Tuesday, February 19, 2002

Is this legally binding?

The whole principle of advertising is just mind-boggling. It weird enough that there's a whole industry built around advertising theory, research, methodology and deployment, but what's even weirder is the implication that it actually works.

Ever notice the ever-present "Enjoy" above soft drink logos? "Enjoy Sprite". "Enjoy Diet Coke." If you think about it, that "Enjoy" isn't there accidentally. Some market research, or possibly some advertising theory, must suggest that the presence of the word "Enjoy" near a logo will make consumers enjoy the product more.

The soda fountain here at work has "Enjoy" above Caffeine Free Diet Coke, Diet Coke, Sprite, and several others. Strangely, it's not above normal Coca Cola. Apparently they think consumers will actually enjoy Coke without prompting. Good to know.

It's interesting, anyway, that they use the word "Enjoy" for Caffeine Free Diet Coke instead of the more accurate "Choke Down."

Tuesday, February 12, 2002

What we need is a super-secret code language!

Linked from sweetcode: Alphabet Soup is a program that can generate plausible-looking characters reminiscent of, but not found in, common character sets. A grammar of "building blocks" of letters defines the structure of possible "letter-like" things, and the program can choose random combinations out of that grammar.

I was much less impressed once I realized that the author hand-built the grammar. Still cute, though.

Wednesday, February 6, 2002

Flags are <i>so</i> last year.

On the subject of trends in patriotism: a friend today mentioned the John Prine song Your Flag Decal Won't Get You Into Heaven Anymore. The song dates from the Vietnam Era, when the nation was sick of war, and when patriotism had fallen out of fashion.

Interestingly, The John Prine Shrine website prominently features a link saying "America Stands United", pointing to a patriotic inspirational 9/11 chain letter/spam/flag thing.

Monday, February 4, 2002

My tuh ih thtuck ih duh mixer.

Mark points out Chef, a programming language in which programs look like recipes. Two code examples are provided: Hello World Souffle and Fibonacci Numbers with Caramel Sauce.


Do not pull this lever.

Today I was talking about aircraft with Sam, who actually flies and (unlike me) knows what's he's talking about. I was amazed to learn that some small aircraft are actually being produced with FAA-certified external parachutes, designed to bring the entire craft to the ground in an emergency.

Why was she looking there in the first place?

The story Liverpool Woman Finds Snake in her Trainer isn't nearly as disturbing if you know that "trainer" in England means "running shoe".