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Surf log 2007


“Regret for wasted time is more wasted time.”
Mason Cooley

December, 2007

Got myself an iPod Touch - which is the most sophisticated gadget I’ve ever tried. Here are a few links so far (non-links are accessible through the standard installer sources):

No more iPod Touch links for now...

  • Drop.IO | Simple and quick online storage (non-persistent)
  • Assembla | Free Subversion and Trac storage (also for private projects).
  • ADrive | 50 GB of free online storage. (Just sad the upload is too slow: ~100Kb/s last I tried.)
  • HowJSay pronounces English words for you.
  • Limbo | Danish game design - hopefully this will end up as a finished product.
  • Sandboxie <*> | Sandboxie lets you run any application in complete isolation from the rest of the OS. Using virtual disk drivers a sandboxed application is not able to modify files on the physical hard drive.

November, 2007

  • MediaMonkey | Currently my favorite music player. I never liked WMP, and iTunes is very memory consuming and has lousy file managment (no folder monitoring?). SongBird is showing great promise, but still needs some polish.
  • Flying Lotus | Retro Flash game.
  • Momondo | Flight search engine
  • SearchMash | is Googles playground for testing new user interfaces.
  • Digital Tools Microcontent | Nice blog (and the source of the link below).
  • Splume | <*> Excellent Bust-A-Move online web game, but with funky physics. Built using the Unity engine below.
  • Unity Game Engine | Promising new game engine with browser plugins for Mac and Windows.

October, 2007

September, 2007

August, 2007

July, 2007

  • How to disable dumprep.exe - probably the only Windows optimization tips that is worth doing.
  • The always charming Maddox has posted his review of the iPhone.
  • Apparently, Blogging is now 10 years old - and Robot Wisdom was the one that started it... It was also the first blog I ever read.
  • On April 29, 2007 Checkers was reported to be solved: “...From the standard starting position, Black (who moves first) is guaranteed a draw with perfect play. White (moving second) is also guaranteed a draw, regardless of what Black plays as the opening move...”. Hardly surprising - most people would probably suspect that - but hey, now we know for sure. Though Checkers has a search space of 5x1020, Chess has a search space of 1043 (Ref), so it will probably be awhile before it is solved.
  • RssFwd | <*> Polls RSS feeds and sends an email when the feed is updated. Works beautifully together with GMail filters and labels.
  • But they said they were not evil?
  • Don’t know why, but it makes me somehow sad to see that Bill Gates is no longer the richest man in the world. And who has ever heard about Carlos Slim?
  • The iPhone has become the Paris Hilton of gadgets. How many unsubstantiated rumors must we suffer from? And no. I will not link to any of them.

June, 2007

May, 2007

  • Google Maps Street View | <*> Once again, an innovative Google feature: 3D rotatable views at street level (and behold, in Korea they got corny animated icons today). In related innovative news, Microsoft announced their Microsoft Surface today. Apparently it is multi-touch, multi-user, object recognizing display mounted on a table. Must have been tough to see Apple announce multi-touch technology on a portable device a couple of months ago.
  • ZoomQuilt II | Collaborative art.
  • Wubi | Lets you install Ubuntu Linux on a Windows machine without installing a new bootloader or repartitioning your hard drive (the Linux OS is installed on Windows NTFS/FAT32 file system) Update: reveal hidden content
  • LittleBigPlanet screenshots | A PS3 game with a unique graphical style.
  • The future of Firefox | About Firefox 3 as an information broker (microformats)
  • Physics myths | Deals with common misconceptions, some taken straight from physics textbook (for instance I must admit I though that it was the increased speed of airflow over a wing that generated the aerodynamic lift allowing planes to fly). Here is another classical myth: that water will exit the bathtub drain in opposite direction on the opposite hemisphere (due to the Coriolis force).
  • Xaos | Last time I tried a fractal generator was probably in the late 80ies and at that time they were just as hot as holograms and headbands. However, this little app impressed me by allowing the user to zoom in on a Mandelbrot set in realtime in fullscreen resolution. As a side note Fractint is still going strong.
  • Tumblr | <*> Blogs are so last week. Instead of paragraphs of text, tumblelogs are small text snippets, photos, video links or quotes. I am currently testing the system and I am impressed so far.
  • Rockbox | An open-source replacement for the Apple iPod OS. Unpolished and with lots of rough edges - but it makes it possible to play Doom in 320×240.
  • Silverlight | Microsoft just rebranded their WPF/e web platform as Silverlight. The version 1.1 alpha now supports a subset of the .NET platform (also on Mac and Firefox (for Windows). Also a public beta of Visual Studio “Orcas” is now available (also in express versions)

April, 2007

  • Google sightseeing | Google Australia Day added some high-res aerial photos to Google Maps. The amount of details is stunning on these pictures. (Though they cannot compete with this one or this one - it appears Google inserts random hi-res aerials at random places...)
  • I got myself an iPod. But how do you get your video onto it? The supported video format for an iPod is MPEG-4 (max 2.5Mbps, max 640×480, simple profile) and H.264 (max 1.5Mbps, max 640×480, baseline profile only), and the resolution of the 2.5” iPod display is 320×240 pixels (it is capable of outputting 640×480 via the optional AV cable). Well, chances are you don’t have either of these formats lying around - even though those DivX and XVid's technically are MPEG-4 part II implementations, they belong to the Advanced Simple Profile, which the iPod is not capable of displaying. Now one solutions is to download the videos from a sites such as YouTube, Google Video or Daily Motion - this can be accomplished using the excellent Firefox plugin VideoDownloader. To convert to the iPod format, I use Videora iPod converter. It is also possible to rip dvd’s and convert them to iPod format. Handbrake converts to iPod format in excellent quality - but is not able to remove the CSS encryption - so either rip the DVD’s with DVD Shrink or install DVD43 which transparently removes the CSS encryption from any DVD inserted. Also notice that Google Video offers the possible to ‘Download for Video iPod / PSP’ for certain movies (e.g. Pirates of Silicon Valley). Finally, if iTunes doesn’t do it for you, this Comparison of iPod Managers might be helpful.
  • Crystal Clear Icons | Another very nice set of free icons.
  • Magic Ink | Essay about Information Software and the Graphical Interface
  • Get The Glass | Flash-game. It is one of the most polished Flash games I have seen.

March, 2007

  • Scribd | <*> YouTube with books instead of videos. Loads of math, programming, chemistry and other books here with some very nice browsing and download capabilities.
  • Software development at Microsoft | About the creation of Windows Vista: “...Vista is said to have over 50 million lines of code, whereas XP was said to have around 40 million. There are about two thousand software developers in Windows today...”. A lot has happened since Microsoft Basic II
  • The Nature Of Lisp | Lisp (...as compared to XML)
  • Everybody Panic | Online Flash Game

February, 2007

  • Todoist | <*> Online to-do list. Very clean and easy-to-use.
  • Got a new mobile phone, so here is a couple of mobile links: reveal hidden content
  • Tamarin Project | Adobe has made their ActionScript (JavaScript) parser Open Source - it will be incorporated into the Mozilla / Firefox framework. Notice that Adobes free Flex 2 SDK contains an ActionScript 3 compiler, making it possible to develop Flash applications without buying commercial software.
  • Musicovery | Yet another online musical social explorer thingie.
  • System Information for Windows | Tool for displaying system information, file locks, open HTTP session (and the responsible process), and much more.
  • Papervision 3D <*> | A Open Source 3D Engine in flash. Impressive demos.

January, 2007

  • PenDriveLinux | Linux on a USB Stick.
  • Google Earth 4 | <*> The new version continues to amaze - the 3D buildings with textures are an excellent addition. Also take at look at this demo using a multi-touch screen. (That would come in handy on one of those fab iPhones).
  • Dubai (Wikimapia) | View of one of Dubais new artificial islands. If you scroll up a bit, you can also get a view of the ‘world’ island being constructed (actually you can see a ship creating one the islands on the map.).
  • Stage6 | <*> Tired of YouTube’s low-quality videos? Stage6 is a repository showcasing DivX6 streamed movies. The quality is excellent. Be sure to check out Elephant Dreams!
  • Shark Optimizer | One of the few reasons I would want a Mac. I saw it demonstrated, and was very impressed. I haven’t seen a profiler this polished on Windows. Very slick and useful. BTW, this is the other reason, I would want a mac.
  • Canvascape | Example of the new Canvas tag in Firefox.
  • FileAlyzer | <*> Tool for showing a file dependencies, string searches, embedded resources and much more.
  • Let them sing it for you | Write a song text, and hear it performed using fragment from popular rock/pop-songs.
  • Jackson Pollock applet | Nothing fancy, but is quite fun to play around with.
  • Joost | <*> The newest project from the Skype/Kazaa founders. This time it is P2P-streamed TV. I joined as a beta-tester this month, and the interface, streaming quality, and general experience is quite nice. However, the most important ingredient is missing: the content. So far the content is limited to ~30 Channels, including a ‘Paris Hilton’-channel, a ‘Lassie’-channel featuring old black’n’white reruns, and several discount music video channels.
  • Paint.NET 3 | <*> Still no substitute for Photoshop, but for those of us, who find that the GIMP's user interface is somewhat... deranged, this is the best free drawing program out there. (also notice the growing number of plugins for paint.NET, including this one for Photoshop import/export)

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picks07.txt · Last modified: 2007/12/26 22:32 by mikael