Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Zero-G Flight

I was actually thinking about this over the last couple of days, about how awesome it would be to take one of these parabolic flights simulating zero gravity. I guess I just have to save up a few thousand dollars, and I'm good to go. (Christmas is coming soon though, so I just might wait and see if someone gets me this)

Read this article on Boing Boing about one man's experience on one of these flights. It sounds so exciting.

Friday, November 14, 2008

My Favorite Christmas Albums

Yes it is getting to that time of the year, and I am so excited for the Christmas season (my favorite time of the year by far).

In honor of the beginning of a season where music has a huge part in defining the atmosphere everywhere, here is a list of my favorite Christmas albums.

These Christmas albums play a big part in the memories of Christmases from years past, and while I have a lot more Christmas albums in my iTunes playlist, without these albums and songs the season would just not be the same.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

See It Right Now

Seth Godin's recent blog post entitled "Seen it all before" talks about how our modern day technological culture has given almost everybody the power of being able to see it all. While it's obviously impossible to actually see EVERYTHING on the Internet (although we used to joke around with one of my college roommates that he had in fact seen the entire Internet) you can at least become familiar with a lot of it. This means that within 15 minutes of surfing you can watch a clip from the original TMNT, read an article from a small newspaper in Africa, listen to music that is similar to your favorite song, and find out what the weather is like in Andorra. This would be near impossible in a pre-Internet era, and these types of activities are just the beginning.

One thing that I think is worthwhile to add to his post would be that not only do we have this previous experience, but these experiences are literally right at our fingertips almost everywhere we go. For example, when I'm watching a TV show, at a movie, listening to a lecture, or watching a presentation, and I don't understand a reference I can get up to speed within a few seconds. My phone (and most cell phones out there right now) have the capability to do at least basic web surfing and can access simple sites like wikipedia. This means that you almost don't have to worry about whether people will understand certain references, because if they don't and the want to they can do it very easily.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Picture of the Day

I like this picture from an article in Treehugger about 8 Green Music Festivals That Rock.

Do you think people would think twice about throwing garbage in a can if it is labeled landfill?

American Airlines Changes Frequent Flyer Program

Following the lead of United, American Airlines recently announced that they will no longer be giving a minimum of 500 miles on flights shorter than that total.

From the press release (with my emphasis)

Effective January 1, 2009, we are discontinuing the minimum mileage guarantee for non-elite status members for flights on American Airlines, American Eagle®, AmericanConnection®, oneworld® member airlines, AAdvantage® participating airlines as well as rail service and codeshare service booked under an AA flight number.

With this change, customers will earn AAdvantage miles equal to the actual distance flown or the applicable percentage of the miles flown, and any associated bonuses will be calculated accordingly. Similarly, elite status qualifying miles and points earned for travel on eligible flights will also be based on the actual miles earned. AAdvantage Executive Platinum®, AAdvantage Platinum® and AAdvantage Gold® members are exempt from this change.

While I've already shared my opinions on these kinds of decisions by the airline industry, I just want to reiterate my stance on the subject.

It's a bad idea. Especially in this kind of economy you want to try and keep your customers, and make as many customers (new and old) as loyal as possible. When you do things like this the only thing it can do is alienate customers, and that is the bad idea.

Sunday, November 09, 2008

Weekend in Sacramento

If you follow my Twitter updates you undoubtedly know that I spent this weekend in Sacramento. With the holiday season knocking at the door, I know that my life is going to be hectic and busy for the next two months, so I thought this would be a perfect opportunity to get out of Fresno for a bit. I decided to take my Smart Car on a little road trip and headed up to the state capitol.

My good friend Dora from college was nice enough to let me borrow her couch to rest my head for the weekend, and I made good use of the time in Sacramento.

I also had the opportunity to visit another friend from College, Shelley, who also lives up in the Sacramento area.

The list of activities for the weekend included
All in all it was quite a busy weekend, but it was relaxing and very fun at the same time.

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

High Speed Rail

While you may have heard the big results of the US election yesterday, you may not have heard about the proposition I was cheering for the most. As of 6:45am this morning, it looks to be official with around 95% of precincts reporting that the State of California has approved Proposition 1A to build a High Speed Rail throughout the state.

Check out this map from the LA Times website
prop 1a results

Not all the counties that will potentially have stops voted in favor, but it is very close. In fact, I'm happily surprised that some counties that won't be very close to any stations have approved of the measure. Check out the California High Speed Rail Blog for more results coverage.

Saturday, November 01, 2008

No Shave November

As I mentioned before, I will be participating in No Shave November again this year. That means that I shaved yesterday (October 31st) and starting today I will no longer be shaving for an entire month.

Don't forget to subscribe to my No Shave November blog as I share pictures of my beard progress as well as fun beard/facial hair/growing hair web pages, etc.

A Political Jesus

I came across this video the other day and found it to be VERY provocative and challenging. It is basically a satirical political attack ad aimed at Jesus. I encourage you to watch, but make sure you have a sense of humor and an open mind (you may take offense to it if you don't understand/appreciate satire).


I love satire, and I think this video does a decent job of bringing to light some of the things Jesus actually does stand for, but obviously does it in a satirical matter. There are only a couple of parts which I disagree with (a big one being the fade away to Osama bin Laden).

What do you think of it?

(Via estewartartist)