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Google Talk Jabber Server - NOW LIVE!

I just logged on to the google talk jabber server:

I am using Apple iChat. Say hello if you log on too: eekyou [at] gmail [d0t] com. More details can be found here. [thanks for the tip sean


Google just sent a message to me on my iChat Jabber session saying that they have updated their page. There is no Mac client but they give directions on connecting from a mac/linux.


My friend set up jabber and his iChat crashed and then killed all his preferences. It seems to keep crashing on him. It is sort of working. Eventually we got both text and Audio chat working in iChat even though the chart on google says voice chat doesn't work.


Well Sean seems to have gotten it working too, but when I tried to reply to his message he disappeared and now I am seeing "Jabber Error" popups when I try and talk to him... can you say buggy!

Tuesday, August 23rd, 2005 -

Chinese Food Festival

This Sunday is the Chinese Food Festival in Chinatown. I have never been to this particular festival, but both Penelope and I love food and we're going to jump on the train this Sunday and go check it out. The festival is normally $10, but if you take public transportation you get $2 off of the admission price. We're meeting up with jim and sha who are also planning on heading down.

Tuesday, August 23rd, 2005 -

LAist Early Retirement.

I will no longer be writing for the LAist group blog. It has been fun and I have enjoyed writing the articles I have written for the site. I want to thank Jason Toney for giving me the chance to write for the site and wish him and the rest of the folks on LAist the best of luck in their adventures. Here is a link to the articles I wrote.

Monday, August 22nd, 2005 -

LABlogs New Look...

LABlogs has been changing their site up in the last few weeks and it looks like they are going to add the ability for people from the community to post.

Monday, August 15th, 2005 -

A Touching Reunion

Blogs can be a very personal insight into people lives as is evidenced by these two posts about a man (William Campbell) reunited with his estranged daughter after not seeing her for 5 years. Sean Bonner said yesterday if you only read one blog today read this and I will echo that again for the second part of the posting.

Monday, August 15th, 2005 -

Bang bang bang

Last night Penelope and I were awakened by the sounds of the first gun shots we've heard in our neighborhood (we shoot my guns all the time just not outside of a shooting range in the city). Right down on the street in front of our house where the dealers and users hang out all day and night, we heard about 10 shots in rapid succession. It didn't sound fast enough to have been an automatic weapon, more likely it was a semiautomatic pistol somewhere around 9mm. A few seconds later we heard it again a few blocks down the street so it was probably fired from a car. I didn't even bother to get out of bed and look but Penelope said she saw a bunch of people huddled around somebody on the ground and a few minutes later the police showed up along with an ambulance. We're on the top floor of the 7 story building so it would take some horrifically bad aim to hit our loft accidentally, but I'm curious to see if any of the rounds hit the lower floors.


I just used the trusty 311 service to talk to my local police department (central) and they informed me that the two incidents are under investigation and the person who was shot was not killed and is doing ok.

Tuesday, August 9th, 2005 -

A Lovely Day in Downtown LA

Today Penelope and I walked up the hill a few blocks to check out the Basquiat exhibit at MOCA. The collection is vast and supposedly the largest ever in one place. We very much enjoyed the vivid and tumultuous paintings of the young deceased artist, our favorites of the bunch being Grillo, Now's the Time (a Charlie Parker record) and the various Gray's anatomy inspired paintings, which were obviously inspired by the thick anatomy tome (even though that bit of information was unknown to us).

This continues after the fold...

Sunday, August 7th, 2005 -

Canon 20Da Firmware on a 20D won't work

I was just wondering if the live focus feature in the Canon 20Da is a hardware change like the different IR filter is or if is purely software... you would think it would be software. You can download the 20Da firmware but it appears to be in Japanese.


It won't work because the mirror on the 20Da is semitransparent, allowing simultaneous viewing through the eyepiece and the LCD.

Friday, August 5th, 2005 -

Over 10,000 photos...

So far I have taken over 10,000 photos with my Canon EOS 20D. I really love the camera and the photos I have taken with it. Of those 10,000 photos I have thrown about 9,500 or so... having a great camera has inspired me to take many shots but only keep what is good. I think my photography has come a long way, but there is always room to improve!

Wednesday, August 3rd, 2005 -

Back from DEFCON

Photos and words coming soon.


So believe it or not I have been slammed at work since I got back from the con and I really haven't had any time to sort my photos and write about my experiences at DEFCON, or at the parties I attended. I just got back from the walking tour of Downtown LA focusing on the Art Deco buildings in the area. I took some photos and I'm going to both sort those and the DEFCON pics and upload tonight.... oh and another thing... if I have time tomorrow I will be releasing a few more pages of LA from an Auto.


Oh my it must be a chilly day in hell as Penelope posted two entries on her site!!! One is a review of defcon... good job sweetie!

Monday, August 1st, 2005 -

Ridiculous NetSol Faux Dog Blog

Ok so I am glad to see that network solutions are offering cheaper domain registration than $40 a year, but as I was checking out their new pricing, I saw a terrified helmeted dog who seems to be riding a skateboard with a jet turbine attached to the back with some rope. Beneath the ad was a link enticing readers to "Read My Blog. Click Here" and when I did click there I was taken to a marketing travesty consisting of one part typing dog and one part blog. Rapid Rocco the Rocket Dog is quite possibly the most annoying web based advertising campaign I have ever seen.

Tuesday, July 26th, 2005 -


Once a year hackers, crackers, geaks, freaks, drunks and gun toting maniacs get together in Las Vegas for the security convention known as DEFCON. Although the con has many speakers and events in the past I have gone to eat, drink and be merry in LV and this year will be no exception as thoughts of Nobu, Bellagio Buffet and Habeñero Rum dance through my head. (which I host / am a member of) is a great spot to find photos from the con both past and present. If you're going, I'll see you there!

Tuesday, July 26th, 2005 -

Downtown Jogging

Penelope just pointed out to me the top downtown blog from LA Downtown News was Eric Richardson's blogdowntown and in the write-up they mentioned our Downtown Jogging (Urban Jog?) idea as one of the topic on his blog... cool! We are still planning on doing this, we are just very busy, this weekend we are going to DEFCON and then in the next few weeks I am taking an advanced rope rescue class on the weekends. Penelope is just finishing her internship and when she is done and when I am less busy we will create the flyers and put them up around Downtown. If you are interested in jogging along with us send me an email and let me know what time / day is good for you: urbanjog [at] eecue [dot] com.

Tuesday, July 26th, 2005 -

Los Angeles From an Auto part 4

This edition in the series of scans from the 1906 electric coach tour guide entitled Los Angeles From an "Auto" takes us deeper into the Old Chinese Quarter and then to the original heart of the city, when it was just a tiny Spanish pueblo. This portion of the book is less of an advertisement for the hotels of Downtown and more of a glimpse into the unique history of the City of Angels. In case you missed them, the first three sections can be found here: Part 1, Part 2 and Part 3.

Check out the google map which shows the locations of the buildings shown in the guide along with a few (soon to me many) photos of the buildings as they exist today. The engravings from this section will be posted soon thanks to the historical address finding wizardry of Eric Richardson, who has already helped find several of the addresses for the map.

UPDATE The story has been boingboinged[oops they said 1909 instead of 1906] fixed... thanks Cory!

Looks like it has also been picked up on and gridskipper

Monday, July 25th, 2005 -

Random Street Choir

When I came back from my training in San Bernardino this weekend I was turning left on to 5th street off of Los Angeles and I heard singing, a very loud and beautiful rendition of Amazing Grace echoed off the buildings and to my surprise was emanating from a group of about 40 people who, to me looked like Quakers or Amish folks . They were dressed all in black suits except for their white shirts and they were wearing wide, straight brimmed black hats. It was very surreal and not something I am used to seeing on the street here in Downtown.

Monday, July 25th, 2005 -

Google Hybrid

Google maps just got even better as they have added a feature called Hybrid that combines street maps with sat footage! Check out the new feature on any Google map, like my Historical Cultural Monuments map. I am really tired from a long day of Search and Rescue training. I will write more about it soon.

UPDATE I have updated to LA from an Auto maps and the HCM maps to use the new hybrid maps. The new type isn't documented yet, but it is pretty obvious: setMapType(GHYBRIDTYPE);

Saturday, July 23rd, 2005 -

Shaolin Monks Next Week

Ok I just got an email from the Grand Performances group that puts on free concerts at the California Plaza... and next Thursday starting at 8pm the Shaolin Monks will be demonstrating kung-fu techniques! The info is not on their website, but here is the pertinent info from the email:

Thursday, July 21st, 2005 -

All Hail July

A friend of mine who lives in the mountains near Big Bear just had hail the size of marbles. He said his neighbor's windows were broken. Crazy weather for July, but this year, almost the wettest on record ever, has been generally strange when it comes to the weather department. I especially enjoyed the wildflowers in the desert that was more like a paradise after the torrential rain that fell this year.

Wednesday, July 20th, 2005 -

IKEA Madness

Penelope and I went to the Carson IKEA last night and picked up most of what we've been needing for our loft. We picked up 2 more Roger chairs for our dining room table, bringing the total up to four. We also scored an 72" Expedit, the ultimate bookshelf. We were going to buy a couch, but we couldn't find any we really liked, so instead we bought two Poang chairs and ottomans. Everything we bought matches our kitchen wood which IKEA calls black-brown and the fabric is a gray microfiber that feels like suede but is actually polyester. To top it all off we picked up some new lamps, picture frames and coasters.

It was a good haul, and soon we will be ready for our loft-warming party! Did I mention I just finished putting it all together? It took me about 4 hours to do everything, and as usual there was a problem with one item, the Expedit had 2 holes that the pegs went all the way in to, but it wasn't a structurally important connection so I don't think it will matter.

Wednesday, July 20th, 2005 -

Site design update...

This is just a partial update. I am going to make it look less boxy when I have some free time, hopefully tonight.

Tuesday, July 19th, 2005 -

Big ups and respect to Eric Richardson

I want to thank Eric Richardson for taking the time to research the locations from my LA From an Auto scans that I don't know the addresses of. Eric has access to the ProQuest database and has been really helpful in finding where business used to be located a hundred years ago. Thanks!

Tuesday, July 19th, 2005 -

iPhoto hickup

I use iPhoto to upload photos to my website using Gallery Remote. I don't actually run gallery on my site, but I like the way the gallery remote works so when I programmed my website I included the GalleryRemote protocol which is nice because I can use any of the third party Gallery Remote programs out there.

I really don't like iPhoto because it is way to slow to handle the 200 photos I take every time I go out shooting. I have been using Adobe CS 2 Bridge for the initial sorting and then when I have about 20 photos I like, I transfer them over to iPhoto and upload them using the remote.

The Gallery Remote can be a little buggy some times and today it crashed iPhoto while it was pulling down a list of my albums. When I reopened iPhoto all my photos and settings where gone, joy! When I quit iPhoto asked if I wanted to use my old settings, which I did and then when I reopened it everything was OK. That was a close one!

Tuesday, July 19th, 2005 -

Los Angeles From an Auto : Part 3

I have posted the third part of my scans of the 1906 electric coach tour program guide: Los Angeles From an "Auto" over on LA Voice. I am a bit embarrassed to admit that the first two portions were painstakingly converted from photo to text manually by yours truly; I have stepped into the modern age and used an OCR program to aid in the task. I added the new photos on the google map.

I spent some time today updating the HCM google-mashup and enabling it to search by either zipcode and distance or name, address and monument number. Just a note of warning, if you increase the distance searched by too much you will end up with a google map that contains hundreds of points which, in Safari at least, ends up dogging your system. Eventually I'd like the system to get the location of the current view and show the HCMs that exist on that map. Tonight I am going to add the rest of the locations from LA and possible the ones from Long Beach if I feel so inclined.

UPDATE I have reimported the database of LA HCMs and this time I changed to code to work with ranges and multiple addresses for the most part and I also imported ALL the regions of LA. I am currently geocoding all the information once again so it may be a few hours before it is all on there. I also added a link to the flick tags for each map point... thanks to the folks in the LA Historical Cultural Monuments Group!

Monday, July 18th, 2005 -


Boy am I tired from a long day of training... but hey that won't stop me from going to Create:Fixate for a couple hours and taking some photos!

UPDATE Create:Fixate was packed with hipster art folks, beautiful photography and strong drinks. I will upload the photos tomorrow and post a review consisting of more than 100 words, but it won't be on here... look out for it on LAist and some more of LA From an Auto on I have more training tomorrow, and more training next weekend, then DEFCON, then 2 more weekends of training, but after that I will be eligible to be Technical Rescue instructor for SAR, I haven't really ever taught before, but I think I will enjoy it. G'night!

Saturday, July 16th, 2005 -

TRBC Training

Tomorrow is the start of a 2 weekend course I am taking for Search and Rescue called Technical Rescue Basics Course. I have read through the course material and none of it is new to me, but I am sure I will learn something from the course. I am bringing all 3 duffel bags of my SAR gear with me because there are always call outs during trainings; some sort of strange Murphy's Law deal. This weekend is all classroom time and next weekend is the field training which should be fun.

Friday, July 15th, 2005 -


They're filming a movie across the street from my loft, I was watching the production drones scurrying about on the roof of the Hotel Alexandria. The yellow signs say Romco which to me sounds like a play on the infomercial master Ronco, but IMDB turns up nothing. I wonder what Celia's take is on all the action in her building, I'm sure it's nothing new to her.

I remember when I was younger, there used to be a crapload of raves at the Alexandria, and I also recall speaking to my Aunt at one point, mentioning I was heading to a rave in downtown at the Alex, and she told me about when she was young they used to party there in the splendidly decorated ballrooms which are now used solely as music video and movie backdrops.

Friday, July 15th, 2005 -

July Downtown Art Walk

I wrote a story about the Downtown Art Walk and posted it here on LAist. Here are the photos from the story.

Eric Richardson posted about the walk as well... he had some nice things to say about my photography (thanks) and I kept showing up at different galleries where Eric had just left. A few people whom I met on the art walk have been reading the LA From an "Auto" [part 1 : part 2] series I have been posting and Bert Green was forwarded a photo of the Edison Buliding by Eric, which he said he has always wanted to buy, but didn't know anything about the actual building, not that the photo gave much information.

Friday, July 15th, 2005 -

Los Angeles Historical Cultural Monuments Google Map

So I've been playing more with google maps API and have created a page that lists all the Historical Cultural Monuments in Downtown Los Angeles and a few surrounding neighborhoods. This phase is pretty buggy and due to the raw addresses from the HCM database being nonstandard, some of the addresses are ranges. I will have to hack my code up a bit to fix the range listings... also the geocoder I am using doesn't have every address in it, so it is not very precise. The geocoding is still going so not all 600 of the locations are on the map yet, but there are still many points so be careful it may tax your system to view this page. Next I just have to integrate photos and descriptions! [If you have a slow computer try this search for "broadway"]

People seem to be enjoying what I have started here. Tonight I hope to work on some custom icons and the xml-rpc.

Thursday, July 14th, 2005 -

Downtown Art Walk

If you are in the Downtown area tomorrow, make sure you get out on the street and check out the Art Walk... I missed it last month when we first moved in, but this time I'm going to go to every gallery I can, plus take photos and write about it. Thanks for the reminder Eric.

Wednesday, July 13th, 2005 - Read more... geek meet

So last night Penelope and I walked the whole 3 blocks to the Golden Gopher to meet some blogging people from the interweb. We missed the free sushi, which was proven to exist here, but we were there in time for a few stiff drinks. We met and photographed Sean Bonner, Mack Reed, Uccellina and her husband and the losanjealous crew. Uccellina's husband whose name currently escapes me just got a job in the animation department at Disney (in the magicians hat). Penelope and Uccellina talked the whole time about weddings, but I'm pretty sure she didn't feign interest!

Tuesday, July 12th, 2005 -

Apple 10.4.2 Update

Apple just updated Tiger to 10.4.2! Cool a bunch of bug fixes in this one.

UPDATE: Since I ran the update Safari has already crashed once and has just stopped loading pages twice.

Tuesday, July 12th, 2005 -

<i>Los Angeles From an Auto</i> Series on

I have begun posting a series or scanned engravings and text from Los Angeles From an "Auto", which is an old tourist guide to LA from 1906. The tours took place atop motorized electric coaches and stopped at all the Downtown Hotels. After each installment I plan to follow up with a current photo of the buildings that are mentioned. Here is the first in the series on, the current photos are coming soon.

Tuesday, July 12th, 2005 -

Horse Trail Jog

Penelope and I just got back from another jog, this time we drove up good ol' Glendale Blvd (the 2) to Griffith Park and jogged along the horse trail. We thought this would be a nice scenic run, which it was, but the scenery involved was the freeway, a trash dump and a golf course. The terrain was sandy dirt which is probably great for horses, but it wasn't the best running surface. I think in the future we will run in Downtown and Echo Park and if we go back to Griffith we will start our jog at the north end of the park.

Penelope and I are going to finish up the Weekly Communal Jog in Downtown flyer tonight so keep an eye out for it around town.

Tuesday, July 12th, 2005 -

Okonomiyaki here I come!!!

When I was in Japan several years ago I made it a point to try many different types of Japanese food and one of them I haven't had since I was there is Okonomiyaki. Oko is a sort of like a savory crepe but thick with the filling infused into the pancake. As you can see here it starts off as a bowl of raw eggs, oil, noodles, flour and veggies with meat, seafood or tofu and it ends up being a giant delicious pancake that you can then cover with japanese mayo, unagi sauce and bonito... mmmm bonito. The fun part about it is that you get to cook it yourself on the table in front of you somewhat like shabu shabu. The whole reason I am writing about oko is this flickr photo and I found a place in greater LA (Torrance) called Tombo that serves the greasy delicious fare. Google led me to Epinions which had a review from 2001 so I gave the number a call and a nice lady answered and she told me yes, they did still serve okonomiyaki, just not on Mondays which is the day they are closed. Photos and review coming soon!

Monday, July 11th, 2005 -

Lotus Festival

Penelope and I had a great time at the Lotus Festival this weekend. I took some photos and wrote a short article that should be popping up on LAist some time today. In short the food was good, the weather was great and the people were out in force. If you have never been to the Lotus Festival, I recommend you mark your calendar now for next year!

UPDATE: Here is the post on LAist

Monday, July 11th, 2005 -

Just what we need... more parking meters

 All the fan mail and positive feedback that meter maids receive on a daily basis obviously inspired the city of LA to install the new parking meters in front of my building on 6th street. I hope nobody tells the city about the wily homeless meter hackers who poke the no-armed bandits and cajole them to give you time without actually placing change into their slots. No wonder Joe's successor is one of the wealthiest people in the city [that is pure speculation on account of nearly every freaking parking lot in Downtown being owned by Joe's]

Monday, July 11th, 2005 -


Penelope is a runner. She ran cross country in college on a scholarship. She is one tuff cookie. I ran a bit in Jr. High and High School, and until recently I hadn't run more than a block in about 10 years. Penelope has been taking me jogging, we started when I was living in Fullerton on the horse trails and we made it about 15 minutes and then I was exahuseted and had to walk the rest of the way. We have been steadily increasing the runs and now as of today we are up to 40 minutes without a break.

Today we did a run in the city and we started at the lofts, went straight up 6th street into the civic center, through a maze of stairs which belong to the parking lot across from the disney concert hall and the up the stairs of the concert hall, through the garden and up on to the chandler catwalk (beautiful view from there!). We then wove through some buildings and then back down to the loft. It was a good run and I feel great now!

Penelope had a wonderful idea to organize a semi-weekly jog through downtown for the residents of our loft. We're going to make some flyers tonight and put them up throughout the building.

Posts about our return trip to the zoo and the Lotus Festival coming soon...

Sunday, July 10th, 2005 -

Granular Music booking agency

I have just launched my new drum'n'bass booking agency, Granular Music. My roster is not yet complete, but so far I have nearly every OG jungle DJ from LA. The site will have more information soon including: bios, photos, mixes, booking calendar, online booking negotiation, booking contracts and more! The main point of granular is to help our local DJs get exposure around the US and the World. Just in case you were wondering, all our artists are nonexclusive so if you already have a deal worked out you can choose to go directly with that artist or whatnot.

Thursday, July 7th, 2005 -

Drum'n'bass from the last few months

Here are the Drum'n'bass events in LA that I have photographed in the last few months. I don't normally post about them on this site... that is what is for! Here are the latest music galleries


Wednesday, July 6th, 2005 -

Long Exposure Downtown View

downtown los angeles at night from the window of our loftThe view from our loft constantly inspires me to take long exposure photos at night. A few days ago after Soundwavez, I clicked my camera onto its tripod and grabbed my remote and shot a few exposures ranging from a few seconds to about a minute. I also shot the first photo that I have taken of the inside of our loft. I love my EOS 20D! I just need some more lenses... right now I have the Canon EF-S 17-85 and the Canon 100mm USM Macro. I want to buy a TS-E and maybe a 300mm telephoto.

Wednesday, July 6th, 2005 -

Flickr broken on Safari

So I am trying to send some of my photos to a group on Flickr and I'm getting an error in safari. AJAX rocks 100x more than Flash, but please test your code in the common browsers!


Wow that was quick! They fixed it, thanks guys.

Wednesday, July 6th, 2005 -


In the last few days there have been extremely loud, earth shaking explosions that have rattled our lofts at early hours in the morning. At first I though it was something real blowing up, but I waited for the sounds of fire engines and police cars racing to the scene of the crime, yet there was no sign of an emergency response. Penelope and I have surmised that the sounds we were feeling and hearing were part of a Hollywood production being shot somewhere near our loft. Hopefully they will wrap soon!

Sunday, July 3rd, 2005 -

Dial #399 for roadside assistance...

As it turns out, maintaining roadside phones for stranded motorists isn't very cost effective, especially when 90% of drivers carry cell phones with them. Starting July 1st, Metro and the Los Angeles County Service Authority for Freeway Emergencies (LA SAFE) will begin a non-emergency road side assistance cell phone number (#399) for LA County highways. If you already have AAA the operator will forward you there and if not you will receive assistance from the Metro Freeway Service Patrol.

Monday, June 27th, 2005 -

Bay Area Weekend Getaway

This past weekend Penelope and I drove up to the Bay Area to visit Merrilee and Keith. We attended a traditional wedding in Old Town Orange on Friday before we hit the road. The service was beautiful and the church (St. John's Lutheran) was lovely. We had to leave early in order to make it to Oakland at a semi-reasonable hour (2am).

Penelope and I woke early and went for a strenuous jog in the Oakland hills, man those are steep! After the jog, Keith and I surveyed the area in the back of the house where a stairway is to be built. We measured once and cut twice... oh wait did we get that bassackwards? Well anyway we planted stakes where we planned to drill holes for the load bearing members of the stairway. When we were done surveying it was time to pick up Merrilee who had just ridden 62 miles in training for the Death Ride. We prettied ourselves up and headed to the Pagan Re-Wedding of our caving friends Bill and Peri Franzt and Ethan and Courtney Frantz

I have never been to a Pagan Wedding or Re-Wedding and I didn't know what to expect, but the ceremony was really quite beautiful. There were about a hundred people in attendance and after drinking a variety of home made brews we all joined hands in a circle and started singing a short chant which I now forget the words to. The circle doubled back on its self and everybody kissed everybody on the cheek. The ceremony the involved the 7 couples who were remarrying drinking some wine and eating some bread and then spinning a wheel of life which we all also had the chance to spin.

edible flowers and baby greens The next day Penelope and I went for our hilly run again, then we all went to the Montclair Farmers Market where I scored some cheese and organic baby greens that had edible flowers mixed in. The edible flowers were really tasty and a bit spicy almost like horseradish. Merrilee and Keith picked up some fresh non-farmed salmon for dinner wich they later BBQ'd after soaking in a delicious Pernod marinade.

Penelope, Merrilee and Josh headed to Berkeley to visit the Sake Factory and buy Jim a father's day present and Keith and I headed to the lumber yard (Not Home Despot!) to pick up some tubular cement forms for the staircase. With the forms in tow we proceeded to the rental company and rented an auger with a 12" bit.

Neither Keith nor I had ever used an auger before, but we weren't too worried and as it turns out, using an auger is pretty straight forward. The only problem we ran in to was spilling a little bit of gas when we improperly laid the auger down on the ground, but no harm no foul. It took us a little over an hour to drill 6 holes and we even had a chance to take a break and have some water before we returned the auger.

seagull by the golden gate bridge After we were all done and the auger was returned I suggested to Josh, who is a photographer, that we head down to San Francisco to take some photos of the Golden Gate Bridge. We drove in to the city and made way to the Persidio where we parked near Fort Point and took some Bridge photos. I also photographed some sea gulls who were mugging it up for me.

palace of fine art We headed over to the Palace of Fine Arts where the Exploratorium is located and shot that famous landmark. Finally we stopped at Treasure Island to shoot the city from afar and while I shot a few pics, Josh sketched the San Francisco skyline.

When Josh and I pulled up to the house the coals were getting hot and the drinks were flowing. We ate, drank and were merry and in the morning it was hard to get up and leave, but we had to get back to LA. Penelope and I both had a great trip, albeit too short, and we look forward to the next time we make it out to the Bay.

Tuesday, June 21st, 2005 -

What is homelessness?

Downtown Central City East Blogger asks the following questions:

What is homelessness? Why are people homeless? And how is it, that this city is the homeless capital of the world?

To which I responded:

Homelessness is the state of living in which you have no home to hang your hat in. People are homeless for a myriad of reasons ranging from extreme poverty to drug addiction to mental problems. Urban sprawl over a hundred miles of coastline has concentrated the homeless problem into a very small area where they are tolerated. Greater Los Angeles is a huge population center in a state where mental care funding was cut under then governor reagan. Drug addiction is treated only as a crime and not as a disease and thus the war on drugs has created self-imposed internment camps for the hardcore addicts.

Obviously not every homeless person requires the same kind of help. Some need mental health care / medication and counseling, others need drug counseling and rehabilitation, many just need help finding work and affordable housing.

Tuesday, June 21st, 2005 -

Holy Moose Chips!

My fiance updated her blog... it is an honest to goodness miracle I tell you! Soon she will have her photos up there too and post on a more regular basis! Wow! Go Penelope!

Friday, June 17th, 2005 -

Move along there is no crack to smoke here...

When we first moved in to our new loft a few weeks ago, we noticed that scores of homeless and drug dealers hung out at a bus stop on Main St, which we had a perfect view of. We have spent many hours watching people sell, buy and smoke crack down on the street below our house.

Every couple of days we would see an LAPD cruiser pull up and watch as the people scattered like so many cockroaches. During the past week, LAPD has upped their patrols to every hour if not twice an hour. They also have bike cops patrolling, and these are real LAPD officers, not the purple-shirt-wearing security guards. This is having a good effect, as there are much fewer people hanging out and I see far fewer crack deals and crack smoke-a-thons. Thanks, LAPD!

That being said, I do feel that chasing people off and/or arresting them is not the solution to the problem. Our country and her war on drugs makes problems like these worse by treating them as a crime and not a disease. Drug addiction is a disease and it should be treated like a disease. Locking up addicts does not cure their addiction.

I already volunteer a good portion of my time to Search and Rescue, but I realize that there is more I can do down here. I want to interview the people on the streets, to learn their stories and to record them for posterity. I also think volunteering at the Midnight Mission would be a positive use of my time, so I have contacted them and offered my time and services.

Tuesday, June 14th, 2005 -

Public Restrooms (BYOP)

Public Restroom (BYOP)In Downtown LA there are not many places to relieve yourself if you are not a paying customer. If you are homeless and roaming 6th Street and suddenly hear nature calling, you can't just use the public restrooms provided by the city, as there are none. There is no reason you can't just squat down and take a crap on the sidewalk, well no reason other than human decency and/or self-respect.

Just in case you didn't realize that you could use the street as your own personal toilet, local artist Richard McDowell[via blogdowntown] has made wonderful signs that let you know you can. Don't forget to Bring Your Own Paper. According to the rumors on blogdowntown, the signs are part of a film that the artist is making. There are also drugrelated signs in case you have trouble finding a drug dealer in Downtown.


I didn't mention it, but there are actually portapotties a few blocks to the southeast on 6th.

Monday, June 13th, 2005 -

Homeless Ingenuity

One of the more resourceful homeless fellows who frequents my block has come up with quite the ingenious money making system. When a car arrives to park at a meter he offers another plan... give him what change you have and he will trick the meter into thinking you paid. He will even hang out for more than an hour (he always hangs out anyway) and keep "feeding" the meter. The trick is he doesn't put money into the slot, but instead uses a bent paperclip to trick the meter and give you time. Pure genius I tell you.

Monday, June 13th, 2005 -

Loft View

I am really loving the view from our loft. I can see almost all of my favorite buildings... all except One Wilshire... oh well. I took this photo on Thursday night after Respect with my Canon EOS 20D. I think it was about a 20 second exposure.

Saturday, June 11th, 2005 -

Curry House

Today I walked a few blocks to Little Tokyo to meet my mom for lunch. We ate at the Curry House, which is located next to the New Otani hotel. I love the sweet, savory flavor of Japanese curry. I could tell from a block away that I was going to enjoy the fare just from the rich curry aroma that wafted down the street.

I ordered Beef Katsu with extra curry (hot of course) and my mother had the seafood curry. The portions were prodigious and pleasantly arranged and the curry was hot and delicious. The large portion I ordered came with a supplemental bowl of curry to smother the rice and beef katsu in once I finished what was on the plate. I washed it all down with a can of milky sweet Calpico (which in Japan is call Calpis, which sounds somewhat like Cow Piss).

If you find yourself craving curry this is the spot to appease your needs.

Saturday, June 11th, 2005 -

Loving Downtown LA

Penelope and I are all unpacked and yesterday we hit IKEA and scored a dining room table, chairs, some shelves and other assorted items. I have been walking down to Grand Central Market every day to buy produce and meat and cooking dinner every night. I love cooking and I really love our new kitchen. It is very open and well designed with brand new appliances and granite counter tops.

The city is full of energy and life during the day and the streets are bustling with activity. Broadway is a great place to buy cheap clothing and electronics as there are hundreds of discount shops in the Historic Core.

Today Penelope and I walked the two blocks to the LA Flower Market and picked up some star gazers and some other purple flowers for the loft and we also bought a bouquet of assorted flowers and lei for my mom. Her birthday is today and we are meeting her in Little Tokyo for lunch in an hour.

Once things are more organized I will take some photos of the loft and our wonderful view. I also plan on taking photos of the flower mart and other places around our loft.

Tuesday, May 31st, 2005 -

What a day!

Yesterday my superstar, amazing, wonderful fiance and I moved. We woke up at 6AM and drove to my storage unit in Redlands where we rented a truck and emptied my storage unit. Then we went to Penelope's house and loaded up her boxes and furniture and then to my house where we did the same. The 14' U-haul was totally filled up. We then drove to our new loft and moved in. Just the two of us! What a trooper Penelope is! I really love her. Boy am I tired.

Friday, May 27th, 2005 -

Moving tomorrow and Tiger on a Dual G5

Tomorrow we move in to our new loft on Gallery Row in Downtown Los Angeles. I am almost all done packing, probably 2 more boxes to pack. In the morning we are picking up a rental truck near my storage unit, which contains my dishes, assorted cookware and utensils. Then on to Penelope's house to pick up her stuff, then on to my house to pick up my stuff, then on to my office to pick up some boxes of books and my speakers then to Downtown.

Today I got a new system at work... Dualy 1.8Ghz G5 with 2gb ram and 80gb + 250gb drives. Finally Tiger actually works well. On my laptop which is a 1Gz powerbook (2nd or 3rd gen I think... it is Titanium) Tiger crawls and tends to keep the processor fan running. I think there may be a problem with the Laptop apart from the burnt out screen that luckily is still covered by the Extended Apple Care Warranty. Spotlight is much more responsive as are all my applications.

I transfered over my existing setup from my laptop and everything worked flawlessly including all my apps and all my settings... what a time saver. I wish Apple would come out with a G5 powerbook so I could carry my Tiger around with me.

Wednesday, May 25th, 2005 -

Swap Meet @ Betalevel

Betalevel, the electronic cock fight ringleaders, will be host to a data swapmeet that focuses on sneaker-netting and socializing through first person peer-to-peer networking. It should be a fun time and a good source of new music for my collection. The event takes place at the Betalevel underground lair in Chinatown this Friday evening. Bring your karaoke voice.

Tuesday, May 24th, 2005 -

Moving to Downtown LA!

After my apartment of 3 years in Hollywood filled up with raw sewage, I upped and moved in a personal-record-breaking 24 hours. One of my friends was nice enough to offer me a room at his house in tree covered hills of Fullerton and I took the offer. I didn't plan to stay very long, but then I met a sweet, wonderful woman named Penelope who happened to live a few miles down the street from me. So I have lived here for over a year, during which time Penelope and I have engaged to marry next year in May.

I have always wanted to live in an artists loft in Downtown LA and I have been following the loft market over the last 4 or 5 years as it has grown. I didn't think Penelope would want to live in a loft in downtown, but surprisingly, she was open to the idea. I scheduled a tour filled day where we visited 7 or 8 different communities that we were interested in. Out of the 20 lofts we toured, we really only liked a couple of them.

It was hot and we were tired when we parked in front of the Santa Fe Lofts on E 6th street. We were an hour early and our guide was giving a tour, but the security guard let us in after asking if we were there to see the lofts. We sat down and waited and soon enough our guide came in with her current tour who took the credit check forms and left.

She began the tour with the standard model unit with it's very standard looking furniture and the requisite granite counter tops and new appliances. The windows were huge and original (single paned) and the model was on a fairly low floor. The street traffic was quite noisy and the view was non-spectacular. We continued the tour and saw 3 more units.

The third loft we saw was high above the city floor with a beautiful view of Downtown. It had a nicely separated area for the kitchen and dining area on one side, a bedroom on the other, and a nice living area in the middle all with gigantic wide windows that covered the the longest wall of the loft. The loft was filled with natural northern light and we instantly fell in love with it.

After we toured the roof we went down to the office, did a credit check and put down our deposit. We sign the lease on Thursday and we will be moving in very shortly after that!

Tuesday, May 24th, 2005 -

Drudge reaffirms his idiocy

drudgeOnce again, to nobody's surprise, Matt Drudge has proven that he is unable to read a story that he links to from his home page. Drudgereport links to this NY Times story about a break in that happened A YEAR AGO. Way to go moron!

Monday, May 9th, 2005 -

An Open Letter to MOS Burger

Dear MOS Burger,

I am writing you because I feel there is a great untapped market in California for a healthy Japanese style burger joint. We in Los Angeles have few choices for healthy fast food and your restaurant would be a welcomed treat. There are over 10 million people in the greater Los Angeles area who love to eat new and unique styles of food. I personally believe that opening one or two MOS Burgers restaurants in the LA and Orange County areas would be highly profitable and rewarding for your company. Please let me know if and when you decide to open a new location in greater Los Angeles.


A David Bullock

Monday, May 9th, 2005 -

Coachella 2005

This year I did some programming for Golden Voice for their Coachella event. I programmed a dynamic scheduler, called the Coachooser, that enabled concertgoers to customize their schedule based on artists they wanted to see. About 10,000 people used it in total in the 3 days before the concert that it was up. I also attended the concert for a couple of hours on Saturday and I photographed Fantomas.

Fantomas is a kick ass band, lead by Mike Patton (Faith No More, Mr. Bungle) with Buzz Osborne on guitar (Melvins), Trevor Dunn on bass (Mr. Bungle) and Dave Lombardo on drums (Slayer). There was nobody in the photo pit (maybe because some crappy band called Coldplay was on the main stage), so I was able to take some great photos... Ice Cream Man featured my crowd shot.

Monday, May 9th, 2005 -

Desktop nuclear fusion

A scientist at State University of New York in Binghamton has achieved table top nuclear fusion in by heating a dueterium gas soaked lithium tantalate crystal. They are only heating it to 7ºC. It only produces a very small amount of neutrons, but you have to start small.

Friday, April 29th, 2005 -

Cave Team Articles

A few weeks ago, the Search and Rescue team that I am a part of did a training with an embedded journalist. She ended up writing two stories about us.

Tuesday, April 26th, 2005 -


In my talk and in the presentation I have linked in a previous post I stated that Autopsy and The Sleuth Kit are @Stake products, which they no longer are. Brian Carrier is the author and developer of both Autopsy and The Sleuth Kit. He left @Stake several years ago and they gave him full rights to his project.

Tuesday, April 26th, 2005 -

LayerOne 2005

This weekend I attended a security and technology conference called LayerOne. LayerOne is in its second year running and this year was even better than last year. It is really nice to have a security conference in the LA area (toorcon is pretty close being in San Diego).

I only live about half an hour from Pasadena, but I decided to book a hotel room for both Friday and Saturday. I showed up on Friday in the early afternoon because I still had to do some work on my presentation. Just for the record I want to state that Keynote is a far superior program in comparison to Power Point.

I worked on my presentation for a few hours and then decided to walk over to Afloat Sushi, which is one of my favorite restaurants in Pasadena. After eating about 10 plates of sushi I walked back to my hotel room and took a nap. A call to my cellphone from Kelvin awoke me and I rolled out of bed, realizing I still had an hour left of work to do on my Snarl presentation. Luckily Kelvin is easily amused, so I put on Fox News and finished up my work.

Monday, April 25th, 2005 -

Snarl @ LayerOne

I just got home from the Layer One conference in Pasadena today. The conference went well and the attendance was good. I spoke today about my open source project Snarl. It was my first public speaking engagement and I was a bit nervous. All in all I think the talk went well. Here is a copy of my presentation in PDF format(2.3MB) and the original Keynote format(2.1MB). I am currently uploading the Snarl ISO to source forge and I will make another post when I have finished. It will be done in about 4 hours from 5:28PM PST.

Here is the checksum for the new release: MD5 (snarl-1.13.iso) = 451166f6094c94f06d9ed1603472b0c4

Sunday, April 24th, 2005 -

A Busy Search and Rescue Weekend

This weekend our SAR team had a two part training scheduled. The first part was Helitac training in which we were to learn about how to deal with helicopters in the search. We got about half an hour in to it when our team leader received a call from the Volunteer Forces coordinator. There was a need for alpine trained rescuers on Mt. Baldy for a patient evac. Being that 90% of our team is trained for Alpine rescue we responded and drove to the command post at the Mt. Baldy trailhead where we readied our gear. We were about to head up the trail when we heard on the radio that LA's rescue 5 chopper had successfully evac'ed the patient.

We decided to do the second part of our training, Cauhilla Creek Cave, which is near Temecula. This was a fun talus cave that is about a mile hike from the road. We had a reporter and a cameraman with us and I think they enjoyed themselves. It will be interesting to read the article.

At the end of the day we received verification on the possibility that we would be needed for a search for a missing woman in Indio. The call entailed us showing up at the command post in indio at 0630 which required us to leave the Sheriff's Office in San Bernardino at 0500. This meant that I would have to wake up a 0345... joy! So after about 4 short hours of sleep I jumped out of bed and into my car and drove to San Bernardino.

We showed up on time at the CP in Indio and feasted on some egg mcmuffins, yum. After the briefing we were assigned an area to search and we drove out and started searching. We searched for about 4 hours when we were called back to the CP where they said they needed Alpine certified rescuers to find some lost Boy Scouts on San Jacinto. Once our gear was ready and we were about to leave we were notified that the scouts were found and were being pulled of the mountain.

We then ate lunch and continued our search for the missing woman. After a few more hours of looking for her in the hot sun and not finding her we were called back. It was a long weekend and I was tired. I fell asleep as soon as me head hit the pillow.

Monday, April 11th, 2005 -

SRL Invades Los Angeles

Last week on April Fools I read a post on BoingBoing that stated the famed Survival Research Labs of the Bay Area would be in full force with their killer robots on Saturday. Hoping that it wasn't just an April Fools joke, I hurriedly finished removing the rear differential from my 86 Bronco and raced back from the desert to watch some good ol' fashioned robot induced destruction.

Penelope and I showed up about half an hour into the show and couldn't get a good look at at the action due to the crowd that had formed. After trying to shoot photos over the crowd we went back to my car and grabbed out ear protection and then went to the other side. We watched the action for a few moments until it was over and then waited at the front of the riot gates. One of the crew members in an orange suit looked at my camera and said that security wasn't watching so I might as well go take some pictures. That was my cue so I walked in and took a bunch of close-ups of the machines. My favorite photos was of an LAFD fireman wearing 3d glasses and watching the show on a PowerBook.

euthanized robot As we walked around and took photos, one of the robots came back to life to the delight of the SRL crew. They quickly opened the robot's body and euthanized it. It was pretty funny to watch.

Next time SRL shows up I will know to come early and bring a ladder!

Monday, April 4th, 2005 -

Desert Tortoise

 While driving through the desert I spotted not one, but two desert tortoises. They are really cool creatures and are protected under the endangered species act. I slowly walked towards the tortoise making sure not to scare it. When I was about 10 feet away I stopped any laid down. The tortoise then approached me and I photographed it.

Monday, March 14th, 2005 -


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