If you know me at all you've probably been bored to the point of cutting yourself while listening to me blab like a chatty cheerleader about Twitter. While I enjoy the mobile kick-assery of Tweetie for iPhone, Tweetdeck provides an excellent desktop experience for tweet-ninjas and tweet-noobs alike. It runs on Adobe's AIR platform and gives you a broody Raven-esque window (Poe "Raven" not Simone "Raven") for culling and sending your syncopated ramblings.
The turbo power of Tweetdeck lies in its lateral placement of multiple customizable search windows: your friends, @mentions, direct messages, #urethra, whatever you want. Also, it has a link-shrinkage function and will automatically Twitpic any photo you throw at it. Alerts pop up whenever you have incoming tweets, which eliminate the need for constant refreshing. RT, DM & reply-to functions pop up when you hover over the avatars. Aces!
The only downsides to the application are that it can't manage multiple user accounts and it is incapable of jerking you off.
DEVICE: ROKU DIGITAL VIDEO PLAYER
What if Apple TV was smaller, cheaper and had access to more titles? This is the question that the sharp humans over at Roku technologies have answered. The tiny black box hooks up via RCA, HDMI or S-Video to your televisioning device and streams movies instantly. Originally tethered only to Netflix's "Watch Instantly" service, a relatively recent deal with Amazon has kicked the door open for, dare I say "shitloads" of entertainment.
The unit itself is only $99 and carries no monthly fees. As part of your Netflix account, you don't pay anything extra, although not all of its library is streamable just yet. Still, there are 12,000 titles available and more added every day. With Amazon's Video on Demand you have to pay per title and have access to 40,000+ with a small but growing percentage in HD.
Setup is easy and makes you feel like you're living in "the not-too-distant future." Visit roku.com for good times.
TV: ODYSSEY 5
What would you do if you were suddenly sent back in time to prevent the Earth from blowing up? Well, you'd probably crap yourself a lot in between sobs and shell shock. Fortunately, an hour of crap-crying every week makes bad television so Manny Coto (who now produces 24) made Odyssey 5. The pilot episode starts with five astronauts, led by Peter Weller, hovering over the Earth when it blows into bit-sized chunks. As they are resigned to die one of those sleepy-time oxygen-deprived deaths that all the kids are always talking about, an alien being turns up and offers to send their conscious minds back five years to solve the mystery and prevent the destruction of Mother Earth. Naturally they accept this offer so that the series doesn't end after fifteen minutes. What follows is a fantastic sci-fi whodunnit with computer beings and synthetic humans.