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© St. Petersburg Times, published March 26, 2001

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Plastic wood trim

How I lust for simpler times. Not horse-and-cart-type simple but a time when video games were understandable by the average person. Recent games such as Quake and its ilk drop me into cookie-tossing mode. Space Invaders or Pac-man were probably the last two that sat well with me. Rewind back to the start and you'll remember that Pong was, well, the only game in town. I could play the thing for days, providing a sibling took over when breaks were not an option. If you're too young to remember Pong, this site might clue you in.

Friends and neighbors

Ponder the insignificance of your meager existence as you render images from our solar system using this rather groovy simulator. This is perhaps one of the coolest sites I've seen in a while. Science devotees and mortals finally can agree on something.


Filing your taxes electronically this year? You might want to double-check that decision. While the IRS has amazing powers to delve into the tiniest nooks of your finances, it apparently doesn't know a whole lot about what its computers are doing, according to data from the General Accounting Office. One can only hope that the GAO's report has frightened the willies out of all concerned and the reported holes are plugged.

Nice doggie, expensive doggie

I'm quite sure that I won't plunk down $20,000 and buy a robot dog. For that kind of cash I'd expect a house or two (you should see my old neighborhood). You, on the other hand, may well be one of those who has stacks of spare greenbacks in a mattress and a burning desire to keep ahead of the Joneses. The seductively named RS-01 pooch does all kinds of interesting things, including running Windows, and ownership of one would give you a leg up in the snob sweepstakes. Perhaps the niftiest of the nifties is the built-in camera and the ability to log into the dog from the Net and see what it sees.

April who?

Ah yes, spring, when a young man's fancy turns to making a complete fool out of co-workers. It used to be love, of course, but that was before the stock market went into the toilet. If you're itching to strut your geek stuff April 1, be sure to send this one around. It's a farcical page that will supposedly make your Internet connection faster by "scrubbing" your data pipes. It reminds me of the time when I told the marketing folks that 5-point type took up less disk space than the 10-point size they were using.

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