Coined this today. Sounds like a winner - an award for the coolest application of technology. Doesn't have to be useful, just very, very cool.
It's nearly the end of the year. I noticed I average about a post a year now on this once so fantastic news site that I barely check up on these days. I haven't seen the oodles of good posts that whooshed by, nor have I seen the inventive new types of trolls that lurked here since when I was in University. That's a perplexing 10 years ago by now.
Anyway, long introduction short to say my wife Isabelle and I are expecting our first kiddo in about 4.5 months from now. Things are still early so we're clinging onto pieces of wood all over the place, but the vibe is good! All sorts of new issues spring to life, such as daycare, home safety.. welcome to the real world it is
During the years I've seen millions of colleagues either getting pregnant themselves or making their spouses pregnant, spawning a fountain of kids and sending tons of birth-cards this way. Not without a bit of healthy envy did I wish for something fantastic like that to happen in my life too. And then you suddenly see the years tick away and settle for life without kids. I still loved to care for kids though. I must have bought truckloads of stuff for newborns of people I knew at the time. So finally it's time to change the tables.
The long wait for 2nd life in my wife's belly was generally first thought to be caused my clumsiness with the other sex, but after a while it became clear we had to resort to more scientific approaches to make a baby. Lot's of bruised identities and emotional roller-coasters later, it worked! It worked! Yeey! So we are incredibly proud and happy to be watching the echo monitor at the gynecologist's, different patches and shades of grey revealing what soon will roam this earth! Incredible! We even bought some sort of microphone to hear the baby's heart-rate and it's a steady 160 bpm, which we fall asleep with.
4 Years ago I started at the biggest game entertainment venture in BE, 2 years ago we got married, last year we rebuilt the back of our house (not a particular smooth ride but nonetheless super glad we did), this year we've made our first kid, and next year hopefully the sunlight reflects in 2 extra pretty eyes! Would have signed up for this if they showed it to me 10 years ago!
The gender ? That's still a classified secret which I hope I can announce in a few months, (and thus up the average of my posting here). I dare you all techies to try to crack the secret
Who wants post caffeine withdrawals? Not me. So I drink watered down coffee. It only takes a small amount of caffeine to kick-start someone, anything after that is wasted and makes coming down off it that much more regrettable. I also like to sleep at night, not twitch and throw all my covers on the floor.
I'm tired. Bone tired. Caffeine can't do anything about that. Need to hit the hay earlier. Stop eating junk, too.
Gonna be a challenge though. Got an Android tablet today. Want to try all sorts of fun stuff. Install Apache and PHP on it. See if I can make it wireless server. That'd be killer fun.
Ah. But need sleep.
Watery steps across the sky,
drops of naked new surprise,
smiled into the megaphone,
home onto my mind's throne.
We belong to the poet inside us.
It is our owner, our ruler, our king.
To be a slave to anything else is death
by slow, ragged steps.
Yet to follow where our fancy takes us,
wherever, whenever, forever,
is the greatest freedom man can bear.
I don't actually have anything to say. Kathleen is due any day, and I'm looking forward to a few weeks of staying home, getting poor sleep, and changing diapers.
But mostly I'm testing to see if journal saving works properly.
We've made some significant updates to the submission/journal system. Visiting Submissions and Journals yields a new form that allows stuff like tags to the data types. There are a number of annoying bugs, but for the most part the dust is starting to settle. More notes will be coming, but this journal entry is really just me putting the final test on the new Journal form.
Excited! That's the word.
It has that funky flavour of good vibes, but it also contains that aftertaste of some lesser vibes. It has Obama making us forget previous steps in the evolutionary chain, it has economic meltdown, it has a planet with a weather fury, it has outrageous coding pleasure as well as millions of unpaid hours of monkey work. It has a whole new world and a new fantastic point of view. And it has Isabelle, a girl I will marry in about 1 month!
And who could ever even imagine me typing that exciting prospect today!
Well, I've started a blog over at http://sethblank.com/. It's in serious need of some design love, and a lot more content, but I need feedback!
Right now, it's more business/entrepreneurship oriented, but I plan on delving a lot into tech and the world at large.
Comments, please! (And yes, I'm alive.)
Today, Bill Gates apologized to everyone in the world for the "horrible, terrible piece of shit" that is Windows. He is also offering compensation to users for "that fucking time vampire" in the form of coupons good for one free visit to The Fellatio Barn for every time a user has had to reinstall Windows or experienced any kind of problem, and is offering one million dollars to each tech worker, even if they don't work directly with Windows or any other Microsoft product, due to what Mr. Gates has dubbed "The uber retard-o factor" which is a form of contagious stupidity brought on by proximity to Windows.
What? It's funnier than some of the stories I've seen. =)
Someone on TECHWR-L posted a link to this paper (under the paradoxical title "The Cupertino Effect"), which is about how Excel's autocorrect feature can corrupt statistical analysis of genetic data if/when Excel "makes the wrong assumption" about an entry based on how it looks:
When processing microarray data sets, we recently noticed that some gene names were being changed inadvertently to non-gene names. A little detective work traced the problem to default date format conversions and floating-point format conversions in the very useful Excel program package. The date conversions affect at least 30 gene names; the floating-point conversions affect at least 2,000 if Riken identifiers are included. These conversions are irreversible; the original gene names cannot be recovered.
As the author points out, this can cause gene names to come back in analyses as "unknown," because "[a] default date conversion feature in Excel
The authors also note that there is a problem with "RIKEN  clone identifiers of the form nnnnnnnEnn" being converted to a floating-point number.
The paper also gives some idea of the devastating scale of the problem and its significance for people doing these sorts of analyses: "A non-expert user might well fail to notice that approximately 3% of the identifiers on a microarray with tens of thousands of genes had been converted to an incorrect form, yet the potential for 2,000 identifiers to be transmogrified without notice is a considerable concern."
As far as I know personally and can glean from the paper, the autocorrect and/or conversion feature is nearly impossible to disable completely, and can only be worked around, possibly unsuccessfully 100% of the time. This suggests that perhaps Excel is not the tool of choice for doing these sorts of analyses. (Does the spreadsheet application in OpenOffice work differently?)
A BIOS update distributed over HP Update is murdering HP laptop wireless cards. HP refuses to admit responsibility or to correct the error in any way. The only solution is to replace the motherboard, which HP will not cover under their warranty. This has been going on for months but I saw another dozen HP laptops with deceased wireless cards this week so I figured I'd mention it again.
Have a nice December 25th, everybody. Especially those of you who are stuck working today.
I work for a small computer store. We give away utility CDs to our customers (or anyone else who wants one) packed with free-to-use or preferably open-source software to go with their Vista computers. (...I know...) Previously, I used CD Interface Studio, but it looks like the suck in Vista and is no longer updated. I tried poking the source code with a stick, but that didn't help.
Does anyone have any recommendations for free-to-use or open-source catalog/utility CD software that would fill the gap? I realize I could just make an html file with links to the installers, but I was hoping for something a little more pro than that.
For the curious, the list of included software: (All of which are free to use, or the free version of that program, or straight up open-source.)
7-Zip, Acrobat (reader), Ad-aware, A-squared, AVG, CCleaner, CDBurnerXP, CDI-Studio, DirectX, DVD Utilities (absolutely does NOT contain DVD Shrink or DVD Fab HD Decrypter, nope not at all), Filezilla, Firefox, foobar2000, Free Download Manager, GNUCash, the hosts file from mvps.org, Irfanview, ISOBuster, iTunes, K-Lite codec pack, a bunch of MS Powertoys (yay tweakui!), Notepad++, OpenOffice, Opera, Par utilities (testing), a folder with some free/open source RPG utilities, Speedfan (regretting this, one nub already borked his computer with it, apparently he thought my "Expert Users Only" warning didn't apply to him), Spybot, TCPView, Thunderbird, Trillian, links to the Tweak Guides, utorrent+installer, VLC, Waste, Winamp, and XNView. Whew. Ohyeah and the tiny windows-based installers for Ubuntu. (8.04 and the new one)
Suggestions for additional software to include on the CD are welcome, too. Just keep in mind it's a CD so it won't be holding full DVDs of Linux any time soon. Other tiny windows-based Linux installers may find their way on there though.