Archive for October, 2006

Desert rescue

Monday, October 30th, 2006

flat tireOkay, so the title is a little dramatic. I was expecting my friend Chelsea and three other people to show up today. They’ll be here for at least a week mostly climbing in Red Rocks Canyon just west of town. She called this afternoon asking if I was busy. Chelsea and her friend Jason had gotten two flats in the Mojave National Preserve. They replaced one and had to drive the other 5 miles on dirt to get to Nipton, CA. It’s about 50 miles. I picked them and the two tires up. We’re safely back at home now getting the tires fixed.

Chelsea is a friend I met while rowing for the University of Nebraska. During the summer season she’s a river/climbing guide in Moab. The rest of the year she travels. There’s a of Chels wearing about 8K in climbing gear after the break.

This week I’m covering SEMA Tuesday through Friday with 3 people from Autoblog. (more…)

Parallels, my new love

Friday, October 27th, 2006

I got a copy of Parallels from work since I need to run some Windows-only (groan) software. Parallels is virtual machine software that lets you run other operating systems inside of OSX. I could care less about running XP, what’s really neat is the ability to run any Linux distro directly from the LiveCD ISO. So, yesterday I booted up and “installed” Ubuntu. Which I was surprised to find is as good as they say (despite me hating desktop environments; terminal isn’t an accessory to me).

“What’s with that screenshot? (click for biggie size) It doesn’t show Parallels.” Notice the OSX dock is on the right. The one on the left is ROX. I’ve used SSH with X forwarding to connect to the Ubuntu machine running in Parallels. Every window you see (besides the Finder) is an application running on the Ubuntu virtual machine and being displayed using OS X Doing this you can run your Mac and Linux applications side-by-side instead of inside a Parallels window. Very cool.

Lifehacker has a guide for setting up XP on a separate virtual desktop so you can page between the two systems.

Movies I’ve seen

Thursday, October 26th, 2006

These are just a few I’ve gotten from Netflix recently:

  • Thank You For Smoking I really enjoyed this. Good satire. Nothing too heavy.
  • Entre las piernas I was surprised by this. It’s got some decent drama and suspense. It may annoy you if you don’t like every character being significant and running into each other (i.e. Crash). I’ll let you discover the English title on your own.
  • The secret of NIMH I remember seeing this videodisc quite a few times as a child. I just wanted to see it again to help my memory.
  • Rabbit-Proof Fence Amazing true story.
  • Mimic I had seen 5 of the last 6 Guillermo del Toro movies. This was the one that was missing. I wasn’t missing much.
  • Chopper An okay biopic about Aussie criminal Brandon “Chopper” Read. I had seen several hilarious skits about him and wondered what the character was based on.
  • Hellraiser Clive Barker’s directorial debut. I haven’t seen a lot of old horror movies and I wanted to see this unedited. Good stuff.
  • Pulse Standard Japanese horror: slow, ominous, incomprehensible, and for some reason it was remade in English. The creepiest part was the main character wearing a shirt from Gilley’s… the bar up the street with the bikini bull riding. This shirt was for the one in Texas though (everything in Vegas is based on something) since their shirts were sold by Lucky at some point.

Fred Eerdekens

Wednesday, October 25th, 2006

fred eerdekensPraise be to the great Waxy for pointing out Fred Eerdeken’s amazing art. His 3D installations of clouds, wire, and trees create 2D text projections. You can see his work on Flickr. The picture above was taken by pocketmonsterd. I think it’s funny that I saw this after seeing a 3D shadow from a 4D object. I think it would be neat if the galleries gave out digital cameras and had patrons “discover” Eerdeken’s text using flash photography. That would probably be a good trick for a horror film as well.

Your boy is going to be fine

Tuesday, October 24th, 2006

Don’t worry mom; I finally made it to the grocery store. I don’t like going to the store so I bought a lot of food. The cart had dome to it by the time I got done. It made me wonder why the produce is always first. I don’t plan on using the 6 pounds of spaghetti and gallon of sauce all at once, but this much food kind of makes me wish I lived in a place where I could get snowed in. I went to a different grocery store after discovering that the 24hr super Walmart is apparently the place to be in Vegas at 10:30PM on a Sunday. Look at me, already finding the local hotspots.

My new house

Monday, October 23rd, 2006

CK uploaded a video of his new apartment today. So, I decided to one-up him and upload a video of my rental house I recorded before I moved anything in (high quality). Actually I think I said to him “I’ll show you how daddy balls“. (that link is for my parents) I’ll get another video up once I’ve got everything in place.

MP3 search bookmarklet

Monday, October 23rd, 2006

I had been using the Google hack Lifehacker recently reposted to search for MP3s in open directories. I was thinking “hey this is useful enough, I wish it was a bookmarklet“. So I grabbed a search google bookmarklet and slapped the search string into the Javascript. (which coincidentally is how the majority of the code I’ve written is constructed) Here it is: MP3 search. Maybe if I hadn’t dove in head first I would have noticed i-hacked’s search box which does the same thing or even that far superior bookmarklet someone else wrote (probably correctly too).

This wasn’t the method I used to get Justin Timberlake’s Sexyback though. If you visit his site (don’t it’s loud), the flash player will drop the whole MP3 right into your browser cache. I kid you not, its ID3 tag is “Weird Al’s – Don’t Download This Song” .


Sunday, October 22nd, 2006

office pano
A friend advised me to “immerse yourself in the Vegas”. I think they had “buy an ice cream cone from creepy van” in mind not “go to the sportsbook with Justin at 6AM on Saturday”. That’s just what I did though. Hey there new experience. After that it was breakfast and then off to watch the Husker game at 9AM (actually 10 once Cox got the feed up after the 1st quarter). I’m not a sports fan, but this was one of those “when in Rome” things or at least “when in a city with a Roman microcosm“. I just did Sudokus and Crown Royal.

Once that was over at 1PM I headed home and worked around the office trying to finally get things squared away. I’m using the master bedroom as the office and you can click for a bigger version. I’m not saying everything is right yet, but it at least all has a place. The most annoying part of going from Linux to OSX is paying for software or more realistically: using broken free software as witnessed by the DoubleTake watermark on these images.

Most of this week was spent crushing spammers, spam sites, porn, abusive comments, and cheating members so I didn’t get as much commentary in.

Wiki singularity

Saturday, October 21st, 2006

klaus nomi
Lane pinged me earlier asking “In the last Venture Bros who is the guy with Iggy Pop and David Bowie?” That’s easy: Klaus Nomi. Of course, it’s only easy because I asked that question at one-point and did the natural thing: hit Wikipedia. There they were in the episode guide, David Bowie, Iggy Pop, Klaus Nomi, all linked to their respective pages. I looked at David Bowie and Klaus Nomi’s pages and found it kind of disturbing that so much space in their “Pop culture references” and “Trivia” sections were dedicated to their appearance in Venture Bros. At one point Nomi’s page included this:

Though Nomi had been dead for 23 years at the time these episodes aired, no explanation for his being alive in 2006 is given in the episodes, or why he has superpowers. The series does parody super-science/superhero adventures, and ressurection of the dead is shown in at least two different methods, so this is not out of question for its settings. Tragically, in the setting, AIDS has not yet been cured, which is explicitly mentioned in one episode (Fallen Arches).

I pointed out to Lane that I thought these references were excessive and he had this to say:

“Someday Wikipedia will contain all knowledge and it will be as useful as a 1:1 scale map.”

LG VX9900

Friday, October 20th, 2006

I’ve been waiting for the LG VX9900 to be released by Verizon. Engadget Mobile is getting fed up with the delay as well and is promising no more updates until it’s actually released. I can wait and will probably buy a TracPhone in the meantime. Well I thought I could wait till I saw that Motorola had gotten FCC approval on the E690. If sold, the E690 would be Moto’s first Linux based cellphone sold in the states. It looks really slick, but with only one US band, no mention of WiFi or HSDPA it probably won’t be very fun. That and I’ve already got enough embedded Linux systems that I don’t use. I can only hope that a US release boosts interest in the OpenEZX project which is opening up the operating system on these Linux phones.