Sunday, November 11, 2007

Dream Team

After about 2 years of protest I can finally join the facebook group "The Dream Team was the best thing to happen to JMHS since Matt and Matt". You see I was always jealous that I was not part of the Dream Team because I could never fit Morning Announcements into my busy schedule. Mat and I had a disagreement over how the intro clips should be distributed, he wanted to make people buy the DVD while I thought he should give them out for free on the intarweb (which is how it was done for the first few weeks). Well I guess the shelf life of the DVD has expired and Mat has decided to post it, in its entirety, online at Vimeo.

Raindom Rights is looking into Vimeo as an alternative to youtube because it can deliver high definition videos and we are kind of fed up with how much pure crap is on youtube. Now if only we had an HD camera and time to make all the shorts we've been planning.

Well, here's the video we've all been waiting for:

Live Feed To Brooklyn from Raindom Rights on Vimeo.

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Saturday, August 4, 2007

Hot Rod: Bringing Sexy Back

Now I don't wanna sound like one of those super-indie music lovers... but I was a fan of thelonelyisland well before "Dick In a Box" or even "Lazy Sunday". Yes, I knew about them and enjoyed their antics back when they were just a few crazy "dudes" up to no good. Maybe that's why I loved their new movie Hot Rod so much.

I don't know what movie the reviewers were watching, but I thought it was a hilarious, nonstop, 24/7 - 69. It had just enough callbacks to their independent days to keep their long time fans satiated, and enough crazy dope slap silliness to entertain even Ebenezer Scrooge.

I was very excited to see that Chester had a role in the film. Although it was a small one, he filled it perfectly and added a little extra sexyness to work as a whole. Will Arnett is a bit underutilized but is quite a charm while on screen. Andy Sambergs' physical comedy and outrageous facial expressions are classically hilarious and the absurdity of the whole movie makes it that much more entertaining. The trailers promised that "He’ll land the jump, get Frank better, and then fight him, hard" and it delivers just that.

Overall it was a really good movie and well worth the raping movie theaters charge theses days... and I'm pretty sure I would have thought that even if I didn't stalk The Dudes' every move...


Soon to come on ourbunny:
Vista on my MacBook Pro!? You better believe it!

And also:
Stellar Phoenix - A Piece of Crap.

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Wednesday, July 18, 2007

New York

Last week was a great one. Justin has relatives who own a farm type thing in upstate New York and his band, MHR, went up there to record an album. Being the swell guy that Justin is, he invited Mat, John, Danny, and myself to go with him.

The band recorded some great stuff while the rest of us filmed them in preparationto make a documentary about our trip. It'll be out whenever Mat gets around to it... I took an abundance of photos with my digital camera which will be posted on flickr. Mat and Justin also bought a polaroid camera which is perhaps one of the greatest inventions ever. Everything looks awesome and very 70's when photographed with a polaroid.

One of the more notable stories from the trip was our voyage to the mall in Albany. Within the first 24 hours we ate all the Oreos and drank all the soda that was provisioned for the week. The 8 of us piled into 2 cars and ventured into town to get lunch and more supplies. We found a dollar store in the mall and so naturally we just had to get some cheap crazy crap. We all bought revolver cap guns and an abundance of caps and 7 of us got canes. I can only imagine what the other people in the mall thought when they saw a gang of totally hot dudes rolling 8 deep walkin' with canes. On the drive home we had shoot outs between the two cars with our cap guns. It is unknown how many cap guns broke within the first few hours after purchase, but it was more than one.

Amazingly enough we didn't all kill each other after spending a week together. Instead we actually had a great time with much hilarity. I'll list some such hilarity here:
  • Why you bein' so cooooold
  • You KNOW you're my best girl
  • Get the * out of your mouth and start thinkin!
  • [mike/sam] eats butts
  • You have to reach the pedals...
  • Thunder Mountain/Ghost Patrol
  • Ball ticklers
Mat also painted me a sweet picture. Note to self, I owe him $10 for that. Much thanks to Justin, his mom who made sure we weren't drinking and that the only thing we were high on was life, and his aunt and uncle who let us take over their home.

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Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Microsoft Hell

About a week ago the company I'm working for this summer purchased a brand new Dell PowerEdge 2950. It's the biggest, baddest computer that I've gotten to work with to date and boy was I eager to configure it!

But now I'm as jaded as a used piece of toilet paper. There wasn't anything particularly special or exotic about how we wanted to configure it but Microsoft sure made it a bitch for us.

The plan was to use this server to host SharePoint Services 3.0 and Exchange 2007 for a few small businesses. The Small Business version of Windows Server 2003 runs SharePoint Services and Exchange (just not in a shared environment) along with various other server rolls so I didn't think setting this up would be that difficult. I was wrong. Even though I was only installing Microsoft products, they somehow found a way to make it a nightmare.

I believe that SharePoint is the root of all evil. The documentation for it consists of thousands of blog posts scattered throughout the net describing problems and providing solutions that may or may not actually work. All users of a SharePoint site must be domain users which I believe is because they Microsoft want's to charge you for more CALs. It is possible to install a third party "solution" to use a custom authentication source. Installing this "solution" was as easy as manually editing web.config files, running a few command line scripts, and working around the occasional mysterious error message.

Finally after countless reinstalls it's all working in harmony. Honestly a lot of this could have been avoided if I wasn't learning everything as I went, but seriously Microsoft, linux is much more intuitive than this crap. At least with linux you know everything that's going on, none of this "oh yeah, im uninstalled... except for all my configuration files, the database I created, and my IIS configuration site, good luck finding out how to completely remove me!"

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Monday, June 18, 2007

Nancy Drew - Fun For All!

An old fashioned girl in a big city struggles to fit in, cope with her mother's passing, and solve the mystery of some old actress lady. Nancy Drew is the perfect summer movie for everyone of all ages, especially if you're a middle school aged girl.

Emma Roberts plays the prudish Nancy Drew who's addiction to solving crimes and sleuthing can be paralleled to America's addiction to foreign oil. Having never read the books I cannot say if she, or the film as a whole, accurately portrays the Nancy Drew of written literature, but I can say that she is one hell of a detective, and knows a whole hell of a lot about random stuff. I mean, who knew that you can save someone who is choking by giving them CPR instead of that tricky and difficult to remember Heimlich Maneuver? I certainly didn't!

Max Thieriot and Emma's on screen chemistry was only surpassed by the, younger, uglier, but oh so adorable Josh Flitter. What he lacks in size he makes up for in Danny DeVito inspired personality.

I had my hopes up that the Hardly Boys would make a cameo and off up one of their famous raging clues but that never materialized.

I give it a 4 out of 5 bunnies. (That's right I rate things using a bunny system now). I suggest that if you aren't a 14 year old girl (or a boy being dragged to it by a girl) that you wait until it comes out on DVD and netflix it cause it's kind of embarrassing buying a ticket for it... At least it isn't as embarassing as buying a Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer ticket...

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Friday, June 15, 2007

Movies You Should Own

I was looking at the DVD's I have and thinkin about which ones I'm really glad to own. Ones that I've watched multiple times and still would watch again. In no particular order...

  • Match Point
  • Eternal Sunshine
  • Donnie Darko
  • The Royal Tenenbaums
  • Little Miss Sunshine
That is all for now.

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Sunday, June 10, 2007


The much anticipated Ourbunny website is closer to being publicly released than ever before! Right now I have a live version of it that allows users to browse a, very small, library of music and add and remove tags from songs. I have also set up the internet radio station part of the site that allows users to vote for tags to influence what songs to play next. I'm working with very limited bandwidth and only about 10 creative commons licensed songs in the "library" so it's nothing more than a proof of concept right now.

Currently I'm designing a new database scheme for the site and working on writing some nice object oriented PHP code. Here are some things I've learned so far...
  • PHP 5 has great object oriented support but the hardest part is conceptualizing a web application in terms of objects. It is hard to make the jump from server side scripting to a full blown web server application. I bet someone could make a lot of money writing a book about this subject.
  • The Creative Commons is pretty awesome. Patents, copyrights, intellectual property is a really interesting topic. I'm taking a class on this next semester.
  • The RIAA is even more evil than I originally thought.
  • Folksonomy tagging is an interesting technical problem. Storing tag information in a database is much more difficult than I originally thought.
  • Say you have a bunch of songs, each with a bunch of tags, and a bunch of votes for tags. Using that information pick the song that will satisfy the most number of voters. It didn't seem like such a hard problem until I had to actually design a way to do it.
So there you go. That's what I've been up to recently. Oh, and coming up with a bevy of short film ideas with Mat and Justin. Filming should being pretty soon!

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Friday, June 8, 2007

Wonderboy Video

This is the glorious Wonderboy music video that some of my pledge brothers and I had to make as part of our pledging process. Pretty entertaining if I do say so myself. Raindom Rights will attack again later this summer.

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Thursday, May 31, 2007

Only Three?

Only 3 posts this month!? That's just ridiculous. Luckily this post will bring that count up to a nice even four. Some big things are coming though... BIG THINGS! I'm almost ready for an initial release of my ourbunny radio station website. It will take me about another week to get some of the back end stuff done. jShout hasn't seen much development recently but I have discovered a few bugs and that's always good!

Mat gets home this evening and so that's basically when summer REALLY starts. We have big plans for some new shorts and possibly even a new dvd which is always exciting. More information will be released shortly.

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Thursday, May 17, 2007

jShout Version 0.1

It's finally here! Today I finished up the last bit of code that needed to be included before I could package jShout up. I haven't done that much testing other than streaming audio from OSX to an XP machine running in Parallels so it might not be perfect, but hey, it's just version 0.1.

Now to get some sleep so that I can go to work tomorrow!

jShout Project Homepage

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Monday, May 7, 2007

Removing Ubuntu from my MacBook Pro

You've followed some how-to's online and setup your MacBook Pro to dual boot OSX/Ubuntu. Now you realize that you never use Ubuntu and really want that space back on your OSX partition so that you can keep downloading episodes of The Office. Well it's not as easy as it sounds.

It was a long process but I finally got that sucker off of my laptop. I found a lot of stuff on the internet about resizing* an HFS+ partition but basically only Bootcamp and commercial software can do it. The most important piece of information in the post is at the very end, about restoring a backup image using the OSX install disk.

What Doesn't Work

Bootcamp - Normally what a user does is repartition their drive with Bootcamp, install Windows, gets bored, then uses Bootcamp to delete the Windows partition and have their OSX partition take back the space. If you alter the partitions at all after running the Bootcamp utility to repartition your drive you cannot use Bootcamp to restore it. It will display a message telling you that it cannot recognize the Windows partition and then exit.

Disk Utility - This program is pretty much useless. It won't let you alter any partition that it doesn't understand and just about the only type it does understand is HFS+.

GParted - I found this great utility for repartitioning drives. Too bad it doesn't support resizing of HFS+ partitions.

Tricking Bootcamp - I used GParted to reformat the linux partition to FAT32 and NTFS but try as I may, I couldn't trick Bootcamp into thinking that there was a Windows partition that needed removing.

What Does Work

These are the steps I went through to completely restore my computer back to working order, complete with the stupid things that don't work that'll drive you crazy trying to figure out.

Preparing the USB Drive For the Backup

Most USB drives are formatted to FAT32 because both Windows and Macs can read/write to it. Too bad FAT32 doesn't support large files.
  1. Boot up using GParted
  2. Shrink the FAT32 partition to make room for another partition that is LARGER than the amount of data that is on your OSX partition.
  3. Boot up using the OSX install disk and run Disk Utility to create a new HFS+ partition on the USB disk from the free space.
How to Make the Backup
  1. Boot up using the OSX install disk
  2. Click on the OSX partition you want to back up (probably called "Macintosh HD")
  3. Click "New Image" and save to the partition on your external USB device that you just created.

Any changes you make to your partition table using Disk Utility WILL indeed erase all the data on it. It is not lying when it warns you of this fact. Just delete the extra partition and make the OSX one as big as you can.

How to Restore the Backup

This is probably the most annoying part of the whole thing. You see there is a problem with the version of Disk Utility that comes on the Intel OSX install disks. Basically you can't use it to restore a backup. Damn them!
  1. Using Disk Utility, mount your backup image
  2. Quit Disk Utility and open up the Terminal
  3. Type in the following commands
    • cd /Volumes/{mounted backup}/Applications/Utilities
    • cp "Disk" /Volumes/{usb backup}/
  4. Replace {mounted backup} with the name of the partition image, probably something like "Macintosh HD 1" and replace {usb backup} with the name of the HFS+ partition on your USB drive.
  5. Quit Terminal and open Disk Utility
  6. Unmount the backup image
  7. Quit Disk Utility and open up Terminal
  8. Run the new Disk Utility program
    • cd /Volumes/{usb backup}/"Disk"/Contents/MacOS
    • ./Disk\ Utility
  9. Now you can properly restore the disk image
    • just select the partition you want to restore
    • click "Restore" and drag the partition to "Destination"
    • click "Image..." and select your backup
  10. You're Done! Reboot and enjoy.
Basically to restore your backup you just need a working version of Disk Utility. You could do this multiple ways other than retrieving it from your backup image. It would probably make more sense to copy it over to your usb drive before you started trying to mess with partitioning at all.

*One method to resize an HFS+ partition I cam across was to use the command diskutil resizeVolume but I was unable to get this to work.

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Wednesday, May 2, 2007

Damn you Apple

I was under the impression that when I "switched" from Microsoft Windows to Apple's OSX that I would never have to reboot after installing a new application ever again. Let it be known that OSX sucks. A new version of QuickTime should NOT require a reboot. I am sufficiently pissed.

It seems like every time "Software Update" has a new update I end up having to reboot. OSX was built from BSD, the only time I should have to reboot is when there is a change to the kernel. Some stupid media player software ought not be messing with my kernel!

Saturday, April 21, 2007

Air Force Fun

Friday was the Spring Event for the Air Force Detachment here. My flight, protocol flight, was in charge of throwing the party and if I do say so myself, it was pretty sweet. It was western themed with blackjack, poker, rootbeer pong, live music, and some awesome Big Jim's food. I was very impressed with the number of people who showed up in costume and with the quality of everyone's costume. We bought probably twice as much food as we needed to and had many "great" door prizes and managed to be under budget by about $300. Overall it was a great experience and I hope to be in charge of the spring event later in my ROTC career when I'm a POC.

Saturday was a 300 themed 5k walk/run. About 8 of us dressed up in skimpy Spartan attire and got much attention. Many pictures were taken but currently I don't have any copies. When they start turning up on Facebook I'll be sure to grab them and post them here. The 200's had to run the course in formation in BDUs, something I'm not looking forward to next year.

Only two more weeks of school... Not looking forward to finals.

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Monday, April 16, 2007

Sunday, April 8, 2007

An Incident

What's funnier than a guy pooping his pants while standing straight up for no apparent reason? Well if that something exists none of the guys one my hall could think of it.

As I was walking down the stairs back to my room a guy stops me and says "Did you see what happened on our hall?" I reply that I had not heard of an incident and become quite curious as to what happened. Someone get caught drinking or smoking weed? Did someone get headb butted and chip a tooth again? Did that guy's crazy girlfriend rape him like before? Did another person slip on a banana and split their head open? I was not prepared for what I would find.

Seems this one guy, we'll call him Bob, was standing in the doorway of a room occupied by a few other guys having a pleasant conversation. Bob's face became a little disgruntled and one of the guys asked if Bob needed to fart. Nope, it wasn't a fart. Bob's face continued to turn red as another guy stated "you're either gonna get a hernia or shit your pants". At this point one of the residents of the room decided to push him out. While being forced back he let it go, right there, in front of everyone, fully clothed. Somehow his feces managed to work its way out the bottom of his shorts and fall flat onto the hallway floor.

Thank you housing for taking out the carpet in our hall and installing that cheap linoleum flooring. Our hall is the only hall with this type of flooring, apparently because the guys who came before us had too many issues with body fluids being expelled in the hallway. Bob was not high, drunk, sick, or impaired in any such fashion... he just thought it would be hilarious to join in a conversation and drop a smelly turd as if it were socially acceptable. I think we all learned something today; if we are the 'leaders of tomorrow' and the guys who lived in our hall before us were worse than us, then the 'leaders of today' are pretty damn stupid.

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Hippitus Hoppitus

It's impossible to own the domain name without giving a special nod to Easter. If it wasn't for Jesus' appointment of Peter Rabbit to head the church, Easter would be just like any other solumn religious holiday with no real reason to celebrate it other than the religious aspect. So thank you Jesus and also a shout out to the Hare Club for Men for keeping this awesome holiday safe from the evil Bill Donohue. If you didn't understand anything I just said I feel very sorry for you.

In other news not much is going on. Gaim was renamed to Pidgin, iTunes is to start offering non-DRM'ed music, and so will Microsoft. There is also this interesting story about how the RIAA has screwed over record stores.

April is a full month finishing up classes and preparing for exams but once all that's over I plan on buckling down and making an initial release of jShout and also a nice review of Joost. To give you a preview of what it might be like: kinda crappy.

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Wednesday, March 7, 2007

Java libshout!!!

Soon I will be releasing a java implementation of libshout on Google Code. Currently if you want to write a source program for an icecast server you have to build the libshout library natively on the platform you are developing on and use some java bindings to access that library. This works really well if your application is being developed on/for linux but my primary OS (currently) is OSX. After spending hours trying to compile libshout for OSX I gave up and decided a purely java implementation was needed.

That was almost a year ago. Finally this past Monday I buckled down and wrote it. Before I actually release it I need to clean up the code some and add javadoc comments. Right now it only works with mp3 files, and only mp3 files that don't have an ID3 header, but I plan fix that and add ogg support probably once summer break comes along.

I also need to come up with a name. Google Code won't let me use the name jStreamer cause apparently there is some inactive project somewhere out there with the same name. Perhaps jShout? We'll see.

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Thursday, February 22, 2007

Pay for Google Apps!

Google recently released a premium edition of their applications for domains. I've been using this for a few months now and really love it.

The docs and spreadsheets tools are actually very sophisticated and useful. As a college student I love being able to work on a document in my dorm on my laptop, on someone else's computer, or in one of the computer labs without having to think about how I will transfer that document around. The way google does revision control on the documents as you're writing them is also a handy feature to have and pretty revolutionary for a word processing application. Being able to collaborate on documents with group members is probably one of the most significant features of their online docs suite.

Despite all of this I would still be pretty wary of using it as a main method of word processing if I were a company. If you're internet connection goes down for some strange reason you're SOL. Also, Google is great and all, but I wouldn't feel comfortable having important company documents with possibly sensitive information being stored on their servers. What I'd really like to see is a Google Apps server (hardware) kind of like their Google Search Appliances.

I'm going to need to research the API's they've released for their apps... maybe I can think of a way to profit off of them!

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Friday, February 9, 2007

Nintendo DS

Dual Screen or Devil Screen?

This "news" report actually tries to make the Nintendo DS look like a tool for child molesters. The average gamer's natural respond to this would probably be something like "Are you @#$%ing kidding me?" The reporter claims that the built in PictoChat program can be used by predators to contact your child while they're playing and lure them into dangerous situations. After watching this you'll be so mad at local news, overwhelmed by their lapses in logic and angry because some parent somewhere will see it and actually be influenced by it.

If you're a parent and are worried that your child may be in danger, let me (the most authoritative source ever: 18 year old male) ease your fears.
  • You can't receive/send messages if you're playing a game
    • To chat with someone you have to WANT to chat to them
  • PictoChat is fun... for about 5 seconds
    • At first it's kind of fun to send your brother a hand written message that says "hello" but then you realize that he's sitting 10 feet from you and what you REALLY want to do is play MarioKart
  • No one is constantly on their DS
    • ... and if they are, they're playing a game, NOT trying to seduce children
  • Myspace already exists
    • so why would they need to use a DS?
A much more likely situation is that a child doesn't own a DS and sees an old creepy man playing Nintendogs. Said child is very jealous and wants to play too. Creepy Man now doesn't need to buy candy and movie tickets.

Solution to all these problems: Buy your kids a DS, let them find out for themselves how lame PictoChat is, worry about threats that actually exist.

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Sunday, February 4, 2007

Our Table

My pledge brothers and I made this awesome table for the brotherhood. The legs are 4x4's, the top is 7 ply plywood, and is supported by a 2x4 frame. It's pretty sturdy. There is one flaw and that is that the top is just nailed down using finishing nails, if it were up to me I would have used wood screws. But as long as people lift from the frame it should be fine. Check out these sweet pics of it.

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Monday, January 22, 2007

Robot Competition

Last semester in my intro to engineering class we had to make mindstorm lego robots to do various tasks. My group had to build a robot that was able to climb two hedgerows (between 2 and 15 cm tall) that were placed an unknown distance apart and pass the finish line. My team which included Grace, Sandeep, and Liz built the winning robot. Here is my "remixed" version of the competition. Basically I sped up the boring parts and added some sweet music (The Thieving Magpie - Clockwork Orange Soundtrack). The original video, and videos of other events, can be found here.

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Thursday, January 18, 2007


The nap is perhaps the greatest inventions/discoveries of all time. I don't know if college could exist without the nap. Working out every day really takes a toll on your ability to stay awake between 3 and 5pm. I'm not sure what I'll do when I start to have a class during that time period.

Speaking of classes, I'm currently taking Probability, Discrete Math, Software Development, Science of Information, a Physics lab, and this course called Foundations of Academic Success. It's kind of geek heavy but that's the way I like it!

The awesome story I promised will be postponed until further notice.

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Tuesday, January 16, 2007

My Logo

Hey check it out, a second post. Yay for me!

If you go to the main page of my website you'll see a friendly looking bunny that I am extremely proud of. It looks a little anime but that's just because I got carried away with drawing ridiculously huge eyes. It also has an extremely shinny forehead, this was to give it that Web 2.0 feel that is all the rage these days. Now on to how I created such a magnificent work of art.

For all us non-artists out there Photoshop is a little pricey. Sure we could steal a copy but we're running linux and we prefer to steal legally. That, in a nutshell, is how Gimp was created. Gimp, however, lacks the ability to create or edit SVG files and I wanted myself an SVG file so that I could make my bunny whatever size I pleased without having to worry about it looking pixelated or crappy! A little scrounging and I found these two apps.

Delineate will convert any "normal" picture into an SVG file. I just drew me a bunny on a piece of paper, took a picture of it, then ran that picture through delineate. There are also a bunch of options that I have no clue what they do. The only extra thing I did was reduce the image to 2 colors so that I would only have the outline of the rabbit and no artifacts from the piece of paper.

Inkscape was the second app I found. With it you can create, edit, and export SVG files. That's how I colorized the bunny and added the cheesy shinny effect. Hopefully one day I'll be able to use it to draw something really awesome looking... one day...

I'll try to make my next post hilariously entertaining... perhaps a story of debauchery and international espionage? Only time will tell.

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Sunday, January 14, 2007

Starting Up

Hey how about a blog! Yeah yeah, blogs are pretty stupid and I really have nothing to say, especially in this post, but all good websites should have some sort of blog so that all the users of the website have a way to stalk the developers and feel like they really are a "part" of the website. isn't exactly the most exciting website right now BUT! one day it will be awesome. Right now I'm just playing with all the tools google has like...

Blogger - This is what you're reading right now... not as versatile as wordpress, fewer templates, extremely obvious when you use a stock template. On the plus side you don't have to host anything.

Apps for Your Domain - Extremely awesome. Love that you can now buy your domain through google, much better than buying straight from godaddy. Gmail is awesome by itself but it's even sweeeeter when you can brand it with your very own logo! The customized start page is lame, for some reason it looks cheap and hackish, nothing like the real google start page.

Pages - Cooool. It's very easy to quickly set up a pretty looking webpage but it would be nice if it could integrate with blogger somehow. I don't know how they would make the two work together but I just know that I want it.

Picasa Images - Haven't tried it yet, will soon upload a bunch of bunny drawings.

Code - I plan on possibly hosting some of my programming projects here and also using tools such as Web Toolkit.

Other things I will probably talk about later are Icecast, ISPConfig, Ubuntu, Asterisk, YUI, Creative Commons

Bye Bye Everyone!

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