Okay, so I'm a bit late to the party. I'm just now starting to get into this whole "Web 2.0" thing, with this blog as one of the steps. Lately though, I'm stumbling on a ton of useful sites.
Jott - You can call their service on your cell phone and speak a note or reminder to yourself. It'll translate that into text and keep it on the site for you. They've also got an iPhone app, so you can pull up all your notes and keep track of what you're supposed to be doing.
Evernote - Kinda the visual equivalent of Jott, this one will take your photos and do some OCR to recognize any text in them. Scribble down a note on a napkin, shoot a photo with your cell phone, and this service will keep the note for you. Can also be used to store regular photos, typed text notes, PDFs, and more.
last.fm - A kind of online radio service, you pick out artists you like and builds a personalized "radio station" of the music you like. Also has videos, and can scan your iTunes library to see what you've been playing to help build the station for you.
This is a great bit of news for a classic film geek like me. The Germans were one of the first to really take advantage of film when it came out, and produced several great movies. One of them is Fritz Lang's Metropolis. The problem was, American audiences were used to 90 minute films already, and Metropolis was 210 minutes long. It got chopped up and sped up to fit the normal showing time, which made the film disjointed and difficult to follow. Still, it's considered one of the classics of early film. Sadly, the original German print had been lost, and all we had was the edited American version… until now.
The original version of Metropolis has been found! Apparently, a museum in Buenos Aires had recieved a copy of the film in 1992 from a private collection. One of the curators wondered why the showings of this print were taking so long, and sat down with their film expert, where they realized this was the original German print. It's scratched, so it will need careful restoration, but we can finally see the film as it was originally intended.
My family moved to Lexington a while back, so I actually get to visit with them now. Not as much as I'd like, but every once in a while I get enough time off to do so. This is one of those times.
The drive from eastern Kentucky is rather nice. The Mountain Parkway is very pretty, lots of woodlands and old buildings. Especially in the current hot, humid weather, it's really nice because all the trees cool down things just enough to drive with the windows down. And there were very few other cars going my way, so it was an easy drive.
In fact, the only stress was when the TomTom, which had been silent for 90 miles, piped up to tell me a turn was coming up. Nearly jumped out of my skin!
Today, I spent time with mom. Went out to lunch and shopping. Dad came home, and this was the project I came to help with. My parents are adding a workshop onto their house. Dad does a lot of woodworking as a hobby, and now they've finally got a house they can put a proper workshop on. It's not finished, but it's together enough he wanted to put a good workbench in.
What he bought was a really nice wooden bench. The trick was, the benchtop weighs 250+ pounds, and he has a bad back. We were trying to figure out the best way to get it into the shop and put it together. Mom came up with a great idea to use a rolling scaffold to hold up one end while we carried the other to get it into position. Worked out fantastic. Dad now has a great, solid workbench and we got to spend some good time as a family on the project.
I only wish I could spend more time with them. But, I have to work on Wednesday, so I'll be off tomorrow afternoon to drive home.