You hit me with a cricket bat!
Ha! Twelve years!
Friday, June 20
What with all the people actually selling the new Radeon 4850, AMD decided that there was little point in maintaining the review embargo. And so, disembargoed, reviews are popping up across the web.
It is 800 shaders. That's 1 teraflop, single precision, for $199.*
* And about 200 gigaflops double precision.
Thursday, June 19
Headless Chickens were a 90's New Zealand grunge band that somehow broke the mold and released something brilliant in their second album, Body Blow.
And then retired back into obscurity with the release of their third album, Greedy, which simply sucked.
Actually, listening to Body Blow yet again today, I realised that of the thirteen tracks, two are indifferent remixes, three are outright bad - including the title track - and one has a strong rhythm and an intriguing sound mix but lame* vocals.
With nearly half of the tracks positively missable, how does this album manage to shine?
Well, it starts out with these:
Donde esta la Pollo
The sound quality of those clips isn't great, but it gives you an idea of what they achieved.
The common theme that distinguishes all (but one) of the songs I like and the songs I don't turns out to be Fiona McDonald, who joined the Headless Chickens for that one album. The exception is Gaskrankinstation, which is perfectly suited to the grunge style, and perfectly executed as such.**
* The word has become trite, but it's entirely appropriate here. I refer to Railway Surfing. If you've heard it, you'll agree.
** Even if the music video is a bit naff. And it really does benefit from a good quality recording and a good set of speakers.
Wednesday, June 18
The only thing worse than any given blogging API is any of the other blogging APIs. Somehow, they all manage to be worse than all of the others. You'd think that would be impossible, but not so.
For a start, the Blogger and MetaWeblog APIs are based on XML-RPC, which sucks. The Atom API doesn't use XML-RPC, because it sucks, but does use XML, which sucks, and Atom itself, which sucks.
Why isn't there a JSON blogging API? Whatever the reason, there soon will be.
But I'll support MetaWeblog anyway. Even though it sucks, it sucks in a way that is easy to implement in Python. As long as nothing goes wrong, anyway.
Innova Studio just announced - and I just bought - a copy of InnovaEditor.NET, which also supports Safari (and still supports non-.NET applications like Minx).
So that's you Mac guys sorted out!
$130 for a royalty-free license, and just $50 to upgrade, which is a real bargain given the wealth of features it provides.
Monday, June 16
Looks like modding Xboxes pays pretty well, too.
Or the next best thing.
Item one: The Fusion io ioDrive.
80GB. $2400. 9 watts. 120,000 IOPS. 600MB/second random writes.
If this thing really delivers, it's a silver bullet for mid-scale databases. I want a silver bullet for mid-scale databases.
Item two: The AMD Radeon 4850.
Somewhere between 600 and 1000 GFLOPS. $200.
I say "somewhere between 600 and 1000 GFLOPS", because this card has either 480 or 800 stream processors... And a week from release, no-one is sure which. At least, no-one who's talking. Wikipedia says 800; I'm betting on the lower figure, based on die size and the too-good-to-be-true rule. Even with 480 processors, though, it's one serious kick-ass video card at an amazing price.
* Only topless, because this is a class blog here.
Saturday, June 14
Innova Editor (the editor used by Minx) works in Opera 9.5. It kind of worked in earlier versions, but there were significant glitches. Now it just works.
It does work more the way it works in IE than the way it works in Mozilla, but that may be due to the options I'm setting; I don't know which set of options Opera will pick up.
So my habit of hitting enter twice between paragraphs has to stop, and I have to learn instead to hit Shift-Enter when I want to break a line without a full paragraph break. Hardly the end of the world!
I need to tweak just one thing to enable Innova for comments for Opera users; I'll do that now.
The one minor annoyance (apart from my double-enter habit) is that by default, if you double-click on text in Opera, it brings up a little context menu. That doesn't prevent you using Innova, but it's irritating. You can disable the menu in the Opera preferences: Ctrl-F12; Advanced tab; Toolbars; down the bottom there is an option Double-click text to display context menu; untick that.
On the plus side, Ctrl-i, Ctrl-b, and Ctrl-u work for italics/bold/underline; in Mozilla they bring up bookmarks, bookmarks (yes, both Ctrl-i and Ctrl-b are shortcuts for bookmarks) and the page source repsectively. They can be overridden, but Innova doesn't.
That just leaves Safari as the holdout. I have a proof-of-concept of another editor (SPAW) working with Minx. It has some nice features (tabs, multiple edit boxes with one toolbar) but is designed to work with PHP, which Minx doesn't have. That will come later; for now, we support three out of four of the major browsers, and Mac users can download Firefox.
Friday, June 13
Via Cute Overload: A mama lion with four little cubbages. With sound. And full screen mode.
Live. From Kenya.*
* Not actually Kenya.
Wednesday, June 11
For the much delayed Minx 1.2:
CherryPy 3.1 is in RC1. This tidies up a few issues I've had to work around with 3.0 and adds some nice new features for me.
Innova Editor 3.1 is out. We're currently on 2.9; 3.0 adds a ribbon like the latest Microsoft Word. Not sure what 3.1 brings; I'll have to check. (Update: Mostly bugfixes, but it looks like you can also resize the editor on the fly, which will be neat.)
So now I just need to shove 1.2 out the door. Working on that; I have a 4-day weekend coming up to devote to it.
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