Wilderness Survival Video: Building and Using a Survival Kit

A video covering practical survival skills for people who aren't seasoned wilderness types

Spring is in the air here in Southern Ontario, and it is almost time to get back out on the hiking trails. I highly recommend you spend an hour or so and check out a 'Google Tech Talk' video that covers basic survival skills. Things worth thinking about before the unexpected happens, like:

  • What makes a reasonable survival kit? (hint, it doesn't include food, matches, or a fishing hook)
  • How not to get lost
  • How to help searchers find you - and more importantly, your children
  • How to avoid the most dangerous peril when lost - yourself
  • Most importantly, tell someone where you are going, and when you expect to be back.

Cory Doctrow reading his short story Shadow of the Mothaship


This short story by Cory Doctrow is the first in the series of:

  1. Shadow of the Motha Ship
  2. Home again, Home Again
  3. Super-Man and the Bugout

It was initially published in 'Amazing Stories' magazine, Winter 2000, then reprinted in his short story collection, 'A Place So Foreign and Eight More'. You can download the text version here

Cory Doctrow reading his short story Home Again, Home Again


Another science fiction short story from Cory Doctrow, the middle part of a series of three:

  1. Shadow of the Motha Ship
  2. Home again, Home Again
  3. Super-Man and the Bugout

Home Again, Home Again

      MP3 of part 1 of 3 ( 16:29 long )

Cory Doctrow reading his short story Super-Man and the Bugout


Another short story by Cory Doctrow of BoingBoing fame. If you don't want to listen to the story, you can always download the text version and learn more about it. If you want to see what other people have said, check out the 'A Place So Foreign and eight more' page.

This is the third story in the series of:

  1. Shadow of the Motha Ship

Cory Doctrow reading his short story Visit the Sins


Another collection of MP3s for a Cory Doctrow story; this time 'Visits the Sins' which was originally published in Asimov’s in 1999 and reprinted in Hartwell’s Year’s Best SF volume 5.

It is about 7,700 words (a few of which can't be said on TV, if you care about that sort of thing...)

Visit the Sins

    MP3 of part 1 of 2 ( 19:15 long, story starts at about 4:20 )    
    Description and comments    

Cory Doctrow reading his short story Power Punctuation


I've been listening to lots of Cory Doctrow's short stories, but find the way he's organized the pages not ideal for downloading using Songbird, so I thought I'd summarize each short story and the downloads here.

So far this story has been my favourite, because the 'voice' is so well done. The story is a collection of letters home, so the main characters personality really has a chance to shine through.

This short story was originally published in Starlight 3 in 2001. More details on the story, and the first few paragraphs, can be found here.

The map is LIVE!

Take a look at our latest addition, multiple blog-post locations on a single map

As of November 20, 2006, my 'Wholemap' is finally up and running. I've started with a subset of my photoblog pictures, and Rannie's "My Toronto Includes" series as well as the SlapDash videos.

I'm not quite ready to open the system up to other people to add their own pins yet; soon I hope, depending on the bugs that need to be worked out with the map so far.

If you'd like to be part of the 1st wave, send a note to 'beta' at this domain and I'll certainly add you to the list. I

Top 6 sources of free Classical music using Songbird

Here is a list of free classical MP3s I've found using the latest pre-release of the XUL based, cross platform music app Songbird.

It is a great combination of web browser (based on Firefox's XUL), and music player (bears a certain resemblance to iTunes, but certainly isn't limited to any specific hardware MP3 player like the iPod). If you haven't checked it out yet, I certainly recommend it.

When you open a web page that links to music files Songbird recognizes them, and you can automatically play them, or download them. It hasn't taken me long to build up a sizeable Classical music collection.

Simple introductory tutorial for Mapstraction

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It was time to start moving my old Google Maps pages over to version 2 of the API, and I thought I'd consider using another mapping solution (maybe Yahoo Maps or Microsoft). But then fate intervened and I happened to listen to a podcast from the Where 2.0 conference by Steve Coast. He talked about Open Street Map and more importantly to me, Mapstraction.

From their homepage

    Mapstraction is a library which provides a common API for Google, Yahoo! and Microsoft's javascript mapping APIs to enable switching from one to another as smoothly as possible.