April 2004 Archives

April 30

EEBO Database Access

I'm doing research for a paper, and am running low on time. It turns out that my college (Goucher college), does not subscribe to a database I need access to. The database is: EEBO : Early English Books Online. If any of my fellow students on metafilter can help me out please send an e-mail to the address in my profile. [more inside]
posted by Grod at 10:24 PM PST - 5 comments

Where can I get RAM for an old computer?

Looking to get some RAM for an older machine; the motherboard specs say it wants 168-pin 3.3 volt SDRAM; I'm wondering if this is still made (is this the same as some early PCxxx RAM?), or if I'm going to have to do some digging... If it's out of production, where could I find a 128-meg stick or two?
posted by kaibutsu at 9:36 PM PST - 7 comments

How can I stop a collection agency when I don't owe?

If someone has a collection agency after you for money that you believe you do not actually owe, what can you do about it? I'm specifically concerned about how to stop letters and phone calls, and how to avoid credit report smears.
posted by bingo at 7:05 PM PST - 7 comments

Help me understand why people write blogs and journals.

Why do people write blogs and/or journals? Is it a fad? When will it end? Non-rhetorical, more inside. [more inside]
posted by daver at 5:07 PM PST - 26 comments

Recommendations for Thailand trip by someone interested in textile artists and vendors?

My mother is spending a few weeks traveling around Thailand, partly with a group of fellow weavers, spinners, dyers and knitters and partly on her own. She's very interested in textiles and wants to visit Thai textile artists and vendors. I've suggested that she shop in Chiang Mai, where she will be for a few days, and the villages in that area, but Chiang Mai and Chatuchak Market in Bangkok are the extent of my Thai knowledge. Does anyone here have more specific recommendations for her trip?
posted by luriete at 3:23 PM PST - 3 comments

Going to Paris

Off the beaten chemin: I'm going to Paris. I've been before & done the museum/Notre Dame thing. All types of recommendations accepted. I'm staying in Oberkampf, but am not averse to the traverse.
posted by dame at 2:46 PM PST - 11 comments

How Spam Works

A question about SPAM. It's a new trick and I'm wondering how they do it. (more inside.) [more inside]
posted by Jonasio at 2:03 PM PST - 22 comments

New Orleans

Inspired by the success of my Disney thread, I'm asking for more tourism advice. We're going to New Orleans next weekend. We're staying near Bourbon Street, and I'd like to see some good live music, in the bluesy-rock and/or Zydeco genres. Any ideas on that, or other must sees?
posted by MrMoonPie at 12:39 PM PST - 12 comments

Analytical Statistics Clarification

Psychological statistics experts needed! I have to write my thesis and I need help deciding on the statistics to use for my analysis. I have ideas, I just need clarification {more inside} [more inside]
posted by ajpresto at 12:25 PM PST - 6 comments

Deleting a Swatch

Adobe 1.5.2 (Mac OS 9x). Deleting a swatch... I have an RGB document with a single full-color image and two spots (Blue and Black). I'm converting the document to CMYK for print: I've swapped out the RGB JPG for a CMYK TIF, the Black swatch is fine, and now I want to delete the Blue (RGB) swatch and do a global replace for the Blue (CMYK). But InDesign isn't allowing me to delete it, nor to modify.

Suggestions? Adobe doesn't support 1.5.2 any longer, and their online help has been purged of relevant documents.
posted by silusGROK at 12:22 PM PST - 4 comments

Reprints or posters of Warhol Mac Ads?

Where can I find a cheap reprint or poster of one of the Apple Macintosh screen-print ads done by Andy Warhol?

There are posters of other works, such as the "Marilyn" screen prints, available at the Warhol Store, but none of the Apple ads.
I'd like to have one to put up in my computer room/office, but I don't want to pay the $10K required for the "real thing". [more inside]
posted by mrbill at 12:15 PM PST - 5 comments

Democracy Questions

Can a free people in a democratic country that has grown to such an enormous power remain to its historically told ideals of basic human rights, government from and for the people? Could the desire for control of that power be great enough to collapse a free society? Is humankind enslaved to war?
posted by the fire you left me at 12:13 PM PST - 22 comments

I have files which continue to appear in Apache but can not be deleted because they supposedly do not exist.

FTP help: I have some files on an external server (Apache) that I am unable to delete because "there is no such file or directory". Yet, mysteriously, they remain. [mi] [more inside]
posted by o2b at 11:47 AM PST - 6 comments

Is there a review aggregator for London theatre?

I'm about to head off to London and I want to see some good, serious theatre. I'm VERY careful about what I see (theatre being expensive), and I like to read many reviews first. Instead of buying 30 newspapers and magazines, is there a site somewhere that collects or links to multiple reviews of each current show?

PS. I'm really looking for reviews, but if you want to recommend a specific show, please note that I prefer classics to modern plays. And I really like classics when they're done withOUT any obvious conceptual twist (i.e. I DON'T want to see "Hamlet" set on the moon.)
posted by grumblebee at 11:05 AM PST - 8 comments


Can anyone show me to a good place to check how many/which sites link to my site?

I tried using link:[mysite] on Google, but it doesn't seem very reliable. Some links of which I've known for months don't even appear, others that still exist disappear, etc.
posted by NekulturnY at 10:22 AM PST - 8 comments

Does sign language have anything like a rhyme?

Does the concept of "rhyme" exist in sign language? [more inside]
posted by freebird at 10:15 AM PST - 10 comments

looking for 3rd party merchant account

How's Charge.com for a third party merchant account to accept credit card payments online? [more inside]
posted by brownpau at 9:31 AM PST - 3 comments

HTML Tables

Basic HTML question re. using tables for no frills layout: if I have a centred table with just one or two TR rows with say 3 TD cells in them, and keep sporadically adding stuff to the cells in the bottom row so that they become humungously long, will something eventually break? Anyway, are tables cool for layout? Or should I be thinking about learning something else? [more inside]
posted by carter at 7:37 AM PST - 37 comments

Receipts in Outlook

Is there a way in Outlook 2002 to assign read receipts to specific email addresses in my address book? For work, I send out emails to certain people that I want to make sure get read. However, I don't want to blanket everyone with read receipts because they are annoying.
posted by Godomatic at 7:26 AM PST - 2 comments

Term Life Insurance

We've talked about Health Insurance a few times - what about Term Life Insurance? I'm +40 years old with two kids and would like a bit more insurance than my job provides (basically 1 year salary). Should I go with a place like Reliaquote and just pick the best offer? Or is there a better approach?
posted by dhacker at 6:25 AM PST - 2 comments

Group Behavior

Psychology/Sociology Q [I think?] Does anyone else experience participatory inhibition when immersed in a like minded group? For example, a creative person becoming unusually shy/quiet within a team of creative people working on a [design] task? Lurkers on MeFi or other online communities might be another example. Or, the opposite: a creative person's creativity amplified [uninhibited?] in the presence of less creative people?

Is it a matter of personality/psychology? Is it confidence/self assuredness? Is it alterable? Imaginary?!

Sources for further reading and help clarifying the question appreciated.
posted by yoga at 5:55 AM PST - 6 comments

Proxy-Authorization: Basic [authentication]; how do I do it?

I'm trying to get my application (VB, but that doesn't matter) to connect to the internet and support proxy servers that require a username and password. The former is easy, the latter not. What I'm doing is sending Proxy-Authorization: Basic [authentication] in the header (where [authentication] is "username:password" base64 encoded) with each request. However the proxy server keeps reporting error 407 (authentication required). I've read the RFC's, I've read google groups but I have no idea what I'm doing wrong. Any ideas?
posted by ralawrence at 5:21 AM PST - 2 comments

What Does It Take to Become a Private Investigator (in Texas)?

A friend of mine here in Texas is wild to become a private investigator. I did some searching, and as far as I can tell, at least in this state, you need a good amount of previous law enforcement or security experience. I've seen some shady-looking "Become a P.I. in two weeks!" websites, but I don't trust 'em. Anyone have any inside info on what it takes to become a professional dick?
posted by majcher at 1:50 AM PST - 3 comments

Wedding jokes/one-liners

What's the best joke/ one-liner you've heard in a speech at a wedding? I'm getting married this year and it's getting to be speech-writing time; the books and websites I've found on this so far have all been quite corny. Does anyone have any gems out there?
posted by adoran2 at 12:25 AM PST - 24 comments

April 29

Introduction to genetic algorithms? And texts on using genetic algorithms for automatic music composition?

I've been playing around with the idea of using a genetic algorithm for automatic music composition, but I can't seem to find a decent introduction/reference on the subject -- the best I've seen is a few relatively high-level academic papers. Could anyone direct me to a good source, or even give a brief overview? Thanks! [more inside]
posted by Krrrlson at 9:16 PM PST - 10 comments

What are some really good books on modern art or artists?

I really enjoy art, particularly modern painting. I just read Russell Martin's Picasso's War: The Destruction of Guernica and the Masterpiece That Changed the World, and was only vaguely satistifed. Can any of you recommend some really good books on modern art or artists?
posted by gesamtkunstwerk at 8:50 PM PST - 9 comments

Title of One Man Show from the 1980s

In the 1980s, pbs aired an off broadway performance (at least I think it was off broadway) that featured a one man show.

The show was about a character trying to write a work report, from his apartment. Unfortunately, the character's low attention span kept distracting him in various entertaining ways, which created many laughs for the audience, but infuriated his boss, who would call him on the phone in between bits.

After so many years, I could be wrong on every single detail, but the show's vibe was fairly unique (for tv at that time), so I'm hoping some one might recognize what I'm talking about, in spite of my poor description.
posted by Beholder at 6:45 PM PST - 9 comments

Multiracial Places to Live

AskMefi, what would you say are the best places to live, for those of multiracial descent? NYC, Los Angeles, and the Bay Area are all good, but where else have people found acceptance and feel comfortable?
posted by jare2003 at 6:09 PM PST - 47 comments

Please sir, write my code.

Any MeFi perl/cgi programmers feel like writing a few lines of code?

I need to add a function to an existing script, which looks like a piece of cake if you know perl.

Given a $newstring and a file of records, each consisting of a count and a string delimited by a space:

201 this.thing
23 that.thing
14 someother.thing

I need a function to check whether $newstring already exists in the file. If so, increment the count. If not, add a new record to the file with a count of 1. Finally, sort the file in descending order by count.

Maybe 5 minutes for you. Learning perl first for me. If it would be easier with fixed length counts like 0000201, that is fine, too.

If this is inappropriate for Ask MeFi, my apologies. I'll take it over to answers.google.
posted by Geo at 5:01 PM PST - 10 comments

More info needed about maze book

A while back I was looking into Eisner Award winning (Talent deserving of wider recognition) Comic Book artist Jason Shiga's site, and I came across the following quote:

"This comic was inspired by the maze-maker/mathematian, Greg Bright. At the age of 23 he had dug a 5 acre human labyrinth by himself. But he is probably most well known for what Guiness has deemed the World's most complex maze. For the past 10 years he's been working on a maze book like no other...pathways would wind through various holes die cut into each page. Last I heard, his project was approaching 1,000 pages."

I want to find out more about this book. More inside... [more inside]
posted by adamkempa at 4:22 PM PST - 6 comments

Should I grow a neckbeard?

My shaving inevitably irritates or cuts my neck, even though I only shave at most every other day. I'm thinking about letting it grow into a neckbeard to supplement the Amish look I currently have. Is this merely mildly detestable or an all-out wrong? I'm not looking for shaving tips.
posted by angry modem at 3:46 PM PST - 32 comments

HTML Resume

When submitting a resume in html format, how much formatting is appropriate? Would a bit of embedded CSS be overkill? [Slightly more inside] [more inside]
posted by Zonker at 3:27 PM PST - 10 comments

Leading International Trips

I'm looking for job opportunities leading semester abroad trips or similar international educational experiences. I've done research and am continuing to do so on Google, but so far the two best organizations I'm aware of and have spoken to have not come up at all in my searching.

Before we start, I am not looking to teach English in China, Japan, Korea or elsewhere. I want to take a group of people to one or more countries for purposes of exposure, cultural exchange, and personal growth. My primary area of interest is Latin America, though I am willing to go almost anywhere (except, oh I don't know, Baghdad) in the world if the position is right. Responsibilities can include academic instruction, but don't have to -- i.e., I would also lead volunteer-work trips.

Your suggestions or leads are appreciated.
posted by whoshotwho at 1:59 PM PST - 4 comments

How do you expand a premise into a story?

Creativity question: How do you expand a premise into a story? More inside.... [more inside]
posted by Miles Long at 1:39 PM PST - 10 comments

Help me pick an online brokerage

Online brokers...there's about a zillion of the darn things. Any of the Mefi gang have experiences, good or bad, that they'd like to share to help me pick one? I'm not a day trader, I won't be doing huge amounts of transactions, but I'd like to be able to get away from the seriously high commission fees I'm paying for buy and sell orders through my current broker. (Especially since they do nothing but place the order...it's not like they offer advice or anything.)
posted by dejah420 at 1:10 PM PST - 8 comments

Bad Keyboard

Th 'e' ky on my laptop is misbehaving a lot. I took it off, but there is just a rubberisd nobble undr there. What should I do? Can i fix th thing by taking th laptop apart? shall I just typ funny? Hlp?
posted by twine42 at 12:59 PM PST - 8 comments

Buying a Duplex

I'm thinking seriously about buying a duplex and living in the bottom unit. Have any of you ever done this? What are the downsides, other than the tenant/maintenance issues?
posted by pomegranate at 12:36 PM PST - 10 comments

2D -> 3D

Making a 3-D box out of several 2-D images: is there any software out there that makes this relatively easy/painless? Small shareware apps or steps in Macromedia or Adobe applications preferred.
posted by namespan at 12:34 PM PST - 4 comments

How can my laptop share my desktop's broadband?

I have a (WinXP) desktop with a broadband connection, and a laptop with a WiFi card. My school doesn't allow wireless routers. I'd like to set it up so that my laptop can connect wirelessly to my desktop and piggyback on that connection, without a router. What equipment do I need? Are there some terms I should Google for instructions? [more inside]
posted by Aaorn at 12:26 PM PST - 12 comments

Buying a Bike

Two-part question about buying a bike. Part the first: I want to get a good quality road or hybrid bike. What's your recommendation for brand and/or model to check out and/or avoid? B) If you're in Toronto, where do you recommend shopping? My price range is C$600-1000 (about max of us$750). If you're not in Toronto, is there an online shop you can recommend for buying and having a bike shipped here? Main purpose of the bike is exercise and will almost exclusively be ridden on city streets. [more] [more inside]
posted by dobbs at 11:48 AM PST - 15 comments

Graphic Novels

I'm looking for graphic novels to read and am hopelessly out of the loop. Years ago my favorites were the Alan Moore Swamp Thing Collection, Sandman, Hellblazer, Daredevil: Born Again, Dark Knight Returns, Arkham Asylum. Can anyone suggest any essential graphic novels in that vein from the past ten years? [more inside]
posted by dhoyt at 11:41 AM PST - 21 comments

Car Performance

What's the biggest factor in a car's performance through different conditions? (more inside) [more inside]
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 11:28 AM PST - 12 comments

Is it a spambot or is it an ***hole?

Someone (or something) has been leaving comments on my site. Can someone help me determine whether it's a spambot? [More Inside] [more inside]
posted by timeistight at 11:27 AM PST - 6 comments

Convertible Bed in NYC

I live in NYC, I have a small bedroom. I'm hoping to find some sort of convertible bed that will allow me to maximize my space... [more inside]
posted by o2b at 10:58 AM PST - 9 comments

History, Culture, and Origin of Chillout Music?

Can someone explain chillout music? Not so much what it is, but the history, the culture. Can anyone explain where all this chillout, downbeat, DJ-but-not-club music is coming from? Why are most in compilations? Are there big artists? When did this first come about? And is this big in Europe? Fruitless googling produces this BBC site that kind of explains it, if you are already familiar with the culture, which I'm not. I know big names only because they repeat on compilations and only know the music. [more inside]
posted by geoff. at 10:42 AM PST - 17 comments

Is there a programmer mentoring community online?

Is there an online community or web site that mentors new programmers? One in which the student is guided through the different phases of development of a small, but not insignificant program. If one doesn't exist, would it be a worthwhile endeavor to create a mentor community?
posted by grefo at 10:38 AM PST - 5 comments

Chestnut Plain Font

Can anyone point me to a font called Chestnut Plain? I've looked all over and I cannot find the thing. I need it in Windows, either TrueType or PS. If not, where's a good place to find fonts?
posted by vraxoin at 9:52 AM PST - 2 comments

Name that Lifetime movie!

Want to help with an obscure Movie/TV quote that's slowly driving me mad? [more inside, honest] [more inside]
posted by Monster_Zero at 9:19 AM PST - 15 comments

Time Like a Slow (Flowing) River?

Some years ago, I read a book called something like "Time Like a Slow (Flowing?) River". It was the sequel to another book in which environmentally indignant aliens had conquered Earth to save it from humans and placed strict restrictions on earthlings until they became better environmental stewards. People had to travel by solar powered paddleboats, abandon fossil fuels, etc.
I have had no luck on Google or Amazon (and it's not this). Does anybody know the name or author of either of these books?
posted by signal at 9:12 AM PST - 3 comments

Rack Ears (for 19" Rack) for a Consumer CD Player

I want to mount "rack ears" on a consumer CD player and install it into a standard 19" equipment rack. Do people sell aftermarket rack ears? Where do you get them?
posted by Mars Saxman at 8:48 AM PST - 4 comments

Piano music for wedding reception

Looking for suitable songs to be played on unaccompanied piano at a wedding engagement party. Ideal requirements include one or more of the following: romantic, classy, lounge/cocktail, film soundtrack, 1920s-1960s. Thanks! [more inside]
posted by carter at 7:48 AM PST - 11 comments

April 28

I have a virus. Can you help?

Virus Question: I have something nasty. It closes any type of anti-virus application I install, closes regedit if I try to get in there, prevents access to anti-virus websites, and yes, there's [more inside]. [more inside]
posted by banished at 11:22 PM PST - 15 comments

Music Listener and Player | Milwaukee, MI | Spring 1998 - present | Salary $0

How do you emphasize non-conventional experience in a resume? [mi] [more inside]
posted by drezdn at 10:49 PM PST - 12 comments

How do I move from SC to Canada?

So I want to move to Canada at the beginning of next summer. I was wondering if any of you have made a similar trip, from the USA to Canada, and could provide me with some info on the move. [more inside] [more inside]
posted by lazaruslong at 9:48 PM PST - 16 comments

What is the song featured in this Norwegian cruise ad?

Over the past few months, I have occasionally seen a commercial for a vacation cruise. I can't recall the name of the cruise, but Norwegian fiords are featured prominently. What really has my interest is the song featured in the ad. It's a classic example of trying to remember a song, but not being able to, and it's driving me crazy. The tune has an ethereal quality to it, and the singer is female. If anyone has even the vaguest idea of what I'm talking about, please end my suffering, and tell me who sings the damn song!

posted by Beholder at 9:40 PM PST - 7 comments

Best content management software for website management?

What is the best free or low-cost content management software for Web site management?
posted by tranquileye at 8:08 PM PST - 7 comments

Pocket PC WiFi Connection

Until tonight, my Pocket PC and NetGear CF card have behaved perfectly - not one lick of trouble installing or running. But tonight: "Unable to obtain a server-assigned IP address. Try again later or enter an IP address in Network Settings." (mi) [more inside]
posted by davidmsc at 7:52 PM PST - 2 comments

How Do I Figure Out What Cryptically Named Files on Usenet Mean?

When downloading multi-part binary posts from the VCD/SVCD groups on Usenet, there's always a zillion of them labelled only with gibberish like: "vcd-gnd1.r01" or "ctk-2.part01.rar" I know how to join and decode rar files. I just don't know what the heck's been posted, and don't want to blow 100s of megs of bandwidth to find out. I'm sure these are codes for something. Posting "clans" perhaps? Do I have to lurk on some 12-year old's IRC channel to figure out what these are? [more inside]
posted by scarabic at 5:03 PM PST - 17 comments

Free file transferring web site?

Google-fu has failed me. I remember seeing a link on AskMe to a site that allows free transfers of up to 50mb of data that someone else can download with a password. Now I can't find it in the archives or through Google. Help.
posted by karmaville at 4:27 PM PST - 5 comments

Adventure on the high seas! I want to read more!

I have recently read An Island to Oneself and Confessions of a Long Distance Sailor and really enjoyed both of these. Can anyone recommend some other online (non-fiction) stories about adventures on the seas or deserted islands?
posted by maceo at 3:13 PM PST - 15 comments

TV tuning and reception

TV Tuning: why is 13 OK, but 9 not so good? Can I improve reception by adding antennas? (Tune in for more) [more inside]
posted by daver at 3:08 PM PST - 9 comments

Movable Type & Oracle - Can They Work Together?

How easy is it to get Movable Type to work with Oracle? I would like to use this at work but it wouldn't be acceptable with a MySQL or Berkeley DB. How difficult would it be? Should I just wait and hope that it's supported with Movable Type version 3?
posted by adoran2 at 2:55 PM PST - 4 comments

SQL Injection Security Issues

SQL injection security under php/MySQL. What specific issues do I need to deal with? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by y6y6y6 at 2:19 PM PST - 18 comments

Copyright law and mistakes in text.

I'm proofreading an OCR file of a 25-year-old book, and after I fixed it up the company (whose history it is) said I had to put back in all the original (non-OCR) mistakes (words spelled wrong, incorrect tenses, text inconsistencies, semicolons used miserably) for copyright reasons. I told them it's their copyright, and they can do whatever they want with it. No, they say, it's a historical record. It's also their money, so I'll do whatever they want . . . but are they right? Are misspelled words and poor punctuation a copyright issue? [more inside]
posted by LeLiLo at 1:58 PM PST - 20 comments

Does anybody know of a decent browser for Mac OS 9?

Does anybody know of a decent browser for Mac OS 9? I'm stuck on it at work, using an unofficial hack of Mozilla 1.3.1, and I'm getting left behind. [more inside]
posted by bonaldi at 1:25 PM PST - 7 comments

why does 420 mean pot?

I've been wondering... where did the term "420" come from, and how did it come to popularity? Most of all, why do folks on Craigslist think they can ask for it / advertise that they have it, without getting busted?
posted by vignettist at 11:47 AM PST - 15 comments

Where do you go to download MP3 or WMA format documentaries, comedy shows and interviews?

I'd love to use my MP3 player to listen to quality voice programming like BBC Radio 4, but I don't want the hassle of recording each streamed file separately. Where do you go to download MP3 or WMA format documentaries, comedy shows and interviews?
posted by iffley at 11:41 AM PST - 2 comments


The Chillow might be a great help in enduring the hot Texas summer, but it could also be a gimmick. Are any metafilter readers familiar with this product?
posted by Beholder at 9:42 AM PST - 6 comments

Recommendations for a free POP email account?

Recommendations for a free POP email account? All I can find is lists of providers, no real commentary.
posted by occhiblu at 9:32 AM PST - 16 comments

I'm looking for an application which would let me save settings across several control panels in Windows XP.

I'm looking for an application which would let me save settings across several control panels in Windows XP. I'd be willing to pay a reasonable amount. [Example inside] [more inside]
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 9:20 AM PST - 9 comments

hardware/software to transfer VHS to DVD

I need suggestions on a good hardware/software combo that will allow me to transfer some stuff from VHS to DVD (along with any other advice). [more inside]
posted by RavinDave at 9:17 AM PST - 7 comments

What's the best nighttime cold remedy?

Tylenol? Contact? Advil? Who makes the best nighttime cold remedy? I haven't slept for three nights because of my running nose and cough. UGH!
posted by grumblebee at 8:52 AM PST - 17 comments

Is Juvenon bollocks?

Mefi biologist types : is this bollocks? I suspect so, but hope springs eternal. [more inside]
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 1:26 AM PST - 13 comments

April 27

Can I keep batteries in their charger indefinitely?

I have a Sony Clié that takes alkaline batteries. Sick of the cost of fresh AAAs, I recently bought a charger and 4 Ni-MH batteries (1.2V 700 mAh), intending to keep 2 in the Clié and 2 in the charger.
Question: if I keep the unused batteries in the plugged-in charger permanently, will they explode or otherwise be ruined? If I keep them in the charger but keep it unplugged, will they lose their charge? The charger has a "charging" light which doesn't go off as long as it's plugged in, and has a "fast charge" light which goes off after 5 hours.
posted by signal at 8:20 PM PST - 10 comments

How do I go back to the old version of Kerio personal firewall?

I've been a long-time user of Kerio personal firewall. Due to recent circumstance, it's now gone. How do I get it back... [ah, but there's more!] [more inside]
posted by five fresh fish at 7:59 PM PST - 7 comments

Customer Service Nightmares

AT&T Wireless screwed me, how can I get revenge (or at least minimize the damage to my credit report)? How have others dealt with customer service nightmares in the past? [MI] [more inside]
posted by freshgroundpepper at 7:54 PM PST - 16 comments

Can I get DSL without having a home phone line?

So can I get DSL without having a home phone line or what? [more inside]
posted by danwalker at 6:32 PM PST - 15 comments

Mortal Kombat

I've been feeling nostalgia lately for my violence-drenched childhood and I was wondering if anyone knew of a website somewhere that has free movie files of all the fatalities from the Mortal Kombat games (especially II) The last time i saw them, I got very wistful. It was a little disturbing.
posted by Slimemonster at 5:37 PM PST - 1 comment

Recommend a site for gambling on the Kentucky Derby.

Can anyone recommend a good gambling website in order to bet on the Kentucky Derby? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by rorycberger at 3:55 PM PST - 11 comments

Is there anything equivalent to Print2Pict for OS X?

I've got a Mac with OS X 10.2.8 that used to run OS 9. I have this one job I do for a friend that required me to use Print2Pict with this one app in order to generate a PICT file that I could then cut pieces out of. Just this week, the app (Finale Notepad) was updated to run on OS X. I still need the ability to generate an editable PICT file, but Print2Pict is not available. Is there anything equivalent to Print2Pict for OS X?
posted by tommasz at 3:35 PM PST - 10 comments

PageMaker-InDesign Compatibility

Regarding PageMaker/InDesign compatibility: I am the production editor at my university's yearbook and we have traditionally done all our design work in Pagemaker, I prefer InDesign. Is there anyway to save InDesign files as pmds or open them in PM or is it a one way thing?
posted by normal_molly at 3:29 PM PST - 5 comments

What's msiwin84.exe, and how can I get rid of it?

What the hell is msiwin84.exe? Somehow this has been installed on my computer in c:\windows\system. Zonealarm warned me that it was trying to access the internet and act as a server. And then about 300 identically sized exe files (136 KB each) with random filenames showed up in c:\. Symantec virus scan didn't pick anything up, and google comes up empty for variations of the filename. I deleted questionable files with today's date stamp, and rebooted - am I okay now?
posted by PrinceValium at 3:20 PM PST - 10 comments

Comics Publishers

Does anyone have any suggestions about self-publishing comics, or possibly publishers who might be interested in submissions? [more inside...] [more inside]
posted by jpburns at 2:47 PM PST - 9 comments

How much should I pay for a website community?

Website costing. How much should I pay for a website community? [More Inside] [more inside]
posted by seanyboy at 2:29 PM PST - 8 comments

Slow download speeds with P2P programs

I'm experiencing very slow download speeds when using either WinMX or Kazaa Lite. [more inside] [more inside]
posted by kchristidis at 2:15 PM PST - 10 comments

Leg Muscle Tightness

I've got a tightness in my left leg that bothers me when I run. It seems to eminate from behind my knee and I only notice it when I'm running. It may be related to a pain in my left glut that I get when I sit in the car for too long.

I blame it to an over-done set of leg presses about three weeks ago, and it hasn't gotten any better or worse. It's not debilitating, but it makes mile four a real chore. Anyone had a similar ache? Did it go away eventually?
posted by Mayor Curley at 12:49 PM PST - 9 comments

How does one become a freelance writer?

How does one become a freelance writer? I've written for money before, but it's all been for assignments that fell in my lap. How do I begin to seek out places to write for? Do I just put together a portfolio and submit to various publications? Any tips would be appreciated, as I'm basically starting from square one. [more inside]
posted by Zosia Blue at 12:46 PM PST - 11 comments

Origin of the phrase "good times, good times..." ?

What is the origin of the phrase "good times, good times..." (said in a mock wistful tone)?
posted by mkultra at 12:13 PM PST - 25 comments

Photoshop CS Books for OSX

Photoshop CS (OSX) books for almost-beginners: I'm hearing good things on "Photoshop CS Bible" by Deke McClelland.
Photoshop CS (OSX, too) for professional photographers: I'm hearing good things on "Adobe Photoshop CS for Photographers: Professional Image Editor's Guide to the Creative Use of Photoshop" by Martin Evening.
Any other suggestions? thanks
posted by matteo at 11:38 AM PST - 6 comments

I degragged my HD and now I'm getting the error message 'rundll32 is not responding' when I shut down.

A couple months back, I defragged my HD. Since then, I can't shut down (I'm using Windows 2000 Pro) without getting "rundll32 is not responding." Is there an easy answer?
posted by davebush at 10:04 AM PST - 3 comments

What does a TV producer actually do?

I understand that in movies, the title of Producer is mostly about providing or arranging the financing & talent for a project. How about for a sitcom? If you watch Friends, there's around a half-dozen producers of varying stripes listed in the credits. What's the role of a producer in the context of an episode of a TV series?
posted by stupidsexyFlanders at 9:48 AM PST - 8 comments

Virtual Memory problem

I need help with Virtual Memory Problems (actual question inside....) [more inside]
posted by anastasiav at 9:39 AM PST - 5 comments

Can I save my dried-out cigars?

I have some cigars I received as a gift a few weeks ago. I didn't place them in a humidor (I didn't have one) and are now they are all dried out. Will putting them into a humidor and rehydrating them return any sort of quality back to them? Is it worth it?
posted by jstew at 9:38 AM PST - 8 comments

Ghost Music

Why do my speakers play music when no music is playing? (More inside) [more inside]
posted by bkeaggy at 9:13 AM PST - 8 comments

Refinishing Hardwood Floors

I'm gearing up to re-finish my hardwood floors this spring. My question is about stains and polyurethanes. Can I use an oil-based stain with a water-based poly coating over it? I can't seem to find any water-based stains, and I want to be able to put multiple coats of the poly down, and I only have about a week to do this (2 small rooms), so I need to take into consideration the quick drying times of the water-based finishes. The guy at the paint store said I could do the oil stain with the water poly as long as I let the floors cure first, but walked away from me when I asked him what that meant. Is a week enough time to sand and finish the floors of two rooms?
posted by archimago at 9:12 AM PST - 6 comments

What are the must-sees in London at the end of May?

I have two and a half days in London at the end of May. What are must-sees? Also, anyone want to meet a group of travelling American bloggers at a pub for a drink the night of May 29?
posted by LeiaS at 8:43 AM PST - 24 comments

Error message when accessing my own blog

I can't look at my own weblog. I'm using Mozilla, and I get a message that says:

The file / cannot be found. Please check the location and try again.

I've tried to access it through the very few people who've linked me, and I get the same message. I've tried typing in, and I get the same message. What's going on? [more inside]
posted by interrobang at 2:08 AM PST - 16 comments

Books about unrequited love?

I've just finished both David Gilmour's Sparrow Nights and Scott Spencer's Endless Love, each for the second time. They're even better than I remember them. What's your favorite book about unrequited love? I'd like to keep up the streak.
posted by dobbs at 12:48 AM PST - 17 comments

April 26

Roasted Salted Nuts

Thanks to a MeFi friend, I postally exchange my favourite weakness (American, Virginia-grown peanuts, the best in the world) with theirs ( >70% cocoa dark chocolate). As the next exchange is coming up and my scant experience of U.S. nuts is limited to Beer Nuts and Planter's Cocktail Peanuts, I need to know what other roasted, salted, expertly packed American nuts are worth trading for? [More inside.] [more inside]
posted by MiguelCardoso at 11:09 PM PST - 34 comments

Keeping it Cool

What's the best way to cool down an upstairs apartment without air conditioning? (mi) [more inside]
posted by lola at 7:45 PM PST - 29 comments

Why can't my PC access eBay suddenly?

My s.o. needs help with a technical problem on his home PC: "I cannot open any eBay page on my Internet Explorer. This just started last night. I can open all other internet pages, just none related to eBay. Is there a virus that specifically prevents people from opening eBay pages? This is really frustrating, I have run virus and spyware checks and found nothing, but I cannot think of anything else that could prevent access to a certain domain. Please help."
Anybody got any ideas (besides, obviously, switching to a Mac)?
posted by turbanhead at 7:41 PM PST - 9 comments

Making a gameplay video

I've got to take some short sequences of gameplay off of the outputs of a gamecube, an old nintendo, and a SuperNES, and produce a CD with the video on it. Since all of the machines have RCA out, it seems pretty straight forward, right? What equipment will I need, and are there any pitfalls I should be aware of?
posted by crunchland at 7:39 PM PST - 3 comments

Need suggestions for new coffee-making machine

Coffee klatch-ure: suggestions for a new machine. [more inside]
posted by jazzkat11 at 7:19 PM PST - 13 comments

Where can I interact with people interested UI design for group blogs?

Is there an interactive site, preferably a wiki, where people can suggest & discuss community-blog design & features? (more inside) [more inside]
posted by Gyan at 3:52 PM PST - 8 comments

Looking for this song

Over the weekend I saw The Umbrellas of Cherbourg. I was particularly taken by the song "I will wait for you", and as I searched for interesting versions of the song I found a reference to one by Scott Walker. (More Inside) [more inside]
posted by shotsy at 3:41 PM PST - 9 comments

Self-employed, needs advice about dental insurance

Anyone (in the US) have any suggestions/war stories for dental insurance? Self-employed now, gotta shell it out. And, um, what exactly constitutes a previously existing condition in your experience?
posted by gottabefunky at 3:34 PM PST - 2 comments

How is a smoke detector so loud?

What is the component in a smoke detector/fire alarm that can produce such a high volume noise from a 9v battery? (more inside) [more inside]
posted by i_am_joe's_spleen at 2:48 PM PST - 9 comments

Real-life experiences regarding EMI fields and an ICD?

I am the proud new owner of an ICD (implanted cardiac defibrillator). Google turns up a rather grim future for me devoid of major electrical devices. However, does anyone else here have one or know someone who does, and what has been your or their real-life experiences regarding EMI fields?

I ask because my current job is maintaining industrial robots, and I doubt the doc is going to allow me to return to work in any capacity when I see him again for the follow-up. BTW, I have had the thing for less than 48 hours and that sucker has already fired once. I don't think it was its full rating of 30 joules, but damn!!!
posted by mischief at 1:54 PM PST - 9 comments

How should I greet someone older and of higher status in Korean?

Any MeFites speak Korean? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by falconred at 1:53 PM PST - 6 comments

Cell Phone Recommendations

After many years of dogged resistance, I'm taking the cell phone plunge. I don't want to use it much beyond emergencies and logistical stuff -- e.g., calling someone from the road to give them my ETA. (Ring, ring... "who's there?" "More inside!") [more inside]
posted by scody at 1:12 PM PST - 20 comments

Desktop RSS reader for XP?

What's a good standalone (not web- or browser-based) rss feed reader for WinXP?
posted by signal at 11:46 AM PST - 8 comments

Resume Writer Ad on Mefi

A good while back on MeFi there was a textad for a resume writer/helper site. I know this is a long shot, but I was intrigued by the service, and now can't find the site. Anyone? (I seem to remember it being a neatly designed, clean site with lots of white space and some green, but that probably doesn't help much).
posted by dagny at 11:21 AM PST - 5 comments

I need an English translation for a song lyric I have only in French

ForeignLanguageFilter: What tools (if any?) are available on the Internet for translating materials that are not prose into English? Specfically, I need an English translation for a song lyric I have only in French. Neither my pathetic high school slacker French nor the usual suspects are producing anything useful... Any suggestions?
posted by JollyWanker at 10:55 AM PST - 9 comments

Artsy Portland. The OTHER artsy Portland.

I'm moving to Portland, Maine and wondered if anyone had recommendations for neighborhoods. I'm looking for places that are funky, artsy and not-so-sterile. [more inside]
posted by machaus at 10:26 AM PST - 13 comments

Mac G4 restarts on its own

I have a Mac G4 with a similar problem to some recent questions - it restarts when I try to shut it down. (more inside) [more inside]
posted by mdn at 8:17 AM PST - 4 comments

If you come up whenever someone Googles your name, how can you find out if anyone else has the same name?

If you've more or less Google-bombed so that you come up whenever someone googles for your name, how do you find out if someone else has your name? (explanation inside) [more inside]
posted by Katemonkey at 8:09 AM PST - 22 comments

Computer restart issues

Trying to solve the problem of my computer spontaneously restarting. (more inside) [more inside]
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 6:52 AM PST - 16 comments

April 25

Is JB Weld epoxy overrated or am I using it wrong?

Is JB Weld overrated as hell or am I using it wrong? [more inside]
posted by IshmaelGraves at 10:09 PM PST - 11 comments

Cicadas in NY?

The cicada invasion , will it reach new york ?
posted by sgt.serenity at 7:46 PM PST - 13 comments

Trouble with Access

Trouble with Access driving me insane...{more internally} [more inside]
posted by ac at 7:44 PM PST - 7 comments

Reverse DNS

How does reverse DNS work? [more inside, related to web hosting and anti-spam measures] [more inside]
posted by malphigian at 7:41 PM PST - 5 comments

Apple/Safari Question

Apple/Safari question: I am at wits end with a strange problem. Every time I download certain files from my webserver (gzip'd tar'd gpg'd backup files), safari renames them. The files are named in the following format: filename.tar.gz.gpg. Safari renames them on the fly to filename.tar.gz.gz, which it then tries to unzip to predictable results since they haven't been unencrypted yet. Each file needs to be renamed after being d/loaded, which is kind of annoying. I turn to you Ask-metafilter; any ideas?
posted by tcaleb at 4:53 PM PST - 9 comments

UK Speed Traps

Google has let me down - are speed trap detectors legal in the UK? Some sites seem to think they were made legal in 2001 but some sites say they are legal to own but not to use. Can someone tell me what's correct?
posted by twine42 at 3:36 PM PST - 6 comments

What's for Dinner?

Are there any companies that will deliver gourmet dinners in america? Not ready made, but make it yourself if that makes any sense?
posted by Mossy at 3:31 PM PST - 10 comments

"If a dollar was a chicken, would the chicken be evil?"

I have a friend from the UK who talks about a commercial with Samuel L. Jackson talking about the evils of money, and then wondering, "If a dollar was a chicken, would the chicken be evil?" The friend has no clue what the commercial was about or for, hasn't seen it since, and googling turns up nothing conclusive (perhaps we're searching the wrong things.) Got any ideas?
posted by precocious at 3:04 PM PST - 9 comments

Mexican Food in NYC

Wow, there really is no good Mexican food in New York. Why? (more insidious). [more inside]
posted by Sinner at 2:21 PM PST - 57 comments

What are good ways to translate foreign webpages into English?

Any way to get good translations of foreign sites or articles for MeFi or elsewhere? Based on this discussion with matteo in MeTa, there's a whole world of good stuff on the net we can't read, because it's not in English. Any ideas? (Google and Babelfish translations leave a lot to be desired) [more inside]
posted by amberglow at 1:54 PM PST - 5 comments

Excel Help

Using Excel 2001 for Mac, is there any way to set up a column that can autocomplete using data from another column? If not, is there something that can handle this sort of thing?
posted by the biscuit man at 11:49 AM PST - 6 comments

Monterey or Carmel?

Monterey or Carmel? Inexpensive weekend hotel/B&B recommendation? Preference is close to the water, less than half a mile, night life not important, yet without blowing my credit card to bits. [NMI]
posted by billsaysthis at 11:31 AM PST - 3 comments

Why do many CDs on eBay, etc. have punched barcodes?

Why do many CDs on eBay, Half, etc. have punched barcodes? I tried a Google search, but that just gave me a lot of pages selling/auctioning CDs with punched barcodes. Check out the second item on this page.
posted by punishinglemur at 11:25 AM PST - 8 comments

Old canned spam?

Why are some spam messages predated, often by days and occasionally by years (I just deleted two that were supposedly from the year 2000)? I'm sure there's some technical means to send them that way, but what do they get out of it? How likely am I to see a penis enlargement offer that's hidden on page 66 of my inbox?
posted by languagehat at 9:35 AM PST - 16 comments

How should I introduce my puppy to my three terriers?

Any tips on introducing a puppy to his three (!!) new brothers and sisters? They are all small dogs, but they are wily...[more inside] [more inside]
posted by Harvey Birdman at 6:52 AM PST - 6 comments

Dying Over My Couch

My couch is depressing me. Someone who shall go unnamed (but his initials begin with "mr. taz") convinced me that we should buy a white couch - with predictable results. It's upholstered in a lightweight canvas type material, and I would like to do something (on the cheap) to change the color. I'm almost tempted to just take it outside with a big bucket of dye and paintbrush (and/or roller), but a) I know nothing about dying, and b) I'm sure that there are serious issues about the dye "setting" so that it doesn't rub off on clothes. (more particulars inside). [more inside]
posted by taz at 1:38 AM PST - 13 comments

April 24

What's wrong with my Trinitron monitor?

Woke up this morning and my Sony Trinitron monitor looked weird. The colors are washed out, almost like a layer of white was put on top of it and the opacity was dropped way down. I degaussed it, turned it off, pulled the plug... nothing helps. Any ideas or is my wondermonitor dead?
posted by dobbs at 11:41 PM PST - 5 comments

Good photojournalism sites?

Good photojournalism sites? [MI] [more inside]
posted by malphigian at 11:09 PM PST - 6 comments

Who else is creative buddies with David Cross, Jon Brion, Aimee Mann, et al? And is there other stuff similar to theirs?

For the past ten years or so there has been this kind of clique based in L.A. that is producing a lot of movies/music I really like. My impression is that it includes Bob Odenkirk, David Cross, maybe Laura Kightlinger, Aimee Mann & Michael Penn, Jon Brion, Jack Black, Sarah Silverman, etc. Question is, who else hangs with these people that I have not mentioned, so I can check out what they're doing, and is there any other good stuff from this group that I should see/hear? (besides the obvious stuff).
posted by stupidsexyFlanders at 10:46 PM PST - 12 comments

Play Misty For Me

Science Question of the Day: Does anyone know how those home mist machines work? This site says something about negative ions, but it sounds sketchy. Can anyone give a good explanation of how it works? There is something electricity-related going on inside, but what exactly?
posted by statisticalpurposes at 6:59 PM PST - 10 comments

Downloading CD Art

I'm bourning some copies of CDs (that I own), and would like to label them with the original artwork. Not having a scanner, what's a good online source for searching/downloading CD-art?
posted by signal at 6:37 PM PST - 8 comments

Accessing a Movielink account from the UK?

My friend has just moved from the US to the UK. She still has a Movielink account, and would like to continue to download her movies. However, the Movielink site bounces her away, because of her UK IP. Anonymizer.com won't cut it. Any suggestions?
posted by armoured-ant at 6:04 PM PST - 2 comments

My computer doesn't start

My computer doesn't start. That's bad. I recently picked up a barebones system, and got it all up and running, but now I just get a couple of beeps. [more inside] [more inside]
posted by notsnot at 5:07 PM PST - 6 comments

My computer keeps restarting

My computer keeps restarting. This is bad. Please help (more inside). [more inside]
posted by lychee at 3:31 PM PST - 8 comments

How do I rip a DVD into MPEG or AVI?

Best way to rip video from a DVD into MPEG or AVI? I need to grab scenes from a movie and monkey with them in Premiere (Windows).
posted by vraxoin at 2:39 PM PST - 5 comments

Help me find funk music I would like.

Help me find funk music I would like. (more inside) [more inside]
posted by Kwantsar at 1:45 PM PST - 18 comments

How to find a small, slow leak in a large inflatable children's toy?

Anybody have advice on how to find a small, slow leak in a large inflatable children's toy? [more inside]
posted by grateful at 1:42 PM PST - 8 comments

Group Health Connecting Their Callers to My Phone?

I have reason to believe Group Health is prank-calling me. [More Inside] [more inside]
posted by Hildago at 1:29 PM PST - 5 comments

Nuclear Spinthariscope or something like it, in the UK

I want to buy someone a spinthariscope but want them to have something to look at through it. However the only firm I can find selling a legal alpha-emitter ( Polonium 210) is in the US and won't ship to the UK. What could I find or purchase in the UK which would emit alpha radiation and put on a good light show for a spinthariscope?
posted by Flitcraft at 1:10 PM PST - 3 comments

Selling CDs

I have about 25 CDs I want to get rid of. They're all in good condition - like new liner notes, jewel cases, and only one or two have scratches, and they both play fine. Where can I sell them online? I'd prefer to just get rid of them all at once, I don't want to do eBay.
posted by punishinglemur at 12:01 PM PST - 13 comments

CD ripping format advice

It's time to take the plunge and rip my hundreds upon hundreds of CDs that are only getting scratchier by the day. So, what format should I digitize them in? (More inside.) [more inside]
posted by _sirmissalot_ at 11:02 AM PST - 23 comments

Images are getting left out of my Pagemaker newsletter.

Pagemaker question- I know little about print publishing as I work mostly with the web, but I do put out a newsletter for a local natural foods market and have so far been able to fake it through most challenges. My printer guy complains that the images are sometimes not available within my document. What is the proper way to link these if you are then throwing the publication on disc. I use PM 7.0, but save as a .P65 file because my printer has only that version. Thanks!
posted by pissfactory at 8:31 AM PST - 4 comments

WinXP Pro Email Client question

Which WinXP Pro Email Client will play nice with close to 800 megs of emails? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by romakimmy at 7:34 AM PST - 12 comments

I need an offsite backup service that works with OS X and can handle frequent changes.

I am looking for a good offsite backup service, I don't really feel comfortable storing important files on a web server. It doesn't really have to be automatic, but that would be nice. If it does have software it needs to be OSX friendly. This data is important, and not replaceable, but not like checking account numbers and things. The data also changes somewhat frequently, so burning a dvd and throwing it in a safety deposit box is not an option. [more inside]
posted by rhyax at 12:07 AM PST - 5 comments

April 23

How can I fix my iPod remote?

I have an iPod remote (past warranty), and unfortunately the insulation is breaking right where the cable joins the plug. I've considered heat-shrink tubing, but the funky plug shape makes this impractical. Is there a way to fix it?
posted by O9scar at 9:31 PM PST - 6 comments

Are there any good driving directions sites that let you avoid major highways?

Are there any good direction generating websites that allow you to avoid major highways? MapQuest used to do it but... not any more as far as I can see. [more inside] [more inside]
posted by asterisk at 9:11 PM PST - 9 comments

My life sucks

My life sucks. But the one good thing about being broke and unemployed is that you can do it anywhere. Assuming I were debt free with no commitments, where's a nice new place to go to scratch out a subsistence living as either a plumber, a waiter, or a dishwasher? Anywhere on the planet, English- or French-speaking (or anything easier than Russian or Chinese -- I'll have a few months to learn a new language as I pay my way toward escape), must have at least paved roads and indoor plumbing, and if the population hates Americans, I'd prefer that they do so abstractly rather than overtly. Canada, Iceland, and Belize seem kinda promising....
posted by BitterOldPunk at 7:18 PM PST - 45 comments

My Palm Zire 71 needs a dust bunny removed; should I send it in, buy something new, or do it myself?

There's a dust bunny under the camera lens on my Palm Zire 71, which has been making my pictures rather annoyingly diffuse. It's out of warranty, so repairs will cost at least as much as I estimate this thing's resale value to be in its current condition. Should I bite the financial bullet and send it in for servicing, cut my losses and sell it as damaged goods, or throw caution to the wind, grab my geek toolkit, and attempt my own repairs?
posted by brownpau at 7:14 PM PST - 3 comments

Wireless Networking Standard With Higher Frequency Than Cordless Phones?

80211b vs 80211g: According to my research, both are using the 2.4ghz freq as are cordless telephones. Isn't there a wireless networking standard that uses higher frequencies so that there's no interference from cordless phones?
posted by Fupped Duck at 7:14 PM PST - 9 comments

need alphonso mangoes in the US

A desperate question... where can I order alphonso mangoes online/phone for delivery within the US?
posted by Gyan at 6:19 PM PST - 11 comments

What's the best website log analysis software?

What's the best choice for log analysis software? We have our own server. We'd like live stats tracking as well as e-mailed reports to multiple addresses on a weekly and/or monthly basis. We've been using LiveStats. Version 5 was OK, Version 6 hasn't been as useful Version 7 looks good, but software always seems to demo good. We're on IIS and SQL if that matters. We just want basic, simple reports -- Referrals, Unique Visitors, Page Views, Click stream Analysis (if it's not too cumbersome to use which is probably asking a lot). One of the things that looks nice about Version 7 of LiveStats is they're using cookies and JavaScript to track unique visits and sessions which seems more real than the IP addresses that most others seem to use.
posted by willnot at 4:24 PM PST - 2 comments

Picking Sides

Your significant other is in a disagreement with someone and looks to you to back him/her up. You think the other person is right and your s.o. is wrong. Quick: what do you do?
posted by gottabefunky at 2:39 PM PST - 33 comments

Composting Advice Needed

I'm going to start composting, and my city sells this composter for $25. Anyone ever use this beastie? Got any composting advice?
posted by RakDaddy at 1:47 PM PST - 5 comments

Belgian gifts?

My Boss's husband is going to Belgium for work on short notice. She can't go and wants a really good gift. What should he buy?
posted by jmgorman at 12:27 PM PST - 13 comments

Why should I vote in the election if I'm uninformed?

In the gray, Mathowie wrote, "it's my hope that all Americans take part in the democratic process ... I'm kinda pissed that American Idol logs half as many votes as the entire last presidential election every wednesday night. Get out there and vote, people!" I admit that I haven't voted in ten years. Why should I? [More inside.] [more inside]
posted by grumblebee at 10:56 AM PST - 96 comments

Recommend time tracking software?

Can anyone recommend time tracking software? --> [more inside]
posted by stupidsexyFlanders at 10:31 AM PST - 9 comments

Has anyone used Traffic Logic for webpage stats?

Has anyone had any luck with Traffic Logic for boosting company webpage stats? Any praise or horror stories would be appreciated.
posted by Zosia Blue at 10:17 AM PST - 0 comments

What to do in San Juan, Puerto Rico

What should not be missed in and around San Juan, Puerto Rico? [more inside]
posted by anathema at 8:55 AM PST - 5 comments

Scandinavian travel tips?

Scandinavia. Any travel tips? Must-sees? Ways to avoid vacating my savings account while I'm there? [...] [more inside]
posted by Succa at 7:45 AM PST - 12 comments

Building an Extensible System

So here's a delightfully geeky programming question for those in the know: I need to build a system, preferably in PHP, with a highly extensible plug-in system. And I don't know where to start, although I figure an OO-orientated approach might help. Any ideas?
posted by bwerdmuller at 6:52 AM PST - 6 comments

Mortgage advice/opinion relevant to the UK?

Mortgage advice/opinion relevant to the UK? (More inside) [more inside]
posted by squealy at 6:17 AM PST - 2 comments

Recommend some good online games?

What is the best game to play online these days? And don't say Counterstrike.
posted by Orange Goblin at 2:52 AM PST - 36 comments

recommendations for autobiography/memoir/family history software

Give my parents some recommendations for autobiography/memoir/family history software. [mi] [more inside]
posted by gluechunk at 1:23 AM PST - 2 comments

Choosing a mattress

Since I'm about to graduate and move on with life, I'm thinking of ditching my 15 year old twin mattress. What should I look for in a new queen-sized mattress, and how should I pick one? How do I know I'm not getting ripped off? I've been trying to look at ads in the newspaper and I've gone into a few stores, but everything seems to be designed to be confusing, and nothing seems to compare across manufacturers ... or even in the same manufacturer's line. Help! [more inside]
posted by SpecialK at 12:52 AM PST - 12 comments

April 22

Moving to the UK

I am a dual Canadian-UK citizen who has not resided in Britain for more than fifteen years. This autumn, I will be returning to live in the UK. What should I do for travel insurance, and are there any other bureaucratic hoops I should be jumping through? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by Marquis at 9:29 PM PST - 11 comments

Problems Uninstalling RealOne on OS X (So I Can Reinstall)

I've been having trouble with RealOne on OS X [MI] [more inside]
posted by Gnatcho at 8:49 PM PST - 9 comments

How do I make digital music sound more lo-fi?

I'm after tips for processing audio to "dirty it up" - techniques and software [more inside]. [more inside]
posted by Jimbob at 8:01 PM PST - 9 comments

Is there an easy and secure way to scan and store important identifaction online?

An acquaintance who travels overseas frequently would like to scan and store her important identification (passport and driver's license) along with her credit cards, and store the images securely online. We would like to make the documents easily accessible to her through a Web page, but otherwise secure. I have offered her some space on my shared server, and while I have some ideas about how to secure things, suggestions would be useful.
posted by tranquileye at 7:03 PM PST - 22 comments

I'm looking for a compact digital camera with a fast wide angle lens.

I'm in a twisty maze of compact digital camera reviews, all alike ... and I know digital cameras have been asked about before ... but I'm looking for recommendations for a basic compact digital camera, preferably with a lens that is fixed-length, wide angle (<=35mm), and fast. I can't really find one, apart from the new SONY Cybershot DSC-P43, but they have to be out there, surely? Basically, I want something digital to replace my beloved Yashica T4.
posted by carter at 6:34 PM PST - 11 comments

Travel in ancient Greece.

Travel in ancient Greece. [more inside] [more inside]
posted by evinrude at 4:58 PM PST - 17 comments

Haircut in NYC

Where to get a decent guy's haircut in New York? I don't want a buzz cut, and I don't want to spend more than 20 bucks or so. Painful past history.
posted by muckster at 3:42 PM PST - 18 comments

Looking for a product that will allow small network equipment to be mounted in a standard 19" rack

Does anybody know if a product exists that will allow small network equipment to be mounted in a standard 19" rack? [:--more inside--:] [more inside]
posted by littlegreenlights at 2:40 PM PST - 5 comments

Why do some people have a tendency to have the same facial features?

Why do some people have a tendency to have the same facial features?
posted by Keyser Soze at 2:10 PM PST - 32 comments

Simple clip-art of a white daisy with a yellow center

OK, I give up. I have been googling and googling, but can't seem to find what I'm looking for: a simple clip-art/icon of a daisy. No colored background, just a white daisy with a yellow center - black outline (or similar) is OK. Picture or drawing is fine, but it needs to be a very simple design that will look cute printed on white background. Free is preferable since this is a one-time thing. I've already tried most sites that feature clipart in the url, plus countless others. If any of you can think of a good site, I'd really appreciate the help ~
posted by widdershins at 1:54 PM PST - 9 comments

Can I watch the ice hockey world championships from Prague on any tv station in the US?

Can I watch the ice hockey world championships from Prague on any tv station in the US? It starts April 24th. I've been searching high and low for information on it, and the only thing I can seem to find is mentions of a "world cup of hockey" in August on ESPN -- a tournament I've never heard of with a two year history and no obvious (to me) reason for existing. I'd love to see the world championships, but I only have standard cable and broadband internet... any tips?
posted by edlundart at 1:43 PM PST - 4 comments

ThinkPad Configuration Woes

While I own multiple Windows and Apple desktops, I need to buy a Windows laptop, after only buying iBooks and PowerBooks for 5 years. I'm looking at the ThinkPad, but there are literally thousands of configurations to choose from. Can someone help me with the big questions? [mi] [more inside]
posted by o2b at 1:26 PM PST - 11 comments

Travelling to Okinawa or Taiwan

Advice on traveling from Seattle or Vancouver, B.C. to Okinawa or Taiwan cheaply. [General advice appreciated, three specific queries inside.] [more inside]
posted by jeffmshaw at 1:18 PM PST - 8 comments

Can anyone tell me what it says on this coffee mug?

Can anyone tell me what it says on this coffee mug?
posted by Frasermoo at 12:51 PM PST - 19 comments

Searching for Blogs on Google

Has finally Google begun shunting blogs out of their results, or lowering them in their ratings? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by Shane at 12:28 PM PST - 8 comments

Weird Google Results with "Exit" and "Leave"

Can someone please explain to me why a Google search for the terms exit and leave return www.vickiandstacey.com as the number two result, and why the cached page that Google has for that site looks just like Google?

(This came to my attention after reading this post over on kottke.org) [more inside]
posted by topherbecker at 12:13 PM PST - 4 comments

Content cataloging script recommendations?

Content cataloging script recommendations? [more inside]
posted by jca at 12:13 PM PST - 2 comments

Is this gas tank leak dangerous?

Gas tank leak. I drive a 96 Honda Accord with about 100K miles on it. I've been noticing a gas smell in my car for the past 200 miles or so, more noticable when I fill-up though I assumed it was because I got gas all over me. How immediately dangerous is this? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by jessamyn at 12:09 PM PST - 8 comments

Tube Amp < $500. Recommendations Wanted.

Can anyone recommend a tube (valve) amplifier kit in the ~ $500 (US) range? I was going to buy one of the Passion Audio Kit i11 amps but the company that offered them, Rotac in Quebec, quit selling them April 1st.
posted by tommasz at 11:21 AM PST - 3 comments

Looking for speakers with optical digital input

I want to buy these speakers, but it seems they are only available from Japan, and other far-eastern countries. Does anyone know of anywhere I can buy some that will ship to the UK (Amazon JP don't), and have a site in English? (Or be easily decipherable by a stupid Brit?) Alternatively, can anyone recommend any 2.0 or 2.1 speakers available to the UK that have optical digital input? [more inside]
posted by Mwongozi at 10:52 AM PST - 6 comments

USB flash drive recommendations?

Trying to find an appropriate model of one of those little USB flash drives.. [more] [more inside]
posted by ac at 10:48 AM PST - 8 comments

iTunes question: why can't I play a CD in my drive directly from the program?

Yet another iTunes question: why can't I play a CD directly from my drive via iTunes? (more inside) [more inside]
posted by JoanArkham at 10:13 AM PST - 10 comments

How do you accurately count calories?

How do you accurately limit calories when exercising a whole lot? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by callmejay at 10:12 AM PST - 10 comments

English as a second language TV show

Two-part Britcom question. First, what was the name of the show involving a man teaching an English as a second language class? Second, why are most Britcoms still shot on videotape, whereas most American shows are shot on film (or that version of video that makes it look like film)? [more inside]
posted by schoolgirl report at 7:26 AM PST - 15 comments

Learning Chess

I just finished reading "The Queen's Gambit" by Walter Tevis (great novel!). It made me want to learn chess. I already understand how all the pieces move, but I'm lost when it come to chess strategy. What's a good beginner's guide that will help me learn to think like a chess player?
posted by grumblebee at 6:47 AM PST - 16 comments

Help me find something to do while I wait for the work to appear.

How do I goof off at work? (mi) [more inside]
posted by Katemonkey at 4:29 AM PST - 24 comments

URL help: database of logins to subscription sites?

Can anyone remember the site which was a database of logins to subsription sites?
posted by Mr Ed at 3:34 AM PST - 2 comments

How to record MP3 from Real Audio

How does one easily record real-audio streams into mp3 files?
posted by ass at 2:14 AM PST - 9 comments

Wireless Networking

Wireless Networking Question. I want to use wireless networking to connect a DSL router to both my PVR & playstation 2. How do I do it? [M.I.] [more inside]
posted by seanyboy at 2:11 AM PST - 7 comments

April 21

Dictionary.com Alternatives

Has anyone else noticed some severe hangtime over at dictionary.com the past couple days? Can anyone recommend another online dictionary that loads quickly and is at least as extensive (and hopfully reputable)?
posted by quasistoic at 11:47 PM PST - 15 comments

Methotrexate complications?

Any long-term methotrexate users out there? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by karmaville at 10:20 PM PST - 5 comments

How do I compare relative weight loss?

After I received the 'time to lose weight or else' talk from my Doctor, a co-worker suggested a healthy weight loss/lower our blood pressure competition. How best to compare the relative weight losses of a guy who only needs to drop 40 pounds (my co-worker, of course) and the guy who needs to drop the equivalent of a Backstreet Boy? (More inside, like the inside of a delicious Snickers Bar... mmm, Snickers....) [more inside]
posted by TomSophieIvy at 10:03 PM PST - 16 comments

Real Estate on eBay

Is it worth one hundred dollars to place a real estate ad on ebay? I looked over some of the ads and it looks like a lot of trash and scams with occasionaly legit properties. I am selling in a public auction in a little over a week and i want as many people as possible to bid on the property. However I am not rich, which i why i am having the auction, so if i am going to lay down $100 i would like to think it is worth it. Also does anyone know of a better online place to advertise that might attract bidders to a think like this? [more inside]
posted by Recockulous at 9:20 PM PST - 5 comments

Looking for slightly academic community blogs about humanities, social sciences, current events, and cultural studies.

Does anyone know of any MeFi-like "community blogs" that are oriented towards humanities/social sciences academic-ish discussion, including current events and especially cultural studies?
posted by statisticalpurposes at 8:50 PM PST - 13 comments

Distributed Computing

Any good "distributed computing" projects out there?

SETI is boring. As I recall, it only intersects with likely regions twice, due to the placement of the telescope. They just rehash the same data anyway. Moreover, they really don't have any lack of volunteers. I did DISTRIBUTED NET for a long time. Slim pickin's there; they only have two projects at present. Kinda wanna support another project for awhile. The MERSENNE PRIME group had a resounding success last year and Iguess they are on to the next one. Maybe the FOLDING PROTEIN gang? I dunno ...
posted by RavinDave at 8:37 PM PST - 7 comments

Are all images on the web 72dpi? Can you use them in print or do they look terrible?

I've heard from 3 different people that you can't use images from the web in print media because all images on the web are 72dpi. Is this true? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by banished at 8:04 PM PST - 27 comments

Where do I find pants in my size (30" waist)?

Well never thought I'd ask metafilter about this, but does anyone else have trouble finding pant sizes that fit? I'm a 30 waist which apparently is so skinny no stores carry it. Actually I can find stores that carry 30 inches but they don't fit, and when I measure they're always 1-2 inches larger. Which is a lot. It's as if stores have forgo a standard measurement sizes in favor of letting people fit into "smaller" sizes. My question is what to do? [more inside]
posted by geoff. at 5:35 PM PST - 19 comments

Is there a regular expressions standard?

Regular Expressions: Is there a standard? [more] [more inside]
posted by normy at 5:09 PM PST - 8 comments

Movable Type-Friendly Webhost for $0-5/mo., Apache Preferred?

Can anyone recommend a decent web host whose cheapie package will support the cgi magic that is Moveable Type? I'm about to start a new Moveable Type blog and I'd like to host it in the $0-$5 per month range. I don't need a lot of web space. I don't want to use Type Pad's "Basic" service, because of the features it lacks. Is there a MT-equivalent of Blogspot? Apache on *nix would be preferred. [more inside]
posted by scarabic at 3:58 PM PST - 32 comments

Is gaf/gaff/gaffe slang for "party"?

I checked every slang dictionary I could find to no avail. Does anyone else use "gaf", "gaff", or "gaffe" as slang for "party" or "get-together"?
posted by Kwantsar at 3:41 PM PST - 8 comments

What to get Your Administrative Assistant

D'oh! I goofed up. Today is Administrative Assistant's Day, and I completely spaced it out. Is there a graceful way to show my appreciation belatedly? [it gets worse inside] [more inside]
posted by ambrosia at 3:10 PM PST - 24 comments

Are there other sites like kuro5hin.org, where users can submit articles?

Are there other sites like kuro5hin.org, where users can submit articles? Not sites like Plastic, which deal primarily with issues and politics and stories with "discussion angles".
posted by Gyan at 2:52 PM PST - 4 comments

New Lawyer Looking for Recommendations for Briefcase for Files and Laptop

Help me pick out a briefcase? More inside. [more inside]
posted by gd779 at 2:30 PM PST - 9 comments

How do I open converted rich text files?

Reading unreadable text files. (More) [more inside]
posted by CunningLinguist at 2:07 PM PST - 15 comments


I've been watching 24 this season and it has gotten me interested in epidemiology. Can anybody suggest a good layperson's resource, either on the web or in print about the topic? I'm looking for information on how diseases spread and how the situation gets out of control. I've done my googlework, but most of the stuff seems to be to advanced for my current understanding or not very informative. Case studies and response projections would be awesome.
posted by shotsy at 1:46 PM PST - 7 comments

Website update monitors

Are there any free services that will monitor a website of your choice, and tell you when it changes?
posted by inksyndicate at 1:40 PM PST - 5 comments

Help me recover my documents after partitioning!

I just did a full WinXP reinstall. In the process, I took an 80 gig drive which was partitioned to 10/30/40 gig partitions and repartitioned it to 10/10/20/15/25 partitions. Unfortunately, that 40 gig partition held my "My Documents" holding a bunch of Word documents spanning the years and a lot of digital photos that are irreplaceable.

I've tried a few file recovery programs with limited success (recovered around 20% of my files) however I think the problem is the repartitions have split a lot of the files across two or more partitions. Is there a way I can recombine these partitions and try the file recovery programs again??
posted by PWA_BadBoy at 1:10 PM PST - 3 comments

Do I have too many fonts installed?

I currently have 885 fonts installed on my XP-pro box (with 512Mb of RAM). Is this an issue? Should I trim down my font list?
Tangentially, what does the number after font's name mean (e.g.: Frutiger 45, Frutiger 55)?
posted by signal at 12:10 PM PST - 9 comments

Looking for Sequoia messenger-type bag information

i went to Paris over the holidays and spotted a messenger-type bag made by a company called Sequoia at the Samaritaine department store. i've since been unable to find any information on the web about the manufacturer, or if they have a website where i could get their bags online. anyone know anything about these people?
posted by callicles at 11:47 AM PST - 2 comments

Recommendations for html/pdf creation

i want to generate documentation for a project in both html and ps/pdf. the content is static and i need to generate previews on both linux and windows, off-line. i'm aware of (but haven't used, mostly) anakia, forrest, docbook, structured text, and latex2html. i don't expect to have any complex mathematical formulae, but may include some logic/category theory, so need some support for non-ascii text. code fragments will be common and i want good control over the final presentation. any experience/recommendations? oh, and the internal representation has to play nicely with cvs (ie no binary format). thanks.
posted by andrew cooke at 11:35 AM PST - 16 comments

Eye surgery

Eye surgery: have you had it, or know someone who has? What type? How much? Most important...was it worth it? [more inside]
posted by gottabefunky at 11:25 AM PST - 24 comments

Cheap, reliable NAT router?

I need a cheapo NAT router to plug into my DSL bridge, stick in a closet, and ignore forever. I'm used to using a dual-homed Linux box with ipchains/ipfilter, and I have a kind of wacky network configuration, but it's time to downgrade to something smaller, more energy-efficient and quieter. Does anyone have a particular model to suggest? [more inside]
posted by majick at 11:11 AM PST - 8 comments

How do you protect your eyes when using computers for many hours?

How do you protect your eyes when standing long hours in front of a computer screen? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by kchristidis at 10:53 AM PST - 11 comments

Being an African American in Alabama- Should I be worried?

This is an extension of a question I asked 5 weeks ago. I am going to Auburn University in Alabama tomorrow and would like to know, as an African-American, if there'sanything I should be worried about. I haven't been down south in a long time and I have no idea what the climate, so to speak, is at the moment.
posted by Slimemonster at 10:48 AM PST - 19 comments

Web-based Scheduling Solutions

Any suggestions for a web-based employee scheduling solution that allows people to submit vacation requests and personal preferences? (more inside) [more inside]
posted by mert at 10:35 AM PST - 3 comments

Less-Toxic Lawn Care

My lawn needs some TLC, but I have neither the time nor the inclination to become your typical Suburban Lawn Nazi. I'm interested in lawn services, but I also have a toddler, and I'd like her to be able to play in the yard without wearing a hazmat suit. Anyone have any insight or knowledge about less-toxic lawn care (preferrably available from a service, not something I have to give up my Saturdays to do)?
posted by briank at 9:38 AM PST - 4 comments

Why wouldn't an embedded WMP work for one user?

I've got problems with an embedded windows media player, and msdn is being predictably useless... [MI] [more inside]
posted by twine42 at 1:46 AM PST - 4 comments

What's the best way to nuke noise from single coil pickups while recording my guitar?

Guitar recording question: What's the best way to nuke 60hz hum and monitor noise from my single coil pickups? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by arto at 1:16 AM PST - 9 comments

April 20

What's the difference between an 'externship' and an 'internship'?

What's the difference between the words "externship" and "internship"? They have very distinct meanings for med students, but for undergraduate, graduate, and law students I've seen them used interchangeably. Is it a full-time/part-time distinction? Or a summer/school-year distinction?
posted by PrinceValium at 9:46 PM PST - 3 comments

I need a really good messenger bag that will accomodate a laptop.

I need a really good messenger bag that will accomodate a laptop. I have one from www.timbuk2.com, which I really like, but I'm looking for other recommendations.
posted by LittleMissCranky at 8:04 PM PST - 21 comments

Are there any other sources of WSR-88D data for the Chicago area besides the NWS and CoD?

Are there any other sources of WSR-88D data for the Chicago area besides the NWS and CoD? I'm looking for stuff with a little more detail and hopefully free.
posted by @homer at 7:35 PM PST - 0 comments

Hard Drive Failure

Yet Another Hard Drive Failure: My laptop started hanging periodically, and eventually stopped booting. Suspecting a hard drive failure, I swapped drives, and sure enough, it works fine now. Except, of course, for the old hard drive. I've put that in a USB enclosure and I've been able to recover some of the data in fits and starts. However, it continues to lock sporadically while the data is being read, and XP will occasionally drop the drive, no longer showing it in explorer. Is there a better way to recover my data, given the inability to stay connected to it via USB? [more inside]
posted by monju_bosatsu at 6:40 PM PST - 9 comments

IMDB-like site for Comic Books?

Is there an IMDB of Comic Books? (ICBDB?)
posted by signal at 5:23 PM PST - 4 comments

How can I trick my computer into treating the external drive as an internal not-plug'n'play, regular old drive?

I put my old 10gb laptop hdd in a USB enclosure and bought a USB 2.0 pcmcia card. The speed is good enough that I would like to use the drive as a scratch disk for various programs I work with, but primarily Adobe Photoshop. Problem is, PS won't list it as an option in the scratch disks settings menu. It only lists the startup disk and the C drive, which are the same drive. How can I trick my computer into treating the external drive as an internal not-plug'n'play, regular old drive? Or just trick Photoshop. (Ver. 7, btw, and on a PC) Thanks.
posted by Grod at 3:04 PM PST - 14 comments

need good science on weight lifting

I'm interested in finding good, scientific, non-biased information on weight lifting. Almost everything I seem to find online and in print is either unsupported or linked somehow to supplement manufacturers. Where can I find real deal?
posted by tirade at 2:58 PM PST - 11 comments

Hiking in the Dolomites

I was planning on hiking along the Alta Via 1 trail in the Dolomites within the next few weeks and I was wondering if anyone had experience in this region. Is it safe during springtime without proper hiking/snow equipment? Can the higher mountains with snow be avoided? Thanks for any tips or suggestions!
posted by RGD at 2:34 PM PST - 1 comment

I can log in to my webmail and send mail, but I can not view the inbox. Is this common? What is the solution?

1and1 Webmail problem: For the last several days, the webmail for my domain at 1and1 has been inaccessible. Specifically, I can log in, and I can send email, but I cannot view my inbox. More inside. [more inside]
posted by gd779 at 2:31 PM PST - 12 comments

Disabling MS Word task bars & menus

MS Word 2003 task panes: when I start Word, I get a "getting started" side bar and an Adobe Acrobat tool menu that I can't seem to permanently disable. This is driving me bonkers. [more inside]
posted by muckster at 2:20 PM PST - 4 comments

Passport for a 3 year old entering Canada?

Would my 3 year old son need a passport to travel into Canada from the US for a day trip? He'd be travelling with 3 other adults (all directly related to him), all of whom have unexpired passports. We'd be crossing at the Queenston/Lewiston bridge (outside Buffalo, NY). I have his birth certificate.
posted by gnomeloaf at 1:26 PM PST - 8 comments

Recommendations for Windows outlining tool similar to Omni Outliner.

In need of a recommendation for an Windows outlining tool that has the same functionality as the Omni Outliner that ships with Mac OSX? Need to document a software testing plan and can't find a program for the Windows that works as well as Omni does for the Mac. All suggestions are appreciated.
posted by specialk420 at 1:22 PM PST - 8 comments

Online resources for emotional support after a breakup?

Can anyone recommend some good online resources that might help someone going through the breakup of a long term relationship? More along the lines of emotional support rather than legal.
posted by btwillig at 12:57 PM PST - 20 comments

Help my cat like her litterbox again

My cat won't pee in the box. [more inside]
posted by jpoulos at 12:04 PM PST - 24 comments

Where should I get prescription sunglasses?

Where should I go to get prescription sunglasses? Some place like this? More inside . . . [more inside]
posted by dhacker at 11:40 AM PST - 18 comments

Why is there a sudden upspike of AOL 4.0 visitors to my site?

What would cause AOL 4.0 to all of a sudden be the second largest percentage of visitors to visit a website? Last month IE and Netscape were neck and neck.
posted by grefo at 10:50 AM PST - 5 comments

Edward Said on Film

I'm looking for documentary films about Edward Said. Preferably, I want something biographical about him, not films that feature him talking about issues. I'm already aware of several [listed inside] but if anyone can locate others, I'd be very grateful. [more inside]
posted by scarabic at 10:43 AM PST - 6 comments

Is there a way to link to the middle of a webpage?

How do you post a link to the middle of pages? I have seen that here where people post to specific replies in a long thread.
posted by busboy789 at 9:35 AM PST - 5 comments

Can I repair a scratched CD with sandpaper?

Unorthodox CD scratch repair. 600 wet/dry sandpaper. Has anyone out there had success with this or other bizarre and aggressive methods? ( more inside )
posted by troutfishing at 8:59 AM PST - 13 comments

Pre-Ordering Etiquette

I have a game that I am interesting in self-publishing. I don't have a lot of capital to put into it myself, so I'm thinking about using pre-orders to generate the bulk of the necessary revenue. What is the etiquette, if you will, of pre-ordering? What's "too long" between the submission of a pre-order and the availability of the product? I don't want people to actually give me money unless I can guarantee eventual shipment of the product; how is this handled? I'm thinking of how Amazon doesn't charge your card until an item ships; is that how pre-orders are typically handled? Do business that operate on pre-orders borrow against those pre-orders to pay for manufacturing, and then cash in on those pre-orders to pay back the bank? Any wisdom in this area is appreciated.
posted by blueshammer at 8:49 AM PST - 13 comments

April 19

T-Shirts for Tall and Slender

I would like to inquire about some t-shirts; more specifically, I'm interested in plain t-shirts that will fit someone (myself) who is tall and slender. More often than not, I find that plain t-shirts are built for the more... portly of my fellow North Americans: often the size difference between a medium and a large is not length but the width of the waist. Is there anywhere you have discovered--online or otherwise--that has well-made t-shirts that will fit someone of my build?
posted by The God Complex at 10:39 PM PST - 14 comments

Help me find more information on my 1968 Bach Messe in H-Moll records.

I have spent the last day looking for information in a particular set of records I own. They are in perfect condition, 1968 Bach's Messe in H-Moll. It is first run, original. More inside. [more inside]
posted by Keyser Soze at 10:15 PM PST - 8 comments

Record players quality comparisson?

A recent question regarding Record players got me thinking: Does it matter what quality record player you are using, as long as the cartridge is high quality? Can you hear a difference between a $100 and a $200 record player if the needle is the same, in regards to music playback?
posted by Keyser Soze at 9:20 PM PST - 5 comments

What are you reccomendations for the L.A. Times Festival of Books at UCLA

I'm going to try to attend the L.A. Times Festival of Books at UCLA this weekend, and pondering my options of which panels or other programs to attend. [more inside] [more inside]
posted by wendell at 8:57 PM PST - 5 comments

What's Carl Stephenson up to nowadays?

The musical group Forest for the Trees (mainly one person, Carl Stephenson, who has worked with Beck) released an album in 1996, partially achieved one-hit wonder status with "Dream," released an EP the following year, then disappeared. What's he up to nowadays?
posted by Nikolai at 7:38 PM PST - 3 comments

USGS Digital Data Formats

Is anyone familiar with old USGS Digital Data Formats? [more inside]
posted by alan at 6:55 PM PST - 9 comments

Anyone know any good free CD copying/ripping software?

This question has been asked before a few months ago, I'm sure, but I can't find it so.... Anyone know any good free CD copying/ripping software (better than Windows Media anyway)? Everything I copy with windows media comes out weird and it skips even though it doesnt skip when i play the CD normally.
posted by Slimemonster at 6:38 PM PST - 15 comments

Preparing for Cicadas

Cicadas will attack (well, not attack, but annoy) the Eastern United States starting in about a month. What kinds of things are people doing to prepare, and for a pedestrian and cyclist, are there any recommendations for keeping these things out of my hair (literally)? [more inside]
posted by benjh at 5:30 PM PST - 15 comments

What to do about a student who plagiarized a paper for athletic eligibility?

What to do about a student who plagiarized a paper for athletic eligibility? [More inside, because that question by itself is a no brainer.] [more inside]
posted by ferociouskitty at 3:24 PM PST - 37 comments

DVD Video Extraction

Extracting clips from a dvd. [More inside] [more inside]
posted by rorycberger at 3:23 PM PST - 17 comments

Mercury in Fish

I watched Episode 208 of Discoveries This Week on the Discovery Science Channel, and there was a short blurb about mercury levels in fish. They showed a web site with drop down boxes so you could enter in what fish you have been eating and come up with a figure for how much mercury you have been consuming. I didn't have anything to write on, and by the time I got home to the computer I couldn't recall the address. The Discovery site is useless and I'm not having any luck with Google. Did anyone catch it and go to the site they mentioned?
posted by Orb at 2:58 PM PST - 3 comments

What's the difference between the words "proffer" and "offer"?

What's the difference between the words "proffer" and "offer"? This has been driving me mad for some reason for a few days now. Every dictionary I consult basically seems to say that they mean the same thing. But surely there must be a difference, right?
posted by reklaw at 2:54 PM PST - 12 comments

UK Cartoon

As a kid in the UK in the early 80's I remember a cartoon series that was on on Sundays (I think) that featured an evil witch type character and her robots who looked like dice and rolled everywhere. My memory says the series was called "Terrabots" but google calls me a liar. Can anyone reassure me I'm not going mad?
posted by twine42 at 2:20 PM PST - 4 comments


I'm looking to buy a new turntable, and frankly, I'm a little confused by the technical talk. I'm not a DJ or an audiophile, I'm just looking for something that sounds good, is reliable, durable and doesn't break my budget (which is around $300). Any sugegstions?
posted by kittyloop at 1:33 PM PST - 20 comments

Idle hands...

Something to occupy my hands but not my eyes. [More inside] [more inside]
posted by stoneegg21 at 12:54 PM PST - 14 comments

Kill Bill Vol. 2 question [spoilers inside]

Kill Bill Vol. 2 question [spoilers inside] [more inside]
posted by rorycberger at 12:34 PM PST - 21 comments

Mystery Devices

Amherst College wants to know: what is this thing?
posted by Vidiot at 11:38 AM PST - 17 comments

Found iPod

My brother found an iPod a while back. He sent it to me as a gift. I'm delighted, but wonder if Apple has a registration program which I should use to try to return it to the previous owner. And if that doesn't work out, I'm wondering what the essential accessories would be, since this is just the iPod.
posted by weston at 11:22 AM PST - 8 comments

What gift for my email/phone mentor?

A lady I've never met in person has been very helpful in mentoring me on the phone and via e-mail. I would like to give her a gift, but it needs to be somewhat professional/formal - i.e., not flowers. Any ideas? She's refused $$ or a donation to charity of her choice.
posted by pomegranate at 10:44 AM PST - 16 comments

Where can I get The Little Prince in Slovenian?

I'm trying to get a copy of THE LITTLE PRINCE in Slovenian. Any suggestions on where I might find a comprehensive list of translations?
posted by silusGROK at 10:34 AM PST - 5 comments

3 Weeks in Europe

Let's say you're spending three weeks in Europe late this summer. The first week is in Denmark, the third is in Ireland. Where would you spend the second? You'd like to go somewhere off the beaten path (in other words not Paris, London, or Amsterdam), but don't want to spend too much time in transit. You'd rather go somewhere rural than urban, you have a limited budget, and you'd prefer culture to castles and cathedrals. Any suggestions?
posted by emptyage at 9:54 AM PST - 28 comments

How does lobbying work?

Lobbying -- I'm a political idiot. How exactly does lobbying work? Is it as simple as 'Big Corporations give Big Bucks to make sure they get what they want, politically?' Who does this money go to, exactly? [more inside]
posted by papercake at 9:45 AM PST - 10 comments

HIV Regimes

Does anyone know the annual "failure rate" of current HIV drug treatment regimes, i.e., of those who are fully compliant, what percentage per year are dying, and what percentage are becoming chronically debilitated?
posted by MattD at 9:41 AM PST - 4 comments

Fishing for Information

Can y'all help me out with the pros and cons of open-face versus bait-caster fishing reels? I've found plenty of information regarding the specifications of the various models, but nothing that compares them generally. I fish for walleye and northern pike.
posted by sciurus at 6:51 AM PST - 5 comments

Health Insurance Recommendation for a Freelancer?

I'm looking for respectable health insurance while I make a go of self-employment. Recommendations? [more inside]
posted by Jonasio at 1:37 AM PST - 10 comments

April 18

How does a Brita filter work?

Brita filters: How do they work? There is much information about the fact that you need to keep the filter (partially comprised of activated charcoal, from what I can gather) in contact with water at all times. How does activated charcoal actually filter impurities? [More Inside] [more inside]
posted by fionab at 10:29 PM PST - 9 comments

How do I make an English-language blog more accessible to non-English speakers?

Can you suggest ways to make an English-language blog more accessible to non-English speakers? And...are there any other good (and free) online translators out there besides BabelFish? Arigato for your time.
posted by azul at 8:54 PM PST - 3 comments

What's the easiest and cheapest way to model a relief map?

I want to create a dimensional map of the state of Washington for the students in my fourth-grade classroom to paint and otherwise adorn with little educational bits. What's the easiest and cheapest way to model a relief map? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by argybarg at 8:16 PM PST - 6 comments

Loaves and Fishes

Google has directed me to many instances of this as a rhetorical quesion, but no answer, and I'm not asking rhetorically: In the story of Jesus feeding the multitudes with the loaves and fishes, what species of fish was it, most likely? Ignore whether the event happened: If it had happened, what kind, or kinds, of fish would the multitudes have been eating, probably? [more inside]
posted by soyjoy at 6:52 PM PST - 15 comments

Bridesmaids Gifts

Bridesmaid etiquette on gifts - What to do? (more inside) [more inside]
posted by ArsncHeart at 6:13 PM PST - 7 comments

Odd Vehicles on Train Tracks

While walking through my school's campus, I saw some really odd vehicles on the train tracks...

What the hell were they!? [more inside]
posted by evilbeck at 6:04 PM PST - 16 comments

Blindfolded Hoops

How do they do that? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by lazaruslong at 4:47 PM PST - 6 comments

What's the best dictionary to use with Word for Windows?

What's the best dictionary to use in conjunction with Word (Windows)? I am a writer and would like to search/cross reference definitions--and synonyms, if possible--directly from my file in Word, and without going online. Webster's Third New Unabridged is my go-to dictionary, but the reviews of its CD-ROM leave me confused. Any advice would be appreciated.
posted by _sirmissalot_ at 2:40 PM PST - 3 comments

iTunes Shuffling

Does anyone know/can anyone approximate what shuffle algorithm iTunes uses?
posted by the fire you left me at 2:33 PM PST - 8 comments

Tips about tipping? (Particularly in a hair salon.)

Who do you tip in a hair salon? I know that in normal salons, you tip the person providing the service. But, I go to a place where the owner does my hair, am I supposed to tip her as well? Seems to me that I've heard that you don't tip the owners. And how much are you supposed to tip?
posted by Juicylicious at 1:36 PM PST - 23 comments

I'm looking for book recomendations about the quest for knowledge for knowledge's sake.

I'm looking for book recomendations about the quest for understanding. An exploration and acquisition of knowledge for knowledge's sake. A sort of unbounded curiosity about the world that shows up in the sketchbooks of Da Vinci for instance. [more inside]
posted by jeffhoward at 1:08 PM PST - 17 comments

Charity for Car Donation

I'm looking for a charity to donate my old car to - it's a '90 Nissan Sentra, pretty beat up, but still running. I've found plenty of websites for places that will take your car, but I'm not sure which ones are legitimate charities and which ones are money-making scams. Does anyone have any experience with this? Which ones are most reputable?
posted by skwm at 12:48 PM PST - 6 comments

Outlook Express

Outlook Express must DIE ! [more inside]
posted by sgt.serenity at 10:37 AM PST - 38 comments

Macromedia HomeSite

Macromedia HomeSite, the resource hog. Why does it consume so much system resources and what to do about it? [more inside]
posted by Termite at 6:12 AM PST - 11 comments

Using Solvent to Clean Plastic

I used a solvent to clean the plastic that protects the instrument panel in my car - the plastic has gone milky and now it is very difficult to see how speedy I am driving. Is there any way to reverse the damage done? [By the way, the damage looks the same as when I cleaned a CD jewel case with a spray cleaner]
posted by meech at 1:00 AM PST - 9 comments

April 17

Jobs in Seattle

Okay, there's just so much stuff at monster.com and jobhunter.com and classifieds, etc. What is the easiest, most painless way to go about finding a fulltime summer job for this summer that pays more than, say, 8 dollars an hour. (Me = 19 year old Seattle undergraduate without paid work experience for the last 17 months and who has forgotten how to look for jobs. Would not want to do anything too personally demeaning (minimal toilets, please)) Where should I look and is it too early/late to start?
posted by Slimemonster at 7:16 PM PST - 13 comments

How can I replace every occurrence of a drive letter with a different drive letter in a table in an Acess database?

Say I have a database DATA.MDB
Inside DATA.MDB there is a table called ImageTable.
In this table is a field named fimageOriginalFilePath. There are aprox 4000 entries.
Each entry holds an absolute path to a directory on the C drive. For example C:\pictures\10131009
I want to automatically replace the first character of each entry with the letter F. So that each path points to the F drive.
Can it be done? Can it be done without MS Access? Can it be done by a person with no programing skills, knowledge of databases, or understanding of SQL queries and the like? If so, how? Thank you all. [more inside]
posted by Grod at 6:49 PM PST - 15 comments

Summer mixed cd suggestions?

It is starting to get summer-y where I am at, and I was thinking about making a summer themed mix cd and going on a day trip somewhere. Any song suggestions? [more inside]
posted by Quartermass at 2:55 PM PST - 53 comments

Growing Strong Fingernails

I want to grow claws. I was wondering if there is a way to cause one's fingernails to grow thicker and harder, into something one won't have to worry about breaking when fingerpicking one's guitar with them. Any suggestions? Is this even possible?
posted by kaibutsu at 1:59 PM PST - 27 comments

How do I use my stock options?

Any investors out there? My company gave me some stock options for the last several years, and I haven't a clue how to to use them. [more inside] [more inside]
posted by benjh at 1:22 PM PST - 13 comments

guru.com for freelance design?

Anyone ever use guru for freelance design work? It looks promising for some freelance jobs, but I would like to hear some opinions before I drop $75 for a quarterly membership.
posted by sharksandwich at 12:02 PM PST - 11 comments

2000 Flushes

I purchased 2000 Flushes for my toilet to color the water blue. When I flush, blue floods down and everything is pretty. When I return, hours later (as the case my be), the water is pale yellow. It looks nasty. What is happening?! How do I fix it?
posted by adrober at 7:58 AM PST - 17 comments

Tips for interviewing people for tech-type jobs?

Does anyone have any tips on interviewing people for tech-type jobs? This will be my first time around on the other side of the table and it'd be useful to know how to evaluate candidates and ask them the right questions. [more inside]
posted by adrianhon at 6:06 AM PST - 13 comments

What was this screensaver?

Vague request for a screensaver: I saw it being linked either at MeFi or at meepzorp or at some other cool blog, however: It was a b/w flash-animation that featured just all sorts of weird forms and figures shifting into each other in organic movements, occassionally a piece of colour dropping into the process. I really don't know how to describe better. There was also a screensaver file which I am looking for. I think the filename was something like "tubular" - or maybe not. I said it was a vague request!
posted by zerofoks at 4:30 AM PST - 8 comments

April 16

Swedish Hillbilly Commercial

Does anyone remember a funny U.S. commercial featuring three bumpkins ("Little Yuka" and "Big Yuka", pronounced "yooka") living in the back of beyond, where one is found to be uncool for some reason (he breaks something?) and is duly whacked for it? The voice-over was, I think, in a Swedish-inflected hillbilly accent.
posted by MiguelCardoso at 9:17 PM PST - 7 comments

Adobe Photoshop

Urgent! Adobe Photoshop Album v1 question. I have about 3gb worth of digital photos currently stored on my C drive. I copied everything (including the directory structure) to an external hard drive and renamed the directory on C:\ from pictures to picturesOLD. As expected Pshop Album couldn't find the pictures. When I tried to point it to their new home (F:\media\pictures\*) it wanted me to manually select each file to "reconnect." I tried google and adobe forums. Can't find a thing. Is there any way to get Pshop Album to recognize that nothing has changed except the location of the files or am I screwed? [more inside]
posted by Grod at 7:40 PM PST - 9 comments

Rataining rights to a painting

So, last night I showed art in public for the very first time since showing some photoshop prints in 1997, and sold a painting. [Kinda crazy feeling, like i'm selling a child.] So i'm wondering, do i need a written contract to retain rights to the work? And what other cautions or words of advice as I prepare to sell some others?
posted by th3ph17 at 5:07 PM PST - 8 comments

Recommendations for a multiplayer racing game?

Looking for recommendations for a multiplayer (LAN) PC racing game. Preferably something that has a pretty straight-forward interface that we can jump in and start having fun with right away.
posted by NsJen at 4:35 PM PST - 15 comments

Tipping Your Piercer

Piercing studio etiquette: it seems that you're expected to include a tip. Base it on the total, including the price of the jewelry, or base it on the piercer's labor alone?
posted by Mars Saxman at 3:36 PM PST - 3 comments

Ink on Mac Book keys wearing off

The ink is wearing off the keys on my Macintosh "iBook." Are they easy to replace?
posted by inksyndicate at 2:57 PM PST - 6 comments

Help me get my FILE NAMES back to normal file names.

Let's say that you have a directory with 100+ files that the file names have been accidentally converted to ALL CAPS (my portable hard drive did that for some crazy reason), and you want to convert them all back to lower case file names. Is there an easier way than "right click/rename/type the whole name in lower case"?
posted by maceo at 1:18 PM PST - 13 comments

Is there a way to send faxes via web or email for free?

Is there a free alternative to eFax for sending faxes via the web or via email? eFax has increased their setup fee to about $26, and all I need to do is send two faxes over this coming weekend. That's all. I've looked at send2fax and MaxEmail, but neither are instilling confidence. Anyone?
posted by grabbingsand at 11:23 AM PST - 6 comments

Replacing laptop with PDA for Powerpoint presentations at tradeshows?

Replacing laptop with PDA for Powerpoint presentations at tradeshows? --more inside-- [more inside]
posted by zeikka at 11:19 AM PST - 4 comments

Drinking a six pack of Coke in a hour: impossible?

Stunts: Have been told drinking 6 12 oz. cans of Coke-A-Cola in one hour is an impossible task. {MI} [more inside]
posted by thomcatspike at 11:07 AM PST - 48 comments

Homeowner's associations, how to deal with them?

Homeowner's associations : anyone had problems with them? If so, what solutions worked? (more inside) [more inside]
posted by littlegirlblue at 10:46 AM PST - 23 comments

Why Do We Forget Dreams?

I had a vivid dream last night and when I awoke I thought "man, I'm never forgetting that one." It's been a couple hours and I barely remember anything from it. So my question is why do we forget dreams? Is it because there is a lack of pattern (since they're often so oddball and different from our daily lives)? Is it because they exist as ideas rather than experiences (I forget good ideas all the time, but remember things I've actually done)? Or is it because we experience them in a semi-concious state (if we were more fully aware, we might remember more?)? Anyone got any leads on this? [more inside]
posted by mathowie at 10:17 AM PST - 31 comments

Closed captioning vs subtitling while using DVDs from different regions

DVD question: I bought a European release of Frasier, season 1 - complete with subtitles etc. - but it seems like I'll have to buy seasons 2 -10 in the region 1 version.

Region compatibility is not an issue, but I wonder if "closed captioned" means that a DVD is subtitled, meaning: will I be able to get to those subtitles here in Europe, or do I need one of those hearing impaired set top boxes I've heard about (they seem to exist in UK and USA, maybe Canada as well)?
posted by NekulturnY at 10:01 AM PST - 5 comments

Gifting my wife on our anniversary (surprise)

My first wedding anniversary is coming up in about a month. I'd like to surprise the crap out of my wife…. [more inside] [more inside]
posted by COBRA! at 9:50 AM PST - 8 comments

Replacement desktop systems on XP?

The current MeFi thread on Sphere reminded me... Does anyone use a replacement desktop system on XP? Which one and why did you choose to use it? [more inside]
posted by twine42 at 8:46 AM PST - 10 comments

Session variables and redirects aren't working the same after I upgraded from PHP 3.x to PHP 4.35 on win2000.

php 4.35/win 2000/cgi question: having problems after upgrading from 3.x with session variables and redirects? any suggestions?
posted by specialk420 at 6:38 AM PST - 8 comments

What the hell do you do about passwords?

What the hell do you do about passwords? --> [more inside]
posted by stupidsexyFlanders at 6:07 AM PST - 37 comments

April 15

Looking for good danceable Latin music for children, and a simple dance step I could learn and teach my child.

My 1-year-old son loves when we dance to Latin rhythms -- mambo and cha-cha especially. (He doesn't walk yet; I hold him.) I am in search of: 1) Best clear, bright, danceable music with Latin rhythms [my meagre playlist is inside]; and 2) a nice simple dance step I can learn, then teach the tyke when he's ambulatory. [more inside]
posted by argybarg at 10:27 PM PST - 14 comments

Help me with this CSS box model problem!

CSS issue. I have a problem with a site that I built. I can either make the centre box containing the main body of the pages line up with the other boxes on the page, or I can make the centre box flexible to allow for different resolutions etc, but not both. [more inside] [more inside]
posted by dg at 7:49 PM PST - 7 comments

Looking for Lamprey software from early 90s

Anyone know how to get copies of Robert Carr's Lamprey Systems Mac software from the early-1990s? I used to log into his BBS many years ago and have only some of his stuff on my Mac SE...
posted by tranquileye at 7:28 PM PST - 1 comment

Piano Rock

I'm making a "Piano Rock" mix. What songs should I include? [current list inside] [more inside]
posted by jdroth at 6:35 PM PST - 72 comments

Can you suggest a pair of cross-trainer shoes?

Training shoes. I need to buy a new pair of crosstrainers. I do cardio and weight training, and need something that is going to last me a long time on the cardio machines without hurting, so cushioning is a big factor. Any suggestions? [more inside]
posted by benjh at 6:22 PM PST - 10 comments

Why do artists depict Asian women as green or blue

Art question:
What's the significance/history behind paintings of blue- or green-skinned Asian women?
[more inside, including a photo (SFW)] [more inside]
posted by me3dia at 6:07 PM PST - 11 comments

One Site for Camp's Online Registration/Merchandise? Or Use Separate Sites?

I have a friend who is running a basketball camp. They want to have their site allow online registration/payment. We've looked at places like Eteamz and CampRegister. But eventually my friend has merchandise they would like to sell on this site as well. Should they just use the registration sites until the time comes that they want to sell the other stuff? Should they just get something that just allows them to let people pay them online for anything? And if they do that, since I don't imagine they will be selling huge quantities of stuff what should they use to sell their stuff (camp and merchandise) online? Paypal?
posted by nramsey at 5:29 PM PST - 1 comment

Away from Livejournal

So I am sick of livejournal, and I want to start a blog independent of any form sites. Also, I am interested in learning to create backends and architecture for sites similar to Mefi. Where should I start? What languages? Perl? Bear in mind, my own programming experience is limited to a fairly fluent grasp of HTML, which I know isn't really programming at all. Tips?
posted by lazaruslong at 5:27 PM PST - 19 comments

Help me write new text ads!

The MetaFilter TextAds for my site have expired. Help me write a new one.
posted by timeistight at 3:43 PM PST - 23 comments

Advanced Lawn Care

Is there a formula for figuring out the most efficient pattern to mow a lawn? Something that takes into account obstacles and elevation changes.
posted by grefo at 2:43 PM PST - 6 comments

General advice sought on acoustic or electro/acoutstic guitars

I'd like some advice on 6-string acoustic-electric guitars. I'm considering buying one for my "home studio" setup (a computer with a MIDI keyboard, a mic, and a couple of guitars), preferrably for less than $400. Does anyone here own an acoustic-electric they'd recommend? Any general advice on this type of guitar? I'm looking for a bright, clear sound, and with a versatile EQ or tone knob.
posted by edlundart at 2:24 PM PST - 14 comments

I'm Trying to hook up my radio on my stereo, but I have 4 wire holes for only 2 wires. What gives?

I'm Trying to hook up my radio on my stereo, but I have 4 wire holes for only 2 wires. What gives? (pretty illustration inside) [more inside]
posted by jmd82 at 2:15 PM PST - 7 comments

Talking to the Apes

This might be an easy one for you all. My former roommate was telling me about this book that sounded really interesting but I cant think of the title for the life of me. All i remember is that the book contained a conversation between an ape and a human being about evolution or something like that. Ring any bells?
posted by Slimemonster at 2:06 PM PST - 17 comments

Panorama-Constructing Software/PS Plugin without Artifacts or Dropped Sections?

My digital camera came with a program for stitching together multiple panning shots into one large panoramic picture. It's okay, but it leaves lots of artifacts, and occasionally drops sections (erroneously matching other areas together and effectively cutting out part of the pic). Is there a better program out there I can try? I don't think I'm willing to pay (not much anyway) for this. Windows preferred but OSX will work too. I have Photoshop, so plug-ins are cool too.
posted by scarabic at 1:04 PM PST - 16 comments

Help with buying a laptop

Can you help me spend an absolute max. of £1500 (UKP) on a laptop PC? Using some quite hefty/nasty engineering apps so it needs some grunt to it; wirless technology would be nice, but is not essential; and something that looks the part would be ace too! [more inside]
posted by nthdegx at 12:56 PM PST - 10 comments

Why do some people wear their watch face against the inside of their wrist?

Why do some people wear their watch face against the inside of their wrist, rather than on top? Is it cultural, a way of being unique, or just the preference of which way one likes to flick one’s wrist?
posted by lola at 12:29 PM PST - 17 comments

What are the funniest TV shows of the past few years?

I'm wanting to download some comedy series off P2P. Any recommendations? [more inside]
posted by dydecker at 12:19 PM PST - 33 comments

Hotels in Barcelona

Any recommendations for hotels in Barcelona Spain?

We're going to be there for a few days at the end of June, and need a recommendation for a hotel that would accommodate a family of four. Most of the hotels we've found only take two people in a room. Any thoughts?
posted by jasper411 at 11:23 AM PST - 7 comments

Will there be an Iraq war draft?

I'm looking for any informative preferably unbiased look at wether the US might set up a draft for the ongoing Iraqi war . I would also be interested in reading educated opinions on the probablility of this happening in the absence of real tangible information. I did find this: The Coming Draft, but I don't know the slant on this news source. Many thanks!
posted by pissfactory at 9:09 AM PST - 14 comments

Seven (7)

PetPeeveFilter: Outside of legal documents, why do people write "seven (7)" (as seen here, but in many, many other places, as well). What, they think I can't read the word seven? [more inside]
posted by MrMoonPie at 9:06 AM PST - 19 comments

I likely swallowed a fillling in my sleep- is there any danger to my health?

I lost a filling the other day and figure its most likely I swallowed it (in my sleep). Is this likely to present any danger to my health? Will it most likely just be inert and come out in the wash, so to speak? I'm not sure what it was made of, whatever they were putting in UK NHS amalgam 7-8 years ago.
posted by biffa at 8:40 AM PST - 6 comments

What should I do with my PDP-11 emulator?

As a few of you may have noticed on #mefi last night, I got an emulated PDP-11 with 2.11BSD up and running to make myself feel better about my real PDP-11 having a dead disk drive. This emulator is actually quite a bit faster and has network capability i.e. I can see the outside world, and the outside world could see me.

My question: what should I actually do with this thing? Keep in mind the emulator has a C compiler (but god knows what it can do), and 3 MB RAM -- and that's about it. And no, perl won't work on the PDP-11. [more inside]
posted by Captain_Tenille at 8:21 AM PST - 7 comments

Nonprescription or herbal eczema remedies?

Eczema. I get it on my face and sometimes behind my knees, and I generally treat it with prescription cortisone cream from my dermatologist. Lately, though, it's not working so well, and it occurs to me that maybe slathering myself with this stuff isn't such a good idea in the long term. Do any mefites have recommendations for nonprescription or herbal remedies? (The signal-to-noise ratio on Google is darn near impenetrable on this topic.)
posted by cowboy_sally at 8:16 AM PST - 22 comments

Ladies In the Front...

What song is this? I was walking behind two teenage African-American girls one day and overheard them singing a song. I didn't catch all of the words but it contained parts that went something like "Ladies in the front, let me [see/hear] you [blank]" Ladies in the middle let me [hear/see] you [blank]" Ladies in the back ... etc."

It sounded like one of those songs that get everyone involved on the dance floor complete with shouting back responses etc.

What is the name of the song and who sings it? It's driving me crazy!!
posted by turbanhead at 8:14 AM PST - 4 comments

Get the baby out, now!

Anyone have any thoughts (experiences) on natural ways to persuade an overdue baby to make it's appearance? (and yes I know that one...!)
posted by brettski at 7:50 AM PST - 18 comments

2nd Anniversary Gift

Any gift ideas I can give my wife for our second anniversary?
posted by Macboy at 5:34 AM PST - 14 comments

April 14

Day or weekend trips outsode NYC

Recommendations for day- or weekend trips outside NYC? [more inside]
posted by Vidiot at 10:02 PM PST - 19 comments

Batch Resizing Photographs

This can't be that hard. I have thousands of digital images taken with high resolution cameras. I'd like to e-mail about 100 of them to various folks so I'm trying to convert them to an e-mail friendly size/resolution that doesn't assume everyone has high speed connections. I'd like to do this in some sort of batch mode - select a bunch of images and do this all at once. I've tried Graphic Converter and iView Media Pro - neither of which can do the trick. Oh they make an effort all right, but they don't really work. I'm still running on Mac OS 9 so I'm looking for something that works there or - can iPhoto do this and will it be the thing that finally forces that new purchase on me?
posted by dhacker at 8:07 PM PST - 20 comments

Dr. Zhivago and Richard Burton question

Need help with a RIDICULOUSLY TRIVIAL but frustrating OBSESSION concerning the movie Dr. Zhivago and Richard Burton, the actor. (m.i.) [more inside]
posted by marsha56 at 7:19 PM PST - 16 comments

Canadian Heritage Moments Online

CanCon AskMe: Does anyone from up North (or wherever) know if those brief "Heritage Moment" shorts on Canadian TV are online anywhere? You know, those little things about the Avro Arrow, or the old man that can't read, or the female med students? Has anyone seen them anywhere other that on TV?
posted by loquax at 5:26 PM PST - 8 comments

What's the origin of the phrase "bleeding deacons"?

Could someone please explain what the phrase "bleeding deacons" means ?
posted by sgt.serenity at 4:39 PM PST - 13 comments

Shopping in NYC

I'm going to be in New York City next Saturday, Sunday, and Monday. While I'm there, I'd like to piss away some money on a knockoff watch and a handbag or two. Where and when should I go?
posted by Kwantsar at 3:04 PM PST - 14 comments

Why don't I like cilantro?

I can't eat anything cilantro has touched, even if it's only a few flakes. In contrast, my friends' reactions to it are extremely positive, and they've described its taste as "bright" and "fresh," and it's commonly included in dishes in my area. I don't think it's just a food preference; I'm a big kid and will eat things I do not enjoy if they're given to me or if I'm hungry. The difference with cilantro is that it makes any food, no matter how much I like it, taste like it's been poisoned, and no amount of willpower can overcome that. Does anybody else find cilantro inedible, or know why it would cause such a strong reaction?
posted by Hypharse at 3:01 PM PST - 67 comments

In Windows, what determines if an opened document will become a "Recent Document"?

In Windows (in my case, XP Pro, but this might be general), what determines if an opened document will become a "Recent Document"? In practice, it seems like roughly half the documents I open can be later found under Recent Documents, but I can't determine the rhyme or reason to what makes it and what doesn't.
posted by badstone at 2:41 PM PST - 5 comments

Packing for Canadian Road Trip

I'll be driving across a rather large portion of Canada with my girlfriend in a little over two weeks: Vancouver Island to the southern portion of Ontario, a trip that covers roughly 4200km and should take the better portion of four or five days depending on how frequently we stop. My question for you, oh great teeming mass of Metafilterians, is what we should bring for the trip?
[there is inevitably more inside, although not an inordinate amount] [more inside]
posted by The God Complex at 2:38 PM PST - 29 comments

What is this southern US dialect phrase?

I'm curious about a bit of (apparently) southern dialect. I'm not sure how to spell it, but it sounds like "do what?" or "du what?" or "d'what?" and seems to mean the same thing as "what?" or "huh?" or "say that again?" I'm from the Northeast, and the first time I heard this, it sounded really strange to me, like people were just adding "do" to the beginning of "what" for no reason. Does anyone know its origin, what part of the U.S. it's prevalent in, and what it means exactly? (Google was no help.)
posted by Tin Man at 1:39 PM PST - 29 comments

help keep a gerbera daisy alive

Help the Black Thumb:

I am terrible at keeping plants alive. The only plants I don't kill are philodendrons, and you pretty much can't kill those things. I was given a gerbera daisy in a pot, but apparently I overwatered it. The plant still seems alive, but the flowers have drooped over. I drained the excess water, but the flowers aren't perking back up. Are they permanently wilted? Should I cut them off and hope the plant flowers again? I googled, but got nothing more useful than "Avoid overwatering".
posted by Shoeburyness at 1:25 PM PST - 8 comments

Songs to Remember Math

I've recently been asking people how they learned the quadratic equation (self link). A large percentage of people appear to have learned it to the tune of a familiar melody. I've heard from people who learned it to all sorts of different tunes, including Pop Goes the Weasel, God Rest ye Merry gentlemen, and various University fight songs (UofM and Notre Dame so far...) How about you? Did you learn it with music? What song? [Excuse the self link - I genuinely just want to know if there are other variations, this isn't a sad plea for traffic.]
posted by adamkempa at 12:54 PM PST - 27 comments

What sysadmin website did I visit?

Several months ago I visited a website that had a green text only interface. It was sysadmin related with stories of troublesome users and a quote engine. I thought it was mentioned here on MeFi, but the site-specific Google search isn't coming up with any relevant matches. Did I just dream the website or could someone please point the way? I promise to properly bookmark it this time.
posted by Kip at 11:56 AM PST - 5 comments

Car Tape Player

The cassette deck in my car is so noisy that when I'm listening to books on tape on the iPod, all I can hear is the clacking and ratcheting of the tape deck as it gnaws on the cassette adapter. What can I do? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by vraxoin at 8:05 AM PST - 13 comments

What are the characters' (not actors') real names on Gilligan's Island?

Sorry is this has been asked before, but what were the *real* character names on Gilligan's Island. Not the actors names (Bob Denver, Alan Hale, et.c), but the non-nickname names of the skipper, Gilligan, Professor,etc. I seem to remember that the Skipper's name was something like Jonas Grumby....
posted by jimbler at 7:47 AM PST - 15 comments

Repossessed Boats?

This morning, the landlord of the bar I work in text messaged me asking, "Ant, can you find a web site that sells boats seized by customs in the USA? Cheers." Of course, my first thought was eBay, but I'm wondering if there's some governmental or contracted company that does this sort of thing. Any ideas?
posted by armoured-ant at 7:31 AM PST - 4 comments

Book / story about a unicorn trying to become human?

This has been driving me batty. I read a book (short story?) a long time ago and I've been trying to find it. Its about a unicorn trying to become human and it cuts off its hind legs. Any bells ringing?
posted by Julnyes at 6:39 AM PST - 11 comments

Jump-start my writing process!

OK, I'm trying to write my latest masterpiece, and I'm doing everything but... Any tips on writing routines? Not blocked, as such. Plain lazy is a definite possibility. But seriously, anybody have a fail-safe way to get up in the morning and get going?
posted by klaatu at 4:58 AM PST - 21 comments

"Dinosaurs" show

Does anyone remember the last episode of that old ABC show Dinosaurs (you know, with the puppets?) Something just triggered some strange memory of the last episode and I seem to remember all the characters kicking the bucket (even the baby). Is that what happened? Is there a detailed synopsis of this episode somewhere on the web? Tvtome doesnt have it to much detail. It was called "Changing Nature," i believe.
posted by Slimemonster at 12:05 AM PST - 17 comments

April 13

DB Interfaces and the comparison thereof

I'm looking at database packages and wondering if anyone has had first-hand experience with direct interfaces for PostgreSQL, SQLite, BerkeleyDB or MySQL, either of the command-line variety or via a web-based GUI? I'm very familiar with phpMyAdmin but that's where my experience stops. How might the above compare with phpMyAdmin?

Mind you, I already understand the features/benefits/drawbacks of the databases themselves. It's the interfaces (especially web-based) that I'm interested in.
posted by fooljay at 11:48 PM PST - 12 comments

What are some great novels and/or myths that feature two heroes?

What are some great novels and/or myths that feature two heroes? [more inside]
posted by _sirmissalot_ at 10:51 PM PST - 33 comments

Spam filter recommendations?

God damn the spam. What spam filter would you recommend?
posted by Termite at 10:44 PM PST - 26 comments

1980 Toyota Controller

I've been working on this 1980 Toyota Corolla to use for the summer, and im realizing its really easy to work on old ass cars. Here is the biggest problem:
Exhaust leak is happening in what sounds to me like the connection between the exahust heads and the tailpipe. I don't know for sure, but I don't think there is a crack in it. I would like to replace this myself, assuming its only a gasket. This car is 24 years old and I am worried about popping off those nuts. What should I do to make sure I don't break the bolts off removing the exhaust pipe? I am talking NO money. I don't even know how I am going to buy the gasket for this. [more inside]
posted by Keyser Soze at 8:38 PM PST - 13 comments

Mountain View, CA - is it livable?

Mountain View Mountain View Mountain View. 'Might be moving there for a summer. Is it livable? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by zpousman at 6:44 PM PST - 25 comments


Idioglossia, cryptophasia, the (in the best cases) autonomous language of twins: Twintalk. Does anyone know of any recorded twin languages with translation? A case-study with a, well... Twintalk-to-English Dictionary is what I guess I'm looking for. [more inside]
posted by Shane at 6:14 PM PST - 3 comments

San Miguel de Allende, Mexico; intensive Spanish course needed

I'm thinking of doing an intensive Spanish language course in San Miguel de Allende in Mexico this summer. Has anyone tried a school there? Any other suggestions for the town or surrounding areas are much appreciated as well. [More Inside] [more inside]
posted by fionab at 6:00 PM PST - 4 comments

Two Mac related questions.

MacAskMe: Two Mac related questions. The first regards Mac compatible security camera solutions; the second involves changing the color of the cursor/pointer in OS X. [more mac mumbojumbo inside] [more inside]
posted by anathema at 4:57 PM PST - 9 comments

advice for a budding bike commuter

Need advice on bike commuting (more inside)... [more inside]
posted by dicaxpuella at 4:43 PM PST - 18 comments

It is bad for a single woman to aspire to be a SAH wife and mother?

Is it naive, selfish, spoiled, lazy, unreasonable, unrealistic, unamerican or otherwise unacceptable for, say, a 25 year old single girl to aspire to be a stay at home wife & mother and not pursue a career, despite her good education and good upbringing?
posted by palegirl at 3:41 PM PST - 73 comments

Why is my wireless disconnecting on my Windows 2000 pc?

Problem with a wireless card on Windows 2000. The manufacturers and Google have been no help. Ask Metafilter will solve it though, won't you...? [more inside, of course] [more inside]
posted by humuhumu at 2:15 PM PST - 8 comments

Air Travel post 9-11

I haven't been on a plane since 2000 (before a certain terrorist attack) and I have a trip next week so is there anything i really need to know? Can I bring food, pencils, fingernail files, etc. onboard with me? Should i be careful what i say out loud? Are people gonna stop me wherever I go?
posted by Slimemonster at 2:14 PM PST - 32 comments

Why is my car stereo fuse blowing?

Car stereo fuse blowing extravaganza! Please help salvage my stereo system. [more inside]
posted by dual_action at 1:03 PM PST - 6 comments

Is there a way to search Google for non-word symbols?

As a programmer, I'm often frustrated by the inability to search Google for non-word symbols such as =~, ||, and $_. Is there a way to do this, Google or otherwise?
posted by callmejay at 12:25 PM PST - 9 comments

Refurbishing Storage Containers

I'm thinking about modifying a standard shipping container to make a small wood shop. Does anyone have any information about cutting through the metal to create windows etc. [more inside] [more inside]
posted by jmgorman at 11:56 AM PST - 10 comments

Graphic Novel Recommendations (Superhero Genre Preferred)

I am looking for recommendations for some good graphic novels. More inside...
posted by Tallguy at 10:59 AM PST - 50 comments

Where can I find a used Pentax SLR (other than eBay)?

On Friday, our apartment was burglarized, and one of the things taken was my Pentax SLR camera I got in high school (about 8 years ago). I'm depressed about replacing it - all the "basic" models now are made of plastic or have too many features. This was the most basic student model, heavy, clunky, and completely manual. Does anyone know of a good used camera site that isn't eBay?
posted by agregoli at 10:23 AM PST - 11 comments

want to get wood floors installed, looking for local but not bank breaking

Does anyone have any experience with having wood floors installed. I just got a quote for almost 3k to install maple strips in less than 200 sq. ft. Home Depot does installations, and although I would like to patronize a small company, I can't do it for double the price. Any ideas?
posted by hummus at 8:36 AM PST - 12 comments

Best development kit to write applications for Nokia 3650

I'd like to write a few applications for my Nokia 3650. I've played a little bit with Nokia's developer APIs in C++, and I've looked at a few J2ME code examples, but I don't have significant experience in either. I don't have the time (or interest) to become proficient in both - which development kit should I dive into, and why? I'm more concerned with performance on the 3650 than other phones, and I'm a pretty good programmer, so a steep learning curve is not too much of a concern. Thanks in advance.
posted by djacobs at 8:29 AM PST - 2 comments

CSPAN, Firefox .8 error

Trying to watch video on cspan.org with Mozilla Firefox 0.8. Get the error message "rtsp is not a registered protocol." How do I fix this? [more inside]
posted by AstroGuy at 7:16 AM PST - 2 comments

How can I invest $14?

I have an extra $14. Rather than spend it at the bar, I've decided to try to turn it into $1,000 by April 15, 2005 through fairly low risk investments (i.e. no poker games or lottery tickets). My first goal is $20. What would you do to make $20 from $14?
posted by BirdD0g at 7:15 AM PST - 64 comments

Can and should I swap out the motherboard on my SO's computer?

My SO's computer has seen better days; It won't turn on anymore. I think it's the motherboard/BIOS that's fried. [more inside]
posted by soplerfo at 7:14 AM PST - 7 comments

Power supplies. Now, with more wattage?!

Computer Power Supplies: Why are they suddenly offering so much wattage? [more inside]
posted by RavinDave at 3:44 AM PST - 19 comments

To nap or not to nap, that is the question

So I'm pulling an all-nighter for work. Should I take a short nap?
posted by lbergstr at 12:38 AM PST - 19 comments

April 12

How accurate are FDA food labels?

Calories and Nutrients: How do they measure them? [the fat's inside] [more inside]
posted by Gyan at 10:48 PM PST - 11 comments

Can I bowl Candlepin outside of New England?

I went to Boston last weekend, and we all played candlepin bowling. I like it better than regular bowling, and I want to play again. Is there any candlepin outside of New England and the Maritimes? (more) [more inside]
posted by tss at 9:26 PM PST - 7 comments

Looking for a vendor to do a limited run of stickers

Recommendations requested: Sticker vendors. [intel inside] [more inside]
posted by o2b at 7:26 PM PST - 12 comments

Buying a Commuting Car

My company recently moved to Silicon Valley, and since I live in San Fran and the commute via public transit is 1.5 hours (vs 30 mins in a car) I've decided to buy a car for the first time ever. But I am totally flummoxed by the range of possibilities. I know I want a used compact 4 door that gets good mileage. Seems like it would be good to get it from a dealer so I can get extended warranty. But I don't know where to go from here. Any advice for a first time car buyer would be greatly appreciated. My price range is flexible but would like to spend no more than 15k. Also, I would love to hear recommendations-- some people have told me to go for a Civic or a Corolla, are there other cars 'equivalent' to those? I am not a fixer-upper so reliability is key. I know older cars are cheaper but seems like they'd be more prone to mechanical trouble-- not sure how much of a trade off it is to go old vs new.
posted by jcruelty at 5:29 PM PST - 33 comments

Determine how much weight my deck can hold

I have a deck. I want a jacuzzi out there. Is there a way for me to test how much weight it can hold? Do I need to hire a professional to do that? If so, how much does that cost?
posted by chaz at 5:15 PM PST - 8 comments

Please share black bean soup recipes!

In the Curley household we have come to be interested in soups, especially the soups with black beans, but we are vaguely dissatisfied with our current recipe. Please share your favorite recipes for delicious black bean soup. Google will provide recipes, but semi-strangers are more trustworthy than complete strangers. (No more inside until someone replies.)
posted by Mayor Curley at 4:28 PM PST - 12 comments

DVD +/- RW format war.

I am thinking of buying an internal DVD burner for my PC. A DVD-RW unit costs about 70% of what a DVD+RW one does. I understand that the +R format is supposed to be "better", but less compatible than the -R one. Which should I get? [more inside]
posted by signal at 4:03 PM PST - 15 comments

I can't get my head around how microchips work.

How do microchips work?

I understand it at a very basic level. I know that when you apply current to a semiconductor, it becomes conductive, and that this closes the gate in a transistor. By opening or closing the right gates, you're able to do basic counting and logical operations.

Here though, my conceptual model totally falls apart. Because try as I might, I can't get my head around exactly what it is that controls the current going to the semiconductor in the gate in the first place. How does the microprocessor know to open or close a particular gate? It seems like if it already knew to open or close a gate, then the operation has already been done. It's like you'd need another microprocessor controlling the current within the first microprocessor, and so an and so on back to some omniscient prime mover.
posted by willnot at 2:28 PM PST - 13 comments

Food photography camera

Looking for a new digital camera for food photography. [more inside]
posted by swank6 at 2:05 PM PST - 8 comments

home made Gatorade recipe

I googled a recipe for home made Gatorade for my son who has a landscaping business. I will list it inside. Does anyone have any cautions about this or perhaps have a better recipe?
What have you used to keep your homeostasis. [more inside]
posted by JohnR at 2:04 PM PST - 8 comments

Windows Explorer folder comments

It's possible to add a comments field in Windows Explorer. Office document comments are displayed. Is it possible to add Folder comments? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by theora55 at 1:36 PM PST - 4 comments

Where can I find Rimsky-Korsakov's Scheherezade performed by acoustic guitars?

Super Hard AskMe Challenge! A few years ago, when listening to the low end of the radio dial late one night, I heard an arrangement of all four movements of Rimsky-Korsakov's Scheherezade, performed entirely by two acoustic guitars. I'd very much like to hear it again. Who recorded this, is it available on compact disc, and where can I find it for sale (if at all)?
posted by Prospero at 12:40 PM PST - 8 comments

Easy SQL Server to MySQL Conversion

My coworker has developed an app using the Borland c++ environment and sql server. Basically, it lets a bunch of instructors score a bunch of papers, each of which is identified by a number.

Because of the licensing restrictions of sql server, we want to port this to php/mysql.

Is there a relatively painless (cheap/free/automatic) way to do this, short of rewriting the whole thing?

Thanks, and sorry for such a dull question.
posted by mecran01 at 12:37 PM PST - 7 comments

Office Space DVD Prompting Me on Mac OS X for Virus Check ... with Pink Button!

Ack! I'm in bed with the flu and I want to watch my Office Space DVD, which I just unwrapped, but when I put it into my OSX iBook and try to play it, I get a weird window that looks sorta OS9-ey with the message: "System Check: press enter to scan for dvd virus." It's really creeping me out. As I'm sapped of all strength, I really don't want to go into the other room and try it on the console. Anyone have any idea wtf this is? The "enter" button it gives me is PINK fer gad's sake. [more inside]
posted by scarabic at 10:56 AM PST - 7 comments

Help me name by new DVD business

Looking for suggestions for naming a new DVD business. (Prizes!) [more] [more inside]
posted by dobbs at 10:33 AM PST - 46 comments

Easy, Cheap, Reliable Third-Party Merchant Accounts?

Suggestions for easy, cheap, reliable third-party merchant accounts? I've looked at 2CO and charge.com, but first I eagerly seek the voice of experience. [more inside]
posted by brownpau at 10:01 AM PST - 3 comments

Hosting for created music in mp3 format.

I've got about 400 MB of my (as in I made it, I own it) music that I want to host somewhere. I'm willing to pay and I don't want my users seeing popups or anything like that. My html is hosted somewhere else already so I just need space for the mp3 files. Any help? I've been looking at hosting services for days and I can't find the kind of deal that I'm sure is out there.
posted by n9 at 9:56 AM PST - 11 comments

Compost and Earthworms

Can I put earthworms into a rotating composter? I have one of those drum kinds that sit off the ground on a rack that spin around for aeration. The spinning takes the place of the earthworm action in the traditional pile, but I've heard that you can put worms in the spinning drums as well to speed up the decompostion process.
posted by archimago at 9:49 AM PST - 11 comments

Exercise Recommendations

Fitness advice: I'm on a long term weight loss program (~2lbs/week.) 32lbs into it, I'm starting to think that I'd better do more than Dance Dance Revolution if I don't want to become one of those skin-saggy people from Ripley's Believe It Or Not. I'm considering either Tae Bo or Pilates for at-home exercise, and would like testimonials or suggestions for other programs. [more inside]
posted by precocious at 9:18 AM PST - 22 comments

Is "Vitor Cunha" really a Portuguese musician or is it Mark Knopfler in disguise?

Calling all internet detectives, music fans and residents of Portugal. Is "Vitor Cunha" really a portuguese musician? [much more inside...] [more inside]
posted by tdismukes at 6:12 AM PST - 11 comments

Help me improve my wireless network connection in a hotel

Wireless network question. I just moved into a hotel with a 802.11b wireless network for internet access and am having problems maintaining my connection. [Inside, there is more!] [more inside]
posted by bendy at 3:54 AM PST - 6 comments

How do I find investments that are negatively correlated?

How do I find investments that are negatively correlated? [lots more inside] [more inside]
posted by weston at 12:27 AM PST - 7 comments

April 11

Does constant squinting cause frown lines?

I squint, constantly. Will this influence frown lines later? [mi] [more inside]
posted by abcde at 8:21 PM PST - 9 comments

Ants ants everywhere!

Carpenter ants. My wife and I are finally winning the war against sugar ants (thanks to a wonderful product called Terro which works better than our $300 exterminator did), but now we have a carpenter ant infestation. The nest (main nest? will there be multiple nests?) is located in some rotten 2x6 boards framing our raised beds in the garden. However, their current ant highway leads to a vent under the house. Any of you Mefites have carpenter ant experience? What worked? What didn't? Do we need a professional? If they're foraging under the house, does that mean they've probably already set up a colony there? I hate ants. I hate them, I hate them, I hate them, I hate them, I hate them.
posted by jdroth at 7:00 PM PST - 7 comments

Neck Pain

Ergonomics question: Why are seats (airplane, bus, car) all so uncomfortable on my neckular area?

(inside there is oh so much more!) [more inside]
posted by Sinner at 2:56 PM PST - 12 comments

Colloaborative music making, online.

Colloaborative music making, online.

[more inside] [more inside]
posted by lazaruslong at 2:02 PM PST - 21 comments

Where can I get a Gmail invite?

Evidently, everyone and their mother has a gmail account and is posting screenshots. Any idea how those of us who aren't even related to everyone might get invited?
posted by timeistight at 12:29 PM PST - 12 comments

Up on the Roof

After getting excited about the Loftcube, I wondered... How would you go about renting or buying roofspace in the city? Is it an endrun around ridiculous apartment prices, or more trouble than it's worth? [more inside]
posted by leotrotsky at 11:59 AM PST - 3 comments

How do I host MP3s for a private audience without getting busted?

Any advice on web hosting for a few MP3s? I'm presenting on the music of Fela Kuti for a seminar on postcoloniality, and part of the week's assignment is to listen to a few of his songs. What I need is a way to host about 60 megs of MP3s so that my classmates can download them. Ideally, I would like to password-protect the files, for legal reasons. [more inside] [more inside]
posted by UKnowForKids at 10:35 AM PST - 13 comments

Software ethics PCMIA

I frequently use a certain piece of software, obtained 100% legally. It offers two usage options: 1. register a maximum of one(?) machine and use it sans CD, 2. use it with the CD in the drive on as many machines as you'd like. I use the latter method on three of my four machines, however, I also have one laptop with only one PCMCIA slot. To use the program without registering requires not using my PCMCIA wireless ethernet card. I don't remember exactly what steps are required to trick the software into thinking a local (hard drive) copy is a CD. I also am not sure just how illegal this would be. Advice? Thoughts?
posted by Sinner at 9:11 AM PST - 7 comments

Best online libraries with articles on weblogs? Free is better

Anybody know of any good online libraries? I'm especially interested in libraries containing articles on weblogs, as that's the theme of my dissertation and that's what this research is for. If you can point me directly at good interesting articles on weblogs, that would be great too. :) (Yes, I'm aware I may be asking too much, but I figure there's no harm in asking.)
Bonus points if they're free resources, but I'm not opposed to paying a small sum to get articles if I have to.
posted by sailoreagle at 8:51 AM PST - 6 comments

NYC psychiatrist needed

Anyone know a good psychiatrist in NYC? Not a psychotherapist, but an MD who can proscribe drugs. I have a friend who thinks he may be clinically depressed but is mistrustful of doctors.
posted by grumblebee at 8:49 AM PST - 8 comments

Evolution of Easter

I'm yet to find a coherent answer to the following question online or anywhere. Crucifixion to chocolate easter eggs. How did that happen?
posted by feelinglistless at 6:32 AM PST - 17 comments

Unicode Chinese characters

[MT question] My blog is configured to publish in Unicode. I frequently use Chinese characters in my posts. The posts are published just fine, but when I go to edit a post, what comes up aren't the Chinese characters, but rather the Unicode coding for the characters. Is there some way to configure MT so that when I edit an older post, I can see the characters instead of the Unicode coding?

I wouldn't be surprised if the same thing happens with Japanese/Korean/Arabic/Summerian.
posted by alidarbac at 12:03 AM PST - 3 comments

April 10

Hairstyle Wishlist

My wife is looking for a website where she can browse through various contemporary hairstyles to find something she likes. Most of what Google has turned up hasn't been very helpful. Any of the MeFettes have any suggestions for ladies' hairstyle sites?
posted by oissubke at 10:30 PM PST - 6 comments

Which Wiki software?

I'm looking to create a Wiki; actually several. The issue though is this - I don't want to have to do this twice. I tried blogger...and then after about six months I had really seen most of the blogging community/software and saw that Movable Type had the greatest flexibility + future (there was a time where I almost was going to use Greymatter!)

I was hoping with the collective strenght of Mefi - that someone would say:"yeah, this is the best of the bunch...and with a decent future"
posted by filmgeek at 8:43 PM PST - 12 comments

Bad links on major news sites

Why do the most professional news web sites so often - and increasingly often - include bad or wrong links? I'm talking NYT, WP, Daily Telegraph and Google News et al. (For a recent example, click on the Researching the New Joy of Sex highlight in today's Observer and you get this.)
posted by MiguelCardoso at 7:25 PM PST - 7 comments

Music: Just what exactly is 'key'?

Music: Just what exactly is 'key'? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by Gyan at 7:16 PM PST - 22 comments

How do I get rid of viruses Norton finds but cannot delete?

I can't get rid of some viruses on my computer. Norton can find them, but can't delete them. They're in my c:\RECYLER direcory. Little help? (More inside) [more inside]
posted by Samsonov14 at 5:44 PM PST - 7 comments

Typepad Comments

Using Typepad, how do I make it so the comments "Pop Up" as opposed to taking the reader to a new page?
posted by adrober at 4:32 PM PST - 3 comments

Cannot vs Can Not

"Can not" vs. "cannot": intuitively, the former seems to mean "one is permitted to not" while the latter means "not allowed to". But I've seen both used both ways. So what's the correct usage?
posted by casarkos at 2:04 PM PST - 10 comments

Wiggling Cat

My female cat's hind end slips from side-to-side in a strange fashion. [more inside]
posted by erebora at 1:46 PM PST - 11 comments

Mail server profanity filters

Question for MS Exchange server administrators, or anyone similarly knowledgeable out there, about e-mail censorship... [more inside] [more inside]
posted by PrinceValium at 1:34 PM PST - 3 comments

The cat keeps chewing, chewing, chewing, chewing

this may seem like an odd request, but can anyone suggest a good chew toy for a cat? my cat loves rubber shoe insoles (dr. scholls gel, to be exact) - his favorite toy. but he chews on them, swallows bits, then barfs. i took them away to stop him from choking, and haven't been able to find a suitable replacement. must be relatively soft, for cat jaws (which is why dog toys won't work) but must also be digestible - and something i wouldn't mind leaving on the carpet all day for him to devour. i was thinking some starch- or gummy-based something or other, but can't seem to find anything that will work. anybody have an idea? (or am i just crazy for asking this?)
posted by caution live frogs at 11:08 AM PST - 7 comments

Regional variations in nomenclature

Some people call them Hoagies, others call them grinders... Where I live what most people call pop is called soda, and water fountains are called Bubblers. What regional phrases does your area have?
posted by drezdn at 10:53 AM PST - 42 comments

Recommendations for ambient/downtempo/chillout internet radio stations?

I love listening to internet radio, especially ambient/downtempo music (I get these streams from iTunes). Anyone out there know any other good ambient/downtempo/chill out internet radio? I ask because although the stations I get on iTunes play from a massive collection, they do tend to narrow in on certain artists.
posted by SpaceCadet at 10:16 AM PST - 19 comments

Visual Field Distortion

Pizza induced visual field distortion : When I chew - as on a piece of pizza (or whatever) and stare at a computer screen, especially from it distance, I perceive a "ripple" (or a "flicker") on the screen which is congruent with my chewing action. (more inside) [more inside]
posted by troutfishing at 10:07 AM PST - 18 comments

Open-Source Version Control

Can some recommend an open-source version control system that will run locally? CVS seems a bit unwieldy, and other online reviews are geared toward large applications/development groups. Windows based if possible, but Linux is fine, too.
posted by grefo at 8:34 AM PST - 9 comments

Dial-up connection woes

I am on a 28.8k dial up. Bleh. However, My modem is a 56K and I used to get 53.3k. One day I just started getting the lower speed. I tried that line check number that U.S. Robotics has, but it is always busy (though, I tried it when we moved in here and it indicated that our line was fine for 56k). I've swapped out the modem. I've changed ISPs. I've tinkered with the modem settings (though I'm no modem expert). Frankly, I've resigned myself to the low connection speed. Now, I'm thinking AxMe... time to take the power back! Any ideas?
posted by pissfactory at 4:17 AM PST - 15 comments

Windows Media Player

For some reason, as of late, .avi files have been playing weird in Windows Media Player (which i'm getting a little sick of). The sound plays fine but the video starts dragging and keeps getting farther and farther behind. This does not happen with .mpg or .asf files. Is this a simple RAM problem or is something up with windows media?
posted by Slimemonster at 12:01 AM PST - 7 comments

April 9

Assessing neurotoxicity authoritatively

BioMeFites, what's the authoritative process on assessing neurotoxicity of any substance, in general? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by Gyan at 10:37 PM PST - 8 comments

US Supreme Court

Feeling strongly on the issue, I'm planning on heading into Washington, DC in hopes of being in the courtroom when the Supreme Court hears Hamdi v. Rumsfeld and Padilla v. Rumsfeld.

Keeping in mind the likely popularity of these cases, when should I show up and be on line? If I make it in to hear argument on the first case, will I need to try to throw someone some cash for their ticket to the second? What might be helpful to know that I won't find on the official info sheet? [last three links PDF] [more inside]
posted by John Kenneth Fisher at 10:01 PM PST - 11 comments

recommendations for computerized star charts for amateur visual astronomers?

Any recommendations for computerized star charts for beginning (visual) amateur astronomers? I've been using
skychart at Sky & Telescope to get a general feel for things, but it would be good to have something with a few more labelling options.
posted by cardboard at 9:59 PM PST - 3 comments

Raccoons in the City

Urban raccoon troubles. Help? [more inside]
posted by stonerose at 6:55 PM PST - 18 comments

Finding a Chinese fable book I read as a child.

I need your help in tracking down a small book of what I believe were Chinese fables/parables/moral lessons that I read as a child. Luckily, I do remember one of the stories...[more inside] [more inside]
posted by vacapinta at 6:53 PM PST - 9 comments

What happed to Christ after the resurrection?

According to the Bible (or any other source, I guess), what happened to Christ after he was resurrected on Easter Sunday? I know that now he is in heaven, but did he do anything other than just make an apperance before going there? Did he have to die again?
posted by rorycberger at 5:51 PM PST - 42 comments

No Gambling U!

My university recently configured the campus network to block the use of online gambling sites such as partypoker.com and pokerroom.com. In an article in the campus paper, the manager of university network services claimed they recently discovered that a large amount of "unclassified traffic" was clogging the server, and so the network was reconfigured to block this traffic, and this had the "unintended consequence" of blocking online gambling. In other words, this was done to manage bandwidth.

I'm pretty sure this is BS. I'd like to call them on it. More inside. [more inside]
posted by gsteff at 1:54 PM PST - 13 comments

Hearing Impaired

Why do some DVDs offer both 'English' and 'English for the Hearing Impaired' options? Aren't they going to be the same?
posted by feelinglistless at 1:36 PM PST - 6 comments

United Nations

Is the United Nations merely a guide for other nations to follow, or is their an innate burden of power within its charter?
posted by the fire you left me at 12:47 PM PST - 23 comments

Accented characters in HTML.

Accented characters in HTML. [more inside]
posted by kickingtheground at 12:19 PM PST - 14 comments

Taking Care of Silk

I have quite a few silk blouses, and I'm curious about the various washing instructions. Some are dry-clean only, others hand wash/line dry, and others still are machine wash/tumble dry. (As well as other assorted combinations). Why all the variations, when all are 100% silk?
posted by ferociouskitty at 9:57 AM PST - 4 comments

Programming languages for beginners

Near absolute beginner looking for a programming language with a small learning curve to make basic utilities/apps for my personal enjoyment. I've taken a few programming courses in HS and so am familiar with *basic* concepts but am pretty much ignorant other than that. I've googled but choosing a language/environment is incredibly daunting with the diversity out there.

-Must be able to make Windows GUI apps.
-Must be able to use sockets easily. I plan on making both client and server apps in the future.
-Must be able to manipulate files easily.
-Must be able to easily utilize common file formats like jpg, gif, wav, and mp3.
-Would like to compile programs into stand alone EXEs though the inclusion of a runtime DLL would be okay.
-Would love to be able to use DirectX audio plugins in my programs someday but definitely not a requirement.
-Online tutorials and resources geared towards the beginner level would be a huge plus.

Again the emphasis is on ease of use and a low learning curve. What am I looking at here? Visual Basic? Some obscure derivative like Euphoria? [more inside]
posted by yangwar at 8:53 AM PST - 29 comments

Are 32-bit computers worth it anymore?

Would I be crazy to plop down money on a 32-bit mobo & processor when 64-bit are now available? (More inside) [more inside]
posted by RavinDave at 8:50 AM PST - 13 comments

Whose voice do you enjoy hearing?

Whenever I hear Garrison Keillor tell a story, I get this warm fuzzy feeling. And there are a few other people whose voice seem to have a subduing effect. Whose voice affects you, in a positve, warm-fuzzy way? Is this anyway related to the brainwave/sub-auditory post?
posted by grefo at 7:33 AM PST - 47 comments

How can I burn playable video content (including .avi and .mpg) to CD in OS X?

Looking for a free way to burn playable video content using a CD burner in OS X. I'd like a solution that accommodates multiple input formats (AVI, mpg) and that someone here has successfully used. Also, is VCD the standard output format? Are there many alternatives?
posted by blueshammer at 7:05 AM PST - 6 comments

Calling all Catalogers! I want to get a spine label tattooed on my spine.

Calling all Catalogers! With the impending completion of my MLS, I want to get a spine label tattooed on my spine. However, after reading this thread, the last thing I want to do is make a mistake in my self marking. I'd be laughed out of the ALA! [More Inside] [more inside]
posted by robocop is bleeding at 6:54 AM PST - 14 comments

Do I need a new hard drive?

Continuing with my stupid computer.... I bought a new Gateway since they're closing their stores. I then put the old hard drive in the new computer. Then the computer wouldn't start. Is this a function of a bad hard drive? It didn't fit in the drive bay, so did I ground it out (I sat it to rest on the case.. is that a bad thing?)? When I took the old hard drive out of the computer, it booted up fine, which leads me to think that it's the hard drive that's causing both systems to lock up. Do I just need a new hard drive for my old computer? Thoughts?
posted by ajpresto at 6:43 AM PST - 6 comments

JSP variables question

I have a JSP Question. How can you pass form variables to another JSP page without using cookies or sessions? I'm doing my form validation on one JSP page and then I need to do the processing of the form in the other. I'm guessing I could set some type of variables like php's $_POST but I'm not sure what to do.
posted by Stynxno at 6:35 AM PST - 8 comments

What to do in early stages of actors rehearsing a film?

Continuation of my film:

I have a good passage written out, and I had my actors recite it today. It sounds pretty good, and I gave them direction during the rehearsal, but I still don't know exactly what I am doing. What should I make sure to do at this very early stage in rehearsing? (Script Inside) [more inside]
posted by Keyser Soze at 3:34 AM PST - 18 comments

I want to go to Thailand on vacation and avoid throngs of Japanese tourists. What are some good places?

Thailand: Whats good? [keep a'lookin-->] [more inside]
posted by lkc at 12:16 AM PST - 14 comments

April 8

Networking Protocols

Networking question: What could cause one protocol to be drastically slower than another between the same two computers? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by m-bandy at 11:30 PM PST - 12 comments

Tools for removing the notebook lines from scanned docs

Has someone come up with a tool for removing notebook lines from scanned documents? [more inside]
posted by Hildago at 11:30 PM PST - 25 comments

Sympathetic Pain Article

A couple of months ago - maybe as far back as six months - there was an article on Yahoo News about how scientists had discovered that there was a neurochemical response to watching other people in pain. The example they gave was that when you watch a person stubbing their toe (or something similar) you yourself "experience" the pain yourself in a way, at least as far as your brain chemistry is concerned.

I'm a little fuzzy on the details, but does anyone remember this, and where I can read more about it?
posted by interrobang at 9:14 PM PST - 5 comments

Audigy2 or Extigy or some other 24-bit sound card?

Audigy2 or Extigy? Don't have a big budget, but if I find a bargin I'd really like to improve my listening experience. This would be for a laptop. Also, any other 24bit external sound cards out there? I know there's a prosumer level pcmcia card called Indigo, but it's outa my range.
posted by Grod at 8:41 PM PST - 7 comments

Wellbutrin Experiences

Wellbutrin. Anybody tried it? Experiences you want to share? Good, bad, indifferent? Weight gain? Sex drive? I've read the pharmacology, and chemically understand it...but clinical studies often leave a lot to the imagination when it comes to side effects, or lack thereof.
posted by dejah420 at 8:22 PM PST - 25 comments

House heating

A question about heating a household: Do you expend more energy maintaining a constant temperature in a house, or does it cost more letting the thermostat become lower and heating the house to a normal temperature when it is necessary?

I have a thermometer that adjusts the temperature up or down depending on the time of the day. When I'm at work and it is winter, I set the temperature lower then when I am at home. Have I wasted my money on this thermometer? When I let the temperature slide, the furnace could run for 15 minutes to 'catch up' for the heat lost throughout the day. [more inside]
posted by sleslie at 7:13 PM PST - 10 comments

So I am in a band...

So I am in a band, and I usually play through a Carvin DC-127T guitar, through a Zoom1010 effects processor and then directly into a PA system. I need help with the tone, however. [more inside] [more inside]
posted by lazaruslong at 6:18 PM PST - 14 comments

need prepaid mobile phone in texas for SMSing

Which prepaid mobile phone option?
I'll be in the US from this weekend until the start of June. I'll be travelling in all states west of Denver (inc. El Paso corner of Texas) plus NYC. I have a handset which isn't locked in to any provider and will work on the US GSM band.

I want to mainly send (& receive) SMS messages, receive calls, have voicemail & make the occasional out-going call. All mainly to make contact with folks rather than any heavy use.
posted by i_cola at 5:51 PM PST - 5 comments

Wanted: Books featuring characters from other books

Books featuring characters from other books? I'm a big fan of Gregory Maguire's work (fairytale/book characters), and Was, by Ryman (using Baum and Oz). I just came across Mr. Timothy (a grown-up Tiny Tim), and loved it too. Any more I should read? And does this subgenre have a name or anything?
posted by amberglow at 5:08 PM PST - 32 comments

What's the benefit of Amazon Associates tiered compensation plan?

Amazon Associates: I've always been utterly confused with the tiered compensation system. Now that they've changed the rules again, what's the upshot? As far as I can tell, there's now no difference between classic and tiered, except that you get a bonus with the tiered plan if you sell more than 30 items through your website. Am I missing something?
posted by crunchland at 4:04 PM PST - 6 comments

Text to Speech Synthesizer

I'm trying to locate a good text to speech synthesizer. I've looked at several but, I'm wondering if you know of any. (More inside). [more inside]
posted by Dean_Paxton at 4:01 PM PST - 10 comments

Copyright and Original Art

If you own an original piece of art, for intstance a painting, do you own its copyright and reproduction rights?
posted by dirtylittlemonkey at 2:06 PM PST - 23 comments

How to buy a used cellphone

I lost my cellphone and my contract has a year and a half to run. I'm thinking, used phones? There must be a market. --> [more inside]
posted by stupidsexyFlanders at 11:14 AM PST - 11 comments

Which Degree?

I'm returning to college this summer to finish a degree and have come to a crossroads as to what degree to go for. (more inside) [more inside]
posted by ttrendel at 8:51 AM PST - 13 comments

Resources for the beginning knitter?

Yesterday's knitting post has inspired me. My gf's birthday is coming up soon and I'm at a loss for gift ideas. She has mentioned an interest in learning to knit in the past. What equipment would you suggest for a beginner? Are there any especially good books geared for beginners? Are kits the way to go?
posted by ttrendel at 8:47 AM PST - 9 comments

Is there a Peep for Windows?

I love the idea behind Peep, and in fact it's something I had in the back of my mind to "get around to making someday" if someone didn't beat me to it. Now my question is -- is there something like it for Windows?
posted by oissubke at 8:14 AM PST - 2 comments

Hypnobirthing - Has Anyone Tried It?

Has anyone tried hypnobirthing? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by grateful at 7:32 AM PST - 11 comments

Who said: "Divide and ye [?] shall rule [conquer?]"?

ISO quote source. So far, no luck with google, at quoteland, idiomsite, or the phrase finder. Thought the well read among us may be helpful. :)

It goes something like this:

Divide and ye [?] shall rule [conquer?].
posted by yoga at 5:35 AM PST - 3 comments

News Radio

Are there radio feeds that carry television signals, or simulateneous news feeds for television news? I live in the NYC area and don't have access to a TV, but want to hear the Condoleeza Rice testimony this morning... NPR's the only radio station I can find that actually lists its programming news schedule, and the ABC affiliate in New York is conservative talk radio, so I doubt they'll have it. Not just for this specific event, but generally, do news networks carry radio feeds still? Did they ever?
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 5:35 AM PST - 14 comments

How to easily produce special written characters (specifically European ones)?

I'm an american, but I communicate in an online game with europeans... I'm the token stateside resident in our in-game organization. I do know a few words from each of their languages, but what I don't know is how to produce some of the special charachters that make up those languages with my standard american keyboard. For instance, in discussing the local name for easter with a swedish friend, Påskdagen, she can produce the odd charachter easily, while I can't even figure out how to do it besides copying and pasting from my charachter map in Word. Any ideas?
posted by SpecialK at 2:00 AM PST - 16 comments


Anybody else familiar with the program Golden Palace Casino? Its malware that is forced into your computer that is next to impossible to get rid of. In fact, I had to call them and they had to SEND ME a file to completely remove it. I asked to speak to their legal department, and they said they didnt have one. My question is:

Are there law firms fighting the rights of people receiving malicious software such as this, and do they have a website?
posted by Keyser Soze at 12:05 AM PST - 12 comments

April 7

Is there a good place online to find lots of photos of past US Presidents?

Is there a good place online to find lots of photos of past US Presidents? [more inside]
posted by Ignatius J. Reilly at 11:56 PM PST - 5 comments

I Scream, You Scream...

I just bought a Cuisinard ice ceam maker and there are way too many recipes on the internet to wade through. So those with ice cream makers: what are your killer ice cream recipes?
posted by adrober at 9:14 PM PST - 14 comments

Easy, DIY intramuscular injection system?

Do you know about any do-it-yourself-ez-intramuscular injection system ? My grandma has poor dexterity and she's afraid she'll hurt herself with the syringe and needle ; she would like something like a "pistol" that shoots the syringe and needle at a safe depth and with accuracy.
posted by elpapacito at 7:55 PM PST - 6 comments

How do I make an online form with email address inputs?

I need javascript or html code for my website so that users can enter their email address in a box, hit send to send it to my inbox. It's so that they can receive notification of updates. I have searched high and low, but no luck.
posted by Quartermass at 7:24 PM PST - 5 comments

FCC Question

So, I'm looking at the back of my wireless card, and I have an FCC rules question. [more inside] [more inside]
posted by Yelling At Nothing at 7:00 PM PST - 6 comments

German MeFi

Put forward to action by this catty thread but with different reasons and intentions, does anyone have recommendations for excellent Metafilter-like sites or even personal weblogs...in German? I have very high fluency in German, subscribe to a few of the default German weblogs in NetNewsWire lite, but blogging culture in the hunosphere (I kid, I kid) just doesn't seem to have much presence. Maybe because everyone can speak English? I'd like to keep up my German with one of my favorite time-wasters while living outside of a German-speaking country. Anyway, almost all input welcome!
posted by Gnatcho at 6:47 PM PST - 6 comments

Ameica the vast

Here's what could be called an urgent question for Europeans who make their living writing (amongst other things) about the United States. How do you explain to intelligent Europeans that "America" is actually as big and varied a proposition as "Europe"? If not more. [More inside.] [more inside]
posted by MiguelCardoso at 5:59 PM PST - 21 comments

What can people tell me about dandruff?

What can people tell me about dandruff? Is it just dead skin cells that get mixed up in your hair or is it some major dry scalp problem like the commercials tell me? I've been reading some very conflicting reports as of late. What's the best treatment for it? Is treatment necessary or even healthy?
posted by Slimemonster at 4:03 PM PST - 14 comments

What other sites are like MetaFilter?

Can someone recommend a decent Metafilter-esque site? [mi] [more inside]
posted by keswick at 3:37 PM PST - 34 comments

What's the best software for bulk email?

A client wants to send bulk email. What's the best software? Is there a way to get address lists of people who might be interested in the product (shrink film), or do you just buy lists wholesale somewhere? Will I be lost to the Dark Side and land in the spammer's circle of hell if I set this up for them?
posted by muckster at 3:08 PM PST - 16 comments

Expired Soup?

I was in the midst making Tater Tot Hot Dish last night when I discovered I had no cream of mushroom soup. I went to the pantry for a substitute and found a can of Campbell's cream of chicken soup stamped May 2001. What does this date mean? Use by? Best by? What about a can of soup stamped Sep 1997? Could I eat that? Is there a rule of thumb for dates on food packaging? I have lots of old food around...
posted by jdroth at 2:52 PM PST - 15 comments

Making New Friends

I'm new to Minneapolis, fresh out of college, working at a job where my co-workers are much older than me, and I'm feeling a bit stumped over how to go about finding some new friends. I enjoy rock shows, bike riding, indie movies etc., but I feel shy going out all by myself. What are some good ways to find a niche and some good pals in a new town? [more inside]
posted by bonheur at 2:38 PM PST - 15 comments

Car radio that displays extended information

I was visiting a friend in NYC recently, and his car stereo displayed what was playing on the radio. It wasn't XM or anything like that. This was broadcast, showing the title, artist and call letters. How is this done, and where can I get a receiver that does this? Do all stations do this?
posted by quibx at 1:05 PM PST - 13 comments

Is there a name for something like the opposite of deja vu?

Is there a name for something like the opposite of deja vu? I experienced this today - where I felt like work was new and I hadn't experienced it for very long, same when I thought about my relationship, etc. Am I just losing it, or has anyone else experienced this feeling?
posted by agregoli at 11:45 AM PST - 23 comments

I want to knit, where do I start?

Any advice on knitting - instruction, starting points, shops, brands, websites, anecdotes. Who is knitting these days? Is this a trend on the horizon? Men, are you knitting? Why do YOU knit? Is knitting experiencing a surge for the same reasons that poker is?
posted by BrodieShadeTree at 11:42 AM PST - 25 comments

Good Free RSS Feed for Keyword Search on Weblogs?

Anyone know of a good, reliable (free) RSS feed for Weblog Keyword Search? Technorati seemed like the most likely candidate, but they don't currently export keyword searches to RSS. I've found a couple others that do, including Feedster (a bit slow) and I thought that Blogines might do this, but they say they don't currently export keyword searches.

What I'm looking for is something as groovy and reliable as Yahoo News Search RSS (example keyword Metafilter) - but searching Weblogs, not the news. Any/all suggestions welcome - I'd rather not resort to page-scraping. [more inside]
posted by kokogiak at 10:09 AM PST - 7 comments

Dealing with College Expulsion

What happens when a person is expelled from a college for academic misconduct (not me)? Can they transfer at all? Does that show up on your transcript? Does it go on your permanent record? How does a person recover from that? Any insight appreciated.
posted by pissfactory at 9:55 AM PST - 8 comments

Where to find a dingbat of a flame?

Looking for a dingbat. [m.i.] [more inside]
posted by emelenjr at 9:25 AM PST - 4 comments

Cellphone rings on TV, I momentarily think it's my phone - what causes it?

Whenever a cellphone rings on a TV Show, I momentarily think it's my cellphone ringing -- or, if it doesn't sound like mine, some other phone in the same room as me. I don't just think this because the sound sounds like a phone; I think it because it sounds like the ringing is coming from outside the TV -- from closer to me than the other sounds coming from the TV set. Has anyone else experienced this? What causes this auditory illusion?
posted by grumblebee at 9:18 AM PST - 16 comments

Sharing DSL

How do I share a MSN DSL connection between multiple computers? The DSL Modem is a NetDSL 800, and I'd like to be able to connect each PC to the DSL independently (Not with 'internet sharing'). PC's are XP, and I already have a router to use (and plenty of experience routing on DSL with static IPs).
posted by daver at 9:17 AM PST - 2 comments

Windows 2K/XP networking woes

I have two computers, one running Win XP and one Win 2k. The XP one has a USB wireless adaptor which connects to the wireless network in my house, and the 2k one is connected via ethernet cable to the XP one. At the moment, the 2k one can open folders on the XP one, but not vice versa, which I find to be extremely odd. I'd like to be able to fix that, and also allow the 2k one to use the internet, which at the moment it can't do. I assume there is something I need to do on the XP machine to get it working, but haven't really got a clue!
posted by Orange Goblin at 3:35 AM PST - 4 comments

Grey vs Gray

To me, grey and gray are two different colors, not just two different spellings of the same color. I've asked a few friends, and so far I'm pretty much alone in my perceptions. Does anybody else think of two different colors depending on the spelling used? [more inside]
posted by emmling at 2:06 AM PST - 33 comments

Fired! Now What?

After being fired (not laid off or downsized, but actually fired) from a professional level job, how do you discuss this in interviews with new potential employers?
(a little more inside) [more inside]
posted by anastasiav at 12:19 AM PST - 16 comments

April 6

Dreaming Death

Is there any scientific data supporting the theory "If you dream your death in your sleep, you'll die"? [more inside]
posted by jmd82 at 10:51 PM PST - 22 comments

What is the derivation of profane language in Deadwood?

Paging Laguagehat! The new HBO series "Deadwood", set in the infamous old-west Dakota terrritory town, is notably profane—even moreso than other HBO shows. This has generated some press and controversy. [more inside] [more inside]
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 7:15 PM PST - 26 comments

HP Backlight

I recently acquired a laptop, an HP Pavilion n5340, and the backlight doesn't like to come on until after the laptop's been on a few minutes. After that, it stays on. I've checked around, and google tells me that the LCD inverter most likely to blame, but I want to know if anyone has personal experience with this. Has anyone else run into this problem (and fixed it) ?
posted by angry modem at 6:50 PM PST - 6 comments

How to get used to using new ergonomic keyboard?

The powers that be at work changed all the regular keyboards to ergonomic keyboards on April 1. Unfortunately, it was not a joke and I'm having a horrible time. Any thoughts or suggestions on how to get used to it?
posted by lola at 4:52 PM PST - 20 comments

After a fresh install on a Sony Vaio, how do you get the screen resolution and colors back to what they were?

My friend just wiped the drives on her off-the-shelf Vaio (RX450) and installed Windows 2000. Now the monitor (ViewSonic A90) only offers up to 800x600 resolution and 16 colors - how do we fix this?
posted by casarkos at 4:32 PM PST - 5 comments

Why might I be able to pick up cable with my uhf/vhf antenna?

Its recently been discovered that i can pick up a 70-or-so channel cable broadcast on my uhf/vhf antenna. While hoping not to jinx myself, i ask, does anyone know how this may be occurring? more inside. [more inside]
posted by c at 4:12 PM PST - 9 comments

iTunes ID3 MP3 weirdness

What is iTunes putting in my MP3 tags? [mi] [more inside]
posted by punishinglemur at 3:56 PM PST - 7 comments

We have 8 gallons of milk, what can we do to use it fast?

My husband went a little overboard, as usual, and bought 8 gallons of milk because it was on sale pretty cheap. I don't think we can use it before it goes bad. A google search says that you CAN freeze milk...but does it affect the taste? I don't drink milk straight, but is milk that has been previously frozen detectable in baking or cooking? On cereal?
posted by Shoeburyness at 2:13 PM PST - 18 comments

Digital Camera Batteries

My digital camera can eat up four AA cells in less than an hour. Suggestions? Short of getting a second job to pay for batteries.
posted by precocious at 1:33 PM PST - 18 comments

Where do I find Mapquest's aerial photos

Whatever happened to MapQuest's aerial (satellite?) photos? Is there a site where I can find ones like them? [more inside]
posted by callmejay at 1:33 PM PST - 13 comments

Don't Shop at Wal-Mart!

How does on convince someone else, who has many options available to them and who has no serious financial restrictions, to not shop at Wal-Mart? (more inside) [more inside]
posted by nyoki at 1:05 PM PST - 44 comments

Medical Reimbursement Plan - what does the IRS require?

I've recently started a company, structured as a 'C' Corp, to sell my consulting/contracting services. One of the reasons I'm working as a 'C' corporation is so I can have the company pay all medical expenses. I've read from the web and various IRS publications that as long as the Medical Reimbursement Plan is offered to all employees equally (no problem there) then it can be paid for by the company and written off on the corp taxes. But in order to make the MRP legit what, other then limiting medical expenses to those listed as acceptable by the IRS, do I need to do? Special records? Outside plan administrator?
posted by dirtylittlemonkey at 11:26 AM PST - 3 comments

Is it leather or pleather?

At my company, we just ordered a pallet-load of leather portfolios for the salespeople. But as I was just checking out my sample, I noticed a definite repeating pattern in the grain. Is it possible that this is some kind of recycled leather that gets stamped with a fake grain, or did we in fact just buy portfolios made of pleather?
posted by baltimore at 9:50 AM PST - 2 comments

Troubleshooting a Hard-Working HP

My computer (HP Pavilion PIII running XP) has been straining lately. It's slow to load programs, occasionally hangs for a second on simple tasks and throws out some odd flashing on bootup that wasn't there before.

If I was going to address this, how would I go about it step-by-step? Preferably without simply reformatting and reinstalling because I don't want to sort out my backups unless I absolutely have to.
posted by Mayor Curley at 9:49 AM PST - 6 comments

Tell me about traveling perfume salesmen.

Who do traveling perfume salesmen work for? Why is their MO to go into retail establishments and sell to people who work there?
posted by pieoverdone at 5:41 AM PST - 7 comments

Seeking examples of films where new technology is depicted as being positive and beneficial

Can anyone provide some good examples of films where new technology is depicted as being positive and beneficial. Essentially I want films that are the opposite of the "you're messing with things you don't understand - you're trying to play God!" kind. [more inside]
posted by biffa at 2:09 AM PST - 54 comments

Training for a 1/2 Marathon

I am running in my first half marathon in 3 and a half weeks time, and in my tradition of leaving things to the last minute, I didn't start serious training until last week. Any advice to make the whole thing go smoothly? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by chill at 1:56 AM PST - 9 comments

How big of a deal is it to have a server in colocation in a far away location?

I have a webserver colocated in Los Angeles, where I live. I am moving to New York in a few months and I'm wondering if I should take the server with me. I have a ridiculously great deal at my current facility. How big of a deal is it to have a server in colocation in a far away location? (The server has RAID 1 and hot-swap drives, if that helps.)
posted by 4easypayments at 1:09 AM PST - 4 comments

April 5

Pinnacle Blue Box

I've accidentally found myself in possession of a Pinnacle Blue Box for capturing video and am wondering where I could find a card with the 26 pin connector required to hook it up?
posted by drezdn at 11:10 PM PST - 2 comments

Where to find free images for t-shirts?

Anyone know of a good source for free images that would be good to use on t-shirts? [simorede] [more inside]
posted by rorycberger at 8:38 PM PST - 10 comments

Can anyone recommend good Peruvian literature (in Spanish)?

Can anyone recommend good Peruvian literature (in Spanish)? [more inside]
posted by nomis at 8:36 PM PST - 4 comments

19th C Portraiture

Question about the process of portraiture in the late nineteenth century in general, and San Francisco artist Addie Ballou in particular. [More inside.] [more inside]
posted by Acetylene at 7:52 PM PST - 4 comments

Can I use my HP ScanJet 5200C printer with my Mac?

I have an HP ScanJet 5200C, which had previosuly been used on a Windows system. I would like to use it with a Mac (OSX 1.3), but HP doesn't seem to offer driver software for it. Can it be done?
posted by skwm at 7:17 PM PST - 3 comments

Compaq Presario 1800T laptop (PIII, 650Mhz, 10GB HDD, w2K, 390MB RAM) with what appears to be a hardware problem.

I've got a Compaq Presario 1800T laptop (PIII, 650Mhz, 10GB HDD, w2K, 390MB RAM) with what appears to be a hardware problem. More inside... [more inside]
posted by gnz2001 at 3:19 PM PST - 7 comments

Is [hr] an inline or a block-level element?

Is <hr /> an inline or a block-level element? The spec is not clear on that. [more inside]
posted by brownpau at 3:00 PM PST - 2 comments

Almond Flour

So, it's Pesach, and time for me and other jews to engage in a culinary tango dictated by what can often seem like an ever shifting sheaf of talmudic law. I've recently started playing around with almond flour - specifically a wonderful lemon pound cake (I use sugar - I'm a natural man!), and was pondering making it this week. But then it occurred to me - is using almond flour in this way - or almond flour at all - kosher for Pesach? And does anyone know of a good one-stop list of the rules and, to my mind more importantly, the reasons behind each?
posted by jearbear at 2:32 PM PST - 13 comments

Hairy Advice

I need a new hair product (more inside). [more inside]
posted by answergrape at 2:05 PM PST - 21 comments

What did you think of Edward Tufte's info design course?

has anyone taken Edward Tufte's 1 day info design course? and if so?? what did you think? worthwhile?
posted by specialk420 at 1:22 PM PST - 14 comments

Online Statistics Course, or Really Good Statistics Textbook?

I'm looking for an online statistics course. Anyone know of a good one? A really good textbook would also work.
posted by LittleMissCranky at 1:15 PM PST - 10 comments

Seeking Reactions, Recommendations and Buying Advice on Tablet PCs

Tablet PCs (a) seem to be very cool, and (b) look like they would meet my particular needs (note-taking at meetings and during conversations, capturing diagrams and informal charts/sketches) better than either conventional laptops or handhelds. But they don't seem to be very popular, and it's hard to find good on-line reviews or comparative assessments of models. So I'm wondering if any of you who have used one can offer reactions (positive or negative), recommendations, or buying advice.
posted by Kat Allison at 12:29 PM PST - 12 comments

Are sheetfed scanners made any more?

Are sheetfed scanners made any more? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by benjh at 12:14 PM PST - 5 comments

Earmuff-style headphones with a built-in radio?

I'm looking for a pair of earmuff-style headphones with a built-in radio. Any recommendations? [More Inside] [more inside]
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 11:41 AM PST - 2 comments

Modeling Airflow

I am preparing a course on Computer Aided Environmental Design for architects and other professionals, and am planning to make extensive use of Ecotect, a package which allows one model and study the solar, light, thermal and acoustic behavior of a building. To round it out, I would like to be able to study ventilation and airflow as well. Is there any easy-to-use (for an architect, not an engineer) software in the vein of Ecotect which will allow basic modeling of ventilation or airflow on a standard PC?
posted by signal at 11:14 AM PST - 1 comment

I'd like a poster of linguistic geneaology

The other day I was looking at my dictionary. At the back is a diagram of linguistic geneaology. As in, Spanish comes from Latin comes from... Does anybody know where I could find a large poster version of this sort of thing? (More Inside) [more inside]
posted by shotsy at 10:34 AM PST - 5 comments

iTunes Question

YAiQ (Yet Another iTunes Question): Why is there a bunch of hexadecimal junk in my Comment fields? Venture within for further elucidation of my quandary... [more inside]
posted by dragstroke at 10:33 AM PST - 7 comments

Deciphering Northfork

The film Northfork: Thoughts or comments? If you have seen the film, you will understand why I am not asking a more specific question. "What're you talkin' about, Willis?" In a way, I loved the film, yet I am still very confused (despite the fact that I'm rarely the guy who is confused by this type of movie.)

Okay, here is a specific question: Do I really even want "answers," or do I just want to watch the film again and let it wash over me without explanation? :-)
posted by Shane at 10:15 AM PST - 6 comments

What's up with my notebook power adapter receptacle?

I've got a big problem with my notebook PC. The spot into which I put the power cord/AC adapter in the computer (whatever it's called) seems to have been damaged somehow, so now I have to nudge the connection into just the right angle for the battery to start charging at all. The computer works just fine except for this, but the warranty has run out, and my PC needs power! (A) Who can I call about such a problem -- a PC support guy or an electrician or what? (B) If all fails, are there any backup options, like a USB charger or something? I'm desperate!
posted by dagny at 7:22 AM PST - 10 comments

Can anyone suggest the title/ author of a book of conversation starters I once heard about?

Can anyone suggest the title/ author of a book I once heard about? It contains dozens of conversation starters - things like (and I paraphrase): "If you were offered to live forever, but only on condition that you were ugly, would you take it"?
posted by skylar at 6:27 AM PST - 7 comments

W3c validation error help, please

I have a web page that is valid XHTML 1.1 when I upload it to the w3c validator. However, when I link to the 'check referrer' validator from it, I get "I was not able to extract a character encoding labeling from any of the valid sources for such information". Does anyone have any idea what the problem is here?
posted by reklaw at 3:40 AM PST - 9 comments

Why is nitrogen part of so many explosives?

Why is nitrogen part of so many explosives? [more inside]
posted by Vidiot at 12:04 AM PST - 13 comments

Using T-Mobile for portable internet connection using a Mac laptop.

Wanted: recommendations about using T-Mobile for portable internet connection using a Mac laptop. [more inside] [more inside]
posted by weston at 12:02 AM PST - 12 comments

April 4

The Cost of Owning a Home

Can anyone give a good break down of the expenses associated with home ownership? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by wildblueyonder at 11:07 PM PST - 29 comments

Cleaning services

Has anyone ever tried a hired maid/home cleaning service before? [more inside]
posted by swank6 at 11:05 PM PST - 23 comments

Unusual & frequent web server request.

I've been getting "/\x90\x02\xb1\x02\xb1\x02\xb1\"with the "/x90" repeated over and over again in my site's visitor logs and was wondering what it means.
posted by drezdn at 8:41 PM PST - 4 comments

Like David Eggers, only female.

my girlfriend is a fan of writers such as chuck palahniuk, dave eggers, jeffrey eugenides, david sedaris.
recently,she's expressed interest in finding an author (or authors) with a similar style-- but female.

any thoughts or suggestions?
posted by ronv at 7:58 PM PST - 32 comments

What is the best Windows application for creating reports of digital music collections?

What is the best Windows application for creating reports of digital music collections? I need it to support both MP3 and AAC. I would prefer customizable HTML output but would settle for Text. I have tried several popular applications but none have supported AAC and their reporting capabilites have been minimal. I am looking for something that can create reports with just artist and album titles as well as the more typical every file/song reports.
posted by agregoli at 7:40 PM PST - 7 comments

Giving Notice

How much notice should I give? I like my job and my boss, but I've been accepted to grad school. My company has a habit of procrastinating on hiring new people (a month or more), but I have a lot of responsibilities that will need to be taken over immediately. It might even be beneficial for someone to take over the week before I leave, so I can give them some training. Should I stick with the traditional two weeks, or give them a little more leeway?
posted by ArsncHeart at 6:42 PM PST - 12 comments

What's this hair band song?

I've got this hair band song that's been driving me crazy for the past couple of months.. more inside. [more inside]
posted by Addlepated at 6:06 PM PST - 10 comments

recover files after XP reboot?

Windows XP rebooted, and chkdsk set many of my files to zero bytes. How do I get what was originally in those files back? [more inside]
posted by calwatch at 5:54 PM PST - 6 comments

Compiling Playfair under XP?

Okay, I found Playfair linked here, and downloaded the gzipped src & installer code, but I'm very lame, because I can't figure out how to compile it under XP. Anyone have the time/inclination to walk an utter command line noob through the steps?
posted by jonson at 5:09 PM PST - 16 comments

Why does Mozilla's window.ondragdrop event have no effect whatsoever

Why does Mozilla's window.ondragdrop event have no effect whatsoever, despite the fact that the official documentation claims the method exists? [more inside]
posted by Danelope at 3:30 PM PST - 4 comments

Protecting Wool Wall Hangings

how can we protect a wool wall hanging from being eaten by bugs? we bought this in mexico a couple of years ago, and it's been hanging on the wall in our bedroom. looking at it now, after moving house, it has "bald" patches and holes. we can probably repair the holes to keep it in one piece, but how do we stop further degradation? thanks.

(there's not much point in suggesting commercial chemical solutions by name, as we probably won't be able to find them; we'd like to continue to display it on the wall; also, since it's only been on the wall, it's relatively clean - googling seems to suggest this means it would not be damaged... - and we haven't seen a particularly large number of bugs near the hanging).
posted by andrew cooke at 2:06 PM PST - 9 comments

How do you set Entourage so that each accounts emails go into their own separate folder?

Simple Microsoft Entourage question... [more inside]
posted by skwm at 1:12 PM PST - 2 comments

CD Player Issues

Help! CD Player Laser Lens Not Working - Why? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by Jaybo at 12:42 PM PST - 8 comments

Kazaa and Ad/spyware

Ad/Spyware problem. My fiancee was looking for some freeware and when she installed Kazaa (not lite) a bunch of programs were installed. We've tried everything we can think of and can't get rid of something called media-search.net. (more inside) [more inside]
posted by graventy at 12:17 PM PST - 10 comments

Free audiobooks?

Anyone know a website where i can download Audiobooks in MP3 (or comparable) format for free or excruciatingly cheap? I've got a long trip coming up and my eyes have been hurting for a while.
posted by Slimemonster at 12:10 PM PST - 11 comments

I "hear" my voice when I read ot think

When I read or think, I hear my voice, but no sound is produced. Am I really hearing, or is something else going on? Is there a scientific explanation for this phenomena?
posted by grefo at 12:01 PM PST - 26 comments

Dog Behavior

Why do dogs behave differently towards different people, and how can an owner adjust that behavior? (More inside) [more inside]
posted by ferociouskitty at 8:40 AM PST - 23 comments

Tracking Down a Job

A friend found a position to which she wants to apply in the newspaper. The ad lists a fax number, but the number is wrong and calls someone's residence. I tried all the various combinations of area codes and exchanges and went through the yellow pages, seeking similar phone numbers. None of that worked. So, I believe the fault is in the last 4 digits, which are 3652. I tried 3852 and 3682.

Since the paper's ad department will not be open until tomorrow and I believe my friend will score big points with the employer if we can crack this mystery and have her fax sitting there first thing Monday morning, do any of you have some ideas?
posted by mischief at 7:10 AM PST - 15 comments

What's the catch on those 'free' trip vouchers?

Has anyone used one of those "free" trip vouchers where you only have to pay for the tax for the hotel room?
We subjected ourselves to an in home demonstration and received a voucher from Certs, Inc from Brunswick GA for two nights in a hotel with us only paying the hotel's tax.
posted by busboy789 at 6:30 AM PST - 2 comments

How do advance copies of music move across the internet? How do you stay updated?

What has always intrigued me is how advance copies of music make their way across the internet. I vaguely know that they almost always start in newsgroups and move from there, but where does it go? How does a person stay updated? How does a person learn about a specific groups release?
posted by Keyser Soze at 5:31 AM PST - 10 comments

Can I get MIDI input through the game port in Windows XP?

MIDI input through the game port in Windows XP - does this actually still work, or is it just me? [More Inside] [more inside]
posted by Jimbob at 4:01 AM PST - 6 comments

PC Power Supply troubleshooting

I think my PC's power supply might be acting up. What are your thoughts? [more inside]
posted by John Shaft at 1:54 AM PST - 14 comments

April 3

Port Scans

Every day for the last three weeks or so Sygate Personal Firewall Pro has blocked twenty or more port scans. In the past I would be scanned maybe once or twice a week. What has changed? I change my IP address from time to time and I know my box is secure and isn't worth hacking anyway. What gives? I'm getting tired of the blinking icon.
posted by Grod at 10:06 PM PST - 17 comments

Compensation for airline delay - esp Air NZ, Star Alliance?

Airline woes
I'm currently sitting in a hotel at Auckland Airport (New Zealand) when I should be loafing on a beach on the island of Raratonga in the Pacific as the flight I was due to take at 11.15am was cancelled due to a mechanical defect. I'm not happy (more inside)... [more inside]
posted by i_cola at 7:06 PM PST - 8 comments

Are US t-shirt sizes the same as in NZ or the UK?

I want to purchase a t-shirt from an American site. Are the sizes - which are, in this case, small, medium, large, and so on - the same as they are in NZ (or the UK)? [more inside]
posted by malpractice at 6:42 PM PST - 4 comments

Dealing with limited IP addresses

My ISP (cable) provides me with two IP addresses, but I now have three computers. What's the best way to set this up? (More-->) [more inside]
posted by timeistight at 6:25 PM PST - 5 comments

Freeware/shareware VCD player for Mac?

VCD Player for Mac - Is there a freeware or shareware program that y'all recommend for playing VCDs on a mac running OS X? As a Windows user, I was shocked to find that my VCD wasn't even recognized by any of the applications on the mac.
posted by turbanhead at 5:19 PM PST - 6 comments

Sublets in Chicago for Visiting Students?

Two very nice friends of mine-- art students from London-- are coming to Chicago for 6 months beginning next September. They are planning on finding a shared apartment through the internet. This sounds like a recipe for heart break to me. Is there a good way to trade apartments, or even a way to find out about sublets in Chicago. Even a recommendation for a less expensive but safe and integrated neighborhood would be great. I used to know the city well, but I image it's changed a lot in the last ten years. Any ideas I could pass on?
posted by gesamtkunstwerk at 4:14 PM PST - 6 comments

Why are Spyware removal and Antivirus software separate products?

Why are Spyware removal and Antivirus software separate products? Both are spread insidiously and often involuntarily, the scanning processes are identical, etc. There are a few political/commercial reasons I can think of, but nothing that persuasive.
posted by abcde at 2:47 PM PST - 8 comments

How does this riddle from "Speak Memory" work?

In Nabokov's autobiography, "Speak Memory," there is a puzzle of sorts. It goes like this (from pg. 70): "We subjected [Uncle Ruka] to a test one day, and in a twinkle he turned the sequence '5.13 24.11 13.16 9.13.5 5.13 24.11' into the opening words of a famous monologue in Shakespeare." I'm stuck, can anyone help?
posted by adrober at 2:29 PM PST - 16 comments

What is this statue at the Hollywood Forever cemetary?

Is there a sculpture of a "winged man sexually assaulting a woman" at the Hollywood Forever cemetary? [More inside] [more inside]
posted by mragreeable at 11:15 AM PST - 14 comments

What is the benefit of using a "solid" deodorant vs a "gel" based one?

What is the benefit of using a "solid" deodorant vs a "gel" based one?
posted by thebwit at 9:27 AM PST - 19 comments

Testing bias; how can it be so?

How can tests be biased? Isn't it simply a matter of understanding concepts related to the material and the language the test is given in?
posted by @homer at 8:12 AM PST - 10 comments

Looking for lyrics that feature "rumble in the jungle"

I'm looking for a song that has "Rumble in the Jungle" in the lyrics, (the Ali vs. Foreman fight), and I don't want the Wyclef Jean/Fugees/Busta Rhymes hiphop one. For some reason the song is stuck in my head, but I don't know anymore than those 4 words of the lyrics or know why it's in my head so it's kind of driving me crazy.
posted by banished at 7:59 AM PST - 5 comments

Home Recording Studio

I'd like to set up a cheap "recording studio" for dialogue (not music). I'm shooting for NPR/"This American Life" audio-quality. What do I need and how much will it cost me? I'll probably have to do this in my apartment, so considerations include sound-proofing a small room in addition to recording equipment. One thing I don't need is a PC or sound-editing software. I have that. But I need recommendations for recording devices, mics, etc. This is for "audio drama" in which several people might be talking at once.
posted by grumblebee at 7:02 AM PST - 17 comments

April 2

Is There a Scorsese in the House?

Im directing a short about friends moving away from each other. The cameraman has some experience, and we are using an 8k camera, but I wanted to know how you seamlessly move from one P.O.V in the same room to another P.O.V using only one camera. Of course this will take at least 2 takes, but what is a good way to go about this simple film trick?
posted by Keyser Soze at 9:17 PM PST - 37 comments

Is that the ending, or did I lose a page?

I got Kyle Baker's King David graphic novel from the library. In this copy, the very last panel is of David and Bathsheeba discussing their son's breathing. Is this really the end, or have previous patrons depaged the book? I can see it as a very somber, elliptical ending, but that's not really Baker's style, to me.
posted by blueshammer at 8:34 PM PST - 3 comments

Do I have to use an A/B switch to switch between cable inputs?

Is there away around using an A/B switch for my digital cable? Here's the deal, the Cable In on my television is malfunctioning. I get intermittent reception, almost as if the cable is not making full contact. I have a VCR, DVR and DVD player. The television only has one set of A/V inputs, which are currently being used by the DVD player. The DVR is not compatible with the DVD player, so I can't run them through the same A/V lines. I went to Radio Shack and the only solution they could come up with was using an A/B switch, which requires me to physically switch between the DVR and DVD player. Isn't there any other technology that would not require me to get off my lazy butt and walk across the living room when I want to switch between television and a DVD? I've been unemployed for four months, so buying a new t.v. is out of the question.
posted by Juicylicious at 8:09 PM PST - 8 comments

Looking for a ESP Eclipse Semi-Acoustic guitar

I don't want to turn AxMe into a wanted ads page, (although in a way, I guess it is...) but I've been after an ESP Eclipse Semi-Acoustic guitar for over two years now, with no luck. [More Inside] [more inside]
posted by armoured-ant at 5:57 PM PST - 3 comments

Vector Intel logo?

I'm looking for an EPS or AI version of Intel's logo but can't seem to find it anywhere. I seem to remember seeing sites that showcase the fonts and logos for famous companies, but can't find any today.
posted by jragon at 5:07 PM PST - 3 comments

Are there any NYC photologs that DONT feature Brooklyn ?

Are there any NYC photologs that DONT feature Brooklyn ? [more inside]
posted by sgt.serenity at 4:31 PM PST - 6 comments

bass guitar string gauge

Bass guitar string gauge determination [More Inside] [more inside]
posted by apathy0o0 at 4:01 PM PST - 6 comments

Relocating to New Zealand

Let's say I wanted to move myself and my family (wife + two kids) to New Zealand for a few years - just for the adventure. Of course, I would need a job. How would one go about finding work and moving? Is it possible with immigration issues etc. to pull this off? I did spend about four months there a few years ago just as a tourist.
posted by dhacker at 2:13 PM PST - 7 comments

ibook weirdness with relaunching finder

Help a computer moron & first time poster. Ibook; OSX: every time I open my CD drawer, the finder relaunches.
posted by dame at 1:28 PM PST - 10 comments

What are "water cigarettes"?

When someone noted we were approaching the 10th anniversary of Cobain's suicide, I remembered an interview I did with a fellow high-school student who made the pilgrimage to Seattle in the weeks after his death. One of the things I remember him saying is that on his marathon drive from Wisconsin to the west coast, he smoked "water cigarettes." Not wanting to present myself as a complete doofus when it came to illicit substances, I nodded and recorded what he said. But now I've got to wonder: What in the world was he talking about? Did I mishear the phrase "water cigarettes"? Google has no results.
posted by blueshammer at 1:25 PM PST - 13 comments

How do you feel?

Why do reporters ask "How do you feel"? I've wondered about this for years (sometimes yelling at the TV); I'm inspired to ask the question by a sentence in this NY Times story about the families of the contractors killed in Iraq Wednesday: "He would not discuss the details of his brother's death or how the attack — in which at least two of the four bodies were dragged through the streets and hung from a bridge in the city of Falluja, west of Baghdad — made him feel." Well, how do you think it made him feel? I understand why reporters have to ask probing questions of grieving families, but this particular one seems so pointless and so ubiquitous I wonder if any reporters in the group could explain it to me.
posted by languagehat at 12:56 PM PST - 19 comments

Why do ordered lists in open source documentation start with zero?

I've been reading a lot of open source software documentation lately, and I'm wondering why all the ordered lists start with zero? Here's an example. Is it a programing thing that counting is supposed to start at zero? An international thing (is it american to start counting 1, 2, 3?). I've see at least three examples in the past week and I'm curious.
posted by mathowie at 12:34 PM PST - 30 comments

Give me recommendations for home exercise equipment

Need recommendations for home exercise equipment (male, mid-20s). My requirements are (1) cost, (2) compactness, and (3) targeted toward a cardio workout with the ultimate goal of losing weight. I saw this on TV last night, and while it's marketed to a thighs-and-butts demographic, the size, concept, and price range is kind of what I'm looking for. Anyhow, I'd appreciate hearing any advice from happy or unhappy consumers of these types of products.
posted by PrinceValium at 10:45 AM PST - 11 comments

Cooked Fish Skin

Any uses for cooked fish skin? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by adamrice at 9:50 AM PST - 9 comments

Alternatives to Word

Bah! I'm working on a Word doc and this program is driving me just batty. It's too clever by half all over the place -- wanting to add hyperlinks, format this way and that-- all kinds of stupidity that are keeping me from controlling the layout the way I want. Any suggestions for a nice, simple word processing program that will just give me the basics of font and tab control and without all of these M$ bloaty gewgaws that get in my way? Stop me before I fire up Illustrator!
posted by mimi at 9:36 AM PST - 24 comments

India Pop on iTunes?

My wife loves the Bend it Like Beckham soundtrack. I don't know what to call the music: India Pop? Can you recommend similar music? (Bonus for tunes available through the iTunes Music Store.)
posted by jdroth at 8:42 AM PST - 16 comments

Python Bittorrent Tracker Question

ahh, it's nice to finally be a member after a year of lurking..anyway, i figure i would take this opprotunity to ask a question that i've recently run into. I need some help regarding the python bittorrent tracker i recently set up. [more inside] [more inside]
posted by bob sarabia at 12:27 AM PST - 6 comments

April 1

FHA Energy Efficient Programs

Has anyone had experience with the energy efficient program for FHA mortgage loans?
posted by jazzkat11 at 6:55 PM PST - 2 comments

Where's the best bet for cheap domain name based e-mail hosting?

Where's the best bet for cheap domain name based e-mail hosting? [more inside] [more inside]
posted by benjh at 6:18 PM PST - 12 comments

Should metaphor be taken from photography?

Should metaphor be taken from photography, or should photos only be approached (or critiqued) as realist?
posted by the fire you left me at 6:09 PM PST - 12 comments

Windows Syncing Software for Website Backup, But Changed Files Only?

Can anyone recommend some Windows software to synchronize a local directory with a remote FTP directory? I want to do nightly remote -> local backups that just download the changed files from my web server, but I can't seem to find software that will do this simple thing.
posted by frenetic at 6:08 PM PST - 9 comments

Thermostat Question

Are there any programmable or automatic thermostats that can keep a house within a certain temperature range, and not just at a certain point? For example, I don't want to set the temperature at 72°F, but have the air conditioner come on at 73°F and the heater come on at 71°F. I'd prefer a range of six degrees or so, so that the air conditioner comes on if the temperature rises above 74°F, and the heater if it falls below 68°F, or something like that. I don't pay enough attention to it now, so the temperature swings too much and it's bad for items in the house. Can't some technology do this for me?
posted by mdeatherage at 5:43 PM PST - 9 comments

I need a good photo or surface map of the Bermuda triangle--one that will print well on A4.

I need a photo or map of the Bermuda trangle area, preferably a physical (rather than political map), if satellite photos can't be found. I need it at a decent resolution, too. Something that could be printed on A4 without looking too mucky.

Are there any sites that can output a specified area of Earth surface at a decent resolution?
posted by armoured-ant at 5:34 PM PST - 5 comments

What do iPodServices and IFTPservice do? How can I kill the processes?

I finally got around to upgrading my 2nd gen Ipod's (PC) firmware to version 1.3 .
All went well, but now I found "IPodService" running full time as a process and access is denied in task manager when I try to shut it off so I can delete it. Whats it do? How do I kill it? (same goes for "IFTPservice") [more inside]
posted by Fupped Duck at 4:30 PM PST - 5 comments

CD burner help?

My CD burner isn't working! Last night, I was burning a few CDs for friends. I successfully finished three, but after that things stopped working. I'm using Nero, and when I try to burn a CD the status just sits at lead-in. My burner sounds like it's spinning up, then slowing down, spinning up, then slowing down, over and over, and its light is not on. [mi] [more inside]
posted by punishinglemur at 4:01 PM PST - 9 comments

I have a Quicktime file that plays on Macs but not PCs. Any idea why?

Problems with Quicktime. I have a client who has a trailer for a movie on his web site and he gets complaints from people with Windows that they can't play the movie. It's in Quicktime format and plays perfectly on my Mac. The people who say it doesn't work all say they have the latest version of Quicktime. Anyone know what could be up? [more inside]
posted by dobbs at 3:52 PM PST - 6 comments

Customizing Windows folders

Two questions about folder customizations in Windows [more inside] [more inside]
posted by TheIrreverend at 3:47 PM PST - 4 comments

Help me find the liberal radio station Air America?

The new liberal radio station Air America went on the radio yesterday...or so I've heard. It's not carried by any station in my listening area. Nor can I seem to find a website for them, rather, AirAmerica.com is a paintgun site. Is it just that I've lost my search-fu on this day of fun, or are the liberals just hiding from me? Does anyone know if there's an online feed?
posted by dejah420 at 2:19 PM PST - 6 comments

CSS sprite method

Stupid CSS Tricks: can the CSS sprite method described at various places (ALA, for example) be used to change the background of a container other than the one being rolled over? [more inside]
posted by precocious at 1:24 PM PST - 6 comments

Phone Call Recorders

Bzzzzz. You know those Radio Shack devices for recording phone calls? When I hook one up to a tape recorder, it works fine. But it's the damndest thing: hooked up to my computer, it buzzes. Is this an electric grounding issue, or is there something I'm doing wrong?
posted by inksyndicate at 1:22 PM PST - 3 comments

Free CMS Recommendation

CMS Recommendation: I need to develop a web site for a client which will allow them to easily update the frontpage news items, and also add / edit product descriptions within a category-tree, as well as having other static content. While my background lies more in design than development, I have done some minor programming in actionscript, php, etc., and am looking at this as an opportunity to learn new skills.
What free (really free, no licensing, no nothing), basic-to-midlevel CMS would you recommend for an architect/web designer/nascent-developer to cut his teeth on?
posted by signal at 7:38 AM PST - 12 comments


Is this an April Fool's joke, or not? The New York Times (reg. req.) appears to think that it isn't, but it's on this list of online April Fool's jokes.
posted by Prospero at 6:29 AM PST - 27 comments

Mmmm, tastes like phish!

I believe this is one of those PayPal lookalike steal all your personal info pages. What are the steps one goes through to report something like this? And to whom? [more inside]
posted by banished at 5:20 AM PST - 12 comments

Help me convince my company to install a wifi network

The company I work for is setting up a new office. Our external IT people are advising against installing a wireless computer network, but I have the distinct impression this is because they don't have the expertise to install one themselves. I need help to build a convincing case to the contrary (assuming I'm right about this). [more inside]
posted by nthdegx at 4:38 AM PST - 14 comments

Office Plants

I work in a fairly large, open plan air-conditioned office, next to a window. The window cannot be opened. I want to buy a plant that will sit on my desk, and preferably not die with minimal maintenance. I am not a gardener. :)

I want something leafy and bushy, no flowers, that will stand around half a metre high from base of pot to top of plant, and be almost as "wide", so as to act as something slightly more pleasant to look at instead of my neighbour.

posted by Mwongozi at 2:52 AM PST - 13 comments

April Fools' Day

Does anyone else hate April Fools day? Big corporations get the chance to show how great the sense of humour they haven't got is while every one else gets thier coffee cup glued to thier desk. WTF? Oh well... I'm just grumpy because I want MetaFilter back.

Has anyone every witnessed a really clever/funny fool? (being the one who masterminded the fool automatically disqualifies you from declaring it a good fool...)
posted by twine42 at 1:00 AM PST - 9 comments

Lens advice for a Nikon D70?

I'm thinking of buying the new Nikon D70 digital, Nikons answer to the Canon Rebel. What lens should I get? I want to do travel photography big landscapes, nature, and occasional cultural/people shots. Someone mentioned this 17-35mm as very good but is that the best for this kind of photography?
posted by stbalbach at 12:40 AM PST - 2 comments