Category Archives:

Is a Canadian team going to win the Stanley Cup in 2014?

Based on this logic, Why Can’t Canada Win the Stanley Cup? – (and Nate Silver, 2013), the answer is No. Not only is the argument convincing, it is depressing if you are a Canadian, since as the post also shows, Canadians are avid hockey fans.

Anyone who loves hockey, the NHL or the Stanley Cup playoffs will enjoy this piece of writing.


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Robert Lepage Brings His Magic to the Metropolitan Opera in NYC

Robert Lepage is bringing his brilliant stagecraft to the Met in New York with a production of “Faust”. I’ve seen LePage’s “Erwartung” and “Bluebeard’s Castle” and I thought they were exceptional, but he seems to be doing something really incredible with this production, as he intertwines the production with the voice and movement of the performers, so that the entire show interacts. You really want to read the article and see the video, so visit Techno-Alchemy at the Opera – Robert Lepage Brings His ‘Faust’ to the Met –

I would love to see this show.

Want to get published? has the story

The New York Times has a good summary on the various web sites offering publishing services in their article: Got a Manuscript? Publishing Now a Snap – New York Times. There are references to, and others.

If you have been always dying to see your work bound in hardcover, check out this article and then the sites they mention.

How Academics are using Facebook for their studies at universities

Over at the – New York Times is a good article on how Facebook is being used as a serious tool for academics. For example:

In other words, Facebook — where users rate one another as “hot or not,” play games like “Pirates vs. Ninjas” and throw virtual sheep at one another — is helping scholars explore fundamental social science questions.“We’re on the cusp of a new way of doing social science,” said Nicholas Christakis, a Harvard sociology professor who is also part of the research. “Our predecessors could only dream of the kind of data we now have.”

There’s lots of great examples in the article: On Facebook, Scholars Link Up With Data

Boots and other luxuries (or how New York Manhole covers are made in India)

The has a fascinating article: New York Manhole Covers, Forged Barefoot in India

Some sample quotes:

Manhole covers manufactured in India can be anywhere from 20 to 60 percent cheaper than those made in the United States

And why is that. Could it be due partially to this:

“We can’t maintain the luxury of Europe and the United States, with all the boots and all that,” said Sunil Modi, director of Shakti Industries.

It reminds me of photographs of Europe in the 19th century.

The No Knead Bread: so simple, even a four year old can make! So you can too

Over at the excellent food blog, Jaden’s Steamy Kitchen, is a review of the No Knead Bread recipe that was featured in the a while ago. Better still, Jaden provides instructions so simple to follow, even a 4 year old can do it (and she has photos to prove it). If nothing else, have a good read of the recipe:

No Knead Bread, Revisited

P.S. This article: How to Turn Cheap “Choice” Steaks into Gucci “Prime” Steaks is also highly recommended. Heck, just sample the entire blog. :)

An Appraisal of the great Luciano Pavorotti

Sadly, Luciano Pavorotti died today. A fine appraisal can be found in at, including this quote (I added the bold):

By natural endowment Mr. Pavarotti was essentially a lyric tenor, ideally suited to lighter roles in Donizetti, Bellini and Verdi requiring lyrical grace and agile passagework. Yet his voice, like everything about him, was uncommonly large. With that big throbbing sound, he was tempted into weightier repertory requiring dramatic power and heft, like Calaf in Puccini’s “Turandot.” Some opera purists maintain that Mr. Pavarotti erred by straying from the lyric terrain. Don’t tell that to anyone lucky enough to have heard him sing “Nessun dorma” in his prime, not just as a signature aria for televised stadium concerts, but in the context of a full production of “Turandot.” Wow!

See: Italian Operatic Artistry at Its Finest – New York Times

Mattel, Toys and China

This could be seen as an crisis for Mattel, but it is just as much a crisis for China. See After Stumbling, Mattel Cracks Down in China – in the New York Times.

Six killers focused on in nytimes. First one: diabetes

The is going to look at leading causes of illness and death in the U.S. (and no doubt Canada and most of the affluent parts of the world): heart disease, cancer, stroke, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, diabetes and Alzheimer’s.

The first article is Looking Past Blood Sugar to Survive With Diabetes

For people who are dealing with these illnesses, it’s worth taking a look.

Why critics should not review kids films

Over at the, is an article on the success of High School Musical: Move Over Mickey: A New Franchise at Disney – New York Times

One thing that struck me was this silly comment from their TV critic.

Virginia Heffernan, a television critic for The New York Times, wrote that although the sequel had a haphazard charm, “the movie is mediocre, and should be skipped.” But she added, “I can’t wait to buy the soundtrack and do the karaoke.”

I wonder if the critic watched the show with a preteen in attendance. It may be mediocre from an adult viewpoint, but it is simply magical to a preteen (I know).

Old folks (boomers) and young folks (gen Y) at work

The has a story about Gen Y at work. It is obvious that it is sympathetic to the older generation. For example:

Managers tell stories of summer associates who come to meetings with midriffs exposed, baring a belly ring; of interns who walk through the halls engaged with iPods; of new hires who explain they need Fridays off because their boyfriends get Fridays off and they have a share in a beach house. Then there is the tale of the summer hire who sent a text message to a senior partner asking “Are bras required as part of the dress code?”

I am sure the Gen Y crowd could talk of

old managers wearing ties or nylons, having two hour lunches, who work overtime on projects that are irrelevent and who wear clothes that haven’t been in style in 10 years or more

Read the article: it seems to me that the boomer who wrote the article is wrong. See:

When Whippersnappers and Geezers Collide – New York Times

New York’s Chelsea Hotel

The has a great study of the (in)famous Chelsea Hotel and the artists – famous and not so – who live there.

How to save a life…with Web 2.0

The New York Times has an article on J. N. Jayashree, who “did not want her husband to die the death of an Indian whistle-blower” and adopted a unique way of protecting him. How did she do it? By blogging.

“We’re creating a fortress around him — a fortress of people,” she said
in a telephone interview. “I wanted to inform the people that this is
happening, that my husband is a whistle-blower, so that it becomes the
responsibility of every citizen to protect him.”

For more, see the article: In India, Protecting a Whistle-Blower.

Blogs on Books

The New York Times has a Blog on books called Paper Cuts.

What is it?

Paper Cuts is a blog about books and other forms of printed matter, written by Dwight Garner, senior editor of The Book Review. Look here for book news and opinion, interviews with writers, regular raids on the Book Review’s archives, and other special features.

Get (back) your life

I saw Tim Ferriss talk recently . Now he’s featured in the web site:

The Hectic Chronicles – New York Times

He has lots of great advice on his web site and in his book: The 4-Hour Workweek.

I recommend you check them both out now (instead of continuing to plough through your email. Go on…the email will be there when you get back :) ).

Captchas or the V-K Test

The online has a good article on the problem of captchas are having. It’s a bit worrisome. See A Dog or a Cat? New Tests to Fool Automated Spammers – New York Times

Perhaps it is time to get out the Voight-Kampff machines.

Philip Johnson’s Glass House is officially opening to the public on June 21, ’07… question is: why? What’s closed about it now? :)

For those of you who think about such things as I do, check out Memories of Life and Death in an Architectural Masterwork – New York Times

For such a slight building, it’s also very influential. I think the key to living there is good pajamas. And not scratching your butt. Or scratching your butt but not caring anyone might notice. :)

Jonathan Coulton

It’s a small world. I came across the Code Monkey video at the Web 2.0 expo and posted it here on my blog which was read by my friend Leta who mentioned Jonathan’s web site,, which I pointed out to some people a few months ago based on an article I read in the!

So….check out his site. He’s got a great story, and lots of good music as well! Leta recommends: the acoustic version of ‘Baby Got Back’ is a treat