Archive for misc



Word is out on Picnik, the web-based photo editor I’ve been working on for over a year now. With Picnik we plan to achieve three goals:

  1. Provide the best photo editing experience. Easy, powerful, and fun.
  2. Take advantage of everything the web can bring to photo editing and everything that photo editing can bring to the web.
  3. Define a new kind of web application that combines the best qualities of traditional desktop and web applications without compromises.

We’re not there yet, but we’re in Beta! You’re only a click away from trying it out for yourself. Please do.

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News That Vexes moves to a new location

If you haven’t been reading News That Vexes by Mark D. Taylor you are missing out on some of the most entertaining scientific research going on, like this: Girth adds to extra gasoline consumption.

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SidewinderHey look what Jonathan found! Back in 1986 we worked together with Hayes Haugen on a fun shoot-em-up game for the Amiga called Sidewinder. It was a moderate hit. Hayes and I coded and Jonathan did the in-game artwork. This is a scan of the retail box Sidewinder was packaged in.

Good times. Now Jonathan and I are reunited on another venture but I’ll save that for later post.

Update: Sidewinder’s fans have posted videos of the opening music and Sidewinder running in an Amiga emulator on a PSP!

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Welcome To The Beach

For many years I hosted on an old ‘386 box connected via ISDN at my home. I enjoyed having complete control over the software installed on the machine but didn’t like the site going down in the event of power failure, HD crash, or whatever. I also didn’t like the bandwidth it took away from my personal use and having another computer in the office always on and whirring away. Eventually I migrated the site to a shared host at DellHost and when they exited the business I moved it over to CrystalTech. While CrystalTech has provided me with great service I miss the absolute control over the server that I used to have.

When I discovered the low cost ($99/mo) dedicating hosting plan offered by ServerBeach I had to try it out. For the price I get an Athlon 2100 server with 60 GB of storage, 1 GB of RAM and a monthly bandwidth quota of 2 TERABYTES tapped into ServerBeach’s high-speed backbone. The machine is all mine, I can put anything I want on it, and if things go wrong I can even remotely reboot it (while praying that things haven’t gonetoo wrong). I’ve been gaining experience and confidence in the ServerBeach setup since the beginning of the year and I love it. The server is fast and its internet connection smokes. Today I’m switching the domain over to it.

CrystalTech hosts Windows Server 2003 and my ServerBeach machine hosts Debian Linux (they’ll also host Windows if that’s what you want) so I’m migrating from the .NET blog (dasBlog) and photo gallery (nGallery) applications I was using to Linux equivalents. I’ve chosen WordPress for my blog and so far am very happy with it. WordPress is professionally developed and has a dynamic community of supporters enhancing it with tons of plugins and themes. For my photos I’m switching to Gallery2. It also has quite a bit more functionality than my prior solution. It’s not very attractive at the moment but it is highly styleable so when I have some free time I’ll be able to take care of that.

It’s nice to be back in control.

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Remove duplicate Outlook contacts

Some time ago during a hotsync operation with my PDA Outlook ended up with duplicates of most of my contacts. I finally got fed up and wrote this little Python program,, to delete the duplicates. It could easily be adapted for duplicate notes, tasks, etc but I didn’t end up with any of those myself.

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Jay’s New Business

While I was away this summer brother Jay Massena was building a new business here in Seattle, Aris Editions. Aris Editions is a digital printmaking studio specializing in Giclée reproductions from original artwork. They also provide a full range of digital imaging services and prices.

Aris Editions
One thing I can tell you about Jay is that his attention to detail is phenomenal. He is always on top of every aspect of his projects which is critical for this kind of work. If you’re thinking about making prints and want to be sure you have the best possible reproductions, Jay is your man. He won’t be happy until the result is perfect.

It’s really great to see Jay fusing his love for art and technology with his business aptitude to provide a service anyone can take advantage of. Head on over to the Aris Editions web site for the details.

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mail to blog test

So dasBlog allows me to email new entries to my blog but how well is it going to work? I’m composing the message in Outlook, actually Word 2003. What font will show up? What about the rest of the formatting? For example, the image below is on its own line and centered. Below it is more text.

If this works I’ll eat a bug, or something.

(hey, it worked!)

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Sea-Monkeys Flashback

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