Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Too many people on Twitter

Posted By on Tue, Mar 31, 2009 at 4:16 PM

A headline on CNN asks, "Is Twitter's breakneck growth causing backlash?"

The answer is yes.

Here's the error message I just received.

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New exhibition at Elder Gallery

Posted By on Tue, Mar 31, 2009 at 3:46 PM

The opening reception of Elder Gallery's new exhibition of paintings, etchings and drawings will go down on Fri., April 3, from 6 p.m.-8 p.m. In two parts, it consists of From Budapest to New York, featuring oil paintings by abstract expressionist artist Carl Plansky, and Etchings and Drawings, featuring works from the early 1930's by Leon A. Makielski. The exhibition runs through April 28.

Check out pictures (below) of art to be featured in the exhibition.

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A hacker's April Fool's Day gift to the world

Posted By on Tue, Mar 31, 2009 at 3:27 PM

This worm doesn't need you to goof and download something malicious by accident — it can find vulnerable PCs on its own.

The fast-moving Conficker computer worm, a scourge of the Internet that has infected at least 3 million PCs, is set to spring to life in a new way on Wednesday -- April Fools' Day.

That's when many of the poisoned machines will get more aggressive about "phoning home" to the worm's creators over the Internet. When that happens, the bad guys behind the worm will be able to trigger the program to send spam, spread more infections, clog networks with traffic, or try and bring down Web sites.

Read the rest of this News14.com article here.

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Miss Universe at Gitmo!

Posted By on Tue, Mar 31, 2009 at 2:32 PM

Dayana Mendoza, AKA Miss Universe, formerly known as Miss Venezuela, visited Guantánamo Bay, along with Miss USA Crystle Stewart, as part of a USO tour, and she's happy to report that everything at the notorious prison camp is "so calm and beautiful." In fact, reading Mendoza's blog about her Gitmo visit might make you want to go there yourself, as her account is full of revealing phrases like "an incredible experience," "visited one of the bars," "memorable," and "a loooot of fun!" Lest you think the two beauty queens were sheltered from the primary reason for Gitmo, Mendoza mentions visiting the detainees camp where she saw where the prisoners shower, and apparently, according to her guides, watch movies, create art, and read books! Sound like fun? Think you'd like to go, too? It's easy: just have yourself sold to U.S. forces in Afghanistan by someone who holds a grudge against you, and the next thing you know, you'll be enjoying that famous "Waterboard" ride, and enjoying all the extracurricular activities that have made Guantanamo a source of American pride.

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The stimulus plan means big bucks for CATS

Posted By on Tue, Mar 31, 2009 at 2:26 PM

One of the requirements to receive the federal funds is that projects must be "shovel-ready," so the Light Rail's northeast line, which is still being designed, won't benefit. The purpose of the stimulus, after all, is to put people to work immediately.

No one in the state has fared better than Charlotte for landing transit money from the stimulus package.

North Carolina will receive $103 million in such funding, with Charlotte claiming $21 million.

“That’s more than double what anyone else got,” says Keith Parker, chief executive at the Charlotte Area Transit System. “We’re pleased with that, but we wish there would have been more transit money in the overall stimulus package.”

Read the rest of this Charlotte Business Journal article here.

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This week's DVD releases

Posted By on Tue, Mar 31, 2009 at 2:05 PM

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Following is a list of some major DVD releases debuting today. For a complete list, go to www.amazon.com.

Continue reading »

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The State to Duke Energy: 'No'

Posted By on Tue, Mar 31, 2009 at 1:59 PM

Bet Duke execs are super sad about Gov. Bev Perdue's win now. Until Feb. 29, 2008, Charlotte's mayor and gubernatorial wanna-be Pat McCrory consulted for Duke Energy.

Duke Energy's bid to compete against other power companies for the largest and most lucrative electricity customers has been blocked by the N.C. Utilities Commission.

Duke, the state's biggest electric utility, had planned to sign a 10-year contract to sell electricity to the city of Orangeburg, S.C., which lies outside of Duke's regulated service area. The South Carolina city has been buying power from S.C. Electric & Gas since 1919 and is that utility's biggest single customer.

The N.C. Utilities Commission said late Monday that Charlotte-based Duke can sell wholesale power to Orangeburg — a city with a population of 92,000 — as long as it doesn't raise costs for households, businesses and Duke's retail customers in North Carolina.

Read the rest of this Charlotte Observer article here.

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Death by reckless cop

Posted By on Tue, Mar 31, 2009 at 1:52 PM

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Just like that, a young life, that of Shatona Robinson, 20, is snuffed out. One more person killed by a Charlotte police officer, this time Officer Martray Proctor, who was doing 90 mph at night without his blue lights or siren on. Maybe this time it will be different. Maybe this time there really will be an honest hearing and investigation. Maybe Officer Proctor will be dealt with severely, even do some serious prison time. Right. You bet. It hurts to say that, believe me, but realism and past history doesn't lead to a much more optimistic forecast. In Charlotte, a speeding cop who happens to kill somebody because of his reckless driving is very likely to be forced to resign from the force, and maybe even plead guilty to misdemeanor death by vehicle, and, um, that's about it. Ms. Robinson's family will be lucky to even get the city to pay for her funeral. Punishment in North Carolina for misdemeanor death by vehicle is 1-45 days in jail for anyone who has less than five prior convictions; the court can also levy a fine, the amount to be determined by the court. Usually that amount is zero. Here's my question of the day: I wonder if Shatona Robinson's friends and family consider her unwarranted death a misdemeanor? I wonder if anyone does.

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Boo to corrupt court officials in Johnson County

Posted By on Tue, Mar 31, 2009 at 1:23 PM

I like how the accused, Former Deputy Clerk of Court Portia Snead, can sign herself out of jail on a promise, because, you know, she's the picture of honesty.

Four lawyers and a court employee in Johnston County began turning themselves in today after being charged with tampering with court documents to secure illegal dismissals for drunken drivers.

Johnston County District Attorney Susan Doyle said Monday she noticed something amiss with the county's impaired-driving cases after adopting a tracking system through a grant from the state. DWI cases scheduled for trial had disappeared from the trial calendar, Doyle said. When she examined the files, she noticed the former prosecutor's signature on an outdated dismissal form. Doyle called the Special Prosecution Unit of the state Attorney General's office last spring to investigate.

Read the rest of this Charlotte Observer article here.

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Don't let the wrong DVD in

Posted By on Tue, Mar 31, 2009 at 12:11 PM

ORIGINAL TRANSLATIONS: Oskar teaches Eli how to use Morse Code so they can communicate at night via the wall that separates their apartments. First word he says to her when they realize it works? "SWEET."
  • ORIGINAL TRANSLATIONS: Oskar teaches Eli how to use Morse Code so they can communicate at night via the wall that separates their apartments. First word he says to her when they realize it works? "SWEET."

US AMERICAN DVD TRANSLATIONS: American DVD translations? Why bother with a full word. We get letters that don't spell anything... Well done.
  • US AMERICAN DVD TRANSLATIONS: American DVD translations? Why bother with a full word. We get letters that don't spell anything... Well done.

The following piece is from DigitalBits.com. To read a more detailed examination of the differences between the theatrical and DVD versions of Let the Right One In, including shot-by-shot comparisons comparing the subtitles (one example above), go here.

"In other news today, you might recall that we recently reviewed Magnet's Let the Right One In on Blu-ray Disc. Well, it's just come to our attention that the DVD and Blu-ray versions have English subtitles that differ substantially from those of the theatrical art house presentation, in that much of the subtle nuance has been lost and many original lines of dialogue are untranslated entirely. Unfortunately, having only seen the film once in theatres, I wasn't familiar enough with the translation to spot the differences. But Icons of Fright has posted some examples of just how different the subtitles are. We contacted Magnet directly on this issue this afternoon, and they were quick to respond as follows:

Continue reading »

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