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  Web http://www.klippert.com



  Thursday, February 11, 2010 – Permalink –

Historical Documents

Remember good old paper?


"Footnote helps you find and share historic documents. We are able to bring you many never-before-seen historic documents through our unique partnerships with The National Archives, the Library of Congress and other institutions.

Our patented digitization process is helping bring other collections to life on the web everyday.

But Footnote is more than just a dusty, digital archive online. We provide you the tools to share your historical passions and connect with others."


Footnote.com




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<Doug Klippert@ 3:46 AM

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  Saturday, November 21, 2009 – Permalink –

History is Something to Play With

Games for kids (and you)


History can be boring when the only reward is a scribbled "Acceptable" on a test paper.

But what if part of the game is to build a trebuchet to fling the teacher?

"Welcome to the SchoolHistory.co.uk downloadable resources centre. This has been updated to allow quick, easy access to our resources kindly contributed by other teachers. There are now over 1,400 pages of resources available."

Interactive History Games



Also see Build a Trebuchet in your Backyard




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<Doug Klippert@ 3:22 AM

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  Saturday, November 07, 2009 – Permalink –

Go Back 23 Hours

Really save useful time


"Therefore, let us keep the fall ritual as it is. However, one Sunday each Spring, let us set our clocks not one hour forward, but TWENTY-THREE HOURS BACKWARD.

Think of all the advantages. We will not lose an hour of sleep; we will gain (almost) a day of rest. It will be Saturday all over again. You will never again miss Confession, or an airplane, or the Redskins game.

Naturally, if this were the whole plan, our calendars would fall behind one day in each year. However, the second part of the Revised DST Plan deals with this. Every four years, instead of adding a day, let us SUBTRACT THREE DAYS.

Furthermore, let these be Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday, which according to recent polls are the least popular days.


Stop Daylight Saving Time



Daylight Saving Time

About Daylight Saving Time

Wikipedia Daylight Saving Time

Saving Time and Energy

Daylight Savings Google News

As a result of the U.S. passing the Energy Policy Act of 2005, Daylight Saving Time in the U.S. will change starting in 2007. DST will begin on the second Sunday of March and end the first Sunday of November.




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<Doug Klippert@ 3:15 AM

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  Sunday, July 19, 2009 – Permalink –

Your Grand-cestors Swore

Your Grandmothers told them to stop


What is there about a well placed curse that spices a novel or a conversation?
Perhaps it's genetic or evolutionary.


"The Jacobean dramatist Ben Jonson peppered his plays with fackings and "peremptorie Asses," and Shakespeare could hardly quill a stanza without inserting profanities of the day like "zounds" or "sblood" - offensive contractions of "God's wounds" and "God's blood" - or some wondrous sexual pun.

Even the quintessential Good Book abounds in naughty passages like the men in II Kings 18:27 who, as the comparatively tame King James translation puts it, "eat their own dung, and drink their own piss."

Almost before we spoke

Refered to by:
LanguageHat.com
The Antiquity Of Cursing




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<Doug Klippert@ 3:18 AM

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  Friday, June 19, 2009 – Permalink –

Dead Yet?

Approximate your last breath


Let me guess. The odds are that you are less than 77.6 years old.
The longevity figures have increased as medical science finds ways to hold off sending a final bill.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the National Center for Health Statistics have almost all the data you'll need between now and then:
Life Expectancy




My high school held a 100 year reunion September 15. 2006.
Of the 38,797 graduates, 24,176 or 62% could still be alive.

Living Graduates

CelebrateStadium.com

Stadium History

Maybe you saw the movie:
10 Things I Hate About You




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<Doug Klippert@ 3:36 AM

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  Wednesday, April 15, 2009 – Permalink –

Date an Octothorpe

Date an Octothorpe


Some more of those things I'm sure I used to know

The keyboard combination of Alt+Shift+D inserts the current date in MS Word and PowerPoint. Ctrl+; (semicolon) does it in Excel and Access.

If you do not like the date's format, select a different one with Insert>Date and Time and, if you would like to make that permanent, click on the Default button in the lower left corner of the dialog box (in PowerPoint it's in the lower right corner).

In Excel, Ctrl+Shift +# formats the entry as day-month-year. Ctrl+1 will display the "Format cells" dialog box.

BTW, the "hash, pound or number" sign # is also called an "octothorpe".

The person who named it combined Octo for the eight points and Thorpe for James Thorpe.

"Bell Labs engineer, Don Macpherson, went to instruct their first client, the Mayo Clinic, in the use of the new (touch tone phone system). He felt the need for a fresh and unambiguous name for the # symbol. His reasoning that led to the new word was roughly that it had eight points, so ought to start with octo-. He was apparently at that time active in a group that was trying to get the Olympic medals of the athlete Jim Thorpe returned from Sweden, so he decided to add thorpe to the end."

While we're at it, the "backwards P, Enter mark" ΒΆ is actually named a "pilcrow".

The pilcrow was used in medieval times to mark a new train of thought, before the convention of using paragraphs was commonplace.

Also see:
Geek-speak names for punctuation marks

Wikipedia:
Punctuation




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<Doug Klippert@ 3:34 AM

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  Monday, December 01, 2008 – Permalink –

Bathroom Appliances

Bathroom Appliances

One man's toilet is . . .



Bill Gates mansion bathroom tour
(a story to be read and enjoyed but not believed)


Terry Love:
Consumer toilet reports


Gizmodo.com:
Toilets

"We've all been there. Nature calls and the only answer is a toilet with more levers, switches, and buttons than Wily E. Coyote's latest invention. What to do? If you're Bob Cromwell, the answer is obvious: You take a picture. Dedicated to the man and the latrines he's dared to use, Toilets of the World features photos and captions from Bob's many encounters with the cryptic, the seatless, and the downright weird. During his travels through Russia, East Asia, and South America, Bob never met a commode he didn't want to remember. From an Ottoman-era throne of a more modest variety to a hole-in-the-ground kind enough to offer tips on feet placement, you're bound to gain a quick appreciation for Bob, the Indiana Jones (and Ansel Adams) of latrines."



Toilets of the world


Ben Franklin's toilet

Also see:
Paperless Office


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<Doug Klippert@ 3:39 AM

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  Tuesday, September 16, 2008 – Permalink –

Wild Fire

Pictures and history


WildFire.com is maintained by Abercrombie:

" Abercrombie is the dirt digg'in, hose pull'in, shovel flipp'in, dozer boss'in, rotor lov'in, firefighter in all of us. Abercrombie has always had more questions than answers. Abercrombie is unable to stop asking why. He feels people are capable of and willing to do a much better job if they understand the "why" in addition to knowing "how". Abercrombie likes to push people's buttons sometimes to provoke an honest response. Abercrombie has a few of his own buttons get pushed occasionally, although he seems to be getting better at slowing his emotional responses."



WildlandFire.com

Fire Photos



Basic Firefighting Training

Other fire stuff:

How Fire Engines work
Fire Engines

Tacoma Fire Department
Seattle Fire Department
Queensland Fire and Rescue
(Including sirens, like the Phaser).

Wheels of Fire: Famous Fire Engines (Wales)
Fire Museums on the Web

SPAAMFAA, privately owned Fire Trucks
Fire Truck Graveyard



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<Doug Klippert@ 4:06 AM

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  Thursday, September 11, 2008 – Permalink –

Secret SS Information

What's on your card?


There's data encoded in your Social Security number! (not a lot, but some).
You can tell in what state the card was issued:

"The first three (3) digits of a person's social security number are determined by the ZIP Code of the mailing address shown on the application for a social security number. Prior to 1973, social security numbers were assigned by field offices. The number merely established that his/her card was issued by one of the offices in that State."


Social Security Number Allocations


If you're an employer, you can verify if the number is valid:
Social Security Number Verification
(There are three types of cards)


Here are some stories about Social Security :

" The most misused SSN of all time was (078-05-1120). In 1938, wallet manufacturer the E. H. Ferree company in Lockport, New York decided to promote its product by showing how a Social Security card would fit into its wallets. A sample card, used for display purposes, was inserted in each wallet. Company Vice President and Treasurer Douglas Patterson thought it would be a clever idea to use the actual SSN of his secretary, Mrs. Hilda Schrader Whitcher.



The wallet was sold by Woolworth stores and other department stores all over the country. Even though the card was only half the size of a real card, was printed all in red, and had the word "specimen" written across the face, many purchasers of the wallet adopted the SSN as their own. In the peak year of 1943, 5,755 people were using Hilda's number. SSA acted to eliminate the problem by voiding the number and publicizing that it was incorrect to use it. (Mrs. Whitcher was given a new number.) However, the number continued to be used for many years. In all, over 40,000 people reported this as their SSN. As late as 1977, 12 people were found to still be using the SSN "issued by Woolworth."


History


Other things on the site include:

Slider puzzles
(Including such luminaries as: Otto von Bismarck, Frances Perkins, and Arthur Altmeyer )


Both Nixon and LBJ recorded conversations in their offices. The SSA has some of them you can listen to about SS matters:
LBJ and Nixon tapes

Social Security Number



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<Doug Klippert@ 3:29 AM

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  Saturday, January 26, 2008 – Permalink –

You are What You Eat - With

Old Food Tools


Even before we had Ron Popeil to provide our cutlery, there were knives, spoons, and later forks.

California Academy of Sciences:
The History of Eating Utensils



A History of Eating Utensils in the West:
A Brief Timeline

"Henry Petroski, in The Evolution of Useful Things, makes the argument that it is not so much that necessity is the "mother of invention" as that invention takes place in response to dissatisfaction at the shortcomings of an already existing way of doing things.

The eating utensils we use and the ways we use them are the result of centuries of experimentation."


The Elizabethan Practical Companion


Medieval and Renaissance Eating Utensils and "Feast Gear"

Ron Popeil (aka Ron "But Wait!" Popeil)

"Born in 1935, he was for all practical purposes orphaned three years later when his parents divorced and he and his brother were shunted to a boarding school in upstate New York.

The one memory of this period is of a Christmas when parents were taking their children home for the holidays. Ron peered through a window at the long, straight road leading to the school, hoping to see his father's car approach. It never did."




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<Doug Klippert@ 7:59 AM

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  Thursday, September 27, 2007 – Permalink –

Photoshop Beginnings

Who started it all


"In the fall of 1987, Thomas Knoll, a doctoral candidate in computer vision, was trying to write computer code to display grayscale images on a black-white bitmap monitor.
Knoll thought it had limited value at best. The code was called Display. Knoll wrote it on his Mac Plus computer at home.
Little did he know that this initial code would be the very beginning of the phenomenon that would be known as Photoshop.


Thomas' program caught the attention of his brother, John, who worked at Industrial Light and Magic (the visual effects arm of Lucasfilm, the famous motion picture company founded by George Lucas.
With the release of Star Wars, Lucas had proved that really cool special effects, combined with heroic characters and a "shoot-em up script," could produce a blockbuster motion picture.
To that end, John was experimenting with computers to create special effects. He asked his brother Thomas to help him program a computer to process digital image files, and Display was a great starting point. So began their collaboration."


Photoshop profile

History of Photoshop



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<Doug Klippert@ 7:44 AM

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  Sunday, August 05, 2007 – Permalink –

Paperless Office

Paperless Bathroom



"In 1982, an article in The Economist began:

'The vision of the paperless office is future-gazing nonsense. Even computer giant IBM believes paper will be found amidst the micro-electronic wonders in the office of the future.'

In 1983 Wang Labs had introduced a system that could scan images and store them in memory. They predicted paperless offices. Today offices are wangless.

In 1985 the Wall Street Journal had a short quote that said there would be 'a paperless office when there is a paperless bathroom'"


The paperless office. Still waiting


Paperless toilet

"When you press the "cleanse" button, a wand, about the size and shape of a fat pencil (that was previously hidden under the seat) automatically extends, washes itself, and then sprays a carefully aimed aerated stream of water for a few seconds, or until you touch the "stop" button. Then the wand rinses itself off again, and it retracts, out of the way again.

The engineers have been perfecting the Washlet for over ten years, and millions of them have been sold. They have plenty of research on exactly what it takes."



"2001: A Space Odyssey"


The Social Life Of Paper

by Malcolm Gladwell





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<Doug Klippert@ 6:37 AM

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  Monday, July 23, 2007 – Permalink –

Horrific Stories

What did your Grandparents do?


"Unsuspecting visitors in crime-infested Port Townsend, victims of shanghaiing, are sold to the highest bidder

Bunco Kelly, Spider Johnson and fourteen dead men on the deck of the Flying Price

Urban East Hicks surrounded by Indians in 1886

Earthquakes, riots, robberies, murders and a host of other terrifying events which created panic in the streets of communities throughout the Pacific Northwest.

Selected from the Clippings File of the Tacoma Public Library's Northwest Room /Special Collections, these true-life tales chillingly capture the dark side of our state's history."


Unsettling Events!



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<Doug Klippert@ 6:49 AM

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  Tuesday, July 10, 2007 – Permalink –

Tesla's Birthday

July 10, 1856


There has been an attempt to make July 10, the birth date of Nikola Tesla,
Global Energy Independence Day.

The purpose is to promote emerging energy technologies that move us away from oil dependence.




Happy Birthday Tesla

Tesla - The Lost Wizard

Tesla Coil

Tesla cage of death



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<Doug Klippert@ 6:52 AM

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  Tuesday, June 12, 2007 – Permalink –

World War I

Color pictures


"Louis Lumière had already invented instant photographic plates and the Cinematographe when, in late 1903, he and his brother Auguste patented a new process for producing colour photographs : the Autochrome.

Before the invention of the Autochrome, colours were separated using a complex three-colour process whereby three successive exposures had to be taken and then superimposed onto each other.

Louis Lumière, however, devised a method of filtering light by using a single three-colour screen made up of millions of grains of potato starch dyed in three different colours.

This mixture was then laid out on a varnished glass plate, which would be ready for use once it was coated in a black and white emulsion.

Developing the plate entailed applying the same process as was used for black and white photographs at the time, with the impression being processed to reversal.


Institut-Lumiere.org
Here are some examples:


"It looks like a painting by impressionist Edouard Manet, but it is a real color picture, made in 1914, by Jean-Baptiste Tournassoud, Commander of the Photography and Cinematography Section of the French Army.

When the Great War broke out, in 1914, French poilu's (common soldiers) still wore their Napoleontic uniforms with red trousers. They made perfect targets.

Here are some more:
World War I Photos

The Great War



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<Doug Klippert@ 6:31 AM

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  Thursday, May 17, 2007 – Permalink –

Wage is too Minimum

Low pay by state


Since 1997, the federal minimum wage has been stuck at $5.15. The new Congress plans to introduce legislation raising the minimum wage to $7.25-an increase that is long overdue.

This minimum wage increase would boost earnings for 13 million American workers-9.8 percent of the United States workforce.

Six million families with children-46 percent of the total low wage-earning families with children-currently receive all of their earnings from minimum wage jobs.

Raising the minimum wage will increase annual earnings to $15,000 from $10,700.

Without this increase, a family of three supported by one minimum wage earner will live roughly $5,400 below the federal poverty line.

At the 350 largest public companies, the average CEO total direct compensation was $11.6 million in 2005. At this rate of compensation, it takes the average CEO only one hour and 55 minutes to earn the annual pay of a minimum wage worker.

Here is an interactive map that will show how your state relates to the others.

Minimum wage map

Via J-Walkblog



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<Doug Klippert@ 8:06 AM

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  Thursday, May 03, 2007 – Permalink –

Where in the World is it not?

Trouble map


If it's not happening here, it's coming down over there.

Here's a Google map mashup of the world wide mashups.

Global Incident Map



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<Doug Klippert@ 6:36 AM

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  Wednesday, April 25, 2007 – Permalink –

Edison Speaks

Cylinders of sound


The archive at Edison National Historic Site includes approximately 48,000 disc and cylinder records produced by Edison in West Orange, New Jersey, between 1888 and 1929. Many of these, including unreleased and experimental recordings, have been at the Laboratory since Edison's lifetime. Some of the earliest examples of recorded sound in existence are preserved within this unique collection.

Sophie Tucker, June 1911

Edisonia Sounds



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<Doug Klippert@ 4:32 AM

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  Tuesday, April 17, 2007 – Permalink –

Old Magazines

Covers and ads


Remember the old magazines that caused young kids to drool over diesel engines?



ModernMechanics.com



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<Doug Klippert@ 7:36 AM

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