential anorexics off is the blow-by-blow, deeply obsessive description of every mouthful of food and every minute on the treadmill; clear evidence that the disorder can wreck not just your body, but your life.
A photo gallery of role models - mainly stick-thin models and movie stars - gives pause for thought.
The diary is set up with links right through to the end of next year. One wonders if she will make it that far.

Big Fat Blog
Down the other end of the body-image scale is Big Fat Blog, a collaborative site dedicated to supporting overweight people (mostly women) and to questioning popular beliefs about their health, eating habits and general well-being.
Lively and diverse, it points out articles about weight and appearance, pooh-poohing the ideal of models.
It queries why overweight women should be removed from customer-contact jobs, as recently happened in Colorado, and praises a movie titled Real Women Have Curves.
The basic premise is that a person's weight shouldn't affect the rest of their lives, delivered with an understandably defensive edge.
It's a busy blog, with an active comments area.


One woman fighting her own personal battle with her body is Marmalade, whose weight hovers around the 95 kilogram mark.
She's set up this blog to record her progress, grumble about her personal trainer's tardiness and to collect encouraging comments from readers.
A typical day might start with oatmeal and yoghurt but she has trouble keeping that up: "And here is where it totally bottoms out: 6pm Dinner: Pepperoni Pizza, shameless amounts; Pete's homemade chocolate chip cookies. sigh"
But, as Scarlett O'Hara said, "tomorrow is another day".
It's not all flippancy; the toll of the effort shows in posts like this one. "I don't want to look strong. I want to look (not) fit (but) skinny. I want to look like I'm 175lbs again, goddamnit! I want to fit into my clothes from last year. I want to fit into my clothes from 5 years ago. I hate this! It totally sucks and I don't know what to do about it anymore.
"Excuse me while I go and bawl my head off now."

Tuesday, December 17, 2002

one person who reads this blog will know who I'm talking about:
just rang a friend. a strange, deep male voice answered, in a tone that appeared to imply that I was interrupting something. I thought "have I rung a wrong number?"
then I realised it must be her son, who's around 13 (?) and has obviously, um, developed since I last spoke to him. furthermore, my attempts to engage him in conversation were greeted with polite but noncommittal and clearly uninterested grunts, instead of the almost unstoppable chatter I'm used to from him.
having survived several years of this with my nephew, I talked on anyway and wished him a merry Christmas.
teenage boys. I once heard a theory that they should all be put on a desert island until about, say 25, when they revert to being human again.
"I know that STG100,000 a year is an enormous sum of money to Mr Bing and I fully appreciate his generosity toward his son," Hurley's statement said.

he has US $400 million. she's not taking his pathetic 100,000 pounds a year. the woman has a nice line in irony and pride. (I guess it helps that she probably already has a couple of mil. of her own stashed away)

Monday, December 16, 2002

let's hope these guys can tell the difference between a symbol of goodwill and a weapon of mass destruction.

Sunday, December 15, 2002

blogger's down so I'm in notepad.
have bought tix to this: cheaper than an airfare to New Orleans.

I keep meaning to see more live music. so a full weekend of it should fix me up good and proper. am a little horrified at what I've just spent, but
I figure with Bob Dylan playing I can probably sell the ticket if I have to.

in other news, I guess I must like Elwood. I seem to be spending so much time walking the dog,
cooking for friends (after a long break in that kind of thing) and trying to catch up on sleep that I have
no time to blog. also, those things aren't really that exciting.

just don't ask about the tiles.

and have you done your Christmas cards and shopping? no? me neither. it didn't help that one of the
friends who came to brunch yesterday did his back as he was about to leave, and spent a couple of hours lying on the floor
before he could leave.
I plan to shop a little on Friday, then hit the Boxing Day sales for all the niece-and-nephew stuff, as I don't see the family
until the 28th.

see? it's just boring. will go back to sorting out a year's worth of accumulated work files now. in my heart I know I could
just bin the lot and not miss them, but it wouldn't feel right.

Wednesday, December 11, 2002


Mom at home
Mom building home is more like it. This American blogger (hence the "o" in "Mom") is documenting every step of the renovations on her home in words and pictures.
It was a ranch but she always pictured it as "colonial" style, and by gosh, she's going to make it colonial, no matter how many tradesmen it involves. She even thinks it's worth blogging the spot where the staircase will be, and discussing whether or not to carpet the study. The blog is primarily aimed at keeping relatives informed, after all.
The pictures are large and will load slowly if you're on a dial-up connection.

Jarrett House North
Just reading about Tim Jarrett's Christmas decorations is enough to make one go politically correct and not "do" Christmas.
"After a lot of swearing, vacuuming and sweeping, the tree was in the stand and the needles were out of the garage," he says. And that's just the start. There were still lights to string and glass balls to hang.
Jarrett's blog is not all about settling into his new house but he has window contractors to deal with, boxes to unpack and plenty of plans to look forward to. The rest of the time he's singing nonsense carols and wondering where his funk went.

Jen and Jeff
A sexy new refrigerator, visits to Ikea, finding the right fabric to recover that vintage couch; Jen and Jeff are the quintessential Young Marrieds.
He claims to be building a wall-sized bookcase and developing a lighting plan but there aren't any photos of either up yet. If you like his taste in music, he promises to send you a CD of his favourite songs if you'll send him one first; almost a quaint idea in the post-Napster world.

Creating Home Decor

Part of a frighteningly extensive site on craft and decorating ideas, the Creating Home Decor blog also comes as a newsletter. It alerts readers to new ideas and TV show tie-ins, such as the chance to vote for "America's Dream Kitchen" on This Old House.
When a luxury refrigerator is auctioned on eBay, this blog will let you know and it can point you to a site where DIY home improvement projects are outlined in Spanish.
And as for the Ernest Hemingway collection of homewares and the chance to "enhance (your) environment with a little of the Great Man's worldly lifestyle"? Well, the Laura Ashley ads are starting to look refreshingly unpretentious.

blog being not speak English very well, but funny, kawaii links, many
I have just received a bill for nearly $5,000. it's my course fees for next year.
this is A Lot Of Money. I won't really pay that much. my employer will pay half if I'm still here and if I pass, and I can claim the rest on tax, so the actual cost is more like 1700.

but it still sounds like a lot. and my friends G and F are about to buy a fantastic ancient farmhouse in France. and for a couple of thou, I could fly over there to check out the guest wing.

oh, and I got my uni results. 80. which is OK.
Bush threatens nuclear retaliation
I'm sorry. can you say that again? I don't think I heard you properly. did you say nuclear? nah, must be a slip of the tongue. or maybe my ears need cleaning out.

nuclear? nah. must be a joke.

Tuesday, December 10, 2002

stupid neologism of the day, from a PR email: "resultant". as in consultant, only getting results, one assumes.
only trouble is, resultant is already taken.

Monday, December 09, 2002

the catch Michael Jackson's babies game.
so I'm fishing in my wallet for $2 for the hamper raffle for the company Christmas appeal. and I said to the woman selling them: "I thought I had $2, but I spent it on a chocolate bar."
then I stopped. thought. and handed over a $5 note instead.
tiles. expensive. pretty. expensive. going mad. never renovate.
Leaving the building for lunch? Check the current
temperature outside first by clicking `Melbourne weather' at
the top-centre of every Intranet page.
Intranet address:

or you could just ask someone who's just come inside. "should I wear a jacket" is a totally subjective human question.
(&*)%^&, I'd like a coffee.
well paint me pink and call me an elephant!
amazingly, I received an email today from my editor in the US, who was part of my tax-deductibilty justification of my trip to NYC.

I filed a lovely 4-5,000 word piece on the domain naming system in Australia to her in July or so. it took me weeks of work, after hours, on weekends, early morning coffees. I rang lots of contacts and used up lots of people's time. the book will look at domain name systems round the world. it's less boring than it sounds.

when I met her, I left the meeting thinking "nice woman, but I don't think this book is coming out."

but today, I received a contract offering me US$500. she says she actually has a publisher. I nearly fell off my chair. this amount is of course a pittance and well below going rates, here or in the US of A. the contract also asks me to pay for all kinds of ancillary things of unspecified scope, and commit to open-ended unspecified "revisions". but I'm sure we can sort that out.

I wouldn't get paid until what, late next year. but right now it would be better than the big fat zero I have.

(can't remember if she reads my blog. I think not. anyway, nothing in here I haven't said (more tactfully) in my reply email.)
I might volunteer to work over my holidays. just so I can experience the sheer pleasure of a fast Web connection.

am trying to give up coffee, for health reasons. so don't get in my way today. or tomorrow. or anytime for the next few years, OK?
oh great. tried to fix it and now it still doesn't show number of comments. but there are/were TWO comments buttons.
look, just send me an email, willya? I'm going for a walk.
wow. Meredith mentioned she'd commented on my blog. I thought "that's funny, comments died ages ago". so I logged onto YACCS and discovered all these comments! it was just the counter that stopped working. and all the comments were waiting for me.

so, for the record:
Meredith, the ornaments were's the tree. the damn thing's 180 cm high.
%00: my temper's fine, thanks. SO SHUT UP!
batty: thanks for thinking of me amongst all your own pressing matters.
Laura: it's a pleasure. plus I get paid for it.
"bitch" at IP address: you have a problem with my spelling problem? my life's fine. and I'll thank you not to swear in here. that's my job.
" A. Nony Mouse at IP address: what's special? I don't geddit. I suppose you're being sarcastic. luckily, I have no fucking idea what you're talking about (see previous for swearing policy)
Kathryn: I suppose you were referring to "all men are...?"
Implisitt @IP address: keep your preference in sex toys to yourself.
hoopty again: it isn't whether we need peemail, is it? I mean, do we need life insurance salesmen? it's just a fact of life in the 21st C
Jill: what you said. only double. he should just start wearing a studded dog collar.

Sunday, December 08, 2002

ooh, I know I'll get in trouble for this. but in the interview, Roddick says: "But, and it's a big but..."

the fat-suit debate. via this woman's work

the original article
an interview about the article
some comments (don't know if that link to a comments area will work)
big fat blog (it is what it says it is)

Saturday, December 07, 2002

Marc [SOS]DeSwaggy's Renegade clan site.
they are 13th in the world.
he is going to kick arse tonight.

Thursday, December 05, 2002

memo to self: before you buy a 180 cm-high blow-up Christmas tree, consider two things: how big exactly is your flat? and more to the point, do you in fact have a pump to blow it up with? "manual" is out of the question. the thing is about 200x my entire lung capacity. so far have blown up one small branch ornament. the tree itself is a sad and floppy green pile beside my chair.

Wednesday, December 04, 2002

Bill Gates, I want my half an hour back.
I've been frantically trying to file Blogon from home, but every time I tried to send, Hotmail froze. I even tried to blog the text just so my editor could get at it.
eventually I worked it out: Word was putting a stupid little doovie over the "e" in "decor". this doovie must have contained killer code that the online interfaces couldn't cope with. the minute I deleted them, bingo! worked just fine.
funny formatting code from my work program, Cybergraphic, has killed a blog before. but never something in Word.
working from home is good when you'd otherwise be at work.
when you're home sick and just have to get certain things done, it sucks. especially when you pick a stupid blogon topic and can't find any blogs that mention said topic more than once. sigh. time to pad with photos.
also, Orange Socks
yes I know the rest of the world has seen this.
but some Melbourne bloggers were discussing it and might like to know where it is: Things My Girlfriend and I have argued about.

I might buy it for A for Xmas
How the Web was made
Stop Design
The man behind the slightly controversial but politically correct redesign of Wired magazine's site bares his artistic soul in Stop Design.
Subscribing to a philosophy of both accessibility and clarity, he uses his blog to talk about his working life.
The main issues last week were the strangeness of going freelance after permanent employment, categorisation methods on a museum website and some retrospective musings about the instant fame the Wired redesign brought him. There's a portfolio area showing designs he helped create, like the WebMonkey logo and the look for a book called The Art & Science of Web Design.
Those are forceful answers to a former boss at a design firm who told him 10 years ago that the Web "would go away within a few years".
And of course the site itself is very nice indeed to look at.

Focusing on making websites easier to use, the LucDesk site links to articles on Internet banking, the Internet's role during disasters, new kinds of personal computer and technical standards issues.
Over recent months you could have read about the legal implications of "cut and paste" and the security risks posed by some personal digital assistants. It gives just enough information about each link to let you decide whether you'd like what's at the other end, and there's an excellent list of like-minded blogs for further reading.
The blogger doesn't offer a lot of his own opinion but the comprehensive coverage more than makes up for that.
Self-described "designer, author, and stunt double Jeffrey Zeldman" is also the man behind the intelligent mailing list A List Apart, which tackles design as only one part of the complex equation of getting things right on the Web. His Weblog discusses design, the just desserts of arrogant makers of products, digital certificates and James Bond. It's a writing style that flits over popular culture and ideas without looking back.
Zeldman's respected place in the design zeitgeist means he hears about most of the good things first, and going to his blog and following the links is a lot easier than tracking down stuff for yourself.
Last week's examples included a site where you can read "other people's stories", often poignant or funny, a list of useful Photoshop 7 short-cuts and what the US law says about Internet accessibility and useability. It's eclectic, but the unifying theme is the Web, and it works.

Brainstorms and Raves

What's under the hood of the WC3's latest Markup Validation Service? (Translation: The WC3 is the World Wide Web Consortium, which sets Web standards, and its mark-up validation service helps designers check their code.) Why on earth should you bother using standards in your design work? What should you look for in a digital camera? What's the buzz on technology and productivity? Brainstorms and Raves has solid advice on what just works, and combines strong technical knowledge with an understanding of the human side of "human-computer interaction". The blog is a project of an established United States design firm, SKDesign.

Tuesday, December 03, 2002

a nice RGB colour wheel.
that's it for today. I've had a little visit to Mr Hospital and plan to do nothing but stare out the window and wait for the eclipse.

Sunday, December 01, 2002

have just interviewed an academic who has been studying how a certain group of people feel about technology in their workplace.
the short answer is that people will only want to work on new technology if it helps them do their jobs better.
strangely, this doesn't seem to have been expressed in a scientific manner before.
I must be turning into one of those grumpy people who walk about muttering "it's just plain commonsense, innit?"
well, he/she died.
at least, it was lying on its side on the bottom of the tank, not moving, and didn't respond when I gently shifted it with a chopstick. I think it died last night, but I left it there just in case of a miraculous recovery.
so I put it in a jar full of water, and on my way to work stopped at the bridge over the Elwood Canal, just where it meets the bay, and tipped it all over the edge. it looked so sad, just a tiny golden fish shape floating out to sea, surrounded by the darting grey mini-fish that live in the canal.
its name was Sushi, thanks to Meredith, who noted when I last rescued it with a chopstick that the whole thing was a bit to close to that particular dish.