And Now For Something Completely Different… Top Songs of 2011

The end of the year… A time for retrospection. And Top10 lists.

My favorite songs of 2011? After seeing the BET “Top 100″ (where everything by Beyonce, Rhianna, Jay-Z, Kanye, Nicki Minaj, or Drake was apparently a winner), or the hipster lists from Spinner and Wired (which seem to go out of their way to ignore lamestream artists), I decided to take a look at my iPod’s most-played list and filter for all the releases of 2011. I’m not embarrassed to admit to having some Top40 in there:

  1. The Airborne Toxic Event – Welcome To Your Wedding Day
  2. The Black Keys – Lonely Boy
  3. Adele – Rolling In The Deep
  4. Christina Perri – Arms
  5. Mumford & Sons – The Cave
  6. Mayer Hawthorne – The Walk
  7. Two Door Cinema Club – What You Know
  8. Ra Ra Riot – Boy
  9. Tom Waits – Satisfied
  10. Super Heavy – Miracle Worker
  11. Gotye – Somebody That I Used To Know
  12. Sara Bareilles – Gonna Get Over You
  13. Snow Patrol – Called Out In The Dark
  14. The Joy Formidable – Whirring
  15. Gavin Degraw – Not Over You
  16. Florence + The Machine – Shake It Out
  17. Wilco – One Sunday Morning
  18. Maroon 5 – Moves Like Jagger
  19. Everything Dies – El Mariachi Bronx
  20. The Kooks – Junk Of The Heart
  21. Death Cab For Cutie – You Are A Tourist
  22. Raphael Saadiq – Stone Rollin’
  23. One Republic – Good Life
  24. Katy Perry – Firework
  25. Guster – Do You Love Me

The only artist that all four lists have in common is Adele. (And she can be found on pretty much any 2011 compendium out there.) Perhaps a preview of things to come for the Grammys in Feb, with a consensus “Artist of the Year”, and maybe “Song of” and “Record of the Year” for “Rolling In The Deep”…


“I Can See Your Stage”

Unless you run a blog, there’s a small part of the web that goes unseen by many: comment spam. Most blogs are moderated and spam-protected, so comment spam does not usually see the light of day. But that doesn’t stop people – robots/scripts actually – from trying. (continue reading…)

San Diego Sucks… As A Sports Town

True to the @DarkSideGeek name, I think every blog post I’ve written so far has been tech-oriented. But I’m deviating today, because something has been bothering me lately. This blog will have to do for my soapbox, since it’s way too big for a tweet and Facebook cannot contain it. The trouble is, I’ve got a basic premise in mind but what I’m lacking is a good conclusion, an understanding of why. Perhaps my readers – both of you – can provide the answer?

Why does San Diego suck so badly as a sports town? (continue reading…)

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The Future of 3D TV

I’m nearly ready to invest in a large flat-screen TV. 3D televisions are now almost mainstream, but they are still very pricey. Should I buy now, or wait till the technology matures? Will 3D TV really take off?

Since, traditionally, pornography drives technology [1,2], I guess I should consider 3D TV to be a non-starter until we begin seeing the porn industry embrace it. Oh, wait. They just did. Yikes, I can’t wait for “Desperately Horny Housewives”, “How I Did Your Mother”, and “The Big Bang Theory”.

Time For The iAttorneys

In the old days, if you didn’t like a product you returned it and got your money back.  These days, I guess you just file a class action lawsuit. Apple is getting both barrels, first for Antennagate and now for the iBook, er um, I mean the iPad.

If Fanboyism Were Rampant…

Mac vs Windows. Android vs iPhone. Intel vs AMD. Nintendo/Playstation/XBox. Fanboyism of any flavor is just nuts. Why can’t people accept consumer choice for what it is? Why does everything have to be a competition about what is or who uses the best? It’s a good thing this extreme brand loyalty is mostly limited to the tech world. Can you imagine if everyone felt the need to argue about everything?

I just bought some “Dove MEN+CARE” body wash. It’s pretty cool.

Feh. “Gillette All Day Clean” is far superior.

Gimme a break. Even the packaging is inferior. The label is upside down when the bottle is standing on its cap.

You’re just an idiot mesmerized by fancy design. Everyone knows it’s what’s inside that counts.

Utterly hopeless. I suppose you mean something like “Odor Shield Technology”? Please. That’s not an ingredient, just glitzy marketing. If you want to talk features, consider the actual engineering, not just the product management spin.

Then how does Green #3 strike you? Yup, that’s right: Version 3. Dove only has Blue v1. Talk about being obsolete before you even bought it.

You’re clueless. That has no effect on performance.

But the Methylchloroisothiazolinone is key.

OMFG. Do you even know what that is? The patented MICROMOISTURE technology is clearly what blows Gillette out of the water.

Hah! Those are probably just air bubbles. When I pay for 12 ounces, I want to know I am getting the full 12 ounces.

Sure, 12 ounces of crap. That stuff oozes out like some bad combination of Jello and the BP oil spill. If you put your tongue on it, nothing actually sticks. What’s it made of, Teflon? I’m surprised it even makes a lather.

Who the &%$# tastes their soap? What’s wrong with you? The important thing is that it provides a superior experience that lasts long into the day.

Well sure, that’s fine if you want “16hr protection”. Obviously there is an engineering problem because “All Day” is not 16hrs. There are 24hrs in a day, my friend. Maybe if they gave away free deodorant it would make up for the design flaw.

STFU. It’s your conclusion that is flawed. Other products suffer from similar limitations. And in the real world, 16hrs is fine. Besides, I like to be clean and fresh. With Dove, you have to actually choose between “Extra Fresh” and “Clean Comfort” models. As if they are mutually exclusive?!? Sorry, but I want something that does both. Why give people so many options?

Right, like Gillette doesn’t bombard with confusing choices also. Are you forgetting their Hydrator product line? And I like how you completely ignored their Hydra-Scrub debacle. “Power beads” my ass! I felt like I just came back from the beach and had sand stuck in all my crevasses.

You are such a l0ser.



iTunes Legal Briefs (sic)

AT&T has an iPhone app (“Mark The Spot” – new? not sure) that allows you to report “bad user experiences” such as call drops, slow data, etc using the phone’s location data as it happens. (I’ll avoid the easy pot-shot about how the app must be getting used heavily.)

Clicking on the app store’s Download button, I was greeted with “terms of service for iTunes has changed”, and directed to read and acknowledge the updated legal mumbo-jumbo. I was taken to a thirty-five page document – yes, 35 pages! And it wasn’t even red-lined to highlight what specifically was ‘different’!! WTF? No one in their right mind is going to read this. Apple could have embedded a commitment of first-born deep on pg 27 and nobody is going to catch it. These things are getting out of control.


Back in the early 90s, I was managing the NCR Scripps Ranch smail hub on MP-RAS Unix, a sendmail router on SVR4, a Compuserve CIS dialup, a Network Courier gateway for StarLAN, a cc:Mail gateway for Novell 3.11, and a UUCP gateway on my Mac at home. I jokingly had a slogan/motto posted on my wall (from a Usenix member – need attribution):

“My goal in life is to send and receive email through as many gateways as possible.”

I just came across this quote that I should plan to have engraved on my tombstone:

“I have reached an age where my main purpose is not to receive messages.”
— Umberto Eco

I’m a PC, and man, I’ve really let myself go…

Is it just me? The “I’m A PC, And Windows 7 Was My Idea” commercials seem to feature doughy, greying men that flash back to some Windows 7 feature epiphany where they are always younger and decidedly more fit than their current appearance. I’m not sure if the underlying message is that people have a much more flattering view of themselves in their own minds, or that it took Microsoft 20 years (and 20lbs) to get the operating system right!

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