Shameless Commerce.

March 27, 2007 at 3:11 pm (Buy My Stuff, Cool Tech, Internet tech)

Even for those of us who turn our backs on corporate values and lifestyles, there comes a time to pay the rent. And it’s my turn, giving me two reasons to post today.

The ultimate horrorFirst, I am working with a really cool guy named Mark Effinger, who has developed some very powerful creativity software for the Mac and PC called ThoughtOffice. Mark has me working on a variety of web projects, ThoughtOffice included. That means income, outside of the traditional CorpCube. Oh, praise be. That alone is cause enough for a shout out.

But the other reason to post today is to test the shopping cart service we plan to use – E-junkie. Very cool stuff! Very easy to implement, and we will undoubtedly use it quite a lot in the next few months.

And now, let the testing begin! To start, I will wedge in a PayPal “Buy It Now” button for ThoughtOffice / Mac version:

Next, let’s try a slightly different button – Add to the cart:

And even a “View Cart” button, just for giggles:

There. That seems pretty slick. You can even use these E-junkie buttons on MySpace, if you’ve a mind to hawk your wares there.

Mr. BurnsWelcome to the 21st Century. I think I am going to go find something to sell, so I don’t have to go back to working for The Man.

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Drive Different. (ly)

March 10, 2007 at 2:19 pm (Cars & Trucks, Cool Tech, The Environment)

To balance out my last post, I suppose I ought to point out that not all vehicles are ugly, tired rehashings of existing parts and concepts. There really is some good, new thought happening in the wide world of the automobile, and I will touch on some of the new coolness here. Now. Ready, set, go.

Vanguard concept - Animated GIFFirst, the Union of Concerned Scientists has come up with a really slick new vehicle specification that could reduce emissions and improve mileage by using existing technologies. It’s called the Vanguard, and you can read more about it by clicking here. Now this is the kind of thinking that has been lacking in Detroit. Take all the parts that make cars more efficient and stick them all together on all cars, and make them all work better. Hello! Who missed this?

OScar Designs - Animated GIFNext upon the show car stand, a group of car enthusiasts, engineers, and entrepreneurs has begun a project called OScar – the Open Source Car. It’s kind of like Linux, but for cars. The intention: create one or more “free” designs for cars that can be built anywhere in the world, without any advanced factories or huge assembly lines. The Big Three aren’t going to like that idea very much, either. To my eyes, OScar looks like a very cool concept, from some people who are just plain fed up with accepting the crappy cars that we are being told to buy; people who want a more democratic alternative that better meets their real needs for transportation.

Hummer O2 ConceptThe third item for your consideration today: a Green Hummer – The Hummer O2 concept vehicle, to be precise. Pretty nifty idea, this one. Powered by hydrogen fuel cells, collecting solar energy, giving off extra oxygen wherever it goes, and made of environmentally-friendly materials, this “opposite world” version of the existing Hummer is a far cry from the current crop of hulking, over-chromed mobile monuments to suburban excess.

Okay, after all that serious stuff, let’s have a little fun. There’s more than one approach to a Green Hummer out there, and I don’t mean the color. Here are some guys who are having a lot of fun with the idea of being green, and going in style. Check out their web site for more pictures and videos.

I have a soft spot in my heart for people who decide to get creative with steel tubing, welders, and old bike parts. Perhaps I will one day also build my own car – sleek, swoopy, efficient, and all mine. Until then, I will dream about Driving Different. Ly.

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