2015 MacBook Pro

My work recently adopted a flexible work policy in which employees could work from home at certain times. I get to work from home on Wednesdays. When the policy was announced, I knew I’d want to work from a laptop so I wouldn’t be chained to the Mac Mini on my desk at home. I wanted the ability to work from bed, the couch, or wherever I had a consistent internet connection. The problem was, my white plastic MacBook from 2007 was really slow and old. It only had 2 gigs of RAM and the battery wouldn’t last more than 2 hours. That’s when I decided to start looking for a replacement.

When I started looking for a new laptop I was unsure of what to get. The company I work for is a Microsoft shop, so our software and tools were developed for the Microsoft ecosystem. That made me consider buying a Windows laptop for the first time in over 10 years. So, I started looking at the higher end laptops that ran Windows and couldn’t believe how awful they were. On top of that, when I would build them with custom specs, the price wound up not being far off from Apple’s line of notebooks. Read more

Color Footage of Berlin in 1945

I saw this video today on reddit and was blown away. The destruction is amazing and sad. I sent this to a coworker (who we may or may not give trouble for being German) and we discussed it briefly. She was telling me how there were few men around so the women lined up with buckets to remove the rubble. These women were called Trümmerfrau.

Ghostbusters III by Max Landis

Ghostbusters was a huge part of my childhood. Every time a rumor would circulate of a third movie I would get excited only to be let down. Now, a Ghostbusters reboot is in the works.1 Writer Max Landis 2 posted his Ghostbusters III idea on his site.

Seeing as it appears the new Ghostbusters franchise will be moving away from the previous films, and be a complete reboot, I thought it would be fun to release an idea I’d been kicking around for a third movie, turning the first two into a trilogy. Following my own beliefs about trilogies, it is a completion of the cycle and themes started in the first film, updated for modern film standards. As such, it features a heightening of the first film’s threat, as well as multiple action sequences, and deeper emotional through-lines for the characters.

I never pitched this. It is essentially just fan fiction. Please judge it accordingly; I released it to an overwhelming amount of requests, and also just because I like sharing this stuff. I hope you enjoy.

It’s very sparse, but still very long. If you’re wondering where “all the jokes are” or whatever, just trust that if I actually wrote it, I’d do my best to make this movie very, very funny.

You should definitely check it out.

  1. Worst idea ever, and not because it’s a female cast. You don’t remake classic movies like this.
  2. writer of the excellent Chronicle

Lost City Discovered in Honduran Rain Forest

city of the monkey god

It is amazing that after all this time there are still cities being discovered. From National Geographic:

An expedition to Honduras has emerged from the jungle with dramatic news of the discovery of a mysterious culture’s lost city, never before explored. The team was led to the remote, uninhabited region by long-standing rumors that it was the site of a storied “White City,” also referred to in legend as the “City of the Monkey God.”

Archaeologists surveyed and mapped extensive plazas, earthworks, mounds, and an earthen pyramid belonging to a culture that thrived a thousand years ago, and then vanished. The team, which returned from the site last Wednesday, also discovered a remarkable cache of stone sculptures that had lain untouched since the city was abandoned.

So awesome. I wonder what we’ll find out about this culture.

Dinosaurs + Notorious B.I.G. = Awesome

You have to be of a certain age (late twenties and early thirties) to remember the awesomeness that was the ABC show Dinosaurs. If you’re of the age, you remember how great the TGIF show was (though, I can’t remember a single plot) and how dark it turned in the finale when all the (spoiler) dinosaurs were wiped out. If the finale left you sad, try watching this excellent mash-up of the show and Notorious B.I.G.’s song Hypnotize to cleanse your palate. It seriously is great.

I Heard the $5 Million Wu-Tang Album That Won’t Be Played Again in Public for 88 Years

Jonathan Sturgeon writes about the new Wu-Tang album

The CD is housed within two nickel-silver boxes that were hand-carved by a Moroccan artist and his team of ten workers over three months; there is only one physical copy of the album in existence; all digital versions have been destroyed; and bidding starts at $5 million. And we learned yesterday that Once Upon a Time in Shaolin will remain under copyright until 2103 — that’s 88 years.

and listening party

“The irony of it is that we did it for the fans,” said the album’s producer, Tarik “Cilvaringz” Azzougarh, who is himself a Wu-Tang superfan. He infamously dogged RZA so persistently that he became — loosely, controversially — a member of the Wu-Tang Clan.

I was thinking of Wu-Tang’s fans as I arrived at MoMA PS1 several minutes late. I had been told in advance that no recording devices would be allowed in the museum, including computers or phones. This of course meant a long line, but it gave me an opportunity to see who would be attending this once in a lifetime exhibition. I saw Ebro Darden (the programming director of Hot 97), Jace Clayton (DJ Rupture), a handful of familiar faces from the art world, and a gaggle of confused “fans” who had won tickets from Power 105. Invariably, intensely, hilariously: the radio fans smelled like booze. And one of them inexplicably mispronounced RZA, “R.Z.A.”

I like Wu-Tang, but this stunt isn’t about the fans.

Companies can track what diseases you look up online

Well, this is terrifying. From Vice:

Tim Libert, a researcher at the University of Pennsylvania, has discovered that the vast majority of health sites, from the for-profit WebMD.com to the government-run CDC.gov, are loaded with tracking elements that are sending records of your health inquiries to the likes of web giants like Google, Facebook, and Pinterest, and data brokers like Experian and Acxiom.

From there, it becomes relatively easy for the companies receiving the requests, many of which are collecting other kinds of data (in cookies, say) about your browsing as well, to identify you and your illness. That URL, or URI, which very clearly contains the disease being searched for, is broadcast to Google, Twitter, and Facebook, along with your computer’s IP address and other identifying information.

It seems like every day I see a new article showcasing what little privacy we really have.