Archive for the ‘Computing’ Category.

Running out of Internet :-(

StofaNet at the limit! Mikkel is going to love this… :-)

It seems that Stéphanie and I will be running out of bandwidth in a week or so… We only have 10 GB/month, and we’ve already used up 6 GB in the first 11 days. When we hit the bandwidth cap we can buy extra capacity at the hefty price of 0.10 DKK/MB (about 1.5 €-cent or 2 $-cent). Ugh!

We’ll probably have to upgrade our subscription for next month to the 4 Mib line with 20 GB/month bandwidth. That would cost us 400 DKK/month compared to 350 DKK/month right now, so it’s actually quite a good deal. The problem is that it might not work — twice the bandwidth, but also twice the speed… We’ll see how it goes.

Keeping score of things

The newest feature on our Planet is post statistics. Every time you make a post you earn 1 point. The total score within the time horizont of the Planet (the latests 15 posts within the last week) determines your order in the list of faces at the top.

The score will probably also determine the size of your face one day…

Suggestions for a better formula is of course happily accepted — patches against the SVN repository is accepted even more happily :-)

The new Planet is online!

In case you haven’t noticed… the new planet is up and running. Find it here: http://planet.mgeisler.net/. The content on that page actually comes from http://daimi.au.dk/~mg/planet/ via a mod_rewrite proxy request. This is because I gave up on making the code work on the Python 2.2 installed on my site…

I hope you like the new overview of recent activities. Of course one should be able to jump from the preview down to the full post, but this will have to do for now. If you have an accound on [DAIMI][], then feel free to checkout the code from ~mg/SVNHOME/planet and implement this before I do :-)

New Planet coming soon

I’ve been playing with the Planet lately and a new version is coming soon.

It now uses the rather cool Kid template language for the templates, which ensures that the output is as close to real XHTML as possible. This also means that your feeds must be properly encoded — if not, then the content will be mercilessly dropped. That’s the new world of XML…

It might sound hard when one considers that browsers have been handling slightly-broken content for years, commonly referred to as “tag-soup”. The advantage of strict compliance to XHTML is the number of programmically transformations possible because we now require the input to be a valid XML tree.

Anyway, consider this post a sort of test-post for the new Planet. As such, I’ll start by testing the encoding of ampersands: &. WordPress ought to encode it as &amp;amp; in the feed, something which Blogger.com seems to forget. An alternative is to wrap the whole thing in a <![CDATA[ ... ]]> construct. This is what WordPress actually does, now comes the question: does it remember to esacpe the CDATA declaration I just made? Lots of things to consider here :-)

Looking for a small form factor PC

Stéphanie will move up here in less than two weeks time, so we’ve started looking for a new PC for her. It’s easier to buy a new than transporting the old one from Switzerland to Denmark.

Because we want to be cool and hip we’re looking for a SFF PC, a so-called small form factor PC. It’s those nice little boxes pioneered by Shuttle (they apparently call them XPC now). The system will not be used for games, but for office work, photo editing, etc. I’m thinking something like this:

  • SSF: Shuttle SD11G53,500 DKK ($600). This box includes a motherboard with integrated graphics card and a sound card.

  • CPU: Pentium M 730 1.6 GHz900 DKK ($155). Nice ultra-cool CPU that consumes a maximum of 27W under full load. It should be fairly fast too.

  • RAM: 2 GiB Dual DDR II SDRAM — 1,000 DKK ($170). I don’t care so much about the brand, but Stéphanie says that size matters :-)

  • HDD: Samsung SpinPoint P120 SP2514N 250 GB600 DKK ($100). I have two of these already and I’m quite satisfied with them. Silent PC Review recommends them too for their quiet operation.

  • DVD: Burner for ±RW — 300 DKK ($50). Again I don’t really care as long as it can read and write on all the silly plus and minus formats.

  • LCD: Samsung SyncMaster 204B4,000 DKK ($685). I hope this is a good 20 inch LCD monitor… I think it looks good and I’ve read positive comments about it, but I would very much like your input on this! So please leave a comment if you have any experience with this monitor or know about another good monitor in the same price range.

Please note how I managed to find three letter acronyms for all the components :-)

If you know of other good SFF systems then let me know! I like the Pentium M based system because it is low noise (when the computer has to be right there on the table it has to be quiet). But maybe this isn’t necessary? Tell us what you think.