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Google Knol is out and ready to bury Wikipedia


Google meets Wikipedia

KNOL a unit of knowledge is a website platform for authoritative articles on specific topics for people to search and review. The idea behind a knol is to empower authorship so that readers can identify and cross reference their sources to the truth.

The website comes as a direct competitor of Wikipedia the online encyclopedia (of unnamed sources). After some quick searches people would normally run, I found plenty helpful how-to articles on broader topics, but few informative pieces on specific searches.

I suspect this is because Knol doesn’t have the sheer bulk of users that Wikipedia enjoys to have that reaching grasp on virtually any thought-up topic. For now, it seems that Knol’s niche is it’s how to… as opposed to Wikipedia’s what is… search results.

Whether this niche grows and rises to bury Wikipedia remains to be seen. It’s worth noting, however, that anything to do with Google in the past has usually met with instant success and widespread popularity. And with it’s motto, “Just write, let Google do the rest,” users may find Knol and it’s Google-friendly tools to be a satisfying alternative to Wikipedia.

May the battle of the Wiki-Knol rage on.


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Al Gore Places Infant Son In Rocket To Escape Dying Planet

Young Gore sets out for his new home, where the sky is clear, the water is clean, and there are no Republicans.

Young Gore sets out for his new home, where the sky is clear, the water is clean, and there are no Republicans.

The Onion is at it again, peeling back the layers and sharing with all. Portrayed in an apocalyptic world, Gore places his fictitious son in a rocket in hopes that he will be accepted as man’s last clean gasp for survival. In good ol’ comic book fashion, the narrative of a cast away politician is told, and in it, a republican fighting, carbon reducing superhero is born.

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The Parody of Politics

I think politics is excellent fodder for parody making, and so I laud Jib Jab for their sardonic brilliance. It just shows that the only way to take politics seriously is to recognize how ridiculous it can be. Humans are natural political animals, so the only way to stop us from acting on our preternatural instinct to kill, is by humbling ourselves with sarcasm and humiliation. Thank God this political campaign season has peaked America’s interest, it was about time we woke up in our feces to dig ourselves out. So power to the people, down with the establishment–a throwback to late 1960’s zeal.

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The Shadow of FISA

I know I’m a tad bit late with this article on the FISA bill, but later is better than never…I hope.

You know, I was under the impression that the Democrats were elected to Congress to keep Bush in check. Of course, you can’t count on Democrats to do anything right. Before you all call me a conservative pig, I believe the same about the Republicans. I keep saying that both parties have a lot more in common than they’re willing to admit. What has the Democratic majority done to stop all this non-sense going on at the Capitol? Nothing at all.

It doesn’t matter if you vote for Barrack Obama or John McCain, nothing is going to change. They too are more alike than they’re willing to admit. Barrack had one thing going for him from my point of view; he was against the FISA Bill. Yet, when the day came for him to filibuster the bill or vote against it like he said he would, what did he do? He voted in favor of it. McCain has been for the bill all along, so of course he supported it, though he didn’t attend the session to cast his vote. Am I the only one that’s noticing how Obama seems to be changing opinions a lot lately, aligning them more with the opinions of McCain?

So here we are, living in what could possibly be one of the darkest days in American history. They passed the FISA Bill. The government is free to spy on who ever they choose, not just internationally, but DOMESTICALLY. They’re free to not only check on people who they think are a threat to national security, but they can spy on you. They might use the power to find out if you’re downloading songs illegally. Better think twice next time you open Kazaa or click on that torrent file. A joint FBI, CIA, NSA, and ATF taskforce might be waiting around the corner to bust your door down. That may be an exaggeration now, but the way things are going, I wouldn’t be surprised if that happens in the near future.

Warrants don’t have to be issued, there is no government oversight, and no one can be held liable. The bill is also retroactive, so all those cases that are in the system right now against phone companies and the government are going to be dismissed. What good can possibly come out of this bill?

The unconstitutionality of the laws being passed on the Hill amazes me. I don’t feel any safer than I did before 9/11. Everyone knows that we knew something was going to happen, but the lack of inter-agency collaboration as well as other factors prevented us from preventing the attacks. We don’t have to spy on our citizens to be safe.

What amazes me even more is the lack of concern by the people. There’s a quote that I throw around a lot and it’s become quite popular recently:“Those who give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety.” — Benjamin Franklin

Americans gave up their lives in 1776 to re-gain freedoms that the English were infringing upon. The Forefathers would balk at the idea of giving up privacy or any other right for safety. Yet, here we stand…I should say sit, allowing the government to strip away our liberties, and they’re doing so in the name safety. Look back through history and you’ll find that dictatorships are created when leaders take advantage of the fears of the people.

The constitution was created to prevent bills like FISA from being passed. It was created to protect the people and restrict government. Yet, government is growing faster than it ever has, and the rights of the people are slowly being chiseled away. We should be up in arms over what’s going on in Washington. It may not seem like that big of a deal, but it is, and it will only get worse unless we do something to stop it. My only hope is that the law will be overturned by the Supreme Court. If that doesn’t happen…the light at the end of the tunnel may not come for a long time.

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So It’s Time For Some Campaign’n!

JibJabs 2008 Campaignn

JibJab's 2008 Campaign'n

Anyone who remembers JibJab‘s hilarious rendition of the 2004 presidential election between Bush and Kerry will greatly appreciate the political subtleties exploited in this year’s campaign parody. We’re always told to be informed and politically active, maybe we can finally live up to those expectations, only I’m sure this isn’t what they had in mind.


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World’s oldest blogger dies in Australia

SYDNEY, Australia (AP)

Worlds oldest blogger dies in Australia

World's oldest blogger dies in Australia

Olive Riley, a 108-year-old Australian woman who was promoted as the world’s oldest blogger, has died two weeks after making her last post about “singing a happy song,” her great-grand son and her online forum said.


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No One Ever Ran From Iran

With news of Iran’s recent missile-tests provoking threats from Israel and a warning from the US, the world is hanging to their seats the way a child might cling to their popcorn in an action movie thriller. The international theatre is literally on hold until the 48-hour interlude between Iran, Israel and the US dissolves, and it’s ridiculous. The world already knows Iran is an abominated militaristic theocracy and that their president is a near lunatic in denial of Israel’s (and gays’) right to exist. Especially with the way the New Media makes it a priority of broadcasting Ahmadinejad’s embarrassing rhetoric at every chance they get. But at the end of the day when the reels quit turning, Iran’s threat is the only thing to fall from the sky, landing like an empty bombshell in a barren dessert.

Yet Americans insist Iran is a threat. A threat to whom? Their best missiles are Photoshopped into images in the place of duds! They’re nowhere near going nuclear, and Israel’s boom of military firepower makes Iran’s look like the snap of a toy cap gun. What a joke!

Something that we have to grow to understand is that Iran isn’t trying to pick a fight with the US. Just think, when was the last time a war was fought on US soil? We are the occupiers and the guys with the big guns, not the other way around. But let’s tip the media slant and suppose we were them. As a people of centuries age with a land, religion and culture that is entirely ours, wouldn’t we challenge the right to defend ourselves from strangers that move within our borders and proclaim themselves sovereign? Yes, we would—and have—during the Revolutionary War.

It’s the same with Israel. A few decades ago we scribbled lines onto a map and put a wedge in the region because a book said so; meanwhile, the Persians and Palestinians were forced off their lands. Today, however, Israel remains where it is and we must cope with their presence regardless of whether they belong there or not, fine. But we need to calm down over Iran. These are missile-tests within their borders! Let them prove they are a force to be reckoned with. After all, why not? We’ve been doing it since before the Cold War, showing Russia not to mess with us by nuking Japan back to the Stone Age. First we terrorize; then we send diplomats.

When America cries for diplomacy, they really mean hypocrisy. I’m just relieved to have won the lottery coming into this world. At least, I’m on the side that gets to make the rules.

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The ‘Fake Steve Jobs’ Gives Up Parody Blog

Secret Diary of Steve JobsThe “Secret Diary of Steve Jobs” has said it’s final goodbye and is “Sailing Away.” Daniel Lyons, the imaginative writer who has kept the site running on Blogger for the last two years is moving on with his creative and professional career. FULL COVERAGE>>

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Decades Later, Still Asking: Would I pull That Switch?

Stanley Milgram’s obedience experiments in the early 1960’s were the kind that forced a question. Would I really do that? Could I betray my own eyes, my judgment, even my humanity, just to complete some experiment?

Milgram tested how far people would go in delivering painful shocks to another person, when instructed to do so by an authority figure. It’s been 50 years since the Jekyll & Hyde experiments and they still inspire. In fact, some have even thought of making them into a Reality TV gimmick where hundreds of decent, well-intentioned guests agree to deliver increasingly painful electric shocks to another person, as part of what they thought as a learning experiment.

If the show existed, it would run something like this: Guests would begin with what they thought were 15-volt shocks, and work upward in increments, as the experimenter instructed. At 75 volts, the “learner” in the next room would begin grunting in apparent pain. At 150 volts he would cry out: “Stop, let me out! I don’t want to do this anymore.” The shocks would continue on and on, until the learner in the next room flat-lined. That’s when Ashton Kutcher would come out from behind the curtain shouting, “you’ve been Punk’d!” revealing the “learner” as only an actor, and the guests for the degenerate sociopaths they are. Americans would love it, and that would be a wrap.

How would you interpret Milgram’s findings? Leave a comment and start a Brawl!

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Gas, Food Prices Pinch Elderly Meal Programs

In an earlier post, I wrote on how rising food prices are caused by hoarding nations and not the savagely ticking meter at the pump. Well I did myself a disservice by ignoring how hard we struggle to keep up with gas, food, health insurance, and mortgage payments every day.

Life is hard, and the price of gasoline isn’t making food any more affordable. I can’t begin to think how hard it must be for the elderly left to fend for themselves at an almost obscene age. But let’s try. Imagine leaving a newborn child out on the street with no means of survival. I’d say baby blue is a goner unless some benevolent being comes to the rescue.

According to an article released by the Associated Press, there are an estimated 20,000 senior nutrition programs across the country that serve millions of elderly and frail Americans (those benevolent beings to the rescue) that are being squeezed by soaring food costs.

That means for every arthritis stricken 81 year old Sally May who relies on the hot meals delivered daily to their homes for sustenance, may not have that lifeline to count on tomorrow.

There are 47 million Americans without health insurance, a quarter of which will check-in the emergency room for various injuries and illnesses, fine. They may live another day to pay-off that outrageous hospital bill. But Sally May and baby blue only get one shot at survival, and that chance may be something small, like an innocuous loaf of bread.

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