[funsci.com. A post about a dead link.]

Hey, I was poking around for something half a bubble off plumb to do this weekend and I came across this site Fun Science Gallery. Now, there are a bunch of things like this out there (just google troll for it) but what really hit me was this article on Lexical Analysis of Text. This is a field I’ve been working in for years (however casually :p) and I’m pretty impressed with this article. Not for it’s sophistication, but for it’s “let’s get down to business and play” attitude. Sure, they use MS Access. But they do so in a way that provides a nice playground for experimentation. Maybe I’ll fart around with it and rip out a MySql/Perl version for giggles.

Mikes XmlRpc Library

Mikes XmlRpc Library

Ok, this is what I’ve been working on for the last week. A fully-compliant (pending :p) XmlRpc client & server library in pure C++. Currently I’m interfacing with the Xerces SAX2 parser, but the decoupling is sufficient to make plugging in a new parse engine a near trivial task.

It exists entirely independent of any transport substrate, so it will work just duckily over HTTP, MQSeries, BEEP, SMTP or carrier pigeon. (Wait for the announcement of streaming protocol toolkits :p.)

Why did I do this thing? Because I got completely friggin fed up with xmlrpc-c, expat, libwww and lots of other stuff. I finally decided that if I wanted it done right (i.e. REALLY platform-independent *caugh* *caugh* *cygwin* *caugh*, REALLY C++, REALLY transport independent, really free of all that configure/libtool silliness) I was going to have to do it my damn self.

It’s distinctly possible that older C++ compliers won’t build it (namespaces, RTTI, etc.) News flash: I don’t care! The developer community has been coddling outdated development tools for WAY too long. You want to retro-fit this? Go ‘head. Send me the updates and I’ll consider pushing them in. But don’t count on it.

Oh yeah, btw: I’m not releasing until I’M happy with it. That means it has to:

  • be fully-functional
  • have more than sufficient documentation
  • include several test applications
  • include several example applications (no they’re not the same thing)

Yummie Bread

Yummie Bread (by snippity request :p)

Yesterday I baked a couple nice loaves of bread. I used the same “Country White Bread” recipe from The Bread Bible that I mentioned a few days ago. However, I substituted 2 cups of whole-wheat flour and used plain old unbleached flour for the remainder and I’m MUCH more satisfied with the result.

However, the second rising was a bit hasty. Could be because I forgot to proof it, but I’m thinking it had more to do with the humidity. Hmm… more experimentation is necessary.

Exploding feet of rollerblade hell.

Well, I just spent an hour and a half or so in the back parking lot trying out my new rollerblades. My feet feel like they’re going to explode. That little part just in front of my heel was under such unbelievable pressure that I wanted to cut the skates off. Well, ok maybe the “form fitting liner” needs to do it’s thing. So I’m going to get a copule lacrosse balls and shove them in there until that thing widens out a bit.

On the brighter side: I didn’t fall and I was going at a pretty good clip over sticks and everything :p”/> Posted on Categories UCCULeave a comment on Exploding feet of rollerblade hell.

Bread Flour? Hmmm… maybe not

Oh yeah. Baked a great couple loaves of bread yesterday. They were nice and breadful. The recipe was from “The Bread Bible” by Beth Hensperger, and it was the Homestyle White bread with Poppy seeds. (I highly recommend the book. It’s the one that got me started.)

Only problem I had with the result was that it seemed very “eggy” for lack of a better word. I think that’s related to the fact that I used “Bread Flour” for the first time. Next time I’m going to try the same recipe with normal unbleached flour.

If you’ve got any breadbaking tips lemme know. I’m all ears.

Rollerblading! WOOHOO

Well I got half that done. I made the mistake of going to Models to get RollerBlades. They have a bad selection of cheap skates with dramatically uninformed staff. BUT I have to say it’s not a specialty shop, so they probably deserve a break.

After trying on a few pair I went to http://www.blades.com/ on Broadway, half a block north of Bleecker. These guys kick ass. They know all the stuff, have an amazing selection of nice skates. The prices are lower, but the selection is high-end (about $150 to $400.) The skates I was recommended as a first-time blader were the cheapest pair. Service contract seemed nice (all kinds of maintenance, free replacement, %10 off parts, etc.) so I went for it at $30 for the lifetime.

But, after all this silliness, it was 3:00, so I didn’t have time to go make an ass of myself in c-park. There’s always tomorrow :p

What’s all this then?

Ok, I’ve had my fun. Today is the 6th day of the rest of my life and it’s time to get off my arse and get going.

Of course, if you’ve tripped over this blog you have NO idea what I’m talking about, so let me s’plain… no we don’ have enough time… let me sum up.

I was in WTC-1 on 9/11. I had quite the harrowing experience as I’m sure you can imagine. I won’t bore you with it here. Anyway, as a result what I’ve always referred to as a good case of the fuckits.

So, I got all my ducks in a row and quit my job (as of May 10th) and decided to do some travelling. In June I’m going to costa rica with http://www.socialcircles.com/ In November I’m going to the Galapagos Islands with them as well. In August I’m planning a solo trip to Southeast Asia (Singapore, Bangkok, Hong Kong.)

In the meantime I’m doing some freelance work, working on some interesting programming projects (stay tuned for some nice announcements), honing my meager but budding writing talents, practicing guitar, baking bread at least 3 times a week, and getting myself in shape.

So it should prove to be a pretty boring summer.

Once I figure out this whole Radio thingie I’ll make this site a bit more interesting, but frankly it’s a gorgeous (sp?) day out and I’m going to go buy rollerblades and make an ass out of myself in Central Park for a couple hours before my date tonight.

If you happen to come across this page, lemme know, wouldja? I’m dying to know how well all this stuff works.

– M