February 2004 Archives

February 29

Sting's Instrument

What the hell was that *thing* Sting was playing at the Oscars? It had an almond-shaped body, but the two strings were spread wide, with what looked like a harmonica in between 'em, and almost no neck. Plus, he was turning a little hand-crank on it with his right hand. It had two small f-holes in it, too. I'm completely stumped.
posted by notsnot at 10:57 PM PST - 15 comments

Learning to surf; book and video suggestions?

anyone have any suggestions for books or vids/dvds on learning to surf? (more inside) [more inside]
posted by specialk420 at 10:41 PM PST - 3 comments

Are over the counter tooth whiteners effective?

Tooth-whiteners: the ones you see at the supermarket or pharmacy. Are they effective? If so, how long do they take (I'm a pack-a-day ex-smoker)? And which ones would you recommend? Colgate's 'Simply White'? Pearly White? Or something else?
posted by timyang at 6:06 PM PST - 9 comments

Help me translate guitar tabs into piano sheet music

As I begin to learn the piano again, there are some songs I'd love to try to play but for which I cannot find sheet music (I definitely want to learn to play by ear at some point, but I don't think that point would best be now). I can however obtain guitar tabs for the songs, and so I'm hoping to try to translate those into rough sheet music for the piano. Can I just translate it note by note (and chord by chord), or are there some specifics about guitar tabs I should be aware about and take into account (it seems that way, a quick direct translation didn't seem to turn out quite right)? [more inside]
posted by thebabelfish at 4:23 PM PST - 15 comments

ipod music management question - all on ipod or some on computer?

Currently I have a 15 GB third generation ipod. Unfortunately it has come very close to filling up. In addition I started a new job which has a 60 minute commute each way. I decided to reward myself by purchasing a new cd each week (either in the store or through iTunes). So the question is: would I be better to purchase a second iPod for all this new music I am going to be purchasing or would it be better for me to just keep the mp3 files on the computer and only transfer the ones I really need to the ipod?
posted by thebwit at 2:01 PM PST - 6 comments

How can I make my Mac stop automatically connecting to my neighbors' networks?

Stupid Mac question - I have an AirPort card, but no base station. I was just visiting my cousin for the weekend, and they have one, and they did something to my computer to get it to connect to their wireless network (they have all sorts of security on it) and now I cannot have my AirPort card turned on without it automatically connecting to my neighbors' networks. I use an ethernet cable here at home, and I have my configuration set to look for the ethernet connection before a wireless one. I am at a total loss as to what to do to tell it to not automatically connect, short of leaving the card turned off unless I'm using it (and Apple's website is no help, because they assume that you do want to use it). Any ideas?
posted by eilatan at 1:57 PM PST - 12 comments

who designed the standby icon?

Does anyone know the name of the person that designed the "standby" icon we see everywhere? (Look at the power button of your computer). [more inside]
posted by theNonsuch at 1:40 PM PST - 7 comments

Learning French

What's the best way to learn French without taking a class?
posted by adrober at 11:06 AM PST - 16 comments

Direct experience with adult ADHD diagnostic tests

Does anyone have experience with tests required for a diagnosis of ADHD in adults? [MI] [more inside]
posted by nprigoda at 11:03 AM PST - 10 comments

Question about "The Passion" movie

I just watched "The Passion" . I have a question about something in the film which I didn't understand. Not really a spoiler (if thats possible here) but my question is within. [More] [more inside]
posted by Fupped Duck at 10:02 AM PST - 17 comments

Stripping audio from .avi videos

I am trying to strip audio from digital video clips I've captured, and having no success. The captured clips are in .avi format, and my sound editing software is CoolEdit 2000. [more inside] [more inside]
posted by beth at 9:29 AM PST - 3 comments

Methodology behind traditonal japanese house proportions

I am working on a house project and feel it would benefit from the quietness and openness I've seen in traditional japanese houses. I understand that their proportions were based on the size of tatamis, both in plan and in section. Does anybody know where I can see a graphic explanation / example of this? A good online collection of traditional japanese interiors and gardens would be much welcome as well. [more inside]
posted by signal at 7:11 AM PST - 7 comments

Over-Chilled AC

Is a frozen air conditioner thingy outside the house a problem? How do I fix it?
posted by ajpresto at 6:23 AM PST - 8 comments

What is this pain under my left eye?

Is there a doctor in the house? I've been having some acute pain just under my left eye for a few days now. It feels like the sensation is enlarging and going 'deeper,' into the bone. I've had similar sensations on my lower back and right leg, though not as long lasting but at times equal in severity... Of course, I'm not looking for a diagnosis, but some shot in the dark maybes. And for the sake of my sanity, humor is enabled.
posted by moonbird at 12:22 AM PST - 12 comments

February 28

How do I fix a faulty GameCube, and is it worth it?

My nephew's beloved Nintendo GameCube has started malfunctioning. It will play normally for "some period of time" and then stop, unable to read the disc. This happens regardless of the game. How do I get it fixed? Do I get it fixed - or is this a case of just replacing-is-cheaper-than-reparing? Does it go back to Nintendo, or do I have to try and remember where the damned thing came from?
posted by JollyWanker at 7:57 PM PST - 11 comments

What are zbbpreq lines in access logs caused by?

I recently opened up port 80 on my home machine, and have been seeing a lot of "zbbpreq" lines in my access logs. What are these? [m.i] [more inside]
posted by seanyboy at 3:23 PM PST - 5 comments

Help with online photo galleries and cell phones.

Question about online photo galleries and cell phones: my brother wants to go from computerphobe to blogger in one day. [I, M] [more inside]
posted by Hildago at 2:04 PM PST - 10 comments

Why does this computer start burning CDs late into the first song and get the numbering wrong?

My girlfriend's computer is from the late Jurassic period-- Gateway with an AMD 500-something mhz processor and 64 megs of RAM running 98 SE. It used to burn cd's from her mp3 collection generally flawlessly, but lately any cd made starts late in the first song and the track numbering is off (e.g. the player dosen't change from "2" to "3" until the middle of track 3.)

We switched from Roxio to Nero, tried converting to .wav with Winamp beforehand, but it's still off.

Any idea what the problem might be?
posted by Mayor Curley at 12:37 PM PST - 3 comments

Help finding inexpensive, professional quality video cameras.

Video Camera help. I'm trying to help pick out some low end professional quality video cameras for a local low budget cable station and was looking for some recommendations. [more inside] [more inside]
posted by drezdn at 11:30 AM PST - 4 comments

Best free utility to use (XP) to create and burn a Mix CD?

Suggestions for the best free utility to use (Windows, sorry) to create and burn a compellation CD? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by anastasiav at 11:21 AM PST - 10 comments

What kind of bike should I get for city riding?

I'm in the market for a new (or used) bicycle because it would be insanely practical for both fitness and transportation, but I havent really had one since i was 11, so I don't know what I'm looking for. I'm looking to mostly ride it on city streets and sidewalks (in Seattle: lots of hills) , but i don't know what other bells and whistles i should be looking for or avoiding. Can anyone point me in the right direction?
posted by Slimemonster at 10:26 AM PST - 20 comments

What's the best Wiki software for a novice?

What is the best Wiki software for an absolute novice? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by moonbird at 10:06 AM PST - 7 comments

Moving a Blog

So I've finally switched isps, and have moved my blog to the new address...Is there any easy way to let everyone who has me on their bookmark list know? I don't know who or how many have me linked, for the most part. (Google shows my message about moving as the first link for "amberglow" so maybe i should just let everyone find me? The old blog url is dead already.) I'd been using sitemeter and can email each referrer individually but that's a pain, and won't catch everyone. Any suggestions?
posted by amberglow at 9:27 AM PST - 11 comments

How can I get computers on a wireless and a wired network to see each other?

I can share files between two Windows machines when both are wired to a router. When I go wireless with one, they don't see each other. Wireless internet connection works fine. [More inside.] [more inside]
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 1:19 AM PST - 5 comments

February 27

What program out there will read a vanilla TOC file and burn it like it is?

I want to record a Disk at Once CD, using a .toc file on my computer. I have all the files I need that are mentioned in the Table of Contents file, and it is very simple. The TOC is in this post. I have Nero 6 platinum but the burned CD has an issue. You'll see why. [more inside]
posted by Keyser Soze at 11:49 PM PST - 5 comments

What's Benign About Benign Tumors?

What's so benign about benign tumors? What are they, anyway? All definitions I can find simply offer "the opposite of cancerous tumors." In my book, the opposite of a cancerous tumor is no tumor at all. What makes benign tumors form? Can't they pose some threat, based on where they appear? How similar are they to cancerous tumors, given the differences in the way they grow and spread? Science folk, don't spare the horsepower. I may very possibly be able to keep up with you.
posted by scarabic at 6:56 PM PST - 7 comments

How can I reference a file permanently once it's uploaded and moved from tmp to a permanent location?

Headaches of permanently pointing to an uploaded file via PHP (more inside, thank you very much). [more inside]
posted by poopy at 6:38 PM PST - 6 comments

exact quote re copyright from a SCOTUS judge

I'm looking for a quote by (I believe) a SCOTUS judge, who said that the purpose of copyright law is to protect the public domain first, and allow exploitation of creative works second.

I lost some of my notes on copyright, and extensive googling has turned up very little. I think Lessig might've referenced it in an interview/post somewhere on the net, but I'm having a hard time locating it. I turn to you, oh great Mefites.
posted by Jairus at 5:53 PM PST - 8 comments

An easy to install Linux distribution?

Liinux, yes, but which Linux? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by signal at 5:33 PM PST - 14 comments

Retirement Calculators

Retirement calculator needed. [more inside] [more inside]
posted by machaus at 3:48 PM PST - 8 comments

iPods in Rental Cars

Going to Scotland and don't want to blow up my new iPod, so I'm looking for some firsthand knowledge here -- do UK cars have the same kind of AC cigarette lighters? Will I be able to power the 'Pod with my Belkin car adapter in my rental car? Or do I have to spring for the "world traveler" adapter kit to power the blasted thing while I'm across the pond?
posted by blueshammer at 3:23 PM PST - 8 comments

How would you write/publish an e-book?

How would you write/publish an e-book? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by rorycberger at 2:11 PM PST - 6 comments

Server Log Mystery

I check my server logs pretty frequently, and am always pleased by the variety of visitors my site gets. I particularly love trying to suss out who's reading the site at any given moment by deconstructing their IP address and/or machine identity. (Ex-coworkers, ex-bosses and ex-girlfriends always especially amuse me.)

One thing I don't love: a machine called "tide70.microsoft.com" is literally "viewing" my site close to 100% of the time - like, whenever I check, it's on. Sometimes it's joined by up to thirty other "tide*" machines, but tide70 is always there. I have my ideas and suspicions, but can anyone confirm for me what the tide series is up to?
posted by adamgreenfield at 1:50 PM PST - 14 comments

London based organisation who accept old computers

I've got an old computer I don't need, and I'd like to donate it to one of those third world programs, rather than chuck it out. Can anyone point me to an organisation (preferably in London) who look after this?
posted by ascullion at 11:02 AM PST - 5 comments

gentoo or Suse?

gentoo or Suse?
posted by the fire you left me at 10:47 AM PST - 19 comments

Burning DVDs

A computer illiterate question about DvD burn: got a new top-o-line computer with a dvd burner and a dvd-rom. I have blank dvds. I go to Blockbuster and rent _____. Is it possible to simply copy the Blockbuster DVD and then have my own useable copy? It seems to me that there would be a problem with the menus or something. Is there software which I need to copy DvDs so that they play in my TV-DvD player? Is there a copyright protection issue?
posted by Seth at 9:54 AM PST - 17 comments

How to Go About Finding Books I'd Enjoy? (Unhappy With Salesperson's Recommendations)

How did you find your favourite book? I occasionally get the urge to buy a book when walking by a bookstore, however, having only a vague idea of what I want to read, I usually go home with a recommendation from the salesperson that is so off-base that I ditch the book after reading the first few chapters. [more inside]
posted by KathyK at 9:51 AM PST - 23 comments

How can I create graphical text with ColdFusion?

How do people get screencaps of copy-protected DVDs? [more inside]
posted by RavinDave at 3:55 AM PST - 9 comments

Hi jack! How ya doin?

How do I get rid of a really stubborn Browser Hijack? I tried "HijackThis" and got rid of a lot of it, but still have problems! (More inside...) [more inside]
posted by zaelic at 2:51 AM PST - 10 comments

Good mp3 download company specializing in out of print records? Or other cheap mp3 sources?

I remember hearing about a stellar mp3 subscription download company that specialized in out-of-print records, maybe about a year ago. I checked them out at the time and was amazed at their catalogue, but not having my own computer, didn't sign on. Now I can't remember their name. Sound familiar to anyone? Can you reccommend any other good cheap mp3 sources (other than iTunes...)?
posted by kaibutsu at 12:55 AM PST - 4 comments

On Accident

My teacher noticed that I say "on accident" when I mean "accidentally". Apparently everyone else in class says, "by accident". Is "on accident" a regionalism? An error? Should I be deeply paranoid about it? [More inside] [more inside]
posted by vorfeed at 12:41 AM PST - 40 comments

February 26

As a new webmaster, what should I do to protect my sites from hacking?

I'm new to the running a website thing. Reading the log files I noticed that people are already trying to hack me. Right now its the basic look for frontpage access (which, obviously, I don't have as I write everything in textpad) but I want to know what steps should I take to secure the server? How can I protect ftp directories, monitor bandwidth theft in the form of linking to images, etc.? can I prevent that all together? [more inside]
posted by Grod at 8:16 PM PST - 14 comments

Port 4644?

My router tells me that many IPs are trying to connect to my PC on port 4644. Why? [more inside]
posted by johnnydark at 7:59 PM PST - 7 comments

Sheet Music

I play guitar. I learned by ear and by copying my rock and pop faves. My gf plays cello, and receives instruction via written sheet music. We'd like to have things to play together, and cello/guitar is a natural fit. But our methods differ so greatly. Let's say I can hum a tune, or perhaps even plunk it out on a keyboard. Is there software that can output sheet music for me, given this rudimentary input? Say, the bass line from Ramble On. I can play it on the kazoo. Now how do I generate sheet music for it? Did I mention I haven't read sheet music since the fourth grade?
posted by scarabic at 7:13 PM PST - 18 comments

Piri Piri chicken

How Portuguese is Piri Piri chicken? I suspect it's almost universal. [More inside.] [more inside]
posted by MiguelCardoso at 6:18 PM PST - 3 comments

DVD Easter Eggs

How do people find DVD easter eggs? [more inside]
posted by soundofsuburbia at 5:07 PM PST - 7 comments

What do you do when you work for a small-ish company relying on patchwork solutions and outdated technology?

"My thang won't print!" What do you do when you work for a small-ish to smallish-mediumish company (say 125 users) and they rely on technology in every aspect of their business but are unwilling to spend/grow? [much more inside; apologies for this post's length] [more inside]
posted by littlegreenlights at 5:00 PM PST - 15 comments

Bypassing a student residence firewall?

I am in a student residence that has recently shut down the ports that allow filesharing, and as such, the only file sharing program I can use is SoulSeek (I was just getting into "Sharing the Groove" too!!). Assuming I am using file sharing for (mostly) legal uses, is there anyway to bypass a firewall like this?
posted by Quartermass at 4:42 PM PST - 14 comments

Anyone using .Mac?

Anyone using .Mac? I'm considering it 'cause I want to use iSync for my contacts and calendar, but $100/year seems spendy.
posted by kirkaracha at 4:07 PM PST - 16 comments

Valuing a Web Site

Someone has expressed interest in buying my web site. How do I assess its value? How do I know what to ask for it? The company in question is rather large, so it could be a considerable amount of money. How do I know if I am getting a good deal? I have 4+ years into it, and a full back-end administrative system. I get moderate traffic and little ad revenue. Has anyone ever sold an entire site?
posted by quibx at 1:30 PM PST - 7 comments

How do I pronounce Saint Coemgen?

Can someone tell me how the name of Saint Coemgen (patron saint of blackbirds, and Dublin) is supposed to be pronounced? Somehow it's anglicized as Kevin. Even after consulting several Gaelic pronunciation sites, I still don't get it.
posted by vraxoin at 1:09 PM PST - 6 comments

Address Book Software

I'm looking for shared, distributed address book software for a small company that hopefully works read/write on the web. Suggestions? (more inside) [more inside]
posted by mathowie at 12:44 PM PST - 13 comments

What live audio streaming software do you recommend?

Seeking recommendations: What software I can use to broadcast live, on-location streaming audio to the Web without a lot of painful configuration and thumb-twisting?

I'm a solo guitarist, and a lot of the places I've been playing at are starting to offer free wireless Internet access. So now I have this crazy idea that I could use my iBook to broadcast my performances live on the Web. The problem is that most of the software I've looked into requires things like open firewall ports, static IPs, etc. and there's no way the people who manage the local CoffeeHaus are gonna agree to do that. So, are there other options?

Bonus points if it works on OS X, but I'll take Windows options too. It doesn't have to be a free solution either, although that'd be swell. Ideally, I'd like listeners to be able to use Winamp or something similar to listen.
posted by scottandrew at 11:56 AM PST - 8 comments

Menstrual Cramps

I have the worst cramps of anyone. When it is that time of the month for me, I can barely function because the pain is so bad. I have tried several different things, and my doctor has tried me on several different prescription medicines, but nothing seems to help. Does anyone have experience with this? What helps you? More info inside.
posted by alicila at 11:51 AM PST - 27 comments

Project management software NOT MS Project?

I'm looking for Project Management software for a software development shop. Please, no MS Project - it's just too big to get our hands around. Any reccomendations to help schedule a team of about 5 developers and 2 QA folks? I see lots of people participating in the scheduling (not just one "overseer") so flexibility is a must. We're looking for granularity by feature->components->tasks. We want to do a good job with time estimates and contingencies. Thanks
posted by dhacker at 10:28 AM PST - 6 comments

Web-Based Chat

Web-Based Chat

I have a friend who used to chat with me from IRC at work. The employer removed that program, saying that for security and virus reasons, the only browser, or anything internet would be MIE.

Since this makes Chatzilla a moot issue, are there any sites reachable from an ordinary browser that have some sort of reasonable-working chat that resembles IRC?
posted by Danf at 10:19 AM PST - 13 comments

Webmail troubles

Webmail troubles: my ISP was bought out by another ISP and recently my ADSL connection migrated from the one to the other.

For my work, I use a webmail, because they can't or won't make POP mail available for the work account. Since I migrated, it became impossible for me to reply to mails, add new contacts and some other stuff. I can still send entirely new emails, but it's a hassle not to be able to just reply and forget about it.

The webmail works fine from other locations, but not on my partner's laptop, which is sharing my internet connection.

The ISP claims that 'absolutely nothing' changed and it's not their problem. The IT guy at work isn't terribly interested. I think I might convince either of them to act if I know exactly what the problem is. Can somebody crack this for me? Thanks.
posted by NekulturnY at 9:11 AM PST - 12 comments

Donating a Car

Has anyone had any experience donating a car to a non-profit organization? I'm thinking of doing it to get the tax deduction rather than trying to sell it. I found a good site here which tells me how to do it. I'm more interested in stories from the tax side, is it easy?
posted by jeremias at 8:24 AM PST - 9 comments

Why "The Christ" Instead of "Christ" in "The Passion of the Christ"?

In the title The Passion of the Christ, what is the significance of the second 'the'? We don't go around around saying 'the Gibson', although I guess we do say 'the Donald'.
posted by mischief at 8:20 AM PST - 12 comments

Deaf-Blind and Mute Children: How Taught? How Much Communication? Life From Their Eyes?

Deaf-blind question. I ask only out of curiosity, but google turns up academic stuff that's above my head. How are deaf-blind children taught? What level of communication can they attain? Does being mute make a difference? Do we know what life is like inside a mind that has only touch/taste/smell senses of the world?

I'm thinking mainly of those who are born deaf and blind.
posted by bonaldi at 7:38 AM PST - 4 comments

Do I have to pay UK duty on cigarettes and alcohol sent via post?

A question about UK/European tax/duty and shopping abroad... [more inside]
posted by twine42 at 3:15 AM PST - 6 comments

February 25


How do evolutionary changes occur in biology? Is there some sort of "intelligence" that helps a species adapt, or does a species have to wait for a random mutation to occur that just happens to confer an advantage (a mutation that might never even happen)? For instance, how do bacteria become resistant? And are there different theories on evolutionary changes?
posted by Tin Man at 9:40 PM PST - 22 comments

Seeking cross-medium (music/literature/art/film) creativity

Artfilter - seeking cross-medium (music/literature/art/film) creativity. More inside. Of course. [more inside]
posted by amandaudoff at 7:50 PM PST - 15 comments

Outlook Reminder Emails

I would like to have Outlook e-mail me my calendar each day around 6 AM so that my daily appointment schedule shows up in my inbox. Any way to automate this? I only see options to export to HTML, which doesn't seem terribly useful.
posted by PrinceValium at 7:02 PM PST - 8 comments

How can other groups replicate Howard Dean's success in Internet Organizing?

Even though I am not an American, Howard Dean's usage of the Internet has captured my imagination (as I am sure it has for many).

Here is my non-specific question (that I am partially asking for a non-MeFi'er): How could other groups harness this kind of power? Is it possible to have Dean-like success without being a Presidential candidate? Was Dean's usage of the internet a one-time only event? Or is there too much "noise" in cyberspace for a non-political organization to have the same kind of success?
posted by Quartermass at 6:29 PM PST - 9 comments

Why is the color of Pad-Thai different on the east and west coast?

I recently moved from the west coast to the east coast - specifically from the SF Bay area to the Boston metro area. One thing I've noticed is that on the west coast all of my Pad-Thai orders have been a redish orange color. On the east coast, they've all been pretty much white. Why is that? [more inside]
posted by jaded at 6:29 PM PST - 11 comments

Please explain "torque steer"

Torque steer- I'm an engineer, but I've never had torque steer adequately explained to me. Most mechanics will tell you that it's due to unequal length axles, but after the initial loading, the greater twist in the longer axle shouldn't count. Anyone?
posted by notsnot at 5:56 PM PST - 6 comments

Help me find the log for Windows XP Pro's connection sharing

I use the Windows XP Professional Internet Connection Sharing to dish out my DSL access to a couple of people residing in the same location. How do I find just basic log information about this service? It magically dishes out DHCP access to them, but I can't even find how many IP addresses have been assigned, how many connections are active, and so on.
posted by LukeyBoy at 5:56 PM PST - 4 comments

How do you resign from a job that you've never actually worked?

How do you resign from a job that you've never actually worked? I was hired in the fall to teach a continuing ed photography class, but not enough people signed up, so I didn't teach the class. Same thing happened in winter quarter, not enough people to have the class. Now I'm in the position where I can't really do it spring quarter and this will be the time when there are enough people. So, how do I let them know I can't do it?
posted by nramsey at 3:34 PM PST - 2 comments

Should I color my grey hair or leave it as is?

Grey hair. I found my first at age 18. Fast forward fifteen years later, and I'm about 30% grey, which seems to be causing a lot of grief and despair amongst my friends and relations. Fifty percent of those feel fiercely that I should color my hair, the other percentage feeling just as fierce that I leave it alone. Since I have found something that is gentle enough for my tender scalp, I do have the option of making a change, but I just don't know what to do.

So, should I run away and hide? Should I be proud of my whitening locks?

What would you do?

(And, most importantly, to gentlemen ever make passes at silver-haired lasses?)
posted by lilboo at 3:17 PM PST - 40 comments

Successful Artist self-promotion

Question for self-promoting artists. Any advice on how/where to promote oneself online, what pricing is most likely to make sales, how to build an online reputation, etc? IANAA (i am not an artist (at least, not anymore)) but I my significant other is, and I am curious about alternative business models for artists as the gallery scene is a pain to get into.
posted by Grod at 2:57 PM PST - 2 comments

Microwave Popcorn

I bought some microwave popcorn that pops fine at work (a newer microwave with a popcorn button), but at home, with popcorn from the same box, I end up with a shriveled bag. The microwave at home isn't so new as to have a popcorn button, but it's not totally ancient either. I'm guessing there's some trick to it that involves NOT following the instructions provided on the bag, but I have no idea what they might be. Any ideas?
posted by hootch at 2:49 PM PST - 7 comments

Where is Home?

My sister moved about 5 years ago from Los from Angeles (we both have lived there all our lives) to the left coast because her husband was transferred there. She was excited about the move, and has a job she enjoys and made good friends. So I was surprised when she mentioned during a recent phone call that although she wasn’t homesick nor did she want to move back, she would always feel that Los Angeles was “home.” So my question is for those who have relocated, where is home? [more inside]
posted by lola at 1:22 PM PST - 33 comments

Battery Charge

Automotive question:
The battery doesn't charge and we subsequently have to manually recharge it at the garage, hopefully before it conks out on us on the road. Driving at night poses problems, since the lights obviously draw off of the battery - it's a heavy drain, trust me. Here's the question: we know it's not the battery (two brand new batteries, same problem), the alternator is showing good numbers (apparently meaning that it's charging, I'm told), all belts are running properly and are tight, the mechanics found no loose connections; what could be the problem?
posted by ashbury at 1:01 PM PST - 14 comments

Recommendations for titles, DJs and, if appropriate, locations of good mashups would be appreciated.

I know this will probably mark me as hopelessly behind the times, but I picked up The Grey Album yesterday, which reminded me that I finally have the hard drive space and internet connection I need to go find out about these mash-ups all the kids are talking about, or were talking about six months ago. Recommendations for titles, DJs and, if appropriate, locations would be appreciated. [more inside]
posted by blueshammer at 10:27 AM PST - 14 comments

Cigarette burn in my car's carpet. How do I fix it?

Where's my karma? I did a good deed and was a designated driver this weekend. I let people smoke in the car as long as they kept the windows down. I keep my car's interior in pristine shape, absolutely no flaws. That is until I noticed a cheery mark the size of a dime on the floor. It just missed the mat. Is there anyway to get this out? I mean it's burned the carpeting (blue-grey fabric)... or at least make it look less junky? As someone who treats their car like porcelain this is devastating.
posted by geoff. at 10:22 AM PST - 4 comments

Can mail be exported from Apple's email on OSX to a Windows XP box running Microsoft Outlook?

Can mail be exported from Apple's email on OSX to a Windows XP box running Microsoft Outlook?
posted by Macboy at 9:30 AM PST - 7 comments

Time Share Scams

We went to a home show recently, and while there my sweetheart apparently filled out some sweepstakes form. As a result, we got a call today from a nearby resort offering us several apparently-nice 'free gifts' in exchange for visiting their timeshare-resort and "learning more about their property" .... my question is: I assume this is a scam of some kind, but what kind of scam is it? [more inside]
posted by anastasiav at 9:22 AM PST - 16 comments

Charity on the street

Do you give money to homeless people, panhandlers, and/or beggars? Why or why not? Defend your position. [more inside]
posted by gottabefunky at 9:11 AM PST - 57 comments

Is there something I can use to open, edit and save MPEG-1 and MPEG-2 files in OSX?

Digital video: Is there something I can use to open, edit and save MPEG-1 and MPEG-2 files in OSX? Bonus question: What would I need to render said files from After Effects, Final Cut Pro, etc? [more inside]
posted by erebora at 9:04 AM PST - 9 comments

Alan Greenspan

How did Alan Greenspan go from This gold standard lovin Randian, to the chairman of the federal reserve board? [more inside]
posted by Tryptophan-5ht at 8:51 AM PST - 8 comments

Help me format a Mac os 8.1.1 hard drive

I need help in formatting a hard drive that's running Mac OS 8.1. I can't find the boot CD that came with it and I will be donating/trashing the computer so all I am looking to do is wipe the hard drive. All help is appreciated.
posted by CoolHandPuke at 8:20 AM PST - 5 comments

Passion of The Christ spam bombardment

Over the last few weeks my journal has been bombarded with spam posts about the Passion of Christ, as have the journals of many of my friends. Does anyone know if this is just some random nutjob, or if it's a co-ordinated 'promotion' of the film by some group? [No More Inside]
posted by twine42 at 8:10 AM PST - 7 comments

Could neighborhood electrical interference, or other exterior factors, be slowing my dialup connection?

Line Speed. . . .I am on a dialup. There are periods of days when my connection speed can be anywhere from 4 to 20 kps.

My local ISP reports no problems during this time, and they are a freenet who are usually very forthcoming about stuff that is going on.

My phone line passes over a couple other houses on the way to the pole. Is it possible that stuff going on in those houses, electronically, could cause some interference? Are there any other physical or electronic factors that would slow my connection down (usually it stays between 50 and 52 kps) between my computer and the ISP?
posted by Danf at 7:36 AM PST - 8 comments

Figuring out where a domain was registered

Client has forgotten where he registered domain. We need to change name server info. Whois doesn't really help as it just tells us he's the admin contact, etc. Anyone have any ideas how I can find this info?
posted by damnitkage at 6:49 AM PST - 9 comments

How do I make a CD of a website

I want to make a CD of a website. What is the best way to go about this?
posted by batboy at 6:37 AM PST - 9 comments

Help me break up a large mp3 file into individual tracks

I have a couple of full albums ripped as one single mp3 file. Is there any program that will break it up into one file for each song? I'm on XP.
posted by signal at 6:36 AM PST - 7 comments

What are the best campfire guitar tunes?

Guitarists: Sitting around a campfire (or a dorm room) with some beers and an acoustic guitar, what's your favorite song to play? Fans of guitars: What are some of the best songs you've heard done on a solo acoustic? (there's more inside, kids) [more inside]
posted by bondcliff at 5:53 AM PST - 35 comments

How can I get Adobe InDesign to wrap this text the way I want it to?

InDesign text-wrapping problem: In two column text, a rectangular object, that spans 1.5 columns sometimes results in bad text wrapping (more inside, with screenshots). [more inside]
posted by meikel at 2:35 AM PST - 4 comments

Cactus Survival!

Can I keep this cactus from dying? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by emmling at 12:10 AM PST - 4 comments

February 24

Houston TX bachelor party: what to do, where to go, who to hire?

I'm planning a bachelor party in Houston. Anyone have any suggestions? What to do, where to go, who to hire?

We're working on a pretty limited budget. Something along the lines of $30-$40 per guy with 10 guys in attendance.

Suggestions need not be Houston specific but any personal reviews of clubs or activities in Houston would be very welcome.
posted by yangwar at 7:07 PM PST - 1 comment

Time Management for Businesses

What's the best book out there on time management? I've yet to find one that does it all: explain the key concepts of time management, provide a proven framework for gaining control of your time, and identify common mistakes and helpful tips.

Extra points if it deals specifically with any of the following contexts: entrepreneurship, running a proprietorship or small business.
posted by will at 5:35 PM PST - 7 comments

Is Rosetta Stone language software any good?

Has anyone around here used Rosetta Stone software for learning foreign languages? Did it work well for you?
posted by Prospero at 1:01 PM PST - 7 comments

Are International Living reputable?

Does anyone have any information about or experience with these people: http://www.internationalliving.com/? This is related to my previous questions about living overseas (1, 2). Some of the things they publish seem like they might be pretty sound advice, but much of it comes across like a beserk shill ("To purchase your copy of the 'Argentina Report--Your Guide to the Buying Opportunity of the Decade.' for only $69, order now.").
posted by Irontom at 12:59 PM PST - 5 comments

Mac Freeware for CD Ripping

Does anyone know of a free (emphasis on FREE) program for Mac (or something I can run through X-11) that can either 1. rip just part of a CD track to MP3 or 2. create a new file from part of an MP3? I'm annoyed with "hidden" tracks that introduce 15 minutes of silence when my iPod is on random.
posted by The Michael The at 11:52 AM PST - 13 comments

Better to change pounds to USD in London or Los Angeles?

Money changing. (More inside) [more inside]
posted by Optamystic at 10:57 AM PST - 11 comments

On Windows AND on Mac, How Can I Screenshot Entire Window?

Screen shots: I know that alt-printscreen gets you the visible portion of the active window on Windows, and that shift-command-3 gets you the whole screen on a Mac. What I want to know is if (on both platforms) there's a way to take a shot of the entire active window. [more inside] [more inside]
posted by namespan at 10:15 AM PST - 19 comments


AskMe physicists: Assuming there were any, where did the entropy from previous universes go? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by vraxoin at 9:25 AM PST - 14 comments

Fish Breeding

Can fish interbreed like dogs? My SO and I have been talking about dogs lately so the mixed-breed thing has been a regular topic of conversation. Last night we were at a Thai restaurant with a large fish tank and some gigantic fish. Too big for the tank, in my opinion. And that got me to wondering....can different kinds of fish, genetically speaking, be bred with each other? Even if they wouldn't do it on their own (mating rituals, etc.), could they do it with a scientists help?
posted by jaded at 8:32 AM PST - 8 comments

Looking for a good (free) utility to convert ogg to MP3

Anyone know a good (free) utility to convert some ogg files to MP3 so I can play them on the iPod?
posted by brettski at 8:15 AM PST - 4 comments

HTML/CSS Characters

HTML/CSS: Damn it Jim! I'm an architect of buildings, not of the web! I've been working on the web site for our chapter of the AIA in Europe. I've been trying to learn as much as I can about HTML and CSS -- looking, reading, trial and error. Our new site is coming along but I have one vexing problem. On the front pages of two directories, some browsers exhibit three odd characters at the upper left hand corner of the page: . Links are inside... [more inside]
posted by Dick Paris at 7:26 AM PST - 13 comments

Identify this musical instrument

In the video for invisible Sun, from "Reggatta Mondatta", there was something that looked like a fretless, stringless, bodyless (a la Steinberg) bass. It had a very electronic sound, and was played by tapping, apparently. I don't think it was a stick, as it didn't seem to have strings, but I might be wrong. Does such a beast exist?
posted by signal at 7:14 AM PST - 7 comments

Has anyone tried cup at a time coffeemakers?

Has anyone had any experience with these new coffeemakers that only brew one cup at a time? It seems like a good idea but I was wondering if the concept outstripped the reality.
posted by jeremias at 6:55 AM PST - 20 comments

Par Bricole Tape

I wore out my cassette from "Sweden's Oldest Male Choir", Par Bricole years ago. Does anyone know how I might get another one? I can't read Swedish!
posted by black8 at 6:10 AM PST - 3 comments

February 23

Dictionary of Superheroes Circa 1989, Not Published by DC or Marvel?

Sometime around 1989 or so, a friend of mine lent me a kind of Dictionary of Superheroes. I don't remember the title, but I'm pretty sure that it wasn't published by either DC or Marvel. [more inside]
posted by interrobang at 10:35 PM PST - 4 comments

Cingular Cellphone

I'm buying my first cell phone now that my commute is changing from 5 minutes to 60. I want to send instant messages with the option of using an actual phone, I want it to be as cheap as possible, and I'd like to be with Cingular. The hiptop has arched my brow since it came out, but I'm not sure I'd like being on T-Mobile's network. Any thoughts?
posted by jragon at 9:46 PM PST - 17 comments

How to share internet connection with Windows XP and ME?

Problem sharing internet connection on home Windows XP / ME network question. [more inside] [more inside]
posted by jasper411 at 8:08 PM PST - 8 comments

Tattoo my tears

Anybody know exactly what the teardrop tattoos that many gang members and rappers have signify? I heard once that they represent people you killed, or people you knew that died, or bullets you've taken, or something like that. Anyone know for sure which it is? For those that have no idea what i'm talking about, here are two pictures of rapper Baby: 1 2
posted by rorycberger at 8:04 PM PST - 10 comments

Objective information sites about heart disease?

OK, guys, the smartass has been humbled. Last weekend I experienced what should have been a mildly stressful event for the average person. However, I have fairly advanced heart disease, and the anxiety put me in the emergency room with chest pains and arrhythmia despite my normal meds and my emergency tranquilizers.

The time has come for me to seriously consider disability, as totally distasteful as I find that. Does anyone know of some objective information sites, particularly regarding how to document my condition, beyond the basic primers that Google coughs up? ( Yes, I am pursuing this through my doctor, but I want a 'second opinion'. ;-P )
posted by mischief at 4:57 PM PST - 7 comments

I'm looking for a track by the fall named 'zagreb'.

I'm looking for a track by the fall named 'zagreb'. [more inside]
posted by sgt.serenity at 4:36 PM PST - 6 comments

What was the issue that Sean Austin was highlighting when LotR won at The Screen Actor's Guild?

Can anyone explain the issue that Sean Austin was highlighting when LotR won at The Screen Actor's Guild? I only caught the last half hour and missed what Tim Robbins said before.
posted by feelinglistless at 4:07 PM PST - 5 comments

Short-Row Knitting

knittingfilter: I'm trying to do short-row knitting and running into some challenges. (more inside) [more inside]
posted by judith at 3:39 PM PST - 7 comments

I need to move data as painlessly as possible from a thinkpad to an ibook.

I have a new ibook, and an old thinkpad. I need to move data as painlessly as possible to the new machine...[more inside] [more inside]
posted by mecran01 at 2:57 PM PST - 7 comments

GarageBand Woes

GarageBand woes. I have a white iBook G3 600MHz / 256MB RAM / 30GB hard disk. The machine does great with iMovie, Safari, Office, etc, but it's choking on GarageBand with "System Overload" errors. I try to play a 2-track composition with 1 instrument that's not a piano and it just stumbles and croaks. I'm sad, that Apple is leaving such a relatively new machine in the dust. My question is: should I bother upping the RAM? I know it will help at least somewhat, but will it make the difference between GarageBand exploding and GarageBand performing really smoothly? If not, I'd rather take the $100 I'd spend on new RAM and save it toward a new PowerBook G4. But then, is a G4/1GHz really going to be that much better than a G3/600MHz? Advice?
posted by scarabic at 2:04 PM PST - 19 comments

Windows XP

Windows XP question... My parents computer is set up that most items are stored on a 20 GB harddrive (or possibly a partition- listed as c:) while they have 100 GB available on d:... When I install software, is it perfectly acceptable to run it off the D drive, and is there a way to switch the set up so most items save to the d drive? [more inside]
posted by drezdn at 1:28 PM PST - 9 comments

Good free subdomain hosts?

A permutation of this question has been asked previously, but I'm wondering if anyone has any experience with free subdomain hosts. I need to run a forum-type (probably YaBBS-based) site for next eight months only, so I don't need a yearly package and I'd prefer to not spend a dime if possible, but I don't want it littered with pop-ups and banners either. Ideas or leads?
posted by grabbingsand at 1:22 PM PST - 6 comments

Aircraft enthusiast web pages

Planespotters and planefans, where do you go to get your airliner fix? (more inside) [more inside]
posted by brownpau at 11:56 AM PST - 4 comments

screechy subway sound what is it

What's that noise that NYC subway cars often make when pulling out of a station? It sounds like a metal-on-metal screech, but has a definite three-note tonal quality (A-G-B?) to it. It seems like some kind of white noise/noise-cancellation, but I'd love to know the skinny.
posted by mkultra at 11:05 AM PST - 3 comments

New Computer Setup

I just got a new computer. I would like to transfer multi-gigs worth of stuff to my new computer. Windows 98 to Windows XP. Can I do this through USB cables and just send it? Any advice on best ways to transfer large amounts? (Keep in mind that my old comp's cd burner doesn't work which is partly why I got a new comp.)
posted by Seth at 10:42 AM PST - 13 comments

Posters in Krakow

Polish Art - My cousin will be in and around Krakow, Poland for a few weeks. He asked me whether I wanted something from Poland. I was going to ask him to get something along the lines of posters as seen here . Does anyone know of stores in Krakow that sell these? Any recommendations on what else I could get?
posted by turbanhead at 10:25 AM PST - 2 comments

How do I clean a moldy bathroom?

File under Moving Sucks. Without getting into the disgusting particulars, we have to clean. Specifically, our horrifying, non-ventilated bathroom, which looks like Richard Preston's nightmares. I sprayed some X-14 on the befouled walls, and the attack-molds laughed at it. What are some thoroughly eco-unfriendly death-chemicals I can launch at these horrors?
posted by Skot at 9:55 AM PST - 17 comments

Explain "blogs", please

What is a Blog? Does anyone have any links to decent, well written explanations, explaining the phenomenon of Blogging? It needs to be as non-techy as possible and preferably from a mainstream, well regarded source.

My enthusiasm for the technology doesn't seem to be translating into understanding with my marketings bods ;o)
posted by MintSauce at 7:40 AM PST - 13 comments

AOL IM video lag

I'm using the video component of AOL Instant Messenger. I can see and hear the person I'm talking with in real time, but he sees me with a long delay, and the audio is very unreliable. I'm not really looking for a definite answer, but maybe some pointers of where I can go to get more information and things to try. The AOL site does not provide much in the way of tech support. [more inside]
posted by JanetLand at 7:14 AM PST - 4 comments

February 22

Besides their location, can you find anything else about a person based on their IP address?

Besides their location, can you find anything else about a person based on their IP address? [Like, for example, if you suspect a friend of joke spamming your website and you want to prove it's them?]
posted by adrober at 11:17 PM PST - 5 comments

What are some awesome free fonts?

I'd like a free font (note: has to be awesome). [more inside]
posted by Hildago at 10:53 PM PST - 18 comments

New Digital Camera

University student on a budget looking to buy a new digital camera. Looking at the Canon G5 or Sony V1 right now, but wondering if I'm overlooking others. Also questions about ordering from the US to Canada with duties and taxes (more) [more inside]
posted by sinical at 8:40 PM PST - 12 comments


At the end of this book, Fritjof Capra describes a hipothesis that proposed that the properties of quarks could be wholly deduced from something that looked like a logic table. Also, I think the same book proposed a new non-hierarchical epistemology based only on the principle of non-contradiction (my memory is sketchy on this, and I'm nowhere near the book). Does anybody know what I'm talking about, and whether or not that these theories were ever taken seriously by anybody?
posted by signal at 5:37 PM PST - 2 comments

How does British English read to Americans?

A writer's question: how does British English read (and internally, silently sound) to Americans? [More inside.] [more inside]
posted by MiguelCardoso at 3:25 PM PST - 36 comments

Help with noise and thermal problems with a new PC

I just built a new PC. Having noise/thermal problems, need advice thanks! {more inside} of course [more inside]
posted by ac at 1:33 PM PST - 16 comments

How do I slow down my CD drive so it's quieter?

My 48x CD-R drive is *really loud*. Is there any way to slow it down for basic tasks like audio CD playback? Googling finds me some brand-specific "control panel" apps, but this is a no-name model. Is there a generic utility out there?
posted by Aaorn at 12:16 PM PST - 3 comments

Use carpet squares instead of standard carpet?

Carpet squares. Have any DIY-types on MeFi used these instead of standard carpet? I'm stuck between the Scylla of finances and the Charybdis of an incredibly ugly hardwood floor (the previous owners were too frail to do anything about upkeep and the wood itself is damaged--not just the finish). The squares would allow me to leave the floor almost wholly intact, which would be a plus if I eventually decide to sell. And the total cost will be about half that of regular carpeting w/installation. But are they worth the investment? I've seen some brief positive responses, but that's it.
posted by thomas j wise at 11:49 AM PST - 11 comments

How do I buy a used car in Montana?

Purchasing a car for my daughter from a co-worker/friend. Clueless about any legal requirements -- transfer of title, taxes (Montana), odometer, etc. Any advice at all...?
posted by davidmsc at 10:38 AM PST - 2 comments

Astronaut vs Cosmonaut

Etymology question: astronaut vs. cosmonaut. Why are there two separate terms for the same thing? Is the distinction just a Cold War relic? It always seemed a little redundant to me. What about "taikonaut"?
posted by mkn at 10:14 AM PST - 4 comments

Georgia On My Mind

Advice and suggestions for upcoming trip to Georgia please (more insideo...) [more inside]
posted by gravelshoes at 9:18 AM PST - 19 comments

When Prohibition Ended, Did Crime Increase? Alcoholism?

when Prohibition ended in the USA, did crime (both organised crime and general crime) increase or decrease? Did levels of alcholism increase? Did alcohol become cheaper? Are there lessons to be learned about the potential effects of legalising drugs? [MI] [more inside]
posted by Pericles at 5:10 AM PST - 6 comments

February 21

WordXP -> Word2000

I'm having trouble saving a Word XP Letterhead design into a format compatible with Word 2000. [more inside]
posted by weston at 11:37 PM PST - 4 comments

How to improve spatial reasoning?

Does anyone know of exercises/games (or other methods) to improve spatial reasoning? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by sid at 11:20 PM PST - 16 comments

Which music label is selling un-DRMed mp3s online?

I remember reading either on MeFi or Slashdot about a label that is selling unencumbered mp3s directly to consumers via the intarweb. Does anyone remember reading about this? I've tried searching for it but my google-fu is failing me.
posted by bshort at 10:37 PM PST - 6 comments

What's a good web filter for a non-profit school-age PC lab?

What's a good web filter for a non-profit school-age PC lab? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by dhartung at 9:19 PM PST - 5 comments

Need Some Pesos?

Hey, are there any MeFites planning a trip to Mexico soon? I just found a few pesos while cleaning up (not much, only 96), and I'd much rather give them to someone than exchange them for what's probably barely enough to buy a cup of coffee.
posted by antifreez_ at 3:58 PM PST - 9 comments

Tonsil rocks?

Does anyone ever get little white smelly ball like things in the back of their mouth that either come out after a long time on their own or after intense coughing with your finger pused up against the back of the mouth? Sounds gross I know but I know im not the only person who gets these. I read that they are bacteria and mucus the gets lodged back there and grows. Also people who have had their tonsils removed dont get them. My question is for those who will admit to getting them... how do you deal with them?
posted by Recockulous at 10:43 AM PST - 27 comments

DVD rental by post in the UK.

One for the UK. I was thinking about joining a DVD rental by post site and it would be helpful to know about other reader's experiences and what site's they use. I know there was a thread in blue not too long ago on this subject but that seemed to mostly cover the US market. How are things in the UK?
posted by feelinglistless at 8:55 AM PST - 10 comments

How does scoring music in a film work?

Has anyone ever scored or recorded music for a feature film? How does it work? I just got a gig to do a film soundtrack and I am totally clueless about the process.
posted by zaelic at 8:21 AM PST - 6 comments

How do you properly cook brown rice?

How in the heck do you properly cook brown rice? I'm an ace at white rice, but last night I attempted to make the brown variety, and failed miserably [more inside...]. [more inside]
posted by jpburns at 6:54 AM PST - 22 comments

Silver Cleaning

I need to know what kind of metal, in combination with Bicarbonate of Soda (Soda Ash) , will clean silver.

I was at the Seattle Home Show last night and a woman was selling a "Silver Cleaning Kit" for over $25. The kit contained a thin rectangle of metal along with a bag of white power. The powder (she freely admitted) was Bicarbonate of Soda, commonly available in any grocery store.

To clean silver, she prepared a solution of warm water and the powder, put the metal plate in the bottom, and put the tarnished silver in the water. In seconds the tarnish was removed.

The woman said that the plate contained 11 alloys including brass, copper, tin and so forth, and that the chemical process was "reverse electrolysis."

We almost coughed up the $25. but then I realized that the metal had to be something simple, and that I could probably find out what it was with a Google search or two.

However, all of my efforts to figure this out have been unsuccessful. All of the hits for "reverse electrolysis" involve electrical current.

Does anyone know what kind of metal this is?
posted by jeffbarr at 6:47 AM PST - 9 comments

February 20

Where can I find new Daily Show episodes online?

I don't have cable. Is there anywhere online I can find new Daily Show episodes? (other than the main site, of course, which only has a few clips)
posted by Tlogmer at 11:13 PM PST - 20 comments

Home Equity

We recently found out we have a boatload of home equity that we wanted to do something with, seems like a waste to have it sitting there. Advice? (more inside) [more inside]
posted by luser at 10:57 PM PST - 20 comments

Entertaining a One-Eyed 7-Year-Old

On Monday I have to cover my seven year old daughters left eye with a patch for eight weeks. The idea is to strengthen her right eye -- currently 20/300 -- in the advent that later in life she should damage her good one. Insurance, so to speak. Any thoughts on making life more palatable for a temporarily blind child ?
posted by cedar at 6:17 PM PST - 20 comments

Guitar Strings

Guitar pickers - what kind of strings do you prefer for your acoustic and more important, what kind of string treatment do you use? (more...) [more inside]
posted by jabo at 3:04 PM PST - 7 comments

What are the sticky black lumps in my bag of rolling tobacco?

What are those black lumps in my shag [more inside]
posted by clavdivs at 2:24 PM PST - 10 comments

Excel File Naming Question

MS Excel appends a 1 to the name of every file I open. How do I get rid of this? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by trillion at 2:01 PM PST - 10 comments

Is there a way to set up single click/right click FTPing?

Anyone know how to set up single click/right click FTPing? I'd like an easy & cheap dialogue-box-free way to ftp images and documents to directories that I set up beforehand.
posted by yeahyeahyeahwhoo at 1:19 PM PST - 8 comments

Fastest way to list keywords for a book index?

I need help create a word list for a book index. You can mark words in MS Word, and it will then create an index for you, but my publisher wants to create the index. From me, she just needs a list of the words that are going to be in the index. [more inside]
posted by grumblebee at 1:01 PM PST - 13 comments

IPod issues

Help/Advice requested: My beloved Ipod is actin' peculiar and unstable [more inside] [more inside]
posted by Peter H at 12:06 PM PST - 13 comments

Selling a Car Lease

I currently lease a VW Jetta, and the term is up in November 2005. I will be heading back to school in September 2004 and I would like to be rid of the payments. If I give up the car, I pay the full amount remaining on the lease, but people have been telling me to get someone to take on the lease for the remainder of the term, but I don't know how to even go about starting to do this. Can anyone help? [more inside]
posted by Cyrie at 11:26 AM PST - 5 comments

Absolute best thing(s) to do in Toronto?

What is the absolute best thing(s) to do in Toronto for an afternoon/evening? More-->inside [more inside]
posted by Shane at 10:18 AM PST - 13 comments

An easy way to do 8-bit art?

I was interested in making a flash animation that looks like an 8 bit nintendo game, and was wondering if there's an easy way to do 8 bit art?
posted by drezdn at 9:36 AM PST - 8 comments

framing recommendation in NYC

Does anyone have a recommendation for matting / framing in NYC? [more inside]
posted by subgenius at 8:38 AM PST - 8 comments

February 19

Which content management system should I use for a collaborative storytelling website?

I'm looking for a new project, and I'd like to build some sort of collaborative storytelling site. Kind of like Fray, but only in the storytelling sense -- more prolific, more interactive, more user-driven. So, I'm looking for an engine. [MI] [more inside]
posted by o2b at 9:24 PM PST - 9 comments

Did You Hear The One About...

What's the funniest joke you've heard recently? It seems like nobody tells jokes anymore.
posted by mecran01 at 8:49 PM PST - 85 comments

Weight Lifting

Weight lifting: I'm doing the Super Slow Motion thing and I've got a question regarding muscle failure... Do I go until I fail once, or is it OK to do the next rep after going to fail and backing down? [more inside]
posted by daver at 8:25 PM PST - 16 comments

How do I protect my car from thieves?

How do I protect my car from thieves? I headed out to work this morning and was confronted by this. (that would be all four tires and wheels - $750 worth) I have a Clifford alarm system, I always park in highly visible areas, I stay out of "bad areas", there is a police academy 100 yards from where this picture was taken. What do I do to make this never happen again? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by y6y6y6 at 8:05 PM PST - 30 comments

Question about cars and clutches

What, exactly, is "riding the clutch"? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by crunchburger at 7:51 PM PST - 17 comments

Buying used software - am I in danger of doing something illegal?

I paid 25 cents at a Public Library Used Books-and-Stuff Sale for a CD-ROM of "Flash 2" with a registration card for "Flash 5 Upgrade". Am I in danger of doing something illegal, futile, or just flashy?
posted by wendell at 7:22 PM PST - 1 comment

February 18

Transmission Trouble

mefi car talk: transmission problems, grinding when shifting
[more inside] [more inside]
posted by Hackworth at 8:05 PM PST - 12 comments

Are there adapters for monitors with DFP connectors?

How do I connect a Compaq monitor to a Dell computer? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by kirkaracha at 7:19 PM PST - 5 comments

Manu Chao's King of the Bongo as the background music of some crazy Flash video?

I'm absolutely positive that I heard Manu Chao's King of the Bongo as the background music of some crazy Flash video. Can't for the life of me find it. Anyone know?
posted by Aaorn at 7:08 PM PST - 1 comment

Travelling in Boise

Okay, I'm leaving for Boise, Idaho (driving) tomorrow and I'd really like to know from people who live there or have been there if it really is as hazardous to black men who travel there as the stories all seem to go. Should I be scared? I'm already planning not to go anywhere without an escort. [more inside]
posted by Slimemonster at 5:37 PM PST - 11 comments

Gay Rights and Religious Minorities

Why do so many leaders and members of non-gay minorities seem to refuse, if not outright stubbornly unwilling, to admit common ground between their own struggles to attain basic rights and what gay people have been and are going through? I've never been able to get an answer that, to my own ears, sounds anything but irrational, but I acknowledge my being a white male can obfuscate my point and overrule any other experience I might be able to relate as a gay person when trying to find common ground. But I don't think that's very fair, and am looking for ways to better argue that idea. Suggestions, please?
posted by WolfDaddy at 5:28 PM PST - 20 comments

Recommend a zine

What are some good zines?
posted by drezdn at 3:45 PM PST - 4 comments

Fighting Zoloft drowsiness

I take Zoloft (50mg/day) and it's making me drowsy - I'm sleepy during the workday and ready to go to bed by 9:30. I already drink a moderate amount of caffinated beverages, and I work out three to four times a week. What can I do to combat the drowsiness?
posted by ArsncHeart at 1:54 PM PST - 31 comments

How can I use a pre-paid sim card in my T-Mobile handset outside the US?

I have a question about how to get my Sony Ericsson T-300 phone to take sim cards outside the U.S. [more inside] [more inside]
posted by buddha9090 at 1:34 PM PST - 10 comments

Wasarrested.com links in search results

How to get "wasarrested.com" links out of Overture search results, or at least off the first page? (more inside) [more inside]
posted by brownpau at 12:05 PM PST - 7 comments

List of zip codes and their longitude/latitude?

I've been charged with writing a program to find customers within a certain radius of a given zip code using their zip code. I was wondering if anyone could point me to a free list of zip codes as well as their latitude and longitude coordinates. [more inside] [more inside]
posted by alphanerd at 11:47 AM PST - 5 comments

Gamma Ray Bursts

Arthur C. Clarke once proposed that gamma ray bursts could be a sign of interstellar warfare (he later changed his mind). What would happen if a GRB struck Earth?
posted by Termite at 11:38 AM PST - 10 comments

seeking psychatrist in the Los Angeles area

A relatively shy MeFi member (and you know I'd admit it if it was me) is looking for advice on finding a good psychatrist in the Los Angeles area. More interested in talking therapy than medication, though not ruling anything out.

Private responses can be sent to SHRINKatWENDELLWITdotCOM.
posted by wendell at 10:51 AM PST - 8 comments

Like music to my ears

I want to learn how to tune pianos. (more inside.) [more inside]
posted by emelenjr at 9:28 AM PST - 6 comments

Windows Media Player Freezes

Why does the current version of Windows Media Player freeze my Win2K machine? The same wmp clip crashed my machine in both the Real One player and the current WMP, but the older version of WMP plays it just fine.
posted by Irontom at 9:12 AM PST - 1 comment

What are the four degrees of foreignness?

A coworker is trying to think of a quote on the degrees of strangeness from a SF book. Its to do with some Scandinavian (maybe) concept of 4 kinds of strangers - totally unknown, of your species, of your tribe, of your family, or something along those lines. [MI] [more inside]
posted by gilgamesh at 9:00 AM PST - 7 comments

XP won't let me type in Thai.

Internationalising email in WinXP. My wife can read emails sent to her in Thai script using Outlook on our Win XP machine, but I can't work out how to configure the machine so that she can type in Thai (using out Thai/ English keyboard) in a non-html email. Outlook help mentions configuring using Microsoft Office Tools from the program manager - but that requires using the XP discs, which we don't have as it was preinstalled by the PC manufacturer. Anyone got any ideas? I don't want to change the language of the whole O/S/ (there's a download from microsoft.com to do that) as I don't read Thai. We're by no means married to Outlook; Moz, Opera etc would be fine. We have Thai fonts.
posted by Pericles at 8:57 AM PST - 5 comments

Beach House Near DC?

I live in Washington, DC and I'm thinking about taking a mini vacation over memorial day weekend with some friends. I'd like to rent some kind of cottage or beach house for the weekend somewhere not too far from DC. I'm 22, so price is definitely a factor and I'd like to find a place not totally dominated by seniors or little kids. After a lot of googling, I haven't been able to find anything that fits. Does anyone here have any suggestions or ideas?
posted by fancypants at 6:51 AM PST - 13 comments

Wooden Cutting Board Maintenance

I have a hardwood cutting board which has a bit of mildew growing into the wood on the bottom. The board has also slightly warped. Is there anything I can do to get rid of these two problems? And for the future, what are some good preventative maintenance tips (asides from keeping it dry) to keep things like this from happening again?
posted by skwm at 6:50 AM PST - 17 comments

Best Web Writing

What blogs (and specific postings) belong in our upcoming Best of Web Writing book? [more inside]
posted by thomascrown at 6:43 AM PST - 27 comments

What's the best way to store Dublin Core metadata?

What's the best way to store Dublin Core metadata? [more inside]
posted by IshmaelGraves at 6:29 AM PST - 7 comments

Eastern Wyoming in March

What exactly is there to do in Eastern Wyoming in March? I'll be there for a week.
posted by Hall at 5:41 AM PST - 3 comments

When's the right time to reveal your disability to your prospective employer?

When's the right time to reveal your disability to your prospective employer? Say you're deaf, and while it won't impact on your ability to do the job, you don't want to surprise them. Do you just turn up at interview and let them see your hearing aids, or ..?
posted by bwerdmuller at 2:56 AM PST - 12 comments

February 17

US Post Office Speed

In the U.S., is Priority Mail really faster than First Class?
posted by Nikolai at 11:28 PM PST - 10 comments

How can I get rid of this cricket?

How do you find and get rid of a chirping cricket inside the house? [more inside]
posted by jca at 7:36 PM PST - 14 comments


I'm planning on spending this coming weekend (February 20-22) in New York City. On the agenda is the MeFi meetup, of course, but some other time that weekend I'd also like to go dancing somewhere. Can anyone recommend a good club, or a DJ that's appearing somewhere? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by Prospero at 5:32 PM PST - 5 comments

Windows Backup Software

Windows Backup Software? I'm looking for software that will backup data from multiple Windows computers onto a Windows server regularly without a user starting the backup. Hopefully it will be automatic. Thanks.
posted by Argyle at 4:04 PM PST - 14 comments

How do people find acting work in New York?

How do people find acting work in New York ? [more inside]
posted by sgt.serenity at 3:14 PM PST - 11 comments

Voting Parties

In Wisconsin, you don't have to declare a party in order to vote in the primary, which has me wondering, since George W. Bush is a lock on the republican side, why don't republicans vote in the democratic party for the person they think is the least likely to win?
posted by drezdn at 2:39 PM PST - 20 comments

I'm tempted to play with WAP

I just switched to a new Cell Phone provider and I'm tempted to play with WAP. I have a bunch of questions to ask of anyone who's used it especialy by way of T-MObile's T-Zone service...[more] [more inside]
posted by Fupped Duck at 1:11 PM PST - 7 comments

Is the domain registrar 1and1 reliable?

This is the absolutely LAST time I will ever use the word "domain" in an AskMeFi post, I promise...
Can I trust 1and1 to register my domains?
I got the three-year-free package and they don't have my debit card number yet. I'm registered by godaddy with $8.95 renewals ($7.95 promotion only for new .coms), and 1and1 gets in my face with an offer for 49-cents-a-month ($5.88/year). I don't feel good about doing monthly payments for this, but saving 3 dollars on a dozen domains will save me enough to buy more domains! And, even though I've specified "shut me down before you charge me for overages" to 1and1, I'm still worried about getting hit by surprise charges if they have my debit card number. Whadyathink?
posted by wendell at 12:57 PM PST - 22 comments

Can anyone find pinouts or spec sheets for a Toshiba LTM09C017?

I tore apart an old, effectively dead PowerBook 540c in order to salvage workable parts. Most notably, the active matrix TFT LCD screen, a Toshiba LTM09C017, was in fine condition. I would love to try to hook this up to an SVGA out, but I can't find pinouts or spec sheets. Can you?
posted by plinth at 12:43 PM PST - 2 comments

Where can I troubleshoot CSS online?

What are some good web development links or discussion lists with an emphasis on CSS development to help me troubleshoot some problems with a new site of mine? Mozilla and Safari aren't rendering my CSS correctly (it's fine in IE) even though I thought I was being careful in how I coded it. I'm a member of CSS-discuss and have posted my issue there, but the nice people who tried to take a look at the problem have been stumped. I've also read through the archives at scriptygoddess and a list apart. Help! [more inside]
posted by Asparagirl at 11:41 AM PST - 8 comments

How can I keep my paintball mask from fogging?

I'm new to paintball and getting addicted. But I have one problem -- humidity. Is there a decent (but cheap) solution for fogging of a paintball mask? [more inside]
posted by timyang at 11:27 AM PST - 11 comments

I need some relational database features for invoicing in MS Excel.

Invoicing with MS Excel--squeezing relational database features out [MI]
posted by adamrice at 11:26 AM PST - 10 comments

Does anyone have a relatively safe & painless method to discharge all the static electricity I'm building up these days?

Does anyone have a relatively safe & painless method to discharge all the static electricity I'm building up these days? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by .kobayashi. at 9:11 AM PST - 16 comments

Where is this post about a recording engineer's "real" stories about working on a major artist's album, which devolves into Spinal Tap-esque antics?

I know I must suck hard core, because I can't get the search engine to work, but does anyone remember where that MeFi post about a recording engineer's "real" stories about working on a major artist's album, which devolves into Spinal Tap-esque antics? I read a description of Metallica's new documentary, and it sounds almost exactly the same, so I wanted to read it again. I've put everything I could think of into the search engine, and have come up empty. Can anyone help me out?
posted by emptybowl at 8:48 AM PST - 10 comments

Collecting everything for a web page into one file that's browsable?

Is there a way to embed images, applets, or anything that is linked in a web page so that you have a one file entity?

I'm thinking along the lines of a PDF, or a Word .doc, but you get the ability to view this document in a web browser (without plugins) edit it in a text editor, and add functionality via scripting. You could lock it and send it so that it can't be changed, but only viewable. (Think mock-up, without hosting a dev website).

If it doesn't exist, would something like it be practical?
posted by grefo at 8:17 AM PST - 7 comments

Original Art in NYC or toronto

Where would I go about finding cheap original artwork for sale in New York City or Toronto? (More inside...) [more inside]
posted by capndesign at 7:56 AM PST - 14 comments

CSS/PHP Question

CSS or maybe PHP question about limiting the display size of content. More inside, of course. [more inside]
posted by dobbs at 6:53 AM PST - 8 comments

Escalator Antics

Why is it harder to run/walk up a stopped escalator than a moving one? Surely the step size is the same and your relative speed is the same?
posted by biffa at 4:19 AM PST - 24 comments

What are future versions of Internet Explorer going to be like?

Does anyone know what the future holds for Internet Explorer? From what I know, IE6 SP1 is the last standalone installation of IE, bar a rumoured upgrade sometime this year that will feature a pop-up killer. What I am really interested in is what we can expect from the browser that will be included with Longhorn. Is it basically going to be Internet Explorer 7, in that it will simply have a few new features hacked in but essentially be the same base code? Or are they planning something more radical, like a re-write of major components and improved compliance with existing web standards and support for newly emerging standards? Anyone got the inside info? Cheers.
posted by chill at 2:51 AM PST - 5 comments

What's a good programming language for open source development?

Programming Languages. I've always done my "fun" programming using Delphi, but have decided that it's time to go open source. What languages should I be looking at? (My feature list is inside) [more inside]
posted by seanyboy at 2:36 AM PST - 11 comments

Multiple Macs

Sharing your music and books and stuff that's on your iPod among different Macs you own: PodWorks is a classic, popular tool. Is there a better, newer software to get the most from your iPod and your Macs or is PodWorks still the way to go? thanks [more inside]
posted by matteo at 1:51 AM PST - 4 comments

February 16

What banks offer credit cards that will automatically withdraw the balance monthly from an account at another bank - and let me configure that online?

What banks offer credit cards that will automatically withdraw the balance monthly from an account at another bank - and let me configure that online? [More inside] [more inside]
posted by kickingtheground at 9:51 PM PST - 8 comments

Tell me about Mary Kay.

My wife is considering getting into Mary Kay. The sales pitch sounds good, and everyone she knows who's involved with it has said it's a good thing. So naturally I'm suspicious that it's too good to be true. Is there a catch? Anyone had personal experience with Mary Kay?
posted by oissubke at 9:36 PM PST - 20 comments

I have a GED and I'm ready for the Military - but I'm told I need either 15 college credits or do a High School Equivalency (HSE). Which is best?

Update: I am now close to my weight requirements for joining the military, and I am very near getting 95 percent on my GED. I called the Air Force recruitment office and was told I need 15 college credits or a High School diploma without the GED. I have all summer to do this, so should I take the classes or do a HSE at PCC (High School Equivalency)? Sorry for the dumb question.
posted by Keyser Soze at 8:51 PM PST - 19 comments

Is it possible to stop Mozilla/Firefox from truncating tooltips?

Is it possible to stop Mozilla/Firefox from truncating tooltips (or whatever the link title="popping stuff" popup things are called)? I assume this is somehow a "feature," not a bug, but it really pisses me off.
posted by Tlogmer at 8:36 PM PST - 1 comment

Web Design Critique

A site I designed was recently described as "competent but uninspired," while this stung, it matches what I feel about it. My question to the community: are any designers here willing to take a look and offer me some constructive criticism? I'd really appreciate it, as this site is for an artist friend and I'd like the design to be both professional and "inspired" without obscuring the art. [Link Inside] [more inside]
posted by Grod at 8:25 PM PST - 21 comments

Where to go when Metafilter is down?

On the offchance that this kind of thing should happen again (Oh the humanity! Six horrible days!), can anyone recommend good replacement Metafilters? [more inside]
posted by graventy at 8:06 PM PST - 14 comments

Doesn't share well with others.

I have a home network with 3 XP Pro machines which can all share files perfectly with one another - and a Windows 98 SE machine which refuses. Help I'm desperate {more inside} [more inside]
posted by ac at 7:58 PM PST - 3 comments

Stock Photography

I found stock.xchng which has a lot of near-professional quality stock photographs for free ("free" in the old sense of not paying anything for them, not the modern sense of "subscription based" or "one time fee", or "free unless you actually need to use them for something"). Does anybody know of similar sites with free, professional quality stock pictures?
posted by signal at 7:40 PM PST - 2 comments

Towel Design

All of the towels in my house have a stitched patter a couple inches from the vertical end. Anyone have any idea where this came from, or what the function is? [MI] [more inside]
posted by woil at 7:00 PM PST - 2 comments

bounty billiards background theme?

Does anyone know what that music is on the Bounty (paper towels) commercial with the billiard balls?
posted by grumblebee at 6:13 PM PST - 4 comments

Networking Windows and Mac OSX 10.3

What is the best way to network my Windows and Mac OSX 10.3 machines? [more inside]

I have a home network set up, but I can't seem to share my whole hard drive with my Windows machine, only public directories. On the flip side, if I set a folder for sharing on Windows, the Mac doesn't automatically detect it, I have to set it to connect to that folder.

Ideally I'd like to be able to access either machine's hard drive no matter which machine I have connected. I'm thinking Firewire networking might be a good solution for this (and faster than my 10/100 switch) but can't seem to find any decent instructions. If I try networking via Firewire, can I restrict so I am only sharing with machines on my network, since Windows file sharing frightens and disturbs me. [more inside]
posted by benjh at 6:01 PM PST - 7 comments

How do I keep virus-infected java class files from infecting my browser?

Norton AV keeps finding java class files that that have viruses and trojans: byteverify, backdoor.Hacarmy, Js.Exception.Exploit. How do I keep them off my system?

I use both IE and firefox/firebird
posted by srboisvert at 5:47 PM PST - 2 comments

Why do some drug advertisments not include the function of the drug whils others do?

In the U.S., some televised prescription drug ads tell you exactly what the drug is for. Others only allude cryptically to the drug's function. Still others just show a middle-aged, sweater-clad couple enjoying a sunset on a beach. Or Mike Ditka. Why?
posted by stonerose at 5:41 PM PST - 10 comments

February 10

Preparing for a Road Trip

Road trip help please! Can my car survive a 7 hour drive? And what I can do to improve survivability? (more inside) [more inside]
posted by mcsweetie at 1:11 PM PST - 9 comments

Why do grapes and peaches shrivel in different ways?

Why do grapes and peaches shrivel in different ways? Is it to do with the type of skin? The surface area? Water content? Or the size of their stone? Any ideas gratefully received.
posted by nedrichards at 11:51 AM PST - 2 comments

Travel to Berlin

Can anyone recommend somewhere to stay in Berlin (and possibly Prague) in June? Europe is expensive for us, so it needs to be fairly low price - around 50 euros a night for a double room (65$, 35 GBP (wow, the dollar is low!)). It would be nice to find something a bit more unusual/friendly than an Ibis. Central location (or public transport at a push) and clean. Thanks.
posted by andrew cooke at 11:25 AM PST - 6 comments

What is a good martial art for a 6 year old, and related questions

MartialArtsFilter: My son has been badgering me about a martial arts class. I know exactly nothing about martial arts, so I have questions:
1) what's a good art for a 6 year old kid?
2) how much should I expect to pay for a) lessons and b) uniforms and equipment?
3) any good schools in northern VA people want to suggest?
posted by Irontom at 10:27 AM PST - 13 comments

Marketing newsworthy photographs

I carry a digital camera everywhere. If I was to take a picture of a newsworthy event, and say it was the only picture and possibly of national interest, how would I go about marketing that photograph?
posted by cedar at 10:18 AM PST - 3 comments

Does anyone have experience creating their own giclee prints, or recommendations for a printer?

I've been experimenting with various photographic processes for a few years now, and would like to begin selling prints of my work. Does anyone have experience creating their own giclee prints, or recommendations for a printer that they've worked with? (more inside, naturally) [more inside]
posted by annathea at 9:38 AM PST - 11 comments

Help with a world time clock?

World clocks. I am trying to put together a clock application and can't work out how to discern the actual time is in each city. The time zone part is easy, but a great many countries (most?) use seasonal time adjustments. I have an online world clock on my screen and a physical one hanging above my head. How do they work?
posted by elliot100 at 9:16 AM PST - 4 comments

How Can I Ship a Family Antique Cross-Country?

Any advice on shipping a single piece of rather unwieldy furniture across the country? [More inside, of course.] [more inside]
posted by me3dia at 9:05 AM PST - 5 comments

Sole Proprietorship vs. LLC? Starting a smal retail space.

Business Owners: What have you seen as the various benefits/pros/cons of a Sole Proprietorship vs. an LLC. When considering starting a small personal retail space, which would you advise to use?
posted by BrodieShadeTree at 8:18 AM PST - 17 comments

New Orleans

I will be making my first trip to the US in late April and it will involve a two night stop in New Orleans. So - what is there to do in the 'Big Easy'? I understand there is the heritage of the French Quarter and the jazz of Bourbon Street. But, beyond the blues and the mardi gras, what should I go see?
posted by metaxa at 8:13 AM PST - 19 comments

Tourist photography: should I pay locals who pose for me?

What are your thoughts on paying to take pictures of people when traveling in developing countries? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by gottabefunky at 8:12 AM PST - 14 comments

Videogame programming camp for 14 y/o boy in central Canada?

I want to send my 14 year old son to video game programming camp this summer. Anyone know of a good one in central Canada?
posted by tranquileye at 8:08 AM PST - 3 comments

What is the ideal device for field recordings?

The ideal recording device. I am looking for a compact audio recording device that has input/outputs for an external mic if necessary, and storage media that is digital. It will be used to make sound recordings of people and other sounds in public areas. The recorded sound should also be easily converted to mp3 or wav format.
posted by turbanhead at 8:04 AM PST - 8 comments

Parenting a Rebellious Teenager

A co-worker and friend of mine is a single mother of three (girls of 6 and 11, son of 14). The boy is becoming more and more hostile and defiant by the day, and even ran away for several hours this past weekend. He's bright and creative, but seems to reserve his anger for the home. I'm fairly certain drugs/alcohol are not involved. Mom is at wit's end. I don't have kids myself so I feel unqualified giving advice. Anyone here who's been in the same situation? Any recommendations on how to go about beginning to try working this out? Counseling?
posted by sharksandwich at 7:00 AM PST - 20 comments

Thunder on the upgrade

Help with Mozilla Thunderbird: I, somewhat foolishly, decided to upgrade my copy of Thunderbird yesterday at the same time as I was getting the new Fire[fox|bird]. I went from 0.3 to 0.5 and now I can't send mail from any of my accounts. [MI] [more inside]
posted by Aaorn at 6:55 AM PST - 7 comments

Wisconsin Dinner

A panicky question: we've invited over 2 American and 3 Portuguese couples on February 17th to watch the Wisconsin Democratic primary. We rashly promised a "typical Wisconsin supper" because we received 2 pounds of delicious (if salty) 7-year-old Wisconsin cheddar last month. Yeah, right. What about the rest of the meal? Any (simple) menu suggestions gratefully received. [More inside.] [more inside]
posted by MiguelCardoso at 6:53 AM PST - 35 comments

Audophile Advice on Connecting my Mac to My Stereo (Jack v. Sound Card)?

Advice needed from audiophiles! What's the best way to connect my Mac to my stereo system? Also, amplifier recommendations advice, more inside... [more inside]
posted by derbs at 4:07 AM PST - 5 comments

Etiquette Question

i want to be polite. Is there an alternative honorific to Miss and Ma'am which is age indiscriminate? [more inside]
posted by quin at 3:57 AM PST - 17 comments

February 9

What are the legal benefits of marriage?

All right, what are the legal benefits of marriage? [more inside]
posted by namespan at 10:50 PM PST - 15 comments

Learning Vietnamese Culture

Recommended sources for learning the Vietnamese language and culture, please? [more inside]
posted by Soliloquy at 9:59 PM PST - 5 comments

How can I sort my Firefox bookmarks the way IE does?

Firebirdfox question. I've been trying to find a browser I like, and after playing with Opera, Mozilla, and Firebird, I settled on firefox. Now I can't figure out how to make it feel familiar, the way IE does. For starters, I would really like my bookmarks to sort the same way, directories listed first a-->z, followed by links stored in the top level also sorted a-->z. It doesn't appear to care if an imported bookmark is a directory or an actual link, and it really annoys me. [more inside]
posted by Grod at 8:59 PM PST - 12 comments

Been on Norplant? Tell me your experiences please.

Birth control question. [mi] [more inside]
posted by stoneegg21 at 5:43 PM PST - 25 comments

Mature piano/keyboard lessons website

I'm trying to find the piano/keyboards-equivalent of this excellent guitar lessons site. Basically, I'm looking for a non-commercial set of tutorials done in style, and essense (I know I ask a lot). I've done the usual Google queries; the free sites seemed either amateurish (e.g. PianoNanny) or poor, while the commercial sites only had one or two tutorials open to the public (and still not always top-class). Any truly worthwhile recommendations? Thanks in advance for your help!
posted by kchristidis at 5:36 PM PST - 2 comments

Seeking Relatively Future-Proof HTML File Browser to be Burnt on CD With Archive

Making an searchable HTML archive ... without a server? Can it be done? More inside. [more inside]
posted by bonaldi at 5:03 PM PST - 6 comments

Help Me Figure Out What Domain Names to Keep

Domain-amania! (part one)
A little less than a year ago, when I thought I was on the road to recovery, I had a shopping spree on GoDaddy, getting more than a dozen domain names I intended to turn into a network of cool sites. Nearly all of them have lain fallow since then, and now it's time to renew or relinquish and "thin out the herd". Over the next several days, I'll be Asking MeFi what names are worth keeping and what site ideas are worth pursuing. [more-on inside] [more inside]
posted by wendell at 3:58 PM PST - 5 comments

Family Tree Program

Is there a free/cheap family-tree program (for the PC) that outputs in ascii text (with dashes, pipe-symbols, etc. as the connectors between people) or HTML format?
posted by grumblebee at 3:53 PM PST - 1 comment

Problem with Apache (Win2K) on a local network

Problem with Apache (Win2K) on a local network . . . [more inside]
posted by yerfatma at 2:24 PM PST - 2 comments

Jaw Surgery

Any MeFites have experience with jaw surgery? (More inside, as you might expect.) [more inside]
posted by scody at 2:22 PM PST - 7 comments

UK rail fare question.

UK rail fare question. [I, there's M] [more inside]
posted by biffa at 2:05 PM PST - 5 comments

Help me store my sizeable CD collection

CD Storage [MI] [more inside]
posted by graventy at 12:57 PM PST - 17 comments

Find my first computer!

My family's first computer was an 8086 system made by Canon. I've since lost everything that could tell me what model name it was, and I'd like to somehow maybe find one for nostalgia purposes. The only specs I can remember is that it had a 20mb hard drive, besides the processor. Oh, and 640kb of RAM. I'm hoping someone had one of these and could give me more info. I'd love to have my first computer again. (*sniff*)
posted by angry modem at 11:35 AM PST - 5 comments

Definately not comic sans

What fonts are good for on-screen readability at small pixel sizes (<12 px)? Are bit fonts better for this kind of thing?
posted by signal at 11:33 AM PST - 8 comments

Unused clothes hangers - what happens to them?

What do people do with their unused clothes hangers?
posted by jeremias at 11:23 AM PST - 19 comments

Men's Caps

Is there a universally recogized name for the kind of men's hat that's kind of shapeless, sits low on your head, and the "bowl" part kind of attaches (snaps?) to the brim? I thought, maybe "newsboy" cap, but that does not appear to be dispositive. For instance, here they're just called "caps." And although googling for "newsboy cap" brings up this, it also brings up this, which is not the same thing. And J Peterman is no help at all, except to illustrate the lack of an accepted name. ("Handsome Thug Hat"???) How is it that the English language made it through the 1920s and 1930s without leaving us a standard word for this kind of hat? I mean, back then, EVERY MAN wore them.
posted by stupidsexyFlanders at 11:21 AM PST - 22 comments

Do people ever go from born-again to, uh, not born-again?

Born again, fundies, whatever you call them, we've all encountered them. Has anyone out there come across any of them that have gone the other way? From fundie to, um, not fundie? More inside. [more inside]
posted by yoga at 11:21 AM PST - 40 comments


Those Things That Look Like Luggage Straps That Hang Around Your Neck and You Attach Your Keys to... Is there a common name for those things? (Hard to Google without one...) And where can you buy them? And in what department? (I've looked in men's accessories, women's accessories, sporting goods...) I've never used one myself, but I need to buy one for somebody (No, it's NOT a Valentine's gift; I'm not THAT lame...)
posted by wendell at 10:54 AM PST - 9 comments

Ikea Desks

I've got a chance to buy an Ikea Jerker computer desk locally for a good price (the closest Ikea store is in Houston, we're in Austin). How sturdy are they? I'm used to early-80s solid-steel welded Steelcase desks, and am wondering if the Jerker will be solid enough for a 19" monitor and Mac G4 tower. [more inside]
posted by mrbill at 9:23 AM PST - 13 comments

how to best set up my house for wireless internet access as well as music?

I need advice on how to best set up my house for wireless internet access as well as music. (please click for more) [more inside]
posted by evening at 9:09 AM PST - 13 comments

Transitioning to First Grade

PublicSchoolFilter! My son is entering the local public school system in the fall (1st grade). He's currently in a Montessori kindergarten, and is reading, writing, doing addition and subtraction. The question is, should we push for gifted and talented designation for him? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by Irontom at 8:04 AM PST - 50 comments

How can I create graphical text with ColdFusion?

How should one go about cleaning a laptop screen? I've always cleaned my regular monitors with good old Windex, but my Mac Powerbook manual recommends using only specialized cleaners (costly wipes) for active-matrix displays.
posted by sharksandwich at 6:10 AM PST - 9 comments

JavaX Imports Can't Be Found, But Are Installed! (Windows XP + Tomcat 5)

Java and Servlet help!! [more inside] [more inside]
posted by Stynxno at 6:09 AM PST - 2 comments

Is there a term for small, decorative Flash photo displays?

Is there a generally-accepted (or your-office-accepted) term for the type of decorative Flash movie with photos that fade in and out and white or black lines that drift back and forth? Here's an example (turn down your speakers) from a thread that was posted recently on MeFi. The genre seems to be ubiquitous enough to have its own moniker, but I don't want to lump it in under "Flashturbation" because the file sizes are typically small and it seems to be a reasonable if cliche way to present a series of images.
posted by planetkyoto at 2:04 AM PST - 2 comments

How can I prepare for an interview for a research/intern position at a VC firm?

Any Mefites out there in the world of venture capital. I'm interviewing for a research/intern position at a VC firm later this week and having no business training (I will hopefully be getting my M.Sc in Comp Sci later this year), I need to study up on the industry and fast. Anyone got any good advice on some decent introductory sites? What buzzwords should I be using in the interview? How badly will my lack of business skills hurt me and how can I minimise that?
posted by PenDevil at 12:19 AM PST - 5 comments

I need a free XLS to XML convertor/editor.

Looking for a free xml editor-convertor-etc, with a wysiwyg-ish interface. is possible. What I really want it for is to convert a sort of plant database I have on a load on xls into one big xml file I can use to search and update.
posted by Zootoon at 12:15 AM PST - 5 comments

February 8

Pre-Screened Email for Kids

Any way to set up an e-mail account for a child that's manually pre-screened? [more] [more inside]
posted by pzarquon at 11:21 PM PST - 22 comments

# of people alive today > all previous humanity?

I heard that the amount of people alive today is greater than the total amount that have died in human history. I understand it's speculative, but is there any truth to it? If not, will it be true at some point?
posted by SimStupid at 10:46 PM PST - 6 comments

Recommendations on where to get a PS2 modchipped?

Recommendations on where to get a PS2 modchipped? (lots of detail inside) [more inside]
posted by tra at 8:50 PM PST - 6 comments

Umbilical Cords and Multiples

How do umbilical cords work with twins? Triplets? Quadruplets? Do they come out like a string of pearls? What about puppies and kittens: do they come out with umbilical cords? The whole litter?
posted by adrober at 8:09 PM PST - 5 comments

Penn and Teller in Vegas

Can I get Penn and Teller tickets for half price in Vegas? [more inside]
posted by mecran01 at 7:08 PM PST - 3 comments

Car accident question

Car accident question:
If you go report a car accident a day or two after it happened at the police station and it was your fault, can you still get a ticket for following too closely, failure to yield, etc?
posted by jmd82 at 6:27 PM PST - 15 comments

Recommend stretching routine resources.

I started weight training about 9 months ago, with regular cardio. I want to start a strecthing routine because I feel very tight. [m/i] [more inside]
posted by benjh at 6:05 PM PST - 8 comments

Do you know of a 3D model of Machu Picchu?

I'm working on this competition. Does anybody know where to find a 3D model of Machu Picchu? (the ruins, I already downloaded the topo from the competition website)
posted by signal at 5:42 PM PST - 1 comment

Basement Flooring

Flooring. We're doing the basement floor and trying to pick the final product. Click/no-glue or Tongue and Groove/Nail? Bamboo or Cork? Linoleum? More Downstairs... [more inside]
posted by daver at 2:35 PM PST - 9 comments

How can I get the music of an old Windows 98 drive onto a Mac Powerbook running Panther?

I have a large hard drive that was in my Win 98 machine. It's got 50 gb of MP3s on it that I bought over 3 years at emusic. However, I now have a Mac (powerbook) with Panther. I have an external firewire enclosure for that drive and when I plug it into the Mac, it sees the drive (appears on the desktop) but can't read or write to it (tells me I have to format it). How can I get the music off of it? I want to move the music onto a different external firewire drive that I bought with the Mac and where the music I bought since switching sits.
posted by dobbs at 2:24 PM PST - 13 comments

Car speaker installation hassles

Say you have two holes in your front car doors where the speakers should go. And say that even though you can wire them up, you have no way to attach them, because the geniuses that can design a car to drive 300,000 miles can't make interior door panels that don't shred like cardboard after a quarter of that. What would you do? [mas adentro] [more inside]
posted by gottabefunky at 1:56 PM PST - 4 comments

How do I find hardware drivers after a clean install of Win2000?

The HD on my Dell died recently. I bought a new one, and did a clean install of Win2K Pro. Now I have an operating comuter with no drivers for the hardware... How do I handle this? [more inside]
posted by o2b at 1:25 PM PST - 4 comments


Anyone have any experience submitting a website to coolsiteoftheday.com? Is it worth the expense? How stiff is the competition?
posted by banished at 12:25 PM PST - 5 comments

Is it OK to order medication from Canadian, Mexican, or Australian online pharmacies?

I take an anti inflammatory medication, Feldene (Piroxicam), for my arthritis daily. As I've just started a new job, and will be without medical benefits for 3 months, I'm investigating the option of ordering my scrip from an online pharmacy to save a few bucks. From Googling, I see that they are based, for the most part, in Canada, Mexico, Australia, and other points. (I live in the US) I notice that some require a copy of the scrip (Canada), and others do not. Has anyone dealt with these pharmacies? Are they legit? Did they save you money? Any recommendations?
posted by bawanaal at 11:36 AM PST - 4 comments

Which direction should I point the louvres from my heating/ac vents?

Which direction should I point the louvres from my heating/ac vents? [more inside]
posted by crawl at 11:25 AM PST - 5 comments

Capitalisation and purposefully lower-case names.

Two language questions, both about capitalisation. MI. [more inside]
posted by biffa at 9:20 AM PST - 12 comments

Losing hard drive space

I've just bought a new 80gb hard drive (Hitachi deskstar).
It shows up as 80gb in the bios, but only as 13gb in f-disk.
What's wrong, please?
posted by the cuban at 4:40 AM PST - 5 comments

February 7

Packaging the perl, give it to atom, all on Panther

I'm trying to write a short Perl script under Mac OS X (Panther) to post to a Moveable Type weblog using the Atom API. After some initial problems with installing packages, I'm having this issue. [more inside] [more inside]
posted by mmangano at 11:15 PM PST - 3 comments

Vacation to Warm Climate

A quick, cheap 3-5 day winter vacation - to somewhere warm. Any suggestions? It doesn't matter where, but beaches are a big plus.
posted by troutfishing at 5:54 PM PST - 13 comments

Family Recipes

I want to put together a family recipe book. Has anyone done this, and do you have any advice? Are there kits out there to help with this, or software? Or have you gone to Kinko's and bound it yourself? (If so, details would be welcome on what services they offered.) Spiral-bound would be fine, but I'm open to other styles. I want to be able to make a dozen or so copies without breaking the bank, and I have a good home computer setup if I can figure out how best to take advantage of it. I've already got the recipes typed in in MasterCook, a recipe format program. Thanks for any help!
posted by GaelFC at 3:13 PM PST - 12 comments

Blackletter typeface in Windows?

Is there a blackletter typeface in default Windows installations? – or at least a fairly common one? I've got an idea for a website with blackletter drop caps and the occasional heading. I'd rather not resort to images since it's otherwise all C.S.S.
posted by Utilitaritron at 3:06 PM PST - 3 comments

Why does the clock on my Macintosh reset to 1969?

Macintosh timekeeping: In some occasions, Mac clocks will get reset to some date in 1969 (usually December). Regardless of the reason for this (bad CMOS battery, or jumper resets, or whatever), I just want to know: Why that date? I've Googled with lots of different possible search phrases and found nothing. I assume it's something important to somebody at Apple...?
posted by cyrusdogstar at 2:36 PM PST - 8 comments

Conversion of AOL e-mail archives for use with MacOSX?

Conversion of AOL e-mail archives: When I was young I used AOL e-mail for one and a half year (AOL Version 3 on Win95). I still have this Win95-Box with a working installation of the AOL software and can access these mails one by one. Now a MacOSX user I'd like to import those archives into the Mail.app or make them at least accesible in some open text format. Any ideas? (I came across this service that claims to do just this, but I don't want to hand out my private e-mail archives).
posted by meikel at 2:03 PM PST - 3 comments

Librarians do it with photos

iPhoto4: How to join libraries? With iPhoto2 you had to keep your libraries small. Various tools were used mainly to switch between those libraries. Now this seems less necessary and it woud be nice to join some libraries (less than 1k of photos, less than 1GB of size each). Is this possible?
posted by meikel at 1:51 PM PST - 2 comments

Candy -> Al Franken?

I just ordered a box of See's Candies Gourmet Lollipops at Amazon. Based on that purchase, they recommened Al Franken's "Lies and the Lying Liars That Tell Them." Huh? I'm in OH, I just like the lollipops. Does See's have some kind of politics I don't know about?
posted by ferociouskitty at 1:43 PM PST - 6 comments

How can I get my noise-cancelling headphones working on my old TV?

How can I get my noise-cancelling headphones working on my old TV? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by Ptrin at 1:31 PM PST - 4 comments

Low-end region free DVD players?

Advice on region free dvd players. I've checked Dvdoverseas.com and ZoneFreeDvd.com for a variety of players w/built-in video converters (which therefore obviate the need for a multi-system TV). Does anyone have experience with relatively low-end players? I'm trying to augment my system so that I can watch UK DVDs, rather than replace what I've currently got.
posted by thomas j wise at 12:48 PM PST - 14 comments

Advice on an infected piercing.

Advice on an infected piercing. [more inside]
posted by Zosia Blue at 12:10 PM PST - 14 comments

Cheap lodging near the Shakespeare Globe adn Tate Britain

I'm visiting London in early March and I was wondering if anyone knew any cheap bed only accomodation (under £40) with access for The Shakespeare Globe and Tate Britain. I'll be going Wed/Thurs. I've checked some accomodation websites but they were all a pain to use.
posted by feelinglistless at 11:46 AM PST - 6 comments

Keyboard problems

Demons of the keyboard - I use both an iMac and an Apple laptop, and they both have certain keys which fill me with dread. The "Esc" and "Clear" keys erase the text in my browser's (IE 5.0,5.1) text input box. How can I turn off these key functions or resurrect the deleted text ? (more inside) [more inside]
posted by troutfishing at 10:21 AM PST - 9 comments

No Chocolate

Valentine's gift for someone who doesn't like chocolate?
posted by gimonca at 9:36 AM PST - 17 comments

Why should I register this product?

Should I register my new Canon CanoScan 3000F? What are the Pros and Cons of Product Registration?
posted by jaronson at 8:21 AM PST - 3 comments

How easy is it to get a entry level job as a pyrotechnician?

How easy is it to get a entry level job as a pyrotechnician? I ran into this guy at the local computer surplus store and we got to talking about his hat. It turns out that he works for a fireworks display company. One of the things he said was that it was relatively easy to get hired as a helper at this company after taking one of their introductory seminars. This caught my interest and also pinged my scam detector. Going online I notice that most firework companies seem to run introductory seminars. I'm guessing that these courses are a nice revenue source for pyrotechnics companies. Has anyone taken any of these courses? If so, did you actually get to work on displays afterward? Was the course fun enough to be worth doing just for itself?
posted by rdr at 6:48 AM PST - 2 comments

Moving to South Africa

South Africa: Company wants us to move there. The question is, do we want to live there? The city is East London. We're a white gay couple (American and Belgian). How safe is it? How much an issue that we're gay and/or foreign? I've searched and asked around, too many conflicting reports.
posted by Goofyy at 2:56 AM PST - 8 comments

February 6

Movable Type Extensions

I'm worried this may be too specific for AxeMe, but here goes:

Is this sort of approach to Movable Type urls really a good idea? I've used extensions on my webpages since 1994, and dropping 'em for extended directory structures seems well, weeeiiiiiird. Has anyone here done this? Do they recommend it? Pros? Cons?
posted by keswick at 9:01 PM PST - 11 comments

Contacts Online

Online contact lenses. For the past year or two, I have been ordering contact lenses online. I've never been asked for a doctor's prescription before. Now it seems no site will allow me to order contact lenses without a doctor's prescription. What happened? The doctor who I saw for my contact lenses, I've long since forgotten his name. I just got a eyeglass checkup but skipped the contact lens because mine are working fine, and are cheaper online. Is there a canadien or foreign contact lens company someone can recommend that doesn't require a prescription?
posted by patrickje at 6:15 PM PST - 5 comments

Non-SF Fiction Where Online is Central Milieu?

Fiction that centers on online interaction? [mo' inside makes it mo' inside] [more inside]
posted by staggernation at 5:56 PM PST - 16 comments

NZ Tattoos

Tattoo parlours of New Zealand: Which? [more inside]
posted by Jimbob at 5:12 PM PST - 4 comments

Blue Pencil Lead

Art/drawing experts: does non-photo blue lead come for a mechanical pencil in any size other than 2mm? [details inside] [more inside]
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 4:22 PM PST - 6 comments

How to Put in a Power Outlet in a Basement Closet

I have a closet in a converted basement (drywall). In the closet there is a light bulb powered by a switch so I assume there is electricity. My burning desire in life is to get a power outlet in that closet. What steps do I need to take? Is this a crazy young-person sort of dreamer's dream?
posted by xmutex at 1:48 PM PST - 17 comments

I'm having some trouble generating a custom e-mail reminder for certain events in Applescript.

Applescript help, please. I'm trying to generate a custom e-mail reminder for certain events [MI] [more inside]
posted by adamrice at 1:09 PM PST - 5 comments

What Are These Keys on my Computer Keyboard?

My daughter asked me (and 'cos I don't know the answer, I'm asking you...): those 3 weird characters on the top left of my keyboard - above the ctrl, shift, caps lock and 'tab' keys - only 2 of them can I display [ ` ¬ ]. I would guess that all three are programmers keys, but how do I access the 3rd one, that looks like a horizontal bar? And do they have a name ('¬' = the inebriated el?). Cheers!
posted by dash_slot- at 12:32 PM PST - 28 comments

What's the best online content management system?

Can someone tell me what's the easiest web-based website content updating scheme out there? I'm convinced that this is the way to go for most sites, and want to read up on it.
In a related question; What's the right way to refer to this technology?
posted by jpburns at 11:54 AM PST - 12 comments


I have some old video tapes that I'd love to convert to digital video, storing the data on DVDs and/or my g5. Is there a good way to do this? Is it possible to transfer commercial video tapes in addition to personal tapes? I'm a video novice, but catch on quickly.
posted by jdroth at 11:29 AM PST - 4 comments

Cat Eating Habits

My cat almost always shows an interest in people food - until you offer it to her, upon which, almost invariably, she will sniff it and look disappointed. This happens even with uncooked chicken and tuna from the can. Also, whenever we open a can, she runs frantically into the kitchen and tries to see up on the counter - she eats dry cat food, and I've tried to serve her wet food, but no dice on that. Do cats really remember a specific food from the past? Is she hoping for something gross I would never buy, like canned pigs feet or something? Or was she perhaps posioned by people food and distrusts it now? She came from a shelter a couple of years ago (found in a motel) so I have no idea what her background is.
posted by agregoli at 9:59 AM PST - 30 comments

Getting Started in the Wedding Business

I've heard that making Wedding Creative Stuff is this crazy ripoff conjob, and I'm all for getting into that. Invites, photography, videography, it's a goldmine! I'm pretty stocked equipment wise with Prosumer-level cameras and video equipment, and I'm a designer by trade. Question is, how do I start out? Should I do some friends' and family weddings for free? Do I have to get cushy with Wedding Planners? And do people really pay so much for the crap I usually see because they're naive or do I have to pull some Car Salesman trickery (i.e. "You only get the photos if you purchase this custom binded book")?
posted by Stan Chin at 9:30 AM PST - 18 comments

What is Fei-Chang?

In my endless pursuit of bizarre new taste sensations, I bought, and ate, a packet of Fei-Chang Flavour Chinese Instant Sweet Potato Noodle. It was pretty good, actually: vermicelli noodles with a salty dark-green powdered stock, not dissimilar in appearance to a pesto of some kind. The ingredients list seemed innocuous: vermicelli, refined sweet potato, potato starch, salt, gourmet powder, sugar spices, vegetable, and the aforementioned feichang flavor powder. So what the hell did I eat? What the buggery bollocks is fei-chang?
posted by chrisgregory at 8:20 AM PST - 6 comments

Where can I live cheap in LA?

Help for a semi-homeless Wendell. [when is there NOT more inside?] [more inside]
posted by wendell at 8:14 AM PST - 10 comments

Anti-Dandruff tips for the winter

Ask MetaFlaker: Dandruff [more] [more inside]
posted by TimeFactor at 7:56 AM PST - 16 comments

iTunes & XML file usage?

iTunes & XML. Whilst playing with my new iPod, I noticed that the iTunes library file is stored in xml. Are there any existing tools/apps/blog plugins that can make use of this file?
posted by MintSauce at 7:33 AM PST - 3 comments

How to prevent our cat from yowling in the middle of the night.

Kitty downers? One of our cats is an older ragdoll. He's generally very sweet and lives to snuggle. About a year ago, however, he started up with night crying - around 3 in the morning he wakes up and will. not. shut. the. &*@#. up. He has access to food, water, clean litter; the vet says there's nothing physically wrong with him. The cat's been sleeping in the basement so that we can sleep. He's not happy with this and yowls disconsolately most of the night, so loudly that we can hear it two floors away. I'd really like to get him back to normal. Any ideas? Experience with kitty sleeping pills?
posted by mimi at 7:00 AM PST - 25 comments

iBook Price Difference

I'm about to buy an iBook - but I've done some research, and the price in the UK is £200 more than in the US! I've got relatives in NY - is it sensible to take advantage of them to get a cheap machine? [MI] [more inside]
posted by ascullion at 1:16 AM PST - 18 comments

February 5

Mars and Venus

With Valentine's Day approaching . . . do men and women want and/or need the same things from a relationship? What do men really want? What do women really want? Do we define love the same way?
posted by onlyconnect at 11:59 PM PST - 12 comments

Dealing with Archives

I'm considering buying a domain, and setting up a personal site. This wouldn't be a problem, really, except that I've got over five years of content on my current personal site in various formats, and I don't want to repeat the mistakes of the past. [Very long, very geeky details inside. Not for the faint of heart.] [more inside]
posted by Jairus at 11:56 PM PST - 7 comments

Building a Check-Out System

Suppose I wanted to build a web site on which a number of items was listed that were available for members of that web site to sign out. I would want the status of items (in/out) to be viewable by people looking to take out items in real time. What would I need to do this and who would I hire to do it? In addition, what would I expect to pay? What's the best way to find such a person?
posted by dobbs at 9:02 PM PST - 8 comments

Decent-sounding, relatively inexpensive computer speakers

Suggestions for decent-sounding but relatively inexpensive computer speakers?
posted by biscotti at 8:55 PM PST - 14 comments

What are some good sources for American political history reading?

AskMefi provided some great answers a few weeks ago to my solicitation for book recommendations. Now for a similar but unrelated question. I have a friend at law school who is an exchange student from Europe. He has had none of the mandated high school U.S. history curriculum that had been drilled into the heads of the rest of us years ago. As such, he would like some background on American political history to supplement our constitutional law lectures and McCloskey and Levinson's The American Supreme Court, which has been assigned for the class. Any suggestions?
posted by PrinceValium at 8:06 PM PST - 5 comments

Banking Conundrum

Is it possible that a financial institution whose name is on a credit or debit card is not the same institution that a merchant would see as the issuing institution? [More inside] [more inside]
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 7:54 PM PST - 10 comments

Mac laptop criteria?

I'm almost in the market for a laptop, and being that I've got a very nice Windows machine in front of me (and that i'm sick to death of it), I'm seriously considering 'Switching'. However, I've got a few questions for the Zealots of the audience: [MI] [more inside]
posted by cheaily at 7:24 PM PST - 18 comments

Wanted: list of canonical, essential mailing lists/discussion groups for web development

Wanted: list of canonical, essential mailing lists/discussion groups for web development, a lá css-discuss. [more inside] [more inside]
posted by weston at 6:07 PM PST - 4 comments

How do I get my landlord to make basic repairs?

Landlord issues! I'm on a month-to-month lease in a duplex and I'm having a terribe time getting my landlord to make basic repairs. I've sent him a letter asking for repairs to be made within 14 days, but he hasn't gotten back to me yet. What do I do next? [More inside] [more inside]
posted by Coffeemate at 6:03 PM PST - 14 comments

Tattoo studio in Chicago?

recommend a tattoo studio in chicago (mi) [more inside]
posted by sugarfish at 5:40 PM PST - 7 comments

locality tax income question - is this right?

I've got a tax question about locality tax. My husband's income for locality tax was $4k higher than his federal and state income. (And as far as I can tell, $4k higher than what he was actually PAID.) Is this common, or is it some sort of mistake? He doesn't have any retirement plans that would be throwing things off. The locality tax ended up being only $69, so I don't know that changing it would save us more than a few dollars... but is this something I should look into further?
posted by Shoeburyness at 5:05 PM PST - 6 comments

Focused on a Game

One for the MeFi Gamer Corps: Are there any decent techniques for staying focused on a particular game? I find that when I pick up a new title I play it like mad for a week and then, finished or not, my attention invariably drifts to something else. What do you do when you want to make sure you see a game to its completion? [more inside]
posted by Monster_Zero at 4:06 PM PST - 17 comments

Hello? Hello? Anyone there?

My sister called me saying that she has gotten these big phone bills the past two months with all sorts of 900 numbers on them. ($900 worth last month.) She has no kids, so I suspect she's a victim of a web dialer. Sure enough, she mentioned picking up the phone and hearing the sound of a modem when she wasn't online. I did some research, and it looks like these are fairly wiley beasts, difficult for even a savvy user to get rid of. I'm scared to send her poking around in her registry. Can anyone recommend a particular piece of software she can run that will clean house for her, without her having to get her hands too dirty? So far, I have told her about AdAware, but it sounds like that won't do the job completely.
posted by badstone at 3:03 PM PST - 10 comments

Can't change brightness settings on DVD with Windows Media

windows media player attack !
I cant change the brightness settings etc when i play a dvd. [more inside]
posted by sgt.serenity at 2:57 PM PST - 2 comments

How do you get rid of skunk spray smell?

Skunk attack! My friend's house had a large family of skunks living underneath it. Dog went after the skunks, and a nuclear cloud of skunk-stink enveloped their whole house, permeating every single plastic, wood, cloth, or food item. Other than burning the whole thing down and starting over, what can she do? [more inside]
posted by pomegranate at 1:37 PM PST - 8 comments

I'm going to be on CNN: how do I keep my bandwidth costs and usage controlled?

I just found out that CNN is going to cover something I did on my website! Despite the anxiety involved in appearing on television, I am concerned that the bandwith on my godaddy account won't be nearly enough to accomodate the massive hits I will probably get. What do I do? Just pay for more bandwith? How much? Please help!
posted by adrober at 12:37 PM PST - 16 comments

What Program for Vector-based Illustration

I'm a Photoshop wiz interested in trying my hand at some vector-based illustration for a change. Which program is best? Is there a free/OSS option that can compete with Illustrator/Painter/FreeHand? And how much of a head-start will my Photoshop knowledge get me in Illustrator vs. anything else?
posted by Aaorn at 12:30 PM PST - 7 comments

Lost Password Windows 2000

How do I gain access to a Windows 2000 computer when I've forgotten the password both to my account and the admin's?

I have physical access (it's here next to me) and it has a disk shared (can't remember if it's C: or a subdirectory, and can't look because it prompts for a password). I have other Linux and Windows machines available on the same network. However, it was kept up-to-date with patches until about 6 months ago. [more inside]
posted by andrew cooke at 12:20 PM PST - 6 comments

How can I export data from SQL Server 2000 to QuarkXPress using ColdFusion?

What's the best way to export data from a SQL Server 2000 database into QuarkXPress 4.11 using ColdFusion 5? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by kirkaracha at 11:59 AM PST - 1 comment

Does Adobe Acrobat 5 work with Mac OS 9.x? If so, where can I buy it?

I need a version of Adobe Acrobat to encode pdf files that will work on Mac OS 9.x. From what I've googled so far, that seems to be Adobe Acrobat 5, but when I go to the websites listed, I can't seem to find tech specs/product reviews that confirm that it actually works in Mac OS 9.x machines. Does anyone have any familiarity with this product and can you confirm that it does actually work in Mac OS 9.x systems? Even better, do you have a source from which I can buy a new, full edition? Price is not necessarily an object....
posted by Lynsey at 11:19 AM PST - 7 comments

Adsense, but better?

Is there a Google Adsense-like service out there that serves web ads (preferrably text, but banners are OK), given keywords from the hosting web page? [yes, more inside] [more inside]
posted by costas at 9:04 AM PST - 7 comments

What are the rates of marital infidelity in western nations?

Can anyone point me to information about rates of marital infidelity in western nations? I'm particularly interested in the United States, but figures on other first world nations would provide interesting material for comparison.
posted by Irontom at 7:35 AM PST - 5 comments

Suggest some classical music.

Classical music advice... It finally dawned on me that the form of classical music I enjoy the most is soloist work such as Pablo Casals performing the Bach Cello Suites or Glenn Gould performing the Goldberg Variations. Anyone have advice for other one musician/one instrument/amazing performance classical works?
posted by machaus at 5:57 AM PST - 19 comments

February 4

Mapping routes with hundreds of stops

I Need Super-Mapquest [More inside] [more inside]
posted by Yelling At Nothing at 10:50 PM PST - 7 comments

Do these red, yellow, and blue swirls mean something?

A Korean friend-of-a-friend, and fellow indie pop devotee, gave me a metal bookmark. Of its many symbols, the most prominent is something like (excuse my ignorance) a yin yang, but with three "swirls," colored red, yellow, and blue. (There is also a fish, a butterfly, and what I think is a Chinese "double happiness" and some hangul writing.) Could someone tell me what this means?
posted by Utilitaritron at 9:40 PM PST - 3 comments

Free or cheap screen capture?

I'm working on a computer manual, and my publisher needs me to take a lot of screenshots. She says they must be 6 inches wide and 300ppi. I don't know of any screen capture programs that can do this. I'm on a PC, and I need an app I can quickly get my hands on (i.e. downloadable) -- preferably free or cheap.
posted by grumblebee at 9:20 PM PST - 24 comments

Hiding a Folder

If several friendly, nosy and very tech-savvy, code-breaking sort of people have access to your computer and you wouldn't wish to hinder their access, but still need to hide, beyond all chance of detection, a folder where you keep your works in progress; innermost thoughts and tentative, early drafts (the kind that could easily be misinterpreted, specially if you write fiction); is there any John Le Carré-approved way of guaranteeing a private patch? I.e. So that they would think it's all open to anyone, but not really? [Mac OSX, if it's relevant.]
posted by MiguelCardoso at 8:01 PM PST - 37 comments

Mysterious referrer log URLs

I'm getting a lot of weird URLs in my site's referrer logs that look like this: wysiwyg://5/http://www.mydomain.com/somepage.php. Anybody know what the heck's going on? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by web-goddess at 7:11 PM PST - 4 comments

Make my USB hub work with Windows 2000

I just bought a USB 2.0 4Port Hub for a Windows 2000 machine with USB 1.1 ports. I'm getting a "This device will not start. (Code 10)" error and none of the devices I plug into the hub will work. I've Googled and found suggestions from installing Service Pack 4 (Which I have already done) to someone suggesting that 2.0 will just not work on a 1.1 port. Does anyone have any suggestions?
posted by jaronson at 6:34 PM PST - 6 comments

Can anyone help me locate Heath Heatley in Great Britain?

Can some kind MeFite in England help me locate a long-lost friend? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by anastasiav at 5:28 PM PST - 11 comments

How do I export email from Thunderbird to Outlook 2003?

How do I export email from Thunderbird to Outlook 2003? Yes, it's the other way around, from Thunderbird's MBOX format to Outlook's PST database. I already tried to using Eudora to import the mail from Thunderbird, and then export to Outlook, but it failed miserably at importing. [more inside]
posted by riffola at 4:20 PM PST - 5 comments

How do I do an advanced search in Apple's Mail program?

Am I missing obvious functionality in Apple's Mail program? Is there an advanced search option I can't find? I'd like to do some serious digging of the 30k or so emails I've gotten in the past year, but I don't see the option [more inside] [more inside]
posted by mathowie at 3:06 PM PST - 7 comments

WiFi network issues when first connecting

I use my work laptop at home, and have to switch network connections from local area connection to wireless network connection. The laptop finds the signal, but I always have to futz with the connection to really make it work. [more tech details inside] [more inside]
posted by jmackin at 2:21 PM PST - 6 comments

Seeking tips on the best practices for maintaining and organizing a website.

I'm looking for tips on the best practices for maintaining and organizing a website. More inside. [more inside]
posted by bondcliff at 11:55 AM PST - 16 comments

Stalker Persistent Despite Restraining Order - Advice?

How to squelch a stalker? More inside. [more inside]
posted by yoga at 11:36 AM PST - 9 comments

Alternative browsers

I want to investigate free web browsers other than Safari for OSX (10.2.8). The most obvious alternative seems to be Firebird, but it doesn't seem to recognise my third mouse-button for tabbed browsing. Does anyone know how to fix this (I'm prepared to look silly), or can anyone suggest an alternative? What shape is Camino in these days?
posted by nthdegx at 11:33 AM PST - 13 comments

XP folder permissions problem.

XP folder permissions problem. [more inside] [more inside]
posted by signal at 11:18 AM PST - 3 comments

What is the Japanese photographer saying in Lost in Translation?

What is the Japanese photographer saying in Lost in Translation? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by mkultra at 10:55 AM PST - 6 comments

Crafts with Kids

Parents! I could use some ideas for various crafts, hobbies, and quiet activities for kids aged 8 through 13. I'm doing some long-term care for a friend, and I want to wean them from the g.d. boob tube. Cheap, quiet, and independent are key factors. TIA!
posted by five fresh fish at 10:37 AM PST - 21 comments

What type of DVD burner should I get?

DVD+R? -R? *R? /R? I'm confused on what type of burner to pick up. [more inside] [more inside]
posted by DaShiv at 10:34 AM PST - 11 comments

Who is this actor in only one scene in Mystic River?

In Mystic River, there's a character who only appears in one scene- talking to Sean Penn about how life was when his wife died while Penn opens a case of beers. The actor is older, and has always seemed to play salty sea captains or the sort. I tried searching IMDB but can't figure out his name.
posted by drezdn at 10:27 AM PST - 5 comments

How can I set up my computer to type a lot of material in grammatically correct Spanish?

So, I want to type in Spanish [More] [more inside]
posted by Yelling At Nothing at 10:24 AM PST - 5 comments

What fictional public domain book would be good for a voice-actress to do?

I'm thinking of producing an unabridged audio book (more for the experience than for money). I have a wonderful voice-actress who is up for it. Now I need to choose a book. I'd like it to be fiction and something in public domain (i.e. a classic). What would you like to hear that hasn't been recorded already (or that's been done badly)?
posted by grumblebee at 9:35 AM PST - 13 comments

Know an efficient way to get wbmasters to change links to my new url?

Does anyone know of an efficient way to get webmasters to change links on their end to reflect a domain name change on my end? [more inside]
posted by anathema at 9:20 AM PST - 9 comments

I'm picking up radio stations on my guitar amp, how do I correct this?

I've just moved to a new apartment and now I can hear a radio station playing through my guitar amp. How do I correct this? [more inside]
posted by Mars Saxman at 9:10 AM PST - 14 comments

Non US resident donating to a US political candidate

Following a link from the blue, I ended up here. What would happen if I, as a non-US resident sent Dean - or any of the other candidates - money? Would it be likely to show up? Could they do anything to me? (I should emphasise that i have no intention of giving him a penny)
posted by biffa at 9:00 AM PST - 4 comments

How do I stay alert at a computer for long periods of time?

What's the best way to stay alert while chained to a computer for nine hours a day? I take regular breaks but still find myself flagging by mid-afternoon. Preferably the answer shouldn't involve too much caffeine or sugar, because I'm also trying to lose weight. [more inside]
posted by bwerdmuller at 5:57 AM PST - 25 comments

Good programming practice suggestions

Inside, I've posted a question about computer programming, regarding organizing class libraries and packages -- and also regarding good programming practices. [more inside]
posted by grumblebee at 5:53 AM PST - 7 comments

Ordering Trans-Atlantic software

Are there any reliable on-line US or Canadian PC software vendors who have no qualms about fulfilling European orders? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by misteraitch at 3:57 AM PST - 5 comments

February 3

Bankruptcy in Canada

Does anyone have any advice, resources or experience they can share on declaring bankruptcy, particularly in Canada? [more inside]
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 10:12 PM PST - 4 comments

Software to track time?

A timekeeping application? I'm looking for an application which makes tracking time spent on something easier. Think something you'd use to record billable hours when you have more than a score of clients and are doing things for them in 15-30 minute slices (not necessarily contiguous) throughout the day.
posted by namespan at 10:01 PM PST - 9 comments

Help me amplify my synth.

What's the best way to amplify a synthesizer when playing with a loud rock band? (More) [more inside]
posted by dhoyt at 9:39 PM PST - 10 comments

Are CD's ripped with iTunes AAC less portable than MP3s?

If I rip my CDs with iTunes, and select the "AAC Encoder," will the files be any less portable than MP3s? Can most MP3 player apps/devices handle them? Are they all intrinsically copy-protected? Are there real quality benefits? (I'm asking on behalf of someone who has already invested serious time in ripping, using iTunes' - you guessed it - default settings).
posted by scarabic at 9:12 PM PST - 15 comments

Musicology: origin of stereotyped "oriental" music

Does anyone know the origins of the little melody used in movies, cartoons and old time radio to indicate all things oriental? (i.e. the beginning of "Turning Japanese")
posted by milovoo at 8:03 PM PST - 7 comments

Renewing Domains

I have a couple of domains coming up for renewal... with Register.com. I'd like to renew with someone else -- is there any trick to it, or do I just go to my new registrar of choice and do it?
posted by me3dia at 8:02 PM PST - 17 comments

I'm looking for a bot to advertise my site and help answer questions on AIM.

I'm looking for a program (a bot) that will help answer questions while at the same time advertising my web site on AOL Instant messenger. An important feature will be for the bot to ask the user if they would like would like to refer the bot to some of their friends. Is there anything like this already out there?
[more inside] [more inside]
posted by banished at 7:37 PM PST - 9 comments

FTP client recommendations

Does anyone have a good recommendation for a FTP program? [more inside]
posted by billybunny at 6:40 PM PST - 29 comments

TV Notification Service

I'm looking for a TV notification service. Something that will email / (dare I dream?) IM me when shows I want to watch are on. Additional challenge: I need it to support Canadian satellite (ExpressVu) TV. [more inside]
posted by frenetic at 6:23 PM PST - 5 comments

Switcher recommendations?

Just made the switch to Mac OS X (12" Powerbook) -- my first Apple. For the Mac crowd -- any "standard build" recommendations? Favorite app, apple script, etc that I should be checking out? Just installed Office, but that's about it so far.....
posted by mmangano at 4:53 PM PST - 29 comments

I'm looking for interesting music whose theme is spirituality.

I'm looking for interesting music whose theme is spirituality. Whether it's Jim Nabors singing "Just a Closer Walk with Thee" or Tibetan throat singers chanting "Om Mani Padme Hum", I want to know about it. [more inside]
posted by vraxoin at 2:17 PM PST - 42 comments

How do I start an internet radio station?

How do I start an internet radio station? What kind of software and hosting do I need? Who do I have to pay for rights, and how much? What else do I need to know?
posted by timeistight at 2:00 PM PST - 6 comments

Good Online Websites for Searching Rentals?

Big changes coming for me and my family - a big move is involved (from Seattle to Boston). Seeking advice from those who have tried online sites to locate apartments/rental houses in faraway locations. Any sites stand out over others? I plan to gather as many potential listings as I can online, since I'll only have one week to actually look in person. I'm trying the obvious ones first (rent.com, boston.com want ads, etc.)
posted by kokogiak at 1:17 PM PST - 16 comments

Flash and .exe file

Flash quandary: A previously defunct Flash project I left unfinished is coming back to life. This is good. What's bad is that I only have one .EXE file projector file, not the .FLA, not even a .SWF. Is there any way I can bring the .exe file into Flash so I can finish the project?
posted by signal at 1:11 PM PST - 4 comments

New Home Networking

You are building a new home. What networking will you provide between your office/computer/router and a media closet in your living space? Between your office and a living room desk? Between that desk and the media closet? Details ? [more inside]
posted by Dick Paris at 12:19 PM PST - 7 comments

Houston Lawn Problems

Oh, my lawn, my beautiful lawn. . .could anyone help me with a problem lawn in Houston? [more inside]
posted by LittleMissCranky at 11:52 AM PST - 6 comments

What are some good, general tech news sites?

I'm looking for some good, general tech news sites...something like Wired used to be before they were bought out. Any ideas?
posted by JoanArkham at 11:05 AM PST - 11 comments

What's a good book for a novice wine connoisseur?

Looking for a good book as an introduction to learning about wines. This will be a gift to a novice who wants to learn the basics and then proceed from there.
posted by turbanhead at 10:51 AM PST - 3 comments

Freelance Copy Editing

Freelance Copy Editing- my wife is hoping to make some money on the side with her mad English skillz. [more inside] [more inside]
posted by COBRA! at 9:57 AM PST - 13 comments

Is there a Buddhist equivalent to mass cards?

Mass cards. Can I get an equivalent type of thing for a Buddhist prayer service? (more inside) [more inside]
posted by lilboo at 9:48 AM PST - 2 comments

3D interactive geometry software

Do you know of any 3D interactive geometry software? I would like to have the power of Cabri / Geometer's Sketchpad in 3D.
posted by MzB at 9:33 AM PST - 0 comments

How to do automated text searches?

Metafilter, as a source to journalists for story ideas and also as a reservoir of good writing for plagiarists, has been discussed on a recent Metatalk thread. How could I acquire a script (I don't have much of a clue about this, technically), for my Mac (OS 9.2.2 and OS 10.2.8) to run automated searches looking for matchups on chunks of text from my 500 (or whatever it is) pages of Metafilter commentary ? (more inside)
posted by troutfishing at 9:11 AM PST - 13 comments

Where did the phrase "bow-chicka-wow-wow" originate?

Meme origin question: The phrase "bow-chicka-wow-wow" has become the standard way to signify "porn movie music." I remember seeing a stand-up comic in the late '80s/early '90s who spoke that phrase, and that was what got my circle of middle schoolers using it, although I doubt that was the real progenitor. But it's too specific of an expression to have been developed independently. Thoughts?
posted by blueshammer at 7:53 AM PST - 18 comments

Search for DMV information online

Is it possible in this interweb thingie to do a search on DMV information? I know there's a trend with certain bars where they will scan the barcode on your driver's license, and bring up your photo/DOB/etc. to prevent underage drinking...so obviously the information is considered public. I'm thinking specifically of a query using either driver's license number or your vehicle tag number.
posted by luser at 7:29 AM PST - 7 comments

How do I make .htaccess show up in Jaguar's Finder?

Mac question: How do I get my .htaccess files to show up in OS X Finder? (I use OS X 10.2.8, will be upgrading to Panther before summer.)
posted by brownpau at 6:49 AM PST - 9 comments

Judging books by their covers

What are your favorite book jacket or cover designs? What do you look for when you judge a book by its cover? I'm doing a design favor for a friend and need some inspiration. It's a word-heavy, non-fiction book targeted at the more brainy types. Any classic, timeless cover that makes you caress its spine every time you see the volume?
posted by TurkeyMustard at 6:40 AM PST - 17 comments

Looking to push the boundaries of acceptable airport security humor.

I just bought a new aluminum laptop case, and I'm trying to come up with clever things to stencil on the outside that won't get me sent to Guantanamo Bay should I enter an airport. [more inside]
posted by mecran01 at 6:25 AM PST - 25 comments

Where do you buy an AC power adapter? In this case, Input: 120V, 60Hz, 18W // Output: 9VAC, 1000mA

The power adapter (Linksys Power Adapter AD 9/1C) for my Linksys router died last night. I discovered that the obvious places (like Radio Shack) don't carry AC power adapters. Where does one go for a replacement?
Input: 120V, 60Hz, 18W
Output: 9VAC, 1000mA
posted by BobJordan at 6:03 AM PST - 9 comments

Choosing Polling Places

How do precincts determine where their polling places are going to be located? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by eilatan at 5:40 AM PST - 11 comments

February 2

My truck's hard to start sometimes

I'm having problems with an 87' Nissan truck (5-speed). Recently when its been sitting for a day or so, me engine doesn't want to turn over at all when I turn the key and all I get is this "click" sound that is identical to how my old car sounded when my alternator went out. The thing is, if I turn the key a few times, it'll start and its fine for the rest of the day when I try to start the car. This "clicking" thing has happened a few times now, and I don't think its the battery (lights and everything work perfectly, and no problems with engine turning over when no click sound). Any ideas what might be wrong (gut instant says alternator is going, but just seeing if any other ideas).
posted by jmd82 at 11:47 PM PST - 21 comments

Photoshop Question

question about photoshop, help ! [more inside]
posted by sgt.serenity at 8:34 PM PST - 7 comments

Best Advice for cellphone & service (northern california)

I'm in the market for a new cell phone, and I'm trying to find some knowledgable reviewers (particularly of carriers and coverage). [more inside] [more inside]
posted by keswick at 7:53 PM PST - 9 comments

What is the best semi-pro photoprinter?

Is there any consensus "best" semi-professional photoprinter? I'd like to buy something that would rival or exceed the quality of prints that one might get from ofoto or shutterfly. [more inside]
posted by mert at 7:39 PM PST - 11 comments

How do I disassemble my Toshiba Satellite 1110 laptop?

How do I disassemble my Toshiba Satellite 1110? I can't find the hidden screws or clips. (General laptop-disassembly tips and tricks also appreciated. I gotta epoxy the case back together before I start losing bits!)
posted by five fresh fish at 7:38 PM PST - 3 comments


Does anyone here know how to make a homemade Slurpee?
posted by @homer at 4:22 PM PST - 9 comments

Client-Side Web Stats

Does anyone have experience with client-side (cookie and JavaScript) web stat programs? Because they don't need to analyze massive log files, they seem to be the way to go... but I have yet to find an open source and/or cheap or free version. If you have experience using either a hosted solution or anything else that is client side, please post.
posted by cell divide at 3:47 PM PST - 8 comments

Business Names

Can a business have two names? [more inside / warning: bureaucratic question] [more inside]
posted by malphigian at 11:55 AM PST - 5 comments

Pronounce Forte

What is the correct pronunciation of "forte?" [more inside] [more inside]
posted by Seth at 11:24 AM PST - 43 comments

How do I find a mechanic I can really trust?

How do I find a mechanic I can really trust? [more inside...] [more inside]
posted by anastasiav at 11:12 AM PST - 20 comments

Is There a Cultural Meaning Behind Pig Paraphernalia in Jewish Households?

Odd question: In high school, I went to the house of a Jewish friend. The kitchen was completely decked out with pig paraphernalia, which kind of surprised me, given kosher living and whatnot. In the grumble grumble years since then, I've met a couple of other folks that have seen similar motifs in Jewish kitchens. Is there a reason behind this, or is it just random decorating?
posted by Ufez Jones at 10:55 AM PST - 8 comments

Postfix Fix?

I installed OS X 10.3.2 from scratch on my Imac and it works great. Then I enabled Postfix using "postfix enabler" and I was receiving email and it was a glorious moment.

However, during my attempts to enable procmail, I broke something and even reverting to the backed up postfix config files won't fix it, nor will re-running postfix enabler.

Can I restore Postfix to its pristine state without reinstalling 10.3, or can I reinstall 10.3 and retain all of the stuff I installed using Fink?

Many thanks. I would ask this question on a newsgroup, but that postfix crew are a bunch of meanies. [more inside]
posted by mecran01 at 10:50 AM PST - 3 comments

how much should a small organization should pay for IT support and services?

I need some help finding general numbers/info about how much a small organization (around 50 employees) should expect to pay for IT support and services.
posted by yeahyeahyeahwhoo at 10:47 AM PST - 4 comments

What firewall should I choose for my new PC with dial-up?

Just got a PC at home. On a dial-up service and would be grateful for any suggestions for a good firewall/protection package (preferably free).
posted by Frasermoo at 10:29 AM PST - 21 comments

What advice do you have for raising a bilingual child?

Raising a bilingual child. I'd be grateful to hear advice, experiences or recommended resources for raising a child in a dual-language home. [more inside] [more inside]
posted by Ljubljana at 10:22 AM PST - 17 comments

How do I embed something in epoxy?

Is there a trick to embedding something in epoxy, or do you just do it? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by o2b at 10:20 AM PST - 9 comments

Water bottle cleaning filter (heh)

I'd like to clean my Sigg water bottle, but don't feel like paying 10 bucks for "cleaning tablets." Any tried and true alternatives?
posted by DenOfSizer at 10:20 AM PST - 9 comments

February 1

Social Security Cards

Why aren't you supposed to laminate your social security card?
posted by drezdn at 9:56 PM PST - 15 comments

Identify this sample: vocal dialogue on DJ Shadow's 'Stem/Long Stem'

Obscure song question: On DJ Shadow's first full length album, there's a song called Stem/Long Stem. About halfway through he samples some tv show or movie or record with a man talking about being taken to jail for parking tickets or something. DJ shadow doesnt list who this is in the liner notes. Would anyone possibly know where this originally came from?
posted by Slimemonster at 9:15 PM PST - 9 comments

Do those bead car-seat covers work?

Do those wooden-bead car seat covers you see taxi drivers using (at least in NYC) really work? Are they comfortable for long drives?
posted by gottabefunky at 8:19 PM PST - 12 comments

Why do the tires on my little used vehicle lose pressure?

I've recently taken my truck out of active service and am only driving about once a week, often less. The tires always seem to be low when I do take it out. It's not the first time I've noticed an infrequently-used car losing tire pressure. Why does this happen? And what can I do to ensure that, if I put my car into long-term storage, it doesn't wind up with 4 complete flats?
posted by scarabic at 7:47 PM PST - 8 comments

Suggestions: songs of misunderstood intent.

I have an idea for a theme CD- songs of misunderstood intent. Any suggestions? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by oflinkey at 7:09 PM PST - 40 comments

Is there any way to make an orphaned, numberless Nokia useful?

I got a new cell phone, and my old one was deactivated and handed back to me. Is there any way to make an orphaned, numberless Nokia useful again (for when Sprint's coverage fades, like it has all this weekend) without signing a contract for a monthly fee? TracFone makes you buy a new phone, which is the opposite of what I'm looking for. Prepaid long distance cards seem to be only for land lines. Am I missing the magic google search term?
posted by Alylex at 6:25 PM PST - 9 comments

Where can I find these Nike City Knife II sneakers?

I'm going crazy trying to find the Nike City Knife II sneakers I wrote about here (yes, self-link, sorry).

Niketown sent me to Paragon. Paragon sent me to Niketown, or online. Google sent me to my own site! I'm going apeshit!

These shoes must exist, they must: my web buddy Rik Abel spotted them in Brighton (UK) of all places. Since AskMeFi has been so remarkably efficacious in the past - accurate responses, response time on the order of ~10 minutes - I figured I'd give you guys a try before packing my quest in entirely.
posted by adamgreenfield at 3:16 PM PST - 8 comments

Advice on buying a new computer system?

My computer guy, who has rebuilt and destroyed my system for the past year, has given up. He's handed me a $500 refund check, and this week I've got to get a new system. I'm stuck between a HP, Compaq, and an Emachine, all at about $600 with exact same features. Question 1 is, which brand is better in the long run? [Question 2 inside] [more inside]
posted by moonbird at 2:00 PM PST - 28 comments

Dog peeing on peoples legs

Why has my dog started to pee on people's legs in the dog park? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by drobot at 1:55 PM PST - 15 comments

Glasses or Contacts

Spectacles only? I got a copy of my glasses prescription from my eye doctor, and it says "Spectacles only". I have an existing copy of my contact lens prescription, complete with measurements. If I keep the same numbers but substitute the new sphere measurements, can I order contacts with this prescription? [more inside]
posted by anildash at 10:10 AM PST - 12 comments

What is the best way to deal with dishwashing sponges?

Home economics 101...What is the best way to deal with dishwashing sponges? They get moldy so quickly, and I never know where to keep them: hanging out in the sink (stays too damp)? On the chrome beside the sink (can create a mess)? In a little bowl beside the chrome (still too damp)? I have been told to microwave them upon every use, or to put them in the dishwasher (although I have also been warned against this), and to boil them/bleach them to keep them clean. Also: should I use the rough green pads for everything? Should I get a sponge on a stick?

Any insights or stories of sponge strategies are appreciated. Thanks.
posted by macinchik at 9:55 AM PST - 20 comments

Black Flag Font

I'm trying to track down a copy of the font used on the Black Flag album covers. I've seen this question asked on a few forums, but no answers.

Freeware would be ideal, but I'd consider buying a copy.
posted by backOfYourMind at 5:37 AM PST - 11 comments

Los Angeles without a car

Los Angeles without a car. Suggestions? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by deaddodo at 2:32 AM PST - 14 comments