Friday, April 30, 2010

Weegee the Famous in Indianapolis

At the Indianapolis Museum of Art, through January 23, 2011:

Shots in the Dark: Photos by Weegee the Famous will showcase 48 works selected from the Museum’s recent major acquisition of 210 photographs by Arthur Fellig, the father of New York street photography better known as Weegee the Famous. The exhibition will explore a range of works that defined Weegee’s career, including photos of crime scenes in the 1930s, Harlem jazz clubs in the ’40s, audiences at Sinatra concerts or in darkened movie theaters taken surreptitiously with infrared film, strippers, transvestites, Greenwich Village coffee houses in the ’50s and portraits of the famous, shot through distorting lenses of his own devising.
A related post
Weegee in Indianapolis

Planet Proust

It’s no. 4474. But it’s not what you think:

Discovered 1981 Aug. 24 by H. Debehogne at La Silla.

Named in honor of Dominique Proust, astrophysicist at the Meudon Observatory who works on observational cosmology. By means of extensive spectroscopic observations he has carried out dynamical studies of clusters of galaxies, large-scale structures and high-redshift objects. He is also a church and concert organist, whose public and broadcast performances include the compositions of astronomer-musicians such as Galileo and Herschel [see planets (697) and (2000), respectively]. The name of this minor planet also honors the French writer Marcel Proust [1871–1922]. (M 21131)

Lutz D. Schmadel, Dictionary of Minor Planet Names (Berlin/Heidelberg: Springer-Verlag, 2003).
Marcel, l’autre Proust.



[Planet Proust, my conception, from a 1921 photograph.]

Related reading
All Proust posts (via Delicious)

Leslie Buck (1922–2010)

“The Anthora seems to have been here forever, as if bestowed by the gods at the city’s creation. But in fact, it was created by man — one man in particular, a refugee from Nazi Europe named Leslie Buck.”

Leslie Buck, Designer of Iconic Coffee Cup, Dies at 87 (New York Times)

Thursday, April 29, 2010

PCs and mice

Steve Jobs on Adobe Flash: “Flash was created during the PC era — for PCs and mice.”

Note how PCs and mice suddenly sound so sadly out of date.

Duke Ellington, 1953

“I have been mistaken for an actor, yes.” Duke Ellington on What’s My Line?, July 12, 1953.

On Duke Ellington’s birthday

Edward Kennedy Ellington was born 111 years ago today.

Rex Stewart (1907–1967) played cornet with Duke Ellington from 1934 to 1945. Stewart’s immediately recognizable half-valve playing is heard on his signature piece, “Boy Meets Horn,” and on many other Ellington recordings. Stewart was an elegant, witty writer. Here he describes the working habits of “the Governor”:

The Duke’s creativity works in mysterious ways, its wonders to perform. He snatches ideas out of the thin air. Many’s the time that I’ve seen him on the Ellington orchestra’s Pullman with his feet propped up and a towel draped over his eyes, seemingly in complete repose. Then, he’d suddenly jump up as if a bee had stung him, grab a sheet of manuscript paper, a yellow pencil, and scribble madly for hours — or sometimes only for a minute. Other times, he has been observed riding in a bus of ancient vintage that seemingly had never heard of springs, jounced around like a dodg’em at a carnival. But the Governor wrote on and on, not concerned as we, the members of his band, were with the lack of comfort. As I recall, it was a rare day that Duke didn’t write something, even if it was only four bars.

Rex Stewart, Jazz Masters of the Thirties (1972)
Related posts
Beyond category
The Duke Box
Ellington for beginners
On Duke Ellington’s birthday (2008)
On Duke Ellington’s birthday (2009)

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

David Hockney and the iPad

David Hockney is drawing on a iPad:

“‘I do love it, I must admit,’ Hockney, 72, says. ‘I thought the iPhone was great when I bought one the year before last, but this takes it to a new level.

‘It’s a new medium, eight times the size of the iPhone.’”

An Apple’s the way to a free Hockney each day (WA Today)

J.D. Salinger photographs

From the Baltimore Sun: eleven Salinger-related photographs. No. 2 is a little scary.

New York, 1964: record stores



From Harold H. Hart’s Hart’s Guide to New York City (New York: Hart Publishing, 1964). Illustration by Ruby Davidson.

I know: Amazon. But consider a world in which record stores were open until midnight. The Colony Record & Radio Center, also listed in Hart’s Guide, stayed open until 4:00 a.m., every day, or night.

A related post
Record stores (memories of a misspent youth)

Also from Hart’s Guide
Chock full o’Nuts
Greenwich Village and coffee house
Mayflower Coffee Shop(pe)
Minetta Tavern, Monkey Bar
Schrafft’s

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

“Is country music right for you?”

A quiz by Charlie Hopper:

Is country music right for you? (via Coudal)

I scored 118. Time to redo my record collection.

PowerPoint and the military

Brigadier General H. R. McMaster, quoted in an article on PowerPoint and the United States military: “It’s dangerous because it can create the illusion of understanding and the illusion of control. Some problems in the world are not bullet-izable.” Read more:

We Have Met the Enemy and He Is PowerPoint (New York Times)

A related post
PowerPoint and the war

New York, 1964: Schrafft’s



From Harold H. Hart’s Hart’s Guide to New York City (New York: Hart Publishing, 1964).

The New York Public Library Digital Gallery has had a Schrafft’s luncheon menu from 1959 — close enough. Liverwurst? Pineapple fritters? Anyone? You can still find the menu here.

The photograph below predates Hart’s Guide by many years, though it does show a “feminine contingent.” Note too the dumbwaiter at the far left and the knickknacks topping the display cases:



[“Schrafft’s.” Photograph by Cornell Capa, 1948. Via the Life photo archive, where there’s a larger view.]

That empty chair awaits the plucky time-traveler.

[This post is for my mom and dad, who sometimes met for lunch at Schrafft’s. They once had a star as their waiter.]

Also from Harold Hart’s Guide
Chock full o’Nuts
Greenwich Village and coffee house
Mayflower Coffee Shop(pe)
Minetta Tavern, Monkey Bar
Record stores

Monday, April 26, 2010

New York, 1964: Chock full o’Nuts



To every food, its adjective(s). From Harold H. Hart’s Hart’s Guide to New York City (New York: Hart Publishing, 1964).

Related posts
Chock full o’Nuts lunch hour
Chock full o’Nuts

Also from Harold Hart’s Guide
Greenwich Village and coffee house
Mayflower Coffee Shop(pe)
Minetta Tavern, Monkey Bar
Record stores
Schrafft’s

Sunday, April 25, 2010

War, soldiers, trauma

From a New York Times report on transition units “for soldiers with physical wounds and severe psychological trauma”:

For many soldiers, they have become warehouses of despair, where damaged men and women are kept out of sight, fed a diet of powerful prescription pills and treated harshly by noncommissioned officers. Because of their wounds, soldiers in Warrior Transition Units are particularly vulnerable to depression and addiction, but many soldiers from Fort Carson’s unit say their treatment there has made their suffering worse.

Some soldiers in the unit, and their families, described long hours alone in their rooms, or in homes off the base, aimlessly drinking or playing video games.

“In combat, you rely on people and you come out of it feeling good about everything,” said a specialist in the unit. “Here, you’re just floating. You’re not doing much. You feel worthless.”
Read more:

In Army’s Trauma Care Units, Feeling Warehoused (New York Times)

And consider what Sophocles can teach us:

Theater of War (“a project that presents readings of ancient Greek plays to service members, veterans, caregivers and families as a catalyst for town hall discussions about the challenges faced by combat veterans today”)

Happy Anniversary

As my dad said on the phone yesterday, “Fifty-six years of close combat.”

Happy Anniversary, Mom and Dad.

(Yes, he was joking.)

Friday, April 23, 2010

Baby alert

Walking home from “school” the other day (a perk of being a college prof, still getting to walk home from “school”), I saw the pre-schoolers from a daycare walking two by two to a grassy spot. One boy cried out: “The babies are here!” As indeed they were. A young woman from the baby daycare unit was waiting on the grass with a fully stocked quad-stroller. A mannerly miniature petting zoo then began to take shape.

Government-pen success

If you too wish to write with government ink, I can recommend buying from One Source Office Products, which sells government-issue ballpoints for 44¢ (medium) and 48¢ (fine). Shipping, via UPS, is free. Three cheers for One Source Office Products.

As for the pen, it’s one dowdy-looking ballpoint. It’s like something from 1965. I am happy.

As seen on TV

“[T]he parts where they show us what we’re doing wrong and why we need the product”: As seen on TV.

(Thanks, Ben!)

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Chock full o’Nuts lunch hour



“Lunchtime shoppers and department-store workers jam the Herald Square Chock Full O’ Nuts [sic]. The rush-hour eater waits five minutes, often eats in 10.”

A rough count suggests at least 120 people in this photograph.

[Photograph by Alfred Eisenstaedt, from “The U.S. Goes Out to Lunch,” Life, January 3, 1955. Via the Life photo archive. Don’t miss the large version.]

Related posts
Angela Lansbury and Basil Rathbone (Out to lunch)
Chock full o’Nuts
New York, 1964: Chock full o’Nuts

Angela Lansbury and Basil Rathbone



“In the studio commissary on Paramount lot Film Star Angela Lansbury, wearing prop coronet and ermine from her morning stint as the princess in Danny Kaye’s new movie Court Jester, munches plebian hamburger next to Basil Rathbone.”

[Photograph by Alfred Eisenstaedt, from “The U.S. Goes Out to Lunch,” Life, January 3, 1955. Via the Life photo archive.]

A related post
Chock full o’Nuts lunch hour (Another Eisenstaedt photograph)

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

An iPad per semester

The Washington Post reports that Seton Hill University — the Pennsylvania school that’s giving an iPad to every full-time student — will be adding a $500 per semester fee to cover the cost of increased bandwidth and wireless access. In effect, an iPad per semester. The large print giveth, and the &c.

A related post
“iPads for EVERYONE!”

The government-issue pen

“It’s the Coca-Cola of ink pens,” said Richard Oliver, operations manager at Industries of the Blind in North Carolina. “Everybody recognizes this pen.”
From a Washington Post article on the lowly, mighty government-issue pen. Bonus: specifications.

Update: There’s a great source online.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Home sweet Homer

Bornova mayor Kamil Okyay Sındır: “All findings indicate Homer lived in Bornova.”

Gaziemir mayor Halil İbrahim Şenol: “It is not true that Homer lived in Bornova, and our research will support and reveal the truth.”

Turkish mayors battle to claim Homer:

This is Homer's real home, says mayor (Hurriyet Daily News and Economic Review)

[Post title with apologies to the Odyssey episode of Wishbone.]

Monday, April 19, 2010

Eddie Feibusch

Says Eddie Feibusch, eighty-six-year-old zipper maven, “A button is unpleasant.”

For Eddie Feibusch, a Life in Zippers (New York Times)
ZipperStop (“Unzipping America since 1941”)

Marcel Proust exhibit

In Paris, an exhibit of 160 documents:

Proust, du temps perdu au temps retrouvé (Musée des lettres et manuscrits)

The website is a Flash nightmare. Don’t overlook the PDF.

Henry Darger exhibit

“These are the images to which Darger woke up each morning, returned to every evening after church and work, and retired to at night.”

The Private Collection of Henry Darger (American Folk Art Museum)

Inverabretes, a creative story

A Google search that brought someone to my post “Extra credit?”: extra credit inverabretes creative story. So:

Once upon a time, there were three inverabretes. They were careless spellers, every one. And when they did not do well on their spelling test, they asked their teacher for extra credit. “Plese, plese, plese,” they cried. Their teacher, who had a backbone, suggested that they study harder for the next test. And they did. And they did better.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

“The Trustworthiness of Beards”

Mine: “Very Trustworthy.” View them all:

The Trustworthiness of Beards (via Andrew Sullivan)

A related post
Aqua Velva

Saturday, April 17, 2010

In praise of shyness

“At the very least, if you’re shy, you’re never bored.”

James Parker, Let Us Now Praise Shyness (Boston Globe)

Friday, April 16, 2010

Rachel Maddow makes cocktails

“It’s the cartoon liquor-pouring noise!” Look and learn:

Rachel Maddow makes cocktails, talks about Angostura Bitters (MSNBC)

Our household seems to have survived the Angostura shortage in happy oblivion. We’ve been working on the same bottle for years, making Old Fashioneds.

Greenwich Village and coffee house



The dog walker is carrying a pencil, I think.



As Tom Lehrer put it, “We are the Folk Song Army,” &c.

Untitled illustrations by Ruby Davidson, from Harold H. Hart’s Hart’s Guide to New York City (New York: Hart Publishing, 1964). Captions mine.

Also from Harold Hart’s Guide
Chock full o’Nuts
Mayflower Coffee Shop(pe)
Minetta Tavern, Monkey Bar
Record stores
Schrafft’s

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Mayflower Coffee Shop(pe)

I found a wonderful book at a library sale yesterday: Harold H. Hart’s Hart’s Guide to New York City (New York: Hart Publishing, 1964): “Over 2,200 personally investigated reports. Restaurants, Hotels, Nightclubs, Museums, Cocktail Lounges, Sports, Shopping, Transportation, Art Galleries, Tours, etc.”

With Hart in hand, I thought of lines from Frank O’Hara’s poem “Music” (Lunch Poems, 1964):

If I rest for a moment near The Equestrian
pausing for a liver sausage sandwich in the
    Mayflower Shoppe,
that angel seems to be leading the horse into Bergdorf’s
This bit of urban surrealism comes into focus (still surreal) when one knows a little of Manhattan. “The Equestrian” is Augustus Saint-Gaudens’s statue of William Tecumseh Sherman, found in Manhattan’s Grand Army Plaza (at 59th Street and Fifth Avenue). The “angel” is the allegorical gal leading Sherman on his way. Bergdorf Goodman is to be found — in the words of the company website — at “the crossroads of fashion,” Fifth Avenue and 58th Street. All that, I know. As for the Mayflower Shoppe:



Thank you, Mr. Hart.

The Mayflower stood at 777 Fifth Avenue. The Apple Store now stands at 767, next to an empty corner. More from Hart’s Guide to come.

More on the Mayflower
The Mayflower motto (“The Optimist’s Creed”)
A menu page (Alas, no food)

Also from Harold Hart’s Guide
Chock full o’Nuts
Greenwich Village and coffee house
Minetta Tavern, Monkey Bar
Record stores
Schrafft’s

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Ray LaHood and bicycles

Good news:

[Transportation Secretary Ray] LaHood says the government is going to give bicycling — and walking, too — the same importance as automobiles in transportation planning and the selection of projects for federal money. The former Republican congressman quietly announced the “sea change” in transportation policy last month. . . .

The new policy is an extension of the Obama administration’s livability initiative, which regards the creation of alternatives to driving — buses, streetcars, trolleys and trains, as well as biking and walking — as central to solving the nation’s transportation woes.
Imagine: policies that emphasize alternatives to the car. Good on the Obama administration and Ray LaHood. But I can hear it already: the government wants to take away your vehicles. Communism! Socialism! Bicycles!

News grammar

“Frequent with random shuffling or elimination conjunctions and prepositions of”: Rules Grammar Change.

*

Are different is grammar.

Gertrude Stein, How to Write (1931)

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

“Love, Irving Sappho”

In childhood, the Glass children left soap-written messages for one another on the medicine-cabinet mirror. In adulthood, they still do. In 1942, sister Boo Boo (an ensign in the Waves) leaves a message for brother Seymour on the occasion of his wedding. Her handwriting is “almost indecipherably minute”:

Raise high the roof beam, carpenters. Like Ares comes the bridegroom, taller far than a tall man. Love, Irving Sappho, formerly under contract to Elysium Studios Ltd. Please be happy happy happy with your beautiful Muriel. This is an order. I outrank everybody on this block.

J.D. Salinger, Raise High the Roof Beam, Carpenters (1963)
Google Books has a 1920 translation of Irving Sappho’s poem that matches the Glass version (save for a hyphenated roof-beam and the exclamatory Hymenaeus).

Bill Madison’s Proust Census

“If you were not yourself, how many people would you be on April 1, 2010?” Bill Madison presents the Proust Census.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Special theory of relativity

Forty is the new thirty. Sixty is the new forty. Eighty is the new sixty. Ninety is the new eighty.

Also, ninety-two is the new eighty-three. Ninety-six is the new ninety. Ninety-seven is the new ninety-two.

A hundred is still a hundred.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Easy-listening “Heroes and Villains”

An easy-listening instrumental version of “Heroes and Villains” (Brian Wilson–Van Dyke Parks). Dance, Margarita.

On the iPad and early adopters

Rob Walker:

I suppose it’s possible that the device will so improve the owner’s quality of life, productivity and social standing that he or she will enjoy a kind of competitive advantage over nonowners for a few months or a year. But there’s an inverse relationship between how long this advantage lasts and how good the thing is. If the iPad is so wonderful, I’ll just buy one, too; I’m pretty sure Apple will happily meet all demand. And if it stinks, then there was never any advantage to buying it early, now, was there?
Read more:

iPad Envy (New York Times)

(I have no plans to buy an iPad, now or in a few months or in a year. No need for one.)

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Clever NYT crossword clue

A clever clue for an eight-letter answer in today’s New York Times puzzle, an example of what in crosswords is called misdirection:

64-Across: “Safari sights.” The answer: WEBPAGES.

[No spoilers here. Highlight the empty space to see the answer.]

Friday, April 9, 2010

Trying the iPad

I tried an iPad briefly last night (with just enough time to take a photograph). My impressions:

The display is beautiful.

Typing — with the iPad propped up at an angle on a low table — is easier than I had expected but still tedious. I was reminded of what it’s like when I catch and correct typos on a cellphone. Because I’m looking at the keys and not the screen, I don’t see typos until I’m well past them. Tedious.

The touchscreen is not as intuitive as I had imagined. In Pages, for instance, swiping a finger across a stretch of text seems not to highlight that stretch for copying or deleting. The iBooks application does allow for highlighting and bookmarking a passage with a swipe but does not allow for annotating (according to the Apple employee I asked).

Web pages display slowly. I wondered for a moment whether there was a wireless problem. The lack of speed and the absence of tabs — it’s one page at a time — might make the iPad well suited to limited, purposeful browsing — check e-mail, check news, check stats — but I can’t imagine using this device to go surfing down rabbit-holes.

Nor, as of now, can I imagine buying an iPad. Maybe later.

¹ What? You don’t correct typos when texting?

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Roger Lathbury and Hapworth 16, 1924

Around this time, I unwittingly made the first move that would unravel the whole deal. I applied for Library of Congress Cataloging in Publication data.
Roger Lathbury tells the sorrowful story of not publishing J.D. Salinger’s Hapworth 16, 1924:

Betraying Salinger (New York)

John Gruber on typing and the iPad

John Gruber has written a lengthy and overwhelmingly favorable review of the iPad. His observations about typing though make me think not for me:

You absolutely do not need a hardware keyboard for it. But if you’re hoping to do any amount of serious writing with it (and, for obvious vocational reasons, I plan to), you’re going to want one.
Then why not just use a MacBook?

Five sentences about clothes

Another Google search: write five sentences about clothes you like to wear. Okay:

I really like my Levi’s 550 jeans.

I really like my Levi’s 550 jeans.

I really like my Levi’s 550 jeans.

I really like my Levi’s 550 jeans.

I really like my Levi’s 550 jeans.

I really like my Carhartt B18 jeans.

I really like my Carhartt B18 jeans.

I really like my Carhartt B18 jeans.
Update, November 2, 2010: That’s one sentence for each pair of Levi’s I own, and one new sentence for a new pair of Carhartt jeans. Recent production Levi’s, I’m discovering, are alarmingly prone to fray at the back-pocket corners.

Update, November 18, 2010: Two more pairs of Carhartts.

Doers of homework: instead of searching for five sentences, just write five sentences, about clothes you like to wear.

Related posts
5 sentences about life on the moon
Five sentences for smoking
Five sentences from Bleak House
Five sentences on the ship

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Domestic comedy

“Are you having your fancy-pants cereal?”

[I.e., Cascadian Farm Cinnamon Raisin Granola. And it’s our fancy-pants cereal.]

Related reading
All “domestic comedy” posts

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

The rules of the game

The rules of the game, as spray-painted on a piece of plywood: U HONK WE DRINK. Ah, colledge. And it’s only Tuesday.

[Colledge: my word for “the vast simulacrum of education that amounts to little more than buying a degree on the installment plan.” Colledge cheapens the experience of students who are in college. Colledge students and college students are often found on the very same campus.]

Related reading
All colledge posts

On this day in 1327

On this day, the poet Francesco Petrarca (1304-1374) first saw (or claimed to have seen) the woman he called Laura. From sonnet 211:

In 1327, at exactly
the first hour of the sixth of April,
I entered the labyrinth, and I see no way out.
Garrison Keillor’s Writer’s Alamnac noted the day’s Petrarchan importance and made me remember that I once translated these lines. Three of the strangest lines in all poetry, I’d say.

Brookline Booksmith

From a June 2009 post:

Brookline Booksmith is a great bookstore, even better now that a nearby Barnes and Noble is gone. It is exciting to walk into a bookstore on a Tuesday night and find it crowded with paying customers. The moral of the story: if you have a great (or good) bookstore, don’t use it as a library or as a source of information for Amazon purchases. Buy books.
The Boston Globe reports that Booksmith’s future is “up in the air” — not because of poor sales but because seventy-eight-year-old owner Marshall Smith is planning to step away from the book business. Read more:

What’s the story with independent bookstores? (Boston Globe)

Jay Bennett (1912–2009)

I recently learned that the writer Jay Bennett died last year at the age of ninety-six. He was the author of the novel Deathman, Do Not Follow Me (1968), a book that I read and reread endlessly when I was twelve or thirteen.

In 2003 I happened to think of the novel, found a copy in a library, and found that many details and bits of dialogue — a description of a girl putting on her glasses to read in class, a conversation about Bob Dylan — were still lodged in my memory. I soon bought my own copy of Deathman, an ex-library copy. (An ex-library copy is to my mind the best way to read a book from one’s youth.) I wrote Mr. Bennett a letter and received, via his son, a reply. I felt as though I had paid a longstanding debt.

Wikipedia has a detailed article about Jay Bennett.

A related post
Out of the past (On going back to the books of one’s youth)

Monday, April 5, 2010

“Sort of gimmicky”

“I apologize, but it seems sort of gimmicky”: Robert Paterson, CIO of Molloy College, on collegiate iPad giveaways. Read more:

Should colleges start giving Apple’s iPad to students? (USA Today)

A related post
The iPad and college students

“REUSE THIS CARTON!”

To your left, a P.S.A. from the cardboard envelope that held two orange “Cuspid Cleaners” from the Draplin Design Co. This P.S.A. is but one element that makes shopping with Draplin a value-added experience. Also in the envelope: two stickers and two signed, numbered copies of a “Guide to Fang Hygiene,” brown type on turquoise card stock, uglily beautiful, like the word uglily itself.

Draplin Design Co. and Field Notes Brand seem to hit some deep ancestral idea of guy stuff — Ace combs, key rings, nail clippers, pencils, pocket notebooks, that kind of stuff. “Mixing memory and desire,” as the poet says, for sure.

Further browsing
Draplin Design Co.
Field Notes Brand

Friday, April 2, 2010

“Why I won’t buy an iPad”

Cory Doctorow: “The real issue isn’t the capabilities of the piece of plastic you unwrap today, but the technical and social infrastructure that accompanies it.”

Why I won’t buy an iPad (Boing Boing)

Watching the Cross Bronx Expressway

Harriet Moore lives next to the Cross Bronx Expressway:

For Mrs. Moore, the highway offers unexpected Proustian moments. As a White Rose truck drove past, she remembered seeing grocery store shelves filled with White Rose products when she was a girl. “We don’t shop anywhere where they carry White Rose anymore,” she said, a note of wistfulness in her voice.
Read more:

On Bronx Stoops, a Highway Traffic Entertains (New York Times)

You can watch the Cross Bronx Expressway (probably without Proustian moments) via a New York City Department of Transportation traffic camera.

Orange soda art


[Life, June 8, 1953.]

Nesbitt’s Crate Art?

Related reading
Nesbitt’s Orange Memorabilia Page

Other posts with orange
Crate art, orange
Orange art, no crate
Orange crate art
Orange crate art (Brown)
Orange flag art
Orange notebook art
Orange timer art
Orange toothbrush art

Thursday, April 1, 2010

“iPads for EVERYONE!”

Not a joke, but it sorta kinda feels like one: in Fall 2010, Seton Hill University (Greensburg, Pennsylvania) will give an iPad to every full-time student. Doing so will require roughly 2,100 iPads.

iPads for EVERYONE! (Seton Hill University)

Update, April 21, 2010: This plan might not be working out so well.

Related posts
The iPad and college students
An iPad per semester
More on the iPad and college
Steve Wozniak on the iPad and college

Gmail outage

At 6:01 am Pacific Time, during routine maintenance at one of our datacenters, the frontend web servers in that particular datacenter started failing to render the letter “a” for a subset of users.

Today’s vowel outage (The Official Gmail Blog)
I can’t imagine that this problem will last more than a day.

Google changes its name

“We didn’t reach this decision lightly.” Eric Schmidt explains:

A different kind of company name (The Official Google Blog)