Archive for month: November, 2010

Mark’s Bookshelf: Digital Dice by Paul Nahin

November 23, 2010 | Mark's Bookshelf, Math | By: Mark VandeWettering

Many people use computers to exchange email or pictures, to shop, or even to program for a living. I do all that kind of stuff, but one of the most pleasurable things I do with computers is to use them to answer questions or to gain insight into problems which are too difficult for pen-and-paper […]

The Wobbulator

November 21, 2010 | Link of the Day | By: Mark VandeWettering

The Wobbulator is a pretty nifty little video modification gadget. Basically, the idea is that by adding a couple of extra magnetic yokes at odd angles to the conventional yokes on a black and white display tube and driving them with a frequency synthesizer, you can create all kinds of amazing patterns. The results are […]

Crazy Project Idea: Playing with RTL Logic

November 16, 2010 | My Projects | By: Mark VandeWettering

I’m kind of on a retro computing kick for the last few weeks. I suppose it is mostly because I picked up an FPGA board to experiment with, and I have been reading old books on computer architectures, looking for old fun machines that were simple enough to implement in VHDL/Verilog. This brought me back […]

Mark’s Bookshelf: The Practice of Programming

November 12, 2010 | Mark's Bookshelf | By: Mark VandeWettering

Today, the hash function has selected The Practice of Programming by Brian Kernighan and Rob Pike. On my shelf you’ll probably find a couple dozen reference books that are written about various programming languages. This book is one of a smaller handful that literally talks about programming: how to write clear, general, reliable programs that […]

Mark’s Bookshelf: Mathematical Recreations by Maurice Kraitchik

November 11, 2010 | Mark's Bookshelf | By: Mark VandeWettering

Today’s book is Mathematical Recreations by Maurice Kraitchik. As might be evident to long time readers of my blog, I have a lasting interest in what might be called “recreational mathematics”. This is a particularly challenging thing to define, since so much of what we might consider recreational mathematics unveils deep and mysterious things within […]

VGA Signal Timing

November 10, 2010 | electronics | By: Mark VandeWettering

I wanted some information on VGA signal timing. A few minutes of googling turned up this information. Bookmarked for future reference. VGA Signal Timing

Contrail Science Overflow

November 10, 2010 | Bad Science, Science | By: Mark VandeWettering

The intertubes are all a-twitter (is Twitter a-twitter?) with the video of what appeared to be a missile launch off the coast of Los Angeles yesterday. It did look pretty weird, but the evidence is mounting that this was not any kind of missile launch, but in fact just the contrails of flight AWE808 from […]

Mark’s Bookshelf: Build It Yourself! PVC Rocket Engine

November 9, 2010 | Mark's Bookshelf | By: Mark VandeWettering

For whatever reason, I have been finding it difficult to find time to blog. Perhaps it is a combination of increased amount of travel, work, or just the shorter daylight hours, but I’m finding it hard to find the muse. So, for the next little while, I thought I’d scan through my bookshelf and find […]

Do Americans Eat 3,790 Calories Per Day?

November 4, 2010 | Dieting | By: Mark VandeWettering

A couple of times in the last few months, I’ve seen this very odd statistic that the average American consumes 3790 calories per day. This is usually used in conjunction with some argument about why Americans are overall so obese. For instance, here is one such thing from Do Americans Eat 3,790 Calories Per […]

Congratulations to the 2010 World Series Champion San Francisco Giants

November 2, 2010 | Baseball | By: Mark VandeWettering

Okay, I’m really more of an Oakland fan, but ultimately I’m a baseball fan, and the Giants provided one of the most compelling post-season runs in recent memory. Narrowly winning the pennant on the last day of the season, avoiding a potential three-way tiebreaker. Agonizing, one inning games in round one against Atlanta. A great […]

The BPSK1000 Telemetry Modem for ARISSat-1

November 2, 2010 | Amateur Radio, Amateur Satellite | By: Mark VandeWettering

The legendary Phil Karn, KA9Q is apparently the brains behind the digital telemetry modem that will be used aboard the ARISSat-1, a satellite designed to be tossed off the ISS sometime next year. From his paper: ARISSat-1 will carry a new telemetry modulation and coding scheme, BPSK1000, designed to handle the severe fading often encountered […]

Somewhere… over the (simulated) rainbow revisited…

November 1, 2010 | Amateur Science, Computer Graphics, Math, My Projects | By: Mark VandeWettering

A couple of months ago, I did some simple simulations of light refracting through raindrops in a hope to understand the details of precisely how rainbows form. The graphs I produced were kind of boring, but they did illustrate a few interesting features of rainbows: namely, the double rainbow, and the formation of Alexander’s band, […]

Mantis 9.1 CNC Mill – Make Your Bot!

November 1, 2010 | Link of the Day | By: Mark VandeWettering

A very nice looking little CNC mill that looks like it would be very nice for milling pc boards and the like, and costs $100 to make. I’ll have to look at this carefully in the future. Mantis 9.1 CNC Mill – Make Your Bot!. httpv://