Jim’s WebLetter for 8/15/09

Hi-ya friends and neighbors!

I have hit the Web this week and found all sorts of things to bring to your attention. I have weeded through the vast number of sites to see and things to do and compiled them into this week’s edition of JWL. It was difficult as I could have written a book on the places I discovered this week … literally pages full. But, who has time to read all this? So, here’s this week’s WebLetter for readers, weather watchers, Twitterers, and more. Enjoy!

Is there a reader in the house? For many, just saying the words, “Barnes and Noble” and ears perk up. They have to hold a book in their hands and tear through the pages as fast as the eyes will scan. But I ask, what about using your cellphone or other web-connected device? Here’s where I’m leading … with the internet, the landscape of publishing has changed forever. A good example of this is Feedbooks.com. The site delivers public domain books, free of charge, to your portable electronic device or computer. Grab books from a number of different types of genres and in a multitude of downloadable formats. But free is only half of it. If you are an aspiring writer, you can get your piece submitted for others to download, too. Let’s see Barnes and Noble do that. http://feedbooks.com/

Before anyone writes me to say that B&N also has an e-book section on their site … yes it’s true. And if you want to pay $10 for a book, download to your heart’s content. The thing is, once you’ve finished the e-book, what do you do with it? Maybe that could be the next cottage industry … uploading read books to a site where they can be resold. Maybe, tho’ there’s a copyright issue involved there. Worth checking out … http://www.barnesandnoble.com/ebooks/index.asp?cds2Pid=16447&linkid=1438283

Well, hurricane season is already into the third month and we’re finally seeing some evidence of formations out in the Atlantic. I have a couple of places I use to track weather by radar. One is a page I compiled for the extreme Southeast at http://weather.jimonline.com and one from Accuweather which gives a look at the mid-Atlantic at http://sirocco.accuweather.com/sat_mosaic_640x480_public/ei/isaehatl.gif

With the avent of Twitter, the need to shorten URLs for texting purposes has opened up an entire world of sites that convert a long Web address (like the one above) into just a few characters. Word of caution, not all URL converting sites are created equal. One good site to use would be Tiny URL which has been around a long time … http://tinyurl.com/, and also, Doiop, a relative newcomer but equally reliable … http://doiop.com/

Along those same lines, want to text a Bible scripture? Now you can. Ref.ly is for sharing bible verses. If you want to share your favorite psalm or passage, you build a verse. The end result is a permanent Ref.ly link to that part of the Bible, specifically to Bible.Logos.com, which owns Ref.ly. http://ref.ly/

Firefox users … there’s a new app for download if you want to obtain court records without all the hassle SOME court systems put you through. Programmers from Princeton, Harvard and the Internet Archive have devised this dandy little application to help you usurp the red tape that sometimes comes when trying to exercise the Freedom of Information Act. Read all about the app and get the free download. https://www.recapthelaw.org/

And if you want to save bits and pieces with their link to your hard drive for future studies or scrapbooking … use Scrapbook for Firefox. Scrapbook is extremely useful for researchers and students. Scrapbook saves blurbs from Web pages to your hard drive along with the URL of the originating Web site. It allows you to organize and categorize your blurbs in a format similar to your bookmarks so that when it comes to creating a bibliography or works cited, you won’t waste any time. https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/427

“Darn!” the man said to his friend while weighing himself at the local drug store scale.
“I started on a new diet but the scale says I’m heavier than I was before.”
Turning to his friend, he said, “Here, hold my jacket.”
The scale still indicated that he had not lost any weight.
“OK,” he said to his friend. “Hold my Twinkies.”
(thanks, Martha)
The minister and his wife place an ad for a butler. Early the next morning a nicely dressed young man appears at their front door. The minister asks him, “Can you fix breakfast by 7:00 a.m. every day?”
“Well … I guess I can.”
“And can you make the beds, dust the living room, do the dishes, cut the grass, and polish the silver also?”
“Gee, Sir, I just came by to see about getting married. But if it’s going to be that much work, you can count me out!”
(thanks, Everest … UK humor, gotta love it.)
Andy Kindler – I love whenever they downgrade a hurricane to a tropical depression, because I always think of a tropical depression as how I feel three songs into a Jimmy Buffett concert.
Demetri Martin – I keep a lighter in my back pocket all the time. I’m not a smoker; I just really like certain songs.
Otis Lee Crenshaw – How come you can play guitar and harmonica at the same time, like, you know, Bob Dylan or Neil Young? You’re a genius. Make that extra effort to strap some cymbals to your knees, and people will cross the street to get the heck away from you.
Hugh Fink – I was listening to Rossini’s Overture, ‘La Gazza Ladra,’ which is Italian for ‘All My Exes Live In Texas.’
What do you call ghosts who scare talkshow hosts?
The Phantom of the Oprah.
(thanks, Stevie … tell your mom, it’s in print!)
OK, that’s all the time I have this weekend, JWL readers. Thank you for your time. I’m saving some of the material I received this week for next. Til then, may God continue to bless you and keep you safe.

Jim’s WebLetter
Discover the best of the Web
C-my-site at http://www.jimonline.com


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