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Tuesday, December 14, 2004

10 Things to Say to Make Your Colleague Happy

  1. “Hey, I accidentally saw a salary table for this office, and you earn the most in your department!”
  2. “I don’t really know what project you’re working on but I got a good feeling it’ll be a success.”
  3. “We were collecting for your birthday gift and everyone chipped in twice as much as usual.”
  4. “Did you hear they’ll be giving out extra holidays?”
  5. “Bummer, all email and internet systems are down. We need to go home.”
  6. “It was supposed to be a surprise, but you’ll be promoted tomorrow.”
  7. “Just sit back and relax, I will do all of your work today.”
  8. “Tell you the truth I wouldn’t trust anyone here but you.”
  9. “Someone peed ’Work Sucks’ into the snow outside.”
  10. “I think you lost that hundred dollar bill, I put it back on your table.”

On the Virtues of Idleness

“Look about: The business of busiĀ­ness is everywhere and inescapable; the song of the buyers and the sellers never stops; the term “workaholic” has been folded up and put away. We have no time for our friends or our families, no time to think or to make a meal. We’re moving product, while the soul drowns like a cat in a well.”
– Mark Slouka, Quitting the Paint Factory (Harper’s Magazine), November 2004

Read the full essay. [Via Kottke at Feeeds.] Also by Mark Slouka: Arrow and wound: the art of almost dying.

The Pacman Nebula

“The Pacman Nebula (also referred as Diffuse Nebula NGC 281 or NGC 281) is a diffuse nebula in the Cassiopeia constellation. It includes or is near the Open Cluster IC 1590, the Double Star HD 5005, and several Bok globules. The shape of the nebula resembles the famous video game icon, Pac-Man. It is visible in amateur telescopes from dark sky locations.”
- Wikipedia: Pacman Nebula


Slashdot tells how a user named Sollog (“Son of Light, Light of God”) takes vandalism to new heights.

Explaining REST

Ryan Tomayko explains REST to his wife. REST means Representational State Transfer, a somewhat more integrated and less complex counterpart of SOAP (aka Web Services) which uses an URL-based approach. For example when I want to search the web using Google, I find PHP5 screen-scraping techniques faster and easier to apply than the official SOAP API Google provides. (Plus, of course, screen-scraping works on all the web instantly.)

Project Ocean Update

John Battelle has some updates on Project Ocean, in which Google scans libraries, as reported earlier this year.

“Harvard University is embarking on a collaboration with Google that could harness Google’s search technology to provide to both the Harvard community and the larger public a revolutionary new information location tool to find materials available in libraries. In the coming months, Google will collaborate with Harvard’s libraries on a pilot project to digitize a substantial number of the 15 million volumes held in the University’s extensive library system.”


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