What are computers good for?

Apparently, not math.

(Repost from yesterday. Where did my content go?)


Are you using any of these as a password? If you are, get a new password. There, now you’ve kept your New Year’s resolution to be more secure. Can’t help you with the learning Mandarin one, though.

Lazy link post

From my open tabs in Flock:

The Hero Factory – an improved costume maker.

Achievement Unlocked – when you only have 1/2 hour to play a game but want to feel like you’re making progress

One way to pay bonuses – “Want your bonus to be worth something? Work for it.”

I had that. And that. And that. And now I have those. – SLYT

It’s been a week – got a few links saved up

If your kids are bored, try showing them Hamster on a Piano, or its companion piece, Cat Flushing the Toilet (via One Good Thing). Unrelated, but also cute, a parrot and a cat (via Jeff B).

Lots of pictures of old computers. Anyone ever have an Altair? compiles the best pictures. Here are some from The Hajj and Eid al-Adha. Via Ann F.

Japan’s trains are awesome. Also AF

Most Likely to Succeed – how can we tell who will perform, and who will not?

What was once the future

A guy in Australia has amassed a giant collection of obsolete computer technology – everything from PDP11s to an Altair to almost modern Macs.

Too many tabs – my annoyance, your gain!

I have too many tabs open, so I’ll share them with you so I can get rid of some:

12-Year-Old’s a Food Critic via Metafilter. Look for him on Top Chef in a few seasons.
Guidelines for Cats via Presurfer. Because there’s not enough funny cat stuff on the Internet.
Sithborg, you want this tshirt (there’s also I’ll kill you with my brain!) via CtrlAltTabby.
Incredibots – more Flash meets physics.
Give a laptop/get a laptop is back. But it’s $399. I’ll have to think about that one.
Will Obama make the greatest sacrifice yet – giving up his BlackBerry?
Google SketchUp, a 3D modeler for Macs and PCs, looks like fun.
I’ve blogged them once, but the Shiba Inu puppies are growing up so you’d better watch them while you can.
On second thought, I think I’ll keep the puppy tab open.


Amazon to sell OLPC XO laptops in November. Awesome. When I can sign up?

Whew. I thought it was just me

A customer trying to download Moviemaker gets frustrated with the Microsoft website and sends a diatribe to the developers:

So I did the download. That part was fast. Then it wanted to do an install. This took 6 minutes and the machine was so slow I couldn’t use it for anything else during this time.

What the heck is going on during those 6 minutes? That is crazy. This is after the download was finished.

Then it told me to reboot my machine. Why should I do that? I reboot every night — why should I reboot at that time?

Think he was listened to? Guess not. Poor Bill Gates. More.

Someone decided to trash the one part of Windows that was usable? The file system is no longer usable. The registry is not usable. This program listing was one sane place but now it is all crapped up.

At one point he tries to enter his personal information and keeps getting rejected. I suspect because the system was built to assume that Bill Gates himself wouldn’t be using it and dismissed his info as a prank.

OK, this was written 5 years ago, but it’s not like Windows has improved greatly since (all those “upgrades” from Vista to XP).

“There’s not a day that I don’t send a piece of e-mail … like that piece of e-mail. That’s my job.” And we all wish these e-mails had been a little more effective. Good bye, Bill, and good luck with saving the world, one desktop at a time.


40 tips for confusing me

I’m taking a beginning PHP class through MLS and I’m learning a lot. But not nearly enough to being to understand these 40 tips for optimizing your php code.

echo is faster than print. There’s a print?

It’s better to use select statements than multi if, else if, statements. Good to know.

A function call with one parameter and an empty function body takes about the same time as doing 7-8 $localvar++ operations. A similar method call is of course about 15 $localvar++ operations. Of course it does.

See if you can use strncasecmp, strpbrk and stripos instead of regex. I’ll see.. wait, I have no idea.

Is this stuff they teach in in intermediate PHP?

Not the most successful speech

In a speech at a recent conference, Steve Ballmer learns that Microsoft isn’t exactly a fan-supported company:

“How many of you use Live Search as your default?” Ballmer asked.

A smattering of hands went up. Tepid applause.

“How many of you use Yahoo search as your default?”

Far fewer hands went up and the room was relative [sic] quiet, until it filled with laughter.

[From Tech Tracks | Microsoft’s Ballmer gives unvarnished take on Windows, online businesses | Seattle Times Newspaper Blog]

What are the techies using? Google, duh. If nothing else, this illustrates the great importance of knowing one’s audience.

From J-Walk