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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Thunderbird on Linux and URLs

It seems Mozilla Thunderbird (GREAT mail client, BTW) seems to download and open the downloaded HTML file when you click on a URL in an email. This is usually not what I want… so: Exit Thunderbird if it’s running. Edit your prefs.js (usually in ~/.mozilla-thunderbird/default/random_characters/prefs.js Add this line: user_pref(“network.protocol-handler.app.http”, “/usr/bin/mozilla-firefox”); Save (DOH) Obviously, if you don’t have an intelligent mozilla-firefox script in /usr/bin that is able to make use of a running instance of firefox, you might have to use the mozilla-firefox-xremote-client or somesuch.

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Washington Post Style Invitational 2004

Each year the Washington Post’s Style Invitational asks readers to pick a word from the dictionary, to add, remove or change a single letter and then to submit a suitable new definition. Below are this year’s winners. Brilliant! Intaxication: Euphoria at getting a tax refund, which lasts until you realise it was your money to start with. Reintarnation: Coming back to life as a hillbilly. Bozone (n.): The substance surrounding stupid people that stops bright ideas from penetrating.

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