Monday, May 22, 2006

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's birthday

It's with great delight that I note that Google takes note of the birthday of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, the author of some of my favorite childhood stories. I loved Sherlock Holmes and still love the idea that if I think about a problem hard enough I can piece together the clues and solve the problem using mostly my brain.

In the past few months I have become a fan of the medical drama show House. After watching the second show, I decided that the writers of the show must be having some fun with the audience, because there were numerous similarities between House (the Doctor) and Holmes (the detective.)

In addition to the obvious homonym of sorts, House and Holmes, they both function as largely armchair detectives, both are addicted to some form of narcotic, they both have a doctor as a foil, etc. I love the smart writing of the show and love looking for the similarities. I just found that someone else has noticed and created a web page devoted to this very topic.

qv: How Dr. Gregory House is like Sherlock Holmes.

Monday, May 15, 2006

Skype Introduces Free Calls to Traditional Landlines and Mobile Phones in the US and Canada

From Skype:
Skype®, the global Internet communications company, today announced that all US and Canadian-based Skype customers can now make free SkypeOut™ calls to traditional landline and mobile phones in the US and Canada. Previously, Skype users in both countries were required to pay for Skype calls from their PCs to traditional telephones. Free SkypeOut calls to the US or Canada will be available to US and Canadian-based Skype users until the end of the year.

Call me!
Skype is already pretty cheap, but now it's free (at least in the US and Canada.) My guess is that free will draw some more people to check it out. My next guess is that they will find the voice quality of Skype to be pretty amazing. Once you have provisioned a good computer and internet connection for yourself, Skype is better than most cell phones. The calls I have made via SkypeOut are not even noticed by my callers, well except for the bizarro caller id number it presents.

qv: Skype Introduces Free Calls to Traditional Landlines and Mobile Phones in the US and Canada

A Super Mario Musical Interlude

And now for a brief musical interlude.
Turn the WAYBAC machine to 1985!

powered by ODEO

qv: Super Mario Bros.

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Wednesday, May 10, 2006

We're LIVE on "Your Day" -- May 11, 2006

Here is the rundown for this Thursday's Your Day radio program.!

THURSDAY, MAY 11, 2006

Main Street in Columbia, SC. Donna London of the Jim Self Center on the Future talks with Tom Prioreschi, president of Capitol Places, Inc. about residential development in downtown Columbia.

Mother’s Day weekend at Darlington Raceway. Bob Schuster visits with Cathy Elliott, director of public relations for the Darlington Raceway to learn what’s planned for the upcoming Diamond Hill Plywood 200 and the Dodge Charger 500, May 12 and 13, 2006.

and then...

Beginning at 12:30, A live call-in segment on the Internet and related technologies. Eric Rodgers hosts Phil Yanov, Director of Business Development at Acentron Technologies, and founder and Executive Director of the GSA Technology Council. Members of the radio audience are invited to ask about computer technology and related topics via the toll-free number: 888-539-8859.

Where to listen?
# 89.3 Charleston
# 90.1 Greenville / Spartanburg
# 91.3 Columbia
# 88.1 Sumter / Columbia
# 89.1 Aiken /Augusta
# 89.9 Beaufort / Hilton Head
# 90.1 Conway / Myrtle Beach

qv: Your Day

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Tuesday, May 09, 2006

I can call Europe for free!

Vonage's announcement:
Vonage America Inc., a subsidiary of Vonage Holdings Corp., a leading Internet telephony company in North America, today announced that it has waived its international calling rates to land lines in France, Ireland, Italy, Spain and the United Kingdom for subscribers signed up for the $24.99* per month Premium Unlimited Plan...
Now I guess I need to find some friends in Europe!

qv: Vonage Holdings Corporation

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AOL to provide phone service with Instant Messenging

TechSpot News:
"AOL is to integrate its instant messenger service with free local telephone numbers. ... Once launched, the service will give AOL users a phone number which can be connected through another computer or a regular phone. Naturally, incoming calls are free but users have to pay to make calls to regular phones. "

It looks like AOL would like to have a piece of Skype's 100 Million users.

Monday, May 08, 2006

NASA launches lunar lander contest

From ZDNet:
On Friday, the U.S. space agency announced it has forged a partnership with the X Prize Foundation, an organization that promotes space exploration, to hold the Lunar Lander Analog Challenge. The contest, for development of a vehicle to simulate a landing on the moon, carries $2.5 million in prizes, including NASA's purse. The X Prize Foundation will host and pay for the competition to take place in Las Cruces, N.M., in October, when it puts on its own X Prize Cup.

It sounds like the X Prize Foundation has had exactly the effect on NASA that it had hoped for. The idea was to spur innovation and they have done it with their own money. Now they've got NASA thinking ahead again. It's a fabulous start.

NASA launches lunar lander contest | Tech News on ZDNet

Sunday, May 07, 2006

Seven days without blogging makes one weak

Sorry, I couldn't help myself. I stole this line from a sign in front of a church then reworked it a bit to suit my purposes here.