Sunday, February 27, 2005


Recently reminded of this link by interesting graphics and Flash at Levitated. Also, this clay grid thing is pretty cool too.

Saturday, February 19, 2005

"Don't evah lose your sense of humor..."

I'm surprised so many of iFilm's Best Viral Videos of 2004 never found their way to my desktop. I guess from the ice age to the dole age, some viruses are more virulent than others.

I'd never seen Nextel: Dance Party. If you haven't seen it, you'll have to see if iFilm's claim is true: "No matter how many times we watch this, we just gotta laugh."

Also recommended are William Shatner's Rocketman (which I had seen) and Starbucks: Eye of the Tiger.

Tuesday, February 15, 2005

That's my name, so don't wear it out

Name Voyager, a cool Flash visualization of name trends. Below, the chart for Keanu. Maybe parents really should have to go through a certfication program. :)

Via heerforceone

Sunday, February 13, 2005

Hackers & Painters

For some time Hackers & Painters has been on the list of a thousand books I'm planning on reading soon. A recent recommendation and the recent link flurry to Graham's excellent advice to the young at heart, "What You'll Wish You'd Known," managed to push it onto the list of many books I'm trying to finish.

I agree with Evan Williams' assertions regarding the the chapters How to Make Wealth and Mind the Gap. There's good humor and insight to be found throughout. Graham's thoughts on fashions and fads vs. timeless principles in morality and aesthetics were particularly interesting to me. Given that my favorite subjects in high school were art and math, the title alone was enough to pique my interest.

There's one point I'd like to make in reference to the book. An old mentor of mine, one of the brightest people I've known, after much technical achivement in engineering, rocket science, etc., ultimately wound up getting his PhD and going into public policy. He used to taunt me with "You're still young, so you're still enjoying the easy problems, the ones involving machines. I'm older, I needed to move on to harder problems, the ones involving people."

I could leap to my own defense here and begin pointing at all of the difficult technical problems in the world, but, rather, I'm noting this to acknowledge the point. In his first chapter "Why Nerds are Unpopular," Graham notes nerd gravitation to technical problems due to the value they placed on being smart, but I think what gets lost on many of us technonerds is just how insanely difficult people problems are.

Computers are easier to understand than people. Computers reduce down to the execution of simple and predictable instructions, which is hardly the case with people. Compared to technical problems, people problems, social problems, are often insanely and unimaginably difficult. IMHO, this is a realization that might do many a technonerd some good.

Saturday, February 12, 2005

Color Image Processing

The current IEEE Signal Processing magazine is devoted to color image processing, and it includes a number of great articles on related topics.

Wednesday, February 09, 2005


Check out this Design Observer piece on Afri-Cola.

Tuesday, February 08, 2005

Google Maps

Still needs some work, but I must admit Google Maps is pretty cool!

AIGA Design Archives 2004

I'm not sure when the site was completed, but it was new for me today:

AIGA Design Archives 2004

Monday, February 07, 2005

Praise for D-Link's Technical Support

Over the weekend, I upgraded my wireless home network from 802.11b to 802.11g. After some frustrations, I decided to call D-Link's technical support. I expected the sort of support I've come to expect from so many companies: a circuitous maze of touch tone menus and ten minutes of waiting followed by cluelessness.

I was pleasantly surprised--shocked, perhaps--to be efficiently routed to competent techs who led me to quick and comprehensive solutions to my problems. This is the best technical support I've received from any company, and I'd like to give D-Link well-deserved praise.

Yey for D-Link's excellent technical support!

Saturday, February 05, 2005

Clifford Attractors

Wednesday, February 02, 2005

Medical Imaging

The latest Communications of the ACM is devoted to medical imaging. My first post-college job was at a biotech that did cancer therapy and imaging, so issues such as this are guaranteed to receive my attention. References to ITK prompted me to review the documentation. The C++ library is an intense exercise in the use of templates (an aspect of C++ with which I've had a longime and love/hate relationship that seems to oscillate).

IEEE Computer Society & RSS

via Geomblog, the IEEE Computer Society has RSS feeds for Digital Library abstracts.

Being Norbert Weiner

I was rereading the 1948 introduction to Norbert Weiner's Cybernetics. In it he talks about the opportunities on the boundaries of science.

"For many years Dr. Rosenblueth and I had shared the conviction that the most fruitful areas for the growth of the sciences were those which had been neglected as a no-man's land between various established fields. Since Liebniz there has perhaps been no man who has had a full command of all the intellectual activity of the day... There are fields of scientific work, as we shall see in the body of this book, which have been explored from the different sides of pure mathematics, statistics, electrical engineering, and neurophysiology in which every single notion receives a separate name from each group, and which important work has been triplicated or quadruplicated, while stlil other important work is delayed by the unavailability in one field of results that may have already become classical in the next field... It is these boundary regions of science which offer the richest opportunities to the qualified investigator."
It's interesting to read how much this was the case over 50 years ago. It seems truer now, and some of my greatest satisfactions have come from tricks I've learned in one domain and applied in another such as the application of various statistical methods in image processing.

In this area, the Internet are helping. In addition to the accessibility of CiteSeer and Arxiv, there are a number of scientific and academic blogs I've come to truly enjoy. The beauty of these blogs is that they're usually informal and accessible.

Sigh. My original intent was to say some things about Norbert Weiner and how I think he deserves more credit than he normally gets, but I think I'll leave that for another time and keep this short.