this blog is girtby.net

Posted
27 March 2007

Categories
Cultcha

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1 Comments

In Praise of Print

Technology people have an understandable tendancy to be a bit disdainful of printed material. We argue that bits are where the real value lies, and not in the atoms. Although books are seen as valuable and portable offline representations, they are mere projections into the physical world of the real asset, which is digital and intangible.

At least, that's how I sometimes think.

Now I don't know whether it is because my possibly skewed perception has been brought back to reality, or that there is a growing trend towards high-quality niche book publishing, but I have really been struck lately by some examples of the printed medium. I want to share some of these with you. And exercise my new scanner.

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Posted
09 March 2007

Categories
Nerd Factor X

Tags
c++ coding unicode

5 Comments

C++ 1, Unicode 0

Yes, another C++ post. Yes, I've been doing a lot of it lately.

Recently on WorseThanFailure there have been several incidences of functions intended to perform relatively simple string manipulation tasks. Being worthy of posting to WTF, they have of course been hilariously over-long, complicated and bug-ridden. One recent example was attempting to compare two strings in a case-insensitive manner. Another was attempting to remove spaces from a string.

I'm going to have a go at a similar problem, namely writing a C++ program to count whitespace characters in a file.

Ready to follow along? Good!

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Posted
26 February 2007

Categories
Nerd Factor X

Tags
c++ coding

1 Comments

Kata Four in C++

On a whim, I attempted Dave Thomas' Kata Four in C++. Yes that's right, C++.

Here's what I ended up with, feel free to throw peanuts.

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Posted
18 February 2007

Categories
Nerd Factor X

Tags
gnupg encryption emacs security password

4 Comments

My Password Safety Technique Is Unbreakable

Well, maybe not entirely unbreakable. You be the judge.

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Posted
15 February 2007

Categories
Nerd Factor X Provocation

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2 Comments

Yahoo! Stops! Forwarding! Mail!

On a whim I logged into my Yahoo account today. I hardly ever use it any more, but I'm glad I did, because it told me there was 45 email messages waiting.

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Posted
13 February 2007

Categories
Nerd Factor X Verisimilitude Personal

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4 Comments

Bloggable Mass The Second

It's probably a good thing that you don't see what goes on behind the scenes at Casa Del Girtby. Instead of fully-formed posts (or what passes for such on this site) instead I have lately just been producing mostly unrelated snippets. They don't deserve a post in their own right, but if I give each of them a bullet point, together perhaps they could form a bloggable mass. Again.

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Posted
24 January 2007

Categories
Verisimilitude Me Use Brain

Tags
climate information quality criticalthinking

1 Comments

The Quality of Information is Not Strain'd

Some half-arsed pseudo-philosophical ramblings follow. It starts with some musings on transistors and eventually circles around to show some relevance to current events, specifically the climate change debate. But be warned, it will take a while.

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Posted
21 January 2007

Categories
Nerd Factor X Personal

Tags
lca2007

3 Comments

Linux.conf.au

So there I am at Linux.conf.au on Tuesday. As with the previous day, there are lots of "MiniConfs" on fairly specialised topics, and I think it's fair to say that the conference proper didn't really start until the Wednesday. Nevertheless, there are lots of geeks hanging around, chatting to each other. I look over and there's a guy who looks a lot like Linus himself.

"Naah", thinks I. Can't be him, he would be a keynote speaker or something.

Next day there is a keynote from Andrew Tanenbaum. Conference organiser Jeff Waugh does the warmup and introductions: "Ladies and Gentlemen ... Linus Torvalds".

I have a moment of cognitive dissonance: maybe it's one of those in-jokes, referring to the infamous flame wars between ast and Linus when Linux was first released. But no, Linus is there to introduce ast, and in doing so demonstrates what nice guys they both are. And what an idiot I am.

That was my most memorable moment from the conference. Read on for some other highlights in no particular order.

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Posted
16 January 2007

Categories
Nerd Factor X Meta

Tags

2 Comments

Settling In

If you're reading this in a feed aggregator, click on through to enjoy the beautiful new theme that I have spent hours slaving over.

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Posted
15 January 2007

Categories
Personal Or Something

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2 Comments

Slinky Topology

Here is a picture of a slinky that has been turned inside out, or reversed, or ... something.

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