Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Hackito Ergo Sum: The Library Problem

Hackito Ergo Sum: The Library Problem: "The problem was that we had no idea what books we had or where any of them were. We lost books all the time, cursed late into the night digging through piles for that one book we knew must be there, and even bought books only to find that we already owned them. There were books on random shelves, books on the floor, we were tripping over books when we walked up and down the stairs. In short, we had a mess. We needed to get organized. "

Friday, December 07, 2007

New law requires complete recording of all 'net activity

Some sites are reporting that HR 3791 EH, the "SAFE Act of 2007" only applies to open commercial WiFi access points - not so. The SAFE Act requires reporting and full binary logging of every communication that has "child pornography, meaning photographs and videos of children being molested. But it also includes photographs of fully clothed minors in overly "lascivious" poses, and certain obscene visual depictions including a "drawing, cartoon, sculpture, or painting.

No, it does not say "WiFi". It says "electronic communication service". Which means:

any service which


provides to users thereof the ability to send or receive wire or


electronic communications;

What are Wire or Electronic Communications?

any transfer of signs,


signals, writing, images, sounds, data, or intelligence of any


nature transmitted in whole or in part by a wire, radio,


electromagnetic, photoelectronic or photooptical system,

OR

means any aural transfer made in whole


or in part through the use of facilities for the transmission of


communications by the aid of wire, cable, or other like


connection between the point of origin and the point of reception


(including the use of such connection in a switching station)


furnished or operated by any person engaged in providing or


operating such facilities

There, in part two (wire communications) you get the WiFi access point. BUT, the 'Electronic Communications' means any method of transmitting any kind of encoded signal. ALL ISP's, email providers, website providers, web forum providers, AND Ham Radio repeater operators, would be required to report this, and maintain full binary logs of the entire transmission.

If you don't log your systems, then you are immune.

But what ISP doesn't log their systems? By running normal syslog and weblogs, they open themselves up to $300,000 USD fines per occurrence. Thus, they have to keep full binary logs of everything transmitted across the wire, wireless, etc. Everyone. Absolutely every single access point to the Internet. Because if you don't log it, and don't report it, then you are liable. $300,000 per image. Per frame. Per incident. Not even Google can afford that risk.

Or stop offering "Electronic Communication".

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Johnson County Radio Amateurs Club Home Page

Johnson County Radio Amateurs Club Home Page: "Johnson County Radio Amateurs Club" Also known as the JOCORAC, they offer lots of HAM radio services, including W5YI Testing for your amateur radio license.

Sunday, December 02, 2007

The origins of 'robots.txt'

From, of all places, a Slashdot comment.

"it was written to keep this rather simplistic and brain-dead perl n00b from pillaging Martin's bandwidth."

(Read more at Slashdot.org . . . )

Friday, November 30, 2007

Drive Space...

It wasn't too long ago that 30 Gig of disk space was more than you'd ever need.  But today, I'm working on some random video projects and I'm tearing up 30 gig just for scratch space.  I have to delete and archive stuff between every disc!

Time for a new external drive I think...

Friday, November 23, 2007

Blue Man Group

Nice floor seats - the show begins: (uploaded live at 8:45PM from my Palm Centro)

And the obligatory audience walk: (horrid video from my Palm Centro)



More Photos from the show (flickr slideshow in Flash), again from the Palm.  Not a bad camera, OK video.  Great show!







Saturday, November 10, 2007

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Someone else likes IBM keyboards...

Walter Jon Williams, author of Hardwired, Aristoi, and other great cyberpunk / near future fiction, is another fan of the IBM Model M keyboard (clickey-board).  

(I have too much time on my hands...)

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Boom!

The Space Shuttle just passed overhead.  Got to hear the sonic boom! 

Now I can go to work. . .

Will

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Alec at skate party

Doing a drawing for door prizes

Make that TWO teeth

Alec won some taffy at the skating party tonight, and welllll...  That second front tooth just popped right out!  He was a real trouper, though - just a little weirded out by the blood.  Now he has TWO teeth for the tooth fairy tonight!


Alec lost a tooth

He lost one of his front teeth today!

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Coffee a top source of healthy antioxidants -

Coffee a top source of healthy antioxidants - Fitness - MSNBC.com : "Coffee not only helps clear the mind and perk up the energy, it also provides more healthful antioxidants than any other food or beverage in the American diet, according to a study released Sunday"

Hah!  I knew it was good for someting.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Decisions, decisions...

I'm about done with my bachelors at Park. Whee! Now, what to do next?

Park requires me to take Econ 101 and 102 before I can apply for the MBA program. WTF? Stupid requirements. So, that leads me to look elsewhere.

KU has an evening professional degree program, just down the road, too! But, what to take?

The classic MBA? Moo.

Or something actually fun
? Take a look at the course descriptions. Sounds like what I read for fun. . . (security risks, encryption and cryptography, viruses, firewalls, viruses, worm attack, Trojan horses, password security, secure multicast ) and stuff I've been wanting to learn for a while now (design and analysis of approximation algorithms; lower bound theory; polynomial transformation and the theory of NP-completeness...)

Maybe I'll do the fun one first, then if I'm still in the mood (MOO) for crap, I'll do the MBA. I can apply either or both to what I do at Sprint . . . (and have them pay for it too...)

Besides, the MS in IS is only 24 hours and a thesis. You mean I *have* to write about computers. Shucks. :-)

podcasting from Joomla

mini-Tutorial for LeBlanc's Podcast Suite v1.1: "a number of folks (besides me!) have been interested in podcasting from Joomla sites and have had some trouble getting started, so I thought I'd try to do a little tutorial on LeBlanc's podcast component"

I wonder if this works any better - I'm 6 hours deep in the code right now trying to make the default install work for simple podcasting at buzzaboutwireless.com

Monday, September 10, 2007

Monday, August 27, 2007

Giant Interstellar Void

Giant Interstellar Void: "stuff that astronomers think exists, but hasn't actually been found anywhere, isn't there, either"

Mmmkay??

Me? I'm going to go look at a total eclipse of the moon at 5:30 AM Central...

W

Sunday, August 05, 2007

Buzz About Wireless - First bill from an iPhone

Buzz About Wireless - First bill from an iPhone: "ATT and the iPhone - this user received his first bill at 15 (!) pages, totalling over $240 for his '$120' monthly shared plan."

Fancy.  How's your iPhone first bill been?

Saturday, August 04, 2007

Route to Arlington

Going to Arlington VA one of these days - and I'm taking I-64 again. I must be a glutton for punnishment. The other (shortest) alternative was to run through Indianapolis, Dayton, etc. Tour the great industrial wrecks of america! Not.

SO, here is the google map for my route - click and check it out.

Fee you on the Slip Side...

W.


.

Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Buzz About Wireless - EVDO at 120KPH?

Buzz About Wireless - EVDO at 120KPH?: "Using the RevA network, Cheung was able to play World of Warcraft, download videos from Youtube at 120KPH and use Skype to place phone calls. "

Friday, July 20, 2007

Cult of Personality

Kung Fu Monkey: "Mm-hmm. Mmm-hmm.": "This woman's just been caught out admitting she doesn't understand her oath of office to the people of the United States and that she's misplaced her priorities in a cult of politicized hero-worship ...and she's treating it like Myra from HR is harassing her about the damn TPS forms again."

Check out the video.  This is lovely...

U.S. Will Allow Most Types of Lighters on Planes - New York Times

U.S. Will Allow Most Types of Lighters on Planes - New York Times: "Federal aviation authorities have decided to stop enforcing a two-year-old rule against taking cigarette lighters on airplanes, concluding that it was a waste of time to search for them before passengers boarded."

OMG - The terrirsts have w0n!  

Monday, July 09, 2007

alec

Creative Profanity

So, here I was rockin back from Chicago this weekend, and I had an idea for a weekly recurring feature for this blog: Creative Profanity.

We all have the usual motherfucker or craptastic swearwords; what we need is some new, unique and inventive swearwords and phrases.

To start: "Mudsucking Shitfoot". I know I've read that somewhere in a pulp sci-fi book, but I find no reference to it on Google. Daffynition to come once I think of one. . .

Any ideas?

Monday, July 02, 2007

Omaha Was Bombed During WWII - Omaha's 150th Birthday News Story - KETV Omaha

Omaha Was Bombed During WWII - Omaha's 150th Birthday News Story - KETV Omaha: "OMAHA, Neb. -- The year was 1945 and the United States was in the middle of World War II. Omaha seemed relatively safe until one night in April when a Japanese bomb dropped in Dundee."

Sunday, July 01, 2007

Visual Hub, High Motion and H.264

Just a tip - on Visual Hub for the Mac, when encoding an MP4 file with lots of motion - my example was a series of photos at 15 frames per photo (2 per second) - it fails miserably even at high quality settings.  The fast frame changes just disintegrated into macroblock noise.

However, if I go into Advanced Settings, and check '2-pass' encoding, it clears right up, at the cost of 50% more encoding time.  (2 minutes to 3 minutes for a 2:10 video clip on the 2.33 MacBook Pro)

Another note - at the same settings, without the 2-pass encoding, the AVI Simple profile appears to deliver similarly excellent results.  Not sure what codec is used - Xvid / DivX I assume via FFMPEG.  Also a smaller file size and greater compatibility between Windows, Mac and Linux.

The AVI files can be seen at my KS HSTA site (no, not the UTube, below that!).

W.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

fell asleep reading


fell asleep reading
Originally uploaded by kcsporttour
Boy chose this book to read and ended up falling asleep. Too sweet. (he's still six isn't he?!?)

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Safari 3.0 works with Blogger!

Finally!  The Rich Text editor works in Safari.  Now I can:
  1. Stop using Firefox for blog posts 
  2. Show my mom how to set up a blog
I've been running the new Safari 3.0 for, um, 90 seconds now and haven't found any bugs.  Nice.  Other neat thing - the built in spellchecker checks spelling in the 'edit html' view on Blogger.  

Monday, June 11, 2007

How to kill brown recluse spiders

Great publication on how to kill brown recluse spiders from the University of Tenn. Even names specific product names - Demon and Tempo are the highest recommended products.

However, the University of Kansas has found that nothing really works as well as good old fashioned glue traps - they use Catchmaster brand.

Gut Rumbles

Gut Rumbles : "If my blog does not meet your standards, then LOWER YOUR STANDARDS. Who the hell do you think you are, anyway?"
Backwoods hill-scoggin who has a down-home folksy style of writing. Fairly offensive, but still a good read.

Sunday, June 10, 2007

More photos from New Mexico


Welcome, eh?
Originally uploaded by kcsporttour
I added some more photos from the Memorial Weekend trip to New Mexico - click the picture to the right, check the 'motorcycle touring' set. Enjoy!

W.

Photohosting, blogging

Funny bits - Picasa from Google now offers integrated tools to upload photos from your Mac, even directly in iPhoto. Very nice, very easy. But! There is no way to create a blog post from a photo in the Picasa web interface. Last time I czeched, Picasa and Blogger were owned by the same company.

However, Flickr by Yahoo! (a direct competitor to Google) makes it bog simple to post a photo, caption, story etc to Blogger from any image - yours or other peoples!

Just one of those odd things I've noticed...

Friday, June 08, 2007

The Interstate Highway System: Road to the Future or Innocence Lost?

The Interstate Highway System: Road to the Future or Innocence Lost?: "Missouri was the first state to start interstate construction, with groundbreaking for I-70 in St. Charles County on August 2, 1956. Less than two months later, on September 26, eight miles of U.S. 40 near Topeka, Kansas, became the first interstate highway project completed."

Thursday, June 07, 2007

They'll finance anyone these days!

After nearly 80,000 miles the Isuzu was a bit creaky around the edges - starting to leak from the steering rack ($1500), the front differential ($500) and the shocks were worn ($800). And, my divorce decree mandated that I close out the loan on the truck no later than the end of this month.

I thought about going to a finance company to re-write the loan, but decided a better way to clear out the loan was to trade in the Isuzu, and it's loan, for something smaller, more efficient, and cooler.

So, overloaded credit and all, Olathe Subaru managed to set up a relatively nice loan on this new (10 miles on it) 2007 Subaru Forester X. With a sunroof. w00t! Quite a bit nicer than the Isuzu that it's replacing, and nearly double the gas mileage! (and SMILEage!)

Now, where to go for the first roadtrip?

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

How the other half lives

Had a meeting today in the 'Executive" building where I work. I snuck off for a minute and saw their reception room:




Friday, June 01, 2007

Capulin Volcano at sunset


Capulin Volcano at sunset
Originally uploaded by kcsporttour
Rode out to New Mexico over Memorial Day weekend. As usual for a motorcycle trip, it rained. And rained. And rained some more. I finally broke out of the rain just over the NM border on US64. The sun was just setting behind the Cauplin Volcano and I snapped a few shots before heading on into Raton to meet the rest of the HSTA crew.

Trying new photo hosting

I've set up a Flickr account for some of my 'best' photos - I'll still do dumps of all the photos to the classic gallery.

Check out the new Flickr account: http://www.flickr.com/photos/kcsporttour/

(update) Wow - Flickr completely fails to suck. Flash-based slideshows. Notes on the photos. Geo-location for photos (put them on a map). Fast simple template-based posting of photos to this blog. (see above).

That sucks so much less than my Gallery software...

Map of internet connections

AT&T map from 2000 - I can't imagine what it'd look like now...


And an un-dated Quest network map...


Saturday, April 14, 2007

Archiving the Past


I found a box of reel-to-reel tapes in the garage - seems to be from 1956 through about 1959. I'm not sure who all is on it - mostly my grandfather and his children it appears, along with some mixed musical selections. It's all 1/4" two-track mono stuff; not the easiest to recover. I got a quote from a local recording studio of $1.00 per minute (!) to copy it over to CD. I thought I may be able to do a bit better job myself; or at least a *cheaper* job anyway.

I got to reading up on reel to reel formats and tapes and more; didn't seem like it would be too impossible. I found several very nice rigs on eBay - for $500 or more! Then I ran across this little consumer grade Sony rig for $70.00 shipped. Not bad - and it even works! Here's the first track I've snarffed off a tape. I think it's RKD Sr. speaking of one of his kids going on to first grade.




And Mark Dean testing that it works - he can see it vibrating on the thing!



So, here's the setup for now - Mac laptop, Grado cans, Sony RTR, and a stack of odd tapes to clear out . . .



(Some people spend their Saturday nights going out to the bar; some going on a date; me? I copy tapes. AV Geek.)


Side note: It's interesting that I can play back 50 year old recordings without too much hassle, but I have video tapes from just ten years ago that are no longer supported - the players are no longer made! Technological innovation keeps on going, I guess . . .

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Ham Radio Bits...

Carolina Windom Antenna
* http://www.hamuniverse.com/k4iwlnewwindom.html

Horizontal Wire Loop antennas (basically 2lambda, at least 0.10 lambda up)
* http://www.cebik.com/wire/horloop.html

Icom IC-718 transiever ($550)
* http://www.icomamerica.com/products/amateur/718/
* http://www.associatedradio.com/radios/icom/ic-718page.html
* http://www.eham.net/reviews/detail/947

Note - the no-code technician class has phone (voice) privileges on 10 meter (28.0 Mhz); and CW (morse code) on 80, 40, and 15 meters. To get the popular 20 meter band, or phone (voice) privs on lower bands, you need the new General class licence. 10 meters is dead right now - we are at the bottom of the sunspot cycle - but by 2011, it should be outstanding for DX skip. An E-W facing Windom antenna should do great on 10.
* http://www.arrl.org/FandES/field/regulations/Hambands_color.pdf

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Thursday, March 08, 2007

team meeting in reston

The Power of One

The Power of One

by Michael Cloud

"One is four times as powerful as two," said Karl Hess. "One is nine times as powerful as three. One is sixteen times as powerful as four."

This was not math class. Nor business. It was speechwriting.

And master speechwriter Karl Hess was teaching me. One on one.

Karl Hess was best known as Barry Goldwater's speechwriter. But he was far more than that. He was a journalist, a gunrunner, businessman, Republican activist, New Left activist, Libertarian activist, author and speechwriter.

But on this day, Karl was showing me how to prune my speech into something elegant, simple, and direct.

I was writing a speech for a client. It had clever phrases and interesting insights. But it just didn't work. Something was wrong. So I called Karl Hess, and asked for help.

"You're making six points in this speech," he said. "The audience will applaud. They'll remember that the speaker was smart and deep, but they won't remember one single thing your client says.

"Six points is too many. Too much. Every great speech has one point. One assertion. One idea. One important and unforgettable idea."

I followed Karl's advice, re-wrote it as he advised, and my client gave an unforgettable speech. The audience loved it. More than a dozen organizations invited him to give the speech to their members. He grew into a local celebrity. And he sent me eight paying customers who wanted me to write them an unforgettable speech like his. A speech people talk about.

Karl Hess taught me the power of one.

In speeches. Essays. In conversations.

Each of Aesop's fables had one point. Not two. Not three. One lesson.

The parables of Jesus. One moral. Not two. Not three. One maxim.

Allegories. Myths. Teaching tales. Each offers one truth. Not two. Not three. One.

------------
Excerpted from the Liberator Online

Sunday, March 04, 2007

Ham Radio Logging Software for Macintosh

Really cool software to log distance contacts on HAM radio.

Ham Radio Logging Software for Macintosh

Bit expensive - $95 for the base software, another $34 for the 3-D visualization plugin . . .

Thursday, March 01, 2007

My phone saga

I have, or rather, had, a corporate demo phone. One of those nice things with the full keyboard and access to all the corporate e-mail systems, etc. However, on Tuesday the account appears to have been terminated. No one knows for sure why, and the billing system where it was terminated has nothing noted other than the string, "TERMINATED".

So, I figure I'll get it turned back on . . .

We had one lady who handled all those accounts. But, she left suddenly. We'll call her ALy (Account LadY).

I contacted the ALy's manager - she said contact her Director, who owns the demo account.

I contacted the Director - he said contact Employee Accounts.

I contacted Employee Accounts, and they confirmed that the line was terminated, and they were unable to modify the account because the account is a Type Z Demo. The account needs to be turned back on in order to work again, and suggested I contact Business telecare.

I called Business telecare and they cannot turn the account back on, They suggested Corporate Activations.

Corporate Activations said that type-Z demo accounts needed to be handled by upper management in our team, who could contact our indirect sales rep to have the account reprovisioned.

So, I'm back to the Director. And I still don't have a phone. At least not one that the work people are going to get the number to.

Such is life in a big company.

I wonder if our retail customers get any better response?

flood at the school



Yes, that is the parking lot to the elementary school. 4" deep in water. Nice bit of a storm we had overnight.

Saturday, February 10, 2007

History of NORAD Tracking Santa

CONELRAD: Atomic Culture | NORAD Tracks Santa [1964]: "The 'NORAD Tracks Santa' tradition goes back to the late 1950s when a young boy accidentally dialed the unlisted number of the Director of Combat Operations at NORAD Headquarters in Colorado Springs."

Now it's Weather Radar, but still facinating...

Friday, February 09, 2007

Internet Weather Forecast Accuracy

OmniNerd - Articles: Internet Weather Forecast Accuracy: "Weather forecasting is a secure and popular online presence, which is understandable. The weather affects most everyone's life, and the Internet can provide information on just about any location at any hour of the day or night. But how accurate is this information? How much can we trust it?"

Sunday, January 28, 2007

WWII Homework..

If'n you're interested, my homework this week:

The Battle Of Britain was the first full scale air battle fought in modern war. Germany needed to gain air superiority over Britain before it could begin moving naval and ground troops in for attack. The battle was fought between the Royal Air Force and the German Luftwaffe between 10 July and 31 October. The Germans needed to destroy the RAF fighter forces. The goal for the RAF was to stop the bombers before they got to their targets, and to shoot down as many German aircraft as possible.

The Germans nearly won the fight - in late August, they were attacking the command airfields around London, and nearly wiped out the backbone of the RAF. However, for some reason, the Germans decided to switch targets, allowing the RAF to recover.

Beyond the significance in the face of the war, this battle was the first that used a combined command and control network blending fighter aircraft, radar and ground defenses into one unified force to stop the German attack. Before this, air defense had been an ad-hoc effort done by each station as the bombers passed over.








Propaganda is communication used to promote your ideals, or denigrate the ideals of another. It preys primarily on emotion, rather than reason, using inflammatory words, images, sounds and ideas. Propaganda can be used for good purposes - to instill a spirit of success and freedom, as in these posters:

Or to encourage greater production for a cause;

Or for less positive purposes:





For a full discussion of the techniques of Propaganda, refer to this website:
http://www.orange-papers.org/orange-propaganda.html

The Allies were not the only ones using propaganda - Hitler based his entire rule on "the big lie" - as he noted in Mein Kampf: "The greatness of the lie is always a certain factor in being believed; at the bottom of their hearts, the great masses of a people are more likely to be misled than to be consciously and deliberately bad, and in the primitive simplicity of their minds, they are more easily victimized by a large than by a small lie.... Some part of even the boldest lie is sure to stick." (Hitler, 1924)

You can further read his views on war propaganda from Mein Kampf at this website:
http://www.hitler.org/writings/Mein_Kampf/mkv1ch06.html





The single largest factor leading to the evacuation at Dunkirk was the surrender of Belgium on May 28, 1940. King Leopold III decided to end the fighting on Belgian territory. This freed up German forces to concentrate on the British Expeditionary Force. Because of this greater threat than anticiapted, the British Government decided to evacuate on May 28. Prior to this, the German Army had driven the French and British Expeditionary force back, but there was still hope. The Belgian army kept open the line of retreat to the sea for the French and British forces. When Leopold surrendered, he exposed a 30 mile wide hole for the Germans to exploit. Evacuation was the only option. The evacuation was covered under 'Operation Dynamo', where anyone with a boat was urged to help. Any description I put would pale beside the words of Churchill:

"[...]the Royal Navy, with the willing help of countless merchant seamen, strained every nerve to embark the British and Allied troops; 220 light warships and 650 other vessels were engaged. They had to operate upon the difficult coast, often in adverse weather, under an almost ceaseless hail of bombs and an increasing concentration of artillery fire. Nor were the seas, as I have said, themselves free from mines and torpedoes. It was in conditions such as these that our men carried on, with little or no rest, for days and nights on end, making trip after trip across the dangerous waters, bringing with them always men whom they had rescued. The numbers they have brought back are the measure of their devotion and their courage. The hospital ships, which brought off many thousands of British and French wounded, being so plainly marked were a special target for Nazi bombs; but the men and women on board them never faltered in their duty." (Churchill, 1940)



http://www.indiana.edu/~league/1940.htm
http://www.winstonchurchill.org/i4a/pages/index.cfm?pageid=393
http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,764003-2,00.html
http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,763997,00.html




The Maginot Line was built in order to allow a smaller force to take the offensive against the Germans. Originally conceived of by the French Minister of War, Andre Maginot, the purpose of the line was to provide a shrot-term defensive line against German attack, while a French counter attack cut off the German supply lines. The French wanted to envelop the German right flank by striking through Belgium from their own left. To do this, they had to hold the front line at Vosges with mobile units, comprising only a small part of the total force. This would give them enough men to make the counter attack. The Maginot Line was built to help in that defense - to hold the Germans back briefly while a massive counter attack took place through Belgium. However, when the Germans did attack, the French did not counter attack and only offered passive resistance (MacArthur, 1964). The Maginot Line was not designed to withstand the onslaught of the entire German army without any pressure elsewhere. Without the counterattack, the line failed.

MacArthur, Douglas. (1964). Reminiscences (p 107). New York, New York: Fawcette.

Saturday, January 27, 2007

Alec building his shelf

Alec building his new shelf. He really did build most all of it -- assembled, nailed, screwed, everything. I was very impressed with my boy!

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Gonzales Questions Habeas Corpus

Gonzales Questions Habeas Corpus | BaltimoreChronicle.com: "Responding to questions from Sen. Arlen Specter at a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on Jan. 18, Gonzales argued that the Constitution doesn’t explicitly bestow habeas corpus rights; it merely says when the so-called Great Writ can be suspended.

“There is no expressed grant of habeas in the Constitution; there’s a prohibition against taking it away,” Gonzales said."

What was I saying about 'buy more guns'?

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Ghost truck

hugin - Panorama Tools GUI

hugin - Panorama Tools GUI: "With hugin you can assemble a mosaic of photographs into a complete immersive panorama, stitch any series of overlapping pictures and much more."

Used to stich the photos together before you run it through Enblend...

Again, GNU - Free. Windows, Mac and Linux

Enblend

Enblend: "Enblend is a tool for compositing images. Given a set of images that overlap in some irregular way, Enblend overlays them in such a way that the seam between the images is invisible, or at least very difficult to see."

GNU - Free software, versions for Windows & OSX.

Friday, January 19, 2007

iChat and Bluetooth Headsets

Check out this article on using a Bluetooth headset with iChat.
O'Reilly Network -- Listening to Bluetooth (or at least trying to): "the greatest new feature is being able to pace while chatting -- no more having to talk directly into your iSight or PowerBook's microphone. And the combination of iChat, an iSight, and your Bluetooth headset is the virtual equivalent of VOIP calling."

Reportedly it eliminates echo for the recipient of the audio, and you're freed from having to sit right smack in front of the computer!

With Bluetooth headset prices dropping ($10 for my favorite, the Motorola H500 -- Seriously, $10 at uBid, and several others!), it's really well worth it.

Install Apache 2 and Tomcat 5.5 on FreeBSD 6.1

Install Apache 2 and Tomcat 5.5 on FreeBSD 6.1 : "This guide will help you install Tomcat 5.5 and the Apache web server on a FreeBSD 6.1 machine."

Very nice, *and* it's current for the most recent versions. Written in January of 2007. More as I test it out...

Monday, January 15, 2007

Pages for Mac makes publishing easy

Just got done writing and printing a very slick (if I do say so myself) newsletter for the motorcycle club I'm in. I used Pages and it took all of 30 minutes to put this together. Take a look at the PDF newsletter for the Kansas HSTA

Pages for the Mac is really one of the biggest selling points on these computers - after iTunes, Safari, iPhoto, the iPod, the absolute lack of crashes, iMovie, . . . OK, it is among one of the big selling points for a Mac.

W.

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Snowy Photo Essay

Cold, Icy, Snowy day today - and I have a new camera phone, so a few photos and a brief story.

The roads were iced and slushed and dirty with sand, but drivable.


Ice, slush and snow everywhere. But the heat and the peace of it all was relaxing for Alec and I:


We went for a drive so Alec could find himself a new videogame with his gift-card from Christmas. Only a ten minute drive, but soon the warm and peace took its' toll:


So, we travelled westward to see what we could see. Gray, white, brown. The park was closed, the sky looming. Nothing to see here. We moved on to the video game store. Bright lights, lots of people stocking up on entertainment before the next blast of winter. After some looking, we found the game we wanted, and headed back home.


Alec was happy to be home, and settled in for a good night blasting computerized Legos into their component parts.


I settled in for an evening cheering Alec on in his virtual endavours while reading my book beside a warm and cheery fire.



The fire has gone to coals, the boy has gone to dreams. And I have pages to go in my new book.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Ravioli at high speed.

I was surfing my own website and found a link to this wonderful quote:
"Thermonuclear interactions, such as hydrogen fusion, may take place in the tomato sauce."

Absolute must read. And print. And forward to anyone who knows anything about science. I dang near snorted coffee up my nose!

(updated link w.england 9/14/12)

what is it that they say about a clean desk

... A dirty mind?

Monday, January 08, 2007

Why Nerds are Unpopular

Why Nerds are Unpopular: "Kids are sent off to spend six years memorizing meaningless facts in a world ruled by a caste of giants who run after an oblong brown ball, as if this were the most natural thing in the world. And if they balk at this surreal cocktail, they're called misfits."

Friday, January 05, 2007