Interesting Links 1.8.08

  • The ethics of “stealing” a WiFi connection – Amazingly, accessing an unsecured, wide-open WiFi network without permission is illegal in some places, and not just in the UK.
  • MacHeist » Bundle – 10 Mac apps for 1 “insanely” low price.
  • Twitter Stats -Being the automation weenie that I am, I eventually hacked together a perl script that did everything except paste the data into Numbers.
  • Twittertale -You kiss your momma with that mouth?
  • Pub Crawl | Three Sheets – Zane Lamprey is bar hopping… MOJO style and now you can trace his every step for an amazing all access pass to the best pubs in New York City.
  • Keybr.com – online web application that measures your typing speed and accuracy.

Pretty tame collection of links this time. First off, if you own a Mac (like perhaps one you just received for Christmas), then you will definitely want to check out the MacHeist. They offer some pretty nice applications at a heavily discounted price. I am going to NYC end of February, and I am really hoping to do a mini version of the Three Sheets NYC pub crawl linked above. I think we’re going to hit #2, 3, 4, 5, and 6 (look on the map when you follow the link).
The ethics of “stealing” wifi is of particular interest to me. They sum up the argument pretty well with this quote:

Using an open WiFi network is no more “stealing” than is listening to the radio or watching TV using the old rabbit ears. If the WiFi waves come to you and can be accessed without hacking, there should be no question that such access is legal and morally OK. If your neighbor runs his sprinkler and accidentally waters your yard, do you owe him money? Have you done something wrong? Have you ripped off the water company? Of course not. So why is it that when it comes to WiFi, people start talking about theft?

I feel that this is a fairly legitimate argument. Although this argument does not hold up when you consider that certain uses of an internet connection can result in degraded performance for other users trying to utilize the same connection. For example, bittorrent is notorious for over saturating a connection if you are downloading multiple files at the same time. In this instance not only are you using someone else’s wifi connection, but you are degrading the quality of their experience. In my opinion, this particular scenario would show that “stealing” a wifi connection can be consider ethically wrong (legality aside).

Interesting Links 12.30.07

It’s been another busy 2 weeks or two, but I’ve managed to find some interesting links to share. The link I’ll talk about is the “snorting a brain chemical” link … this sounds very very interesting, but I am sure it will turn out that some horrible side effects will show up as a result of not sleeping. It’s pretty widely accepted that we sleep for a very good reason. That reason might be memory consolidation or some type of brain repair (or countless other suggested ideas), but the underlying point is that it’s important. Either way, as they mentioned in the article, this won’t be available for humans for at least another 10 years anyways.

Interesting Links 12.9.07

  • My DebugBar for Internet Explorer – If you’ve ever tried Firebug for Firefox you’ll like this. It’s like Firebug-lite for Internet Explorer.
  • http://www.zml.com/ -Download movies -Semi-legal. Movies are playable on various devices including iPod, PDA (HandHelds), PC, DVD & DivX players. Lowest prices on the web ever. $1.99 each, no DRM.
  • Leopard Tweaking – Terminal Codes: All kinds of little tweaks (using the terminal) for Leopard.
  • Head First Labs -Learning isn’t something that just happens to you. It’s something you do. You can’t learn without pumping some neurons.
  • URI vs. URL: What’s the Difference? – What is the difference between a URL and URI and why does it matter? This topic is confusing to some (myself included) and I thought I’d share my understanding of the two concepts.
  • Fix Your Home and End Keys on your Mac with KeyFixer -The default behavior for the Home and End keys on the Mac can be very annoying—particularly for Windows-to-Mac switchers.
  • 24 ways – 24 days of updates…web design tweaks/hacks/cool stuff. Web design nerds love this site each year!
  • A Preview of HTML 5 – Work on HTML 5, which commenced in 2004, is currently being carried out in a joint effort between the W3C HTML WG and the WHATWG.
  • HTML vs. XHTML – WHATWG Wiki -Although HTML and XHTML appear to have similarities in their syntax, they are significantly different in many ways.
  • Rattlebox–  e-cards that don’t suck. ‘nough said.
  • CSS-Tricks – CSS-Tricks is a home for examples, tutorials, tips, tricks, and news regarding Cascading Style Sheets. Topics sometimes go beyond CSS to include larger web design issues and other languages like Javascript, PHP, and perhaps a little Ruby

Yeah, it’s been a very long time (nearly a month) since I last posted a non-automated-Twitter update. School has been insanely busy, work has been insanely busy, and…well, I like sleep so I picked sleep over updating my blog. I don’t explain all of the links because most are pretty self explanatory, but a few are worth mentioning. ZML.com is a semi-legal way to download movies without any DRM, but it won’t probably won’t be around for all that long considering it’s sort of in a “grey area”. The HTML 5 article and the HTML vs XHTML articles really make my little nerdy brain so giddy. I can’t really explain why, but I am really excited for HTML 5 and XHTML 2. Expect updates more often now that this semester of school is essentially over with.

Interesting Links 11.10.07

  • To WWW or not and how to redirect your blog – WWW can make all the difference in the eyes of Google
  • Top Firefox 2 config tweaks – Beyond the extensive options available in its menus and dialogs, there’s a lengthy set of advanced Firefox preferences that can customize the browser to your specific needs.
  • APML: The Next Big Thing or the Next FOAF – The concept of APML is that it allows you to share your “attention profile” data with other users, organisations or programs in the same way you might share your OPML file with someone.
  • Source of ‘optimism’ found in the brain – The act of imagining a positive future event – such as winning an award or receiving a large sum of cash – activates two brain areas known as the amygdala and the rostral anterior cingulated cortex (rACC).
  • Explaining semantic mark-up – One problem is that some people don’t understand the difference it makes, so therefore let me humbly make an attempt to explain why semantics is important.
  • POSH – Plain Old Semantic HTML – POSH, in case you haven’t heard of it already, is short for “Plain Old Semantic HTML”, and is obviously much quicker and easier to say than “valid, semantic, accessible, well-structured HTML”.
  • YouGetSignal.com – Open Ports Tool: The port forwarding tester is a utility used to identify your external IP address and detect open ports on your connection.
  • 25 Photographs Taken at the Exact Right Time – Timing is everything, particularly in the case of amazing photography. Sometimes that means waiting through a whole sports game and getting lucky to catch just the right shot.
  • USB Ubuntu 7.10 Gutsy Gibbon install – This tutorial enables you to install, boot and run Ubuntu 7.10 (Gutsy Gibbon) from USB.
  • Top 100 Mac Apps – I’ve compiled a list of my top 100 Mac apps for your perusal, since so many people have been asking for it.

Sorry, too many links and too little time to talk about all of these individually. I’ve amassed this list over the past 2 weeks. Enjoy.

Features for Windows Seven

Click here to view the Windows Seven Early Feedback Feature list **Warning – massive image**
This is a list of features the Beta team recommended to be incorporated into future versions of the Windows operating systems.
A few notable features from the list:

  • Tabbed explorer
  • Live recovery DVD
  • Vector based GUI
  • Boot from EFI
  • Windows ‘Gaming’ Mode
  • Family license
  • Open-Up UXTheme.dll allowing users to apply their own Visual Styles to Windows
  • Patch operating system without having to reboot

Don’t ask where I found the list. I’d be thrilled with Windows Seven if they actually included 1/3 of

Quick Note: Sorry for Any Hassle

Just a very quick note regarding some updates/changes on the website. I’ve activated a few new counter spam measures due to the recent influx of comment spam that I have been seeing. First off, I’ve been using Askimet for a while now with pretty decent success, but it’s time to step up the protection. Next on the list is a new solution (to this blog at least) called Bad Behavior. Viewers shouldn’t see any kind of detrimental impact due to this particular plugin as it only blocks spam bots from accessing the site. If you are blocked for some reason (not that you’d even be able to read this post) please drop me an email. The final line of defense is reCAPTCHA. You’ll notice a red box when you try to leave a comment. This system works like the traditional CAPTCHA check in that you will need to enter the words that are randomly display to verify that you’re human. The twist comes from what happens with those words that you enter: they are fed back to the Internet Archive to increase the accuracy of there OCR processing. Pretty cool huh? I could have used a standard CAPTCHA, but I thought I’d try and help out in small part to a great cause (the Internet Archive project). In summary, I apologize for any inconvenience that these new systems might cause, but it was time to hopefully deal with those heartless, spineless, degenerate bastards (AKA spammers) once and for all.

Interesting Links 10.19.07

  • A beautiful mind – Schizophrenia is potentially a very creative tool which, as yet, has not been understood or recognised and is mistreated and so its powerful symptoms manifest as confusion and destruction.
  • Schizophrenics gain by practice, not meds – A U.S. study suggested cognitive gains in schizophrenic patients treated with newer antipsychotic medications are due to practice effects, not the drugs.
  • How schizophrenia develops: Major clues discovered – Schizophrenia may occur, in part, because of a problem in an intermittent on/off switch for a gene involved in making a key chemical messenger in the brain, scientists have found in a study of human brain tissue.
  • Brain cell growth diminishes long before old age strikes – While other research groups have made similar observations in the brains of rodents, this is the first time the decrease in new cell growth, known as neurogenesis, has been noted in a primate, the biological order that also includes apes and humans.
  • Light shone within brains of mice reveals secrets of sleep-wake cycle – By flickering a special light inside the brains of sleeping mice to wake them up, Stanford researchers have shown that they can induce behavior in a living mammal by directly controlling specific neural cells.

It’s been a crazy week between papers, quizzes, work, running 5 sessions of my independent research…Needless to say, I haven’t had an opportunity to post any of the links before now. The first group is entirely psych related links (mostly Schizophrenia), and it’s very interesting stuff that is worth the read. The article that I thought was particularly interesting/sad was the one regarding individuals with Schizophrenia showing progress based on practice effects, not the wonderful meds everyone thought were so effective. That would really suck if that’s true (which it seems like it probably is).

  • 250+ Tools and Resources For Coding the Web – We’re all living on the web, and we all seem to be starting our own websites, so it’s time we all learned the languages that make it run.
  • CSS Vertical Bar Graphs – Eric Meyer has been keeping a secret since 2005 about CSS Vertical Bar Graphs. Well, not really, but it is good that he has come out with a nifty demo on how to do this.
  • A List Apart: Findings From the Web Design Survey – In April 2007, A List Apart and An Event Apart conducted a survey of people who make websites. Close to 33,000 web professionals answered the survey’s 37 questions, providing the first data ever collected on the business of web design and development as practiced in the U.S. and worldwide.
  • 21 Facts About The Internet You Should Know – You probably use it every day but how well do you know your Internet?
  • Verizon Wireless: If you don’t opt out, we get to share your CPNI call data – Over the weekend, a small storm erupted over new legal language that Verizon Wireless is passing quietly on to its subscribers. It appears as though the cellular provider is changing its terms of service to give the company the right to share sensitive calling data with third parties.
  • BitLet – the BitTorrent Applet – download a torrent without using a desktop application. perfect when you’re at work…

The second group is the normal miscellaneous tech links. The ALA Web Design Survey is worth the read if you’re a web designer. If you are a Verizon subscriber be sure and read the article linked above. Verizon sucks my ass. There I said it. I can definitely see BitLet being very useful. I could have used it a few times in the past…

iPod Touch running 3rd Party Applications

Here are a few (very blurry) images of my iPod touch running 3rd party applications. The jailbreak process was very easy using this guide from TouchDev. It does require a bit of command line work so I’d recommend waiting if you’re uncomfortable with the command line. Several “one click” applications are now popping up, but I can vouch for any of them considering I haven’t tried them. Here is a Mac “one click” application called iJailbreak and a Windows “one click” application called TouchFree.

Interesting Links 10.9.07

This is definitely an eclectic collection of links. I won’t talk about all the links. I’ll just say that Windows Home Server is one of the best things to come from Microsoft in nearly 10 years (since Windows XP). If you have ever downloaded any music *cough* illegally you will definitely want to read the article about how/why the RIAA won this particular trial. It could be very important for you in the future.