Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Prepare to get schooled

Rear Admiral Grace Hopper was a computer science pioneer. She is credited with writing the very first computer compiler. She postulated and articulated the concepts that led to the development of COBOL, and popularized the term ‘debugging’. In short, she is one of the giants whose shoulders we all stand upon.

Thanks HackaDay for posting about her.  The video below seems simple enough, but she had a very interesting way of explaining latency in a manner that everyday people could wrap their minds around.  This right here can help you understand that every time we advance in how tiny we can manufacture our chips we can experience a leap in processing speed.  The power of this explanation is really its simplicity.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Epic levels of cosplay?

So I've never heard of Katsucon, and live no where near there but a fellow blogger that's gone all pro on my over at posted some videos of the "best of" from the con and well I'm absolutely floored.  Every year the freak flags in my area come out for Sakura-con, but I have never once seen cosplay costumes of this caliber in Seattle.   What do you think?  I would never, (seriously never) be caught dead dressing up like anime but some of these are really well done.

SAN Managment

F*CKSTICKS I was working with my ISCSI SAN yesterday because one of the volumes was getting full (seriously why does everyone save so much data) and I needed to delete an unused volume and use that space to expand the nearly full one.  Well genius boy over here deleted the live one.  ISCSI is really sticky so even though the volume is deleted it is still serving data and let me restore from the Friday backup to the new larger volume and overnight I remapped the shares to the restored files and started syncing the two.

Net result no one but me will know, but there is nothing like the rush of pure adrenaline when you realize you just deleted 300gigs of users data at 3pm!  Sweet Jesus thank you so much for LTO4 Tape drives, I restored at 1.5gb/m so restoring 300 gigs was only about 3 hours but either way I'm exhausted and not going to be in charge of making any decisions today.

Monday, February 27, 2012

Success and some failure to boot

So I did succeed in getting a beer brewed, I'm pretty pissed off about the amount of work to get the damn beer out of my keggle into my fermenter.  I have those sweet taps on the side of the kettle with awesome screens that should keep the adjunct fairies from gumming up my works, but I underestimated the power of 12 pounds of pumpkin guts.  It took more than 30 minutes from when I decided my beer was cool enough to transfer to get 5 and 1/6 gallons of wort out of that keg and I know I left another 1/2 gallon worth of liquid stuck in those pumpkin guts that clogged my kettle screen.

The new rule is adjunct stuff for beer goes in a motherfucking bag, I wanted nothing more than to be done last night and my beer was not letting me get into the house and cook dinner for my wife.  It was 45°F outside yesterday and I was out there for about 5 hours with little interruption, which is just me whining I know but damn it mother nature was not helping my cause.  My efficiency is still pretty piss at around 59% given my second wash of my grain gave me wort about 1 gallon with 1.058 OG so I made a tiny batch of Raspberry Leftover Ale.  After a boil I had a little more than 1/2 gallon of 1.078 OG to put in my growler and pitched my extra thing of Nottingham Dry Ale yeast and called it a night around 11:30pm.  Both beers where bubbling away this morning when I left, so we'll take success where it we can get it I suppose.

My taste of the unfermented sample tells me the pumpkin flavor is going to be huge, and I didn't get any cranberry taste at all so 3 lbs might not have been enough.  

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Brewing tomorrow

I have to get my shit together, but I have bought all the ingredients for brewing tomorrow afternoon.  The first run on my cooler mashturn was only about 50% efficiency, so I'm looking to crush that tomorrow but took the precaution of buying Dried Malt Extract(DME) in case I need to bump up my Original Gravity(OG) before the boil.

Here is the recipe I'm working off of: Pumpkin Cranberry Ale

Friday, February 24, 2012

Crazy video

Well here is a way to start off your weekend, it seems like it's about to get NSFW at any moment but the video stays tame, the lyrics less so.

Soundcloud for internationals

Smoker at home

A few weeks ago, I started on a really masochistic streak with my cooking and tried to smoke a Corned Beef Brisket on my barbecue on a week night.  I got it on the coals by 6pm and didn't finish until about 2 in the morning the next day.  It turned out pretty good, but still needed another few hours to be truly fall apart tender. I cheated around midnight and put it on a roasting pan in the oven at 250 so I could try to sleep rather than having to check the coals every half hour or so, but the experience got me thinking about ways to achieve that smoked flavor without all of the work.  Wouldn't you know it Saveur had my back.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Music video

I don't know or care what genre this would roll up under, the video is the point.  In no way is the music good, but there is a hilarious payout at the end.  Also as a random aside, I posting from my Ubuntu Laptop today.  I set it up not terribly long ago and can say that this is the best Linux experience I've had in a decade.  I've tried several times to switch to Linux and gotten somewhat frustrated by something or another most every time.  This time, smooth as silk.  I wouldn't ask or make my parents run it by any stretch, but wifi works without a hitch and I got my printer setup without wanting to kill myself and found chrome (aka chromium) for Linux.  I'm 90% thus far and will have a place to setup my Android Appmaker.

Being ignored

So I'm apparently on a social justice kick of late, and this article was pretty interesting in relation to how being ignored hurts.  I couldn't help but consider the impact of being ignored on the homeless.  I live in a relatively large city and you see people that are living on the street begging all the time, and if you are an avid people watcher you will see that most of the people on the street flatly ignore them.  I'm adverse to giving handouts to the people begging, particularly because I almost always see the same people coming out of stores with tall boys of beer.  The people that I do support are the vendors of Real Change a Seattle newspaper that is sold by the presently or formerly homeless.  It costs them $.35 and and they sell them for a dollar and goes to people that are working to not be beggars.  I'm not sure if there are other cities with programs like this one, but it's nice to have a way of supporting the people that are genuinely trying to turn their lives around and not the people that are not ready to.

What about you?  How do  you react to the homeless?

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Academic research copyright

An interesting article about publicly funded research in the US and 2 publishers working hard to ensure that it stays behind their paywalls for perpetuity popped up on Techcrunch and in the course of reviewing my drafts today I also remembered getting an action notice from about a petition to End Corporate Citizenhood.  If you live in the US and are tired of corporations having the right to spend nearly unlimited amounts of money to convince Congress to do what ever it is they want, that petition would be one concrete thing to help start the conversation to end this bs.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

New indie music game

This is exactly the type of crap that makes people like me frustrated with indie music. There are six douchebags in this here video, see if you can spot them all.

Unknown Mortal Orchestra - Strangers Are Strange from Pharm on Vimeo.

Liv Tyler singing

The vocals are run through a few filters, but the video is kind of fun.

Long weekend experiments

So apparently long weekends (yeah presidents day) mean that I choose to cook strange things.  First up I started a sourdough culture from Goldrush Sourdough Starter.  In the past I've tried a so called spontaneous sourdough where I tried to let wild yeast start fermenting in my kitchen, but there are two problems with this.  1 I always want to start this in the dead of winter, and 2 my wife and I don't tend to run the heat very high.  Both of these things conspire to prevent the yeast from taking off.  Having a kid now we run the house much warmer than we would if it was just us, so the yeast had a fighting chance.  It is sort of hard to tell, but that is sour fermentation going on there in the picture.

I also tried the dried apples I wrote about here.  They taste good, but I think that you need a mandolin slicer to get thin enough to have a prayer of getting the store bought quality.  I sliced them as thinly as I was able by hand, but they are still too thick.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Fracking awards season

Alright let's make this quick, some douchebags tagged me InfinitePlans and R probably some other jerk too, but I'll get to you soon enough.

So whoever thought up this blog version of a chain letter decided that they could arbitrarily add rules to this award, and in an act of extreme arrogance assumed that people would follow them.  Here's the deal, most do but I expect it's because they are sheep.  So the three rules to accept this award are that I must:

  • Link back to the person who gave you the award. 
  • Pick 5 people deserving of the award and notify them on their blogs. 
  • Post the award on your blog and spread the love.
The point of this is to hightlight blogs with sub-200 followers that you think deserve a second look.  Well I give to you my two.  Why two because rules are dumb and I'm gonna do two.

Lord Phorzen over at Cirnopoly, I can barely understand the blog but hey what's life without whimsy?  also Dreadnaught tagged him already, but I barely give a fuck.
KingDota at the latest tech news, title says it all.  Click here to read about the suff you already read about on slashdot, engadget or gizmodo already.
ToTipota wanted to get an award so here he get's one

And I apparently need a nap, 'cause I'm feeling surly.  so whoever liebster is I hope you have really bad heartburn tonight.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Everything is a remix

So here is a video to relax with for the weekend.  It's about copyright and creativity, a little long but does an excellent job looking at copyright it's origins and the creative process and how it is affected by the availability of information in culture.

Part 1

Everything is a Remix Part 1 from Kirby Ferguson on Vimeo.

Part 2

Everything is a Remix Part 2 from Kirby Ferguson on Vimeo.

Part 3

Everything is a Remix Part 3 from Kirby Ferguson on Vimeo.

Part 4

Everything is a Remix Part 4 from Kirby Ferguson on Vimeo.

Friday, February 17, 2012

John Cleese

Interesting bit to me starts at 3:28 if anyone knows how to do embedes that start at a specific time please tell me in the comments I really wanted to just have it start at the spot I thought was interesting.  You can do links such as this one that start at a specific time, but that didn't work for the embed code

1976 Democratic National Conference Keynote

It's going to be a kind of long year here in the US for elections and the tone is really bitter around the Presidential campaign, there are a lot of things done historically by both parties that are rather embarrassing, and the recent behavior by well just about every elected official (seriously congress doing nothing is probably saving The US way more money than the stupid super comittee could have ever done[side note to my side note I've read some really wacko theories about the super committe being an endgame for real]) but I'm most sad to have lived through a period of history that got our debt rating downgraded because of a political pissing match (and depending on how far left you lean likely about not letting a black man get re-elected).

Where am I going with this?  I don't know, it started a few weeks ago and this article a week ago about economic recovery (well really about news/pundits and their complete failure to add any value to political or economic discussions) and I started to want something better from my politicians.  I give you Barbra Jordan and her 1976 DNC keynote speech, but I want politicians to hear her admonitions: If you promise, deliver if you propose, produce and if you ask for sacrifice than be the first to give.

It's just shy of 20 minutes, but well spoken and delivered.   (Super side note I cannot believe the state of Texas elected a triple minority Black, woman and most likely a lesbian to Congress.  Mind = blown)

Thursday, February 16, 2012

App Inventor

I'm going to start this by assuming that you have heard about the android operation system and I'm going to further assume that you've heard about apps.  All of that assumption leads me to the hope that news that The Android App Inventor is now available for download might stir some interest in budding developers that don't strictly speaking want to learn to code.

Right now it's just a source download and you have to install and configure it on a linux or mac system to run it. I'm thinking that this either needs to be deployed as a virtual appliance (hello vmware!) or I have a Pogo Plug I plan on running Arch Linux that I could build the source on.  Anyone have more than passing interest in this?  I hate coding, but Android is fun and it would be supper sweet to have develop applications for managing your home.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Tazer Ball

Someone somewhere just found the shortcut to getting a Darwin Award.

Pictures of beer

Okay so it could really be just titled picture of beer, but whatever I took a picture.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

I'm sure she means well...

I was just looking over world press photo's contest winner galleries when I found this one with the following description

Inna Shevchenko, 21, is one of the leaders of Femen. The feminist Ukrainian protest group organizes topless protests against sex tourists, sexism and social problems. 
Just let that soak in for a minute .... attractive blonde protesting sex tourism by going topless. facepalm.jpg

Started a brew

So I got started on my Pumpkin Cranberry Sour ale over the weekend, I started the funky beer that I will be blending with my fruit beer for the finished sour product.  You can see the recipe I worked out here, as for the beer I'm trying to clone you can find out about that here.  I need to get a picture of this beer, the combo of the Trappist High Gravity yeast and the Lambic Blend has the largest krausen I've ever had.  It's only 4 maybe 4.5 gallons in my 5 gallon carboy and it's trying to bubble out the airlock!

Monday, February 13, 2012

Random indie

So this came up today from a blog I don't follow yet, pretty fun and chill.

International version ignore the video it's a fan made one.

The Submarines, "1940" (Amplive Remix) from SARAH ADAMS on Vimeo.

Shredded chicken

I read about a way to quickly shred chicken in your mixer and get results that look like this

I can vouch that it works.  I cooked some chicken on my Gorge Foreman grill tossed it in the mixing bowl and watched the chicken jump out the sides!  Second try I had the flour guard on and that kept the little buggers in there to be beaten to a pulp.  Given how often I feel annoyed at the amount of counter space the Kitchenaid commands it is always a good thing when I come up with a use for it.  I expect that it could do the same for any meat that is shreddable,  and plan on trying this trick again in the future.  I used it for BBQ chicken sandwiches and chicken tacos this weekend so having shredded chicken around is pretty handy for quick meals.

Friday, February 10, 2012

USB wall socket

Now that everything is charged by usb it seems like we should be able to ditch those darn wall warts.  Seems a few other people think this too!

The first one is from RCA and it is just an external add on to your existing plug.  It is a pretty basic, easy to install and only costs about $20

Image via RCA
 The second one I found is more involved, you have to remove the outlet and replace it with a new one.  Not for the completely clueless for sure and it's clean look costs $25-30, but I like this look a lot.

Thursday, February 09, 2012

What the hell Joseph Gordon-Levitt

Ever see something and you're just sure it had to be a joke, but won't stop?  Yeah that's this video.

Season Cast Iron

Wow, as I look over my draft folder it is filled (to the brim) with food items, and cooking articles.  Apparently I'm in the depths of a fat kid kick here.  Neither here nor there an article on how to season your cast iron, pro-tip is to use flax seed oil.  I get my cast iron looking like this by using it and I only clean it with salt and a paper towel.

Anybody else obsessed with the cast iron?

image via Lifehacker

Wednesday, February 08, 2012

Miike Snow

Alright Miike, I barely tolerate you on a normal day, but if you're gonna put out weird ass videos we are going to have to fight.  Provided with only the commentary that I just don't get it.

International version

Miike Snow - Paddling Out from Furlined on Vimeo.

Death and return of superman

I haven't been much of a comic nerd for quite some time, and the only ones that really ever did anything for me where Pitt and Maxx (and all of the insane crossover) but I really appreciated this breakdown on the Death and Return of Superman.  I'm going to assume that this saved my not only years of my life, but hundreds of dollars.

Dried Apples

So one of the blogs I'm following is trying to kill me, I will not be posting about that other blog or the beignet recipe that I am studiously pretending I didn't read about today.

Instead I will post about dried apple slices and the how healthy and delicious these look see here is a picture

Oh sweet jesus help me, I'm weak and those fried dough balls call out to me with the force of 100 fat kids.

Seriously checkout the apple thing though, that looks pretty do able without needing a dehydrator and apple chips are the most delicious things.  That dough is making me drool on my keyboard just a bit, but you should totally make the apples instead.

Tuesday, February 07, 2012

Trippy indie

Maynard James Keenan you crazy singing bastard.

I give unto you unwashed masses the current distraction of the Tool front man Puscifer

Supreme Court and privacy

Gizmodo has an interesting read for Americans on a recent supreme court ruling that was actually in our collective favor.  The ruling was that cops cannot place a gps on your vehicle for tracking without first getting a warrant.  That is the broad victory, essentially police don't have the power to track you just because they feel like it.  They must first convince a judge that it is pertinent to a case that they tie your movement to specific locations.  That is pretty huge in our post 9/11 tea cup.  Most rulings have upheld the right of the government to tap your phones without a warrant, and let the complicit telephone companies off the hook for their involvement.  Others rulings have approved the detention and deportation of suspected terrorist, and generally trampled on your right to not be poked and peeped up on by your government.

The article goes further and calls out specifically our champion of privacy Justice Sotomayor, and what he sees as a confluence of events that are making it easier for us to be spied on given the current legal frame work.  In essence the information that we give to thirdparties (think google, foursquare, twitter and facebook) is not subject to 4th amendment rights because we have not resonable expectation of privacy on things we have passed to third parties aka third party doctrine.  There have been some attempts to modernize this see Stored Communications Act 1986.

Any how something to be positive about, at least a few justices can see the value to privacy.

Monday, February 06, 2012

Don't watch if you have a weak stomach

The narrator is kind of annoying, but the point is still the same.

Cider's done

So I finally got around to bottling my hard cider and I ended up with 75 12oz bottles and 1 22oz bottle.  The OG was 1.066 and the FG was 1.004 for and ABV of 8.5%.  Due to my unfortunate acid blend additions early on I was afraid that I would have to throw it out, but after the champagne yeast got done the cider is a little tart less so than a Mikes Hard Lemonade or similar beverage.  I expect that this will be the best batch I've made.  The champagne yeast makes it so dry that most people think it tastes more like a sparkling wine than cider.  This way there is still some tartness that pairs well with the dryness.  Letting the yeast attenuate to 1.004 was not the plan, but I didn't think I had any star san to sanitize my bottles with and snowpocalypse messed with my local home brew store's supply chain.  Keep in mind that I didn't think I had any, I was cleaning my kitchen and hidden behind some spices was my star san, so I was in business this weekend.

This bottling marks the second time that I've had help bottling, my Dad was in town so the sanitizing, filling and capping only took about an hour and a half versus the normal 3 or 4 hours it takes me.  I decided that because the cider was still bubbling slowly when I bottled it to only had about 3/4 of a teaspoon of corn sugar.  The juice of apples has so much sugar in it already I didn't want to make bottle bombs

Friday, February 03, 2012

More advocacy Stuff

So apparently your thirties are for getting political, here is a petition that will help you mail your senators asking for them to support a constitutional amendment that would end corporate personhood.  The broad point being that because corporations are considered people (via a court case known as Citizens United vs FEC)

It's and interesting read and worth a few minutes of your time.  You can see the petition over here.

Vacuum ziploc bags

My family has started buying and sharing a side of grass feed beef and we just had to make room in the chest freezer for a mountain of meat.  It seems like a lot upfront, but my wife and I hardly bought meat over the summer last year so it feels like it makes sense for us.  While I was re-arranging the freezer I saw my huge pile of frozen pumpkin and frozen blackberries.  I had meant to put some of the berries into one of the hard cider batches I have going, but with 8 gallons waiting to be bottled and a boat load of beers I want to brew I don't see this happening soon.  Maybe I'll make a fruity session ale for the summer heat, but before that I have got to make my Pumpkin Cranberry sour ale.  This beer needs to happen, those that have been following may have read about it a while back.

Any way this rambling ass post was really about the pumpkin and blackberries I have stored in Ziploc vacuum storage bags.  I read about them on a Lifehacker post about sous vide cooking, and was excited about a lower cost vacuum sealing product.  My aunt and uncle claim to have ruined 3 of the fancy ones you see at Costco was they tried to seal up fish for storage (my uncle fishes a lot).  The beauty of the pump that comes with the Ziploc product is it's manual and when I bagged the blackberries I just stuck a paper towel down between the flap and the pump to catch the excess liquid from the berries as I tried to work the air out.  It worked great and the pumpkin and berries both looked good when I checked them recently.

I can only find the gallon size bags at my grocery stores, but Amazon has the quart size.  I like them and they are way cheaper than the electric ones, and so far are holding up well in my freezer.  I'll try to remember to get pictures when it comes time to thaw them for beer making so see if they kept fresh.  I know they are doing better than the standard freezer bag we put our yearly blueberry picking harvest into last June.  The berries that are left all have ice in the bags, vs the blackberries I froze in August have none.


Thursday, February 02, 2012

SMBC Comic

Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal chimed in on the HR 1981 and SOPA/PIPA with this comic.

I think he did a solid job of grounding examples of what the powers they want mean to citizens.  Check it out.

HR 1981 aka Protecting Children From Internet Pornographers Act

A few commenters have brought this up and I have taken action personally, but this will be the first time I actually write it down.

Demand Progress has a form for contacting your Reps about what is being dubbed the internet snooping bill that wants to create a federally searchable database of your name, address, phone number, credit card numbers, bank account numbers, and temporarily-assigned IP addresses.  This seems like a terrible idea on it's face, lets make a huge database for scammers and con-artists to target; but what's worse is the intent of creating a surveillance state.  As long as you value your individual liberty, and like that the government does not have access to the books you peruse at the library (who goes there any more?) you should be concerned about this.

I personally took action with and if you want to see the letter I sent to my representatives you can see it here, you can also read about the bill here.  This is another nasty bit of legislation from the lovely Senator that brought you SOPA.

Thanks to Dreadnaught, neatfit, A Beer for the Shower, and Baur for pestering me to say something about this. Sometimes after I've taken action I forget to talk about it with people I know or interact with.

Wednesday, February 01, 2012

Further thoughts and readings on SOPA/PIPA

Okay so before this gets really stale I figured I empty it out of my drafts folder, it's about SOPA and PIPA so if you are bored already move along.

First up both bills are currently shelved and of little interest for the time being.  It may be toxic enough to not come up again in the immediate future. There where a few summary posts that really highlighted great info on the guts of these bills and the efforts to curb them that I thought needed to be shared.

Finally some perspective and thoughts on the future, and maybe a little of how we got here.

Those links are all over the place but the one to read that is the most interesting of the bunch in my opinion is from Binary Bonsai.  The author of that blog is very passionate about Star Wars, he is part of the effort to get the real stories of the origin, and creation of the Star Wars universe out to people.  He has found amazing interviews with people that where part of the guts of making this movie and really shows the magic was quite different from the story that George is trying to sell the world.  He likes people to believe that he wholly created it from nothing with no support from anyone and certainly didn't draw inspiration from the environment around him.  The passion he has for Hollywood is evident, and his perspective is truly a different tone than anything you've been reading about killing Hollywood.

I found this video because of him.

@jamieSWB - Star Wars Begins - The Complete Documentary from jambe davdar on Vimeo.