Wednesday, October 28, 2009
I believe most of the social networking sites leave these profile pages up indefinitely, but Facebook has taken the next step and requires that next-of-kin fill out a form to keep the page up as a memorial, but with no log-in access.
Creepy? I don't think so, especially when you think about the fact that the tiniest details of our lives have all been parsed into tidbits of data streamlined for electronic transmission.
It's just the next step in our evolution to homo sapiens sapiens digitalus.
Speaking of evolution: I realize sites like Facebook are incredibly prevelant in the lives of most people these days. If you put in perspective though, they're only a few years old and ultimately destined to be supplanted by "the next thing," whatever that is. So perhaps these social networking sites (and the personal profiles, photos, information, blogs, etc. they host) will eventually go the way of GeoCities, which was effectively deleted from the Web this week (except for what some digital archivists/historians were able to salvage). Click here to read more.
Back in May I posted about a book I was reading called "World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War." Click here to read that post.
Turns out the author will be speaking tonight at Sage College in Albany. Sweet! I'll be there. Click over to All Over Albany for the details.
I didn't realize Max Brooks was the son of Mel Brooks; which makes me wonder why Mel never tackled the walking undead in one of his films. A glaring omission in the work of the man that gave us "Dracula: Dead and Loving It."
Sadly, World War Z is the only book listed in my post from May that I've actually finished (though I did start "Children of Dune" before my wife left it on the shuttle train at the San Francisco Airport during our honeymoon. Ah well.)
Tuesday, October 27, 2009
Click here to view the videos from Anthony "Skip" Scirocco's time in The Saratogian's hot seat.
Click here for Ed Miller's grilling.
And here's a direct link to "the hub," where links to all the other videos will be posted.
More videos coming. Check back all week.
Thursday, October 22, 2009
What did I tell you? What was I saying way back in May (and thinking about long before then)? Click here to read this older post and refresh your memory. And click here to read the addenda. (In the words of Ace: "Can you feel that, buddy? Huh? Huh?")
Long Island-based newspaper Newsday, a rather well-known publication that once had bureaus across the globe, will be switching to a subscription model next week. There's a rub, of course, and it's rather like a fork in chess:
The paper is owned by Cablevision Systems Inc., which provides the Optimum online service (the downstate version of Time Warner's Roadrunner). So if you subscribe to either the print edition of Newsday, or Optimum Online, access to Newsday.com is free. If you're not a subscriber to either tangible newspaper or Internet provider, well, you're boned — at least in terms of accessing most news content produced by Newsday (there will be some free content, obituaries and community events among them, which is wise).
Click here to read it right from the horse's mouth.
Click here for a post by Newsday sportswriter/blogger Neil Best.
Click here for the Newsday subscription page. Remember, if you're clicking that right-most option, you're boned.
And here's the Associated Press story on the whole thing, courtesy of Google's aggregator.
Ah, but wait, there's more vindication for yours truly!
If you watch free television programming via Hulu.com, you may soon be paying for THAT content as well. Seems the folks at News Corp. and the other TV networks behind the joint Web venture also realize that giving away the goods for free online is no good way to bring in revenue. Click here to read more at MovieLine.
Consider the first of the elaborately staged dominoes tipped.
Tuesday, October 20, 2009
Which means I still need to cut the video from our interviews with Peter Martin and Ed Miller, candidates for commissioner of finance and commissioner of public works, respectively.
I'm hoping to roll out all those videos by the middle of next week. I think, rather than edit the footage into one video for each candidate, I'll simply cut several videos of each as they speak on the most relevant points of interest to voters.
Hopefully our new video-hosting platform will be live by then.
Thursday, October 15, 2009
In the News portion of the site, we now have a Police Blotter section, accessible via both a dropdown under News in the top navigation bar, and a slick graphic underneath the days' top stories. Click each image to enlarge.
You'll be able to find the daily Police & Courts roundup and other law enforecement/emergency services articles mixed in with the rest of our news reports at www.saratogian.com/news as they happen, or grouped together at www.saratogian.com/blotter (that page displays the 10 most recent articles).
On the Sports side of things, we also have a page dedicated to our coverage of the AHL's Adirondack Phantoms, who call Glens Falls home now. Again, access these stories via the dropdown in the top navigation bar (which takes you to www.saratogian.com/sports/phantoms), at www.saratogian.com/sports, or via the widget that displays the five most recent Phantoms headlines on the right side of any Sports page or article.
Despite the lede of that CNN article linked above, Albano will best be known to me — and I think many others — as none other than Super Mario in the short-lived 1989 cartoon "The Super Mario Bros. Super Show," a fact relegated to the final paragraph of the article.
I have vague memories of Albano's wrestling career pre-Super Mario days, back when wrestling was less soap opera and more action (I'm a Hulk-a-maniac from back in the days when that meant something). But his name has always been synonymous with Nintendo's mascot.
As we all know, it's a great time to be a 20- to 40-something because grainy-resolution snippets of our childhood are no more than a click away:
in the Mushroom Kingdom after an intro like this?
I'm doing "The Mario" as I type this.
I wish I'd remembered to "The Mario" at my wedding.
My only gripe with this show was that they made a buffoon out of Castlevania protagonist Simon Belmont. Otherwise, who DIDN'T want to get transported through an ultimate warp zone?
Monday, October 12, 2009
Since I didn't get August's numbers out in a timely fashion (and I'm flirting with the same dismal timing for September's), I present to you BOTH months for the price of one. It's like TiW's own version of the Toy Story double feature!
Except I don't have a 3-quel to plug.
As many of you may recall, shortly after starting this little feature, I issued a challenge to the rest of the staff: Topple reporter Andrew J. Bernstein from his pinnacle of blogging success and get treated to lunch. He had no reason to lose sleep prior to the last installment of By the Numbers. Have things changed in the interim?
I'll spare you the canned suspense: No.
Andrew continues to steamroll through our segment of the blogosphere. In fact, I'm beginning to think I don't even need to mention this challenge anymore; it's practically a moot point. If at such time Andrew does get bested in the blogs, I will bring the matter up again. Until that time, it's just an unspoken understanding: Unseat Andrew and chow down.
Here's the breakdown of page views (with percentage compared to previous month in parentheses):
1) Andrew Bernstein's Saratoga City Desk: 5,383 (a 5.9% decrease)
2) Stan Hudy's Diary of a Mad Sportswriter: 2,217 (a 13.1% decrease)
3) Mareesa Nicosia's In the Biz: 2,067 (a 5.9% decrease)
4) Barb Lombardo's Fresh Ink: 891 (a 0.7% decrease)
5) TiW: 593 (a 1.7% increase)
5) Saratogian Sports' Extra Points: 190 (a 9.1% decrease)
1) Andrew Bernstein's Saratoga City Desk: 5,018 (a 6.8% decrease)
2) Mareesa Nicosia's In the Biz: 2,153 (a 4.2% increase)
3) Stan Hudy's Diary of a Mad Sportswriter: 1,644 (a 25.8% decrease)
4) Barb Lombardo's Fresh Ink: 588 (a 34.0% decrease)
5) TiW: 455 (a 23.3% decrease)
5) Saratogian Sports' Extra Points: 219 (a 15.3% increase)
Some noticeable decreases across the board. I chalk it up to the new season of sizzling crime dramas, hilarious situational comedies and riveting reality programs that hit the airwaves in the last few months. You know, the ones that people are watching now that they're not in the Spa City for the summer.
Update, Wednesday, Oct. 14, 2009, 3:23 p.m. - Stan Hudy's September numbers are now available. So it seems our intrepid business reporter is the only blogger to experience an increase in traffic last month.
Thursday, October 1, 2009
Here's one such thing that caught my eye. Mark Batty Publisher has just released a book that looks to be right up my alley: "Instructions for the Apocalypse." The premise of this "illustrated fiction", it seems, is a set of instructions from an estranged father to his daughter about how to survive in a post-apocalyptic world. These instructions unfold over actual photographs from the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Here's the description from the publisher:
"'Instructions for the Apocalypse'" fuses a collection of found photographs with the fictional account of one man’s descent into madness. Leaving "instructions" about living through an inevitable apocalypse for his estranged daughter, Gareth Gray’s gloss of the last 200 years dissects the industrial military complex, technology and religion with a voice as original as the book’s use of photography and graphic design.Click here to read the rest of the description and check out sample images from the book.
Click here for the book's blog (with an even better description) and here for its Web site.
Some of the instructions are priceless:
"You'll need a managed influx of new people because the effects of inbreeding start showing up in the first generation. Somebody's going to have to keep track. It's impossible to tell what the situation will call for but your options will range from targeted recruiting to capturing breeders."
I particularly like the instructions about recruiting lieutenants and strong-arm loyals, and making sure one of them dies every 18 months, even if you have to arrange the circumstances.