07 December 2006

More T-Shirts

Ooh, in follow up to the T-shirt post (like as if there wasn't enough of them there)



Jesus Says

with it's excellent message:

Don't Be A Dick

both seem like the sort of mature image I want to give.

04 December 2006

What I Need Is A Fireman And His Axe...

So I was thinking about posting about films (like The Prestige and the new 007 film) or my recent XForms Mah Jong scorer (which I will post soon). But it took me being prevented from going into my flat for me to post.

For people who don't know my flat. It's on the first floor (British style, second floor for the Americans) but using the mystic power of bridges it is entered from the street after going over a brief path (which is really suspended above ground). To stop you looking at a 10 foot drop every time you pass by there is a sort of garden fence on the exposed side. Anyway that collapsed in the heavy wind that was blowing yesterday. This morning it was a little difficult to get out of the flat but then the fence collapsed again leaving me unable to open the door into the path that leads to my flat. So I'm stuck, I can't get into my flat. My landlord is going around in the near future but if he doesn't get anywhere I might call the fire brigade and see if they can't take a ram or axe to that door to let me back in again.

24 November 2006


I've been asked to write about some T-shirts I want for Christmas. I thought why not make a blog post about it to show the world what cool T-shirts are out there. Lets start with one T-shirt I found in the UK:

Game Over

It's not the best but it's ok.

Moving on to some VGCats (and more) T-Shirts from ZeStuff.

There's Zombie Food which I only like the original of:

Zombie Food

but is is quickly running out of stock... presumably others know of the impending zombie apocalypse. However much better is one of my favourite T-shirts which is:

Silly T-Shirt

It is silly and fantastic at the same time!

Anyway a few from ThinkGeek:


An indifferent T-shirt.

Keep Out Of Sunlight

A instructive T-shirt.

Obay Gravity

A physics T-shirt.




RPG. Because it's super-cool in a Final Fantasy geek way.

Health Bar

Finally who doesn't need a health bar. I especially like the fact that it suggests you have virtually no life.

Sorry to bore you all with a Christmas shopping list (honest people asked for it). The images are all links to the products as well, not just as a hint but also because I think it is fair on the supplier.

20 October 2006

Have You Used An Interrobang‽

I read Eats, Shoots and Leaves ages back and mentioned in that was the interrobang punctuation designed for use as an exclaimed question. I was surprised (in a geeky delighted way) to discover that the Unicode character ‽ does just that. I rarely use the exclamation mark anyway and I'd never consider using !? (except as an example to the fact that I'd never consider it). But doesn't a combined character have so many possibilities‽

05 October 2006

Thoughts On Blogger and HTML Standards

I've been using Blogger for a while now. I liked the Beta upgrade (so much in fact that I moved my last non-blogger blog here). However trying to hand-roll the HTML seemed to become more of a pain because, even though I removed auto paragraph breaks and added in my own paragraphs, it seemed to have incorrect spacing. So I stopped doing this and let blogger deal with it. The thing is blogger uses <br/> to space things. You can't create headings you can just pretend by increasing your font size. Even clicking the bold button actually just does a span with style information on. To a non-CSS browser (lynx say) this means the bold text doesn't mean anything. It seems to have removed all semantic mark-up and that, quite frankly, bothers me.

We can do all sorts of clever things with CSS but we can't do that if there is nothing to work with (in terms of elements and classes). Want a print version with a TOC, suddenly more difficult when you can't find out what things are headings. It seems such a shame. Hopefully it will improve in future versions, though I'm very confused why they don't use <em> and <strong>. I'm sure someone might be upset if it didn't render bold correctly if they changed their stylesheet, but then again they changed their stylesheet... so they can just go ahead and change it back.

26 September 2006

Google In The Courts

My master, Google, were in the courts again over the indexing of multiple Belgium newspapers. The newspapers in question stated that Google was in breach of their copyright. They demanded that Google remove all their content from Google's sites. I find this crazy. Effectively they don't want to be indexed (or at least any content listed if they are indexed) hence reducing traffic to their site. Google News provides a summary of the indexed site, it's not the full article. Therefore when I'm interested in a subject (or even just see a headline that interests me) I'll click on the link to show more providing the site with traffic it otherwise never would have had.

Google makes a good point in the post that:

Of course, if publishers don’t want their websites to appear in search results (most do) the robots.txt standard (something that webmasters understand) enables them to prevent automatically the indexing of their content.

I have to agree that a mechanism is provided to stop people indexing your site and it is up to your web master to control that. Of course they aren't asking for people to stop indexing their site. They still want the traffic but at the same time they don't want any snippet to show up in the results (I've rarely clicked on a result that has no associate text with it; I use that snippet to give me an idea that it is a page I'm interested in). They can easily have their way, they just aren't prepared to take that step. The fact that the court agrees with them is somewhat worrying as it sets president for this sort of action happening again.

20 September 2006

Google Talk and XMPP

I've been using Google Talk for a while. I like it, it has a simple clean interface and seems lightweight enough to do everything I'd like it to do (though I haven't got into trying voice conversations over it yet or anything). They are using the Jabber/XMPP standard which I like since I've long believed that having a common standard (like email) is much easier than having friends on lots of different networks. They recently upgraded to a new version. It has a few new features that I haven't really tried yet but one I was using, that shows your currently playing track, was bugging a friend. The reason it was bugging him was that every time the track changed it showed him the new track in his chat window.

The only reason it was doing that was because Google were using the status message to update this information. Given there is a draft standard to show user tunes in XMPP then it seems a shame they aren't using this. Since their core market are probably Google Talk to Google Talk users both clients would probably understand this. Other clients that did understand this would display the information however they liked (hell if someone was using a client that was some sort of music library it could start playing the same track). Other clients that didn't understand it would merely ignore it with the result of the person's status remaining the same (available, busy or whatever) and without bombarding people with the track information. Seems a real shame they didn't take advantage of this, after all I'd expect most of the work was doing writing the scripting with the music players it supports; it wouldn't have been much work to write this into a different area than the status.

13 September 2006

Digital Content

I've been moving, ever so slowly, more and more to digital content. I'm, I guess like a lot of geeks, a hoarder. So even if I'll never read that book again, if I thought that CD I bought in 1996 was crap or, that that game I bought 6 years ago won't even run on my machines even if I wanted to play it I'll still keep hold of them. I've got my DVD collection on a bookcase and my CD collection of some large racks. It's a bizarre thing for me, therefore, to see this media as worthless and switch to an entirely digital platform. The tangible form of a CD has long been lost to me in favour of the ease of use of a digital library and the ability to quickly make playlists and access all of my library. However I know that, if I need to, I can go back to that original and get another copy of it.

I realised, though, that it was the ability to get a copy from the original format that bothered me it was more a sense of ownership of the item. iTunes, with it's DRM one download file, doesn't give me a sense of ownership. All I have is a stream of data that, if all copies of that are lost, can just as easily be destroyed as can be bought. Steam doesn't bother me in the same way at all (at least now it doesn't); the fact that once bought, the product is mine, free to be downloaded again to a new machine in the event the first is destroyed. I don't need to worry about losing the disc (though, I guess, I do need to worry about the company going under). It's not the data that is mine it is the product and that feels so much more tangible.

All this witter is really about the new iTunes Store Movies (though I doubt that they are available in the UK anyway. As they are much larger than music it is far more likely that I'd want to free up the space they take up and re-download them later. I need ownership of that product, not the series of 1s and 0s that make up a transient copy of it that I have.

Am I alone in my desire for a sense of ownership over a product?

11 September 2006


After reading Endie's post about LibraryThing how could I help but set up an account myself. I've not really had time to add my collection yet and, unlike most other things that I obsessively collect, I tend to give books away. Now I almost feel sorry that I've done that. Think of that cataloging I've missed out on! I already also log my DVD collection in IMDB; I'm still looking for a way to do it for my computer games. 1Up's method just didn't work for me. I'd like to use MobyGames since I consider it the IMDB of the games world but it isn't supported yet.

Anyway since my weekend was pretty much spent dancing and playing computer games then not much else to report here.

31 August 2006

Yet Another Blog!

There is nothing like having an army of blogs. I've even linked to the feeds of my other ones (cross linking goodness). Anyway this is a blog about my personal life. You might know me and maybe that's why you are interested in what I get up to. Maybe you're a complete stranger but like knowing what other people around the world get up to. Who am I to judge? Of course much of my life is involved in my hobbies and therefore those blogs might see more posts. Work is of no interest to anyone I expect and I'm probably not allowed to talk about it anyway so you won't read anything about that either. That pretty much leaves random witter about other stuff like err... stuff.

There might be some friend's only posts on this blog since there are often things I don't want to share with the whole world. Then again it's likely that such things I'd not tell all my friends either so I might not post it at all. This is basically me replacing my Livejournal Blog. I'll stop posting on that but I won't migrate across. Plus I have friends that I do still read the blogs of over there.