Wednesday, January 25, 2006

This week's fortune.

Turn your thoughts within - find yourself.

Thursday, January 19, 2006

If you're looking for boots and you live in St. Louis...

...go to Chuck's Boots Superstore. They have, for the lack of a better expression, A TON of boots...of many different kinds. They also have some western-ish clothing, belts, buckles, hats, and sundry other items. I purchased a pair of Laredo Black Eagle Harness western boots there earlier tonight. I'd post a link to a picture, but I can't find them online and I'm too lazy to take a picture myself.

I witnessed a bird's suicide today.

I was merging onto I270 from Page on my way to work this morning, and a bird flew from out of nowhere into Tina. I'm not sure where exactly the bird hit, but it was somewhere low in the front. When I looked in the rearview mirror, I witnessed a puff of feathers, just like you'd expect to see in the movies. I was distraught for all of about 10 seconds.

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

This week's fortune.

You have an active mind and keen imagination.

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

I'm boycotting the city of Chicago.

At Ease reports that the city of Chicago does NOT want Radiohead to play there later this summer...even when they would have paid 100 Gs. You can read the Sun-Times story here.

Who cares about some no-name symphony orchestra? I think this calls for an Obi boycott of Chicago.

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Penalized for doing the right thing...

When I placed my newly purchased CD copy of the album Z by My Morning Jacket into my computer at work, I was greeted by an End User License Agreement (EULA) which mentioned the installation of DRM-protection software if I accepted. My immediate response:!

After more research with the help of my friend the Internet, I found that "the SOFTWARE" (as they fondly referred to it) was SunnComm MediaMax Version 5. Sony BMG was responsible for this and another DRM software package, First4Internet's XCP, which installed a rootkit on Windows computers. For those who are not up to date on their tech news, XCP created a huge controversy because it opened a security hole when rooted on computers. In addition, Sony's initial uninstall program also had a security flaw.

The MediaMax support website insists that the two software products, MediaMax and XCP, are unrelated. However, I observed that both had similar symptoms and both were initially fixed incorrectly. Hmmm...

Needless to say, I was not happy about this. And neither are many other music fans...a Google search on the topic yields countless blog posts which protest against Sony. Even the artists are quite displeased...My Morning Jacket, for example, has a link to help pages about working around the DRM protection on their website. It's also been reported that they have sent out over 100 copies of burned non-DRM copies of the album to friends and fans who have had trouble with it.

Fortunately, when I ripped the tracks onto my laptop using Yahoo! Music Engine, I was neither prompted with the EULA dialogue box, nor affected by the DRM malware. The ripped tracks play fine, and when I downloaded and ran the MediaMax uninstaller it informed me that the software was not found on my system.

Alas, this brings us to my views on the issue. Though I was not harmed by this malware, I am still enraged. These days, I acquire the vast majority of my CDs through legal means. This is not because I am more ethical than is actually mostly because I am lazy. I would rather use a subscription service, such as Yahoo! Music Unlimited (shameless plug), to check out what's hot in music and then order albums that I like off, than spend hours scouring the Internet for high-quality versions of songs. The few exceptions to my legal acquisition are when a friend offers to burn me a copy of something he thinks is the fire...this usually leads to me buying more albums by the artist anyway. I think it's a shame that someone who acquires music legally is put at risk by buying the CD. Oh, and Sony is wac.

This week's fortune.

Your future is as boundless as the lofty heaven.

Sunday, January 01, 2006

If I was a lesbian living in St. Louis...

...I would party at Novak's Bar and Grill. RFT readers voted it their favorite bar of 2005 and thrice voted it the best lesbian bar in St. Louis (2001, 2003, 2004). I would have to say that I had my best New Year's Eve celebration in recent memory there last night.