First two days at IEEE Visualization 2004

Right, for those of you who don’t know yet, my group very kindly sent me to attend IEEE Visualization 2004 this week in Austin, Texas, USA, Earth. The flight here was of course less than pleasant, but this is par for the course when considering any kind of flight longer than 8 hours. One tip: pre-ordering vegetarian meals can make all the difference. Instead of eating one of a few hundred pre-prepared plastic-like food imitations, you get one of 5 or 10 lovingly prepared tree-hugger veggie meals.

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Ubuntu, Drupal and more odds and ends

The Seagate 120G drive in my firewall machine died at the very young age of 8 months. I sent it in to Seagate via the RMA procedure and got a new one back within about 3 days, which I did find quite impressive. In the mean time, I started using a cheap-assed hardware firewall/router/modem thingy, which means I have a machine to play with. Ubuntu went on there without a hitch and I must say I’m VERY impressed.

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Also moving to anhosting

Dear readers, cpbotha.net has now als moved to AN Hosting. I can REALLY recommend these guys; their service is top notch and the price/performance ratio is impressive. In anycase, the weblogs have already been migrated. That went okay, partly due to Movable Type’s brilliant documentation. It will take a bit longer for the rest of the website to be migrated… I’m evaluating Content Management Systems while we’re shifting things around.

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Me: 1 PhD monster: 0

HARR HARR! I kicked it in the crotch when it wasn’t paying attention. Yes ladies and jelly-beans, the draft of my PhD thesis is finally done. Not bad, if I might say so myself. My PhD contract ended on September 15, today is the 21st. 6 days overtime. Lest I forget: On September 16, I was officially appointed as PostDoc in the Visualisation group of the TU Delft. In other words, I’m staying just where I am, except that now I’m getting paid BUCKET LOADS of cash.

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What heppened?

Dear Readers, My self-inflicted thesis deadline of the end of August whooshed by, slightly ruffling my alread ruffled hair in the process. One of the many good skills I picked up at StoneThree Pty. Ltd., may it become a huge company and may the people behind it become staggeringly rich, was to build ‘slop’ into any schedule. ‘Slop’ is extra time that comes in very handy when things take longer than you had planned.

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Charl’s Aubergine Surprise

This is what we thought up and constructed for dinner last night… it was divine. Thanks to Paul for suggesting the pancetta, it’s perfect for this dish. Ingredients: one aubergine per person one ball of fresh mozzarella per 2 persons 60 g of pancetta per person (amazing italian bacon, you’ll have to get this from your deli) chestnut mushrooms (I think this is what they’re called; in Dutch they’re called “kastanje champignons”) – obviously you can improvise if you can’t find these

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The Official Ninja Website

Yes, boys and girls, this is the one and only official and authoritative Ninja website, Real Ultimate Power. This is a brilliant resource, chock-full of hard-hitting information such as the following: Ninjas are mammals. Ninjas fight ALL the time. The purpose of the ninja is to flip out and kill people. You can also buy the book through Amazon. Don’t forget to read the hate-mail linked from Real Ultimate Power.

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Sage, the Firefox aggregator extension

Hopefully this will help me to cut down on my WAB1 activities… an extremely groovy RSS/ATOM newsfeed aggregator plugin for Mozilla Firefox. See the screenshot here and download the extension, called Sage, here. 1 Work Avoidance Behaviour; you know, you’re supposed to start working, so first you clean up your desk, then clean up the room, then the house, then you take up gardening or perhaps embroidering… in my case, I spend far too much time reading nerdy web sites instead of finishing this little story I started writing.

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UN Human Development Report 2004

According to the UN HDR of 2004, the top five most developed countries in the world are: Norway, Sweden, Australia, Canada and the Netherlands (whoohoo!). Things have not changed much since the HDR of last year. South Africa is at position 119 (just above the UK – just joking!) and is classified as having “medium human development”. The HDR is based on various factors, including literacy, education, average life expectancy, per capita GDP, etc.

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I don’t like Graffiti 2

I bought my Tungsten E last year (2003) in October. This is a perfect little gadget and is still serving me well… however, Graffiti 2 really, REALLY sucks. Maybe the years of Graffiti 1 on my previous Palm IIIx are holding me back, but I just couldn’t get used to the new multi-stroke characters. Yech. Today I finally gave in and downgraded to Graffiti 1 according to the included instructions and with the PRCs in this zip-archive.

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