Wednesday, December 31, 2008
Wednesday, December 24, 2008
Also: Special bonus from their father.
Saturday, December 20, 2008
A little explanation if you care for it: The dogs are sleeping with us in the bed since God knows when. The bed is over 60 cm high but Chucky is capable of jumping on it from the ground and Albert had a little wooden box next to the bed and he used that as a springboard.
So the problem was not getting to the bed but I was worried that jumping down from the bed can be harmful to their backs (especially for rather heavy Albert with rather short legs).
Of course, the hardest part now is to teach them to use the stairs and not just jump down from the bed...
P.S: I did not construct the stairs, of course. I just gave the blueprints to the carpenter and afterwards glued the pieces of our old bathroom mat (with penguins!) to the surfaces.
Saturday, December 06, 2008
I solved this problem like a man. Like a geeky nerdy man, that is. I made a special CGI web application to track the dogs.
Because we both have www-enabled mobile phones, we now just use a private URL on my webserver where we can see when the dogs were last fed and walked and we can both set these times to "now" or to some predefined times in the past ("30 minutes ago", "1 hour ago" etc.). And we can see the info and set it from any place with network coverage.
I pity the people who had to solve this problem 10 years ago. They were screwed and had to resort to uncool paper and pen.
TODO: Automatic sending of alarm SMS when the dogs are not walked for 10 hours or more!
Monday, December 01, 2008
Remember, if there was no Internet, we'd probably never see this.
For those not "in the know": This is a mashup of two completely unrelated videos.
For those "in the know": This is the stuff Pedobear's dreams are made of.
Tuesday, November 25, 2008
Recently, however, there has been a surge in quality of their video section. These new skteches are snappy, well written, directed and acted, even - dare I say - witty. Take a look at a few choices:
In Thanksgiving Tradition, Bush Pardons Scooter Libby In Giant Turkey Costume
World's Oldest Neurosurgeon Turns 100
Tuesday, November 18, 2008
Tuesday, October 28, 2008
That means everything public from firstname.lastname@example.org is being transfered to email@example.com Google account and "fuka" account at Google hosted "fuxoft.cz" domain - these are two different accounts, believe it or not! For example my e-mail and Jabber chat is being handled by fuxoft.cz Hosted Apps, while Google Reader or Google Notebook are handled byt "firstname.lastname@example.org" standard Google account and linked accordingly (hopefully).
Why should you care?
You should care if you still use "email@example.com" in any form whatsoever in any contacts or services of your. You should replace all of them with "firstname.lastname@example.org". The most important and not readily apparent stuff:
- My E-Mail/Google Talk/Jabber id is email@example.com (this is true for several months already, I am just repeating it in case you missed the change).
- My "Shared Items" (interesting links) are now residing at the new address with much nicer URL: feeds.fuxoft.cz/Fuxoft/Shared (if this domain doesn't seem to work, wait a few hours for the DNS changes to propagate). If you subscribed to my Shared links before October 27, 2008, that feed will no longer be updated!
- If you used one of the early Google Social features (for example "friend feeds" in Google Reader), you should remove/ignore firstname.lastname@example.org and add email@example.com instead.
And while we are talking about friends and sharing, my "Activity stream" is at fuxoft.jaiku.com. This is a combined feed of "everything Fuxoft" - my blog posts regardless of language, my uploaded photos, my Jaiku status changes, my favorite discovered links, uploaded and discovered videos, etc...
Sunday, October 19, 2008
Friday, October 03, 2008
No, it was OK and it did what it should do:
if clicked then
Friday, September 26, 2008
When you look at fuxoft.jaiku.com, you can see my status changes ("wha I am doing right now" - like on Twitter), but - more importantly - you can see my blogposts, my photos uploaded to Flickr, my videos favorited at YouTube and interesting links I found using Google Reader sharing. Everything on a single page with automatically generated RSS feed. If you want to know about "everything Fuxoft is up to", this is the page to go to (or subscribe to).
In order to prevent flooding of person's Jaiku stream with dozens of items each day, the items from each source are indexed only once every 24 hours. You have to click on "... and XY more" link in each post to see special page where all the items from this day and from this feed are displayed (in the right-hand column).
Jaiku has been bought by Google and you can probably expect its integration into Google infrastructure fairly soon.
Jaiku registrations are not yet public but everyone has been given an infinite number of invites recently. If you want to register at jaiku, I can send you the invite. But if you just want to watch what I'm up to, you don't have to register at all!
Friday, September 12, 2008
Knowing all this, you can imagine my terror when my LCD monitor suddenly went blank in the middle of websurfing. No, the computer did not accidentally reset. The monitor went back on in three seconds, with my Ubuntu desktop intact. I was relieved but cautious.
About 30 minutes later, the exactly same thing happened. The monitor went black and, after 3 seconds, the desktop appeared again in all its glory.
That pissed me off. Will I have to buy a new monitor? Will I have to buy a new videocard? How to diagnose this when it happens only once in 30 minutes and lasts for a few seconds? Surely this cannot be software related...? This has to be another ugly hardware problem!
Yes, it was hardware based.
Albert was sleeping under the table, warming his ass at the exact spot where the video cable was plugged in too loosely and occassionally wagging his tail...
Monday, August 18, 2008
Of course my tiny project will never use 99% of them...
Thursday, August 14, 2008
Yes, dear reader, we had something to celebrate. It's exactly one year since we agreed (by e-mail) that we can try dating and met personally for the first time as "boyfriend and girlfriend". I could also write "...since we had our first sex" but that doesn't feel quite right because we had sex only after (30 minutes after) we agreed that we will be dating.
In any case, it lasted far longer than anyone predicted and - maybe surprisingly - it works quite well even when we live together. Meanwhile, Jitushka not only got accepted to University (she will be a translator from English and German!) but also got herself a part-time job - courtesy of Karolina, my former girlfriend (I like it when everyone is friends with everyone else).
Yes, it works quite well so far. Let's see how it will work when we leave for Greece the next week...
UPDATE: Proof that "everyone can be friends with everyone else"!
Monday, August 04, 2008
I can visit the first hotel I stayed in, the second hotel I stayed in and even the third hotel I stayed in!
All that thanks to Google Maps' new Street View coverage. You can now see Tokyo's new city hall, the giant golden turd, big-ass roller coaster right in the middle of the city and even Godzilla herself. Unfortunately, most of the photos are taken very early in the morning and that means one of the most important elements is missing - the people. And, of course, you cannot see areas where cars don't have access.
Street View, coupled with Panoramio, Picasaweb and Youtube integration, makes Google Maps really, really useful tool for selecting your vacation or just "having a look how it looks over there". Recently, I used it to check out where we are going for a vacation in a few weeks.
Tuesday, July 29, 2008
Friday, July 18, 2008
Thursday, July 17, 2008
Wednesday, June 25, 2008
The last non-Linux PC operating system I actively used was Windows 98 (which I used well until 2002 or 2003). I have some limited experience with Windows XP (I have to use it for making music) but I only use it to run FL Studio and save/load files to/from networked drive. That means I cannot rationally criticize Windows XP, much less Windows Vista, because I have no experience using them.
But now, Bill has done that instead of me. Thanks Bill.
This puts to rest the popular argument which goes: "Yeah, but any stupid secretary can install Windows"! The exactly same stupid secretary can probably install Ubuntu Linux as well. The trouble comes when she wants to fine-tune that installation for her needs (assuming she is not entirely stupid and knows what her needs are). In this case, the idea of "searching in Linux forums" is as unhelpful as "try asking Microsoft support".
In my personal experience, the people who don't understand computer well are the prime candidates for using Linux. After I carefully ask them what exactly they want to do with their PC, I install and fine-tune everything (usually Ubuntu), knowing that they cannot screw it up afterwards (I don't give them their admin passwords, of course) and if they have problems, I can repair/re-configure almost anything over SSH or VNC. Many of them don't even understand that they are now using some other operating system than before. The only hurdle (major hurdle) is the fact that many useful Linux programs don't exist in Czech version yet.
The "slightly more advanced" users (e.g. people who install their own games, instant messengers, media players etc.) are the least likely Linux users. They feel sort-of-powerful, content with the fact that they have to "clean their computer" (read: "reinstall Windows") from time to time and they are just bitching that some stuff is "weird" under Linux (read: "different than in Windows").
I don't want to talk about "really advanced users" very much, because many of them have legitimate reasons (business or otherwise) to run Windows and this has been already discussed to death. I basically just wanted to say that the 5 years old Bill Gates memo made my day.
Wednesday, June 04, 2008
Thursday, May 08, 2008
Tuesday, May 06, 2008
Thanks to this, "Google Shared Stuff" now seems to be officially abandoned and its functionality was moved into Google Reader. Thus, "Fuxoft's recently discovered links" will reside here from now on. With ninjas!
Tuesday, April 15, 2008
But enough about J.o.e. I figured now is the correct time. The price has dropped under 10,000 Kč, it won't probably get cheaper too soon and there are some decent games available at last (GTA4 coming later this month!). And now that HD-DVD is dead, it's also probably worthwhile to own BluRay player. I also thought about installing Linux on it (which is officially supported) and using it as an Media center but it was surprisingly easy to use it as such without installing anything (on the PS3, at least). I just installed MediaTomb media server on my home server (which I already used to host audiovisual stuff), told it what directories to index, and - voilá - I was able to play most of my music and movies on my vanilla, unmodified PS3, over my home WiFi network (including DivX movies in very high resolution). There are only two problems: First, when playing very high-quality movies (e.g. 8 GB of Terminator 2), you can exceed the maximum available WiFi bandwidth. The more serious problem is that PS3 currently refuses to play anything that's over 2 gigabytes. It simply stops on the 2 GB boundary. Let's wait for the next firmware update and see...
Which brings us to the concept of firmware updates and network connectivity. PS3 (as well as my trusty old Wii) supports online purchases of downloadable content. When comparing the two, Wii immediately scores about minus billion points because of the simple fact that, even today, in April 2008, Nintendo officially doesn't support any online features for Czech residents!!! In order to use any of them, you have to set your country to "U.K.", for example. And it makes me think twice to enter my debit card details while supplying false address...
On the other hand, PS3 online shop works without problems even for Czech residents (albeit in English and rather slowly, even after the latest 2.30 firmware update) and offers many downloadable demos completely free of charge. Which is great because playing the few minutes of demo is enough to convince me that at least 80% of PS3 games are utterly meaningless for me and I don't ever want to play them again.
Which brings me to the games themselves:
I bought Burnout Revenge which looks and sounds great, has amazing sense of speed and adrenaline, online modes, but has completely botched the "Crash for $$$" part of the game. It's now ridiculously easy (and even boring) to keep crashing for dozens and dozens of seconds, getting millions and millions of dollars, mutiplied by "bus multipliers" which are dependent on the presence of buses in your vicinity (i.e. mostly completely random).
Apart from Elder Scrolls: Oblivion, all my other PS3 games are downloaded. I get much fun from simple "mini-games" like PixelJunk Monsters (clever twist on "Tower Defense" mechanics which even Jitushka likes and we play it together), Snakeball or Tekken 5 (with about 666 unlocked fighters, which makes it reduntant for me to ever buy another fighting game in my life).
I also bought and downloaded Gran Turismo 5 Prologue and, frankly, I don't understand the hype. Even when using very expensive (borrowed) G25 Racing Wheel (with pedals and shifter), the experience does not even remotely resemble the sensation of actual driving (in Škoda or otherwise). Also, the graphics - while looking better than PS2 or Wii, of course - can never be mistaken for photorealistic (if only because of numerous pixel artefacts at polygon edges, also the bystanders look extremely stiff). Also, while the driving model is supposedly extremely realistic, the best racing strategy is to ram opponents in the curves at the full speed, using them as driving guides (the opponents don't care and all cars are indestructible). Moreover, after installing the game, I found out that I can only play it when I am connected online and no other user registered on my PS3 can ever play it. The business model of Sony seems to be that when someone wants to play GT5 with his 3 sons, he has to pay for the game four times?!?!?! This was not mentioned in the agreement I clicked through when buying the game (it was corrected 2 days later), which allowed me to get full refund for GT5. Great. I returned the wheel and got Mario Kart for Wii.
However, the most amazing game - in my opinion - is Warhawk.
Ignore the notion that this game is somehow based on decades old 8-bit shooter with Rob Hubbard soundtrack. This is a classic multiplayer multi-vehicular carnage reminiscent of those we know from PCs, except that this one is designed from ground up to be played on the console, using the console controller (no mouse or keyboard), thus making the playfield level for everyone.
The most amazing thing about Warhawk is how balanced everything is. You've got about half a dozen personal weapons, jeeps, tanks, turrets, jets (with another half a dozen weapons) and motherships, and yet nothing seems to be superfluous and everything is useful, allowing for multitude of wildly different strategies. For example, knife if definitely less useful than a pistol, but it kills in one hit and you are invisible on the radar when you equip it.
The interesting thing is that Warhawk does not have any single player mode. There are no scripted missions and no bots. If you want to kill someone, you must kill other living beings. Of course, when you first try to kill someone, it's probably someone who already killed many others and you get majorly pwned in a fraction of second. This is all part of unique Warhawk experience. I now played the game for many, many hours, and yet I still often just sit behind the crosshair of stationary missile turret and shoot down occassional jet, whose pilot doesn't expect that someone could actually be sitting in that boring turret, waiting for his chance, hahaha. Only when the odds are favoring my current team, I get bold and try my hand at driving, flying or hand-to-hand combat. And I've observed many, many wildly different tactics, getting killed in many brutal ways, and experiencing the rush of my first sniper kill at the distance of 1 km or so or first shooting down the mothership with 7 enemies inside.
I see that (based on the available ranks and the ranks and medals I actually obtained) I am still worthless shit but I have unmistakable feeling that I am slowly but surely getting better.
As for the Wii, Mario Kart is great fun, No More Heroes is super-bizarre but Geometry Wars Galaxies is the greatest thing ever.
Tuesday, April 08, 2008
Wednesday, March 26, 2008
And now, excuse me, I'm going back to playing Burnout Paradise.
P.S: Everyone stop asking me if I am OK. Yes I am!
P.P.S: No, I didn't try to enter a space that was too narrow. I hit an oncoming car and bounced to cars parked along the road.
Saturday, March 22, 2008
As I don't understand cars and I don't ever want to understand cars, I used my friend's brother, who's a car mechanic, to select the car, check it and do basic maintenance. That's why any of your questions about this selection are totally pointless. From my perspective, the only important factors are that I bought a kick-ass Korean stereo (with USB and SD card playback) for it and the car's color scheme matches Albert's color scheme (click for large):
I already drove some 300 km in and around Prague, without killing anyone and without scratching my car (too much). I even drove 70 km on the highway, which should prepare me for next week's trip to Pilsen. I am trying to perfect my parallel parking skills using Grand Theft Auto and this thing. I'm probably gonna try some tuning soon.
Otherwise, everything in my life is the same (meaning "okay" or "great").
Tuesday, March 18, 2008
Wednesday, February 20, 2008
Sunday, February 17, 2008
Thursday, February 14, 2008
In other (maybe less important) news: The first teaser Trailer for the 4th Indiana Jones movie was released today. And, I admit, it moved me almost to tears. Which, of course, has nothing to do with how I'll like the finished movie. But it just looks like Indy. Older, more fragile, but the whip still works...
However, the most important question is: Should I insist on showing the original Indy trilogy to Jitushka?
Thursday, February 07, 2008
Tuesday, January 22, 2008
Thursday, January 17, 2008
Tuesday, January 15, 2008
Monday, January 14, 2008
However, I was appaled that some of my DVDs exhibited god-awful interlacing which made the movies unwatchable. After some digging, I discovered that the latest official firmware is "B7_1.1" but there is also the newer "B8_1.1" version which is "unofficial and may have problems with HDMI". Guess what? My player had "B8_1.1" installed. I think it's not very wise to factory-install firmware which "may have problems with HDMI" into player whose much-touted feature is HDMI output.
Anyway, after I downgraded to the older firmware, the picture is great. Note: When updating firmware, you don't have to burn it to CD, you can also upgrade from USB Flash disk, as long as the volume is named "FERGUSON".
Other than that, this player is excellent value for money, offering region-free playback and ability to skip those awful DVD warnings and intros. It can also play DivX movies from USB-connected devices (and correctly display Czech subtitles in separate file) but I couldn't persuade it to recognize my external USB harddisk. USB Flash disk worked but there was some unfortunate stuttering with higher bitrates - the USB is probably quite slow because the playback was OK when I burned the same AVI file on DVD disk. Also be warned that you cannot play high-definition AVI files, it just says "invalid resolution"...
For now, I am perfectly happy with my ability to watch standard DVDs. Althought the High-Def war might now be over (I guess I'm happy Sony has won because I hate Microsoft even more than Sony), I am in no rush to buy any high-def player. There are still many movies which I loved in my youth and which I can now rediscover. Watching Who Framed Rogger Rabbit or Excalibur is quite a different experience today than it was 20 years ago.
Friday, January 04, 2008
At first, you may be dumbfounded what the hell is that graphics supposed to mean but believe me, it's no joke, it's a real game with great premise that becomes apparent after minute or so of playing.
UPDATE: Also, check out the best freeware games of 2007.