Tuesday, May 20, 2008

New Toy: Garmin zumo 550

Just picked up a new toy, a Garmin zumo 550. I can't wait to get lost with it. As with all new technology, it is always interesting to learn all the little hacks and extra features available on the internets. I'd love to hear any stories people have to offer.

Helicockter

Brilliant use of the Helicockter.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Safeway gas promotion

Whomever came up with this promotion is a rocket scientist. The closest participating gas station where I can redeem the $0.60 I've earned so far, is in Vallejo, 28.18 miles from my house. Really, what were you thinking?

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Rietveld

At first glance, Rietveld seems very cool. As someone who spends a good portion of their day reading emailed subversion commit logs, I've always wanted a tool to properly annotate commits with comments. It really sucks having to reply to the diff email and make comments. There is no good tracking system for that except to keep an internal stack in my memory of all the comments I make and then make sure that my co-workers make the necessary changes. With open source projects, it is even more difficult because of the huge number of changes that happen on a daily basis. I can't wait to try this tool out.

Architecture astronauts

Joel's latest rant about Architecture astronauts is such a fun read.

Monday, May 12, 2008

New way to help homeless: Feed a meter

I kind of like the idea of installing machines that take spare change which is then given to the homeless by the city. I never give anyone change anymore because after my experience with the homeless and owning a night club, I know that all it is used for is drugs. Handing someone money doesn't help them get the help they really need. I really believe that panhandling and homelessness in San Francisco is totally out of control. I've done a fair bit of traveling around Asia and Europe in the last few years and I'd say I haven't seen a homeless problem this bad in any other large cities I've seen. Our Mayor hasn't done nearly enough to fight it. Sadly, I do think that the reality of doing something like this in San Francisco is that the machines will be quickly attacked and disabled.

UnsubscribeMe Storm

Today was rather interesting. For the first time in many years, I fell victim to an UnsubscribeMe Storm. First a little back story. Years ago, I was added to an email mailing list for a hair salon a friend of mine once worked at. Puddin gave me a really fun haircut and color that day. Pictures of the cut are even still online. Every 6 months or so, I get one email from the owner of the Blow Salon talking about a new fashion show they are having. No big deal. Hit delete and move on.

Well, for the first time, someone decided to hit reply-to-all with an unsubscribe message. I don't know who setup their mailing list, but they did it wrong (should have done it as an announcement only list) and the message went out to everyone on the list. Hello instant shit storm! Did I also mention that the salon happened to be closed today and it was clear the owner was off relaxing somewhere nice?

Therefore, this storm lasted longer and sent more messages than any other storm I've seen before. The best part is how aggressive many of the people got. Name calling ensued. Threats of action were tossed out. People continued to not read all the replies telling people to stop replying. More name calling. And then the jokes started and I can't say I stayed out of it, way too much fun to have.

First someone created a MySpace account using the address so of course the 'confirm your email address' message went to the list. Nice. So, I created a LinkedIn account figuring that everyone was already stuck together and there was no way out of this mess. Sadly, I wasn't able to read the confirmation emails quickly enough and someone hijacked the account before I could (they probably guessed I made the password 'unsubscribe'). Next up, I sent an email detailing in a very nice language how stupid people are (I got a lot of replies saying how funny it was). Someone else started sending Chuck Norris messages. Classics such as "Chuck Norris destroyed the periodic table, because he only recognizes the element of surprise."

Sadly, here we are at 10pm and this epic journey seems to have ended. Luckily, one of the final emails to the list was mine: Subject: Free haircuts for everyone. Body: If you act fast and respond to the email with 'unsubscribe' in the subject, you get a free mohawk. Everyone else who can't follow the directions gets a mullet. Of course, color costs extra.

Monday, May 5, 2008

Smoking

Did you know that effective July 1st, 2008, in California, smoking in a vehicle where a minor is present is an infraction. Awesome!

Saturday, May 3, 2008

PeerGuardian

I just found out about a really cool piece of software called PeerGuardian. It has dynamic block lists of all the bad seeds on "The Internets" and prevents your computer from making connections to them. Before I installed it, I tended to get really bad performance when using Azureus. It took forever to connect to hosts and download speed was terrible! After I installed it and watched it block an ass-ton of hosts, the torrents started downloading immediately and the speed is amazing. I'm so lame. How come it took me this long to figure this trick out?