Category Archive: Blah

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Text block clock


This is a clock that tells you the time by highlighting text in a block of text. In this case using a C# Console App. Not exactly original, but I thought I’d give it a try.
The progress bar counts the time until the next 5 minute mark.

Download Code
Download Executable

Smullyan’s Paradox

Here is one of the best paradoxes I’ve seen in a long time:

“At a desert oasis, A and B decide independently to murder C. A poisons C’s canteen, and later B punches a hole in it. C dies of thirst. Who killed him?

A argues that C never drank the poison. B claims that he only deprived C of poisoned water. They’re both right, but still C is dead. Who’s guilty?”

[Via Futility Closet]

Hardware vs Software Raid

Hmm.. Which is better?

I would say software raid is better*, my reasons:

  1. Software raid follows the OS around, upgrade all your hardware, your raid array will still work (In Theory)
  2. Software is easy to update, Firmware is not
  3. If your on a budget, do you really want to trust a cheap raid controller?

[*] Under most conditions, ie. without big budgets, mission critical servers etc…

See Also:
Stackoverflow Blog: Tuesday Outage: It’s RAID-tastic!
Linux: Why software RAID?

Comments fixed!

It seems that when i upgraded to django v1.0 it broke the captcha as all template variables are now auto-escaped, whereas previously escaping had to be done explicitly this meant that you would see the html, the field is now marked as safe and so fixed! :)

This really does prove to me the value of testing as its been weeks since I upgraded, I never noticed because as a site admin I dont see it. Doh!

On a side note, i’m wondering what peoples opinion on captcha is? personally I see it as essential, and that re-captcha is the best, second only to googles own.

New Look!

Heres a new theme and header image, what do you think?

Stack Overflow Beta

For those of you who dont follow Jeff Atwoods blog, he and Joel Spoolsky are creating a question and answer site for programmers called Stack Overflow.

Its in late beta now, and its great, to make it more than just your basic Q&A site theres a reputation score (based on how many people have up-voted your questions/answers) and badges, which were inspired by Xbox Online. The community is also top-notch.

SB Audigy SE OEM Drivers

I have a Sound Blaster Audigy SE 7.1 (Part number SB0570), which is an OEM part i picked up from Ebuyer on the cheap.

The only problem with OEM parts and creative is that they dont support them (not even the drivers!), so here they are for anyone who needs them.

Audigy SE Drivers.rar [7.45MB]
Audigy SE [8.75MB]

New Webhost!

Moved to xenEurope

I was using a westhost VPS, and although this was fine and the support was brilliant, with the server being in Utah, USA, the latency was poor (~250ms), The server also seemed fairly loaded.

So I’m now with xenEurope, which so far is great, a proper VPS server instead of the cut-down redhat one that westhost provides (with no root access), I now have root access and so have the ability to set it up how i like :D I’ve have setup a Debian 5 (Lenny) server, running apache2, postfix+dovecot (mail), bind9 (dns), MySQL and webmin (web-based server administration). And all in 128Megs of ram :)

The latency for me is just 30ms, and the server is very snappy (as you may notice). But the best part is the price, at 10Euros/month its far cheaper than most UK VPS hosts while being as good.

Database (over) usage

(Rant about drupal not django btw)
Since creating this website (in django) ive been interested in how it uses the database, dajango doesnt provide an easy way to show this on a per page basis, so instead i chose to use the log feature in MYSQL.

To enable it add log=/var/log/mysqld.log to your my.cnf file in the [mysqld] section and then restart the database.
You may not want to leave this on indefinably, as it spits out every database query (leading to a large logfile)

New Website (Software)

Welcome to the new, running on my new blogging sotware using python+django!

Basic but fully functional.

Ill release more info soon

EDIT: when i say fully functional i mean missing trackbacks and rss… ;)

EDIT2: The RSS is now up and working at

EDIT3: Now with a full rss feed for rss readers