Fighter fun

Why not make a gingerbread Star Wars TIE Fighter this Christmas?

PNIX fixation

Sly network operators are fond of injecting burlesque humour into their work, even when it comes to serious things like peering exchanges. These are traditionally abbreviated to IX (Internet eXchange), which provides room for endless amusing variations, such as these posted to the New Zealand Network Operators Group list:

“DPE [Dunedin Peering Exchange] is also up and running in Dunedin and has first connections from January 2007. We requested a name change to DIX so that we could hook up CHIX with DIX, but the request was again denied.”

CHIX being in Christchurch, unlike the HIX residing in Hamilton, of course. Not to be outdone by HIX CHIX with DIX, Palmerston North operators have named their exchange PNIX.

It's all in the name

At a recent vendor Christmas do, an E-taler spotted the glamorous fashion designer Trelise Cooper (or someone who looked very like her). He was tempted to go up and introduce himself to the dynamic blonde businesswoman, but was afraid — since he’d had a drink or two — that he might stumble verbally while introducing himself. After all, it would have been a tad embarrassing if, instead of, “Hello Trelise, nice to meet you”, he’d accidentally said, “Hello Tamsin, nice to meet you”.

For those not in the know, Trelise Cooper is suing Tamsin Cooper, another fashion designer, for using her own name. She claims fashionistas might confuse Tamsin Cooper’s clothes with hers. This hasn’t stopped Trelise C branching out in other directions, however, as this picture of her pretty pricey pink-corset mobile phone cover shows.

Remotely yours

We know Christmas is coming here at E-tales headquarters when the new tech stuff starts arriving for review. Some of it is cool and some is not so cool but, theoretically, falls into the useful category. Such is the Sony universal remote control, sent to us by Altiris. Vaguely excited, one of our E-talers took it home to try out with his harem of remotes — for the TV, the music system, the DVD player, the VCR, and so on.

The result: it wouldn’t work with any of them. Now, having looked at it, and what passes for a manual, this E-taler has reached the conclusion that normal human beings will be flummoxed — even one techie chap of our acquaintance says he would be too scared to take it home, and not because it might mate with his own harem of remotes. But it should be a cinch for E-tales users, although it is definitely not intuitive.

Fighter fun

Still on the subject of Christmas, the tech world seems to do it differently, if a recent Boing Boing website entry (courtesy of Flickr) is anything to go by.

The weird and wonderful image above is actually a cake, a gingerbread one, in fact, complete with white icing. Northern Europe is big on these cakes for Christmas — the Germans do sweet little Hansel and Gretel-type houses, but, apparently, further north in Sweden they do things very differently.

In Uppsala, a bunch of science fiction fans get together each year to bake a traditional advent cake with a difference. This year’s offering comes in the form of a Star Wars TIE Fighter Advanced.

We think it’s great and it even comes with photographic instructions — see pepparkaksbk 2006 on Flickr (it means gingerbread baking). But where are the traditional smarties that usually decorate such cakes?

Biter bit back on the web

Heard of the prisoner’s dilemma? Of course you have. It means you should never underestimate the power of the little gal or guy, as in — Prisoner to Guard: “If you don’t give me a cigarette I’ll bash my head on the door and blame you, and then you’ll get it from the guv’nor.”

Well, the internet provides many rich examples of the small guy biting back, and one of the latest such tales is told by news site Ananova. It concerns an Auckland couple who cancelled their marquee for the big day and got roundly bawled out, by email, by the company concerned for being “cheap, nasty and tacky” — even though the wedding was set to cost $30,000.

But the bemused couple got the last laugh. They emailed the offending email to their mates, who emailed it to their mates, who emailed it to… and on and on around the world.

The virtual stocks are surely with us, but now the village is global and the derisive laughter echoes around the planet.

Nerds rule OK

Seen parked outside IBM headquarters in Wellington: a car bearing the number plate “A NERD”. A shared corporate vehicle? We wondered.

Love hurts big-time

Still on the subject of virtual stocks — this time courtesy of MySpace — Ananovaalso reports on how love-cheating English lad (or should that be cad?) Matt East’s girlfriend, Sam Deakin, hijacked his MySpace page and inserted a satirical take on the Mastercard TV advert:

“Dinner in a posh restaurant … $100. Night in a top hotel … $200. Finding out your boyfriend is a lying scumbag and changing his MySpace page so everyone can see … PRICELESS.”

The site, which has since been closed by MySpace, received 250,000 hits in five days. Ouch!

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