Knowing is Half the Prattle.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Oh Yeah! Oh No!!

OK, this actually made me laugh out loud.

Drunk History vol. 2.5 - Featuring Jack Black

This is the way we should have learned history in high school. More at

Here is a picture of the birthplace of Benjamin Franklin as it is today.

The "Sir Speedy" store is apparently named after one of Benjamin Franklin's nicknames.

Friday, July 18, 2008

A Night at the Opera

Made this on the website "Type is Art" On this site you take a given set of typographical segments and rearrange them to make a picture. This is mine "A Night at the Opera" The site suffers from a limited interface and the site really appears to be a secret advertisement for some woman's print which honestly isn't the best picture in the gallery but it's fun.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Wow, This Would Have Been a Great Idea 20 Years Ago.

The Zpen!

Yeah! A pen that can take what you write on paper and upload it to a computer screen. Just in time for a generation of student note takers who text message and IM like crazy and when penmanship is being cut from elementary school curriculums.

In the interests of full disclosure I do have a Wacom art pad but I've never actually used it for text capturing and don't imagine when I ever would want to. Maybe some artists who don't already have a drawing pad may want one but when that first drawing app for the iphone comes out, this invention is dead in the water.

wait for it ....


Oh yeah and if that's not good enough for you, use the scanner that probably already comes with the printer you got with your computer. To "upload" your drawings.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Monday, July 14, 2008

I Think I've Just Found the Most Obscure Online Quiz Ever

What Kind of Zouave Are You?

If you don't know what a Zouave is click here. Oh, and the quiz is specifically referring to American Civil War Zouaves exclusively. Go 11th New York!

When is Vanilla Not Vanilla?

When you buy Stonyfield Farm yogurt. I got a "vanilla truffle" flavored yogurt today and guess what flavor it is? Chocolate! The only way you would have known that this is chocolate is to have read the ingredients. Does truffle automatically imply chocolate? Yeah maybe technically it does but it would be nice instead of throwing some fancy marketing name on it they could have just called it chocolate yogurt. I had expected this to be just some variation of vanilla that doesn't make a difference anyway. Can anyone really tell the difference between "French Vanilla" and "Vanilla" anyway? I guess everything sounds fancier when it's French. If it's vanilla, just call it vanilla thanks. Save you're fancy adjectives. I can gaurentee that this is the chain of logic that caused this to be named "vanilla truffle" went something like this.

Marketing Guy #1: All women eat is yogurt. We've marketed them into believing that all this sugar and fat is a health food.
Marketing Guy #2: Yeah but the only other thing that women eat is chocolate, brownies and cookies.
Marketing Guy #1: Well we have to move all this vanilla yogurt.
Marketing Guy #2: Hey maybe we can get women to eat even more yogurt if we make believe that this is both a health food and a decadent treat. Let's throw some cocoa into it.
Marketing Guy #1: That will confuse them enough. Brilliant.
Marketing Guy #2: "Chocolate Decadence"?
Marketing Guy #1: To obvious.
Marketing Guy #2: Oh hey the boss just called and he likes to call it vanilla because it has a vanilla base instead of a plain yogurt base.
Marketing Guy #1: How about "Vanilla Truffle". It's got that candy spin to it.
Marketing Guy #2: Perfect.

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

My Code Added to an OpenSource Project

So I while ago I wrote some extensive php code to change the open source project Geeklog from its own authentication method to instead use LDAP for authentcation. The code I wrote was pretty extensive but someone took that code and whittled it down to the very basics and added it as a standard feature of the software. At least they gave me some credit. Honestly if I was looking at Geeklog fresh and trying to implement LDAP, I'd be pretty confused because the code really doesn't look much like anything. Also there are a few things that aren't really explained here. The LDAP attributes being used here are UNIX LDAP shell account attributes. If you're looking at using this with a microsoft implementation of LDAP or with Netscape's implementation of LDAP for iplanet, the you're missing a bunch of other attributes. All this is in the original implementation of the code and really isn't explained in the Geekog documentation. Also the setup of your LDAP tree isn't really covered in the documentation either which is pretty crucial.

1 <?php
3 /* Reminder: always indent with 4 spaces (no tabs). */
4 // +---------------------------------------------------------------------------+
5 // | Geeklog 1.5 |
6 // +---------------------------------------------------------------------------+
7 // | config.php |
8 // | |
9 // | LDAP configuration file. |
10 // +---------------------------------------------------------------------------+
11 // | Copyright (C) 2008 by the following authors: |
12 // | |
13 // | Authors: Jessica Blank - jessica.blank AT mtvnmix DOT com |
14 // | under contract to MTV Networks |
15 // | Evan Rappaport - evan.rappaport AT mtvi DOT com |
16 // +---------------------------------------------------------------------------+
17 // | |
18 // | This program is free software; you can redistribute it and/or |
19 // | modify it under the terms of the GNU General Public License |
20 // | as published by the Free Software Foundation; either version 2 |
21 // | of the License, or (at your option) any later version. |
22 // | |
23 // | This program is distributed in the hope that it will be useful, |
24 // | but WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY; without even the implied warranty of |
26 // | GNU General Public License for more details. |
27 // | |
28 // | You should have received a copy of the GNU General Public License |
29 // | along with this program; if not, write to the Free Software Foundation, |
30 // | Inc., 59 Temple Place - Suite 330, Boston, MA 02111-1307, USA. |
31 // | |
// +---------------------------------------------------------------------------+
33 //
34 // $Id: config.php,v 1.1 2008/05/01 19:27:48 dhaun Exp $
36 global $_LDAP_CONF;
38 $_LDAP_CONF['version'] = '1.0.0'; // Module Version
41 // LDAP Settings
43 // Basic LDAP variables
44 $_LDAP_CONF['user_ou'] = "People";
45 $_LDAP_CONF['group_ou'] = "Group";
46 $_LDAP_CONF['branch'] = "dc=mydc,dc=com";
47 $_LDAP_CONF['user_branch'] = "ou={$_LDAP_CONF['user_ou']}," . $_LDAP_CONF['branch'];
48 $_LDAP_CONF['user_attributes'] = array("uid","cn","ou","objectClass","shadowLastChange","loginShell","uidnumber","gidNumber","homeDirectory","gecos","userPassword","givenName","sn","mail");
50 // LDAP server configuration
51 $_LDAP_CONF['servers'][0]['bind_dn'] = "cn=mycn,ou=LDAPusers,dc=mydc,dc=com";
52 $_LDAP_CONF['servers'][0]['password'] = "mypassword";
53 $_LDAP_CONF['servers'][0]['host'] = "localhost";
55 // (put additional servers here; example given below)
56 // $_LDAP_CONF['servers'][1]['bind_dn'] = 'cn=foo,ou=people,dc=corp,dc=com';
57 // $_LDAP_CONF['servers'][1]['password'] = 'joshua';
58 // $_LDAP_CONF['servers'][1]['host'] = '';
60 // LDAP server selection
62 /**
63 * If you wanted to set up some complex logic to determine which
64 * LDAP server is in use, this is where it would go.
65 * We have provided the basic infrastructure for multiple LDAP servers;
66 * the rest is left as an exercise for the user.
67 */
68 $_LDAP_CONF['server_num'] = 0;
71 // Default user settings
72 $_LDAP_CONF['user_defaults']['ou'] = $_LDAP_CONF['user_ou'];
73 $_LDAP_CONF['user_defaults']['objectClass'] = array("account","posixAccount","top","shadowAccount","person","organizationalPerson","inetOrgPerson");
74 $_LDAP_CONF['user_defaults']['shadowLastChange'] = "0";
75 $_LDAP_CONF['user_defaults']['loginShell'] = "/etc/ftponly";
77 ?>

Monday, July 07, 2008

GM Still Doesn't Want You to Drive

I was just reading an article on (the top story) which talks about the coming of a new era of driverless cars on the horizon. GM is announcing that driverless cars will be on the road in the next 20 years! Hmmm... where have I heard GM announcing that driverless cars will be on the road in 20 years before? Oh yeah, the Futurama exhibit at the 1939 World's Fair. Who thinks that 70 years from now there is going to be another announcement of driverless cars on the road in 20 years? Who thinks that GM is even going to be in business in the next 20 years? Not holding my breath.

Futurama Part I

Futurama Part II

Saturday, July 05, 2008

Naming a Series of Drinks.

There are tons of names of mixed drinks but no one seems to name a series of drinks that you drink one right after the other. Here are two suggestions.

A Menage Artois = Three Stella Artois in a row.

The Pep Boys =
1 glass of Manishevitz
1 Mojito
1 shot of Jack Daniels.

Thursday, July 03, 2008

Welcome Back to Runescape

I've logged in to the mmorpg game RuneScape for the first time today in over 3 years and surprisingly my account still works. The game is still exactly as I remember it... tedious drudgery. See you in another 3 1/2 years.

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

What Kind of Crack are You On?

So, I was reading a few articles online today and all of them made me believe that the authors need to pay closer attention to reality. Here they are.

#1 Ten Perfectly Pure Gadgets
The exective summary: Here is a list of 10 gadgets that are perfectly pure. They have not and can not be improved upon.
Why I think the author is on crack: Your examples are the pop up toaster, the radio and the etch-a-sketch (among others). Yeah sure there hasn't been much advancement in pop up toasters since their invention. Instead of saying that it is a perfectly pure design, maybe you should consider that it was a stupid idea to begin with. They didn't improve on the design of the pop up toaster, they ditched the idea completely for the idea of the toaster oven. Ever stick a bagel in a pop up toaster? A number of the other examples are similarly inspired by a delusion.

#2 Apple could create headaches for Garmin and TomTom
The executive summary: GPS manufacturers don't have anything to fear from Apple's new iphone which comes with a built in GPS receiver.
Why I think the author is on crack: Your theory is that people won't use iphones for GPS navigation because...

1) "Unless there is a decent vehicle mount kit available, it's hard to believe so." Um you think no one is going to develop a bracket with a suction cup for the iphone? Do a google search for "car mount for iphone".

2) "Can you take and make calls while the GPS continues working in the background, giving you all those voice directions?" You don't think they thought of that?

#3 OK this is not so much an article but an activist group.
The executive summary: They want you to leave your 1/2 eaten food on top of garbage cans so that the homeless can take the food and eat it.
Why I think they are on crack: So here are two scenarios. Which do you think is more likely?

1) Actual homeless guy (not a con artist, drug user, "vietnam vet", etc who claims to be homeless) comes along and sees 1/2 eaten meal of questionable age and decides to have lunch.

2) food gets knocked over, by wind, rain, etc splashes food all over the place, blows garbage into the streets and food attracts pigeons, mice, rats, bugs (add your own favorite animals here).