Good news for all you clueless entrepreneurs and cash vortexes out there! Once again, the world of business is rewarding tech firms for losing money!

Just when you thought the tech IPO frenzy was over and idiotic sites like pets.com and mothernature.com finally met their timely demise, another unbelievable IPO comes up and boggles our collective minds. Transmeta, producers of the intensely fabulous new CPU which almost every computer company refuses to use, launched into the glitzy world of IPOs this week and shares of their stock jumped to an impressive $45 per share.

"But Rich 'Lowtax' Kyanka," you might be thinking. "Transmeta actually produces something! They're famous for their award-winning Crusoe chip, the CPU which is more power-efficient than a similarly-rated Intel processor, yet is 15 million times as slow! I can understand why you would make fun of idiotic sites like Pets.com, which was obviously the result of a fraternity bet gone out of control,but not Transmeta! They actually do something! Also, I think my house is being robbed!"

Well, you're right and you're wrong. Transmeta does do something; as mentioned before, they produce chips that practically no company wants to use. Their Crusoe chip has been snubbed by IBM, Toshiba, and Compaq. Why? Perhaps the benefit of having their computer's battery life prolonged by 10 minutes doesn't outweigh the fact that the Crusoe CPU has the raw processing power of a Wal-Mart cordless phone. Of course there's always a need for slow computers, so there's probably sufficient market demand for the chip. For example, people who produce sci-fi movies seem to have an infatuation with computers that run really slow and display the realtime results of whatever bogus scientific calculations they're running. You know what I'm talking about; like when people get a picture of somebody and then try to match that person's face through a database full of other people. The computer will start producing vulgar beeping noises, almost as if it's got a huge gob of snot caught in its sound chip, and then it will begin to sluggishly cycle through the faces of all the people in the database. The computer usually goes slow enough that any mildly retarded human being could manually flip through the records themselves and make a visual match, so I would imagine the CPU running inside the system has to be remarkably underpowered. Well, either that or they've got a lot of crap running in the system tray, like Norton Antivirus or Norton Disk Doctor or Norton Utilities or Norton Virtual Cereal or Norton Does Dallas or whatever. Or even better yet, AOL! Since science fiction movies take place in the future, it'd probably be something ultra-cyber hip like AOL v183! Virtual coolness on the Information Superhighway!

However, Transmeta doesn't only give support for AOL v183, they also do something that many companies can't, at least without help from employees of Gamefan's sales staff: they lose over $43 million a year. Yup, 43 big ones. Actually, I think "big ones" refers to thousands of dollars, not millions, so I can only assume that the term used to describe the word "millions" is even more impressive than "big ones." It's probably something like "gigantic wheelbarrows full of fatties," only less lame.

It continues to amaze me how badly investors want to throw their cash into anything that looks even remotely high-tech, especially considering how all the tech stocks have fallen faster than a Singapore Airlines jet full of overweight Americans. Let's look at AMD for a second. People may not remember back this far, especially if they've been mixing their Tang drink powder with the clear liquid labeled "SOLVENT" under their sink, but AMD at one point in time was a terrible, terrible, terrible chip. The original K-series, even up to the K-3, didn't have enough processing power to display both a flashing cursor AND a mouse pointer icon on the screen at once. Attempting to do so would often result in a comical array of exotic error messages, effectively ending all hopes of using Microsoft Notepad. An easy way to estimate the equivalent Intel Pentium speed of an AMD K-series chip would be to use the following equation:

Equivalent Pentium Speed = ((AMD K-Series Chip Speed) - (AMD K-Series Chip Speed)) + 75

Regardless of what speed chip you bought, it invariably ended up running like a Pentium 75. On the positive side, the K-series chips cost about as much as a supersizing an extra value meal at McDonalds, so it wasn't that huge of a loss. The point I'm trying to make here is that it took AMD years and years to catch up (and eventually overtake) Intel... and this was back when there were only two chipmakers in the market! Oh, and please don't try to claim there were three chipmakers back then, because the only reason anybody used a Cyrix chip was solely to weigh down their motherboard so it wouldn't fly away on a windy day. If it took AMD years to get where they are now, and they only had one competitor, what does that say about Transmeta? They have to go up against two gigantic, hulking heavyweights of computing power, two infinitely large companies that are just waiting for Transmeta to get in the shower of competition and drop the soap of success. How's that for an analogy?

Maybe I just don't understand the way of the industry. Perhaps I'm too stupid to comprehend the mad rush to invest in something that has consistently lost money, is inferior in performance to all competitors, and is in a market dominated by two humongous companies. Do investors simply like underdogs? Do they hate owning money, and is investing in companies like Transmeta easier than going out of their way to find a cliff that they can throw laundry bags full of cash off of? I can't provide an answer to those questions, but I can tell you this: your house probably isn't being robbed.

Well, I'd like to unveil version .001 delta of the "Big Thing I've Been Working On." Let me first explain the legacy behind this idea.

A few days ago (yes, it's a very short legacy), I was going through my normal daily news rounds. Every morning I hit about 10 different news sites, ranging from CNN.com to Shugashack, to get enough information and stories so I can say to myself, "I'm going to write an article about this" and then forget to do it later. However, I suddenly realized that I really don't like having to go to so many different news sources and sites simply to find stuff that is interesting to me, all the while having to wade through boring crap like "GERMANY TO HOLD REFERENDUM ON TUBESOCK IMPORTS" and "BUCKETFULL GAMES RELEASES 16 SCREENSHOTS OF UPCOMING TITLE, 'MAD ABOUT CELERY'." I wanted a site that had all interesting news, presented in a semi-entertaining fashion... one that would keep my interest and wouldn't force me to hunt and pick among uninteresting crap stories. Instead of simply complaining about not having a site that matched these needs, or complaining to webmasters of sites and demanding they change to fit what I want, I decided to make a site of my own (just like the inspiration behind this site).

Please welcome version .001 delta of "Real Awful News." It's going to carry a wide array of news articles, ranging from computer technology to politics. This is a twin sister site of Something Awful, which will offer the familiar "awful slant" on all current events and topics. We're going to combine the most interesting news bits with a humorous angle, and hopefully won't end up failing miserably. So far I've got two extremely talented writers poised to join the staff. In case they fail to do their jobs, I've also been talking to Kevin "Fragmaster" Bowen and Andrew "Linguica" Stine to write as well. It's going to be good folks.

In any case, do me a favor and stop by the version .001 delta design of "Real Awful News" and give me some feedback regarding the design. Although I didn't use any of the layout code from this site's design, I did model the site almost exactly like it. I want the two pages to be as closely integrated as possible, and if it ain't broke, don't claim you're going to fix it.

DISCLAIMERS:

Most of the graphics on there are placeholders.
Left navbar is goofy in Netscape thanks to my crappy placeholder form sheets.
No links work.
In fact, nothing works.
I'm not even sure why I put the link up to begin with.
I am a horrible monster and I pray for death.

With all that out of the way, feel free to send me any comments or suggestions you'd like to see implemented on the site.

To celebrate the launch of Counter-Strike version 1.0 (actually, this was just a coincidence, but I won't admit it), Cranky Steve's Haunted Whorehouse is proud to present another Half Life map that's just drenched in misery and self hatred. We present you with "DMCross."

"DMcross" is a fun-filled fiesta of small identical rooms, sexy purple hallways, and ramps that take you to new and exciting places like "empty room #3" and "a few feet above the floor of empty room #3". So basically, it's like every other Team Fortress map out there except for the notable inclusion of what has to be the most god-awful display of seizure-inducing colored lighting I've seen since... well, since this guy's last shitty map. This isn't just your everyday, garden variety awful lighting here, folks. It's the kind that can permanently fuse your sunglasses to your skull if you're not careful. The incredible talent for destroying human retinas that SilverPhoenix displays here isn't something one simply acquires over a period of time, it's something that certain people are just born with, much like dyslexia or cerebral palsy, both of which SilverPhoenix also appears to have in spades.

Screw Counter-Strike, I want "DMcross!"

– Rich "Lowtax" Kyanka (@lowtax)

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