Wouldn’t it be cool if

Wouldn't it be cool if Amazon let you remove a book from its Book Recommendations? I really like the selections they recommend for me, problem is, they know my reading habits so well, they suggest things I've already read. So why can't I click someplace and say, "hey please don't show this to me, I've read it already"? That would improve my user experience and increase the likelihood I'd buy a book, which is what they're after in the first place.

[warning: the following entry contains

[warning: the following entry contains bad words, words that you ( momdadgrandmaaunt marciapb ) probably don't want to hear me say]

I think I'm a little naive, at least when it comes to vocabulary, or bad vocabulary. Sure I know words like solipsistic and perspicacious, but it wasn't until twelfth grade that I learned the word twat. One of my closest high school friends had a terrible fight with her mother, a screaming argument in the kitchen as they sat drinking orange juice in the breakfast nook, a fight during which my friend's mother called her a twat. Huh? I said when she told me the details of the fight on the walk to school, What's that mean? Somewhat surprised at my ignorance, she explained.

Jump ahead ten years, I'm out to dinner the other night, a friend uses the expression Pussy Whipped. I don't say anything, I understand what she means from the context but this is new to me, pussy whipped? Oh dear…I ask around. Turns out lots of other people know this word, *lots* of people. Except me. I never knew that before the "whipped" I'd so casually used in reference to many a boy, there lay an unsaid, "pussy." I don't think I like that expression so much anymore.

The office is in chaos,

The office is in chaos, desks and papers and computers moving around, and today it's my turn: moving across the hall to a new desk with no drawers. Meaning today I have to empty my current desk, filled with papers from the past year, including data models for a web app I built for a client, which paid the bills for the company long ago, BB: Before Blogger. My new desk is a table top with legs. No drawers. Paperless world, here I come, with a big smile on my face!

I’ve always loved foreign languages

I've always loved foreign languages and learning new ones. I can speak Spanish fluently, and can get by in French and Italian as well, though my accents (especially in French) are terrible. It's always seemed so simple to me: there are rules and there are words. And learning a new language is as simple as memorizing the rules (which are similar across most languages) and learning the new words. Follow the rules, string the words together accordingly and bammo! you're speaking German. Or French, or even Java. I've been learning Java the past few weeks and I'm noticing the same patterns as learning any other language (human or machine). The rules are a little different: instead of subjunctive, you've got IFs, but it's just a series of words assembled based on a set of rules. When you construct your statement accordingly, you get the desired results. Break the rules and you get the wrong answer or say the wrong thing. And I've always felt that language and math were similar, except with math you replace words with numbers. Follow the rules, string the numbers together accordingly, and bammo! you're doing math. It's always surprised me that a person is categorized as a "math person" or a "language person." It seems to me there are people whose brains work well with the structure of items and rules, and there are those whose don't.

Have you ever heard of

Have you ever heard of the Mercury 13? I've been fascinated by space travel and astronauts since I was little. I've been to Florida to watch two Shuttle lift-offs. I regularly check NASA's site for news and updates. The Right Stuff is one of my favorite movies of all time and I watched every episode of From the Earth to the Moon, and all this time, I had no idea that NASA ever conducted astronaut tests on women in the early 60's. Nor did I know that the women kicked ass on many of the tests, acheiving in some cases better results than the men. But the tests were cancelled and the women were sent home and Congress ruled future astronauts would be selected from the pool of all-male military test pilots. [Insert rant about sexism here which I can't bear to write right now, I'm too upset by the quote on page 3 from Rep. Anfuso stating the women would be necessary in space exploration since we couldn't colonize other planets without them! Argh!]

I’m constantly frustrated by how

I'm constantly frustrated by how I have to interact with information on a daily basis, be it email, web sites, random thoughts occurring in my brain, etc. I just can't figure out a system that allows me to effectively work with the information that's critical while constantly allowing me to change my definition of what's critical.

Here's one dilemma: I have my Inbox sorted by date received, which makes sense. But sometimes something arrives and gets buried so it's out of view, but I need to do something about it. Outlook (yes, I use Outlook, but I don't go all willy-nilly opening attachments) allows me to flag something, but this is rather useless. If it's out of view, I don't remember to work on it until the reminder pops up saying I should be done dealing with it. All I'd like to do is move it to the top of the stack. I'd like to say to Outlook, Show me everything as it arrives, newest to oldest, but let me override at any point by dragging something to where I want it to go. The current Inbox is too structured for my tastes, I need more flexibility *within* my Inbox. Using separate folders isn't effective for me, I'm an out-of-sight, out-of-mind kind of girl.

I don't know how I'd survive without email, and no one would argue the importance of email in the workplace, but sometimes I wonder how I'm going to survive email. I get more and more everyday and it's getting hard and harder to deal with. The easy ones are the ones I read and delete. Any email that requires action, oy, then the questions flood my brain: Do I make it a task in Outlook? Do I flag it and hope it doesn't disappear from sight? If I flag, will I remember why I did by glancing, or will I have to open it? Do I copy and paste it someplace else? If so, where? [side note: a long time ago, these were questions we set out to answer, but we've gotten sidetracked along the way.]

As more people come online, as more people embrace email, a sophisticated and powerful, but easy-to-use system will become critical in helping people deal with the volumes of mail they receive. Unfortunately, I don't know many VCs who are keen to invest in people developing next generation email clients, do you?

So people have been saying

So people have been saying that megnut's changed, that it's not about the linking anymore, that it's about the personal storytelling, the 3000 words, the sea change in weblogging, or something. But I'm here to say No! No way, jose! megnut's got links, baby, links like you ain't never seen: what happens when some guy leaves a plate of meat in his neighbor's yard for 18 days and photographs it? Grossness the likes of which…I'll say no more. [via syl]

Several people have written to

Several people have written to ask where the starfish pictures from last weekend were taken. So if you'll promise me you're not going to overrun one of my favorite spots in the whole Bay Area, and you'll be respectful of all the creatures you find there, and you'll be careful and watch out for waves and go at low tide and not get swept out to sea, I'll tell you where it is: it's called Sculptured Beach.