kwc.org Photos Spare Cycles MythBusters

Category: My Other Blogs

May 7, 2007

Elsewhere on kwc.org (part AK(K) of A(g64, g64))

April 21, 2007

Elsewhere on kwc.org; a whole heap of MythBusters

The Hindenburg and Underwater Car myths are two of my favorites that they have tested recently. I still have a huge backlog of episodes though this clears it up a bit.

March 12, 2007

Elsewhere on kwc.org (part XI)

February 13, 2007

Elsewhere on kwc.org (part X)

IMG_0314 Landis Approaching the Finish Line-1

February 9, 2007

Yet another blog baby

kwc.org/architecture is starting to take shape. After my architectural splurge in Japan, I finally feel like there is enough original content there to stand on its own. The amount of traffic my architecture category page gets seems to justify this as well, though most of that is due to Google Image search. One other reason is that its nice to play with a pure MovableType 3.3 blog with tags and widgets, instead of trying to migrate an older, heavily-customized template.

With kwc.org/cycling and kwc.org/mythbusters, you might think that I actually like creating sub-blogs, but the real answer is 'kinda'. It's a pain to maintain a single blog between MovableType upgrades (kwc.org/blog still runs with MT 2.x-style templates), and having multiple blogs is multiple pains.

I used to believe in the idea of a universal data manager. The notion is attractive: throw everything into one big bin and have a good tool for pulling all that data out. But the fact is that you want to treat different types of data/media differently, even if they are all "blog entries." You can try and customize the wazoo out of categories and tags and whatnot, but that becomes ugly. Keeping them in separate sandboxes means that you can see just MythBusters-related tags when searching the MythBusters guides and see just architecture-related tags when searching the architecture entries. It also means that I don't have to type the 'architecture' tag when creating an architecture entry nor assign it to the 'architecture' category.

So anyway, step 1 of the separation is complete. I haven't really bothered with the default MT template just yet and I need to fix up some macros I was using with older entries. I'm also rethinking past decisions and I think I'm going to try and figure out how to merge all the various blogs and feeds into one display, instead of having the infrequent "Elsewhere" posts.

December 29, 2006

Mythbusters guides redesign

AnnotatedMythbustersRedesign-thumb.jpgI did a very, very quick redesign of my MythBusters episode guides site and even gave it a new name: Annotated MythBusters. 'Annotated' seemed slightly less hackneyed than 'Unofficial', which was chosen because I was getting sick of dealing with absurd cease and desists. Annotated is a little bit closer to what I'm trying to do, which is both document what occurred as well as provide supplementary links to details not covered during the episode.

The only reason I was able to do a quick redesign was because I used Liz Lubowitz's "Calm, Cool, Collected" entry into the SixApart Style Contest. I made some minor tweaks, such as tweaking widths and removing background graphics, but I didn't want to spend too much time on it, and Liz's design was already so clean. Her other designs are quite good as well and are there to remind me that 1) I don't know jack about CSS anymore and 2) I really, really need to get the redesign of this blog done sometime. Maybe I'll make that a resolution as well.

December 27, 2006

Elsewhere on kwc.org (Part IX)

Episode 69: 22,000 foot fall, Lights On or Off

The 22,000 Foot Fall myth was in many was a revisit of the Cement Mix Up myth, i.e. setting off a really big explosion in a Calaveras County quarry for kicks, though they were actually testing a myth this time around. This explosion had better footage than the cement truck as you could see the shockwave more clearly, and there is even a fire-fighting copter swooping in afterwards to put out fire on the surrounding hillside. As this myth did have a true story at its core, there was some hint of belief from Adam that this might actually work... until they were reminded what a 1,000 lb bomb looks like.

I was interested in the lights on or off myth as I had been told that its generally best if you leave fluorescent lights on all the time. I believe I had been told something like, "unless you leave the fluorescent lights off for more than an hour, you shouldn't turn them off." As it turns out, the actual rule for fluorescent lights is about 23 seconds. For other lights, about a second or less.

Episode 61: Deadly Straw, Primary Perception

The primary perception myth was the kooky myth of the episode and it started off on a weird note: they actually got a polygraph to react to Tory's thoughts of harming a plant. As they improved their experimental setup, though, these weird results disappeared.

The hurricane-related myths saw the construction of a new MythBusters air cannon. This one couldn't fire chickens -- just at them -- but it did feature an 80-foot-long barrel. It was a little scary as a straw gun; it was absolutely frightening as a piano wire gun.

Episode 62: Killer Cable Snaps, Pottery Record

The cable snap myth saw the return of pig carcasses as standins for human bodies. Its not a episode for those easily made queasy. The cable snap myth tested a belief that many of us, including Adam, had: that a snapping cable can cut you in half. But their own researchers had not turned up a single confirmed case of this actually happening and their testing confirmed what their researchers did: a snapping cable isn't going to cut through you like butter. It can kill you and cause many other types of damage, but in their multiple tests, though couldn't get a single cut.

December 10, 2006

Elsewhere on kwc.org (part VIII)

I'm behind on my MythBusters episode guides and I'm even more behind mentioning them here. FYI: Mega-Movie Myths has the myth that I got to watch in person (Awning Fall).

MythBusters episode guides: * Christmas Tree Lights, Antigravity, Vodka and Jellyfish Stings * Mega-Movie Myths * Crimes and Myth-Demeanors II * More Myths Revisited * Earthquake Machine, Exploding Lava Lamp * Shattering Subwoofer and Rough Road Driving * Diet Coke and Mentos, Postage Stamp on Helicopter

Spare Cycles: * Tour of California 2007 Route Announced * Levi Leipheimer at Lombardi Sports in SF, Dec 18th * Indoor Peloton Class at LATS

September 11, 2006

Elsewhere on kwc.org (Part VII)

I've gotten a start on the season 4 episode writeups. Of course I am eagerly anticipating the episode that I got to watch in person, but many of these have been fun as well. Never before have I gotten so much background info on a myth prior it to showing. I mean, it's one thing to hear Adam tell everyone at lunch about that pizza he ate, it's another thing entirely to watch said pizza spinning down a whirlpool vortex.

July 1, 2006

Elsewhere on kwc.org (part V)

This is mostly a reminder that Tour coverage has been moved to my spare cycles blog.

April 23, 2006

Elsewhere on kwc.org (part 4)

A writeup of my visit to the MythBusters set and the Tour de Georgia coverage has concluded. It's been an exciting month, from cycling events like the Sea Otter Classic, Menlo Park, and the Tour de Georgia, to MythBusters to Maker Faire to Alternative Press Expo, but I'm probably going to have to buy a stack of hard drives for all the photos and videos, and I go to Japan in two weeks! These are very good times.

April 19, 2006

Elsewhere on kwc.org (part 3 of infinity)

Update 2: MythBusters: Bullets Fired Up and Vodka Myths III guide Update: MythBusters: Cell Phones on Planes and Helium Raft episode guide

March 30, 2006

Situation resolved

It looks like my mythbusters site is in the clear now. I've just chatted with the lawyer and, although I don't have the official okay, any confusion as to the nature of the remaining images on the site has been cleared up. In response to this whole situation that started a month ago, I have been trying to find legal sources of images documentating the shows. Just today, Robert Werden of replicaprops.com was kind enough to let me use photos of the Flatulence Containment Unit (FCU) that he acquired (as seen in the Flatulence myths episode). If you know of any images, please drop me a line at

For reference, I was asked to remove images from the Archimedes Revisited and Shredded Plane myths. Neither of those are actual screen captures from the program, which was the cause of the original cease and desist.

In other MythBusters news, you can now view video of the six pack cooling demonstration on my Encinal High event summary. You get to see Jamie shoot Adam with the fire extinguisher and audience members drink beer in a high school auditorium.

March 28, 2006

Lots of videos from MythBusters Encinal High Benefit

I've posted a lot of transcripts and video from the MythBusters Encinal High Benefit. The video is shaky but has descent audio.

NOTE: The video of the six-pack cooling demonstration is still being verified by Google Video. From prior experience, that's gonna take awhile to be ready (YouTube couldn't handle a file that large).

March 26, 2006

Elsewhere on kwc.org... (part 2 in a never-ending series)

Unofficial MythBusters guides:

Spare cycles: * What Would Graham Do? * SportsVelo and LATS * Basso Looking Strong (Criterium International)

More on the MythBusters coming soon. I took lots of video that I need to process. If it's good enough I'll post on YouTube. If it's not, I try to transcribe some of the Q&A. There was a great blooper reel that I wish I could post.

March 13, 2006

Poll update

Based on the feedback, I'll post links to the MythBusters episode guides when they're done so that they show up on the Movabletypo page and I'll do the occassional pointer to the cycling entries, but much less of those. If I'm going to be cross-posting a lot less of the cycling entries, at least allow me to brag about my photos making it to some pro cyclist sites :). Of course, there's no limit to where your photos may end up ... when you give them away for free.

March 12, 2006

Poll: Blog separation (cycling, mythbusters)

The cycling and mythbusters blogs are now 'hidden' from both the Movabletypo front page, LiveJournal users, and the normal feed for this page. Is this what people prefer? There are several options for the Movabletypo/LJ feeds that I can try out, which of these do you prefer?

  • Keep hidden, people can check the cycling and mythbusters separately
  • Put MythBusters entries back into the Movabletypo or LiveJournal feed
  • Put cycling entries back into the Movabletypo or LiveJournal feed
  • Do summary posts like my previous entry that highlight some of what's going on in the other blogs

I personally don't care either which way as I have no trouble reading my own entries :) ... and I already know how much each entry gets read so it doesn't affect my vanity for you to say thumbs up or thumbs down to seeing certain entries (muhahaha Google Analytics/Measuremap).

Elsewhere on kwc.org

I've posted my MythBusters: Franklin's Kite and Flatulence Myths episode guide and a review of the IMAX film Wired to Win.

February 26, 2006

MythBusters episode guides relocated

If you're reading this blog for MythBusters episode guides, let me now point you to kwc.org/mythbusters. I've been wanting to run a separate episode guide site as I've never liked that someone searching for a MythBusters episode summary is dropped into the middle of my blog. The separate site should eliminate a lot of navigation confusion. I've also gone back through a lot of entries and have tried to add in photos to replace some of the removed screenshots where possible.

I'll still be posting MythBusters news on this blog, but the episode summaries will go to the new location.

On a related note, I'm thinking of separating out the cycling and Comic-Con content so that I can create more customized pages. I may wait until I have more artistic inspiration for those as the new mythbusters episode guide site is rather bland.

February 17, 2006

Brief update

Thanks to bernadette I've been browsing the Chilling Effects database. There are a few cease and desist letters from the same law firm and one for Discovery Channel that is much more harshly worded than the one I received. They are a bit nicer in their wording now, though the arguments I feel still conflate copyright and trademark and are awash in slippery slope non sequiturs. It's still not clear to me how one defends against a cease and desist letter without financial liability.

I also found this fair use article online, which I'll link to because of it's title:

Copyright Mythbusters: Believe It or Not, Fair Use Exists

For now I've updated the MythBusters episode summaries to really, really try to make it clear that this site is not Discovery affiliated. I've also decided that I'll leave all the broken image links in so that future visitors can appreciated the absense of screenshots.

Myths undecorated

In my more recent episode summaries for MythBusters, I have been using screenshots from the episodes as I felt that they conveyed some of the mythbusting better than text. I did so believing this is fair use, as they were merely screenshots and not actual video clips, they were of low quality, and in no way did they devalue the original material. Apparently the Discovery Channel does not agree.

They state that I am using Discovery Channel's copyrighted material and, oddly, Discovery Channel's logo (do they mean their own logo they place in the bottom right corner of every episode?), and they are concerned that somehow someone will mistake kwc.org for a Discovery affiliated or sponsored site. This is probably a form letter and, as such, I can only expect a form response to any further inquiry. In the mean time, I have disabled the images in the links so you will see many, many broken image links. It will take quite awhile for me to fully purge the entries of these images.

I'm saddened as I feel that this was a fair, legitimate, and appropriate way in which to document MythBusters episodes. I also feel we live in a very bogus era of copyright enforcement where any weak argument can be used to effectively deter legal uses of material.

February 8, 2006

Screenshots added

My MythBusters: Catch a bullet with your teeth and helium football entry has been updated with disgusting screenshots of abused pig heads.

Update: screenshots removed at the order of the Discovery Channel

December 5, 2003

blogcount++

I now have another blog, in fact, I have a couple more now so I figure I'll crosspost this to outline what's what.

There's my main blog,kwc blog, which will always be my main blog because I enjoy the expressive power of Movable Type and its related plugins. On this blog I'll try to keep it to posts that are by some definition related to me in some way (journal, photos, job) or expressing my interests (sports, books, movies). Also, I use movabletype on kwc blog to manage my reading list and movie list.

My friends Kenji and Justin helped set me up with a Live Journal account. I haven't figured out yet how I'm going to maintain the balance of posts with LJ. daveXtreme helped setup a syndicated feed from this blog to LJ, so the contents of this blog will be mirrored there. However, the way syndicated feeds work, I am not the "owner" of this feed so I can't do much to maintain/modify it.

I had to sign up for a Xanga blog so that I could post to my friend's Xanga blogs. I don't like the restriction that only Xanga members can post on their blogs, so I'm not planning on actually posting there, only maintaining it enough that they don't close the account (and thus, my ability to post).

There's also 1010, consisting of members of the 1010 Golf Ct house and extended community, which I've given occassional mention here already. I'm planning on moving more of my link posting over to 1010, which should reduce the number of posts on this blog and make it easier for those consuming my syndicated feed over at LJ.

To summarize:
1) kwc blog: posts related to me, or expressing my interests, including my movie and reading lists
2) 1010 (community blog for myself, metamanda, honeyfields, and pqbon): largely a mirror of the crazy stuff that BoingBoing and FARK provide me with.
3) kwc livejournal: I'm not sure what I'm going to use this for. If you are a LJ user it's much easier to follow along in the community and your comments get a nice little icon, so in many ways I have the account for the same reason as Xanga. I make posts more specific to the LJ community there, seeing as I participate in a lot of fantasy sports leagues with them and may make posts relating to those.
4) xanga blog: exists only so that I can post comments on Xanga, as Xanga is evil and doesn't allow anonymous comments. I'm not linking it here because it's of little interest.