Archive for month: May, 2010

NaCl, at 70x

May 29, 2010 | Microscopy | By: Mark VandeWettering

Slides and coverslips are back ordered, so I am still playing with stuff I can front illuminate. For your viewing pleasure, ordinary table salt, magnified 70x.

From my home office: first picture through my microscope

May 25, 2010 | Amateur Radio | By: Mark VandeWettering

As you might have guessed, I’m a “collector”. Not of anything in particular, but of anything that interests me even vaguely. A few years ago, I bought an old Zeiss Jena laboratory microscope at a swap meet for (if memory serves) around $50. It’s a very nice, heavy microscope and included a pair of Zeiss […]

From the code cellar: a program to find haiku in text…

May 25, 2010 | Amateur Radio | By: Mark VandeWettering

While I was surfing around this weekend, I was reminded of the old website (sadly, which is no more, but you can still see courtesy of the Internet Wayback machine if you like) and found an old chunk of code that I had archived that was written by Danny O’Brien based upon an idea […]

Maidenhead Grid, courtesy of geolocation in HTML5

May 24, 2010 | Amateur Radio | By: Mark VandeWettering

If you have a browser that supports the HTML5 geolocation facilities (such as Mobile Safari on the iPhone, or certain recent versions of Firefox) then you can try clicking on the following link to find out your Maidenhead grid square. It may not remain there forever, since it is just hosted on my machine, but […]

Martin Gardner, 1914 – 2010

May 23, 2010 | Math | By: Mark VandeWettering

Today, someone who had a big influence on my life (and whom I’ve never met) passed away: legendary recreational mathematician Martin Gardner. I learned about it from Phil Plait, of the Bad Astronomy blog, courtesy of his twitter feed. Phil writes up his own thoughts here: Martin Gardner, 1914 – 2010 | Bad Astronomy | […]

Musings on Blogging and Social Media

May 22, 2010 | Audioblogs and Podcasting, Blogging | By: Mark VandeWettering

Over the last couple of days, weeks, and even months, I’ve been pondering my participation in various social media: mostly my efforts at blogging and podcasting, but also my participation in things like Facebook and Twitter, as well as the possibility of using things like YouTube. I thought I’d toss out some ideas and ask […]

Converting Microsoft Lifecam Cinema HD Webcam for Telescope Use

May 20, 2010 | Amateur Science, Astronomy | By: Mark VandeWettering

Before computers, my first love-affair with geekiness was an interest in telescopes and astronomy. For the past few years, I’ve slacked off considerably in my telescope making activities, but every once in a while I see something that piques my interest. Gary Honis has a fascinating webpage that details several conversions of digital SLR cameras […]

The WebM Project : Welcome to the WebM Project

May 19, 2010 | Amateur Radio | By: Mark VandeWettering

While I am surfing around, I discovered that Google made good on their promise to release the VP8 codec they obtained from their acquisition of On2 earlier this year as a royalty-free open alternative to other video codecs. This isn’t of much use right now to end users, but hopefully this will result in a […]

Google Font API Test

May 19, 2010 | Amateur Radio | By: Mark VandeWettering

Google has a new API that enables you to easily embed a selection of fonts into web pages. It seems to work! Try googling for “Google Font API” for more information. Or you could merely click this link.

Atlantis + ISS cross the Sun

May 19, 2010 | Astronomy, Space | By: Mark VandeWettering


How to layer/remix videos with free command line tools « The Broadcaster Project

May 18, 2010 | Amateur Radio | By: Mark VandeWettering

I work on video and audio files fairly often using a variety of free tools. FFmpeg is particularly useful for modifying video, and this hints at some of the fun you can have when you combine it with ImageMagick. How to layer/remix videos with free command line tools « The Broadcaster Project.

On G4ILO’s Scratching the SDR itch

May 18, 2010 | Amateur Radio, Rants and Raves | By: Mark VandeWettering

I try to surf a lot of different ham radio blogs, mostly for inspiration about projects. My own life has been a bit hectic lately, and isn’t really likely to calm down until summer is well underway, but I am still reading. Today’s posting was inspired by a posting over on G4ILO’s blog: G4ILO’s Blog: […]

Why I can’t play checkers very well…

May 7, 2010 | Checkers | By: Mark VandeWettering

White is to move. It isn’t that hard to find the move that draws, but in two minutes, I couldn’t work out the move that wins for White. All other moves are dead losses for White. Solving this puzzle requires basic visualization skills which seem beyond my current capabilities. Milhouse of course immediately answers 27-23. […]

The Virtual Choir – Eric Whitacre

May 6, 2010 | Music | By: Mark VandeWettering

In between celebrating the completion of a project at work (and coincidently Cinqo de Mayo) and pondering the mysteries of singular value decomposition, I found this rather interesting Internet collaboration, where the voices of 185 different singers which were recorded separately are combined into a virtual choir. The results are quite beautiful. Not my usual […]

Images of Objects in Orbit

May 2, 2010 | Amateur Satellite, Astronomy, Photography | By: Mark VandeWettering

Ralf Vandebergh has a really interesting web page, where he shows pictures of the ISS and Shuttle missions taken with a 10″ Newtonian telescope. The detail is really amazing. Images of ISS, Space Shuttle and other spaceflight objects by Ralf Vandebergh George Tarsoudis has similar equipment, and produces similarly impressive results: Images of Satellites by […]