the photography, music and ramblings of Matt Lipstein

The Best Website Ever

I'm cool with my level of hyperbole and gross generalization. You may not be. None of this changes the fact that this is undoubtedly the best website ever.

Thanks Marc.

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Computer Geeks Are Sexy (really though)

This is from a post a few weeks old from Boing Boing, but I just couldn't resist.

For all you ladies who still think that "jock" is where it's at, and "nerds" have nothing to offer in the sexy department I offer this pictorial:

Yuppers - that's our good friend Steve Jobs of Apple up top, and multi-billionaire Bill Gates on bottom. Even in the 80s, pre- black turtleneck or world domination (respectively), these two were straight pimpin' baby!

Insert intro to Marvin Gaye's "Sexual Healing" here.


Happy holidays!

Hope everyone is having an awesome holiday season. I have been having
a ball.

This message is coming from my new iphone (thanks moomer & don). I
just figured out how to do mobile blogging from my phone!

Here is a shot of the webpage teaching my how. Lots of love and peace
in the new year!


Same old song and dance...

[Insert standard comment about not posting as much as I want to here]

Good - now that that's out of the way...

Been investigating different online photo sharing services to get some slide shows uploaded to the photo page. Tonight (post-fireworks) I decided to give Picasa Web Albums a go (further signing on to the Google monster that has taken over my tech life).

If their products just weren't so gosh-darn smooth!

Check the new galleries on the photo page and lemme know what you think about the new interface.

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Podcasts: Why do they suck?

When you're a techie in a visible role (read: a guy like me doing technology for a school), people expect you to be into all of the up and coming technologies and trends. From knowing the pros and cons of Windows Vista, to being on top of every high-tech companies stock price, people assume you're the go-to guy. "Hey - you like technology! What's Second Life all about?"

Which brings me to Podcasts. We all know what they are by now, but does anybody really listen to these things? Is it just me or do they all suck? First off - there are so many of them, and most are done very poorly. The hosts rarely know what they are talking about, and they seem to love the sound of their own voices (an affliction that I can *ahem* identify with).

I've tried to ask people I trust for recommendations, but even these "cream-o'-the-crop" shows are not that engaging. The sound is always tinny, and the volume is all over the place. The whole thing just seems like a medium that will seem laughable in about two years.

All geek stereotypes aside, I did think I was going to enjoy listening to podcasts. I mean hey - I went to school for radio broadcasting, and even aspired to get into talk-radio at a certain point. But no. This podcast thing is just not taking.

I'm listening to one now. My hopes were high. The host is Mark Frauenfelder the creator of one of my favorite blogs, Boing Boing. It's called "Get Illuminated" - an obvious nod to Robert Anton Wilson*, one of my most cherished authors of my mid-twenties. And the first episode was an interview with cultural critic and author Douglas Rushkoff. A veritable slam-dunk of a podcast!

But here I am - bored, not paying attention. Blah blah blah. Who has the attention for this? Do people just sit and stare at their computers while they listen? I know folks have these on their iPods and listen on the commute, but for some reason that doesn't appeal to me.

Tell me - what am I missing? Am I the only one who is missing the boat?

*Fair warning if you click this link: Robert Anton Wilson maintains one of the worst looking websites on the Internet.

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When it's time to change it's time to rearrange

As I've mentioned before, I'm a big fan of Bloglines. But lots o' people have been praising the Google Reader to help make sense of all the blogs floating around out there in cyberspace.

I'm coming to find that google owns all of the online applications I like to use. And while it's great having one login for everything, it's a little bit scary too. I suppose I'm holding on to Bloglines as one way to resist becoming all Google all the time.

I'm going to give the Reader a chance. If history proves anything, in the short term I'll be using Google Reader. In the long term, the company will become too big for its britches and will then fall like Rome.

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Linky McLink Link

If you look closely in the right-column of this page you'll see I've added two new links . Been meaning to do it for a while but you know - sometimes you get all caught up checking out Living Tables and before you know it it's time for bed.

In any event, here's more details on these websites:

Infinite Regress is a site run by my man Tim. It's a melange of posts about everything but has running themes of technology, baseball and many pictures of meat he's eaten recently. Always interesting stuff here, including Tim's 10 best burgers of 2006. See if your favorite made the list!.

I've posted before about Rebecca's Drawing Game Challenge. Each month she chooses a topic and forces herself to complete an illustration of that topic on the daily. We've seen Birds, Robots, and now we're up to Bugs. Check in everyday to see what she's up to, and maybe even challenge yourself!

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Kriss Kross will make you...

Oh the internet. What can't you do? I love finding sites that harken back to the big dumb internet of 1997. fits this bill.

Pictures of people jumping on hotel beds. Period.

Check it out!


Web 2. Oh!

This 5 minute video shows a great history of Internet development through web2.0 and raises some interesting thoughts as to where we are going. Great food for thought.

"The Machine is Us/ing Us"
by Michael Wesch

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Future Tagging

While were at it, another example that we are making our transition into the future is the work done by the Graffiti Research Lab.

I'm not going to preface this much, other than these graff writers are tagging whole buildings with lasers. LASERS I SAY!

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Are we in the future?

I keep seeing things recently that make me think we are in the future. The Google Books project was one. The possibility of an African-American or female president was another.

But this really takes the cake.

Below is a demo video for the Monome. It's a musical instrument that works off of a computer feed to sequence, cue, loop and trigger music. I'm sorry but the future is now! Watch it.

Info courtesy of The Shamblers via RD.

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Boing Boing Bonanza

I've been flagging a ton of posts on Boing Boing "A Directory of Wonderful Things". And now, those links will be yours!

Personal vehicles on abandoned light rail tracks

Horror remix of When Harry Met Sally

Photos of people wearing fezzes

Pulp Fiction as typography

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How are you feeling?

Tim-bo showed me an amazing site today:

This site has a bot that looks at blogs all over the Internet every 10 minutes (!) for anyone who has written "I feel..." or " I am feeling.." and then adds that quote to the site. You then see all quotes floating in a crazy sea and can choose one at random. Each one of those little dots in the image is actually a quote lifted from the web. Also you can filter the results based on a few criteria (age, location, weather).

It's a little abstract to explain here, but please go and have a look and find out how people are feeling.

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Have you ever felt hyper-connected? Too much screen time and too much happening while you're on the computer? I'm on machines for an average of 8-10 hours a day. Yowser. I've made some changes in how I use these machines recently. Changes that are supposed to make me more productive, but they are simply leaving me frazzled.

Here are the new technologies that should be stepping it up but are just leaving me down:

Web Browser: Flock

I've been using Flock for a month now. It's a really good web browser that integrates my Flickr account so I can just drag and drop photos in that I'll want to post to this site. It's built on the FireFox platform, so it allows for tabbed browsing and the like, and is secure and stable. But now I'm finding myself with 128937 tabs open in 213 windows.

Home Page: Personalized Google
The personalized google page let's me see my gMail inbox and Google calendar, as well as additional info like the weather, word of the day, and extra crap (no - I do not have the Dilbert comic of the day there, but I do have the daily photo from NASA)

This is supposed to make me more efficient, not less! Every time I open my homepage I immediately feel stressed that there is so much more I need to be looking at, digesting and processing. It's a bad feeling.

Google crazy: When my new laptop came into the mix a few months ago, I decided I would use web-based applications to track my information. Using a work desktop, a home PC and a home laptop necessitates the ability to access the same information anywhere.

Enter Google and it's array of free services.

As mentioned, I'm using gMail which is incredibly robust. Instead of simply reading my emails I'm flagging, labeling and archiving conversations. I'm also using Google Calendar to track my events, and Google Docs to keep tabs on different lists of crap I'm updating. If you can't tell already, I can be a bit obsessive.

Blogging: Blogger Beta

I'm using the newer features in Blogger Beta which are great and make this very blog you are reading right now (no, NOW!). It's a great system that I've been able to tweak beyond the templates that they offer, but it's just another elaborate system that I've been using, leaving me overwhelmed.

Photo Storage and Sharing: Flickr
A good service, made easier when using the Flock browser. Just another large step in a multi-stepped process in having a digital identity. They do create those great slideshows you've seen on my Photos page.

I NEED TO UNPLUG! Or at the very least simplify this situation. So - what to do:
  • For the time being I'm switching back to the simplified, classic Google homepage.
  • I may (may, mind you) switch back to Safari as my browser. Although it doesn't have as nice an interface when I log into Blogger.

Any suggestions? Add a comment and let me know how else I can sloooooow down without turning off completely.

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The $100 laptop

Started at M.I.T., the One Laptop Per Child team is gaining speed. This group is committed to producing fully functioning laptops for students around the globe at a purchase price of $100.

They just released a batch of photos of their new prototypes from the factory, and they look GOOD! Read through their wiki and get excited for the future.


Believe the Hype

I'm adding another link to my sidebar today. It's the greatest online tool for finding music you want to hear and learning about new stuff you might enjoy. It's a music blog aggregator - basically they pull from all the MP3 Blog sites and show what tracks they are posting. You can also search so if you want the new 45 minute LCD Soundsystem track "45:33" - you can find it there.

The Hype Machine

Remember: If you like something always support artists by legally purchasing their music and going to see their shows!

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Get inspired about Technology

If you don't know, I am the Director of Technology for an independent school in Brooklyn, NY. The main part of my job is finding ways to use technology in classrooms to help enhance kids' education. It's challenging and rewarding work.

Last week I went to a conference in Mohonk to meet with my colleagues. It's always inspirational, and opens my eyes to the big picture. I can get very brought down into the minutia of day to day life: a particular laptop not working, or the internal politics of working in a school. Stepping back and seeing the big picture of how we are effecting children's education and ultimately their future is heavy business!

I was forwarded a link to the TEDBLOG. A description from their site:

The TED (Technology, Entertainment, Design) conference is an annual event where leading thinkers and doers gather for inspiration. (More at The TEDBlog covers the same ground, on a rather more frequent basis.
It's higher-level thinking and incredibly inspirational for anyone interested in technology. They have videos of their speakers from the last few years.

And they have a video of Bono speaking (which could be good or bad)

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Back at it again...

So here I am changing the look of Stupidfresh yet again! I can't seem to make up my mind how I want to publish this thing. Let's give this version a go.

Way back in the day I started with a modified version of Blogger. I tweaked the hell out of it to get it just right. Then, a few weeks ago when I got my new Macbook I decided to try their iWeb software. It's actually really cool, but if you don't fork over the 100 clams to buy a .mac account, it's really difficult to publish with it.

After a brief foray into WordPress (which is what my other site, A Picture's Worth is published on), I have come back full circle to Blogger.

I'm hoping this will give me the flexibility to:
  • post from any computer I am working on
  • make posting super simple - so I can get my stuff up as soon as possible
  • allow me to make easy to posy/easy to use interfaces for photoblogging and musicbloggin (of my own material of course) - for starters, click on the picture of Kojak on the bottom of this post
  • give me the flexibility to post frequently on more topics, with more links to more timely information - and maybe get more personal too
So far (tonight anyway) I am pretty pleased with how it is going. I modified a Blogger template and added in some bells and whistles. Updates to come.

So it's pretty dry right now, but I'm hoping to keep things fresh - Stupidfresh that is.

Stay tuned and thanks for checking in!

Who loves ya' baby?

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