The (not-so-)Great Dumb Phone Experiment

Around two months ago, I successfully defended my Master’s thesis and received my M.S. in Engineering. As there was still some work to be done on the project I did, I agreed to stay in my lab over the summer and work on finishing the project as well as a few other small projects that needed my attention before I leave for good. However, this meant taking a fairly hefty cut in pay, as I would no longer be a fully funded teaching assistant, but instead merely a part-time lab technician. … »

Leaving Facebook

I deleted my Facebook account today. Not just deactivated, mind–that’s too undo-able. I actually deleted everything. Spent about 2 hours last night deleting all my old posts by hand, mostly to see if there was anything worth saving before I took the plunge. Aside from a few articles I had shared before I started using Pinboard, there was nothing of value. After purging content and connections, and making sure I revoked all application tokens, I requested a permanent deletion, an option which is not easy to find. … »

On Vim

Vim is a complicated beast. Although the recent trend has been away from megalithic IDEs in favour of simple text editors such as Sublime Text, the classic “simple” text editors (emacs and Vim) don’t seem to get much love–mostly because their arcane nature scares off any new users long before they begin to appreciate their true power. But, those brave (or foolhardy) enough to tackle the asymptotic learning curve become gurus of text manipulation, able to fling any ASCII text around with a mere handful of screenshots.

I am not one of those gurus.

What I am is a little bit crazy, and a little bit nostalgic for an era of computing that was largely over before I ever even learned to speak, much less type. I won’t try to convince anyone that Vim is awesome, or that they should chose to learn it over a more modern text editor–the days of Vi being the only thing available on remote systems are long over, so there’s really no justification for even learning basic Vi motions. What I offer here is just a glimpse into the mind of someone who consciously chose to learn a text editor that was already archaic, and a helping hand along the way should you choose that as well.

Get a drink ready. You’ll need it.

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Goodbye, Tumblr

I’ve moved my blog (with all, what 5 non-image posts) to Octopress. I’m not entirely sure why (boredom, I suppose), but here we are. Perhaps this will give me the motivation to post some of the posts I’ve had brewing in my Dropbox posts directory for the past year or so. In the meantime, I suppose I’ll be learning about Octopress themes and Jekyll’s static site stuff. Yay. … »

That one post I do at the end of the year

2011 has been a interesting year, to say the least. I graduated college and, deciding I hadn’t had enough pain and suffering, came back for grad school. There’s been a good deal of turmoil in my personal life, which I’m not going to get into here, but overall 2011 was a pretty up-and-down year, mostly down. At least there was some good music to cheer me up. Unlike last year.

In the spirit of retrospective, and in clinging to tradition, I’ll close this post with a look back at technology, music, movies, and games that came out in 2011.

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Trollin'

Albums that came out in 2011 that are better than A Dramatic Turn of Events1 In no particular order: Rise Against - Endgame Death Cab for Cutie - Codes and Keys Bon Iver - Bon Iver Explosions in the Sky - Take Care, Take Care, Take Care Foo Fighters - Wasting Light Daft Punk - TRON Legacy Reconfigured Mogwai - Hardcore Will Never Die, But You Will Jay-Z/Kanye West - Watch the Throne Foster the People - Torches 3 Doors Down - Time of my Life Albums that came out in 2011 that are not better than A Dramatic Turn of Events2 Theory of a Deadman - The Truth is… Lady Gaga - Born This Way Dream Theater - A Dramatic Turns of Events3 First Listen ↩︎ … »

2010 in entertainment

Well it’s 2011 now1 and I thought I’d write out my own personal choices for the best albums of 2010, and maybe include a few other entertainment mediums in there as well, while I’m at it. So, here’s my top n lists for 20102, and a few miscellaneous awards too.

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MacVim font settings

For future reference, using the experimental renderer: defaults write org.vim.MacVim MMCellWidthMultiplier 1.1 defaults write org.vim.MacVim MMCellWidthMultiplierKey 1.1 and then in gvimrc: set linespace=1 … »

Simple vim regex to isolate urls

:%s%^.(http://./?d=[A-Z0-9]{8}).*$%\1%g Pretty straightforward. … »

Why do I have 5 computers, anyway?

As I sit here surrounded by 4 computers, with a fifth waiting to be returned to service, I have to wonder… why? I’d guess most (sane) people only have maybe 2 computers, something like a laptop and a desktop, that they actually use regularly. I’ve got my MacBook Pro, my gaming desktop, my “server” desktop, and my SheevaPlug all in use, and will probably add my old Dell D630 back into the mix soon enough. … »