Other online diaries:
Wed, 31 Aug 2005
At the recent blogher conference (women in blogging conference) one of the sessions was titled How To Get Naked (There is Audio available of that session now, the panel consisted of Heather (dooce) Armstrong and a few other well known public bloggers). The session topic was that of blogging where everyone knows your real identity. This of course brings into focus the other way to blog, doing so anonymously.
One rather brilliant (in my opinion) example of a good anonymous blog is Fafblog, I have no idea who these people are, but damn are they funny, insightful, clever, biting, esoteric, etc. The EFF recently released a guide on How to Blog Safely, or anonymous blogging.
If one were to start an anonymous blog, they would avoid linking to it elsewhere, would avoid telling people they know or who read anything they write elsewhere about it as them linking to it or telling others about it could also be suspicious. Should one just go about writing what they hope is good content and blog like no one's watching? (because lets face it, it is pretty much a sure bet that no one is) Consider the recent statistics from technorati in their latest State of the blogsphere. The number of blogs is doubling every 5 months currently, a new blog is created almost every second. Even ignoring the spam blogs that appear on blogspot and other services, this is a huge number of blogs. As pointed out in the article I linked to about cats the other day, most of the blogs out there are rubbish, and far too many of them seem to contain endless photos of pet cats.
So if you write a bunch of stuff and do not use your existing reputation or google juice to pump it into any sort of readership how does it get noticed? I think the only way really is two fold a) have a lot of good content on it. and b) use tagging services and other techniques so posts from it will start to appear in the appropriate places when being searched for. It is fortunate that good content matters more than almost anything else, otherwise spam blogs would be far more successful than they are currently. Also a good anonymous blog is obviously done for the art, for the sake of the blog, to improve ones writing or thinking on some given subject, it has no bearing on any real world social status or status of the author on the Internet, a form of art for the sake of the art.
Tue, 30 Aug 2005
Mango flavour hash browns. - 10:27
Speaking of mango flavour (no not the hash browns) I was pleasantly surprised to find one of the bells fruit bar flavours is mango, why I had not noticed this before is beyond me, however eating an orange coloured bar last night I thought, this does not taste much like apricot, then I looked on the packet and found it said mango. Mmmmmmm mangos (well processed barry stuff that has mango flavour in it, but hey). Maybe I should cook the mango chicken on cous cous dish I have had ingredients for sitting around the kitchen for a few weeks, well mango chicken and hash browns on cous cous of course...
Sat, 27 Aug 2005
It's a Blorthday and I will write crap if I want to! - 18:50
Thus for the heck of it, to encourage the view that blogs are inaccurate and dates may be picked at random and because I did not remember to check the date of my first ever post until today (I knew the Blorthday was coming up I just had not checked which date it was exactly). As for the term Blorthday, well what else could I call it Blogthday? Diaversary? Trevor?, though alas the use of Blo encourages the Blog connotation and I still have not come to like the word Blog much.
[18:56:47] 28 oneiros sjh ~/diary/data>find -name '*.text' | wc -l 337 [18:58:37] 29 oneiros sjh ~/diary/data>wc `find -name '*.text'` ... 12875 96471 620439 total
Including this post (so far) that is 337 posts, 96,471 words. Whoda thunk I could rattle on about crap that much, though this is still not a real blog, I have yet to post photos of my cat, possibly made more difficult by not owning a cat, maybe I had better wander into the RSPCA and ask if I could take a photograph of a cat which I could use to provide some authenticity to this diary. Who cares if they think I am a loony, I am sure it must be done, all in the name of blog truth.
Today I hopped on the road bike at 7:50am and headed out for a 100 KM ride with the Bilbys (Tharwa, Cotter), got home at 12:40pm and hopped in the car a 1:10pm to head out to pack up the course from the 8 hour race at Sparrow Hill and then head out to the Kowen XC course to lay out the course for the Bilbys off road duathlon tomorrow, I got back home around 6pm, time now for some food I think. (this was all to attempt to provide some blogthenticity of boring shit no one cares about, which in the absence of cat photos may be the best I can do to be like every other blog on the planet).
Fri, 26 Aug 2005
More of that slow news day stuff - 12:07
I am hoping the work the CORC Trails Advocacy team has been doing over the past two years to present a need for an extreme mountain biking area to the ACT Government will be successful, though ACT Laws still make this hard on the land owner/manager, in South Australia they have been able to create such parks with properly/safely constructed obstacles and ensure the land manager and people constructing the obstacles in their parks are not liable for injuries of riders in the parks.
The slow news day title of course refers to the thing a few weeks ago where they quoted me in the paper with a photo.
Thu, 25 Aug 2005
Where do you buy every day stuff online in Australia? - 10:48
However I have absolutely no idea where to look for less specific stuff to purchase online, say you want to buy a few pairs of socks, or a television (and compare specifications of a few), or some cutlery, or a microwave. I was wondering a few months ago how much a given size tv would cost here (Mum has leant me a large tv for the foreseeable future and I was curious about the cost of such an item as I would never consider buying a tv myself it is not something I had any idea of what it may retail for). Just today I spent about 15 minutes looking around yahoo's Australian only directories in shopping/clothing areas, trying searching google and froogle for Australian only retail outlets, etc. I was searching for someone who would sell plain sports socks such as reebok, billabong, quicksilver, addidas or whatever and ship them to you in the post.
Sure for this sort of more generic stuff most people I suspect would prefer to go to a physical retail outlet, however it just seems o be a waste of time to me, to walk into Civic (because driving would just make me unhappy and agro, driving is not a nice or pleasant way to do anything) (and I do not like locking my bikes up in town as they cost a bit) from work, find a shop, buy some socks, walk back to work. There goes 40 minutes minimum for no real good reason. Of course this could just be my male anti shopping gene in full force, but it really does sound like a huge waste of time I could use to do work or ride bikes or something instead. Searching google for something as simple as "clothes shop" and selecting Australia only really does not show anything particularly useful, nor was wandering around yahoo.com.au for a while doing me any good. Maybe I had better capitulate and simply go in and buy socks at one of those physical retail outlets.
Wed, 24 Aug 2005
Wearing the wrong socks for an interview in a warm building. - 18:56
Now in an effort to drive away the two and a half readers I may have of this diary I will talk about the socks I wore to work. These socks are worn out to the extent there is only thin gauze sock skeleton material across the bottom of the sock, I should simply throw away this, and a few other pairs of my socks and go buy more, the problem is (especially in the heat mentioned above) that my feet get smellier and feel icky all day.
On an aside there was another Environment ACT sort of backed thing going around on Win TV news tonight in Canberra and something will appear in the paper tomorrow. I have not seen the TV piece however I hear it came across fairly badly for mountain bikers as a whole. A Canberra times Journalist rang me for some input from the CORC perspective, I suspect that will appear in the newspaper tomorrow. Hopefully the piece will not come out too badly but I really have no idea what angles they are looking for here.
Tue, 23 Aug 2005
Racing in a fast team or showing off old scars - 18:36
Anyway it is always good to do races in teams with people who can ride fast, this weekend, due to being teamed up with a rider like Rob, we came 3rd in the Mens Pairs category, my laps tended to be around 5 to 8 minutes slower than Rob's most of the day. Another example of this is my 2003 Mont 24 Hour race team, due to being teamed up with riders as fast as Dave, Julie and Aaron we came first in our category by over an hour. I do not think this is really rocket science, A good team is a key to success in cycling, Lance Armstrong has proven that pretty conclusively over the past 7 years.
As for showing off old scars, Mikal is getting into his cycling, he seems to be enjoying it, including a 23 KM ride on Saturday, even though he had another fall on the ride. He claims his scar on his knee is cool, and that it bled lots. He suggested I should try for a scar on my knee during my ride out to Stromlo this afternoon as all the cool people have cycling related scars on their knees. I decided it was best not to aim for this today, after all, in my case, acquiring knee scars in cycling accidents is so last year (and I still have purple skin marking those scars on both knees over a year later)
My ride up stromlo was a bit lacklustre today, 12m30s for the climb itself, the entire ride out and back was 1h12 minutes today, an average speed of 30.0 for the 36.4 KM ride. Slower than last week even, ahh well maybe next week I will improve.
Fri, 19 Aug 2005
More good food on campus soon... - 13:50
There is a light at the end of the tunnel though, the new JCS building that is being built (or possibly finished already, the big green ugly looking building) on the oval opposite Mikey's work will have a cafe, the owner of a certain eating establishment I like a lot (mentioned and used a lot during lca2005, about 50 metres from my office) has taken out the lease for the cafe that will be in this new building once finished. This will not be a ANU Union establishment, and if the two cafes they already run are an indication (Pickle and Discovery) it will be something to look forward to for all the people on that side of campus. (there really is not much nearby in the way of food outlets over there).
Of course I do not know how public this information is, or should be, ahh well it is out now. Interestingly Nick may price things a bit cheaper at the new cafe in order to encourage people to go there, it may even be worth hopping on the bike and riding across campus if he makes things a lot cheaper.
I suspect Andrew is somewhat pissed off. - 13:29
Andrew rocked up to the uni this morning for a 1 hour lecture, and parked out in this more public area due to the difficulty of getting parking access in the uni and headed off to the lecture, his was the only car there at the time. I imagine sometime while he was in his lecture some fuckstick walked past and seeing it was the only car there thought it would be fun to make all 4 tyres go flat with a knife. "WHAT THE HELL IS WRONG IN THE HEAD OF SOMEONE WHO DOES THIS?" I mean really what sort of mindset has someone wander past some random car on some street and slash all the tyres for no reason?
Sarah had rocked up to give Andrew a lift once the tow truck rocked up, NRMA had already been but could not do much with so many tyres flat. Thinking about it, with modern car tyre technology flat tyres are quite rare, this is one of the few reasons I can imagine that would cause a tyre to go flat now days, but really what sort of idiots do this to cars? One of the tyres was not entirely flat, I suspect the idiot responsible was seen and yelled at before they could properly slash the las tyre so ran off.
Thu, 18 Aug 2005
Wed, 17 Aug 2005
Daily grind has a few more opening hours - 10:10
Anyway Hugh mentions having lunch at the Daily Grind over near his office area. I have not partaken lunch there, however have been there at breakfast, thus his "Lunch Only" hours suggested may be somewhat incorrect. I do agree it is a good place, prices are low and the breakfast menu is pretty good and the coffee is up to par, I liked it more than the other place I have been to in that area which AFAIR is on the same street as Hugh's office and a few blocks up.
Tue, 16 Aug 2005
Mt Stromlo wins again - 17:45
I had a upset feeling stomach a bit today and had lunch about an hour before the ride, those to combined to give me a stitch during the climb. When I got to the flat bit half way up before going through the boom gate I had to back off so the stitch would not worsen, then I was unable to put real effort in again for the rest of the climb and kept my speed around 20 rather than 23 or 24 all the way from there to the top. The climb itself was around 12m10s. I suspect my diet today and last night was not ideal, too much meat and not balanced well enough with fruit, carbs and vegetables.
The reason I suspect a diet problem yesterday and today is I hit a fitness flat spot on the way home from just past cotter road back to near yarramundi reach, I was simply unable to put real speed into the bike and was often dropping to 23 KMh on slight rises. Anyway hopefully I have gotten over this a bit as I am heading out for a lap of cotter/uriarra at lunch with Sue. I must remember to eat and hydrate too.
Tuesday afternoon milk carton blogging - 13:30
For the geeks among us, this is an interesting bug filed against some milk cartons. I wonder if these people really want to run gdb on the core of a milk carton or not (the core of a milk carton would probably just be a whole bunch of milk, unless someone filled the carton with something else, like gravel).
For anyone who was massively confused by the above paragraph (heck knowing how little sense I make sometimes I suspect that would be almost everyone) I found this milk is milk blog, lots of stuff pertaining to milk cartons and cases put to the US FDA pertaining to milk cartons.
Mon, 15 Aug 2005
Why no comments? - 21:48
I wonder if the primary reason I have not put comments on here is simply because of my own severe dislike of web forums? A few people have told me in the last few months that comments would be really neat here. Sites like Farkin (Australian Mountain Biking hangout) or most of the more popular blogs (Fafblog or Dooce (on her photos)) have comments and an active community. I personally can not imagine any reason to use Farkin when there is email or other mechanisms, maybe I am just sticking my head in the sand too much.
Like Mikal maybe I should try this comments thing on here some time.
Speed of light, Avogadro's, Tomato and Cucumber and other universal constants. - 21:13
As for his telepathic waiters, maybe they have 802.11 or something chips implanted in their heads, who knows anything could happen. Interestingly this guy lives in Austria, I wonder how many Arnold's he knows?
Xmas in July in August mtb ride down the Oaks. - 15:07
I went to the 2003 and 2004 instances of this ride. On both those occasions a few other Canberrans were also there along with the Sydney siders, also the trains were running to the blue mountains so there were large numbers of Sydney listees. This year I was the sole Canberran, and the trains were not running to the blue mountains so the ride (known as the Oaks, this is from Woodford to Glenbrook in the lower blue mountains near Sydney) had somewhat lower attendance.
For once though there was a pretty god turn out of riders at the earlier start time to ride up hill as well as back downhill so Dave@ and I were not the only hill climbing nutters. There was quite a lot of uphill traffic on the ride on the day, heck Lisa Mathison (Australia's best female XC mountain bike racer currently) was there, she past us going uphill and downhill. Anyway I took photos of the XiJiA ride and put them online with a few words again.
Sun, 14 Aug 2005
Where did they hide Arnold? - 20:16
I got to thinking maybe all the Arnold's are hiding, so went looking for Arnold. I looked under the rug and didn't find Arnold. I rang Moe's and asked for Amanda Huggenkiss but Arnold didn't answer the phone. From this extensive search I believe I can conclude that Arnold is indeed hiding. As Jane said she knows one in Austria I suspect they are all hiding there. Like Bruce hiding out in Australian Academia, I may find Arnold if I ring the Governor of California's office and ask for Arnold (and he is Austrian too, spooky) though they may simply lock me up for that.
Of course another blow came when someone pointed out to me that Arnold J Rimmer is a hologram so can not be used as conclusive proof that Arnold is not hiding in Austria but is instead travelling through space with a mutant cat an android and a bloke named Charles Lister.
Thu, 11 Aug 2005
I let myself in with this chainsaw - 09:10
Anyway for anyone who wants some more obvious humour, go have a look at what is on Fafnir's list of things to do.
Wed, 10 Aug 2005
More of that folk music stuff... - 17:40
Last week someone on one of the planets I read (Linux Australia, Debian or Gnome) mentioned a cdbaby sale, selling a lot of their stock at USD $5 per album. I have purchased music from cdbaby a few times in the past, all my Kathleen (Bird) York and Melissa Ferrick albums come from them. They retail many lesser known artists that would otherwise not have much of a presence in global retail chains or outlets.
So I wandered over to the site and browsed around for a while, listening to a bunch of the samples with some of the albums I decided on buying 3 Lorna Bracewell albums. "Don't Stop Now", "Little Miss Obvious" and "God Forbid". I also bought an album by Deborah Smith, "Stay Awake". So far I have listened to the Deborah Smith one once, last night, however most of the listening I have been doing has been to the three Lorna Bracewell albums.
The albums arrived yesterday, freedb did not recognise any of the albums, I have since attempted to submit freedb updates so hopefully that will be fixed soon. Last night and today at work I have had all three albums on repeat play.
So far I really like the sound of the first two albums, "Don't Stop Now" and "Little Miss Obvious", though as I start to get used to Lorna's singing style and am able to listen to the lyrics better I notice the lyrics on "God Forbid" are, unsurprisingly (it is a more recent album, with more experience behind it), better on the whole, though strangely the sound still does not appeal quite as much as that of the two earlier albums. An interesting sound and voice, I am definitely happy to have purchased these three albums, I suspect as usual this stuff will grow on me more over the next few months too.
Before looking around cdbaby last week I had never heard of either of these artists, it is always a good thing to find more music you enjoy.
I'm sorry Dave I can't let you do that - 15:44
Extra goodness with disc-cover - 14:49
disc-cover looks at a cd in the drive does a cddb/freedb lookup and produces a postscript (or other format) output that can be used in the jewel case. Anyway yesterday I received some new cds (I will blog about this later) and the artists are not well enough known to have listings in freedb. Grip and other programs thus displayed unknown and such. I wanted to generate a cddb entry to place in my ~/.cddb/ directory that these programs could use. Freshmeat and google did not produce much of interest for outputting the correct file. Much to my delight after glancing at the disc-cover man page I was reminded that one of the output formats available is cddb.
disc-cover -n -t cddb
Generates the hex string used to name a file and the file Artist_-Disctitle.cddb which I was able to rename into my ~/.cddb directory and all works fine. I suppose I should look at uploading the album details to freedb, however last time I looked about 5 years ago uploading to freedb was a non trivial task, though I notice there appear to be applications that can do that more easily now days.
Anyway disc-cover has once again proven to be damn useful.
Update: I notice on the FreeDB FAQ they mention grip as an application that may be used to submit new track information. Now I have valid labels and grip has the information I should be able to work out what button to press to do this. (I use grip as my cd playing/ripping application).
Update2: So reading the FAQ closer it does appear though they tell you there to use some application I should be able to send the updates in a basic email, copy the entry generated by disc-cover add some items such as DGENRE and DYEAR, as this will be the first upload leaving the revision at 0 will be fine and all should work. I worked this out simply by looking at some existing entries for albums I already have cddb files for.
Update3: The first submissions I tried had blank subject lines, I noticed the developer link on the freedb site and found a Submit new entries document for developers of software, it appears that is the only thing my first submission attempts were missing. Anyway it is good to see that document there I do not recall finding it when I last looked at submitting track listings.
Tue, 09 Aug 2005
Mon, 08 Aug 2005
Fri, 05 Aug 2005
Those chemists, always making things 'splode - 15:19
Once we evacuated we were all told DCS had been sealed for at least 2 hours and they suggested we all go home. I wandered home (my road bike is still in my office) and I wonder if now would be a good time to hop on the mountain bike for a few hours....
DCS may be open again by 5pm, not sure yet.
Update: We were allowed in briefly around 5pm to fetch anything we needed (in my case, winter cycling tights, insulin pen, home keys, laptop, road bike, running shoes, running tights, a few other things) and in theory the building will be open for staff again by tomorrow morning. The entire building still retained the smell of the smoke that erupted from RSCHEM.
One of my house mates mentioned many other buildings around ANU were evacuated, even on the other side of campus, at one point they considered evacuating some of the halls and colleges also. Talking to someone in the building when I was picking up my stuff I learnt the Firies tried putting the fire out with foam, when that did not work they resorted to water, this has them wondering if run off from it will negatively affect Sullivans creek. I still do not know the cause or any more detailed information about the fire.
ABC has a story about the explosion in the uni science lab too which provides explosion details but not much more information.
Out there with the negative temperatures - 10:45
The temperatures were just bein' negative, saying stuff like "Are we there yet?" and "Why do we have to hang around on this cold drafty Moon?" and sayin' "Hah you are never going to make it to the top of Everest!" and "I bet we get caught and eaten by Amazon cannibal pygmies" and all manner of other depressin' things. Them temperatures, they just don't know how to have a good time at the moment, all they can be in the mornin's is negative.
Wed, 03 Aug 2005
The evil that is the Rav 4 - 16:43
I saw one on Tuesday morning with a little children's mobile and a child car seat, I am sure it steals babies, luring them in with the mobile, locking them into the seat and stealing them away. There you have it Toyota Rav4's steal children, irrefutable proof.
Time trialing into the sunrise. - 15:30
This was the first morning in about two weeks I have not felt sick with a cold while out riding, so I was happy to be able to put a bit of effort in to the ride. I was planning to meet up with the others for coffee at Dickson around 07:30 so did not have heaps of time (so doing a climb of Mt Majura or similar on the way back in was not an option today).
On the ride I stayed in the drops, low and pushing the pace for about 80% of the ride, the rest, generally when climbing, still at a good pace I was on the hoods. For example the climb up to the first hill top as the highway leaves Canberra I was on the hoods or out of the saddle pushing a bigger gear. As I topped this climb I saw a wondrous pink sunrise with pink fog sitting below the clouds in the distance. If only I had my camera with me I could show you all what you missed out on by not being out there this morning at 06:45am.
I got to the cafe at Dickson with an average speed of 31.1, riding time around 1h5 minutes, on the whole it was a bit slower than I would like, however I did take it easy toward the end, and it is the middle of winter and my form is down, in summer I should have been able to get the average around 33 or 34 KMh. Of course I should do this sort of thing more often (moderately hard to hard effort by myself so I can keep the pace pegged), if I do maybe I can improve on summer expectations.
Tue, 02 Aug 2005