The Bush administration has secretly ceased closed captioning for 200 television shows. No warning or reasoning, they just decided to stop. Some of the shows that are no longer being closed captioned are “The Simpsons,” “Law and Order,” “X-Men Evolution,” and “A&E Investigative Reports.” A lot of the shows on the dropped-list are cartoons, leading me to believe that the young hearing-impaired (and those who are young at heart) will be most directly affected.
The National Council on Disabilities is charging the administration with censorship, in that they are “telling the nation’s deaf what they can and can’t watch.” The Bush Administration has long been known to further its political agenda through government censorship (no freaking surprise). In 2002 they directed federal government organizations to censor their web content based on the current administration’s values and goals. This included a CDC page explaining how to use a condom to prevent the spread of STDs, and various Department of Education pages that conflicted with Bush’s worldview. The Orwellian-age continues…
Steve Bass has made a chapter about e-mail freakishness from his book, PC Annoyances, available for free download. He explains the fixes for various problems in several different e-mail programs, such as Outlook, Eudora, & Netscape. This is good–very good. Thanks Steve!
Francis Ford Coppola is bottling wine made of grapes grown on George Lucas’s Skywalker Ranch. At $30 a bottle for the Chardonnay, I don’t know how well it’s going to do. I mean, damn, you can get a $2 bottle of Chardonnay at Trader Joe’s. Long live Two-Buck-Chuck!
…they have a fight, Flat-Panel-Man wins, Flat-Panel Man… (sung to the tune of They Might Be Giants’ “Particle Man”). So, yeah. For the first time, global shipments of liquid crystal displays in 2004 will surpass those of cathode ray tube (CRT) units, market research firm IDC said Thursday. It’s about time. See the story here.
For my California readers, the state launched a new site today helping voters figure out what’s what. The California Online Voter Guide gives ballot information, where to register to vote, where to vote (for me, the place seems to change from one election to the next), and links to other voter info sites.
While the homepage of this online history resource is not particularly impressive, the sheer amount of information it contains is overwhelming. eHistory contains over 130,000 pages of historical content; 5,300 timeline events; 800 battle outlines; 350 biographies; and thousands of images and maps. Just as an example, if you go into maps, and choose Maps of the Civil War, you get 26 large, quality, color maps of various areas, battles, and events (such as the progress of emancipation). This is an extremely detailed resource, and one I’ll keep in my back pocket for those tough history homework questions I get on the virtual ref desk.
For all the true animation freaks out there: Iowa State University’s Chronology of Animation. A truly extensive resource.
An interesting Woman’s Day competition rewards the best essay with a day as a Librarian. Interesing PR for libraries I guess, though somehow it makes me feel like the profession is being devalued a little, as though any person can just waltz in and start doing reference. But, perhaps I’m just being defensive after having to come up with a reply for the thousandth time to the inevitable random-relative question: “So, you’re a librarian? Why do you have to have a degree to do that? All you do is read stories to kids and stamp books.” *sigh* My canned response so far is to state that I am an information broker, just like a stock broker, except I deal in information, and my services are free. Does anyone have any other good responses to that oh-so-fun question?