Iiiiiiiinccccrrrrereeeeeeeedibly busy at the moment

Iiiiiiiinccccrrrrereeeeeeeedibly busy at the moment, so not much time for blogging…

Had my first aikido lesson yesterday – fantastic fun. Four of us went along (Rich & Emma, Jala & me) and all agreed that it was marvellously friendly & welcoming, interesting, and just brill. :-) So expect more tales of joint locks from now on…

Don’t know what aikido is? Check out Cardiff Ki Society, Ki Society US, and AikiWeb.

Some more all your base knockoffs

I know it’s passe, but what the heck. I like these: Only 52 Days, Gravestone, Freebase, Zits, Wassup?, etc.

Boing Boing selection

Boing Boing Selection: Postmodern Essay Generator, Martin Amis on pornography, Ulysses For Dummies.

Named variables are really important!

Here’s what happens when you use a web application development system which doesn’t give you named variables.

If you don’t get it, here’s a clue: “If I had a pound for everyone who vists this site – wait a minute, I do!” :-)

(From NTK 2001-02-02).

This week’s Need To Know selection

This week’s Need To Know selection: www.slub.org – generative music, Accurate Future Predictors, T-Bone’s Stress Relief Aquarium 3, Swedish Chef Web Search!

Some excerpts from the blue book

Your mission, should you decide to accept it, is to Take That And Party.

Fractal coffee.

“You want nano’s with that?”

Yellow is the colour of knowledge. And this is a knowledge smartie.

Time is the wave and space is the particle.

Teach Yourself Emacs In 24 Hours

Teach Yourself Emacs In 24 Hours

One for Ben

One for Ben:

perl -le '$_="6110>374086;2064208213:90<307;55";tr[0->][LEOR\!AUBGNSTY];print'

Japan has cut its interest rate to zero

Japan has cut its interest rate to zero.

Gimboland archive problems

Hmmmm… Once again, the Gimboland archives (on the left hand side of this page) seem to be diminished… There should be February stuff in there too. Must look into this. But I think I’ll wait until this page moves to gimbo.co.uk, which it should do soon…

Physical covered by Goldfrapp

There’s a Real Audio clip of Goldfrapp covering Olivia Newton John’s “Pysical” here. Unfortunately I have no capability to listen to this at work, so I’ll have to wait until I get home.

Come on people, haven’t you heard of mp3? (Or better still ogg vorbis. No, too much to hope, I know).

Sand pendulum

Here’s a nice story… A sand pendulum in Port Townsend, Washington created a remarkable image during the recent earthquake. Check it out.

BT takes 36p per call to Comic Relief

Bloody hell… It seems that for every call made to Comic Relief, BT collects 36 pence. More here.

Quite a conundrum

If Angel doesn’t have breath, how can he smoke so moodily?

cookdandbombd

There’s lots of Chris Morris stuff at cookdandbomd, including some Brass Eye and Blue Jam downloads – fantastic!

I’m currently reading the “Geefe Columns”, and they’re pretty cool, in a very Chris Morris kinda way. Which makes sense, I guess.

Building Dynamic Websites with Zope

Must check out Dieter Maurer’s book, Building Dynamic WebSites with Zope – it’s supposed to complement The Zope Book pretty well…

Yup. it’s the flu

I was off sick yesterday, and I’m off sick today. This “flu” thing (read unidentified generic virus inducing colds and sore throats) finally caught up with me… I knew it would when, on Sunday, two seperate people told me how amazing it was that I hadn’t had it yet. Gits. :-)

Penny Arcade

Penny Arcade is kinda hit and miss, imho. A couple of goodies: goody, goody, cthulu goody, goody

Some Gimboland tweakery

I’ve made a few subtle changes to Gimboland:

The logo’s back (link was broken, easy to fix but I just hadn’t bothered).

The sidebar colour’s changed a little (slightly darker, less salmony, hopefully easier to read).

Metacrawler box has moved (‘cos I never use it).

A couple of other extremely subtle changes that no-one but a lunatic could notice but of course had to be done. :-)

As I’m sure you’ll agree, it’s infinitely better for it…

Mr Pants, we heart you

I haven’t visited the ever-excellent mr pants for a while, but it’s good to get back there… Here are just a few nuggets I picked up tonight:

Some excellent pie charts.

Lancelot Link and the Evolution Revolution!

BloodHag! – “The faster you go deaf, the more time you have to read!”

The KLF’s What The Fuck’s Going On? – the whole thing!

But really, check it out for yourself. It’s the blog that made me want to blog. :-)

A couple of cool Zope products

A couple of cool Zope products: Security Audit, Value Handler, and a management interface hack.

And here’s a howto on setting up an SQL-backended page hit counter.

Multibabel

You don’t want to miss Multibabel – or indeed, “They would not wish the elasticity of MultiBabel of disturbarli”.

Winnie The Pooh!

Winnie The Pooh!

The fantastic Moaning Goat Meter.

The fantastic Moaning Goat Meter.

Publish bookmarks via Zope?

Gimbo: make your bookmarks available to your self through Zope, with a better interface. :-)

Web development musings

For web development, Python looks harder than ASP, but that’s because it’s deeper than ASP (at least on Linux). ASP does let you do some things very easily, but if you want to do something it doesn’t give you for free, you may not be able to at all. This situation is ameliorated in the win32 world by COM components, which are what actually make ASP a viable development platform. Sure, you could write your own on Linux if you needed, but it’s loads of effort on Linux and you’ll probably fuck it up anyway (COM is complex).

On the other hand, Python: It’s a well-designed language, not broken, it comes with an excellent library which probably makes your task easy anyway, and if it doesn’t, it’s easy to write your own, and the tool is right… If the choice is between writing an MD5-hashing module in Python, VBScript, or a COM component, believe me, that’s a no brainer.

The meaning of the word “hallmark”

The meaning of the word “hallmark” is changing. Historically the word has referred to a stamp in a metal object used to identify it or its origin. (At least, this is the meaning I picked up from watching The Antiques Roadshow back when I didn’t have a choice whether to watch it or not). For some people, this is still the primary meaning of the word.

However, another meaning has evolved over the last few years, and I expect to see it grow. It’s the usage of the word “hallmark” to describe a certain kind of “day”, not a public holiday but a “celebration” day of some sort which, when you look into it, turns out to be completely artificial.

“Father’s Day” is perhaps the canonical example. “Mother’s Day” grew out of the traditional “Mothering Sunday”, which was (apparently) the one day of the year when servants of English households could go home to see their mothers (at Christmas, of course, they’d be required in the household). Once again, I’m making this up from memory and may not be entirely accurate, but you get the idea. But “Father’s Day” is entirely artifical, introduced not for laudable reasons of equality, but in order to allow greetings card companies to sell more greetings card. Introduced, in fact, by the greetings card companies – of which the prime example is the “Hallmark” company.

Hence, a “hallmark” holiday is a completely artifical event for the purpose of generating revenue, and we all fall for it like cattle, bless us.

And that’s what I mean by the meaning of hallmark changing. :-)

Botan Clan

Botan Clan: Had a well wicked weekend in the company of Ben & Gail in Newbury… Checked out the British Museum and the Imax, and ate the best pizza I’ve ever tasted. Also discovered the secret to enjoying London. :-)

Yes, I’m really rather getting into Zope

I can’t believe how bloody amazingly cool this Zope thing is. Fantastic… I’m ascending the learning curve and at no point have I stopped and said “that’s shit”. It’s been more like a constant stream of “wow, very impressive”, or “nice”, or “good design…”, etc., etc., etc.

Love it.

Zope scripts etc.

This page says: “At the time of this writing, Scripts are not a standard part of Zope and you must download them from Zope.org and install them.”, which isn’t true… Maybe I should tell someone (tomorrow).

Things for me to do at work tomorrow:

Check out this, this, and this.

Point Michelle at this to allay her DTML-deprecation concerns. Point her at some of ensane’s sites too.