Friday, April 15, 2005

Actually, its 101 books

The list I put up on my site yesterday is actually 101 books to read. One of the lads pointed it out to me when I was talking about it with him. Bearing this in mind, there's one more book I noticed shouldn't be on the list (because of the reason I gave for not wanting to read Anne Frank's Diary...). It's Captain Corelli's Mandolin. I'm not going to read it.

In the news the other day was an item about the IMRO (Irish Music Rights Organisation), the Irish equivalent of the RIAA. They're part of a legal action prosecuting 973 file sharers around the world. 17 of these people are from Ireland. They're sharing files on some p2p network or other. Are the people at IMRO completely stupid? Or are they trying to hit consumers where they've been hitting them for the past number of decades? In the pocket...

Instead of taking legal action against filesharers, these companies should be bucking the trend. It costs around €25 to purchase a single CD of music here in Ireland. A rip-off by anyone's standards. So, to combat the downturn (if any) in sales, music organisations prosecute individuals for sharing files, not lower prices, or display ingenuity, or talent...

Makes me sick.

Wednesday, April 13, 2005

100 books you should read before you die, riiight...

Yesterday I was reading The University Record. It's one of the student newspapers in college. They've published a list of 100 books you should read before you die. You can get the list here [plaintext, approx 4kb].

It's not immediately obvious who wrote the list, or why exactly one should read these books. Having looked at the list myself, there are only three books I have deemed unreadable in my eyes. The other 97 are countable on my reading list. (Oh, I've read 10 of these, so the 'to read' count is currently only 87).

The three books I've deemed unreadable are:

  1. Anne Frank's Diary - Anne Frank [Reason: Too much 'lets re-live WW2' going on]

  2. Midnight's Children - Salman Rushdie [Reason: I just don't like Salman Rushdie]

  3. Wuthering Heights - Emily Bronte [Reason: Don't get me started on this...]

Besides all this, good on the record for being such a coherently published newsrag.

Tuesday, April 12, 2005

If you haven't seen this yet...

then check it out. It's seriously cool, although I'm afraid I'll never quite understand why MIT students call studying 'tooling'.

NASA World Wind & other cool software

So today in our HCI tutorial (Human Computer Interaction) we were doing some stuff... as we generally do in tutorials. The lecturer had left her 17" apple laptop (lucky!) plugged into the projector & her screensaver kicked in. It was a pretty cool demo of software that tracks a number of sattelite networks and tells you where they're pointed at and what they're looking at or doing. Among them I noticed NOAA & GPS sats. The view rotated around the earth every couple of seconds but it was truly impressive.

I was talking with Richie about it & I asked him if he had seen NASA's World Wind project. He had, we talked about how impressive it is & we both wanna download it. I thought it was a gig or so to download but it turns out that the requirements are 2gigs of HD space (to store the data) & the actual download is only ~170mb. sucky thing is though, .NET runtime & DirectX are required also. For an opensource application it's not really endearing itself to the opensource community with those requirements.

missed going to the gym today & yesterday. heading there tomorrow. also was talking to cha, watch this space for bortTV! that's all I can say for now though...

oh yeah, before I forget

today started out utterly beautiful. sun was shining and all that. then the weather came along & decided to spoil things. got a little sunny in the evening time too.

btw, check this text generator out. it's a fairly decent replacement for Lorem Ipsum

Got it from a post on BoingBoing

buildtools, debugging & general java messyness

so today in our Software Engineering lab we were playing around with Ant, a java buildtool. Setting up the environment variables was tricky (but nothing that couldn't be sorted fairly easily after a couple of abortive attempts...) and the coding of the build.xml file was straightforward enough, javadoc'ing through ant is a PITA though. no matter what I tried, ant kept giving me some cr*p about Packages & Source files being either missing or unspecified. Since we've got to build our final project for the year using Ant I reckon I'll try to get javadoc working before the end of the week. Also need to start learning the basics of gui building using java. I spose I should also start learning to debug with eclipse.

Two questions. Why did they decide to teach us Java? (As opposed to C++, Python etc...) Also, why didn't I do Computer Applications in DCU instead of ICT (which only gets me a B.A. Mod, not a B.Sc.!!!) in Trinity.

They'll probably never be answered though. So feckit.

The Java MMU simulator is due on friday. PHUN! Going to hopefully get most of that done tomorrow. I get the feeling it may be another PITA though.

Been proofreading some more LinuxNetMag articles. Took a look at their site stats. An average of 55,000 visitors a month! Fairly impressive.

24 getting really good. SkyOne just showed hour 0600 - 0700. Gonna be real good.

Still looking for work placement this summer too...

Sunday, April 10, 2005

shuffle still behaving oddly

but, fortunately it seems to have started to charge. leaving it plugged in as a removable disk seems to let it charge ok. picked up a USB 2.0 hub. now i'll be able to have my memory stick, my webcam, my palm, my wireless usb connector & a free port all hanging outa my computer!

went into the 'official' apple dealer in dublin yesterday...the guy I was talking to obviously had no clue about the shuffle. when I asked him about a dock for the shuffle he looked at me blankly for a moment and then replied that "there was no such thing"... also when asked about a charger he said there was none (which is true) but he failed to mention the fact that apple sells a battery pack for the shuffle. this is what wrecks my head about people working in computer related stores that have no clue about computers, they can't sell anything worth sh**.

from this moment on, I refuse to buy anything from anyone who doesn't know about their products. and yes, that means no more fruit or vegetables unless the individual in the shop knows where they came from & when they're in season. (not)
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