Sorry about the absence, have some pi

No, the Poorhouse is neither dead or so poor he can't pay the hosting bill. So many sorries for lack of updates, I know I shouldn't take those micropennies of google ad income for granted. However the situation (extreme busyness, lack of internet freedom) is in no danger of resolving itself anytime soon.

So, in the mean time, baffle yourself with this apparent fact.

If you divide the length of a river from source to mouth across a gently sloping plane by its direct length "as the crow flies", you'll find pi.

Microsofty tidbits for work and pleasure

What could be more interesting on a weekend than an article about Microsoft Office? I know...a story about the most common aspects of it that everyone knows about anyway.

Those of you with recentish incarnations such as Office 2003 may be aware that unless you tell it not to, Office monitors (parts of) what you're doing and reports back to big bad Microsoft which collates this information, hopefully to inform their designers and developers rather than another step towards world domination. So guessy guess time: what were the most used commands in Word based on this data (circa 2006 anyway)?

Music to watch geeks by

It's Monday. We need entertainment. Let's start with Brad Paisley, with his country ditty simply entitled "Online". Note guest appearance by the Shat.

Then there's "Dontcha Wish Your Cell Phone Was Hot Like Me?", a version of the Pussy Cat Dolls' classic of course, only this time obsessing over the geekgasm that was the iPhone, rather than filthy hos.

How to record streaming radio (or any sound you hear on your computer)

The Internet is full of sound. Most of it is annoying, but occasionally there might be a streaming radio station, RealAudio file or something similar that is actually interesting and you'd like to keep a copy of. Unfortunately some sound formats do not lend themselves to being easy to download and copy, whether this be as a piracy prevention precaution or just a technological flaw.

Enter then the slightly strangely named but totally free-of-charge MP3myMP3 Recorder, as mentioned on the excellent Lifehacker. Its tag line: "If you can hear it, you can record it".

The Shat, remixed

Still no experiment results sorry, but instead a bit of entertainment. Just one Internet-meme-famous step down from the Hoff, William Shatner is most famous for being something of a philanderer with aliens from a distant planet - although please note it was only aliens that looked like women with pretty faces, boobs and everything rather than the sort that looked like a big lump of gooey vomit-strewn rock he was interested in.

Dancing Bush x 2

No, not everyone's reasonably-favourite Flash timewaster Dancing Bush Game, but our Great Leader having an awesome time at the Malaria Awareness day yesterday. He may be a ridiculous president, but his combination semi-doggy style and professional chimp expression dance is a thing of wonder.

OK then, Flash game it is. Make him strut his stuff cartoon-stylee below.

What time is it?

Elite web surfers: the virtues of using the 'fox as opposed to Internet Explorer to surf away have been discussed many a time before - mainly to do with the many extensions you can add on to it to make it super useful. Yet to feature on the Poorhouse however is the number one essential reason to get it right now.

Two words: Stop and Hammertime.

Well, for far too long when that immense webpage full of a certain type of photographs has refused to download within the hour, you've had to reach for a dull red stop sign, X or other such tedious and predictable iconic representation of "stop" stuck at the top of your boring web browser. No longer!

Away in a sweatshop

Something seasonal - well, at least it's the right month. The Poorhouse wishes a very merry forthcoming Christmas to all and sundry. One rather large subsection of the population who won't be swilling back the brandy and eating stupid amounts of pudding or in any way be having a semblance of a good time will of course be those who are forced to work in a sweatshop. They will most likely still be near-slaving away for pennies in illegal, dangerous and entirely amoral conditions, to make the things us especially in the "developed" western world like to pointlessly buy throw away as often as possible, especially at this time of year.

Even if you don't want to entirely eschew your consumerist lifestyle and spend your time changing the world to free these modern-day-slaves, then at least let's remember them throughout the holiday season.

Online file conversion

The Internet is great for sending files around, whether they be documents, pictures, sounds, videos or any other such electro-data. What is sometimes less great is when the proud recipient of your favourite picture of your hilarious office antics, or chain letter that if you don't forward to 7 people immediately you will die a painful death, can’t actually see the file because they don't have the right obscure program needed to open it.

This problem is only exacerbated by the profusion of admittedly cool new technologies where for instance a Nokia phone can bluetooth a sound recording to your Apple Mac via a Palm PC and so on. Who knows what format that will turn up in, or how to open it? If horror-of-horrors you aren't even on your own computer the chances of you finding and installing a program that will let you convert such things is minimal. So luckily you don't have to any more, Media Convert will do it for you via the web.

Treadmills can be fun

Only the least Internet-enabled peons amongst you will not be aware and have witnessed one of the latest virals circulated around the email and blogosphere. Namely the band OK Go's gymnasium extravaganza "Here it goes again". If you've missed out, regardez vous below.

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