Author: Gary Burge

Gary Burge is an experienced web developer and techno-activist who helps small businesses, non-profits and other interesting people create effective communications on the internet.

“Buzz Aldrin is So Gangsta”


Buzz Aldrin on moon

I have two passions: space exploration and hip hop“, says Buzz Aldrin, the pilot of the Apollo 11 Lunar Module on NASA’s first mission to the moon and on July 20, 1969, became the second human to stand on the moon (Neil Armstrong was the first).

This video shows Buzz recording “Rocket Experience” with Snoop Dogg and Talib Kweli. Quincy Jones and Soulja Boy also appear.

The best part is Snoop Dogg’s impromptu rap followed by his coaching of Buzz, who is now 70 years old. Nice, and all in good fun.

Neda: “The innocent look in her eyes”

A moving — and chilling BBC interview with Arash Hejazi, the doctor who tried to save Neda Soltan’s life. He is the younger man shown kneeling at her side in the videos of her death on the streets of Tehran.

Dr. Hajazi, who said he did not know Neda and was walking from his nearby office through groups of people who were themselves watching a demonstration, is now in Great Britain. He says that although he fears for his safety and will not return to Iran for some time, he felt compelled to speak about the death of a 26-year-old woman whose bloody image has become an icon of Iranian protest.

“They (the Iranian clergy) are going to denounce what I am saying. They are going to put so many things on me. I have never been in politics. I am jeopardising my situation because of the innocent look in her (Neda’s) eyes.”

Google Voice Going Public


The Google Voice team announced a few minutes ago that they have begun sending invitations to people wanting to signup for the phone dispatching and voice mail service.

“Invites for Google Voice are going out, and our list is huge, so it will take a while to get though them all. Be patient. Thanks!”
@googlevoice on Twitter.

No mention (yet) of porting existing numbers to Google Voice or using Google Voice with Google Apps for Domains.

Update: Confirmed by Official Google Blog.

Google is sending emails to people who have requested the Google Voice service. As an added touch, the signup procedure includes and opportunity to selected a number based on what the number spells out (a la 1-800-hot-babe). Says Google:

“Once you receive your invitation, just click on the link and follow the instructions to setup your new Voice account. To help you find a Google number that is personalized to you, we’ve added a number picker that lets you search by area code and text. See if you can find a number that contains your name, a specific word or a number combination.

Google Voice signup lets you "personalize" your number

Google Voice signup lets you “personalize” your number

Obama on the “Logic” of Public Health Insurance

QUESTION: Won’t that drive private insurers out of business?

THE PRESIDENT: Why would it drive private insurers out of business? If private insurers say that the marketplace provides the best quality health care, if they tell us that they’re offering a good deal, then why is it that the government — which they say can’t run anything — suddenly is going to drive them out of business? That’s not logical.


Typekit Brings the Web a Step Closer to Real Publishing

A Small Batch, Inc. has announced a new web service that resolves copyright restrictions on downloadable fonts and will deliver font packages directly to your web page the same way YouTube hosts videos and provides them to your web page on demand.

Typekit page

Typekit page

Typekit, the name of the new product, will solve a frustrating limitation inherent in web browsers: Only a very small subset of the thousands of type fonts available to desktop applications is available to designers of web pages.

Only 18 fonts can been assumed to be available in browsers running on Windows and the Mac — and half of those are so gnarly that no self-respecting designer would use them. In addition, even a font with the same name will display slightly more bold or larger on one platform versus the other.

If you every wondered why web pages look so similar, a large part of the answer is because of the font limitations.

Typekit hopes to remove that restriction:

“So here’s the situation: Every major browser is about to support the ability to link to a font. That means you can write a bit of CSS, include a URL to a font file, and have your page display with the typography you expect…

“But there’s a problem. While it’s technically quite easy to link to fonts, it’s legally more nuanced. Almost all fonts are protected by copyright — even those available for free — and very few of them allow for linking via CSS or redistribution on the web…

“That’s where Typekit comes in. We’ve been working with foundries to develop a consistent web-only font linking license. We’ve built a technology platform that lets us to host both free and commercial fonts in a way that is incredibly fast, smoothes out differences in how browsers handle type, and offers the level of protection that type designers need without resorting to annoying and ineffective DRM.”

The fonts are requested from Javascript code in the target web page. Small Batch said the service will be available “this summer” and offer both free and pay-to-use font licenses. You can sign up for a preview on the Typekit website.