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The only good thing about April Fool’s on the web is…

04.01.2008 @ 10:08 AM in Technology
We all know it's April 1st. everyone is on alert, youtube links are most likely rickrolled, and digg becomes amazingly more worthless and irrelevant than normal. However, not all is lost on the web. Each April fools, ThinkGeek publishes a fake front page, featuring amazing and incredible new geek toys that, well, really are incredible. thinkgeekaprilfools.jpg Last year, the most prominent item was the 8-bit tie, which after a well planned flood of demands to the TG email boxes, was realized and put on sale later in the year. This year, it goes to the defendius, an innovative chain lock designed by art.lebedev, and intended to help keep your precious and rare date inside your lair of love. [disclaimer from TG: ThinkGeek does not condone forced captivity - no matter how desperate you are.] defendius_web.jpg Product features:
  • Chain style Doorlock forces you to solve a maze to exit
  • 100% Titanium Alloy Construction
  • 8" chain
  • 10 mounting screws included (2 extra)
  • Tested to 700lbs of force.
  • This innovative lock is designed by Art Lebedev Studio… responsible for the amazing Optimus Maximus keyboard with a tiny screen on each key. Constructed of 100% titanium alloy, nothing less than a level forty-two spell of ultimate cutting will break the Defendius lock open. Really, just look at it: no one is getting out easily. You'll have to guide the lock nib through the labyrinth before you can open to door. There is only one solution, so no cheating will help. Maybe when confronted with the Defendius Labyrinth Security Lock, your date will reconsider your offer of playing the game of love in co-op mode. And don't worry, these locks were tested by robots and confirmed to be the strongest lock commercially available. So, install a Defendius Labyrinth Security Lock today, and make sure your next date gets to the bonus level.
Here's the thing: defendius was actually designed by art.lebedev, prank or not. If you want this one for reals... bomb this email address [mailbox -at-].

Meet Barry the Beaver

04.01.2008 @ 9:38 AM in Lifestream
When I get asked to explain (validate) why I spend so much money on these vinyl toys, I say that they are upscale toys, designer toys, and like a lot of collectors say, they are "toys for adults, but not that kind of toy." Not anymore. barrybeaver.jpg [I got my Beaver from Hero Design on 93 Alllen in Buffalo] Meet Barry the Beaver. he's 5.25" of lovable vinyl, with a flexible rubber tail and he's just so happy to see you. Twist him on the stump (provided you installed the AA battery included) and watch how excited he gets. Created by the amazingly talented and semi-twisted Jeremy Fish, in conjunction with Superfishal and UpperPlayground, Barry was produced by and is available in limited release for ~$45. Pick one up and bury your beaver today. Meet Barry the Beaver from Nathan Strang on Vimeo.
  • Jeremy Fish is a prolific artist who has an extensive history working with Upper Playground. Over the years, he has contributed numerous graphics for Upper Playground's apparel line, with his own line, SuperFishal, being established in 2007. In addition to his clothing line, he has released two popular art books through Upper Playground. Fish's book credits include: I'm With Stupid featuring some notable selections from the Big Stupid series that ran in SLAP magazine and The Next Best Thing, a collaboration with hip-hop artist Aesop Rock that featured a storybook accompanied by a 7" picture disk. For more info on Jeremy,

Video: Skylar and his new daddy.

03.31.2008 @ 9:54 AM in Lifestream
Alright, so it has been almost a week with no updates, and I have been quite mum about the Scranto visit. Work has swizzled my hours around and tossed on a few extra projects, sending me into reorganization mode with almost every one of my daily activities. Not to fear for the blog, I just have to schedule the time I have to update. I really hate responsibilities.. makes me itch. Anyhoo, here is a video clip that me and John took while he was here. Skylar was an attention whore, sapping up to John and winning him over instantly. Watch out for the cute bear at the end... he's MINE. Skylar from John Scranton on Vimeo.

Mond.. er Tuesday Tunesday: Butterfingers

03.25.2008 @ 1:05 PM in Technology
I was a little preoccupied getting back to work Monday and missed getting this video posted, but better late than never. butterfingers.jpg This is Butterfingers by 80's Electropop group Bomb the Bass. They recently came out of the woodwork with Butterfingers being the first single off of the upcoming album "Future Chaos." The video features a puppetized minimoog, produced by the Parish Factory. Check it out here. [via NotCot]

ModBlog: Not Safe For Wimps.

03.24.2008 @ 1:13 PM in Lifestream
People that know me know one thing for sure: I'm a sick puppy. I love the unconventional, the extreme, the things that make you go "OMFGWTFHWARFFF!" get a passing "hmm, interesting" from me. Granted I'm not totally desensitized, I just look a bit differently at things; I'm always looking for that one thing to really set me off. One of my favorite tries is ModBlog, maintained by creator of BMEzine, Shannon Larratt. The site is a mixed gallery of beautiful (and some awful) tattoos and body mods, blatant objectification of pretty pierced ladies, and the (more than) occassional extreme mod like subincision of the genitals or  perhaps a self-amputated finger. Its a crapshoot when browsing, beauty is only half as popular as the bizarre on ModBlog, but it serves a very important purpose: giving you a glimpse into the wide world of body modification. inkedaussie_cut.jpg As a taste, I'll lure you in with this tempting shot of an inked aussie who must bare all to show the extent of his inking. Click on the picture to jump to the original post with a fuller view.

What Kind of Geek Are You?

03.20.2008 @ 9:03 AM in Technology

[click above to embiggen]

Page four-dee-too of April's Wired features a "field guide to the identification of unique species in the nerd underground." Here's the description for "gadget guy," the type I most feel associated with.. The Gadget Guy
  • Disposition: Sociable while waiting in line on launch day; ferocious in comments on Gizmodo. Seemingly unflappable in the face of early adopter's remorse (AKA Apple Newton Syndrome).
  • Beliefs: I can fix that. There's no god but Macgyver. The price will drop in a month but I need it now.
  • Turn-ons: Unboxing videos. Backup batteries. Blue LEDs. Laser pointers. People who RTFM. Things that make loud clicking sounds.
What kind of Geekster are you? Be sure to pick up April's Wired, its a good read (as always) and features an in-depth article on the battle of Gizmodo vs Engadget and why Brian Lam is such a jerk. If you don't subscribe to Wired, you really should, its the common denominator between all types of geek.

Elmwood Market: What It Is And What It Isn’t

03.19.2008 @ 1:26 PM in Buffalo
Elmwood_Market_32.jpg The grande opening (March 17th) for the Elmwood Market & Grill was a success; everything (mostly, save for the beer and some organics, the credit/EBT system was yet to be activated) in place and ready for the steady stream of customers wishing them success and of course, buying things. I was there Monday morning, and seeing as I live accross the street, I'll be there every day no doubt. The atmosphere is a whole lot more inviting than Wilson farms, and less of a chore than Walgreens. I also had a chance to chat a bit with the owners: Dale, Alex, and Tony. The guys are very excited to be on Elmwood and are eager to fit in with the community, asking for suggestions to stock (organics and conventional) and basically trying to get a feel for the area. Elmwood_Market_26.jpg Since Latina's closed last spring, the community has been longing for a new place to shop. Unfulfilled talks of Dash's, Tops, and Whole Food's filling the void that Latina's left put despair in the area. No one wants to be let with a crummy Wilson Farms; the added burden has had a negative effect on the store, overcrowding at times and leaving the store more haggard than it has been in years. Thus, the Elmwood Market has many shoes to fill... have they picked the right ones to tackle? We'll see. Read on for my initial assessment of the store and its role for the community.

The Elmwood market is...

  • Your Morning Stop - the Breakast Combo (any breakfast sandwich, coffee and two hashbrowns for $3.99) is sure to be a winner in the morning. pick up some cold cuts, cheese, a few Costanza rolls, and you have lunch fixin's for a week. I'll have my good buddy Kirk report back on how that works out for him. He was a big fan of X-cel. I'll start getting the breakfast special as soon as I use up my Wilson's Coffee Bucks.
  • A Cheap (and good) Grill and Deli - In the wake of X-cel, getting something to eat left you with Jim's or Just Pizza. While both are amazing places to eat and definite Buffalonian mainstays, I doubt anyone's gut will survive a sustained diet of either. You can and will get full for under $10 bucks, most sandwiches won't take you past 6 bucks; all 12' subs are only $6.49ea. as for the deli meats? I'll do a little research, but I hear the meats are cheaper than Tops. As of right now, the grilled chicken sandwich is my favorite, and nothing is better than a sammy on a Costanza roll.
Elmwood_Market_18.jpg Elmwood_Market_9.jpg Elmwood_Market_14.jpg
  • A Essentials Market - Obvious, but the shelves are stocked with enough goods that you will only need to head to Tops for produce or that giant stock-up I hear you people that buy food do once a month. I haven't had groceries in my house for a year, partly due to laziness and partly due to my pride of not wanting to be loaded down on the bus. I still may not. Why, with a pantry next door, I'll just dash down and get what I need. In the next week or so, I'll have a price comparison between Wilson farms, Walgreen's, and Elmwood Market on the essentials like milk eggs, tp, etc.
Elmwood_Market_7.jpg Elmwood_Market_2.jpg Elmwood_Market_4.jpg
  • A Safe Place to Shop - I have never seen so many security cameras in one place before. There is even a cam pointed on the street by the store, and everything is hooked into the video system. This was a common fear of impending trouble but i can assure you these guys have it covered. In addition to the cameras, there is a no single beer can/bottle policy, aiming to keep the riff-raff from hanging around panhandling for change to get a 40oz. I'm sure someone will make a try to knock this place over, but the deterrent factor is huge.

The Elmwood Market is not...

  • A Wilson Farms Killer - Wilson Farms serves a valuable purpose and always had. Once people get used to the Market, the Farms will go back to what it was.... a late night beer/smoke/munchie stop. A little healthy competition is good for everyone, and when the Market closes at 11pm, Wilson's is and will still be the place to go for the afterhour goods.
  • One of "those" places - As with all good things, people want to fail the market before it has a chance to mess up. Supposedly, the guys who own the market own a few stores on the east side that are in sorry condition. I haven't been to these places but this is the "dirt" that I've heard the most. I really hope that this won't happen to their Elmwood location, and I don't think it will. The place is just too nice to let it go to shit, and the spacious location will prevent the overclutter that leads to dumpy grocers. However, this is all relative to the amount of support given to it by the community. Hold them accountable for a great store and support them and the Elmwood Market should be here for years to come.
Overall, I'm very pleased with the Market. I've talked with Dale and Alex and they really seem to want what's best for the community. Everyone at the Market is very friendly, inviting questions and even letting a blogger like me get all nosy. Elmwood_Market_25.jpg

[Ironman tought us that gang signs are "totally cool." ]

That means that you need to go in there and say hi, tell them a bit about what you want to see stocked at the Market. You can also head to their website and send them a note, and read their welcome to the community. The owners will be in the store for the first month before leaving the store in the hands of the managers; don't wait to say hello. This is your Market, get involved. Elmwood_Market_28.jpg

[Good luck you guys! Thanks for the T-shirts - Buffawhat & Sai One ]

You can check out the rest of the pictures of the Elmwood Market in my flickr set, just click below.., thumbs.jpg

Elmwood Market: Customer #2

03.17.2008 @ 3:08 AM in Buffalo
The staff at the new Elmwood Market deli & Grill could be seen scurrying around last night till the wee hours of the morning, preparing to unleash a much needed asset to the Allentown end of the Elmwood Village. The weekend pushback of their open date proved just enough time; they were ready like they said, 7am Monday morning. I walked in behind a fellow bus commuter and quickly scanned the shelves as I headed to the back to gather my morning caffeinated goods. the clusterfuck that seems to plague most mini grocers was not to be seen. the shelves were heavily stocked but the gap between the aisles rivaled Wegman's. They had no deli sandwiches ready yet, but they assured me that once things got into a groove, I would be able to grab a fresh sub even as early as I come in (7-7:30). For a quick stop in the morning, I am very pleased. This will be the first of many reviews as well, taken from a general customer with a focus on the community needs and concerns. The Elmwood Market can be found on the corner of Elmwood and North, in the old DVDdot location. There is (blessed) adjacent parking as well.

Scranto’s Video Test

03.14.2008 @ 1:38 PM in Lifestream
John bought himself a new digital camera, and sent me this video to show the quality of the recording. I twittered about it, only to have the bears demand viewing rights as well. So here it is, coupled with a testdrive of the new Sprout online flash widget creator.

Virgin Mobile Canada Puts Spitzer’s Shame to Use

03.14.2008 @ 10:08 AM in Lifestream
The Canadians are laughing at us (New Yorkians) right now, and Virgin Mobile Canada is taking the joke all the way to the bank, using our disgraced NY Governor as a part of their new "you call the shots" campaign. The ads will run in Toronto newpapers this week. spitzer_client_9.jpg The copy reads..
  • At Virgin Mobile, you're more than just a number. When you call us we'll treat you like a person, not a client. Whether you're #9 or #900, you'll get hooked up with somebody who'll finally treat you just how you want to be treated.
In addition to Spitzer, VMCa  has plans to release ads poking fun at Hillary and Obama as well. via CNet News