A site worth howling about
You gotta have art. And if you're going to use it on your favorite animal's Web page, there's a gold mine of freeware available at www.doghause.com, including animal-themed fonts, critter-centric clip art and a veritable barnyard of animal sounds, from pigs snorting to cats singing "Jingle Bells."
Worth plunking your credit card down for: adorable shirts and totes that make a humorous point about the very serious issue of spaying and neutering.
Gigabyte players mature, but they're still pricey
A serious music collector with hundreds of albums easily could fill a closet with vinyl records, CDs and tapes. Now, all those tunes can be squeezed into a portable handheld gadget.
Three new music players from Apple Computer, Creative Labs and SonicBlue store thousands of songs on built-in hard drives, run for 11 hours on a single charge and offer a host of features.
But if the music doesn't rock you, the price tag will.
Apple's iPod, above center, now available with 10 gigabytes of storage enough for 2,000 songs sounds great, integrates perfectly with software and is small enough to fit into a pocket. It costs $499.
Creative Labs' Nomad Jukebox 3, above right, costs $100 less, has twice as much storage and is geared for expansion. The drawback: It's considerably heavier and twice as large as the iPod.
SonicBlue's RioRiot, above left, also runs $399 and has a 20-gig drive. It has the best display and fantastic song navigation features. But it's also bulky, slow in transferring tunes and its PC software is a mess.
Do the capacity, portability and other features justify the price tags? You decide.
To bee or not to bee
The National Spelling Bee takes place next month in Washington, D.C. Get a jump on it from these spelling-related Web sites.
The contestants are already decided, but you can still buy the official pronouncing guide ($20), and the word list ($1.50). Yes. Who knew the competition involves 3,700 words preselected each year and published in a handy study guide? Beats memorizing the whole dictionary.
English spelling is too hard. In fact, it is fossilized, according to this site. "But y b so konsistent? Loosin up. Chanj spelings to the way werds sound. Drop dubl letrs. Komunikate betr.
The word is "judgment," darn it, and anybody who inserts an extra "e" to make it "judgement" faces judgment here at the Alliance for the Preservation of the Correct Spelling of the Word Judgment.