Play ‘Give Bush the Boot’

Just 20 days left in real time until the US says goodbye to George W. Bush, but you can keep the send off started by the shoe-throwing Iraqi journalist a few weeks ago going with Give Bush the Boot, the bloodiest tongue in cheek Bush booting game to date. Developed by Adelaide, South Australia-based Champagne for the Ladies and I Love Biscuits, the free online game is based on two basic yet fundamental principles: you can never have enough shoes in your wardrobe and you can never have enough blood in your games! Travel the world and throw shoes from a variety of scenic locales (designer stilettos from Paris, ice skates from the Netherlands, cowboy boots from Texas) and see if you can beat my score of 3,015!

You’ve Been Served…On Facebook!

I love being in Australia and consider myself incredibly lucky that I get to come here two or three times a year and do some work. In particular, I love the Australian people — in many ways they’re a lot like Americans, just sans the b.s. and that’s refreshing, particularly for an American like me who can b.s. with the best of ’em.

The Australians just have a way of going about things that warms my heart. It’s so simple really. Like if you’re trying to serve someone a subpoena, but they refuse to answer the door, pick up the phone or respond to an email. Why not inform them on Facebook? Gives a whole new meaning to being “superpoked”, hey? (Read more)

How a Viral Video Grows

TechCrunch reports late today that the raw video of the “shoe(s) heard ’round the world” incident has been viewed more than 5 million times on YouTube alone since its debut last night. Some 3.5 million of those views took place over a 12-hour span on Monday, putting this viral video of an Iraqi reporter throwing his shoes at President George W. Bush in position to become the most watched online video over a short period ever. Just another million and half views to go and it will replace Barack Obama’s election night victory speech that hangs onto a slim lead at this point, with 7 million views in 48 hours. Charts and and demographics from Visible Measures Blog here.

The Computer Mouse Turns 40

Is it possible? Where did the time go? This month, the computer mouse turns 40. For those of you who weren’t born yet — or were wasting time in elementary school learning penmanship — we like to think that the mouse is something we came up with — along with Atari, MTV and the Internet (hat tip to Al Gore on that last one, maybe). But no, the mouse came about in December 1968.

The name was never meant to stick. When Doug Engelbart and his team at the Stanford Research Institute in California designed a computer controller encased in a carved-out wooden block, with wheels mounted on the underbelly, one researcher nicknamed it a ‘mouse’. ‘We thought that when it had escaped out to the world it would have a more dignified name,’ Engelbart recalled later. ‘But it didn’t.’

Engelbart’s invention became the mouse that soared, an essential piece of computer hardware. Its 40th birthday will be celebrated next week when Engelbart returns to Stanford (now known as SRI International). The mouse was first shown to the world when he gave a presentation of a working network computer system in San Francisco on 9 December, 1968, which is still revered as ‘the dawn of interactive computing’.

(Read more)