links for 2009-12-24

  • The real winner of this year’s fight for the number-one Christmas single is neither Rage Against the Machine nor Joe McElderry; it’s social media. And any businesses that still fail to see the commercial importance of networking websites such as Facebook are doomed to be mired in the 20th century.
  • The history of calisthenics is linked to Greco-Roman gymnastics. Calisthenics originated in ancient Greece, where it was mentioned in a Persian scout report on Spartan warriors before the Battle of Thermopylae, with the Persians interpreting the odd synchronized movements as a form of dance, and thus a sign of weakness.

    Disciples of Friedrich Ludwig Jahn brought their version of gymnastics to the United States, while Catherine Beecher and Dio Lewis set up physical education programs for women in the 19th Century. Organized systems of calisthenics in America took a back seat to competitive sports after the Battle of the Systems, when the states mandated physical education systems.

  • The idea of rewarding users who choose modern browsers is not a new concept; Dan covers it thoroughly in Handcrafted CSS, and it’s been written about in the past by Aaron Gustafson and Andy Clarke on several occasions. I believe we shouldn’t have to design for the lowest common denominator (cough, IE6 users, cough); instead we should create designs that are beautiful in modern browsers, but still degrade nicely for the other guy. However, some clients just aren’t that progressive, and in that case you can always use background images for drop shadows and rounded corners, as you have in the past.
  • I've always loved artists who create an image, a stage persona and represent their music through that. Now with facebook and twitter, and reality shows like Idols you know everything – and more -about these people by the time the first single is out. These people seem like ordinary, gifted, but ordinary people who just make music.

    I'm sorry, but I don't like ordinary people and I don't care about the music they make.

    Me, I'm just a man in a cape who's curious what the next new new will be.

  • Knack: Ineens ontdekten politici ook "de kloof met de burger".

    Rik Coolsaet: Die was het gevolg van de vaandelvlucht van de politiek. Het is begonnen met Margaret Thatcher. Vanaf het einde van de Tweede Wereldoorlog tot aan de komst van Thatcher was de samenleving verzekerd tegen ziekte, werkloosheid en ouderdom. Maar net op het moment dat mensen bang en onzeker ware'n, en geconfronteerd werden met krachten die ze niet meer de baas konden, trokken politici de beschermende mantel van de verzorgingsstaat weg. Zegden ze: 'Jullie zijn groot en wijs en sterk genoeg om op eigen benen te staan. Zoek het voortaan zelf maar uit. Trek uw plan.

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