Thursday, July 28, 2005

Roland Weigelt's GhostDoc

Roland Weigelt's GhostDoc:

"2005-07-27: Release of 1.3.0 Beta 1
The first public release after over 9 months. More info here."
Go download it. It's good.

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Roland Weigelt's GhostDoc

I've been beta testing the latest release (1.3.0) of Roland Weigelt's GhostDoc for the last few weeks, and I just have to say this: It is awesome. The sheer number of rules that are incorporated into the documentation framework is astounding, and as if that's not enough, you can add more yourself.

And it doesn't hurt that it's free...

Monday, July 25, 2005

On Ethanol's Energy Balance

There's been some talk in the media lately about the Plug-In Hybrids' 500 miles per gallon (imported) gasoline fuel efficiency; based on these cars' 100 mpg capacity and the fact that they could theoretically run on 80% biofuel and 20% (imported) gas.

But more coverage was recently given to David Pimentel and Tad Patzek and their report that stated

"it takes at least 29% more energy to convert maize and other biomass feed stocks into ethanol than the amount of fuel produced by the process."

Now, of course, the study has been solidly refuted, and these refutations have also been widely covered in the media, though mostly in the mid-west.

So - one biased study claims a -29% energy balance, another equally biased study claims a +167% energy balance. They call this science? With as much as $1/gallon in tax incentives for ethanol producers, it's hard to know who to believe.

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Icon War

So it seems that every time I log back on my computer, my icons have moved around - I can never find the recycle bin, for example. Maybe this is what happens while I'm away: Icon War

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

ReSharper 2.0 is out

One of my favorite developer tools receives a major update: Download ReSharper build 201

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Monday, July 18, 2005

Commuter Cars

Seats 2, does 0-60mph in 4sec, carbon-fiber body, weighs 2500 lb, costs $85,000: sounds like a high-end sports-car...

Hardly looks like one though: Commuter Cars

Thursday, July 14, 2005

What Was Actually Lost in Translation

I DID wonder what the director was telling Bill Murray in Lost in Translation - no longer: Extraordinary Ordinary Guy In Japan: What Is Actually Lost

Spell with flickr

Ok - more geeky cool: Spell with flickr

memorial decorationLalopes_h

(Via Roy Osherove)

Review: Virtual Privacy Machine -

An interesting review of the Tor Desktop Virtual Privacy Machine; a 128MB USB JumpDrive (Flashdrive/thumbdrive/keydrive/whatever) that through the magic of Linux, the Qemu process emulator, and the Tor network enables a user to surf the internet/email/IM in a "totally secure way": Review: Virtual Privacy Machine -

This is cool from a geeky techno standpoint, but am I naive in thinking that only paranoids and criminals (and/or cheating lovers) would really have a use for this?

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Styled Checkboxes

via slashdot: Styled Checkboxes
"Pretty much every form element has been conquered by CSS so far, letting us create stylish, integrated forms to tie in closely with our site designs for that UI polish graphics artists love to have. Radio Buttons and Check Boxes, however, have resisted most attempts to style them consistently, accessibly and elegantly- perhaps because nobody cares enough to come up with the solution. However, these elusive form elements have finally been conquered with a simple combination of CSS and Javascript and a little HTML wrapper. The solution is easy and quick to implement, is accessible (working with tab and space) and elegantly degrades where CSS and/or XHTML is not available."

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

MSDN Nuggets

I don't know whose blog I got this from, but these are helpful: MSDN Nuggets - 10-15 minute downloadable webcasts on a wide variety of developer topics.

Monday, July 11, 2005

Throw away email accounts

A list of throw-away (and free) email service providers: Jeffrey Vanneste: Throw away email accounts

Much Ado About 'None'

Researchers explore whether parrot has concept of zero:

"A bird may have hit on a concept that eluded mathematicians for centuries—possibly during a temper tantrum."

"...Alex, a 28-year-old Grey parrot, recently began—unprompted—using the word “none” to describe an absence of quantity, according to researchers at Brandeis University in Waltham, Mass."

Lean Manufacturing Blog

Lean Manufacturing Blog:

News and discussion about Lean Manufacturing, the Toyota Production System, Lean Healthcare, and American manufacturing competitiveness.

Thursday, July 07, 2005

WhenU - Ads by choice

WhenU has a n interesting business model: Allow users to voluntarily install a desktop application that serves them relevant ads.

"For example, when you are shopping for an air fare, WhenU recognizes this, and then provides you with an ad for a cheaper fare. The end result is an online experience that allows you, the consumer, access to more information and therefore make better informed decisions while saving money in the process."

Hm. I wonder how they'll make this compelling enough for people to download. Of course I have a silly SWA Ding! program running on my desktop (soon to be uninstalled)... With $35 million in funding, it looks like WhenU has some time to figure it out.

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

BlogThis Quote Fixer GreaseMonkey Script

BlogThis Quote Fixer:

This is a Greasemonkey user script. To install, you need Greasemonkey: Then restart Firefox and revisit this script. Under Tools, there will be a new menu item to 'Install User Script'. Accept the default configuration and install.

Site-specific GreaseMonkey Scripts

For future reference: GreaseMonkeyUserScriptsSpecific - An Unnamed MoinMoin Wiki

Europe Parliament Nixes Software Patent Law

Yay: MSN Money - Associated Press Business News: Europe Parliament Nixes Software Patent Law

Friday, July 01, 2005

ASCII Movies

First there was ASCII.

Then there was ASCII - "art"

Now there are ASCII movies:

This is a little beyond ASCII Star Wars, but not nearly as creative or fun to watch.
Yay! There's now an episode called DIE JAR JAR.

Is Dynamic SQL in Your Stored Procedures Vulnerable to SQL Injection?

Pencil Bros. Geology, Inc. (a.k.a. Richard Dudley) asks: Is Dynamic SQL in Your Stored Procedures Vulnerable to SQL Injection? and then proceeds to provide a simple but effective CodeSmith template that generates a safe (and efficient) stored procedure for any table.

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Hackers, Spelling, and Grammar?

Strom Carlson asks Slashdot readers a question I have asked myself many times before:

"Over the last few years, I've noticed that a surprisingly large number of native English speakers, who are otherwise very technically competent, seem to lack strong English skills. Mostly, this seems to manifest itself as varying degrees of poor spelling and grammar: 'definately' instead of 'definitely'; 'should of' instead of 'should have'; and I even see the names of products and companies misspelled from time to time. It baffles me that a culture so obsessed with technical knowledge and accuracy can demonstrate such little attention to detail when it comes to communicating that knowledge with others, and it baffles me even more that many people become enraged when you attempt to help them correct and learn from their mistakes. Do hackers and geeks just not care about communicating effectively? Do they not realize that a mediocre command of written English makes them appear less intelligent? Am I missing something here?"

PS! I'm not a native English speaker (which will from now on be my excuse for any "typos" in this blog), but the sad truth is that my English spelling-accuracy is worse now than it ever was. It appears that the longer I am immersed in an English-speaking culture, the more I tend to write words as I hear them, and not as I know they are spelled. It is as if my brain is shifting from using an internal dictionary of written words, to some phonetic-based audio-library. I'd love to see someone do an fMRI study on this sometime.