By JULES ALLEN
© St. Petersburg Times, published January 1, 2001
Feel free to browse
Groans of yore
Bad commercials are sometimes so bad they're, well, quite good. I'm not an avid TV watcher, so I can't comment on the state of TV today, but I must admit that the "I invented pants" Snickers commercial tickled my funny bone recently. As for times gone by, I remember seeing some of the disasters listed on this site as visions of white bell bottoms and skinny ties danced in my head. Take a trip down memory lane with your browser and Real Audio plug-in (real.com). TV not required.
Behind Gates' gates
Sometimes you can have too much space. I downsized the goodies stashed in a modest suburban house into half the square footage. It was the best thing I've done in some time. A tour of the new digs takes a mere minute. While it's hardly a Zenlike experience, the simplicity of it all is intoxicating. My name isn't Bill Gates, of course. If it were, I'd be thinking of how to furnish my 66,000-square-foot palace. Throwing a TV and a sofa in the living room clearly wouldn't work here. Wander around this site while looking at the plans, maps and other data and you'll get an understanding why. Thanks to Russ Smith for sharing this one.
Eye candy directory
I like a good Flash-oriented site, provided it's a voluntary journey. Hulking Shockwave, Java or Flash sites that force you to sit through a self-congratulating, multimegabyte epic test my limited patience. That aside, I do like this site. It's a fabulous resource for design folks operating in idea-stealing mode and a visual feast for mere consumers.
So many applications ...
... so little time to keep track of them all. If you've got a Mac, that is. Windows users have bunches of places to keep up to date with their software, and the open source and Linux crowd is served by the all-encompassing Fresh Meat site (freshmeat.net). So what's a Macphile to do? Bookmark Version Tracker, that's what. It's loaded with links to up-to-date versions of what's on your PowerBook.
There are some interesting applications for this free service. If you have one of those nifty two-way text pagers such as the RIM 950 or the Motorola Arch, you've noticed you can't get Web pages on them. But you can get e-mail, of course. So by using the instructions on this freebie site, you can have the words and spaces contained in a Web page e-mailed to you. Other applications for this site might include bypassing an oppressive corporate firewall or nanny filter, such as Surfwatch, and having forbidden sites delivered to your Hotmail account. That's assuming Hotmail isn't blocked, of course.
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