Gadgets for the Halloween Geek

Images and info found on Device Daily.

While I was looking around for fun music and accoutrement for Halloween, I stumbled upon these cool gadgets.

doll sharpener
1. Living Dead Dolls Pencil Sharpener

I’m pretty sure I would want this around every day of the year. I can also think of plenty of my friends that are sadistic and freaky enough to want to stab her eye all the time.

zombie light
2. Solar Powered Yard Light Zombie

Although the solar powered option makes it attractive to have out all the time, I’m not sure how well it would go with my garden. This might be one that only comes out each October.

coffin fogger
3. Coffin Fogger

The coffin comes with an included skeleton, and oozes color-changing mist by using tap water.

spooky shadows
4. Spooky Shadows Projector

I tried to make one of these before. Sometimes it is just easier to buy something, especially when the one you made doesn’t even work (the shadows were completely undecipherable).

ghost finder camera
5. Ghost Finder Camera

Now when you get those blurry photos, you can say, “Oh, that is just the murderer who haunts my house.”

pumpkin PC case
6. Pumpkin PC Case

It takes all kinds.

pumkin PC
7. Pumpkin PC

At least with the case, you can switch it out (to your Christmas Santa case, maybe.) With this one, you will be celebrating your Halloween nerdishness all year round!

ghost mouse
8. Ghost Mouse

While the decoration is kinda cool, I’m not so sure about the ergonomics of the shape. We must suffer for our geekdom.

pumpkin USB lights
9. USB Pumpkin Decor Light

Time to decorate the cubicle or your house with these lights that are powered through the USB.

USB Hub monster
10. USB Hub Monster

I think this one is my favorite, since it looks like it was made by a demented 5th grader.

Redistribution of Wealth, Commando Style


I thought it important to note that I put this blog posting up AS A JOKE!!! People, come on! I am a steadfast Obama supporter. Obviously this story and the person who wrote it has virtually nothing to do with Obama’s distribution of wealth plan.

The changes having to do with the economy are geared toward changes in taxes:

Obama and Biden will cut income taxes by $1,000 for working families to offset the payroll tax they pay.

  • Provide a Tax Cut for Working Families: Obama and Biden will restore fairness to the tax code and provide 150 million workers the tax relief they need. Obama and Biden will create a new “Making Work Pay” tax credit of up to $500 per person, or $1,000 per working family. The “Making Work Pay” tax credit will completely eliminate income taxes for 10 million Americans.
  • Eliminate Income Taxes for Seniors Making Less than $50,000: Barack Obama will eliminate all income taxation of seniors making less than $50,000 per year. This proposal will eliminate income taxes for 7 million seniors and provide these seniors with an average savings of $1,400 each year. Under the Obama-Biden plan, 27 million American seniors will also not need to file an income tax return.
  • Simplify Tax Filings for Middle Class Americans: Obama and Biden will dramatically simplify tax filings so that millions of Americans will be able to do their taxes in less than five minutes. Obama and Biden will ensure that the IRS uses the information it already gets from banks and employers to give taxpayers the option of pre-filled tax forms to verify, sign and return. Experts estimate that the Obama-Biden proposal will save Americans up to 200 million total hours of work and aggravation and up to $2 billion in tax preparer fees.

This has nothing to do with taking money from someone who has earned it and giving it to the poor.I am saddened that I needed to explain the joke, but I guess my dry sense of humor goes over even poorer on the web than it does in person.

The Original Post:

This story was found on an unidentified blog earlier today and I thought it would be worth disseminating for those who wish to help jumpstart Obama’s redistribution of wealth before he gets into office:

Today on my way to lunch I passed a homeless guy with a sign that read ‘Vote Obama, I need the money.’ I laughed.

Once in the restaurant my server had on an ‘Obama 08’ tie, again I laughed as he had given away his political preference–just imagine the coincidence, him and the homeless guy.

When the bill came I decided not to tip the server and explained to him that I was exploring the Obama redistribution of wealth concept. He stood there in disbelief while I told him that I was going to redistribute his tip to someone whom I deemed more in need–as his candidate declares is fit and proper. The server angrily stormed from my sight.

I went outside, gave the homeless guy $10 and told him to thank the server inside as I’ve decided he could use the money more than the man who earned it. The homeless guy was grateful.

At the end of my rather unscientific redistribution experiment, the homeless guy was grateful for money he did not earn, but the waiter was pretty angry that I gave away the money he made… even though the actual recipient deserved money more and the waiter had publicly declared his agreement with that political stance.

I guess redistribution of wealth is an easier thing to swallow in concept than in practical application.

Obama's Tax Calculator

While I understand that there may be a political charge to the calculator, as well as questions as to the validity of the results, there is no denying the simple usability of Obama’s Tax Calculator.

The Obama campaign continues to utilize the web with grace and style. It brings McCain’s technological retardation in to sharp relief.
For more info about Obama’s Tax plan you can read this PDF; Barack Obama’s Tax Plan.
Additionally, there is a comparison between Obama and McCain’s Tax Plans.

Apple's iPhone Developer Kit Agreement Published

apple icon
original article by Thomas Claburn available at Information week here.

The restrictive terms of the old iPhone SDK Agreement effectively prevented iPhone developers from discussing their coding work with anyone other than project team members.

The controversial iPhone Software Development Kit (SDK) Agreement that Apple last week discontinued has been posted to Wikileaks, where it is available for download.

NOTE: Wikileaks provides anonymously leaked corporate and political documents online.

The iPhone SDK Agreement states that it is for internal use only and not for redistribution.
The summary information that accompanies the iPhone SDK file states that the agreement has never before been publicly released.
“This file is important because Apple is being extremely secretive about the iPhone developer program,” the Wikileaks summary page says. “The agreement contains several controversial terms and claims that need to be discussed in an open forum. This is however explicitly forbidden by the agreement.”

The SDK Agreement was posted to Wikileaks on October 24th, the day that Apple issued a new iPhone developer agreement. Earlier in that week, the T-Mobile G1 mobile phone was released. The G1, built atop Google (NSDQ: GOOG)’s Android mobile platform, is widely seen as an iPhone competitor.

Please see other stories about the G1 phone and Android

Apple did not respond to several requests for comment.

The restrictive terms of the old iPhone SDK Agreement effectively prevented iPhone developers from discussing their coding work with anyone other than project team members. Many iPhone developers complained about Apple’s restrictions. Some reportedly took to paying friends a token sum so they could be legally classified as project contractors and thereby discuss iPhone development with them.

WordPress went so far as to release the source code for its iPhone blog-posting application, a violation of the SDK Agreement. Apple, however, has not pursued any legal action.

Apple’s SDK Agreement also prohibited developers from talking about its restrictions. “You may not issue any press releases or make any other public statements regarding this Agreement, its terms and conditions, or the relationship of the parties without Apple’s express prior written approval, which may be withheld at Apple’s discretion,” the posted SDK says.

In announcing its plan to release a new iPhone developer agreement, Apple acknowledged that its non-disclosure terms created too much of a burden for developers and relaxed them for released iPhone software.

The new agreement continues to regard as confidential: Apple pre-release software, related documentation, information presented at Apple Events, and paid developer content.

Joe the Plumber; Another Distraction

Over the course of the last few days, I have heard references to “Joe the Plumber” and really had no idea what people were talking about.

Is this a new video game?

Is it a reference to our dearly departed Joe Strummer from the Clash?

Is it the alarmist web site

Leave it to The Daily Show and Jon Stewart to finally enlighten me. I used to find it funny that many Millennials listed The Daily Show as their main source of news and information about the world. Now, with as busy as my life has become, it seems that I must group myself with the uninformed masses and Stewart’s show (along with The Colbert Report) are now my news mainstays.

Joe the Plumber

Seems that Joe “The Plumber”¬†Wurzelbacher is a working plumber who wants to buy a small business and confronted Obama about his tax increases that would affect him as a business owner to pay for tax cuts for others.

While these moments make for good rhetoric and even better comedy, I am concerned that as we slide into the last couple weeks before the elections, that the ‘undecided voters’ don’t have more pressing issues placed before them and clear opinions by our candidates with which to differentiate them and give these wishy-washy voters something to grab for.