Tag: computers


While I’ve internalized selections from The Jargon File (well, sections thereof, from particular versions) I have to admit that the stuff in the new programming jargon collection run recently at Stack Overflow is all new to me. I don’t see myself using many of them heavily, but I think I can see drug/shrug/smug report all making their way into my lexicon.

Don’t teach it Daisy Bell

Did you see the story about the researchers who are growing computer brains out of organic material? And not just that, but massively parallel computers. Oh, and just for fun, they’ve also ditched that whole binary concept, skipped over trinary, and moved the whole thing on to quaternary logic. If you’re not lucky enough to have access to journals1, you… Read more →


If you are at all interested in how the business of publishing may change in response to some current disruptive technology shifts–and particularly if you’re interested in looking at the question from an author’s point of view–you should really pop over to Charlie Stross’ blog and read his post there outlining some thoughts on the question and asking for reader comments. This is one of those cases where the “don’t read the comments” rule does not apply: there are a couple of hundred comments there now with a pretty high signal-to-noise ratio, and lots of interesting (and some very scary) ideas are being kicked around.

Rambling about passwords

What you’re looking at there is a list of the 32 most common passwords from among the set of more than 32 million users of RockYou. The top item, ‘123456’ was used by more than 300,000 users. We don’t normally get to look at actual user data in sets this large, but one benefit of the recent privacy breach at… Read more →


Is there really still no tool for editing “story” as opposed to text? Reading (awesome) SF author Karl Schroeder‘s tweets today lamenting the lack of such a thing (in the wake of losing a document) makes me wonder why it is we don’t have it… The tweets in question: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5.


Generally speaking one should not mess around with any kind of major upgrade (operating system, router firmware, web service, etc) while drinking–this was lies madness. WordPress upgrades are so painless though, that I can run one from a hotel room while sustaining a mild buzz.


You know, sometimes the right tool for the job makes problems remarkably simple to solve. For a lot of my small computer problems, the right tool is sed. I remember the first time I encountered it, and I estimate it’s saved me around an average of about an hour a week since then–which works out to something like 117 working days.

Stick Figure Crypto

I generally love when people use the comic form to explain complicated concepts. I generally love cryptography. I have a special place in my heart for stick figures. So you can imagine how I feel about Jeff Moser’s multi-stage explanation of how AES came about, and how it works. Everyone should check it out, since there’s not really anyone (at… Read more →


I love garlic like few men love garlic, and I have even bought garlic from Lenny, but that doesn’t stop me from recognizing utter stupidity when I see it. If I were one of those “majority of householders” who were being prevented from having high speed by this kind of utterly cornball FUD, I would certainly be giving old Lenny a piece of my mind.

Fixing The Asides

Hey, did you notice the “aside” formatting is working again on that last post? You might remember my saying, way back when, that I had noticed that the upgrade to WP 2.8 had broken AsideShop, the plugin I used to do styling for my “aside” posts (Oh yeah, this is going to be some deep WP nerdery–run away!) and I… Read more →

Deep Geekery: DD-WRT

So, because of the recently discovered vulnerability in DD-WRT, I figured it was time to update the firmware on my router. Yes, I know that since I don’t allow remote configuration of the router I was somewhat protected from the threat, but I was due for an upgrade anyway. However, I do have to ask myself why I always think… Read more →

A Monday Night Gallimaufry

Let’s see if we can close some of the myriad tabs I’ve opened in the process of trying to catch up with everything that happened in the non-work world while I was off spending time at the Melbourne office: I’m quite impressed at the 16-year old (from the city where I did my university days) who managed to isolate plastic… Read more →

Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.5 Canada
This work by Chris McLaren is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.5 Canada.