It seems that the keepers of 007 have decided Austin Powers has gone across the line... they've issued a Cease and Desist on the third AP movie, as it was pretty obvisouly piggybacking the success of James Bond movies over the years. Hell, that's what a spoof is; but I guess everyone has a breaking point. Apparently for MGM and Danjaq, "Austin Powers in Goldmember" was it. E! Online News - 007 Dis(Gold)members Austin Powers. I'm an avid fan of both JB and AP; but I can see why "Gold Member" could be just a little too crass, and yes, derogatory for the original 007. I hope they can sort this one out.

You may recall that Sony was gearing up for a day in court with Channel Technology, who manufactured PS2 mod chip. Well... not surprisingly: Sony Crushes UK PS2 Mod Chip Developers. It's a bit dodgy, considering that mod chipping your playstation should be a legal modification, which simply invalidates your warranty. Pirating games is the illegal activity. This basically means the mod chip trade will go back underground, and people will take that much longer to write their own PS2 programs. *shrug* ahh hell, you can still play GT3 :)

It's getting mercifully close to a dead issue, but the Sydney Morning Herald have an opinion piece on Pauline Hanson's media coverage as it may/may not have related to her rise to notoriety: They voted for her - but it's hard to agree why. It's hardly surprising that someone sitting Sydney has missed a critical factor in Hanson's career - Ipswich has serious problems with racial tension and "reverse discrimination". A ratbag minority cause huge problems for the rest of the community - both Aboriginal and European. Yes, Hanson is a raging xenophobic racist fool; but that doesn't mean there weren't any real problems in her electorate. Unfortunately her actions rammed them straight back onto the "too hot to mention" pile; so the problems just keep simmering.

Zeldman's latest article on A List Apart covers the troubles you face when people owe you money... one of the many reasons I eventaully decided to work for someone else for a while. A List Apart: Getting Paid. I had clients who never paid until I rang them and harrassed them. I would frequently end up having to speak directly to the boss, who would instruct their account department to have the cheque in the mail by close of business - time after time.

Not for the faint-hearted and definitely not for anyone who likes mice. Harvey the mouse must die, apparently. This is .... weird, but fascinating. The stuff that gets on the net! It's not quite as weird as the fact it's happening in the first place, though. But would people do this stuff if there was no net to post it on? If a modem connects but there is nobody there to hear it, does it make a sound....? *confused look* I'm going over there now. Thankyou.

This is significant... The first Shockwave Computer Virus has been found. There are conflicting reports regarding the level of threat - some people think it's low, others think it's high. Considering how much skip-into crap and Flash jokes is floating around there, I'd say it's high.

Google's anti-spam directory... you've gotta fight spam. I don't get why it's so incredibly persistent - I've never bought anything as a result of a spam, nor have any of my friends. I can only assume that there are a lot of good salespeople out there convincing stupid people that spam will help their business.

Icehotel: "Imagine a hotel built from thousands of tons of snow and ice, and re-built every winter- that is Icehotel in the little village of JukkasjÀrvi in northern Lapland, Sweden. Complete with Absolut ice bar - what else would you drink in a hotel entirely made of ice? :)

A Tribute To The Forgotten Heroes of Star Wars... a top ten list of those characters you only see for a few seconds in the Star Wars movies. . I want to note that Hammerhead was in the film for a total of maybe five seconds, and offered nothing more than a glance and a sip of his drink. For a guy who seems to have had less of a role in Star Wars than my shoes, writers really had a field day with this guy. According to post-movie lore, this guy isn't just some drunken alien with a t-shaped head. He's Momaw Nadow, exiled Ithorian/pacifist/Rebel sympathizer with two mouths. I'm not kidding. Remember that five seconds he had in the film? Really didn't do him justice! Just from the sporadic Star Wars novel I've read, I can tell you that Momaw has found and lost love, has a carniverous plant in his Tatooine abode, and thoroughly respects the sacred jungles of his Ithor homeworld. Man, and people wonder why Star Wars is so successful. Every freaking one of the 10,000 creatures we've seen has had more exciting adventures than the entire cast of the Golden Girls.

Yeesh. Humans just can't cut a break - I guess it's karma for all the pollution. Apparently the protein known p53 limits cancer but shortens life: A Grim Choice: The Ravages of Age, or of Cancer? (interesting site design, too). Testing was done on mice, but it's often close to how humans go as well. 'The paper adds weight to the developing hypothesis that the body has to walk a line between cancer protection and aging, that they are, in effect, two sides of a coin. "You have a fine balance," Mr. Donehower said. "Too much p53 and you get this aging effect. Too little and you get cancer. My guess is that evolution has evolved just the right level.'

In Austraila, thanks to our government's insane stance on 'net censorship, "R" is The letter that dare not speak its name (opinion piece from the Sydney Morning Herald). It's horriffic the way the legislation was rammed through parliament without debate; and it threatens to make Australia look like the internet world's inbred country hicks (as opposed to the US, which is going for Big Brother). Finally, some people who have a little power to make a difference have realised this. Frankly I think most net users and producers have taken a civil disobedience style of solution. Thank glod for that.

Damn I'm chuffed about this. I can't keep my mouth shut any longer. The Web Standards Project's Browser Upgrade campaign used to say the referring page "didn't work". I wrote to them with a suggestion that they change the wording (of the "how did I get here" paragraph")... I attached what I considered an example of how to word it. That wording was used almost exactly (they made a small change to the punctuation). It makes me feel all warm, fuzzy and standards-evangelical ;) Hell. It's not every day you get an email from Zeldman thanking you for supporting standards :)

slashdot bits

Cnet has a "year in review" style collection of interviews from 2001. Pretty interesting stuff.

Meanwhile the Euro has arrived in Europe. I guess now we'll see if it makes a lick of difference to a bunch of nations who really don't get along very well, despite what they say. A standard currency makes a lot of sense though - it's a pity that certain nations are refusing to believe that it has any good points. But hey, just like the good ol' Our Way Is Better US of A, they don't go for the metric system either...