January 15, 2008

Insulting someone, middle ages style

Ever run out of things to say to someone who has royally pissed you off? Sure, you could drop a few dozen F-bombs, but that gets boring, even to a potty mouth such as me. Use this handy dandy Shakespeare Insult Kit and you'll be certain to confuseupset people everywhere. Some examples that I created:

Thou clouted clay-brained coxcomb.

Thou infectious fool-born gudgeon.

I think that I just made myself cry.

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December 03, 2007

Laptop envy

Color me green over this little gizmo.

Thanks go to Brian Tiemann for the link.

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November 26, 2007

Well, this is interesting

I know that someone else is bound to have posted about this "nuclear battery", but I think that it's pretty cool. Carry it to wherever, bury it and voila! 27 MW electric power. My questions, of course, would concern waste disposal and economic viability. Assuming that the answers are reasonable, I'd be fine with the idea. I'll be interested to see where it leads.

Update: I should have known the the Slashdotters would be all over it.

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November 13, 2007

Complete and utter bullshit

Everyone, I take it, is aware of the Magic Eye pictures. Is that correct? And you can all see the pictures hidden within, right? Sure you can... you lying fuckers. I swear to God that all of you are in cahoots to drive me me completely batshit crazy. In other words, you want me to become one of the Kos Kidz. Because I've listened to all of the people in the mall, read the instructions in the books at Barnes and Noble and followed to the letter what the Magic Eye™ website said to do and all I get are dry eyes, a headache and an overwhelming desire to bitchslap all you liars for fucking with me. To wit:

3D Viewing Instructions

Hold the center of the printed image right up to your nose. It should be blurry. Focus as though you are looking through the image into the distance. Very slowly move the image away from your face until the two squares above the image turn into three squares. If you see four squares, move the image farther away from your face until you see three squares. If you see one or two squares, start over!

When you clearly see three squares, hold the page still, and the hidden image will magically appear. Once you perceive the hidden image and depth, you can look around the entire 3D image. The longer you look, the clearer the illusion becomes. The farther away you hold the page, the deeper it becomes. Good Luck!

I can see the 3 squares just fine. But even after clicking on the link to see what those bastards say is hidden within so that I'd have something to shoot for, all I see are color stylings of someone suffering from a severe acid flashback.

I know a few others who, like me, think this is like a modern day version of Gaslight. For the record, we're onto you. Quit screwing with us (me) before I take a 2x4 to your head.

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October 09, 2007

Because you can

GPS devices are both cool and useful. You know what's even more cool? Building your own GPS device from scratch. Excerpt:

The block diagram of the described GPS receiver is shown on Fig. 13. In the microwave frequency range, at L-band, the antenna needs a direct visibility of the satellites. Therefore it has to be installed outdoor, on the vehicle roof or on top of a portable receiver. Due to its excellent performance, a half-turn quadrifilar helix is used as a circularly polarized, hemispherical-coverage antenna. The LNA is installed directly under the antenna. Using two inexpensive GaAs FETs it achieves 30dB of gain making any following (reasonable) cable loss almost unimportant.

Circuit diagram image.

The GPS receiver includes a fixed-tuned downconverter to a suitable IF, an IF amplifier and limiter, a dedicated DSP hardware, a MC68010 based microcomputer with a small keyboard and a LCD display and a single master crystal oscillator for all frequency conversions and sampling rates. The downconversion from the GPS L1 frequency (1575.42MHz) is made in two steps for convenient image filtering. The first wide IF is in the 102MHz range and the second wide IF is in the 10MHz range. The wide IF bandwidth is set to around 2MHz. The actual value of the wide IF bandwidth is not critical, since filtering is only required to prevent spectrum aliasing in the signal sampling circuit.

6139kHz was selected as master crystal oscillator frequency of the described GPS receiver, since the best TCXOs are usually available for the frequency range between 5MHz and 10MHz. The output of the 6139kHz master oscillator is used both as the sampling frequency for the IF A/D conversion and as an input to a chain of multiplier stages to supply all of the frequencies required in the downconverter. Limiting the temperature range from 0 to 30 degrees C, as encountered during normal receiver operation, the TCXO was replaced by a much less expensive conventional crystal oscillator in all of the prototypes built.

Sampling the 10MHz wide-IF signal with 6139kHz produces a third downconversion to a 2303kHz nominal center frequency. The latter is the final carrier frequency that needs to be regenerated in the dedicated DSP hardware. The dedicated DSP hardware is designed as a microprocessor peripheral with read and write registers and is interrupting the MC68010 CPU once every millisecond to match the GPS C/A-code period.

In the portable, stand-alone GPS receiver, the operating software is stored in a compressed form in a 32kbytes EPROM. After power-on reset, the software is decompressed in 128kbytes of battery-backed CMOS RAM, which is also used to store the system almanac and other data to speed-up the acquisition of four valid satellites. For the same reason the CPU also has access to a small battery-backed real-time clock chip.

A small 8-key keyboard is used to select the various menus of the operating software and manually set some receiver parameters if so desired. The portable version of the GPS receiver is using a LCD module with integrated driving electronics and two rows of 40 alphanumeric (ASCII) characters each, to display the receiver status, the almanac data or the results of the navigation computations.

There's a lot more at the article. Go there now.

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September 25, 2007

Calling all nerds

Geekks, dorks and dweebs, too. A 49-disc collection of the entire ST:TNG will be released for the low, low price of $440. Excerpt:

The definitive DVD collection features all 176 classic episodes from the series' 1987-1994 run along with all-new special features including "The Next Generation's Impact: 20 Years Later," "The Next Generation's Legacy: 2007" and "Star Trek Visual Effects Magic: A Roundtable Discussion." The collection is encased in an incredible collector's packaging and includes an exclusive poster. Each season also includes additional bonus features exploring memorable missions, crew profiles, behind-the-scenes and much, much more.

Time for a Deep Space Nine collection.

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September 21, 2007

If you haven't been reading

Have you been reading DM of the Rings? If not, you are seriously missing out. Young has taken the movies and, well, here's the introductory paragraph:

Lord of the Rings is more or less the foundation of modern D&D. The latter rose from the former, although the two are now so estranged that to reunite them would be an act of savage madness. Imagine a gaggle of modern hack-n-slash roleplayers who had somehow never been exposed to the original Tolkien mythos, and then imagine taking those players and trying to introduce them to Tolkien via a D&D campaign.

Alas, 144 episodes later and the D&D trek through the LOTR books and movies is complete. However, he's got a new project, which I'm certain you'll find entertaining as well.

Update: I'm such a moron. I'm been clicking through DM of the Rings so long that I didn't realize that I hadn't actually added Twenty Sided to my blogroll. Consider that fixed.

Speaking of the blogroll, I'm going to start pruning some names real soon. Not because I want to exactly, but some of the links and domains no longer exist. Sure, I held on for a couple of years until Rachel Lucas started blogging again, and it was a small matter to change A Small Victory to A Big Victory when Michele Catalano started blogging solo again. And I don't drop people for not blogging. What I do drop them for is when their domain no longer exists, or has become a porn site. In any event, some dead wood will be removed.

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August 14, 2007

I have been sorted

Via CalTech Girl and SarahK comes this non-automated, Amish type quiz, wherein you use check boxes to determine which house you should be assigned to at Hogwarts. Since the quiz wasn't animated, I had to think for a while before I remembered that I could actually type my answers. Anyway, my answers are below the fold.

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I was wrong

This is, in fact, the stupidest USB powered invention. So far. The day isn't over yet.

Update: Mother of God. Just when I think that humanity has hit rock bottom in terms of abject stupidity, someone lowers the bar a little bit more. Right now, the bar is a line painted on the ground.

What makes me say this? This thing: a USB-powered Ghost Radar. Excerpt:

Now, SolidAlliance has come up with a GhostRadar USB flash memory that detects, well, ghosts. Basically, it responds to unusual magnetic waves with audible alerts and flashing red lights. This thing maybe useful for paranoid travelers who stay in all kinds of hotel rooms and need to check them out.

Remember my comment about lowering the bar to the ground? At this rate, we'll have to start digging the trench soon.

Thanks, I guess, go to Henry for emailing me the link to this thing.

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August 13, 2007

Free comic books?

Did you read comic books as a child? Do you read them currently? In either case, do you have any interest in finding electronic copies of them on the Intertubes? Here's how you do it. Excerpt:

For title specific searches, substitute the title for the word comics in your search.

-inurl:htm -inurl:html intitle:"index of" "Last modified" spider-man cbr
and -inurl:htm -inurl:html intitle:"index of" "Last modified" simpsons cbr

While some directories will only contain a few comics, there are others that will keep you reading for weeks and weeks.

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August 10, 2007

Sign of the end times

I swear that this should be a joke. Unfortunately, it isn't. I give you the USB powered, air-conditioned tie.

Next up: the USB powered, air-conditioned jock strap. Because no one wants to have their junk all sweaty and smelly. Simply ignore the electrical plug connected to your groin and move on.

Update: Ask and ye shall receive something close to what you asked for.

Update: I take a break from blogs to spend time with my family and I missed out on the Instalanche. Thanks to everyone for stopping by.

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August 09, 2007

An idea whose time should never have come

I will admit to, once in a while, chatting on my cell phone while driving. I don't like to, but sometimes I do it. Also, I have a rechargeable razor that I, once in a while, shave with on the highway while cruising in to work. However, there are things that maybe, just maybe, you should never do while driving:

1) Read a book. And I've actually seen some dimwits driving down the road with an open book sitting on their steering wheels.

2) Typing on your effing laptop. I mean seriously, WTF? But hey, you can now save $10 on your mobile suicide device so, you know, weed yourself out of the gene pool if you see the need. Just do it on a lonely stretch of road so as not to take anyone else with you.

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August 06, 2007

Repairing a scratched CD or DVD

Pretty interesting article over at Wisebread. I've tried the toothpaste method before, with mixed results. Might be time to grab a bottle of metal polish.

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July 26, 2007


The flying car is here! Of course, you're limited to heights of no more than 10 feet, but it's a start. It would be a cool way to cross a river or lake, though.

orget keeping up with the Joneses…now you can keep up with the Jetsons. Not just cartoons, but every “futuristic” movie ever made seemed to employ some sort of flying car to titillate and amaze the audience, and it always worked too! What will futuristic movies rely on now that the stuff of fiction will soon be parked out in the garage?

The Moller M200G Volantor, produced by Moller International is shaped like a saucer and can be used for a wide range of recreation and practical purposes. Moller has already started work on the 67 orders received so far. Ground-based obstacles don’t bother the Volantor, so its creators say it can be used for extreme off roading, or as a ferry between a yacht and the land, among other uses. But eventually they'd like to see the vehicle used as the ultimate commuter vehicle. The company says it could also be used by the military or government, who they suggest could use the vehicle for skyscraper rescues and fire fighting.

Here's a link to the M200 brochure. And it costs only about $125,000.

Heh. I said only. As if. Anyway, here's a link to the company's website.

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July 10, 2007

When you're short on time

There's always a Movie A Minute. Here's Good Will Hunting:

Matt Damon

I'm smart, but so what? Let's start fights and pick up chicks.

Robin Williams

If you push people away, they can't be close to you.

Matt Damon

SHUT UP SHUT UP SHUT UP SHUT UP you fixed me thank you I love you. (cries)


I guess that there's just no good reason to go to the theaters anymore.

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July 09, 2007

None shall pass

My geek credentials, that is. Trust me when I tell you that I was to women in high school/college as sunlight is to vampires. Then again, some vampires actively seek death, so they had a leg up on me. Anyway, this picture kind of sums it all up.

geek cred.jpg

On the other hand, I still have some way cool Ral Partha figurines, so I've got that going for me.

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July 03, 2007

New on the wish list

Stop-action movies may not be that great, but making your own would be pretty cool, right. Well now you can.

I might buy one for me my son this Christmas. He's a good sharer.

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June 30, 2007

A new coffee mug for the office

Via Val came this link to ThinkGeek via Contagion. Call it Six Degrees of MuNu. Anyway, I decided to search for more items and stumbled upon this really cool mug:


Now I can really show my school colors. Unfortunately, I work with too many people who would probably get it immediately, and I have no desire to get fired this week. So we'll see.

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May 07, 2007

Keep hope alive

Instead of updating this post, let me instead direct you this article. Excerpt:

Cold fusion, the ability to generate nuclear power at room temperatures, has proven to be a highly elusive feat. In fact, it is considered by many experts to be a mere pipe dream -- a potentially unlimited source of clean energy that remains tantalizing, but so far unattainable.

However, a recently published academic paper from the Navy's Space and Naval Warfare Systems Center (SPAWAR) in San Diego throws cold water on skeptics of cold fusion. Appearing in the respected journal Naturwissenschaften, which counts Albert Einstein among its distinguished authors, the article claims that Spawar scientists Stanislaw Szpak and Pamela Mosier-Boss have achieved a low energy nuclear reaction (LENR) that can be replicated and verified by the scientific community.

And that's been the rub for the last 18 years. No one has been able to reproduce on any type of consistent basis what Pons and Fleischman reported to have achieved. Now, apparently, the test appears to be one which can easily be verified or disproved. If true, my career could take an interesting turn over the next few years.

Hat tip to McQ.

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May 04, 2007

Calling all geeks

I guess what's scary is that I figured out the number in my head without really thinking about it.


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