Now there's a Halloween costume for you... It's the Flying Spaghetti Monster!
See the rest of “Flying Spaghetti Monster Costume”»
It's been gone for a while now, but for those of you wondering why the live blog activity widget is gone: it got glitched up. It started registering every visit as being on the Cruise Ship Watch: Serenade of the Seas post. So I got rid of it.
So I suppose I'm in the market for a new widget to take its place in the sidebar. Anyone know of any I should take a look at?
Qweb Online Riddle
I've seen something like this before. You have to think outside the box in order to figure out the address for the next level. I had a few hangups that took a bit to get past. But I'm dead stuck on the very last level: level 18.
Snipped from the source code of level 18's page:
<!-- X = image."3725" --><p>
Congrat<!-- 1 -->
ulation<!-- 6 -->
s, you <!-- 7 -->
made it<!-- 3 -->
to the<!-- 5 -->
final <!-- 2 -->
level! <!-- 4 -->
K-I-S-S-I-N-G... Yeah, ok. I'll stop with the nursery rhyme.
So the biggest news for me lately is Google is finally integrating Google AdSense (their ad network) with Google Analytics (their tracking software). It appears to be part of a big upgrade they've did with Google Analytics. You don't even know how much I've wanted this to happen.
Tracking clicks and revenue on the ads using their current system in AdSense is a real pain. Using all the different channels and such has always given somewhat confusing and overlapping results. Once it's tied into Google Analytics, that shouldn't be an issue any longer.
I've been really happy with Google Analytics. About my only complaint with it is I wish it were more real-time; the stats only update a few times a day. It took me a bit to set it up properly after I switched to the new domain. There was about a 10 day period I had it set wrong and didn't notice: all the visits site-wide registered as being on index.html instead of their corresponding pages. It was entirely my fault though. I had set a custom filter so I could tell what sub-domain the page visits were on, and I had left out some parentheses. So, like anything involving code, that little error totally borked the entire thing.
It's going to be great to be able to pull up the traffic stats on a page and also be able to see how much money the page has made me. However, as the usual Google updates go, they roll it out slowly. The option (or invite as they call it) hasn't been offered to me yet. Probably won't be for a while, but I'll keep checking.
My theory is they roll things out slowly so if there's a bug or glitch it will be reported and they can fix it before the majority of people are even using the newer version. Good idea I suppose. I was one of the last to get the new iGoogle homepage. I wish they would have just skipped me entirely on that one. I like the old iGoogle much better. I've even been tossing around the idea of writing my own homepage or just using "about:blank". It'd defiantly load faster.
As a side note, sometimes when I have Google Analytics open in my browser, I have a few other tabs open as well. Then when I look at the tab names I'll see "Google Anal..." as one of the tabs. I had a few laughs when I first noticed it.
Last night we had a bit of a wind storm. Maybe 60 mph? Definitely not as strong as I've seen before. They were calling for 70 but I think they lowered it a bit. Heavy rain came with the storm, as always. Wind driven rain droplets sting your face, that sort of thing. Of course, I just had to go to the windiest place I could think of. It's down on the waterfront in town, on the water side of our mall by the Safeway store. I tell you what, that would be the perfect place for wind turbines. It seems like it's always windy there.
I was standing down there just at the edge of the building so I was shielded from the wind and rain. I was watching the waves, garbage flying around, and the shopping carts blow around in the parking lot (and crashing into parked cars). I even saw one chasing a car. The cart was gaining on it, but the car turned before the cart hit it. Then the shopping cart slammed into a curb and fell over.
There was one power outage caused by a falling tree, but didn't affect the part of town I was in. I'm told it fell across the road near Ward Cove and there was single lane traffic while they cleaned it up.
Got to love fall weather in Ketchikan.
These pictures are in chronological order of when I took them. My dad and I went to Petersburg, Alaska to help out my uncle that lives there. The trip started on October 9th and ended on October 15th. All these pictures were taken by me within that time frame. Click an image to view full.
Here's the Kubota in the trailer hitched up and ready to go to Petersburg.
Here we are on the Alaska Marine Highway System's ferry Taku, on the car deck. The crew directs you where to go, how to turn, and when to stop. They pack you in tight. That boat in front of the truck had an outboard engine sticking out about 6 inches away from the grill of the truck.
Here's the ship's directory for the Taku; the ferry we took both ways.
This is downtown Petersburg. As you can see, it was raining. It rained the entire time we were there. The weather is very much like Ketchikan, just a little colder and not as near as windy.
I'm standing in the same place as the previous picture, looking down the other direction. Now you've pretty much seen the entirety of downtown Petersburg. Most of the side roads just go to housing. Yeah... It's many times smaller than Ketchikan.
This is down on the docks. It's a sailors lost at sea memorial.
Here's another angle. If you view full you can just barely make out the words "We remember ours lost at sea..." on the highest plaque. Those are the rain gear of the last person lost.
I just wanted to give a feel for another way that Petersburg is different from Ketchikan. Petersburg has much more flat land and muskeg flats.
Here's the grocery store. There's another one in town, but this is the main one. Hammer & Wikan is really not as big as it looks. It's not even half the size as the Safeway or Alaskan & Proud grocery stores here in Ketchikan.
One thing about my uncle's place: there were always deer everywhere. At times there were 8 deer in his yard; and they were unafraid.
They didn't even care about the equipment running.
Even the fawns (baby deer) didn't seem to mind.
Here's a map of Petersburg outside the ferry terminal.
This is about the best picture of the M/V Taku ferry I could get. It's arriving in Petersburg. We're waiting to get on to go back to Ketchikan.
Petersburg flag hanging in the ferry terminal.
The waterfront as seen from the ferry, leaving Petersburg.
The ferry made a quick stop in Wrangell before we went on to Ketchikan. Here's the Wrangell waterfront.
We made it home safe, had no problems or accidents while in Petersburg, so it was a good trip. I even got along good with my cousins.
It's obvious that the Halocaust [sic] was a lie created by US corporations owned by Jews so they can get some more money for their Jewish habits. They still think we should give them stuff because some guy with a bowl cut had their ancestors killed 700 years ago.
Ok to be honest, I really didn't pay attention in your class, and I'm really high right now... Paper's over, I just lost the game, didn't I?
[ ALERT! THIS IS A PUBLIC SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENT. ]
It has been discovered that life is a terminal disease. It is believed to be sexually transmitted, and there is no known cure. It is passed on genetically, so it is likely your children will be afflicted as well. The expected mortality rate has been found to be 100%.
Please, be cautious.
[ THIS HAS BEEN A PUBLIC SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENT, BROUGHT TO YOU BY: Master Marf. ]
Because a nuclear submarine can't defend itself... It's being escorted by 2 Coastguard ships. This picture was taken by me on September 7th. Sorry for the bad quality, it was a few miles away from me and there's a little atmospheric disturbance in the photo.
I'm going to Petersburg for a week to visit my uncle and his family. You can read all about Petersburg, Alaska in its Wikipedia page. My uncle runs charters in the summer. I've had a link to his website in my Links section since before I had a blog. Ok, it's not just to visit. He wants my dad (his brother) to bring his Kubota track hoe up there and do some work for him.
We will be taking the Alaska Marine Highway system, on the Taku ferry. Happens to be that we're on the same ship on the way back as well. I think we end up making a quick stop at Wrangell both ways. It's about a 9 hour ride from Ketchikan to Petersburg. My uncle is paying for the ferry both ways.
I'll leave tomorrow, so I'll be relying on the automatic scheduling feature to make my posts on time. I've had it fail to automatically post before, so if I end up missing a day it's not my fault. I have a bunch of posts scheduled, mainly random pictures and such. Oh, and I'll share some photos from Petersburg when I get back.
I should be able to get back into the swing of things when I get back. I've been obsessed with playing Spore lately, so I've fallen way behind on other blogs. If my Google Reader is any indication of how far behind I am, (1000+ unread items) it's going to take me a bit to catch up. Hopefully I can get back into my normal routine.
Not my idea. I found this elsewhere on the internet. I thought it was funny so I'll share it here. Whenever I get a package of plain M&Ms, I make it my duty to continue the strength and robustness of the candy as a species. To this end, I hold M&M duels.
I actually tried it after reading this. I found that any single M&M doesn't last very long. It will develop cracks even if it is the winner, and will eventually fail to what otherwise would have been an inferior M&M. I suppose that's what old age is about though...
Taking two candies between my thumb and forefinger, I apply pressure, squeezing them together until one of them breaks and splinters. That is the "loser," and I eat the inferior one immediately. The winner gets to go another round.
I have found that, in general, the brown and red M&Ms are tougher, and the newer blue ones are genetically inferior. I have hypothesized that the blue M&Ms as a race cannot survive long in the intense theater of competition that is the modern candy and snack-food world.
Occasionally I will get a mutation, a candy that is misshapen, or pointier, or flatter than the rest. Almost invariably this proves to be a weakness, but on very rare occasions it gives the candy extra strength. In this way, the species continues to adapt to its environment.
When I reach the end of the pack, I am left with one M&M, the strongest of the herd. Since it would make no sense to eat this one as well, I pack it neatly in an envelope and send it to M&M Mars, A Division of Mars, Inc., Hackettstown, NJ 17840-1503 U.S.A., along with a 3x5 card reading, "Please use this M&M for breeding purposes."
This week they wrote back to thank me, and sent me a coupon for a free 1/2 pound bag of plain M&Ms. I consider this "grant money." I have set aside the weekend for a grand tournament. From a field of hundreds, we will discover the True Champion.
There can be only one.
Whenever I get a package of plain M&Ms, I make it my duty to continue the strength and robustness of the candy as a species. To this end, I hold M&M duels.
[ ALERT! THIS IS A PUBLIC SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENT. ]
There is a bright orb rising over the East horizon. It is expected to follow an arching path across the sky and disappear in the West. Scientists are calling it a phenomena, and are advising caution when observing it directly. When or if this event induces panic, walk, not run, to the nearest exit.
This event is expected to reoccur in the very near future.
[ THIS HAS BEEN A PUBLIC SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENT, BROUGHT TO YOU BY: Master Marf. ]
"Turn right" means take the next right turn on the road, not immediately turn right and drive down the train tracks. I mean... Seriously... I don't drive and I know that.
And yet, that is exactly what two different people did on the same set of train tracks this year. What's wrong with you people?! I'm sure the GPS meant for you to turn onto the road that runs parallel to the train tracks. Wouldn't the overly bumpy ride on the tracks be a hint? Maybe it wasn't meant for cars?
If you followed the GPS in this town, you would be off in the Tongass Narrows. There's a rather large offset in the GPS maps around here for some reason. It would be impossible to navigate this town by GPS, because you could be on 1st Ave, but the GPS would register as being on 5th Ave (Yes, it's that bad).
You can see how bad it is in some areas by looking at Google Maps. I think they must use the same road maps the GPS does. Take a look. See where it put North Tongass Highway? That's way out in the water.
EDIT: Finally, in October 2009 they fixed the road alignment for this town!