Excellent online diary entry about Who Wants to Marry a Multi-Millionaire.

Couldn’t resist pointing to it: yesterday, Dave Winer decided to hurl an insult at Derek Powazek, seemingly out of the blue, at least for those of us who aren’t “in” enough to know why. Derek responded gracefully, which led Dave to heap more insult on top later in the day. And it all got summed up quite accurately by Neale Talbot today.

After Jerry Lewis said that women can’t be comedians (and something much more offensive), Entertainment Weekly has their list of 10 women funnier than Lewis. I hope they stopped at 10 because it’s a round number; I can’t think of any female comedians not funnier than Jerry Lewis.

For those (like me) who couldn’t contact the main NEAR satellite site, there’s now a mirror.

A two-fer in the latest installment of Bushism of the Week:

If you’re sick and tired of the politics of cynicism and polls and principles, come and join this campaign.
How do you know if you don’t measure if you have a system that simply suckles kids through?

Interesting question: if legislators stop the anthrax vaccination program, what will happen to the soldiers who refused to take it? Brings up questions of insubordination, right to make choices about one’s own health, and evidence-based practice of medicine on a forced, national scale.

I have to say, I don’t feel too badly for students at colleges which have banned Napster on their networks, and looking at it as “censorship” is just plain ridiculous. When universities with huge bandwidth are saying that 61% of that bandwidth has, at times, been used exclusively by Napster, then they have to do something about it.

Maxim for life in the year 2000: a well-implemented web commerce site makes your life significantly easier.

Great example: Insight. When you view your past and present order status, it’s a direct glimpse into their orders database; one time, I was on the phone with a rep working out a replacement for a DOA item, and as he was entering it, I saw the order on my account order info screen. Shipping and tracking info is also real-time.

Bad example: Buy.com. On any item screen, they show a little button which is supposed to tell you availability of an item (ships in 24 hours, on back order, etc.). Three times now, they have had something as in-stock when it is backordered for months; when I placed my order, they didn’t tell me about the delay, and I had to call to find this out when my item didn’t arrive after a few days. Weeks later, they still hadn’t changed the status, and actually said to me “if status is really that important to you, we’d recommend that you call to verify it before placing your order.”

As a general rule, I like TV ads that surprise you.