Monthly Archives: April 2008

The World is Just Awesome

The Discovery Channel has been running new commercials that preview upcoming new seasons for several of their shows. As in the past, the commercials are well-made and (for me at least) can get you really jazzed up for many of their shows.

They’ve obviously got a great advertising team and I wish they’d post these commercials on their own site (where you can now get full video of most of their shows). Instead, we need to hunt around to dig up copies like this one:

[ View this video on YouTube. ]

The montage commercials they showed last year were outstanding, but I can’t seem to find them anywhere online. I did find the promo for season 3 of Bear Grylls in Man vs Wild, one of the favorite shows at our house. (Update: I found a couple more cool promos from 2007 and 2008 on YouTube.)

Another new addition this year: custom merchandise through Cafepress.com. Now you can buy t-shirts or coffee mugs for your favorite show like Dirty Jobs!

I’m impressed with the continuing evolution of the Discovery Channel as they continue to combine entertainment with education. Now if I ever upgrade to HDTV at home, I could really get into it.

IRS Kindly Accepted My Tax Return

It might be the stress of several late nights sorting out the taxes, but this email tonight from the TurboTax filing center made me laugh:

Screenshot of email confirming the IRS has accepted my federal tax return

I feel like a winner: “Congratulations!” it says. Now all I have to do is pay my taxes! I guess at some level I should feel good that the IRS has accepted my creation.

The cute icons are a nice touch but don’t go far enough. I’d use the Windows animated file copy dialog as a guide and show dollar signs floating from you to the IRS.

Yahoo! Sports Blogs: Worth a Look

Somewhere along the way, Yahoo! launched a new series of sports blogs and I missed it. I’ve only recently subscribed, but these blogs have good writing, high-quality images (from the sports news services), and even full article content in the RSS feeds.

If you’re into NBA, MLB, NASCAR, NFL, or NCAA Basketball, click the appropriate logo below and go check them out.

Yahoo! Sports Blog Logos

Ball Don't Lie - NBA Blog - Yahoo! Sports Big League Stew - MLB Blog - Yahoo! Sports From the Marbles - NASCAR Blog - Yahoo! Sports Shutdown Corner - NFL Blog - Yahoo! Sports The Dagger - NCAA Basketball Blog - Yahoo! Sports

Yahoo! Groups and Generic Email Accounts

For a youth basketball league I help run, we’ve set up a Yahoo! Group for announcements and the like. I’ve been banging my head against the wall trying to attach one of my email accounts for the league (info@, and webmaster@), but Yahoo! Groups refused to let me, instead showing those accounts as “disabled”.

As a last resort (and this comes from a guy who works there), I contacted customer support who got back to me the following day. Apparently Yahoo! Groups has a restriction that prevents so-called “generic” email accounts from joining, presumably in the fight against spam.

Sure enough, search through the help turned up the topic What does Yahoo! Groups do to prevent spam abuse?, which in part states:

No generic addresses: Email addresses such as webmaster@domain.com or postmaster@domain.com cannot be used to join a group. Messages from Groups should be personal and should not use email addresses which commonly recycled within an organization. In addition, spammers commonly target these addresses. For all these reasons, we disallow their user on the service.

I’m not sure how restricting certain email accounts is going to help prevent spam in any way, but at least now I can work around the problem.