Knowledge is power Archive - March 00 Last updated - April 6
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March


EEEEE-business
Blueblog's (a sort-of Chicago blog) March 21st entry, has a quick scathing rundown on 60 or so ebusinesses and their sites. Its a good way to get a handle on some of the fluff and feathers that attracts venture capital.



World War I
Most of the ads from 1918 all mention the War. A Dec 1918 ad for Cliquot Club Ginger Ale apologizes for stopping production due to sugar rationing. Eastman kodak urges that pictures from home sent to a serviceman abroad may "help him to keep the light of heart until that day when in his magnificent strength he returns to you a bronzed veteran, a victorious crusader in the battle for democracy." Edison Electric Appliance Company touts that their products will save quantities of coal for war purposes, baking powders claim to save thousands of dozens of eggs and thousands of barrels of flour, most food ads featured a uniformed man sitting at the dinner table, and the magazine itself asks you to put a 1-cent stamp on the cover and mail it when you were done reading it. It would be put in the hands of soldiers or sailors destined for overseas. The stamp to the right was from a page full of them (large download - 224k) and were to be pasted on the back of Christmas letters bound for overseas.


Old Car ads
Here's some more old car ads from 1917 including a Buick, a Saxon and an Oakland. An article in the Feb.1917 Ladies' Home Journal, "What Does Your Car Cost You?", averages gas at 24 cents a gallon. The six-cyclinders of the time averaged around 14-15 miles per gallon. A spare tire (32 x 3.5 inch) was $17.60 and tubes were $2.70 each. The tires went about 5000 miles.


Pubs
Pubs in England and Wales may not have to close at 11:00 pm under government proposals due out within the next few weeks. My recent experience in Ireland taught me that the 11:00 closing time is considerably stretched in the smaller pubs even though owners and their late-night guests could both be fined for drinking after hours. The super-huge pubs in Dublin do not risk staying open and most drinkers pour onto the street at 11 looking for a late-night club. Despite the huge drunken crowds we managed to get into some night clubs including the very exclusive Lilly's Bordello. The giant super-bars in Dublin may be killing off the traditional pub. A 1998 report by the Competition Authority said that there were 1,119 people per pub in Dublin, compared with only 260, for example, in Limerick.



Advertisments
1917 Overland ad What? Has KIPlog been forced to accept advertisments to handle the expense of the full-time staff and the room full of Cray supercomputers needed to satisfy the volume of visitors? Naw. I just thought I'd feature some old ads I've found while researching a book. To the right is a Willy's-Overland ad from a 1917 copy of The Ladies' Home Journal. Many of the companies ads featured women driving. Overland Touring cars ranged in price from $695 for the roomy, easy riding 106-inch wheelbase, 5 passenger Overland Light Four, to $1950 for the big luxurious, 125-inch wheelbase, seven passenger, eight cylinder Willys-Knight. They also offered coupes and limos. I found a 1917 Light Four on sale on a German page for 35,000 marks ($17,411). Willys-Overland grew up to make the jeep and eventually spin off AM General, maker of the Hummer. WillysOverland.com is still around as a wholesale/retail parts business.

Stay tuned for more old car ads.


Russian Cars
While searching for the current price of a 1917 Willys I found this Russian page selling old cars with a top 9 list of reasons not to buy an old car in Russia. Despite Russia is Klondike of oldtimers, often for low prices, you'll possibly meet following obstacles:
  1. Condition of most vehicles is terrible because of their hard work, many of them are rebuilt.
  2. The procedure of official registration is a big headache. You often have to pay miscellaneous taxes and "tips", collect a lot of papers, some of them with expiry dates.
  3. Russians usually don't speak English or another foreign languages.
  4. Criminals in Russia are well organized and seems collaborate with officials!
  5. Owner of the vehicle can erroneously suppose his car is original.
  6. Ask him if the vehicle has documents, and be sure that numbers of units correspond to the ones in documents.
  7. Some advertisings keep modest silence, that the car isn't running, corrupted, rebiult etc..
  8. If price is low indeed, this perhaps means, that vehicle is sold at moment you read this page.
  9. My help to you cannot be very big - I simply haven't time for this.



Know you're Knot
Borromean ringsThis great collection of links at Knots on the Web introduced me to mathmetical Knot Theory (A knot is a simple closed curve in 3-dimensional space) and Links. No, not URL links but a mathemetical Link which is a collection of Knots like the image to the right,called Borromean Rings If you remove one of the component loops, the other two loops will no longer be connected! Back at the Knots on the Web page, there's plenty of stuff to learn about real life knots including exploding knots which are called such because they untie easily and completely with one tug of the ripcord but leave no tangle. For those of you with little knot-knowledge, start with the bunny through the hole method of tying a bowline.



Weblog notes
A strange thing happened last night. I woke up with the words "I must check Dan Bricklin's Log" in my head. Which is odd since I never read Dan Bricklin's Log. And it's even odder since I haven't been spending alot of time blogging or thinking about blogging lately. And there wasn't anything on his log today of any real interest to me. Except there is a picture of Dave Winer, so now I Know what he looks like, and there's a picture of Dan Bricklin with Whoopi Goldberg which didn't make any more sense then waking up with the intense desire to check a Weblog. After checking Dave's scripting.com it appears that he always had a picture of himself on his own page (never noticed) and he talked with Whoopi too. This is getting stranger. Maybe I should wake up now.



Bar Maps
Nevin's PubPeterme is exploring the design patterns of coffee houses. I have started a research project on the study of bar interiors of Chicago. If you have any contributions or would wish to fund this project by buying a round or two, please let me know. An important part of any establishment where you drink alot (either coffee or alcohol) is the bathroom. I feel this is vital knowledge and my project will show you where the restrooms are before you step into a crowded bar. To the right is Tommy Nevin's Pub, an Irish Pub in Evanston Il. A seat at the bar allows you to watch the door if you're waiting for someone, but if you just walked in you have to check both rooms. The set-up around the pool table allows spectators to watch the play without usually getting in the way of a side pocket shot. Waitresses patrol the floor so you don't have to work your way to the bar each round. I'm going to be looking for better examples of design though, for instance somewhere downtown is a spiral bar. Also I'd like to find the smallest bar in Chicago. My votes would be Tim & Brunos by Loyola or Ed & Jean's in Bucktown. I think the limit in both places is a dozen people (including the bartender)



Dendrochronology
Even if you don't know how to use the International Tree Ring Data Bank or what you'd do with that data, you at least know now that Dendrochronology is the study of tree rings. If this intrigues you, read the Principles of Dendrochronology on the Ultimate Tree-Ring Web page. Lots of other good tree links there.


Ancient Ice age
Popsicle Planet explains the theory of the King of all ice ages, which happened in the Neoproterozoic era, 700 million years ago. Carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere dropped so low in the Neoproterozoic that the planet froze over completely for 10 million years, killing off most life, which at the time consisted primarily of microbes and algae. The last ice age wasn't so bad but this guy claims that on May 5, of this year a solar system convergence will unbalance the Southern Ice cap sending trillions of tons of ice all over the planet. I believe it because of his credentials - He received the Georgia Grand Master's Award for his discovery of Masonic Influence in Ancient Egypt. For a non-masonic look at ice and sea level read the Sea Level FAQ. More on the convergence if I find anything.



Important food science
Months ago I reported on the link scientists at Rice University provided detailing gravitational response, radiation, solubility and many more tests on Twinkies. I'm glad to report others are conducting such important studies on marshmallow bunnies and marshmallow peeps. While less scientific than the Rice University tests (and a Turing test was not performed on the marshmalow treats) these studies offer useful knowledge, and will help you know where not to put your Easter basket. The coyote test made me fall off my chair. Thanks to illuminatrix for the link. For more official info on Peeps and Bunnies visit Peepsville.


Mind mapping
This Washington Post story " Mapping a New Path to Understanding" briefly explains "mind mapping" or "webbing", a technique for taking notes and organizing thoughts which is being taught in a growing number of schools. This page on mind mapping applications have some good examples of uses of these maps. Introduction to mind maps has some good links for learning more. This idea intrigues me since its the way I organize my Web projects (not just site maps but all aspects of projects, which are growing in complexity). Learning to map without being linear is the hard part. I'm so used to organizing things in an order, by level, that associations between things on different levels become hard to grasp. The example on the right is useful to see how many levels a user must go through to get to the info they want, but it doesn't help me organize who's reponsible for creating each element or how different types of users will go about looking for the same data.



Kilarney Ireland
CAUTION: Kiplog now about to get journally. Things have been busy since I got back so I'm going to put up some of my pictures and notes about the trip until I get the time to start blogging again. This is a shot of some swans on Loch Lein in Killarney. Anyone thinking about going to Killarney should go now before all the Americans get there in the Spring and Summer. The town is 95% bed and breakfasts and it gets very crowded. You should stay at the Lake Hotel and get a suite with a lakeview for a very reasonable rate with breakfast and great dinners included.



Interview
Frontwheeldrive has several interesting interviews with "new media and new science" people, a bit of a news log and a bookstore on those subjects. There's an interview with Sean Gullette, star and co-writer of Pi, a movie essentially about fundamental questions of the nature of the universe and our understanding of it. Thanks to Peterme.


Bubbly
The Nature Science Update article Bottoms up discusses why champagne bubbles start from one point and form a "bubble train" to head to the top. It also answers the question: Why do champagne bubbles travel faster than beer bubbles? In champagne... surfactants stiffen -- and hence hold back bubbles only slightly. Beer, on the other hand, contains about 30 times more surfactants than champagne, and so beer bubbles move far more slowly. There is also less dissolved gas in beer, so bubbles grow and ascend at a more leisurely pace.


Foreign Blogs
Staying on the outside-of-America theme (mainly because I see alot of non-Americans are visiting through the link Robot Wisdom gave me), here's Joe Clark's list of non-US Weblogs. Thanks to nqpaofu who discusses Weblogs in the Feb 29 and March 1 entries.



English as a second language
After spending awhile driving on the left and eating with my fork in the left hand and upside-down, I thought I'd explore the English-American language barrier. Britspeak has an excellent translation dictionary. If you're a Brit trying to learn American check out the American Dialect Society (which also has some interesting choices for Word of the Year, of the Decade, of the Twentieth Century (jazz) and the Past Millennium). For a thorough look at trans-atlantic style, read the Economist's style guide which has a section on Americanisms. Thanks to Juateria for that last link.



Photoshop
Photoshop is ten years old this month. Here's a WebReview article on " How Photoshop Came to Light" If you use Photoshop you should keep this link to "The Great Grandmother of All Shortcut Tables", a list of the 400 Photoshop 5.0 shortcuts. Thanks to CamWorld and Xblog respectively.






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