For the last DECADE, this ring of people have been defrauding Wal*Mart

31 12 2004

So, what was the high tech crime that allowed these people to steal 1000’s of $ from WalMart?  They’d been switching the UPC code on products.

Authorities said the scheme involved using a home computer to produce UPC bar codes for cheaper products and slipping them over the real codes on high-priced items. The suspects then allegedly sold the merchandise, or returned it for refunds or store gift cards that also were sold.

Somehow you’d like to think that a cashier would notice when a TV rings through as “Candy Bar”  🙂  Or some such equivalent.   Just goes to show you…. You get what you pay for in products, AND in people.

Some incredible Tsunami Photos

31 12 2004

Care of DigitalGlobeSome satellite photos of Bandar Ace and Sri Lanka  before and after the Tsunami hit.  Some serious changes to the landscape.

Even more pictures – these posted on Wave of Destruction:  Try the DHTML at the bottom of the page for a wiper effect to see the BEFORE and AFTER of the Earthquake/Tsunami

Also, this picture that really helped me to grasp the magnitude of the death and destruction (warning VERY GRAPHIC image – may be disturbing)

More recently: has some excellent BEFORE/AFTER, by rescaling and aligning some of DigitalGlobe’s pics.

It’s truly a horrible thing.

Another good way to help envision is to compare it to the World Trade Center Destruction

Although, if you consider the annual death rate due to AIDS of children UNDER 15 around the world, it’s only 1/4 of that.  How much money is pouring in year after year for THAT?  Perhaps if our governments spent less time fighting, and more time cooperating, people that need help would get it. PERIOD

Final note:  Many of you have ended up here by searching for TSUMANI  It’s SPELT TSUNAMI.  I hope these pictures help put it into perspective.

CES 2005: Bloggers Not welcome!

29 12 2004

According to Digital Photography Blog, the CES is thumbing its nose at bloggers (And from the article, it makes you wonder what they define as a blogger, vs a regularly updated website)

From the InfoWorld Article:

The CEA spent more time qualifying attendees this year to make sure everyone in attendance has a legitimate attachment to the consumer electronics industry, said Kristen Peiffer, a CEA spokeswoman. The show is not open to the general public, and the CEA does not allow the blogging community or other independent observers to attend the show.


Concerned that you might fall out of a plane without a parachute?

29 12 2004

Here’s an interesting slant on that fear of having your plane cease flying while you, without a parachute, have to take a flying leap.

Some tips:

First of all, you’re starting off a full mile higher than Everest, so after a few gulps of disappointing air you’re going to black out. This is not a bad thing. If you have ever tried to keep your head when all about you are losing theirs, you know what I mean. This brief respite from the ambient fear and chaos will come to an end when you wake up at about 15,000 feet. Here begins the final phase of your descent, which will last about a minute. It is a time of planning and preparation. Look around you. What equipment is available? None? Are you sure? Look carefully. Perhaps a shipment of folded parachutes was in the cargo hold, and the blast opened the box and scattered them. One of these just might be within reach. Grab it, put it on, and hit the silk. You’re sitting pretty.

Much will depend on your attitude. Don’t let negative thinking ruin your descent. If you find yourself dwelling morbidly on your discouraging starting point of seven miles up, think of this: Thirty feet is the cutoff for fatality in a fall. That is, most who fall from thirty feet or higher die. Thirty feet! It’s nothing! Pity the poor sod who falls from such a “height.” What kind of planning time does he have?

Thanks Metafilter, for pointing me in that direction.

Broken File Associations on your XP box?

29 12 2004

Omar has posted a link to a site that has each association, with a regfile to return your associations to default.  Handy!

Just got a Digital Camera for Christmas for the first time?

29 12 2004

So, you just got a digital camera for the first time for Christmas, and you can’t figure out where to load the film?   Hope is in sight.  Digital Photography Blog has  you covered.  They’ve posted a list of links for where you should go to find out what button does what, and why you should or shouldn’t press some of them.

Merry Christmas!

25 12 2004

As Christmas eve comes ever closer in this part of the world, I know that many of you may be experiencing Christmas already.  I hope that you can over look any of the sad, or unfortunate occurences during the past year, and that you have the chance to spend Christmas with those you love.  If you can’t be with them, then know that they love you, and miss you, and wish they could be with you too.   Please remember, Christmas isn’t about getting the BEST or the NEWEST, or the greatest gadget or thing.   For myself, it’s time to remember that family and love are the important things.  It’s a time to reflect on how I’ve been as a person, and how I can renew my promise to God to be the best person that I can be. 

While around the world, Christmas temperatures and conditions are different, here in the Northern Hemisphere we have just come out of the Winter Solstice.  The days get longer, and the weather starts turning the corner toward summer.  Of course here in Vancouver, I even saw some Cherry blossoms on trees today!  So, while these blossoms will have a short life, as we will still have cold weather this winter, let the Christmas spirit stay warm in your heart, and keep you strong in your convictions in life, while all the other things in life tug you in other directions.

Merry Christmas, and Happy and Safe New Year to you and your Family from myself and Mrs DragonSpeed!

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