Archive for August, 2006

Scuderi Air Hybrid Engine

August 28, 2006

This thing looks like it has a chance. I’ll be keeping my eye on what happens next with it. The computer models seem to show it will work. They’re building a couple of prototypes that should be ready next year.

Link to video –> http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kogz4wedwtk

More on The Scuderi Group can be found at http://www.scuderigroup.com/

For a time it looked like a lost season…

August 26, 2006

A couple of months ago I pledged to eat my 22-year old wool Twins Cap if they ended the season ahead of either the White Sox or the Tigers. It seemed like a pretty safe bet. The Twins sucked. They sucked hard. With “players” such as Tony Batista, Rondell White and Ruben Sierra brought in at the beginning of the season to bolster a young, inexperience lineup, I saw little hope. That hope fled even further when Torii Hunter and Shannon Stewart went down. Even with Morneau hitting better and Mauer hitting more than missing, Johan couldn’t pitch every night (and he really needed to the way Radke was winding down his career).

So you see where the lack of confidence came from.

A funny thing happened — they ditched the old guys and brought in the youngsters that should have been with the team at the beginning of the season (if you’re going to bring in some free agents, bring in some decent ones). Since then, they’ve gone 50-19 and have been the best team in the league. They’ve passed Chicago, and if they win tonight could be only four games back of Detroit with a month left in the season.

That hat is looking scared. I’ll eat it, but it will have been worth it to be able to enjoy a season such as this.

Go Twins!

Sigma 30mm f/1.4 EX DC HSM Lens for Olympus available – FINALLY!

August 21, 2006

Fellow Olympus E System users! Amazon (well “OneCall” by way of Amazon) finally has the lens we’ve all been waiting for available. This means that Amazon proper will likely begin shipping in the next few days. I think I’ll wait for Amazon (think generous return policy) as I have no idea on the build quality and lens characteristics. This “fast prime” will let you shoot natural light in far more situations than before.
For those who can’t wait:
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000FBFXY2/ref=sr_11_1/102-8109705-2681706?ie=UTF8

$429.

sigma30.jpg

Ruby On Rails (time for this Microsoft-centric developer to check it out — painlessly!)

August 21, 2006

Ruby On Rails resources and tutorials abound on the web and I’ve spent the last couple days plugging away on a few of them. Being a Microsoft developer has afforded me little insight into Ruby. There are a number of reasons, but the most important are the fact that the learning curve for .NET C# has been steep and that Apache and MySQL aren’t things I’d necessarily like to set up and configure on my server — I’d rather get a root canal.

All of that changed when I discovered the existence of InstantRails (http://instantrails.rubyforge.org/wiki/wiki.pl). Now my excuses for avoiding this spectacularly non-Microsoft environment have been at least partially removed. InstantRails encapsulates all of the tools you need to get up and running in a hurry with no install or configuration (a wonderful Ruby trait) necessary.

There are a number of good resources available online to at least get you going — and you’ll be amazed at how far “getting going” will get you.

Here are some of the best I’ve found:

Writely! Open for (beta) Business

August 20, 2006

I’m writing this post using the re-release of Writely(beta!)! If you’ve fallen in love with Google Spreadsheets (like I have), this is exactly the thing you’ve been looking for. It does all of the important things that Word does plus a few things Word has failed on (and avoids all of the bloat and install). Sure you need to be online, but I know I don’t even consider firing up the laptop without an internet connection (it’s akin to sitting in your car without the keys).

Things I like:

  • It kicks out the formatted PDFs.
  • Collaboration.
  • You can post to your blog (I just did!)
  • The craziest thing, and I haven’t found a use for it yet, is that you can subscribe to an RSS feed of a document.

http://www.writely.com