Guilty pleasure television

So my DVR list has a pretty wide range of shows on my list. I have confessed to the guilty pleasures of “American Idol” and “So you think you can Dance” and the train wreck that is “Jersey Shore”. I also love standard popular shows like “LOST” and I just watched the season finale of “Heroes”. Mix in some other shows like “Survivorman” and “man vs wild” and “Dog the bounty hunter”. Throw in some expected shows like “mythbusters”, “conspiracy theory with Jesse Ventura”, and “the daily show”. So what show could I tell you that would make you say WTF?

RuPauls Drag Race!

That’s right, I said it. I watch a show about drag queens and think that it is FAB-U-LOUS! It is a world that I don’t know anything about and I find it fascinating! I really do. I have to say that these men…er..women…err…yeah…anyway, these people are genuine and truly comfortable with who they are and I respect that they stand up and aren’t afraid to be who they are. This may be a bit of a leap, but it is teh same way that I am not afraid to stand up and admit that I am a hacker.

I admit that their situation may be much harder due to social stigma, but hackers can relate at least o a small scale to having to hide who we are to certain people. There is a lesson here of tolerance and even though you may have laughed at the first part of this entry, I hope that you finish reading this post with a lesson. How can we expect other people to accept us for who we are if we don’t accept other people for who they are. Or to put it into words that Rupaul says on the show…

“How can you expect anyone to love you, if you can’t love yourself?”

That’s right, I quoted RuPaul in a blog post on a hacking site. That is what makes me the dawg.

The Colony: My new favorite show

So I have been watching this new pseudo-reality show on Discovery channel called “The Colony“. I say pseudo-reality, because it is really more of a simulation of what reality might be like in a post disaster environment. They also chose people who clearly would have the skills necessary to survive. These are no everyday dramatards that you find on “the real world” or other reality shows (although there is some drama on occasion). They chose people with specific skillsets that they knew would actually be able to do the interesting things that would be necessary to survive. They chose 1 doctor and a nurse as part of the casts, surrounded them with several mechanics and engineers and some handymen and carpenters. This gives them the skills and knowledge necessary to do things that are needed to survive.

Here is an example: The are dropped off in an abandoned area outside of Los Angeles, CA where there are no other people with whom to interact (other than an occasion plant by the show to test them somehow). But the area that they were guided to was a giant warehouse that just coincidentally happened to have a lot of handy items in it like some canned food to get started, some gasoline and other types of fuel, and a large array of car batteries which is a great start for generating and storing power. I think this is pretty freaking awesome! As a person interested in survival anyway, I find this show intriguing because it shows not the hardcore “eat anything that moves” survival aspect of life, but a more realistic “use what you have laying around” type of survival. This plays very well to my hacker core.

One of my favorite characters is John who is a computer engineer. So the first thing to point out is that there is no power, no Internet, no computer anywhere around in this situation. But let me tell you, this guy is a freaking GENIUS! He is a geek MacGyver! He may be a computer scientist by title, but this guy knows more science than most science teachers that I have had. Not to mention the fact that he is a very gentle and caring human being. He is a bit of an old hippie, but that may be my end form in life. When it is all said and done and I am in my twilight years (if I am not already in them) that might be the same way that people describe me. This guy is one of the best parts of the show.

Another person that I like is Mike who is portrayed as the general handyman of the group with bonus knowledge of solar energy (how convenient that there were solar panels on a nearby building) which is apparently what he does for a living. He is a great example of someone who just works hard to get things done. He knows what he can do and just does it and if he doesn’t know it, he figures it out. He proves that you don’t need a PhD to be smart and accomplish a lot of things. There is another character on the show who is supposedly a rocket scientist (Aerospace engineer to be exact) named Morgan who is worthless. She has done nothing the entire show except get an old record player working to play music. She tried to help on other project but showed her ineffectiveness compared to o0thers like Vlad and John. Mike can be a bit of a dick sometimes, but I would gladly have him on my team anytime.

I highly recommend that you check this show out. I really think that it is must see for hackers of all kinds as well as anyone with an interest in survival. I definitely learned a lot of things so far on the show that I had never heard of before. I think you will as well.

Attack of the show is a /b/-tard

When I watch anything on television that has a computer, I always watch very closely to see what I can find out about the computer and the person using it. I have mentioned here before that I have caught some interesting things on Attack of the Show on G4. Well, they are at it again.

During a segment where they were demonstrating the new halo game, or some other such nonsense, I noticed that their firefox browser had another tab open at the same time. I do not have the capacity at home to do a proper screen capture, but I did pause it long enough to get a blurry camera phone picture.
AOTS 4chan screenie
If anyone doesn’t know, 4chan is an imageboard/forum type site that is well known for creating some of the most enduring internet memes. My personal favorite is CATURDAY where the LOLCATS run free. But their biggest claim to fame is the total chaos that is “/b/” or the random channel. This particular board is an anything goes world where the easily offended should stay away. Very NSFW and insanely hilarious, it is not the place for the feint of heart. This is why it is so funny to see the mention on a big show like AOTS.

Attack of The Show desktop capture

I was watching Attack Of the Show this weekend on my DVR and during the “Around the net” section, after showing a live web site tool, they minimized the browser quickly before the director has changed the camera. This allowed a 1 second glimpse of the desktop of that machine and I paused it to find some interesting things.

The obvious thing that I noticed was that the computer was running (surprise!) Microsoft Windows. (This was assumed?) The interesting part to me, is the sort of thing that I spoke about in my “Electronic Deduction” article.? There were a lot of little icons and clues on the desktop that are listed below.

  • Ugly AOTS logo wallpaper (tiled)
  • Safari browser icon (which had just been released earlier that week)
  • Last.fm icon/shortcut (someone is listening to some music in the studio)
  • Yahoo messenger icon (along with some other yahoo icon so someone has a yahoo account!)
  • There were also a couple of unidentifiable icons.? Maybe someone else recognized the description or saw it better than I did.
  • Some camera icon (It did not look like webshots or picassa, but it could have been an internet shortcut to flickr or something also)
  • A default DOS application icon.? Something that seemed very out of place. There was a name under it, but I could not make it out.
  • A folder.? This one also had a description that was unreadable.
  • An icon with a red letter “S” on it with a white background.? This was certainly an application of some kind, but again, I did not recognize it.

So what does all this mean?? I guess it means that I watch things to damn closely, but I just always find it interesting to look really closely at everything.? I was expecting that a live system in a studio for a live show would be pristine and only have the bare minimum installed to avoid the potential for crashing while live or to prevent embarrassing things from happening on the air.? I guess that they use this machine for whatever they want.

I did not get a screen capture of it before I deleted it, but if someone out there has it, please send it to me and I will post it here.