Actually, not only did the dog finish, the dog placed 72nd, ahead of hundreds of humans in a field of about 500 swimmers. The swim, which starts in Alcatraz and finishes at shoreline near the Hyde Street Pier, is about 1.2 miles in length through the frigid waters of the San Francisco Bay. The race is sponsored and organized by the South End Rowing Club, which prides itself on swimming the race without wetsuits. Wow.

Everyone is all up in arms at the fact that there are some explicit soft-core porn scenes embedded in Grand Theft Auto San Andreas. This is a game filled with almost every weapon imaginable, like bazookas, flame throwers, chainsaws, knives, machine guns, and pistols, and let’s you kill anyone in the game at anytime!

So you are a teenager and you install a downloadable hack. Now, in the middle of this game, filled with blatant racist stereotypes, disposable prostitutes, and missions that get progressively more violent, you are in the middle of gangbanging, killing pimps, blowing up police helicopters, stealthily cutting people’s throats when, there’s a sex scene, a soft-core lamely animated sex scene at that. You are outraged because it looks so lame, your parents are outraged because it’s, it’s sex! Without Viagra and Cialis, they can’t believe it! They call their congressperson.

Now congress is coming down on Take-Two Interactive and Rockstar Games for hiding a little bit of crappy soft-core sex in what may be considered one of the most violent games of all time. The message is clear. Violence is okay in our society because it desensitizes our teenagers to it enough so that we can send them to Afghanistan or Iraq or the next theater of war. But, those teenagers won’t have sex, damn it, if it’s the last thing we do!

The Entertainment Software Ratings Board has changed the game’s rating from Mature to Adults Only. At the end of the day, the Mature rating is for people that are 17 and older, while the Adults Only rating is for people 18 and older–a one year difference. The shocking thing is that all of this violence in the game doesn’t warrant and Adults Only rating! People are so fucking upset about the sex that you would think that this is a society of test tube babies. Everyone does it. Maybe the problem is that not everybody does and it makes those that don’t very bitter and intolerant of those that do–even in video games.

A few days ago, I found a bug in Movable Type 3.2 Beta 2. The Search and Replace function had some serious issues, inserting spaces and creating excerpts into entries. Jay Allen and the engineers at Six Apart were able to track down the bug and correct it in last night’s release.

I got mad props on the Movable Type Beta Blog for finding the bug and hopefully saving someone else the trouble of dealing with mangled blog data. Still, I have to thank Jay and the folks at Movable Type for all of their help and support. I can’t wait for the final release. Rock on!

One of my best friends, Mark J. Asher, has a photography book coming out this August called Barking Up the Family Tree. It features moving photographs of kids with their pets in various locales and makes a great gift idea. Order a signed copy of the book by visiting his online store.

Japanese Female Android

Weird Science was a John Hughes film. The man is responsible for single handedly brainwashing my generation with mind-numbing and unforgettable films throughout the 1980’s, but I digress.

In the film, a couple of geeks attempt to create a perfect woman, a female android. Well, life imitates art. Japanese scientists unveiled a female android that has lifelike skin and mannerisms. In this still photograph, she looks as lifelike as a Blade Runner replicant or a new Battlestar Galactica cyclon.

I wonder if they will be able to create fully operational androids that will help us in our daily lives within our lifetimes. Probably not. The power sources and computing power required for a robot that advanced is probably several hundred years away. Until then, androids will just be novelty items used at photo ops like this one.

The Daily Nugget has been running Movable Type 3.2 Beta for the last couple of days and I must say that it is much better than previous versions. One great new feature is the way that entries are archived and named. It is much more efficient than in the past.

Unfortunately, my choice to use this feature has messed up some older entries where I used relative paths on images posted (i.e. “images/image.jpg” vs. “http://www.dailynugget.com/images/image.jpg”). Since I changed the location of the archives, relative pathing will no longer work. This means that I’ll have to go back and manually fix about 76 entries, since the search and replace feature in the Beta does not appear to be working properly. *Sigh*

On the bright side, the administrative interface looks a lot nicer, but only the authors on the Nug will ever get to see it. If anyone has any questions on how the new features work, please let me know. Enjoy.

Where the hell were these cool moms when I was in high school? A woman in Golden, Colorado pleaded guilty to sexual assault charges for having sex with high school boys at parties where she supplied drugs and alcohol. Incredible! How can something so wrong be so right?

In a fitting end to a man who was the engineer on the Starship Enterprise, a few grams of James Doohan’s ashes will be blasted into space later this year. The ashes will be placed inside an aluminum capsule which will burn up upon re-entry into the Earth’s atmosphere.

“This blog is the chronicle of my experiences with Grandma, the video-game playing queen of her age-bracket and weight class. She will beat any PS2, XBox, GameCube, etc., console game put in front of her, just like she always has. Her favorite game of all time was Final Fantasy VII, her current task is reaching 100% in tour mode of Outlaw Golf 2. These are her stories. She is absolutely real. She lives in Cleveland.”
— Old Grandma Hardcore blog

The above excerpt is the description of the Old Grandma Hardcore blog. I know, I was a little skeptical too. I thought for sure that this had to be a hoax. But, this lady is real. She’s sixty-nine years old and plays to win. She’s even been know to break a controller or two in frustration when things don’t go her way. She has even been the focus of several news articles, the most recent article appearing on the MTV website. Kick ass and game on, grandma!

James Doohan as Montgomery Scott, 1968

James Doohan, the actor that played engineer Montgomery Scott in the original Star Trek series, died earlier today of pneumonia and Alzheimer’s disease. His famous line, “She can’t take much more of this cap’n, she’s about to blow!”, is part of American pop culture and acted out by many, accent and all, whenever a machine is being pushed to its limits. An engineer for the ages, he will be missed.

Biography from Startrek.com site

No relation to a celestial sea-person, but it seems that Google has taken its maps to a new level. Every lunar landing is mapped. However, I was hard-pressed to find a Waffle House or Super Wal-mart.

I’ve just finished watching reruns of the first two episodes of the first installment of the Amazing Race and have been struck at how raw the series looked in its first installment. I started watching the race in its third installment and kinks from the first season had been worked out by that time.

The first two episodes were filled with a lot of emotion. There were no less than four different team breakdowns. Tears were flowing everywhere with teams succumbing to the pressures of the race. These were the first victims after all–they didn’t know what to expect. They didn’t have the advantage of having seen the show before submitting their applications.

There were a lot of things that were different in the first season. The route markers were yellow and white, not the familiar yellow and red that they were later changed to. There was a Fast Forward on every leg, this was later changed to only three per race. Another funny difference was that the Pit Stop mats were made of plastic, this made them really slippery in the rain and one of the teams fell hard in Paris. It was comedy.

The biggest departure of all from the first season was that Phil Keoghan, the host of the show, did not greet all the teams as they came onto the Pit Stop mat, only the last place teams. It’s much more dramatic now, with Phil standing next to the mat with a blank expression before telling the team their standing.

It’s great to be able to see the first two seasons that I missed before becoming a fan of the show. I can’t wait to see the rest of the shows.

A man in St. Petersburg, Florida has been charged with stealing a neighbor’s unprotected WiFi connection. The man admitted to using the wireless signal while sitting in his car with a laptop. The criminal charge, unauthorized access to a computer network, is a third degree felony in the state of Florida. It will be interesting to see how this case of WiFi theft plays out.

I personally am so paranoid about someone using my home network to commit a crime or download kiddie porn or something that I use WiFi Protected Access Pre-Shared Key (WPA-PSK) with a highly complex passphrase that is immune to dictionary attacks. WEP is so easy to crack using AirSnort that I stopped using it a long time ago.

However, even though I am paranoid about my own network, this doesn’t stop me from using open WiFi access at places like Union Square, Yerba Buena Gardens, or other public spaces throughout the city of San Francisco. This case may change the public’s perception about wireless and spur a wave of wireless security initiatives and protocols. Stay tuned.

The Game Show Network will begin airing reruns of the Amazing Race starting on July 11th. I’ve been a fan of the show since the Amazing Race 3, when Flo and Zach, well actually just Zach, staged a come-from-behind win. I can’t wait to finally see the first two installments of the race that I missed. GSN will air the episodes of the race nightly at 9:00PM ET.

Woke up to hear news of terror attacks in London earlier today. Four bomb blasts occured, three in the London Tube system and one bus. All of this comes just one day after London won the bid to host the 2012 Olympic Games.

I have to take some comfort in the fact that I do not take public transit, like Muni or BART, to get to work or any of my clients. Should things pop off here, I think that I would be safer than the people that have to ride the subway to commute. I just hope nothing else happens and they catch the mofos that did this.

3 Stars

NBA Rookies is a six-part documentary made in a collaboration between NBA Entertainment and Spike TV. The show chronicles the roller coaster world of NBA rookies and shows that it’s more than bling-bling and supermodels, it’s hard work.

It’s interesting to see how the rookies deal with stress. With the pressure to perform some rookies lose sight of what’s important. In the episode I saw, titled Road Trip, one rookie said he would trade a thirty-point game for getting on the highlight reel! Others rise to the occasion to become key role players in their teams. Through it all the cameras follow.

Great narration, by a guy that sounds like Ice-T, and omnipresent cameras by the NBA Entertainment crew make this show feel more like reality TV than a documentary. It’s a good show that nobody is watching. If you are interested, check it out on Spike TV.

The second season of Battlestar Galactica is scheduled to start on July 15th. Also exciting is the fact that Sci-Fi will air all of the fisrt season in a marathon scheduled for July 6th. So if you missed some or all of the first season, here’s your chance to catch up on what you’ve been missing. This is by far the best science fiction show on television right now.