Archive for month: May, 2004

Tinkering with Toys

May 26, 2004 | Games and Diversions, Science | By: Mark VandeWettering

I recall seeing the plans for a simple walking, balancing robot constructed out of TinkerToys, and while surfing around aimlessly I ran accross it again. I thought I’d go ahead and archive the paper which described it just for fun. It seems like the kind of toy you should just go ahead and build so […]

BXFlyer Four Rotor Helicopter

May 26, 2004 | Toys and Gadgets | By: Mark VandeWettering

A couple of days ago I was talking about small robotic flyers, I should have known that somebody at the Seattle Robotics Society would already have done something like this. Check out BXFlyer Four Rotor Helicopter for a description of a four rotor robotic flyer similar to the commercially available DragonFlyer. Addendum: I found a […]

How To Build Your Own Blog

May 25, 2004 | Rants and Raves, Web Programming | By: Mark VandeWettering

The title is a bit of a fraud. This is not so much an article on how to build your own weblog as a short bit about what I think is important in building a weblogging system, what is not important and how to drive most directly toward a system that is simple, flexible and […]

What’s the lesson of The Swan?

May 24, 2004 | Rants and Raves | By: Mark VandeWettering

Allright, I admit it. I watch lots of crap “reality” television shows. None do I find more disturbing than The Swan.

Moneyball, by Michael Lewis

May 23, 2004 | Baseball, Books I Read | By: Mark VandeWettering

I received an interesting phone call from my friend Phil last week. I hadn’t heard much from Phil, but he called me in the middle of a ferry ride to San Francisco to tell me that he was reading a book called Moneyball by Michael Lewis, and that he was sure that I’d enjoy it. […]

On the strike zone…

May 23, 2004 | Baseball | By: Mark VandeWettering

This morning I was catching up on Baseball tonight to see what went on with baseball yesterday. I mostly wanted to see what happened yesterday when Reggie Jackson’s number 9 was retired over in Oakland before the Athletics-Royals matchup, but in skipping through it, I caught an editorial by Rob Dibble on the state of […]

Lair of the Chrome Cow

May 23, 2004 | Link of the Day, Science | By: Mark VandeWettering

For some reason I found myself looking for plans for cheap 3D scanners at 1:15AM this morning, and came up with the Lair of the Chrome Cow. Surprisingly, I remember this site being mentioned on an old slashdot posting, but I guess I didn’t look. It’s got some nifty ideas. I’ll have to think about […]

A Paper on Small RC Vehicles

May 22, 2004 | Science | By: Mark VandeWettering

I’m always interested in bizarre remote control applications, so I was pleased to find this informative paper on the development of the Black Widow Micro Air Vehicle, an RC vehicle with a 6″ wingspan, a range of 1.8 kilometers and a live video transmitter. Nifty and informative.

Spiral Fresnel Reflectors

May 22, 2004 | Science | By: Mark VandeWettering

A recent Slashdot article was a rather dull one about fun things you could do with a large Fresnel lenses. I had seen stuff like this before, but in scanning over the responses as I often do, I found a reference to a patent for a spiral Fresnel reflector. You can review this the patent […]

Shrek 2

May 22, 2004 | Movie Review | By: Mark VandeWettering

It’s rare that a sequel film surpasses a good original film, but I must say: Shrek 2 must be judged as one of those rare films. It builds on everything that was good about the original: the look, the story, and the vocal talent and delivers a new movie which is familar but not predictable […]

Software Update

May 22, 2004 | My Projects | By: Mark VandeWettering

I’ve upgraded this blog to use the latest release of WordPress. It’s unfortunate that the software mingles functionality and appearance in the way that it does, it makes upgrading more painful than it should be. In particular I had to make some changes to the index.php to rearrange the appearance of the menu portion to […] Overhaulin’

May 21, 2004 | Rants and Raves, Stupidity | By: Mark VandeWettering

Sweet Manatee of Santa Fe. Apparently if you post an article about a TV show on your blog, you become their official voice on the Web. Read the comments below the main posting. If you really do want to get on the show, a simple Google search will turn find you how, admittedly below the […]

Andy Tanenbaum on ‘Who Wrote Linux’

May 20, 2004 | Fear, Uncertainty and Doubt, Operating Systems, Rants and Raves | By: Mark VandeWettering

It’s fascinating the degree to which Microsoft/SCO backed front companies are trying to create FUD around the use and authorship of the Linux operating system. In a Slashdot article today, they link to an article by Andy Tanenabaum about Ken Brown’s claims that Linux Torvards is not the author of Linux. Brown’s argument seems to […]

Modal Web Server Example Part 1

May 19, 2004 | Web Programming | By: Mark VandeWettering

I thought that this article, Modal Web Server Example Part 1, had some interesting ideas. I think that many existing web applications are hampered by the fact they are implemented in rather crufty and adhoc languages. The author of this seems a bit more disciplined. Some interesting ideas, and an excuse to look at Seaside, […]

MSNBC – Can Star Wars: Episode III be saved?

May 19, 2004 | Movie Review, Rants and Raves | By: Mark VandeWettering

Today someone on our local message board posted a link to MSNBC – Can Star Wars: Episode III be saved?, a story that suggested that if one could fire George Lucas, Hayden Christensen, Natalie Portman and put in more Christopher Lee, you could hire some real writers and salvage the entire script. Not a bad […]