Google gets all Amazony

April 8, 2008 · Posted in Tech - Software · Comment 

Well last night Google announced “Google App Engine”, it’s essentially Google’s answer to Amazon’s web services. Pricing hasn’t been announced at this time, or at least that I could find. If you are interested in testing it out you can sign up for the waiting list here.

Right now the only API language supported is Python, but the platform is supposed to be language agnostic and should be supporting other languages in the near future. TechCrunch has put together a quick app and has details on working with the API up on their site right now and you can find that here:
http://www.techcrunch.com/2008/04/08/techcrunch-labs-our-experience-building-and-launching-app-on-google-app-engine/

The SDK and docs are all available here:
http://code.google.com/appengine/

I am on the waiting list. Should be interesting to see how these two services stack up against each other.

I am also wondering since several startups are using Amazon Web services for their applications, and theoretically others will also soon be using Google AppEngine, I wonder how long before they just start running optical fiber between their respective datacenters and house a large portion of the “internet” between them. I also wonder if an AppEngine or AWS version of WordPress, or the like, is in the cards in the not-so-distant future.

Rockin’ Out in the Caribbean

April 5, 2008 · Posted in Music · 1 Comment 

I’m in the Caribbean again for work and apparently there are only so many days that you listen to resort cover bands, and 14 is way past my limit. So I was very happy to find this post on Wil Wheaton’s site for a very cool LA HD radio station which is also online:


KROQ – The ROQ of the 80s

Enjoy!

I’ve actually decided that there are big holes in my iPod selections that need to be filled after listening.

It’s just like it was, except completely different

April 5, 2008 · Posted in netfarious.net · Comment 

So I finally got around to widgetizing this site today. So even though the sidebars looks exactly as they did this morning they are now wordpress widgets instead of actual edits to the underlying template. This will allow netfarious to not be tied a particular template as well as hopefully stop me from having decipher why the latest WordPress update has borked the site. While I was at it I updated several plug-ins and even added a few for some behind the scene supporting roles.

The other big behind the scenes change is that the site search is now Google and its all “ajaxy” instead of the built-in search.

If you see a problem on the site please drop me a line or leave a comment.

Thanks!
The management

Jonathan Coulton Rocks!

March 12, 2008 · Posted in Music · Comment 

I was introduced to this guy via TWIT 133. If you like “They Might Be Giants” you’ll like his music. If you finished Valve’s The Orange Box:Portal you are most likely already a fan.

Here is a “music video” someone threw together of one of his popular songs, “Code Monkey”:

Jonathan Coulton’s home page is here. Why don’t you head over there, listen to some songs, and maybe buy a non-DRM’s mp3 or even a CD or 3.

Need a Holiday? Petition for one…

March 10, 2008 · Posted in Politics · Comment 

The guys & gals at Guinness would like your help in making St. Patrick’s Day a U.S. Federal Holiday. They need 1 million petition signers by midnight on March 16th. I think it’s not a bad idea to support any measure that may help give us more free time:

http://proposition317.com

The People’s Mario

February 29, 2008 · Posted in I'm such a geek · Comment 

Saw this on Wil Wheaton’s blog. Apparently at one point there was a rumor that Super Mario Brothers had a “communist agenda”. You can find the … err… proof here:

http://nedmartin.org/amused/communist-mario

So all of that reading just to setup this animation of how the game would have actually played if it were true:
http://terminal71.com/flash/mario.php

Chaldean Archbishop kidnapped in Iraq

February 29, 2008 · Posted in News - International · Comment 

65 year old Archbishop Paulos Faraj Rahho was kidnapped in Iraq today shortly after saying mass. He is a Chaldean Catholic bishop. The three people with him were killed.

More info on the kidnapping:
USA Today
Associate Press
Catholic News Service

More info on Chaldean Catholics:
Wikipedia
Catholic Encyclopedia

I like Crayons …

February 29, 2008 · Posted in I'm such a geek, Tech - Software · Comment 

When I grow up I want to be able to play this game, actually, I want it now:

Here is a link to the game’s site, unfortunately it is still under development:
http://www.kloonigames.com/crayon/

Old computing habits die hard …

February 26, 2008 · Posted in Tech - Hardware · Comment 

I upgraded my system so that I could continue to play Oblivion with lots more of the eye candy turned up and perhaps even dabble in Bioshock but I still have a motherboard with (gasp) AGP. Yes, although I do have an Intel Core 2 Duo, I am still “kicking it old school” in the graphics department. Luckily for me and the other folks still otherwise happy with their AGP computing experience there is a new AGP graphics savior compelling you to spend money if you want to extend its gaming life a little longer:

The Sapphire ATI HD Radeon 3850 AGP 8x 512MB

This little card will not break any speed records when compared to the high end in the land of milk & honey … err … PCI-E but to those of us still holding out in AGP land it is the fastest graphics available. So far it is noticeably faster and quieter than my EVGA NVIDIA 7800GS OC and even seems to handle powering down for sleep mode well. For actual benchmarks please take a look here:

Oh wait … you can’t because I can’t find any online magazines that actually have a review out on this card because I guess they are all latte’ drinking AGP haters (my apologies to any latte’ drinking AGP lovers).

In summary if you’re still loving your AGP, give this card a try (although make sure your PSU still has some oomph left in it)…

Bulk Chemicals, Pre-paid phone cards, Food & More

January 26, 2008 · Posted in Misc, Tech - Hardware, Tech - Software · Comment 

The title really hasn’t got much to do with this post except that I saw this on a “market” on the way to the hotel I’m currently staying at for a business trip in Jamaica. This one of those “etc” posts so I figure it would be a good title since there will be a little everything.

I usually end up running through lots of benchmarks and reviews when I do a computer upgrade but I think “Yougamers” (Futuremark) might have put together a nice page for these endeavors. They essentially have a page that lists hardware in order of CPUMarks per dollar and 3DMarks per $ so that will be a definite help in future upgrade. The list is updated twice a day and you can find it:
http://www.yougamers.com/hardware/stats/3dmark06/priceandperformance/

Need to help a far away friend or family member with their computer on the weekend? Then Fog Creek software (Of “Joel on Software” blog fame) has you covered as they have opened up their Copilot service for free use on the weekends. Haven’t had a chance to try it yet but probably will soon. Here is a link to that post:
http://www.joelonsoftware.com/items/2008/01/25.html

Like Pizza? Here is a list of various regional U.S. pizza styles:
http://slice.seriouseats.com/archives/2008/01/a-list-of-regional-pizza-styles.html

Like OSX but not the price of the hardware to run it on. Purely for educational purposes lifehacker has put together a walkthrough on how to get OSX running non-sanctioned hardware:
http://lifehacker.com/348653/install-os-x-on-your-hackintosh-pc-no-hacking-required

Here is a list of the top 100 motivational blog posts as put together by Laura Milligan of Bootstrapper:
http://www.businesscreditcards.com/bootstrapper/top-100-motivational-blog-posts-of-all-time/
And once you’re motivated, here’s a list from the same site of 50 resources to help de-clutter your life:
http://www.businesscreditcards.com/bootstrapper/50-online-resources-for-decluttering-your-life/

Like to dual boot but don’t want to re-partition your hard drive well the Wubi installer might be something for you. It lets you install ubuntu onto your current OS file system (linux, windows, OSX under development) as a virtual hard disk not to be confused with a virtual machine ala qemu or vmware:
http://wubi-installer.org/

The Library of Congress is sharing lots of their pictures on the Library of Congress Flickr tagging project so take a look and help tag:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/Library_of_Congress
LOC Flickr FAQ

That’s it for now….

Happy New Christmakwanakah!

January 19, 2008 · Posted in Misc · Comment 

Since this is my first post of 2008, Happy New Year! I got back form my business travel exploits in just enough time for Christmas and then had a hectic New year followed by a birthday party for a 1 year old. Now that I have enough time to breathe, I am heading back out again for a couple of weeks but hopefully the Caribbean will at least be warm. Since I didn’t wish you all a Merry Christmas, I will do so now and I will even include a Nativity play performed by a Fanuc LR Mate 200iC robot, please enjoy it in all its Icelandic glory:

I’ve also been toying with some ideas for a new web project so that has even further pushed out blog updates. I will give some info on it when I actually have some to share, its mostly vapor-ware and php dreams at the moment.

Ubuntu & Citicards.com

October 27, 2007 · Posted in Tech - Software · Comment 

Well my windows install started to act up again so I decided to free up some space on a partition and try out the latest Ubuntu that everyone seems to be going ga-ga over. I do have to say that I was was very pleasantly suprised at how easy the desktop just worked, as it’s been a while since I’ve used linux as a non-server …

I did find one thing that was annoying, but it wasn’t Ubuntu’s fault. If you have a citicard and login to manage your account online with firefox on linux for some reason the web page loads and then immediately disappears. After googling this it appears that that the problem stems from some kind of anomaly between the flash on the site and the Adobe flash player for linux. Some site suggest disabling and re-enabling javascript after you login but what I found that worked is if you use the Adblock plugin and create filters for:

https://www.citicards.com/cards/wv/swf/savecards.swf
https://www.citicards.com/cards/wv/swf/filter1.swf

After that you will immediately be in business. By the way if you run into this problem, please send them a note in the “Contact Us” section so that they may actually fix this sometime in the near future or maybe look into officially supporting linux.

Good Luck!

Etc: October 14

October 14, 2007 · Posted in Tech - Software, Writing & Reading · 1 Comment 

So I’ve been doing at alot of traveling and running about and the site has gotten a little neglected. But here are a few things to keep you guys entertained:

Flight Aware:
Ever want to really know where your flight is, not the airline’s “update” but the actual real location of the plane (6 minutes delayed). Try Flight Aware:
http://flightaware.com/

Ever want some “Cool Software“, well Intel has decided that they want to apply the Digg model to software apps. Go take a look:
http://coolsw.intel.com/

For you intellectual reader types, if you’ve ever needed to track down a book, magazine article, journal, music, etc … You can now search all your local (participating) libraries from the comfort of your own home using WorldCat. Type in the search and it will show you the nearest library that has the resource. The site is: http://www.worldcat.org/
And here is a direct link to their browser extension page:
http://www.worldcat.org/toolbars/default.jsp

While I’m talking about readers, Discworld is a series of books I have heard much about but never had a chance to read any of the series. But I stumbled upon a guide on how the 30+ book interrelate and a loosely coupled reading order (at the very least it’s literally a nice big picture) if I ever get a chance. Check out the guide here:
http://www.lspace.org/books/reading-order-guides/

I’m not sure how they get away with this but here is a MickyDees video game which I am pretty sure is not sanctioned by the actual corporation. Ever want to run the empire:
http://www.mcvideogame.com/
(Actually I guess this is that whole satire use of trademarks thing … although I’m not a lawyer. )

And finally if you have ever wanted to make one of those still picture talking image things, similar to what Conan does on his talk show … at least I think it’s Conan’s show… Blabberize is here to fill that need for you. Go ahead and make one, you know you want to:
http://www.blabberize.com/

Pirates! Yarr!

September 9, 2007 · Posted in Quiz · 1 Comment 

Another Quiz. I’m sure this one is scientific:

You scored as Captain Jack Sparrow, You are definitely quirky and often mistaken for mad but if anyone is truly paying attention they can see there is method to your madness. You try really hard to be bad but in the end you tend to do the right thing.

Sinbad

75%

Captain Jack Sparrow

75%

Captain James T. Hook

67%

Captain Barbosa

67%

Black Beard

67%

Mary Read

58%

Dread Pirate Roberts

42%

Long John Silvers

42%

Will Turner

42%

Morgan Adams

33%

What kind of Pirate are you?
created with QuizFarm.com

A Great Bioshock review

September 9, 2007 · Posted in I'm such a geek, Tech - Software · Comment 

I have not bought Bioshock yet as I need to find some time to play as well as perform a computer upgrade in order to play it. But I hope to get to it “soon”. But in the meantime I really enjoyed this review of it which I am blatantly borrowing the linkage from a friend’s blog.

Enjoy!



Digging through the Linux Kernel

August 15, 2007 · Posted in Tech - Software · Comment 

So I stumbled on two things today that might be goods for folks wanting to delve into the Linux kernel for education or development.

The first is the Interactive Linux Kernel Map. This provides some detail on the layout of the kernel and the interaction between various parts.

The second is the Linux Weather Forecast. This gives you a better insight on the status and progress of features going into the kernel. For example, if the lead developer of the feature is MIA, the feature is probably not going into the kernel in the near term.

Hope this helps your kernel habit!

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