Curse of the flying wombat…

Typical. You wait ages for me to write up a news story, and then two come along at once.

In order of publication (although it was, strangely, very close) then. Firstly, this number at PC Authority:

Aussies rush to mobile over fixed line: “Australians are moving from fixed lines to mobile phones en masse, but using a mobile phone over a WiFi network is still a pipedream for many.”

And then this piece, at APCMag.com:

Soon, computers will read handwriting: “Would you trust this man with your credit card signature?”

Awesome. Giraffes are apparently kosher…

Well, at least according to the Wikipedia entry on Jewish dietary laws. It strikes me that Giraffes are perfectly proportioned to be made into Kebab rolls, which perhaps explains that mystery — and also why you never see herds of Giraffes flocking wild around anywhere that has a Kebab stand any more.

Macworld August 2008. Now with added Alex.And so continues the modern trend of segueing strangely into whatever I’m writing at the moment, which in this case is a larger than has been previously normal contribution to the August 2008 issue of Australian Macworld magazine. First up, an examination of the iPhone/iPod Touch App Store over a couple of pages, with an obligatory screenshot of Moo in action. Then a column about why the Kidman family may, in fact, have a rare tech-virus that renders otherwise functional devices into steaming heaps of silicon sludge. Editor MJCP has a rare dig at my expense right at the end that absolutely makes the entire column, and improves the humour quotient about 1000%. It’s on newsagent store shelves right now. You know what to do.

Well, OK. You probably want to know why I’m reading up on Jewish dietary laws? Well, I could segue here into the story about how I got recommended for a Jewish IT position at a major printing firm (because Centrelink presumed that with a name like Kidman, I was Yiddish…), but in truth it’s got more to do with a chance comment from a journalist colleague, combined with the fact that my brain woke up at 1am this morning with every single idea I needed for a particular past-deadline piece of writing I needed, right then and there. So I got up and started writing, lest it be lost in slumber. Right now, I’m tired, and my brain ain’t working right. So reading Kosher rules seems totally normal to me. Hey, I’m rambling again…

A watched pot never boils…

What utter rubbish. I mean, a certain amount of basic observation proves this one false. I suppose if you happened to be extremely cold then your ambient temperature might slow the boiling process of the pot, but only at a very microscopic level, if at all. And even then, the action of your observation has nothing to do with it.

And don’t try and get all clever and rig up a webcam to a fire extinguisher, so you can watch and keep the pot from boiling. On second thoughts, do that, but remember to credit me on it. It’s a great idea, and could easily be the next YouTube sensation!

Strange, what the mind ponders. Less strange is this trio of reviews, live at CNET.com.au:

The Chronicles Of Narnia: Prince Caspian: “Die-hard CS Lewis fans would undoubtedly gain more enjoyment from a decent, leather-bound set of the books, while younger fans of the movie may get some enjoyment from Prince Caspian — but it’s enjoyment that’s not likely to last very long.”

Linksys WAG160N: “Linksys’ WAG160N resides in an attractive package, and manages better than most Wireless N routers. Better than most, but still nowhere near the hype.”

Motorola EQ7 Wireless Hi-Fi Stereo Speaker: “The EQ7 offers exceptional playback quality and speakerphone ability, albeit at a somewhat exceptional price.”

Rushing headlong, out of control…

Is there anywhere that won’t publish my words? I certainly hope not — three kids, one studying wife and a Sydney-sized mortgage takes a certain amount of funds, after all.

Once again, it’s Australian Netguide time. The August issue features a lot of articles written by yours truly (so what’s new?), including a feature on MMORPGs (the same one that saw me dip my toes into the murky world of World Of Warcraft earlier on, fact fans), as well as the broadband guide, a comparative review of camcorder models and standalone reviews of the HP DV2840TX, Asus Eee PC 900, HP Mini-Note 2133, Cyberlink MediaShow 4, AVG Internet Security 8.0, ZoneAlarm Forcefield, Roxio Toast 9 Titanium, WD MyPassport Elite 320GB, Canon Selphy ES2, Lego Indiana Jones: The Original Adventures, UEFA Euro 2008, Mario Kart Wii and Grand Theft Auto IV. Phew. When do I sleep again, exactly? Oh, that’s right — mortgage to pay off. Back to the word anvil I head for further wordsmithery, then…

Nothing quite compares to a varied portfolio of work

Hey, they can’t all be stories about the iPhone 3G, despite appearances. Hopefully, however, this doesn’t herald a trend towards me becoming the premier reviewer of titles aimed at young girls — if only because the music is truly painful…

Hannah Montana Music Jam: “When mild-mannered Miley Stewart eats a banana, she becomes … no, wait, that’s Bananaman. When night falls, Miley Stewart assumes the mantle of the bat, dishing out vigilante justice in the guise of … no, that’s Batman. After her uncle was murdered by a burglar … no, that’s Spider-Man. Drat. Secret identities are so hard to keep track of…”

I’m Henry The Eighth I am, Henry The Eighth I am, I am…

In my not entirely mis-spent youth, I spent a certain amount of time singing the above happy tune to the elderly (and often incontinent) grannies at local rest homes. Except that it now strikes me that it’s not a happy tune at all. Also, the grannies should have been scrubbed down before the unwitting teenagers (myself included) were forced to dance with them.

Anyway, it’s not a happy song. It’s a warning. Henry obviously hasn’t noticed that not only has he married a seven-time Widower (an unusual circumstance to begin with), but that she’s got an obsession with men called Henry. Well, OK, he has somewhat noticed that latter part (“I’m ‘er eighth old man named Hen-er-y”), but hasn’t tied the two facts together.

Clearly, this Widow is a psychotic mass-murdering old bint with a thing for men with certain names. She must be found and stopped now!

What does this have to do with my published works today? Well, nothing, really, except that the following article at PC Authority is yet another iPhone 3G story, and as such, I thought it might make a nice diversion, rather than just listing it at 100,004.

What’s the big deal about the iPhone App Store? Yep, it’s another iPhone 3G-centric article, so if you’re sick of them, I’d suggest you click away to some other portion of PC Authority. Well, if I’m going to be technical, it’s an iPhone 3G and iPod Touch-centric article, but then again, this is my Apple Blog, so what else would I be talking about?”

Hey, just because I was on holidays…

Doesn’t mean I wasn’t getting published somewhere. In a somewhat catchup mode, the following articles of mine went up online over the past week:

At CNET.com.au:

Diner Dash/Diner Dash 2: Restaurant Rescue/Diner Dash: Flo On The Go: “Many hours of our youth was spent stealing gold from Octopi, putting out stupidly placed oil fires and keeping spiders and bees away from flowers, all in the name of a points counter that would invariably reset itself once you got good enough.”

Samsung VP-HMX10 Progressive HD Camcorder: “The HMX10 makes a decent entry-level HD camcorder — with an awful lot of limitations.”

And then, at Australian Macworld:

The App Store cometh: “It’s the not-so-secret weapon that turns the 3G iPhone into a utility powerhouse. It’s the App Store, and Apple unveiled it early Friday morning — or late Thursday night, if you happened to have an iPhone by then…”

Australian Macworld Weekend Edition Podcast: Episode 30: “Special hour-long episode. MJCP, Alex Kidman and Danny Gorog chew the fat about iPhone 3G, network coverage, pricing plans, hype and hysteria.”