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Wednesday,  06/01/05  09:34 PM

Found an interesting Dutch blog (in English): Zacht Ei.  (Literally, "the soft egg"; the motto "doorbakken kan altijd nog" means "cooking thoroughly can always be done later".  What a great motto for a blog!)  Anyway there are lots of posts about the Dutch referendum on the EU Constitution; you probably heard it was resoundingly rejected... 

According to this article at Blogspotting, blogs tilted the French vote.  "A law professor named Etienne Chouard's blog received 25,000 visits per day, and was linked throughout the French blog world.  His blog turned this professor into a national celebrity, one who went head-to-head with the leading French politicians."  Excellent. 

Gerard Vanderleun reports on the horrible landslides in Laguna Beach.  The picture at right is captioned: "This is the route I normally take home.  I have a sneaking suspicion I'm going to be taking the longer back way in for some time to come."  Unbelievable, about 20 homes destroyed.  And it isn't raining or anything. 

CNN is celebrating its 25th anniversary!  Amazing.  The network which came of age during the first Gulf War - and kind of imploded during the second - ushered in the current era of worldwide always-on news.  Long before the Internet, and blogs :) 

Fighting cancer with math.  "By using a mathematical formula formula designed to strengthen the immune system, a team of scientists in Spain have succeeded in curing a patient who was in the last stage of terminal liver cancer."  It sounds cool but I'm from Missouri; there are no details in the article to suggest how the tumor's growth was arrested.  The posters on this slashdot thread are pretty skeptical, too. 

TechNews reports Microsoft will drop 'my' prefix for Longhorn.  The mind boggles.  Yeah, I just wish they would do Shorthorn instead of making dramatic changes like this :) 

John Koetsier thinks I am "improbably named".  So be it. 

MS did just announce new "open" XML feeds for Microsoft Office.  I'll wait for the experts to opine on how "open" they really are, but presumably this is a step in a good direction.  For many of us it won't particularly affect our day-to-day work; I've been using Office XP for four years now, and I haven't seen a reason to upgrade, dinosaurs notwithstanding.  Plus, did we really need to change the file formats again?  [ via Robert Scoble

[ Later: Tim Bray weighs in; he notes "the popular wisdom is that it takes Microsoft until Release 3 of anything to get it right; but the early word on the new Office XML format makes Release 2 look pretty good" and "the news coverage says 'late 2006'; good luck to the team in the tough job of getting it shipped."  Late 2006 huh - more announceware like Longhorn.  After it ships let's talk about it. ] 

Peter Rojas wonders Microsoft + IPTV = Trouble?  Interesting to see how this plays out.  I think the xBox is in the strategy somewhere... 

Yesterday we noted Video4Skype, now today we get Sony's Instant Video Everywhere.  This is happening fastVoIP = Video over IP

Gizmodo: the PS/2 to USB converter.  $19.  This seems so obviously useful.  And it seems the best way to connect old PC keyboards and mice to a new Mac Mini :) 

Check this out: the placebo mini-pattern.  How to keep users happy while your program churns. 

John Gruber has posted a fascinating look inside Tiger, the latest Mac OS X release.  Among other more-useful nuggets: The "waiting for login" window apparently uses the placebo mini-pattern (a "fake" progress bar). 

Have you been in an Apple store?  They are awesome.  I went to the store in Mission Viejo yesterday; walked out with a new Airport Extreme WiFi hub and SpongeBob SquarePants Teaches Typing.  Great shopping experience, including knowledgable salespeople (Me: "does the Mac Mini support the 30" display?"  Him: "no, the highest supported resolution is 1920x1200, like on the 23" display."  Okay, got it.  Try that at Fry's!).  Imagine you wanted to buy a computer, but you didn't know anything, this would be the place to go. 

Check out Einstein, the bird.  Wow.  I'm speechless, but she isn't.  [ via Woundwort