Megnut

Archive for August 2002

Saute Wednesday Redesign

Saute Wednesday's got a nice redesign up and has added some more functionality with its "Random Link" boxes at the top of the page. Now if only the site were updated frequently, I'd be one happy reader!

Back on schedule?

One of the things I enjoy about maintaining megnut is the ability it provides for me to go back in time and view what I was thinking about or doing at this time last year, or the year before. Poking around in July of 2000, I stumbled across this post in which I was bemoaning the lack of progress in my life. It's funny to see that since that time, I've actually checked some things off that list. Book? Written! Savings for house? In the black! (Though woefully short of a San Francisco down payment.) 29? Long gone! Marriage? Kids? PhD? Well, some things take time. And with some people, they take lots of time.

Minority Report, Round 2

I saw Minority Report again yesterday and found that it really doesn't hold up upon a second viewing. The first time, I enjoyed it (except for those dumb wooden balls.) But this time around, I found the technological short-comings too much to bear. All I could think of was Jane's hysterically-funny essay and I kept wondering why someone would go through the trouble to make such a "good" movie and leave it filled with so many holes.

Wouldn't it have been far more creepy, and interesting, and probable, if Anderton's security *had* been cancelled? Then he wouldn't have gotten any old eyeballs for his transplant, he'd have to get the eyes of someone with security clearance, someone he worked with. Now that would have been interesting! (Who to choose? How to go about doing it?)

Seabiscuit the Movie

Looks like Tobey Maguire is going to produce and star in a movie adaptation of Seabiscuit. He'll have to lose all the Spidey body he built up and more to portray Red Pollard, The Biscuit's jockey. I hope they use some real footage in the movie, especially for the exciting race scenes. That would be cool.

Blogroots Redesign

We've redesigned Blogroots a bit to reflect the book's cover and we've added some more features, including Blogpopuli, a blog filled with TrackBack posts -- meaning that whenever someone who uses Movable Type to publish their weblog writes a post they think would make sense for Blogroots, they can notify our site and we'll include a snippet of their post on our Blogpopuli page, with a link back to their site. For more details, see the tutorial on how it works and how to participate.

Also chapter 3, Navigating the Blog Universe is now online for your reading pleasure.

Goldmember

I saw Goldmember over the weekend, and while it had its moments, it wasn't as good as either of the first two. Perhaps I'm too prudish, but in this one Mike Myers took the poop and fart jokes too far for my taste. Still I think Myers is a genius and he manages to portray four different characters in this film and find some fresh new material for a film that could have simply regurgitated jokes from the first two installments. Recommended as a matinee.

"We Blog" Coming Soon

It's hard to believe but our book, We Blog: Publishing Online with Weblogs will be published in two days! Which means if you order now, you can have it as soon as it's released. As someone who's wanted to write a book her whole life, you'd think I'd be more excited than I am. Perhaps it's because I co-wrote it? No, I don't think that's it. I couldn't imagine writing a book with two better people than pb and Matt. Perhaps because it's a techie-type book I don'ty have an emotional attachment to it? Nah, I don't think it's that either. I think it's because it hasn't sunk in yet -- it doesn't seem real. Maybe when it arrives and I actually feel it and touch it and see my name on the cover. Maybe then it will sink in and I'll feel excited, or proud, or horrified, or whatever it is that authors feel when they see their words on the printed page for the first time (or second time, since I did have a book review published in a magazine in April, but you know what I mean). Or maybe I'll never feel anything great about the book, and I'll just say, "Oh, yeah, I wrote a book," and then move on to my next big thing.

Tuscan Panzanella

The other day, a friend with a bountiful garden gave me a bunch of ripe tomatoes. Last night I finally got my butt in gear to do something with them, and I recalled a recipe that Mena shared with me a couple months ago for Tuscan Panzanella, or bread salad. All I can say is: if you like tomatoes and basil and olives and bread, make this right now while tomatoes are in season. It was so delicious, I'm about to make it again for lunch!

Tuscan Panzanella, or Bread Salad

Ingredients

4 (1-ounce) slices Italian bread
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup torn fresh basil leaves
1/2 cup thinly sliced red onion
1/2 cup pitted kalamata olives, halved
2 pounds ripe tomatoes, cored and cut into 1-inch pieces
1 (16-ounce) can cannellini beans or other white beans, rinsed and drained
3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 tablespoon water
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon salt

"We Blog" is published

Though Amazon is still saying you need to pre-order, in theory, We Blog: Publishing Online with Weblogs is published and available for purchase. If you spot it in any stores, let me know. I can't imagine that many bookstores will carry it, so I'm curious to hear which, if any, do.

"We Blog" is not published

Correction: according to the Wiley site, "We Blog" isn't being published until August 13, 2002. You'd think I'd know when my own book is being published, but for some reason, this isn't information any of our editors bothers to share with us, the lowly authors. Also if you follow that link, there's a piss-poor description of what the book's about. The book isn't simply a "how-to," there's a lot more in there about why you'd want to create a weblog, and we also devote quite a bit of space to discussing the social implications of blogs. Argh!

Blogging for Dollars

My newest O'Reilly Megnut column is up, Blogging for Dollars - Giving Rise to the Professional Blogger.

Blogging for Dollars discussion

There's a good discussion about my recent Blogging for Dollars column going on over at Blogroots. Please join us if you have any thoughts about this. One of the main reasons I wrote the column was to spark a discussion about money and blogging.

Jurying for Dollars

Juror Wants $100 an Hour to Serve, "When computer consultant David Williamson was summoned for federal jury duty and told that he should keep August free of commitments, he replied he was ready to serve – at his normal rate of $100 an hour."

Having recently been summoned for jury duty, I can totally relate to this man's approach. I was kept hanging for a week, never knowing until the night before whether I'd need to go into the court house for the selection process. It's hard to schedule meetings and in general run one's business -- whether you're the partner of a small firm, such as this man, or self-employed, as I am -- when you don't know what your schedule will be the following day. Seems to me like they need to change the way jury duty is structured to better reflect the way people work in the 21st century.

Freak Pea Accident

Man dies in freak pea accident. There's really nothing more to say about this one.

Gizmodo launches

Gizmodo has just launched. According to creator Nick Denton, "it's a vertical blog devoted to superskinny laptops, spy cameras, wireless wizardry, and all manner of other toys for overgrown boys. All gadgets, all the time." (I suspect it will appeal to overgrown girls as well...)

What makes Gizmodo really interesting in my mind is that it's a commercial venture: the blogger updating the site, Pete Rojas, is being paid to do so. The business model? According to Nick, "All I know is that weblogs are a compelling form, gadget addicts are all online, and it's easy to plug into Amazon's electronics store." Sounds like a great start to me. Who would have thought people would respond to my Megnut column so quickly? ;)

pb's Alaska Pics

pb returned from Alaska with some wonderful photos. Reminds me that a) I'd love to go back to Alaska and explore further -- it's so amazing and b) I never posted the photos from my trip. Alas, I'm so lazy.

Design snafu

Update: I'm an idiot. I guess when I added the XML link, I forgot to close the <span>. Apparently I know CSS but not HTML. So the footer of this site has decided to move off to the far right when viewed in IE/Windows, for some reason unbeknownst to me. I haven't changed a thing, and it looks fine on my Mac. I've looked at all my files and can't see anything that would cause this (like a giant invisible .gif hidden between lines of text?) and I'm at a loss as to how to fix it. Any CSS gurus have any ideas? I thought I knew CSS but now I'm beginning to wonder.

Fall is coming

I got up a bit earlier today than usual and noticed the sun wasn't yet shining into the living room -- it was still hanging low, behind the houses across the street. Quite suddenly, I experienced that pang of "summer's over," as I realized how the days have already grown shorter and images of dark cold winter flooded my mind. Of course, winter in California is neither that dark nor that cold. Growing up in New England must (weather) scar one for life.

AWA - Another Weblog Article

Living in the Blog-osphere is another article about weblogging, this one from Newsweek. I've been hesitant to link to it because it annoyed me (again) for getting simple facts wrong (again) and I didn't want to bore you with my complaints (again) about it. But then I decided I'd post it because there are folks who read this site who might enjoy the article (Hi Gram and Gramp H and Gram and Gramp Pete!) and not see it elsewhere.

For what it's worth, I think the article does provide a nice introduction to blogging and I'm still thrilled with the continued press coverage and the further "mainstreamization" of blogging. Also, there were two founders at Pyra, not three. And I'm bummed they didn't mention our new book, We Blog: Publishing Online with Weblogs. (Which contrary to what Amazon is saying, is published. I guess they haven't gotten it yet. Grrr!)

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