Wednesday, January 31, 2007


I'm sure practically everyone has heard about the "bomb scare" in Boston that was really just some LED sign boards.

Boston needs to wake up and realize the over-reaction and subsequent press conferences using the term "hoax" and "post-911 world" really don't make them look any less foolish.

First off, it's not a hoax - it's a guerilla marketing plan gone awry. A hoax implies that these devices were intended to be mistaken for bombs - which is clearly not the case.

Secondly, can we retire the term 'post-911 world', PLEASE? I'm just tired of this poor excuse covering people with an overactive imagination, and a lack of common sense and knowledge.

I've seen the devices - it should have been apparent that there was no structural threat from these, even if it was 100% explosive. As you may not know, explosive placed on a steel or concrete will just 'blow off' - leaving only surface damage or less.

There is a flickr photostream of one of the ads. The device is a black board, covered with LEDs, exposed electronic components - ie: resistors, capacitors, etc, and a line of C/D batteries along the bottom. No way there could have ever been enough explosive to threaten entire buildings and bridges and the like.

Finally, the "we arrested someone, hooray!" just seems like a face-saving strategy. I hope they realize the rest of the world sees this for what it is and just stop it. I assume the guy's legal defense will be covered by the agency who hired him, if not, the ACLU should step in.

Friday, January 26, 2007

Bulk Embedding Flickr in Blogspot

Does anyone have a methodology to bulk embedding Flickr images in a blogspot posting? I tried copying the snippet they give, but it ends up weird. Also it's time intensive, since I have to visit the 'all sizes' page of EACH photo to copy the HTML snippet.

All I really want is a system that grabs N photos in a row out of flickr, and gives me N nice little framed HTML snippets. Then I paste into my entry, and we're done.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Testing on the toilet

Thanks to slashdot, I noticed that our internal newsletter "Testing on the Toilet" is now public. I personally think the sheet is great - generally always something to read in the toilet.

But what is even funnier, is the comments in the slashdot article. The wild speculation, the huge leaps of faith, the analogies are just bizzare, and hilarious!

My view on TotT: A fun way to twinge people's thoughts about testing. Clearly a single 8.5x11 sheet is not going to deliver the final word on anything, but it will remind you of various techniques and why certain stylistic constructs are bad, and not just for style reasons.

Also, that my workplace is subject to millions upon millions of nerds fantasies, fears, dreams and hopes is always kind of neato.

The Challenges of P365

I must say, Project 365 has turned out to be a bit challenging this last week. The problem is remembering to snap a picture during the daylight hours. Driving to work does not help this much at all. While driving to work you generally have 0 downtime - if you're not driving, you're probably either still at home or just arrived at work. At least if you are taking the bus, you probably have to wait a few minutes for a transfer. This slight downtime is where I've gotten a few of my pictures from - specifically the bag lady.

Luckily my camera is very capable, the ISO 1600 mode offers a low amount of noise. Combined with the image stabilization of my new lens, the next batch of photos contains some fascinating low-light and night time pictures. Of course I've been lazy posting them, so I'm behind some. With an up and coming trip to Las Vegas starting tomorrow, you might just have to wait until next week to get it all.

Some tips for would-be Project 365-ers:
  • Your Camera goes everywhere. No exceptions. If you have a 8oz Point and Shoot - consider yourself lucky. My camera bag weighs at least 10 pounds.
  • Thematic - I have been trying to take things that support the theme of the day/week/month. One of my shots is a wilting poinsettia left over from the holidays.
  • Experiments - use this as your chance to mess with light and your camera's abilities. Switch to manual mode, turn off the flash, etc. Absolutely none of my Project 365 photos are done with a flash - I don't even own one!
  • Photos don't just mean camera - One of my up-coming pictures is a screenshot from WOW. Since I played all day long, I figured the theme of the day was WOW, and hence a screenshot would be appropriate. Hey, it's my project!
  • Peer pressure - make sure you're not off the hook. Get your friends, SOs, family to pressure you. There ideally should be an expectation that the next week will bring something awesome. You must post your photos on a blog.
  • "Just do it" - this is my anti-tip. This slogan rings hollow to me (for a variety of reasons), since motivation is more than 3 words. It doesn't offer any actual mechanical advice on HOW to get it done. I only include it here to rail against it.
I am still taking pictures every day - I have not missed a single day so far. Good luck to those also in process.

Monday, January 15, 2007

Jan 15th

Project365 016, originally uploaded by ryanobjc.

Waiting for a light at 5th and Denny in Seattle. A busy intersection, I'm sure there were many people looking at him. Now's the time to get your 15 minutes of fame.

Jan 14th

Project365 014, originally uploaded by ryanobjc.

Indie enjoys the snow, running around like a crazy dog (which he is). This is Carnation, WA which exhibits much more snow (more than half has melted at this photo) than Seattle.

Jan 13th

Project365 013, originally uploaded by ryanobjc.

The result of 4 days of below freezing weather, precipitation and some sunny days. Normally snow lasts a maximum of 2 days. It's been unusually cold (global warming makes for unpredictable weather changes).

Jan 12th

Project365 012, originally uploaded by ryanobjc.

At a party, Facinating!

Jan 11th

Project365 011, originally uploaded by ryanobjc.

On this icy and snowy day I braved the streets and bussed to work. This was to receive the UPS package that contained my new lens! This is the manual of the lens, using the 'macro' mode - the front element of the lens was ~ 45cm from the manual. I hope this new lens will give me much more versatility (great zoom range, awesome image stabilizer), as well as reducing the amount of dust in my camera. This was my Christmas and Birthday present to myself.

Jan 10th

Project365 010, originally uploaded by ryanobjc.

A bag lady - literally! These are plastic bags covering a motionless human shaped figure. Luckily the next day, I saw the same, but with a sleeping bag, and I finally saw her awake. So just an unusual way to sleep.

Jan 9th

Project365 009, originally uploaded by ryanobjc.

On the great snow storm day, between storms was a band of clear sky, with sun, and here it is. At this point it was still only windy and rainy, the temp was set to fall later that evening (and that it did!).

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Level 60

I finally reached level 60 in WOW on my primary character. It's been a long time coming - mostly because I haven't been able to play much in December.

Here is a screenshot of the moment I leveled up:


Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Project 365

I saw Project 365 recently - great idea - take a photo a day and post them. So I have been snapping at least one photo a day since Jan 1st. Some of the photos passed the midnight boundary, but since my day is realistically 9am - 2am, it still counts.

So without adieu, here is my first week:

Project365  001

Project365  002

Project365  003

Project365  004

Project365  005

Project365  006

Project365  007

And a special 8th one:

Project365  008