Thursday, January 31, 2008

Cable music channels - The Nature channel

So I listened to the "Nature" music channel, on my Shaw Cable digital TV system, and some things, like the "rolling thunderstorm" and ocean sounds and such, are fine, but there are some things that really annoy me

This channel is found on Shaw digital cable channel #434 (at least here in Winnipeg, anyways), apparently programmed by "Galaxie Max Trax".. Which seems to be French, but who cares. Even if you don't have a shaw digital cable TV terminal, you can stream it live online if you use Shaw internet. The information is available at shaw's own website.

What really bugs me are "Nature" sounds that are so obviously fake and repetitious that nobody could possibly be fooled
by them. Like the same fake animal sounds over and over again screeching. Also its spooky sometimes.

Worse, is when they cover up their lame nature sounds with piano music (usually its the piano, have yet to encounter anything else. Theres probably some with guitar music).. If I'm listening to the nature channel, I want to hear nature, not freakin cheesy piano music.

Also, there was one nature thing that had crows caw'ing. I like nature, but who the fuck likes the sound of crows? It starts with little birds tweeting, then annoying fucking crows start caw'ing and annoying the hell out of me. That isn't relaxing to anybody. Except maybe other crows, and even I doubt that.

In conclusion, I like ocean sounds, and rain/thunderstorms. not fake animal whooping and crows and piano music.

I leave you today with this classic animated gif showing nature at its finest: (probably have to click to see the animation)

Oh yeah, also I hate walruses. Walruses suck. OOORK OORK. STFU WALRUS.

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Monopoly, World Edition - Vote Winnipeg.

Monopoly is creating an updated version of its Monopoly board using the names of the worlds most popular cities. There are two wild card positions up for grabs, and there is a movement to get Winnipeg into one of those wildcard spots, because if any city deserves to be Baltic avenue, home of slum lords and cheap hotels, its Winnipeg.

click the icon and please chose Winnipeg - Canada, as your choice for the wildcard spot. I'm appealing to your sense of Pity, also, Winnipeg is a pretty unique name, and fun to say. Plus, Winnie the Pooh, the bear, was named after Winnipeg. Really. So vote for Winnipeg. Besides, do you really want some city from Taiwan on the board instead? C'mon. Vote Winnipeg, for a better tomorrow. Also Monopoly was invented in Winnipeg. OK not really.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

I won the Lottery!

I bought two tickets on a whim last week for two different lottery draws, and I ended up winning $10 on the first ticket, and to my surprise the second ticket was slightly more than $100.00. Which was a sweet little bonus. It's weird how when you're lucky, you're lucky all at the same time. Perhaps this is a sign that I'm due to win the big one or something. Probably not, but I'm glad for once that I won something.

Saturday, January 12, 2008

The book industry, DRM, and bullshit

The book industry likes to piss me off. They're like the music industry, except in even greater denial of how much the digital world can totally make them irrelevant. In my case, its mostly in regards to the Comicbook industry, and Digital Rights Management (DRM)

Recently created the Kindle, an ugly looking ebook reader with DRM and battery eating wi-fi. I'm fascinated by e-ink based ebook readers, but I'm not going to pay $400-$1000 for one. I'd pay $200 for something that can read books or images in compressed zip/rar files, in black and white, but for $400 it better have a colour screen. Also it has to be black with blue LED's, like all of my other computer peripherals. (Even my router is black). What can I say, I like black. It's not as distracting in the dark as other colours.

In any case, this past christmas, my comicbooks were a whole week late, and even worse, the comicbooks for that week were a day late. So what am I going to do over the holidays, talk to my family? FUCK NO. I'm going to fucking DOWNLOAD those comics off of file sharing sites, thats what. And I don't feel guilty about it either, because those comics should have been out on Wednesday like they are in the rest of North America, but for some reason, in Winnipeg, nobody gets their comicbooks on Wednesdays. WHY IS THAT, Diamond distributors? Why must I download my comics in order to read them when I want to read them?

I think the comicbook companies like DC and Marvel would be wise to offer all of their comicbooks, old and new, over the internet in DRM free cbz format archives. They can charge a monthly fee of like $8. Because really, thats a price most people wouldn't feel bad about paying, and if they keep it low enough, they'll get more of an audience built up for when the inevitable e-ink based reader popularity gains momentum. With an audience, they gain more advertising revenue, with low prices it limits the need for people to pirate (and DRM'ed files mean people will ignore you and pirate it instead)

Will the comicbook companies do it? I doubt it. But it'd be very wise if they did. They haven't really got anything to lose considering their stagnating sales. Plus, people like me would still buy the hard copies (and they could focus on Trades for people who really like a particular series online)

Anyways, back to the kindle, its ugly. Really poorly designed, and full of DRM thanks to the fradey cat book companies who don't realise that a large amount of books people read are public domain anyways. DRM is just insulting.