Archive for December, 2008

You got thirty minutes . . .

December 22, 2008

yougotthirtyminutes. . . then what? The message on that pizza box sounds rather threatening to me. Does steam start pouring out of the well-marked exhaust port? Does the box explode? Or will my arteries clog within a half hour of eating the enclosed pizza?


Non-global British Web

December 15, 2008

Somebody should remind the BBC what the first two w’s are for in I went there looking at a few things about David Tennant leaving his role as the Doctor. The web site presents me with a video, complete with a play button, that won’t play. It taunts me with the play button and then tells me, only after I press the button, that I’m in the wrong place to view the video. The bloody bastards (corporation)! I know they have some kind of television tax over there, but this is on the world wide web. It is probably just a short little interview video anyway; it certainly wasn’t a link to a whole episode. Bandwidth isn’t that expensive, but we still have twits trying to keep media so localized that it limits the media’s exposure.

The seven good flavors of Mountain Dew

December 4, 2008
The seven good flavors of Mountain Dew in blue light.

The seven good flavors of Mountain Dew in blue light.

While driving to visit with my parents for Thanksgiving, I managed to find the Live Wire variety of Mountain Dew. It is my favorite flavor of all the Dews that Pepsi has produced, and one of the most difficult for me to find. It also means that I have a total of seven flavors in my possession. Any flavor that I’m missing at the moment is a flavor that I don’t care about. I took the opportunity to take several pictures showing all the flavors, but so far only two are any good. As I come up with more good pictures, I’ll post them on the Picasa web.

The seven good flavors of Mountain Dew in white light.

The seven good flavors of Mountain Dew in white light.

I/ITSEC 2008

December 4, 2008

20081203-120030ncssI attended I/ITSEC, a trade show focusing on the simulation industry, for a few hours today. Many of the exhibitors were showing military related projects. No one, that I saw, was showing any subsea (underwater) simulations save for CM Labs. That is good for my company since we do subsea simulation, and we use CM Labs’s Vortex physics engine. What they were showing seemed to be more of a demonstration of what Vortex can do rather than a directly competing product.

The most interesting item to me was Concurrent’s Red Hawk Linux, especially their NightStar tool. That tool can show what each processor is running and when along a time line. That is very useful for developing multi-threaded and multi-process systems that need to take advantage of all the processors on modern computers. The demonstration I was given used a system with eight processors (two Intel quad core CPUs) and showed that their software was aware that cores were paired together to share cache memory. Concurrent’s kernel also allows great control over what each processor does and does not run, including allowing or disallowing threads, processes, and interrupts. Very slick and impressive stuff. Makes me want to find that kernel code.

The Banana Saga

December 2, 2008

20081007-165252_filteredThere are several banana plants growing in my backyard. A little over a couple months ago, one of them started to grow bananas. I’ve been taking pictures every week to show their progress. They did not get as large as the bananas found in grocery stores around here, but some bananas are small. Unfortunately, their time to grow was cut short by the storm that came through this past Sunday. I found the plant leaning Monday morning. By the time I returned home from work on Tuesday, the plant had fallen over. I’m going to try to get something edible out of what I got, but I don’t know how well it’ll turn out.

Here are a few of the pictures:

20081007-165402_filtered20081014-175830_filtered20081026-170652_filtered20081108-124330_filtered20081123-155012_filtered20081201-093306_filtered20081202-180418_filteredThere are more pictures at

False Steps

The Space Race as it might have been

You Control The Action!

High Frontier

the space colony simulation game

Simple Climate

Straightforwardly explaining climate change, so you can read, react and then get on with your life.