Archive for April, 2005

Who’s Drawing Dilbert Lately?

April 14th, 2005 No comments

I’m on one of the Dilbert emailing lists. The latest edition came out a couple of days ago, but I’ve only just got around to reading it.

Contained in it, is this explanation:Who’s Drawing Dilbert Lately?

Alert readers have noticed that Dilbert looks different lately, almost as if someone else is drawing it. Well, it’s still me, but here’s what’s happening: I lost the use of my right hand for drawing, thanks to overuse. Technically, it’s called a focal dystonia. It’s essentially a brain-mapping problem caused by overusing the hand. The hand is structurally healthy and perfectly fine for every possible use EXCEPT drawing. It’s very specific. My brain essentially removed from me the ability to do the thing that was hurting it.

One way I can confirm that it’s a brain issue is that when I try to draw with my LEFT hand, my RIGHT hand spasms immediately. Some part of my brain doesn’t want me drawing because that’s what caused all the discomfort.

For a few weeks I worked left-handed. I’m not quite ambidextrous, but if I work slowly, it looks about the same. Some of the lefty ones have a “L.H.” on them to tip you off.

Left-hand drawing was too slow, so I looked for, and found, a technical solution. Wacom has a product that allows you to draw directly onto a special flat computer screen that tilts and turns just like paper on a drawing board. It’s called the Cintiq 21UX, and I’ve been using it for the past several weeks, with much success. It will take a while for my characters to look the same as old, but I’m closing in on it.

The reason I can draw on the computer, but not on paper, is because now I work at a different scale (larger), and the feel of the stylus on the screen is so different from pen-on-paper that my brain doesn’t think I’m drawing, so it doesn’t trigger the hand spasms.

Brains are funny.

All I can say is: Get well soon Scott, and I admire your perseverance to keep drawing.

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New McDonalds Adverts

April 14th, 2005 No comments

I’m really confused.

The current UK TV marketing campaign for McDonalds involves people with stereotypical accents from around the world talking about 99p meals and what they should do with their 1p change from a pound coin.

The current advert they keep on showing is the one where the suggest using it as a wishing well token and asking for luxury mansion.

What the hell is the accent that bloke has in the advert? I just don’t get it. I got the last “Mexican” advert, but this guy sounds half dutch, partially Australian, some South African, a bit Scandinavian and falls back to an English accent for some words. I think that there might be some Irish in there as well!

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Student Comedy Genius

April 13th, 2005 1 comment

I saw this on Richard’s website yesterday, and I’m loving it for it’s simplicity and genius.Girl:

Are you allergic to nickel?


I’m allergic to Nickelback…

Apparently, Richard overheard it in “Cafe Mondial”, a bar in the University of Reading’s Students Union building (for those not in the know).

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Technorati Tags!

April 10th, 2005 1 comment

As some of you may have noticed, I’ve now integrated my blog (partially) with Technorati.

I’ve now categorised all of my 147 posts (this is number 147), which took bloody ages.

At some point I’ll integrate the categories with the site page so that you can browse by category as well.

I’m particularly pleased that I have managed to create a new Technorati Tag of “Suicidal Birds”.


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More Music

April 10th, 2005 No comments

I should have logged this last Friday (1st April), but I only got around to listening to them this weekend!

Anyway, last Friday, I bought 2 more CDs – “Hotel” by Moby and “Human After All” by Daft Punk.

Both are pretty much as expected, with no major surprises or pieces of inspiration. Daft Punk doesn’t really do it for me this time around (although it’s still a good album) – it doesn’t really have the spark and energy of “Discovery”. “Hotel” isn’t too bad, and is Moby experimenting with a slightly different sound, but still doesn’t beat “Play” in my opinion.

I think that is it for CDs that I want at the moment, I’m guessing that there will be a couple of CDs out in several weeks that I’ll want – I’m kind of getting into “The Bravery” and “The Kaiser Chiefs” so may be they will be next.

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Out of Sync

April 10th, 2005 No comments

For the first time in several months, I went in a boat with my brother when we went rowing this morning.

Having sat directly behind him (in a quad) for several months, it was pretty unbelievable how out of sync with each other we have become.

Pretty rubbish session really.

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Grrr, more blog spam

April 9th, 2005 No comments

I got my first ever trackback yesterday

Annoyingly though, it was from a spammer again! Grrrrr.

Guess I’ll just have to make sure that all I vet all trackbacks now as well!

Brilliant. :-/

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April 9th, 2005 No comments

Not sure I approve of this. It lets you create Cron jobs that are executed over the Internet (e.g. Request a webpage which then backs up your website database). I use a similar system on my website, but I keep the requests internal – I use a proper Linux Cron job to execute WGet to request a file on my website, which does “stuff….”

I can see the use of this site if you don’t have that kind of access, or the expertise to setup Cron and WGet, but I don’t like the idea of a potentially hidden URL being known to a company that I know nothing about.

But that could just be the paranoia in me taking hold. Must stop talking, they’re watching me!


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RSS Image Feed

April 9th, 2005 No comments

Another good idea!

This time, a guy has written a program to strip images from RSS feeds, and display them in a single web page.

Here’s a link. Be careful though – there are some explicit adult pictures on there too.

The shame is, it would be better if it also provided an RSS feed itself to the last 20 (or so) pictures that it receives!

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Here’s A Thought…

April 4th, 2005 No comments

…for a Monday afternoon.

6 or 7 years ago, man struggled with the Y2K bug. It was eventually solved, and the root problem solved too (increase date fields to have 4 digits for the year).

Here’s the question: Do we now have a Y10K bug? If so, would it be a good idea to solve it now rather than later?


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