Snobs, swabs and exit strategies

John
John Gushue
Send to a friend

Send this article to a friend.

We keep a stiff upper lip while sniffing our Pinot, then get our fingers dirty in the kitchen sink, as we help the kids learn a thing or two about science. And those are just the first two stops on this week's hop around the web.

Snobsite

snobsite.com/

Last week, I bought a copy of the Wine Snob's Dictionary. Not because I want to drop words like "tannins" and "finish" into my everyday speech more often, but because I have a great fondness for the whole Snob series that David Kamp, a frequent writer for Vanity Fair, has crafted.

Surf's up - We keep a stiff upper lip while sniffing our Pinot, then get our fingers dirty in the kitchen sink, as we help the kids learn a thing or two about science. And those are just the first two stops on this week's hop around the web.

Snobsite

snobsite.com/

Last week, I bought a copy of the Wine Snob's Dictionary. Not because I want to drop words like "tannins" and "finish" into my everyday speech more often, but because I have a great fondness for the whole Snob series that David Kamp, a frequent writer for Vanity Fair, has crafted.

In four years, he and a rotating series of collaborators have knocked out many books; the preceding subjects were food, film and rock music.

They're funny, and that's because they're true. The companion website has samples, but a blog that Kamp keeps infrequently.

Science projects

www.yesmag.ca/projects/

From YES Mag, the Canadian science magazine for kids, a host of ideas for students looking for some ideas for school projects - or maybe just something constructive to do on a dull evening or afternoon.

Make bread like a Viking, prove Newton right on gravity, and see how washing soda and baking soda can strike new bonds before your eyes. All projects have detailed lists of ingredients and reasonably straightforward instructions.

Get Me Out of Here

www.getmooh.com/

You're in a meeting, your thoughts are definitely elsewhere, and you're trying to use telekinesis to make your cellphone ring. That won't work, but this might do the trick.

Get Me Out of Here is an automated phone service, with a couple of twists.

You basically program the site to call you at a specific time (it's free), and when the call comes, you have the opportunity to excuse yourself. (This might also be handy on a blind date.) But it gets better: you can choose your message, some of which are phrased like one-sided conversations, and most are pretty funny.

Online Converter

tinyurl.com/5ubong

I've put aside more than a few conversion tools in my (hopelessly overstuffed) bookmarks folder over time ... but there's room to squeeze in one more.

I like this tool not just because it includes a wide variety of things (speed, volume, area, among others), but instantaneously presents a host of options. Let's say you have a gallon of gas.

You can find out how many litres that is, among about 30 other options (from teaspoons to barrels). A bonus, it converts ordinary words to Morse code, and back.

Yard Barker

www.yardbarker.com/

The Super Bowl's around the corner, the hockey season is getting serious ... face it, there's always a good time to be checking out the sports news. And rumours, and commentary, and good old-fashioned yelling. Check out the quizzes to test your knowledge.

Definr

definr.com/

Can you trust a site that, Flickr-style, uses an unconventional spelling for its own name to tell you what words mean? Um ... yes. Yes, you can.

Fat Fingers

fatfingers.com/

Speaking of spelling, here's a site that assumes many people have spelling problems.

In fact, you capitalize on their eras ... er, errors. Fat Fingers searches alternate spellings in eBay, the online auction site, where people hoping to make a few quick bucks aren't necessarily hoping to spell their goods correctly.

TED

http://www.ted.com/index.php/

Technology, Education, Design - the TED conferences have been around for 25 years now, and still command attention, perhaps because of the blue-ribbon speakers they invite and their ability to throw people from different disciplines, countries and walks of life in one place and then see what happens. The website is filled with videos of presentations on business, art, technology, society and more.

Browse to see what's available, or search by keyword.

John Gushue is a news writer for CBCNews.ca in St. John's. E-mail: surf@thetelegram.com. Read past Surf's Up columns and daily updates at his blog: johngushue.typepad.com.

Organizations: Vanity Fair, EBay

Geographic location: St. John's

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5

Thanks for voting!

Top of page

Comments

Comments