Bizarre - Goldfish living in a deep fat fryer. Only in Japan of course.
Site to share recipes - Nibblous. I'm a terrible cook but they have some pretty good stuff here and theres an rss feed so you can get a new idea delivered to your feedreader almost every day.
Heh - Ribena Rumbled. GSK laid low by some Kiwi school kids.
Dave Bishop (of 2000AD fame) is reviewing all of them - Films of Michael Caine. So far he's up to 73 movies!
Because I'm a sad geek I enjoy reminiscing about the old days - Dans 20th Century Abandoneware. Check out some of those old applications
Awesome - 10 Most Magnificent Trees. I'm not sure about the best in the world but they're all pretty impressive.
Interesting - XML Based IT Management Spec. Wonder if anything interesting will come out of this standard ?
For 2000AD fans - Progslog. A guy blogs about rereading 2000AD from Prog 1.
OS X - Some wonderful OS X screensavers.
Useful - PC Deployment with WindowsPE.
I was almost going to post this in the humour section but then I had these nagging suspicion that these guys are for real - A banana is apparently a sign that we're the product of divine creation. And GodTube ? WTF.
Recently I've come to appreciate the joys to be had in other musical genres.
So be sure to check out Nina Simones - I put a Spell on You video. Truly a wonderful voice.
Theres nothing quite so nice as Nina Simons 'Sinnerman' cropping up between Pelicans 'Drought' and Nick Caves 'Fifteen feet of pure white snow'.
It was an all day event - most of the sessions were good although the uncomfortable chairs definitely made me lose focus about 2/3 of the way through each presentation. Microsoft could learn a little something from Apple when it comes to holding peoples interest over an extended period of time ('more demo less talky' and 'squinty fonts bad' spring immediately to mind).
The take away from the event was that Microsoft really are moving to slay the opposition in the next layer of applications and services. If Microsofts offerings are like a cake - the Operating System is the base, Office suite is the cream and then Integrated Services is the next layer of sponge. Essentially they're looking to do value-add almost everywhere - as with everything Microsoft do version 1.0 might not be that great but by the time they get to version 3.0 they'll definitely be hurting the competition.
Its also interesting that a lot of the exciting new stuff has been acquired by corporate acquisition rather than developed in house (which seems to just be going through improved iterations).
Interesting stuff included
* SoftGrid is application level virtualisation - for example you can sandbox multiple Java versions or Access versions so they run on the same machine. Looks like a great way to handle application conflicts and deployment of legacy apps.
* Virtual Server is still has a long road to topple VMWare but the new versions certainly look like they'll give ESX a good run. Particular at the high-end - it looks like their Data-center version will give you the right to unlimited Virtualised servers. If you're a Windows-only shop the licensing implications alone are pretty huge.
* Forefront seems to be the new catch-all for Microsofts Security stuff. Their presentation had about 16 different products in the 'Forefront' bucket - given the range of systems they need to protect this isn't a surprising figure but it does make their over-all offering a little confusing. What I liked were the hosted Exchange, mail archiving and mail scanning facilities (backed by stringent SLA's and penalty payouts for passing through known malware/viruses). They also have a new Internet Access Gateway (IAG) which is SSL VPN with endpoint security - lots of VPN vendors are going to struggle.
* As well as the anti-competitive aspect (if you write the OS & application it gives you bit of an edge in securing them) it does raise the spectre of putting all your bags into a single basket which many people will weigh up against ease of use and integration with all their other Microsoft apps.
* They've put all their management stuff under the - System Center banner SMS is probably the most well known tool but they have MOM (a monitoring solution), Data Protection among others in this category. Most of these have had multiple revisions under various different product names - Microsoft admits they've been remiss in improving the management aspects of their products so they've been beefing up their resources to greatly improve this line. I've tried the new MOM & SMS and they seem straightforward to install and deploy but getting them to do more seems to require some serious specialist knowledge (ie its counter-intuitive and quirky).
* Lots of Vista goodness on show - given Microsoft have done an about-face and are now promoting image-based deployment you'd think they'd make the process foolproof. They've come up with some good tools but they seem to be a bit tricky to use - Windows Deployment Services (which supercedes RIS) and Business Desktop Deployment. At least now a single image can go onto a variety of hardware. The license and activation stuff looks straightforward (you need to setup your own internal license server if you want to get a volume key).
So it looks like interesting times ahead in IT land.
If you fancy yourself as an artiste take a look at The Structure of Man - a blog with video to help you learn to sketch the human form.