Archive for September, 2002

September 16, 2002

On Saturday the doorbell rings. I answer it, and standing in front of me is, what must have been, a teenage kid in a black suit. “I’m _____, and this is my associate,” as he motions to his right. I look down. It must be his 6 year old sister. “Hello,” I say. The kid in the suit starts saying something like “blah blah blah blah … numbers … blah blah,” but I don’t hear any of it — I’m fixated on the pamplet he’s holding up for me to see. On the cover is a cartoonish drawing of an elderly couple looking up, confused. All around their heads are random numbers, floating and the title “What Do the Numbers Mean?”.

“Is this something you’d be interested in reading?” he asks. “No, thanks,” I say — and as I shut the door, I’m already kicking myself. *Of course* that is something I’d be interested in reading. I’m wondering what kind crazy stuff this kid and his associate are hawking. Oh well… they most certainly would’ve wanted money in exchange for such information.

September 13, 2002

After reading the first few lines of Where Have the Moon Trees Gone?, I was intrigued:
“Hundreds of trees that have been to the moon are now living on Earth, and NASA scientist Dave Williams is hunting for them.” Now, I first thought — cool! Trees that had been planted on the moon had been brought back to earth and replanted (I know I know.. trees on the moon??). But wait… it’s far less spectacular than that. An astronaut (his name escapes me) happened to bring up a tin of seeds into space. They happen to orbit the moon. This makes them moon trees I guess.

Ever wonder who started :-)?

September 12, 2002

I can’t stop fiddling with the layout. I think it was far too boxy before.

I’m a huge Alton Brown fan, and he was kind enough to answer some questions from slashdot readers. “… we always see these shots coming out of refrigerators and ovens. Do you actually have little windows in the back of your appliances or are those props built up for the shows?” I was always wondering the same thing.

Yesterday’s New York Lottery: “‘The numbers were picked in the standard random fashion using all the same protocols,’ said lottery spokeswoman Carolyn Hapeman. ‘It’s just the way the numbers came up.’”

September 11, 2002

Every day on my walk to and from the train, I notice small, worn puddles of candle wax on the sidewalks and in the park. One year later, they’re still there. They’ve weathered a little, but they remind me each day of the candle-light vigils held a year ago. It’s incredible that a year has already gone by.

September 10, 2002

I’ve finally added slideshow action to the viewer script. Here’s the first installment: Quebec City / Jacques-Cartier Park. You might be wondering what this is — it was actually a fire dancer person, twirling rags that were soaked in something flammable… or inflammable. Cool.

It’s amazing that we can hop in the car, drive for 7 hours and end up in a completely different world. Literally. Quebec City is like being in France. Or course, I’ve never been to France, but I imagine it would be something like this. The entire city speaks French. The woman who ran the bed and breakfast we stayed at spoke no English, but that was a good thing. I spoke a few “Bonjour”s and “tre bien”s. That was about it. The photo on the right was taken on the river bank, looking up at the Chateau Frontenac.

Highlight of the trip was hiking in the Parc de la Jacques-Cartier — about 1 hour north of Quebec City, where we met a very nice porcupine. More photos to come…

September 6, 2002

It’s 7am and we’re off to America Jr. (Canada) for an extended weekend in Quebec City. While I’m away, I leave you in the capable “hands” of the musical and magical Hand Man. Bon voyage.

September 5, 2002

happy macIf you’re using Mac OS X 10.2 and really miss the Happy Mac icon, there’s a hack to get it back. You could also replace it with any image you’d like. Like a monkey or a sad clown… Or perhaps a mango with a bite taken out of it.

CNN: “…Using a Web-enabled phone, players compete head-to-head with other players — just like the old game show, only the host Richard Dawson isn’t yelling ‘Survey says’”

September 4, 2002

I’m probably late to the game, but I didn’t realize until last night that PHP4 is included by default in Mac OS X (10.1). All you need to do is activate it. With a little snooping around I found some simple instructions on how to do this here (scroll down about 3/4 of the way and see the command line steps under “Activating the PHP Module”). In 2 minutes I was building a site with PHP on my local machine.

Salon: “‘You’ve probably been thanked for ‘Ferris Bueller’ a thousand times, so I’ll just thank you for a movie you weren’t even in, as a sort of acknowledged irony between two clever chaps.’ But actually, it was more like, ‘Hi Matthew, I’m stupid — no, just kidding, but I am tremendously ludicrous and abstruse. And did you know that I like to pee in my own socks?’” — What happens when you try to be funny while meeting Matthew Broderick in line at the movie theatre.

September 3, 2002

Matt, of the super-cool Boston band Charlene was kind enough to send me an advance of their upcoming debut full-lenghth CD. The band also runs the SharkAttack! Music label/collective/studio that puts it out. You’ll be hearing a lot about these guys when this comes out in October — I don’t pretend to know how to properly describe music by referencing other bands, so I won’t. It’s damn good and makes me want to get my act together and play again.

Seth-Tech (via scripting news) has some useful tips on what your RSS feed should look like. Like Seth, I publish my entire posts in the feed — but the reason I do this is because I use the RSS format for the final render of this site. I don’t know enough about the inner workings of Radio, Blogger Pro or Moveable Type, but I’m wondering if these tools use XSLT to transform their “feed” into the real deal… Works great for me.