Add some pages here, or start a new chapter.


» IBM Model M You know you want one - IBM Model M keyboards.

Now I know I'm not the only keyboard nut on the interweb.   |

IBM Model M

Wednesday 30 April 2008 at 8:49 pm You know you want one - IBM Model M keyboards.

Now I know I'm not the only keyboard nut on the interweb.

Micro Origami + More

Wednesday 30 April 2008 at 4:32 pm Fascinating - Micro-origami for drug delivery.

I am a self confessed master but this takes it to another level entirely - Structured Procrastination.

Interesting insight into why the F117 Stealth Fighter is being prematurely retired.

Useful marketing too - CampaignMonitor, Lets you simulate how a marketing email will look in multiple mail clients and also how it will be rated by spam checkers. We recently sent out automated receipts to people we provided funding to; many of these emails were wrongly classified as junk mail.

Useful - 21 ways to shoot better photographs.

Awesome - DIY Chocolate - Beans to bars.

Online dictation service - Jott. I wonder if this will become more common - leveraging cheap skilled labour online. Remember the online personal assistant ?

Interesting reading - NoteBook SSD Market. Discusses wether or not the Laptop SSD market is worthwhile persuing given the minimal benefit to be had at vast expense.

Cool - MiT Re-invents the post-it note.

Set aside an hour to watch this Francis Bacon Doco.

Nifty - Synchronise five metronomes. Something similar is discussed in the opening chapters of Sync: The Emerging Science of Spontaneous Order.

Slightly surreal - Droogs Do Hit Chair. A steel box you bash into whatever shape you like. Watch the video.

Tecra Brightness Under Linux

Sunday 27 April 2008 at 3:59 pm I just upgraded to Ubuntu 8.04 - downloading the packages took 3 hours but the install itself took 30 minutes and a single reboot.

One of my minor peeves didn't seem to be resolved after the upgrade - I can use the Fn-F6 & Fn-F7 buttons to control the brightness but nothing actually changes on screen.

So I finally started to google the issue and sure enough hit number one was my exact same problem with a suitable (if slightly clunky) fix - so if you find your laptop brightness keys or controls don't do what they're meant to do take a look at this article and try option # 4.

The only other thing I need to sort out is the audio which worked fine under 7.10 but stopped after the upgrade. Odd.

YouTube Music Video - Om

Sunday 27 April 2008 at 09:50 am If you were a late 80's early 90's indie-kid there were three bands you could get away with listening that all mined a deep Sabbath-vein without being overtly metal - 'Kyuss' (which begat 'Queens of the Stone Age'), 'Earth' and 'Sleep' (which begat 'High on Fire' and 'Om').

All three were later collectively lumped into the stoner/drone-metal category. Luckily by the time the re-categorisation happened you were old enough to be completely unfashionable anyway :-)

Of the three Kyuss was the most straight-out rock, Earth was so slow it practically fell into ambient and finally Sleep was the most weed-obsessed (their third album was called 'Dopesmoker' - it contained only a single 60 minute track and was classified 'unmarketable' by their label!). Be sure to read the Julian Cope review - "Although the double vinyl artwork is huge, gatefold, magnificent, the CD version of DOPESMOKER is the best option overall because you can get utterly narnered once youve put it on and not have to get up for almost an hour and ten".

After Sleep split - the guitarist formed High on Fire which sounds like a nastier version of Motorhead while the drummer and bassist went on to form Om.

Om take the meditative approach to metal - the duo use drum and bass repetition to create music akin to tibetan chanting (only much louder) - check them out playing live Flight of the Eagle.

Diet Affects Gender + More

Wednesday 23 April 2008 at 7:26 pm Interesting - A recent study of 740 first-time pregnant mothers in the UK shows that a mother's diet at conception can affect the gender of the baby.

Nifty idea - Calendar Wallpaper.

Sci-fi is starting to come true - Holographic storage debuts. No magic storage crystals though, just 300Gb on a single CD(!)

Will it be any good ? The definitive British Space Opera - Blakes 7 to be remade.

Useful tools for a web developer - Tools for Evaluating Web Design. The 'heat maps' look pretty nifty.

Can you really make a living from the 'long tail' ? An interesting insight into The Reality of Depending on True Fans

Some nice stuff here - collection of data-visualisation blogs. For example - Obama/Clinton divide as a decision tree, Starbucks/Wal-Marts by US State, Word 'soup' for the first 10 books of the old testament, Visualizing the wikipedia power struggle. And lastly becuase I really like maps - Making Maps: DIY Cartography.

Interesting series - A Windows developer switches to OS X. He essentially gets fed up with the hoops he has to jump through due to an archaic API and a real lack of quality applications (ie most Windows apps lack the elegance of OS X apps because there really is no incentive to do otherwise).

On a vaguely related note - Mike Lee - self confessed 'worlds toughest programmer' writes about leaving Delicious Monster to form his own company United Lemur. He reckons that the iPhone will drive a frenzy of development activity on a hitherto unseen scale. With only 3000 Cocoa programmers already gainfully employed writing for the Mac - every man and his dog will be after Cocoa devs so its time to cash-in.

Check out Pulp Shakespeare. A blog-post joke turned into a collaborative wiki to rewrite Pulp Fiction in the style of William Shakespeare:

ACT I SCENE 2. A road, morning. Enter JULES and VINCENT, murderers.

V: And know'st thou what the French name cottage pie?
J: Say they not cottage pie, in their own tongue?
V: But nay, their tongues, for speech and taste alike
Are strange to ours, with their own history:
Gaul knoweth not a cottage from a house.
J: What say they then, pray?
V: Hachis Parmentier.
J: Hachis Parmentier! What name they cream?
V: Cream is but cream, only they say la crme.
J: What do they name black pudding?
V: I know not;
I visited no inn it could be bought.

Murderous Mayhem

Monday 21 April 2008 at 2:56 pm For those frustrating days - Every single Sopranos death.

Probably best not to view before eating.

Spotting Photographic Tampering + More

Thursday 17 April 2008 at 9:29 pm A couple of posts on spotting photographic tampering - first code to spot copy-move forgery and a guide to photo fakery.

Cool - a free online Font 'forge'. Create your own fonts online.

A bunch of free 'grunge' fonts for that distressed look. Use it in PowerPoint after you've had a bad sales quarter . . .

Nifty - print out a bunch and stick them up over billboards - "You don't need it" stickers.

Useful - Mac OSX Security Primer. Remember at a recent hacking competition the OS X box was compromised first.

Peeks into the turbulent development process - Milliways: Infocom's Unreleased Sequel to Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. Seems a shame it never got past early 'alpha' stage.

Amusing - interview with the developer of the worlds biggest time-waster: Solitaire.

Know your ordinal from your interpunct and prime - Typographic Mistakes. On the same site - this is pretty funny - Software piracy: its a crime.

Fantastic and pointless - Bicycle wears shoes to get you to work. Be sure to watch the brief video clip.

Nifty - Interview with a book-cutter. Amazing art.

Interesting - The World has $54.31 trillion of external debt: exactly who is the World indebted to? NZ is in tin-pot territory. Actually, quite a few so called third-world countries have far less debt than I would have thought. I guess they just don't consume enough junk (ref 'You don't need it' stickers above!).

A must-read for IT professionals - Six Dumbest Security Ideas. Although it might be a bean-counter concept they do fail to mention the careful balancing act of security, cost, usability and risk.

Umberto Eco on Eternal Fascism: Fourteen Ways of Looking at a Blackshirt. Additional writings by Eco are collected here too.

Battery life appears to suffer - AnandTech reviews the MacBook Air with a 128Gb SSD. The drive is worth more than the laptop. In fact the drive is probably worth more than the same weight in gold or platinum.

Brilliant - Interiors: Rooms that lose none of their shelf life. Byline "In this digital age, it may surprise you to read that more people want libraries than cinemas in their homes". I suspect they're not talking to the right generation; having said that a study or reading room would be an excellent addition to any home. Nice to see books have insulation properties as well.

I'm finally getting the blog back to the way it used to look - between resolving odd formatting issues and zapping comment spam its taken longer than I thought. The next step will be to try the new PivotX Beta 1. I still can't believe they doing such awesome work without needing a SQL backend (althought they do support it if you'd prefer not to use flat-files).

Munged Blog

Tuesday 08 April 2008 at 9:17 pm Not that anyone reads this but somehow my site config got munged so there will be some weirdness until I work out how I'd configured the site to work.

Must remember to back up my site and its configuration more regularly . . .

Create your own PayPal enabled wireless hotspot + More

Tuesday 08 April 2008 at 5:51 pm Nifty - Chillifire Wireless Hotspot with Paypal. Essentially you load in custom firmware to your wireless-router and have it behave as an internet cafe hotspot. If you have a cafe, business, hotel/motel or anywhere else people hang-out you can easily provide wifi services without them touching your internal network (and generate some revenue).

Interesting - 10Gb Ethernet. Looks like networking is in for a pretty good speed bump in the next few years.

Nice - Free Online File Conversion via ZamZar.

Be sure to play the video - Sideways Wheel Chair. Thats awesome.

Some nice graphic design ideas - Cool Business Cards.

An excellent bit of website design - HEMA. Load the page and wait about 10 seconds for the entertainment to begin.

The Telegraph lists its 110 Best Books.

This looks fascinating - How to use Amazons EC2. I didn't realise you could use it to provision virtualised horsepower on-demand like this.

On a similar tack Google is offering hosted application environments and other Web 2.0 companies seem to be following suit - Joyent 'Garden of Eden'. More info on the GoogleApp Engine.

UK/US Attitudes Compared + More

Wednesday 02 April 2008 at 9:29 pm A nice Economist article on Anglo-Saxon attitudes. Compares and contrasts UK/US attitudes to religion, ideology, values, military action, national interest and climate change. Americans (even Democrats) are considerably more conservative than their UK counterparts. Surprise surprise.

Could be interesting - A Year Of Living Biblically. A guy spends a year living as per the bibles rules as literally as possible. I can't wait for the movie.

Amusing - disturbing teddy bear bares all.

Doing the rounds - Face Demo. Pretty neat. Apparently used to assist autistic children recognise different facial expressions.

Geeky and amusing - Using a something like ELIZA to deal with Nigerian 419 Scammers.

Now Microsoft are getting into virtualisation VMWare are trying to stay one step ahead with value-add services. StageManager looks pretty darn useful as does the new LabManager (ver 1 was apparently pretty useless). The linked clone technology should save a lot of space on expensive SAN's. The new VMWare release in October will apparently also add RAID 1 support for guest VM's - ie run two identical virtual servers on two ESX servers and if one fails the other picks up immediately with zero downtime.

Compare the nifty new UK coinage and the new US $5 note.

It used to be tricky to find these Mac ROM's but if you're interested in emulating old Mac's on new PC's or Intel Mac's then look no further.

Two interesting items spotted on Make magazines site - one is an art installation made from 1500 hula-hoops and the other is a vertical indoor plant-box.

Have your interweb connection on standby for the new series of torrents start to appear ?


Yet another blog about stuff.

The image in the header is mine.

Tag Cloud





[ The Doors ]
[ Arstechnica ]
[ Gizmodo ]
[ Pitchforkmedia ]
[ Popmatters ]
[ Google ]
[ BBC News ]
[ Stuff NZ News ]
[ Free Tibet ]
[ Scoop ]
[ Metafilter ]
[ Long Now ]

[ Shaun ]
[ Stuart ]
[ Chris ]
[ Lex ]
[ Vanessa ]
[ Alec ]
[ Damien ]


Powered by PivotX - 2.3.6
XML: Atom Feed