Archive for February, 2011

Motorhead – Iron Fist

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The man known to his mother as Ian Fraser Kilmister and known to his fans and the rest of the planet as Lemmy will be celebrating 30 years at the helm of Motorhead this year.  Lemmy had a choice to give his soul to God, Satan, or Rock n’ Roll.  He chose Rock n’ Roll and in return, Rock and Roll has made him immortal.  Anybody who consumes as many cigarettes and Jack n’ Cokes in a day as Lemmy does has long ago entered the boneyard just prior to the great beyond.  What would have killed most mortal men has only made him stronger.  Lemmy was a roadie for Hendrix years before I was a twinkle in me mum’s eye.  I’m 41 now and I’m thoroughly convinced that Lemmy will still be touring as my next of kin places the urn with my ashes in it on the mantlepiece.

There is one word you cannot use with Lemmy that you can use with almost any other musician that has achieved his level of longevity… and that word is “prime.”  You can easily talk about Eddie Van Halen’s prime being VH’s first 3 albums or Steven Tyler’s prime being sometime before getting clean and judging American Idol.  With Lemmy, that term doesn’t apply.  Listening to Ace of Spades played now sounds just as good if not better than Ace of Spades played 25 years ago.  Along with Lemmy’s relentless pursuit of the Rock n’ Roll lifestyle goes Lemmy’s adherence to a standard… a standard that demands the an absolute 100% commitment to the man, the music, and the machine that is Motorhead.

How to Write a Hit with Dave Grohl

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Let’s recap:

1.  The deep cuts don’t keep the mansion running.

2.  Don’t bore us, get to the chorus.

The cautionary tale of Nir Rosen

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Why you should think before you Tweet.

Wanna feel a little of what it’s like to be unemployed or among the working poor?

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Play this very well researched and well thought-out… I hesitate to call it a “game“… courtesy of Urban Ministries of Durham.  They have a lot of experience ministering to, counseling, and helping the unemployed of their region.

I won’t ruin the whole thing, but the gist of it is that you start out with $1000 and you get have a bit of that stunned feeling as you watch how quickly it evaporates in today’s economy.

Christians protect Muslims during prayer.

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It’s kind of amazing how uncertainty and instability brings out the worst in some people, but the best in others.  It’s nice, for once, to the examples of the best getting some attention.  A few days ago, I put up this story on on this blog about Muslims surrounding a Christian shrine during Christmas services to provide a “human shield” for those inside worshipping.  A quote from a local muslim artist was simple, yet profound:

“We either live together, or we die together.”

– Mohamed El-Sawy

Yesterday, journalist Maryam Ishani, of the blog, gave an account of the chaos that is still going on in Egypt, particularly in Cairo’s Tahrir Square.  The blog The Islamic Workplace picked it up and posted the story, but with a strikingly different image.  The image used above the story was of Egyptian Christians forming a circle around Muslims during an outdoor prayer session.

My battered faith in humanity just got a much-needed shot in the arm.  We might actually figure out how to live on this planet without exterminating each other.

The other thing I think this brings into glaring clarity is the role of blogs.  There are times when I think that having a blog is kind of like the internet equivalent of littering.  I mean, seriously, how many of these things does the world really need?  But when stories like this come around where one blog reports it, another blog picks it up and then another and then another, one of the roles… scrtach that last word, let’s say responsibilities… that blogs have is to perpetuate and spread the good information and not perpetuate the bad, or refute the bad, or call out the bad.  Good information can mean good as in uplifting, but also good as in factual.  This is one of those examples of blogs fufilling both definitions of good in one shot.

You know AT&T is in trouble when the review for the iPhone4 with Verizon starts out like this…

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And to answer everyone’s question, the Verizon iPhone is nearly the same as AT&T’s iPhone 4 — but it doesn’t drop calls.

Article from the NY Times.

You can tell a nerd came up with the testing protocol:

I took the Verizon iPhone to five cities, including the two Bermuda Triangles of AT&T reception: San Francisco and New York. Holding AT&T and Verizon iPhones side by side in the passenger seat of a car, I dialed 777-FILM simultaneously, and then rode around until a call dropped. (Why that number? Because I wanted to call a landline, eliminating the other person’s cell reception from the equation. Also, Mr. Moviefone can carry the entire conversation by himself, so I could concentrate on the testing.)

If it can get reception in Barto, Pennsylvania, I’m sold.

Hannity: “Can you name any country that became a democracy after a violent revolution? Honestly, can you even name one?”

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More for the “context is everything” crowd…

“The only democracy that has emerged when you see uprising like this, is in Iraq. Name me one other example. I can’t think of one in history.”

I thought the whole O’Reilly “explain the tides” thing was the dumbest thing I was going to read for quite some time, but then this little gem just falls out of the sky and says “I am stupid.  Hear me roar.”  Where do I begin with what is wrong with his question?

First, we’ll start with the list of countries that became democracies after violent revolutions:

  1. The first and most obvious choice… the United States, which Hannity would have known if he had just looked to his faux-patriotic lapel for help.
  2. India (just because the Indians… some of them anyway… were non-violent doesn’t mean the British were.)
  3. The Czech Republic
  4. Poland
  5. France

Second, let’s examine what Hannity calls the Iraqi “uprising.”  If I remember correctly, democracy was imposed from the top down in Iraq, not from the bottom up.  The graphic below illustrates this quite nicely.

Third, anything Hannity (or any other FOX News talking head) bloviates about should be taken with a truckload of salt, as the chances of it being factually accurate are minimal at best.

This is one of those times as a CEO where you really hope you know what you’re doing.

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CEO of Path says “No” to Google’s $100 million offer.

Path is still very small, with just “hundreds of thousands” of users, said the company yesterday. It’s a private mobile network limited to just 50 friends, which makes viral spreading difficult. But we’re also hearing that 20% of active users are using it daily – a Zynga-like engagement rate that is a sign that at least some people really connect with Path.

Path’s CEO Dave Morin is either a visionary who will look at Google 5 years down the road and think $100 million is chump change, or he will be wearing the glasses and groucho nose as he tries to evade pitchfork-wielding throngs of former employees with reams of worthless stock options.  Should be interesting to see which one pans out.