1996 – CAKE – Fashion Nugget

In 1996, CAKE put out the album that a massive number of their fans agree is their finest album. It is the album that helped many people discover the band, and would likely only be rivaled in popularity by a later album, Comfort Eagle. Although I own and genuinely enjoy every single one of their albums (some of them autographed), I always come back to Fashion Nugget when I need a fix of twangy guitar and brass horns.

Although their website has been largely unchanged since the late 90’s when I first discovered it, it is an excellent source for news about the band and interesting polls which are generally a bit on the politically motivated side. Still, no matter where you fall from left to right, you can probably find something you like in the music of CAKE (who is on record as saying the name should always be printed in ALL UPPERCASE LETTERS – and in the Copperplate Gothic Bold font whenever possible).

The music has a delicious rock’n’roll flavor, a hint of country, and a punk rock message, with influences from practically every genre there is. You probably already know who CAKE is, and have probably have already heard Fashion Nugget. But the important question is: how recently have you heard Fashion Nugget?

Special note for our readers during this last week of April 2012, Fashion Nugget is one of Amazon.com’s $5 MP3 Albums.

Change your Xbox 360 resolution and other display settings

Hopefully you’re taking full advantage of your Xbox 360’s ability to output high definition resolutions like 1920x1080p. But did you know your Xbox 360 could fine tune other display settings, such as color saturation, tint, temperature, widescreen, etc…? There are a lot of settings you can tinker with in the Xbox 360, you can find them in the guide. Hit the guide button, then go to Settings blade, System Settings, Console Settings, Display. Knock yourself out with all of the details on how to change yourself to 1080p and everything else – there is all kinds of useful information for accessing these great additional tweaks in the Xbox audio and video support pages!

How CISPA is both BETTER and WORSE than SOPA

CISPA supporters say that the bill has nothing to do with seeking out people who pirate movies and music, and shouldn’t be looked at as the next SOPA. Although I think the true goals of the CISPA Cybersecurity bill are more innocently motivated, and the overall efforts of the bill should even be applauded, the problem isn’t what the bill contains. CISPA wants to allow business to share information about hackings and cyberthreats with government agencies – to more quickly identify and respond to cyberattacks. Imagine a network of information sharing, where large scale business, the likes of Google, Sony, Microsoft, Yahoo, and AOL (you know them now as Engadget, Joystiq, TechCrunch, Huffington Post, et al…) all actually worked together to protect your privacy. All of that is fine. It’s what CISPA leaves out that frightens me the most. Specifically, CISPA leaves out any language that clearly identifies what it should be used for. One could, quite easily, argue that ‘criminal activities’ and ‘hacking’ can simply be defined as file sharing, and thus your information goes to the government and they can have you arrested. You could be strong-armed to stop using BitTorrent by your ISP (even if you argue that your use is not for illegal purposes), by them saying “quit it, or we’ll sick the feds on you.”

CISPA, like nearly every technology-related bill to date seen on Capitol Hill, has vague language that can be interpreted and bent in many, many ways. It does great things at its core, but could easily be twisted in to making something like MP3 swapping a near-felony, if the ambiguous phrasings of the bill were later left up to interpretation by a judge. We shouldn’t throw it out there and sort through it later; the bills proposed should have cleaner language and specific, targeted purposes. These are laws we’re enacting, after all.

And on over to the Electronic Frontier Foundation’s website and see how they break down CISPA for a better understanding of why it’s important that this bill not be enacted as it is right now.