YouTube copyright block icon

This is what YouTube returns if a video is blocked due to copyright issues. It was implemented as part of the new HTML5 version of the YouTube video player.

The icon is so sweet and endearing that I almost forget to be irritated because I wasn’t allowed to watch the video!

copyright block icon
This video contains content from MGM, who has blocked it on copyright grounds.
Sorry about that.”


UPDATE: Perhaps I should change that back to HTML in light of this: Meet HTML, the spec formerly known as HTML5.

Published in: on January 13, 2011 at 8:57 am  Leave a Comment  
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A recent e-mail from a concerned subscriber sent to The Los Angeles Times:

Subject: Massacre at the copy desk? Quote: Briefs subheads will roll.

What happened here?

L.A. Times Page A22 before correction via copydesk dot org

The Los Angeles Times, Page A22

Some readers in The Times’ East zone … were startled to see ‘dummy’ headlines in the National Briefing column on Page A22. About 55,000 papers were printed before the error was discovered. Readers feared that all the copy editors had been laid off… the best e-mail was from a reader who wondered about the top brief, which is about Elena Kagan:

The headline said, “Briefs subhed large.” “What is this saying? That Elena Kagan wears large briefs?”

There was an error in sourcing the page in question. What was supposed to be an editorial for the Want Ad’s section was linked instead to National News Briefings. The photo explains the situation most eloquently. And Gerri Beremdzen, who wrote this Cautionary Tale from the Copydesk, Straight from Page A22, completely describes the humor and embarrassment of the situation.

Published in: on November 1, 2010 at 1:27 pm  Leave a Comment  

Unintelligent Content


Originally sited and captured by Cayobo on Flickr.

It isn’t confined to the web.  Unintelligent content is alive and well, and seems to be THRIVING. Everywhere.

Published in: on September 10, 2010 at 2:09 pm  Comments (7)  

Word Games

Great Vocab Didn't Save the Thesaurus from Extinction

The Original Thesaurus is Gone but an Evolved Creature HAS Been Sited Recently

via and
More verbal fun can be found at the Wordplay Website.  Go there to get your

  • anagrams,
  • palindromes,
  • spoonerisms,
  • tongue-twisters,
  • pangrams and
  • Rebus puzzles.

Don’t forget mnemonics!  Be on the lookout for malapropisms, too. It’s all part and parcel of the joy that is etymology.

Oxymorora are also featured. N.B. Fun-with-words taught me that “oxymorons” is not grammatically correct. I’d just assumed that it was the same singular-plural form as moron versus morons! I’d like to segue into a good example of English usage for that term.  It also pertains to those who make indiscriminate or spammy comments:

Published in: on August 27, 2010 at 2:34 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Muro Drawing Application from DeviantArt

I saw a Twitter entry from Chris Messina about this a few days ago. Pardon me, he’s trademarked his name, let me try this: chrismessina™ .  Here is the link to the Muro drawing application, and the Ultimate Muro User’s Guide.

It is free, it is from Deviant Art, and anyone can have fun with it. No artistic training is necessary. I say this with confidence.  Prior to trying it, I’d relied almost exclusively on MS Paint as a drawing aid. I drew a snail using Muro. Here it is.

Interpretive Art by Ellie K

Snail Fantasy by Ellie K (Muro Drawing Application)

I think it is a beautiful snail. However, I will continue to restrict my public domain creations to screen shots and uploads from the Second Life™ interface by Linden Lab™ until I acquire a more refined aesthetic sensibility.

HTML Tip:  For that little trademark entityTM superscript, use this:


or the character decimal code:

 entity & # 8 4 8 2;

Note that the character hex code

 entity & # 2 1 2 2;

did not work. Perhaps WordPress is to blame? Also note that the extra spaces are mine:  despite many efforts, with much html, WordPress insisted on converting my source into page view.

UPDATE: For a more comprehensive description of Muro, and a very nice visual which is probably more aesthetically appealing than my snail, I’d suggest having a look at the CAD blog on Muro.

Published in: on August 16, 2010 at 11:57 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Update: Type is Art to Take With You

Parts Of A Character product from Zazzle

Parts of A Character U.S. Postal Stamp

The Type Is Art interactive site, which I was introduced to by via ProArt on Twitter, has a store on Zazzle. There are some delightful and truly original products here, and they are actually made by Susanne Cernha of Silo Designs, who is associated with the Type Is Art project.

Unlike most of the promotional product pages that link to many blogs and fan websites, this one is not a tired old recycling of the same t-shirts, porcelain mugs and canvas bags with a logo stamped on the front that I see everywhere. Update 17 Aug 2010: There are plenty of t-shirts, porcelain mugs, canvas bags and baseball caps on Zazzle, I just hadn’t found them when I wrote this post. However, that doesn’t extend to the TypeIsArt site.

Parts of a Character is a bona fide U.S. Post Office stamp. Denominations are U.S. First Class (first and second ounce) and U.S. Priority Mail < 1.0lb.  Update 17 Aug 2010: I was incorrect about quantity purchase requirements. They are not huge, but pricing is in fact based on order quantity. Another plus: there are no huge bulk purchase requirements.

I found another data-related site at Zazzle, the pleasant ethnographers from Floating Sheep. I’ll take the liberty of cross-linking to Ellie Asks Why Annex on Blogger, and my post about geo-tagging and Microsoft’s Tag application. It offers a curious opportunity for creating linkages between the physical world and the interwebs.

Published in: on August 2, 2010 at 1:05 am  Comments (2)  
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Science Tattoo Emporium

Discovery Magazine’s dizzying assortment of blogs include The Loom, written by science author and Yale lecturer Carl Zimmer.  I’ve culled a few of my favorites from his gallery of science-themed tattoos, The Science Tattoo Emporium. There are over 150 images, with each tattooed scientist, engineer, mathematician or wannabe explaining his or her tattoo’s meaning and personal significance.

Chemistry PhD from Cornell Tattoo: C. writes

I got this tattoo as an homage to the pain of my graduate work. It’s a model of fulvic acid which is a representation of natural organic matter in the soil. I work with this molecule for my grad work and I figured I might as well get it etched into my skin so I can look at it and say, ‘Well, at least it hurt less than grad school at Cornell.

Organic Chem PhD at Cornell

MM, Quartermaster 1st class, USN, writes: “I have been fortunate enough to be paid by the government to get ships from pt. A to pt. B serving in the US Navy…. I was drawn to navigation when I joined. In my opinion, it is the only job in the military that is both a science and an art…. it is important for Navigators to remain proficient in the old ways to fix a ship’s position using a sextant and trigonometry. My tattoo is the visual depiction of how to plot a line of position from a celestial body using the altitude intercept method… it serves as a reminder that while technology improves, the sea remains an unpredictable place….”

Celestial Navigation Tattoo

Power of Science in Living Color

Alan writes:
“After much consideration, I decided to get an atom tattoo. But what atom? Given that I’m an graduate student in organic chemistry at the University of Michigan, carbon seemed like the obvious choice. It also has the advantage of being small enough not to look too crowded. I went for a retro 50’s Jetsons sort of look. Believe it or not, the general shape (though not the coloring) is based on a piece of Microsoft Office clip-art.”

Power of the Atomic Tattoo

Carbon Atom Tattoo

Published in: on July 25, 2010 at 5:27 am  Comments (3)  
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Hermes’ Tree

The Sacred Tree

Hermes Sacred Tree of Alchemi

Found in Manly P. Hall’s The Secret Teachings of All Ages…via BLACK TO THE BLIND, “Who Would Know the Answers If Given?” Read More

This is a wonderful find! Hermes stands at the boundary between the sun and the crescent moon, psychopomp that he is. I would far rather have him escort me from this world to the next than that grumpy old ferryman Charon. Hermes (or Mercury, as the Romans knew him) is wearing his winged sandals and helmet, and holds his sigil. The caduceus is by his side. Is that also one of his symbols? It would be fitting, if he were the gatekeeper at the portal between life and death, the womb and birth.

The Tree of Alchemy (“Alchemi”) itself is numbered one through 12, then 14 and 15. The number 13 becomes conspicuous by its absence. I do not know the provenance of this image. It is an excerpt from Manley P. Hall’s The Secret Teachings of All Ages, published in 1927. However, the image looks more like a drawing from 16th or 17th century Britain, Germany or France, however I’m no expert. Was the number 13 associated with misfortune, or worse, at that time and in those locales? If so, then why is Mercury positioned in the place of number 13?

Finally, I am curious about the significance, if any, of the 15-count. The number 12, for each month or astrological symbol would’ve been more intuitive, but I certainly don’t know everything. And I haven’t even begun to consider the meaning of the words written on each leaf. Organic chemistry?

Feel free to leave any guesses or insights!

* Manley Hall wrote another work which had a similar aura of the perpetually mysterious, or perceived to be mysterious, Society of Freemasons, Rosicrucians and others, but had a uniquely mystical American patriotism about it, entitled The Secret Destiny of America.

Published in: on July 25, 2010 at 2:35 am  Leave a Comment  
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Scrabble for Web Developers

Scrabble Web 2.0 Version

Scrabble for Web Developers

Originally uploaded by FatSeth on Flickr, via Smashing Apps Scrabble

Here’s a Web 2.0 specific version of Scrabble. You decide: limited vocabulary or very clever?  It is a bit reminiscent of  Wordle, a fun javascript application by Jonathan Feinberg, Ph.D. of IBM.  A scrabble-style font would be a nice addition to Wordle, actually.

Buzzword Edition of Scrabble via

Scrabble for Web Marketers: Buzz Word Mix

Update: I found a marketing buzz word version of Scrabble at Marketing Minds, while spending some time over at my Annex site on Blogger. The Annex started as my private sandbox for comparing digital publishing platforms for sites that are not self-hosted, e.g. here at, and evolved into a full-fledged blog in its own right.

Published in: on July 19, 2010 at 12:29 am  Leave a Comment  
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Time Stands Still When I Think of You

What is

ShrEdit is for uncut snowboarding videos.
ShrEdit is television for snowboarding

I really like that logo! Bold intersecting rectangles enclose large point sans serif type font, all in black and red on a clean white background. It is very appealing.

Location: Xscape in Castleford UK, 18 June 2010
Music: Teddybear Crisis – Time Stands Still

Published in: on July 14, 2010 at 8:05 pm  Comments (2)  

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