Monday, February 27, 2006

Quote of the Day

Computer science education cannot make anybody an expert programmer any more than studying brushes and pigment can make somebody an expert painter.
- Eric Raymond

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Quote of the Day

One of the main causes of the fall of the Roman Empire was that, lacking zero, they had no way to indicate successful termination of their C programs.
- Robert Firth

Monday, February 20, 2006

Some Interesting Statistics I Just Made Up

  • There are approximately two billion weblogs in existence.
  • Henry the Adequate is one of those.
  • Henry receives approximately two thousand hits per day.
  • Henry the Adequate wins approximately the same number of Battle of the Blogs battles as it loses.
  • Therefore Henry is an average weblog.
  • Therefore Henry receives an average number of hits per day.
  • Therefore there are approximately two thousand billion hits per day on weblogs. That's a lot of mouse clicks.
  • Therefore weblog surfing is a major cause of lost productivity in the workplace.
It's amazing what you can prove with some imaginary statistics and a good solid application of really crappy logic.

Another pointless post on the road to obscurity.

Sunday, February 19, 2006

Quote of the Day

The trouble with programmers is that you can never tell what a programmer is doing until it's too late.
- Seymour Cray

Form Over Content

I just accepted a blogexplosion challenge from a very interesting weblog. The interesting thing about it is that it looks beautiful, but seems to have no content to speak of, whereas Henry the Adequate looks like crap, but is packed with content (some would say content of dubious quality - I know where you live, dammit).

So, will Form win, or Content? Whole minutes of fun.

Check out the battle here (my username is nebyah on Blogexplosion):
Oh, and my opponent is here:

UPDATE: Here's what I was hoping to write. "Sadly Henry was defeated by the forces of eye-candy! No, I am not bitter, dammit."

Unfortunately Henry won, so I guess occasionally content is indeed king. I'd have voted for northernbound, if they'd let me. Go and take a look at the beautiful template. Tell her Henry sent you.

Saturday, February 18, 2006

Blogexplosion Rides Again

And you thought my little tryst with Blogexplosion had come to an end. As if I could ever resist flogging a dead horse.

George mentioned Battle of the Blogs in the comments for my last post, and I thought "Hell, better give that a go!".

For ten credits I get a guaranteed fifteen page views, which is the best exchange rate available on Blogexplosion (that I'm aware of, but knowing my research skills...), and there's a chance I'll win my ten credits back, plus five. How could I resist? Results of Henry's first no-doubt-epic battle will be posted here soonish. Go to the battle of the blogs and vote for Henry, or the other guy, so the damn thing can end, goddamit. It's been sitting on three votes remaining for ages.

Then I went and did the unthinkable. I PAID ten bucks for one thousand credits. Shame.

Thank you to all who voted for me, and I will try to remain humble as my fame spreads accross the globe, devouring all other famousnesses in its path.

Blogexplosion - The Complete Waste of Time

The Great Blogexplosion Experiment has concluded. The verdict has been previously hinted at in the title of this post. Too subtle?

Reasons why Blogexplosion doesn't turn me on:

  1. My average hit count did not increase. Of course this could be due to the suckiness of my content, but more on that below. (Suckiness is a word, right?)
  2. Spending time on blogexplosion distracted me from actually creating content, and being distracted meant the content I did create had an increased suckiness quotient as measured on the patented Shooting Lawyers scale, which used to be called the "Man This Sucks" scale, but has recently been renamed in honour of that american politician wanker who shot that lawyer dude. The word dude sucks big time, which is why I use it so much - just to highlight how awful it is.
  3. There has to be at least three items, otherwise it's not really a list, now is it. So the third item is: My blog did not actually explode. Imagine the disappointment. I like explosions, and fires. Also pizza. Pizza is good.
So there it is, another pointless post on the road to obscurity.

The Linux Talent Shortage

I never just link to somebody else's story, and you can believe me because I am the truthsayer who says truthful things.

This is a good article because it is about how stupid people are. I like articles that remind me I'm best.

Friday, February 17, 2006

Quote of the Day

Optimism is an occupational hazard of programming: feedback is the treament.
- Kent Beck

Thursday, February 16, 2006

Blogexplosion Again and Again

Blogexplosion has banner ads. You can place your own ads, for a price. Currently for one credit your banner can be displayed thirty-one times. Remember, to get one credit you need to view two weblogs, or you can buy a gaggle of them for five bucks.

Anyway, I created a crappy banner for Henry the Adequate, using some online thingy that I found via google but seem to have now misplaced. You can view it here: My Fab Banner

Great isn't it.

Right now the banner has been displayed 1423 times, with 12 clicks. This gives a click-through rate of 0.84%

So 2 blog views gives me 1 credit.
1 credit = 31 banner views.
therefore for every blog I view I get 15.5 banner views.
1423/12 = 118 (rounding down)
118/15.5 = 8 (rounding up)

Therefore, at the moment, it costs me 8 blog views for one click through to Henry the Adequate. I wonder if a better banner would give me more clicks. Since these page views are voluntary I wonder if they are more valuable than the standard blogexplosion view-for-thirty-seconds page view. I wonder if there's any chocolate left in the fridge.

Monday, February 13, 2006

Microsoft Message To Windows Users…Shut Up And Pay Up.

Microsoft Message To Windows Users…Shut Up And Pay Up.

I forget what I was planning to say about this, but it was going to be really witty and clever and totally to the point. You would have liked it a lot, I can tell. And then you would have clicked on the "donate" button and sent me some cash. Yeah, it was going to be great. Pity.

Saturday, February 11, 2006

A Quick Howto

Somebody asked me how to insert a link into, for example, a blogger comment. So here's a couple of useful tags.

This: <a href="">Henry the Adequate </a>
Looks like this: Henry the Adequate

This: <a href=""><img src=""> </a>
Looks like this:

This: Crappiest post <b>EVER</b>!!
Looks like this: Crappiest post EVER!!

This: <i>I suck at html.</i>
Looks like this: I suck at html.

  1. A tag is some stuff between < and >
  2. Generally you need an opening tag (<a >) and a closing tag (</a>)
  3. The <a> tag represents a link to another page. You need to specify the page you want to link to, which is where the href="" bit comes in. Note that this is within the tag itself (ie before the >).
  4. Stuff between the opening and closing tags (see 2. above) will be displayed on the screen. This can be text, as in the first example above, or an image tag (<img src="http://link-to-image">). Unlike most an image tag does not require a closing tag. Image tags are not allowed in blogger comments though.
  5. In the second example above we have an img tag nested within an "a" (hyperlink) tag. This is what makes the image clickable. Note that when nesting tags the tag that is opened last must be closed first. For example, </img></a> is correct for the example above, whereas </a></img> would be incorrect.

Friday, February 10, 2006

Cartoon Messiah

It seems just about every weblog I visit these days has something to say about the whole religious cartoon thing featuring that guy whats-his-name, whoever he is. Apparently something or other happened somewhere, which caused some other things to happen in some kind of fashion, and various people got upset and did things that are generally considered unacceptable, which made some other people upset. War ensued, or will ensue. Of this part I am uncertain.

Anyway, I suppose I need to have something to say about it too, so here goes my opinion on the subject:

Cartoons are drawing things that some people can make and that have little bubbles and things on them that are supposed to represent speech. Some people even use computers to make cartoons. Some people even use cartoons to get their jollies, and some people use them for satire. Sometimes cartoons can be in colour. An example of an actual cartoon can be found here. Cartoons are sometimes also called comics, although these might also be entirely different things - I am uncertain. you should ask someone who knows about this stuff.

Borland News

Borland are attempting to sell off their development tools. Wow. There's got to be a story there... Hang on while I make one up.

Thursday, February 09, 2006

Why Apple Really Really Ditched Power

Here's what really happend:

Steve: Hey guys, e comes before o, right?

Underling #1: Uh... yes...

Steve: Well that's no good. We're supposed to be leaders, not followers, and what with "Power" coming after "Pentium" in the dictionary that's just gonna make us look bad. That's like completely the antithesis of our whole image thing, dude.

Underling #2: Um...

Underling #1: It means the opposite.

Underling #2: I know what antithesis mean, moron.

Underling #1: You're the moron.

Underling #2: Am not.

Steve: Shut up!!

Underlings: Sorry.

Steve: I want Pentium processors, like, right now!

Underling #1: But didn't we decide we like Power cause it sounds all powerful and stuff?

Underling #2: And doesn't IBM come before Intel in the dictionary?

Underling #1: Yeah, man.

Steve: None of that stuff matters now. Did you see the colour of the new Power chips? Yuck!! I'm not having that inside any of my computers!

Underling #2: Yeah, you've got a point boss.

Underling #1: Sure thing man.

Steve: And stop saying man! Say dude. Dude is much better, and really hip and stuff. You've got to get with what the kids are saying, man - I mean dude.

Underlings: Uh...

A Most Important Quote

There is more to infinity than meets the eye.
- Henry the Adequate

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

BlogExplosion TextLinks

This is a new BlogExplosion thingy.

It's over there, on the right, sort of down a bit, or up a bit, or something. Where that thing on the side is, that looks like a bar. I forget what they call those.

Interesting isn't it.

An Asimov Quote

Those people who think they know everything are a great annoyance to those of us who do.
- Isaac Asimov

Activate Your Brain and IQ

Another google ad. Under the enticing heading above we get "Lab proven to amplify IQ, brain functions & intelligence. It's easy"

I think these guys need to use some of their own kool-aid, because, well, the first sentence isn't a sentence on account of the subject being missing, and the second one needs a period at the end, dammit.

(Unless "Lab" is the subject, and I guess that's possible. If so, I want one of those labs. But I don't think that's what they meant. Of course the subject could be implied, inferred, whatever, but we don't need no damn english lessons.)

Oh, and also, if the brain isn't active you are dead, or a record company executive, and no amount of glorified relaxation music is going to help. Morons.

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Akregator is Great

Just thought you'd like to know.

apt-get install akregator

Today's Quote

The most likely way for the world to be destroyed, most experts agree, is by accident. That's where we come in; we're computer professionals. We cause accidents.
- Nathaniel Borenstein

uClinux/FPGA module hardware goes open source

uClinux/FPGA module hardware goes open source: "A tiny SBC (single-board computer) that runs uClinux on an FPGA (field-programmable gate array) with a softcore is now available as a GPL'd hardware design. SSV Embedded Systems says anyone can now build its DIL/NetPC ADNP/ESC1, which targets Ethernet-enabled designs with very long lifecycle requirements."

Hey, I'm "anyone". I want to build one. I have my own hammer, and can probably borrow an axe. Is there anything else I will need? Because I know a guy who has a flamethrower, if that helps.

Monday, February 06, 2006

A Random Quote

When a distinguished but elderly scientist states that something is possible he is almost certainly right. When he states that something is impossible, he is very probably wrong.
- Arthur C Clarke

Helping Users

The best way to help a user is `cat /dev/axe > /dev/user1/brain`

Ok, phew, wasn't that fun. I just love attempts at applying meaningless pseudo-code to real world situations, don't you. And it gives me such a feeling of superiority too, because I understand it, and a brain-dead wookie might not. (Got to watch out for those wookies, damn them).

But, and here's the serious bit [start serious mode] (see), I do spend a lot of time helping users, and only a relatively small number of those users are wookies, or wookie-like, or could qualify as wookies with the right training. So, given that I have a certain amount of experience with the User of the species, I can now say with some certainty, and in way more words than are necessary, but that's my thing really isn't it... I can now say with some certainty that the best and most reliable way to help a user is to... [end serious mode] crack their skull open with an axe.

Anyway, here is a list of the tech news that I have found interesting lately:
  • ...
  • ...
  • ...
Hell of a list, isn't it.

Oh, and ps, did I mention the wookie?

Sunday, February 05, 2006

What the hell is going on with Blogger lately?

Thursday, February 02, 2006

Googlegates 1.1

The Register: Google at work on desktop Linux.

Linux Watch: Bullshit.

Google: What that guy said.

Me: All of these stories that keep going around about Google working on some kind of Microsoft killing operating system, or office suite, or Giant Robotic Dinosaur, are just a smokescreen cleverly designed to distract attention from the truth about what it is Google are really up to.

But I am here to reveal, at last, and for the edification of both of my readers, the shocking story of Google and their insidious and devious plot to defeat Microsoft via the deployment of their patented and highly secret BClone technology!

"But," the reader protests in a futile attempt to appear shrewd and intelligent, "how can BClone be both patented and secret, because patents are public information and all that."

To which my reply generally includes the terms "sod off", and "you moron" in reasonably close juxtaposition. Anybody who believes trade secrets and patents are incompatible has clearly not been reading any patents lately. But I digress, mostly in order to pad out the story and make it look like I have something to say.

You see, and here's where I finally get to the point, or some place close to the point, the engineers at Google do not think small. In fact all of their small-thinking specialists were exported to Red Hat and Borland some years ago. No, Google realizes that you cannot defeat Microsoft with technology, or quality products, or service. The only thing that can defeat Microsoft, is Microsoft, or to put it a little more accurately, the only thing that can defeat Microsoft is Bill Gates.

Which is where BClone comes in - and I can see that you've spotted where I'm going with this but please just keep it to yourself and don't spoil the surprise for all of the other morons - because Google are growing, in huge vats hidden deep within their secret Siberian fortress, a better Bill Gates!

Using dna from the original, combined with cutting edge CGI technology from Pixar, Google have developed a Bill Gates version 1.1 (beta 3) that will not only excel at doing whatever the hell it is that makes Microsoft unstoppable but seems to involve somehow convincing people that shoddy workmanship is a good thing... Bill Gates 1.1 (beta 3) will not only excel at that stuff, but will be specifically programmed to forcibly uninstall any previous versions, thus leaving Microsoft impotent and allowing the marauding armies of Google, with BG 1.1 at the head, to burn and rape and pillage until the entire world is crushed beneath the iron boot of Googledom, and Microsoft is but a dim memory in all of your dim brains.

This is true, and it will happen. You can believe me, because I know stuff.

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

More about Blogexplosion

First the positive:
I have encountered some very good weblogs.
Had to look at a tremendous amount of crap in the process.
Increased page impressions...
... which disappear as soon as I stop using Blogexplosion. This tells me that the readers sent by blogexplosion are not really looking for content, but for hits. Either that, or my stuff is crap, which may be the more likely explanation.
If you're really desperate you can buy page impressions from blogexplosion.
If you're really desperate you can buy page impressions from blogexplosion. Extremely low quality ones from people who are just looking for hits on their own sites, but are too cheap to fork over the five dollars. Myself, for example.

For my next brilliant scientific investigation I will determine whether cigarettes cause lung cancer by smoking one, then watching to see if I drop dead over the following week. Being struck by a car means instant disqualification, so don't even try any tricks like that. Furthermore using my patented, and extremely powerful, "making shit up" technique I will prove all sorts of other things that I'm not about to go into right now because this joke is just not working and deserves to be clubbed to death like a baby seal...

Damn those baby seals.