The fear I see when I look in your eyes makes you believe I’m one of a kind…

Ah, if only I had educated feet.

Virtually nobody will get that, but that’s OK.

Now, when most people look under their office desk, they see three things:

  1. Fluff
  2. Lost documents, or possibly a missing USB key
  3. Feet.

But me? I see a recently operated on cat, attempting to sort out my wiring for me.

cat_cables

Who said that cats are only interested in themselves?

Way back when I was just a little bitty boy…

Ah, Albequerque — perhaps the Weird Al song I’ve used most for subject lines. Being over ten minutes long doesn’t hurt any in terms of lyric choices, of course.

What probably does hurt me is my diet, specifically junk food. On Sunday, I was having lunch with my esteemed brother in the local food court, and hied me hither to the nearest Burger King. Where, for reasons that still elude me, they were opening up a box of solid vegetable oil on the counter. With a machete. As you do.

Solid Vegetable Oil, it should be said, isn’t the most appetising stuff on the planet, and the sight of it being extracted, one white brick-sized chunk at a time was a strong disincentive to eat there*.

While I was waiting for my meal, I noted with some interest two odd little factoids about the vegetable oil

  • It wasn’t just “Vegetable Oil”, it was “Superior Vegetable Oil”. Do humble plants have delusions of grandeur? Did the company involved previously only use really crappy plants, or something? I’m getting images of a carrot in a KKK robe now, for some reason.
  • It wasn’t just “Superior Vegetable Oil” — it had a “New Improved Formula” too. How? I mean, they’re vegetables — well, probably some kind of seed, actually, but anything’s possible. Burger King might be frying its chips in pure potato oil, which feels vaguely cannibalistic to me, somehow.

Enough of this vegetable oil fixation. All things being well, my cat (who was daft enough to ingest some elastic and then end up with it wound around bits of its lower intestine early last week, requiring emergency surgery) will be heading home shortly… as long as I can pay the rather hefty Vet bill, that is.

I know! I’ll write something, and somebody can publish it and pay me for my work! It’s such a wacky idea, it just might work!

First, at PC Authority:

Mac Authority: Apple relaxing iPhone rules, developers winning big : “Sure, Steve Jobs is taking a leave of absence – perhaps permanently. But it’s in some unusual strategic decisions that Apple’s made recently that you can see Apple changing even more, argues Alex Kidman.”

And then at CNET.com.au:

NetComm NB12WD MyCommsGateway: “NetComm’s all-in-one broadband, wireless and VoIP solution makes for a pretty package, but we were still left wanting just a little bit more.”

*Sadly, for my waistline and arteries, I still did. Hey, I’d paid for it! I wasn’t going to not eat it after that!

The answers, my friend, are in the back of the book…

(as sung to the tune of “Blowin’ In The Wind”)

Ah, when I was but a spritely* seventeen year old, that was the height of comedy. And a big hello to any members of 3UM who might be reading this. Which, as the odds would have it, would probably be none of you. And the rest of my reading audience are busy scratching their heads, wondering what it is that I’m blabbering on about. I’d better distract you with yet more writing work, I guess.

First up, at GadgetGuy:

HTC Touch HD: “HTC’s latest stab at an iPhone-like, touch-based phone is mostly good fun, but the fact that it still hides Windows Mobile 6 behind the scenes means that you’re in for moments of frustration.”

And then there’s this distinctly… odd.. story at APCMag.com:

Woman forced to pay cab fare with iPod: “Ex-owner unhappy, driver unhappy after iPod substituted for taxi fare. Although in the cabbie’s case it seems to be because it lacked headphones…”

*I was never really spritely, although there have been days when I’ve felt distinctly pixellated…

Hard to get, impossible to hold…

Ouch. It feels right now like my whole week’s been nothing but a long, painful journey to this:

path

In the meantime, I also somehow managed to get some work off the ground — especially yesterday, which was another 15 hour day working monster, thanks largely to the above imaged pavers not turning up for five days and putting my schedule in serious jeopardy. Some stuff won’t be seen for a while, but there was a solitary online effort at APCMag.com:

Seagate hard drives suffering mass data loss: “Now you see your data… now you don’t. You can’t even see the firmware upgrades to fix the problem, either.”

It’s time to tour the planets that make up our solar system. C’mon!

Ah, Yakko. Wise beyond your years.

It’s been a weird and highly frustrating week, spent largely (and fruitlessly) trying to set down a path in my front garden, stymied at every turn by the half-truths and evasions of a certain tiling company that failed to deliver on their promises. Oh, and writing work.

I sometimes wonder if my creative juices are fired up by confrontation, or blocked by it. Based on this week (and what I suspect will happen next week, given the paving drama now will continue into next week, thanks to the idiots at Amber Tiles), I suspect that it’s the blocked scenario. I’ve just not been that creative this week in any endeavor. Which doesn’t mean I’ve not written anything, however. Wow. That’s probably my worst segue ever. Read this at APCMag.com, will you? It’ll make me feel better… or something.

Second Google Android phone — Kogan Agora — “Delayed Indefinitely”: “Got your heart set on one of Kogan’s Android phones? Too bad.”

And I think it’s gonna be a long long time…

In-between the incredibly frustrating adventures in finally trying to put in a front path (*subliminal message: Don’t use Amber Tiles*) this week, I’ve also flung forth a few frothy and ferociously fonted fabulous words of wisdom. As well as, it seems, developing a taste for the sixth letter of the alphabet. Sesame Street would be so proud. I wonder what the number of the day is?

Firstly, at CNET, there’s this router review (hey — it’s not alliteration day, is it?)

NetComm N3G005W 3G Wi-Fi Router: “Renters or those who want to mix and match broadband styles with a dab of 3G will do well with NetComm’s N3G005W router, as long as you don’t need lots of wired ports.”

Then, at PC Authority, a couple of Apple-centric articles. First, my regular blog-based musing, this time on, of all things for an Apple column, Windows 7:

Mac Authority: Is Windows 7 eating Apple’s lunch? “Alex Kidman gets down and dirty with the latest version of Windows 7, and surprisingly – doesn’t immediately hate it with all the vigour of a Mac disciple.”

Followed today by one of the world’s most over-reported Apple stories:

Apple undergoes Jobs cuts: “Charismatic CEO steps down for six months as health fears worsen.”

All I want is to cry with you…

Well, actually, my list of demands is just a tad longer than that. Although I’m not exactly unhappy that the man who wrote that lyric is coming back to my neck of the woods in Mid-February. Anyone want to babysit?

I guess I’d better earn some dosh to pay those tickets off, now that I think of it. Oh, look — a news story at APCMag.com:

Ethical Trojan blocks Bittorrent sites: “A fake keygen for pirated software tries to stop you pirating anything at all by blocking out popular Torrent sites. Hollywood probably loves it. Perhaps they even programmed it.”

The song’s a year long and had been playing for months…

One of my favourite Prince songs (and one that, outside of the Prince fan community, nobody’s ever heard of) provides today’s lyrical subject line.

Meanwhile, I’m busy providing content over at CNET.com.au:

LG RH399D: “LG’s DVD recorder offers plenty of recording space and an in-built digital tuner, but the lack of HD capability really hurts.”

Disney Fairies: Tinkerbell (Nintendo DS): “We handed it over to a seven-year-old to play to get impressions. We still haven’t managed to wrest the DS from her grasp…”

Where did I put my floppy shoes?

I got a package yesterday addressed to “Alex Kidman Clown School, Inc.”

It’s nice to see my editors taking me seriously, for a change….

Back to the serious stuff, though, and an analysis of this morning/yesterday’s/today’s (depending on which side of the dateline you sit) Macworld Keynote for PC Authority:

Mac Authority: Business as usual: “Even in the absence of Steve Jobs, Apple still snuck a few innovations out the door. At the same time, it managed to deliver one of the least surprise-filled keynotes in the company’s history…”