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Avia S-199 in Israeli Air Force Service

Happy now?

Wife One complained last night that I haven’t blogged since the weekend. I don’t have anything planet-shattering to write about so I’ll throw some odds and ends in here.

• Our novice hockey team earned a second loss this past weekend. The team just wasn’t up to play and coasted through the game. One of the opposing players had too many chances to use his amazing shot, with which he roofed three goals. We lost 4-3, after having beaten this same team 6-0 two weeks ago.

• Wired has a follow-up top-ten list of animal videos. I’ve seen most of them before but there a fun way to waste a half-hour with your kids. Follow-up to what, I hear you wonder. To this.

• Last month, Roger Ebert re-published a piece that Frank Cottrell Boyce wrote about writing screenplays. It’s succinct and to the gut. Read it.

• I’ve been trying out the Mac browser called Shiira. The Wikipedia page on the software says more than I want to. I like the thumbnail tabs, but I’m not sure I like them enough to let them keep the monitor real estate. It is fast and stable – no doubt about that.

• Looking for a December time-waster? Play Auditorium. You use a limited series of bending fields to guide particle beams around the playing surface. The goal is to guide your beam(s) across amplifiers to create a musical composition. Right now, the game is only exists as a limited beta version, but it’s one of those consuming attractions that will leave you sad once you’ve finished all levels. I assume it will leave me sad, too, if I ever figure out how to complete the final puzzle, 3:6. Even the online hints I found don’t work for me.

• I’m glad HDTV prices are plunging faster than the Dow because our big CRT TV decided to freak out. The colours have gone uncorrectably off and the corners of the screen have distinctly yellow wedges. Everything is mostly blue and red has disappeared from the image – but the channel display characters are red, which really confuses me. The TV was fine Saturday night and went blue sometime Sunday. I wouldn’t be too surprised to find this to be the fault of a wire clip that had materialized inside the TV.

• Looking for a geek gift under $50? If your beloved geek has a pile of hard drives, consider ThinkGeek’s external SATA/USB hard-drive dock. The dock accepts both 2.5″ and 3.5″ drives and drives may be hot-swapped. Me? I need a new hockey bag.

• Google has its online office suite, but where do you go for an online image manipulation tool? SUMO Paint is a Web-based competitor for Photoshop – yes, Photoshop. This is not your older brother’s online painting program. SUMO Paint looks and acts one heck of a lot like Photoshop, right down to the layers. I haven’t used it much, and I don’t understand the business model, but this is one of the most impressive applications of Web tech that I’ve ever seen.

• Now, if you think the above diversions will stunt your kids’ intellectual development, think again. Don’t confuse your own being left behind with your kids’ ability to assimilate the new.

And that’s all I have to say ’bout that.

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