Dan and I shot this last summer but it took a while to get it finished up. The next one is going to be even better.
Found some more time to work on my fullfeeds project over the weekend. Finally getting into Node's everything happens in a callback spirit, and managing to not make it look like spagetti code. Discovering the async module really helped but I've probably gone a little overboard with it.
At this point it's following links, extracting and caching page content, and generating a new feed. But it's still got a way to go:
- The configuration is hard coded — I hope you like the feeds I'm interested in.
- It doesn't serve up its own feeds — on my server I symlinked its output directory into an Apache webroot to serve the files).
- Doesn't run as a service — I'm using cron to run it hourly.
I just got around to upgrading my website to Drupal 6. In the process I decided that I was going to redo the theme using 960.gs for a nice grid based design and then I got it into my head that I wanted a nice retro 1990 theme. So here it is, my stab at recreating the Netscape 2 experience. I'm not sure how long I'll be able to stand it but I'm going to enjoy it while it lasts.
Update: couldn't handle it anymore, had to "modernize" it a bit.
My side project has been writing some code to display data from iTunes on my Heathkit H19 terminal.
sudo port install jp2a imagemagick
You need to use Ruby's gem to install ncurses and appscript:
sudo gem install ncurses rb-appscript
As of 24 May 2009, I've move this code to GitHub Repository. Now there's publicly accessible version control and people can fork and share changes.
I was walking the dog around my the block at my grandma's house and started thinking that genre of historical cityscape photos that you'd find at a city or state's historical society. I find it absolutely fascinating to be able to peer into a snapshot of a place and time. It's both exciting and a bit scary to think how new technologies/databases like Google's Street View will probably be this period's equivalent. The exciting part is that the record would be exponentially more complete but the scary part is how fragile it is. You can't just drop a server off at the Historical Society and wish them well... even if you could it's hard to believe that any computerized record is going to last longer than silver based negatives and prints.
That then got pondering the possibility of using the modern techniques to record a city in the older, more stable medium of film. I don't see any way of making it commercially viable so framing it as an art project and looking for a grant would probably be the only way of funding it. Since it'd be an artistic undertaking I'd want the purity of capturing the image directly onto film rather than storing them digitally and then printing an analog image.
Having properly geo-coding images would be the entire point of the project so it would be critical to record the time and location that each image was taken. This would, in turn, require some custom (or customized) cameras. I'd want to use the same type of imprinting technology that records the date and time on a negative to also store the latitude and longitude--even cooler would be to record the approximate address. Rather than constantly changing film it seems logical to use the 1000 foot rolls of 35mm film that you'd find in a movie camera. The final component would be a computer and GPS to control the camera and provide the location.
The really interesting part that I haven't yet given any thought to would be figuring out how to present the images.
After installing a new hard drive I decided it was time to re-install Windows and clean everything up. I firmly believe that the best time to document something is when you're doing it. So I took the opportunity to write some instructions for setting up a Windows based Drupal development machine. I hope it's of use to someone.
I spent a good chunk of the day bottling my first batch of beer. I'm not saying it turned out great, but I had really low expectations and it surpassed those. I started with 6 gallons, bottled a total of 67, 12-oz bottles. Four bottles cracked while I was capping them, but once I started paying attention to the position of the bottle's seam, I had pretty good luck. Once I finished, I poured the leftover flat beer from the carboy into a pitcher (it had a crazy amount of yeast in it) into a small pitcher and ended up with a nice afternoon beer buzz.
Two more weeks and I'll be drinking proper beer. I think Joe Lane would be proud. Oh, and speaking of Joe Lane, go check out his photos from touring a brewery in Vermont.
Update: beer is "done" but it tastes pretty funny. I used bleach as a sterilizer but didn't rinse it properly so it gave it a weird metallic taste. I'm hoping the next batch will be better.
The last couple of weeks I've been trying my hand at home brewing. Etta's dad, Ron, is the part owner of a building that has/had a brewery in it. They kicked the the tenants out after they got way behind in their rent, and ended up with all the old equipment that he wasn't easy to sell. He gave me a glass carboy and I went down to the home brew shop in town and bought a couple of beer kits.
I'm pretty sure the first batch is going to be fucked up. The kit I used was three years past its best by date, that and I didn't mix it up enough when I put it into the fermenter, and it got too cold and the yeast fell out. I put an electric blanket around the carboy to warm it back up and waited a few days. Finally after four days of nothing happening I opened up the closet to dump it out and it was going crazy bubbling. So I figure it'll be my test batch for bottling, I'll make all my big mistakes on that and not feel bad when it's a mess.
I started a second batch yesterday and it's been doing much better. It's already bubbling away in the closet next to the first batch. I've got much higher hopes for it.
I contributed a PHP5 color conversion package to the PEAR project.
It supports supports the following color models:
- CMYK - Used in printing.
- Grayscale - Perceptively weighted gray scale.
- Hex - Hex RGB colors i.e. #abcdef.
- HSL - Used in CSS3 to define colors.
- HSV - Used by Photoshop and other graphics packages.
- Named - RGB value for named colors like black, khaki, etc.
- WebsafeHex - Just like Hex but rounds to websafe colors.
I totally whacked the KPSU archive machine today. It's one of those standard stories of being stupid and then being in a rush to compound it. So now I'm building a backup machine to stand in while try to rebuild the archive.
Learning from my mistakes:
- sysinstall is a handy pistol. Use it to shoot yourself in the foot.
- dd is your best friend, provided you've got extra disk space. You just make an image of drive you've sort of fucked up and then you can restore back to that image when your troubleshooting go wrong.
i've spent the last few months working on a persistence of vision (pov) circuit for a bike wheel. this is my first foray into electronics and micro-controllers so, while it works, it's a bit of a hack. in fact, you might just want to skip on down to the "things to fix" section.
the project is based on two of lady ada's plans for pov projects, the minipov and spoke pov. the minipov uses only a single pic16f630 while the spoke uses an amtel micro-controller, an eeprom, and several 74x259 8-bit latches.
i wanted to enhance the minpov to display text on both sides of the bike wheel. i chose to use microchip's pic because they sold a cheap programmer and i had lady ada's working source code. the biggest challenge with displaying text on both sides of the wheel each side needs to read from a different end of the string. if you're displaying ABC the left side needs to start at C and the right side needs to start at A. that meant i needed 16 outputs, four more than the 16f630 has. to work around this i used an 8-bit addressable latch for each side.
I host the following websites:
- My old roommate Little Bob's record label.
- The first black musician on the Grand Ole Opry. My dad wrote his biography, I finally convinced my dad to get with the times and setup a website.
- Courier Coffee Roasters
- My friend Joel is a coffee roaster in Portland. I setup a simple site for him.
- My old house's domain. If you've lived here you get an email address and webspace if you want it.
- Maker of sub-premium bicycle parts and publisher of zines.
- My old friend from Reno (who also lives in Portland), Dan Reed Miller's travel journals.