Showing posts from September, 2005

Microsoft Avalanche - BitTorrent by Bill

MS is buying into the Torrent scheme... it's Research project Avalanche uses the same basic principle: downloads bits of a large download from others who already have the file or already have a part that you need.

$100 Linux laptop from MIT!

MIT has shown a prototype for a $100 laptop that runs Linux! It uses a 500Mhz AMD CPU, 1 GB of RAM, stores information in flash memory and has a dual-mode display that can be used in color or in a black&white sun-readable mode. The latter is handy when reading documentation or manuals or news.
The cool part is that there is also a cranck that can be used to manually wind-up the battery should you have no outlets nearby. The laptop is meant for children in schools in Africa, among others. More info on

AJAX Office applications

AJAX, a new instantiation of existing web technologies, has some interesting applications... How about a complete web-based Office application that you can use whereever you are? ZDnet has a list of currently available AJAX applications. Cool! Watch that space...

Acetylene Based Life on Titan?

Everytime, just when I think we've figured out Mother Nature's bag of tricks, she reveals yet another hidden pouch. Astrobiology has an article about possible Acetylene Based Life on Titan... go figure! But the idea is that the extreme cold may slow otherwise lethal (i.e. explosive) reactions to a pace that is biologically useful.
"Some of those organic molecules are very energy-rich, and one that we consider in the paper is acetylene. We know it's being made in the atmosphere, we know it's raining down on the surface, and it's been detected at the surface with the Huygens probe. [...]We don't know if there are any customers, but there's something on the menu."

Google buys Urchin Web Analytics

Google buys Urchin, a website analytics company like WebTrends.
Using Urchin, Google can jumpstart their efforts to intimately track visits to website using source information: web server log files. Google already offers sites the possibility to yield that information to Google in return for being (pro-)actively crawled whenever pages change: Google Sitemaps. But with Urchin, it buys detailed access to milllions of existing customers. Groovy. Of course, it also means AdSense can use even more information to present the right, to the point ads on a website when *you* visit. Because it also knows what you surf on other sites... Creepy, huh?!

Ibiza by MrVanes

Martin also posted his pictures of Ibiza. And Petra uploaded the pictures she made of Martin and Femke, as well as the pictures Martin made of her and me. Aren't we cute all? ;)

Sjoerdski is moving

Yesterday, we helped Sjoerdski get prepared for a move into his new house. He's got a great new apartment close to where he's already living. Nice spacious 3 bedroom apartment in Amsterdam West. Sunny and bright on the 7th floor of a flat with a great view and transportation and access roads really close. Very cool.

Notebooks Set to Double Up Processors

Notebooks Set to Double Up Processors, Eweek reports. Starting Jan 2006, Intel's dual-core set Yonah will appear. From May 2006, AMD's new Turion CPU will be available. At the same time, the Yonah chip will be succeeded by a new Merom chip.
The dual-cores are expected to yield better performance for a marginal increase in battery consumtpion. Cool! I'll have to find a way to convince my employer... ;)

Hurricane Rita - Wikipedia

Damn, Riat is just blasting away in the US Gulf area... holy moly. Cruising for bruising. :( WikiPedia has a pretty good account of the hurricane. Can't imagine what that must be like, while we here in the Netherlands are enjoying a wonderful Indian Summer.

Writing code that does something it shouldn't

Slashdot has an article about writing program code that does something else than it seems or is supposed to do. One contest, the Underhand C Contest, asks you to write malicious code into seemingly harmless code. In other words: a trojan. You seem to search for files but it really scans your computer for passwords, email addresses and more. Of course, it is doubtfull whether or not you should be proud to win such a contest. However, the fact you *can* do that teaches you one or two things about programming in the first place and shows you what else you could do with generic programming instructions.
Another contest, and this one just seems to keep coming up in my general conversation over the last months or so (really!), is the Obfuscated C Contest. The rules of that contest are to write code that's almost impossible to understand let alone figure out what it does, and even when you do, it should do something else. Or abuse the aspects of style and "lint" of a language. …

The LPIC-2 Exam Prep

Should you want to take a Linux certification exam, a generic one, you should check out The LPIC-2 Exam Prep. It's old, granted, but it should contain useful information.
As for RedHat or Novell CLP/CLE exams, I have some preperatory PDFs for you too, but you have to mail me for that. Can't post them, sorry. Use my guestbook or leave a comment.

OpenSUSE 10 release date set

The OpenSUSE roadmap tells me that the next release of SuSE, this time a community effort, is scheduled for October 6th. My colleague Albert-Jan already runs the 10 béta daily on his HP nx6110 laptop and has had no major problems so far. So that is quite good.
OpenSuSE also fixed his USB hub problems. Other distos and versions had problems properly configuring any USB mice on the nx6110. They work fine for the nx9030 (the predecessor of the nx6610) but on the nx6110 a USB mouse would appear to work and then somehow cycle through all available interrupts until giving up and simply stopping. Go figure... Must be some kind of new chipset or so.

Back from Ibiza

Yesterday, we got back from our 2 week vacation on Ibiza... Oh man, do I wanna go back! The weather was great and now it's fine here too, but the day to day aggrevation... *sigh*
Upon landing, we took a train home and got there about 2pm or so. We unpacked, loaded some loads of laundry and started up our PCs again. While finishing a reinstallation of my laptop, I found out I had to go to work for in Emmeloord on Monday morning... a 2 hour drive from Den Haag. So I set the alarm for 6am, again. :( Then I proceeded to break my GNOME desktop on my PC :'( but fortunately I still have a fresh laptop to work with. Pffew...
Petra went straight to work and found out she had a work event instead of actual work. Life is unfair. ;) Luckily, she had been busy on sunday editing and filtering all the pictures of Ibiza. So you can enjoy them already. (y) Cool!

Installing OS X on common Intel x86 made easy

If you're dying to try OS X running on a common Intel hardware, check out the OS X x86 (Intel) - How-to guide. It wasn't too much trouble to get the béta running... I'm impressed they're so quick with it...

Ibiza Spotlight

Just a few more hours and we're off! 2 Weeks vacation on Ibiza. Sun, sea, music and friends. Almost as good as Mysteryland... ;) See yunz later!
/me waves goodbye

Eyes on Katrina :

Here's another one, from an editor of a real newspaper. Should be better, theoretically, but I haven't read it yet. Blog first, read later. ;)
Eyes on Katrina :

Katrina blog: Eye Of The Storm

Katrina... Hurricane comes. Hurricane blows. New Orleans turns to crash site. People survive. People return... real damage starts!
Here is what I have been looking for a while: a blog from a guy who's down there himself, blogging from his mobile I guess and posting pictures too. It's a long read and not all of it is good (it's a blog, for crying out loud!) But it's good read if you want to get a first-hand perspective on the effects of Katrina on one person's life...

Cartoon Wavs - Dexter's Lab

Sometimes I miss Dexter's Laborotory big time. It was soo funny when it was still undubbed on Dutch Cartoon Network. Sadly, it's on only during kiddies hours and all voices have been dubbed with sad attempts of similarities by some dweeb. Anyway, at My Fave Wavs you can download some of the more famous sound bites of your favorite cartoon characters: Dexter, Johnny Bravo, Pinky and the Brain and more... woohoo!

DirectNIC Stays Online in New Orleans Facility

No power means trouble for computers. Water is a disaster for computers. A collapsing building is worse. So what do you do when a hurricane approaches your data center? Well Netcraft: DirectNIC Stays Online! That's what! You don't panic, you don't run, you may scream as no one can hear over 2500 km/h winds anyway... but most of all, you get out all your modern blogging equipment and blog away and post photos! B) So cool! :respect: to these guys!

Petra is a Photoblog "Must See"

If you look now, you can be witness to Petra being selected as a Photoblog "Must see" photoblog. Like a site-of-the-day special, kinda. I'm very proud of her and all the great comments and peer reviews she has been getting on Photoblog. :hug: Big (K) to me baby!
If she is no longer on their homepage, you can visit her photoblog seperately too, of course.

Hurricanes from afar

A hurricane is a frightening thing, but from space it looks very pretty. Pacific islands get these things regularly, so buildings and infrastructure and people are so what more prepared for them. Just like people in California are more used to dealing with minor and medium earthquakes, people on Hawaiï with vulcanoes and people in Bangladesh with floods. It's when nature wreaks havoc on ordinary modern cities that it does the most damage. Both materialistically as well as, and perhaps even more, psychologically.
Katrina would have wiped out the Netherlands, not just destroyed some homes and flooded a city. It would have leveled it all or at least most of it. Dike breaches would fill the rest with water. Dying cattle and animals would pollute practically everything. Industrial waste and garbage dumps would pollute soil and water. Lost crops would starve the survivors and the dropping (Fall) temperatures would sicken the already weakened victims. In short, at least half of the popu…