The Movie Location Game (Round 2)

The game is simple: I post a picture of a movie location, you guess which movie it’s from. Hints will appear after the picture; highlight them to read. Using TinEye or Google in ANY WAY is cheating. There are no prizes, other than bragging rights. There are three pictures this week; we’ll start easy and get harder as they go along.

LOCATION #1 – For most guys in the 30-50 age bracket, this film EASILY ranks in their top 5.

Movie Location #1
(click to enlarge)

HINTS (highlight to view): This scene is one of the most talked about in modern film history. This because of how the scene was shot, not the content. The scene (and its filming) are discussed in several other movies.

LOCATION #2 – Although set in one city, this film was mostly filmed in another. This is one of the few scenes that was actually shot in the story’s city.

(click to enlarge)

HINTS (highlight to view): The film spawned not one, but two soundtrack albums. Combined, these two albums rank at #7 on the “best selling soundtracks of all-time” list. The film is set in the UK.

LOCATION #3 – I hope you can remember who lives here!

(click to enlarge)

HINTS (highlight to view): This building is in Paris; the scene in which the building is used is also set in Paris.

Answers after the jump!

Continue reading “The Movie Location Game (Round 2)”

Yes, we’re doing this again!

I hate to do this yet again, but here we go:

Grammar Police

A cannon is a large gun, used in battles and on ships roughly between the Middle Ages and the American Civil War. Canon is a group of laws, customs and traditions. It comes from the “canon law” of the Catholic Church, but nowadays it usually refers to the accepted facts and mythology of a TV show, movie or video game, such as the “Star Trek canon”.

Dual means consisting of two parts, things or people, as in “she plays the dual roles of CEO and mother”. Duel, on the other hand, was originally a contest between two people using deadly weapons, as in “Alexander Hamilton challenged Aaron Burr to a duel”. These days, “duel” usually has a less lethal meaning, as in “the game was a duel between Peyton Manning and Tom Brady”.

To insure something is to take out a legal financial instrument against loss or damage. You probably insure your car, for example. To ensure something is to make sure that it gets done, as in to “ensure that the insurance check is in the mail”.

Continue reading “Yes, we’re doing this again!”

Twitter Weekly Updates for 2011-07-10

  • What's the opposite of irony? #
  • OMG! Geraldo Rivera is losing his mind on #foxnews #
  • Random Internet quote; "Modern weddings have gotten so grasping they might as well send invoices instead of invitations." #
  • Word on the street is that Madonna is working with LADYTRON for her new album. Might be cool, eh? #
  • RANDOM FACT: Conan O'Brien's senior thesis concerned the use of children as symbols in the works of William Faulkner and Flannery O'Connor. #
  • @1outside SWEET! Thanks for the #sherlock pics! #
  • @emmyrossum Sorry for your loss, Emmy! #
  • Good luck and God bless, Atlantis! Thanks for making human spaceflight kickass all these years, NASA! #
  • Peter King even REMOTELY thinks that KERRY FREAKIN' COLLINS can get in the HOF? I want whatever he's smoking! #
  • Welcome to South Sudan, the world's newest country! #southsudan #

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The Movie Location Game

So… this past Friday I “invented” a new game on Facebook: I’d post a picture of a location from a movie, and I invited people to guess which movie it was from. People seemed to like it, so I thought I’d post it here, too.

The rules, such as they are, are quite simple:

1) The movies must be “popular”, in that most people have either seen them, or at least heard of them. I’m not going to try to sneak some obscure 1960s Bulgarian art film past you, or some “direct to DVD” film no one has ever heard of.

2) The locations must be “prominent” in the film. I’m not going to “cheat” by posting a picture of one of the houses Ferris ran through near the end of Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, which were only on the screen for second. Having said that, remember that buildings change over time, or might have been embellished for the film.

3) Where needed, I will obscure writing on buildings which might identify them. This is to prevent you from googling a quick answer.

4) Using TinEye is considered cheating!

Here we gooooooooooo!

LOCATION #1 – The grey building in the center of the picture was prominently featured in a popular 80s film. If you’re 35 or older, you’ve almost certainly seen this movie.

(click to enlarge)

HINTS (highlight to view): The film was based in Washington DC. The building has been repainted since the film came out.

LOCATION #2 – This church was seen into two films: a late 80s classic and an early 2000s rom-com. Name either film.

(click to enlarge)

HINTS (highlight to view): The first film was not directed or written by John Hughes. Julia Roberts was not in the second film. Both films featured young blonde actresses who died unexpectedly.

LOCATION #3 – This house was featured in a super-popular 80s film. I don’t know anyone who hasn’t seen this movie.

(click to enlarge)

HINTS (highlight to view): The film was set in Chicago. The lead actor became one of the biggest movie stars in the world because of this film.

Answers after the jump!

Continue reading “The Movie Location Game”

Google Flops

So, yeah. Google released a limited beta of “Google+”, their answer to Facebook, this week. And some people on the Internet were creaming in their pants about it. Why?

Why is it that certain people seem to have this blind trust in Google? To these folks, Google wouldn’t ever do anything bad, ever. Not that I think Facebook is prefect by any means. But all Facebook knows about me is what I post, what my friends post, what I import onto my Wall (mainly this blog), and the relational aspects of my friends.

These are the people who scream bloody murder whenever Windows wants to phone home for updates… but the same sheeple who somehow see no problem with using Gmail, Google Talk, Google Voice, Google Apps and Google DNS. Windows just wants to see if its up to date; Google knows more about you than your wife and mother combined.

Sure, Google+ looks kind of interesting. But there’s no killer feature in it that Facebook couldn’t implement in a couple of weeks if they wanted to. For example: FB’s new video chat feature is supposed to be absolutely dead simple and kickass.

So it boils down to who has the most users. Sure, Google has far more potential users than Facebook, but Facebook owns social networking at the moment. And, despite how some people fawn all over Google, they’ve had some massive fails, too. Google Wave was supposed to replace email and instant messaging. How did that work out? Google Buzz died a quick death. And did anyone ever create a Google Profile?

At least Google+ is a product that some people might actually want, unlike…

Google Catalog (really? scanned catalogs?)

Google Video Player (just what the world needed: another proprietary video format!)

Google Checkout (“It’s like a digital Discover Card!”)

Google Answers (“We somehow lost to Yahoo! Answers?”)

Google Page Creator (“You know what we need? Our own version of Geocities!”)

Google Knol (“What’s better than one Wikipedia? TWO Wikipedias!” Too bad no one ever visited Knol.)

Dodgeball (“Wait… in May 2005 we bought a company that did exactly what Foursquare does and somehow forgot that it existed, then created Google Latitude to compete with Foursquare… which we helped develop when we gave all that money to Dennis Crowley?”)

Jaiku (“Wait… in October 2007 we bought a company that did almost exactly the same thing as Twitter and somehow forgot that it existed? Why does this keep happening?”),

Orkut (“Wait… in 2004 we bought a company that does almost exactly what Facebook does… and somehow it only ended up being popular in Brazil and India? SERIOUSLY, WHY DOES THIS KEEP HAPPENING?”)

Needless to say, I’m skeptical about Google+.

Installing Win7 via Flash Drive

For over 15 years, Microsoft has distributed Windows installation media on optical disc. And why wouldn’t they? CDs and DVDs can hold significantly more data than floppy disks, and optical drives are (were?) far more ubiquitous than competing technologies like Zip, Jazz and LS-120 disks.

But times have changed. Most netbooks and many “ultralight” laptops don’t come with optical drives. And, let’s face it, new technologies like flash drives are much, much faster than optical discs.

Thankfully, Microsoft listened to IT folks and came up with an easy way to install Windows 7 via flash drive. I’ll show you how below. Although it might look like a lot of steps, I’ve just been very thorough with my documentation. In practice, it’s really quite easy.

To create a Windows 7 installation flash drive, you’ll need the following:

1) A working Windows 7 computer with DVD drive.
2) A 4GB (or larger) flash drive.
3) A Windows 7 installation DVD.

The first thing you’ll need to do is make sure that the computer(s) you want to install Windows 7 on can boot from a flash drive. Most computers built in the past five years should be able to do this; computers built in the past three years almost certainly can. To test, insert a flash drive into one of the USB ports on a target computer, then power it on. At the boot (BIOS) screen, you should see something that says Press ESC for boot menu (the exact key will vary; F10 and F12 are also common choices). Press the key. If you see the flash drive listed as a boot choice, you’re good to go. If not, see if you computer or motherboard manufacturer has a BIOS update on their website. Run the update and try again.

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Twitter Weekly Updates for 2011-07-03

  • When did The Learning Channel become The Lunatic Channel? #
  • Why did Benetton go away… but Dress Barn is still here? #
  • "And over the rooftops when the stars prickle the skies, London is sleeping and the Mississippi moon shines…" #
  • Bob Geldof wrote "I Don't Like Mondays" while sitting in the studio of Album 88, Georgia State University's radio station. #
  • Acronis True Image Home 2011 is a pig! #
  • Why does it take longer to install Acronis TI Home 2011 than SP1 for Windows 7? #
  • OMG! Why am I watching "Lynyrd Skynyrd: Behind the Music"??? #
  • Jim Morrison was a stupid, dirty hippie. Good riddance! #
  • OK, I draw the line at ZZ Top! #
  • OMG! My back is KILLING ME! #

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July 4th Memories

On July 4, 1985, my family was in Florida to celebrate Independence Day. We went out to eat that night, and afterwards went to see the fireworks the small Florida town was putting on. I don’t want to say that we were “Big City snobs”, but compared to the fireworks at Lenox Square Mall or Stone Mountain, this little show just didn’t cut it. I remember making everyone laugh as we got into the car afterwards by joking that the fireworks display “must have cost upwards of $25!”.

So we went back to the place we were staying and decided to watch the Braves game. The team always did a massive fireworks display on Independence Day, and TBS always showed it after the game was over. Sure, it would be kind of lame seeing fireworks on TV… but why not? It was 10:30 at night, the beach was dark, the pool was closed and we were all sick and tired of the board games we’d brought.

The only problem was that the game ended up going to 19 innings. Mom, who would end up being the biggest baseball fan in the family, gave up around midnight and went to bed. Dad, sis and I were determined to see the fireworks. Yeah, it was stupid. But it was one of those little things where you’re like “dammit, we’ve waited for five hours to see these stupid fireworks, and we’re gonna see ’em!”.

The really funny thing is all the bizarre stuff that happened in the game. At first, we were pulling for the Braves, our hometown team. But then we started cheering for whoever could end the game first. So when the Braves fell behind in the 18th, we started cheering for the Mets. But then the damnedest thing happened: relief pitcher Rick Camp hit a solo home run to tie the game in the bottom of the 18th. A relief pitcher. Whose lifetime batting average was .074. In fact, it was the only home run of Camp’s career, and it happened at around 3:18 am on July 5.

We were afraid that the sun might come up before the game ended, but the game ended after 19 innings. The Braves lost. Hell, they were running out of skill players by the point, and it looked as though they might start grabbing people out of the stands to pitch! But we got to see the fireworks.

And no, it wasn’t really worth the wait.

Lest you think I’m joking, here’s the box score for the game.

More Jill Wagner pics

Well, if the log files for this site can be believed, “Jill Wagner” has become one of the most popular search terms for my blog. I can’t say I blame you (although I *do* wish you’d check out some of my Geek Stuff tips or History Blog articles when you’re done with the pics!). So here are a few more pics of Jill from a recent vacation, snagged off her Twitter feed:

Jill Wagner vacation 01
(click to enlarge)

Two more pics after the jump!

Continue reading “More Jill Wagner pics”