Tuesday, December 26, 2006


I'm creating this post using my brand new Nintendo Wii. For some reason, the Opera Browser for Wii won't enter text into compose view, but works fine in Edit HTML View. It can deal with the AJAXy GMail fine, though. However, I am using a beta-equivilant version of the browser. Overall, the experience is extremely good, but I should stop typing or my hand will get a cramp from using the Wii-mote too much.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

New home for Math Drupal

I have moved Math Drupal over to mathdrupal.wordpress.com. There you will find the Development Blog, as well as new releases and bug fixes. Check it out!

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Blogger Beta

I have switched to the new Blogger beta!!!! If something goes wacky with the RSS feeds, I expect it. I've hear of stranger things. The Worst that can probobly happen is all of the posts get re sent through the feed. Leave me a note in the comments if there's another problem.

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Math Drupal

Math Drupal has MathML support using the ASCIIMathML JavaScript library.

  • .tar.bz2 (Good for UNIX/LINUX/*BSD)
  • .zip (Good for Windows or Mac OS X)
I'm working on creating a live demo of this.

Math Drupal

I plan on creating a custom distribution of Drupal that has built in support for MathML. I will distribute the package in a later post.

Friday, December 01, 2006


I learned about this on the twit.tv site.

I just received this disturbing news. If any of you knows anything please help...

CNET editor and former Fresh Gear contributor and Lab analyst James Kim has been missing since Saturday. ANY word, especially from people in the Oregon area is appreciated. The information is all below from the official investigation by the SFPD.

Missing Family Includes: James, Kati, Penelope (age 4.5) and Sabine (6 months). Last name is Kim

Overview: The Kim Family left San Francisco on November 17th on a road trip to the Pacific Northwest. They had Thanksgiving in Seattle with family and then drove to Portland. They were last seen by their friends in Portland whom they had brunch with on Saturday, November 25. According to their friends, their plans were to drive out to the town of Gold Beach on the Oregon Coast and then make their way back to San Francisco. James was expected back at work on Tuesday, November 28th. When no one had heard from him by Wednesday morning employees at the Kims' two stores and his colleagues at CNET began to make phone calls to his family and friends to inquire of his whereabouts. Presently, the SFPD is investigating the case.

The family was last heard from at around 5:45 PM on Saturday. A hotel clerk at the Tu Tu Tun lodge in Gold Beach, Oregon took a call from James. He said he was about five hours away. The hotel clerk said she would leave the keys out for them as the lobby would be closed after 10. The keys were still in the same place the next morning. The clerk believes James referred to being near Salem, Oregon at the time. They were driving a 2005 silver Saab station wagon with California personalized plates of “DOESF”.

More details and pictures of the family are available on CNET's Crave Blog.

If you know anything about James' whereabouts, you can contact the SFPD by calling 415-558-5508 during normal business hours and 415-553-1071 after hours.

Read Leo's post here.

Thursday, November 30, 2006

Hell froze over

Hell seems to have frozen over. ATI has released Linux Drivers for ALL of it's cards. I knew this was going to happen after being acquired by AMD. See http://ati.amd.com/support/driver.html.

Monday, November 27, 2006

The US has common sense again!

The United States seems to have common sense again!! The Librarian of Congress has ruled that certain things should not be protected by the DMCA. This includes:

1. Audiovisual works included in the educational library of a college or university’s film or media studies department, when circumvention is accomplished for the purpose of making compilations of portions of those works for educational use in the classroom by media studies or film professors. 2. Computer programs and video games distributed in formats that have become obsolete and that require the original media or hardware as a condition of access, when circumvention is accomplished for the purpose of preservation or archival reproduction of published digital works by a library or archive. A format shall be considered obsolete if the machine or system necessary to render perceptible a work stored in that format is no longer manufactured or is no longer reasonably available in the commercial marketplace. 3. Computer programs protected by dongles that prevent access due to malfunction or damage and which are obsolete. A dongle shall be considered obsolete if it is no longer manufactured or if a replacement or repair is no longer reasonably available in the commercial marketplace. 4. Literary works distributed in ebook format when all existing ebook editions of the work (including digital text editions made available by authorized entities) contain access controls that prevent the enabling either of the book’s read-aloud function or of screen readers that render the text into a specialized format. 5. Computer programs in the form of firmware that enable wireless telephone handsets to connect to a wireless telephone communication network, when circumvention is accomplished for the sole purpose of lawfully connecting to a wireless telephone communication network. 6. Sound recordings, and audiovisual works associated with those sound recordings, distributed in compact disc format and protected by technological protection measures that control access to lawfully purchased works and create or exploit security flaws or vulnerabilities that compromise the security of personal computers, when circumvention is accomplished solely for the purpose of good faith testing, investigating, or correcting such security flaws or vulnerabilities.
This list makes a lot of sense, and I hope it doesn't get struck down with help from RIAA, MPAA, and friends.

Thank you, Dr. James H. Billington, Librarian of Congress!!!!!

Sunday, November 19, 2006


I stumbled across Apache2Triad during my search for a good WAMPPP stack. IT TOTALLY OWNS!!!!!!!!!!!!!! It is probably the only (easy) way to implement mod_python under windows. Apache2Triad includes:



Graphic User Interfaces:

Wikipedia Links provided for your convenience.

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Insanity, Anyone?

Seen on Slashdot:

An anonymous reader writes

"There's a federal case in the Northern District of California where copyright for open source is being challenged. The free software project JMRI discovered that a commercial company was using some of their files in a product, in violation of the license. They added a copyright claim to an ongoing legal action about cybersquatting, software patent abuse, etc. The patent case was covered on Slashdot back in June but the copyright part is new. The other side came back with an argument that copyright law didn't apply, simply because they software was 'being given away for free.'"
This is insane. for those who want to read JMRI's license, see The Artistic License.

Saturday, November 11, 2006

Ms. Dewey

This is ... interesting, to say the least. Ms Dewey is an anthropomorphised Search Engine designed to help you search using Windows Live Search. Check it out as msdewey.com.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006


The spud server is a real web server made out of potatoes. Check them out http://d116.com/spud/index.html.

Monday, October 30, 2006


My friend is putting together a website, and is looking for feedback. Check out miked.dyndns.org. Leave opinions in the comments.

Saturday, October 21, 2006

FiOS Rant

Digg this story! So, we were thinking of getting FiOS at my house, and I was reading through Verizon's Terms of Service to make sure it was kosher. You can read it for yourself here. On a side note, It was very hard to get to the terms of service. It's listed under "Member Center" on Verizon's FiOS Customer Service Website. We are going to take this quote by quote:

"14.5 Monitor of Network Performance. Verizon automatically measures and monitors network performance and the performance of your Internet connection and our network as part of this process. We also will access and record information about your computer's profile and settings and the installation of software we provide in order to provide customized technical support and you agree to permit us to access and record such data for the purposes described in this Agreement. We do not share information collected for the purpose of network or computer performance monitoring or for providing customized technical support outside of Verizon or its authorized vendors, contractors and agents. You hereby consent to Verizon's monitoring of your Internet connection and network performance, and the access to and adjustment of your computer settings, as they relate to the Service, Software, or other services which we may offer from time to time."
Verizon is saying that they can connect to your network and do diagnostics, and adjust settings on your computer.
"(c) to access or attempt to access the accounts of others, to spoof or attempt to spoof the URL or DNS or IP addresses of Verizon or any other entity, or to attempt to penetrate or penetrate security measures of Verizon or other entities' systems ("hacking") whether or not the intrusion results in corruption or loss of data"
I have issues with the terminology that they use here. Not to beat a dead horse, but Hacking and Cracking (what they should be referencing) are two different things. Hacking something could be like hacking my cell phone to change the software on it, or hacking the keyboard driver to enable multimedia buttons under Linux. Cracking is hacking, but with a malicious intent. Connecting to a web server and modifying webpages (ala on SCO a few years back), attempting to access someone's computer and files, etc. As a hacker (not cracker) by the definition I just gave you (not the Verizon one), I take offense to this.
"(g) to post information on newsgroups which is not in the topic area or charter (e.g. off-topic posting) of the newsgroup;"
While I do find this annoying, it is most certainly done all the time. Also, correct me in the comments if I'm wrong, but US ISPs shouldn't be allowed to tell me what I can and can not do with the Internet connection that I'm paying for.
"(j) to damage the name or reputation of Verizon, its parent, affiliates and subsidiaries, or any third parties"
If I were posting this using a Verizon FiOS connection, Verizon could cancel the internet connection without notice or refund, legally.
"...You agree that your name, UserID, and other identifying information may be placed in our user directory."
I hate to say it, but Microsoft has done something right. Microsoft lets MSN Subscribers opt-out of being in their User Directory. Verizon should follow Microsoft's example, but only in this context.
3.7.5 You may not use the Broadband Service to host any type of server personal or commercial in nature.
This would leave me High and Dry. I run a small webserver (running the LAMPPP (Linux, Apache, MySQL, Perl, Python, PHP) stack, mind you) that has calendars, and a photo album for our family (It's password protected, so don't try looking for it). This pretty much says that I can't do that. They would probably rather have me use the Personal Web Space because it features ads. PWS, in a word, sucks. It doesn't allow you to have a database, CGI scripting is disallowed. Think AOL Hometown, without the AOL part. They don't give you the alternative of hosting your own server and administering it yourself. To make sure that you don't hog bandwidth, they should just put a limitation on the amount of bandwidth that you can use for traffic coming out port 80 and 8080.
"14.4 Verizon Network. For the purposes of backup and maintenance, we may use, copy, display, store, transmit, translate, rearrange, reformat, view and distribute your information to multiple Verizon servers. We do not guarantee that these procedures will prevent the loss of, alteration of, or the improper access to, your information."
Verizon, scratch that, anyone should not be allowed to reformat web pages. Imagine if Microsoft payed Verizon an LSM*. I'm going to Wikipedia, and I get redirected to a site that says "You should try Encarta. It's much beterer. User Friendly did a good cartoon on what would happen. Just ignore the Google part:
"(d) injuries to or death of any person and for damages to or loss of any property, which may in any way arise out of or result from or in connection with this Agreement, except to the extent that such liabilities arise from the active negligence or willful misconduct of the other party;"
The internet is hazardous to your health, and can be deadly if handled improperly. Consult your doctor before using. If you have the sudden urge to visit hampsterdance.com, stop using immediately and consult your psychologist.
"(d) injuries to or death of any person and for damages to or loss of any property, which may in any way arise out of or result from or in connection with this Agreement, except to the extent that such liabilities arise from the active negligence or willful misconduct of the other party"
No, you dolts! The Internet isn't owned by Verizon. <sarcasm>The Internet is owned by your friendly neighborhood blogger, Me!</sarcasm> I'm going to hold off on getting FiOS until Verizon can get it's act together. Verizon, if you're reading this, you have what we in the industry like to call a TOS POS**. Please fix it.

*Large Sum of money
**Terms of Service Piece of S***

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

(Another) Bug in Windows...

I have found yet another bug in Windows. This one has to do with the Windows Task Manager. Let's take a look:

This is your standard Windows Task Manager dialogue, in the Networking Tab. In order for the bug to present itself, the window must be maximized. Double click on the tab bar. This makes the current tab's contents full screen. This window, however, is just that. A Window. That means you can move it around. Move the window around, until a good portion is hidden, as seen in the picture above. Double click on the window to bring it out of pseudo-full-screen mode. The bug, is that the window is still maximized, as seen (You can't re-maximize a maximized window). The only way to restore it is to right click on the program's button and choose restore. You can also double click on the Title Bar.
While this isn't a serious bug, and people are not likely to stumble across it, Windows has been out for six years. Microsoft should have been able to change the few lines of code that it takes to fix this.

Monday, October 02, 2006

More Computer Issues

My computer isn't booting. I'm probably starring a $500 Motherboard replacement in the face, so don't expect to hear from me for a while.

Wednesday, September 27, 2006


Guess it's broken...

Saturday, September 16, 2006

What Happened... & Nintendo Stuff

I've been offline a lot lately because my home networking just got overhauled with new equipment and wires. So, as a result of this, I haven't posted anything since the 10th. From the "so-old-it's-new" department of things, the Nintendo Wii will be out in the US on November 19th and will retail for $249.99.

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Video editor

Anyone know of a good video editior for linux?

Monday, August 28, 2006

What Virus Scanner?

After taking a week long vacation and wrestling with a naughty internet connection, I'm back. I finally got along to installing Linux to my hardrive (I couldn't in the past because my network card wasn't supported, but now the router's in my room) and when my Dad first saw it in all of it's KDE goodness, the first words out of his mouth were (somewhat shortened) "Where's McAfee?" I tried to explain to him that it's Linux, and you don't need a virus scanner on Linux just so much as you don't need one on a Mac. Apparently, in his world, you also need a virus scanner on a Mac. If someone has an actual need for a Virus Scanner under Linux or Mac, short of someone else making them, let me know in the comments.

Sunday, August 06, 2006

Regarding the Name...

I (finally) decided that I needed a real name for this blog. I've been trying to think of one since forever, however, I'm not the most creative person out there. I finally decided on Electric Potato. Anyone who knows me personally will instantly know where that name came from. I cover pretty much anything that uses Electricity on this site. However, the "Potato" Part leaves some explaining. I have an obsession over potatoes. Mashed, Baked, etc potatoes can be eaten for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. I figure that would be a good description of my personality. From here on out, This blog is known as "Electric Potato". I will eventually make new pixelbuttons to suit the new name.

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

DIY Bodcast is out!

The podcast I have polled you guys about is out! you can get it at diynetwork.wordpress.com I started with something simple: Installing RAM

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Apple releases wireless Mighty Mouse!

Apple just released the Wireless version of the Mighty Mouse. I wonder if they will eventually package this standard with new Macs? digg story Remember that the polls are still open regarding a podcast, so vote now!

Select an option: Yes! Maybe, depends on what is featured... No, I already know all of this stuff. I wouldn't, but I know someone who would...

Monday, July 24, 2006

Podcast (again)

After a failed attempt at creating a general tech podcast, I would like to try and do another, but this time, it would only be me, with an occasional guest.  I would come on and show you how to do seomthing related to computers.  If I do, I would probobly start with adding devices (internal and external) to the machine, and work up to software things.  Would you watch it?  It will probobly be video.

Select an option:

Maybe, depends on what is featured...
No, I already know all of this stuff.
I wouldn't, but I know someone who would...


AMD Agrees To Buy ATI In $5.4 Billion Deal

I'm back!  I just replaced the power supply with a new, 450 watt, modular one.  I'll tell you about it in a later post.  But for now, the topic at hand:

AMD has purchases ATI for US $5.4 Billion.

On Monday, AMD agreed to acquire graphics powerhouse ATI Technologies in a surprise $5.4 billion deal that will radically alter the landscape of the PC component industry.

ATI will become "the ATI business division," within AMD, and its chief executive and president, Dave Orton, will become an executive vice president reporting to both AMD president and chief operating officer Dirk Meyer and AMD's chief executive, Hector Ruiz. The deal, if agreed to by shareholders, will total $4.2 billion in cash and 57 million shares of AMD common stock, which the company is valuing at $18.26 per share.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Computer Issues

My Power supply failed. Not a lot of posts for a while.

Tuesday, July 11, 2006


My good friend Jake Jarvis has Just launched a nice website called "Relisho."  It's digg like in function, but does not require people to submit stories.  Instead, it imports them from various RSS feeds.  For those who haven't heard of it, I urge you to check it out.

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Just in Time for the 4th of July: How Fireworks Work

Directly from HowStuffWorks - "If you have ever been to an aerial fireworks show at an amusement park, baseball game, Fourth of July celebration or on New Year's Eve, then you know that fireworks have a special and beautiful magic all their own -- a good show is absolutely amazing."

read more | digg story

Thursday, June 29, 2006

Sure, I'm a webdesigner! I have Dreamweaver!

Take a look at this website from digg:

It is the blind leading the blind. I always hear 'Well, the client wanted it this way…' or 'The client really liked the way this was done…' - and that is it, that is the rationalization behind their lack of knowledge for building things improperly. … MANY poorly built sites that do absolutely nothing but sit there - stagnant.
The way I see it, the title should read "Sure I'm a Web Designer! I have FrontPage!" or better yet, based on what I've seen at atkda.com, "Sure I'm a Web Designer! I have the Latest Version of Microsoft Word!" When I told the guy who desinged it (he's being payed, by the way) that it wasn't working in my Browser (Firefox), he said "Well I tested it in Internet Explorer [XP] and AOL, so it should work..." A lot of people in NJ don't know how to desing websites. I curious to see what Jake Jarvis thinks of this...

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

From the weird-web-site-of-the-day dept.

From the weird-website-of-the-day dept:

The standard Windows beeps you hear when you've made a fatal error can be quite irritating. This guy made it into a nice composition and manages to create a great new use for the windows sounds.

Monday, June 26, 2006

Bush has got to step down

After reading this article, I hope that all of you bush lovers will change your minds, other wise, you're treasonous!

US Representative Peter King (Republican, New York), chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee, has called the New York Times "treasonous" for informing the public about another secret Bush Administration counter-terrorist program, the Associated Press reports. "We're at war, and for the Times to release information about secret operations and methods is treasonous," King reportedly told the wire service. King has also called for the US Department of Justice (DoJ) to investigate the Times and prosecute the reporters, editors and publisher on any and all charges they can dream up.


I'm considering moving over to a WordPress Platform. As such, posts will no longer have anything in the "link" field to make the move over to Wordpress that much easier.

Saturday, June 17, 2006



GamePolitics has confirmed with her staff that Governor Kathleen Babineaux Blanco (D, seen at left) signed HB1381 into law last night. Under terms of the legislation, it takes effect immediately. The bill, sponsored by Rep. Roy Burrell (D) and drafted by controversial Miami attorney and anti-game activist Jack Thompson, defines violent video games as "harmful to minors" in much the same way as pornography.

Thursday, June 15, 2006


Bill Gates is leaving!

REDMOND, Wash. — June 15, 2006 — Microsoft Corp. today announced that effective July 2008 Bill Gates, chairman, will transition out of a day-to-day role in the company to spend more time on his global health and education work at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. The company announced a two-year transition process to ensure that there is a smooth and orderly transfer of Gates’ daily responsibilities, and said that after July 2008 Gates would continue to serve as the company’s chairman and an advisor on key development projects.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

No Comment


Two years ago, my wife Carol and I decided that our children's education would not be complete without some grounding in modern computers. To this end, we bought our children a brand new Compaq to learn with. The kids had a lot of fun using the handful of application programs we'd bought, such as Adobe's Photoshop and Microsoft's Word, and my wife and I were pleased that our gift was received so well. Our son Peter was most entranced by the device, and became quite a pro at surfing the net. When Peter began to spend whole days on the machine, I became concerned, but Carol advised me to calm down, and that it was only a passing phase. I was content to bow to her experience as a mother, until our youngest daughter, Cindy, charged into the living room one night to blurt out that "Peter is a computer hacker!"
Most American families use trusted and responsible Internet Service Providers, such as AOL. These providers have a strict "No Hacking" policy, and take careful measures to ensure that your internet experience is enjoyable, educational and above all legal. If your child is becoming a hacker, one of his first steps will be to request a change to a more hacker friendly provider. I would advise all parents to refuse this request. One of the reasons your son is interested in switching providers is to get away from AOL's child safety filter. This filter is vital to any parent who wants their son to enjoy the internet without the endangering him through exposure to "adult" content. It is best to stick with the protection AOL provides, rather than using a home-based solution. If your son is becoming a hacker, he will be able to circumvent any home-based measures with surprising ease, using information gleaned from various hacker sites.
Your son will probably try to install some hacker software. He may attempt to conceal the presence of the software in some way, but you can usually find any new programs by reading through the programs listed under "Install/Remove Programs" in your control panel. Popular hacker software includes "Comet Cursor", "Bonzi Buddy" and "Flash".
Computer hackers are often limited by conventional computer hardware. They may request "faster" video cards, and larger hard drives, or even more memory. If your son starts requesting these devices, it is possible that he has a legitimate need. You can best ensure that you are buying legal, trustworthy hardware by only buying replacement parts from your computer's manufacturer. If your son has requested a new "processor" from a company called "AMD", this is genuine cause for alarm. AMD is a third-world based company who make inferior, "knock-off" copies of American processor chips. They use child labor extensively in their third world sweatshops, and they deliberately disable the security features that American processor makers, such as Intel, use to prevent hacking. AMD chips are never sold in stores, and you will most likely be told that you have to order them from internet sites. Do not buy this chip! This is one request that you must refuse your son, if you are to have any hope of raising him well.
There are, unfortunately, many hacking manuals available in bookshops today. A few titles to be on the lookout for are: "Snow Crash" and "Cryptonomicon" by Neal Stephenson; "Neuromancer" by William Gibson; "Programming with Perl" by Timothy O'Reilly; "Geeks" by Jon Katz; "The Hacker Crackdown" by Bruce Sterling; "Microserfs" by Douglas Coupland; "Hackers" by Steven Levy; and "The Cathedral and the Bazaar" by Eric S. Raymond.
If your son spends more than thirty minutes each day on the computer, he may be using it to DOS other peoples sites. DOSing involves gaining access to the "command prompt" on other people's machines, and using it to tie up vital internet services. This can take up to eight hours. If your son is doing this, he is breaking the law, and you should stop him immediately. The safest policy is to limit your children's access to the computer to a maximum of forty-five minutes each day.
Quake is an online virtual reality used by hackers. It is a popular meeting place and training ground, where they discuss hacking and train in the use of various firearms. Many hackers develop anti-social tendencies due to the use of this virtual world, and it may cause erratic behaviour at home and at school. If your son is using Quake, you should make hime understand that this is not acceptable to you. You should ensure all the firearms in your house are carefully locked away, and have trigger locks installed. You should also bring your concerns to the attention of his school.
8. Is your son obsessed with "Lunix"? BSD, Lunix, Debian and Mandrake are all versions of an illegal hacker operation system, invented by a Soviet computer hacker named Linyos Torovoltos, before the Russians lost the Cold War. It is based on a program called "xenix", which was written by Microsoft for the US government. These programs are used by hackers to break into other people's computer systems to steal credit card numbers. They may also be used to break into people's stereos to steal their music, using the "mp3" program. Torovoltos is a notorious hacker, responsible for writing many hacker programs, such as "telnet", which is used by hackers to connect to machines on the internet without using a telephone. Your son may try to install "lunix" on your hard drive. If he is careful, you may not notice its presence, however, lunix is a capricious beast, and if handled incorrectly, your son may damage your computer, and even break it completely by deleting Windows, at which point you will have to have your computer repaired by a professional. If you see the word "LILO" during your windows startup (just after you turn the machine on), your son has installed lunix. In order to get rid of it, you will have to send your computer back to the manufacturer, and have them fit a new hard drive. Lunix is extremely dangerous software, and cannot be removed without destroying part of your hard disk surface.
If your son is failing courses in school, or performing poorly on sports teams, he may be involved in a hacking group, such as the infamous "Otaku" hacker association. Excessive time spent on the computer, communicating with his fellow hackers may cause temporary damage to the eyes and brain, from the electromagnetic radiation. This will cause his marks to slip dramatically, particularly in difficult subjects such as Math, and Chemistry. In extreme cases, over-exposure to computer radiation can cause schizophrenia, meningitis and other psychological diseases. Also, the reduction in exercise may cause him to lose muscle mass, and even to start gaining weight. For the sake of your child's mental and physical health, you must put a stop to his hacking, and limit his computer time drastically.
No Comment.

Google Spreadsheets - A solution to scheduling issues?

Of use to your kid's sports coach, your aunt in Omaha trying to organize a major family reunion, your friend who promised to compile a list of all your favorite hiking trails (and now wants you to help), or your project team which now has a way to keep tasks and status in one place for all to see.

read more | digg story

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

MS - ebay takeover

With all of the bruh-hah going on lately about a possible Microsoft - ebay taker over, I thought I should comment on an angle that hasn't been covered before.

ebay ownes skype, correct?  What would happen to skype if Microsoft now owned the company that owned skype?  Would skype have 50 million security holes?  Would it become Windows Vista only? (nah, Microsoft wouldn't do that.  They know that Vista is vaporware anyway)  Think about it, and tell me about your conclusions in the comments.

Friday, May 26, 2006

Which came first: The chicken or the egg?


The key to the age-old question apparently lies in the fact that since genetic material does not change throughout an animal's life, the first bird that evolved into a chicken must have initially existed as an embryo inside an egg.

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Office 2007's best feature...

NO CLIPPY! Office 2007 will no longer have the often cursed-at Paperclip Character. For Once, Microsoft did something right.

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Google Humor

While browsing around the web, Google Reader spat this at me:

Google Reader's built with electrons and leptons, meters and liters. We're off dealing with those particles so we can bring you your articles.

a Clerihew by Daniel Bentley

Google Reader is down for scheduled maintenance and will be back by 1:00 PM. Please check our blog for updates.

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Skype free US/Can. Calling!

For those of you who don't subscribe to the newsletter, Skype is noe offering free calling within the US and Canada. Yeah!!!

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Get the Nintendo E3 Media Briefing via BitTorrent

Via digg. I'm a Nintendo fanatic, you see. So imagine my suprise when I found that you could Download the Nintendo show from the internet! Go to http://titaniumtorrents.com/viewtopic.php?t=72 and download the .torrent file. One word: Woah.

Friday, April 28, 2006

Hacked CueCat

I recently aquired a CueCat (don't ask me what I was thinking). I'm not going to go into detail on what they are; see here for more info. For fun, and because it's not good for much else, I decided to hack it to output normal, unencrypted data. My model was a later version, a "single board"model because it only had one PCB, where as the others had t PCBs: one for scanning, and the other for handling what came out of the sensor. I decided that for this, it would be better to use video to describe the process. Below is the video: Let me know what you think, and if you would like me to do something like this again, in the comments.

Saturday, April 22, 2006

Regarding The Microsoft Mouse...

Upon close inspection (as in my mouse fell on the floor and I went to pick it up), Microsoft's Wireless Optical Mouse 2.0 seems to have an image. This is in rebuttal to the Post on Digg about Apple's Mighty Mouse having an image of a mouse. I got this mouse sometime in 2004, long before Apple's Mighty Mouse. It looks something like a Face. If anyone else can confirm this (it's late and maybe I'm just seeing things), or can see this on another mouse, let me know in the comments. Below is a picture. It may not be visable in the picture, I 'll see how it turns out (My camera is old, so the pictures aren't that great).

New Google Layout

Check out google's new design of the more page! This is probobly leading up to the eventual complete site redesign.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Funny 404 Error Message

I was stumbling around the Internet (as I often do) and found this little Gem. If you have scripting turned off, it helps and adds to the enjoyment if you turn it on, although the text will appear. UPDATE: For some reason, The Script isn't working in Blogger. If it's working for you, let me know in the comments. The Webiste where I found this is at http://users.adelphia.net/~dbk2/.

Thursday, April 13, 2006

Best Firefox Ad ever!!

This is possibly the best firefox Ad ever. It's that simple.

Google Calendar is live!!!

Google Calendar is live!!! While I'm unable to give a full review due to time constraints (I'll do it eventually), Google Calendar is live and these are my first impressions:

  • It features Day, Week, Month, an Agenda View, and a Custom View that defaults to Next 4 Days
  • It looks Very Web 2.0
  • It has the ability to create Public Calendars
  • It (obviously) has search
  • It allows multiple Calendars
  • Reminders are present
  • phone Notification is a Feature
  • Calendar Importation is a feature
I will get around to reviewing this soon, but with the Holidays and everything, it probably won't be until next week.

Sunday, April 09, 2006

Official News Bulletin

Good news: You can now link to us using these brand new buttons! Currently, I only have one available, but I will add more eventualy.

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Friday, April 07, 2006

New Google Talk Logo

If you haven't noticed, Google has changed their logo for Google Talk. It now resembles the gMail Logo, in that it has a gradient. This new logo accompanies the New Version of Google Talk.

Sunday, March 26, 2006

Why Macs Suck - Google Video

I do not like macintoshes. I really do not like macintoshes. I dislike macintoshes so much that the "m" in macintosh does not deserve to be capitalized. This Video makes me feel better. Flames to the bit bucket, please. Remember: macintosh, windows (not worthy of being visible), and LINUX (every letter deserves to be capitalized in LINUX). Here it is:

Thursday, March 23, 2006

How to create a torrent and share your seed

Bittorrent is great, But surprisingly enough, not many people create torrents when they need to share something although it can save a lot of time and even bandwith. Read this tutorial and share your seed. I may implement this on our Podcast, What's up in Technology.

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Dell aquires... sniffle sniffle.. Alienware

It's Official. Dell is aquiring Alienware. Meanwhile, Millions of gamers worldwide are crying... Including Myself. Sniffle Sniffle. You can be sure that we will be talking about this on the Podcast, What's up in Technology. Meanwhile, I'm going to try and control my Crying.

Sunday, March 19, 2006

Digg overtakes Slashdot according to alexa

It finally happened. I've been eyeing the alexa ratings on both digg and slashdot for a while now, but never thought it would happen. See for yourslef, the image is right here: See that little smidgeon on the right? The Red is /. and the blue is digg. See how digg overtook slashdot? Interesting, eh?

Friday, March 17, 2006

Firefox Easter Egg

I don't know of anyone knows this, but I just found an easter egg in Mozilla Firefox (You are using Firefox, right!?). You can access the page by going to about:mozilla. This will bring up a quote from the Book of Mozilla. In Firefox 1.5, this says:

And so at last the beast fell and the unbelievers rejoiced. But all was not lost, for from the ash rose a great bird. The bird gazed down upon the unbelievers and cast fire and thunder upon them. For the beast had been reborn with its strength renewed, and the followers of Mammon cowered in horror. from The Book of Mozilla, 7:15
Pretty Funny, eh? The strangest thing is if you type it into any version of IE upto IE6 Service Pack 1, you will get a completely blue page. If it's IE 6 Service Pack 2 or above (Yes, this works in IE 7), type res://mshtml.dll/about.moz. You can see some of them at the wikipedia article here. If someone wants to add the text in other Gecko Browsers (Netscape/Mozilla), e-mail me at keenan.dan@gmail.com and I will add it. Please don't post them in the comments, As that will lead to comment clutter (a.k.a. A Very Bad Thing).

Thursday, March 09, 2006

Microsoft's Origami

Microsoft has been pretty hush-hush about the Origami Project until today. Well, here I am to (help) unwrap this project! The Following are the system specs that are known:

  • Windows XP Tablet PC Edition 2005
  • Intel Celeron M, Pentium M, or maybe a VIA C7-M processor
  • 128 MB or More of RAM
  • Minimum 800x480 resolution (This image is 800x480, get a comparison to your current screen resolution)
  • 7-inch Screen
  • At-Leat a 30 GB Hard Drive
  • USB Inputs
  • WiFi?
  • Bluetooth?
It is expected to cost approx. US $800. ARS Technica has a nice article on it here.

Sunday, March 05, 2006


I'm thinking about doing a Technology Podcast with a few of my techier friends. Tell me: Would you listen to such a podcast?

Select an option: Of Course I would! That would be awesome! Maybe, depends on the Content No, I like just reading the Blog better.
UPDATE: I have decided to do the Show! You can find episode #1 at http://whatsupintech.wtwk.com. Let me know what you think!

Sony's PS3 to cost $900 US, Sony's Stock go way down boom

Sony recently announced that their much anticipated PS3 console will cost $900 US. As a result of that, their Stock Price went down to 5,300 ¥ (about $45). This is fucking ridiculouss! I've been talking to people, and we both agree that the only people who will buy this fall into one or more of the following categoriess:

  • Rich Bastards who have so much money that their Idea of spring cleaning is spending some of it
  • The Above, except that they respond to telemarketers by saying "Oh thank god! I'll take 50 of 'em. Finally I can put some of this money that's been lying around to good use!" and mean it
  • People with money burning a hole in their pocket
  • Reviewers for PC Magazine, ExtremeTech, 1up, GMR, etc
  • Employees of Sony.
  • Employees of Microsoft who find the obscure need to rip off All companys that compete with them
  • Bill Gate$ (he'll buy 500 of them and sell them on eBay to increase his wealth)

New Geek code

I've updated my geek code (from the original one I posted, see this page) to reflect some issues I noticed after a while. Here is a change log: I've gone from s- to s-:-- based on an event that happeneda few weeks ago. From c++ to c++>$ because I hope to one day make money out of my hobby. From U++ to UL++>++++$. I've done this to reflect that I use the linux variant of unix, and that I would like to be paid to be a linux SysAdmin. Gone From P+ to P+>++ to emphasize that I would like to learn more Perl. I used to be L+++ but now I'm L+++>++++$ because I want to be so good at it, people will pay me for it. From W+++ to being W+++>$ because I want to be (among other things) a webmaster when I grow up. I lied a bit here, so I went from N++ to N+. Sorry. I changed from M- to !M- to express that I will never use a Mac (see This Post for reasons why). I changed from V-- to V?. The reason this was originally V-- was because I believed that Unix was better than anything it came across. But given that I can not compare it with Something I have not used, I should change it to V?. I added 5?because I have never heard of Babylon 5 (flames to the Bit Bucket, Please!?). 'Nuff Said. I went from tv+ to tv-- because I have been watching less and less TV lately. It may change agiain, though. I used to be b++, but had to go to b+ because I can no longer find the time to read (outside of school, and not including PC Magazine and Extreme Tech). I wanted to express that all of the people I live with are complete anti-geeks (see this UserFirendly Comic strip for an Image of the typical anti-geek. My parents are a slight variation fo that, but pretty much the same.). As such, I added h--. I really like the WebToon UserFriendly, so I added UF++. This means "I have two or more User Friendly cartoons posted near my office/cube/whatever." Note that this is not an official part of the Geek Code; Illiad made this up. This is an explanation of what each segment means:

  • UF+++++ I am Illiad.
  • UF++++ I have accumulated more than 500 geekpoints.
  • UF+++ I am a Dust Puppy prototype.
  • UF++ I have two or more User Friendly cartoons posted near my office/cube/whatever.
  • UF+ I have been a victim of the User Friendly Productivity Virus.
  • UF I read User Friendly daily, often understanding it
  • UF- Why are they always picking on Stef? He's my idol.
  • UF-- Don't read it, but the fuzzy thing with feet is cute.
  • UF--- What's their tech support guy's problem? Why can't he answer honest questions without getting an attitude?
  • UF---- I am Crud Puppy.
The Final Geek Code Block now looks like this: -----BEGIN GEEK CODE BLOCK----- Version: 3.12 GCM/GS/E/IT/MC/M/TW/O dx s-:-- !a C++>$ L UL+++>++++$ P+>++ L+++>++++$ E W+++>$ N+ w--- !M- V? Y+ PGP 5? R tv-- b+ DI+ G h-- -----END GEEK CODE BLOCK-----

Friday, March 03, 2006

The big DRM mistake

I've been saying that this is why I will never buy an iPod in my life. As soon as you buy just one song in the iTMS, you're locked in. Period. End Of Story. Same story with the iPod. Put just one media file on that thing and you're locked into iTunes. It seems apple hasn't figured out why they only have 1-5% market share in computers (they're much to closed). I hate to say this, but this is where Microsoft has done something right. They licensed the OS to OEMs and hobbyists, and you can run a myriad of hardware and software on Windows (No, I don't own stock in Microsoft, and I've used Linux for the past 3 years). As soon as apple opens up their systems, they will have a new customer buying as many apple products as humanly possible. Draw your own conclusions and leave them in the comments.

Thursday, March 02, 2006

New Sign

A new sign now adorns my wall:
Alles touristen und non-technischen looken peepers! Das computermachine ist nicht fuer gefingerpoken und mittengrabben. Ist easy schnappen der springenwerk, blowenfusen und poppencorken mit spitzensparken. Ist nicht fuer gewerken bei das dumpkopfen. Das rubbernecken sichtseeren keepen das cotten-pickenen hans in das pockets muss; relaxen und watchen das blinkenlichten.

Monday, February 27, 2006

Portable Apps

Today I'm going to talk about all of the Portable Apps I have on my USB Key (or Flash Drive, or USB drive, or whatever you want to call it). I have:

Click Here for info on getting these portable apps.

Portable Firefox

Portable Firefox is just that: A Portable version of firefox. It allows the installation of extensions & Themes, and runs completely off of your USB Key without touching the hard Drive.

Portable Gaim

Portable Gaim is a Portable of the popular Open-Source IM program, Gaim (Adium is the equivalent on the Mac). Plugins can be installed, and, as with the rest of the programs, runs completely off of the USB Key.

Portable NVU

NVU is a webpage editing program based off of Mozilla Composer that is similar to Macrodobe Dreamweaver. It includes Sites, FTP, a pretty descent WYSIWYG editor, HTML Tidy, XHTML, Strict (X)HTML, and many other features.

Portable OpenOffice.org

OpenOffice.org is an open-source version of Sun's StarOffice. It includes a Word Processor (Writer), Spreadsheet (Calc), Presentations (Impress), Desktop Publishing (Draw), Database (Base), and Math Editor (Math). This program is un-runable on anything less than USB 2.0, so don't try it.

Portable Sunbird

Sunbird is a stand-alone Calendar App from the Mozilla Foundation (The Firefox People). It includes iCal support, import and export of most standard formats (including MS Outlook), Calendar Printing, Publishing and more.

Portable Thunderbird

Thunderbird is a Mail & News Application from the Mozilla Foundation. It is supported by extensions and Themes. It supports RSS, Atom, POP3, IMAP, SMTP, Multiple accounts, and Podcasts (or any feed with an enclosure, for that matter).


PStart is a nice (and by that I mean tiny (size measured in Kilobytes)) app that acts a a launch pad for all of your portable applications. It can also tap into the host computer with a built-in search function. You can organize your Apps into folders, or just leave them alone.

Getting the Portable Apps

You can get all of these portable apps at http://portableapps.com/apps. Something of note: DO NOT TRY TO RUN THESE PROGRAMS ON ANYTHING LESS THAN A USB 2.0 PORT. Otherwise, it will take (trust me on this) forever to load. Even PStart takes about a minute to load, and that's a long time for a program who's size is measured in Kilobytes. You've been warned.

500 Hits Now!

I now have (over) 500 hits on this site! As of last night (the 500th hit didn't bother to e-mail me, so I don't know the exact time) the counter read 500. Again, if you are the 500th hit, I beg of you to e-mail me! Please!

Sunday, February 26, 2006

500 Hits?

To all of my loyal readers: I am approaching my 500th Hit on this website. As of 9:05 PM EST February 26, 2006, the counter is at 497. As soon as the counter hits 500 (the counter is at the bottom of the page), please e-mail me at danielskeenan@goowy.com with the following:

  • Your First Name and Last Initial
  • Time you visited the site (please include your Time Zone)
  • a valid e-mail adderess (I won't give ths out)
  • The City, State, and Country you live in (at least the state and country, please)
This is an important time in my blogging history, and I want to preservet this moment in time. Don't include anyhting you don't want the whole world knowing (with the exception of your e-mail adderess). Thank You

IE7 (a.k.a. Microsoft Windows Internet Explorer 7 Beta 2 Preview)

Hi, My name is Daniel, and this is Internet Explorer 7 (The Official Name is "Microsoft Windows Internet Explorer 7 Beta 2 Preview"!

After downloading the Installer, you are presented with a clean Installation interface:
The EULA, according to EULAlyzer, contained few Interesting words. If you want the full text, you can get it here. To Install IE7, You must Validate your Copy of Windows (we all love doing that, don't we).
You then have to download and install any updates to Windows (and, for that matter, Internet Explorer), as well as run the Microsoft Malicious Software removal tool.
In the installation process, it changes your browser's Search page...
...Your default Home Page...
...And your default Search Engine.

When you launch Internet Explorer, the window looks something like this:
Take a look in the About Box if you are still not convinced that something is different.
The New Internet Explorer has Support for the Open Search Standard, which hopefully means that developers won't have to create 50 million different plugins for five different browsers for one website. Another good thing is that there is now more Pathetic Dog or weirdo in a car! Yahooooooo! (Sorry, Yahoo! Inc.) The feed discovery seems to support both Atom and RSS. Personally, I like the way IE7 (sorry!) handles Feeds as opposed to Firefox 1.5. The Feeds feature supports enclosures, so that means it also supports Podcasting. Something newcomers to Feeds will like is the "Friendly" interface that IE7 gives to feeds. Microsoft has done some very innovative things (Microsoft and innovative in the same sentence... Something's Wrong here...) with tabbed browsing. Such innovative Things include a live preview of everything that's in each tab and the tab close button is on the tab itself, as the location of the close button in Firefox is something that can be confusing for first-time Users. One problem that exists in this build is that you can not go to another tab while the page is still loading, or it will go to about:blank (a blank page) in the original tab. Something else that you can do in IE7 is, similar to how control-enter adds "http://www." and ".com" to the URL, alt-enter opens it up. Control-alt-enter, however, will not complete the URL and open it up in a new tab. Back on the topic of search, IE7 has an emphasis on search (similar to Windows Vista), and not just MSN Search. You can add a wide variety of search engines (see http://www.microsoft.com/windows/ie/searchguide/default_new.mspx), and developers are working on more. Security (finally!) is another emphasis of IE7, via the New Security Shields and a built-in, turned-on-by-default phishing filter. I couldn't test out the phishing filter (isn't it strange how when you want a phishing site, you can't find any, but when you don't want it, you find dozens...), but I'll assume it works alright. Something new about the interface is that Microsoft has done away with the concept of FEV (File-Edit-View) and the All-of-the-icons-are-in-one-spot-in-the-corner philosophy and opted instead to spread it out. One more thing: IE7 is Very Slow. I don't know if it's my Internet Connection (although it's probably not because it's much faster in Firefox), but something needs to be done about this.

The following is a picture tour of the New IE:
The Top Toolbar. Features the Back/Forward Buttons, the Location bar, the Refresh Button (That strange green button with the two arrows), the stop button, and the Search Bar. This toolbar is locked in place, so not even clicking "unlock toolbars" will unlock it.

The Bottom Bar. It contains the Sidebar button, the Add to favorites/Subscribe Button, the Tabs, The Home Button, the Feeds button, the Print Button, the Page Button (Similar to the view button in IE 6), and the Tools Button. Not seen is the Help Button, the Research button, and a space for other programs to put their buttons (Why can't Microsoft get rid of this).
The Information Bar. Hasn't changed much, except for maybe a few new messages.
The Browser Window featuring a Security Warning. Also an example of the "Security Shields."
The Status Bar. The Shield on the Left-Hand Side is an indicator of the Security Status of the Website. The "Zone" Indicator is still there. New to the Status bar is the Zoom Button. The Zoom button does just that: it zooms in on the entire page.
An example of how IE7 handles Feeds. In this windows is my own feed. At the top, IE displays the title of the feed, followed by the date it was last updated. Each feed item is listed next to a bullet with the name and Date of Posting. On the right is a search box, followed by ways to sort the feed.
An Example of how IE7 handles feeds with enclosures. For this example, I chose one of my favorite podcasts, the Digital Experience Podcast. You can see that the content is the exact same as the post on his website (www.digitalexperiencepodcast.com), but IE7 adds the Link at the Very bottom (the one that looks like ¯ DEP-2006-02-23.mp3)
The tabbed browsing view. You get to this by clicking on the button that has four boxes in it.
One more thing. IE7 seems to have issue with blogger's entry form. UPDATE: PC Magazine recently did an article about IE7 (Vol. 25 No.5, for March 21st 2006). You can get the article online at go.pcmag.com/ie7.

Saturday, February 25, 2006

iTunes Billionth Song Contest is Over

ITMS recently sold the billionth song to an unsuspecing person - Alex Ostrovsky. The NY Times has an artical about it here. If you have to create an account, Here's the Text, verbatim:

A Milestone for iTunes; a Windfall for a Downloader

Published: February 24, 2006

It may well have been the best 99 cents Alex Ostrovsky ever spent.

Early yesterday, he paid that amount to download "Speed of Sound," a song on the Coldplay album "X&Y," from the iTunes Music Store, the Internet music shop that Apple Computer started less than three years ago.

He did not know it, but it was the billionth song the site had sold, and Apple was not about to let that go unnoticed.

So at 12:45 a.m., Mr. Ostrovsky's phone rang. It was an Apple employee, telling him that in addition to the song, Apple was giving him a 20-inch iMac, 10 iPods and a $10,000 gift card for the iTunes store. It is even establishing a scholarship at the Juilliard School in his name.

Mr. Ostrovsky, 16, was still trying to absorb it all yesterday. His phone had been ringing all day, alternating between reporters wanting to know his reaction and friends wanting to congratulate him.

At one point Mr. Ostrovsky, who lives in West Bloomfield, Mich., went to an Apple store to look at iMacs. "Everyone there knew who I was, too," he said. "It's just surreal."

He has pretty concrete ideas about how he will use the prizes, though. The iMac stays with him — "I'd been asking my parents for a new computer for a while, so this was a dream come true," he said. He will keep an iPod, and family and friends will get the rest. But the $10,000 gift card has him a bit flummoxed.

"My sister has already called from New York to talk about divvying it up," he said, "and I'll probably buy some music for friends."

But he will also buy more for himself. Until now, Mr. Ostrovsky has not been a frequent user of the iTunes store. "I've downloaded maybe 50 songs, but I was always more likely to borrow CD's from my friends," he said. "I'm certainly going to download more songs now."

That would certainly be music to Apple's ears.

Deutsch, Claudia H. "A Milestone for iTunes; a Windfall for a Downloader." New York Times 24 February 2006. [Online] Available , 25 February 2006.

Thursday, February 23, 2006

Google releases new Page Creator

"Google Page Creator is a free online tool that makes it easy for anyone to create and publish useful, attractive web pages in just minutes." This is both amazing and strange. Wonder if all of the Websites you create with it will have "Ads by Google" on it.... I'm going to try it out and hopefully get you a review by Sunday, February 26th.

UPDATE: Google (of all sites) seems to be suffering from the digg effect, based on the following image that now appears on the google pages page: