Dress codes for avatars

I'm sitting in my cube right now, wearing shorts, a T-shirt and tennis shoes. On the other side of the sensibility coin, analyst firm Gartner is predicting that avatars will have business dress codes by 2013. How do people come up with this stuff?

Search old, old, old newspapers

The Library of Congress is up to its old tricks again. Chronicling America has a number of scanned newspapers from 1880 to 1922 from various American states. The site, which is sponsored jointly by the National Endowment for the Humanities as part of the National Digital Newspaper Program, allows users to search based on topics and zoom in to read papers from the more than 100 years ago.

Ridiculous inventions

A co-worker recently sent me a link to Life's list of 30 Dumb Inventions. I'd say there are probably more than 30, but this list is pretty good. I will admit, though, that I'm a big fan of the flying platform. I could use one of these as a substitute for city driving!

Baltimore Book Festival school fundraiser

I plan to attend the 2009 edition of the Baltimore Book Festival ... as a customer, though, not as a vendor. But I still feel as if I should be more a part of the action. So, for the rest of September, I decided to give away a few copies of my workplace humor novel, "The Developers," in conjunction with raising money for Southwest Baltimore Charter School.

Publisher List

As a knockoff of my literary agent list, I have decided to supply you with the short list of publishers I have contacted for my latest book venture. After querying agencies for a few months, I started contacting more mid-range publishers with the hopes of avoiding agencies altogether. This is not to say that bypassing an agent is beneficial to everyone; I think it's worthwhile in my case for a few reasons:

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Random News

Buy now.. low price... lifetime guarantee

One big disadvantage working at night is the television quality when I arrive home. Sometimes there could be a "Perfect Strangers" rerun or two, and possibly an old game show, but most channels are overrun by infomercials.

Webster defines an infomercial as "a long television commercial, often made to resemble a talk show, educational demonstration, interview, etc." Kudos to Webster's assessment. The only words missing from the definition are "trash," "ridiculous" and "cheap."

Hello bot, meet bot

Chatting with bots can be fun ... sort of strange, but fun. But what about bots chatting with each other? Can they determine that each other is not human?

Well, that's a tossup, but Discover Magazine tried to determine this particular item. ALICE and Jabberwacky have been chatting with people for quite some time now. And finally, they have been introduced.

Dude, you can recycle now

If your old Dell computers are starting to stack up in the corner of your home, you can actually do something about it now. No, I don't suggest dropping them off skyscrappers. They are computers, not pumpkins!

Dell recently announced that the company is offering a free recycling service for its used computers.. The best part about it is that it's free! You can schedule the pickup right on Dell's website.

Friendster automatically re-inviting your friends

I have joined a fair number of social networking websites, primarily to see how each works differently. I rarely send invites through these websites, although I did a number of years ago when I initially joined Friendster.

Now I realize why that was a bad idea, because Friendster re-invites those individuals on an automated basis. It's clearly spelled out in the privacy policy:

Don't let DoS attacks send you to the circus

Sometimes Web sites don't work. They just don't. There are plenty of reasons, including &quot the sun was in my eyes,&quot why a particular site will not work. It's definitely frustrating when you know other sites are working, except the one you want to go to, The Original World Famous Home Appliance Shooting Page, just won't boot.

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