The series is called Pani Poni Dash! and it's apparently an exercise in referential humor (perhaps a sorta Japanese Family Guy?). The series, which is apparently a high school comedy with little or no plot, doesn't seem all that interesting, but the artwork on that first disc and the fact that it's available to watch online means I'll probably give it a chance. I doubt it's something I'll get into (it seems... stupid), but who knows, maybe I'll enjoy it.
I'm still making my way through Martian Successor Nadesico though, and I'm going to finish that first. Discs 4 and 6 are on their way (should be here for the weekend) and I've downloaded disc 5, so I should be able to finish it off in the next week or so (I'm actually travelling this weekend, so not a lot of time then...) I haven't forgotten all the other recommendations that were on the list, but given my schedule over the next couple of months, progress may be slow.
Update: Steven has a page with a capsule review of Pani Poni Dash!, and he doesn't seem impressed: "Take one part Azumanga Daioh, two parts Excel Saga, remove all the charm and most of the humor, and add half a liter of unsweetened lemon juice. " Doesn't sound so appetizing.