scrap pad

fancy suit advice

english cut: bespoke savile row tailors: what if you only have £200? enjoying this blog by an english tailor, English Cut, because I love the details of clothes (not that there's a lot of room for consideration of details in my own clothes budget). (orig. link to blog via kottke)

silk knots

cufflinks, except actually silk knots

flying spaghetti monster on top of christmas tree

knit FSM on an xmas tree at flickr

kb's bamboo tshirt is wicked soft

Bamboo Fiber T-shirts, $17, also $24 at bamboosa


possible optimal positioning of schoolwork...

if an activity:
  • is within my abilities
  • has clear rules and clear goals
  • gives direct feedback
and I am:
  • able to concentrate on it
  • in control of it
  • I will worry less about doing it
  • time will pass efficiently while I am doing it

Flow (psychology) - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

battlestar galactica

oh, fuck, reading battlestar galactica behind-the-scenes stuff: : 'Episode #210' Pegasus

Earthworm Bracelet

Earthworm Bracelet

"eggnog in quantity"

Salon | Time for one thing: All eggnogged up and nowhere to go


control itunes with the powerbook's accelerometer

powerbook accelerometer

The Apple Sudden Motion Sensor. also, funny how really small things change from model to model - "certain machines (apparently the 'hi-res' PowerBooks) use a different motion sensor driver."

police have been infiltrating NYC protests

not just going undercover: inciting stuff, getting "arrested." videotaping also. it's interesting how much videotaping is referenced in this article--collecting citizen and police videotapes to protect people arrested at the Republican Nat. Convention the other year, etc. Police Infiltrate Protests, Videotapes Show - New York Times (note to self - saved for later as pdf). possible english/civics paper topic.

rfid physical address book

great example of "thinking through making." the idea is that his cell phone that will do an action when it encounters a certain rfid tag, so you set up rfid tags and put them under your desk, so you can set your phone down to say, "I am in the office" or something. The address book desk

for overcrowded services menus

Service Scrubber (mac os x app)

Bikini Calculus

How-to-Do Girls: Bikini Calculus - Constant Rule - Google Video

Tricks of the Trade: Tech Support

Tech Support: "Show me what you were trying to do."

usb plug diagram

Universal Serial Bus

corner bookmarks

bookmark design - goes on the corners of pages

applescripting the System Events app

example Make Plain Text at an Applescript Forum - can do stuff that is not in an app's applescript dictionary via apple events, like accessing menu items. etc.

kb says

"laziest assed"


"Mithra: The Pagan Christ Part"

more christmas

I'm totally in it for the 'pagan rituals' anyway—the baking, the tree, the gathering together and christmas morning phone calls and to a certain extent the exchange of gifts. the lighting of candles at the midnight church service (one for every family). Jesus' birthday is not really related to what I'm celebrating.

Fuck Christmas

well, somebody has to say it. "Fuck Christmas" plus a lot more "fuck" and damning pop culture accusations.

Bee comix

good comics here: Beekeeper Cartoon Amusements. unfortunately for my greed, they're not regularly updating webcomics. still awesome.

thefacebook as CIA front

"What would Orwell do?." harvesting well organized accurate information like it's GMO corn on square cobs.

recommended mac apps

(not necessarily by me) 10 Apps Every New Mac User Should Download. (mac os x)

Black Sticky Gingerbread

This recipe is SO FUCKING DELICIOUS: Black Sticky Gingerbread. It has a slightly crunchy top and a soft sticky inside... if I don't stop talking/thinking about it I will have to go have another ramekin-cake. Holy fuck, delicious.

"yay me"

for future reference: some weeks, even when everything seems to be like crap, I do a good job on things.

  • On Thursday my lab partner and I did a good presentation on ceramic and tantalum capacitors. I made gingerbread cookie capacitors, which the professor liked.
  • I showed up an hour and ten minutes late to the chem final and finished it in the remaining hour plus 10 minutes. (The first part is not "yay." I remembered the final time as 11:45, but it was actually 10:45) My crib sheet (allowed) was really good.
  • I gave my roommate his first snowboarding lesson last weekend. He doesn't hate me OR snowboarding.

big capacitor can replace a 9v battery

with a little finagling. SuperCap 9V battery

Antarctic slang

Dictionary of Antarctic slang

tim berners-lee has a blog

timbl's blog. heh.

month's calendar as desktop image

and there are folders of related stuff on certain days... Rooze's Desktop on Flickr.

top ten list

"My Top Ten Kitchen Utensils of the Year"

distributed proofreading

mindful way to waste time... Project Gutenberg's distributed proofreaders

spring semester plan

this semester isn't quite over yet, but here is the plan (with specific actions!) for next semester:

  • do work in the mornings. every week, do some work for each class, and do homework on at least two seperate days.
  • talk to the professors. within the first three weeks of class, talk to each professor outside of regular class at least twice.
  • do specific exercise or recreation activities on normal days, alongside other responsibilities. engage in some form of physical distraction at least twice a week.

also should avoid "science lab russian roulette"—though it should be easier because I won't be taking any lab courses—which is in full swing since Monday; the idea is that I save 2 to 6 lab reports for the end of the semester, and then try to complete and turn in as many as possible between the last day the Professor accepts them and the last day of finals. It's like pointing a gun at the head of any 'A' that may have been considering placement on my report card, but usually the chamber is empty.

encyclopedias, wiki or otherwise

dear self: if you ever write a paper, any encyclopedia is a crap source for writing a paper. Wikipedia survives research test

making liqueurs

was going to try making some liqueurs for Christmas but it's a little late now. did make a parsley one and a pepper-ginger-cardamom one (neither sweetened, so not really liqueurs I guess?) The Webtender: A few words about liqueurs

specific graviites of liquors

for making layered drinks. super goofy. The Webtender: Specific Gravity Chart

alternate absinthe recipes

The Webtender: Absinthe FAQ

general drink recipes

The Webtender: General Drink Recipes - all these are topped off with soda or something... it's more than just the (almost equal parts) alcohol and juice. for future party reference.

the banjo breaks and turns into a legs-bug

Achewood - March 8, 2005

cardboard computer

conceptually, at least. (imho cooler than a computer in a cardboard box.) Bell Labs Science Experiment Kits - CARDIAC

power supply

How to Convert a Computer ATX Power Supply to a Lab Power Supply - WikiHow

also I think I'd like a dremel sometime.

mouse in an altoids tin

small led/microcontroller/soldering project

MiniPOV2 - Persistance of Vision Toy instructions/kit. involves the following:

  • learn how to solder
  • learn how to assemble simple kits
  • learn how to program microcontrollers
  • make blinky stuff

these are things I'd like to do.

trig identities

trigonometric identities at the wikipedia

word on the CVS disposable video camera

the hacking it kind of word, that is.

osmotic pressure

1/4 inch chicken wire down the middle of a tupperware container, put some lentils in both sides and chickpeas in only one side... shake the container a while, and most of the lentils end up in the side with the garbanzos. weird result; it's a model of osmotic pressure, action of solutions across semipermiable membranes. (from my chemistry notes)

email excerpt

approximate quote from an email I sent.
People always say, "it's not fair" after a death, making me wonder why we keep passing on the idea that things should be fair. Fairness only really can apply to choices, not to events. Fairness is a myth like the warm ocean of the Caribbean. Here it is the perfect weather for everything, if only because we have no choice but to do everything in this weather.

secret sites comments at

a mostly uninteresting bunch of comments about having secret blogs. it struck me though because my habit online is near-anonymity, and lately two friends have started friendster blogs, which are the complete opposite. not only are friendster blogs connected to a full profile, and made obvious to all of your "friends," but random area people browsing can find them. so someone who recognizes your face from a bar is suddenly reading about your lj-esque ups and downs. neat for travelogues and life updates for out of touch friends, but otherwise too highly visible for my taste.

also, at how being super-open has been interesting. (ugh, braindead vocabulary; blame that on a busy weekend.)

spring toy

flash spring system to play with. I like it with k low (=0.001) and c high (=0.999). (via slacker manager I think)

cilantro = coriander

didn't realize that coriander and cilantro were the same thing. the seeds are very different from the leaves. Coriander at the Wikipedia

invert sugars

sugar where the sucrose is broken up into glucose+fructose, which means it doesn't crystalize as easily. corn syrup is one, honey is another. Inverted sugar syrup at Wikipedia. never heard of this until reading this bit about toasted pecan toffee (via slacker manager).

pixel and other small fonts

11 ugly ones. 4 pages of nicer ones. best: the Unibody family. seriously, though, who needs any beyond kottke's silkscreen?

Frida Bus accident

Maine aid worker dies in New Orleans (Portland, Maine)

new graffiti at the asylum

working on it, more pics. 1 billion pictures. summary: it has more red and orange, and there's a big flaming mushroom cloud that is flame colored. have I not walked by there in that long? two months!

put up new photos

just added a bunch of photos to my flickr acct. for months I've been meaning to start carrying my camera all the time; finally got around to it. hence the moose picture. jacket is so big these days there's an accessible place for it. some highlights: gingerbread that jen wrapped for me, leftover gross noodles from dumpling night, vaginas, and a pic of the couch which belies its less classy past.

experimental physics - lab week

am really enjoying this "Week in the Lab" series at Uncertain Principles
  • A Week in the Lab: Slow-Motion Experimental Physics Live-Blogging - "a series of articles explaining what I'm doing on this specific project, and how it's going. If I remember to bring the digital camera in to work, I may even post pictures of the apparatus. It'll be an all-access look into the glamorous world of lost tools, bloodied knuckles, minor electrocutions, and vacuum plumbing that is the development of an optically excited metastable krypton atomic beam source."
  • The Big Picture - "The basic idea is to measure the amount of krypton in some other gas by trapping single krypton atoms out of a stream of gas passing into our vacuum system. The exceptional frequency selectivity of laser cooling lets you do this..." Also, krypton quirks.
  • Lasers, Eight O'Clock, Day One - tuning lasers. "There are two lasers involved ... One is the 819 nm laser needed for the second step of the excitation process, the other is an 811 nm laser that will ... be used for detecting the metastable atoms..."
  • Lock and Load - this one was my favorite: finding a tiny signal in noise
  • Cleanliness Is Next to Somethingorother - details of an expensive laser. etc.
  • It's Not Science Without Graphs - testing the setup.

pictures of waspy girls

The All Girls School, by Mara Bodis-Wollner at The Morning News.

home town news

"man [arrested] for failing to register as a sex offender, shortly after he arrived at the police station to register."

more Ruby

I can't see myself forgetting this because I like the name so much, but here it is: Why’s (Poignant) Guide to Ruby.

web news in Maine

CNN money on web-based local news (Nov. 1, 2005)... was looking for more info about The Bollard and its editor, Chris Busby (because I couldn't find the masthead... eventually did, though). Until about 2002 he wrote for/edited the Casco Bay Weekly, an "edgy" local paper that no longer exists. Wrote/writes for a bunch of local publications.

Portland for tourists

article in the National Geographic about Portland, Maine. possibly published in November 2004? includes a link to Percy Inn across the street from my old apartment(s), to whom we never returned the q-tips.

quotes from The Infernal Desire Machines of Doctor Hoffman

by Angela Carter. ©1972. page numbers refer to the Penguin Books U.S.A. 1994 paperback edition. started in August, finished last Saturday. didn't like it much until the last 1/3 (probably a change of mindset more than any change in the story/writing). In the beginning I said it was "like a minefield with similes."

p. 195 top:

'Yes,' she said and turned her ensorcellating eyes on me so that all at once I was breathless with desire and the cabin dissolved in our kiss. Yet there was still that duplicity in my heart's core. I had been marked out at the beginning as the Minister's man, for all my apathy, for all my disaffection, for I, too, would have worshipped reason if I could ever have found her shrine. Reason was stamped into me as if it were a chromosome, even though I loved the high priestess of passion. Nevertheless, we kissed; and the crew of the helicopter shielded their eyes as though we were to bright for them to bear.

p. 201 top:

The white evening dress of a Victorian romantic heroine rustled about Albertina's feet and clung like frost to her amber breasts yet I wished she had worn the transvestite apparel of her father's ambassador or had come to the table naked, with poppies in her hair, in the style she had adopted for dinner in the land of the centaurs. My disillusionment was profound. I was not in the domain of the marvellous at all. I had gone far beyond that and at last I had reached the powerhouse of the marvellous, where all its clanking, dull, stage machinery was kept. Even if it is the dream made flesh, the real, once it becomes real, can be no more than real. While I did not know her, I thought she was sublime; when I knew her, I loved her. But, even as I pared my dessert persimmon with the silver kinfe provided, I was already wondering whether the fleshly possession of Albertina would not be the greatest disillusionment of all.

quote from Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince

by J.K. Rowling. read this a few weeks ago.

Harry and Dumbledore, p. 197:

"But you think you're right?" said Harry.

"Naturally I do, but as I have already proven to you, I make mistakes like the next man. In fact, being—forgive me—rather cleverer than most men, my mistakes tend to be correspondingly huger."

basic math symbols

Table of mathematical symbols at Wikipedia

day o' sulfur

I guess in this picture the machine is melting and eating a building-sized block of sulfur? I heartily approve of the "so I stopped in at our local sulfur plant" methodology of this dude's brief sulfur plant tour.

about burning sulfur and zinc: "Do not attempt this reaction unless are a professionally qualified chemist and..." you are wearing a periodic table t shirt! (info about sulfur)

AppleScript bits

"AppleScript for Python Programmers" ... or: basic AppleScript bits defunked.

caffeine consumption: holy shit.

"... in the United States, the average consumption is 238 milligrams per day, equal to that found in 4 1/2 cups of [coffee]." Also it improves memory.

p.s. please everybody: calling coffee "java" is stupid. and annoying.

quick! try ruby!

wicked neat interactive thing. try ruby in your browser. (ruby = oo programming/scripting language)

Memorial Bridge: falling down.

Bridge between Kittery and Portsmouth needs repairs. They keep getting put off. Lame editorial. I was wondering why they weren't fixing it this year, though. Portsmouth Herald Editorial: Memorial Bridge repairs cannot wait any longer

Ruby reference

Programming Ruby: The Pragmatic Programmer's Guide

molecular geometry

for chem class. VSEPR stuff.

Tyson recommends

The Poisonwood Bible, a book by Barbara Kingsolver. Well, not exactly recommends: "I didn't like it but I thought you might." Also, as she hands Tim a book, Christine says of herself: "Not only am I an avid reader, I'm also a pusher." In fact, we all left with scifi/fantasy books: for me, Thud! by Terry Pratchett, who I tend to regard as light reading, but enjoyable (if you don't read two of his books in a row).

3 things to make a website

someone offered to make a website for someone else, but required these three things:

  1. who the audience is
  2. what you want to present to them
  3. how you want it to look/be organized

at least, I think that was how it went.

tim bates So I might find it again years from now.

Jen recommends

the movie What's Eating Gilbert Grape.

porting bbedit to intel macs

Pretends at the beginning that this will be terribly difficult and full of stumbling blocks; concludes, "Despite its complex internal workings and equally complex history, the BBEdit port went smoothly." Has bits and pieces about bbedit's "complex internal workings" and history along the way. A Mac Text Editor Migrates to Intel.

cheap liquor comparison

by stuffed bears. Actually, someone needs to do a real one, or I'll be stuck buying Scoresby scotch and Gordon's gin for ever.

kacey recommends

the online comic Achewood. She says to start from the very beginning.

Flickr: Public Computer Crashes

crashed bilboards, ATMs, scrolling banners

art on chairs

flat chairs. I wonder what the art looks like when they are assembled.

exploding soda

I want to do this in the street. soda fountain

of note

yesterday was the fifth anniversary of bec writes. I think this is wonderful! It means I'm persistent and awesome and egotistical enough to talk about myself for five entire years! Also I should not ever ever feel weird saying "I write a little" as long as I don't forget the "a little" part.

note to self (resolution)

Dear Self:

Don't talk about being drunk when you're drunk. People already know. Also, you get super peeved at "Are you drunk? I'm really drunk" exchanges (also: substitute high/"fucked up"/horny/excited for "drunk") when you're less drunk than other people. So remember that when you're more drunk than other people.

I know you can do that: you remember the fucking steam rising from the bar dishwasher and seeing drunk people feel smooth but look rough and also you remember the pen cap in your mouth as you wrote "Remember This" on your hand. Oh, wait. You wrote it down.

Not to enforce regrets or anything.


Tantalum capacitors

For ELE lab. Search results are dominated by industry type sites. The wikipedia has some info in the article entitled Practical Capacitors. Also: an article, a manufacturer's FAQ.

Maine heating

Heating is big around these parts. One of my favorite Maine programs is the volunteer home winterizing thing. This reads like a press release (the bulk of it is "Baldacci's remarks, a primer on state actions thus far, and the text of a letter being sent to Northeast governors") but is good info: Maine Gov Baldacci outlines heating assistance plans.

6. Negotiations with Venezuela/CITGO. Maine will be discussing a purchase of discounted heating oil for low income Maine families with officials from Venezuela.

Every time I hear that Maine/Baldacci is negotiating with Venezuela/Chávez for discounted oil, I imagine a bizzare super-federalized USA out of distopian scifi. (The oil is for low-income families, which moderates my inklings of impending revolution.)


Panel To Judge Maine's Best-Tasting Drinking Water


who I am