Monthly Archives: October 2006

A Fresh Volley

Cannondale has unveiled its 2007 bike line.

The Carbon Rush family has made its official debut, after a summer of tantalizing press releases, as has a new carbon hardtail frame, the Taurine. There are the usual tweaks to paint schemes and model numbering, of course.

The addition of greatest interest to me, though, is the Rush 3Z. As far as I can tell, it’s a Rush 3 with a conventional fork and matching headset — an acknowledgment, it would seem, that there are people who want a top-of-the-line aluminum Rush but aren’t yet, for whatever reason, quite ready to embrace Cannondale’s signature Lefty design.

Cannondale Rush 3Z

It is disquietingly possible that I am in fact one of these people.


I’ve been posting a bit more lately, and while this is due to a couple of contributing factors, one of the big ones is my adoption of MarsEdit.

This is the blogging software that grew out of NetNewsWire: like NetNewsWire, it’s elegant, powerful, flexible, and clever without being too smart for its own good. If you’re looking for a tool that will let you create and manage blog posts from your Mac, MarsEdit is a fine place to start.

Drilling Into the Bottom of the Barrel

John Gruber takes a break from the usual “Mac Nerdery” to bestow the Jackass of the Week award upon Rush Limbaugh, for picking on a man whose nervous system is basically falling apart.

Gruber is constrained by both decorum and tradition — Jackass of the Week is a running series, after all — from calling Limbaugh something harsher. I, however, am not. “Asshole” comes to mind, of course, but the term’s been bleached a bit by overuse. “Scum” seems short, sharp, and to-the-point.

This, to use Lois McMaster Bujold’s expression, “is not news“, but it bears periodic repeating anyway.

Le Renard, Part Deux

Firefox 2 has emerged from beta.

I’ve been running it for all of 15 minutes or so. I’ve observed no radical changes yet, which is fine, since in my view there wasn’t anything egregiously wrong with Firefox to begin with. Overall it looks like they’ve integrated some of the best ideas arising from the extensions developed for 1.x: finer-grained tab control and session persistence, to name but two.

My favorite new feature so far is integration with third-party RSS readers: it’s now possible for me to visit a site with Firefox, and then add its feed to my NetNewsWire subscriptions with two clicks. Very nice indeed.

Gloss Leader

I don’t know who the Crank Brothers use to do their component photography, but these people need to be stopped. They’re a menace to public decency and morals.

Seriously, pictures of the company’s new line of bottom brackets shouldn’t be making me drool just because they’re awash in lustrously anodized, lovingly polished, precisely machined metal. This is sick.

“Whatever turns your crank,” they say, but I’m not sure that’s what they meant.

There’s Something Very Wrong With Us


It’s hard to shake the feeling that things are fundamentally screwed up in some way when it turns out to be easier to obtain the new album from one of your favorite bands by firing up Xtorrent than it is to walk into any one of three different music stores, cash in hand, and actually buy the CD.

I mean, I’ll wind up ordering the thing from Amazon if all else fails, but… for cryin’ out loud. It’s been said before that any company or industry that has problems taking your money is in trouble. This would seem to be a good example.

(The album itself? It’s good. Very good. But you’d expect nothing less from Dick Valentine & Co.)


When I was younger, my mother, with my sister and yours truly in tow, would visit Germany almost every summer, to catch up with her side of the family. More than once she wound up booking us with Icelandic Air, because flying from New York to Reykjavik to Frankfurt with them actually wound up being cheaper than a direct transatlantic jaunt with Lufthansa would have been. Go figure.

Anyway, we’d come in for a landing in the small hours of local morning, but thanks to the perpetual daylight of Icelandic summer, we could see the countryside we skimmed on our final approach. It was oddly beautiful — a rocky and achingly empty landscape, overhung with gray mist, but colored with lichens in every hue from green to ochre. I always thought that I’d like to go back and hike it someday, and perhaps I will yet.

I was reminded of all of this by running across a story about Reykjavik electively going dark, albeit briefly, to afford its inhabitants a better view of the night sky. A dome of stars undimmed by light pollution is a beautiful thing, and I tip my hat to any city with good sense to embrace that sort of wonder. (As a bonus, they might even catch a glimpse of the Northern Lights. Lucky devils.)

Those Icelanders, they’re all right.

What’s in a name?

Confusion, apparently.

Browsing the headlines on Yahoo! this morning, I was thrown not once but twice.

First, “Delay disrupts meeting to discuss Iran“. Wait, what? Tom DeLay disrupted a meeting to discuss the Republican boogeyman of the moment? Which meeting? And anyway, isn’t he out of the picture? Oh, wait, they’re just talking about Condoleezza Rice’s flight being delayed. Right. I heard about that on the radio while driving in. (In hindsight, the failure to correctly capitalize DeLay should have tipped me off, except that I’m so used to sloppy typography in journalism that I’ve almost come, sadly, to expect it.)

Skimming down a few lines, I then got to “Rice could doom U.S.-Korea trade deal: source” and thought, Jesus, what’s she screwing up now?. But it turns out they’re just talking about the grain.

Context is everything. And there is no conspiracy.