Wednesday, February 21, 2007

More Fish Tacos

One of my most searched (most found?) blog posts was titled Fish Tacos in Sun Diego. Today I had the chance to sample some fish tacos in Santa Fe. I was looking for a place with free WiFi and found the Atomic Grill near the Plaza.

This was a great little place although I can't tell you much about the menu. As soon as I saw fish tacos on the menu I was heading for the car to get my laptop bag and plug the meter. IMO, the best fish tacos are with grilled or broiled, unbreaded filets. I'm not even that particular about the type of fish cause I've had good ones from all different kinds of fish.

There were two things that kept the Atomic Grill fish tacos from moving to the head of the class in my book. They used breaded fish (very tasty, but breaded fish is just not as good) and they use lettuce instead of cabbage. They did have some very tangy Southwestern tartar sauce (or something like that) and some hot salsa to be added to the tacos.


Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Santa Fe

Cowgirls BBQAfter the ITC conference ended at noon today, I started 48 hours of R & R by heading for Santa Fe. Besides driving around the countryside to remind myself what mountains look like, I spent some quality time in Cowgirls BBQ on Guadalupe Street. Great place. Good food, good beer, and very interesting employees and clientele. That, and the fact that it was Fat Tuesday and they were doing their best Mardi Gras imitation.

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Monday, February 19, 2007

Happy New Year

Happy New Year to my many new friends in China. May the year of the Pig be safe and prosperous for all the peoples of the world. The photo below is of some middle school students in Xi'an. I took the photo last June while visiting their country.

So, to Wenzhi, JiYe, Linda, Edward, Mary, and all our other friends at GAFA ... Happy New Year!

Xian middle school students

Sunday, February 18, 2007

Help Desk Reality

This video has already made the rounds (viral videos, as they're called these days), but I wanted to post it in case any readers haven't seen it. It's hilarious, and not just for the tech support folks.

Thanks to Joho the Blog (David Weinberger) for the heads up.
I had to replace the video after the first one I posted was taken down by the user. Let's hope for more staying power this time.

Friday, February 16, 2007

From the Aggregator - Week of 2/12/07

Sharing links to various things that struck my fancy from reading the 100 feeds in my blog aggregator.

  1. Nanoquest: a game to learn about nanotechnology (Thanks Ewan): I've always been interested in nano and this might be a way to get my kids interested as well. If not them, at least I can learn something.
  2. Call Me (from Inside Higher Ed): I love this one. The academic name game that some of the high and mighty take far more seriously than the teaching and learning process. And some of them wonder where the concept of the ivory tower comes from. Sheesh. Reminds me of my grad studies at ASU when a particular pretentious Assistant Professor was first hired while ABD. After he successfully defended his dissertation and earned his PhD (or maybe it was a DBA) the first thing he did was to get new bank checks with his name at the top - "Dr. Mucky Muck." I assume he thought being a doctor would get him better seats in restaurants, or some such nonsense.
  3. Tragedy of the FOSS Commons (Thanks Stephen): article by Schweik and English - "we noted that a key difference between environmental commons and FOSS commons is the kind of “tragedy of the commons” they face. In environmental settings it is over-harvesting of the resource. In FOSS commons, the tragedy is an under-production or maintenance problem." I find Stephen's question the most interesting: "Both papers highlight the role companies are playing in the development of open source software. The implication, it seems to me, is that the companies are using the developers, and therefore, changing the FLOSS culture. But I wonder whether the reverse isn't true, that it's the developers who are using the companies."
  4. The High Price of College Textbooks: A Contemplation and Possible Solution (from XplanaZine by Susan Smith Nash). XplanaZine is an excellent resource, but I think she misses the mark on this one. (More later on that.) Interestingly, our state system office is currently gathering information from the 32 schools about the level of profits earned by the campus bookstores. I'm thinking that something is up at the Board of Trustees or the student associations, or some where like that.
  5. Free Microsoft Photo Info (Thanks Allan Ogg): Microsoft released a new free Microsoft Photo Info 1.0 tool, where Windows XP and Vista users can edit metadata properties for digital photographs using Windows Explorer.
  6. Internet Policy: What Congress Should Do is the outline of a series of short presentations outlining arguments for six Internet-related proposals that Lawrence Lessig believes should be enacted by Congress in the near future. I'm very much looking forward to this, now I only wish we could get the elected officials to pay attention as well.
That's half of the links I have, but all of the time.

Runescape Primer

After my son had spent about 6 months on Club Penguin, one of the other kids at school turned him on to RuneScape ... which is still primarily a online role-playing game for kids, but it is definitely for more mature kids than what you'd find on Club Penguin.

My son shows me part of what happens inside RuneScape. (There's a screencast linked with the image above.)

Here are some Runescape "Facts" from Review Centre
  • RuneScape is a MMORPG - a multiplayer online role playing game.
  • 3D online interactive adventure game.
  • Membership costs - $5 per month (or play for free)
  • Runescape was launched in 2001 by Jagex.
  • Anyone can play from a remote location with internet access.
  • The game is the most popular online Java formatted game in the world.
  • Runescape continues to expand its membership with over two million players currently involved on over 130 servers.
  • Runescape is updated and expanded usually on a weekly basis with new features and improved running quality.
  • During peak hours over 100,000 players are online. (157,495 at mid-day on a Friday as I post this)
  • Players are all nationalities and ages.
  • English is the most common tongue in Runescape but there are worlds populated by members of other language backgrounds. Some worlds have more mixed nationalities.
  • Over 50 game worlds.
More later

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Thursday, February 15, 2007

Club Penguin Primer

All three of my kids have accounts on Club Penguin, as do many of their friends from school and their cousins. I've been watching a bit to see what goes on, trying to ensure that it's as innocent as it seems. For the most part, I haven't been disappointed.

I interviewed my middle child while he showed me around the site in this CamStudio screencast. I think this kid could be a great teacher.

Take a look at Club Penguin through the eyes of an 8-year-old.

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Winter Weather

This just isn't right. I flew into Albuquerque today for the Moodle Moot on Friday and the ITC E-Learning Conference on Saturday through Tuesday. There is more snow in Albuquerque, NM than in Duluth, MN. We've had almost no snow this winter and we definitely have zero accumulation right now in Minnesota and Wisconsin, but "balmy" New Mexico has snow and slush everywhere.

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Thursday, February 08, 2007

Marilyn Monroe Dead

Oops, my bad. It was actually Anna Nicole Smith. Never Mind.

Sunday, February 04, 2007

Web 2.0 Explained

Professor Michael Wesch of KSU has posted his fourth video on You Tube, and it is an excellent rendering of why the read/write web is different from the read-only web. He posted it with a Creative Commons license so I will share (embed) it here as well. It is 4 1/2 minutes well spent.

A special thanks to Ewan McIntosh for for the heads up on this one.
I find the whole Digital Ethnography project at KSU to be very interesting. It's also interesting that my mother's family name is Wesch. Not that common of a name, maybe we're some sort of distant relatives.

Freakin Freezin

Holy crap. I hope this is the cold snap for the year. Here's the forecast captured Saturday (2/3) night for Superior, WI.


As I write this Sunday morning, it's 19 below with a wind chill of 39 below. Global warming (which I believe in) is taking a vacation this week.

Thursday, February 01, 2007

Online Photo Editing


I tried a new free online photo editor today. It's called picnik and I think it has great promise based on the early returns. It is clearly not complete yet, as seen in the "Creative Tools" section where there are several "Coming Soon" buttons to go along with the Special Effects such as B&W, Sepia, Boost, Matte, Vignette, and Soften.

The screenshot above shows how I can easily grab my photos from Flickr (or my computer, or a website, etc.), edit them on the fly, and either save a new version to Flick or replace the old one.

Today I used the crop tool, the vignette tool, and the exposure tool. There are several other tools available as well. I look forward to the newer tools as they are released. As it stands now, it is a great tool for most of the very basic editing tasks. It's not going to replace a full-fledged photo editor anytime soon, but it is a great tool that is free, totally web-based, and user-friendly.