could this be a good day?

June 29th, 2007


Of course the media will have different topics today.

And then there is
news like this, which will cause ‘debate’. Problem being that the ‘debating’ have no clue what they are talking about. On both sides of the argument. Neither would I. My solution for this is to decide to still be excited about great news that comes form sucessful scienes. We all would not be here without science. Most people forget that, since it seems so ‘natural’ by now. All the technology surrounding us. It certainly is no. No iPhone (shit now I said the word) spuds to be found. Yet.

from those oceans

June 28th, 2007

15 years out there

document root under OS X with apache

June 25th, 2007

as /etc/httpd/httpd.conf will tell you in

DocumentRoot “/Library/WebServer/Documents”

the Document Root under OS X is under /Library/WebServer/Documents.

Of course you need to enable the oddly named “Personal Web Sharing”
in the system preferences under network.

ISS blossoms

June 25th, 2007

People like symmetry. More than you would gues. I would not be surprised if there would be more positive voices around the ISS, now that it has reached a certain size. Not looking like being a biplane attempt of the 7 year old darth vader might help that device up there that is under construction for so long now.
Bush will probably want to go there or something along those lines.

and I don’t even own their stock!

June 25th, 2007

the mac’s I had

the original

The SE was great. 2,500 Deutsche Mark, even after buying it via a student friend of mine, was allot of money. But it was a computer that you could buy books about. It was actually documented. That I had only seen like this for a Sun.

The LC and Newton I bought in an impulse. I lived 400 Meters from a Mac dealer back in the day. Which there were like 5 or so in the whole god damn country. Played a little bit of Myst on it. Started to develop for the Newton. But it was so odd and different from any API I cared about that I declared it a waste or time. And money I might add.

Power Macintosh I got a work. Slow like hell.

Powerbook Titanium I got at work as well. My boss brought it in one day. And I was very very very happy. Then, after the while, the hinge just snapped off. Apple pretended that that would never happen. Machine got hot, but was nice otherwise. Miss it.

iBook I got for my wife. Old CPU rev, real cheap. Worked great. I think she made the mistake of opening and
closing it though: the backlight display failed

iPod 1st Gen. Failed by now. Was ok though.

PowerBook Al 12″. Nice. But hot.
PowerBook Al 15″. Smoothest Mac I owned. Had to leave it when I left that job. Which was a shame.

iPod 3rd Gen: Broken. Those 4 buttons in the row are such a bad idea!

iBook G4. Mac I bought in 1995 working on my own in the US again. (I had in Germany before 1997). Nice machine. Real nice. Would still use it, would it’s keyboard not have failed.

iPod Shuffle: refurb, started to listen to podcasts on that one. Not ideal.
iPod Nano: Nice. Refurb, which made it an awesome deal. Left the connection cable in Germany last week though. So I will probably pay alsmost as much for that then I paid for the nice.

MacBook Pro: Tis ok. First Gen. Get’s hot like hell. Disabled spotlight and it helped somewhat.
MacBook: For the wife. Unusable with 512MB or memory. With 1.5GB I have not have heard any complaints. About the computer. (joke that is not true, but was unavoidable in a way)

iPod Hifi: emberrassing. Only used it one day, scaring kids with it during Halloween. Expensive for what it is. Can not even find a tuner for it, which would make it a decent looking kitchen radio. Seing it in the store the other day I was shocked how much I had paid for it.

NTX: First laser I owned. And loved. Got it as part of payment in a job back in the day. Still runs and makes ozone. Is entirely yellow by now.

How odd that I can recount my life by Apple products I used / owned.

Will I buy an iPhone? Certainly not. I am looking forward to it’s release. So that I go publish with the Interdubs-iPhone features, and since Razr prices will go down. It’s an ok phone, that works and that I am used to. If I want more I use a computer. There is no room for an intbetween. I never used a PDA or Blackberry. And UMPCs still make me laugh.

My life in Apple. How weird.

vfx coder par excellence

June 24th, 2007

Andrew Bell has made a website with a couple of in depth how-it-has-dones on projects of his. Very nice.

misc links

June 24th, 2007



what to do with yahoo

June 22nd, 2007


Funny how an ailing internet property can have so many options. None of them that make any sense.
Yahoo just has visitors that go there, since they always did. There is nothing else.

wrld 2.0

June 21st, 2007

rumor-1: Fox swapping myspace ofr 1/3 of Yahoo how to get 11billion out of 580. And suggested there: Yahoo giving up and giving search to google

rumor-2: Google buying Apple. The Steve not liking to come to work anymore.

rumor-3: [And I made this up]: Microsoft giving up and going open source. Nobody wanted to play with the gray elephant in the room that used to be a store.

back to 1&2: that could mean that google is the only remaining search engine. It was in a way anyway. But now it gets real tricky. Getting the enire email market could be quick second: Just funnel enough millions into the spam engine to keep the volume up, so that only people with very vast computing resources can survice in the email market. Already in todays brave new world Google could control vast amounts of spam: Just a slight tweak of a specific search quality parameter and somebody gets allot of money somewhere. Much of those funds would be reinvested in measures that come quiet expensive to counter for wannabe Google competitors.

iPhone Bandwidth

June 20th, 2007

When there is no wifi the iPhone is depending on AT&Ts EDGE technology to get data over the cell phone network. Bandwidth for that is supposed to be 70Kbps to 135Kbps. In other words. It is 11 to 22 times slower than a T1 line. Download wise many consumer DSLs are around T1 speed. So people that are used to ‘high speed internet’ and expecting the same from an iPhone everywhere are in for a surprise.

Since a couple of happy months I have been using EVDO on my laptop. In the rare cases that the Bandwidth dropped below 200Kbps I stopped using the Internet. It was just too painful.

dropping the 12th shoe

June 20th, 2007

youTube player on iPhone
This was the 12th icon, missing so far.

While on wifi through connect via local internet connection the iPhone might be a cute little viewer. Much like the Sony PSP was back in the day: 480 x 272 is the resolution on Sony’s device, while it is 480 x 320 on the iPhone. Somewhat tragic, that the actual hardware path (internet->wifi->device) was already available on the PSP. Two year head start. Wasted. Well, they sold 10 million PSPs in the US.

The real innovation would have been GPS. I think that devices should be fucking aware where they are. I would like the next MacBook Pro have EVDO
built in. Including GPS support. I am sure there are ample applications one could think of, once devices are location aware. It takes only 2 floats to store this precisly. Without any compression applied it would take a mere 10GB to store my location since I was born. One record for each second that I was alive.

from the big apples mouth

June 20th, 2007

in case you have not been to NY,NY in a while

hack tv

June 18th, 2007

From what I read (cursory) the tchech artist Roman Tyc replaced the usual live landscape images to been at this time of day with this recording. This seems to be a rare case that the local german paper reported such mixed / pseudo news before BlogsNow. Usually it’s the other round.

Roman Tyc did replace some traffic signs in April in Praque

Interdubs: now with public website

June 18th, 2007

Finally I got around to make a public website for Interdubs. It was an interesting experience to condense the essence of a sucessful and working system into a couple of pages. Good thing is that it can be changed and altered. I decided to link to sites of competing services. Those that I know about. Being able to do so is one of the joys of running your own business: I doubt that such a move would have made it any commitee. I want to believe that I work in a world where people can decide what’s good and what is not. I have no fear to that click on a link of a different service and then fall in love with it and sign up over there. If they should do so, then Interdubs should not be around anyway. Well, it is. And with 11,968 files right now it seems to be going strong. I decided to put total file count inside of interdubs also on the outside. It’s my job to grow the service. And I certainly don’t feel doing so clandestine.

Next Stop: Press work and iPhone version.

how far can the kid go?

June 16th, 2007

The Daily Mail looks at how far kids can go on their own. Now and then.


June 15th, 2007

I don’t agee with all its points. But it has been a while since there was a ‘Barry says’ like piece.

how stuff gets made

June 15th, 2007

a Motherboard get’s produced

Being a child of the last century, and having built machines, that, well, actually build machines, I might have unusual high interest in things how actually get made. Looking at America in 2007 you might think that it needs is marketing and malls to provide people with ’stuff’. But there is this little -often ugly- detail: ’stuff’ needs to get made. And before that, it has to be engineered. Mostly elsewhere.


June 14th, 2007

This brief intro to zfs I had linked to in the last entry already. As it turns out, I was a bit naive in thinking that Apple would just implement zfs in leopard. If I understand this clarification correctly then ZFS will be READ ONLY in Leopard. Which makes it pointless for all real life uses I had in mind. Or that most people ever would have had in mind. Why bother? Apple is an odd company, certainly not one that behaves logical in some areas of it’s efforts. Sometimes it just behaves like a spoiled Trust-a-fari. Who needs reason if the iPod sales just keep the ATM filled up for you?

In the meantime Sun’s Jonathan Schwartz invites Linus Torwalds to dinner in response to his post about Sun.

What I do like about this story is how much of it happens in the open for everybody to see. In a more upbeat perspective there seems to be one big global “Forum Romanum” these days.

from the internets

June 14th, 2007

some random links, let’s call it BlogsNow Digest:

Zfs explained: easy, brief and hands on I will upgrade to Leopard aka OS X 10.5 just for ZFS.

Pi is 3, says the Bible
Some things are so god-damn straight forward, it is hard to fathom that people run around and try to think otherwise. I

phantom cell vibrations


June 12th, 2007

animals on the underground

via strangemaps via BlogsNow (of course)

Some days I like the internet. Does it not only have sites for strange maps but also for the history of the button
and -I am sure- all sorts of other ones.

It’s been 50 years since Mao said “Let 100 flowers blossom”.

Of course there are all sorts of flowers.

Photoshop and the Knoll Brothers

June 9th, 2007

A brief story about the beginnings of Photoshop. Interesting, I had no idea that Pixar made computers. Which is a bit embarrassing, considering what I do for a living. Well, now I know.

small screens

June 8th, 2007

Somehow there is this long history of really small screens. And most of them were failures. OK, Sony became known by shipping a load of portable TVs via one of the first 747s to NYC. But apart from that, the watchman wasn’t really that sucessful. Neither was the iPod with video capabilities. There are actually much better devices in terms of screen size or price. But none of them really caught on. I think the problem is, that there is no real content and need for such a device. It’s technical feasibility seems to lure people into thinking otherwise. But how often do you find yourself wishing to watch a couple of quare inch screen? When? As much as the original walkman concept of having a mobile music source with headphones was a hit the mobile visual pendant is a miss. It’s not flying. And I honestly doubt that the iPhone will change that. Nothing will. How many of your chat sessions are video chats? Exactly. Yet, the picture-phone had the same feasibility driven shadow life for a while. Lateral progress I would call these things: Something is a hit. And then people just extend the concept to the side. Cinemas add first sound and then color. Both times it’s been well perceived. Smelling is another sense! Just that it did not work. Walkman -> Watchman. Same deal. Ears are happy with a walkman on, let’s feed the eyes now. It’s probably easy to pitch. Stupid board member can ’see’ this simple lateral extensions. As Homer Simpson said “They have the internet on computers now”

how the internet is doing

June 8th, 2007

This is a neat little overview how the internet is doing.

Some other links that do similar things: Internet Traffic Report And nice cross matrix between different providers.

ten OS X Applications

June 7th, 2007

Abusing the own blog as a boomarking tool again, here a list of ten OS X Application Some even be worth trying. Just that every new Application I need to kick one to the curb. Appl-Clutter is horrible.
Clutter is horrible. Period. Just writing this while Final Cut thinks it needs a re-render. Of course it’s not needed. But those bugs that you can survive that ‘only’ waste time and disk space get fixed last.


June 5th, 2007

somebody blogged about productivity

safari and pngs

June 5th, 2007

Developing a new public site for interdubs. I am almost done. I needed a png file. Of course they looked different in Safari and Firefox. Actually, to be precise, they looked wrong in Safari. There is problem some academic reason why safari displays them with all that fancy color information rendered in. I don’t care, they are still wrong to me: I want all people to see the same image. this describes the problem I think; as I said, I am making a new site for Interdubs, I don’t have time for another science project. That site however recommends pngcrush. Problem is, that one is a real bitch to compile or install on OS X and linux. Again, I am just trying to have the same image look the same in the two most popular browsers under OS X. I can figure out which libraries to install etc etc. Just that I don’t want to. Finally I found the solutions, and it works awesom: Gamma Slamma might have an odd name, it might have a trendy logo, but it certainly works like a charm.

time design

June 4th, 2007

Yet another way of reading time

Which got me looking and I found, that Yugo Nakamura is still writing down time.

Of course he is cheating, while Roman Opalka is not.

In Germany this device got some attention 30 years ago.

40 years

June 1st, 2007

Sgt Pepper forty years.

Listened to it 3 times in a row at 2am on deck of some dodgy vessel in the middle of the mediterian in August 1993. Portable CD player. Hard to forget.

June 1st, 2007

hundreds of visualsations

I wish I had the time to look at them.


June 1st, 2007

couple of misc links. Curtesy BlogsNow:

Pixelmator is a future Mac Photo edit app, slated to use GPU and cost 59,- they say
drops of liquid aka coffee in milk on steroids
youTube Apple-tv to use h.264 interesting how iPhone vs. Flash will play out. Yesterday we saw already that Apple-TV is not so great

the best code: no code at all I do agree. Having added some 150 lines of code earlier today to interdubs I feel somehow dirty.
It’s official Summer since Nessy is back


June 1st, 2007

morphing had been around for a while.
All of these images as well. Still needed youTube to get this out:

I am not a fan of this implementation. The idea itself is great. A bit more understand of art history would have been helpful. The track I can mute, the jumps in time and obvious omissions are harder to fade out. Maybe this time the rip-off in a commercial (bank, insurance, dove soap?) will be better than the you-tube-inspiration?

technological advanced

June 1st, 2007

A comparison of a twenty year old computer with a recent one. And it does support what I felt all along. But this is only half of the story: Computers became what they are because we wanted them that way. People kept buying more Mhz, and decided for the OS with more features. But while what’s called a ‘PC’ ballooned in it’s technical specs there was maybe a gap left below that nobody seems to care about. What about a machine that does web browsing, text editing and digital photo management really well. I would argue that the hardware would cost not more than 100 to 150 US$. Getting the apps right and the OS out of the way is a little bit harder. But it’s possible. “One-Upping” this imaginary concept by one notch and it seems even to be more attractive: Don’t sell the machine. give it to people that sign up for an internet connection with you. Lot’s of ISPs want to get more clients, but are unable themselves to get such a concept working. Really working means to make it work like the iPod worked. The machines are cheap, people would sign up to have them technically monitored remotely. Lot’s of things can be done. There are ample possibilities from here: Sell people computers that are locked down so that their kids can use them. Sell people media access, like music or videos, if that should be a market. This might be the right personal computer for real life persons. The other stuff didn’t really work for many people.