scrap pad


"I Heart Urban Chickens" - hehe


tesseract-ocr - Google Code. open source OCR (optical character recognition). didn't check it out so I dunno if it has a CLI or what. via simon willison.

bright fake wood

nightstand and dresser. wood pattern with bright colors and bold black grain.


a blog called High Scalability very obviously built with Drupal. funny, because scalability is a central topic of conversation when you get big/fancy Drupal developers together (thinking you can build the Next Big Thing with Drupal? --think again). because I wonder if they will talk about Drupal scalability at all. because Drupal itself is a bit of a resource hog, out of the box; the site at least *looks* straight out of the box.



1969, in font

kb, I saved this font for you. it's from Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid (1969 western with Paul Newman and Robert Redford).

kb asks:

"if the pope did web development, would you convert to catholicism?"

where are CA mobile home parks?

California Mobilehome and RV Parks Listings from HCD. for work.


just saw: "voi-la" spelled "wa-la"

from now on

interesting: on twitter, when you start following someone, their old posts aren't added into your timeline.

read aloud

The Economist has an "audio edition" - the entire current issue, read aloud. It's free to subscribers, but essentially a podcast that people will actually pay for.

when putting text on a photo

for a quick and dirty improvement in readability/prettiness, you should put a small shadow around it to make the text edges look crisper. How I do this in Photoshop:

  1. duplicate the text layer
  2. make the text in the new layer black (for black text, I make the shadow one of the colors from the background)
  3. rasterize the new text layer and move it behind the original text layer
  4. do filter > blur > guassian blur. a 1-3 pixel blur should be plenty to make the letter edges sharper.
  5. sometimes I reduce the opacity of the shadow layer.


the second image has a black shadow on the white text and a pinkish shadow on the black text.


Quinn: fancy OS X Tetris. via df.

EL wire

This winter I got some electroluminescent wire for kb's and my bikes. I bought the following stuff (1 setup) from CoolightWest (not the cheapest but had a good tutorial):

Then I put it together with a lighter, like in this tutorial on connecting EL wire.

for the fall

Anton's new record, The Automatic Door, will be out in the US on 125 Records before or around October.

more hosting

evan recommends the hosting at nearly free speech. it is pay-as-you-go.

web hosting

A friend asked for help in setting up a small website for her photography, which involves recommending hosting. I'm thinking Friendlier, A Small Orange, or Bluehost.


personal names around the world (vs. firstname lastname assumption). via simon willison.

hilarious album covers

LP Cover Lover. via kb.

weird positioning

apparently with CSS absolute positioning you can set positions for all four edges of an element. Conflicting Absolute Positions (at ALA).

Moxie weekend

the Moxie festival was this weekend; out here in Sacramento, I heard this radio story on Moxie.


Blackbirds. nursery rhyme:

Sing a song of sixpence a pocket full of rye,
Four and twenty blackbirds baked in a pie.
When the pie was opened the birds began to sing,
Oh wasn't that a dainty dish to set before the king?
The king was in his counting house counting out his money,
The queen was in the parlour eating bread and honey
The maid was in the garden hanging out the clothes,
When down came a blackbird and pecked off her nose!

thing I wish google maps would do

if I type in the address of a store or restaurant, recognize it and give me an info bubble.

things that annoy me

  • when people say, "[good, worthy person] got [some mistreatment], but then [bad, unworthy] person got [better treatment]" and they're not actually asking for these people to get equal treatment, but rather have the "worthy" person receive good treatment and the "unworthy" person receive bad treatment
  • when newspaper people complain that their business is hurting because of the internet. people: grow! evolve!



did not know: ATA and IDE are the same thing. hah, no wonder it's so f-ing hard to find ATA hard drive enclosures. (hard drive interface: AT Attachment (ATA))

blimp story

The horror of blimps. so funny. via defective yeti links.


"we’re effectively providing developers everywhere a way to unlock data from their financial institutions and put that data to work." uh, that sentence doesn't sound like a good thing... (actually I have no basis for an opinion) Wesabe and a REST API for your bank.


I really want to go to Yosemite in September, from the 8th through the 13th or so. The train fare is $82 round trip; the hostel is $15/night; the bus from the hostel into the park is $10 round trip. The National Park Service has a bunch of decent maps available.

fancy point and shoot

the Canon PowerShot G7 is a point and shoot that has a full-manual mode, manual focus and all. via seriouseats. (review at DC Resource.)

PostgreSQL for Mac

PostgreSQL for the Mac. I have some other postgres installed, but I also have a new HD coming, meaning fresh installs of everything. unfortunately, my work server runs php 4ish and mysql 4.1, so no upgrades for me there.

looking for a 2.5" ATA drive enclosure

2.5" ATA drive enclosure, USB 2.0, at OWC (needs this power adapter). $29.95 and $9.95 respectively. Anyone have any better suggestions?

also found: ADAPTEC 2188700 2.5 inch USB 2.0 Hard Drive Enclosure Kit and DataPortable 250 External Hard Drive Enclosure for 2.5" IDE and ATA-6 Drives.


Will It Blend? - iPhone.

camera details

Review: Canon PowerShot SD700 IS. super-thorough review of my camera; taught me some stuff about it.

things from Berkeley

  • my uncle and I biked out to Albany Bulb, where there is a park with driftwood and scrap art. lots of people used to live there, or go there to get stoned and make art. some people still do live there.
  • Sheri S. Tepper - a scifi author who apparently writes lesbian utopian scifi. I am skeptical (based on a retelling of one of her books), but if I read Heinlein there is not much justification for avoiding other scifi authors. books: The Fresco, Six Moon Dance, The Family Tree, Singer from the Sea.
  • Yosemite: apparently it's doable without a car. you can take the train, then the "yart" (Yosemite Area Rapitd Transit). There is a youth hostel called The Bug in Mid Pines, and it has good food.
  • On the BART into SF I saw some writing on a wall: "gothic dolphins! not bombs!"

arctic photos

Corey Arnold Photography Portfolio - some really gorgeous crabbing & arctic photos here. to heck with South America and Southeast Asia, I want to go north. via asofterworld.

today's funny things

dessert chart

awesome: a Taxonomy of Desserts (large size; reading the description only makes it more fascinating). via waxy links.


AJAX is Not a Fucking Programming Language: "examples of mammals include the tiger, the human and the human hand"

more IH db

an article on my work project.

HTML elements in HTML versions

chart of HTML elements in HTML 3.2, 4.01, and 5.0, and XHTML 1.0, 1.1, and 2.0. via.

entity lookup

slick HTML Entity Character Lookup. via.


"SMILE (A Dental Drama)" by Raina Telgemeier

email list tools

Idealware on email tools; Campaign Monitor looks pretty decent.

also, I think Idealware is my new favorite tech nonprofit.


italic poster. (via)

re: "lesbian gangs"

Black lesbian in NYC get 11 years for self-defense. also, nice copyright notice:

Articles copyright 1995-2007 Workers World. Verbatim copying and distribution of this entire article is permitted in any medium without royalty provided this notice is preserved.

talked about

  • danah boyd's Viewing American class divisions through Facebook and MySpace. generated lots of buzz (good.)
  • Is the web killing our culture? the idea that person to person culture is bad: "In the Web 2.0 world, however, the nightmare is not the scarcity, but the over-abundance of authors." Why is the "value" of culture determined by its elitist appeal? Why is creating and consuming culture for small, personal groups of people a bad thing? In my opinion, re-valuing our personal cultural expression is good, and having more people are creating and sharing means that there is plenty of room for all of the "superficial observations of the world around us," "deep analysis," "shrill opinion," and "considered judgment."


huge slug. for my collection. (things I collect photos of: pies, bathroom signs, slugs.)

seamless gsm+wifi cell networking

T-Mobile is offering phones & service that switch between using GSM and wifi for phone service (via). cool but expensive. only works with two specific (new?) phones.

UMA service treats trusted Wi-Fi networks as just more GSM cell transceivers. This requires new handsets that have both Wi-Fi and GSM radios, and which can operate both radios simultaneously to allow a seamless handoff between GSM and Wi-Fi (in either direction), just as cell networks hand off between two transceivers. “This is GSM over Wi-Fi,” said T-Mobile spokesperson Tom Harlin.

(from Wi-Fi Networking News: T-Mobile Takes Cell/Wi-Fi Calling National)


catenary. describing the shape of a hanging line, or powering electric buses or trains. via the silver line in Boston.

"wait wait" on the iPhone

from the last minute of today's "Wait Wait... Don't Tell Me": "the iPhone will be discovered to have a technical flaw that causes users to talk about it rather than into it."


who I am