Posts filed under “General Knowledge”
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Terminations. Our Terms now include more details about when we might need to terminate our Agreement with bad actors.
If that is not all the material you need to build your own joke, you probably ought to give up humor and take up knitting.
Day after day, year after year, our most popular feature is the Free Blank Sheet of Paper we provided more than four and a half years ago. It has always fascinated Dr. Boli to see that most of the traffic to that page seems to come from search engines, suggesting that there are people all over the Internet looking for exactly what that article has to offer. The comments on that page, however, suggested that some visitors went away disappointed.
Dr. Boli will be perfectly frank with his readers: he was not actually intending to meet a real need with that article. Every once in a great while, Dr. Boli feels compelled to vary the usual serious tone of his Magazine with a little frivolity: a joke, if you will. The number of people searching for a printable blank sheet of paper has therefore always puzzled him a bit.
Just yesterday, however, a comment was left on that article that provided a good and legitimate reason why one might want a printable blank sheet of paper, and Dr. Boli will admit that the reason had not occurred to him. In response to this comment from “Kdon,”—
U people are so dumb- If you can print this sheet, you have blank paper because it is in your printer.
—a reader named “iggy” replied yesterday (expressing himself in the English of the Future),
not if your in school and your not allowed to open the printer like me
So Dr. Boli has met a legitimate need, and he is very happy to see that his hard work in producing a blank letter-size PDF was not in vain. To the Internet at large: You’re welcome.
Here is an amusing little puzzle. Before following the link to the Web site, can you guess what profession these people practice from the introductory text on the home page?
“As you can see, fragments are the key to our website. Projects, visual alphabets and different disciplines are freely mixed together, in order to provide an impression of emotions, rather than an archive of projects. Our oeuvre is a continuous combination of parts, and its overall image is the very subject of our work. For this reason, we present individual projects as fixed fragments in a mobile system. They are the tangible and partial materials of an abstract flux of ideas.
“The projects are the linguistic components of an ongoing puzzle that is never completed. The sense lies in the progressive utopian hypothesis of reaching an impossible synthesis; sense lies in this expanded, centrifugal movement that has no end. The message of our work lies in this atmospheric dust, this polyphonic rhythm. A throng of figures full of contrasts.”
Now here is the link, and you may go to the Web site and see whether you can guess it from there.
Google Photos has all sorts of tricks up its sleeve. One is “Estimated Locations,” by which it can identify where your picture was taken just by looking at it. Our friend Father Pitt provides us with a few examples, though he was very reluctant to show them, because they are unedited and therefore full of lens distortion and other embarrassments.
This picture was taken in Oxford just around the corner from the Ashmolean Museum.
Father Pitt swears he was standing across the street from the Kaufmann’s department store in Pittsburgh when he took it, but apparently his lens has a longer range than he remembers.
This one is in the middle of Tower Bridge in London:
It appears to be part of the central tower of East Liberty Presbyterian Church in Pittsburgh (which Father Pitt intended to be part of a giant composite picture of the church), but appearances can be deceiving.
This one is in Bath:
—or at least Google says it’s in Bath, but then shows us a map of Salisbury:
Close enough. Father Pitt says the building bears an astonishing resemblance to the Burke Building on Fourth Avenue in Pittsburgh, but he bows before the superior intelligence of the machine.
But it is possible to fool Google. The machine identifies this as a photo from France:
Ha! Father Pitt put some effort into fooling Google here. This is Phipps Conservatory’s version of Red Vineyards Near Arles by Vincent van Gogh, rendered in plants. Phipps Conservatory is not near Arles at all! We sure fooled Google this time.
When it is necessary to spell out words unambiguously over a connection with poor sound quality, the International Phonetic Alphabet will be found invaluable.
Our old friend Father Pitt, whose ultimate ambition is to let nothing in Pittsburgh escape his camera, has been experimenting with a simpler site designed to load very quickly and, more importantly, not to bog down your browser with advertising, the way his old site has been doing more and more as a certain blogging service scrambles for more and more pennies. Since he has been experimenting for a few months, and has filled the very auspicious number of thirteen pages with new photographs, he asked Dr. Boli to make an official announcement that, for the moment, he is publishing at a new location:
The newer site is hosted on a free server, so there is always the chance that Old Pa Pitt’s host could yank the rug out from under him, so to speak, leading to a very comical but very annoying silent-movie pratfall. For now, however, this is where Father Pitt will be.
You visit one of those Web sites where an ad pops up in front of the text you intended to read, which in itself is annoying enough to make you think twice about visiting the Web site. But what if this is the ad?—
Now what do you do? Do you agree that it is OK that there was an error? That seems to be the only option, since the red X in a circle is not an active link. Nothing but clicking OK will dismiss the white box that blocks the content of the page. But what message is one sending by clicking OK?
Dr. Boli pondered this conundrum for some time. Then he closed the browser tab. Then, just to be certain, he closed the computer.