• Toh Kay - Dear Sergio (Unplugged)

    Submitted by jean-paul on Wed, 09/25/2013 - 22:42

    I think that Toh Kay is an underappreciated artist (except by his fans), so I would like to present his music to you here.

    This first video is one that I made from concert photos, and I hand-coded the captions. You're welcome!

    I wanted to include this one because concerts always have a different feel to them.

  • Excellent Early Tim Burton

    Submitted by jean-paul on Thu, 11/08/2012 - 10:13

    This has to be one of the best stop motion animations that I've ever seen! So dark, and yet it makes me smile!

    <iframe width="560" height="315" src="" frameborder="0" allow="accelerometer; autoplay; clipboard-write; encrypted-media; gyroscope; picture-in-picture" allowfullscreen></iframe>

  • Cory Doctorow - The Great Big Beautiful Tomorrow (GBBT)

    Submitted by jean-paul on Fri, 10/05/2012 - 02:31

      It's not very often that I read something that I think ought to be shared with the world. Even if "sharing" only means spreading to the <100 people per day that come here. This book...or perhaps "novella", is one of the few.

      The author is Cory Doctorow, known to most nerds as one of the few authors who releases texts under a liberal license, and makes payment optional. 

      The other author that releases under that type of license (that I know of) is Charles Stross. I'm currently reading "Accelerando" for my UWO English class. 

      Oops, I'm getting side-tracked.

      Cory. We read his story before Accelerando, and for a novella, "The Great Big Beautiful Tomorrow" it was pretty fantastic. And I don't mean 'unicorns and wizards' fantastic. I mean 'lol' and 'omfg' fantastic. I find Cory's ability to make me empathize with his characters is second to none. The only other authors who write like that (imho) are Orsen Scott Card (Ender's Game) and Timothy Findley (A Prayer for Owen Meany).

     I first came across Cory Doctorow's work in about 2005 when I read "Down and Out in the Magic Kingdom", which was also released for free on the internet. That was when I was just beginning to dig deep in to the philosophy of FOSS, and an authors like Cory stood out in contrast to the commercialized literature that was available.

     Can you imagine walking in to a store, and having the proprietor say "take what you'd like, and pay me what you can"? That is essentially what Cory and a few others are beginning to do, and they seem to be succeding. Does this mean that what he and (few) others promulgate could possibly be true?

      Could it be possible that humanity is "good" enough to allow an artist to thrive without the intervention of the legal system? Is there enough tradable value in lax monetization? Only time will tell. If the quality of Cory's work is any indication, not withstanding the fact that he hasn't yet starved to death, I think he might just be on to something.

      What do you think? Would we be better off without a media empire telling us what is "hot" this week?

  • I Want a Das Keyboard!!

    Submitted by jean-paul on Wed, 07/25/2012 - 22:01

    With the amount of typing I do, it would be nice to have a mechanical keyboard. If you haven't heard that term before, a mechanical keyboard is one that has individual switches for each key. Most keyboards that either come with a desktop machine, or are for sale at your local big-box retailer, are not individual mechanical switches, but instead have a rubbery dome under each letter that comes in to contact with a circuit when you push the key. The tactile differences are easily noticeable when you compare the two side-by-side. Some mechanical switches give an audible "click" when the keypress registers, some just give a bit of tactile feedback. That feedback, combined with the increased stability of the keys can lead to faster and surer typing.

    Out of the models I've seen for sale right now, I thing that the Das Keyboard Model S Ultimate Silent Mechanical Keyboard would be my favourite, seeing as how the "Datahand" input device isn't being made any more.

    From Buy Das Keyboard Model S Ultimate Silent Mechanical Keyboard


    Update: I just bought this keyboard! It feels a bit strange, but there is no doubt that I will be faster and more accurate than I would be with my old Logitech keyboard. If you're a serious computer user and you're looking for a real keyboard, I suggest getting one that uses mechanical switches. The one I got uses the Cherry MX Brown switches, so there isn't a loud click but there is still a satisfying keyboard sound when the key bottoms out.

  • HTML5 Tetrinet

    Submitted by jean-paul on Sun, 05/20/2012 - 01:55

    Awesome. I wanted to play Tetrinet against a friend, but he has Windows and I have Linux. I have used TetrinetX and gtetrinet, but I don't know about any clients for his OS. I did a quick Google search, found a few dead links and dodgy looking sites, and came up with this site: Awesome. It's an HTML5 version of Tetris, but head to head against your friends, and uses the Canvas element, so you won't be able to use it if you don't have a new enough browser. I have tried Chrome and Chromium in Windows 7 and Ubuntu 12.04, respectively. All you have to do is put in a room name, and your nickname. If other people use the same room at the same time, they will join your game. No client required, and no constantly running server. I hope this service stays online for a while!

  • Whitespace

    Submitted by jean-paul on Mon, 05/07/2012 - 01:06
    What is Whitespace? Most modern programming languages do not consider white space characters (spaces, tabs and newlines) syntax, ignoring them, as if they weren't there. We consider this to be a gross injustice to these perfectly friendly members of the character set. Should they be ignored, just because they are invisible? Whitespace is a language that seeks to redress the balance. Any non whitespace characters are ignored; only spaces, tabs and newlines are considered syntax.

    This almost made it to an "A to B" post, but unfortunately it was a bit too simple. --> The following link. Not much of a path! I guess that's what happens when you mix nerds and anonymity. Let me (and the language designers) know if you come up with something interesting in Whitespace, or one of the other esoteric languages! From Whitespace If you've ever programmed in an Assembly Language then some of the languages listed on the following Wikipedia page might not seem as bad as they would to a non-programmer.

  • Bruce Eckel's MindView, Inc: Thinking in C++ 2nd Edition by Bruce Eckel

    Submitted by jean-paul on Wed, 05/02/2012 - 21:11

    Thinking in C++ is a free online book from Bruce Eckel. There are a lot of books available on this topic at your local bookstore, including this one, but if you don't have enough money to purchase one yet, or you just want to see if it is worth the investment, I suggest checking out this resource first. There is also a link for an online seminar entitled "Thinking in C" for those of you who don't have any experience in programming. It will help you get up to speed on basic C syntax. "Thinking in C" is also a great resource for those people who are interested in learning Java, as it is very similar to C. From Bruce Eckel's MindView, Inc: Thinking in C++ 2nd Edition by Bruce Eckel