The Net Nerd’s Profiles

The Kobe Bryant defense fund folded and now you need a new cause? Go quick to http://www.deregulationnation.com !

A lot of you out there have heard bits and pieces about Bill 43. Perhaps you’ve seen the poster in The Voice or you’ve been hearing about it here and there. Well this is the website to go to: DeregulationNation.com is brought to you by CAUS (the Council of Alberta University Students, of which our own Shirley Barg is chair!) and ACTISEC (the Alberta College and Technical Institute Student Executive Council).

This website is dedicated to the education of post secondary students about Alberta’s Bill 43. Deregulationnation.com is reader friendly and describes Bill 43 in a way no politician could hope to do.

On the home page the sections are divided into “Issues”, “Events’, “Get Involved”, “Media Kits”, “Contact” and “Discuss”.

There are also links to the CAUS and ACTISEC websites. Under “Issues” this site discusses why we need to learn more about the implications of Bill 43. For example, it explains how how the lifting of the tuition cap would affect Alberta students; how the government can “audit” democratically elected student councils (isn’t that up to the students?); how the academic freedoms of universities will be undermined by government (i.e. college professors will not be able to conduct “pure research”); and it also discusses the effects of the bill on distance education. Under this bill, there would be no limit on the tuition for distance ed courses.

Under “Events” you can see what’s going on in the province to challenge Bill 43. Look at “Get Involved” for contact information to write to representatives of the various Alberta student organizations, and a handy form letter you can fax to Alberta Learning Minister Lyle Oberg. Under “Media Information” there are several convenient documents where you can learn more about Bill 43.

This website is organized, informative and easy to understand. Here is a call out to all AU students nationwide: Let Deregulationnation.com help you to get involved!

Neat Stuff: You can go to “Discuss” to go to the U of A’s “web board” or the U of C’s “thought swap forums” to talk about Bill 43 with other students. Of course you can also do that here on AUSU’s own discussion forums.

Not So Neat Stuff: The only crappy part about this website is that it reminds you about the government’s poor attitude about post-secondary education. But with a little effort we can change that.

Rating: *****/5 I may be in trouble if I give this site anything less than 5, but that’s not the reason I’m giving it the full rating. There are a lot of petty causes that people try to recruit followers for. Often university students are so disenchanted with these types of causes that the meaningful ones get lost in the shuffle. Deregulationnation.com shows students that they can work for a significant cause and one that actually means something. Kudos to CAUS and ACTISEC for Deregulationnation.com.

Rupert’s probably going to get voted off so you don’t need to watch Survivor anymore and Average Joe reminds you too much of the guys you used to (or still) date. You need
http://dsc.discovery.com/fansites/amchopper/amchopper.html or http://dsc.discovery.com/fansites/monstergarage/monstergarage.html

Heads up for the OCC! The Discovery Channel fansite for American Chopper is beyond reproach. What is American Chopper you ask? Well this is a real reality show, not a bunch of strangers thrown together and made to eat weird stuff or go on phony dates (which look almost an uncomfortable as real ones). This is a show about Orange County Chopper a bike shop that’s run by a father (Paul Sr.), one son that designs the bikes (Paul Jr.) and another son that answers the phone and pops bubble wrap (Mikey). They design and build custom choppers that kick the ass of any other bike out there (just so my friends and family will still talk to me- I didn’t include Harleys in that comparison).

If you’ve never seen the show you should still check it out. It’s bikes, bikes and more bikes. Go to “Episode Guide” to find out what you’ve missed or to recap what you saw. To get a more up close and personal go to “Meet the Guys” for more information on the real people in OCC (Mikey’s bio is the best one). “Photo Gallery” has tons of pictures and descriptions of the bikes ( “TrimSpa” is my favorite), and in “Talk About It” you can post and answer messages about the show (interesting fact: Paul Jr. goes by “occ1”, Mikey goes by “tomwaits”, and Paul Sr. is “Paulsrocc”).

You may not like bikes, you may not like the bickering that goes on between Paul and Paul Jr., and you may not even get The Discovery Channel, but check out this site anyway.

Neat Stuff: On “American Audio” hear audio clips of Mikey answering questions such as “How come your dad doesn’t yell at you as much as he yells at your brother” or Vinnie answering questions like “How did you feel when you got to ride the Firebike first?”

Not so Neat Stuff: Reminds you that you won’t be able to have the skills to build bikes like these or have the cash to buy one.

Rating *****/5 Did it sound like I was going to give a 3?

Now for the other Discovery Channel gem http://dsc.discovery.com/fansites/monstergarage/monstergarage.html

Don’t know anything about cars? Can’t even change your own oil? Well, neither can I but that didn’t stop me from getting excited over a set of wicked rims on the “Mercedes/Handicap Car” on Episode 28. Monster Garage takes an ordinary vehicle, like a Mustang, and turns it into a lawnmower. My favorite is the “Sling Ray”. Go to “Vehicle Specs” to see all the many machines these guys have made. How do they do it, you ask? Well mechanically inclined men and women apply to be on the show. Then a select group is picked for each episode to be the team to work on the next “monster”. Again, even if you’re not a gearhead this site and show rock!

This fansite has everything the American Chopper one has plus more. Go to “Meet Jesse James” to find out more about the show’s tattooed chopper-building star. Check out “My Monster Gallery” where anyone can post pictures and specs of customized cars (some cool stuff on there). Under “Music” you can listen to the tunes categorized by each episode. Take the “Gearhead Test” and see where you stand, or apply to be on the team at “Get on the Show”. Lots of stuff here for everyone. By the way, this is the only show that everyone in my house aged 4 to 30 will watch!

Neat Stuff: Play the “Build a Car Game” and “Mystery Monster Game”. I didn’t do too well, but it was still fun.

Not so Neat Stuff: Still looking.

Rating: *****/5 See the American Chopper rating.

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