Maxwell Hammer's shared items

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Monkey Wars

Catnip - WildLife

Some people say that robots will rise up and enslave man, other say it will be aliens, or even zombies.

I say it's going to be the monkeys.

Primates aren't really taking over the world ...are they? Documents released from Moscow show that in the 1920s, Joseph Stalin (here at the Wildcat we just call him "Joe") commissioned biologist Ilya Ivanov to create a race of half-man, half-ape soldiers called "humanzees." Stalin requested, "I want a new invincible human being, insensitive to pain, resistant and indifferent about the quality of food they eat." Unfortunately, the experiment fell through before Ivanov could artificially inseminate any of the human females with ape sperm.

It's already started. New Delhi's mayor was killed by monkeys.

The band of monkeys attacked the deputy mayor at his home this past weekend, knocking him off a terrace and killing him. The monkeys were allegedly driven from the downtown areas into the suburbs after the Defense Ministry trained larger langur monkeys to attack the smaller macaque monkeys responsible for the attack.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

The 25 Greatest Moments from "The Office" : Rolling Stone

The 25 Greatest Moments from "The Office" : Rolling Stone

I didn't watch the first 2 seasons so these are new to me. I didn't like the British version of The Office. It was funny, but it was painful to watch Ricky Gervais. When people do stupid things I don't laught at them, I cringe and feel bad for them. I'm just too damn nice, huh?

The US version is nicer. The boss is sympathetic. He's a dork, but not really mean. I even like Dwight and his weird obsessions.

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Reaction to the news....

funny cat picture

I don't know why I do these things.

But I do them anyway..... Image shack has a new feature that lets you add glittery effects and text to an image. So I made several of them...with Hayden Pantierre. This chick is just smoking hot. This is about the coolest toy, ever.

Free Image Hosting at www.ImageShack.usFree Image Hosting at www.ImageShack.usFree Image Hosting at
Free Image Hosting at www.ImageShack.usFree Image Hosting at

Dumbledore is gay!

J.K. Rowling outs Hogwarts character - Yahoo! News

NEW YORK - Harry Potter fans, the rumors are true: Albus Dumbledore, master wizard and Headmaster of Hogwarts, is gay. J.K. Rowling, author of the mega-selling fantasy series that ended last summer, outed the beloved character Friday night while appearing before a full house at Carnegie Hall.

After reading briefly from the final book, "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows," she took questions from audience members.

She was asked by one young fan whether Dumbledore finds "true love."

"Dumbledore is gay," the author responded to gasps and applause.

She then explained that Dumbledore was smitten with rival Gellert Grindelwald, whom he defeated long ago in a battle between good and bad wizards. "Falling in love can blind us to an extent," Rowling said of Dumbledore's feelings, adding that Dumbledore was "horribly, terribly let down."

Dumbledore's love, she observed, was his "great tragedy."

"Oh, my god," Rowling concluded with a laugh, "the fan fiction."

Potter readers on fan sites and elsewhere on the Internet have speculated on the sexuality of Dumbledore, noting that he has no close relationship with women and a mysterious, troubled past. And explicit scenes with Dumbledore already have appeared in fan fiction.

Rowling told the audience that while working on the planned sixth Potter film, "Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince," she spotted a reference in the script to a girl who once was of interest to Dumbledore. A note was duly passed to director David Yates, revealing the truth about her character.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

'Lady Godiva' care home protest

BBC NEWS | UK | England | Staffordshire | 'Lady Godiva' care home protest

Simone Christiaan
Simone Christiaan is the guardian of a resident in one of the homes
A woman posing as Lady Godiva swapped a white horse for a mobility scooter to protest at plans to close care homes.

Simone Christiaan went almost naked to pretend to be an elderly version of the Anglo-Saxon campaigner at Stafford's county council building.

Ms Christiaan, 41, is the guardian of a resident in Springhill Home in Leek, one of the homes under threat.

The council said no decision has been made and it is still consulting those affected.

Ms Christiaan, who only had two plasters to cover her modesty, said that during the protest on Wednesday morning she was nearly arrested by a police officer.

She said: "They said just covering the nipple part was not good enough, it had to cover the whole breast. I said that if I was wearing a bikini I would've shown more.

"I nearly got slightly arrested and had to cover up a bit."

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Britney Overheard Trashing Judge at Neiman Marcus |

Britney Overheard Trashing Judge at Neiman Marcus |

"I hate my judge," Spears declared to Bret. "He is so mean. Just an old fart. He told me I was being catty with him, but he was being catty with me and paid me no respect at all."

Her verdict?

"His job is to sit there and tell people what to do," Spears said. "And that's just so sad, because he gets off on it."

Welcome to the real world, Britney. That's what judges do.

She's never going to get those kids. And the truth is, she doesn't really want them.

Monday, October 15, 2007

Giuliani has a plan for Alien Attack

Union Leader - Giuliani: Preparedness is key (even if aliens attack) - Monday, Oct. 15, 2007: "EXETER – Presidential hopeful Rudy Giuliani yesterday said preparedness will be key for all crises, even an attack from outer space."

I think he's bluffing. He doesn't have a plan.

Mirror Ball

If you hold two mirrors up to each other they produce an infinity of reflections.
Have you ever wondered what it would look like inside a mirror ball?

They did it for a Japanese tv show.

From TV in Japan.

Friday, October 12, 2007

Everyone needs to read this

Have you ever fallen in love with someone on the internet and then find out it was all a lie? Then this will sound familiar.

It's easier to fall in love on the net because you don't have to actually deal with the person. You don't have to deal with them stinking up the bathroom. You don't have to watch Degrassi because that's her favorite show.

You get all the good love stuff (except the sex) without any of the bad breath and bad jokes.

LA Weekly - News - The Life and Death of Jesse James - Josh Olson - The Essential Online Resource for Los Angeles

Why the music industry is dying

Throughout most of the 80's the Major Labels were all about consolidation. Top 40 was their invention. What they wanted was everything neat and divided up easily. They wanted to be able to tell people that these are the top R&B songs. These are the top country songs. These are the top mainstream songs. That's all you can listen to, because that's all we want to sell you. They wanted to minimize the number of artists and the number of albums. That maximized profits. What they hated was when there were thousands of little bands, each with a loyal little following. Consolidation was the best way to minimize costs. Once you had an album it's cheaper to run 5 million copies of one CD. It's just a matter of scale. The more copies you make of a unit the cheaper each unit is. That's something anyone who's ever had business cards or t-shirts printed has found out.

The plan was coming along well.

Then the record industry was struck with a one two punch. Hip Hop and Nirvana ruined the whole thing.

First Hip Hop came along. Sure, it had been around since the 70's, at least. But it was put out on it's own record labels. Little indie labels that the big boys only noticed when they would occasionally buy one of their producers or pick up one of their acts.

But MTV put on Yo! MTV Raps in 1988. While it had been big before, now Hip Hop blew up. Instead of sticking to their plan of releasing a million Milli Vinilli and Tiffany clones they had to change their strategy. There were a lot of rap acts suddenly making money, and the record industry wasn't getting their cut. So they had to sign all the big rap acts or they had to buy the indie labels that signed them.

Then Nirvana came along, with a thousand little moderate punk bands with them. The labels had to do the same thing with the white music. Top 40 as a genre was mostly destroyed by this. Kurt Cobain called 1991 "The Year Punk Broke", well Rap broke about the same time.

But, little by little, the recording industry did it again. They bought lots of little labels and just folded them into the bigger company. They created their own little fake indie Labels, like Interscope. See, Nine Inch Nails had a contract with a little indie label called TVT. Something went wrong with the negotiations when a big label tried to buy them for their wonderboy, Trent Reznor. So they just had him break his contract, gave him his own fake label called Nothing Records under another fake label called Interscope. They dared anyone to say anything, because they knew they had the meanest lawyers in town. Interscope was just started in 1990 and released such greats as Gerardo's Rico Suave. It was always owned and distributed by Atlantic records or a subsidiary.

They also signed a lot of indie artists from Sub Pop (name some others). They were initially offered very good contracts. Then later, in the mid 1990's these contracts weren't renewed. Michelle Shocked had her name stolen from her. The record label claimed they owned her name and wouldn't allow her to record under it for ten years. Juliana Hatfield had her contract just dropped. She found that the album she had just recorded didn't really belong to her and her label refused to release it. Even though it was finished and already paid for. They still hold the album God's Foot hostage. Fortunately you can find some staticky copies on Pirate Bay. Some fans say it's her best album ever.

Again and again this pattern was followed. Buy or create an "indie" label. Cherry pick the musicians you want and drop the rest. It worked and few noticed.

Finally their plan worked. Everyone was paying them. They had their fingers in everybody's pie. In the late 90's they had managed to cut down their roster of musicians to just a few. It was mostly just Britney, Christina Aguilera and the boy bands. It was a horrible time for music. MTV didn't play videos anymore. Radio didn't play anything new unless it was by one of the approved artists. The underground music scene, which had been around since the Beatniks, was really underground. You didn't hear about a band that wasn't one of the majors.

Then downloading came along. It was nothing new. The record labels had been aware of the possibility since the 80's. They saw it as a content delivery system, though. Their vision was that you would go to the record store, tell them what album you wanted, and instead of them having it in stock, they would download it and burn it for you. The Record Store as we knew it would just be an empty store where you could have anything you wanted.

The Labels couldn't wrap their head around it. Every metric in their system, all the accounting, was based on shipping units of Cd's, cassettes, LP's whatever. They had split themselves up into several units. One of these was distribution. If you cut them out where would all those VP's and Presidents of distribution go? How would they make their cut from the indie stores? They saw themselves not in the intellectual property business, but in the shipping and warehousing industry. They bought units. If you weren't selling a unit, what were you selling? They understood selling things that you could hold in your hand. That's it. If you separated that from the music then what did you have? Besides, they had been wary of any knew tech since they had lost a bundle with Quadraphonic sound in the 70's.

So they went on, oblivious, for awhile.

But it wasn't downloading that was killing their sales. It was the web.

With the web everyone could put out their opinion. Even if they didn't have a blog, they could write reviews on Amazon. They even put them right there on the page.

The Labels had never wanted to know what people thought about music. They wanted to tell them what to think. They didn't want to find out what kind of music they liked and then sell that to them. They wanted to tell them what they liked based on their age. If they were baby boomers, they got John Tesh and about a million classic rock box sets. The young and angry got Tupac, Marilyn Manson and Rage against the machine. All artists that seemed to be anti-establishment but they were part of huge multinational corporations. Everyone else got Britney and the Backstreet Boys. That's the way they liked it.

They even got rid of most of the indie record stores. You had a choice of where to buy music, Blockbuster, Best Buy or Wal-mart.

But, in the meantime, a million file sharers were out there ripping and burning. Telling each other about their great new finds. Obscure bands came out of nowhere and moved major units. A million music blogs were started. The corporate rock magazines, like Spin, started basing their print issues on what had been big on Pitchfork 3 months before.

The Labels weren't getting any of the money. Not even for distribution...which is where they always got a cut before. Indie labels had always made deals with the big boys to get their albums into stores. Not anymore. Why do you even need a CD when you can download from bittorrent? Even people that wanted to pay for these things couldn't. The Labels have huge back catalogs that they never release to the public. Millions of songs sit in warehouses and rot because they don't want the cost and trouble of having to issue them on cd. But they won't give them away, either. They would rather no one ever heard them again.

The Labels tried to buy the little distribution systems. It didn't work. Sure, they could buy Napster or Audiogalaxy, but as soon as they did, as soon as they started limiting the files available, everyone moved to a different distribution system. So they went after the users. They sued a few people to scare off everyone else. It didn't work, either. The filesharing systems just became anonymous.

So now the Labels try to protect their dying business model by lobbying congress and bribing politicians. Maybe this time it will work, but I doubt it. Legislation wouldn't have made buggy whip manufacturers profitable after Henry Ford changed the industry, would it?

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Who is going to be the first network to pick up this show?

Excite News - Murder-for-Hire Admission Dooms TV Show

BOGOTA, Colombia (AP) - The hit game show "Nothing But the Truth" has been canceled after a contestant won $25,000 for admitting she hired someone to kill her husband.

Tuesday was the final day for the show, in which contestants attached to a lie-detector machine answered 21 increasingly invasive questions to win up to $50,000.

A U.S version called "Moment of the Truth" is still expected to be launched on Fox in the coming months, along with spin-offs in England, Australia, Germany, Italy and Spain, according to Howard Schultz, the Los Angeles-based creator of the show.

On the Colombian version, dollar-desperate contestants confessed everything from drug smuggling to homosexual prostitution before a studio audience packed with unsuspecting loved ones.

It drew high ratings and spurred a boom in polygraph usage among private companies trying to screen employees and protect themselves from infiltration by Colombia's well-organized mafias.

But the show also generated sharp rebukes from U.S. polygraph examiners, family values groups and legal experts who likened the spectacle to a modern-day Roman circus that sanctions criminal behavior. Complaints of indecency also poured in to Colombia's national television commission.

The episode that sealed the show's fate was broadcast Oct. 2, when Rosa Maria Solano admitted she had hired a hit man to rub out her husband. "The crime couldn't be carried out because the hit man tipped off my husband and he ran away forever - God save me," said Solano after her revelation.

Facing negative public reaction and the threat of legal action for being an after-the-fact accessories to crime, Caracol Television pulled the plug.

Schultz, the creator of such reality TV hits as ABC's "Extreme Makeover," said he was unfamiliar with the controversial episode in Colombia, but did not fear it would slow the worldwide rollout.

"We're very careful about the questions we ask," he said, "and would never sanction any criminal behavior."