Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Farewell Glasshouse

You will all be remembered fondly if for no other piece than the Kyle Sandilands / country music bit.


Tuesday, November 21, 2006


I still haven't seen the Capn on tv as the Bubble-bath guy. Will have to do an interview on exactly how that duck worked...


The best thing in Bruce Almighty - Steve Carrell - reprises his role in Evan Almighty.

While you're checkin' out the tube, stop by the two classics Evolution of Dance and Male Restroom Etiquette. Don't forget the outtakes.


Movember - Day 21

Movember 2006 - Day 21

OK, a few weeks in now & here's the result. Sponsorship's going well, but can always be better, so head on over to & enter my rego number 21953.

Don't forget the party on the 30th. You can get your tickets on the Movember site.


Thursday, November 16, 2006

You're So Bleeping Special

Can't even swear in sign language: Opera singer Ali McGregor plays Radiohead's Creep on last night's Spicks & Specks accompanied by a sign interpreter. I think the sign interpreter's face says it all.


Monday, November 13, 2006

And lo, the typo delivered salvation unto the masses.

Cheers to Kate for spotting this one:

Speaking of salvation, check out this gospelrific game. Better get converting because it's rigged; no one beats the final boss.


Putting Hot Air to Good Use

'Twas not long after reading about Mr Zilla's need for sufficient carbon credits to offset his migratory lifestyle that I came across The Information Factories in Wired 14.10 (Oct 06) that got me thinking about the environmental impact of modern geekery. One passage in particular got me thinking:

Hovering above the cabinets like a midday emanation over Death Valley, a shimmering haze of heat signifies an awesome consumption of power.

If it's necessary to waste memory and bandwidth to dominate the petascale era, gorging on energy is an inescapable cost of doing business. operations VP Dayne Sampson estimates that the five leading search companies together have some 2 million servers, each shedding 300 watts of heat annually, a total of 600 megawatts. These are linked to hard drives that dissipate perhaps another gigawatt. Fifty percent again as much power is required to cool this searing heat, for a total of 2.4 gigawatts. With a third of the incoming power already lost to the grid's inefficiencies, and half of what's left lost to power supplies, transformers, and converters, the total of electricity consumed by major search engines in 2006 approaches 5 gigawatts.

That's an impressive quantity of electricity. Five gigawatts is almost enough to power the Las Vegas metropolitan area - with all its hotels, casinos, restaurants, and convention centers - on the hottest day of the year. So the annual operation of the world's petascale search machines constitutes a Vegas-sized power sump. In the next year or so, it could add a dog-day Atlantic City. Air-conditioning will be the prime cost and conundrum of the petascale era. As energy analysts Peter Huber and Mark Mills projected in 1999, the planetary machine is on track to be consuming half of all the world's output of electricity by the end of this decade.
My question is (and please correct me if I've got the science wrong here) would all of that heat generate enough convection to push the air up (assuming you designed the roof in such a way as to funnel the air) & be able to push turbines to generate some energy to offset all of the power used?

I figure if The London Oasis - an interactive sculpture with a vertical-axis turbine and thermal chimney that I read about tonight - can do it, why not huge heat-generating server warehouses?

Then they can start working on Parliament House...

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Sunday, November 12, 2006

24 Hour Curse?

24 hour bugs are widely accepted; you pick up a bug, your immune system goes to work on it & you feel like crap for a day or so & then you get better. But have you ever had a day when you felt like you were going through a 24 hour curse?

Yesterday nothing seemed to go right:

Wasn't hungover, but slept in and passed on soccer.

Wandered down to nerd markets to get some new parts; found out that a card had expired.

Went home, replacement card not in unopened mail. Call bank, new card in a week.

Back to markets for video card but not the other parts I wanted, then into Civic for studio practice, then back home to install card & get some BF2 sniper freak on. Or that's how it would have gone if the new card hadn't rooted the sound & tv cards.

Messed around with it for a couple of hours before thinking that a drink or two might present the answer. Got to Muddle for the PANTs gig around 9. Didn't see any sign & bartenders hadn't seen anyone wearing a "I [heart] Cbr" badge. Hung out by the bar thinking that the PANTs crew would recognise their mo investment, but no one had by the time I finished my scotch, so I returned to fight the geek fight.

The first few uninstallations & reinstallations of drivers, movements of cards & repeats didn't work. I can only assume that it was the clock striking midnight & the lifting of the 24 hour curse that set things right. Once the date ticked over the cards all worked and the improvement in detail & FPS in BF2 almost made all the BS worthwhile.

Today was good; a few good rounds of slick BF2 - courtesy of the now functioning 6800GS - preceded a housewarming BBQ at A&B's. Thankfully the rain stopped long enough for a top afternoon of meat, beer, cherry-seed competitions, Jackass, Singstar & Lego Star Wars.

This evening's channel surfing still hasn't delivered the Capn's new bathtub ad.


Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Lend a Hand to Help a Gland - Movember Week 1 Update :-<)

We're one week in, time to check progress.

The Mo

I'm pretty happy with the way the mo is progressing:

Movember 2006 - Day 1 Movember 2006 - Day 2 Movember 2006 - Day 3
Movember 2006 - Day 4 - 2/2 Movember 2006 - Day 5 Movember 2006 - Day 6 Movember 2006 - Day 7

Daily updates are available in my Movember set on Flickr.

Sponsorship to date = $85

Firstly many thanks to those of you out there who've sponsored me thus far. I really appreciate it*.

It's been a bit of a slow start, but I can understand that people want to see that I can come through with the goods & will stick with it. Believe me, this thing is staying until the end.

To sponsor me, go to the Movember sponsorship page and enter my rego number: 21953. Don't forget that all donations of $2 and over are tax deductible, so you can write off todays betting losses and stand by your man all in the one gesture.

If you've got a blog & want to help spread the word, you could throw this banner someplace on your site until the end of the month :

:-<) * - I've been asked if I'm in the running for any prizes as part of this. As far as I know there's a Man of Movember thing, but judging on last years efforts I don't think I'm in the running for that, so it's just self-interest of a health & wellbeing kind driving me.

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Sunday, November 05, 2006

Starting Over

Watching The Lost City of New Orleans tonight rekindled a few questions I've had lately: how many times in history have cities/towns just packed up and left to start over? What prompted it (natural disaster, resource depletion, recognition of a lack of foresight in planning)? What level of devastation (short of complete) would it take for a population to sacrifice the infrastructure and emotional ties they'd built up to start again?

Those questions got me to thinking about our national capital. Wasn't there ever a moment when the early Canberrans looked back at their first few years, recognised that the summers were bloody hot & winters bloody cold & thought 'what the hell are we doing here?' ? Didn't anyone ever say " Look this free sheep station was nice & all, but we really should be going" ? Were the Sydney-Melbourne rivalry and need to be away from the coast (threat of naval bombardment) the only things keeping them here?

If another massive fire came through and took most of the city, would the rest go? If so, where would they rebuild the capital? I'd go coastal; send the Army to annex Byron Bay for the ACT. I'm picturing a Parliament House with a veranda facing the sea, complete with louvers to let the sea breeze flow through the chambers. The sea scent and the opportunity to hit the beach before question time could have a calming effect on our dear leaders.

Or would they rebuild here, putting aside practical reasons for leaving in favour of staying the course and man resisting & conquering the elements or some other emotive crap?

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Thursday, November 02, 2006

Singstar Legends Released

Well I'm still a bit croaky from the bronchitis, but I still picked up Singstar Legends today* and gave it a go for a half hour or so when I got home. The best I could do was 8590 on Silverchair's Tomorrow. I reckon it's gonna be a top disc with a few drinks in me.

* - I thought there'd be an opening day special at the new JB in Civic that would get me Anthems at a massive discount too (cos I really don't want to pay anywhere near full price for it, but I want a complete collection), but 'twas not to be.

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Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Movember 1st

Movember Day 1:

Movember 2006

The options:

Movember 2006

Clockwise from top left: Supertroopers, Sanchez, Groucho, Lord Kitchener.

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Now on to the Mo Important Stuff

During Movember (the month formerly known as November) I'll be growin a moustache. That's right, I'm one of a multitude bringing the Mo back because I'm passionate about changing the state of men's health.

And I think a mo - along with a pair of dodgy old sunglasses - will go well as part of the bad highway patrol cop image I'm going to cultivate this month.

Male health is a major issue. Did you know:

  1. Men are far less healthy than women. The average life expectancy of males is 6 years less than females.
  2. Every year in Australia 2,700 men die of prostate cancer – more than the number of women who die from breast cancer.
  3. Depression affects 1 in 6 men…Most don't seek help. Untreated depression is a leading risk factor for suicide. Rates of suicide are more than double the national road toll.
Help me change the face of men's health by sponsoring my mo. We need to help researchers (real ones, with lab coats and clipboards!) dedicated to finding more comfortable tests and treatments.

Please go to, enter my Rego number which is 21953 and your credit card details. All donations of $2 and over are tax deductible (so don't give it to the man, help the men).

The money raised by Movember will be used to change the face of men's health by creating awareness and funding research into prostate cancer and male depression.

Movember culminates at the end of the month at the Gala Partè where I'll be parading my Mo on the cat walk for a chance to be crowned the Man of Movember. If you want to be part of this great night you'll have to purchase a Gala Parte ticket for $33.00 (inc GST).

Movember is proudly grown by Motorola, Polaroid, Remington and VB.

Movember is proud partners with the Prostate Cancer Foundation of Australia and beyondblue - the national depression initiative.

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