Wednesday, December 31, 2008


have you guys seen the hottrends over on google labs? i've always wanted to know what the current interest is of the internet dwellers. now I now, minute by minute. you can look back to different days as well. if i needed a way to do very specific targeted advertising, i think this might play into that.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

rainbow table

crack a windows password, up to 14 characters long in a few minutes. it just doesn't get any more nerdy than that. see project rainbow crack. i'm sure theres others, but this had a nice writeup.


I loved the stereo view things (you know, the ones where you cross your eyes and then it turns all 3 dimensional). I made a special one for the nerdy crowd. don't be stupid and try to see the small one above, click on it for a full screen view.

Some dudes over at cornell did a project with an FPGA and a TV. ahhh.. the good old days involving fun projects for projects sake, not just profiteering innovation for the investors

it is interesting to see that you can do this with plain text. I Haven't figured out how this is done, but over on hidden-3d they have an ascii generator tool you can use

Friday, November 28, 2008

peeler guy


The Gentleman Grafter

By night, Joe Ades dines with his fourth wife at exclusive restaurants, sips Veuve Clicquot at the Pierre, and goes home to a three-bedroom Park Avenue apartment. By day, he is something else altogether. At 72, the “peeler guy” in the Turnbull & Asser shirts is a New York legend.

by Howard Kaplan May 2006

In the early 90s a man named Joe Ades began showing up in the bar at the Pierre, Manhattan’s famously posh hotel on the corner of Fifth Avenue and East 61st Street. Joe liked the crowd at the CafĂ© Pierre, but the real draw for him was Kathleen Landis, the dimpled, piano-playing house chanteuse who still entertains there five nights a week. Joe was a five-nights-a-week man as well, always seated at the same round table with a front view of the baby grand and a back view of Landis. He drank only champagne, and never alone. His usual brand was Veuve Clicquot. On most nights he casually ordered a bottle, which always appeared with two champagne glasses—one for himself, the other for Landis.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

it looks like you can search alot of craigslist at once if you used

Friday, November 14, 2008

HD failures

over at they have a nice listing of the sounds of failed HD's. there are some nice writeups on particular failure modes for specific manufactures and models. If you suspect a crappy drive, I would check these guys out for ideas of what to do (or to confirm it is now worth the sacred opening and harvesting of the eggs magnets)

Thursday, November 13, 2008

fire glass

handheld printer

did you guys see HP's new handheld printer? looks like its being used for shipping receiving, with a scanner / printer all in one.

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

pdf import

hey, has anyone seen the pdf IMPORT coming for open office? i'm going to have to try that one and see if it has any potential or not.

other cool open office plugins

Friday, October 31, 2008

check scare

slashdot links to a nice little article telling the story of how an author has offered small checks to readers that find errors in his [technical] books. for reasons of check security [or lack there of] he is no longer doing checks.

based on that, these are my uninformed recomendations
1) don't use a checking account as a savings account
2) don't tie an overdraft from a checking account to a savings account
3) keep only what you need in the checking account
4) if you invested in getting rid of global poverty, you wouldn't have to worry about losing money in your checking account.

...oops had the throw that last one in there. i'm in global poverty this fall at school.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

I was browsing over at the google map directory and found a nice little tool that warrants much more playing with. is a tool to plot the horizon (and name the peaks) from a location of your choosing. you can account for the curvature of the earth, and will also predict how far you can see from a particular location which makes it an ideal tool if... say.... you wanted to build a communications tower. check it out, you'll be impressed.

after you have picked your point, be sure and turn on the 'visibilty cloak' so you can see where you can 'see' on the big map. so cool.

I took the time to add in the view from Mount Rose for a friend.

Saturday, October 25, 2008


White Castle

Some time ago I saw Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle, a film that makes up for its lack of morals with increased laughs, and was totally convinced White Castle was a fictitious place. I was on business travel again this last week (Saint Louis this time) and we actually found one of these places.

Now picture with me the best fast food burger in existence (arguably In-n-Out here on the west coast) and prepare yourself as I did for the White Castle experience.

I should have known something was up, in-n-out is bright colors, happy, fast paced, where as White Castle is dull, drab, mundane, and slow (ok, it wasn't that slow, but the comparison sounds better). Burgers (without cheese) were 59-Cents or something, that too should have been a clue.

My coworker actually finished one, I could not (its only about 5 bites). I am convinced (and later told my wife) that dirt tastes better. When we returned the rental car across the street, we actually made a comment to the rental lot girl and she said "oh.. but did you get the ones with cheese? you have to have them with cheese, their the best that way". we politely informed her that no amount of cheese could have possibly made any difference and when we asked her if she had ever had in-n-out, she actually had the audacity to compare it to not being up to snuff with White Castle. wow.... to each their own.

If you ever run across a White Castle, just keep on moving. There is a nice little story of starting in 1916 with an iron griddle, and old shoe store, and a smashed meatball. to bad it looks different almost 100 years later, but still probably tastes about the same as a shoe store and a smashed meatball.

Friday, October 24, 2008 - image search

Visit and login (use for a nice 'trial' membership) - to link/upload an image and have this beast search 1,000,000,000 images and show you 'similar' images.

I tried it with an image on a corporate website that had an image that appeared doctored from stock photography, and what do you know. it was.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

biology diesel

man..I was just getting use to the idea of bio-diesel, now it looks like we are going to be turning to the biologists for our next form. you read it here first, i'm going to call it biology diesel. (sugar cane + yeast + gene splicing )


I don't watch TV, I Just watch internet, so I don't really see commercials any more. you'all have probably already seen this one, but if you haven't, here it is in the original sound. if you like this one, the bouncy ball one is pretty good too.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008


yup.. windows may be MORE reliable than the last, but anything less than 100% is still rubish in my book. I have no idea if this is real or not. someone needs to fire up the internet time machine or find a really old copy of nt4 and see if its on there.

scripting languages

I'm starting to get a reputation at work for solving problems with the crudest of tools. i'm not sure if thats a good reputation or not. I hate the idea of smashing an ant with a freight train, in my opinion a smallish bus is more appropriate. I firmly believe that everyone has a super-computer on their desk and refuses to acknowladge the power we all have right in front of us. you do not need to spend more money and time to release the beast, just open up a comand shell.

I read an article over on slashdot about 6 new[ish] scripting languages (well, some are really compiled) and theres all kinds of fun things, like other languages that compile in java byte code (groove) and ones that take pride in being compact, with a slogan, do it in 1mb, not 200mb. (Rebol, its not in the list of 6, but in the worthy mention section)

Friday, October 10, 2008

FPU in your GPU with CUDA

I read a little summary over on toms hardware of the cuda interface to nvidia graphics cards. i was intrigued by a post over on gizmodo about the GPU being used by -russian- hackers to break WPA and WPA2.

if you don't want to read all of it, i'll summarize: for certain things, a GPU can be at least 10x faster than the CPU.


Melodyne is software I got very excited about. It allowed us to take source material from anywhere, in our case from the natural world, and turn it into MIDI control data that would allow us to manipulate musical instruments, so we could have birds playing cellos or horns, or the wind playing strings. This is what we did in the film Rabbit Proof Fence [aka. The Long Walk Home]. I still think there is a lot more that can be done with it.

Melodyne is a wonderful piece of software. It allows me to do things I'd always dreamed of.

Peter Gabriel

The music from the video is from ninadeli

Sunday, October 05, 2008

NAS backup

I was reading over on slashdot at some ideas for backup software, and it looks like bacula may be pretty high up there on the useful scale. I'm not sure if I could set it up to work on a network attached storage, but maybe we could set it up to mirror across some of the nerdytales computers? anyone interested? 500gb is what, $50 now?

Thursday, October 02, 2008

German Qwerty

Wikipedia has a nice little writeup on qwerty in which you can clearly see the trouble I had today when I went to use a 'laptop' from Germany. its close, but not close enough. check out the 'z', 'y', loss of the '+' and '-' (in the standard locations). you don't have any idea how much of the expanded characters you use in day to day windows navigation until you've tried to use one of these baby's.

couple that with my inexperience in vista (and office 2007), and the fact that vista lost the 'run' ability from the start menu, and hyperterminal is now missing in vista and that made for one exciting unusable computer. oh yeah, no com port either. its strange how modern machines become increasingly less useful.

The fact that the OS was in german was only a minor inconvenience given the rest of the problems I had with the machine, OS, and office.

Sunday, September 28, 2008


Your word of the day is Tetraphobia. I have no idea why cultures are so tied up in numerology. its the modern era, move on people!

At work, the main product has a developer logon PW with a lot of 8's. heres why

Saturday, September 27, 2008

T-Day Plans

Seeing as Sarah is planning on being about 37 weeks pregnant we are not planning on traveling (I'd rather not have to tell my kid they were delivered at mile post 382 on the interstate).

We are happy to host anyone who wants to visit though. Especially those who want to cook yummy things :) or go hiking.

electrocute your diesel

some 'snake-oil' plate differential has claims of 20% increase in mpg or power. i say snake oil because it may have some validitity to it. it made it to slashdot, and was scoffed, but its actually been published on and we know those guys are all snakeoilly. read the paper here

as a side note, now i don't feel so bad that i use paint for technical illustrations.

canada and back

A week ago I had a discussion with my manager about my work responsibilities. The discussion didn't go so well. We weren't seeing eye to eye on much of my responsibilities. The next day I was asked to fly to Canada for a spur of the moment FAT (factory acceptance test) to conclude a 4 month demo. A Canadian customer had a unit and wanted some modifications made, and I was the best qualified that was able to travel.

This last week, I flew up and spent almost the entire week up with the crazy Canadians. (yes, I did ride a horse, and yes, the saddle fell off, and yes I did end up on the ground). The trip was an awesome success (mostly luck). I spent a day and wrote a report on the new configuration and sent it back to the factory. When I got back, the plant gave me a raise and a new job (doing more of what I want to do).

not bad for missing 2 nights of school. well worth it I think.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

putty puzzle games

weird little puzzle games from the maker of putty, which now has serial support so i'll be giving that shot. you guys can enjoy the games.

all the games appear to run in a browser window in java, so no need to install anything. i tried the tangle game and 'beat it' in a few minutes. it made me very proud.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Unscrewed Leg

They took the screws out of my leg... Lots of fun, got to meet some nice people in the hospital. I really like the guy holding the mask right before the lights went out, it all seemed quite pleasant.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008


check out the video on head tracking. pretty interesting and you even get the 3d effect from a 2d video. the brain is so cool.

Acoustic Trigger

I need to make an acoustic trigger for the cannon. (the big one). maybe one with a variable delay, you could go old school with a tunable RC network, or digital uP. I'd put a long cord on the pickup so I could put it near the impact point, and then adjust delay.

I wonder if you could use a piezzo electric? maybe just use a regular crystal, with no load, and then gain up the response with an op amp. drop the piezzo on the ground and out pops a trigger? tape it to a frozen jug, and use it for the trigger when the jug gets shot. so many possibilities....

found here


the folks over at have a nice little write up about using the atmega168 (thats the atmega8 with 16k of EEPROM) to drive a display and give you your speed and MPG. it specifically is targeted at older fuel injected cars where you just tap the injector signal, and the speed sensor, and your off and running.

It looks like a fun little project. i almost regret having a newer generation car where I fell pretty much obligated to reverse engineer OBD-II so I can read the fuel injector info directorly from the ECU. its so sad that is RIGHT THERE, but so hard to get to it!

ubuntu at wwu

unfortunately the mirror is super slow.  time for a new download site.

Monday, September 15, 2008


Have you guys seen they have a little compiler IDE thing that i think is a pretty front end to openGL and graphics processing, that turns into java. I was able to use to make a scope for a thing I was working on at work. it took me all of a few hours. its that simple, you guys already knew that because of how bad I am at coding. =)

I interfaced it with a 15 line program I loaded up on the arduino, which interestingly enough uses an IDE that looks identical. for a few hours of work, I have a fully functional tool that we've spent over $5,000 for at work to be built with off the shelf hardware. the kicker? Mine cost $35 for the hardware, and a few hours of code.

see the first screen shot, complete with 2 10-bit a/d inputs and one digital input (the blue sync line) running at 4 hertz. yeah, sounds slow, but try cramming 10-bit data over a 115,200 (crappy) serial rs-232 link. its possible, but it will take some work to do much better.

this was before i got my sync algorithm all figured out (which I implented on the computer side, not the hardware side). I would post the code, but unfortunatly i was at work when i wrote it, so technically that makes it theirs =(

Wednesday, September 10, 2008


Another poor attempt to make money off of search engine vampire tactics, Groovle does have one good thing going for it. a few of the images are pretty good. browse to your selection of choice, right click and 'view background image' and then save for your use. i'm sure that violates some TOS somewhere, but hey, i'm sticking with my already uglified start page, and just using that thing for my desktop.

Monday, September 08, 2008


since kevs been posting nostalgic items, I was going to counter with the organ grinder, but it must have been called something else. i'm having a terrible time finding this old restraunt where a monkey ran across the room on a string. if memory serves, you walked down through the organ when you entered the place? man. I must be completely wrong, because i can't find it.

that brings me to awesome lakeside. that I could find. see above. there was the cyclone, but really, nothing tops the dragon

there was some whole book-it thing that if you read 20 picture books during the summer, you got half off a coupon for the place or something. later the book-it turned into a free personal pan from pizza hut, but it was still enuf for me to claim I read books I'd never opened.


If you haven't played a good tower defense game in a while (the gem game was cool) sit down and fire up the old mouse for onslaught. you can play it a number of places, including kongregate i think. on first pass analysis with little printers walking by it doesn't inspire much confidence, but don't despair, theres a huge list of combos of how you chain your towers together to napalm, poison gas, taser and laser rockets, nukes, blackholes. the list seams endless, and really adds for huge gameplay.

denver - casa bonita
has an interesting writeup and current pictures of what my mind says was an awesome restaurant 20 years ago. perhaps times have changed, or at least my standards.

Saturday, September 06, 2008



has a brief writeup on a mysqlgame.

think OLD warcraft1 with no gui, just a database.
pretty cool.

it's been 24 hours and 10 seconds just does not come fast enough! (every 10 seconds, your factories cycle and you get more fuel and money)

visit shard1 to get started.

Friday, August 29, 2008

Funny Science Videos

watch them and laugh

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Thinking Ahead is Overrated

some lunch time fun (via failblog) that shows failure that kev avoided when he carried his golf club around

Sunday, August 24, 2008

microscope fun

nikon small wold has some really cool microscope pics.

Toy Yoda

from here includinga little discussion on snopes for you fans.


[click to enlarge the awesomeness]

Femto finally figured out she can jump. she was running along the top of the fence one night when I called her in for the night. she was preoccupied with something and went over to investigate.

I got the camera and played with the manual focus and got a picture of our prehensile tail friend. it never did move, no matter how close I got. it just looked at me like i was an idiot for disturbing it. I'm generally not to scared of wild life, but this thing ranks right up there with a few bears i've seen. I felt like I was getting rabies just by looking at it.

Friday, August 22, 2008

It Can Stab You

check out this wind turbine. perhaps a reason for safety testing and a NIMBY policy. though i think i'd still let one be around my area.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008


check out nhtsa to see if you have any recalls on your vehicle. I wonder if the dealer is always up front. now you know where to look. when i went through the 5 or so that are listed for the VW, i think they have done a pretty good job bugging me to go in, but you may find your maker is not as forthcoming. there is alot of useless knowledge on the [obviously] government website. I say obviously because most government lacks asthetics, this is no exception.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008


go ahead and punch about:config in your firefox address and look at all the cool things you can customize. I wonder why i didn't find that sooner? you can see most of the list here. more firefox customization for the nerds

Thursday, August 14, 2008


kseb has a great link to the history of paperclips. how can anyone call themselves a nerdy scholar without being informed on this! jen and I loved the read and I compare it to the many fine examples of barbed wire I saw while on vacation in south dakota. the barbed wire may be dangerous to collect, so I think i'll switch my planned collection to paperclips. I say 'planned' because i've never collected anything, I usually just plan to. wait... i have like 3/4 of the 50 state quarters. oops.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Fail Blog

Fail Blog has some fairly epic failures. its worth stopping by and preparing yourself for reality before you face the general population.

for anyone that has ever questioned why i run studs (or did before moving to a local where we are afraid of the cold), I present the following:

Thursday, August 07, 2008


Thanks kev for the terrible time waster. my wrist hurts now. GemCraft is the first games in along time that has kept my interest for more than about 10 minutes.

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

3d data

I saw the rendering of 3d data on a google code page. pretty cool! some of you may have even seen the music video. by-by regular camera, hello personal radar!

check out the city mode in full screen. pretty cool! (use the little icons on the bottom left)

Sunday, August 03, 2008

bikes for dan

if this things for real, then i say we haven't made any real technological advances in bicycles in at least 60 years.

Friday, August 01, 2008
send a book to someone, get points, cash points in for books others want to send.

Thursday, July 31, 2008

beautiful keith

from here. I'm still trying to figure out how much we payed the professional photographer for that shot and given the final product i could have used a 5 year old cell phone camera.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Saturday, July 19, 2008

South Dakota Trip PIctures

here are long overdue pics from our south dakota trip

2008 07(july) 04 trip to belle fourche, sd

subaru = mini

I was looking through the micrcocar museum and found the subaru360 from 1970. the notes say they were about $1,300 each, or if you wanted to buy bulk, you could get 6 for $2,000.

that looks alot like the original mini (one on the left)!

Friday, July 18, 2008

mba relfections

I ran across a quote burried down in the slashdot comments. its pretty good. sometimes I have to think twice about this whole mba thing.

Management is where people who are too incompetent for technical work go. No one gets fired, they get moved to different departments. As a last resort, they get assigned to 'special projects' for about a year in the hopes that everyone will forget what an imbecile they are, and will be safe to move back into the management structure.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Stupid People

Sometimes you just have to see stupid to believe it... I was out on my MTB on some back roads in eastern OR with a friend of ours while we were camping... I had my helmet cam running to try and figure out what works and what doesn't... and I learned some a few things, mostly got about 1.5GB of video that wants to make me puke, but this is a learning experience for me. Anyway, I got a few frames of this car going by and I was amazed at how stupid some people are...

Thursday, July 10, 2008


I hate flash, but i'm happy to see that we now have enough bandwidth to actually make good use of it. bored? try a random simpsons video.

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

modern pics has some cool photographs, many taken from a perspective you would have never thought would look cool. like parking garages and billboards.

Sunday, June 29, 2008

an interesting audio site.

Friday, June 20, 2008

the big picture

over the boston globe they have the big picture, a photo blog that has highlights from the major happenings around the world. there is some REALLY good pictures. lots of fun to look at. be sure to expand each days post to see all of them.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

horse click

check out singing horses and click on them.

Monday, June 16, 2008

virtual haircut

have you guys seen the virtual haircut yet? it was actually interesting enough that I poked around the site to hear the auditory illusions as well. you'll learn that right handed people discern higher pitch with the right ear. strange. really strange.

Wednesday, June 04, 2008

random utube

since the news on nerdy is slow on coming, heres a random utube flic.

Monday, June 02, 2008

Tank: Finders Keepers

so some old army buddies are sitting around telling stories, and turns out one remembers a tank in the pond.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

"owning" a part of the company

Published: May 29, 2008
A group of former employees are accusing U.S. Sugar insiders of scheming to enrich themselves by buying workers’ shares back on the cheap.

people work harder and feel more attachment to a company they partially or wholly own. so companies like to offer ways for employees to be part of the company success to encourage them to do things like work overtime or for salary employees work more time for free. but here's the catch that these sugar workers fell into. they didn't really own a part of the company so they didn't have a chance to know what was going on with the company. their retirement company owned the stock. they were also screwed because the stock wasn't trading publicly so they didn't know the value of the stock. stock options also fall into this problem. sure you profit when the company rises in value but you still aren't a shareholder so you can't know what is going and vote on the direction of the company. i think every company that offers their stock as a retirement option or offers stock options to employees should be required to have each person have at least one real share or vote in the company. not that everyone would be informed even in that case, but at least that way if one person in the company did discover something they could mobilize all the other employees to vote against something.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Fat and happy

Okay, I'm not really fat yet, but I just came out positive on a pregnancy test. And yes, that was the goal. :)

Sunday, May 11, 2008

$50 in Sod

$50 in sod from Lowes for about 150 Feet^2. mom helped me rip the old stuff out, and dad sacraficed the van to haul the sod and then helped me lay it. Thanks!