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About

"Serial Bus is a place for me to dump interesting links that I find."

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"Sed ut perspiciatis unde omnis iste natus error sit voluptatem accusantium doloremque laudantium, totam rem aperiam, eaque ipsa quae ab illo inventore veritatis et quasi architecto beatae vitae dicta sunt explicabo."

Archives

A sitcom theme about sitcom themes Tuesday, June 30, 2009 | comments

Lego Arcade | comments

I think Asteroids is the best one.

Trending Spam | comments

Twitter has a feature called Trending Topics in which it tells you what some of the most popular things being written about at this moment are (i.e. Michael Jackson, Billy Mays, Iran). The problem is that if you go to see what people are actually saying about something, they are all
1) Spambots trying to link their websites by posting a bunch of trending items
2) People asking "Why is [thing] a trending topic?"
3) People misusing it hoping that you'll see their post (with the topic tacked on the end), love it, and start following their stream of mundane observations.

Here it is in practice. "Gorgeous twitter" was popular because of a Mashable post about 6 gorgeous twitter visualizations. Note how no one is talking about the actual item.

D-Day images are on this film? Think I'll do a crappy job processing it | comments

Why is it we seem to have such a hard time holding onto important stuff? Apparently NASA had lost the [never before seen] high quality moon landing tapes and now they've found them again.

http://www.express.co.uk/posts/view/110442/WORLD-EXCLUSIVE-NASA-finds-missing-moon-landing-tapes

There, I fixed your defrost Monday, June 29, 2009 | comments

More photos of makeshift repairs at http://thereifixedit.com

For the golfer that wants to pee into his golf bag Sunday, June 28, 2009 | comments



From Top Ten Dumb Infomercials

A website built with MSPaint, Clipart, and Comic Sans Saturday, June 27, 2009 | comments

The village of Arcade: http://villageofarcade.org/index.htm
.

[via somethingawful]

Michael Jackson crashed the internet, sold the albums, is not Billie Jean's lover | comments

Via the Google Reader Recommended Items feed, here's a list of the effect that Michael Jackson traffic had on the internet:

-Leading news websites saw traffic surge to 4.2 million visitors per minute from around 2.75 million visitors per minute, according to Akamai.

-CNN's traffic grew fivefold in one hour and the site clocked 20 million pageviews.

-Twitter had its biggest spike in traffic, to 5,000 tweets per second, since Barack Obama's election as president, according to co-founder Biz Stone.

-Facebook status updates tripled.

-AOL Instant Messenger went down for 40 minutes.

-TMZ, which broke the news of Jackson's death, crashed several times amid a surge of traffic.

-The LA Times, which got early confirmation of the death, went down, as well.

-For about half an hour, Michael Jackson queries weren't working on Google News.

-Wikipedia froze amid an edit war on Jackson's page.

[See information source and data links at Gawker]

Bonus information from things I've seen:

-Chart of Google search volume by time
-Over on iTunes, Michael Jackson's albums currently occupy slots 1-9 of the top selling albums for all of iTunes (as seen at right)

Today we had a pool party for our residents Friday, June 26, 2009 | comments

and a group of three, 40+ year old women residents sang "I'm Too Sexy" for karaoke.

In all, the whole thing was pretty fun and entertaining and I got to take home a free pizza since we had extra.

This is Thriller | comments

Figured this was an appropriate thing to post given the latest news. I can imagine that you've already seen this before (I think it even made the 99 things you should have already seen on the internet list), but if you haven't this is 1500 prison inmates in the Philippines doing a choreographed dance to Thriller. Skip ahead to about the 1:00 mark if you're impatient.


Their main youtube page has a bunch of other songs/dances too.

If collegehumor beats me to posting a video, I might as well grab one of theirs | comments

Here we see a guy really excited to see an easy-to-answer Office Space question as his 250k question on Millionaire. Asking a college student about Office Space is like asking Barack Obama a question about the 44th president of the United States.

*shakes fist* | comments

In the world of blogging,
1) There is nothing more satisfying than posting something and seeing it hit Digg a few days later
2) There is nothing for frustrating than holding off on posting and then seeing someone else post it before you get around to it.

Here's an a capella group doing Kids by MGMT (which is probably only entertaining if you know the original song) as posted to collegehumor a few minutes ago.

If I were in this group, I would want to be the "ooh waa ooh waa ooh waa" part. The leader must be an indie kid given that they also did a Fleet Foxes song and that he's posted a bunch live Of Montreal shows.

In other news, why the heck is MGMT being mean to a baby in the official music video? (and filling the opening with a minute of filler)

You deceived me, googley-eyed stack of money Thursday, June 25, 2009 | comments


Joel typically sends out a monthy email with miscellaneous financial links and tips, and this month his email included the following thing that I had never thought about:
"We all see ads all the time about switching our auto insurance. I've always wondered "how can they all say that the average customer who switched is saving $300? They're switching to the ones that were just in that other commercial." The simple answer is that people that don't save money, don't switch :)"
Very clever, verrrry clever.

And in other intresting tidbids of information, the consumerist posted a list of 50 different ways that people are influenced. Here are two excerpts from the full article:
On having too many decisions: "When Head & Shoulders brand killed off 11 scents of the shampoo, leaving only 15 on the market, the sales rose 10%."

And of course the classic foot-in-the-door technique: "Asking for small favors changes self-perception, introducing ways for big favors. Researchers asked a group of homeowners to place a large “Drive Carefully” sign on their front lawn. Only 17% agreed. With the second group of homeowners, 76% of people were ok with road traffic people maintaining the sign on their beautiful lawns. What was the difference between two groups? A few weeks earlier group B was asked to display a small non-intrusive window sign asking drivers to slow down. This mental foot-in-the-door technique made homeowners from the group B view themselves as socially responsible and safety-aware, hence a request for a larger favor few weeks later didn’t startle them. "
[See Full List]

Guy makes his own iPhone icons from a few simple photos of himself | comments


[via]

Shaq found out he was traded through Twitter | comments

As shared by Bridget on Twitter
http://www.techcrunch.com/2009/06/24/did-shaq-just-find-out-he-was-traded-on-twitter/

Easier than Glass Joe even Wednesday, June 24, 2009 | comments

When it comes to boss difficulty, this game is like the opposite of megaman.

Break time | comments

Or as boingboing titled it, "Half-man / half-Pooh Bear takes a break next to decapitated patriotic Mickey Mouse"
[original source]

Cardboard box cloud Tuesday, June 23, 2009 | comments


[via core77]

Googly Eyes Monday, June 22, 2009 | comments

[Via Bridget]
[Image source]

Also check out his cool self portrait made of halo items

Previously on Lost | comments

A Bolivian TV channel broadcast a report saying they had gotten a hold of photos from the final moments of Air France flight 447 breaking apart. The photos, however, are actually photos of Oceanic Flight 815 (i.e. they are photos from the ABC TV show Lost)

Whoops.

May a suggest a name change for both you and your business? Sunday, June 21, 2009 | comments


Spotted on our road trip

When making a holiday ad, make sure that you change more than just the headline. Proofread. | comments

Toronto breaks out photoshop to appear more diverse | comments

I've heard of colleges doing this, but I've never seen a photoshop job that was quite so blatant. Via Photoshop Disasters

I know that these little line-ups happen all the time Saturday, June 20, 2009 | comments

but regardless, coming up on July 8, there will be a time when the time/date is

04:05:06 07/08/09

32 years later, they are still making awesome merch | comments


[via]

Pizza Hut is renaming itself The Hut Friday, June 19, 2009 | comments

Full Story at The Consumerist. No word on if pizza will be delivered in hot bags or frozen in carbonite.

Some people just can't keep a place clean | comments

Every 2 years, the city inspects every single unit in every single apartment community in its borders. Our apartments were done this week and the inspector couldn't stop talking about what good shape our apartments were in, especially the apartments that were ready for people to move into. [Apparently it's not the norm to offer people clean apartments?]

With the exception of 5-6 apartments, everything passed inspections. Among those that didn't pass were
-one showerhead that was against code
-one was so full of stuff where there wasn't a wide enough path to walk through (need 36 inches),
-and two or three that were dirty: one from uncleaned cat poop/vomit.

The most surprising one, however, was someone who was a recent move in. Yes, somehow in the space of 25 days, one person lived in a manner so foul and disgusting that the city housing commission deemed it unsanitary after less than a month of occupancy (lowlights: multiple cat food dishes on the floor, not-quite-empty food containers up and downstairs, and fish skin on the floor left for cats to eat).

It takes a special kind of sloth to get two notices that apartment inspections are coming and respond by saying "meh" and displaying your barn-scented home to city officials.

Graffiti made with 11 layers of stenciling | comments



[via MAKE]

Hope that they were good songs | comments

A trial recent ended in which a woman was fined $1,900,000 for downloading music. She downloaded 24 songs.

What I really want to know though is what were the songs she payed $80,000 each for?

I thought this was a joke | comments

but feel free to read the original article yourself. Obama recently had a news interview in which he swatted a fly and the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals is all up in arms.
"Get out of here," the president told the pesky insect. When it didn't, he waited for the fly to settle, put his hand up and then smacked it dead.
"Now, where were we?" Obama asked Harwood. Then he added: "That was pretty impressive, wasn't it? I got the sucker."
Friedrich said that PETA was pleased with Obama's voting record in the Senate on behalf of animal rights and noted that he has been outspoken against animal abuses.
Still, "swatting a fly on TV indicates he's not perfect," Friedrich said, "and we're happy to say that we wish he hadn't."
At right is the "Katcha Bug Humane Bug Catcher, a device that allows users to trap a house fly and then release it outside" that PETA is sending him.

Even as I post this, I'm expecting comments like "oh Mike, I can't believe you fell for this fake news story"

edit: as Joel points out, someone has already gone and made a ninja remix of the video

Wrecks Cake To This Submitted I Wednesday, June 17, 2009 | comments

I saw this at Meijer today with Karen. Now if you'll excuse me, I have an X-wing to levitate out of a Dagobah swamp.

You're going to have to be more specific Monday, June 15, 2009 | comments

Apartment communities love to have signs out to get your attention. "Ask about our leasing specials!" they read. "Doggone Good Deals!" says the sign being held by the cartoon dog. Apartment communities love bad puns and wordplay, adding a big green P to "Now Leasing" to make it read "Now PLeasing"

But by far, the worst sign I have seen is the sign you see below. It's staked outside of one of the local apartments. I never got around to taking a picture, so here's the reenactment:

Can you believe that an apartment would have more than one amenity? Now if only they would tell you which ones.

Pay 10 Euro to Make Yourself Sick All Day Saturday, June 13, 2009 | comments

From Sharenator article via Digg:
Mario's Cafe in Westhoughton does a big breakfast for £10! Eat it all in 20 mins without a drink to wash it down with and you get it free!

It's 10 eggs, 10 bacon, 10 sausage, 10 toast, 5 black puddings, tomatoes, beans and mushrooms.


I hope they gave the vomitmopper a raise.

Followup: Guy who made the construction barrel monster was arrested Friday, June 12, 2009 | comments

From http://www.wral.com/news/news_briefs/story/5339554:
Raleigh police arrested a North Carolina State University student last week who was accused of creating a "monster" out of construction barrels and placing it on the side of the road.
Authorities charged Joseph Carnevale with larceny for taking materials from a construction site at a roundabout project to create the monster.
He's asking for people to write letters in his defense on his site

If I was a government official that took things via eminent domain, I would want my title to be "Executor of Condemnation" | comments

The Executor of Condemnation hath deemed this a suitable place for a sidewalk.

Suckers and coffee are not a substantial meal | comments

Found this yesterday:

Explain this conversation to me Thursday, June 11, 2009 | comments

[A phone conversation from today]

Caller: Do you have any 2 bedroom apartments available immediately?

Me: Yes we do: I only have one left. It's 840 square foot apartment that includes heat, water, and a covered parking space and rents for $865 a month.

C: That sounds good. Should I set up an appointment to come see it or can I just come by?

M: You can just come by but it's probably best to set up an appointment just so I
know to expect you. What day did you want to come by?

C: Do you have any 3 bedroom apartments?

M: Wh-? No, we only have one and two bedroom apartments

C: Oh never mind then, goodbye *click*

All I really need to get by are items from the D&D Player's Handbook | comments

As Karen pointed out, people in the Star Trek movie spent a lot of their time almost falling off of ledges, hanging from ledges, or watching their gun be kicked off a ledge.

It's a comfort to know that if I were transported to some sort of war in the future that I would still get by even with my insufficient technology since it all comes down to a fist fight in the end (though there was also a sword fight in Star Trek).

And it's not like I need a gun since the minion training school never seems to include marksmanship.

It seems that the one thing that would be most beneficial to be would not be a blaster rifle or lightsaber, but rather crampons so that when I undoubtedly find myself hanging on the edge of some great chasm, I can can get some traction and pull myself up.

That and a gauntlet since heroes always get their hands stepped on.

41 characters you always see in informercials Wednesday, June 10, 2009 | comments

http://www.buzzfeed.com/mjs538/41-characters-you-always-see-in-infomercials

Tolerances | comments

Most of the time, when someone is assessing someone's ability and they say "on a scale from 1 to 10," they are going to give you a number that is either negative or greater than ten.

Thank goodness that these are not wii fit plus screens | comments


[Extreme Yoga Poses via digg]


Speaking of WiiFitPlus (officially one word?), everyone knows that the awesome thing about it is that you can finally string together a bunch of exercises to make your own workout routine and that there are many more exercises and games. The thing that surprised me the most is that WiiFitPlus allows you to track the fitness (well, weight) of your dog as well. Here, I queued up the trailer to the right part:

[hit replay again if you want to see the full trailer]

Orphaned tweets & websites Tuesday, June 9, 2009 | comments

Slate ran an article about people that sign up for twitter, post once, and never come back. Some examples [each a different acct] include:
User1: "it hurts to breathe. should I go to the hospital?"
User2: "what kind of donuts are you offering?"
User3: "marching backwards toward the source of the four winds "

And through that article, I came across a website called One Post Wonder for blogs that only have one post. My personal favorite is a site someone made called Corner Bakery Watch to give her opinion on some locationless bakery. Its lone post reads:
"Friday, October 06, 2006
Corner Bakery SUCKS

It's awful!

posted by Sally | 8:17 AM | 0 comments"

All over the internet in like two seconds | comments

But if you haven't seen it yet, the guy that played Zach Morris on Saved by the Bell went on Jimmy Fallon as Zack Morris.

http://www.latenightwithjimmyfallon.com/blogs/2009/06/zack-attacks-late-night-signs-on-for-the-reunion/

It's bizarre how much he still looks and sounds like him when he wants to. Also: 90's pants.

Caught in the crossfire | comments

Today I had a woman come into my office who was upset with her husband for not paying rent on time the past three months and lying about it, giving them a $50 late fee each month (for being late: we don't charge for lying).

While in my office, she called him at his work and handed me the phone, telling me to explain to him how our late process worked and how much it cost each month.

Wikihow to creep people out | comments

Every day, WikiHow has a featured how-to article. Today's was how to build rapport and was mostly filled with bad advice. Let's look at a few examples.
"Accents: Copy their accent slightly. You don’t want to come across as mocking them, but listen to how they pronounce words. Mimic them just enough to hint that you might've lived in their part of the country at some point in your life."
Put into practice, I feel like this will only come off as mocking them since most people probably don't have a good-enough handle on accents to do anything but mock.
"During the conversation, breathe like they breathe. This will create a hypnotic synchronization"
So while you're trying to match their accent and also listen to what they have to say, also figure out when they're breathing too.

And finally, the weirdest of all
Mimic the depth of their voice. People talk in one of three ways: through their nose, throat, or chest. Figuring it out won’t be too difficult. Compare them to the descriptions below and shift the depth of your voice a little bit closer to theirs.

- Throat: A very throaty person will sound similar to Kermit the Frog
- Nose: An person who talks through their nose will sound a bit like they’re congested.
- Chest: People who talk to their chest usually sound very deep and loud.
There you have it, folks. Next time you head down to a new state, bring out a toned down version of your Kermit-speaking-in-a-deliberatly-breathing-Southern-Dialect voice and you'll do great!

Modern day science publishes stuff from Tatooine, 1977 | comments

This hit the front page of Digg this morning.
"Not a plant to be seen, the desert ground is too dry. But the air contains water, and research scientists have found a way of obtaining drinking water from air humidity. The system is based completely on renewable energy and is therefore autonomous."
Sound familar? May I remind you that before Luke Skywaker was a Jedi that he was a moisture farmer on the desert planet of Tatooine with Uncle Owen and Aunt Beru?

So after you read the news article on moisture farming, feel free to get some more data from wookiepedia. And then go to Tosche Station and pick up some power converters.

I'm sorry Google: I did not mean to break you Monday, June 8, 2009 | comments

Remember how, as a joke/experiment, I did a post about all the weird search terms people found me with and named it after a soon to be released popular video game? As it turns out, it's way too easy to hijack the top of google search results. 15,000 visitors (and counting) and miscellaneous childish insults later [see: right], it's pretty easy to see why people are calling for google to rework its search algorithms.

Google gives precedence to sites that
1) Have the search terms in the website title ("serial")
2) Have the search terms in the address (sims-3-cd-key-generator.html)
3) Are recent
Which is fine when people follow the rules, but not so fine when people don't.

Some malware software writers have taken to taking over popular words by making a page that looks legit (and even has relevant text) but then instantly redirects you to another site without ever taking you to the first site. They've been known to go after top search terms on Google Trends to capitalize on up to the minute popular search terms.

For more info and examples, check out ZDNet's list of The Web's Most Dangerous Words to Search For (#1 is "screensavers" with 59.1% dangerousness with "lyrics" and "free" also being higher risk words as well)

Any meme in the world at your fingertips | comments

Knowyourmeme.com [portions NSFW] is a database of anything that the web has beaten to death (all your base, longcat, it's a trap, etc), but amid them are things that I've never seen before (like the anteater you saw earlier) and this rich raven.


Hello | comments

Constuction Barrel Monster | comments

More of this guy's art at his blog at nopromiseofsafety.com

School lunches from around the world Sunday, June 7, 2009 | comments

USA and Japan pictured below.



Luckily there are some American school lunches that look healthier. Full gallery at http://interestingemailforwards.blogspot.com/2009/05/school-lunch-from-around-world.html

Used tire art Saturday, June 6, 2009 | comments

For more, check out the 15 image gallery

Take your vote and shove it (into a ballot box) Friday, June 5, 2009 | comments

Remember when Iraq voted and we saw all the photos of their index finger after voting?

As shown at boingboing and elsewhere, India uses a different finger to vote.

You bet your life | comments

In what could be described as the best potential retirement fund, this guy had terminal cancer and a bookie gave him 50-to-1 odds that he wouldn't live a year. He took that bet and won. Twice.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/england/beds/bucks/herts/8075288.stm

If you thought parking under a sappy tree was bad | comments

From iotd, "The car was mistaken as food by spindle ermine larvae, which had already begun to strip a nearby tree of its leaves."

Non-circular bike wheels | Spokeless bike Thursday, June 4, 2009 | comments

There's an article about this, but I scrolled right past it to get to the photo. It supposedly has a surprisingly smooth ride and the article has full details of the reasoning and shapes behind it


While we're at it, here's a bike with geared inner wheels and no chain:

Above that write blog post title | comments

Though I've shared posts from Cake Wrecks before, I've never shared the website itself. So, in case you've somehow missed it, go check out the glory of Cake Wrecks, a blog of professional cakes gone wrong.




On the cake below, they were told they could bring in pictures on a USB drive. Instead they got a cake with a USB drive on it.

Break out the tear makeup and paint on a frown | comments

To quote the slideshow: "Members of the Antioch Shrine Funster Clown Unit gave the highest honor that a deceased clown can ever receive by acting as pallbearers"

Cool guys don't look at explosions Wednesday, June 3, 2009 | comments

In case you didn't see it on the MTV Movie Awards

When trends get out of hand, down comes the banhammer | comments

Animation from an episode of This American Life [the TV version]


In a related note, the New York times ran an article that talked about how some schools went and banned hugging:
A measure of how rapidly the ritual is spreading is that some students complain of peer pressure to hug to fit in. And schools from Hillsdale, N.J., to Bend, Ore., wary in a litigious era about sexual harassment or improper touching — or citing hallway clogging and late arrivals to class — have banned hugging or imposed a three-second rule.

This is not a photoshopped photograph | comments

It's an image made by folding paper

Improv Everywhere Strikes Again Tuesday, June 2, 2009 | comments

This time they took two random people that got married at the city clerks office, ambushed them, and threw them a surprise wedding reception in the middle of New York. Photos and video are on their mission page.