Capn Design

March 2006

This month I posted 34 entries, listened to 1430 songs, watched 7 videos, bookmarked 25 sites, took 32 photos and favorited 2 things.

24 and Bottle Shows

"The bottle show is a valuable safety valve - another contingency that you have to make sure that you stay on budget and don't spiral out of control." [via Matt]

Power Reveals

Great quote by way of Caterina

Senturi: Get Files Off Your iPod

For the longest time I've wanted a free app to get music off my ipod. Senturi does it well.

My First Counterfeit Bill

Posted March 27, 2006

20060325tenspot.jpgYesterday, I used my first redesigned ten dollar bill at Shake Shack. Of course, I didn't realize that until I felt it in my hands. Earlier in the week I was given one of the new tens by a coworker for a delivery order. My first reaction was, "Wow, they changed the texture a lot. Oh, and it's a bit smaller than regular bills. Wait a minute..." Althought my coworkers were skeptical, it was definitely a fake.

It also dawned on me that the introduction of the new ten was a perfect opportunity for counterfeiters. The ten dollar bill is a small denomination that is rarely checked by retailers and since it was newly redesigned people could be fooled long enough to let a bunch of them slide, just like I nearly did. Aside from the size and texture, the bill looked the part. If I was manning a cash register and it was slipped between a few other bills, I doubt I'd have noticed.

Also Interesting:You probably noticed the image of a ten above has the word "specimen" on it in bright red lettering. This is because Photoshop uses an anti-counterfeiting mechanism built at the behest of the U.S. government and international banks. If you try to open an image of a banknote, you are often sent to, but this may have changed as mine just printed "specimen" on the bill.

Oglala Sioux Tribe Willing to Open Planned Parenthood in South Dakota

"I will personally establish a Planned Parenthood clinic on my own land which is within the boundaries of the Pine Ridge Reservation where the State of South Dakota has absolutely no jurisdiction." [via kottke]

Photos From This Year's Orchid Show at the New York Botanical Garden

Jori and I snapped some pics and created a flickr set just for you

Gnarls Barkley is Crazy

Posted March 24, 2006

Gnarls Barkley CrazyGnarls Barkley is a collaboration between Cee-Lo and Danger Mouse and the first single is amazing. It's called "Crazy" and you can listen to it on their website. You could also visit their Myspace page, but I had problems loading it.

Their album will be called St. Elsewhere's and is out on either May 2nd or 9th, depending on who you ask. You can preorder it from Amazon today. Cee-Lo's last album, Cee-Lo Green is the Soul Machine is one of my favorites from recent years.

Ze Has Started Reading the News to Us

He's only put up two (#1, #2) but they're terribly entertaining

The Sony DSC-N1

Posted March 18, 2006

I'm thinking about buying this camera:


My favorite features? It's got 3-inch LCD, 26MB of internal memory for slideshows, compact design, zeiss lens and good looks.

Do you have one and like it? Is there another ultra-compact digital camera you'd recommend first?

Update (03/20/06): After a visit to B&H, I think I'm going to wait until the Canon Powershot SD630 arrives next month. Same big screen, probably better photos and a little cheaper. I'll miss that cool slideshow feature, but it seems like a better option.

Seiko Bluetooth Watch

Apart from looking cool, the watch can pair with your cell phone and show caller id, battery power and signal strength.

Snakes on a Plane Fever!

Posted March 17, 2006

20060317snakes.jpgHoly shit, Snakes on a Muthafuckin' Plane! Yeah, I know these meme was hot about six months ago, but now that the trailer was leaked, I wanna see some motherfucking snakes on a motherfucking plane.

For the uninitiated, Snakes on a Plane is a film starring Samuel L. Jackson that has, well, snakes on a plane. Wikipedia's description of the fervor behind the movie is pretty accurate, but the meme seemed to gain a lot of traction after this post went up. My favorite bit of the whole story is Jackson's back and forth with a reporter at a press junket:

Beaks: One of those films that you're working on right now is... well, it's called "Pacific Air 121"—

Jackson: Snakes on a Plane, man!

Beaks: Exactly.

Jackson: We're totally changing that back. That's the only reason I took the job: I read the title.

Beaks: Snakes on a Plane! That’s everything!

Jackson: You either want to see that, or you don't.

And goddammit, I wanna see it. You'll see me there, August 18th, 2006.

9rules Announces 9Charities

This makes me want to be part of their network. I'll apply the next time they open it up.

Yahoo Farechase

Best flight-search engine I've used thus far

Home Movies Season 4 on DVD May 16th

It will include a CD of all 52 tracks Brendon Small wrote for the show. They saved the best for last, I guess. Preordering now.

Fetch Your Netflix Ratings

This Perl/Python script will pull each film's Netflix ID, title, year, MPAA rating, genre and rating and output to a text file. Someone else has created a bookmarklet for the task, which is how I got my data out. Tres useful for data nerds.

JNF is Hiring a Web Production Assistant

Posted March 15, 2006

At the day job, we've decided to hire someone full-time to work with me on the website. Our online fundraising has been growing significantly since I arrived almost three years ago and we're ready to take the next step. If you're into web design and you've always wanted to work at a non-profit, this is for you. If you're not and you didn't, then please pass this along to your friends.

If you're interested, send a cover letter and resume to our HR department. Be sure to include links or samples of your work and the title in the subject line. Below is the official job description.

Web Production Assistant

This position will be responsible for assisting with the maintenance of existing and to-be-developed programs on the JNF Website; working with content management system and helping incorporate the latest web delivery tools and technology; working with standards-compliant XHTML, CSS, Flash, Photoshop and other relevant technologies.

Candidates for this position must have B.A. or B.S. degree. Interest or experience in both marketing and technology/web design is required. Candidates must work well in a team environment. This position is full-time and on-site in our New York City office.

Update: My boss mentioned the most important perk: you get to work with me. I am awesome and I only require twice-a-day coffee runs. I take 8 sugars.

Youtube: Every Fatality from Mortal Kombat 3
Design Eye for the List Guy

The yearly panel redesigns Craigslist. Looks great and I'm digging the color scheme (it's similar in style to the coming iteration of Capn Design).

Rotation Of Earth Plunges Entire North American Continent Into Darkness

"I looked out the window and saw it getting dark when I was still at the office working," said Albert Serpa, 27, a lawyer from Tulsa, OK, who had taken shelter with others at Red's Bar and Grill. "That's when I knew I had to leave right away."

NY Times is Eliminating Daily Stock Listings in April

It'll be replacing it with a more robust finance section on the web. Makes sense to me. Are there other major dailies that have already dropped stock listings?

Top Ten Most Annoying Alarm Clocks

I will almost certainly be buying one of these as I need some interaction if I want to truly wake up

Just Enough Office

Posted March 10, 2006

Yesterday, Google purchased Writely, a web-based word processor. Today, the technology world is talking about how Google is trying to take on Microsoft Office. 37 Signals point out that Google is really trying to create half an office suite, which seems perfect.

Have you used a macro in Word? I know I haven't and I don't know anyone who has, which is why I have a problem paying for it. Paying $300+ for an office suite that I use 10% of is crazy.

Google's potential approach is incredibly appealing. I don't even need the applications to be free. If they charge $50-100 for a calendar, word processing and spreadsheet package I will happily pony up the cash every year or two. The best part is Google is nearly there with Gmail, Writely and the forthcoming calendar app CL2.

My only complaint will be a lack of desktop equivalent. I just hope they have a great API or build their own desktop applications because the internet is still inaccessible from a lot of places.

This is also a sore reminder than Apple missed the boat on this one. Maybe iWork will grow to include more applications down the road, but they could have done this really well. Google's great, but Apple's design and usability beats out just about every desktop competitor available.

Apple Now Offers Monthly Subscriptions to iTunes TV Shows

Definitely a step in the right direction. If we can get higher quality downloads, a wider selection of shows and cheaper subscription rates then I'll get excited.

Sports Illustrated Gives Definitive Proof that Barry Bonds Used Steroids

"...when Bonds broke Mark McGwire's single-season home-run record (70) by belting 73, Bonds was using two designer steroids referred to as the Cream and the Clear, as well as insulin, human growth hormone, testosterone decanoate (a fast-acting steroid known as Mexican beans) and trenbolone, a steroid created to improve the muscle quality of cattle." [via Deadspin]

Dave Werner's Portfolio

Breathtaking, humbling work [via airbag]

Hollywood Should Remake The Island

Posted March 3, 2006

For a couple months, I've discussed the feasability of a remake of The Island (I'll get to my reasoning momentarily). It would seem an impossible task as it was a box-office failure and was released last summer, but now I'm not so sure.

It appears 20th Century Fox has greenlighted a remake of Mr. and Mrs. Smith, a film that was also released last year. The Onion explains it thusly:

"We're always looking for ideas, and moviegoers really responded to Mr. & Mrs. Smith," said Fox vice president of development Mtumne Ngumwebaum. "Buckle up, action fans! This time we're going to do it bigger and better, with twice the budget and even hotter stars." Said film critic Harry Knowles: "You shouldn't touch a classic like Mr. & Mrs. Smith, but if you bring Eli Roth in as director, count me in!"

Obviously, this idea is ridiculous. Is there anyone hotter or bigger than Bradgelina? A sequel I would understand, but why would you remake a movie so quickly? I find it boring.

This is why I propose Hollywood start remaking films that were failed attempts at a good idea. As you likely read the title of this post and its opening sentence, I shouldn't have to tell you I nominate The Island. For those who didn't see the film, which is probably most of you, the film is about a society that grows clones of rich people who need organ transplants. It's a really interesting idea that fueled my interest through the first third of the film. Unfortunately, Michael Bay couldn't summon enough explosions to make the film work.

Image instead that Chris Nolan, director of Memento and Batman Begins had directed the film and Darius Khondji had filmed it (I thought of him because of Delicatessen). Now we have something interesting. They could have filmed The Island for a third of the $120 million budget and made something far more interesting.

I'm sure there are dozens of flops out there that were spoiled by the studio system and I would love to see them all remade. These are the types of things I would fund if I were a bazillionaire. If you're a fledgling movie producer, keep that in mind when I make my bazillions.

Smoking Gun Publishes 79-page, $71m Budget of The Village

Haven't gone through it all, but $250k was budgeted for the actors' entourages

Metacritic Books

I've always loved Metacritic, but their books section is really helpful as I find it difficult to discover new authors.

Chris Bliss Juggles in Time with the Beatles' "Golden Slumbers"

Mesmerizing [via waxy]

James Niehues: Ski Map Painter

Posted March 2, 2006

Tonight I went to the opening of the Works on Paper exhibit at the Armory thanks to Jori's aunt, who works at the Richard Norton Gallery. Although I mostly went for the free food, it's nice to check out all of the art as well. Generally, I thought last year's show was better, but one artist stuck out: James Nieuhues.

If you've ever skied out west, you probably know James Nieuhues as he has painted about 75% of the ski maps for large resorts. At the show, he was offering the paintings without all of the trails and writing we're accustomed to, which was nice.

The base of the paintings are done with an airbrush and he uses acrylic paints (I think) for the details, like trees and buildings. The paintings were far from cheap, but are available from art dealer Norman Brosterman. I've put one of the prints from Brosterman's site below and three more after the jump, but you can see many more maps on Niehues' site.


Read the rest of this entry »

WTF 2.0

Insight on the Web 2.0 Bubble

Download the New Jenny Lewis Album from her Label

They're offering all of it but one song for free, sans-DRM [via whatdoiknow]

Edgar and Chloe

Posted March 1, 2006

Edgar and Chloe

These two make me crack up every show. They are complete caricatures of nerds, but they provide an excellent ballance to the machismo of Jack Bauer. The show would be lost without them.

By the way, how ridiculous is the 24 president? That guy couldn't make a decision to save his life. "You must choose: the right arm of every innocent child or a charlie horse." "[Shudder. Pace. Make constipation faces.] I hate charlie horses, so you can take the arms." Phew, it feels better to get that off my chest.

The Real Reason for the iPod's Success...

Posted March 1, 2006


Reading through these quotes SvN gathered from a macrumors thread when the iPod was first announced, it became quite clear. I had two MP3 players before my first iPod and loading music took far too long. The price was fine and it held more albums than a CD, so you'd think they were in like Flint. Well, as you've probably heard before, it's the experience, stupid.

The iPod+iTunes combination blew everything out of the water. Looking over an old post, It's probably that put my fully back in the Apple camp.

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