I Nearly Destroyed This Dragster And Now I Respect Drag Racing

Jalopnik:

Let’s just get this out of the way right off the bat: I’m an idiot. I’m a big dumb idiot who made a stupid mistake and got lucky that something really bad didn’t happen. I’m hoping I can use my idiocy for some good, though, and dispel some myths about drag racing. Because drag racing deserves your respect.

“I Nearly Destroyed This Dragster And Now I Respect Drag Racing”

Leaving aside the issue of, “you should have respected them BEFORE, asshole” – I mean, you have to respect someone insane enough to get behind the wheel of a top fuel dragster, sit in front of a engine that generates approximately 7,000 horsepower, accelerates from a standstill to 100 miles per hour (160 km/h) in as little as 0.8 seconds, has a top speed that exceeds 300mph and subjects the driver to an average force of about 4.0 G over the duration of the race. (wikipedia stats)

So yeah – you better respect these guys.

But the story is still a good one. The writer makes the same mistakes many of us would have when faced with such an insane situation without the years of training a drag racer goes through.

Memories of Steve

Don Melton posts his Memories of Steve:

I have no plans to watch that new movie about Steve Jobs. As I have no plans to read Walter Isaacson’s biography of him.

It’s not because I think those efforts are somehow not worthy of his memory. It’s just that I have my own recollections of the man. And I’m very jealous in guarding them. I don’t want those few and fleeting memories fractured and confused by other people’s interpretations.

Consider that a fair warning, because I’d like to recount a few of my own stories about Steve here. Not only for you, but for myself. Because maybe in the process I can remember him better.

Yukari Iwatani Kane's "Haunted Empire" is as bad as you've heard.

I read the first paragraph of this except on Re/code and it literally stopped me in my tracks. I had to reread it several times to make absolutely sure I was getting the full effect of The Stupid. Here it is:

On the evening after the first iPhone went on sale, a couple dozen visiting designers from Samsung were dining at a Korean barbecue restaurant in San Francisco called Hanuri when a friend showed up with the device. The phone was locked, so the designers couldn’t see the home screen or open the applications. But it didn’t matter. They were impressed enough with the sleekness of the device and the elegant ease of swiping their finger to pull up the pass-code screen. They oohed and aahed as they made the gesture over and over again. They had never seen anything like it.

Do you see the problem?

Supposedly, a “friend” showed up with a brand new (it had gone on say that very day) iPhone. If that was the case, why couldn’t they unlock the phone? Where was the friend? Why couldn’t he do it? Wouldn’t he let them? Was it stolen? If they had access to the phone and access to the friend, WHY COULDN’T THEY USE THE PHONE!?

How does such an obvious oddity in storytelling get past the writer and any number of editors and fact checkers?

BTW, I read the rest of the excerpt so you don’t have to. Don’t bother.

A (bad) MacWorld/iWorld 2014 Expo Hall wrap-up

The Powerpage has been around a long time. Which begs the question – has it always been this clueless? (spoiler: yes)

Tom Hesser posted his MacWorld/iWorld 2014 Expo Hall wrap-up (let’s just ignore the intercap W because…sigh…) on Tuesday – a short three days after the show closes. Perhaps he banged his head in the interim. It would explain why he says:

The first day, Wednesday, was my traditional walk around the show floor.

The show floor opened on Thursday.

Hesser mentions some missing vendors like Mophie without pointing out Mophie had already attended (the much bigger) CES show in the iLounge Pavilion.

It would be interesting to find out if there were specific reasons for some of these changes or it was just a matter of timing. The Expo, occurring much later in the year than normal, may have had some affect on attendance.

Yes, it would. Did you ask them? Have you sent an email or called any of the companies you mentioned asking them why they didn’t attend Macworld Expo this year?

In regards to the software developer section, Hesser says:

these areas are populated by cylindrical kiosks that can accommodate one company/developer per side…

I’m no geometry whiz but…how many sides does a cylinder have?

In response to why Hesser believed these small kiosks were popular, he says:

This area was created as the result of a couple of factors. One, the economy was cutting tech budgets, but not conference booth fees. After 2009 when Apple dropped out of Macworld Expo, vendor attendance began to drop off…Smaller spaces meant a lower priced option and the return of smaller vendors.

True. But, if that’s the case, why wouldn’t the vendors who had been there in the past taken up residence in those spaces? If it was simply a cost measure, you’d think the companies who left after Apple did would come back, wouldn’t they?

Yes – If it was only about costs. The lack of vendor attendance is about a lot of issues – cost only being one.

This year saw a number of new developers as well as some well-known ones who seem to have elected for the smaller, cheaper spaces

Hesser either doesn’t know or ignores the fact IDG has, in the past, restricted these small booths to developers who hadn’t attended the show in previous years. These booths were smaller and cheaper and designed to tease developers and companies to come to the show. They also wouldn’t allow vendors to show in that small space two years running. Obviously, with companies like AgileBits, Readdle, and BusyMac there, IDG has changed that policy. I wonder why that would be? (actually, no I don’t…)

I could list a ton of products old, new, or improved that I saw, but that would be a bit crazy.

Umm…why would that be crazy?

…throughout the show flow.

Sigh.

The people are still there, but in fewer numbers.

That’s just shitty writing. And it’s what you get when you send the “West Coast Correspondant” to the show.

Mom TV Show quote

The show Mom is not very good but I watch it (and fast forward any scenes she’s not in) because I adore Alison Janney.

Latest episode had this exchange that cracked me up:

Daughter Christy (Anna Faris): “I’m surprised you two were able to stop fighting long enough to be able to conceive me.”

Mom Bonnie (Allison Janney): “We didn’t.”

Christy: “How does that work?”

Bonnie: “How do you think? It hurts a little.”

Literally made me laugh out loud.

Still – not a good show.