robot overlords

What will our bathrooms look like in 50 more years?

Two quick and unrelated things:

One: how nuts is this?
It’s a real product. I hope you’re being nice to your iPod, cause they are taking over the world and it’s only a matter of time until we’re all merely their puny human slaves.

Two: old stuff, unearthed! The Walt Disney Company opened a time capsule letter written by Walt himself in 1956 and locked away for the last 50 years. The Disney properties are supposedly full of time capsules with various opening dates, as Walt was all about this stuff. There’s a PDF download of the letter. It’s pretty cool what Walt thought we’d be doing in 2006, and funny how much he thought 50’s breakthroughs (like radar) would be HUGE by now. Save that away and read it again in 10 years, make Walt proud.

I know what you’re thinking, and no, Walt did not correctly predict the iPod’s hostile takeover of the human race. But i think Nostradamus did…

To buy toys, or not to buy toys, that is the question.

I’ve got 20 minutes to kill until i need to start walking to the other building to meet Katie for lunch. This is not to be confused with the *other* walk to the *other* building i hope to take today, or at least this week sometime, to talk details on that aforementioned internal transfer… but i digress. Since i’ve got this window of time that i wouldn’t have spent in a useful manner anyway – although i’m sure i could make an argument that reading Autoblog is useful and, knowing me, i probably already have at least once – i thought i’d spend it bonding with my webserver. If, indirectly, that somehow means communicating with human beings then, well… super.

Speaking of super, how about that Child’s Play? If you haven’t heard about it, this is a cool local (Seattle) charity that buys toys for kids during their hospital stays. They’ve expanded this year to include more hospitals around the country, as well as Canada and the UK, and it’s so freakin easy you have no excuse. You just buy toys off the Amazon wishlist for your chosen hospital, and via magic interweb pixiedust those toys show up at the hospital’s door. Child’s Play was put together by the guys from Penny Arcade (vid-game-enthusiast webcomic) in an effort to (besides helping kids) help video gamer-types give something back (see, they’re not all cop-killers). I had great fun picking out some Gameboy titles that were sent to Seattle Children’s Hospital. I highly recommend giving that a try yourself.

Not every nonprofit group is out there helping children (a worthy cause, no doubt, but certainly not a hard sell as charities go), but i’d like to think the Firefox enthusiasts who are running this little number have the same common good in mind. For the highly motivated, there’s even some more aggressive tactics you can employ in the browser wars. I’d totally consider setting that up here, only i think all four people that are reading this already use Firefox.

In the event that Firefox wins the war and Bill Gates doesn’t completely take over the internet and turn us all into his e-slaves (no doubt giving Steve Ballmer free reign to throw chairs at developers all day until he’s red in the face), this email time capsule put together by Forbes mag has the potential to be pretty nifty. You write little emails to yourself that will be stored (again, via interweb pixie dust) and sent back to you (or whoever, really) 5, 10, 20 or one meeellion years from now so you can remember how tragically hip you used to be and how simple life was before the robot overlords conquered mankind. Who knows, if you keep smoking, jaywalking and wearing fur on capitol hill your emails might be arriving from beyond the grave (ooo! spooky!). More than likely, however, you will have changed your email address eleven times since then and your carefully constructed words of wisdom to your future self will end up at yahoo’s dev/null. Still, an interesting gamble that won’t cost you anything. And your kids will probably think it’s hilariously old-school in 2025.

You know what’s really old-school? Driving a fuel-inefficient SUV around the city. Or at least, that’s apparently what TV is telling americans to think these days, leaving hundreds of Hummer SUV’s to sit unwanted despite perpetual markdowns and special offers (buy an H2, get a free yacht!). Rather than scare away that last potential H1/2/3 buyer, who upon seeing the endless aisles of unpurchased Hummer hardware may finally clue in that their purchase will no longer buy their way into the cool kids’ club, those crafty big-H dealers are stashing the supernumerary trucks in remote asphalt time-capsules of their own, desperately hoping that off-road extravagance comes back in style. While i don’t condone loping around the concrete jungle in 4WD just to keep up appearances, i can’t help but feel a bit sorry for these ostracized trucks – they should be out mucking around in the mud and snow, being trucks, instead of rotting into the ground on the backlot of the Hyatt. That’s no way to treat a good truck, even if it is an over-hyped miscreant fashioned from the harvested souls of a thousand sensible economy cars and hand-me-downs from the Chevy parts bin.