Sun Sep 21 2003 18:57 Metadessert After-Action Report:
I wanted to get rid of the Nutella I had left over from when I made Nutellamisu. I figured it would be very good mixed into chocolate ice cream. I knew that Mondo Gelato had a Nutella-flavored gelato, so it should be possible.
I assumed that if I put the Nutella in the ice cream maker after the ice cream had taken form, it would be formed into nice swirls like you find in the Ben and Jerry's that the kids like so much. But what actually happened was it stuck into a huge blob on the mixer blade and I had to sort of scrape it off and use it as a topping. Clearly there is some trick for getting swirls into ice cream that I don't know about (what is it? I don't want to have to buy a book).
What I should have done was melted the Nutella in the microwave and added it to the chocolate before pouring in the hot cream. If I'd let it sit in the cream/milk mixture as it cooled, it probably would have bonded with the chocolate and the dairy, or something.
Sun Sep 21 2003 20:40 Mama, Don't Let Your Babies Grow Up To Be Software Roundup:
OK, here we go. This catches me up about halfway, not counting the inevitable Game Roundup.
- You know what was really cool? The old-school Norton Utilities hex editor. I stopped using a hex editor around the same time I stopped using DOS, because for the stuff I did, having source code priced having a hex editor out of the market. But bdump gives a Norton-esque ASCII and hex rendition of a file. It can't simulate the cool raw-disk view that Norton did, but maybe there's something you can run as root which does. Anyone?
- If your weblog entries are scribbled into dated HTML files, like Seth's, then the Advogato poster will post all those files to your Advogato account. Will probably also work with NewsBruiser!
- spamtest is a web interface to SpamAssassin which lets you probe SpamAssassin for weaknesses. I mean, it lets you make sure that your legitimate, non-spam newsletter won't trigger SpamAssassin. Sorry, but maybe you should consider the possibility that your newsletter actually is spam.
- SQL Profiler
tries to find places where you could add SQL indexes to your database tables. Requires that you be using JDBC.
- I've heard good things about Jext as a source code editor/light
IDE. Unlike other source code editors, Jext lets you put
hot chicks in the background of your code windows, possibly as
some sort of motivational tool.
- Principia Mathematica II is a
predicate logic proof system and a hyperlink-aware way of representing
such proofs. The goal is to build a large distributed archive of
mathematical knowledge, each proof being reducible to the basic
axioms. Unfortunately, Godel proved that due to limitations of HTTP,
there will always exist URLs containing true statements that PMII will
not be able to access.
- TEAPOT is a
prim, three-dimensional ncurses spreadsheet. A
three-dimensional spreadsheet?! Why not? I'll quote from the web page:
In traditional flat spread sheets, you have to have the
ability of hiding columns or rows to hide intermediate results. This
indicates that two dimensions are not enough...
But why stop there? I'd like a spreadsheet of n, nay,
even n+1 dimensions!
- Eurobill calculates the checksums on Euro bills. This is pretty cool, but I gave all my Euros to Rachel.
- The Hunting of the Snark Project is what Project Gutenberg should have been called. Instead, it is a hackable Java BitTorrent client. Nice version numbering system.
- ft is a template engine for PHP. You may know PHP as a popular template language.
- Rnews is a server-side
aggregator like, but not as good as Feed On Feeds. I don't like the
way the interface only displays the titles. However, it's another
server-side aggregator, so take a look at it.
- For every successful X, someone is undergoing a quixotic quest to
redesign X. The author of NewSQL noticed that "Nobody
is trying to clean up the SQL grammar" and sprung into action,
creating a language that will either look like a bunch of methods on
table objects, or will look like SQL without the "FROM" and "ON" and
"INTO" that look friendly until you can't remember which one of them
to use to list a table's indexes.
displays the locations of satellites you have in orbit. If you're not a
supervillain, a space agency, or a communications company, it lets you
track the satellites other people have in orbit. Ported from OS/2!
- The HP Labs
Semantic Web Research page links to Semantic Web toolkits like Jena2 and Joseki, while inadvertently
demonstrating that the only people who really use the Semantic Web
right now are the people who think acronyms like "HP" should be
provided with mouseover expansions.
- ReadySET is Jason
Robbins' latest project; a set of
HTML templates for documenting development over the lifetime of a
piece of software.
- I am still a sucker for map software. Thuban is a GIS map viewer
which lets you do TIGER-like
things to any GIS data. Thuban links to freegis.org, a bunch of links to map
software which deserves a roundup all to itself. I know there's a
science fiction story in here somewhere, but do I look like Cory
Doctorow to you? Hm, I guess I have to think
of another excuse. PS: another pirate joke to complete Seth's
"pirate Constitution" series of jokes, two days late and two dollars
short for TLAPD:
Q: What was the precursor to the pirate Constitution?
A: The Arrrrticles of Confederation.
- memaid is a
memorization aid that works with question/answer pairs you provide,
using a neural network to predict how best to get you to memorize
claims to be a configuration framework, but loyal readers of my paper on configuration frameworks will
note that in terms of the terminology of that paper, it is a
configuration store capable of supporting multiple formats.
- You know how sometimes in science fiction stories, person A has
to do exposition to person B with respect to scientific phenomenon C
because at the spaceman academy, person B spent too much time in the
class about C thinking about cute classmate D? Well, that's why I
don't understand error-correcting codes very well. But David MacKay
has a cool site, sponsored by the Gatsby foundation, containing software
for generating and analyzing error-correcting and error-detecting
codes. According to the website, there are some codes discovered
in 1962 which are much better than the ones you learn in class, so
maybe I was just engaging in a form of unconscious protest.
- With Read It
To Me, you can turn your RSS feed into MP3s for your iPod and
achieve ultimate post-dot-com crash hipsterdom. Only works on texts
that may be read aloud.
If you do not have UnicodeChecker, you will likely have
some unicode characters read to you. For example, it will say "and
number eight thousand two hundred and seventeen" instead of "'".
Pretty cool that it can say "'".
- doclite is a simple
HTML preprocessor for adding just enough structure to a document that
you can keep multiple related documents in one file and add sections
to the documents which are linked and grouped into a table of
contents. The multiple-document thing is something I'd like to see
introduced into reST.
- Abeni makes it easier
to create Gentoo ebuilds. Sounds really useful.