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Pages.google.com – Use Ajax to Create a Home Page like It’s 1998!

Saw via Steve Rubel that Google has launched their “Pages” service at pages.google.com.

I created one in about 30 seconds. You can see it at jabancroft.googlepages.com.

I’m still scratching my head on why you’d want to do this, though. I mean, it’s so easy to create a full blown blog site, or wiki, these days, why would you need a static web page that looks like it came out of the Home Page WIzard from Geocities 10 years ago?

EDIT: This topic is on top of Tech.Memeorandum right now.

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Dear WindowsMobile.com – Web Page Background Music Makes Me a Sad Panda

Read via Jason Landridge’s blog that WindowsMobile.com got a makeover, so I headed over to check it out.

Looks nice, but background music starts playing as soon as the page loads, and I couldn’t see any way to turn it off. Repeated jabs of the ESC key did nothing, meaning it’s probably Flash or something.

I HATE web pages that start playing music, and then, worse, don’t let me easily turn off the sound.

All of that led me to flee the site, post a comment on Jason’s blog, and then write this post. I didn’t even stick around long enough to see if the page has an RSS feed (if it doesn’t, that’s two strikes against whoever did the redesign! Scoble would say they should be fired! :-)).

I’m stupefied that someone in 2006 thought it would be a good idea to do that. Have you ever met someone that DOESN’T hate music on web pages? I mean, it was cool in 1997, but so was Third Eye Blind.

BTW, I intentionally did not make WIndowsMobile.com a hyperlink – go there on your own if you must. But consider yourself warned.

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The Other Camera I’m Drooling Over – Canon S3 IS

I’ve been drooling over the Canon S2 IS for a while – 12x optical zoom (!), great photo features, record 640x480x30fps, etc. All for under $500. A few of my friends, (Chris Pirillo, etc.) have this camera and extol its features regularly. Image stabilization, especially, would be welcome (which you already know, if you see how blurry some of the shots out of my little Nikon 5600 are).

In fact, the only reason I don’t already have one is the size – it’s not quite as big as a DSLR, but not pocketable, either. Even in my big cargo pants pocket.

Today, Canon announced the successor to the S2 IS – the S3 IS:

A bump to 6MP (from 5), a bigger LCD, nice black gunmetal finish, and the ability to record video at 60fps. Incremental updates, to be sure, but they kept the 12x optical zoom and the $499 price tag.

If they had added wireless, I’d be a goner for sure. That, and the fact that it won’t be out until May may cool off my feelings for it, assuming something better comes along between now and then.

The worst part is that it’s not really in the same league as the other camera that I’m currently drooling over, the Nikon S6. That makes me want both of them, rather than “either-or”. And that’s much harder for afford, or justify into the gadget budget. πŸ™‚

Still, if I ever do go for a nicer “full size” camera, it will likely be this one.

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Tiny Nikon 6MP Camera with a 3″ LCD and WiFi? Yes, please! – The S6

Lots of cool new camera announcements coming out of PMA2006 – a big trade show for the digital photography industry. One that caught my eye was the Nikon Coolpix S6:

You all know that I love my Coolpix 5600, and was almost tempted into buying the slim, sleek little S3 when I thought my 5600 had died. But patience appears to have paid off.

The S6 has a 6MP sensor, a huge 3″ LCD (that’s bigger than my Samsung i730 Pocket PC phone!), and built-in 802.11b/g WiFi. No word on how much it will cost (I’d guess around $400), but it’s supposed to be available this month.

I may have just found my next digital camera… However, there’s an updated iteration of a model that I’m always teetering on the edge of getting that’s also clamoring for my attention. More on that soon…

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Apple Photo Booth – Pencil Drawing



Apple Photo Booth – Pencil Drawing, originally uploaded by JoshB.

Messing around with the Intel iMacs at the Pioneer Place Apple Store in downtown Portland today. Took a couple of shots, and emailed them to myself.

This one is the “pencil drawing” effect. This was my favorite effect, and I can’t really say why. Maybe it’s because it makes my eyes look blue (they’re really hazel), and I secretly wish I had blue eyes. πŸ™‚

You can see the other photos/effects under my “photo booth” tag on Flickr.

Man, it would be cool to have a Mac to play with! πŸ™‚

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My Gadget Spread – Portland Podcasting Feb. Meetup

Here’s a shot of the gadgets I had spread out a the last Portland Podcasting meetup.

Go to the Flickr page for this photo and mouse over each item for a note/description of each gadget.

You can see another shot (less blurry, but darker) here.

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Black and White



Black and White, originally uploaded by JoshB.

My black 60GB 5G iPod and Stan’s new white 60GB 5G iPod. Don’t they make a cute couple? πŸ™‚

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Fancy Programmable LED Flashlight



Fancy Programmable LED Flashlight, originally uploaded by JoshB.

Kevin got this LED flashlight that’s programmable to different brightness levels, morse code, etc. Check out the programming card to see all the options available. The only interface to the flashslight is the power button.

See a photo with the other side of the card here.

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Dear Amazon – We Need To Talk

Dear Amazon.com-

I ordered an iPod Radio Remote on Feb. 7. 2006, and the Availability was “Usually ships within 2 to 3 days. Ships from and sold by Amazon.com”.

Now, my order status shows a ship date of April 13, 2006 – TWO MONTHS FROM NOW! I didn’t get an email explaining the delay, or anything.

When I go to the page for the item, it still says “Usually ships within 2 to 3 days. Ships from and sold by Amazon.com”.

Something is wrong here. Please ship this item, or update the stock status to indicate that you don’t have it and can’t ship it, so I can cancel my order and take my business elsewhere. And so other poor suckers don’t place an order and wait endlessly for it, like me.

I really like you, and order from you all the time. I hope we can work things out.

Loves and kisses,

Josh

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