Thursday, September 30, 2004
.Macoffering. Everyone seems to be concentrating heavily on the increase in space to 250Mb, shared between your iDisk and email inbox, but to me the ability to create disposable aliases as email addresses which can be thrown away afterwards if they attract spam is the most useful feature.
|Copyright © Jason Brown|
Jason is also working on a new website for the dive site, which should go live in a couple of weeks time.
Wednesday, September 29, 2004
|CREDIT: NASA TV|
|CREDIT: NASA TV|
|CREDIT: NASA TV|
|CREDIT: NASA TV|
CREDIT: NASA TV
CREDIT: NASA TV
Paul's recent keynote at OSCON attracted a lot of attention, but having heard him speak I immediately went out and bought his book. I'd recommend it, it's a good read, and he makes some telling points about the culture of the new economy.
|Hackers & Painters: Essays on the Art of Programming|
by Paul Graham, ISBN 0596006624, 225 pages, £11.16
Eric S. Raymond, author of The Cathedral and the Bazaar, writes in the foreword to Hackers & Painters: "Paul's writing is, as you'll soon learn from the rest of this book, wonderfully lucid stuff. Reading Paul's essays is like having a conversation with a genius who doesn't need to score any points by proving it to you, except that most geniuses aren't as articulate as he is. You get to share Paul's sense that the Universe is a fascinating place, and his knack for looking at it from an unusual angle."
Tuesday, September 28, 2004
Tuesday, September 21, 2004
Friday, September 17, 2004
There is actually more information about eSTAR in the article than PPARC put in the release, so it looks like they may have done a bit of background reading.
Wednesday, September 15, 2004
|CREDIT: Faulkes Telescope LLC|
Tuesday, September 14, 2004
While iChat has always used Jabber for Rendezvous messaging, this will be the first build with full scale Jabber support. This will give iChat users access to standard Jabber servers, and interoperability with other open source instant messaging programs.
Monday, September 13, 2004
I have an Apple Wireless Mouse and I love it, it's sleek, reliable, works flawlessly, and of course it's wireless. But it's only got the one button, and when I'm running X11 applications it would be really handy to have a more normal three button mouse. The MacMice Mouse BT looks just as sleek as the Apple mouse it's imitating, but it has those three buttons. I'm looking forward to getting my hands on one...
Sunday, September 12, 2004
ext2file system under Mac OS X. That'll come in handy...
Surely combining a (modified) Linksys NSLU2, and a couple of cheap USB2 hard drives, and deploying the combined (self-contained) bundle of hardware at a remote site would do just as well. Better perhaps, especially with automated incremental backups.
I guess I'm a total Neanderthal but giving someone else control of your data, even if they're giving you control of theirs at the same time, doesn't sound like a good thing. Then again, I guess some people don't have remote sites to push hardware at...
The Philips webcam kernel module made use of another binary only compression module, the author had signed an NDA with Philips, and it seems that the kernel development team had removed the hooks for this from the open code in the main module. This meant that full support for the Philips hardware was unavailable from a stock kernel, and to get full support you'd have to recompile the kernel. The author of the module didn't like this and asked for his code to be removed from the kernel tree entirely. He's also decided to throw in the towel and stop supporting the module instead of backing it out to non-core status.
To me this seems like a victory for doctrinal purity over common sense on behalf of the kernel development team. This is not a good result for anybody.
Friday, September 10, 2004
His post summarizes the results of his estimation quiz, where he asks questions like "What is the latitude of London?" asking for a value, and also, your estimate of the error in your answer. I'd recommend having a look at his results, it makes interesting reading...
|DDPLAN is Copyright © 1999 - 2004 Gordon Henderson|
As some of you may know I recently acquired a shiny new Apple Powerbook, and while Gordon distributes binaries for Red Hat and Debian Linux, Solaris, MS DOS and MS Windows, there wasn't a precompiled Mac OS X version of DDPLAN available. So with Gordon's cooperation I have recompiled and packaged up a version for the Mac OS X, which he'll shortly be making available on the DDPLAN site.
Wednesday, September 08, 2004
|Copyright © Reuters TV|
This was the first sample-return mission for NASA since the Apollo programme in the 1970's. Considering the speed of the impact, over 100 mph, it's likely there will be little of scientific value to recover.
NASA is reporting that there was some concern that the sample return capsule battery would fail, jeopardizing the re-entry, as the battery was overheating.
Tuesday, September 07, 2004
Sun Microsystems SPARCstation 2
Like the Macintosh Plus the SPARCstation I grabbed doesn't have an internal hard drive, as most machines of that era relied on external SCSI drives. On the other hand, unlike the Macintosh, I do actually know how to make this boot from the floppy drive....
The NVRAM battery on this machine is dead, which means it's reporting an "
The IDPROM contents are invalid" error on boot. This isn't too much of a problem if you spent too much time mucking about with Sun's arcane Forth OpenBoot monitor when you were an undergraduate, as it's possible to use it to reprogram the IDPROM with moderately sensible values.
After playing around for a bit I managed to get the machine to boot Debian Linux off it's internal floppy drive. The hardest problem was finding the floppies...
My "new" Apple Macintosh Plus
The Plus didn't have it's own hard drive, but it did have an Apple 25 pin SCSI connector to allow it to be connected to an external unit. While I came away with a lot of AppleTalk cabling and splitter boxes, and something that looks like it should be the external hard drive to go with this beast, I unfortunately didn't find the cabling to go with the drive.
At the moment I'm currently trying to track down a System 6 or 7 boot floppy to see if my find still works. I can certainly turn it on, and it makes all the right noises and displays the "where is my boot floopy" icon I was expecting. So I might actually have a fully functioning Mac Plus here!
Okay, so I'm a geek, but at least I'm a happy geek. If anyone knows where you can still source a SCSI to Ethernet adaptor I'm certainly in the market for one...
Monday, September 06, 2004
Weymouth at dawn, catching the early tide
Portland Bill Lighthouse
The P&O liner Salsette was torpedoed by UB-40 in 1917, and lies in 48m. I spent 30 minutes on the bottom, using an 18/40 diluent, with 37 minutes of decompression
The Pomeranian is a 4,241 ton Canadian liner which was torpedoed and sunk the following year by another German submarine, and lies in 37m. I spent 40 minutes on the bottom for around the same amount of decompression penalty.
Visibility for the weekend was around 3 to 4m.
Friday, September 03, 2004
Next time I'll know what to do, I'll hopefully recognise the symptoms a lot earlier, and manage to do a diluent flush before starting an immediate ascent. The reason I went public is to try and spread the knowledge about what the symptoms are, because as I said before, the symptoms people tell you to look for don't actually seem to be the symptoms people are getting in the water.
Thursday, September 02, 2004
But, the burning question is, will I use it day to day?
It seems unlikely, the pain involved in moving my non-work related email to yet another email address I don't control will probably be too great a hurdle. If I could easily import my mail archives, and if it offered the option to retrieve mail from my other accounts via IMAP and POP3 then I might be tempted in the long run. As I said, the interface is very nice, although I'd prefer that Apple used some of the ideas in Mail.app instead. I prefer local storage, neandertal, me? Perhaps...
I was diving the Everleigh, which is in about 45m and was was running towards the end of the planned bottom time, around 35 to 38 minutes into the dive, when I started to feel very out of breath. This progressed to the point where it was almost impossible to breath, with the rapid breathing being almost uncontrolable. As a result I got very stressed, and despite having 18/40 as a diluent gas felt distinctly narked (confused, slow to react).
I desperately wanted to go up, right away, and the thought of the oncoming ascent and decompression filled me with a sense of despare. I managed, barely, to control my panic and deployed a delayed SMB and started up with the assitance of my buddy.
Although some of the cannoical symptoms such as headache or drowsiness were not present, everything about the incident fits with a CO2 breathrough, especially the fact that I felt better during the ascent, where the gas being dumped from the loop and the extra O2 being added by the unit would reduced the percentage of CO2 present.
During our time on the bottom the weather had deteriorate quite severely and I had to work hard to get back onto the boat in force 7 conditions, this resulted in another incident on the lift where again it was impossible for me to get a breath. This time however I violently spat the mouthpiece out and preceeded to take great gulping breaths, I had to be assisted onto the boat and took some time to recover.
During the incident, I can honestly say I didn't recognise it as hypercapnia, I was feeling confused, paniced, and paranoid. The thought of bailing out to OC, even if possible due to my rapid breathing, never even occured to me in the circumstances. If it wasn't for my buddy who babied my through my decompression I probably wouldn't have managed the ascent, I didn't feel "well" until the 6m stop.
I've now broken down the unit down. Looking at the cannister O-ring the O2 grease I'd applied to to it had gone, well "lumpy" is the best way to describe it, "sticky" also springs to mind. Not really what you'd expect from grease, I'll stick to silicone grease in the future, if at all. I've ordered new O-rings, and some scrims just in case, from Ambient Pressure which should arive for the weekend when I'll be getting back in the water to dive the Salsette.
Wednesday, September 01, 2004
Copyright © Steve Jones
|The new boat, looking a lot like the old boat.|
We were going to have a four day weekend, but the traditional bank holiday weather meant that Friday was blown out. The weather on the Saturday had settled remarkably however and we dived the Aparima, a 5,704 ton liner lying in 42m, sunk in 1917 by a German submarine while going from London to Barry.
Diving the Aparima on Saturday
I was diving with Pete Steggle, and did about 35 minutes bottom time, followed by around 45 minutes of decompression.
Ken using his baby booster.
The weather on Sunday wasn't so good, but we pushed out to the Everleigh, lying in around 45m, sunk in 1945 by a German submarine while sailing from London to New York. I was diving with Pete again, and had a pretty decent dive until near the end of our planned run time when I had a CO2 break through on the unit.
All I can say about this right now is that every horror story you've heard about this is true, it isn't pleasant. I've ordered a new scrim kit, cannister O-rings, and some other bits and pieces and once I've got the unit stripped down I'll post again and in more detail.
All things considered I decided not to dive on the Monday, which seemed like an even better idea once I found out that Woody's new lift broke later on that day.
Steve Jones has written a trip report for the weekend.
Update: A more detailed report of the breakthrough and my experiences in the hope that this will help other divers.