As I sat on my couch this morning waiting for “Local on the 8s” to come on The Weather Channel, I realized something: How utterly moronic the weather guys look standing out in the middle of hurricane force winds talking about chunks of debris flying through the air.
Here are grown adults, in most other ways seemingly intelligent, standing out in the middle of 130 mph winds, watching chunks of metal, garbage, and other various debris blow down the street. Often times they will jerk out of the way, “Oh that piece almost hit me,” they exlcaim. I’ve seen them trying to not be literally blown away as they discuss the force of the winds. This morning, I actually saw one of these dopes say, “If you are in the Miami area, have not lost your cable, and you are watching us… Don’t go outside!”
I guess that these are your basic weatherpeople, a job once consisting of standing in front of a blue screen and pointing at silly, smiley-face sunshine icons, now getting the chance to look like real journalists. The problem is, they actually look stupid (to me anyway). And how much debris flying around do we need to see to know what a Cat 3 hurricane looks like?
One of these days, one of these people is going to get killed. The weather media community will morn and discuss how brave a reporter he or she was. Then they will all be standing out there again when the next storm comes along, risking their lives for the sake of “news.”
Oh, by the way, if you haven’t noticed, this “news” supercedes all local weather on The Weather Channel. If you live in any other part of the US, you won’t get your “Local on the 8s” because why would you care whether you need to take an umbrella to work or not when South Florida is being pummeled by a hurricane. Endless hours of bending palm trees and flying cardboard at the same intersection are much more newsworthy than whether it is going to rain in Chicago.
This is the coolest thing I’ve ever seen. Ok, maybe not THE coolest, but it is clever. Ok, maybe not clever… Actually, it’s probably kind of dumb. But who knew Duct Tape could be so useful?
Most people agree that Duct Tape can save you money on costly repair bills but did you know that you could create a wallet to hold all of the money you’ve saved? It’s not as difficult as it sounds and in just a few simple steps, you could be the proud owner of this year’s most important fashion statement (Duct Tape is my life).
Full step-by-step instructions for your very own Duct Tape wallet are available directly from 3M.
More things with duct tape:
The MythBusters have since done an episode on all things Duct Tape where they built a sailboat out of Duct Tape. Unfortunately, they did not get the plans from me.
MythBusters Duct Tape Videos and Outtakes
The new Verse-O-Matic plugin is here. This handy WordPress plugin displays a random verse and has an optional “translation bar” to link to additional translations.
Click here for more information or to download the plugin.
I am testing a new version of the Verse-O-Matic plugin that will get it a little closer to my original idea. I have allowed for the text file storing the verses to be multi-dimensional in that it can store the version, the scripture reference, the verse text, and an associated link in a delimited format. The new Verse-O-Matic then randomizes the set, picks one, and displays appropriately.
I will be testing this a little more and release Verse-O-Matic 2.0 beta in a day or two. Until then, feel free to continue to use the current version as the upgrade will only require modifications to the verse-o-matic-list.txt file.
The new alpha version is currently being used in the sidebar of this site.
[UPDATE: This version is not longer available. The current Verse-O-Matic is available at wordpress.org]
Awhile back I created a plugin to display a random verse on the sidebar of this site. I usually do things like this mainly for the tinkering.
Anyway, I’ve packaged this up for download if anyone needs a random verse display on their site. It is fairly straighforward and simple.
- Download the .zip file and extract it.
- Copy the files (except install.txt) to your wp-content/plugins/ directory.
- Figure out where you want the verse to display.
- Call it with the function verse_o_matic()
- Go to the plugins area of your WP admin
- Activate Verse-O-Matic in the menu
You can edit the list of verses from within WordPress by clicking the link in the plugin menu, or by editing the file verse-o-matic-list.txt directly. Just make sure that you put the entire verse on one line.
Also, I put a link to an online tract around the function call, so all verses go to the same link. But you could probably put links into the txt file as well if you wanted to send things to different places. That might be something I work on in the next version.
Yesterday I added a new plugin to the side bar. It is “Most Wanted” from Richard Boakes.
This plugin works in conjunction with StatTraq and shows the number of unique views for a given number of posts. I have set it to show the top ten.
It is an easy to install plugin, and adding it to the sidebar was straightforward. You just have a single function call to put in.
In my previous blog, I was used a plugin called StatTraq for getting site statistics. It was fairly easy to set up as it was a WordPress plugin. So it was logical that, now that Randy Peterman has updated his plugin for WordPress 1.5, that I install StatTraq for this blog as well.
You can download the beta (1.0b) here.
Also, here’s a little trick. Once you get it installed, if you want to add a link to your admin menu to jump over to StatTraq, follow the steps below.
- Go to /wp-admin/ and find “menu.php”
- Make a copy of the original file as a backup (just in case)
- At line 14 you should see the following line:
$menu = array(__(‘Options’), 6, ‘options-general.php’);
- Insert the following as a new line after this line:
$menu = array(__(‘StatTraq’), 8, ‘../wp-stattraq/’);
- Upload your new menu.php file
That’s it, you’re done! Go to your admin panel, and you should see the link for StatTraq in your menu.
I added a general link to the “verse randomizer” that goes to an e-tract from Good News & Crossway Publishing. As for the verse randomizer itself, when I was looking for one as a WordPress plugin, but couldn’t really find one that did what I wanted. So, I ended up building it myself. I’ve got a little more work to do on it and I may release it as a plugin.
So there is some kind of rumor circulating that, on certain elevators, if you push “Door Close” and your floor at the same time, it puts the elevator into “express mode” and will go right to the floor without stopping. I viewed this information with a certain sense of skepticsm, but nevertheless, it sounded good to me and was worth checking out. I felt it deserved special attention in my building since, a few floors below me, there is a company that occupies several floors. Their employees are constantly “interrupting” my trips to and from the lobby with their single floor “jaunts.” What better way to avoid these extra stops than with my own personal express elevator.
So I had been pushing “Door Close” in combination with my floor or the lobby (depending on my direction) and experiencing some success. I wasn’t making any stops along the way. Since this is unusual, especially during “rush hour,” I thought things were working out rather well.
However (you saw that one coming, didn’t you?), yesterday, after pushing the combination for the lobby, I made several stops along the way. Well, that shoots that idea. So it is either “urban legend” or my elevator isn’t one of those equipped with such fancy features. Personally, I think I’m storing this one in the “urban legend” category.
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Asking for the moon, aren’t you?
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Posted in Web
Tagged tools, Web, webdev